Four candidates compete to fill two vacancies in Kinderhook village race
Sep 11, 2020 2:15 pm
Melanie Lekocevic is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media village elections in New York will take place September 15, six months later that originally planned as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. In the only contested race in Columbia County, voters in the village of Kinderhook are being asked to choose from four candidates vying to fill two vacancies on the village board: Michael Abrams, Robert Baumeister, Mark Browne and Dorene Weir. Abrams is running on the Old Kinderhook Party line. He has lived in the county since May 2015, and is the founder of FourBlock, a non-profit organization that helps military veterans transition back to civilian life. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, having served eight years active duty. He continues to serve in the Reserves. Abrams attended Tamarac High School in Troy, received his bachelor’s degree from SUNY Cortland and an MBA from New York University. If elected, he hopes to bring new businesses to Kinderhook, wants to protect the integrity of the village water supply, and to lead efforts to “reach out to developers, business owners and potential visitors” to promote Kinderhook for potential new businesses. Incumbent Trustee Robert Baumeister has lived in Kinderhook for 46 years. He is retired Verizon area manager. Baumeister is a Vietnam veteran who served in the U.S. Navy. His name will appear on the Bell Party ballot line on the ballot. Baumeister's priorities if re-elected, including, “The new trail that will be opening up — the village will have to maintain it,” he said. He is also looking to complete plans for the new Butterfly Park. Other recreational sites are also in Baumeister’s plans. “The park on Rothermel Avenue, the tennis court has to be repaired again, and we have a lot of little rides for the kids that have to be replaced,” he said. Candidate Mark Browne is running on the Shamrock Party line. He is a member of the Kinderhook Planning Board, and chairman of the village’s comprehensive plan committee. Browne has been a resident of Kinderhook since 1996. “...I want to preserve the character of this rural historic community, support managed growth and enable improvements to the services rendered.” Browne is a past member of the Kinderhook Runners Club, a current member of the OK5K Committee, race director for the Red Apple Run and Lindenwalk Trail Run, and a member of North West Columbia Trails. Candidate Dorene Weir has lived in Columbia County for 41 years. She is running on the Lindenwald party line. Weir is a graduate of Keveny Memorial Academy, and the State University of New York at Albany. Rebuilding infrastructure is at the top of her list of concerns if she is elected. “I believe that infrastructure is a top challenge for our village,” Weir said. “If elected, I would assist in any way possible with aggressive and timely submission of the New York State Drinking Water grant, along with written correspondence and personal interaction with our state senator.” Maintaining a dialogue with constituents is key for Weir. The polls are open noon to 9 p.m. at village hall on Chatham Street, Tue., Sep. 15. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.