If signs counted as votes, Tuesday’s vote on whether to keep or dissolve the village of Depew would be a landslide. That’s true, because the pro-dissolution team made only one. Those against dissolution made hundreds.
But signs aren't what win elections, votes do.
A no vote and the Village of Depew remains the Village of Depew.
A yes vote and half of Depew becomes part of Cheektowaga, the other, Lancaster.
According to those in favor of dissolving, the move would mean a significant drop in taxes, for the village's 15,000 residents.
“Depew would have to actually lower our taxes by over 41% just so the combined village and town taxes are competitive with the town taxes. And that's just not going to happen,” said Irvine. G. Reining II. Reining says he’s been asking the village to consider a better long term plan to lower taxes for years. He says now would be the perfect time to dissolve.
If Depew dissolves, the police department, department of public works, fire department among other services would be eliminated over the next few years. Those are services many are not willing to give up.
One police lieutenant says, Depew becoming an independent entity would solve the excessive tax problem, while continuing to provide services for its residents.
“Why don't we become our own town? We have everything the people need here. We provide all the services,” said William Curr.
“Why people in Depew are paying taxes to the Town of Cheektowaga for police services is beyond me? That's millions of dollars being wasted,” said Curr.
If the village dissolves, an appointed board would have to work quickly to develop a plan.
“The plan would take somewhere between a year and a half to two years from the time when the vote actually takes place,” said Reining II.
If residents in Depew vote no, dissolution can't be voted on again, for another four years.
Polls open at January 17th, at noon at the Depew Village Hall. They close at 9pm.
For more information on the Depew dissolution vote here are some links: