The largest crowd in many years, some 70 people, turned out yesterday evening to nominate candidates for the upcoming Village elections.
Two Village Trustee seats are on the March 21, 2006 ballot as well as the Village Justice post. While incumbent Trustee Charlie Kane had been making it quietly known that he was eager to seek a second term, a possible running mate for the second Trustee seat was not apparent until the caucus itself. Ann Gallelli sought and received the caucus nomination for second Trustee slot. Ms. Gallelli will join Mr. Kane as the Democratic slate for the two trustee seats.
Leo Wiegman nominated Mr. Kane, who was seconded by Carl Grimm. Wiegman noted, “I need Charlie on the board with, because we face 3 board members who vote their opinions without checking all the facts, over and over again, against Charlie and I voting on the facts. So ill-informed opinions overrule the facts time and time again.” Mr. Grimm, an architect, noted, “We need Charlie to keep up his excellent hard work on environmental issues. ”
Excerpts from Mr. Kane’s acceptance speech:
“To know where we are headed as a community, let me explain where we have been in the past 10 months. The present majority has ridden the coattails of the past administrations by taking credit at every turn for works in progress or completed such as the Harmon water main project.
Isolationist policy by the present majority failed to be aware of regional issues that directly affect residents. Case in point, Regus’s Northeast Interchange Railway. Last summer, I informed the VB and village attorneys of the Surface Transportation Board exemption process that Regus Industries used previously in Massachusetts to attempt to exempt a C&D operation from state and local control. The village attorneys were not even aware of the process. Three weeks later NIR filed an application of exemption with the STB to operate the former Metro-Enviro site. The village now awaits a full-blown application by NIR as mandated by the STB.
Further isolating our village the present majority has failed to research or apply for significant federal or state grant monies for sorely needed projects. One lonely CDBG grant has been accepted and that was planned for submission by last March by the prior present administration. The present majority did request a serving of lard from our state senator in the Albany pork barrel process.
Importantly, the present administration has ignored remediation or further studies for ongoing flooding issues at the Harmon Station and those plaguing Batten Road residents. With two studies and hundreds of thousand of dollars now gathering dust on the shelf, commuters vehicles are still being flooded and traffic backups continue to enrage residents and parkers alike. Batten Road residents driven from their homes during flood events have been ignored; while remediation plans for the area also gather dust.
Our present majority has been busy haggling with our school district haggling over recreational issues and field space and the cost of sharing use of the village radio antenna system with the school district. In short, the present administration likes to nickel and dime its partners, such as the school district.
Our present majority passed a punitive sewer tax as a budget crutch, with no homework on who would be affected, whether a revenue increase would result, or what effects this will have on the water fund, or the possibility of lawsuits.
The present majority appears to feel recreation programs must now be revenue neutral or revenue producing. They appear to ignore the public good associated with spreading costs equally across the spectrum of stakeholders.
The present majority enacted a punitive sidewalk parking law that will likely exacerbate curbside parking during snowstorms and penalizes those who rent. We will see the consequences of this short-sighted law with the next significant snowfall.
Finally, the majority has isolated the public with closed door, backroom meetings using the guise of “advice of counsel” to prevent the taking of minutes or even the subjects discussed. This is where the past ten months have taken our village.
Where are we headed? More of the same with small-minded reactionary leadership, punitive government, and isolationist policy.
I ask you tonight for your support in returning proactive leadership to the village, your support for open government, and your support for a new majority on the village board.”
A supervisor at Metro-North’s Croton Harmon Shop, Charles (Charlie) Kane has twice won MTA awards for creative cost saving measures. Charlie was chair of Croton’s Water Control Commission and is member of Croton’s Waterfront Advisory Committee. Mr. Kane’s research on the potential environmental impacts of the Millennium Pipeline has helped stall its construction permits. A lifelong fisherman, Mr. Kane writes and lectures on the natural history of the Hudson and Croton Rivers and its aquatic life. He and his wife, Sandy, have lived in Croton for 30 years and have five children and four grandchildren. Elected in 2004, Charlie is completing his first term as Village Trustee.
— Trustee Charles A. Kane, 68 Truesdale Drive, Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520 | 914-271-8524
Tom Moore, a 14 year village resident, nominated Ann Gallelli for Trustee, and Holly Anzani, seconded the nomination of Ms. Gallelli. In his remarks, Moore pointed out Gallelli’s 16 years on the planning board meant that “any long range improvements going on here has had Ann involved from the waterfront to behind the scenes.” Moore went on to state, “ I give Ann a lot of credit for bouncing back from the mayoral race defeat last year to getting even more involved since with village and school activities.” Ms. Anzani commented “Ann inspires me. She makes me want to do more, because she does so much.”
Excerpts from Ann Gallelli’s acceptance speech:
“I accept the nomination because, in the over 16 years I have been involved in Croton’s affairs, it has always been with an eye toward what is best for our village’s future. In various capacities, as Planning Board Chair, a two-term Trustee, and as Comprehensive Plan Committee Chair, I have always been focused on moving Croton forward.
In the last year, any thoughts of future planning in Croton have come to a screeching halt. It may not seem that way to you today because you have seen projects being worked on this year – such as the Harmon water main replacements, the Brook Street drainage improvements, the Yacht Club dredging. However, everything that happened this year was conceived, designed, approved and its funding arranged in prior years.
That is my point. Nothing was done this year by the current administration to move our village forward in any way. No new ideas, no plans, no grant applications. The year was spent treading water. Unfortunately, in government, inaction for 1 or 2 years, results in 4 to 5 years of stagnation.
We must get moving again. Our priorities and goals as a Village are being sacrificed to political expediency. Croton has accomplished a lot over recent years. The challenge of our local government should be to keep that momentum moving forward.
Long-range, we want to go forward with the goals we set for ourselves in our Comprehensive Plan – that’s our real mandate.
Ann Gallelli, a 32 year resident of Croton, has long been involved in our local government including a total of 12 years as Planning Board Chair, 2 terms as Village Trustee and 7 years as Comprehensive Plan Committee Chair. She is on the Board of the Westchester Municipal Planning Federation and in the Fall of 2004, Ann received the NYS Planning Federation’s highest award - the Heissenbuttal Award for Excellence in Planning.
When Ann’s two children were young, she served as President of Croton Community Nursery School for 2 terms is currently on their Advisory Board. Subsequent work with public school committees included service on the PTA, DARE Committee and Site-based Pan committees in the Hendrick Hudson Schools. Brownie, Girl Scout and Cub Scout leadership all figure in her past. A former employee of IBM, Ann had ran her own technical writing business for many years.
She graduated from Stanford University. An avid tennis player and, more recently, a golf fan, Ann enjoys sharing these pursuits with her husband John and two children, Carla and John.
— Ann Gallelli: 20 Briggs Lane, Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520 | 914-271-5301
The caucus closed with the appointing a vacancy committee, that would serve to appoint a replacement candidate in the event a nominee cannot stand for election. The 2006 Vacancy Committee will include Rick Turner, Paul Rolnick, and Bob Elliott.
This press release was sent to Crotonblog by the Croton Democratic Committee. Please contact Leo Wiegman at 914-980-9437 or 212-790-4329 for additional information.