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Where To From Here?

by Dave Zornow

Today’s Journal News editorial provides a good overview of Nyack’s post-election challenges.

The village’s problems are similar to other Lower Hudson Valley municipalities struggling through a rough recession. But as Nyack is a showcase village, its problems seem to loom larger.

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Now, the mayoral winner, Richard Kavesh, must start team-building, so the new Nyack village board can avoid the rancor-fueled stagnation that has led to half-cooked decisions and molasses-slow action.

We learned a few things about ourselves in the last few months. Old rivalries can separate people who share the same goals. History, some of it private and deeply personal, is often the subtext for vigorous conversations between the players.

But it’s time to move on and begin anew.

Nyack’s business community is deeply suspicious of the new mayor — they worked about as hard as they could to elect his competitor. On the current board, Mr. Kavesh has frequently been the odd man out, voting against initiatives he felt favored the merchants more than the village.

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Angry words have been exchanged. Vows have been sworn. And then, last Tuesday, votes were cast. And now, here we are.

The new administration can’t move Nyack forward without the support of the business community. It’s that simple.

Nyack’s merchants, challenged by a sagging economy, a sad looking streetscape and The Mall’s free parking and multi-floors of stores, need help from the village.

Mr. Kavesh needs to reach out to local business leaders and show he is listening. Conversely, our merchants need to be patient and not prejudge as the new mayor finds his footing.

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It’s been said that only Nixon could go to China. Perhaps this is an odd comparison to make with the unabashedly liberal Mr. Kavesh, but the analogy still works. Or it could work.

Nyack is a village of boundless potential filled with entrepreneurs both in business and the arts. Today’s challenges are great, but we’ve come so far. And there’s so much more we can do.

A new Nyack can only succeed if we follow the old golden rule: Treat others as you would like to be treated.

History does matter. But the history that matters most is one we can make together — not the history we will put behind us.

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