News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.
Click for classifieds of Oneonta, Cooperstown, and all of Otsego County. Click for jobs in Oneonta, Cooperstown, and all of Otsego County. Click for dining, entertainment, and things to do in Oneonta, Cooperstown, and all of Otsego County. Click for real estate listings in Oneonta, Cooperstown, and all of OTsego County. click for cars, trucks, and other vehicles in oneonta, cooperstown, and all of otsego county. click for funeral homes, flower shops, and other businesses that specialize in= remembrance in oneonta, cooperstown, and all of otsego county. Click for more great ads from local businesses in Oneonta, Cooperstown, and all of Otsego County.

Search Results for: berliant

BERLIANT: Glad For DiNapoli’s Support

BERLIANT: Glad For DiNapoli’s Support

To the Editor:

“I’m delighted to endorse Leslie Berliant for Otsego County representative for Middlefield, Roseboom and Cherry Valley. As you know, one of my jobs is to ensure that local governments are fiscally responsible. Ms. Berliant is the right candidate to help Otsego County to thrive and will be a responsible, honest and transparent representative for her district.”

– Tom DiNapoli, New York State Comptroller

I am thrilled to share this endorsement and extremely honored to have such strong support from a man known for his integrity, honesty and fiscal responsibility.

Democrat for Otsego County, District 7

Bliss Tells Of Bipartisan Record; Berliant Says It’s Time For Change

Bliss Tells Of Bipartisan Record;

Berliant Says, Time For Change

District 7 Representative Dave Bliss and challenger Leslie Berliant address a packed house at the old high school in Cherry Valley on Monday night. Bliss believes that his record of bi-partisan leadership shows his commitment to getting things done for the constituents of District 7. Berliant believes it is time for big changes in the County Board of Representatives. (Parker Fish/
questionnaire 2017 — leslie berliant

Leslie Berliant



EDUCATION: Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and History, Master’s Degree in Comparative History and Master’s Degree in Women’s Studies.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: Trained and worked as a creative facilitator, helping corporate and non-profit clients innovate and problem solve. Served as general manager at eTalent Agency, taking a brand new company to $3 million in billings in 18 months. Co-founded a company that worked with public and private organizations on branding, marketing and effective communication, including the states of New York, Illinois, Missouri and Kansas, the Independent Cities Association, Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability, SEIU 434b, RADD and many others. Founder and owner of Le Marais Chocolat. Founder and owner of WB Consultancy, helping entrepreneurs and individuals grow and expand their businesses, career opportunities and creative endeavors. Former editor and head writer at Celsias, a leading online journal on climate change with an international staff of more than 50 writers.

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Cooperstown Farmer’s Market Governing Committee, volunteer with Positive Action Cherry Valley and Positive Action Cooperstown, member of local chapters of League of Women Voters, National Organization for Women, and NAACP.

FAMILY: Husband Chris, daughters Adina and Emma, two cats, Buster and Byron (also called Buster). Together they are known as The Busters

PHILOSOPHY OF GOVERNMENT: It is the responsibility of elected officials to solve problems and serve the needs of their constituents, including proactively addressing issues before they become problems. Government is a partnership between citizens and those they elect. In order for that partnership to work, there needs to be transparency and open communication so that elected officials can be held accountable to and by the people that elect them. In addition, as Congressman John Lewis recently said, elected officials should be headlights, not taillights, standing up for what’s important and holding themselves accountable to measurable progress on the issues that are impacting the people they serve.


1) Lack of measurable progress on basic infrastructure necessary for economic development, particularly access to high-speed internet and cell phone service.

2) There is a disconnect between the jobs available and the training that people have to thrive in those jobs. As a result, entrepreneurs are staying away and young people with skills are leaving.

3) The lack of Board resolve to hire a County Manager to effectively manage our $110 million budget and see critical projects through to completion. A part-time board cannot meet the needs of a County of this size.

4) Months of crisis at Otsego Now that has deeply damaged economic development efforts in Otsego County and left critical projects without adequate management.

5) The lack of adequate processing facilities for farmers in and around the County.

6) The dangerous practice of having XNG trucks full of compressed natural gas on residential roads.

MY QUALITIES: I am a hard worker who will listen to constituents and speak up on their behalf. I believe in collaboration and working with people of differing viewpoints to get to the best solutions and am skilled at finding compromise and consensus. At the same time, I will be a loud and persistent voice for what is right and needed in order for our County to thrive. I set measurable goals and I make every effort to meet them, as well as inspire others to do the same.

