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FEMA dollars debate rages on

Glenville Town Councilman and Republican candidate for Glenville Town Supervisor Chris Koetzle is proposing a fund for Federal Emergency Management Agency money the town received after the December 2008 ice storms, totaling in at $425,000.

The plan, called REDI (Revitalization and Economic Development Investment), would be a program that placed the FEMA money in a fund that would soley be used for investing in economic development projects within the Town Center, which includes the stretch of Route 50 surrounding the old K-Mart building. Other ideas for spending the money that are on the table include the purchase of new public works trucks and paving roads, or putting it in the fund balance while the 2010 budget is created.

It kind of came to me as we were looking at what to do with the FEMA money, said Koetzle. "In this instance we can invest it and get it to a point where we can have businesses come in and have more property taxes and we'll end up making more in tax revenues in the long run."

Koetzle said that he wants to pass a resolution where the town isn't spending the money right away, but the money is secured.

"The board is ready to spend it on trucks or paving, and before they do that they should have the opportunity to look at what else they can do with that money," said Koetzle.

He said he isn't sure if his resolution is going to get support from other board members, but said he "thinks that it's something important to talk about and be able to see a vision of what's important here."

Rick DiCresce, owner of Enterprise Auto Sales in the Town Center, supports the REDI plan.

"If I spent all my money developing this property and making it look good and didn't have money to buy cars I wouldn't be in business very long," said DiCresce.

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