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Doing The Numbers On Universal Basic Income

COLUMN • View from Fly Creek

Doing The Numbers On

Universal Basic Income

By ADRIAN KUZMINSKI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

As the economic insecurity of a large segment of the country continues without relief (debts, taxes, low wages, health costs, education costs, etc.), some big new ideas (like the Green New Deal) are getting attention.

Andrew Yang and his T-shirts are becoming visible in Iowa,where the first caucuses of the 2020 presidential campaign will be held Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2020.

In my last column, I examined one of these big new ideas: the proposal for a universal basic income (UBI) put forth by presidential candidate Andrew Yang, who proposes to give every US citizen over 18 years of age $1,000 a month. He calls it the Freedom Dividend.

Yang argues that automation and robotics are relentlessly eliminating wage-labor jobs, hence the need for a UBI. He may be right. I speculated that a UBI might be paid out of corporate profits, but it turns out that that’s not where the money is.

To see how it can be funded, let’s do some math:

The current adult (18 plus) population of the U.S. is about 250 million people. Giving $12,000/year to each person would cost about $3 trillion. To put that in context, the federal budget is about $4 trillion/year, including $700 billion for the military, while total annual U.S. corporate profit is about $2 trillion/year in an economy of about $21 trillion.

The total net financial assets of American households, according to the Federal Reserve, are much greater than that. They add up to about $70 trillion. What are net financial assets? They include stocks, bonds, funds and other financial instruments. That’s where the money is.

The major asset for most Americans is their home. Net financial assets don’t include your personal property (your home, vehicles, furnishings, art, etc.); nor the debts you owe.

Simple Integrity Plans Net-Zero Apartments: 2 Stories, 12 Units On Chestnut Street

Simple Integrity Plans

Net-Zero Apartments

2 Stories, 12 Units On Chestnut Street

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www. AllOTSEGO.com

Josh Edmonds, principal in Simple Integrity builders, briefs the Cooperstown Village Board last evening on a net-zero 12-apartment building he is planning at 10 Chestnut St. in the village, next to the Inn at Cooperstown. “The village needs long-term rentals,” he told trustees at their monthly meeting. “And I see a need for more energy.” He was advised to take the plans to the Historical Preservation & Architectural Review Board (H-PARB) and the Planning Board. (Libby Cudmore/AllOTSEGO.com)

COOPERSTOWN – For Josh Edmonds, the lot at 10 Chestnut St. represents a chance to solve two problems in the village – adding housing and reducing energy consumption.

“The village needs long-term rentals,” he said. “And I see a need for more energy-efficient construction.”

Edmonds, a passive-house consultant through, Simple Integrity, his contracting company, has proposed a two-story, 12-unit building on the lot at 10 Chestnut St, next to the Inn at Cooperstown.

At the Village Board meeting on Tuesday, May 28, Edmonds revealed details about the proposed project:  12 two-bedroom units, with the six apartments on the first floor designated as handicap-accessible. There will also be 24 parking spaces.

SUNY Oneonta’s Ford Hall Picked As ‘Net Zero’ Project

SUNY Oneonta’s Ford Hall

Picked As ‘Net Zero’ Project

First-In-System Redo Paves Way For 500 Dorms Statewide
SUNY Oneonta’s Ford Hall during Eastman & Associate renovations a few years ago.

ONEONTA – “Net zero.”

That term refers to a building “that generates all its energy onsite, producing as much energy from non-fossil fuels sources at it consumes each year,” SUNY Oneonta’s Lachlain Squair, chief facilities planning and safety officer, said yesterday in announcing 213-room Ford Hall will become the first such building on the local campus.

12 Net-Zero Apartments Planned On Chestnut St.

 EDMONDS BRIEFS TRUSTEES ON ‘THE GROVE’

12 Net-Zero Apartments

Planned On Chestnut St.

Josh Edmonds, principal in Simple Integrity builders, briefs the Cooperstown Village Board last evening on “The Grove,” a net-zero 12-apartment building he is planning at 10 Chestnut St. in the village, next to the Inn at Cooperstown. “The village needs long-term rentals,” he told trustees at their monthly meeting Tuesday. “And I see a need for more energy-efficient construction.” He was advised to take the plans to the Historical Preservation & Architectural Review Board (H-PARB) and the Planning Board.  Facing the camera are, from left, Trustees Jim Membrino, MacGuire Benton and Jeanne Dewey; with back to camera are Trustees Jim Dean, left, and Richard Sternberg.  (Libby Cudmore/AllOTSEGO.com)

