Category Archives: Featured Stories

Phillips senior VP at Pathfinder Bank

Daniel Phillips has been named senior vice president and chief information officer at Pathfinder Bank, said Thomas W. Schneider, president and chief executive officer.

“We are pleased to announce Dan’s promotion to senior vice president,” Schneider said. “He has provided Pathfinder Bank with years of experience in financial information technology, and his leadership, ability to execute and strategic thinking have been driving forces to help advance our bank.”

As a member of the bank’s senior management team, Phillips will oversee all areas of technology and information systems, as it relates to the bank’s strategic technology plan and overall strategic plan.

He will also continue to oversee the bank’s eCommerce and IT Departments.

Phillips has been with Pathfinder Bank for 15 years and in the financial information technology industry for 25 years.

A 1987 graduate of Le Moyne College in Syracuse with a bachelor of science in business administration, Phillips resides in Oswego and has two children, Eric and Taite.

He is active with the Alumni Association Board and Advancement Committee at Le Moyne College, and is a Pathfinder Bank Money Smart Educator for the  “Keeping Safe in an Electronic World” curriculum.

Pathfinder Bank is a New York state chartered savings bank headquartered in Osweg. Deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

The bank has eight full-service offices located in Oswego, Fulton, Mexico, Lacona, Central Square, and Cicero. The company reported total assets of $503.8 million and total shareholders’ equity of $42.7 million for the period ending Dec. 31, 2013.

Rabies clinics scheduled for 2014

Submitted by Oswego County

The Oswego County Health Department will hold eight rabies clinics at locations around Oswego County this year.

All clinics will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays.

The first clinic will be Wednesday, March 26, at the County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Drive, Scriba.

“The rabies virus continues to be active across Oswego County,” said Jiancheng Huang, Oswego County public health director.

“Although the virus can infect any mammal, including dogs, cats, livestock, wildlife, and humans, the vast majority of rabies cases reported each year occur with wild animals such as raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes. Immunizing pets is an effective way to reduce the risk of human exposures to rabies,” he said.

New York state law requires all cats, dogs, and pet ferrets be vaccinated against rabies. The first rabies vaccine should be given at three months of age. A second vaccination is required within one year of the first, and every three years thereafter.

In order for pets to receive the three-year booster shot, owners need to show that the pet was previously vaccinated, and should bring their pet’s last rabies vaccination certificate to the clinic.

The health department suggests a $5 donation per animal to help cover the cost of the rabies clinics, but no one will be turned away. Dogs should be leashed and cats and pet ferrets should be in a cage.

Clinics will be held at these locations during the spring, summer and fall:

Scriba: Wednesday, March 26, County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Drive.

Pulaski: Wednesday, May 7, County Highway Garage, 957 Centerville Road.

West Monroe: Wednesday, June 4, Town Highway Garage, 46 County Rte. 11.

Parish: Wednesday, July 9, County Highway Garage, 24 Dill Pickle Alley.

Volney: Wednesday, Aug. 6, Bristol Hill Landfill, state Route 3.

Hannibal: Wednesday, Sept. 10, Town Highway Garage, 68 Cemetery Drive.

Pulaski: Wednesday, Oct. 8, County Highway Garage, 957 Centerville Road.

Scriba: Wednesday, Nov. 5, County Highway Garage, 31 Schaad Drive.

Any time a person or pet comes in physical contact with a bat or wild animal, especially a sick or suspicious-acting animal, the incident should be immediately reported to the County Health Department.

To report a possible exposure, or for more information about rabies, call the Health Department weekdays at 349-3564 or (800) 596-3200, ext. 3564.

In an emergency during evenings, weekends, or holidays, call the health department’s answering service at 341-0086.

Women of Distinction applications due

State Senator Patricia Ritchie, R-Oswegatchie, is accepting nominations for the New York State Senate’s 2014 “Women of Distinction” program.

The program honors women’s history in the Empire State by recognizing outstanding leaders and everyday citizens from the present who are making a difference.

The deadline for applications is April 1.

“Each and every day, women in our region are doing amazing things and throughout the years I’ve had the opportunity to recognize dozens of them through the New York State Senate’s ‘Women of Distinction’ program,” Ritchie said.

“I’m truly excited to once again honor the women of our region who are making a difference,” she said.

