Shelby, Ridgeway won’t discuss dissolution with Medina

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 July 2014 at 12:00 am

MEDINA – The public has pleaded with leaders of the towns of Shelby and Ridgeway, and the village of Medina to meet and have civil discussions and look for ways to reduce taxes.

The much-anticipated meeting is set for 7 p.m. on July 28 at the Shelby Town Hall. However, the town supervisors in Shelby and Ridgeway don’t like the agenda presented by Medina Mayor Andrew Meier.

He was told by the town leaders to prepare the agenda and listed village dissolution with discussion and feedback from the towns on the plan. Meier also put consolidation of Shelby and Ridgeway towns into one entity on the agenda, and a discussion of shared services among the three entities for water/sewer and street maintenance. Meier created the agenda following discussion with village trustees on Monday.

In emails today (Orleans Hub is included in the chain emails), Ridgeway Town Supervisor Brian Napoli said the joint meeting should only include shared services.

“Town consolidation is an issue for the two Towns, not the village,” Napoli wrote in response to Meier. “We were not included in your dissolution plan. Therefore, you are not included in a discussion of Town consolidation. The Towns will decide if, and when, that happens.”

Napoli chided Meier for setting the agenda.

“This is supposed to be a mutually cooperative effort, not dictated by you,” Napoli said.

Dissolution was supposed to be put on the “back burner,” Napoli said, referencing a transcript for last month’s Village Board meeting that included comments from officials from Shelby and Ridgeway.

If Meier insists on dissolution as a topic at the July 28 meeting, Napoli said Ridgeway town officials won’t attend the session.

Meier responded by email that the village wants “open dialogue on a range of matters.” He said he has sought clarification on the agenda the past two weeks from Ridgeway or Shelby.

Shelby Town Supervisor Skip Draper, in his response, said town consolidation should be struck from the agenda.

“If this discussion were to take place it would be appropriate for it to be held between the two towns,” he said.

As for dissolution, Draper said, “it may be appropriate for the towns to make some type of statement regarding the plan.” But Meier’s request for discussion about the plan was rebuffed.

“(Discussion) should have happened as the plan was prepared (not after the fact),” Draper said.

The Shelby town supervisor said shared services is a good starting point to work to bring down taxes in the community.

“If we focus on Shared Services with open minds and not allow the discussion to get bogged down, we may be able to do some good and produce favorable outcomes for all,” he said. “I believe this is what people in general want and we owe it to them to have that discussion. Further, I feel we should be willing to have a discussion regarding Shared Services in general and not limit it to street maintenance and water/sewer.”

He asked if Meier and the Village Board would be open to a shared services discussion.