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After 16 years on the Orchard Park Village Board, Tom Morrow is stepping down.

Morrow has announced he won't seek re-election in March's village elections, saying he's looking forward to more free time.

Morrow, the owner of Arthur's Hardware and Arthur's Home Furnishings, said he has no plans to retire from his businesses but wants time available to possibly pursue other options.

"Running the business is a full-time job in itself," he said. "But there are possibilities of other options. You never know what's around the next corner."

Morrow said some of the accomplishments he's most proud of with the board have involved the village's water system.

"One of my first charges on the board was to look after the water system," he said. "In the process of doing that, I determined our West Falls reservoir, which was source of water for the village, was becoming dated and couldn't meet some of current requirements.

"So we set in motion the process of getting our water through the Erie County Water Authority, which meant working with the Town of Aurora to change some water lines, and we had to put new water lines to some of our village customers.

"We really upgraded the quality of water the people in the village were getting. We've been constantly upgrading the water system. And it's going to continue to do that when the highway project comes through."

The state Department of Transportation is scheduled to reconstruct Buffalo Street -- Route 24 0/2 77 -- through the village next year. In conjunction with the project, the DOT will replace outdated and overtaxed water and sewer lines.

"(Morrow has) been able to get the best for the money for the village in the water system," said fellow Trustee John Wilson. "What we've been able to do over the years is upgrade a system that dates back to pre-Depression times."

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