Last week the Gardiner Town Board turned down a request from New Paltz Town Supervisor Neil Bettez to collaborate on a joint Independence Day fireworks display at the County Fairgrounds, which lies close to the border between the two communities. Bettez had sent a letter to Gardiner supervisor Marybeth Majestic suggesting that the two towns combine their municipal July 4 celebrations and split the cost, with Gardiner contributing $5,000.
“Not this year” was the Gardiner officials’ consensus, since no such sum had been set aside in the 2016 town budget. The fairness of splitting the cost in half was also questioned by some on the Town Board. “New Paltz is a much bigger town,” observed councilman Mike Reynolds. “To share in the cost, I think, is a good ideas; but we should discuss how much.”
“I like the idea of collaborating, but it should be put on our budget wish list for next year,” agreed councilwoman Laura Walls. “This does not warrant jumping the process.” And rather than coming completely out of municipal coffers, “It should be done through fundraising,” added councilman John Hinson.