letters to the editor/opinion

Our Letters Policy

Posted 10 June 2021 at 7:00 am

We appreciate input from our readers, and we publish letters to the editor without charge. While open speech and responsibility are encouraged, comments may be rejected if they are purely a personal attack, offensive or repetitive. Comments are the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Orleans Hub. Although care is taken to moderate comments, we have no control over how they are interpreted and we are unable to guarantee the accuracy of comments and the rationality of the opinions expressed. We reserve the right to edit letters for content and brevity. Please limit the length of your letter (we suggest no more than 500 words) and provide your name, telephone number, mailing address and a verifiable email address for verification purposes. Letters should be emailed to news@orleanshub.com.

OCALS appreciates support with basket raffle fundraiser in Medina

Posted 10 August 2022 at 2:20 pm

Editor:

On behalf of OCALS (Orleans County Accredited Learning Services) I would like to thank the public and local businesses for supporting our first-ever basket raffle fund raiser that was held this past July.

OCALS is accredited by Pro Literacy and is a non-profit agency that provides free confidential tutoring services for adults, families and children in need of improving their literacy skills (including digital literacy). We provide services to all individuals within Orleans County.

During the month of July, a total of 44 separate items were on display at Case-Nic Cookies in Medina for the public to purchase tickets in hopes of winning one (or more) of these prizes.

A special thanks goes out to the following businesses and individuals who donated these items:  Medina businesses – A Kut Above, Ashlee’s Place, Tompkins Bank of Castile, Blissett’s Specialty Shop, BMP America, Inc., Case Nic Cookies, Celebrity Day Spa, Creekside Floral, Della’s Chocolates, Downtown Browsery, ellen j goods, Evan Ace Hardware, Herbalty Cottage, Modern Mercantile, Orleans YMCA, Rosenkrans Pharmacy Inc., Rudy’s, Supercuts, Tops Friendly Market, Tractor Supply Company, Valu Home Center; individuals – Assemblyman Steve Hawley, Cathy Hooker, Cindy Parada, Carolyn Wagner and Ginny Kropf.

The backbone of our community is our local businesses and individuals who reside in the community. Your continued support (by donating items or purchasing tickets to the basket raffle) is truly amazing! We are grateful and humbled by the community support.

Thanks to all for making this fund raiser a great success! We look forward to continuing this new tradition next year!

Carolyn Wagner

Middleport

OCALS Board of Trustees

Trump should let public know what documents FBI was seeking with warrant at Mar-a-Lago

Posted 10 August 2022 at 8:21 am

Editor:

The court-ordered search of Donald Trump’s home is a tempest in a teapot so far.

1. Trump-appointed FBI director, Christopher Wray, was responsible for the investigation and conviction of Clinton’s Secretary of State, Sandy Berger, for illegally possessing far less classified documents when he was no longer in office. He is not partisan.

2. Trump’s lawyers haven’t made motions against the search warrants at this time, so we don’t know what their legal basis for complaining is. They will if Trump’s litigation history is any guide.  DOJ will have to disclose something even if the motion, as has been his wont, is bogus.

3. Trump is free at any time to release the warrant so we can know what’s suspected and what was being looked for. That would settle a lot of guessing that’s going on.

4. We’ve known for over a year that representatives of the National Archives at DOJ have been going there asking for “eyes only” documents which were believed to be there and not in the 15 boxes he turned over.

5. The Trump-appointed judge who was satisfied the application met the requirements of the Fourth Amendment which must at some point open everything. When is a guess depending on what’s found and any other pending cases. If there are “eyes only” classified materials they will not be described, just noted. The fact the National Archives had to piece torn and shredded documents back together with tape last spring suggests there were some there at some time.  We know some staffers have testified documents plugged the toilet so the toilet bowl will cloud the accuracy of any inventory when it’s finally released.

Until we know about the about these four things all we are seeing is political posturing. But historically these document cases go away unless the person with the documents has passed the information on to our enemies or used it to profit themselves. Of course this could be the first “eyes only” case not charged as treason which is a different animal.

