Friday, 10 March 2017 21:17

Veitch Meets Stefanik in D.C.

Saratoga Springs Supervisor Matthew Veitch in Washington, D.C. with U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik. Saratoga Springs Supervisor Matthew Veitch in Washington, D.C. with U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik. Photo provided.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — City Supervisor Matthew Veitch recently went to the nation’s capital in part to sell the idea of replacing a popular bridge over the Adirondack Northway—one that the state no longer considers a target for complete removal.

On February 28, Veitch met with U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Willsboro), and other federal leaders who represent the Capital Region, as part of a delegation from the National Association of Counties.

“The congresswoman and I discussed a range of topics related to the district,” Veitch said in a statement. “The most important issue I felt which was discussed was urging support for infrastructure funding.” 

Veitch confirmed that the Nelson Avenue Extension bridge was singled out. Last year, that span’s fate was the subject of a concerted advocacy campaign led by the Balet family. 

“I knew that bridge needed to stay open for the whole community,” offered Suzanne Balet-Haight, who is busy this week preparing for her season at Balet Flowers and Design a short distance from the structure. State officials are closely monitoring the aging bridge. 

Last season, Balet-Haight said, her business had to be put “on hold” while she very publicly opposed a plan by the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) to tear down the bridge, which is utilized by many of her customers. She had reached out to Veitch, Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen, Malta Supervisor Vincent DeLucia and other officials for support.      

During his visit with Stefanik, Veitch indicated that he was moved by the ultimate success of that lobbying campaign. “The rallying point for the congresswoman was that federal infrastructure [funding] needs to be available to provide for all critical transportation links,” he said. 

Bryan Viggiani, a DOT spokesman, said the agency’s current priority is to replace two bridges over the Northway on East High Street in Malta and Crescent Avenue in Saratoga Springs. A competitive bidding process for those projects is expected to take place this summer, he said. 

“Safety remains our top priority,” Viggiani added, “and we are committed to continuing the maintenance effort on the Nelson Avenue Extension bridge.”

Tom Flanagin, the communications director for Stefanik, provided a statement downplaying her ability to control federal money used for specific bridge replacements. “Congress operates under an earmark ban that does not allow lawmakers to request funding for individual projects,” he said.  

“Our office is always pleased to assist with federal grant requests,” Flanagin explained, “and we encourage local officials to reach out to us for letters of support and assistance navigating the grant process.”

Read 1626 times

Blotter

  • COURT Paul J. Sims, 26, of Stillwater, was sentenced Nov. 29 to 16 months-to-4 years, and 1.5-to-5 years in state prison, after pleading, respectively, to felony DWI in connection with an incident in Malta, and criminal mischief in Saratoga Springs.  Nicholas L. Moon, 28, of South Glens Falls, pleaded Nov. 30 to felony DWI, in connection with an incident in Saratoga Springs. Sentencing  scheduled Feb. 1, 2018. Jared M. Tenace, 27, of Schenectady, was sentenced Dec. 1 to 1.5 to 3 years in state prison, after pleading to criminal possession of stolen property, a felony.   POLICE  Brian F. Egan,…

Property Transactions

  • BALLSTON SPA 1443 Route 50, $600,000. New York Development Group Kensington LLC sold property to Kensington Court Apartments LLC. 70 Lake Rd., $498,000. Bretton and Erica Adams sold property to Wei Huang. TOWN OF BALLSTON  6 Van Vorst Dr., $209,000. Mary Nixon sold property to Charles Fernandez and Kim Vo.  3 Kaleen Dr., $360,000. David and Danielle Donnelly sold property to Andrea Stankovic.  936 State Route 67, $221,500. Jason Serra sold property to Jason and Stephanie Savaria.  CHARLTON 1403 Cosgrove Dr., $481,452. Bordeau Builders Inc. sold property to Daniel and Vikki Mazzone. CLIFTON PARK 92 Balsam Way, $460,190. Heritage Builders…
  • NYPA
  • Saratoga County Chamber
  • BBB Accredited Business
  • Saratoga Convention & Tourism Bureau
  • Saratoga Springs Downtown Business Association
  • Saratoga Mama