Charter, manager deserve our vote

I am writing to encourage everyone to vote "yes" on Nov. 8 for the city of Oneonta Charter Revision. The present charter is old and outdated. Among the many things the new charter will do is to strengthen the Common Council's ability to make policy. The new charter will streamline the responsibilities of the aldermen. Often when aldermen are asked why they are not seeking re-election, they will cite the unrealistic time required to fulfill their obligations.

One way the above will be addressed in the new charter is with the addition of a city manager. This will allow the Common Council the time needed to make policy. The manager will also provide full-time supervision and support to all department heads.

It is fully expected that the manager will more than pay for his or her salary with budgetary savings and additional non-tax revenues. Even if these savings are not realized at first, the cost of this salary divided by the number of taxable properties averages less than $40 per property. If the position of manager of operations and facilities is not filled, the cost to taxpayers would come down to around $10 per property per year. Since this manager is not elected, he or she will be held accountable for his or her performance.

Government and the regulations imposed on the city have gotten more complicated and cannot be handled effectively without the revisions in the new charter. Please show your support for the new charter on Nov. 8.

Phyllis Gunther


Economy matters as much as fracking

Most of us share the same concerns when it comes to fracking. However, when it comes to electing our county representatives, fracking should not and is not the only issue Otsego County is facing.

Our fiscal future is looking rather bleak at the moment. We are facing a $6 million projected shortfall in the 2012 budget. This more than likely would mean a drastic change in our property taxes. Raising taxes is never a good way to go. Also it would not be a good time to increase county government spending by hiring a county manager.

On Nov. 8, I plan on voting for Ray Holohan. I know that Holohan is concerned about issues surrounding hydrofracking. He also has concerns for our economic future and who better to help us with that than someone who is in the numbers business. Ray Holohan is a certified public accountant. His experience and skills are just what this county needs.

The ultimate decision regarding fracking will be settled via the courts and the state government. So in the meantime, let's elect someone who will take a rational approach to all the issues that this county faces.

For the towns of Cherry Valley, Middlefield and Roseboom, remember on Nov. 8 to vote and to vote for Ray Holohan.

Paul Gardner


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