Women living in the 48th Senate District, including Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties, are eligible for nomination.

All nominees will be invited to a local recognition ceremony to be held on May 1. One individual from each State Senate district will be selected to travel to the Capitol to be honored at a special reception on May 13.

In addition to being recognized at the special ceremony at the Capitol, the honoree’s photo and biography will become part of a display that travels across the state to bring attention to the achievements of distinctive New Yorkers.

Last year, 17 women from Central and Northern New York were nominated for the program.

Of the nominees, Rhonda Lyn Roethel of St. Lawrence County was selected as the 48th Senate District’s “Woman of Distinction,” and became the 19th person recognized through the Senate program from the 48th Senate District.

Family, friends or coworkers can make nominations by visiting www.ritchie.nysenate.gov or calling 782-3418.

2 new doctors join Oswego Health

The husband wife urology team of Elizabeth W. Bozeman and Gary D. Bozeman have joined the active medical staff at Oswego Health.

The board-certified urologists will provide a wide range of services in their Fulton office and in Oswego Hospital’s surgery center. Both physicians have nearly 20 years of experience in their field of expertise.

Dr. Elizabeth W. Bozeman

Elizabeth Bozeman has extensive experience in female urology, recurrent urinary infections, stone disease, interstitial cystitis, and many other conditions of general urology.

“When I was in medical school, I found that I really enjoyed my surgery rotation,” Bozeman said.

“As I continued to complete my rotations, I discovered that as a urologist, I could perform surgery and could also develop long-term relationships with my patients, as in many cases there is a continuum of care. This was a perfect fit for me personally and professionally.”

Bozeman completed her undergraduate degree at Emory University in Atlanta. She went on to the Medical University of South Carolina, where she attended medical school, as well fulfilled as her internship and residency.

During her residency, she was chief urology resident. She has the distinction of being the first female to complete the urology medical school program and was the first female to practice urology in South Carolina.

Along with her urology practice, Bozeman was active in both the South Carolina Urological Association and the Society of Women in Urology, serving in several key leadership positions.

Dr. Gary D. Bozeman

Gary Bozeman provides care in all areas of urology, specializing in prostate enlargement, voiding dysfunction, stone disease, prostate cancer, bladder cancer, kidney cancer, urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction.

Bozeman initially practiced as a general surgeon for two years before deciding to concentrate on providing urology care.

He earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, where he also attended medical school. His internship and residency in general surgery were completed at the University of Tennessee, while his urology residency was fulfilled at the Medical University of South Carolina, where he was chief resident.

Bozeman has been an active member of the American Urological Association, the Southeastern Section of the AUA, and the Society of Urodynamics and Female Urology. He is a past president of the South Carolina Urological Association.

During several visits here, the Bozemans have enjoyed the area’s natural beauty and have found the residents friendly.

“We’re excited to become part of the health system, which offers us an opportunity to provide personalized care in a community where we can get to know our patients,” Dr. Gary Bozeman said.

Porky and Buddy gives advice to teen who wants a dog

Dear Porky & Buddy,

Can you help me? I am 13 years old and I really, really, really want a dog, but my mom won’t allow it.

She says they are dirty and we can catch diseases from them and that she would end up taking care of it and blah, blah, blah.  What can I tell her to persuade her?

Annie

 

Dear Annie,

First of all, ditch the phrase “blah, blah, blah.” Then try this approach: “Ask not what your mother can do for you — ask what you can do for your mother.”

So . . . are your grades up to par?  Is your room clean?  Do you ever help around the house? Do you complain about it? Ditch the complaining.

Because, in fact, your mother is right.   If you have a dog it will be your parents’ ultimate responsibility, as the adults in the family, to make sure he is trained, fed properly, walked, taken to the vet, and licensed and to clean up or repair any damage that he might do in your house or the neighbor’s yard.

You are 13. You need to start acting like you are 23.

Make a pact with your Mom.  You will save up a certain sum of money to contribute toward the expenses of owning a dog. You will spend some time at the local shelter interacting with dogs (and not come home whining about how you want to adopt one immediately).

You will go to the library and check out some books about how to choose the right dog, how to care for a dog, how to train a dog, how to practice good hygiene  around a dog so you don’t catch any parasites or diseases. (It’s rare but it can happen.)