DETAILS IN FREEMAN’S & HOMETOWN,

ON NEWSSTANDS THIS AFTERNOON

Lofts On Dietz Parking, Energy Raised As Issues

Lofts On Dietz’s

Parking, Energy

Raised As Issues

SEQRA To Start Next Month;

Groundbreaking Next Summer

Addressing the city Planning Commission, from left, were Michael Stolzer and Mark Drnek, who raised concerns about parking; David Hutchison, who called for net-zero energy use in the proposed Lofts on Dietz, and weaver Liz Shannon, who asked if the size of the proposed units – about 800 square feet for single units and 1,000 for doubles – was sufficient; Kearney’s reply appeared to satisfy her. Mayor Herzig is at right. (Jim Kevlin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Developer Ken Kearney outlines the project. Behind him is Dave Ohman from Delaware Engineering. At right, Planning Commission member Dan Maskin listens.

ONEONTA – Two citizens raised concerns about parking – a third called for “net zero” energy efficiency – when developer Ken Kearney outlined plans for a 64-unit art colony, The Lofts on Dietz, to the city Planning Commission last evening.

Vice Chair Overbey presided.

“As an artist, the building is an excellent concept, one we should embrace,” said Michael Stolzer, who lives in the Town of Oneonta but owns rental properties in the city.  “But parking spaces are valuable.  It seems kind of on the absurd side to build it on the parking lot.”

Mayor Gary Herzig saw it another way: “I truly hope we have a real parking problem, because it will mean we’re thriving and our businesses are successful,” he said as the meeting wrapped up.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, MAR. 10
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, MAR. 10

Cabaret Guest Conductor Contest

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GUEST CONDUCTOR – 7:30 p.m. 3 candidates compete for YOUR vote at the Annual Cabaret Concert featuring the Mambo Kings. Alumni Field House, SUNY Oneonta. Call 607-436-2670 or visit catskillsymphony.net/how-to-help/volunteer.html

CRAYON CARNIVAL – 11 a.m. 3 p.m. Enjoy food, games, prizes gift basket raffle, the “Cake Walk” the Junior Cupcake Boss Competition, displays from Oneonta World of Learning, more to support the PTA. Cooperstown Elementary School. Call 607-547-8181 or visit www.cooperstowncs.org

U-Haul Growth Survey: NY Drops Four Places

U-Haul Growth Survey:

NY Drops Four Places

New York is the No. 43 Growth State in America, slipping four places from 2018, according to U-Haul® data analyzing U.S. migration trends for 2019.

New York backslides four spots from its No. 39 ranking a year ago, registering as a slight net-loss state for procuring U-Haul truck customers. It ranked in the same vicinity the previous two years – 44th in 2017 and 35th in 2016 – after climbing to the No. 7 state for growth back in 2015.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, FEB. 11
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, FEB. 11

Performance of ‘Love Letters’

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THEATER – 2 p.m. Performance of ‘Love Letters,’ by A.R. Gurney, which tells the story of Andrew Makepeace Ladd III and Melissa Gardner via the letters they exchanged over their lifetime. The Production Center of the Foothills Performing Arts Center, 124 Market St., Oneonta. Info, (607) 432-5407 or GEStevens17@gmail.com

QUILT SHOW – 11 a.m.-4 p.m.. Thru Sunday Feb. 26. Cooperstown Art Association, 22 Main St., Cooperstown. Info, www.cooperstownart.com

PLAY READING – 6:30 p.m. Reading of “Lord of the Wilderness” by local playwright Ron Nash. Telling the story of William Cooper and the founding of Cooperstown. Based on Alan Taylor’s book “William Cooper’s Town.”Fenimore Art Museum Auditorium, 5798 NY-80, Cooperstown. Info, www.fenimoreartmuseum.org

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, APRIL 29
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, APRIL 29

Mozart Concert For 

Hans & Edith Wilk

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MEMORIAL CONCERT – 7:30 p.m. The Oneonta community remembers “Hans & Edith Wilk.” Features the combined voices of the Hartwick College Chorus and SUNY Oneonta Concert Choir performing Mozart’s Symphony #35 Haffner and Requiem with the Catskill Symphony Orchestra. Hunt Union Ballroom, SUNY Oneonta. Info, catskillsymphony.net/news-events/upcoming-events.html

SPIRITUAL ARTS & PSYCHIC FAIR – 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 2 day fair featuring reading by psychics, vendors, and workshops to help you heal, and find direction in your life. Oneonta Holiday Inn, 5206 State Highway 23, Oneonta. Info, www.shiftnewyork.com

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, FEB. 12
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, FEB. 12

