Citing significant accomplishments on behalf of town residents in 2018, the four Democratic members of the Niskayuna Town Board have released their 2019 priorities for the town. Town Board members John Della Ratta, Denise Murphy McGraw, Bill McPartlon and Lisa Weber say they will continue to focus on accountability, fiscal restraint and quality services in the upcoming year.
The Town Board members list among their accomplishments in 2018:
– an overhaul of the supervisor’s proposed budget in which she cut services, raised taxes, and raided the town’s “rainy day” fund. The revised budget that was approved unanimously maintained the tax cuts enacted in 2017, protected family-friendly programs, reaffirmed a commitment to government transparency by restoring funds for public access television, saved the award-winning high school Youth Court program from the chopping block, added funding for a town grant writer, and protected the contingency fund;
– defending the environment by focusing on the increased use of solar energy and bringing online a new state-of-the-art waste water treatment plant with the cost-saving and environmental protection goal of net zero energy consumption;
– ensuring streets are safe and well maintained;
– a move forward on improving cellular communication service in town;
– investing in the town workforce by successfully negotiating new collective bargaining agreements for the police department and water and sewer department employees;
– renamed Town Hall in honor of longtime supervisor Edwin D Reilly; and
– continuing to offer some of the best community programs in the Capital Region.
This year, the Town Board looks to build on the spirit of cooperation to enact the following priorities:
– invest in capital improvements to town parks and facilities;
– enact more stringent fiscal policies for the use of contingency funds;
– support the town workforce by providing clear policy direction, training opportunities as well as a thorough review of fulltime employee salaries to bring about parity much the way it was done for part-time employees in 2018;
– improve the quality of life for residents by continuing to work to attract additional internet and cable television providers to the town; and
– maintain a commitment to safe streets and infrastructure improvements.