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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Town of Bethlehem Town Supervisor

The supervisor is the town's chief executive and is responsible for coordinating the operations of all town departments, as well as developing and proposing the town budget, with the assistance of the comptroller. The supervisor presides over the Town Board, an elected body that enacts town legislation, passes budgets, and conducts hearings on matters involving town government. Salary for this position is $115,703 per year.
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  • GARY M FISH (Rep, Con) Retired Law enforcement 30+ years of experience.

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    DAVID VANLUVEN (Dem, Ind, WF) strategic planner

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Biographical Information

What have you done that qualifies you for this position?

If you are elected, what would you like to accomplish during your term in office?

Campaign Phone (518) 253-6722
Biography Born and raised in Slingerlands, N.Y. youngest of 6 siblings, I have lived in Bethlehem nearly 55 years. Married, (Teresa) 3 children, Elise, Michael, Markie, all educated in Bethlehem School District. Retired from Albany County Sheriff's Office. Served as Deputy Sheriff/Criminal Investigator. 24 Yrs Senior Investigator with N.Y.S.I.G. 2012-2015. Owner of Private investigation security contracting company 2008-2012
Occupation and Special Skills Special Skills: logical and ability to work as a team to build consensus. As an Investigative Supervisor, handled very intricate, complicated, fraud investigation involving numerous agencies, Federal,State and local.
Website, facebook page or other links www.facebook.com/FishBethlehemNYTownSupervisor/
I have dedicated my entire adult life to public service, public security and public safety I have done this in a fair and impartial manner. I have always been the consummate team player. I have worked in the public sector, private sector and as the former owner of a business, I know the needs of a local business to be successful.
If elected I want to ensure taxes in the Town of Bethlehem remain as low as possible and grow at a reasonable rate. I want to balance the growth of Bethlehem and ensure we are utilizing the comprehensive plan to its fullest extent. I would like to address the concerns of all our residents, many in outlying areas of the Town feel as though they are not being listened to. I want to attract viable business, both large and small to our community. I want to address the open space issue and keep in the highest regards land owner rights.
Community Involvement Town Board (2016-present); Citizens Advisory Committee on Conservation; Comprehensive Plan Assessment Committee; Odyssey of the Mind coach (7 years); build sets for the Beth Central Middle School musicals
Experience and Qualifications Since joining the Town Board in 2016, I have worked to better guide residential development, fought dangerous pipelines, advocated for town employees, and bridged political divides. Professionally, I have led a variety of programs with environmental nonprofits and state agencies where I forged strong teams, navigated shifting politics, managed complex budgets, and raised millions through grants and appropriations. Today, I am a strategic planning consultant for nonprofits and government agencies across the Northeast.
Biography I was born in Michigan and grew up in Park City, Utah, then came east for college where I met my wife Isabelle Bleecker. We have been married for 21 years, have three daughters, and live in Delmar. I have a B.A. from Middlebury College with a double major in Religion and Arctic/Alpine Ecology (for which I did my thesis research 130 miles north of the Arctic Circle), and a joint M.S. from Tufts University in Urban/Environmental Policy and Biology.
Occupation and Special Skills I am a private consultant specializing in strategic planning, particularly for nonprofits and state agencies. Before that, I ran a variety of programs across the Northeast for The Nature Conservancy.
Website, facebook page or other links www.vanluven4supervisor.com; www.facebook.com/vanluven4supervisor
I joined Bethlehem’s Town Board in 2016. In this role, I have developed a good understanding of the excellent services our town delivers and the challenges that are involved in providing them. I have rebuilt relations between the Town Board and the police department, challenged projects that would allow denser development in increasingly small places, fought for the creation of an open space program, and opposed dangerous pipelines through our town.

The majority of my professional career was spent running programs for The Nature Conservancy. In these positions, I managed complex budgets, led staff, and redirected programs to make them more successful. Since 2010, I have been a strategic planner specializing in nonprofit organizations and government agencies. This work primarily involves helping people figure out how to identify and accomplish their goals within the context of limited budgets – work that relates very closely to the responsibilities of the Town Supervisor.
1. We need to improve our codes so the town has the tools it needs to ensure that residential growth does not degrade the character of our neighborhoods or our community’s quality of life. 2. We need to implement an active open space program that gives landowners options other than selling to developers. 3. We need to support the town employees who work so hard for us, and to regularly assess ways to continue delivering services within the context of a limited town budget. 4. We need to aggressively work to attract good businesses to our town, because a vibrant commercial sector is the heart of a strong community. 5. We need to improve communications between the town and residents, as many feel that their concerns are not heard, and many don’t realize the breadth of services the town already provides. One step towards addressing this problem would be to have regular community forums throughout town where residents and town leaders can talk and, more importantly, listen.

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