SARATOGA SPRINGS: Keehn, Boyd square off

"I don't think there is a debate as to whether there is a need for a new police station," said Boyd. "But I think the most important thing we could do is make a commitment to public safety that we can afford."

Keehn disagreed. "We've been studying this issue for 18 years. The time to build this facility is now," said Keehn.

On taxes

Keehn said the city has an operating deficit of $1 million and noted the 4.5 percent tax increase that occurred last year, even after realizing more video lottery terminal revenue than the city had expected.

"It seems the more we have, the more we spend," said the mayor. She said the city should lower its annual increase to 3 percent.

"I couldn't have said it better myself," replied Boyd. He referred back to the city's capital program as an example of overspending. He reiterated that all of the projects, particularly the public safety facility, were worthy ones, but said the city couldn't afford to do them in the proposed timeline.

When asked about the $6.3 million indoor recreation facility, Boyd said, "That horse is already out of the barn."

He said he would like to see less of a focus on only sports as recreation and more of a partnership with existing area facilities like the Arts Council and the Spa Little Theater. "Why should we differentiate sports from, say, a violin lesson or the theater?" he asked.

Keehn noted that the original funds needed for the facility were bonded before she became mayor. She increased the bonded funds for the facility after "it became very clear that the original $2 million was not going to get us very far."

On water

Both candidates said they supported a city water system independent from the Saratoga County system.

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