By EAST AURORA EDITOR (3/23/2010 6:25:02 AM)
Last year we predicted that someone soon would come out and attempt to carry the downsizing torch just in East Aurora just as Kevin Gaghan has done all over Erie County. Only six days after the recent election our prediction has come true.
Tom Kranz wants to be the guy.
He has petitions and is sending emails requesting people to go out and collect signatures to force a referendum vote on dissolution.
It shouldn't be all that difficult as only a few hundred (or 10% of the electorate) need to sign to force the vote.
So this means that once the petitions are filed and Kim Reichart (or the new village administrator) approves the petitions the village has between 60 and 90 days to vote on dissolution. If it passes, the village board has 210 days to approve the plan to dissolve. The plan then goes to a vote in front of the village board and the town board. If it is approved dissolution is enacted and moves forward.
The only recourse for those against dissolution is to get signatures from 25% of the electorate to force a referendum AGAINST the plan. If that passes everything starts over including getting another 10% to force another referendum on dissolution.
It's interesting how dropping the signature percent from 33% to 10% has brought all of the Kevin Gaughan's out of the closet to try and force a referendum.
The election certainly wasn't a referendum on dissolution as the vote was close, but it does show a divided community in this regard. Moreover Kranz's initiative will basically nullify the grant that the village board was seeking to study dissolution to get the actual dollars that would be saved as well as other negatives and positives that would occur as a result. Instead Kranz is going to carry the flag and force a vote most likely before that information is tendered.
It's unfortunate because Mayor Clark Crook was certainly attempting to hold off Kranz while he tried to educate voters on what dissolution really meant. No question Crook stood firmly and without exception in the dissolution camp, but wanted the village to drive the process.
Mayor elect Kasprzak recently told the Buffalo News that dissolution got in the way of more important items like the joint municiple facility on Main. Since he is against dissolution I believe he will need to spend most of his time on this issue no matter how much he wants to focus on other items.
Again, this is all due to our prediction last year that someone who "doesn't mind the limelight" would want to carry that torch around the village and force a vote as soon as possible.
The law took effect this past Sunday but there is no doubt whatsoever that this will not end until there is a vote. I predict it will happen this year.
Attorney General's Guide to Dissolution
A good link with some references to recent dissolution events
Mayor Crook's presentation for dissolution
Libby Weberg's dissenting opinion on dissolution
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