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3 seek 2 North Collins board seats

The financial difficulties facing the Village of North Collins are chief among the concerns of the three people running for two seats on the Village Board.

Incumbents Jennie Alessi and Beverly Boltz and challenger Paul Carozzi agree that something needs to be done.

Boltz, 66, said the village needs to cut spending, not raise taxes. The village should trim spending on equipment, she said, and trustees should take a 5 percent pay cut to lead by example.

"We need to reduce our debt and cut back, just like every family has had to do in these hard times," she said.

Boltz, a retired banker who now works as a nurse's aide part time, is about eight months into her current term on the board, having been appointed to fill a vacancy. She also served as a village trustee for three years, about 30 years ago.

She voted against putting a village dissolution question on the ballot and says the most sensible course of action now is to consolidate services, not get rid of the village itself.

Alessi, 49, also voted against having a referendum on dissolving the village. But she says she does not oppose dissolving the village -- she just thinks the residents need more information before a vote is held.

The village commissioned a study on dissolution, but she says it was incomplete.

"Let's get all the facts out," said Alessi, who is a police officer in the Village of Gowanda. "I'm not against dissolution. That's a misconception."

In the meantime, the board needs to find ways for the village to save money, she said. Like Boltz, she noted that the village and town have begun studying a consolidation of garbage services, and she cites that as an example of what needs to be done.

Carozzi is running for public office for the first time. He's not sure whether dissolving the village is a good idea but says the study that was done needs to be more widely disseminated.

"The people of the village need to have a little bit more knowledge," he said. "We just need to get it out there."

Once residents have more information, he said, the dissolution should go to a public vote.

Carozzi, 35, works at Karstedt's Automotive Center in Hamburg. He says he will bring a different, younger perspective to the board.

The top two vote-getters in Tuesday's election will win four-year terms.


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