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New super unveils plans

Newly elected Niskayuna Supervisor Joe Landry said continuing the town's economic development initiative and attempting to find areas of savings in the budget will be key areas of interest during his two-year term.

I'm coming into office under a budget that was passed last year because that's how the system works, said Landry. "Just because money is appropriated doesn't mean you have to spend it, though."

An attorney who has been in private practice for 12 years, Landry will head an all-Democratic town board in 2008.

The board acknowledged the re-election of Liz Orzel-Kaspar and welcomed new member Julie McDonnell at a swearing-in ceremony on Sunday, Jan. 6.

Though Landry is a relative newcomer to politics, he's provided legal services to the state Assembly and has also served as part-time counsel to the Schenectady County Legislature.

Landry said it's part of his job as Niskayuna supervisor to assist the county with its economic development initiatives. He said he'll work closely with Schenectady County Commissioner of Economic Development and Planning and Metroplex Chairman Ray Gillen to improve various areas, including the industrial complex on Hillside Avenue and the St. James Square shopping plaza.

"What we're looking for is smart growth," said Landry. "Some areas like St. James Square on Balltown Road are underutilized, and as a board, we need to work with the private businesses there and the owners of the plaza."

Landry replaced fellow Democrat, Luke Smith, who stepped down after four terms as supervisor of Niskayuna.

Landry has lived in Niskayuna for the past 10 years and has called the Capital District his home for more than 20 years. He has a wife, Karen, and three children, Elizabeth, Julianne and Michael.

"I like Niskayuna," said Landry. "People know me here, I've coached half the kids in Niskayuna in one sport or another, and I hope I can take this town further."

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