The unions representing New York state troopers and public school teachers oppose a mandatory vaccination requirement for their members. At the same time, more and more private employers are requiring vaccination by their employees as a condition of continued employment.
Conservatives regularly argue that government should emulate the private sector in its employment practices. A vaccination mandate is a good place to start.
For those state troopers and teachers who choose not to be vaccinated and thereby to ignore the risk they pose to us taxpayers and children with whom they come in contact, I suggest that they have at least two other choices:
About two weeks ago I got a message from the other Tara in my life, Cooperstown Sports Booster Club President Tara Loewenguth, letting me know that despite COVID restrictions I was invited to the annual end-of-year sports banquet.
It wasn’t an unusual text and I politely declined. I don’t do a lot of banquets, but as a Cooperstown booster and after a fun spring of sports coverage, I thought nothing about being invited.
I told Tara it was graduation weekend and I had plans to go somewhere Friday evening to cover one of our small schools.
What happened next I found to be unusual. Tara texted me back and asked if I could call her immediately. It was urgent, she said.
“So, we were hoping to surprise you, but,” she said, and then explained that the other club members had unanimously voted to give me the 2020-2021 Ken Kiser Award for Good Sportsmanship for dedication and commitment to athletics at Cooperstown Central School.
I spent the next couple of days stunned, debating with myself if I could miss a graduation night, and discussing with my family if they wanted to go to a long banquet on a Friday night, while trying to cobble a speech together in my head. I guess if you are at the stage where you are cobbling together a speech in your head, the decision is obvious. And when even the teen agreed to go, I knew it was settled.
COOPERSTOWN — Following last week’s announcement by Gov. Andrew Cuomo that lifted significant COVID-19 restrictions, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum announced Monday, June 21, that tickets will not be needed for free lawn seating for the Wednesday, Sept. 8, induction ceremony.
The ceremony was rescheduled from its traditional last Sunday in July to an event at 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 8, on the grounds of the Clark Sports Center in the town of Middlefield.
The event will celebrate the inductions of Class of 2020 members Derek Jeter, Marvin Miller, Ted Simmons and Larry Walker and will be broadcast live exclusively on MLB Network.
Since 1992, the event has been held on the grounds of the Clark Sports Center, with estimated crowds approaching and surpassing 50,000 at five of the last six ceremonies, from 2014 to 2019. The second-largest crowd on record – an estimated 55,000 people – attended the Hall of Fame’s last induction, July 21, 2019.
YOUTH ART EXHIBIT – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. CCS students present exhibit ‘Young at Art! Inspired by Community’ sharing their experience of community during the pandemic and how art grew their relationships online and at home. On view through June 26. The Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown. 607-547-1400 or visit www.cooperstowncs.org
COOPERSTOWN – The village of Cooperstown will stop enforcing its mask mandate as it waits for the state to rescind Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive orders on the coronavirus pandemic.
The village’s Board of Trustees debated the issue at the end of a three-hour meeting Monday, May 24, in the village board room at 22 Main St., but decided against calling a public hearing on revoking the statute, which was passed in August.
The trustees voted unanimously to remove mask ordinance signs from in and around the village and to relax enforcement of the law. Trustee Richard Sternberg was not at the meeting.
Cooperstown Police Chief Frank Cavalieri said he has heard the executive orders on the pandemic will be revoked July 1.
Because the village needs time to advertise a public hearing, and because there are several already scheduled for the trustees meeting Monday, June 28, Village Attorney Martin Tillapaugh said the trustees could simply take the mask ordinance signs down and let it be known that enforcing it is no longer a priority for village officials. He called it a “tacit acknowledgement.”
The Community Foundation of Otsego County is up and running and wants you to join us as one of our Founders.
We are OF the community, FOR the community, and want to do everything in our power to improve the quality of life for all residents of Otsego County. We also want to live by our values which include taking direction from the community we serve.
The concept of forming a philanthropic organization to serve one’s community is not new. There are over 750 community foundations across the nation. Successful foundations exist in New York counties to our north, east, south and west. The essential difference between a community foundation and a more common private foundation is that we are a public enterprise. Our funding is from our public and our responsibility is to our public – our friends and neighbors.
