Today we introduce you to Rye City council candidate Terry McCartney:
What are the three most important issues for Rye in 2014?
- Returning respect, civility and professionalism to the way that City government is run.
- Controlling taxes and maintaining a high level of City services.
- Negotiating contracts with the police, fire and DPW personnel that both protect taxpayers and respect the men and women who serve our community.
Rye Playland. Questions:
- Which of the Rye Playland alternatives do you favor? I support the SPI plan because it respects the historical significance of Playland while adding green space, playing fields, access to the shoreline and other needed resources to both Rye and Westchester County.
- Do you believe the financial performance of Rye Playland has been misstated by the County Executive (yes or no) and should the financial statements of Rye Playland be audited by an independent auditor? No. Maybe.
- What’s your favorite ride at Rye Playland and why? The Dragon Coaster. It reminds me of riding roller coasters as a kid. It’s just rickety enough to get your heart racing.
Rye City Budget and Infrastructure. Questions:
- What percentage of the city’s budget is comprised of healthcare and pension contributions? Approximately 24% of our $31 million annual budget ($7.5 million) goes to healthcare and pension contributions.
- What can and should Rye be doing to control city employee healthcare and pension costs? Negotiating good provider agreements, increasing employee contributions when appropriate and lobbying state officials.
- Infrastructure in Rye: The Central Avenue Bridge in Rye was replaced this year, six years after it was washed out in the floods of 2007. Questions:
- What are the three most important infrastructure projects in Rye City?
- Railroad station plaza
- The projects funded by the recent bond referendum
- Creating and improving our sidewalks
- What are the three most important infrastructure projects in Rye City?
- Is it ever appropriate to defer needed infrastructure maintenance or improvements even if in the end the deterioration results in a more expensive project? No, unless there is no money to pay for the improvements.
- What is the best way to fund infrastructure? A good mix of federal and state grants, operating expenses and debt.
Flooding in Rye. Questions:
- What has been done in Rye since the 2007 floods to mitigate future flooding? Installation of the sluice gate at the Bowman Avenue Dam; obtained various studies for further improvements.
- What still needs to be done to mitigate flooding concerns in Rye City? Explore additional ways of retaining water upstream of Rye, starting with a study of the existing scientific reports (which were due in March 2013 but have not yet been made available by the current administration).
Rye Town Park. Questions:
- Should Rye City own and run Rye Town Park, yes or no? No. As of now, Rye Town Park is an asset of both Rye City and Rye Town residents and we need to work cooperatively to manage it.
- If the government entity Rye Town is dissolved and goes away, should the park fall under the ownership and control of Rye City, Westchester County or someone else? Yes, ideally; but the park will be an asset of local residents regardless of municipal entities.
- Should dogs be allowed off leash in the park, yes or no? Yes, before 9 a.m. only when the park is fairly empty.
The TD Smoke Shop on Purchase Street. Questions:
- Should the Smoke Shop stay open, yes or no? Yes.
- Should the Smoke Shop stay open even if it means the City needs to intervene with the building owner or others, yes or no? Yes.
The Rye Golf Club has been mired in scandal and badly mismanaged. Questions:
- Does the Rye City Manager Scott Pickup hold responsibility for mismanagement and if so, what consequences should befall Mr. Pickup? Every City employee and council member is accountable for their job performance. The City Manager’s overall job performance should be reviewed and the appropriate action taken, if necessary.
- In the future, what needs to be done to place proper auditing and financial controls? Increased checks and balances, greater oversight, better leadership on the City Council.
- What specifically should happen with the dining facility at Whitby Castle? The City should issue a Request for Proposals for the restaurant and catering operations.
- Should Rye Golf Club members be forced to pay a $300 food minimum, yes or no? That is a question to be decided by the membership. As a member, I do not mind the minimum and use it up easily, but I understand that others may feel differently.
