Category Archives: Valley Viewpoints

Valley Viewpoints: Correcting Castiglia’s comments

County Legislator Frank Castiglia recently wrote things regarding the east side pool and about the Common Council, most of which was not true. 

I would like to tell what the truth is.

Legislator Castiglia stated, “they could have gotten a grant to help fix it but the mental geniuses we have on the council voted not to fund the cost to do an updated study.”

First of all, calling us “mental geniuses” is immature and very unprofessional coming from a fellow elected official. I didn’t know of any grant because that was applied for last year. We didn’t vote against any update to a study because it was pulled from the agenda. We wanted to be better informed about this issue, something Legislator Castiglia might want to try.

The grant in question was applied for last August and the city was informed last January that we were denied. It wasn’t until after that we found out it was because of an outdated study. Neither this council nor the previous council was responsible for not getting the grant.

Legislator Castiglia goes on to say that “they can bond for police cars and trucks for the DPW, but one thing for the public they say no.”

Again, we never said no and I always thought having police cars and trucks for the DPW was for the good of the public.

Legislator Castiglia also said, “Now I know that most of the taxpayers in this city don’t have any kids that would use the pool, but if we don’t have something for the kids (around 200 a day) they will either swim in the river or be in the streets causing trouble.”

Legislator Castiglia was wrong again, this time on the usage of the pool. According to figures from the Recreation Department, the actual number of people using the pool was an average of 104 per day.

Well, Legislator Castiglia was only off by almost 100 percent, I guess that’s close enough for him. Also, he seems to have a very low opinion of the kids in this city if he thinks their only other choice is to cause trouble.

Legislator Castiglia continues, “Now I could see the three councilors from the three wards on the other side of the river not voting yes, but there are three over here that most of their voters’ kids use the pool. Why … oh I know they think they will use the money from the state … wrong … do it now the cost will be a lot less then (sic) the possible loss of life because they will be swimming in the river.”

Once again, nobody voted no on anything and assuming he is talking about the state restructuring board, I, and I’m sure the rest of the council, am not counting on any money from the state because we don’t know what’s going to happen there. He shouldn’t presume to know what we are thinking because he doesn’t. As a side note, the conjunction ‘than’ should be used and not the adverb ‘then’.

Legislator Castiglia goes on to say, “I will be writing a letter and putting it in the paper (there’s a shock) and I know most of the council won’t like me for it but that’s to (should be adverb too, not adjective to) bad..it’s for the kids…I told them at least 5 years ago this was going to happen.”

I don’t have a problem with him or anybody else writing letters to the editor, it should contain the truth though, not these mis-statements made by Legislator Castiglia.

He mentions the kids, well, the city has 14 parks and 10 playgrounds so it’s not like there isn’t anything for the kids to do. The city raised the rate to use the pool in the past by a mere 50 cents and the attendance went down by almost half.

It seems that people want to use the pool, but are not interested in helping to pay for it.

Now I don’t want anybody to think I am against having a city pool. I wish we had the money to get it fixed, and a lot of others things too, but we don’t.

The state has come in to Fulton and declared us fiscally distressed and we are the first city in the whole state to be put on the list for needing help. I would find it irresponsible, considering the fiscal situation the city is in, to spend upwards of $300,000 on a luxury such as the pool when we have streets and sidewalks that need repair so badly.

If the situation changes and we can afford to fix the pool then I will be all for it.

Jim Myers

Fulton

Councilor – 4th Ward

VALLEY VIEWPOINTS: A giving boy, Red Cross Month

A giving boy

A few years ago, a picture and a brief article in The Valley News told us about a young man named Michael Doney, who decided that on his birthday he wanted to give presents rather than receive them.

He wanted to make his birthday special for others.

We were so impressed that someone so young would think of others rather himself on his day of celebration. Subsequently, we interviewed Mikey, his dad Michael, his mother Renee and his brother Walker (when we could slow him down) for an article in The Valley News to tell others about this amazing youngster.

