questionnaire — craig gelbsman

CRAIG GELBSMAN

COUNTY BOARD OF REPRESENTATIVES, DISTRICT 12

COMMUNITY OF RESIDENCE: City Of Oneonta

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: 4 years of being your current Representative, Small Business Owner, employ between 20-30 people.

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT:

Oneonta Little league board member
Opportunity for Otsego County Board Member
Oneonta Little Coach
Donor to many organizations throughout the region.

FAMILY: A wonderful wife, Melinda, teacher at Oneonta High School and four children, three of which attend Oneonta School System, and one that attends the YMCA.

PHILOSOPHY OF GOVERNMENT: Serve the people! Keep government out of the people’s pocket.

MAJOR ISSUES FACING OTSEGO COUNTY:

When I first entered the board four years ago I felt and experienced the major problems. During my first two terms we have made great progress to solving these issues I talked about when I first ran for office.

• We have invested in our infrastructure to the tune of millions more than ever. New vehicles, equipment, roads, culverts, etc.

• We are in the process of new method of replacing our aging vehicle fleet that will help budget years out.We will be on a pattern of turning the vehicle fleet over at a max every five years.

• We actually put together a shared services agreement for purchasing with another county and is saving hundreds of
thousands of dollars. We aren’t just talking about we are doing it. First of its kind and now another county is doing the same thing. Otsego County lead this in NYS!

• We put together our first solar farm and negotiated that all maintenance cost will not be any burden to the county taxpayers.

• We finished an upgrade on the moving our new state of the art 911 center.

• We are nearly finished with our multi million dollar upgrade of our tower communication system bringing it the 21st century.

•  Making Otsego County safer for everyone.

• Did our first strategic plan with county wide involvement we are currently implementing many parts in our current budget.

• Jump-started economic development going from a part time consultant to a full-time economic developer. This is huge to being able to help our current local businesses while striving to get others to invest here. It’s an exciting time.  We have spent millions to jump-start development.  It’s now time to create jobs.

• We this year put Otsego County “in the best financial position in tens years,”  according to the county treasurer.

• Cut the user-fee tax in half.

These are just a few large dents we made in now major past issues in a just a few short years. I still need to work harder the next term. I will be continuing to invest like we have and balance budget under the mandated tax cap while providing better services.

Major issues that I believe needs addressing this term are the major issues affecting the county going forward.  The opioid epidemic discussions are happening now. Whether the consensus can be built to have centralized management is an issue I will be addressing. Continue the fight with Albany on unfunded mandates. Continue making Otsego County a safer better place to live and a better quality of life.

MY QUALITIES: As I have the first four years I will continue to work hard. Whether the meetings are morning day or night I will show up for my district as there voice. Whether we conclude together we need a centralized management or not I will put in the time, show up and work hard for my district. We are elected to represent and work. I have been doing that from day one. I have the ability to communicate, build consensus and get business done for my district and the county.

STATEMENT: I hope I have shown you I’m moving the county forward with the most experience and ability to give WARDS 3 AND 4 IN THE CITY OF ONEONTA a strong voice and will be the best steward of their money. You can be confident I will be able to tackle the tough issues on day one and make informed decisions since I have the experience and knowledge of the issues. I ask for your vote on Election Day so I can continue to work hard for
district 12, the city of Oneonta and Otsego County to make it an even better place to live. Again, thank you!

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