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Hearing is set on zoning for pet grooming

The Village Board on Tuesday evening scheduled a public hearing for 7:30 p.m. March 13 to discuss proposed changes to the village zoning law regarding pet-grooming businesses.

The proposed amendment would add the definition of a pet-grooming business, in part, as "a personal service establishment that, for a fee, trims, cleans or curries domestic pets such as dogs and cats and which may sell pet supplies. This term shall not include establishments which board pets or provide pet day care."

A provider of dog day care whose Main Street business would be affected by the proposed changes was present for the announcement of the hearing.

Mayor Frank A. Pagano said he would present the preliminary budget for 2006-07 to the board March 20. It is expected to be a bare-bones spending plan.

The mayor, who is president of the New York State Conference of Mayors, said he learned at a recent gathering of mayors and state elected officials that there is a good chance a state budget could be passed favoring cities and villages.

He noted that Fredonia now gets less revenue-sharing than it did 15 years ago. Moreover, he said, pension costs for the village are up by 400 percent.

"We have nowhere to go for these resources than the village taxpayers," Pagano said, "and that's just not fair!"

Communities are in difficult financial straits these days, he said, in large part because of increasing costs for pensions, health care and state mandates. He said hopes that the state budget will bring relief to municipalities.

"People are leaving, and taxes just keep rising," he said.

After the meeting, the mayor said he hopes to be able to announce the name of a new village administrator at the Village Board meeting March 13. The board went into executive session after the regular meeting to interview the final group of candidates for the position.

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