Cancellations Possible

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DUE TO 10-14 INCHES OF SNOW BEING FORECAST SUNDAY AND MONDAY, BE SURE TO CHECK TO SEE IF AN EVENT IS CANCELLED BEFORE YOU VENTURE FORTH

CANCELLED!! TREP$ MARKETPLACE – 1-3 p.m. Come support CCS students bring their businesses alive. Cooperstown High School. Info, www.facebook.com/Cooperstown-TREP-1508685209401557/

CONCERT – 3 p.m. Oneonta Community Concert band presents its annual “Summertime in Winter” concert featuring numbers like “Hail to the Spirit of Liberty”, “I’ve Made My Plans for the Summer”, and “Our Flirtations.” Free and open to the public. Fox Care Center, Oneonta. Info, 437-1052

TOURNAMENT – 4 p.m. Valentine “Hearts” Tournament to benefit Susquehanna Animal Shelter. Trophies and door prizes awarded, with beverages and food available. Cooperstown Beverage Exchange, 73 Main St, Cooperstown. Info, susquehannaanimalshelter.org/category/events/

Cuomo, Schumer Favorability Drops Sharply, Poll Says

Trump Nudges Up In NYS

Cuomo, Schumer

Favorability Drops

Sharply, Poll Says

Governor Cuomo’s job performance rating plummeted in the last month, and U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer also saw a significant drop in how voters feel about him, according to a Siena Poll of New York State voters released yesterday.

President Trump’s ratings actually edged up a bit.

The governor’s favorability rating fell to negative 43-50 percent, down from  51-43 percent last month. His job performance rating fell to 35-64 percent, down from 43-56 percent.  Schumer saw his favorability rating drop to 47-46 percent, down from 53-39 percent in January, the Siena pollsters found.

Railyard Foes Derail $2M In Good News

Railyard Foes Derail $2M In Good News

Herzig Pleads: Work Together

By PATRICK WAGER
& JIM KEVLIN

Ian Austin/HOMETOWN – ONEONTA Common Council candidate Seth Clark, who runs a student rental business, was the only speaker who said, due to poverty, the city needs “hundreds of jobs.”
Mayor Herzig

ONEONTA – In his 2019 State of the State speech, Mayor Gary Herzig Tuesday, March 5, said everyone wants to get to “net zero,” but – “please” – don’t oppose a plan for the D&H railyards “to create much-needed jobs.”
Particularly, “while we go about enjoying our indoor tennis courts, gyms, swimming pools and theaters – all heated with gas. These are not the values of the people of the City of Oneonta,” he said.
The plea fell on 112 sets of deaf ears.
This was supposed to be a celebratory evening, with Herzig and former mayor Kim Muller, who chaired the DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) committee, announcing $2 million in grants for façade improvements, signage and redevelopment of upper floors for housing in the city’s downtown.
But as speaker after speaker – 30 in all, speaking for three minutes each – criticized the GEIS (generic environmental impact statement) on a multi-million-dollar plan to redevelop the 88-acre D&Y Railyards, time ran out and no announcement occurred.

Paula DiPerna Testifies Before Congress

FULL TEXT APPEARS HERE

Renewable-Energy

Stocks Keeping Up

With Fossil Fuels’

Cooperstown’s DiPerna Testifies

Before Congressional Committee

Editor’s Note:  This is the full written testimony submitted to the House Natural Resources Committee after Paula DiPerna of Coopertown, a CDP-North America special adviser, testified on Feb. 6 in Washington D.C. on the growing  prowess of renewables in energy-related investments.  A longtime local resident, DiPerna ran for Congress in 1992 for the district that included Otsego County.

Paula DiPerna testifies Feb. 6 before the Natural Resources Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington D.C.

Thank you for the opportunity to testify here today on climate change and the recognition of its economic importance among businesses, investors, and consumers—all, of course, constituents. No doubt the CDP Platform has a touch point with all the states represented here on the Committee and I thank you for your service to the nation.

Railyard Foes Derail $2M In Good News

FROM TODAY’S HOMETOWN ONEONTA,

ON CITY NEWSSTANDS THIS AFTERNOON

Railyard Foes Derail

$2M In Good News

Herzig’s Plea – Work Together – Falls

On Deaf Ears In Packed Foothills Theater

Otsego 2000 Technical Adviser Keith Schue, Cherry Valley, distributes a map of wetlands in the former D&H yards to Common Council members at last evening’s public hearing at Foothills. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By PATRICK WAGER & JIM KEVLIN • From Hometown Oneonta

Only Seth Clark, the Common Council candidate who operates a student-rental company, spoke about need for more jobs to alleviate local poverty.

