By Greg Hitchcock
Every vote matters in a small Adirondack town.
Last November Betsy Bain and former Lake Pleasant town supervisor and Adirondack Park Agency board member Dan Wilt evenly split 566 votes. The Town Board has since broken the tie, voting 3-1 to elevate Bain to a one-year term as the new supervisor.
“It’s important to be seen in the office and overseeing a smooth (town) operation,” Bain said.
She said her biggest concern of note was the friction in town government that sometimes spills into the community. “There is a division within the past few years that is beginning to look better,” she said.
Board Member Cristine Meixner agreed, and said Bain would be good for the community because she is the board’s appointed candidate. “We didn’t have to appoint the candidates who ran,” Meixner said. “We could have chosen anyone.”
Another election for this seat is scheduled for November, with the winner this time getting a two-year term.
“Every vote counts,” Hamilton County Board of Elections Democrat Commissioner Cathleen Rogers said. “We are a small county and sometimes there is a tie in election results.”
Rogers said a recount was demanded, but a Fulton County judge ruled against it, stating there was no state provision for a recount. The Hamilton County judge was not sworn in at the time.
Bain, 62, said she is working on the problems poor internet and cellular service in Lake Pleasant.
In a recent snowstorm, on Dec. 26, the town reported that a pickup truck went off the road damaging the truck but not harming the driver. Due to the lack of cell service, the driver had to wait for a passing driver to stop and help.
“Cell service is spotty, which is a big issue especially in cases of emergencies,” she said. “We as a town, village and county are working to get some kind of cell service in place.”
Bain owns the Oxbow Lake Motel in Arietta, and previously served on the Town Board for eight years and worked in the Motor Vehicle Department for six years. She and her family built a house in the area in the mid-1980s before permanently settling in Lake Pleasant in 1999.
“It is a wonderful place to live,” she said.