STATEMENT: I am running for County Representative because when you find yourself saying someone should really do something about a long standing problem, it’s time to look in the mirror to find that someone. I am running because we need to extend high speed internet and cell phone service throughout the county so that our farmers, artisans and entrepreneurs can compete. I am running because our farmers produce some of the best organic, biodynamic and naturally grown produce, as well as amazing grass-fed beef and lamb, pastured chicken and free-range eggs and yet, people in New York City have an easier time getting goods from California than they do getting goods from Middlefield. I am running because if any one of us had $110 million dollar budget, we would have a full-time person managing how we spend and invest that money. I am running because under the current majority on the board, our economic development agency has collapsed, we have had a major scandal involving the sheriff’s department that adversely impacts public safety, we still don’t have an ethics board seated, and we continue to spend money on studies of problems rather than solutions to problems. I am running because I hope to represent my district and help to ensure that we have all of the tools we need to succeed and prosper while taking exquisite care of the beautiful natural surroundings and the global environment while preserving our close knit communities. If I’m elected, I will make sure that I spend my two years being productive and a strong voice for the citizens of our District and our County to get us the movement that we need and deserve on issues that are impacting our lives!

EDITORIAL: In 40 Visits, Brian Flynn Earns Democrats’ Support

Editorial, June 22, 2018

In 40 Visits, Brian Flynn

Earns Democrats’ Support

If for nothing more than the knowledge he’s gained about Otsego County and its issues in 40-some visits over the past year, Brian Flynn is the logical
candidate for local Democrats to support in the party’s 19th Congressional District primary Tuesday, June 26. The polls will be open from noon to 9 p.m.
Absent someone actually from Otsego County – Cooperstown’s Erin Collier was an attractive entry, but it appears she got involved too late to gain sufficient traction – we need a candidate in a Hudson-Valley-heavy field who cares about Oneonta and Greater Cooperstown.
We also need a congressman who’s strategic, and Flynn has proved he is: By focusing on Otsego, plus Schoharie and Delaware, while others ignored us, he may have carved out the relatively few votes, perhaps as few as 4,500, to win in the seven-person race.

Parker Fish/The Freeman’s Journal – Brian Flynn, seen here with fellow Democratic hopeful Erin Collier at the debate earlier this month at Cooperstown Central School’s Sterling Auditorium, deserves county Democrats’ support in the June 26 primary.

Flynn has also sought out key local folks for his campaign staff, including the brainy Leslie Berliant, who ran for county rep from the Town of Middlefield last fall, and MacGuire Benton of Cooperstown, former Otsego County Young Democrats’ president. Clark Oliver of Oneonta, Benton’s successor at the YDs, was also on the staff for a while.
And Flynn’s also courted and largely won over most of the county’s top Democrats, from county Rep. Gary Koutnik, Oneonta, the ranking Democrat on the county board, to activists Deb Marcus of Oneonta and Melinda Hardin of Cooperstown, to the potent Sustainable Otsego leadership.
(Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig, referred to Jeff Beals by a cousin’s wife – no, Beals is not the mayor’s cousin – has been the odd man out in supporting the Woodstock teacher-by-way-of-the-CIA.)
Flynn, while he’s only lived fulltime in the 19th for less than two years – with wife Amy and children Bo, 14, and Heddah, 10 – he has roots, and family roots. He has owned that home in Hunter in Greene County’s ski country for the past 13 years (and bought the property 15 years ago, after a fire, and rebuilt it.) And his grandfather was a bartender and grandmother a chambermaid in Catskill hotels. The Michael J. Quill Irish Cultural Center in East Durham, on the road from Cobleskill to Catskill, is named after a great uncle.
Moreover, he’s got the energy, the brains, an engaging personality, the high-level contacts – his partner in Schlossberg:Flynn, an investment firm, is Caroline Kennedy’s husband, Ed – and the money – both he and big-firm lawyer Antonio Delgado have raised almost $1 million – to win, and this should matter to Democrats.

Whether it should matter to the rest of us remains to be seen, as Flynn and our current congressman, Albany veteran John Faso, R-Kinderhook, sharpen their focus on the issues from the end of June to November.
As we’ve noted here before, Faso would be unobjectionable in normal times; he’s done what a congressman who wants to make a difference would normally do: Get key committee posts, cleave to the party line, but break with the party when sensible, on the merits and on the politics, to do so.
Both of these candidates could
capture the middle, and thus win.
But as Nov. 6 approaches, if it appears – as historical precedence suggests it might – that the House of Representatives will be recaptured overwhelmingly by the Democrats, then a switch to Flynn might make sense.
For now, Brian Flynn, who has gotten to know Otsego County, and vice versa, is the clear and best choice for local Democrats.
A strong turnout – even better, one that clearly is the clear factor in his nomination next Tuesday – would
lock in that relationship for the
benefit of both.

