UPDATE ADDED 12-6-16:
Guess the supervisor's office was able to find the missing Attorney Rossi letter right after I posted the blog yesterday. What a coincidence!
Anyway, here is the pdf of Attorney Rossi's letter.
Santa is Coming to Town on a white stallion pulling a sleigh with his bag of city tricks on board!
Did you read the message from Supervisor Tyksinski in the December 2016 edition of the Town Crier titled, "City of New Hartford - What it means to it's residents and taxpayers"?
Supervisor Tyksinski ended his message by saying he wants to hear comments from Town residents.
Well, okay! I'm kind of busy right now, but I will start it off.
First let me backtrack a little...
The town becoming a city was already looked into back in 2002. According to the September 18, 2002 adopted town board minutes:
Creation of CityI thought the letter to the town board by Attorney Rossi mentioned in the 2002 minutes would make for interesting reading so I FOILed it a few weeks ago. It should be easy to locate since I knew that one of the first things the Earl Reed administration did was to use taxpayer money to have ALL of Attorney Rossi's (the previous attorney for the town under Ralph Humphreys) files copied.
Attorney Vincent Rossi explained that it does not make sense for Town of New Hartford to do this. There are advantages and disadvantages. If you are a city you are obligated to maintain all roads in your geographical area that would include all arterials, highways, state and county roads. The only exception would be an interstate road such as the New York State Thruway. Attorney Rossi has sent a letter to the Town Board members on this matter.
Mr. Rossi further stated that there would be no more water districts, sewer districts and lighting districts. The New York State Legislature would have to grant a City Charter. Deputy Supervisor Backman asked Attorney Rossi about the Village and the Attorney explained that the new boundary would end at the Village Line. Regarding revenues, there would be Sales Tax advantages and revenue sharing advantage. There is no way that the Charter would be approved by the State without a referendum. The Police Chief also stated that there would be Public Safety ramifications.
The town clerk answered my FOIL by saying the supervisor's office was unable to locate the letter from Attorney Rossi. Darn, I am surprised that records would be destroyed particularly such important documents from an attorney. Oh, well, there is always research which, by the way, is my forte.
I will be picking the supervisor's diatribe apart gradually as time permits, but let me start with his statement that "elimination of all Town taxes and assessments".
Ho...ho...ho...of course, town taxes and assessments would be eliminated, but they would be replaced with city taxes and assessments! A city doesn't charge town taxes, duh!
Next, he stated "Our school system would remain as it is..."
Really? Have you taken into consideration Education Law Section 2 - Definitions #16 (b) and (c) Supervisor?
It says in short that "whenever a city shall be created after January first, nineteen hundred fifty, that school district shall become a city school district if it is (2) partly without and partly within the city and then contains the whole or the greater portion of the children of the city between birth and eighteen years of age, as shown by the school census..."
I'm no lawyer, but I do believe that law describes the New Hartford Central School District and I would venture a guess that it might affect those students who live in the NYM School District as well. Perhaps the town attorney can check into this law and get back to the taxpayers in the next Town Crier.
Also, as a city, my research found that the school district's legal debt limit would be reduced to 5%.
My sources tell me there may be other possible affects on the school district as well. Hmmm...no city created in NYS since 1942! Wonder why?
If you haven't read the Supervisor's message, you can access it on the Town Crier website on page 11 of the December 2016 edition.