Catalanello and Rowe for a More Affordable and Desirable Madison
Thursday, October 31, 2013 • 12:35pm
As they wrap up their campaign for borough council, the team of Robert Catalanello and Patrick Rowe review their records in office and plans for the future.
“We believe we are the only candidates with a complete understanding of municipal finance, proven records of leadership, proposals based on real fiscal conservative policies that will help taxpayers by lowering the cost of living in Madison.
As we’ve walked all the neighborhoods since August, we’ve had the chance to meet many residents and discuss the things they’d like to see council accomplish the next three years,” noted the candidates, “and all agree that the areas we pledge to address are critical to making Madison a more affordable and better place to live:
“Giving the community an electric rate cut when our cost of purchasing electricity is cut in half,
“Containing Municipal and Open Space taxes,
“Continued delivery of quality services,
“Minimizing any future borrowing,
“Increasing financial transparency,
and, “Focusing on critical infrastructure repairs.
Talking to residents, we found that they were eager to see us tackle the following, if elected,
“Utilizing a portion of the savings that the Electric Utility will see next year to give residents a significant and much rate cut. A 10% cut will provide over $2,000,000 to the community, and give taxpayers the equivalent of a 15 – 20% municipal property tax rate cut.
“A multi-year strategic financial plan based on additional multi-million dollar revenue from the new electric contracts and the development of the Green Village Road School site;
“Increase financial transparency for the Electric and Water Utilities, requiring the borough owned utilities to provide audited financial statements to the taxpayers, as any publically owned utility would give to their stockholders, at least once a year;
“Conducting an in-depth public review of municipal property tax policy and the reliance on Utility surpluses to fund the borough;
“No new properties purchased until prior purchases have been paid, historical contamination issues remediated, and a rigorous recreation fields master plan has been jointly developed by the borough and BOE;
“Continued focus on infrastructure repair, especially the borough’s aging water and sewer lines and roads;
“Closer ties with the BOE, neighboring towns and county to enhance shared services opportunities;
“Continue to foster public/private partnerships for open space projects that promote private fundraising and just grant requests, to help shift the burden from taxpayers;
“Recognize the significant contributions of the borough workers, such as the DPW, utility, police and fire, crossing guards and office workers; and,
“Increasing ratables by leveraging relationships with the county and state to attract new businesses to Madison.”
The candidates noted, “We believe our experience in both the private and public sectors gives us the knowledge and skills to continue to work with council, the board of education and other governmental bodies to get our agenda accomplished. In our time as elected representatives, we have been able to tackle many large issues, and we look forward to addressing the challenges and opportunities that the borough will face over the next three years.”
Councilman Rob Catalanello noted his key accomplishments, including -
“Kept taxes increases low.”
“Served as Finance liaison in 2012 and actively engaged with ratings agency in the crafting of the budget, thereby ensuring the protection of our credit rating.
“Reinstituted the Construction Review Committee to coordinate construction activity in the borough and save money by insourcing work whenever possible;
“Championed infrastructure repair by leading the effort to prioritize and fund projects for our sewer system and sewer pump stations, as well as the repair of many long neglected roads;
“Voted for the award-winning Turf Field Project at the Madison Recreation Complex, which added two desperately needed, lit all-weather fields, to the borough’s overused active recreation properties;
“Helped lead the fundraising effort with the Madison Athletic Foundation for the award-winning Turf Field Project;
“Originated the Water Line Protection Plan, which offers a service to residents while at the same time creating a voluntary revenue stream for the borough; and
“Led the creation the Madison Community Gardens at the 49 acre site;
His running mate, Board of Education Vice President Pat Rowe, noted the things he is most proud of, including,
“Continued improvement in the quality of education that is delivered to the children of Madison, even as the state severely cut back on aid and difficult decisions had to be made to minimize the impact to the district;
“Completing the referendum work, which saw major additions and renovations at all five school buildings. This work was performed on time and under budget;
“Completing the Strategic Planning process to address the long term needs of the school system;
“Advancing the disposition of the Green Village Road School property, which will provide the borough and BOE with large financial gains in both the long and short-term; and
“Building a closer working relationship between the board of education and the borough through the joint BOE/Borough Shared Services Committee, which I chaired for the past three years. Key initiatives addressed included the sale of GVR and the development of the Madison Recreation Center.”
Finally, Catalanello and Rowe noted, “Over the next few years the council will have to make many critical decisions on how to use the large amounts of excess revenue from the Electric Utility, and it is imperative that we provide taxpayer relief, and dedicate the balance to our critical infrastructure needs.
We believe we have the skills, experience and ability to work with the community and council to ensure that the best decisions are being made on behalf of our taxpayers today and tomorrow. It is essential that we work together to make Madison a more affordable and desirable place for our families.”
“We have spent the past six months laying out a serious, positive plan for the future, and with the support of the community next Tuesday, November 5, we hope to have the opportunity to implement these plans starting January 1. We respectfully ask for your votes on November 5 so we can represent all of you at the council table.”
“Please feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or comments about our campaign. You can also follow us on Facebook - facebook.com/CatalanelloRowe4Council or, our campaign website - catalanello-rowe.com.”