Knox Election 2017: Dan Hanley for town council

Dan Hanley

Dan Hanley

KNOX — Dan Hanley, a Democrat, is running on the Democratic line for the second time to keep his seat on Knox’s town council.

Hanley, 48, grew up in Loudonville, but always loved the outdoors, including camping at Thompsons Lake. He said that he and his wife moved to Knox in 1997 to “get out of the hustle and bustle.”

Hanley teaches special-education students at Schalmont High School. He and his wife have four children.

He believes that his background and involvement with the community helps him serve on the board.

“Having a common-sense approach to things is really one of my strongest points,” he added.

Regarding the business district, Hanley said that he and the rest of the town board are waiting to hear the consensus from the planning board and the Conservation Advisory Council on the proposed business district along Route 146, which the board will be discussing on Tuesday, and that he is awaiting more information on that.

He said, regarding the proposed district at routes 156 and 157, that he doesn’t feel another business district is necessary.

“Part of municipal planning is, if you have a business district and it’s full, then you need to add business districts,” he said. “But right now we have a business district that does not have many businesses and you don’t want to expand that until it has businesses in town to work from.”

He said that Knox has many home businesses and, while he would like to see a convenience store in town, it would have to be looked at, business by business.

“I think that there has to be some sort of control,” he said, noting that this is the role of an organization like the planning board.

On the capital project, Hanley said that both the transfer station and highway garage “are in desperate need of repair.”

He noted that the closure of the Albany City Landfill will affect how to deal with the transfer station as well.

Hanley said that an upcoming energy audit would help continue the process of receiving the Climate Smart Communities grant, which could be used for funding repairs on the facility.

He said that he does not like the idea of sharing services with the county, but would be open to sharing facilities. He said, though, that he would have to make a decision based on what savings are projected.

Hanley is not sure which structure should be repaired or replaced first, given upcoming issues with the landfill as well as conditions faced by the highway workers.

“The transfer station should be repaired if not replaced,” said Hanley. “But we also have our old, old highway garage … Both have to be addressed; that’s the bottom line.”

On tax revaluation, Hanley said he has not heard of any concerns about the state-set equalization rate, which is at 60 percent. He said he also has not heard many complaints about property taxes from residents. Hanley added that town taxes also make a small portion of property taxes.

“I think we’re where we need to be, because I’m not hearing otherwise,” he said.

Regarding the tax cap, Hanley said that, while the town is currently financially sound, he could see something pressing such as funding repairs in the town facilities as justifiable for going above the cap.

“I don’t really foresee us needing to go above that 2-percent,” he said. “But we also do have some significant repairs coming to our town buildings and that may necessitate that happening.”

Hanley described the town’s solid-waste situation as a “double-edged sword.” He said that the town could look to models such as paying for bags to dump trash, and having recyclables be free to dump.

He speculates that costs will increase once the landfill closes, because the waste likely will have to be shipped, and the town should be looking at new means of waste collection now before that happens.

Hanley concluded that he feels he has been elected to protect the rural integrity of the town.

“I know I have been painted as anti-business because of voting down the business district,” he said. “But I did not take that lightly and I did not base that on my personal opinion. I base my decisions on facts and data.”

He added that a lot of work goes into those decisions, and he will do that for all his decisions.

 

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