[JK: Several weeks ago I emailed Heidi Owen West, who is this year’s candidate for Mayor on the Republican line, seeking answers to some questions. Most important to me was clarifying her and her family’s role in litigation against the city regarding the proposed Emergency Medical station. As readers will see below, she responded that she now supports the proposed site on the New York Racing Association property.
The timing of her response is important because last week a judge dismissed the suit against the city. She responded prior to the decision, however, and could not have known what the outcome of the case would be. As there were other litigants it is possible they may appeal.]
From Ms. West March 25, 2021
Good Morning John-See answers below.
*When did you separate yourself from the lawsuit regarding the proposed Fire House/EMS station?
I began the process at the same time I announced my candidacy.
*Why did you separate? I separated after I made my decision to run for office with the opportunity to represent all Saratogians.
*If elected, would you pursue completing that same project? Yes
*If elected do you have any plans to initiate a new charter change proposal? No, Charter Change has already been defeated 3x.
*Do you support the project initiated by Michele Madigan to deploy fiber optic cable throughout the city?
I am in favor of this project as it brings much needed upgrades to our networking capability and allows businesses to stay competitive.
*Saratoga National Golf Course has in the past sought to build a hotel or some other lodging on their property east of the Northway. Would you support or oppose modifying the city’s master plan and zoning to allow for such an expansion?
I am not a fan of modifying the city’s master plan or modified zoning. I support balanced development. I am concerned about our “city in the country” as development encroaches on our neighborhoods. I believe in open space and green space and spend much of my free time enjoying our parks and trails.
From an economic standpoint the project might have made a lot of sense particularly after 2020.
From John Kaufmann March 25, 2021
Thank you for your response concerning your status as a litigant in the lawsuit against the city regarding the proposed EMS station. It has come to my attention, however, that your husband is still a participant in this legal action. Could you address this and also indicate whether you or your husband will be involved in funding the litigation.
From Ms. West March 25, 2021
My husband is in the process of removing himself from the lawsuit and neither of us will be involved in funding it.
I asked Ms. West if she would expand on her thoughts regarding the proposed EMS.
From Ms. West:
“I have always supported providing emergency services to the eastern ridge. The tremendous growth of the east side most certainly warrants it. This is about public safety. As the singular option presented to the public, and with the partnership of NYRA, it’s important our city sees this project to completion.”