Saturday, November 05, 2011
Not only is this team on TV with a 30 second commercial, they are on the radio with a 30 second commercial beginning today and on through election day.
This commercial catches up on the time line of endorsements and issues which have changed since the TV commercial was produced.
Heard this morning on WTRY.
Thursday, October 06, 2011
Budget Warning in North Greenbush
As the elected Highway Superintendent in North Greenbush, I must react to the 2012 Budget with a warning to taxpayers. Last year the Town Board took more than $71,000 in Highway PILOT funds from the Highway Department to pay for a General Fund spending spree rather than to accept the proposed cuts of the Supervisor.
During the year, I have watched the fund balances in the Highway Budget change without my knowledge or my approval. The numbers have changed without my approval or transfer resolutions from the Town Board. Premo noted that more than $370,000 in set aside highway funds were in his budget at the beginning of last year and in the last few months, balance sheets have shown amounts as low as minus $90,000 one week and plus $50,000 the next.
While I was able to submit a budget proposal for 2012 that should not raise the Highway Tax rate which is a separate tax fund from the General Fund, my warnings not to use the Highway PILOT Funds for General Fund expenses will force a significant shortfall in the next budget (2013) with no cushion in 2012 for unexpected occurrences.
It appears the Town Board has used most of the Highway Fund Balance leaving us in a unacceptable cash position for 2012 and beyond.
The Town Board should take responsibility for the money they needed to fund their spending in Town Hall and to stop taking Highway PILOT Funds to pay these expenses. Now I do not have funds needed to address added expenses of increased health, pension and contract costs expected and forecasted by the State Comptroller.
My department provides critical services to the developments appearing all over town. Many receive tax breaks from the county, and we receive no direct tax revenue to provide those services. Instead we rely on PILOT (Payments in lieu of taxes)money to provide services and plan for our future which had included building a long needed addition to our garage. It appears that plan is gone because the money to build it was taken from us.
N.G. Highway Superintendent
Monday, September 26, 2011
Now that voters have ensured that we will have an election with choices for Supervisor, all that is left is to give them a close up view of the candidates themselves to help them make this important decision for our community and its future.
“I believe that each of us has an obligation to take this test before the voters so that they are equipped with an understanding of the abilities, vision and direction that each of us would take the town”, stated Smith.
Smith urged his opponent to accept this challenge and to work with him to facilitate the participation of a non partisan organization to moderate the event such as the Rensselaer County League of Women Voters who have performed this service in the past.
Sunday, September 25, 2011
The North Greenbush Democratic Committee has announced its endorsement of a slate of Democrats for this fall’s town elections. Chairman Dan Ashley said the slate reflects the Democratic Committee’s commitment to providing people a choice between candidates on elections day as a means of preserving our two party system.
The Committee endorsed Charles B. Smith for Supervisor along with former Councilman Ernest Kern and Andria Fisher for Town Council. The committee also endorsed Michael Derevlany for Receiver of Taxes to replace the retiring Kyran Devery. Mr. Derevlany holds an MBA in Finance from Adelphi University and a J.D. Degree from PACE University. Rounding out the endorsements is Highway Superintendent Mark Premo who also serves as the Deputy Supervisor.
“Our candidates are committed to progress in North Greenbush while shining the light of openness on the business of town government”, stated Ashley. Once elected, all town board meetings will again be broadcast on cable TV Public Access so people can see and hear their town board in action from the comfort of their homes. In addition, the candidates are committed to see action on the construction of the I-90 Connector to relieve the long commutes we are experiencing and to promote economic development along the corridor and the RPI Tech Park.
The Democratic Committee also endorsed Ray Elliott and Tom Breslin for State Supreme Court, Gary Gordon for Sheriff and Richard McNally for District Attorney.
Saturday, September 24, 2011
Friday, July 29, 2011
Monday, July 25, 2011
After an unexpected declination by the town Democratic Committee’s candidate for Town Supervisor, Democratic Committee member Charles B. Smith has agreed to accept the party nomination for Town Supervisor. The nomination was legally formalized Friday when a Committee to Fill Vacancies filed a notarized acceptance at the Board of Elections.
“The unexpected declination left us little time to recruit a candidate but we realized that we had the most honest, well equipped, committed and informed candidate here on our town committee all along in Charles Smith”, stated Chairman Dan Ashley.
