Revisit Richfield Comp Plan: Elect Palevsky, Eckler, Bello

ENDORSEMENT EDITORIAL

Revisit Richfield Comp Plan:

Elect Palevsky, Eckler, Bello

Nick Palevsky for Richfield town supervisor

In the lead-up to the Richfield Town Board adopting a new Comprehensive Plan & Zoning Code, people said they want to see the town come together.

People observed that “nothing’s happened” in the Richfield Springs area in the past 20 years (or longer).

Send Political Letters

To info@allotsego.com

By noon Monday, 10/28

People mourned the decline in enrollment of the Richfield Springs Central School, which graduated 29 seniors on June 29.

These emotions are easily understood.

But to conclude, as some did, that the town’s new comp plan and code, hatched without the knowledge of the community at large with special interests in mind, will accomplish any of those things is likely mistaken.

While polite, meetings leading up to the final decision – a public hearing Sept. 23 on the zoning code, and the town board meeting Sept. 30 where members of a clique, 3-2, jammed through the undigested document – were angry.

The reasons have been spelled out in our news pages: West End neighbors, their lawsuit against the five-turbine Monticello Hills Wind foiled, took control of the process of revising the comp plan and zoning code.

Fred Eckler for Richfield Town Board

By the time the community at large became aware of what was going on, the neighbors controlled the Zoning Commission, the Planning Board and three of five seats on the Town Board.

In addition to banning wind turbines, and original comp plan virtually prohibited any development along Route 20, the major commercial thoroughfare through the town.

After an outcry, and more measured inputs by people like Andela Products President Cynthia Andela, that was revised.  On the whole, though, the plan pushed through Sept. 30 envisions the Town of Richfield’s future as agricultural – as dairying disappears – and residential.

That ensures “nothing” will happen, new people won’t move in, commerce will remain stagnant, school enrollment will continue to ebb.

The Republican Town Board slate – former Supervisor Nick Palevsky, incumbent Town Board member Fred Eckler and newcomer Ed Bello Jr. – object to the new comp plan and code.

Ed Bello Jr. for Richfield Town Board

They deserve voters’ support Tuesday, Nov. 5.  Polls will be open 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the town and across Otsego County, where local elections will be held.

If elected, a first step being considered would be to revisit the petitions signed by landowners in the town to require a super-majority – a 4-1 vote – to pass the zoning code.  If found valid after all, and Sept. 30 vote is moot.  The code is no more.

If that happened, it would have to be just the beginning.  A process – the particulars are unclear; this is a rare occurrence – would have to be pursued to come up with a new comp plan and zoning code that truly reflects the widest possible consensus among townsfolks.

Done correctly – not by any special-interest group, but by community leaders guided by only the good of the whole – a new broad-based plan might very well achieve what everyone wants.

That’s a community that’s come together, not torn apart, where “something” can happen in terms of jobs and commerce, where RSCS will indeed flourish again.


3 thoughts on “Revisit Richfield Comp Plan: Elect Palevsky, Eckler, Bello

  1. bobocin

    The opposing paid, unsigned, ad in another paper this week looked back over a dozen years to attempt derision on these good candidates. It was nothing but personal attacks that really had nothing but spite. AllOtsego is right on the money — lengthy half-baked regulations won’t improve business prospects.

  2. Monica Harris

    Thanks for hitting the nail right on the head! This new plan certainly ensures that nothing will happen here. Your editorial forgot to mention that the Land Use Board of Appeals is also controlled by the western end of town. All boards and all committees are under the control of a few families and their friends. Please get out and vote for the Palevsky, Eckler, and Bello ticket on November 5th. It’s time for a change. By the way, why is the author of the smear article in this Week’s Pennysaver afraid to sign their name. Whoever wrote this does not have the integrity to sign their name. Why? You wrote it, don’t be a coward.

  3. Andy Minnig

    Time for a change? More likely a vote for a return to business as usual which, historically, was no business as usual. Yeah, sure, give the old guard another hundred years of unimaginative response to the challenges of the past! The current Richfield Town Board represents both new thinking about the town’s future and a recognition that the Monticello Hills project would begin the dismemberment of all that makes life and living in Richfield worthwhile.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.