We just do not know yet but that warrant, which Trump can release, would tell us a lot. Is this a mole hill made out to be a mountain by him or is he actually being accused of something unforgivably serious?

Conrad F. Cropsey

Albion

Banning chickens from Village of Medina part of larger attack on those who produce food

Posted 9 August 2022 at 11:44 am

Editor:

Our great nation was founded on tools of survival, and currently ruled by politically controlled opinions and political tolerance, as our laws don’t dictate the feelings police, where a village board and code enforcement officer get to decide the life of one based on the life of another

True, a complaint could stem from noise, uncleanliness, and even the concern of bird flu, but who is the town council to decide such endeavors of change?

Across social media, specifically YouTube, journalists will audit American public service persons, and it ultimately comes back to the town council, feeling that they have the power to run the show, be it requesting the name of a police officer and badge when requested to do so, who refuses to identify, and the far greater issues at hand, that knowledge is being taken away from our children, such as classic literature, and our local public schools and libraries are being filled with raunchy material while refraining from defining to a child what a man or a woman is, and indirectly inviting them into the LGBTQIA culture.

If our political leaders cared for the future of the status of us as a society as a whole, they’d take a look at themselves and ask: “Who are we to evict a resident of Medina?”

If a chicken has to go, then hunger, famine, and cannibalism are here to stay.

Since the start of the year 2022, over 100 mass food production facilities in the U.S. alone, with over 600 abroad, have all burned to the ground. Product freezers have stopped working, having to throw away hundreds of thousands of tons of food. Cattle ranchers have had to kill off and/or sell over 91% of their stock to maintain a profit. Nitrogen rich fertilizer hasn’t been able to be shipped abroad to produce for the winter. With the price of diesel fuel, tractors can’t harvest and cargo trucks won’t run to supply the local food market shelf. The trains and freighter ships are docked, and at least according to the World Health Organization, there are over 49 nations in starvation and bankruptcy.

We’re all globally embedded in World War 3, but I’d reference the great winter of 1846 to site the example of cannibalism during the heavy snowstorms in California in which the Donner Party were forced to eat each other for supper.

Famine by itself is a disease albeit a slowly killing one.

China raises pigs because they’ll birth an average yield litter of 14 piglets, and amongst other things consume cats, of which Medina was equally wanting to remove, euthanizing the stray and feral ones, and who’s to say of which are they, when hunting for prey between community homes and when an owner in a time of hardship can’t afford the identification marks, save for our political leaders?

Store food and bottled water en mass.

If our political leaders don’t listen, and this goes all the way up to The White House, they may be the next ones to be evicted, with only the crows of their belly able to satiate their hunger

Daniel Zimmerman

Albion

Gardens and farm markets offer more than fresh produce

Posted 6 August 2022 at 9:55 am

Editor:

Since my husband and I have owned our home we have grown a garden nearly every year. Our garden is not to grow produce, our garden is to grow our children.

We are so blessed to live in a community that grows fresh delicious produce that we can buy at a roadside stand or in the grocery store; where we know most of the producers or have heard of them, for an incredibly reasonable price pretty much anytime we want. Our garden reminds me to be so grateful to our local farmers who produce our food and also how incredibly reasonably we are able to purchase such great produce.

It also makes me very grateful to a couple from our church, Glen and Linda, who grow beautiful produce in abundance that they graciously share with our church family. Watching the kids run to the playground, each with a cucumber in their hand eating it like an apple, or with cups of blueberries and cherries is such a blessing.

I would like to take this opportunity to share with all of you a few lessons that my children have learned so far this season.

  1. It only takes one time of leaving the gate open for the rabbits to enjoy our plants.
  2. Little brothers can not tell the difference between a weed that needs to be pulled and one of our pepper plants.
  3. Bugs can consume large quantities of leaves and hinder the growth of our plants.
  4. If you are asked to go out and harvest the kale and you aren’t positive that you are picking kale, maybe come in and ask Mommy before picking a bag full of cauliflower leaves.
  5. The legs of the rain catching basin should be aligned or it will tip over, and dragging the hose out is a lot harder than getting water from the basin.

