Two candidates competing to serve as Ravena mayor
Melanie Lekocevic is reporting for Capital Region Independent Media two candidates will face off in the Ravena village mayoral election on Tue., Mar. 15. Incumbent Bill Misuraca is seeking his third term. He is a Republican, but did not secure the GOP endorsement during the January caucus. Misuraca was then nominated by the Democrats and his name will appear on the Democratic line. The name of challenger Dominic Ruggeri, also a Republican, will appear on the GOP line Tuesday. Misuraca is a lifelong resident of Ravena and graduated from Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk High School in 1990. He is the owner and operator of the Halfway House Tavern on Main Street in the village. The business has been in his family for 106 years. Misuraca is coming to the end of his second four-year term and is seeking a third. He said the village has much to be proud of. “We are on a roll,” he said. “We have managed to secure well over $7 million in grants to improve our infrastructure, wastewater retention and disposal, and we have some of the best rates and marks for our water quality in the state, so I am very proud of that. More recently, we received a grant for nearly $200,000 to improve [Mosher] park, ....” If re-elected, Misuraca said securing funding for infrastructure improvements would be at the top of his to-do list, plus continued efforts at economic development. This is Ruggeri's first mayoral bid; he previously ran for village justice. He has worked in the Human Services field for more than 30 years and is currently employed as the director of residential services for the non-profit organization Equinox, Inc., in Albany. He oversees residential housing for adult clients with a mental health diagnosis and teens in the Youth Transitional Living Program. Ruggeri has lived in the village for 11 years and holds a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in business from Southern Vermont College. He is running for office because he wants to see [a] change in the village. “...Taxes have gone up, and there is not much economic development that I have seen. I have seen little stuff here and there, but there is not a lot for the village residents. I want to get things back to where they were years ago. It’s not where it’s supposed to be,” Ruggeri said. He wants to secure funding to support small businesses and draw new businesses into the area. If elected, another top priority would be to create a community center to offer daycare and afterschool programs on a sliding scale based on household income to be affordable for working parents, he said. Improving infrastructure is also vital, he said. Read the full story at TheUpStater [dot] com.