Many of the successful community foundations in our region of New York have taken decades to grow to the level where they are able to make a difference. Small but sure steps. One dollar at a time, invested so that spending was limited to earnings at the rate of 4 or 5% per year. The early emphasis was on asset building.
This is an important strategy and one that we are working on too. But we want to make a difference NOW. How can we do that?
Our approach is to raise seed capital that we are willing to invest in our community instead of in the stock market. Thus, our Founders Campaign is to secure $2 million. These funds will be used over the next five years, while our other strategy (accumulating investment assets) is pursued to secure our future sustainability.
Ours is a modern model. It borrows from the world of venture capital and private equity. It is founded on the bedrock confidence that our community will support our work. It is responsive to today’s needs.
The formation of Community Foundation of Otsego County is a vitally important step in the health of our county. It is an opportunity for neighbors and friends to join together to work smartly to address issues that need addressing.
We hope that many of you decide to join us as Founders. The amount of your support is up to you. We want broad participation. We have made it easy to join us. Send us a check. Make a five-year pledge (to match our five-year business plan). Donate appreciated stock or real estate. Use your credit card or Pay Pal.
Set up a monthly or annual payment program. Go to our website to get more information (cfotsego.org). Or simply mail us a check to P.O. Box 55, Springfield Center, NY 13468.
How are we doing so far, you ask? Well, our goal is $2 million. Today, we are 90% of the way to that target. Our entire board has joined as Founders as well as more than 100 others.
And are we making a difference now? Absolutely yes!
Our COVID Emergency Fund disbursed $200,000 in 27 awards. We have helped families put food on their tables, provided shelter to homeless individuals, supported over 100 small businesses and much more.
In 2021, we have allocated another $200,000 to meet challenges facing our community.
Please visit our website for details on our award programs.
Will you join us as a Founder? This is a once only opportunity to be part of a group of like-minded friends and neighbors dedicated to creating a force for good in our community.
We deeply believe that caring together makes us stronger together.
The last time the Oshima Brothers were in Cooperstown, they played as the opening act for Caitlin Canty at the Otesaga Resort Hotel and it was a show they said they will never forget.
“It was a beautiful place,” Sean Oshima said during a phone interview the brothers did with Iron String Press on Friday, May 14. “I remember the magnificence of that place.
“I remember the last time we played the show in Cooperstown, we were the opening act, so we played a shorter set before the set from the main artist,” he continued. “They crowd was so great, we ended up playing an encore, which doesn’t usually happen when you are the opening act. It was special.”
Sean and his brother, Jamie, will return to Cooperstown and the Cooperstown Concert Series for a return performance.The show will take place at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 22, in The Otesaga’s ballroom.
It will not only be the first concert series show in more than a year, because of the coronavirus pandemic, but it will also be the brothers’ first show “back on the road.”
“We’re so excited to be back,” Sean said. “We have played a few shows in Maine, but this is the beginning of us getting back to touring.”
Carol Lachance and Mike Lachance were presented with an “Outstanding Seniors of the Community” recognition from the Office of the Aging in an award announced Monday, May 3.
“It is truly an honor and very much a surprise,” Carol said.
The Lachances run the Cooperstown Senior Community Center in the recreation center of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church at 31 Elm St. in Cooperstown. Mike said that he didn’t really expect the award, but he wants to use it to promote the senior center.
“Seniors want to feel that somebody cares about them,” Mike said. “It really revives them.”
COVID-19 has affected everybody, but no group has been as impacted like senior citizens. The pandemic has affected the senior population disproportionately compared to other age groups with 85% of deaths occurring to those 65 or older, according to 2020 statistics from the New York Department of Health.
The center has been taking steps to help seniors affected by the pandemic, including those dealing with increased social isolation.
From: Sochie Nnaemeka and TeAna Taylor. special to the Utica Observer-Dispatch.
There’s no doubt that Albany is undergoing a transformation.
Voters across the state turned out in record numbers to elect Democratic and Working Families champions to the Legislature last year, winning super-majorities in both houses. And this April, the results were made clear: New York passed a budget that provides historic funding to our public school students, tenants, immigrants and Black and brown communities. We legalized cannabis for adults with provisions to ensure the benefits are shared by the communities directly impacted by the drug war. And we finally passed the HALT Solitary Confinement Act to restrict the use of “the box” in prisons and replace it with safe, humane alternatives. Electing progressive leaders is helping to deliver a future for New York rooted in equity and justice.
