Answer: The future of Bethlehem requires experienced, professional leaders who can oversee growth and development while protecting our community interests. I believe I have demonstrated to the town residents that I have that ability.
A: Nine years on the Town Board has given me the knowledge to protect the services that our residents expect for their tax dollars. Fortunately, we are in a solid financial position to continue to support those services. However, we are continually facing challenges such as providing clean drinking water with modern infrastructure and keeping our residents safe with a committed and responsive police force while also preparing for projected revenue losses in the next few years. I have endeavored to make informed and reasonable decisions, without pursuing a personal agenda, that best represents the priorities of our town residents.
A: Development, both residential and commercial, is the biggest challenge, as this will forever change the nature of our community. We must hold the line against uncontrolled sprawl, create clearly defined and enforceable development standards and take the lead in areas of competing multiple jurisdictions, such as those involving county or state interests. Although we are now on solid ground, the Town’s financial stability and the continued provision of services will be threatened in the next few years by fiscal pressure at the state and county level, as well as by other jurisdictions. Critically important EMS and local fire services will find it increasingly difficult to maintain services to our residents under the current arrangements. The town must be an active participant in finding new solutions to protect these and other essential services.
A: We must pursue new ways of doing business if we are to continue to provide the high level of services that has made Bethlehem a desirable community for all generations. We need to find ways to recruit and support our dedicated and professional work force to provide those services. I want to engage our state representatives to eliminate statutory barriers to the sharing of health insurance benefits for all local government employees. We must pursue shared arrangements with Albany county and the City of Albany and other neighboring towns to ensure the most efficient provision of services. It’s not enough though to just maintain the status quo. We must also keep our eyes on anticipating the future needs of Bethlehem as it grows including a more modern and efficient justice center as well as the creation of a multi service community center to meet the needs of all residents.