Again this election year, Clifton Park Town Supervisor Phil Barrett is running unopposed.
If you are one of the many Clifton Park residents who are disappointed by this, please do not forget that you have the option of voting for a write-in candidate. You can write in any valid name as a protest vote OR write in someone who would definitely make a good town supervisor, namely Dale Kelley, a well-qualified resident of Clifton Park. Earlier in the year, he announced that he wanted to “rock the boat” in a Republican primary. Unfortunately, sources that could have provided sufficient financial backing did not, which is too bad.
Dale is more than well-qualified. He is a long-time, well-respected resident of Clifton Park. He is a Republican fiscal conservative. Among his accomplishments, he is a former Town Board member, as well as a former Planning Board member. He has been active in Clifton Park in many capacities in many positive ways. AND, he believes in term limits and its benefits.
My family and I have lived in Clifton Park since 1973, and I have been a registered Republican for almost as long. I feel that changes are necessary and overdue.
Why should you vote against Supervisor Barrett? Maybe you are one of hundreds (or thousands) of people who have signed petitions to the Town requesting affordable common sense improvements, and have been ignored or dismissed. Maybe you have asked the supervisor a straightforward question, and have received an evasive, confusing response or no answer at all. Maybe you perceive the supervisor to be arrogant and condescending. Maybe you have witnessed the supervisor become irate with people who have good ideas that he does not like. Maybe you think he has forced good Town employees into early retirement just so he can look good when presenting a budget. Maybe you wonder why he appears to hoard a ten million dollar or more Town surplus.
Maybe you believe that the supervisor wants all new Town employees and key officials to be absolute yes people. This takes important vibrancy right out of government.
Maybe you wonder why the old Kmart building sits vacant after the supervisor vehemently prevented a good project, which had the approval from the Town’s own Planning Department, from going forward. The project would have produced significant revenue for the Town.
Maybe you object to the supervisor failing to negotiate in good faith with Shenendehowa to purchase land for a fair price in the town center. He apparently did not seek the opinion of the Town’s Open Space Committee before forcing the school district to go out to bid. You may wonder why the Town knowingly submitted an invalid bid. And now the Town has still refused to negotiate a fair price. Penny wise, pound foolish. If the sale goes through it will negatively impact ALL Shendehowa taxpayers.
OR, maybe you simply feel that 18 years on the job is enough, and that the Town Supervisor position is not a career!
Anton G. Salecker
Clifton Park, NY