A good deal?

To the editor:

I have been reading with interest the letters to the editor in support of Ms. Ellis and Mr. Donaldson, the candidates for Franklin County legislator. I have found that I agree with much of what has been said about both of them. I don’t know Ms. Ellis, but she seems to be a nice, hard-working person who, along with her husband, have fully embraced our community. However, there is one theme I have heard over and over with which I have to disagree: She has been able to obtain a lot for us in the southern end of the county.

In her defense, no legislator in the past 15 years that I have been keeping track has been able to get us a fair deal in the county. The southern townships have historically paid a disproportionate share of the county taxes. There are 19 towns in the county. It might surprise your readers to learn that the five townships in the southern end (Brighton, Franklin, Harrietstown, Santa Clara and Tupper Lake) pay a whopping 61.46% of all the county taxes, with Harrietstown paying the highest percentage at 22.69%, while only having roughly 10% of the population. For comparison, Malone has about 32% of the population yet pays only 12.52% of the taxes. In fact, the town of Malone has a slightly greater population than the five southern townships combined.

Do I think Cliff Donaldson can fix this inequity? I don’t know, but I am hopeful that his many years of experience dealing with the Essex County government will offer him the insight he needs. I, for one, am willing to give him a chance. Will you join me?


R. Miles Van Nortwick

Saranac Lake