To the Editor:
I am happy to announce my candidacy for Trustee to the Canton Village Board.
The people within the Village of Canton have much to be proud of: a historic downtown, above average elementary and high schools, a swift river flowing through the heart of the village, a remodeled and updated medical facility, two excellent institutions of higher learning, beautiful places of worship, B and B’s, restaurants, new parks for children, robust civic organizations and enthusiastic citizen-action groups.
Communities surrounding us look to the county seat for direction, inspiration and advice. We have much to be thankful for and those who have put their blood, sweat, and tears into this community are to be commended. Surely, however, with all that has been done there is much more to do.
The Canton Community Action Plan (CCAP), approved in 2011, proposed many goals for our community. Some goals include a forward-thinking look at, and research into, consolidation of services within our town and village governments with the expressed goal of lowering village taxes. It calls for an evaluation of village parking and business infrastructure to increase efficiency and encourage entrepreneurialism.
Among other things, the CCAP encourages tourist- and recreation-driven economic growth largely stemming from recommendations made by the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP) finalized in 2010. The LWRP proposes river-access solutions and grant-funded parks utilizing the Grasse River. Some of the objectives and recommendations within these two documents have been addressed and acted upon; but again, there is much to be done.
If elected, I would encourage and take part in open conversations and better communication between the Village Board and the citizens of Canton. After the downtown Main Street construction is behind us, I will push for better parking solutions and seek to minimize vacant storefronts by finding incentives for brick-and-mortar businesses to operate within the village.
Furthermore, I’m in favor of more work being done towards recreational goals set forth in the Waterfront Revitalization Plan, first-and-foremost for the health and wellness of the village tax payer, but also to boost Canton tourist dollars. Also, I would encourage a grant-funded study into village tax-relief strategies, including town and village municipal consolidation and resource-sharing.
As a North Country native, college program administrator in our community, and a family man with young children, I believe there is much to be done in Canton, and I would be honored to help.
Please vote for me for Canton Village Trustee on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
Dan McDonnell, Canton