You will figure out what equipment your dog will need and what it will cost.  You will talk to a veterinarian about what she recommends for routine health care and the costs of vaccinations, office visits for check ups, and flea and heartworm medications.

Then, and only then, will you be ready to help your Mom (and Dad) with the responsibilities of caring for a new pet.

Will it work? We have no idea. Will it be worthwhile? Absolutely, because even if you still can’t persuade her, you will have impressed her with your maturity, you will have learned a lot, you will have had fun helping out with shelter dogs, and you will be ready for your own dog when you really are 23.

And if it does work then you and your Mom (and Dad) will experience both the joy and the awesome responsibility of having a dog in your life.

So good luck, either way!

The Oswego County Humane Society provides spay/neuter services and assistance, fostering and adoption of animals in urgent need, humane education programs, and information and referrals to animal lovers throughout Oswego County.

Our office is at 265 W. First St., Oswego. Phone is 207-1070. Email is ochscontact@hotmail.com. Website is www.oswegohumane.org.

Officials review county’s pressing healthcare issues

Healthcare professionals representing virtually every healthcare provider in Oswego County gathered recently at the American Foundry to review and discuss the most pressing health issues that exist in our county.

Facilitated by Danielle Wert, coordinator of the Rural Health Network of Oswego County, the event featured presentations from Dan Dey, chief executive officer of Northern Oswego County Health Services, Jiancheng Huang, public health director for the Oswego County Health Department, and Jeff Coakley, vice president for Strategic Services at Oswego Health.

Dey, who also serves as chair for the Rural Health Network’s advisory board, spoke of the role the Rural Health Network plays regarding health services in Oswego County.

“Sponsored by the state Department  of Health, the Rural Health Network of Oswego County is a collaboration of healthcare providers, human service agencies, health education services, and political leaders whose mission is to improve the quality, affordability, and availability of health care services in Oswego County by focusing key resources to address specific health care priorities and to strengthen the local health care system,” Dey said.

Dey said while Oswego County does have its challenges, the level of primary care providers and resources is one of the highest of any rural community in the country and the Rural Health Network is working to continue to retain and expose those resources.

Huang and Coakley echoed those remarks and outlined many of those challenges when they shared their respective health needs assessment results and community service plans.

According the results of the Oswego County Health Department’s health assessment, Oswego County’s risky health behaviors have resulted in higher than average rates than surrounding counties and the state for a number of health issues including; incidence of cancer, cancer related deaths, obesity, smoking, diabetes, and suicide.

All significant challenges, but Huang said they are challenges that can be met.

“Based on our physician to population ratio, doctors and other healthcare providers in Oswego County are working harder than those in other counties throughout the state,” Huang said.

“We and the other members of the Rural Health Network understand the challenges we are facing and are working to introduce new practices and programs,” he said. “Health is determined by where and how we live, work, study, and play.  We must establish initiatives with a goal of engaging community members and lowering the rate of risky health behaviors in Oswego County.”

One of these initiatives is the Oswego County Primary Care Collaborative, comprised of Oswego Health, Oswego County Opportunities, a nonprofit community action agency offering more than 50 human service programs, and Northern Oswego County Health Services.

Coakley said the collaborative is working to ensure that primary care services will remain available in Oswego County for the foreseeable future.

“Previously, the three health partners collectively operated six primary care clinics,” Coakley said “During the past year, these centers transitioned to NOCHSI, which can operate them more efficiently and with financial stability.

“This collaboration was recognized as the Outstanding Rural Health Program of the Year by the New York State Association for Rural Health at its annual meeting in September,” Coakley said. “In addition, individuals from the three partnering organizations were honored as Healthcare Workers of the Year.”

Moving forward, partners in the Rural Health Network will expand their efforts of developing partnerships, coordinating resources, implementing programs and informing and educating the public in an effort to lower the risky health behaviors and reduce the rate of chronic diseases in Oswego County.

“We are fortunate to have a very robust Rural Health Network in Oswego County.  We have 35 active network member organizations and 10 subcommittees that meet monthly,” Wert said.

“The network membership represents virtually every aspect of healthcare, and our members are committed to improving the delivery of and access to quality and affordable health care in Oswego County and contiguous areas,” she said.