As we come down the final stretch of the legislative session, our elected leaders must resist complacency and continue to deliver long-overdue changes to our criminal justice systems that New Yorkers have been demanding.
Family members of incarcerated people, community leaders, and criminal justice advocates call on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to grant emergency clemencies to older people in prison and others with compromised immune systems in response to the death of a person incarcerated at Sing Sing Correctional Facility who tested positive for COVID-19 April 3, 2020 outside the prison in Ossining, New York. Juan Mosquero was the first incarcerated person with the virus to die in a state prison.
Cooperstown and SUNY Oneonta track champion Lucy Ford took a step up the coaching ladder this school year.
Ford, a former state champion in high school in the high jump and a former SUNYAC champion in the high jump and heptathlon, accepted a coaching position at Brandeis University, a Division III school in Waltham, Massachusetts in November.
Although the job began in the fall, the season didn’t, as the University Athletic Association canceled winter sports for 2020-2021, because of the coronavirus pandemic.
However, the spring season began last month and Ford told Iron String Press that she is happy with her new position.
“It is going pretty well,” she said. “I am having fun.”
Ford graduated from Cooperstown Central School in 2014 and SUNY Oneonta, where she transferred after beginning college at SUNY Brockport, in 2018. She was an assistant track coach at SUNY Delhi from 2018 to 2020, but the college eliminated most paid sports assistant positions during the pandemic.
He tested positive for Covid -19 on March 2, 2021. He entered the hospital on March 26, suffered a rapid decline, and passed away from the complications of multiple organ failure and sepsis, at Samaritan Hospital in Troy, NY on April 12.
Kenny was born in Tucson, AZ on May 23rd 1982 to parents Ardith L. and Kenneth F. Huemmer, Jr. He graduated from St. Mary’s Catholic School, Oneonta Sr. H.S., and attended Herkimer County Community College. Most recently, he worked for the State of New York, managing an OTB store in Green Island. Kenny, loving the outdoors, was an avid skier, hiker and kayaker.
Standing 6’6” tall, he was known as a “gentle giant”. Ever friendly, always uplifting, he didn’t believe in speaking ill of anyone, always choosing the higher ground. Having lost his father at the tender age of nine, he thought life was too short to waste time on negativity toward others… Indeed, it was.
He was predeceased by his loving father, Kenneth F. Huemmer, Jr. in 1991; his paternal grandparents Kenneth, Sr. and Joan Huemmer; his maternal grandparents Dr. Kent and Jane Lawson.
He is survived by his loving mother and step-father Ardie and Jay Dinga, Oneonta; brother Brett Huemmer, Seattle; step-brothers Zachary Dinga, Dallas and Rocky (Stephanie) Dinga, Bethesda; loving aunts Leila (Roger) Jacobs, Nancy (Peter) Mangione and Ellen (Ken) Huemmer-Harnett, loving girlfriend Jennifer Edwards, as well as many cousins.
The worst pandemic in a century has impacted the daily lives of everybody including farmers markets, which are a staple of the community in Otsego County.
However, some farmers markets, such as the Cooperstown Farmers Market and Richfield Spring Farmers Market, have turned that misfortune into an advantage by implementing new ways of doing business, market officials said.
With increased interest in customers buying local, farmers markets and their vendors have put in place safety regulations and have adapted to the new reality of social distancing by abiding to USDA regulations during the age of COVID.
In order to limit exposure, the Cooperstown Farmers Market, which is operated by Otsego 2000, has established a curbside pickup where customers can order food on their website between 5 p.m. Mondays and 2 p.m. Wednesdays and pick up the order on Saturdays.
Product offerings will be updated every Monday on the website.
Fly Creek’s favorite tourist attraction is seeking new owners.
The Fly Creek Cider Mill, which dates back to 1856 and has been owned by the Michaels family for two generations, closed in January. Co-owner Bill Michaels said at the time that the coronavirus pandemic had hurt sales to the point where it was no longer cost effective to remain open.
“We’ve survived floods. We’ve survived hurricanes, tropical storms, the 2002 recession, the 2009 recession,” Michaels told Iron String Press in January. “We just couldn’t survive the pandemic.”