All posts by Nicole Reitz

Oswego County BOCES District Superintendent Christopher Todd (left) visits the Welding Technology program during his first day on campus and is pictured with student Danielle Smith of Central Square and Director of Career and Technical Education and Alternative Programs Ronald Camp.

BOCES welcomes district superintendent

Oswego County BOCES District Superintendent Christopher Todd (left) visits the Welding Technology program during his first day on campus and is pictured with student Danielle Smith of Central Square and Director of Career and Technical Education and Alternative Programs Ronald Camp.

The Oswego County Board of Cooperative Educational Services welcomed the arrival of a new district superintendent.

Christopher Todd began his post at the start of June. He was appointed earlier this school year following a recruitment process that spanned several months and included input from component school districts, students, staff, and community partners.

Selected from a field of candidates, BOCES Board of Education President John Shelmidine said, “Mr. Todd brings a fresh sense of excitement and energy to our organization and I am excited about working closely with him as we move forward with our capital improvement project.”

“This is an exciting time for education,” said Todd. “Conversations at the state level indicate an understanding of multiple pathways for success for our students. This speaks to the heart of BOCES’ programming.”

Prior to his appointment at Oswego County BOCES, Todd served as the superintendent of schools at the Oakfield-Alabama Central School District, a position he held since 2007.

In addition to his superintendency, Todd’s tenure in education includes experience as a classroom teacher, high school principal, middle school principal as well as a career and technical education principal with the Franklin-Essex BOCES.

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Phoenix receives grant for concert series

The Village of Phoenix has been awarded $1,000 from the Cultural Resources Council under the 2012 Community Arts Grants Program.

In addition to the Village of Phoenix, 70 other not-for-profit organizations and nine regional artists will share $120,000 for community-based cultural projects in Cortland, Herkimer, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, and Oswego counties.

Community Arts Grants were awarded with funds from the Decentralization Program of the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

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Widow seeks affordable health insurance

by Carol Thompson

A widow with three young children is finding that affordable health insurance is something out of reach and that there is little assistance for those in her situation.

The woman has been struggling to find affordable health care for seven months to no avail. Prior to the unexpected death of her husband, the young widow was insured by Blue Cross/Blue Shield through his employer. Upon his death, she said she was immediately dropped.

For a few months, she was on COBRA until the cost jumped to $1,100 per month for health coverage and $400 per month for dental coverage.

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Legislature to hire consultant to write health insurance RFP

by Carol Thompson

The Oswego County Legislature is looking to solicit bids for a third-party health insurance administrator and approved a motion to allow the personnel director to spend the funds to seek a consultant to write the specifications.

During Tuesday’s meeting of the Finance and Personnel Committee, approval was given to Personnel Director Carol Alnutt to move forward with the process.

“Our department goal for fiscal year 2013 is going to be for our department is to issue a request for proposals for a third-party health administrator and what I’m hoping to do in preparation for that is I would like to in this year prepare an RFP (request for proposal) for a professional service contract with a consulting firm to review the health care plan in terms of its plan design, actually perform an audit and do a thorough evaluation process and help us to do the RFP process,” Alnutt said.

She asked for the committee to allow her to issue an RFP for a consultant.

To read the rest of the story, subscribe to The Valley News by calling 315-598-6397

Legislators hope to establish their own sales-tax rate

by Carol Thompson

The Oswego County Legislature’s Finance and Personnel Committee passed a memorializing resolution Tuesday in support of allowing counties to establish local sales tax rates up to four percent.

Bills currently under consideration in the Senate and Assembly are designed to provide counties permanent authority to control their own local sales tax rate up to four percent.

The proposed legislation would reduce waste and redundancy in state and local legislative procedures by ending the unnecessary practice of requiring state approval and renewal for local sales tax rate changes, including the cumbersome and inefficient biennial renewal of the one-percent sales tax extension currently utilized by nearly every county, the resolution states.

To read the rest of the story, subscribe to The Valley News by calling 315-598-6397

Kali Magnarelli with pen in hand and Samantha Familo holding the original set about enlarging a small photo of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” into a 9 foot by 10 foot mural. The artwork will become a stained glass mosaic assembled by local artists during Harborfest in West Park as part of Showcase Oswego Arts.

Oswego County comes together to create art

Kali Magnarelli with pen in hand and Samantha Familo holding the original set about enlarging a small photo of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” into a 9 foot by 10 foot mural. The artwork will become a stained glass mosaic assembled by local artists during Harborfest in West Park as part of Showcase Oswego Arts.

In recent weeks, Hannibal High School students have been working on their part of the county-wide art project that will be presented at this year’s Harborfest.

The project, spearheaded by the CNY Arts Center, will be a stained glass mural of Van Gogh’s famous painting “Starry Night” and will consist of various colors of glass bottle fragments. The mastermind behind the concept and creation of the mural is Arts Center member Leslie Paice.

The Hannibal math students of Sally Kingsbury’s class have developed an equation for enlarging the painting, to determine the approximate number of bottles and jars needed for the mural. Using the dimensions of the mural frame, and the average size of the bottles being used, they determined that approximately 3,260 bottles will be needed to complete the mural.

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Legislators learn about proposed mandated costs

by Carol Thompson

As New York State passes more laws, it also passes on mandated costs to local governments. Oswego County Administrator Phil Church gave members of the Finance and Personnel Committee an update on the most recent proposals.

During Tuesday’s meeting, Church noted that a proposed law could change the way 16- and 17-year-olds are treated in the court system and by probation.  “The goal is to treat them differently rather than treating them in the adult sector,” he said.

If the change is approved, it will come at a cost of an additional $416,000 per year in the probation department, a cost that is bore by the taxpayers.

In addition, both the Senate and Assembly have proposed a bill that would require those convicted of animal abuse to register with local law enforcement. The registry would be similar to the sex offender registry currently in place.

“It will be up to local law enforcement to maintain that registry,” Church said, adding that he does not anticipate funding from the state for such project.

To read the rest of the story, subscribe to The Valley News by calling 315-598-6397

Pictured is the Landrigan-Lose house on Route 104 in Scriba. The home will be one of eight locations that will have an open house as part of the Scriba Bicentennial Celebration’s self-driving tour.

Self-driving tour part of the Scriba Bicentennial Celebration

Pictured is the Landrigan-Lose house on Route 104 in Scriba. The home will be one of eight locations that will have an open house as part of the Scriba Bicentennial Celebration’s self-driving tour.

One of the activities of the Scriba Bicentennial Celebration is a self-driving tour of the historic homes, structures and sites of interest in the township.

There are many such places in Scriba, but a sampling of nearly 50 of them are included in a  brochure, which will be available at the Scriba Municipal Building, the Scriba Justice Center, or the Scriba Fire Station during the celebration June 16 and 17.

The text is by Dr. Helen M. Breitbeck and includes a brief description and location of each site. Brochures will be available after the event as well.

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