It has been a while since we have spoken, and I welcome all of our out of town visitors to our Website and to the city. There are a lot of good things happening in Albany these days. Our new convention center is nearing completion, with an expected opening in March of next year. You definitely have to check out the new Renaissance Hotel, which is a remake of the Dewitt Clinton hotel. Both of these venues will be linked to the downtown arena and the Empire State Plaza. That’s some of the good. Actually, the Albany I grew up in, was not a bad place to live. A city is only as good as the government that runs it. Prior to three years ago, I had lived happily under the guidance of three mayors. And I am 61 years old. Then our mayor of 20 years decides he’s had enough. What we have in return, is what I will call, is a Progressive Democrat — mind you out of townees there hasn’t been a Republican mayor in this city since before my grandfather was born — whose department that takes care of the underground plumbing took four months to correct a sinkhole on a main street in town that swallowed up some poor guy’s SUV (and if anyone from Albany’s DGS want’s to challenge me on that, I am an engineer, and I could have rented some equipment, got some skilled workers out of the Hall and fixed it in a week.) Then our new mayor, who continually blames the past administration on the city’s budget woes comes up with this brilliant idea to install a series of red light cameras to pad the city treasury to a supposed $2.5 mil a year, and actually included that number into the city budget for the year. In hindsight, the camera’s are probably doing some good as far as safety is concerned, but they generate absolutely no income for the city. I don’t know about anyone else, but I know where the camera’s are, and I think more than once about gunning the gas pedal to get through a light. The city doesn’t own the camera system, and has to pay rent for each camera installed. Next, and this is a problem that I haven’t even heard an iota of a solution to: That being what is going to happen to the city’s trash when the current landfill, which is at capacity has to close. And it will close. The Save The Pinebush folks have acquired all the surrounding land, and any thought of an upward expansion is out of the question. Albany reaps a bundle of cash each month accepting garbage from surrounding communities, and with the inevitable closing of it’s solid waste facility, it faces having to pay for it’s own trash disposal. Believe me; there is nowhere anyplace close to here that will accept a new landfill. Just ask anybody who lives in, or anywhere close to Coeymans. So let’s impose a trash fee? First, we start by charging a fee for for rentals less than four units — which just passes the cost down to the tenant. Now the mayor wants everybody to pay a fee. That would be an OK idea, as free trash pickup is a luxury a lot of communities do not have; IF the mayor and common council could get on the same page, on a reasonable fee. I am about done, and I don’t know if anyone else cares about this next one. I wouldn’t have brought this up but, even my wife noticed this the other day. The City, to appease the whim of it’s bicycle riding 10th Ward Common Councilperson, performed a transformation of a perfectly functional section of Madison Avenue between Partridge and Allen Street’s, into a bike friendly, newly paved nightmare. My wife, driving west on Madison, approached Partridge and said: ”This is a pretty dangerous merge.” I know the city did a comprehensive study to perform a ”Road Diet” study on Madison, from Allen, all the way down to Lark. Either redo the whole road, or let it be. This was done for St. Rose, and all in all that is not a bad thing. But don’t do it to appease the leader’s of the Ward or Neighborhood Association. THAT is the problem with our new Progressive Democratic leadership. We need someone to step up next year to get this city back on track. Maybe the guy from the 15th Ward. That would work……….I was going to talk about Donald Trump. But it’s 4:30 am, and that is a another story. Remember. I am a Democrat. Follow me on Twitter @jonmazur.
And that is ”The Daily Take”