LETTER: Conley, Byrne and Ehrlich will do what’s best for Madison residents

EDITOR: My grandfather proudly served in World War I and my father in World War II. They served a country that was united, working together toward a common goal. It was a time when differences in political opinions were recognized but, most importantly, respected. This was, and hopefully will always be, a value that Madison holds close to its heart.

I served Madison as a council member for two terms starting in 2011; first as a Republican and then as a Democrat. During these two terms I had the honor of serving under Mayor Bob Conley (Democratic candidate for re-election), a lifelong Madison resident who embodies the belief that what is most important is doing what is right for the residents, looking past political ideologies.

As Mayor, Bob Conley was progressive-thinking, fostering shared services with the Board of Education, serving on the Planning Board working to maker it easier for business to open and thrive in our downtown. During his tenure, property taxes increases have averaged less than 1 percent, with seniors receiving property tax rebates. Under Mayor Conley, our fiscal house has been placed in order, securing an AAA credit rating from an independent credit rating agency.

He also guided the town through Hurricane Irene and Hurricane Sandy. He did this working across party lines, uniting the town. Mayor Conley believed in openness and keeping the public informed, frequently holding “town hall” meetings where residents could not only learn about an issue but also have a forum to express their opinion.

I also had the honor of serving with Maureen Byrne (Democratic candidate for re-election) on the Council. An entirely selfless and incredibly bright person, she worked tirelessly as Community Affairs liaison, Public Works liaison, Chair of the Friends of the Madison Public Library and serving on the Downtown Development Committee. Maureen strived to ensure that services to the town were maintained while keeping a close eye on the budget. But there was a truly human side to Maureen as she was open about her personal life, recognizing the struggles that many in our town are working through.

Rachel Ehrlich (Democratic candidate for council) brings an important skill set to Madison that the town will benefit from in years to come. As an award-winning architect with 15 years of experience working for a New York City firm with a civic-minded mission, Rachel will be invaluable as we face the challenges of a growing downtown and evolving housing needs. Already serving on the Madison Planning Board, Rachel is tackling the challenges of refining the Borough’s Master Plan; a document that will help outline the direction and design of our downtown and housing.

There is no doubt that Bob Conley, Maureen Byrne and Rachel Ehrlich are three highly qualified candidates for office as recognized by their accomplishments. But, most importantly, they are three honest and caring individuals who will always listen, accept advice and do what is best for our residents. It is for these reasons that I wholeheartedly endorse Bob Conley for Mayor and Maureen and Rachel for Council.

ROBERT LANDRIGAN

Green Village Road

Madison