“This is not something I planned to do”, stated Smith, however, people deserve a choice in November and the Republican candidate, Al Spain, is attempting to corrupt the two party system by entering a primary for the Democratic nomination after accepting the Republican nomination. “It’s all about power and winning without standing for a vision or principles for too many in North Greenbush politics”, stated Smith.
I am a lifelong Democrat who believes in the checks and balances provided by a vibrant two party system. As a committed Democrat, I could not in good conscience accept a Republican nomination. It is out of a sense of obligation and duty to my town and my party that I have accepted this nomination, stated Smith.
My opponent will be asked to explain to Democratic voters how he can claim to be a Democrat while voting 100% with the GOP majority on the town board. He even voted to place a Republican on the town board when he could have displayed his party’s conscience by voting with the Democratic Supervisor for a qualified Democrat, stated Smith. “Mr. Spain has acted to damage the Town Democratic Committee numerous times since he was elected to the town board three years ago”, stated Chairman Ashley. He continues to encourage his brother to disobey a court ordered repayment of more than $3,500 he misappropriated from the Town Committee checking account and used his town position to provide his brother with free legal services in this case by appointing an out of town attorney to a paid town job.” These actions have delayed the court ordered repayment which even now is being ignored after the Sheriff served a garnishment order.
Town Democrats will have a choice between a “double dipping” Republican candidate who answers to the Republican Party in the City of Troy where he holds a $73,576 a year job and a well equipped Democratic candidate who understand ethics, respects the law, and is thoroughly familiar with town government , concluded Ashley.
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
North Greenbush Democrats will for the first time select their candidates through the Primary Election method, having ended the Caucus system. This will open up the selection process while affording absentee voting for the first time in the selection of Town Democratic Party candidates. We are especially excited that registered Democrats who are members of the armed services unable to be present on election day will be able to vote on their party’s nominees to town offices for the first time should there be any challenges to the party’s nominees. The Caucus method failed to permit absentee voting.
The Committee encourages new faces to become involved and share your talents to better our quality of life. We especially encourage recent college graduates to consider public service. Anyone interested in serving in a town elective office may send a resume and cover letter to the North Greenbush Democratic Committee, Box 675, Wynantskill, NY 12198 or Email to “firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also contact any Committee member listed on our web page at ngbdems.blogspot.com.
Monday, February 28, 2011
Resolution: It shall be the policy of the North Greenbush Democratic Committee to consider for party nomination to town elective office, only candidates Registered in the Democratic Party.
In addition, the North Greenbush Democratic Committee will not endorse any candidate who is also endorsed by the Town Republican Committee in order to ensure voter choice and candidates who fully support the party’s platform.
• Immediate Passage of the Completed and Delivered Comprehensive Plan of 2006.
• Oppose all no bid contracts such as that recently awarded by this Board for another Comprehensive Plan.
• Adopt resolution to urge construction of the I-90 Connector as part of the national economic stimulus and recovery.
• Reform Planning Board Operations by Requiring Hearing to begin at the time Scheduled and prohibiting hearings from beginning after 9 p.m. or to be adjourned to continue after 9 p.m and prohibiting Hearings from continuing after 11 p.m..
• Restore Transparency in Government by Broadcasting Town Board Meetings on Public Access.
• Protect residents with reasonable construction hours for developments.
• Reform Building Department through Reorganization and Appointment of a PE to provide engineering services and manage unionized employees.
• When the existing labor contract is being renegotiated, to remove all management employees, ie Building Department Head, Assessor etc from union bargaining units.
• Comprehensive Recycling Program to deal with electronics, batteries, paints and materials which haulers decline to accept.
• Require Town Board approval as the legal appointing authority for any waiver request to State Retirement System.
• Affirm that all appointments other than the secretary to the Supervisor and Deputy Supervisor are the exclusive prerogative of the full town board.
• Require an updated traffic impact analysis before new development can occur at 4&43.
• Reform Budget Process by Full Disclosure of All Raises and Placing Budget On Line for full public access.
• Reform contracts which improperly gave away health insurance buyouts without common sense guidelines. (You must first be enrolled in a program in order to be eligible to receive a buyout.)
• Reform policies and procedures for employee retirement benefits to conform to platform.
• Full annual Health Insurance reviews to affirm eligibility of all those receiving taxpayer funded health insurance and affirmation of results by elected Town Board.
• Retention of a Professional Contract Administrator for all existing and future water contracts in NG.
• Adopt a Capital Budget as Recommended by the NYS Comptroller.
• Consolidation of all water districts pursuant to new State Law designed to streamline and reduce cost of government.