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Posted 21 June 2018 at 7:45 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 letters to 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 info@orleanshub.com.

Residents need to keep an eye on local governments and their push for more power

Posted 18 June 2018 at 7:04 pm

Editor:

“Patriotism is supporting your country always; and your government when it deserves it.” – Mark Twain, famous American author

If liberty and justice for all are what you desire, then the time for idleness has passed. We, as taxpayers and as American voters, need to pull our heads out of the proverbial sand and act!

There are certain figures strutting around within the town governments who seek to acquire and consolidate the power of authority in their own favor to limit the choices that we can make for ourselves. Long have these people cultivated an atmosphere of blatant corruption within our governmental system, with complete disregard for the will of the people. This is being achieved by the Town Board members and some code enforcement officers also being in control of the Republican committee as well – allowing them to appoint themselves and their friends to positions of influence to sway elections and keep themselves in power.

Months of town meetings packed with patriots and dissatisfied taxpayers watched as the local town of Murray’s elected and appointed officials completely ignored the will of the people and passed sweeping property maintenance laws that effectively removed much of our freedom of autonomy upon our own property!

For example, got a pothole in your driveway? Violation (someone should mail the county about a hundred of those for their roads). Grass a bit too long? Violation. And if you have too much water sitting in your lawn or on your driveway? That’s a violation now too. And if you think you can hide from their enforcement of these laws, good luck – these same people support the use of aerial imagery; effectively spying on the taxpayers to force their compliance.

And if these suffocating regulations weren’t bad enough, the towns use code enforcement as a weapon against political dissidents to scare them into silence. For example one particular code enforcement officer monitors and tickets some people and turns a blind eye to their friends. This was especially evident in the last election cycle, when a political opponent was cited for an obscure violation that the officials endorsed candidate was not cited for.

If you think “well I don’t live in Murray so it’s not my problem,” think again. These government officials are seeking to adopt legislation from Albany to give them enforcement power over the entire county. That means that every ridiculous code and law that they introduce will be enforced upon us all.

It is our duty as Americans and as taxpayers, to remind these would-be lords that they serve THE PEOPLE. We are sick of the bullying, sick of the regulations from people who would call themselves Republicans, and sick of the corruption! We need all of us to get up, go to town meetings, push back against this expanding authoritarianism, and vote the corruption out! Stand up for our liberties! Stand up for our American way!

Arthur Knab

Murray

Sergeant who was double dipping should have received jail

Posted 18 June 2018 at 6:58 pm

Editor:

I’m pleased that Dean Covis can never again defraud the people of Orleans County by playing the role of a protector and first responder.

I must. however, take the judge in this case to task. No jail time for a person that blatantly abused the power entrusted in him by the citizens of Orleans County. Spent our taxpayer dollars through fraud for personal gain. And no jail time.

Covis said in a June 11 Orleans Hub article he is highly trained in law enforcement and “went above and beyond.”

I say a highly trained manipulator much more concerned with his creature comforts than the wellbeing of the community he purports to serve.

Bob Harker

Clarendon

Holley resident says Sorochty, incumbent trustees deserving of re-election

Posted 18 June 2018 at 6:54 pm

Editor:

I congratulate the current Holley Village Board headed by Mr. Brian Sorochty for your many successes this year. Among the accomplishments are the village being awarded $4.5 Million dollars in grant funds to fix village sidewalks and to upgrade the water system. Also you got approval for a $165,000 state grant to develop a brownfield opportunity program. That plan will help develop strategies for improved housing,  business and tourism opportunities.

All Holley village departments have been providing excellent customer service while staying within budget constraints. Additionally, the crown jewel will be the old school renovation into the  Holley Gardens, will just surely be a beautiful sight with fantastic housing for those eligible, and you secured the funding for that amazing project. In my many years as a U.S. Army officer, I have heard a kind of slogan that made a lot of sense, being, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”

Therefore, I urge my fellow Village of Holley residents to retain Mr. Brian Sorochty and the current Village Board members (trustees ) that are running for re-election. Nobody knows grants and how to secure them like Mr. Sorochty.

Major William. C. Moroz, United States Army Reserve

Holley

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Candidate for 27th Congressional District says immigration is lifeblood of America

Posted 18 June 2018 at 4:30 pm

Editor:

Not very long ago, a man who had ambitions to become President of the United States wrote a book, declaring that the security of our country was being threatened by a mass influx of immigrants. It wasn’t that he was anti-immigrant, the man explained: America had been built by “men of sturdy stocks of the north of Europe…which…every year added to the vital working force of the country…” These new immigrants, coming in their millions, were a different breed. They were “multitudes of men of the lowest classes,” the man explained. They possessed “neither skill nor energy nor any initiative of quick intelligence.” Our enemies were using the United States as a dumping ground for their criminals, their handicapped, and their mentally ill. If we didn’t take steps to stop this flow of undesirables, and find a way to deport the ones who were already here, America was doomed.

