Village and Town Begin Reorganization Study

posted Feb 9, 2016, 9:53 AM by Richard Weidemann

Residents of Village and Town Invited to Public Kick-Off Meeting February 18th, 2016

Highland Falls, NY – The Village of Highland Falls and the Town of Highlands are kicking-off a year-long planning study with a public meeting on Thursday, February 18th from 7:00pm to 9:00pm at the Highlands Town Meeting Room.

The Local Government Reorganization Study, funded through the Local Government Efficiency Grant program of the New York State Department of State, represents a commitment by the municipalities to more closely examine how services are delivered, and identify opportunities for reducing costs while maintaining or improving the level of services.

“We want the best for members of this community, and I’m confident that there are opportunities available to make some improvements”, said Highland Falls Mayor Patrick Flynn. “This Study provides the chance to look closely at how we can offer residents the most cost-effective and high-quality services.”

A Reorganization Study Committee that includes residents and elected officials of both communities is leading the Study, and has selected a consulting team to assist in their efforts. The consulting team, which includes Rondout Consulting of Kingston and Fairweather Consulting of New Paltz, met with the Committee in late-January to finalize the project schedule and tasks to be completed.

At the meeting, the importance of involving members of the community throughout the duration of the Study was also discussed. Committee members and the study consultants agreed that a public gathering would provide a venue for residents to learn more about the study, and also provide a chance for the Committee and the consultants to listen to residents’ hopes and concerns about the topic of reorganization.

“It is important that members of the community be given opportunities to ask questions and share their thoughts and opinions”, said Highlands Board Member and Committee member Bill Edsall. “Decisions made as a result of this Study should be informed in part by input provided by residents.”

Tim Weidemann, one of the project consultants, added, “we’re excited to help the Committee identify and evaluate options for improving services and reducing costs. But, we also understand that studies like this can be a cause of anxiety for some residents, as well as employees of the village and town. We like to provide a chance, early-on, for community members to share their thoughts. In addition to the public meeting held to kick-off the Study, we will also be meeting with staff from both municipalities to gain information about current services, and also to gain additional input about possible concerns and potential ideas for improvement.”

According to Weidemann, the February 18th meeting is open to the public and residents of both the Village and Town are encouraged to attend. Those in attendance can expect an overview of the Study process and goals, as well as information about how community input will be utilized during the study. There are four public meetings currently scheduled throughout the year-long project timeline. Also, a project website will allow residents to view documents and reports related to the study, as well as keep-up with important dates. The site can be found at http://highlandfalls.rondoutconsulting.com but links to the site can also be found on the village and town websites.

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The Highland Falls Local Government Reorganization Study is supported with funding from the New York State Department of State’s Local Government Efficiency Grant Program. The Reorganization Study Committee is committed to an open and transparent study, and encourages input from residents, taxpayers, and other interested parties through a variety of forums. For more information, visit the Reorganization Study website: http://highlandfalls.rondoutconsulting.com.

For further information, contact:

Tim Weidemann, Rondout Consulting:  845-430-0426

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Richard Weidemann,
Feb 9, 2016, 9:53 AM
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Richard Weidemann,
Feb 9, 2016, 9:53 AM
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