Mikey recently celebrated his 9th birthday, deciding that this year he would make a donation to the Golisano Hospital.  Once again, we were moved and are writing again to tell of his generosity.

The list of items that Mikey brought to the hospital were as follows: 11 boxes of kids’ Band-Aids, three baby rattles, two baby teethers, five coloring books, six sets of crayons, two card games, four activity books, two puzzles, 13 $5 Tim Horton’s gift cards and $70 in cash that was turned into gift cards to be used at the Cold Stone Creamery Ice Cream shop at the children’s hospital.

The gift cards go to families to buy ice cream and coffee for parents.

Once again, we want to wish Mikey a very happy birthday and thank him for his unselfishness in thinking of others.

We should all take example of what it truly means to be giving.

Bob & Sandy Weston

Fulton

Red Cross Month

It’s Red Cross Month and we would like to recognize our Everyday Heroes who reach out to help their neighbors when they are in need.

These everyday heroes are our volunteers who help disaster victims get on the road to recovery. They give blood to help someone in the hospital.

They brighten the day of an injured service member in a hospital far from home. They take our classes and step forward to help someone having a heart attack or to save a drowning child.

March is also a great time to become part of the Red Cross. It’s easy. Household members can work together on a preparedness plan. People can sign up to take a class or volunteer their time. They can give blood or make a financial donation.

The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters a year in this country. It provides 24-hour support to members of the military, veterans and their families; collects and distributes about 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply and trains millions of people in first aid, water safety and other life-saving skills every year.

This year so far in Oswego County, the American Red Cross of CNY responded to 12 local emergencies, assisted 3 military families and trained 45 people in lifesaving skills.

Red Cross Month is observed in dedication of everyone who supports our mission. We are grateful to people for their generosity which enables us to continue our work, and encourage everyone to become an Everyday Hero during Red Cross Month by helping their neighbors.

Danielle D. Hayden

Manager

Oswego Chapter of the American Red Cross

Valley Viewpoints

Educate on the Holocaust

After reading the article about Arlene Laut’s class at Hannibal Central School on the Holocaust and Genocide, I want to commend her on her commitment to educate our youth and let no one ever forget that horrific era of history.

It’s too bad that more educators do not have the same conviction as Arlene Laut.

More people need to remember and re-educate themselves and others on how the Holocaust was allowed to occur.

It started with government propaganda in schools’ curriculum, then with complacency of the citizens. They were disarmed, new relentless regulations and restrictions were brutally forced upon targeted citizens, with no recourse against the lawless government.

As Ms. Laut said, the phrase “Never Again’ is not true. Citizens must forever be constantly vigilant of the activities of government and other forces.

Diane Gardner

Fulton

 More on the Holocaust

Congratulations to Hannibal High School special education teacher Arlene Laut, the Hannibal Board of Education and Hannibal Central School District for the design and implementation of the college-level course for 11th- and 12th-graders in Holocaust and Genocide studies.

One goal of Ms. Laut is to educate the students in this subject which students may have limited knowledge of, and her belief that, “….if people don’t teach it, it’s going to disappear.” If Ms. Laut continues to teach this class to Hannibal students, I dare say the atrocities that occurred in Europe during WWII and the genocides that continue to arise in Rwanda, Sudan and Armenia will be remembered by the students decades from now.

Unlike traditional history classes where students learn from textbooks and teacher lectures, Ms. Laut’s multi-dimensional class includes learning tools such as listening to survivor testimonials, visiting out-of-town Holocost museums, reading books written by concentration camp survivors, watching documentaries and Hollywood movies, group discussions in the classroom, writing and project-based learning.

I congratulate the District for making the decision to offer such a progressive, innovative class to our students, thus giving them a taste of the style of learning used in exceptional colleges, and enriching their total high school educational experience. The classes that encourage students to think on their own and be aware of social injustice are the types of classes that make a difference and empower students to form a lifelong interest in social responsibility.

