Pack up the circus and move on
To the editor:
Most anyone who knows Joe the Pro can't help but like the man. He is the kind of person that would give you the shirt off of his back. This being said I would like to offer this opinion concerning the Muni fiasco. Joe signed a contract that contained certain terms and conditions. One of which was his duty to disclose certain revenues. He needs to comply so that we can all move forward. He obviously has the support of the Common Council. So, after complying fully with the terms of his previous contract, the mayor will have no other alternative but to sign the contract approved by the legislative body whether she agrees with it or not. Our rules of government allow for the legislative body to pass legislation, the mayor to sign it or veto it, and in the event of a veto for the legislature to override it by four-fifths majority. This has all been done. Only thing left to do is for Joe to disclose and this baby can be put to bed. If Joe fully complies with the terms of his previous contract the mayor will not have a leg to stand on. She is not a dictator. She must comply with the will of the council. That's how our system of checks and balances works.
Imagine if Gov. Cuomo just refused to sign every bill he disagreed with? He could do that. But once his veto is overridden he has a duty to uphold the will of the legislative branch.
The city of Amsterdam does not have the money to hire outside council for a protracted court fight. Let's everyone do the right thing here and end the circus so that we may move on and figure out where the money missing from the city's coffers has gone.
Business park doesn't fit town plan
To the editor:
For the past two or three years I have read several newspaper articles about how the "powers to be" in Fulton County would like to convert some 300-plus acres of agricultural land located in the town of Mohawk, Montgomery County, into manufacturing. Furthermore, without our consent, they hired a consultant to perform a study to see what is the best location for a bypass highway through our land. Neither of these proposals will have any adverse affect on any of their personal properties.
Along with some of our Montgomery County elected and appointed officials, they feel converting this 300-plus acres of tillable farmland into this so called "regional" business park is the "cure all" for all our problems. Again the negative impact this would have on the property owners in our town is of no concern to any of the officials standing behind this proposal.
At the present time there are four vacant buildings in the Johnstown Industrial Park and the roads in this park are in need of repair. It is my understanding that funding for these repairs may need to come from Fulton County taxpayer dollars.
This proposed takeover of our farmland will cause irreversible damage to the landscape in the town of Mohawk. Maybe you live in another area of the town of Mohawk and feel this change will not affect you personally but it will. This farmland cost the taxpayers in the town of Mohawk nothing. A development like this can have a negative affect on your taxes. We saw it last year in the Fonda-Fultonville School District tax bill. Wal-Mart fought to have their assessment lowered on their distribution center and won. Who do you think had to make up the difference in funding? You and me. And we are not done paying this bill because this change in assessment is over a three year period.
At the time, when the Johnstown Industrial Park was being proposed and/or built the mayor of Fonda was Dan Reich. Unfortunately, Dan passed away, but he hit the nail squarely on the head when he stated: "The Environmental Impact Statement for Johnstown Industrial Park stopped at the county line." We, in the town of Mohawk, feel its effect on a daily basis and this proposed "regional" business park will only increase that impact.
This land is zoned agricultural. This land is being used to grow food, whether directly or indirectly for our consumption. This proposed "regional" business park would constitute a non-conforming use of this property. The town of Mohawk has a comprehensive plan. This proposed "regional" business park does not comply with the town's comprehensive plan. As far as I know, neither a State Environmental Quality Review nor an Environmental Impact Statement have been done.
town of Mohawk
The writer was elected to the Mohawk town council in 2012, was chairman of the Mohawk Planning Board for 20 years, and is a former member of the Montgomery County Planning Board.
The best way to teach is by example
To the editor:
The proven guideline to follow over the years has been "the best way to teach is by example."
The approach is also applicable regarding an activity usually considered just a spare time pursuit, but in reality now has become a highly essential necessity -- volunteering.
Even though the act of volunteering is one of freely devoting time and energies to serve a worthwhile cause, very often the spirit of cooperation, friendship and a sense of unity, always become that much stronger.
Just by shoveling snow from a residential sidewalk, clearing away snow banks from fire hydrants, opening a pathway to the entrances to a house may seem trivial, but quite often events arise resulting in lives actually being saved and entire structures avoiding total destruction because of such considerations.
For these reasons, three times the usual number of photocopies are being distributed of the Feb. 18 Recorder editorial, "Lend a hand in this winter of discontent," and the op-ed letter written by a Johnstown resident, "Problem gambling and the young." Both pieces expertly embodied the obvious value of volunteering by clearly defining how these services can be rendered.
As a printed guideline further illustrating the best ways to teach by example, the editorial and letter deserve to be read by as many people as possible.
Congratulations to both parties involved for doing their part to further benefit the common good.