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Village of Middleburgh enjoying post-flood rebirth

Monday, December 9, 2013
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Back to business


Main Street in Middleburgh on Monday, December 9, 2013.
Photographer: Patrick Dodson
Main Street in Middleburgh on Monday, December 9, 2013.

— When Schenectady accountant Francis Pipczynski saw an ad on Craigslist from a village looking to get an accountant back on Main Street, he decided “Why not?”

A new office Pipczynski opened at 296 Main St. brings another service back to the village of Middleburgh, where the Mayor Matthew Avitabile is determined to reverse Tropical Storm Irene’s impact.

“I’ve been trying to target the ones we essentially lost to the flood,” Avitabile said Monday.

The new accounting office adds to other businesses returned or returning to the historic village that was nearly wiped out in 2011.

Green Wolf Brewery is developing a site at 315 Main St. and Andy’s Auto and Alignment opened at 139 Main St. this past spring.

An office for The Schoharie News, an online news site focusing on Schoharie County, opened on Main Street. And Stony Creek Architecture and Hudson River Valley Engineers opened on Railroad Avenue.

Avitabile attributes the continued resurgence — he’s calling it a boomlet — to several factors, including a healthy business community.

The village re-formed its business association last year after it languished inactive for about nine years.

Avitabile is also offering incentives most mayors can’t: He’s a capable Web developer and is offering to put websites together for village firms.

“We build them a website for free. It’s a nice carrot,” he said.

Valley Tax and Accounting office will be staffed full-time starting Jan. 20, Pipczynski said.

The firm offers a variety of services including tax preparation, accounting and bookkeeping services, wealth management and credit restoration.

Pipczynski said he noticed an ad Avitabile placed on Craigslist looking for an accountant for Middleburgh.

“I said, ‘You know, I’ve set up offices before. I can set up an office here,’ ” he recalled.

He said the fact that the village was flooded in 2011 isn’t much of a deterrent.

“The risk to me is not that huge because the rent is very modest and much of what I had to purchase here are things I can pick up and move anywhere,” Pipczynski said.

He said he didn’t have to remodel the office and move many items, and if it doesn’t work out, the cost of trying is minimal.

“Why not give it a shot? The people have been very, very courteous to me,” Pipczynski said.

 
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