continued “It’s a burden, and it looks awful the way it is,” Leach said. “I’ve had meetings with Mr. Benson, and he has had meetings with just about all of us at one time or another to explain his position and his ability to complete the project. Everyone thinks individually, and a couple of people in the area try to admonish me for thinking the way I do.”
Marcia Aronowitz, who is secretary of the Loudonwood East Homeowners Association, said she does not understand why Leach came out in support of the project, and there was never a caucus held to discuss the association’s stance on the project.
“Mr. Leach has no right talking for us,” she said. “I can’t believe what they’re trying to do.”
She said the residents usually do not care about what goes on around the area but because this project would impact their property values, they have begun to take notice.
“This is more serious,” Aronowitz said. “This impacts our property value. … Since they [the developers] know they’re not going to sell condos, what happens? Just like in Florida, they rent it. … We’re not stupid people, we can figure out what’s going on.”
The McGuirks said they have felt that in the past there was no one representing them against developers, but now they feel the residents’ complaints are being heard and received.
“There’s nobody representing the neighborhood,” Jim said. “We feel now that this Planning Board and this administration is listening.”
The role of neighborhood associations
Mahan said the town works with several heads of the neighborhood associations, such as the East Latham Homeowners Association, the West Latham Homeowners Association, the Greater Loudonville Association and the Loudonwood East Homeowners Association.
The members meet with Mahan, Councilwoman Linda Murphy, the liaison from the Town Board, and sometimes Colonie Police Chief Steve Heider. They go over an agenda with various issues brought up by the associations.