Green issues in Rye. Questions:
- Is Rye being overbuilt, yes or no? Yes and No. The character of the neighborhood should be a consideration in balancing the rights of property owners and their neighbors. We should always strive for the correct balance so that young families as well as our seniors can continue to live in Rye and keep the culture of Rye as it has been for so long while respecting the rights of property owners to improve their homes.
- Should there be rules about cutting down trees of a certain size or age? Who doesn’t love trees? We all love trees; as long as the rules are fair and well-written, I have no problem with making them.
- Do you support the plastic bag ban in Rye, yes or no? Yes.
- Should we cull the deer population in Rye, yes or no? Yes.
- What else should we be doing to make Rye a sustainable city? Follow through on many of the Action Steps detailed in the excellent Rye Sustainability Plan published recently. We can do a lot more to make Rye a more sustainable city.
Word Association: tell us the one word you associate with each of these topics:
Scott Pickup: Misleading
Doug French: Struggled
Steve Otis: Thoughtful
George Latimer: Steady
Judy Myers: Verni
Bill Connors: Average
Rye City: Hometown
Central Avenue Bridge: Late
Bowman Avenue Dam Sluice Gate: Beginning
The Smoke Shop: Iconic
Rye Little League Parade: Americana
Rye Recreation: Foundation
Plastic Bag Ban: Smart
Rye Playland: Resource
Rye Marshlands Conservancy: Point
Edith Read Sanctuary: Quiet
Rye Garnet Football: Teamwork
Harrison Huskie Football: Worthy
Tell Us About Your Campaign:
What “ticket(s)” are you running on? Rye United.
Who else (if applicable) is running on your ticket? Joe Sack, Kirstin Bucci and Julie Killian.
What local organizations have endorsed your candidacy? Republican, Conservative
What are the three most important endorsements you have received from local residents? Former Rye School Board President Michael Ice, Steven Secon, Greg Hale.
How much money has your campaign raised as of Sunday, October 20, 2013? For questions regarding campaign finance, please see the detailed filings on the New York State Board of Elections website.
How much of the money raised to date is from you, your immediate family or relatives? no answer
How much of the money raised to date is from individual donations of $100 or less? no answer
What percentage of money has been spent on postal mailings to Rye homes? no answer
What percentage of money has been spent on advertisements in local newspapers or web sites? no answer
What comprises the other major expenditures? no answer
Who is your campaign manager and where do they live? no answer
Tell Us More About You:
Where do you live in Rye? 450 Park Avenue
How long have you lived in Rye – since what year? 2000
What’s your day job? Attorney
If your co-workers (from your day job) were to describe you in a single word, what word would they use? Loyal
Did you have a summer job in high school and if so, what was it? I have been working since I was 13 years old. My first summer job was washing dishes in a honkytonk. During high school, I worked one summer at an oyster house shoveling oysters from watermen’s boats and then stocking the tables of the shuckers (hardest job I ever had!) and the following summers I worked as a laborer on the railroad tracks (second hardest but paid great).
Tell us about your family. My wife Julia (who grew up in Rye and graduated from Rye High) and I have been married for 26 years and we have two sons: Jack, 19, who also graduated from Rye High and is now in college at Northwestern and Daniel, 17, who is a special needs student at Northern BOCES (he blows the sweetest kisses you’ll ever see).
What’s your favorite Rye area restaurant for “date night” with your partner? The Rye Roadhouse
What’s your favorite Rye area restaurant for take-out or delivery when you are having dinner at home with your family? Piazza Pizza
Where might we find you on a Sunday morning? On the golf course at Rye Golf Club.
What is your most unusual skill? I boxed growing up, while at VMI and in the Marines; I have been coaching Rye kids in boxing since 2005.
What is your political affiliation? Republican
Your favorite major league baseball team: Yankees
Your Facebook page: www.Facebook.com/RyeUnited
Your twitter call: n/a
Your campaign web site: www.RyeUnited.com