Last night Bob LaColla gave his departing statement to the Fishkill Town Board. Bob spoke about his and his staffs accomplishments from 2012 - 2020, and I must give credit where credit is due. Many of the accomplishments he has achieved for our town has been noteworthy to include fiscal responsibility, improved accountability to the tax payers, state of the art water meters, a successful bond rating improvement, grants received, and several awards and accolades for the achievements of the Town of Fishkill under his direction. Bob has done a good job in those areas, and he passes the leadership and position of Town Supervisor to his successor with a much improved Town Board.
Bob LaColla comes from a background of business, so during his tenure he encouraged new business and development, leading to a much stronger local economy fed by taxes from businesses rather than from the residents. Bob will be remembered for what he did for the Town of Fishkill, however he will also be remembered for what he did not do. Fishkill is most notably known for its rich History, and in this area Bob will be remembered for his failure to protect or capitalize on one of the Towns greatest assets. The Jackson House serves a perfect example. Bob spoke at length last night about how he and his staff listened to the residents, however on some issues this was simply not the case. I have personally attended numerous Fishkill Planning Board Meetings for almost four years, and on virtually all projects proposed to the Town by developers, residents were afforded the opportunity to ask questions of either the developer or the Planning Board members. This was not the case for any time the developer of Continental Commons appeared before the planning board, and residents were specifically warned against any discussion about this project. They were removed from the room if they spoke about this project. When the Planning Board voted for a negative declaration for the Continental Commons Project, I personnally observed the Town Lawyer hugging and giving the property owner for the Continental Commons Project a "High Five" outside of the meeting room immediately after the adjournment. This glaring favoritism garnered distrust by the residents of the developer, and the Towns role in this project. Bob LaColla and his staff failed to protect our greatest resource.
As a Veteran who has been following the Continental Commons Project for many years, the actions of the Town on this project, as well as the hostile rhetoric by the developer, has pushed myself and many others to fervently oppose the development of the Fishkill Supply Depot Historic Site. Although the public was not allowed to question the Continental Commons Project during regular planning board meetings, at the one public forum where this contentious issue was discussed, of the 52 mostly residents that spoke, 48 of them spoke against this project. One of the speakers was an employee of the Continental Commons Project who openly berated the residents of the Town, and openly chastised the school children who had written letters to "Save the Depot". Bob claims that his staff listened to the residents, however on this one issue in which the residents strongly opposed, Bob and his staff did not listen at all. This is why I believe Bob LaColla is no longer the Town Supervisor. All of my friends, many of whom are Republicans voted against Bob LaColla for reelection, believing that his continued tenure as Town Supervisor would have meant the destruction of the Fishkill Supply Depot Historic Site. I agree with them. The Fishkill Supply Depot Historic Site is not just a treasure to be cherished and protected by the residents of Fishkill, it is an American treasure and I sincerely hope that the new Town Supervisor and his staff will treat this historical asset with the reverence that it deserves.
#FishkillSupplyDepotHistoricSite #FSDHS #Veterans #America #Patriots #Colonial #History #RevolutionaryWar #REVWAR #RememberHonorTeach #FishkillSupplyDepot #Army #RememberTheFallen #NotForgotten #Vets #SayTheirNames #TheyServedFirst #USA #AmericasFirstAllVolunteerArmy #TownOfFishkill #DutchessCounty #ContinentalArmy