This isn’t what you think. These words were not written by any current politician. They don’t refer to immigrants from Mexico, or Africa, or those of Muslim heritage. They come from a book, History of the American People. They were written by Woodrow Wilson, who became 28th President of the United States. They were written about immigrants from “the south of Italy and men of the meaner sort out of Hungary and Poland.” They were written about our ancestors.

There was a time, barely one hundred years ago, when our grandparents and great-grandparents came to this country from places that were poor and oppressive and torn by war. They came here, ready to work. They came here, looking for a better life for their children.

What they found was men like Woodrow Wilson, powerful and influential leaders, who declared them too slow-witted, too lazy, too dangerous to deserve a place at the American table. At Ellis Island, director William Williams created a set of standards to determine who should be allowed entrance to the United States, and who should be forced to take the long voyage back to Europe. Williams was a believer in eugenics, the now-discredited pseudoscience that moral, mental, and physical weakness could be pinpointed to genetic heritage.

Young French women were almost always denied entrance at Ellis Island, because Williams and his top assistant, Dr. Henry Goddard, believed that young French women were genetically inclined to be prostitutes. People were denied entry based on the shape of their skull or the length of their fingers: stubby fingers were a sign of slow-wittedness. Goddard even coined a word, to describe those he ruled unfit to become Americans. He called them “Morons,” an adaptation of the Greek word meaning, “dull.”

One of my great-grandfathers, Piotr Litwin, was less than five feet tall when he landed at Ellis Island. For some of the eugenicist examiners, Piotr’s height alone was enough to send him back to his tiny village in southeastern Poland: short people were too weak for factory work, and too slow-witted to do anything else.

Miraculously, Piotr won admittance to the USA. He settled in North Tonawanda, in the collection of shanties on the unpaved roads that would become The Avenues. He got a job, at the Buffalo Bolt plant. He got married. He made sure his children went to school, learned English, studied hard. He saved his money and eventually bought a business. That business became Litwin’s Bar and Grill, a major gathering place in Third Ward, and home of a legendary Friday fish fry.

Piotr’s descendants include three attorneys, a writer for a major American newspaper, several college professors, a number of nurses and medical professionals, a successful small business owner, an award-winning composer, several teachers, and one town supervisor/congressional candidate. By my count, more than fifty of Pitor’s children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren have earned college degrees, many of them advanced degrees. Piotr, who insisted on being called Peter once he settled in America, is an American success story. And it only a bit of good fortune that enabled him to settle here in the first place.

My family’s experience is not unique. Nearly everyone who reads this can tell a similar story of ancestors making the sacrifice to cross the Atlantic, of the terrifying examination process at Ellis Island or some other point of entry, of facing prejudice and poverty and years of backbreaking labor, and finally, of their descendants reaping the fruit of this amazing, bountiful country.

All of those people who were hated and mistrusted and mistreated a hundred years ago, the Italians and Poles and Hungarians and Russians, our ancestors, our families, they are the people who made America great. This country would be a lesser, weaker place without the contributions of those immigrants.

Immigration is the lifeblood of a vital, dynamic democracy. It is scary, embracing that truth. Our natural inclination is to pull back from the unfamiliar, to distrust. We are better than Woodrow Wilson. We know the power that comes when we open ourselves to new ideas, new people.

When we are tempted to close our hearts, we need to remember the experiences of our ancestors. We need to remember Peter Litwin, and all the men and women like him. And we need to change. Most importantly, we need to remember who we really are and what made us strong.

God bless America. May it be a beacon to the world forever.

Nata McMurray

Grand Island town supervisor

(McMurray is a Democratic Party candidate for the 27th Congressional District.)

Medina Police Department needed more than ever

Posted 14 June 2018 at 5:22 pm

Editor:

We live in dangerous times. Almost daily, there is another random act of violence somewhere in America. I remember when we felt safe here, living our lives far away from the heavily populated cities where those unimaginable events took place.

Our sense of security is now and forever gone, replaced by the realization that there is no place on earth excepted from acts of violence. While my generation still has difficulty coming to terms with this harsh reality, the younger generation has learned how to endure it.

I was shocked one day when my niece, Jessica, rather nonchalantly informed me that there has been violence and terrorism for as long as she can remember. I quickly did the math and realized that she belongs to the first generation of Americans forced to carry the mental burden of these brutal acts as a condition of their daily lives.

All of our children shoulder this weight with astonishing dignity and grace. Jessica will never know anything about the carefree world in which I grew up, and I mourn the loss of that for her, for her sisters, and for all young people universally.

