All posts by Nicole Reitz

Governor Cuomo expected to appoint new county clerk

by Carol Thompson

Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to fill the vacancy created in the Oswego County Clerk’s Office due to the death of George Williams.

Oswego County Democratic Chairman Mike Kunzwiler said that as of Thursday, the word from Albany is that the governor will appoint someone to the county clerk position through the end of the year and the position will be on the ballot for November’s general election.

The seat has not been held by a Democrat in decades, if ever. Kunzwiler said he is awaiting the return of the governor from the Democrat National Convention to have an exact determination as to how the seat will be filled.

Each major party caucus can submit a name to be on the ballot should it go to a November election. “We will definitely submit a name,” Kunzwiler said.

The Democrats are most likely to have a candidate selected as the governor is Democrat and appointments traditionally remain within the political affiliation of the governor.

“The position is one that cannot remain vacant for an extended period of time,” Kunzwiler said.

To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of the Valley News at our office or at one of several locations throughout the City. For Subscriptions call 598-6397.

City’s ‘bath salts’ law has some bite to it

by Andrew Henderson

The City of Fulton adopted a local law Tuesday that bans “bath salts” and other similar substances and compounds in the city

The law is different than other synthetic drug laws, however. It has some bite to it.

“We looked at a several different laws, but all of them were just violations — and that’s not going to help,” said Mayor Woodward. “A slap on the hand is not going to help. With this law, it’s a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor carries a year in jail.”

The local law is the same law that the City of Syracuse recently adopted.

It bans a long list of chemical compounds and hallucinogenic substances found in synthetic marijuana and “bath salts.”  The local law also bans the use of embalming fluid or similar by non-professionals.  Some addicts dip their marijuana or regular cigarettes in the fluid.

“With this, unlike some  other drug laws, not only do we get the dealer, but we get the user,” said Woodward.

In late July, law-enforcement agencies raided “head shops” suspected of selling bath salts and synthetic marijuana.

The 420 Emporium in the City of Fulton was one of the many shops targeted. The raids were conduced by multiple law enforcement agencies, including the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and state and local officials.

In Fulton, residents were cheering the raid from across the street as it took place.

The nationally coordinated raids took place in New York, Minnesota, California, Ohio, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and other states.

Over the past two years, the country has seen a surge in the use of synthetic drugs.

“When we shut down the place on Broadway, it dropped down to hardly any,” Woodward said about “bath salts”-related arrests and incidents.

 To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of the Valley News at our office or at one of several locations throughout the City. For Subscriptions call 598-6397.
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Local coin club to host Coin & Collectable Show

The 48th annual Oswego County Numismatic Association Coin & Collectable Show will be held Sunday, Sept. 23 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. in the Fulton Municipal Building, 141 S. First St., Fulton. Free admission and parking are being offered for the event.

There will be a drawing for many items, including a 1/10th ounce gold coin at the show. Tickets are first come, first sold.

Attendees may bring any item as some dealers will offer appraisals. Dealers on premise may also make offers to buy items and are selling a vast array of collectables.

“We have many dealers that will have coins, stamps, postcards, pocket watches, jewelry, sports cards and other collectables on the bourse and the variety should offer something for all collectors,” a spokesperson said.

Schedule for the day is as follows:

• Bourse opens at 10 a.m. for the public to enter and peruse the dealer tables. There may be displays and demonstrations throughout the day.

• Door prize drawings starting at 11 a.m. and every hour after that, the club will be drawing for a lucky winner. Tickets will be good throughout the event. Each prize is a coupon redeemable at any show dealer during the event.

•Raffle drawing is at 3 p.m. to cap off the day for the 1/10th ounce gold coin and other raffle prizes. You do not need to be in attendance to win the raffle prize.

EEE discovered in Central Square, county to conduct aerial spraying

by Carol Thompson

The Oswego County Health Department was notified by the State Health Department late Tuesday, Sept. 4 that the Eastern equine encephalitis virus was found in a sample of mosquitoes collected last week in the village of Central Square.

Jiancheng Huang, Oswego County public health director, said he has requested the New York State Department of Health to issue a declaration of “imminent threat to public health” in Oswego County with the intent to conduct aerial spraying of the Big Bay and Toad Harbor Swamp area as soon as possible.