Yes, we have had a few challenges this growing season; but what they learned this summer and will continue learning will benefit them so much in their future. Learning that despite challenges, if you don’t give up, you can still grow delicious produce. Learning that mistakes and setbacks happen, but that they can still smile and know that God designed plants with the ability to overcome those challenges, just like our beautiful children can overcome obstacles they may face in their life. That weeds may grow beside them and try to block out the Sun (or Son) but that they can dig in their roots (to the Bible) and grow bigger and stronger despite those challenges.

The garden provides so many opportunities for great conversations, and learning lessons for our children. Plus the joy on my children’s faces as they see the peppers, eggplants, and tomatoes ripening! The excitement when they come running into the house with a cucumber that they put so much work towards warms my soul!

I would encourage anyone to start a small garden and allow this garden to grow your children, not just some fresh produce!

Also, August 6 and 7, is a local farm market hop. Where you can go to a few farm markets and get to see the abundance of local produce and treasures from a few of our local producers. There are 6 farm markets participating and you can purchase a basket for $10 at your first stop and then at each subsequent stop specific free produce will be added. Plus get your ticket stamped at each location and you can be entered for a chance to win a farm market hop basket filled with goodies from each market.  Enjoy local and family-run farm markets, collect great produce, discover what makes each farm market unique, and what we all have in common – amazing homegrown fruits and veggies!

How to participate:

1. Start at the farm of your choice

  • Partyka Farms – 1420 County Line Road, Kendall NY 14476
  • Kirby’s Farm Market – 9739 W Ridge Rd, Brockport, NY 14420
  • Navarra’s Farm and Greenhouse – 3272 Eagle Harbor Waterport Rd, Albion, NY 14411
  • Robert’s Farm Market – 11170 Maple Ridge Rd, Medina, NY 14103
  • Brightly’s Farm Market – 525 Drake Rd, Hamlin, NY 14464
  • Circle R Fruit Farm – 13490 Roosevelt Hwy, Waterport, NY 14571

2. Purchase a Farm Market Hop basket for $10 at your first stop.

3. Travel to all participating markets to fill your basket with free produce.

4. Each farm will contribute a different item to your basket, and in the end you’ll have a basket full of beautiful fruits and veggies.

5. Get your ticket stamped at each market. (Visit all 6 Farm Markets and drop off your stamp tag at your final destination to be entered for a chance to win the Market Hop Gift Basket, full of goodies donated by each farm.)

6. Head home after a day of touring your local farm markets, to enjoy all of those delicious fruits and veggies!

Kerri Richardson

Barre

GCASA, Albion officials should consider Route 31 for entrance to new community residence

Posted 6 August 2022 at 9:43 am

Editor:

I am a lifelong resident of Albion who graduated from high school in 2007. I have lived on Butts Road for about five years, near where GCASA wants to build a 25-bed women and children’s recovery center.

We had no knowledge of this center being proposed to be built other than a brief announcement in the Orleans Hub in 2021. That was very short and brief and easy to miss. The town also recently posted a public hearing sign at the property on June 1.

I attended the public hearing on August 3rd on this issue. My fiancé and I were the only ones of the public in attendance.  We brought up a concern about the proposed addition of the entrance  on Butts Road would cause an already high traffic flow to increase due to the constant traffic coming and going from Saint Gobain’s near the corner of Butts Road and Route 31. This entrance sees traffic 24 hours a day/7 days a week with employees and semi trucks delivering supplies or waste management trucks coming and going.

Then there is also Orleans Community Health located on the opposite side of the road from this entrance that also sees a high number of traffic during their operating hours. Our concern is the GCASA site and its entrance will result in a higher risk of a serious accidents due to the blind hill with the railroad underpass. A higher risk of vehicles not knowing there is a 7 foot, 2 inch clearance to go under the underpass.

There’s also the threat of accidents with speeding. It’s a 40 MPH speed zone and many people treat it like a drag strip. We have seen at least 3 to 6 incidents of vehicles hitting the bridge per year, either damaging the bridge or causing damage to vehicles. Recently an Amazon prime delivery truck hit the bridge and tore the top of the truck right off.

