Four candidates are seeking two open Town Council seats in Lloyd.
Republican William “Bud” Walker has been endorsed by the Republican, Independence and Highland United Parties.
“I feel strongly that we need Jeff Paladino to be our next Supervisor. His 8 years on the Town Council and his business experience gives him the best background and he has the right vision for the Town,” he said. “When I made the decision to run, [Republican] John Fraino had already stepped forward as a potential candidate. I was blown away by John’s history of community service and I was inspired to support and work with these spectacular candidates as part of a TEAM to move Lloyd forward. If elected I will, of course, work on the Town’s behalf as part of whatever “team” voters elect.”
Walker said his, “forty years of creating and operating businesses equals 40 years of successful management of people, budgeting, and problem solving. I have also served on numerous boards governing farm co-operatives, homeowners associations and a large timeshare resort cooperative.” Walker recently ended 11 years of ‘hands-on’ service on a resort board that has a budget slightly larger that of the Town of Lloyd.
“We brought this resort back from the brink of financial collapse to current excellent financial health,” he said.
Walker highlighted the top issues facing Lloyd.
“The Town has lost experienced and extremely capable key employees (Supervisor’s Executive assistant and bookkeeper, as well as Assessor). The first order of business for the next Board is to find replacements and foster a supportive work environment to keep critical staff. People continue to leave New York State, especially upstate, due to high taxes, which is the real affordability problem. Lloyd is blessed with the best business corridors in Southern Ulster County (Route 299 east-west and Route 9W north-south). We need business development that pays lots of property tax and does not put kids in school,” he said.
Republican John Fraino has the endorsement of the Republican, Independence and Highland United Parties and his name will appear on Lines A and G on the ballot.
Fraino said if elected, he brings to the board his, “people and business management experience, strong interpersonal skills and very good analytical and decision making abilities.”
Fraino promised to “explore every opportunity” to keep taxes low, streamline operations and maximize efficiency in all town departments. He would encourage growth, especially light industrial that would require minimal services, implement best practices and capitalize on shared services with neighboring towns.
“I would put aside party differences and foster a spirit of teamwork, regardless of political party affiliation,” he said.
Fraino would encourage growth, “in a controlled and responsible manner. As a team we would accomplish this by implementing a collaborative effort engaging the Zoning and Planning Boards, SEQR, County and State departments to effectively review individual projects to mitigate any adverse impacts associated with these projects.”
Fraino is a life-long resident and said he loves Highland.
“My entire adult life I have been involved in town activities and organizations with the hope of making Highland a better place to live for all,” he said. “At this post retirement stage of my life, I feel I can use my work experience and knowledge to address the issues facing the town that our current board does not seem capable of fixing. I see it as an opportunity to me to give back to my town and my friends who live here.”
Democrat Joe Mazzetti is running for re-election to the Town Board. He has the Democrat and Conservative endorsements and his name will be on Lines A and C on the November ballot.
“I am a lifelong member of Highland, my roots are here, and my future is here where I chose to raise my family,” he said. “I am a leader that is not afraid to ask the tough questions and make decisions that are in the best interest for our residents. My vision is for our community to be an example of what can be accomplished when we work together and stay focused on the real issues to achieve common goals.”
Mazzetti’s sixteen years as a school administrator has helped him to successfully settle union contracts, stay under the 2% tax cap, and oversee town processes.
“I work cooperatively with others to create a shared vision to meet common goals. I strive to inspire and motivate others, as well as develop a positive sense of community,” he said.
Mazzetti holds a B.A. in Political Studies and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Administration from SUNY New Paltz and a M.A. in Psychology from Marist College.
Mazzetti said he will review and suggest revisions to portions of the town code, particularly Planned Residential and Planned Unit Developments, the Walkway Gateway District, the Adaptive Reuse law, limit the use of waivers and offer tighter language on density issues.
Mazzetti promised to provide residents with a high quality community that is not adversely impacted by high density housing and will implement a smart growth policy that will balance residential and commercial development.
“As a board member I take into consideration what finical impacts these new projects will have on our community. Besides the increased tax revenue, I need to understand how the projects will impact our infrastructure,” he said, pointing out that recent development proposals, if approved, will increase Lloyd’s population by 10% in the next few years, will force a second shift at the Water Department by 2025, cause more roads to be built and maintained and increase the number of police personnel.
He said if Lloyd waits to fix these issues, “our whole landscape and infrastructure is going to be impacted with an increased tax burden upon the taxpayers. The prior Republican board, who held the majority for over a decade, said yes to anything without looking into the future and determining how their decisions would have a negative impact on our community. These decisions have overcrowded our roadways, changed our rural landscape to more of an industrial look, with the self-storage [on Rte. 9W] a prime example. It is imperative we make sure that what is being built is in the best interests of the community and is not just benefiting the developer.”
Democrat Mike Guerriero is seeking another term as Town Councilman and will be on the Democrat and Conservative lines on the November ballot.
“I am running for re-election because I care. For me, it’s very simple, I love this great town. I have lived in Highland for over 50 years, ran a business in the village for over 40 years and raised my two children here,” he said.”I bring my years as a small businessman and I believe in spending taxpayers money the way I spend my own; conservatively. As I sit on the board, I always try to stay calm and objective and be a voice of reason and compromise to get things done in our residents’ best interest.”
Guerriero spoke of the three top issues facing Lloyd.
“I am PRO-development, but right now there are several proposals before the Planning Board to develop along the 9W corridor that have the potential to impact traffic flow and the safety of our residents; safety is my top priority,” he said.
Presently, he favors putting a 6 month moratorium in place that will halt large scale development temporarily to allow the board to review and make changes to the town code and the Comprehensive Plan.
“Our reason for doing this is simple: the safety of our residents and our quality of life,” he said.
Guerriero said the town has been under the tax cap for the past eight years, which will continue to be his goal.
“Local government, like all government, should exert restraint whenever spending taxpayers’ money,” he said.
Guerriero promised to ensure that development, “does not impact our local sanctuaries, and as the liaison to the Environmental Conservation Committee, this is always front and center in my mind. Housing density, our water supply and overall quality of the residents lives must always be put first...Every issue and decision we make is discussed and debated and our goal is to always answer the question: “What is best for the residents of Highland?”
Guerriero pointed out that while the Democrats hold the majority on the board they have appointed both Democrats and Republicans to the Town Planning Board, “who believe in “smart development,” not development where outsiders and developers come into our town, look out for their own best interest and leave the taxpayers, holding the tab.”
Guerriero is proud, “of our bipartisan accomplishments, including the extension of the Rail Trail, the construction of the Highland Landing, and the soon-to-be-built pavilion in the village...In closing, I want to thank everyone for taking the time to read this and if there are ever any concerns or issues that you or someone you know are personally facing, please don’t hesitate to reach out. I am here to help.”