- Shop local more. This could be broadened to do more business locally. We should have told our house painter where to get his paint - he didn't travel far, but even if we had paid just a few more bucks to keep that purchase in town we should have insisted. Two high school kids did an awesome job shoveling out our cars and walk yesterday, and I know that cash will be spent nearby. My brilliant wife suggested tipping the mailman with Chamber of Commerce CertifiChecks.
- Recycle more. Businesses aren't required to recycle and there's no good reason why not. I applaud Craig Shankles at PDQ Printing for having a strong environmental commitment, but recycling is one of those things that needs a governmental nudge before it makes economic sense.
- Did the EnCC get the Post Office fully on board yet?
- I want to visit Laura Petit at the recycling center and talk to her about what can and can't be recycled. I bring my stuff there myself, and it's stunning when you compare the list of appropriate items to the stuff that shows up in those dumpsters. Does separating at home work? I'm watching Springfield's pilot recycling program closely.
- Talk more about unification or whatever you want to call it. Consolidating governments may save money and may make government more efficient and may put the independence and character of the village at risk (which the Town Planning Board can do in all the ways that count under the present system). No one has any really good evidence on either side of the debate because people are stubborn and unwilling to let grant money be spent on finding out. Is Terry Dungan thumbing his nose at us to protect his fiefdom, or is Toni Hokanson rubbing her hands together gleefully at the idea of gaining more land for hers? Can we please find out?
- Overthrow partisan politics. The idea of even considering a person's political party in a local election is just absurd. Does it really affect how streets are plowed or parking regulated? Far too many people in New Paltz make voting decisions with political party forefront in their mind; both educated and uninformed voters do it. There shouldn't be a fully Democratic town council, and it also should matter that there is! And it's not just the Democrats doing it, either - I've taken several Greens to task for their tunnel-vision mission to avoid voting for a Democrat.
- Improve this blog. I may not be interested in politics but others are, so I'd like to include at least a Republican or a Libertarian in the gadfly mix. No elected official has asked yet, but if they do, should they be allowed to post? I'd also like to make a cool new banner, but first I need to find a nice picture of the ridge to use. Please comment if you own one that you're willing to donate.
Monday, December 22, 2008
New Paltz New Year
Maybe if I make a list of hopes and dreams for New Paltz in 2009 early enough it won't get lost in the thousands of New Year's posts that will hit the blogosphere next week. This past year I moved back into the village and became part of its non-renting minority, and I'm excited about what the next twelve months will bring to our village and town. Here's an impromptu to-do list for 2009: