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New Year brings new plans for Clarence

BY: Kaitlin Fritz, Community Papers of WNY | December 27, 2012

The New Year is just around the corner and while many make lists of their New Year’s resolutions, Town of Clarence Supervisor David Hartzell has his list done and has several plans for 2013.

“My wish for next year, as always, is to see taxes go down,” said Hartzell.

He added that the tax rates are already lowered for 2013 and that he looks forward to lowering them for 2014. One way to continue lowering taxes is bringing in new businesses, which is on Hartzell’s resolution list for next year. There are a few projects such as Towne Mini and Niagara Produce that are already underway, which will add jobs to the area along with generating funds.

Another project that will be taking place in the upcoming year is additional sewer lines on Main Street. This can help open Main Street for the opportunity of commercial development.

Several other projects are being considered and may also be possible for 2013.

Hartzell added that he tries to spread funds throughout all ages and plans to do projects for youth and seniors as well.

The town pool, located at Clarence Town Park on Main Street, will be getting a new liner, replacing the one that has been leaking for years. Along with this, there will be a twist slide added to the pool along with a lifeguard stand to help keep all the swimmers safe. This will benefit the youth and families of Clarence.

Also, Hartzell added that there would be outdoor hockey rinks for the children of Clarence to enjoy this winter as well as a new outdoor basketball court for when the weather warms up.

Another project that will benefit the youth is an indoor soccer facility. The Clarence Soccer Club has more than 2,000 players and doesn’t have its own facility. The club itself would fund this project.

Hartzell believes that adding these facilities for sports are essential to the town. Seeing Clarence High School earn two state championships in 2012, it shows that sports are very important to the town’s youth.

For seniors, a new van has been added and new front doors will be put in the senior center. The current doors allow cold air to rush in whenever someone enters the building. A better design will be installed to help keep the building warm.

Also, Hartzell added that a new senior citizens complex would be built on Transit Road. This project was approved in February and will become a reality in 2013.

“We try to do something for our seniors and it’s nice that when you retire, you won’t have to move out of Clarence,” said Hartzell.

One final thing that Hartzell has planned is to rearrange the schedules of the town’s security officers. He has found that the need for security officers in the winter is low and the need for them in the summer is higher. Hours for the winter will be cut and added to the summer hours instead.

“Security will be much more visible,” he said. “It’s just rearranging our priorities and how they do what they do.”

A police force for the town would cost $7 million when the security officers cost only $160,000. Rearranging the hours will not cost the town anything extra. He also plans to add new carts to help patrol the bike path and cameras as well.

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