Opinion

This Wednesday, after we celebrate St. Patrick's Day, it is very important that you vote at Village Hall between the hours of noon and 9 p.m. for a village trustee.

Cheryl Parisi, the incumbent, is being challenged in a special election by Georgiana Sena, for the honor of serving the people of the Incorporated Village of Farmingdale over the next year.

Cheryl was appointed to fill a vacancy that was created last year when Butch Starkie was elevated by the electorate from trustee to mayor. Since stepping up to the plate for our village government, she has worked tirelessly, donated her time and professional talents, proven to be an independent thinker and is a strong advocate for our village residents.

I have had the honor over the past 11 months working with your village government on a weekly basis in the courtroom at Village Hall. All our Monday work sessions are publicized and we welcome residents to voice their concerns as we discuss important issues that face our village. The members of your Village Board have different ideas, come from different backgrounds and align themselves privately with different political parties, but we have succeeded in working together to make the best possible decisions for our community. Although we meet publicly every Monday in the courtroom for work sessions, we will only vote on an issue at the first Monday meeting in a month. This vote occurs only after it has been thoroughly discussed at the other Monday work sessions and everyone's point of view has been heard and considered. Often we start out with different ideas and opinions about issues when they are first presented at a public work session; however, the unanimous votes that take place at formal meetings are most often the result of hours of discussion and compromise. The residents that attend the public weekly work sessions know how the process works.

During the 11 months since this village board has taken its oath, we eliminated unnecessary positions, required all elected and appointed officials to contribute towards their health insurance, lowered the compensation for the mayor and deputy mayor, addressed a 15-year continual under funding of our firemen's pension plan, obtained State and County grants, reversed an improper decision that helped reduce our water fund fund balance $600,000 in four short years, confronted a problem with assessments and tax refunds that unfairly increase the tax rate for our residential homeowners; and we do not tolerate illegal housing.

But, there is still much more to be done!

Cheryl Parisi is a tireless thinker and a worker. She is a doer and is directly responsible for several of the village's accomplishments. She is the person that your village needs to get the job done.

I ask you to join me on March 18 by casting your vote for Cheryl Parisi at Village Hall between the hours of noon and 9 p.m.

William A. Barrett, Trustee


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