News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.



Cuomo Dashes Hopes Of Quick End To Crisis


Cuomo Dashes Hopes

Of Quick End To Crisis

Bloomberg Appointed To Lead

Regional Ramp-Up Of Testing

Cuomo at this morning’s briefing.

ALBANY – At today’s briefing, still underway, Governor Cuomo dashed expectations he might outline an end to the State of Emergency lockdown, or that it would happen anytime soon.

He did announce Michael Bloomberg, the billionaire and former presidential candidate, will lead a task force that will guide a multi-state reopening, following a ramp-up of coronavirus testing across New York State.

“We’re not going to have people lose their life because we acted imprudently. I’m not going to do that.  And I’m not going to allow the state to do this,” the governor said.

The End May Be Near! Listen Live To Briefing



He Asks Upstate Hospitals

For Inventory, Just In Case


Governor Cuomo

Upstate communities can breath a sigh of relief.

 National Guard troops will not be taking ventilators from Upstate hospitals for use in downstate hospitals hit hard by coronavirus, the infection that causes COVID-19.

 In an executive order signed today, Governor Cuomo backtracked on statements made Friday about issuing an executive order to requisition medical supplies, including 20 percent of unused ventilators, and having the National Guard help ensure compliance.

 Instead, he issued an executive order that hospitals provide an inventory of such equipment and that the state “may shift any such items not currently needed, or needed in the short term future by a health care facility to be transferred to a facility in urgent need.”


Keep Hands Off Upstate Ventilators


Keep Hands Off

Upstate Ventilators

Here is an example of the ventilator being used for coronavirus patients.

COOPERSTOWN – Three key Republicans representing Otsego County issued a statement today calling Governor Cuomo’s plan to “seize” ventilators and PPE equipment from Upstate hospitals “dangerous” and “just plain wrong.”

They are county Rep. Peter Oberacker, R-Schenevus, who is running to succeed state Sen. Jim Seward, R-Milford, and Assemblymen John Salka, R-Brookfield, whose district includes Oneonta and Cooperstown, and Chris Tague, R-Schoharie, whose district includes Cherry Valley, Roseboom, Decatur and Worcester.

Make The Call. Avert Disaster EDITORIAL

Make The Call.

Avert Disaster

Please, Congressman, Senator, Convince

Governor To Approach Dreams Park Owner

Cooperstown Dreams Park’s decision to cancel the 2020 season was only announced Friday.

Two days before, county Treasurer Allen Ruffles, who chairs the county Emergency Task Force, had called Mike Walter, Dreams Park COO, and received no inkling such an economy-shattering decision was in the making.

It’s not locked in concrete.  It’s not too late to turn it around.

Four men may be able to make it happen.  Congressman Antonio Delgado, D-19, and state Sen.  Jim Seward, R-Milford, should approach Gov. Andrew Cuomo and ask him to intervene with Dreams Park COO Mike Walter to keep the door open to a Dreams Park season this summer.

Cuomo Shut Barber Shops, Salons, ‘Personal Services,’ Effective 8 p.m. Tomorrow

Cuomo Shuts Barber Shops,

Salons, ‘Personal Services,’

Effective 8 p.m. Tomorrow

CDC image of the Coronavirus

ALBANY – As of 8 p.m. Saturday, Governor Cuomo today ordered all barbershops, hair salons, tattoo or piercing parlors, nail salons, hair removal services, and related personal-care services closed, “as these services cannot be provided while maintaining social distance.”

Thursday, he announced portions of retail shopping malls, as well as amusement parks and bowling alleys in the four states would close by 8 p.m. last evening. Earlier in the week, Cuomo limited crowd capacity for social and recreational gatherings to 50 people.






ALBANY – Governor Cuomo announced moments ago that the SUNY System will close all campuses – presumably, including SUNY Oneonta – next Thursday, March 19.

The schools will continue the remote learning model for the remainder of the spring semester, Reuters reported.

