New County Chairman Ed Kinowski Looks to Taking the Helm

New County Chairman Ed Kinowski Looks to Taking the Helm

by Harold Wessell

BALLSTON SPA, January 4:

Incoming Saratoga County Board of Supervisors Chairman, and  Stillwater Town Supervisor Edward Kinowski, corresponding with this newspaper over the New Year weekend indicated he may be expected at his installation to talk about a key direction  he will be taking after he is sworn in as 2017 Chairman at the January 4 annual Organizational Meeting.

A crucial focus will be on the basic duty of government to keep its citizens safe – including the safety of its sworn officers,, themselves.

Kinowski said the County Board will  increase the Sheriff's Department by 10 during this year; and he will form a special subcommittee to study and analyze its staffing needs for the future.

"I will propose we focus our resources and abilities to fulfill the priorities of each [County] committee, with special emphasis given this year to our Sheriff's Department.  The Public Safety Committee will be challenged to meet the  new and growing threats to our community.  Our sheriffs face a host of new dangers, with the near-epidemic in drug abuse, and a new wave of vigilante or terrorist type threats [in the nation] – Balancing our safety and security, along with providing the tools, equipment and training to help protect our officers, is a significant challenge."

He further pointed out, however that any significant change to Sheriff's staffing will have a direct effect on facilities and equipment and a host of other support requirements.  "When you place emphasis in any major County support area, it creates a domino effect throughout the many other county services and the Committees that provide oversight and management," including  Court system, Probation Department, Correctional system, Buildings & Grounds initiatives, Public Health, Personnel & Insurance. "All will be affected."

He stressed further that the County Supervisors, representing the 23 Towns and Cities are responsible to oversee, manage, and recommend funding for the County's  12 major committees; and many other committees  aligned with all the County departments – “All are vitally important to run County services supporting our residents and everyone who visits or does business in our area.”

“Your Supervisors are charged with significant responsibilities that have an effect on our daily lives...  If in doubt, just think who responds to our emergency needs, maintains our roads, provides sewer and water, delivers emergency response County-wide;  addresses public health issues – and the list goes on.”

Many folks, he added,  may take for granted that these resources exist; or maybe just expect them to be there when needed. “I for one am glad we have dedicated people willing to run for public office and devote a great deal of time with ‘round the clock expectations to serve their communities."