This doesn’t include the multiple vehicles as in cars/trucks/semi trucks not seeing the underpass or the misunderstanding the signs and they try to take a chance to go under the underpass. When this happens vehicles have to either turn around in our driveway or they back all the way back down to Saint Gobain.

We have witnessed so many near-misses in the last 5 years were worried the added traffic flow would raise the risk of a serious accident that could lead to be fatal. We asked if there could be any considerations in the possibility of relocating the entrance to Route 31. We asked the Town Planning Board, the director of GCASA and also to the code enforcer that was present at the Aug. 3 meeting.

We were told by said officials that they would “recommend” vendors bringing supplies not to come south on Butts Road and risk any incidents around the underpass. A recommendation isn’t going to stop an accident.

I have 4 children – ages 3, 11, 14 and 16 – all either in school or starting school in September. We were also told that the other 6 acres of land that was purchased by GCASA had not gone thru the historical and archeology impact study that if said study was done could be used to consider relocating the entrance to route 31 that would alleviate the traffic and simply solve a simple concern.

I simply want the time taken to take this into consideration to be looked into for my family’s safety. The director of GCASA said he’s not considering relocating the entrance or does not want to take the time to and my emails to the town planning board have gone unanswered.

I am in 100% support of this center being built, it is needed and it is what’s best to fight addiction.

I just want my simple concern be addressed and looked into possibly relocating the purposed entrance of this center off of Butts Road to Route 31.

Aaron Vosburgh

Albion

Pause on Aug. 7 to reflect on sacrifice of Purple Heart medal recipients

Posted 4 August 2022 at 8:16 am

Editor:

August 7th is designated “Purple Heart Day.” The Purple Heart medal is presented to service members who have been wounded or killed as a result of enemy action while serving in the U.S. military.

Those of us who serve our country are often asked to serve in unfamiliar places away from families and friends under extreme stressful and dangerous situations for months and sometimes years at a time.

Purple Heart recipients have shown a willingness to bear any burden to defend freedoms under the U.S. Constitution. My Purple Heart came while defending a village in Vietnam from enemy activity.

A Purple Heart is a solemn distinction and means the service member has greatly sacrificed themselves, or paid the ultimate price, while in the line of duty.

Purple Heart Day, is a time for Americans to pause to remember and honor those brave men and women.

William Fine

Brockport

Historical Society thanked for welcoming hundreds of cyclists in Holley

Posted 1 August 2022 at 10:21 am

Editor:

A big thank you to the Murray/Holley Historical Society (MHHS) for supporting the 24th annual Cycle the Canal Bike Tour.  There were 750 bikers registered to participate, ranging in age from 10 to 83.

After an overnight stay in Medina, the riders headed for a scheduled breakfast stop at the Village of Holley park along the Erie Canal. The MHHS has supported this event for 20 of those years and look forward to doing so every year.

The MHHS started setting up at 8 a.m. and provided danish, ice water, Gatorade and coffee which was generously provided by Tim Hortons to complement the much appreciated snacks and fruit provided by the Canal Bike Tour sponsors. The SAG wagon set up near the gazebo was busy assisting riders with minor fixes to their bicycles.

Our members manned the gazebo from 8 a.m. until almost noon when the sweeper came through signaling that the last of the bikers had come through as more than 200 bikers had signed our register. The riders came from all over the United States and Canada. One rider from Denver Colorado, Chris Wilkin, texted a friend and said Holley was “one of the best stops on the bike ride.”

The riders were all very appreciative of the extra rest rooms that were available and many lingered awhile in the shade of the trees and rode down to view the famous Holley Falls.

Again, thank you for coming out and supporting this annual event.  See you at next year’s event on July 9-16, 2023.

