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Village voters reject plan to join town

Village of Wellsville residents trounced a proposal to dissolve the village and merge with the Town of Wellsville on Tuesday, by a margin of 92 percent opposed.

Only 96 voters favored the move, while 1,151 opposed it.

"We need to move on to the next thing -- city status for the Village of Wellsville," said Wellsville Mayor Bradley Thompson, who opposed dissolution.

"We already have it in the works. We've written a City Charter and we'll be submitting that to Albany in the next few months."

City status would force Allegany County to share its sales tax proceeds with Wellsville, he said, as well as boost Wellsville's funding from the state.

Richard Hetzel, whose Tea Party passed the petition that forced the vote on dissolving the village, thanked everyone who came out to vote, saying, "Education of the public is so important, and that's what we've done."

He said that he pushed the dissolution proposal after city fathers ignored his pleas to reduce taxes.

Asked what he thought of the mayor's proposal to seek city status for Wellsville, Hetzel said: "I don't think it's got a shot in hell. The New York State Assembly decides that and it's controlled by New York City -- they've got more people in one block than we do in the village."

Winning two trustee seats were Democrats Laurie Hennessy, with 665 votes, and Judy Lynch, with 662. They beat Republicans Gary Pearson, with 549 votes, and Randy Hartwick, 492.


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