HARRISON, N.Y. – Harrison is shaping up to have a bright 2013 with a new budget passed and more businesses coming to the town. However, there are certain resolutions a trustee would like to see happen.
“We’d like to see an improved economy and safety in our town to continue,” said Marlane Amelio. “We’d like to see a more prosperous time and a safer time.”
The Harrison Police Department has been lauded for its work during Hurricane Sandy and throughout the year by both residents and board members.
However, staffing is an issue, with the department at its lowest numbers since the 1970’s, Amelio said. There were three new police officers added in the 2013 budget, but some in the community would like to see more, including Police Chief Anthony Marraccini.
“I’ve been saying every budget cycle, we need to start rebuilding the police department,” said Marraccini at the last town board meeting of 2012. “It’s a wise investment.
He said at a previous board meeting that Harrison is not immune to criminal activity and an additional three officers “is really a step in the right direction.”
Currently, the department has 61 police officers with a payroll of $5,923,695. The approved 2013 budget has money for 64 police officers.
A prime resolution of many parents is to see police officers in the school making sure their children are safe after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn.
“I would be willing to pay more in taxes for the safety of my children,” said Lauren Robinson at the Dec. 20 town board meeting. “We’re willing to put our money where our mouth is. We’re asking for a short-term solution at the end of the day, no matter how much it costs.”
When it comes to economic prosperity in Harrison, Amelio said she would like to see it improve and was glad to get a “great budget” passed.
“We certainly stayed within the 2 percent tax cap while not cutting any services,” she said. “From our point of view, we were very successful.”
She is also hoping that, with three new Harrison businesses opened or debuting in the future – DeCicco Family Markets, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Life Time Fitness – that more will come to the town.
“We’re hoping to attract new businesses as we move into the new year to make our community a town that people look forward to coming into for shopping.”
Harrison is moving in the right direction and has a lot to look forward to, Amelio said.