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Spa County didn’t need a dump then, doesn’t need it now

Friday, October 19, 2012
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Spa County didn’t need a dump then, doesn’t need it now

Re Oct. 14 article, “Dormant landfill may get waste”: Saratoga County taxpayers need to pay attention and speak out now.

The never-used Saratoga County dump was built on a foundation of deceit and deception. More than 10 million tax dollars were spent on a dump we never needed. Elected officials had our cash and were not concerned about cost.

When a resolution to conduct an economic impact study was brought before the Board of Supervisors in 1992, [Saratoga County Clerk] Kathy Marchione — who claims she has always put taxpayers first — tabled it, thereby permanently killing it without discussion.

For years, the town of Northumberland and hundreds more of us from outside the town spoke in opposition. We’ve all heard the bogus claims about how the mere existence of the dump was saving money and that it would never be sold. Now that Saratoga County is cash-strapped, the dump is for sale or lease, and they put Edinburgh Supervisor Jean Raymond in charge. Raymond consistently voted against taxpayers as we fought against building the dump. How ironic that she now thinks “by the time it was built, it was probably not needed” [Oct. 12 Gazette].

She blames DEC. Can you find another dump that was built and never opened because the state made them do it? Can you trust her to look out for your money now?

There are many reasons the dump never opened. What you need to know is that short-term gain through sale or lease of the dump will undoubtedly leave taxpayers economically liable long-term, one way or another.

It will take a large public outcry from all over the county to get answers to many nagging questions. Disappointingly, Northumberland’s town government has announced it will not fight the county any longer.

As one who spent many years of my life fighting on behalf of Northumberland and county taxpayers, I’m deeply offended to see the town pimped out for “host benefits.”

Taxpayers deserve to know the truth, which has been missing in Saratoga County since at least 1990. County officials cannot be trusted behind closed doors as they plan our economic and environmental future.

Heed the warning of now retired Recycling Coordinator Joe Miranda, “Once you open (the dump), it’s like a disease you just can’t get rid of.” Speak out now before it is too late.

Barbara Weed

Schuylerville

Romney’s debate demeanor a red flag

My choice for president was confirmed by the first debate. Though I wish President Obama had released the passion that is so clearly within his being, I am thoroughly convinced that Mitt Romney would be a destructive choice.

Two things were clear to me. First, Romney’s eyes: I saw in them the same bewilderment, the same lack of integrity, that I often saw in George W’s eyes as he tried to convince himself that what he was saying was both true and represented the real Romney. His eyes told of one who was willing to “etch” himself into what he has not stood for all the way through two campaigns to become president.

Who, then, is he? I believe the history is inconsistent with who he tried to present himself as in the first debate. As with his business dealings and tax matters, he hides his identity even from those he asks to unquestioningly trust him.

The second thing was his demeanor: Time and again he interrupted, not only a nationally known and respected moderator, but the president — as if he alone were important and could set the rules. I can only imagine the aggressive impatience and lack of consideration he might direct toward advisers with differing perspectives.

If he could not be civil in the simple format of a debate, who would he be when in the heated engagement of looking at all sides, seeking varied perspectives, as a president must do?

No matter how the next debates unfold, Romney has already failed what I believe to be the essential test for president.

Robert F. Long

Niskayuna

Time to part with Spa City’s rusty antique

Change can be hard. Even after you’ve been putting way more money into the old Studebaker than it would cost for a new Mustang, there are just so many memories. Good friends, good times.

That must be what those people still clinging to Saratoga’s old commission form of government are feeling. But at some point, you just have to admit that a new car would run better and cost less. And that, after all, it wasn’t the car that helped the Yankees beat the Red Sox. The car was just the thing that sat rusting in your driveway while you watched the game on TV. And likewise, it wasn’t the commission form of government that made Saratoga a success.

Those who built the tracks and the Victorian architecture, those who restored it, those who established Skidmore [College] and created SPAC, and so many who own and maintain the houses, run the businesses and raise the families would have a little something to say about that.

Come on. Mechanicville is the only other city in New York still clinging to the commission form, and they’re thinking of changing, too. Of cities nationwide with populations over 25,000, only 25 cling to the commission form, compared to 910 with the council-manager form, the most popular in the country.

Our gorgeous, thriving city deserves modern, professional management. We can no longer rely on a series of part-time department heads, usually lacking government training or experience, overseeing five uncoordinated departments.

Step into the showroom at www.saratogacitizen.com, where you’ll find the proposed charter, a detailed financial analysis, and a host of educational resources, including the IBM study, “Smarter, Faster, Cheaper” that praises the efficiency of governments with professional managers.

It’s time to unload the Studebaker and get ourselves a new charter. We deserve it!

Charlie Samuels

Saratoga Springs

School zone speeders a major hazard in Sch’dy

As the parent of an elementary school child who walks to school, [and a school crossing guard], I am appalled at the Schenectady Police Department for its ineptness in patrolling Guilderland Avenue.

At the start of school and at dismissal, motorists are constantly speeding through a poorly marked school zone; occasional school buses do the same.

Parents calling the traffic division are told that “it will be looked into” — with nothing being done. On the first day of school, there was a police presence: He never got out of his car, [staying] for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile on Curry Road [in Rotterdam], near Mohonasen High school, there is a large blinking light warning motorists of the school.

Why don’t Schenectady children merit safely walking to and from school? If Schenectady would like to make easy cash, how about speeding tickets through school zones?

Howard Goldstein

Schenectady

Debates entertaining, but that’s about it

I watched both the presidential and the vice-presidential debates and I intend to watch the rest of them.

What is astonishing is that there still are people who are undecided about which ticket to vote for; what is even more astonishing is that some people will make their decisions based on these debates.

For me, the debates are basically good entertainment, shedding very little light on what each side really thinks or is likely to accomplish in office. I love it when the candidate I support calls the other candidate’s statements lies, and I hate it when he does not make a point that should be made (or I would have made). It’s all theatrics.

Those who are waiting for the debates to make up their minds have not been paying attention. Unfortunately, there are many of them.

B.K. Keramati

Galway

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comments

October 19, 2012
11:41 a.m.
wmarincic says...

Robert F. Long,
It was a debate that was moderated by a nationally known liberal that gave Obama much more time than Romney. You really should watch less NBC as you are basically clueless to the damage that Obama has done. I was no Bush fan but would gladly have him back over Obama.

October 19, 2012
12:59 p.m.
Will1960 says...

WMarincic,

That linkage from Bush to Romney is one of the democrats key talking points, "If you want to go back to the Bush era, vote for Romney". So I doubt you will get your wish. However, the silver lining of an Obama second term for you is that you'll have plenty to blog about the next four years.

October 19, 2012
2:51 p.m.
wmarincic says...

I don't believe that America is so stupid to vote again for Obama but judging by some of the posters here I may be wrong. BTW Candy Crowley admitted after the debate that Romney was correct on Libys and Obama LIED.

October 24, 2012
8:37 p.m.
robbump says...

If you want to stay in the Obama era (error!), vote for Obama.

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