By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
COOPERSTOWN — Rep. Antonio Delgado, D-NY19, appeared in Otsego County on Thursday, May 28, to speak about the money the county will receive from the American Rescue Plan, which he help shepherd through Congress.
Otsego County receive about $11.5 million, he said, half of which has already been delivered, with the other half to follow within a year. Other county towns and villages will also receive money from the act.
“Its been a joy,” Delgado said. “It’s a real testament to what government can do.”
Delgado also praised the bipartisan nature of the politicians that were gathered at the press conference, including State Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-51st District, and State Assemblyman Chris Tague, R-102nd District, and said it is how it should be in all forms of government.
“This is a big deal, people,” Delgado said. “We’re able to get real meaningful dollars to our community.”
Delgado also said that they had to make sure “we had flexibility” to get things done with “something more cooperative.”
“I call that direct democracy,” he said.
Delgado spoke on the importance of getting broadband for the county calling it a “basic necessity.”
Ellen Tillapaugh, mayor of Cooperstown, opened the press conference with remarks about the “critical” nature of the money being given by the rescue plan and spoke of the economic hardship that Cooperstown and Otsego County went through as a result of the COVID pandemic. She said that Delgado “delivered the representation and support we need” in being able to get the money for Otsego County.
Throughout the press conference, before and after, people could be overheard optimistically speaking about the rescue plan and the money that the county would be receiving.
“What a great opportunity to come and have some actual good news to report,” Oberacker said, who thanked Delgado for “not forgetting the small communities.”
“We sometimes get lost in the shuffle,” Oberacker said, but that “the little towns today were not forgotten.”
Oberacker said that the “stress level was high” at the county board and that at the press conference “the first thing I saw was smiles.”
“I haven’t seen (the treasuer) this calm,” Oberacker said to appreciative laughter.
Tague praised the “great, great, working relationship” he had with Delgado and echoed the points made by him regarding the bipartisan nature of their relationship.
“Although we come from different political parties, we happen to be friends,” Tague said. “Our job now is to make sure that the money is put in the right place.”
Delgado afterwards visited the Cooperstown Distillery.
For more on his tour information, read next week’s edition of The Freeman’s Journal and Hometown Oneonta.