Rochelle Moroz

Holley

Village Trustee and Historical Society member

NY’s concealed carry law criminalizes right to self defense

Posted 30 July 2022 at 9:35 am

Editor:

In the wake of Albany Democrats’ most recent trampling of New Yorker’s second amendments rights, we witnessed a heroic act in Greenwood, Indiana, that highlighted just how disastrous and nonsensical the latest anti-constitutional gun laws passed really are. Thanks to the bravery, skill, and quick actions of a concealed carry permit holder, several lives inside the Greenwood Mall were saved on July 17th.

While we pray for the families of those who lost loved ones on that day, we also recognize the lives that were saved due to a civilian’s ability to respond quickly and neutralize a threat, thanks to his ability to use a concealed pistol.

Unfortunately, because of the recently passed laws in New York, the hero who saved lives would be considered a felon if an incident such as this happened later this year. Not only will these new laws make it more difficult for law-abiding pistol permit holders to exercise their constitutional right, but they would criminalize the right to self-defense.

America is home to over 18 million concealed carry permit holders. Yet over the last 18 years, less than 0.8% of all firearm-related homicides in the U.S. have involved law-abiding concealed carry permit holders.

Law-abiding pistol permit holders are not the ones committing crimes. An overwhelming majority of the gun violence and gun-related homicides we witness daily are perpetrated by criminals with illegal firearms. These are the same criminals who are being arrested and quickly released back on our streets thanks to Albany Democrats’ pro-criminal policies like bail reform.

In New York, these lawbreakers are re-committing violent crimes at over four times the rate of law-abiding pistol permit holders. After SCOTUS ruled New York’s existing pistol permit process unconstitutional, Governor Kathy Hochul and her anti-protection allies in the State Legislature were quick to orchestrate a “Special Session” to condemn and harass law-abiding pistol permit holders. Yet it’s these same politicians who continue to sit idly by as violent crime skyrockets; there is no accountability for those criminals breaking the law.

Instead of doubling down on their unconstitutional policies of the past and passing unconstitutional laws that will do absolutely nothing to address gun violence, New York State should instead be empowering all New Yorkers, regardless of sex, race, religion, or political persuasion, to exercise their constitutional rights to self-defense and self-preservation.

The right to self-defense and the second amendment is not limited to an individual’s home. I hope the court system in New York sees these new pistol permit laws for what they are, a mockery of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling, and strikes down this nonsensical legislation.

Multiple lawsuits have already been filed in New York to do just that. I pray, God forbid we see a horrible tragedy such as the one we witnessed in Indiana here in New York, that a brave, upstanding citizen with a concealed carry permit will be there to protect and save innocent lives.

Sincerely,

Robert G. Ortt

North Tonawanda

NYS Senate Republican Leader

Albion PD contract is confusing, and doesn’t spell out how to calculate hourly rate

Posted 27 July 2022 at 8:49 am

Editor:

This is in response to Andrew Remley’s letter to the editor entitled “Albion mayor did the right thing in disclosing apparent overpayments to Albion PD.”

The contract with Albion PD, as written (which is easily accessed online without a FOIL request) is confusing and does not specifically address how the hourly rate was to be calculated for overtime purposes. If there was a verbal agreement or “understanding” then that needed to be fully fleshed out in the written agreement in language that was not subject to misinterpretation.

Article XXI, which is solely dedicated to overtime, says “payment shall be made at the rate

of time and one-half the employee’s normal hourly rate for all hours worked over twelve hours in one day.”

“Hourly rate” and “salary” are referenced in the contract multiple times, but there is nowhere in the document that actually says how the hourly rate is to be calculated. The police were to be “scheduled” 84 hours bi-weekly, but again, there is zero indication that 84 hours was to be paid at straight time, or used to establish an hourly rate for overtime purposes.

For comparison, here is the wording in Medina PDs contract: “ARTICLE 26 OVERTIME The standard work week shall consist of 40 hours. The standard work day shall consist of eight hours.”

There is little room for misinterpretation in Medina’s contract. Even the verbiage in the Albion contract related to the work week can be open to interpretation, because rather than use the term “work week” they use the term “The number of hours actually scheduled to be worked in the work week shall be.”