“The new evidence of Eastern equine encephalitis, together with the West Nile virus activity already present in Oswego County, drove the decision to spray,” said Huang. “Although the number of mosquitoes collected in trapping sites continues to be much lower than in prior years, considering virus activity in recent weeks, the weather forecast, and as a precautionary measure against a repeat of last year’s unusually rapid emergence of EEE, we need to conduct aerial spraying to control mosquitoes. We have started the process needed to conduct aerial spraying, and we will announce the schedule to the public as soon as it is developed.”

Huang emphasized that the decision on when and where to conduct aerial spraying is based on data collected in surveillance and mosquito control guidelines.

Oswego County Legislator Amy Tresidder, who has been questioning the county’s decision not to spray for the West Nile virus, agreed with Huang’s decision.

“I agree with this decision to spray,” Tresidder said. “I have asked the question for several months as I have been concerned both the West Nile virus and the EEE virus and I feel the health department has made the right decision.”

West Nile and Eastern equine encephalitis are different diseases caused by different viruses and transmitted by different mosquito species, said Huang. The risk of contracting either virus runs from June through September with peak activity late July to mid-August.

The Oswego County Health Department collects samples of mosquitoes throughout the summer to look for evidence of West Nile and Eastern equine encephalitis viruses. EEE is usually detected in bird-biting mosquitoes before it appears in mammal-biting mosquitoes.

In Central Square, the virus was found in the type of mosquito that bites birds — not in a species that feeds on humans. Aerial spraying may help reduce the risk of EEE spreading to human-biting mosquitoes.

Samples of mosquitoes collected earlier this summer in New Haven, Central Square and West Monroe tested positive for West Nile virus.

 To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of the Valley News at our office or at one of several locations throughout the City. For Subscriptions call 598-6397.
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Committee approves transfer

by Carol Thompson

With no guarantee that it would last through the end of the year, the Oswego County Legislature’s Finance and Personnel Committee approved a budget transfer of $900,000 to cover the cost of housing inmates at facilities in other counties.

Sheriff Reuel “Moe” Todd has been grappling with jail overcrowding for more than a year and has gone to the committee several times in the past to request more funds

The legislature originally budgeted $100,00 to cover costs incurred this year, however, those funds were exhausted in the first few months. Todd made a request in February for $600,000 to cover the remainder of the year.

The legislature suggested Todd request the money in increments so that the more frequent requests would generate more publicity, hence, resulting in more public awareness of the problems Todd is facing at the correctional facility.

During Tuesday’s meeting, Todd requested $400,000.

County Administrator Phil Church said that the jail population does not appear to be decreasing and he suggested the legislators increase the amount to $900,000 so that Todd doesn’t have to make the requests in piece meal.

Minority Leader Mike Kunzwiler asked if any unused portion would be returned to the appropriated fund balance account. Church said that it would.

The committee passed the budget transfer unanimously.

Inmates are housed in other county facilities when the jail meets the maximum capacity.

 To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of the Valley News at our office or at one of several locations throughout the City. For Subscriptions call 598-6397.

Judy Trepasso, retired school monitor

Judy E. Trepasso, 68, of Fulton, died Saturday, Sept. 1, 2012 at Oswego Hospital after a short illness.

She was born in West Point to the late Carl and Doris (Ripley) Mealus. Mrs. Trepasso has been a resident of Fulton for 47 years.  She retired from the Fulton Consolidated School System as a school monitor after 10 years of service.

Mrs. Trepasso has been an active volunteer with Fulton Booster Club since 1983. She was an avid fan and supporter of all Fulton Sports.

She was pre-deceased by her brother, Tom Mealus.

Mrs. Trepasso is survived by her husband of 47 years, David Trepasso of Fulton; two children, Sandy (Thomas) Strauss and Thomas (Rhonda) Trepasso, both of Fulton; her siblings:  William (Vicky) Mealus and Cathy (Ed) Dreythaler, both of Harrisville, N.Y.; four grandchildren, Joshua and Jacob Strauss and Grace and Caleb Trepasso; and several nieces and nephews.

The Trepasso family will receive family and friends Sunday, Sept. 9 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Manor at Lakeview Lanes, 723 N.Y.S. Rte. 3, Fulton. Burial will be private.

Sugar Funeral Home, Fulton, has care of the arrangements.

Contributions may be made to the Fulton Booster Club/Treasurer: Margaret Beckwith, 6 Ellen St. Fulton, NY 13069.