Tuthill criticized the latest floodplain maps, noting that more homes are now in a larger flood area.
“This puts a red flag up to me. Those homeowners will be expected to carry flood insurance now,” Tuthill said. “I will strive to work better with the Department of Environment Conservation when it comes to flood prevention rather than slow recovery.”
Colchester Supervisor Cindy Donofrio, who is on the Democratic line on the ballot, said she has seen the benefits of cooperating with New York City as a substitute on the Coalition of Watershed Towns.
“The city has a lot to offer and it’s important our towns take advantage of opportunities,” such as opening reservoirs to more boating, Donofrio said, noting that this program “boosts tourism and helps the local businesses economically.”
Donofrio said she recognizes that Delaware County is one of a few in the state without a bed tax, and that she wants to study the issue further.
The town is working on implementing a warning system along the river.
“As part of flood mitigation, fire whistles will be installed along the river so that in a case of a pending flood, notice can be sounded off to alert the public,” Donofrio noted.
While on the Colchester Town Board, Republican challenger Arthur Merrill said he witnessed improved cooperation between the towns and New York City.
Although Merrill grew up on a farm, his pursuit of economic development reaches beyond agriculture.
“The agricultural business is a struggle, so the town should look to second homeowners and weekenders,” added Merrill. “They have an invested interest and are beneficial to development.”
To protect the town from future flood damage, Merrill said he would seek grants to keep preventative action “moving forward.”
He also noted that he would support the stone quarry and logging industries.