Miller, Delameter battle in Dem primary on Tuesday
By Cheryl Petersen
Middletown Supervisor Marge Miller and Nelson Delameter will square off in a Democratic Primary next Tuesday, Sept. 10 with voting from noon-9 p.m.
The winner will earn the Democratic line for the general election on November 5. Regardless of the primary outcome, Mr. Delameter has received the endorsement of the town’s Republican Committee and will appear on the GOP ballot line. Both candidates also filed petitions to have their name appear on the Independent line in November’s voting.
Following are profiles ont the candidates for Middltown supervisor. Ms. Miller is completing her first term in office.
“I love public service,” said Marjorie Miller. “I like the challenge and hope I am rehired.” Marjorie Miller is finishing out her two-year term as Middletown Supervisor and will be on the Democrat Primary Ballot on September 10.
Born and raised in the area, Marge Miller, a graduate of Margaretville Central School also attended college at Syracuse University. After living in New York City for 20 years, gaining experience in many job descriptions, including running a co-op, Miller returned home. “I’ve also been the Director of the Bovina Library for almost 10 years,” said Miller.
Miller began her job as supervisor for the town on the heels of Irene and Lee. “The damage was immense and the paperwork required to deal with the situation is also immense,” said Miller. “Middletown has since sponsored and managed 11 projects to protect property. The most recent, and one of the largest projects, is the Arkville Stream Project, which will begin work soon. The local stream bank repair projects will be complete by the end of September.”
Flood mitigation is also being achieved at town hall. “The furnace, that got flooded, is being brought upstairs,” said Miller.
“New York City is going to stay and so are we,” said Marjorie Miller. “Therefore the town board needs to strategize so we can work together with the city with the interests of Middletown in mind.”
At the beginning of her supervisor’s term, Miller analyzed the Sewer Use Law, regarding the New York Sewer systems in Margaretville and Arkville.
“The language of the sewer law lacked a permanent settled law that compromised the development of Middletown. When it came to filing new language, my inexperience working with the town lawyer caused some confusion, however, my motive was to improve the language of the Sewer Use Law to ensure sewer extensions, and this was accomplished,” said Miller. “The language was updated and Middletown is currently moving forward with plans for New York City to add sewer extensions to Bull Run, Upper Academy Street, and Glen Acres.”
“The sewer extension designs are 90 to 100 percent complete and should be ready to go out for bid next spring. The extensions will open up developable land, plus the city will pay taxes to our town on the extensions, and the construction work will generate jobs locally,” added Miller.
“The town has also come to an agreement with New York City to follow a template for tax assessment,” said Miller. “They now recognize, and will pay taxes on special property such as the land under the reservoir.”
In regard to the Department of Health’s recent Mid-Term Revisions to the 2007 Surface Water Treatment Rule Determination for New York City’s Catskill/Delaware Water Supply System, Marge Miller said, “I’ve begun my review of the 91-page draft regarding Filtration Avoidance Determination. I have no comment now.”
Under the supervision of Marjorie Miller, the board has updated the Transfer Station Law. “The fees have been increased for out-of-town users, and fees have been added for commercial haulers from outside the town,” said Miller. “The next step is to allow construction and demolition disposal at the Middletown transfer station.”
Miller supports the Belleayre Resort and ski center expansion. “As for fracking, I don’t think fracking is consistent with the tourism of our area, but I wanted to hear from the people so we are now conducting a survey.” Middletown residents are encouraged to fill out the survey found online www.middletowndelawarecountyny.org or on hardcopy at the local libraries, village and town halls.
“As for improving the facilities of the Mental Health Services, new facilities need to be centrally located,” said Miller.
“A sidewalk construction and repair along Route 38 in Arkville has been bid and awarded,” said Supervisor Miller. “Also, ground was broken for the Catskill Recreation Center on the Crossroads in Arkville.”
