Category Archives: Valley Viewpoints

Valley Viewpoints: Granby GOP

by Les Holmes, Granby GOP Committee Chairman

Ray Sullivan, the current Granby highway superintendent, won the last election. He was supported by Granby Supervisor Ed Williamson and town councilors Matt Callen, Lori Blackburn, Susan Richardson and Joe Cortinini.

Mr. Sullivan was also supported by a coalition of Democrats and Republicans from Granby’s South end led by Republican Les Johnson. Democrats Mike French, Fred Martin, Sharon Martin, Frank Fox and Rose Anthony and again Mr. Ed Williamson.

Martin and Williamson attested to Ray Sullivan’s credentials and Martin vetted and heavily endorsed Sullivan, which was published in The Valley News Aug. 31, 2011.

Les Johnson, who was proud to have served on the highway department, heavily endorsed Ray Sullivan and praised Rose Anthony (Valley News October 26, 2011).

Rose Anthony also supported Ray Sullivan for highway department superintendent and sported his campaign posters at her place of business.

This is an adverse group each with a political following that added up, can and did sway the Granby Republican Committee’s candidates in the last election!

To Rose Anthony: Why would one expect anything but nepotism when Sullivan was already a part-time employee of the Highway Department and the third potential highway department candidate that the above people approached and finally convinced to run for the office? The first two potential candidates declined.

The highway department looked hard for a candidate to recruit from within. The blue code of ethics rule, which exists in the Town of Granby Highway Department, extends to the employees families and friends.

Most employees’ attention is not on serving their town. It is focused on their bi-weekly pay, vacation, sick days and retirement. Just look at the snowplowing problems last winter, Also, was the roof on the highway department broken by snow or from a truck box raised from within the vehicle bay?

Lynn Moyer, the past highway superintendent, was in office for 16 years. He was an employee for Granby highway for 38 years.   Most town highway employees are friends or relatives of Moyers.  This organization has political roots.

An entity cannot expect to advance the sect of the species if the seed inside the sect is continually intertwined and there are no fresh ideas injected into the group. Stagnation and degeneration results within that sect and the strain weakens.

Labor is much the same. Without the threat of consequences, discipline in families is tough to administer, labor grows stagnant, lazy and irresponsible, hence, Rose Anthony’s letter in The Valley News.

I believe the above named people all have agendas. None of these people are on the Republican committee. For this reason and because of these kind of people, the town Republican committee exists and flourishes.

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

Valley Viewpoints: Thankful for the support

by Rosemary Occhino, Fulton Board of Education member

To all of the 1,256 voters who voted last week in the school budget, please accept my sincere thank you for taking the time to vote

It does sadden me that only 10 percent of Fulton’s population chose to make their opinions known, but am thankful that you did.

The presented school budget and all of the propositions passed with ease. The Library’s quest of added funds made my heart sing with joy, at its passage. As promised, ten hours have already been restored with the Tuesday opening from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. The addition of the Monday opening will be forthcoming in the fall.

Once again, I need to thank the 730 voters who are placing their trust in me. I will speak for you as I serve on the school board for the next three years. It is my pleasure to be your voice.

Please know that my mission is to create a positive difference in the lives of our children, community, and fellow educators. I promise you my time, energy, knowledge, and experience in education.

In closing, don’t hesitate to contact me with concerns and questions Remember I want “to be the change…for kids!”

Valley Viewpoints: Save the lake

by Edward Williamson, Committee Chairman

It is the mission of the new Lake Neatahwanta Committee to clean-up and re-vitalize the lake so it can be used by residents of Central New York, visitors and local community.

This mission statement was developed by Jim Karasek, a local resident and legislator representing a portion of Fulton and Granby.

“The little lake near the great lake” so named Neatahwanta is a 750 acre lake that is jointly shared by the Town of Granby and the City of Fulton. In previous times, the lake shared its life as a source of water, fish and recreation. In years hence the lake has turned its face away from those resources due to neglect, abuse and pollution. The lake committee is charged with the task of restoring the health and vitality to Lake Neatahwanta. Recognizing and supporting that the lake is a living breathing element necessary to the communities that share shorelines, the lake committee under-takes the restoration of returning life back to “The little lake near the great lake.”

Please join the committee in its efforts to clean-up the lake.

Valley Viewpoints: Job well done

by David Cordone, Fulton Board of Education member

I am writing this letter to express my gratitude to those who performed their civic duty in voting on the recent school budget and for the candidates who had entered the race for two open seats on the Fulton Board of Education.

The margin of support for our schools was amazing! Thank you! Although this election cycle provided fewer interested candidates than the last cycle, the priorities and issues facing public education remain significant for the children of our community, our state, and our nation.

Fulton is fortunate to have an outstanding school district, a teaching staff that is comprised of outstanding educators and administrators, and community members who are willing to volunteer their service on our school board.

I wish to congratulate Rosemary Occhino her re-election and Daniel Pawlewicz on his election success to return to the Fulton Board of Education.

As experienced board members, I trust and know that they will continue to place the needs of our students first as I have served with them both.

The Fulton City School District was fortunate to have three outstanding candidates seeking election to two available seats on the board this cycle.

As one of our candidates was not able to be successful, I must take this opportunity to share my gratitude as a parent, fellow board-member, and as an educator to Robbin Griffin for her 21 years of service on the Fulton Board of Education.

Only those who have served in this capacity can relate entirely to her commitment to our collective cause.