“Number of hours actually scheduled” doesn’t even imply they have to work those hours to get paid their base salary, it just means they have to be “scheduled” to work those hours.

Now if you take the term “normal hourly rate,” most hourly rates are based on a 40-hour work week, so this is an easy mistake to make, if it is not clearly addressed in the contract.

Regardless, the contract, as written, should have included an addendum or some language that specified what was meant by “normal hourly rate.”

Nevertheless, if there was an alleged error of this magnitude in handling the police department’s payroll, why not run an audit of the entire payroll for all the departments in the Village over the same time period?  In focusing on the Albion PD, it creates the impression, real or not, that the police are being targeted.

Where the real confusion lies is in the fact that nobody seems to want to answer who was responsible for the implementation of the policy that was supposed to reduce overtime? Also, in reviewing the annual budgets didn’t anyone notice that overtime costs were not being reduced as a result of the policy? You had at least four budgets passed over the period the alleged error occurred.

Ultimately we all have to realize that police officers and all government employees are individuals, and are just as fallible as everyone else. Thus, it is important to handle sensitive issues with dignity and to make sure all the facts are gathered before making a decision that could have a long-term impact on the morale of the police department.

Thom Jennings

Oakfield, formerly of Albion

Make your opinion known on wind turbine project that would change the landscape of Barre

Posted 26 July 2022 at 10:09 am

Editor:

After being denied permission to place 6 wind turbines near the wildlife refuge as previously requested, Heritage Wind is now going to submit a 94-C Major Modification Request to the Office of Renewable Energy on or about July 27th, which I might add, I was just notified of on July 25, by a postcard in my mail.

Once again, Heritage Wind wants to place more of their 680-foot giant turbines on the east side of Route 98, bringing a total of 31 turbines placed around the surrounding homes in area, with no regard for the residents who reside near them. Compounded with their tremendous height and the distance between them, how will these enormous turbines be able to keep the decibels of audible noise allowed in check?

As a lifelong resident of the Town of Barre, I want to know who is going to protect the rights of the people here who have put their hearts, souls and future investments in their home properties that will be surrounded by 680-foot wind turbines?

Again, I do not believe that these turbines are going to draw people to want to buy or build homes in the Town of Barre, which would add revenue to our town, when they can go anywhere else and not be surrounded by structures that are taller than the Statue of Liberty (which stands at 305 feet).

Will the Town of Barre and the State of New York lower our home assessments if our values fall?  If so, how does that benefit the town? Who is going to subsidize people whose homes may not possibly sell? Is New York State, the Town of Barre, or better yet, Heritage Wind, willing to offer buy outs for these properties should the need arise?

As soon as possible, write to the Town of Barre Board at 14317 West Barre Road, Albion, NY, attend the Barre town meetings, write to the Honorable Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State, NYS State Capitol Building, Albany, NY or call her office at 1-518-474-8390.

Also be sure to contact and write your concerns to ORES at https://ores.ny.gov/permit-applications under Matter 21-00026.

Now is the time to stand up for your rights as a resident of Barre and Orleans County and say no more!

Sincerely,

Susan Webster

Barre

Albion deputy mayor says village needs to correct error in overpaying police officers

Posted 25 July 2022 at 9:43 am

Editor:

Friends, neighbors and community residents, it is great to see so many people engaged in what is going on currently in the Village of Albion, even though I would rather have it of a more positive engagement.

I am not going to dazzle you with a bunch of dates and sound bites – that is being done already.  I am most happy that many residents and concerned citizenry have FOIL requested information to be able to decide for themselves where their feelings lie.

As one of your elected officials, my role is to first consider the community and then responsibly work with the village employees. Sometimes this includes great news and sometimes you must have the strength to deliver bad news.

I want to be clear, our village police force is a very vital part of our community. Like any other departments, when there is a disagreement we try to work it out. If we had underpaid our officers – no question, they would want reimbursement yesterday, and rightly so. It was an error.

In this particular case according to the contract and the verbiage, they were overpaid. The overpayment continues. We have communicated with the leadership and union representatives of the police force and informed them of the overpayment, even before the amount determined by the auditors was finalized. We informed the union leadership that their pay would be adjusted according to the contract. After one payroll it was reversed, against legal advice, and continues this day.

