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Retirement has impact on all of New Baltimore

August 9, 2018 08:00 pm

To the editor:

New Baltimore, did you feel it? It was quiet and almost imperceptible, but it had an impact on all of us in New Baltimore. There was a change, a shift....no, more like a tearing in the fabric, a hole created in the fine thread work of our town.

In May, reaching a 20-year threshold of service, Denis Jordan resigned as our Highway Superintendent.

To all who know him, Denis Jordan is a man of strong moral character — a meat and potatoes kind of guy. Born and raised in New Baltimore, Denis holds a deep love for this town. His family has lived here for generations and he found and married his wife, Diane (nee Miller) here. Married in 1978, they both began their legacy of public service to our town.

Before Denis was elected as Highway Superintendent in 1998 he worked part-time in the Highway Department. With years of experience in the operation and repair of heavy-duty equipment, and his keen business knowledge, Denis quickly brought change and unification to the department. Inheriting an aging equipment inventory, Denis began first by having his crew make most equipment repairs in-house versus outsourcing the work, saving taxpayers money in his budget and freeing needed funds to acquire (new or used) equipment and materials for highway repair. He started a program of sharing equipment and materials with other towns benefitting all the taxpayers. Denis’ knowledge, honesty and integrity is recognized and regarded by fellow town, county and state highway workers.

Our town highways create a patchwork fabric that touches us all. Our once proud town has endured so many rips and tears over the past few years that we seem to have lost our connection to each other. Unity and fair play is lost.

These rips to our Town’s fabric began with wrongful, and politically biased, accusations targeting Denis. Just before Denis’ last reelection, town leaders attacked Denis’ foundation of honesty and integrity with false accusations of wrongdoing that were ultimately found to be ungrounded and obviously politically motivated. Not done with their misdeeds, they’re false accusations have continued. Denis, New Baltimore is proud to know you. We thank you for your fairness, honesty and hard work and your service to our town is already missed.

Arlene McKeon

New Baltimore