Robbin has served as a highly effective school board member, in my opinion, not only locally, but she has been a presence in that role at the state and national levels as well.

As I began my board service with Robbin 11 years ago, I can attest to her immeasurable passion and leadership skill, her depth of knowledge, willingness to hear and imagine multiple perspectives, her commitment to the Fulton City School District, but most importantly that her only motivation through it all was our children and students, and the opportunities they deserve.

Our community, our school district, but most importantly the children and students of the Fulton City School District are the beneficiaries of Mrs. Griffin’s vision and her commitment to and her love for our community. This is her legacy as a leader.

It is with great privilege as a colleague that I must say, “Job well done, Mrs. Griffin.

You have been a tremendous leader and mentor to your colleagues, and you have set the bar very high for those who follow you in service.”

Valley Viewpoints: Great equalizer

by Marian M. Stanton

To all the voters who supported their Fulton Public Library by voting “yes” last Tuesday, please accept my biggest thanks.

Thanks to every one of you, we will be open next Tuesday and all the Tuesdays, continuing to offer you excellent library service through our dedicated, hard-working staff.

If you haven’t been in for a while, stop in, look around, borrow a book, take home a DVD to watch tonight, or use a computer.

The world is at your fingertips at the Fulton Public Library.

When I was thinking about how to ask for your vote on this urgent issue, one of the items I came across is a quote from Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones, which I didn’t use then but would like to share now:  “When you are growing up, there are two institutional places that affect you most powerfully: the church, which belongs to God, and the public library, which belongs to you. The library is a great equalizer.”

Your Fulton Public Library stands ready to serve each and every one of you! Stop in soon.

Valley Viewpoints: Big Brother

by Rodney DeLong of Fulton

I would like to share a concern regarding the people who run our local fire district. All elected officials swear an oath to “support the Constitution of the United States, and the Constitution of the State of New York,” and that they will “faithfully” discharge the duties of the office… to the best of their ability.”

I have recently had several issues with the commissioners of the Cody Fire District. For most people, the process for addressing concerns is to call one of the commissioners or attend a district meeting to bring up these concerns. The Cody Fire District has determined that my concerns and issues should not be bought directly to the commissioners, but rather through their attorney.

Ok, fine, for the last 2-3 years I have been bringing my concerns to their lawyer as requested. Unfortunately, the commissioners still don’t care to address some of my issues (they pick and choose what they want to address).

Now they have decided that I shouldn’t call their lawyer either, but hire a lawyer to talk to their lawyer. This is ridiculous, if they would allow me to use the same method of communication as everyone else, they wouldn’t have to pay a lawyer to take care of my concerns.

To read the rest of the Viewpoint, pick up a copy of The Valley News

Valley Viewpoints: Friendships forged

by Robbin Griffin of Fulton

I wish to express my sincerest thanks to those of you that took the time to vote in the recent school-board election. I am grateful for the support of our budget and referendums. It was a great evening for our school district and its students!

I am also grateful for the many years that you allowed me to serve as one of your representatives on the board of education. Each election left me feeling humbled as well as grateful for your confidence and trust.

Throughout my years of service, I worked to balance the needs of our students with that of our community. I wish to thank everyone of you that ever reached out to me to express your opinions, allowing me to better understand the varied ideas and needs of our students and residents.

While we may not have always agreed, I always filed away the points of concern, which caused me to pause and consider other points of view before exercising my vote on the issues.

I wish to thank our state and federal leaders for making the time to meet with myself and others to share concerns, views and sometimes brainstorm for solutions to the many issues our schools faced over the last 21 years.

I must also thank my fellow board members throughout New York State, especially those from Oswego County who allowed me to work with them in an effort to make our collective voice heard in our state and federal capitols.

My thanks to the many administrators who helped educate me about the many needs of our students here and Fulton and Oswego County.

To the many folks who served on the Fulton board over my years of service, thank you for your commitment to making the board function effectively, thank you for the many things you each taught me and for the shared humor which made the work so much more enjoyable.

To the many teachers and students of the Fulton School District and Oswego County BOCES, thank you for the many moments you shared with me over the years. I am blessed to have had so many “first day of school” moments, opportunities to read to your students and presentations that you shared with the board.

So what is my take away from all this experience? I take with me many memories that include students of all ages (some now parents themselves), long nights working on policies, contract discussions, personnel issues and capitol project planning.

I take with me years of financial learning that changed my outlook on how things work in a community. I also take with me a hefty knowledge of what it takes to make a school district run in the 21st century.

If you haven’t been asking kids what they learned recently through their education studies, you are missing out on the significant changes that have been and continue to take place in our curriculum and classrooms. Lastly, and most importantly, I take with me the greatest surprise of community service: the many treasured relationships with those I was lucky to serve with locally and beyond. I didn’t expect to get anything for my board service but must admit that the time spent with our youth and the friendships I forged made all the late nights and difficult meetings seem insignificant in comparison.

Thank you all and thank you editor for providing coverage of the important work that occurs in our public schools.

Valley Viewpoints: Nepotism?

by Rose Anthony of Granby

We have nepotism in Washington and Albany and Oswego County — so many political positions have relatives employed in high positions. Why do we have to have nepotism in the Town of Granby Highway Department?

At the April Granby Town meeting, I asked a couple questions about the highway department. Has anyone else in this town ever noticed that even when there’s little to no snow, the plow is plowing (sharpening the blades?) and there’s two people in the trucks.

Why are we paying two people for one person’s job? This is our tax dollars at work.

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