CASSADAGA Even small village is missing input

A recent Chautauqua County Planning Board meeting indicated some concerns regarding the village of Cassadaga’s potential short-term rental law. As proposed, there would be a cap of only 20 of these locations allowed in the municipality.

Susan Asquith, a village resident who serves on the county panel, also spoke against the plan. What’s most surprising in her comments was the controversial discussion did not include participation of key stakeholders. “Unfortunately, there was not a good engagement of public comment and input,” she said.

Cassadaga is one of the smallest local governments in existence. It serves a population of less than 600 residents. If there cannot be public input in the smallest of communities in the county– where one board member represents 120 residents — why do constituents believe that it needs to continue to exist?

Most of Cassadaga’s successes are not tied to the government. Instead, it is volunteers who belong to Citizens for a Better Cassadaga. The group has successfully injected enthusiasm with events into the lakefront community. Government, in the meantime, squabbles with a short-term rental law that benefits attendance at these happenings while attempting to limit visitors.

It is never easy finding common ground. If politicians are involved, such as a Village Board, it will become even tougher.


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