Keep up the good work, Hannibal High School. The community appreciates your achievements.

Laura H. Bishop

Hannibal

 

 

Valley Viewpoints — Boosters will miss Margaret

When anyone who does wonderful things on earth passes onto Heaven, we on earth feel the void that they once filled. 

With the passing of Margaret Beckwith, that scenario could not be more accurate.

Our Fulton Athletic Booster Club lost a true leader. Someone who cared so much about an organization and what it stood for, Margaret willed everyone around her to do better and make the Booster Club what it is today.

She was extremely proud of this organization. All you had to do is work at the concession stand and you would realize how passionate she was about this cause.

She made sure the product we were selling was as perfect as it could be. The menu was simple, but it still had to be special.

Margaret taught all of us to serve it with a smile. Many times, students or children did not have enough money to purchase what they wanted and Margaret would reach into her own pocket and pay for it with her money so they could have something to eat or drink. This is just one example of her kindness.

As a fellow board member and others can attest to, Margaret’s main concern was for the student athlete and making their athletic experience as good as it could be.

On a personal level, Margaret always made you feel like you were special. I am sure I am not the only person to say this, but she made me feel like I was family. If she made me feet like this, I can only imagine the love her sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren felt. We were all blessed to have her in our lives.

After reading the article so eloquently written by Jerry Kasparek, we all were so moved. Jerry’s thoughts and memories of Margaret were so precise. As I read, at one moment I was smiling and the next crying. In a comparison that Margaret could relate to, Jerry had hit a ‘grand slam’ with beautiful words she had written.

In a world lacking in the good role model category for our youth, one doesn’t need to look any farther than Margaret Beckwith.

On behalf of the entire Fulton Booster Club Family, our hearts go out to Margaret’s family. So whoever is in charge up there, they would be wise to have Margaret help run their Booster Club. The rest of us down here will continue to honor Margaret’s wishes.

We will truly miss her.

Dan Shue

President

Fulton Athletic Boosters Club 

Valley Viewpoints

Help foster cats

Sometime on Wednesday, Jan. 22, with the temperature below zero, two declawed long-haired cats were abandoned on Route 104A.

They were found and taken into the Humane Society foster care, but if that had not happened they could not have survived. One was so badly matted she had to be taken to a groomer to be shaved down.

Yet they had been someone’s pet once — they were not only declawed, they had been spayed.

On Saturday, Jan. 28, with the temperature again below zero, a 9-month-old cat was found by two Hannibal teenagers when she was trying to find shelter in their garage.

She had almost no fur on her body, the result of a severe flea infestation and resulting skin infection. She too would have frozen to death had she not been found and given immediate medical attention.

These stories are not uncommon to the Humane Society — but this year we have seen a disturbing increase in the number of older cats that were obviously once someone’s pet being abandoned and essentially left to die.

This article, though, is not about the people who abandon their pets.  It’s about the people who save them by providing foster care for them until we can find them new, safe homes.

In 2013, the Humane Society  rescued and adopted out 332 cats.  These numbers are down slightly compared to the year before and we were pleased.

We felt the Humane Society’s spay/neuter clinic was finally having an impact on the problem of abandoned pets in our county. By the end of 2013 we had spayed/neutered 676 cats and 67 percent of those cats were from low-income families.

So we were hoping to start seeing a decrease in the number of cats needing rescue each year, and, in fact, there have been fewer litters of young kittens coming into foster care.

The problem now is this. These older cats, unlike cute fluffy kittens, typically stay in foster care for much longer until we find them homes. They may have health problems, they may have been traumatized by their time in the wild; but mostly they are just not cute and fluffy.

This reality is starting to put a strain on our foster families. If you look at our website, we have 46 cats listed for adoption and only one is a young kitten. Our foster homes are almost always full with these older cats that are harder to find homes for — not impossible, just harder.

We know if this continues we will not be able to rescue all those cats out there in the cold.

