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Rotterdam gets organized

Organizational meeting sparks debates, lasts more than 4 hours

Rotterdam's annual organizational meeting was far from ordinary after stretching four and a half hours long to set up town business for 2011.

While some people were resting from New Year's Eve festivities, the Rotterdam Town Board held its organizational meeting on Saturday, Jan. 1, to appoint and reappoint town employees and set up the year's meeting schedule along with other town business. At 1 p.m. the town board meeting began and Democrat Wayne Calder was sworn in after being elected to replace Republican Councilman Gerrad Parisi. Soon the tone of the meeting was set with an executive session after remarks from Supervisor Frank Del Gallo to inform Calder of town employee matters on the agenda. Later during the meeting there were also two recesses held adding to the lengthy meeting, which ended at 5:30 p.m.

Calder shared some opening remarks after being sworn in by Town Attorney Joseph Liccardi.

I'm going to have 12 months here and during that 12 months you are going to get everything that I can give regardless of how you voted, none of that matters anymore, said Calder. "I promise you that every decision that I make will be based for the betterment for the community and that is the best that I can give you and thank you for everybody that helped."

For the first day on the job, Calder got a true sense of what is like to be a Town Board member as residents became noticeably drained, most leaving before the end, through the lengthy meeting and tensioned started to flare between board members.

Before digging into the over 50 resolutions and two public hearings, Del Gallo shared remarks about the progress made in the town during 2010 when the Democrats seized control of the board.

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