November 17, 2007

Less sewage than expected

There always seems to be more sewage than expected, but there had to be an exception. Matt Cooper reports in this week's Dryden Courier that the Cortland Road Sewer district appears to be sending less sewage to the Village of Dryden's Waterwater Treatment Plant than anyone had thought likely. Installing those flowmeters seems to have produced some pleasantly surprising data.

Elsewhere in that article, Cooper notes that the Town's 2008 spending will climb 7.9%, while the tax levy will climb 2% and the tax rate will remain flat. The Town increased spending from its fund balance by 35% to keep the tax rate. Public works spending jumped 191.5%, thanks in part to $401,000 of higher contract costs and $385,000 for salt storage. Fire company spending also increased, with Varna and Etna receiving the biggest increases from the town, though not as much as they had requested.

Near the end of the article, in the continuing discussion of the problems of Lower Creek Road's 10mph curve, former Supervisor candidate Cheryl Nelson makes another surprising (to me) suggestion: that the Town contract for police. After a campaign in which she seemed to call for keeping government small and cheap, we now have her calling for a full-time Supervisor, a single paid fire department, and police to supplement the Sheriff's Department. As it happens, I think the Town should probably talk with the Village of Dryden about contracting some coverage, but it's very confusing to see this after the last few months.

Also on the front page, Cooper visits the Dryden Middle School production of Alice in Wonderland, which sounds like it was gigantic, in cast, sets, and production numbers.

On the opinion page, the editorial is pretty confusing. It seems to call for non-partisan local government, but spends most of its time decrying one-party government. When it gets to Dryden, they write:

Dryden is even more evenly split than Newfield with regard to major party affiliations: 2967 Democrats and 2,701 Republicans. But the number of unaffiliated and minor party candidates [voters?] is nearly as large a number.

In Dryden, it seems as though the diverse political landscape means that people in government will actually have to talk to each other about basic issues. In a one-party town the basic issues are already decided.

I agree that we're doing something right in Dryden, but I have to admit that I don't really understand the rest of the article.

Also on the opinion page, they note that the George B. Bailey Agency won a Gold Award for its insurance services brochure.

Sports has photos of the Dryden Girls Swimming and Volleyball teams.

Matt Cooper's Inside Dryden column recommends today's Chili Cook-Off and Apple Pie contest, and writes about how to donate to the Dryden and Freeville Kitchen Cupboards. He reports that the Dryden Guest Artist series will continue November 28th at 7:00pm in the Dryden Middle School/High School auditorium, featuring Dan Hammond and the River Rat Project. He reports on the W.B. Strong Fire Company's continuing search for their history, and visits the Society for Creative Anachronism's dueling session at 4-H in Dryden.

There's an article on the Dryden Youth Opportunity Fund's efforts to provide community support for Dryden youth.

Even with the confusing editorial, this week's Dryden Courier is a fine example of what local reporting should look like. It's good to see that someone realizes how much is going on in Dryden, and that it's worth in-depth articles.

Posted by simon at November 17, 2007 9:50 AM in , , ,
Note on photos


Mary Ann said:

Matt Cooper and the Dryden Courier are doing a great job.

It's worth noting that the increase in the tax levy - the total property tax - results from the increase in total assessments which is entirely attributable to $13.4 million of new construction.

I don't know where Matt got the $401,000 increase in public works contractual. The total increase in public works is $385,000 for the new salt storage building. This is offset by decreases in equipment costs in the highway department.

I don't know how to post a spreadsheet. But I'll send you my two page budget summary for the reading pleasure of Living in Dryden visitors.