Can you help? Would you be willing to foster a cat or two. We are not asking for a long term commitment, just your help us get through the rest of the winter.

We provide the vet care, food and equipment if you need it. You provide a home and a second chance.

Please consider it. You will be amazed when you discover what a beautiful experience it is to save a life.

Go to our website at www.oswegohumane.org  to read more about the fostering program and for an application to fill out. If you have questions about fostering, call Barb at 343-2959.

Diane Broadwell

Animal Services Chair

 

Why do we pay tuition?

The Oswego County Legislature needs to explain why senior citizens have to pay tuition for college students through our property tax.

We are mandated by New York state to pay one-third of the cost of tuition for each student from our county attending community college, even though there is no Oswego County Community College. We are paying an 85 percent tax increase for Cayuga Community College and 19 percent for Jefferson Community College on our county taxes.

Can’t our legislature represent us and fight this excessive tax? I am sure our legislators will say what they always say — “there is nothing we can do.”

But people are losing their homes and property through foreclosures by the county treasurer’s office and re-sold at auction. This is a disgrace and should not happen because people are being overtaxes by state, county and federal governments.

Like many of my senior friends, I paid for children to go to school and to college — why should we pay again for other kids to go to college after we retire? It is getting so it’s a curse to own property because of our “tax and spend” government.

We are also taxed to pay for the state retirement fund so teachers and state employees and state politicians can retire with a tax pension. No one paid for my pension or for many others that I talk with.

My belief is when a person retires, it should be their golden years. What golden years? At 88 years old I am still paying college taxes, with not one red cent going to Oswego County — it all goes to Cayuga County. We are being hurt very badly and our representatives cannot see it.

We elect our legislators to look out for each and every citizen’s benefit, but it certainly isn’t working that way.

I would appreciate our county representatives to at last reply to this letter with some answers.

Rose Anthony

Fulton  

 

No more cigs at CVS

In recent news, CVS/Caremark has announced their plans to end all tobacco sales by October 1 of this year.

This is a huge step forward for public health. It has been a conflict of interest for pharmacies, providers of health care, to also profit from the sale of harmful products such as tobacco, known to cause cancer, heart and pulmonary diseases.

No doctor would prescribe tobacco so why would a pharmacy sell it? Selling tobacco products doesn’t fit a pharmacy’s mission of providing health products and services. In fact, reducing the availability of tobacco products helps people to quit.

CVS’s decision to remove tobacco products from their pharmacies is a step in the right direction to working together as a community to improve our residents’ health.

CVS is not the first pharmacy to recognize the importance of eliminating tobacco products in our local stores.

Did you know the overwhelming majority of independently owned pharmacies in Oswego County already don’t sell tobacco?  Many of the mom and pop pharmacies have chosen to put the health of our residents above a profit.

We thank the pharmacies that have made this decision to demonstrate their commitment for supporting the health of our community.

Further, we encourage all local pharmacies to consider their role as the neighborhood expert for improving health.

 

Abby Jenkins Wrolsen

Program Coordinator of the Tobacco Free Network of Oswego County

 

Sub shop owners explain 

In November 2013, the Oswego Sub Shop was contacted by the United States Secret Service and identified as a possible common point of purchase of a credit card breach (hack).

They informed us that our computers may have been compromised resulting in the unauthorized use of customers’ credit card information.  We are currently working diligently, in full cooperation, with the United States Secret Service in finding the point of origin of this possible breach.

We have replaced all hard drives in our Point of Sale terminals and hired experts in PCI (Payment Card Industry) Compliance to ensure that our system is and will remain secure to the highest degree.

Information received thus far indicates that the possible compromise of this information may have been accomplished via an unauthorized EXTERNAL breach.  It is also important to understand that this is NOT an “internal investigation,” as it has been speculated in social media outlets, but rather a much larger investigation and scope.

