FREDONIA: Referendum call seems desperate

Fredonia’s tug-of-war lawsuit over the reservoir and the potential future move to the Dunkirk water system is supposed to have its day in court on Monday. Petitioners are seeking to have the Village Board decision of Dec. 26 squashed.

How that plays out remains to be seen. Our take on the water issue — for more than a decade — has simply been this: the village needs reliable water for its residents, businesses and the State University of New York campus.

At this moment, it does not.

That brings us to the other contentious piece in the water debate. Some of those who favor keeping the reservoir also want the village to have a referendum on the issue.

That’s something we’re against. Voters elect representatives to do this work. While those officials are not always the best people for the job, that’s how the municipal system works.

Residents, we must add, did not have a decision during the sale of the Chautauqua County Home. That was kept to legislators in 2014. Additionally, Fredonia taxpayers did not have a say on the recent budget that included a nearly 6% tax increase on village property. Only the trustees decided.

Why change a policy now? Because a segment of the population disagrees with a decision by elected leaders?

Residents have their say during an election when they decide who takes office. That’s how the system has worked for some 200 years in this county.

Ultimately, as is usually the case, not everyone will be pleased with a government’s decision.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $2.99/week.

Subscribe Today