Congress Hopeful Flynn Pays Visit

Congress Hopeful Flynn

Hosted At Meet, Greet

Brian Flynn, now living in Hunter, Greene County, discusses his position on various political issues with Margaret McGown of Cooperstown at a meet and greet hosted this evening at The Shack in Hartwick Seminary by Leslie Berliant, the recent county board candidate. Flynn is one of six Democratic candidates running for the 19th New York Congressional District challenging incumbent John Faso, R-Kinderhook. Flynn discussed what needs to change in Washington D.C., and how he would address the concerns of the voters in the 19th district.  Tuesday night, he will attend another meet and greet in Oneonta. (Parker Fish/



Absentee Ballots May Erase

Chair Clark’s Narrow Victory

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

COOPERSTOWN – The “Reform Caucus,” a coalescence of forward-looking minds, decisively took control of the Otsego County Board of Representatives Tuesday, Nov. 7.

The caucus claimed nine of the 14 seats, and 3,746 weighted votes against 2,482 for the stand-pat  coalition that had gathered around county Board Chair Kathy Clark, R-Otego/Laurens.

Strictly along party lines, Democrats rose from a 4-11 deficit to a 7-7 tie, although weighted voting gives Republicans a 3,421 to 2,807 edge.



Editor’s Note: Due to the large number of Letters to the Editor of Hometown Oneonta and The Freeman’s Journal, all that didn’t make it into this week’s print editions will be published on before Election Day, next Tuesday, Nov. 7.  The polls will be open from 6 a.m.-9 p.m.  Click here for sample ballots.  This is the SECOND round, with more to follow.

BERLIANT: Glad For DiNapoli’s Support

HOHENSEE: Thank You, Andrew Marietta

WEINBERG: Gelbsman Saves You Money

FRAZIER: Tarbell Dedicated To Oneonta

KUZMINSKI: Vote For Democratic Slate

KUZMINSKI: Vote For Democratic Slate

To the Editor:

Sustainable Otsego has endorsed the following candidates for county board: Leslie Berliant, Nicole Dillingham, Gary Koutnik, Danny Lapin, Andrew Marietta, Adrienne Martini, Chad McEvoy, Cathy Nardi, Pat Ryan, Liz Shannon, Tom Spychalski, and Andrew Stammel.

They all support the principles of sustainable living, economic self-reliance and home rule. As we face the future, it’s clear that we can no longer rely, as we used to, on distant governments and corporations to provide for our social and economic security. Increasingly, we’re going to have to do it ourselves. Our communities and our resources are repeatedly challenged; social and economic security is harder to come by. Incomes are low, jobs are scarce, and young people migrate elsewhere. For far too long, majorities on the county board have failed to respond to these challenges.

We need new leadership in Otsego County, especially on the county Board of Representatives. We need people, like the candidates above, who are ready to aggressively defend the interests of our communities. Otsego County desperately needs a voice of its own – and these candidates are the ones who can give it that voice. If you are happy with the way things are, vote for their opponents. But if you think we need a change, here’s a chance to do something about it.


Fly Creek

Reelect Marietta, ‘Reform Caucus’


Reelect Marietta,

‘Reform Caucus’

Editor’s Note:  This is the editorial opinion of, Hometown Oneonta and The Freeman’s JournalLetters to the editor on political topics received after 10 a.m. Tuesday will appear on  Polls are open 6 a.m.-9 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7.

Andrew Marietta’s biggest supporters, wife Melissa, daughters Caroline, 11, and Charlotte, 9, and the man’s best friend, Otis, rally around the candidate. (

With all the sturm und drang over the years surrounding the Otsego County Board of Representatives – MOSA or not, road patrols or not, economic development or not – a central truth was lost: County government doesn’t work very well.

It makes sense that Andrew Marietta, the freshman county rep for Cooperstown and the Town of Otsego, would quickly recognize that. As regional director of NYCON, the state Council of Non-Profits, his job is to get struggling organizations to focus on mission and map steps necessary for success.

Locally, from Foothills to the Greater Oneonta Historical Society to merging the Smithy Pioneer Gallery with the Cooperstown Art Association, NYCON, often with Marietta in the lead, has strengthened so many key institutions we take for granted.
The road to success is simple: Identify priorities – five at a time, maybe, not 100 – resolve them systematically, then move on to the next five. The goal, progress. Simple, but requiring vision and discipline.

Shortly after taking office in 2016, Marietta salvaged the $40,000 county strategic plan that had been put together the year before by the Laberge Group out of Albany, tapping common needs among the county’s municipalities. It was headed for the shelf, but his advocacy saved it, turning it into the guiding document of the county board’s Strategic Planning Committee.

Posts navigation

21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103