Oswego Police Chief Tory DeCaire said “The Management of the Oswego Sub Shop has fully cooperated in this investigation and, at this point, there is no reason to believe that the customers of the Oswego Sub Shop are at any greater risk than those at any other business that allows electronic transactions.”

We assure you that nothing was or is more important than keeping our customer’s payment card data secure. We have taken this matter very seriously, and fully understand and apologize for any stress or inconvenience that it may have caused you and your family.

It is important to understand that this is an “ongoing investigation” and the local, regional and national law enforcement agencies are taking this situation very seriously, along with similar fraudulent activity reports seen recently at national retailers including Target, Neiman Marcus, Michaels and others.

We want to thank you for your patience, understanding and continued loyalty during this investigation.  Please do not hesitate to contact us personally with any questions regarding this matter.

 

Sincerely, 

Bill and Kathy Greene,

Owners, Oswego Sub Shop

Valley Viewpoints

Missing Margaret

Jerry Hogan Kasperek devoted her Jan. 25 “Jerry’s Journal” column to Margaret Beckwith.

Jerry’s thoughts and memories captured what anyone who had known Margaret knew to be true. We got to know Margaret as members of the Fulton Athletic Boosters Club many years ago and were fortunate enough to develop a friendship and an association with this truly remarkable woman.

How do you describe Margaret? There aren’t enough adjectives to do her justice but here are a few: loving, caring, sensitive, emotional, detailed, consistent, dedicated, determined and strong.

Knowing Margaret, you have to begin with the love she had for her husband, sons, their wives, and especially her grandchildren. here was nothing that she wouldn’t do for them.

All of us are “suppose” to love our children and grandchildren, but in Margaret’s case, there was something extra special about their relationships.

As we learned over time, Margaret was a good athlete in her day, so it was natural that her boys and grandchildren might have some athletic ability. They were all involved in sports, which led to her being involved in the Fulton Athletic Booster Club. She could be seen at all of their events and if they weren’t playing, watching other children play or working in the concession stand.

The concession stand was her baby, making sure everything was in order and operating at its full potential. She was the last person to leave at the end of an event.

Margaret was the club’s treasurer for many years and, she was a strong advocate for recognizing athletes, coaches and fans by organizing award ceremonies. She took pride in everything she did always adding a special touch to make the event extra special.

No detail was overlooked.

This was the base that carried through to her caring for everyone she met, especially kids. Margaret genuinely cared more for others than herself.

Whenever we had health issues, Margaret was the first to call to see if we needed anything, which was followed by her visits, delicious strawberry salad and later meatballs and sauce. Soon thereafter, Margaret would come bearing gifts. We both have been the recipients of Red Raider jackets.

When Margaret became ill, we would either call or stop in to see her. Before we could ask her how she was doing, Margaret would ask us if we were okay and how our kids were doing. She always deflected anything to do with her situation by saying, “I’m okay.”

There seemed to be someone with her whenever we called or stopped by. Usually friends during the day. The last time we stopped by family members were with her.

Margaret’s condition had seriously worsened from our previous visit.

Margaret appeared to be sleeping when we got there with her favorite movie, The Student Prince, playing on the TV.

When her son Bill went up to her and said “the Westons are here,” she responded and indicated that she wanted us to come near.

Even though she was so weak, beautiful Margaret asked if we wanted some water (thinking of others again). She also let it be known that she wanted to squeeze our hand.

We kissed her forehead before we left, knowing in our hearts that would probably be the last time we could.

Needless to say, Margaret Beckwith made a tremendous impression on the both of us. We loved her dearly and deeply miss her. We are all better off having known her.

Bob & Sandy Weston

Fulton

More on Margaret

As most of you, upon hearing of Margaret Beckwith’s passing, I was stricken by a deep sense of lose.

The obituary, from The Valley News, was well written, gave brief highlights of Margaret’s life, accomplishments and loving family members.

Fortunately, on the same page Jerry’s Journal column was dedicated to memories of Margaret’s earlier life — she shared many of these memories with us written from her unique position as lifelong friend and peer to Margaret.

