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Colonie Town Board saves LifeGuard program for four months

Whether audience members were for it, or against it, the Colonie EMS LifeGuard Air Rescue program has been extended until December 31, 2008, as a result of tonight's (Thursday, August 14) public hearing during a Town Board Meeting.

After ten spoke in favor of the program, little opposition was heard on the program until Town Supervisor Paula Mahan and Town Attorney Michael Magguilli presented their own research which implicated costs and liability involved with the program.

When UPSEU Labor Relations Representative Gary Favro spoke, he made an offer the supervisor couldn't refuse: to pay for an outside auditor to examine the costs and revenue of the LifeGuard program.

Based on that stipulation, and that the Town would send surveys to the homes of all residents in the Town asking their opinion on whether they want to pay, with their tax dollars, to continue the program, the Supervisor voted aye to extending the program until December of 2008.

Republican Councilman Brian Hogan made two attempts at ammending the resolution on the agenda to push the date back even later--the first time he tried pushing it to December 31, 2009 and the second to July 1, 2009. Both extensions failed, so the board unanimously voted on the December 31, 2008 date.

After the meeting, Favro said that he did mean his offer to pay for the audit, and that he was glad the Town would be taking him up on it so that they could learn more information about the program, though he felt four months would not be enough. At the same time, he said, he was glad the Town voted to continue the program for now.

For more on this story, read \The Insighter at http://spotlightnews.com/blogs/acohn/view_blog.php?blog_id=1218816814

or

check back at www.spotlightnews.com, or read the Aug. 20 print edition of the Colonie Spotlight.""

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