We must remember that whenever and wherever catastrophes strike, law enforcement officers are the first to run straight into the chaos. I have no idea where this kind of valor comes from, but I do thank God they all share the same spirit of heroism. There is no greater act of courage than to put their lives into dangerous situations in order to protect others. Officers know that at any time, they may be called upon to lay down their lives, and they willingly accept this responsibility as a condition of their profession.

There is currently a movement to dissolve the Medina Police Department. I have carefully studied the Center for Governmental Research Baseline Report of May, 2017, the Options Report of October 2017, and the Final Report of December 2017. There is nothing in this study to persuade me that any of this is in the best interest of any man, woman or child in our community; however, if we are not attentive, it could happen.

Once these bastions begin to break down, it leaves every remaining department vulnerable. What might be dissolved next? I have waited for our village officials to take a very strong, tough and public position against the proposal to dissolve our Police Department long before it goes to the referendum stage.

So far, at least to my knowledge, their push-back against the proposition has been weak. As a private citizen, I feel uncomfortable standing by and doing nothing; however, I feel equally uncomfortable stepping forward and taking up a cause that I feel should be addressed by the officials for whom we have voted, and in whom we have placed our trust.

The crisis that is paramount today regards the safety of our children, our schools, and all public and private places within our community. We have always looked to our Village Police Department for this protection. I firmly believe that we have outstanding leadership in Medina Police Chief Chad Kenward, a 15-year veteran; Lieutenant Todd Draper; and Sergeant Michael Borrell.

We also have some of the most remarkably talented police recruits Medina has ever seen. Under their leadership, they will create a team to build the foundation upon which a great police department will continue to serve our community with strength and determination.

Thanking you all in advance for your time and attention in this matter.

Respectfully,

Mary Eileen Hare

Medina

Run for a local political committee to have a bigger say in who is endorsed for elected positions

Posted 13 June 2018 at 8:43 am

Editor:

Just a reminder. The local political committees are reorganizing this year. June 5 was the first day to start circulating petitions to run for a town committee. The petitions have to be filed at the board of elections between July 9th and no later than the 12th.

Become a committee member, become involved. Have first say on who will or will not be endorsed for a political office to serve the people in your district. To quote the Greek Philosopher Plato: “If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools.”

Becoming a committee member is more powerful than holding an office. You can change the entire makeup of a board. Run. Run in packs of as many as you can convince to run. Get your petitions at the board of elections and carry it yourself. You won’t get another chance for two years.

Orleans County needs changing and this is how you do it. End the tax, regulate and spend. Make our county a low-tax place to settle in and do business with new leadership.

Paul Lauricella

Lyndonvile

Orleans County Conservative Committee

Hard work – not platitudes – has Holley making progress on several fronts

Posted 12 June 2018 at 5:22 pm

Editor:

Let me do my best to respond to my challenger’s comments. First of all, personally, I think Holley is great already! However, just like all small communities, it is true that much work needs to be done to address a variety of issues. The good news is, we are currently on a path to do just that. With experienced leadership we can utilize the current approach combined with new ideas to address other areas in the Village, but this will take time.

If my opponent were to actually read my letter he would understand that what was said was that the creation of these projects and the improvements will make the village a better place to live and do business. This is a true statement…replacing about 1/3 of the Villages crumbling sidewalks and water infrastructure will absolutely help accomplish this. This is approximately $4.5 million worth of infrastructure improvements, a magnitude of projects not seen in this Village in recent history!

Further, revitalizing the old High school (conveniently left out of his comment letter) will absolutely help accomplish this as well. This $17 million project is a game-changer for our Village putting people from 41 apartments within walking distance of our square. This is truly a transformational project that will impact not only the Village but all the communities around us. These are the types of projects and real progress that encourage new businesses to invest here and that has been our consistent message.

These projects also show a commitment to our community. Putting forth projects as described above will create a climate where new businesses, or businesses looking to relocate, will look at Holley and say, this community is pressing forward and constantly improving and investing in themselves. This is what will bring business back downtown.

Does he disagree? Based on the concerns expressed in my opponent’s letter while considering we already have solutions to about 1/3 of the Village in motion, it would be logical to assume they would agree? (Should I take this as an endorsement from them…thanks, I guess??)

So then, my opponent claims to “want to turn this around.” My question to them is, turn what around exactly? Everything you state you want to do during your “infrastructure phase” are things we are already in the process of doing. So again, what needs to be turned around? It simply seems my opponent and his team claim to want to do what we have already been doing. Yet somehow they want to address “ALL” of our curbs and sidewalks, (which is a very big promise by the way), by going in some different direction, and somehow do it better and at no cost? Oh yeah, and also they have a “results-driven, solution-oriented team” that is accountable to the taxpayers. Where is the evidence or plan to back up these claims? How can you make these claims when none of you have been to a board meeting, particularly our recent budget meetings? If you are going to make promises, how can you do that without knowing how much money there is to work with? Now is not the time for platitudes and shallow campaign promises, there is serious business going on here. Now is the time for experienced leadership, those that are truly dedicated to these efforts. These claims and promises are mind-boggling to me.