For more information on the Rural Health Network, go to www.rhnow.org

Apply now for Oswego UPK program

Submitted by Oswego City Schools

The Oswego City School District is gearing up to welcome next year’s class of pre-kindergarten students!

Applications for the Oswego City School District Universal Pre-Kindergarten (UPK) program are now available. The program is designed for children who were born between Dec. 2, 2009 and Dec. 1, 2010 and is offered at no cost to children who are selected by lottery, said Cathleen Chamberlain, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.

The UPK teachers and staff strive to create a warm and nurturing environment for all our four year olds. The goals of the program are to meet the individual needs of 4-year-old children in the areas of social, academic, language, emotional and physical development.

This prepares them to successfully enter kindergarten the following year.   The UPK teachers and District work closely together to deliver the best first educational experiences for your children.

Sessions will be available at the five elementary schools: Charles E. Riley, Fitzhugh Park, Frederick Leighton, Kingsford Park and Minetto. The program runs in conjunction with the regular school district calendar.

“There will be a maximum of 18 students in each class and the classes will be taught by a certified teacher and teaching assistant,” said Chamberlain.

Morning and afternoon sessions are available. The program runs from 9 to 11:30 a.m. for the morning session and 12:45 to 3:15 p.m. for the afternoon session.

Partial transportation will be offered for all four year olds. Students attending the morning session will be provided transportation to school and parents would be responsible for transportation home at 11:30 a.m.

In the afternoon session, parents are expected to transport their child to school at 12:45 p.m. and the school will transport the child home at 3:35 p.m.

An open house will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. March 26 at all elementary schools. Children are welcome to accompany parents, but are not required to attend.

This is an opportunity for everyone to see the classroom and learn more about the UPK program.

Anyone who would like their child considered for the program can complete an application — applications are available at all elementary schools, or the Office of Curriculum and Instruction on the first floor of the Education Center.

Questions? Call 341-2013. An application form is also available online at www.oswego.org.

Screening will be held in April, so send in applications as soon as possible.

County legislature meets Thursday March 13

By Debra J. Groom

The Oswego County Legislature will decide on a number of resolutions at its Thursday March 13 meeting that officials hope will save the county money.

One deals with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s tax freeze proposal. The legislators will vote on supporting an alternative to the governor’s plan — namely having the state take over paying for the mandated programs it tells counties they must provide.

County Administrator Philip Church told the legislators last month that Cuomo’s plan would save Oswego County taxpayers with an avaerage home valued at $94,500 a little less than $74. This would be a two-year rebate, Church said.

But he said if the state instituted permanent mandate relief, paying for programs such as Medicaid, indigent defense, presschool special education and others, the reductions to the average Oswego County taxpayer’s bill would be about $514.

And these would be permanent reductions — not just a two-year fix.

In his 2014-15 state budget presentation, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he will provide $1 billion for property tax relief.

Church said this would help taxpayers by reducing their property tax burden permanently.

“Many counties and the New York State Association of Counties are proposing this alternative method to provide property tax reductions to New Yorkers,” Church wrote in his analysis.

Also on Thursday, the legislature will vote on supporting a statewide indigent defense legal system. Church said if the state picked up the cost of paying for poor defendants needing lawyers, the county would save about $1.55 million, which amounts to about $24 for the average resident.

This issue is hot in the state right now due to a lawsuit called Hurrell-Harring et al vs. the State of New York. In that suit, defendants in a numbr of counties, including Onondaga, say they were not represented in court by lawyers at various parts of the legal process because the county did not provide the required lawyer.

The lawsuit contends some counties do not have the money to send lawyers to every court hearing, such as an arraignment, but the law requires defendants have legal representation in court at all times.

The state mandated the indigent defense legal system, but passed it on to the counties to run and fund.

Also on the agenda for Thursday:

** Approving a new lease with Operation Oswego County for the county’s Board of Elections offices on East Seneca Street. The lease would be for two years for 10,156 square feet of space at an annual cost of $31,900.

** A public hearing for some land being added into the agricultural district in Oswego County. The additions include about 80 acres in Scriba, 2 3/4 acres in New Haven and a little more than 150 acres in Amboy. The legislature also will vote on including these parcels in the ag district during the regular meeting.