BY SUSAN VAN CLEAF
Franklin Township residents Tuesday, March 13, will fill a Town Board supervisor seat in the annual township election and then approve the town’s property tax levy at the township’s annual meeting.
Board Supervisor John Czantskowski Sr. will be unopposed on the ballot as he seeks re-election to his seat. Polls will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 13, at Franklin Township Hall, 8735 County Road 16. The annual meeting will start at approximately 8:15 p.m. after ballots are counted.
Township residents will approve the property tax levy for taxes payable in 2013. The proposed levy is $749,200. The township plans to draw $150,000 from reserve funds to help cover a budget of approximately $899,200 for 2012, according to Town Clerk Denise Olson.
In 2011, actual expenses for Franklin Township were $951,644, Olson said. Last year’s levy was $701,750, with the budget proposed at $931,350. The township drew $229,600 from reserves.
The agenda for the annual meeting also includes presentations by representatives from Delano Community Education and the Delano Senior Center concerning their budgets and offerings for Franklin Township residents.
Town Clerk Olson will display cost figures that will be assessed on 2012 property taxes for fire protection. A resident receiving fire protection from the Montrose Fire Department will pay $125. Assessments from the Watertown Fire Department will be $156 for a residential property. The Delano Fire Department assessment will amount to $182.
John Czantskowski Sr. is seeking a repeat three-year term on the Franklin Town Board. He has served for more than 10 years as a township supervisor.
Born in 1949, he has lived in Franklin Township all of his life. He is a Delano High School graduate and a Vietnam era U.S. Army veteran. His army service was in Germany. He has served on church boards in addition to the Town Board.
Czantskowski Sr. owns and operates a Franklin Township dairy farm with his son John Jr. and both of their families. They have a herd of about 250 dairy cows.
"Serving on the Town Board can be rewarding," Czantskowski Sr. said. "Township government is closest to the people and more accountable to the people. That is why I believe in smaller, local government. It is government by the people for the people."
He has learned that local governments are not spending their own money. They are spending taxpayers’ money. The goal of the Franklin Town Board has been "to keep spending down while providing the services that are needed," Czantskowski Sr. said.
"We try to not spend money we don’t have," he added. "We try to live within our means. I realize a lot of people are having a hard time."
His vision for Franklin Township is to improve its roads "at a price we can afford."