Cuomo also said the number of coronavirus cases in New York state has increased to 212 from 173 the day before.

He is also considering cancelling New York City’s famous St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Trump, Cuomo Fail To Break ‘Trusted Traveler’ Deadlock

Trump, Cuomo Fail

To Break ‘Trusted

Traveler’ Deadlock

President Trump and Governor Cuomo were unable to break a deadlock over the “Trusted Traveler” program.

Governor Cuomo visited the White House yesterday but was unable to persuade President Trump to allow New Yorkers back in the federal “Trusted Travel” program.

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf told reporters that Cuomo and Trump held a “productive meeting.” He called the relationship between the state of New York and the federal government an important one but said it “has been made difficult by the unilateral actions of New York State regarding the sharing of critical security information with DHS.”

The Trump Administration announced it was curtailing the program in New York because the “Green Light” Law granting driver’s licenses to illegal aliens and cut off federal access to state DMV records, preventing the U.S. Customs & Border Control Agency from properly vetting “Trusted Traveler” applicants.

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.

CUOMO: ‘Fundamentals That Attracted Amazon Here Remain’

CUOMO: ‘Fundamentals

That Attracted

Amazon Here Remain’

Editor’s Note: Governor Cuomo issued this statement after Amazon announced Thursday, Feb. 14, it is backing out of the 27,000-job HQ2 planned for Long Island City.

Amazon chose to come to New York because we are the capital of the world and the best place to do business.
We competed in and won the most hotly contested national economic development competition in the United States, resulting in at least 25,000-40,000 good-paying jobs for our state and nearly $30
billion dollars in new revenue to fund transit improvements, new housing, schools and countless other quality of life improvements.

On Spending, Pot, LGBTQ Rights, Cuomo Charts Path


On Spending, Pot, LGBTQ Rights, Cuomo Charts Path

Editor’s Note: With Democrats taking control of the state Senate Jan. 1, 2019, Governor Cuomo’s party now controls the state Legislature and his office for the first time in years, prompting him not to wait of the traditional State of the State message, but to issue a first-100-days “Justice Agenda,” a call to action for the state’s Democrats.  Here are the 20 points:

►Ensure a Progressive Tax System, maintaining millionaire’s tax, permanently capping property-tax increases at 2 percent.

►Cut Middle-Class Taxes while Fighting to repeal SALT, the federal limits on state and local deductions.

►Protect Quality, Affordable Health Care by ensuring the health exchange and coverage of pre-existing conditions will be protected at state level.

►Codify Reproductive Rights by passing the Reproductive Health Act and the Comprehensive Contraceptive Coverage Act within 30 days to protect Roe v. Wade protections.

►Enshrine Gender Equality into Law, by passing Equal Rights Amendment to add sex as a protected class.

►Combat Gun Violence, by passing bump-stock ban, extending waiting period to buy a gun from three to 10 days.

►Expand $150 Billion Infrastructure Plan, adding $50 billion for new airports, bridges, train stations across state.

►Ease Traffic in NYC Business District by overhauling Mass Transit Authority.

►Ensure Education Equity by
increasing funding for poor schools.  (A coalition of public educations is seeking a $2 billion increase)

►Pass a Dream Act, to ensure a higher education system that opens the door of opportunity to everyone.

►Launch the Green New Deal,
to make New York’s electricity 100-percent carbon-neutral by 2040 and put state on path to eliminating carbon footprint.

►Ensure Clean, Safe Drinking Water for All, by investing in our water infrastructure and clean our water for our children and our children’s children.

►Improve Our Democracy, by enabling voting by mail, early voting, same-day and automatic voter registration, synchronizing federal and state elections, and make ►Election Day a state holiday to ensure as much participation as possible.

►Increase Trust in the Democratic System, by closing the LLC loophole, banning corporate campaign contributions, overhaul our campaign finance system and ending outside income for lawmakers.

►Protect Public Sector Unions, by expanding protections for public sector labor unions at the local level, and to ensure workers have labor rights in the gig economy.

