West Seneca Town Board Special Meeting Minutes 04/08/2009
Supervisor Wallace C. Piotrowski called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M. followed by the Pledge of Allegiance.
ROLL CALL: Present -
Absent - None
DOWNSIZING PETITIONS AND SCHEDULING PARTICULARS OF THE SPECIAL ELECTION
Supervisor Piotrowski stated this meeting has been called to address the downsizing petitions and schedule a Special Election pursuant to New York State law.
Motion by Supervisor Piotrowski to accept the petitions and the particulars of voting as follows:
WHEREAS, on March 20, 2009, the West Seneca Town Clerk received petitions duly subscribed, authenticated and with sufficient number of signatures of electors of the Town all in the manner provided for by New York State Election Law and New York State Town Law Section 81, and
WHEREAS, in accordance with New York State Town Law Section 81, such petition compels this Board to cause to be submitted at a special election a proposition on whether to decrease the number of council members from four to two, and
WHEREAS, under New York State Town Law Section 82 this Board must adopt a resolution at least twenty (20) days before every special town election designating the hours of opening and closing of polls and the place or places of holding the election and setting forth in full all propositions to be voted upon.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Town of West Seneca shall hold a special town election on Tuesday, May 26th 2009 for the purpose of placing before the town voters a proposition on whether to reduce the number of council members from four (4) to two (2). Such special town election shall take place on Tuesday, May 26th, 2009 with the hours for opening and closing of polls being from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm in the same format and places of holding of a primary election including consolidated election districts for each polling machine at each polling location in the Town of West Seneca, New York as follows:
The text of the proposition which shall be designated as Proposition No. 1 shall be read as follows: Should the number of the council members of the Town Board of the Town of West Seneca, New York, be decreased from four to two, such as the West Seneca Town Board shall be comprised of the Supervisor and two Council members as of January 1, 2010, and the Town Clerk is hereby instructed to take all necessary steps to comply with the notice and posting requirements relating to this special town election and proposition.
Motion by Councilman Graber, seconded by Councilwoman Bove, to amend the motion to set the date for Wednesday, June 3, 2009 with the details to follow.
On the question, Supervisor Piotrowski noted that New York State law Section 82 requires that the particulars of the election be set by the Town Board, including times and locations within 60 to 75 days of the filing.
Mr. Graber stated he wanted to discuss the election with the Town Attorney as he is not in favor of the hours as set forth, the locations as proposed or the wording of the proposition. By law, only six hours are required. He felt twelve hours are unnecessary as the Board is looking to reduce the cost for the special election.
Mrs. Meegan questioned why the matter could not be discussed tonight.
Mr. Graber stated both attorneys have resigned and the special election needs to be done in conjunction with the advice and oversight of a town attorney. The particulars of the election are not required at this time and will not change the date of the election.
Mr. Piotrowski stated he was concerned that less locations will result in a lower voter turnout.
Mr. Graber disagreed, noting that voter turnout in a typical primary election is low even with multiple locations. He felt streamlining of the quantity of voter locations would encourage a larger voter turnout.
Mrs. Meegan remarked that this matter has been in front of the Town Board since last summer and the opportunity to discuss it is at this meeting.
Mr. Graber responded that another meeting would be scheduled to discuss the particulars.
Motion by Councilwoman Bove, seconded by Councilman Graber, to adjourn the meeting (7:15 p.m.).
PATRICIA C. DePASQUALE, RMC/CMC