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Oswegatchie supervisor Nichols to run again

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OGDENSBURG — Oswegatchie Town Supervisor Alfred J. “Bud” Nichols will seek a fourth four-year term.

Mr. Nichols, 71, is a retired farmer and a Republican. He served on the Town Council for six years before succeeding William E. Dashnaw as supervisor.

Mr. Nichols is keen for the town to reap the growth-related benefits of economic development. But he said he knows that cannot happen until the town can provide full-scale water and sewer service in lieu of wells.

“I still keep hoping that we’re going to have a water district,” he said. “But it’s all in the money.” All in the money as in an estimated $14 million price tag that undoubtedly will rise as time goes on without a project in the offing. Mr. Nichols is hopeful the right combination of grant funding will make itself available.

“I don’t want to bankrupt the town,” he said.

As proposed, the water district would encompass the town’s routes 812, 68 and 37 corridors. Mr. Nichols doesn’t mind reciting a what-could-have-been list of commercial prospects that looked at Oswegatchie but instead went to Ogdensburg or decided not to build because of no available water and sewer service.

“We could have had Lowe’s,” Mr. Nichols said. “We could have had Walmart. We could have had Ponderosa.”

Mr. Nichols also wants to enhance the already strong tourism of Black Lake. As popular as it always had been for camping, boating and fishing, the body of water has long had a severe shoreline weed-clogging problem. It especially has wreaked havoc in recent years on pleasure boats whose outboard motor propellers are caught and damaged in the tangle of the weeds.

“It comes to the point where they (tourists) don’t want to put boats in there anymore,” Mr. Nichols said.

The town will soon apply for grants to deal with Black Lake’s weed problem.

No other candidates for town supervisor have surfaced.

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