►Keep Housing Affordable, by reforming rent regulations, including ending vacancy decontrol, repealing preferential rent and limiting capital improvement charges to protect affordable housing and respect tenants’ rights.

►Pass the Child Victims Act, to ensure those who abuse our children are  accountable criminally and civilly.

►Protect LGBTQ Rights, by codify the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act into state law and end conversion therapy.

►Legalize Adult Use of Recreational Marijuana, ending the disproportionate criminalization of one race over another by regulating, legalizing and taxing adult use of recreational marijuana.

►Ensure Fairness in the Criminal Justice System, by ending cash bail and enacting speedy trial and discovery reforms.

From the Governor’s Office – Governor Cuomo outlines the 20 points in his “Justice Agenda” for the first 100 days of Democratic control Dec. 17 at the Roosevelt Institute in Albany.






The Center Will Hold – If You Vote Nov. 6, HOMETOWN ONEONTA,


The Center Will Hold

– If You Vote Nov. 6

As voters – in Otsego County, the 19th Congressional District and nationally – struggle to make the right decision in the Tuesday, Nov. 6, midterm elections, a study, “The Hidden Tribes of America,” surfaces with a conclusion that has been widely commented on nationally:
“A majority of Americans (61 percent), whom we’ve called the ‘Exhausted Majority,’ are fed up by Americans’ polarization. They know we have more in common than that which divides us: our belief in freedom, equality and the pursuit of the American Dream. They share a deep sense of gratitude that they are citizens of the United States. They want us to move past our differences.”
It the past two years, those of us with that sensibility have been screamed at by two sides that, it turns out, are fringes. On the left, “Progressive Activists,” according to the study, are a mere 8 percent of the citizenry; on the right, “Devoted Conservatives” are only 6 percent.
If you consider yourself a centrist, you may believe your views will be overwhelmed at the ballot box. Not so, “Hidden Tribes” tells us; in effect, it’s the wish of a sizeable majority of Americans to find common ground.
This is by way of preamble to this newspaper’s endorsements, below, which are an effort to make recommendations based on the merits, not through any particular political prism.
Be sure to vote Nov. 6 – polls will be open 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. – and vote your conscience. You may be surprised how much you are in sync with the majority of your
fellow Americans. So vote.
As usual, these endorsement editorials appear 10 days before Election Day, to allow you to agree or disagree in next week’s Letter to the Editor columns.
Send letters by noon Monday,
Oct. 29, to
Whether you agree or not, be of good cheer.

Times Says Nixon Beats Cuomo Here


Times Says Nixon

Beats Cuomo Here

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Cynthia Nixon

COOPERSTOWN – The New York Times is reporting Cynthia Nixon has beaten Gov. Andrew Cuomo in the Democratic primary in Otsego County.

The Times says Nixon, the “Sex In The City” TV star, beat Cuomo 1,592 to 1,485 votes here in Otsego County, or 51.7 percent to 48.3 percent.

Statewide, Cuomo was declared the winner more than an hour ago.  Now, with 66 percent of precincts reporting, the governor leads his challenger, 837,870 to 444,398, or 65.3 percent of 34.7 percent, according to The Times.

In Otsego County, Hourly Wage Will Rise To Only $12.50 By 2021

In Otsego County, Hourly Wage

Will Rise To Only $12.50 By 2021

In New York City, Minimum Wage Will Go To $15
Governor Cuomo at budget announcement.
Governor Cuomo at budget announcement.

FROM TODAY’S NEW YORK TIMES:  Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and state legislative leaders announced on Thursday that they had reached a budget agreement that would raise the minimum wage in New York City to $15 by the end of 2018, but initiate slower increases elsewhere, even in the city’s wealthy suburbs.

For Mr. Cuomo, the wage agreement came with clear concessions, as some lawmakers outside the city won a softer phase-in period. Long Island and Westchester County will not reach a $15 wage for nearly six years; areas north of Westchester are assured only of reaching $12.50 by 2021…

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