I would encourage all interested voters to come to the Candidate Forum on June 13, and I hope someone asks the simple question of HOW? to Mr. O’Mara.

I have repeatedly described how I believe we are heading in the right direction given our current progress. Is everything perfect, no absolutely not….We have much more work to do! What we have done so far is just the beginning….we have the experience, dedication, and commitment to Continue the Progress!

Please Vote June 19th to re-elect Sorochty – Mayor, Nenni – Trustee, Lynch – Trustee!

Thank You!

Brian J Sorochty

Mayor Village of Holley

Holley trustee says current mayor, board has village in right direction

Posted 11 June 2018 at 4:11 pm

Editor:

It has been a year since I joined the Holley Village Board, and in that time I have seen many changes, and yes it was sad to see the bank and store leave, but I am excited about the new Holley Bar and Grill due to open in the Fall.

And there are many improvements coming, due to the hard work of Mayor Sorochty and all the board members, and thank you to all the village residents who have supported our efforts.

If you received the Mayor’s update letter you know what improvements are coming and I can assure you this is just the beginning of continuing the progress for our little but strong Village of Holley.

The first weekend in June was a prime example of  what we can do when we work together and get involved. This year’s June Fest was fantastic, with the village-wide yard sales, all the children’s activities, food and craft venders, wooden boats and classic cars, library book sale and the many service information booths. The Historical Society put on an old-fashioned cake walk along with a very successful bake sale by the museum. But my favorite was the fireworks. Thank you Krista Wiley and the rest of the June Fest Committee for a job well done.

And a shout out to the DPW Crew who were out sprucing up the village before and cleaning up afterward.

My first year as your Trustee has been a busy one with the monthly meetings the many extra working meetings as well as the numerous training seminars and informational programs offered by the county to attend. I am enjoying it all and learning much. So I hope you will join me in supporting our current Board and vote on June 19 to keep the progress going.

Vote Sorochty, Lynch and Nenni.

Thank you,

Rochelle Moroz

Village of Holley Trustee

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Gaines resident states his goals for serving on the Town Board

Posted 10 June 2018 at 10:09 pm

Editor:

My name is Joseph Gangi Jr; I am running for the Town of Gaines open councilperson seat and I am running in the September 13th Primary Election. Hard work, honesty, morality, objectivity and integrity. These are values I hold dear today.

After 30 years working for the Rochester Police Department, I am retiring this January 2019. I have been the department’s Quartermaster. I managed an annual budget of around half a million dollars. Over the course of my career, I have saved the City of Rochester thousands of dollars.

I met my wife in 2009; we bought a house in Gaines in 2010. We could have lived anywhere but we chose to stay in this town, our town, Gaines. My wife Michelle was raised here in Gaines. We have solid roots.

Our town residents are very smart and I know they share the same concerns as I do. My concerns are simple but extremely important to this community;

Taxes – We need to keep an eye on our town’s taxes. The hope would be to not have them go up. As you all know, politicians all say the same thing, LOWER TAXES.  All I can say is I will work hard to do just that but again, you are smart and know, nothing is guaranteed. I do promise you this; I will work hard for all of us to keep our taxes controlled. We must keep an eye on taxes.

Agriculture (Farming) is the backbone of this community.

1. Agricultural Effect Economically – Farms provide a livelihood for people who work on them. The list goes on and on from machinery, feed stores, transportation, then eventually to us, the consumer. There are multiple professions in between that benefit from agriculture. We must protect agriculture.

2. Agriculture Effect Environmental – When you think of farms, you think of cows grazing in the fields, corn crops, big red barns, and don’t forget about the view over those fields, how beautiful those truly are for miles around. It’s for this reason we chose to live here in our town, Gaines. Also, think about the wildlife that is sustained because these farms exist, I’m sure all you hunters can appreciate that. We must protect agriculture.

Support Smart Economic Growth – This just goes along with agriculture. We must be real careful how and where our town grows as to not disturb the agricultural environment. These are the concerns of many I have spoken to. We must encourage and be conscious of our town’s economic growth.

Smart Spending – Our town is small and most of us, the residents, are not wealthy. We must be smart with the way our town’s money is spent. Again, this goes to keeping expenses down and not being wasteful so that we can keep our taxes low. Money has to be spent; we just need to be smart about it.  We must watch spending.

Our town matters.

Joseph Gangi Jr.

Gaines