Utica provided enough government for 100,000 people -- and that is about what is left in Utica+NH+Whitestown now. One government for all three to me is a no-brainer.One reader responded:
Strikeslip surely jests. New Hartford people may be fat and lazy when it comes to government involvement but they are not stupid. The incompetency and corruption in NH pales to that of Utica. Why, Utica produces so called leaders who can't produce two coherent sentences together." One goverment for three" sounds good but is an undesirable, pipe dream given Utica and its political players.This got me thinking.
Utica may have had years of incompetent leadership -- but why would that not be expected? The region's most capable people are most likely to live in the "better" neighborhoods -- which are in the Suburbs. But (given NH's latest fiasco) we don't seem to have competent people running for Village or Town offices either. If you were a successful and capable person would you want to put up with the petty small-town politics that is governed by cliques? You know that you would be banging your head against the wall, wasting time.
City-Suburban merger would enlarge the gene pool and dilute the cliques -- maybe attracting better leadership.
It might also encourage more airing of issues. While the Utica City Council can be comical at times, there is at least debate on the issues, unlike the rubber stamping Town Boards.
Who would govern an enlarged Utica? Utica voters are notoriously complacent -- which explains why all our regional leaders are now from Rome in spite of Rome having 1/2 the population. If NH and Whitestown became part of Utica, voters from those places likely will run the city.
Now think about this: If people from NH and Whitestown ran Utica, how would they govern?
Do you think they would put up with bulldozing their orchards or fields for business parks and "town centers"? I don't think so. I think they would try to figure out a way to make THEIR downtown vibrant with business activity instead.
Do you think they would concentrate their police patrolling Main St NYM or the 840 looking for people going 2 MPH over the speed limit? I don't think so. I think they would put them in Cornhill to squelch crime so that their children could be safe when purchasing the region's most affordable housing. (And if suburban children buy inner city homes, we would not have the absentee landlords renting to whatever scum comes up from NYC to sell drugs)
Do you think they would turn governance of their sewer system over to a political body (the county legislature) most of whose members aren't even affected by the system? I don't think so. I think they would want to control their system themselves.
Do you think they would vote to send their water supply to Verona, knowing that a shortage will occur if their population significantly grows? I don't think so. I think they would want to conserve their water supply for their own future growth.
I see only positives from merger - - for Everyone but the Special Interests who control small-town government and the government employees whose jobs would be eliminated.