No one wants their wages cut, but we need the courage to do that until an agreement can be reached on the rest.  As a village trustee we must exercise fiscal responsibility in executing the police contract salaries as it is written.

As an aside, we are currently trying to process and hire additional police officers to be fully staffed and that will have an effect on our budget.

Again, I would encourage you to personally review the facts.

Respectfully,

Joyce A. Riley

Deputy Mayor for Village of Albion

Albion mayor did right thing in disclosing apparent overpayments to Albion PD

Posted 20 July 2022 at 7:52 am

Editor:

On March 15, Angel Javier, Jr. was duly elected mayor of Albion. Angel is an upstanding citizen, a U.S. military veteran (Marine), and a longtime friend of mine. He and his family, through their own hard work and perseverance, are the embodiment of the “American Dream.”

It was recently reported in the Hub that Albion Police Department officers have been allegedly overpaid over the course of five years. This finding was the result of a forensic audit conducted by a respectable accounting firm, The Bonadio Group.

I make no claims here about whether APD officers should remit the alleged overpayments, or about whether law enforcement officers are paid adequately. But, whether the officers were overpaid, or not, is a knowable fact. The errant claims about “breach of a union contract” and “violations of public employee laws” are neither based in law, nor fact. There either was and continues to be an overpayment, or there was/is not.

Unfortunately, most of the public discourse surrounding the alleged overpayment has focused on the mayor, personally. It should not.

Mayor Javier is a proud Republican, and he does not believe in “defunding the police.” I know; we have debated the subject in the past. Mayor Javier should be praised for bringing this issue to light because the taxpayers have a right to know where their money is being spent.

Sweeping errors like this under the rug is exactly the kind of behavior that sows distrust among the public in their elected officials. Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

Transparency and the accurate accounting of taxpayer money are hallmarks of good government and good governance. Concealing errors, hiding relevant information from the public, sweeping things under the rug, and circling the wagons are all hallmarks of authoritarian regimes. This disclosure will likely hurt the good mayor politically; it should not. Make no mistake, Mayor Javier did the right thing.

At the very least, the error should be corrected so the Village books reflect the actual amounts paid to APD officers. Taxpayers deserve that much. Thank you, Mayor Javier, for being an adroit steward of taxpayer money.

Respectfully yours,

Andrew “Drew” Remley

Oakland, California – formerly of Albion

Rejecting lies and hate needed for democracy to thrive

Posted 17 July 2022 at 9:19 am

Editor:

Honorable, informed and discerning people understand that President Biden won the election by a large majority in the fairest election ever. (Not one precinct changed after full and repeat audit of every allegation.)

A distinguished group of Conservative Judges – including the former Bush Solicitor General which is the nation’s highest legal position – have just published a report evaluating the lies to the contrary. Click here to see “LOST, NOT STOLEN: The Conservative Case that Trump Lost and Biden Won the 2020 Presidential Election.”

Will the report or any series of reports and investigations make a difference? I fear not but it depends on people rediscovering the meaning of “honor.”

Politics  – particularly in the Trump/MAGA (RINO) era – has degraded from discussions of best middle of the road alternatives into hatred posing as politics and radical conservatism. We all know that friends and families are fractured as never before. There is nothing to be proud about there.

It’s as “If you do not support MAGA, your thoughts, whatever they are are, are bogus, bad and we do not care what the objective facts are.” This is incredibly self-destructive thinking but it is where things are.

The fact so many are frustrated because so much is not working well is proof this is a shortsighted and inflexible approach – wrong headed at a granular level. It devalues listening, patience and truth. Those virtues are honorable.

Look at dictatorships, autocracies, and Banana Republics with militia  groups – with people dedicated to carrying  out the antidemocratic dirty work of intimidation or death. At MAGA rallies and in public speech violence and intimidation are openly urged. These strong-arm tactics are exactly how the enemies of democracy work and MAGA has stolen part of that play book to use on us. That’s low.

