ROTTERDAM: Four vie for board seats

Denny, 62, a registered Democrat endorsed by the Republican Party, is also a Rotterdam native. He has worked for the town for more than 20 years in various departments and is retiring in January. He said he is qualified for a position in town government because he understands the inner workings of the town.

"I'm not a lawyer or doctor; I'm an everyday working, hands-on kind of guy," Denny said. "I have been involved in a lot of things, and I know what's going on because I've worked there. I have a lot of knowledge about the town and good ideas to help save the town some money."

All four candidates feel they have what it takes to create positive change in the town, including ways to lessen the property tax burden and fix water problems within the town.

Leet said the town should create a schedule for reassessing property to prevent the shocking changes that the current reassessment project created.

Lessening the burden of taxes on town residents is a large concern for each of the candidates.

Silva said the town should take a better look at the reassessment because he feels homes and properties were assessed wrong, which has caused the sharp increase in property taxes.

Denny agreed. He said the town should have used its own personnel to complete the reassessment project rather than hire a private firm.

Della Villa said the way to decrease the property tax burden is to increase the tax base by bringing in more business. Silva agreed, saying the town should develop a comprehensive business plan.

The four candidates also have plans to tackle the town's water issues, including problems with drainage at Masullo Estates, the lack of sewers and a new water tower in Rotterdam Junction.

Leet and Silva want the whole town to address these issues, not just those who would be affected.

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