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Drake questions Mahan administration transparency

Oft-referenced 10-year financial plan subject of words disagreement between supervisor candidates

Republican candidate for Colonie own Supervisor Todd Drake held a press event on the lawn of Town Hall Wednesday, Oct. 2, to call for greater transparency in town government.

Republican candidate for Colonie own Supervisor Todd Drake held a press event on the lawn of Town Hall Wednesday, Oct. 2, to call for greater transparency in town government. Photo by Billy DeLap.

— Mahan said her administration created a 10-year plan when she entered office in 2008 to help improve the town’s financial situation. Six years into that plan, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s office both put the town on a list of distressed municipalities and released a statement saying that Colonie had significantly improved its financial situation.

The document in question can be found on the Town of Colonie website under “Key Documents.” The document is labeled “Strategic Financial Management Plan” and is dated May of 2008. The plan lists the causes of the deficit, short-term objectives, long-term objectives and goals.

At his press conference, Drake outlined a two-part disclosure and management proposal. The first part would require that financial statements be issued quarterly instead of yearly. The reports could be found online, in print at Town Hall and at the public library.

Part two of the proposal is a four-year financial plan to address what Drake argues is a lack of comprehensive long-term financial planning. The plan would clarify long-term consequences of town budgetary actions and create in early warning system of potential fiscal trouble and reduce the reliance on fiscal gimmicks.

Mahan scoffed at Drake’s assertions of a lack of transparency in town government.

“Our administration is very transparent,” Mahan said. “That’s his opinion, but I haven’t seen him around Town Hall. He’s not accurate in his statements. Prior to my administration the town was not transparent. We encourage people to come in and meet with the comptroller and ask questions.”

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