Threats, false and misleading claims about the other’s side’s beliefs and positions, enlisting armed violent people to induce people and officials to ignore legal and constitutional duty all are used to advance  antidemocratic enterprises. Each helps enforce what is not working and preserve the influence of ineffective leaders.

Indeed on Jan 6th, MAGA and its leaders proved small, cowardly, and craven when advance warnings were intentionally ignored and police and others died.  No informed and honorable person can rightfully ignore there was advance planning, people with guns in trees, caches of explosives? This is fact, not fiction. There was no honor there except for the valiant capital guards.

Ultimately how a person deals with these hate, lies and intimidation tells you how intellectually facile and honorable the person is. A well working democracy is frail as it relies on honor and smart hard working people pulling together. But try we must.

The KKK era and “Know Nothing” party of the 1830s were similar stains to our everlasting shame – both similarly crude, paranoid, bigoted, delusional, hate dominated movements. They too failed only because the best of democracy won.

So how we stop mindless hatred this time around? If we look at the history of countries, nationalities, religions, political beliefs, and ethnic groups in conflict, the answer is we have NO sure way to simply force self destructive hate to stop, rebut baseless rumor, and cause acceptance of good ideas to cure oppression.

It requires people open their eyes, see their lot, take stock, and unlock their souls as well as their minds to find what is true. First take on lies and then violence and intimidation can be stopped. Good people do that.

Hate, ruin and running with a crowd are easy. Understanding, open mindedness and working towards success are hard.

As with the writers of this new report, we have to stand up to speak the truth and hope it falls on ears which are ready to listen to their better selves.

Conrad F. Cropsey

Albion

Many helped to make Children’s Carnival a success at Bullard Park

Posted 15 July 2022 at 11:26 am

Editor:

On Wednesday, July 13, the Village of Albion Recreation Department conducted a Childrens Carnival at Bullard Park for anyone in Albion and surrounding communities.  We had over 350 people in attendance having a great time. Please check out the Village of Albion Recreation Department Facebook page for this event and all upcoming events.

Special thanks go to Best of Tymes Party Rentals, and Christina Nenni and her staff for providing all the games and activities. Thanks to Head Start, Frosty and Friends, and the Amazing Magician with the magic show and anti-bullying message. This event could not have happened if it were not for those mentioned. Best of Tymes Party Rentals went above and beyond with their generosity and love for proving smiles to the children and people in the many communities who attended.

The Park Supervisors were wonderful all day proving a fun and safe environment along with helping set up and cleaning up following the carnival. Thanks to the Liberty Partnership from Byron-Bergen and Albion, along with the Medina Recreation Department for transporting children to our event.

Thanks to the Village of Albion Mayor and Trustees for their support, along with the Maintenance Department and Village staff.

We hope that this event will be a yearly event with hopes of getting better next year.

I, as the Village of Albion Recreation Director, am very proud and honored to be in this capacity to provide recreation, leisure and create fun events for the community.

Thanks as always,

John J. Grillo

Village of Albion Recreation Director

Ortt should show bipartisanship with push for school safety funding

Posted 12 July 2022 at 10:53 am

Editor:

New York State Senator Rob Ortt, in a letter printed in the Orleans Hub, expressed his dismay that his colleagues failed to adequately fund safety measures for our schools.

Mr. Ortt failed to mention that he also voted against funding our schools claiming that the budget is “skyrocketing to completely unaffordable levels.” The budget Mr. Ortt voted against will provide funds for the wellbeing and learning loss in response to the trauma of the pandemic, including after-school programs and mental health professionals.

It would also fund recruiting and retaining teachers, (schools are in the business of teaching, after all). Currently there is legislation in New York State Senate, S6338, that addresses some of Mr. Ortt’s school safety concerns.

Mr. Ortt has met with educators, parents and constituents in his district all telling him we need this legislation. As the Republican leader in the Senate, Mr. Ortt should assure bipartisan support for this measure. Mr. Ortt knows what his constituents need, will he support his constituents or is he beholden to special interest?

William Fine

Brockport