Ask the residents of East Greenbush

Seems the East Greenbush Town Board did not listen to its residents. Two recent editorials in the Times Union shed some insight. In last Friday's issue Jim Flanigan's Op-Ed "Plan snubs ecological concerns" walks readers through the process developers used to get the green light from the EG TB. "The casino strategy also called for downplaying any negative information. This led to the second, and potentially fatal, decision to minimize public input and delay starting review of the project under the State Environmental Quality Review Act."

Flanigan continues: "As the casino proponents may soon learn, the strategies that work in a political campaign for state Legislature are very different from the strategies that are required to convince a skeptical community to accept a large and complex change in their town."

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Fred LeBrun in Sunday's paper looks at the Statewide issue with the Upstate Gaming Act and what the reality that Proposal 1 on last November's ballot has wrought wherein East Greenbush plays a starring role: 

"I wonder, idly, of course, what the outcome would be if there were a statewide vote today in New York on the question of full, non-native casinos.

"Not that the idea was ever all that popular upstate, but I suspect seeing the reality develop up close has been an eye-opener for many, and not in a nice way. It hasn't always brought out the best in local governments. Ask the residents of the town of East Greenbush.

"Pulling an end run around its own citizens to give Capital View Casino developers the town board approval needed for a successful application is bad enough. But it now appears that zoning and master plan highjinks may also be required before the casino site can be approved. It will be instructive, and painful, to watch the contortions the town board is willing to go through to back up its bet, should such hijinks become necessary. When the developers say jump, it's how high."

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