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Colonie’s finances ranked among the worst

Supervisor says news expected, while her opponent attacks her administration

— Mahan said the Town of Colonie has been working under a 10-year financial plan, now in its sixth year, and it will be a “long-term process” to build reserves. The town finished 2011 with a $700,000 fund balance, the first positive fund balance since 2005. Mahan said she believes the town’s 2012 audit will find just over a $1 million fund balance.

“Having a low tax rate and being able to manage our services and building our reserves, I definitely think we’re moving in a positive direction,” Mahan said.

Mahan said there are “so many good things” in the Town of Colonie the monitoring system didn’t highlight, including an “excellent tax rate, quality of services” and safety.

DiNapoli said his monitoring system is supposed to serve as a wake-up call for the municipalities.

“I am confident this new early warning system will motivate elected leaders and their constituents to work together to help their municipality become more efficient, more creative, more forward-thinking and more effective with the resources that are available,” DiNapoli said in a statement.

Todd Drake, Mahan’s Republican challenger in the upcoming election, said he believes the comptroller’s report was “alarming,” and said Colonie “is heading down a path of fiscal disaster.”

“That is why I believe we need to create new sources of revenue, along with high-paying jobs, that can effectively address the costs and needs associated with a growing populating and mounting obligations,” Drake said in a statement.

Drake specifically criticized the town’s landfill deal and a one-time tax, calling such measures short-term fixes. He said working on an effective economic development plan, including redeveloping Route 7 and Route 5 corridors, could help strengthen the town’s financial situation.

Mahan, on other hand, said she doesn’t plan on letting DiNapoli’s report affect her campaign plans.

“As far as the campaign goes, that’s up to the voters,” Mahan said. “Do they like the direction the town is going in now, or were they more comfortable when the town was placed in devastating financial situation and there were a lot of things to be cleaned up?”

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