Yates supervisor reiterates financial successes for town with results for residents

Posted 18 September 2023 at 9:33 am


“Time for sweeping change.” Now there’s a line from Mr. Lauricella’s September 12th letter to Hub readers that needs explaining!

But first a response to concerns Mr. Lauricella has about what the “math shows.” On January 1, 2016, as the newly elected Yates Town Supervisor, the town was operating on a nearly depleted general reserve fund. The budget for 2016 that John Riggi and I inherited from the previous town board was projected to have a large deficit in the general reserve fund by the end of the year.

That negative general reserve fund trend, combined with our costly, multi-year, legal fight against Apex Clean Energy, made it very difficult to stay under the tax cap the next few years, but we did until 2021.

However, even with the 2021 Town Tax Rate increases designed to remediate the negative general reserve fund, the Yates taxpayers’ Combined Tax Rate was the 2nd lowest of six Orleans County towns for “Inside the Village,” and the 4th lowest of ten Orleans County towns for “Outside the Village,” for that year.

For the current 2023 fiscal year, Yates taxpayers’ Combined Tax Rate is the lowest of six towns “Inside the Village,” and the 3rd lowest of 10 towns “Outside the Village,” in Orleans County.

Speaking of “taxpayers first,” Mr. Lauricella and Mr. Colon, what are the “sweeping changes,” you intend to make if elected? The taxpayers deserve to know.

Would you have negotiated a fair and sustainable contract with the SEIU for our hardworking highway team?

Would you have spent sufficient funds to defend the town against Apex Clean Energy?

Would you have extended access to public water to include Goodwin and Hall roads in Water District 4?

Would you have taken out a short-term loan while interest rates were very low to purchase a new highway tractor?

Would you have supported the Lyndonville Fire Department by facilitating the creation of the Joint Fire District?

Would you have frozen the town board and town supervisor pay for the last eight years?

These are all things we did.

With all due respect, what would you have done differently?  What’s your “sweeping” plan?

I admit I’ve learned a few things about municipal government the hard way. But one thing I would not change are those I am currently serving with on the town board.

John Riggi is a retired Medical Device and Pharma Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs Executive, and he is in his 8th year as Town Councilman and Deputy Town Supervisor.

Susan Hrovat is a Social Work and Law Enforcement officer with over 30 years’ experience, and she has served as a Town Councilwoman for 4 years and on the Lyndonville School Board for over 10 years.

Meanwhile, I very respectfully ask Yates voters to re-elect John Riggi, Susan Hrovat, and me.  And if you have any questions for me, please don’t hesitate to call me at 716-946-2075.

Jim Simon

Yates Town Supervisor