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Town of Wheatfield Supervisor Don MacSwan (Submitted photo)
Town of Wheatfield Supervisor Don MacSwan (Submitted photo)

Reflections of 2023 from Town of Wheatfield supervisor

Fri, Jan 12th 2024 11:00 am

Guest Editorial by Town of Wheatfield Supervisor Don MacSwan

Looking over the past year, much has been accomplished in our town. Many of our accomplishments were aided with the help of ARPA funds (federal funds provided to municipalities to assist in the recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic).

New high-efficiency windows were installed in the Town Hall. The original windows were single pane and non-insulated. This led to extremely high energy bills. In the long run, this will be a huge savings to the taxpayers.

The original boiler, from 1973, was replaced with a high-efficiency boiler – again, saving the taxpayers money in the long run.

A generator has been installed at our community center. With this installation, it makes the facility a place of refuge in the event of a major storm or catastrophe. We have added a new storage building at the Town Hall complex for use by our veterans, and the Wheatfield Enhancement Group for storage of their equipment and decorations.

Work has been completed to the water tower on Niagara Falls Boulevard, removing the old steel cables that were used to support the water tower when filled with water, and a fresh coat of paint was added to the outside of the tank – including the Town of Wheatfield logo for all to see.

Fairmont Park had numerous upgrades. New playground equipment was added to include a beautiful all-inclusive playground for all to use. The parking lots on Stieg Road and Nash Road were rebuilt and paved. In addition, many drainage improvements were completed at the park.

The town purchased a high-capacity pump to be used in areas that are prone to flooding in high-water storm events. It is portable and can be moved to any location at any time.

The Highway Department resurfaced over 8.5 miles of roadway on 19 town roads in the past year. In addition to the paving, the department continued to work on drainage projects, as well as their normal routine of picking up brush and leaves in the fall. The outdated fuel system was replaced with a much safer, aboveground fuel system at the highway garage. The town purchased a Kubota tractor with an extended boom, which will allow us to cut grass on both sides of the ditches and creeks – allowing for better visibility when entering the roadways.

On the corner of Niagara Falls Boulevard and Nash Road, the town upgraded the stone wall and added the illuminated letters of “Wheatfield.” Other upgrades were also done to make the wall and sign more visible.

The Niagara Falls Boulevard project between Witmer and Ward roads had progressed slower than expected. The relocation of some of the utilities had some additional difficulties. Contaminated soil was located at Ward Road and the boulevard. This had to be removed and replaced with clean, fresh soil. Further testing also had to be done to be sure that the contamination hadn’t spread.

Let’s hope that we get an early start in the spring on this project.

The town clerk’s office is often thought to be the center of town government, as they provide a wide variety of services that are essential to our residents. The clerk’s office processes water bill payments, tax bill payments, and other town fees; maintains all vital records (birth, death and marriage licenses) and provides copies of them when needed; issues hunting and fishing licenses, dog licenses, parking permits for people with disabilities, and freedom of information requests; and maintains town records. Many of the required forms are available on our website, at www.wheatfield.ny.us, or at Town Hall.

There are several options available for residents to complete transactions and payments, by mail, drop box at Town Hall, online, and direct withdrawal for water payments.

Visit our website at www.wheatfield.ny.us to see options and for details.

We enjoy seeing everyone at Town Hall. However, should you have any questions, please call us at 716-694-6441 or email at [email protected].

Regarding calendar year 2023, I am pleased to report that the town continues to be in a strong financial position. This is the result of an increase in revenues, particularly in sales tax revenues and by controlling expenditures, including a continued reduction of the town’s outstanding debt.

In closing, the Town of Wheatfield will continue to provide quality services while keeping cost to our residents down.

May you all be blessed with a healthy and enjoyable 2024.

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