25 years ago

Oct. 1, 1987

A group of bus tour line owners and drivers will take a tour of their own through the area next week that will have a sinister side — they’ll have to solve a murder along the way.

The murder-mystery tour, beginning in Oneonta on Oct. 5, has been set up by the Leatherstocking Country tourism bureau to get the motor coach industry interested in the region.

According to Esther Miller of the Holiday Inn, Oneonta, one bus load of 40 to 45 tourists spends about $3,500 a day in the community.

About 35 owners and drivers will come for the tour from 15 companies in Canada, New York, Maine, Florida, Ohio and New Jersey. They will visit and stay at certain spots where services have been offered for free.

A murder will be staged, and a clue will be given at each stop, said Roberta Byron, project director at Leatherstocking Country. People dressed as police officers will arrest a suspect, which will be one of the bus owners or drivers. The acting murderer, however, may be either a member of the tour or someone from the community.

The participant who solves the crime will receive prizes, Byron said.

The tour will start at Southside Oneonta Holiday Inn with a dinner and overnight accommodations. The next day the group will go to Cooperstown and have breakfast at the Otesaga Hotel. It will visit the Farmers’ Museum, Fenimore House and the Baseball Hall of Fame, then have free time to see the village.

The tour was written by travel writer Diane Gallo. It will be sold to the bus owners and drivers for use on their tours.

50 years ago

Oct. 1, 1962

The rush season is about to begin in the office of City Chamberlain Thomas J. Natoli and among members of the Common Council Finance Committee.

It’s time to deal with the budget of a corporation that is close to a million-a-year business — the city of Oneonta.

The normal system in the city is for budgets to be presented and approved for each commission and for the city chamberlain to handle general fund expenses. The chamberlain and the Finance Committee then begin the job of studying and, in most cases, whittling. This last includes hearings for justification with the various city departments.

Last week, the Safety Board received and approved budgets from the Police Department, Fire Department and Health Department. The police are asking for $131,168, and increase of $18,080; the firemen are seeking $106,925, a boost of $21,472; and the Health Department is asking $17,333, up $2,308.

The Parks Board has also submitted a budget of $53,748, an increase of $4,284.

The Recreation Board has a budget for $19,000, similar to a year ago.

Still to come are the Service Board budgets, for water, sewage, and public works, and the general fund budget to be prepared by Mr. Natoli.

The final tentative budget will be presented by the Finance Committee to the Common Council at its second meeting in November. After a public hearing, it will then be formally accepted by the council.

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