The Town Board meets every third Wednesday of each month at 7:00 PM at Town Hall. Meetings are televised live on Channel 20. The latest meeting can be found as streaming audio and video on the Channel 18 & 20 section of this web site. Any special documents for the meetings will be posted on the Agendas & Public Notices tab if available. The Town Board Minutes will be posted on the Message Board if available.
Messages can be left for the councilpersons with the Town Clerk’s office. You can also leave messages or requests/concerns via e-mail to the Town Clerk.
Town government is run by the Town Board as the executive, administrative, and legislative body of the town. The Town Board represents the will and voice of the people.
According to the Town Law Manual published by the Association of Towns of the State of New York, the Town Board evolved from the early days of (our) Nation, many of the colonies established a form of government intimately conducted and controlled by the residents of the towns. All important decisions as to the government, taxes, and other matters were actually decided at a meeting of the residents of the town, at which meeting a vote would be taken to determine the proposal at issue. In some states this procedure is still followed.
In New York State, our towns have been organized with an elective legislative body, to wit: the Town Board. “..only in special instances is a vote of the inhabitants of the town required.” The “special vote” is knows as referendum and the laws governing Town Government in New York State have laid down specific situations where a referendum is allowed. As explained in the Town Law Manual:
“Government by representation is still the rule. Direct action by the people is the exception.” “Thus in the absence of express statutory provision (wording of and within the Law) the holding of an advisory referendum by a municipality is not authorized.” “Thus, a high personal responsibility rests on individual town board members. It requires that they exercise careful consideration in making important decisions which will affect the lives of town residents and businesses.” This is why the position held by Town Board members and other elected officials is considered to require a high level of trust by the public in their officials.
-WILLIAM ZUTT, ESQ.