Rensselaerville: Deputy Supervisor Rauf uncontested in bid for highway super post

Jason Rauf

Jason Rauf

RENSSELAERVILLE — After four years on the Rensselaerville Town Board, Deputy Supervisor Jason Rauf, 34, is ready to step up and over into the full-time highway superintendent position, where he’ll oversee roughly 80 miles of town roads.

He’s uncontested in his bid to replace Superintendent Randall Bates, who is not seeking re-election. 

Rauf, a Republican backed by the Republican and Conservative parties, told The Enterprise this week that, although he “enjoyed immensely” his time on the board, he’s looking forward to the relatively non-partisan highway superintendent position.

“In my opinion, as long as the job is done correctly, nobody cares whether the highway superintendent is Republican or Democrat,” Rauf said. “They just want their road plowed and maintained correctly. So I’m looking forward to that aspect of it.”

A municipal mechanic by trade, Rauf told The Enterprise in 2017 as he sought a position on the town board that his experience working on equipment for the town of Coeymans would be valuable in his role as a councilman in Rensselaerville. Now, he expects his experience as councilman will inform his work in the Rensselaerville Highway Department.

“I know the ins and outs of the operation and principle of the budget, the daily paperwork required, where the money comes from, how it’s utilized, how it’s saved,” Rauf said. “It’s been nice being on the board and it’s going to help me in my next endeavor.”

His mission, at this point, is to pick up where Bates left off, said Rauf, stating that Bates, who’s been the highway superintendent for over a decade, “has done a very good job.”

“Right off, we’re basically going to run things how they’ve been running, keep the status quo,” Rauf said. “As I see the need for adjustments and changes, we will do that. When it comes to our road resurfacing program, what Randy has done has been right on point, and we’ll continue that same mentality going forward.”

Over the summer, the Rensselaerville Town Board established a committee, headed by resident Rebecca Platel, to investigate ways the town might improve parking in the hamlet, something that Rauf said he wants to be “on board with.”

Rauf said that he always had a mind to become the town’s highway superintendent, but that he didn’t think it would happen this soon. If all goes according to plan, he’ll be in the role for quite a while.

“I’m a lifelong resident here in town,” Rauf said. “... Ideally, assuming I can get re-elected, this is going to be a career for me. I’m not going to be here for four years and [leave]. My intention is to do 20 years here, in this position, if possible, if the people are good enough to re-elect me. I intend on doing the best job possible in order to become re-elected and to uphold my family name here.”

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