Somehow I feel Jerry could have expounded boundless paragraphs beyond the wonderful recollections she shared with us in her column. Hopefully in future columns she will do so.

Thank you Jerry for your touching memories of Margaret’s early years. Your memories of Margaret only further reinforce all the great aspects of Margaret’s life of which we have all come to know.

The Margaret we knew was a spark plug of vitality and positivity, ever encouraging, prodding to excellence, smiling, laughing and always lending a concerning ear to all in our close knit community.

Nothing could cheer you up more than a “Hi, how are you doing? How are the kids” and her then listening intently as you described their achievements of life’s goals during and after college. She always took a motherly pride in their achievements as if they were her own children.

Little did she know, they all were her own. She adopted them all from her very first words. The famous Margaret “Hug” cemented that relationship for the rest of their lives.

At football games, wrestling matches, volleyball, soccer, concerts, academic and athletic gatherings, all were Margaret’s purvey. Margaret was always there extending her positive influence and encouragement.

I feel it is no accident in the picture accompanying Jerry’s column showed a volleyball team in which Margaret (Smith) Beckwith is “Top Row, Center,” an early recognition of her life to follow.

That is the position she has taken with all of us who were blessed enough to know her. “Top Row, Center.”

Two and a half generations of Fultonians have been blessed by her presence in our community. To Rita and I, a friend has left us, to my children an honorary aunt has left them and to my grandchildren, a loving grandma has gone to heaven.

Our commonality is we were all lucky enough to be touched by her and at the same time to be greatly saddened by our mutual lose. We are all part of her enduring legacy. We are all the better for having known her.

To George, Christine, Bill and Sue, to Megan,Coutney, Austin Callie and Evan, thank you for sharing your beautiful mother and grandma with us all. As you grieve so do we all. To all who have been blessed by Margaret, let us do her greater honor with the lives she has touched. God Bless this tender soul.

Bogardus/Tanner Family

Fulton

 Also missing Margaret

Editor’s note: This letter was written as a thank-you to Jerry Kasparek, who wrote the column about Margaret Beckwith.

Your Friend, Margaret Beckwith, “Aunt Marg” was my Aunt.

I would like to thank you so much for the article you wrote this Saturday. You described Marg’s qualities so clearly and to the point, that I had tears welling up in my eyes.

My father Henry was born in 1917 and his father died in 1921-23 in White Plains.  Elizabeth moved to Fulton in the mid-20s (her siblings were married to  the Tetros.)

Anyway, Grandma married Mr. White, and that’s why Fred White, Joe White, Edie Fiorini and Marg’s last name were all White!.

Anyway by the time Marg was 10 or so, my Dad was 20 or 30 and working at Sealright helping the family who lived on South First. Well, knowing my father during those years, he would come home after a night out and raise hell with his mother and dance with his impressionable sister, Marg.

Thank you again for your recognition of your friend and I enjoy reading your contributions every week.

Hank Latino

Fulton

Valley Viewpoints

Residents thank sand owner

We wanted to write and thank William Simmons for offering his sand to the County for use on the roads in the winter.

In July, Kurt Ospelt wrote the Hannibal planning board that the county has “abandoned its plan to open a sand pit on the Beckwith property immediately” after it was found out the road to the sand pit had been put in illegally. This left the county without sand on the west side of the river.

The neighboring towns, at the direction of Mr. Ospelt, this year had to get their sand from the Scriba pit instead of the transfer station for whatever reason.

At a recent Town of Hannibal meeting, Terry Wilbur got up and said ‘if you have sand, contact Kurt Ospelt and the county administrator, they need sand for this side of the river.”

Mr. Simmons has a sand pit right near Mr. Beckwith’s sandpit and Mr. Simmons already has a road to it and the pit was already permitted by the DEC for mining a few years ago.

This is a wonderful opportunity for the County to get sand and not have to spend any more money to get to it after they’ve  already spent anywhere between $15-43,000.00 and up on the illegal road.

