Schenectady County

Taxes, comp plan are Princetown board race topics

One year ago, Louis Esposito and Nick Maura Jr. were running on the same ticket for the Town Boar


One year ago, Louis Esposito and Nick Maura Jr. were running on the same ticket for the Town Board.

Maura, a Democrat, enlisted the Republican Esposito to run with him, despite their party affiliations. What was more important at the time, Maura said recently, was that they shared similar goals.

Not much has changed since the election, in which both candidates lost. Both want to maintain Princetown’s rural charm and both say there’s a need finalize the update to Princetown’s comprehensive plan.

Only this time around, Maura and Esposito will face each other as they vie for the lone Town Board seat up for election on Nov. 2.

But don’t expect much mudslinging in this political race. Maura said, “Whoever gets it gets it.”

The victorious candidate may not have much time on the board. The seat left vacant when board member Melanie Whiteley was elected supervisor is up for election again in 2011.

Maura, 52, who was unanimously appointed to the seat in August, is shooting for his third term as a board member after warding off a primary challenge by Ben Smith last month. He served one term as a board member before being elected supervisor in 2007; he also served a stint as former supervisor Muriel Peterson’s deputy until the position was temporarily abolished by the town.

If elected, Maura said, his main goal would be to push for a the comprehensive plan update to be ratified. Though he acknowledges the 76-page document produced by a committee in July 2009 needs some work, he said it shouldn’t be left to languish. “Some of it has to be tweaked,” he said. “But we’ve got to get the comp plan done.”

Maura said he also supports limited government, especially at the state level, but also locally. He said the amount of laws that are on the books collectively have stymied residents and made it impossible for small businesses to survive.

Maura said he’s also in favor of keeping Princetown’s budget in check. For years, the town has been able to maintain operations without a general tax levy — something that Maura plans to continue if elected.

Likewise, Esposito said one of his top priorities is ensuring that residents don’t need to pay local taxes. He’s heard rumors that a tax may be floated by the present administration, though town officials have denied this.

Esposito, 62, is also a proponent of getting the comprehensive plan updated in short order. Without the update, he said the town could fall prey to large-scale development, particularly along the bustling Route 7 corridor.

Esposito said concerns about the document impinging on property owners’ rights are somewhat unfounded. “The comp plan is only a guide,” he said, for future development.

Esposito would also like to see Princetown’s meetings aired on public access television, as they are in the neighboring towns of Duanesburg and Rotterdam. He said such a move would help townspeople become more knowledgeable about local affairs.

“We do have an elderly population and a lot of them can’t come down to the meetings,” he said.

Categories: Schenectady County

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