ONEONTA – In his 2019 State of the State speech, Mayor Gary Herzig Tuesday, March 5, said everyone wants to get to “net zero,” but – “please” – don’t oppose a plan for the D&H railyards “to create much-needed jobs.”

Particularly, “while we go about enjoying our indoor tennis courts, gyms, swimming pools and theaters – all  heated with gas.  These are not the values of the people of the City of Oneonta,” he said.

The plea fell on 112 sets of deaf ears.

This was supposed to be a celebratory evening, with Herzig and former mayor Kim Muller, who chaired the DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) committee, announcing $2 million in grants for façade improvements, signage and redevelopment of upper floors for housing in the city’s downtown.

Tennis Club Goes Private, Aims To Train The Future

FUNDRAISING UNDERWRITES LESSONS

Tennis Club Goes Private,

Aims To Train The Future

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Pro Paul Catan serves at the Oneonta Tennis Club. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

ONEONTA – In 2017, Phyllis Orlowski discovered a worrisome trend in Oneonta in 2017: not many kids knew or were learning how to play tennis. There was no equipment, like racquets, balls and ball hoppers available and there was no motivation to even plat the sport.

In July, Oneonta High School’s Varsity Tennis coach, who commutes from Cooperstown, she began reversing that trend, running a three-week tennis camp on Wilber Park’s courts. Providing racquets, balls, and ball hoppers like those that can be seen here, many children wanted to participate. The 80 K-12 participants paid $10 each.

The United States Tennis Association’s Eastern Division was so impressed with Orlowski’s efforts, it declared her “Organizer of the Month” in August.

“It’s such an honor,” she said. “This is a really big deal that can help draw more attention and support for making tennis more accessible to children in the area.”

With its own membership declining, the Oneonta Tennis Club is seeking to replicate Orlowski’s success.

Last weekend, the club held a Charity Doubles Tournament to raise money for its new clinic for kids ages 5 to 10. The funds mean families will only pay $5 per child for a 45-minute lesson, taught by tennis pro Paul Catan.

“Tennis is expensive to learn – the lessons, equipment, entry fees for tournaments,” Catan said. “We’re trying to remove that barrier and make tennis accessible to more kids.”

Orlowski believed the decline in youth tennis began after City Hall stopped funding a summer tennis camp, which provided 10 weeks of free lessons to kids. But she didn’t realize the impact until 2017 when, after a nine-year hiatus, she returned to coaching OHS’ varsity team.

Pro Paul Catan walks off the Oneonta Tennis Club’s outdoor courts on Rose Avenue.

“I struggled to put together a competitive tennis team that year,” she said. “The kids didn’t know how to play tennis anymore. I had to do something.”

Young people need to be introduced to the game as early as possible, so they can play competitively by the time they entered high school, Orlowski said. If they start young then they will also have a passion for the sport that’s needed to put in the hours of training required. A young tennis player must be willing to visit sites comparing all the best racquets (learn more about this here) and train in their free time so they can get the advantage. But how to make it affordable?

Last year, “I reached out to Jenny Irwin, the head of the U.S. Tennis Association’s Eastern Division,” she said. “She told me about USTA grants I could apply for, so I applied for one and was awarded a $5,000 grant.”

Orlowski also found out about USTA’s youth tennis program, Net Generation, which “provides curricula and equipment tailored for all ages and abilities, so kids of all ages learn tennis skills and have fun doing it.”

“Net Generation hides skills in their lessons, so kids learn them without realizing it,” she said. “And they tailor it for different age groups.

“For instance, five year-old kids use large racquets and small red balls that don’t bounce much because they can’t even bounce a ball at that age.”

But Orlowski said it was Mary-Margaret Sohns, founder of the nonprofit Cooperstown Tennis, who made the Oneonta tennis summer camp happen.

“Mary-Margaret used Cooperstown Tennis to cover the required $1 million safety insurance camp,” said Orlowski. “Without that, we couldn’t have done the camp.”

Sohns “insisted the summer camp be taught by tennis pros, so she ‘donated’ Cooperstown Tennis’ instructors Jorge Falla and his son Sebastian, who are pros from Colombia.”

The Oneonta Tennis Club faces more challenges in funding affordable lessons, since it is a private, for-profit organization and the USTA only funds nonprofits’ and public schools’ tennis programs.

But Catan will begin teaching the youth clinics for 5- to 10-year-olds on Tuesdays, 3 to 3:45 p.m. And because the club has two indoor tennis courts – the only indoor courts in Otsego County – kids can learn and play tennis all winter long.

“There’s a real need out there for kids to just get the exposure to play tennis,” he said.

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