MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM TYRE NEWSLINE!
It is once again that time of year to wish all the residents of Tyre a fantastic holiday season! It has been quite a year, one that will not easily be forgotten, this year of 2020. The various struggles, along with our lives being turned upside down with the reported COVID-19 Pandemic situation, the extreme economic impact it has had on our state and the nation, as well as the current attempts being made to rebuild businesses and lives, have certainly been a challenge for us all. Moving forward into 2021 this is for sure a lot to absorb. Throughout all of these challenges, your Town has been active in a variety of ways and it is our hope that this annual letter can share some of the accomplishments that have culminated in the year of 2020.
We do have a lot to be proud of and certainly a lot to be thankful for.
Let us discuss the Highway Department and their activities throughout 2020. First and foremost, we are blessed to have replaced a number of our aging vehicles and related equipment. Most recently we have taken delivery of a new ten wheel dump truck with snowplow, as well as a new excavator. It is important to note that all of our recently acquired Highway Department purchases have been paid for, debt free. The Highway Department Building itself has had a new roof installed that will last for many years. This was a much needed repair. Nearpass Road was completely repaved this year and actually came in under budget! As with the purchase of equipment, all of our roadwork was completed and fully funded without taking on any debt to the Town. Besides a full overhaul of Nearpass Road, the Town completed partial resurfacing of East Tyre Road, Lamb Road, Blackbrook Road, Dawson Road, Chase Road, and a small portion of East Road. It is unknown if towns will receive much, if any, of the annual highway funding from New York State that it has been accustomed to in years past. To eliminate taking on any future debt, we will carefully consider our roadwork projects for the upcoming year.
The Town continues to attract new development, and even throughout the craziness of 2020, Tyre has been busy working with several developers that wish to put down roots in our community. We have been collaborating with the Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores throughout 2020. All necessary approvals have been granted and Love’s advises us that their plan is to break ground in the Spring of 2021. Tyre has also attracted Dunkin Donuts and they plan on constructing a store on NYS Route 414 next to Love’s in the near future! We may also see an IHOP (International House of Pancakes) locating here in 2021. These businesses will surely enhance our commercial corridor with exciting new establishments for our residents and travelers alike who come to visit our beautiful Finger Lakes area. Considering the whirlwind of 2020 that everyone has been contending with, we consider ourselves incredibly lucky here in Tyre to be working with these developers at this point in our State’s uncertain future. These businesses are certainly welcome in our community and they have a home here!
Our Planning Board members have certainly been busy throughout 2020, with a number of developers discussing their plans to establish new businesses in the Town of Tyre. In addition, The Town has made a change in legal representation in 2020. We have engaged a new attorney to work with our Planning Board as well as other Town related matters. Mr. Donald Young, Esq. has been engaged by the Town to join the team and help with a new direction the Town is taking with a “business friendly” initiative, to welcome investors and businesses alike. Attorney Young has been a beneficial addition to our team and we are happy to welcome him.
This year, our country had a Presidential election and with this occurrence, it has brought up discussions concerning our own voting location here in the Town of Tyre. For many years, our residents have voted at the Tyre Band Hall Building, located at 616 Lamb Road here in Tyre. However, now that the Town has been fortunate enough to have built a new Municipal Building at 1082 Gravel Road, some residents are asking why our voting is not taking place in this new building. There appears to be a mix of opinions, with some residents preferring to continue to vote at the Band Hall, while others voicing their wishes to have the location of voting changed to the new Municipal Building. In order to ascertain what the majority of Tyre residents would prefer for their voting location in 2021, please contact us by January 31, 2021 either by phone at: (315) 835-0206 or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please let us know your thoughts on this issue! We will gather the feedback of the community and share the information, once obtained, on our website at: www.tyreny.com. Thank you in advance for your input in determining the location for future voting in Tyre.
