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October 12, 2011 - 4:23pm

Council approves hiring state-funded facilitator to help consolidation task force

posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, consolidation.

"In for a dime, in for a dollar" seemed to be the argument that won the night at Batavia City Council meeting when it came time to vote on a proposal to hire a facilitator to help the Consolidation Charter Task Force do its job.

The facilitator will cost $55,000, but will be paid for by a state grant.

Bill Cox and Rosemary Christian -- the two no votes in a 6-2 vote -- argued that consolidation has no chance of approval by Town of Batavia voters and therefore the money should be spent.

But other council members argued that state grant money has already been spent on consolidation studies so the city should support finishing the process.

Perhaps some good ideas will come out of the task force with a facilitator's help, said Tim Buckley.

"We're on our own 10-yard line," said Tim Buckley. "We've got 90 yards to go. Let's get to the end zone."

Frank Ferrando said that he could be pursaded to vote against the proposal if voting no would actually save taxpayers money, but if the city doesn't spend the grant money, he said, then some other municipality will.

"Any time we can take advantage of money from a broader base of taxpayers to do something that could save our taxpayers money, we should," Ferrando said.

As for the town voters possibly not approving a consolidation plan, Ferrando argued that first, the town's leadership must believe consolidation has a chance of passing in the town, or they wouldn't keep voting to approve consolidation measures.

"I want to see information on consolidation because there is a possibility it could be very beneficial to the city," Ferrando said. "It could it be beneficial to the town, we’ll see, but I don’t represent the town. I represent the city."

John Roach
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Joined: May 29 2008 - 5:22am

Kudos to Council members Bill Cox and Rose Mary Christian. On Tuesday, October 11th, they tried to save you about $55,000 by voting NO, on hiring a facilitator for City-Town consolidation.

Lisa Falkowski
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Joined: Jun 23 2009 - 10:29am

..and yet the rest of them vote for projects and spend money nilly-willy regardless and are still getting nowhere...

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