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Mealsites get reprieve in county budget

Warrensburg senior mealsite employee Rhonda Dalaba serves up plates of turkey and fixings during the venue’s early observance Thursday, Nov. 17 of the Thanksgiving holiday.

Warrensburg senior mealsite employee Rhonda Dalaba serves up plates of turkey and fixings during the venue’s early observance Thursday, Nov. 17 of the Thanksgiving holiday. Photo by Thom Randall.

— “If these services drop off, it’s going to really change the way people live in the North Country,” Goodspeed said.

Among the upcounty citizens speaking out against the mealsite cutbacks were Chestertown Mealsite Manager Linda Lewis, as well as Calista Murray and Susan Prosser of Warrensburg. After hearing the concerns, the supervisors voted unanimously to earmark $40,000 of unappropriated funds in the budget to continue the program through April 30.

The cutback to senior mealsites wasn’t the only topic of concern as the supervisors met to finalize the county’s 2012 budget.

Bolton resident George Weinschenk questioned many specific expenditures, while he decried a decline in services. He said trees downed by Tropical Storm Irene had yet to be cleared by the county.

“You’re raising my taxes and lowering my services,” he said. “You can’t do that and expect me to be happy.”

Bolton resident and former county supervisor Alexander Gabriels, however, praised the county officials for curbing taxes, despite unavoidable increases in fuel expenses and costs of employee retirement and health care.

“A 1.7 percent increase in tax levy is a very good job,” he said.

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