Thanks to the redistricting process, New Paltz exists in a liminal political space. The community’s current Senator, Mike Martucci, will live in a different district come 2023, and the community will be represented by Michelle Hinchey — if Hinchey secures another term. The result, according to Mayor Tim Rogers, is that New Paltz “is in no-man’s land, almost without Senate representation.”
Forefront on the Mayor’s mind now is SUNY impact aid, money that’s given to college host communities to offset the increased cost in emergency services. In a city, the economic activity of college students would be generating more sales tax, but towns and villages do not have any legal guarantee to any of that money. In Ulster County, a tiny slice of sales tax is divided up among town and village governments; it’s not enough to compensate for the large swaths of tax-exempt land and the more frequent calls to 911 that result from a college being in town. SUNY impact aid was put in the last state budget as a balm, but as yet it hasn’t been added to the upcoming budget — despite the state being in a strong financial position overall.