Ancram to pick two of three for board

ANCRAM—With the exception of two of the four seats on the Town Board, all elected town posts are on the ballot in the November 3 election.

But the races are few.

Three men are in the running for two seats on the board, one is incumbent Hugh Clark, the others are political newcomers, David Boice and Daniel Rothvoss, Jr.

There is also a race is for Highway Superintendent. After 20 years as highway chief, James MacArthur has decided to call it the end of the road and retire. Two men are vying for his job: current councilman James Miller and Robert Roche, who has sought the position before. Mr. Miller’s term on the board is up at the end of this year and instead of another run for that seat, he has opted to try for the driver’s seat at the Highway Department.

Town Supervisor Art Bassin, Town Clerk/Tax Collector Monica Cleveland, Town Justices George Wittlinger, Sr., and Robert Wilcox are all seeking re-election and are unopposed. All posts carry four-year terms except the supervisor’s, who will add another two years to the six years he will have served by the end of the year. Mrs. Cleveland has served for 12 years; Mr. Wittinger for 16; and Mr. Wilcox for 8.

Alphabetical profiles of candidates running in contested races follow.

Town Board

David Boice, 51, is an enrolled Democrat running for town councilman with the Democratic endorsement.

He is a lifelong Ancram resident and has been married to his wife, Jennifer, for 29 years.

They live on Poole Hill Road and have two children, Johanna, who is a student at Oneonta State University and Matthew, who is studying at the Crane School of Music in Potsdam.

Mr. Boice is a graduate of Taconic Hills High School and attended Columbia-Greene Community College and SUNY Delhi.

For 30 years, he and his wife have operated Boice Home Care, a lawn maintenance, snow plowing and caretaking business.

Mr. Boice has been a member of the Ancram Volunteer Fire Company for 31 years and has served as chief for the past 27 years. He was a member of the town’s Youth Commission for more than 20 years and has been involved with the Ancram Union Cemetery and St. John’s Lutheran Church.

Mr. Boice says he is running for councilman because he believes he “can help the Town Board in making decisions that will benefit the future of Ancram. I have occasion to talk to many of the residents of Ancram and generally hear multiple sides of all issues. I believe that taking this into account I will be able to bring a view point to decisions that other people may not.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I will work long and hard to take into consideration everyone’s thoughts and ideas to make decisions that will be in the best interest of Ancram and Ancram’s future. Thank you for the opportunity to help make Ancram a place we can all be proud of.”

Hugh Clark, 71, has no party enrollment and has been endorsed by both the Democrats and Republicans for re-election to a second four-year term on the Town Board.

He was born in Danbury, CT, and grew up in Pawling. He graduated from Pawling Central; Middlebury College, VT, with an AB; Emory University, GA, with an MA.

He retired as an officer in the U.S Army after 30 years, 1966 to 1996, and received advanced professional education at the Army’s Command and General Staff College, Management Staff College and War College (Army Fellow). He served in Vietnam, the U.S. and Europe as Battalion and brigade commander in VII Corps; as provost marshal, VII Corps; as assistant professor on the faculty at West Point; as executive to the Director of the Army Staff (Pentagon); as commandant of the Army Management Staff College.

He was a consultant in leadership development and succession management to National Academy of Public Administration and USDA Grad School, 1996 to 1999; director of leadership development for the New York State School Boards Association, 1999 to 2007.

He and his wife, Sheila, came to Ancramdale in 1999. They live on County Route 3. They have two adult sons, Brian and Tom; four grandchildren, Hannah, Zachary, Sadie and Renee.

Mr. Clark is a trustee and chair of the Finance Council at St. Bernard Church, Sharon, CT; was a member of the Ancram Comprehensive Plan Committee, 2008 to 2010; chair of the Ancram Zoning Revisions Committee, 2010 to present; and chair of the Ancram Subdivision Regulations Revision Committee, 2014 to present.

