HINSDALE, NY –  Democrat Daniel Zawatski is challenging incumbent Theodore Mascho, a Republican, for highway superintendent.

Zawatski, who had served on the Hinsdale Town Board for 12 years, has been a steamfitter with Local 449 for 39 years.

Mascho has 27 years of construction experience and is a life-member of the Hinsdale Fire Department.

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As the incumbent, Mascho brought up the difficulties of being highway superintendent.

“It’s a hard job and not everyone can do it," Mascho said. "You have to delegate the roles that are most important -- especially in the high traffic areas. It’s not an easy role.”

Zawatski pointed to the regrading of dirt roads as an important project that could be started quickly.

“There some dirt roads that need regrading that have not been touched,” Zawatski said. “Some of the stuff can be done without materials. Some of it is in the grading.”

Mascho shared some of his plans for projects he would undertake if he continues in the role of highway superintendent, including "redoing" Fay Hollow Road.

"It’s pretty rough and out of shape," Mascho said. "It’s crowned too high in the middle. We’re going to resurface it and hopefully it will be better for years to come.”

Zawatski, who holds a New York State inspectors license for heavy and light vehicles and certification from Purdue University’s instructor training program, noted he is familiar with the role of highway superintendent from his service on the town board. He also pointed to existing agreements with nearby municipalities, noting "so if someone is tarring and chipping a road, we would help them and they would help us with the roads."

Zawatski talked about the importance of planning work on road shoulders, on drainage and on sluice pipe work during the short time periods of spring and summer.

“You have a small window to take care of anything you are going to do as far as to get the road ready,” he said.

Zawatski believes that he can fix budgeting concerns and communicate well with the town board if elected highway superintendent.

“The current highway superintendent has budgeting problems,” he said. “I want to be a team player with the board and to let them know what is happening as well as what needs to be done.”

Mascho reflected upon his experience as an important part of his time as highway superintendent.

“I do have 27 years of construction experience. The roads I have done have been holding up very well,” he said. “The new roads and paving jobs I’ve done with other towns have been great. I think we’ve made all the roads better.”

Zawatski noted that a former highway superintendent, Ronald Brown, is running for Hinsdale Town Board and commented, "That would-be a plus because we have conversations quite a bit, so if there was something questionable we have someone that was already in the position.”

And he added that Brown "was an excellent highway superintendent in everything that he did, and he had a good rapport with the town board and we don’t have that now."