Mr. Simmons sent a letter on October 9 to Kurt Ospelt offering his sand. The letter reads as follows:

“Dear Mr. Ospelt, In light of the situation in Hannibal, I feel obligated to help the taxpayers of Hannibal and inform them that my sand is for Sale. My sand pit is located off of Mill St in the Town of Hannibal. It will be available for $1 a cubic yard. This should eliminate a lot of previous problems with access to available sand. There is already an access road to the sand pit off Mill Street and it has already been permitted in the past. This would decrease the amount of truck traffic through the center of town. I believe it would be a more cost effective alternative for the taxpayers of Hannibal. Sincerely, William Simmons”

Again we would like to thank Mr. Simmons for stepping up and helping out the residents of Hannibal and the surrounding towns who will use the sand.

Bill and Barb Bogacz

Josh and Molly Bomgren

Tim Harmon

All of Hannibal

Valley Viewpoints

Thanks Valley News

The Weston Family would like to thank The Valley News for the wonderful opportunity for us to be included in the recognition of Fulton Families.

It was a privilege and an honor for us to join the Pawlewicz, Hayden and Schremp families in this monthly series.  We look forward to future articles as there are many fine families residing within our greater Fulton community.

We truly appreciate the time that assistant editor Ashley Casey spent with us.  She is a very professional young woman who represented the newspaper extremely well.

 

Bob & Sandy on behalf of the Weston Family

 

Local business changes hands

Ontario Cleaners, this well-established family business that has been owned and operated by Patrice Segretto and family since 1992, has been sold to Jeanne McManus.

Please join us in wishing her good luck and we would like to thank all of our loyal customers over the past 21 years.

Patrice Segretto and family

 

Helping Hands

On Thursday evening, Jan. 9,  I attended a meeting between representatives of the Oswego County Legislature and City of Fulton elected officials.

In attendance were Kevin Gardner, chair of the Oswego County Legislature, Linda Lookwood, vice chair (District 11 County Legislator), Dan Farfaglia (District 24 County Legislator), Jim Karasek (District 22 County Legislator) and representing the city of Fulton were Mayor Ronald Woodward and Common Council President Dan Knopp (second ward common councilor ).

The meeting was the result of the county reaching out to the city in hopes that there may be some way the county might be able to the city in its time of distress.

There were ideas brought to the table by both sides. They ranged from tipping fees to foreclosures. There weren’t any bad ideas and they all brought a lot of discussion by both sides.

When all was said and done, both parties agreed that until the State Board comes in with its recommendations, we wouldn’t be able to bring anything to the full Legislature or to any committees.

A question was asked that with the state’s money and recommendations, will the taxes in the city of Fulton go down. The answer was “NO”.

With that answer another question was asked — that if the state took back their portion of the retirement contribution and if the state lessened the state mandates would the taxes go down. The answer was “YES”.

I know both of these were no brainers. The point is that everyone should realize that the state is the key factor here and people have to contact their state representatives (Will Barclay and Patty Richie) and let them know what they need to do.

All in attendance agreed that the cities of Fulton and Oswego are key to the survival of Oswego County. We all stated that the City of Fulton was once the shining star of both the county and state and now it is in need of some help from both the state and county.

We all left the meeting with the agreement to meet again and the county legislators that represent the city of Fulton on the Oswego County Legislature agreed to set up a secluded meeting on a monthly basis with the mayor.

I feel that with all the above said and done, this is the chance for the City of Fulton to again become the leader in both the state and county. It will take the city coming up with ideas of their own and recommendations. The state wants us (the City of Fulton) to be the poster child for the governor’s new program. This is our chance to go forward with our own ideas letting them know that with these ideas the city and the plan will succeed. We must remember no request is a bad one. The request not asked for and needed is bad. Without a plan of our own we may just be right back here in less than 10 yrs.

 

Frank Castiglia Jr.

County Legislator-25 District City of Fulton