Looking ahead, Mr. Clark says the Comprehensive Plan is due for review. Decades-old laws, such as those regarding flood prevention, “need review to determine relevance.” He says, “Keeping town taxes flat while maintaining a healthy reserve remains a top priority. Money matters, so too does quality of life. A summer haven for generations of Ancram youth, the Blass Field pool and its accessories need attention.

“What we do and how we do it are both important. Improving Ancram is not a spectator sport. We welcome volunteers and good ideas. Free-flowing communication is critical to achieve the right ends, by the right means, for the right reasons.”

Daniel C. Rothvoss, Jr., 32, is an enrolled Republican running for his first term on the Town Board with the Republican Party endorsement.

He and his wife, Stephanie, live on County Route 3 in Ancramdale and are the parents of three children: Tyler, 18; Natalie, 14; and Hayden, 12.

Born in Hudson, Mr. Rothvoss is a high school graduate who was home-schooled.

He is a crop farmer in the family agricultural business, H. Rothvoss & Sons, Inc., which grows and harvests organic hay and grain on the family’s 480 acres and on an additional leased 500 acres.

In his statement of issues, Mr. Rothvoss says, “I feel that we as a community need to try and bring some local businesses back to our small town. These businesses would help the taxes and bring jobs to our youth. The taxes in our town are quite high, and that is because there isn’t much revenue to make up for it.

“If you aren’t fortunate enough to work in a family business or move here with money there isn’t much here local to employee our youth. I feel that our town is a dying town for our youth. We need to make some changes in that area to bring people, jobs and revenue to our town.”

Highway Superintendent

James P. Miller, 59, is a Republican running for his first four-year term as highway superintendent with his party’s endorsement.

He will have served seven years as councilman when his term ends at the end of this year. For six of those years he has been deputy supervisor.

He and his wife, Janice, live on Farmall Lane in Ancramdale. They have three grown daughters and five grandchildren.

Born in Poughkeepsie, Mr. Miller graduated from Pine Plains High School. He has worked on the family dairy farm, Millerhurst, for 40 years and has been part-owner since 1997.

He is a life member of the Ancram Fire Company.

Mr. Miller says he has “gained a familiarity with the highway department from my prior Town Council experience.

“Every month the town board audits and approves payment vouchers to pay the many different vendors to the department. I know how the monies are spent, what the department’s strengths are and where efficiencies might be realized.

“In my career as a farmer I have learned how to repair equipment and trucks and to get the most out of the resources available—also how to deal with Mother Nature’s many whims. If elected I pledge to use taxpayers funds efficiently and wisely.”

Robert Roche, 61, has the Democratic endorsement in his run for highway superintendent.

He has served on the Ancram Zoning Revisions Committee and the Planning Board.

He and his wife, MaryAnn, live on Hall Hill Road.

Mr. Roche has three daughters and one step-son, all grown.

Born in Great Barrington, MA, Mr. Roche is a 1973 graduate of Taconic Hills High School. He continued his education through New Holland and John Deere, graduated from New England Fuel Institute Education Training; and is a certified respite provider with the New York State Taconic Office for People with Developmental Disabilities.

He works for Sunny River LLC.

He attends St. John’s Lutheran Church and is a social member of the Ancram Fire Company.

In his statement of issues, Mr. Roche says, “If elected, I look forward to working with the Ancram Town Board and current highway department employees to maintain and improve our town road system in a fiscally responsible manner.

“My plan is to initiate and develop a comprehensive system whereby our roads will be routinely maintained and improved in a timely manner, thus avoiding costly repair work. I plan to develop and maintain a service schedule for all of our town equipment in order to avoid having our equipment out of service for lengthy periods of time and at great expense to taxpayers.”

Anyone who wants to know more about candidates running for town offices this year can attend upcoming Meet the Candidates events at the Ancram Town Hall, 1416 County Route 7, Sundays, October 25 and November 1 at 1 p.m.

To contact Diane Valden email





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