“One of the hallmarks of my public service tenure has been a governing approach that encourages regional and municipal collaboration, whenever and wherever possible.
“That is why I am opposed to the effort by the City of Jamestown and the Board of Public Utilities to annex the Dow Street substation. The Appellate Court Referee Panel ruled unanimously against the annexation, finding that annexation was not in the public interest. The Appellate Court itself officially denied the annexation on technical grounds.
“Yet, disappointingly, the City of Jamestown has indicated they intend to restart the annexation process.
“Beginning this process again after both court proceedings ruled against the city doesn’t make sense and will only keep diverting funds away from more pressing public services. Legal fees have cost the BPU ratepayers $515,871, with the additional monies recently committed. Taxpayers in Ellicott, Falconer, and the Falconer School District have paid over $320,000, not including new additional costs.
“My plea to our leaders in the City of Jamestown is this: please abandon the new annexation petition and come to the negotiating table. I am ready and willing to work with all parties to discuss the issues involved and facilitate a compromise that addresses the concerns at the core of this situation. It has been my experience in both business and government that so much can be accomplished by just sitting down face-to-face.”