“I will continue to push for fair prevailing wages for our town,” said Miller. “I will also work to change the finance policy of Delaware County so that Middletown is not paying such a high rate in comparison with many of the other 18 counties.”
“That Middletown is a part of Delaware County can’t be underestimated,” said Miller. “I spend 65 to 70 percent of my time on county issues. I serve on the Economic Development/Watershed Affairs Committee, the Legislative Committee, and the Social Services Committee at the county level besides working at Middletown Town Hall. I like the work and ask for your vote.”
“I make no promises about tax rates,” says Nelson Delameter, “but, I will be financially responsible if elected supervisor of the Town of Middletown.”
After retiring in 2011 from his position as the Regional Coordinator of the New York State Emergency Management at the Region 2 Office, Nelson Delameter is ready to work for the town.
A graduate of Margaretville Central School and Alfred State College, Delameter went on to work for the Delaware County Highway Department. “
I served as bridge construction supervisor,” said Delameter. “And, in 1991, the board appointed me director of the emergency services and I worked at the fire departments and EMS Resource Center until 2007.”
Delameter’s past work involved sitting on many state committees and assisting municipalities through 18 federally declared disasters. “I feel the administration needs to resolve issues in order to help people better,” said Delameter. “The post-Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, that created so much damage two years ago, is only now starting to be mitigated.”
“The DEC insists repair work in the streams be stopped by the 30th of this September,” added Delameter. “The delay and then hurry is absurd. To help and to minimize future damage, action needs to be more timely.”
“As supervisor, I’d sit down with the town board and look at the town’s relationships with other municipalities, state departments, and New York City,” said Delameter.”
DEP money concerns
“NYC has a stranglehold on us and I’m willing to make an effort to loosen that hold,” said Delameter. “Middletown receives a lot of money from New York City, but I don’t want to keep taking money at the risk of losing the township. “I question whether or not, or how the money coming from New York City affects the administration,”
Delameter supports the Belleayre Resort and the state’s proposal to expand Belleayre Ski Center.
“I’m totally in favor of the expansion and resort,” said Delameter. “Tourism is the only draw our town has and it can counter the chokehold New York City has on our area.”
“I remember when hunting season brought grid-lock to the streets in Margaretville and I’d like to see those good days again when tourists come to town.” Delameter also commented on the town’s highway department as being, “one of the finest functioning departments in the county.”
“Fracking is currently a moot point in the Town of Middletown, however, I believe further investigation in the methods of fracking needs to be done. Canada has proven safe methods,” said Delameter. “I don’t believe in stopping fracking when down the road it can be proven safe. I’m in favor of activity that brings gain to our economy. Natural gas is a resource for our area and it needs to be handled properly.”
Delameter has been watching Middletown activity. “Marge Miller’s efforts to re-district the Town of Middletown into a more realistic prevailing wage district are worthy and I would continue that effort,” said Delameter. “I also would continue to pursue what Marge has tackled in regards to the reason why the Town of Middletown is paying such a high share of the county tax. I would determine the reason, whether the high contribution is due to assessed value, the number of parcels, or the amount of New York City land.”
As for shared services, Delameter has gained experience in its benefits. “When a storm hits, neighboring towns can provide services,” said Delameter. “Moreover, the Federal Emergency Management Agency looks for inter-municipal agreements.”
Delameter however distinguished between shared services and consolidation. After working for years with the Margaretville Fire Department, Delameter can say, “Although the Mutual Aid Law, which is a form of shared services, applies to afford equal protection to everyone, different regions can still pay different rates to the department. Therefore, consolidation would help level the field and taxes would also be equal.”
“The Delaware County Mental Health Services are a tremendous asset to our county,” said Delameter. “I realize the mental health offices are cramped, but it is important to research for the best solution. Renting a place is not always the way to go and I’d investigate renting or buying. I’d investigate moving or not.”
“The supervisor position is not a one-man show. The supervisor is a facilitator. It’s about the people in the town,” said Nelson Delameter. “I urge people to vote and support me in the primary and again in the general election.”