In regards to the Band Hall, the Tyre Band Hall Committee has been in the process of changing the building into a Community Center for Tyre. The interior was painted and repaired by Mark Travis, thanks to a grant from Senator Michael Nozzolio several years ago. Rich Amidon was subsequently hired to rebuild the existing kitchen. The original pass-through was kept and the original kitchen shelf was salvaged and moved to the meeting room to be used for displays. A handicap accessible rest room had also been added. Dennis Stone volunteered his time and talents to replace the original blackboards and is rebuilding an oak cabinet. Our committee members have given their time and efforts to work on this project and it is very much appreciated. Because of the reported COVID-19 Pandemic situation we have been unable to use the building for programs and events that were planned for 2020, but we are hopeful that it will be possible to present an Open House in the fall of 2021. The Band Hall Committee members are appointed by the Town Board and they are the following: Patsy Amidon, Marge Fahrenholz (chair), Jean Horton, Pat Mahoney (treasurer) and Char Verkey. The liaisons for the Town Board are Councilmen Jim Rogers and Ken Sutterby.
Financially, the Town is in a good position. With years of careful and conservative fiscal budgeting, Tyre has put aside a portion of the NYS Gaming Tax Revenue funds it has received into a reserve account. Unfortunately, we have had to use some of these funds to get us through the 2020 budget due to the unforeseen NYS shutdown of del Lago and many other businesses in our area due to the reported COVID-19 Pandemic. It is helpful that we have recently received a very small portion of our allotted Gaming Tax Revenue that New York State shares with Tyre as the host community. However, when the Governor mandated the shutdown of the casino for approximately 6 months, the funds we would have received earlier this year were obviously reduced by a very significant amount, over 1 million dollars. With the unknown future of mandated shutdowns of businesses in New York State, our ability to plan for and budget for 2021 has been a difficult proposition. We have not budgeted for any NYS Gaming Tax Revenue in 2021 in an attempt to plan for the worst, but hope for the best! Our adopted 2021 budget expenses have been reduced by nearly 2 million dollars, and our recently enacted 2020 spending moratorium will likely continue until the overall economic situation stabilizes. It is hoped that 2021 will bring back the previously healthy financial situations we have enjoyed over the past few years.
Once again, del Lago Resort & Casino has funded the fire tax for The Town of Tyre in 2021 and therefore, you will not see a fire tax amount on your property tax bill. The Town is incredibly grateful that del Lago assisted the Town by pre-paying the fire tax for 2021. This way, the Town could budget in advance for this cost and be absolutely certain these funds would be available for this payment for fire protection which is due in January 2021. This action, by itself will save our taxpayers from an additional cost on their property tax bill that otherwise would have been needed to be implemented.
It should also be noted that the Town of Tyre has made a change in who we contract with for Fire Protection Services for the Town of Tyre Fire Protection District. For many, many years Tyre has engaged the Magee Volunteer Fire Department for the annual fire protection contract. As the result of numerous concerns raised, and after obtaining expert legal advice, the Town decided to explore options to determine what other opportunities there were for fire protection in the Town of Tyre. Much time and effort went into making this decision, always keeping the best interests and safety of our residents first and foremost. During this process, the Galen-Clyde Fire Department offered the Town a contract that was, not only less in cost, but also offered fire protection that would ensure response on a timely and consistent basis, without all of the issues and uncertainties currently facing Magee. We sincerely thank the Magee Volunteer Fire Department and its’ members for their years of service to Tyre, and we truly hope that the internal issues that they are currently facing can be resolved in the near future.
We would like to take this opportunity also to thank our Highway Department personnel, our Volunteers and Members who serve on our Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals, Band Hall Committee, Attorneys and Engineers, as well as all Staff Members and Elected Officials in our Town. Thank you for your service!
Finally, a very Special Thanks goes out to Elizabeth Sutterby (“Tootie”) for her 44 years of service and dedication to the Office of Tyre Town Clerk. A well deserved retirement!
WE WISH EVERYONE A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR !
Ronald F. McGreevy
Town of Tyre Supervisor