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Dana Levinson

Despite Student Outcry, Council Passes Fines For Party Hosts

Despite Student Outcry,

Council Passes Host Fines

James Kavanaugh, SUNY senior and president of the Inter-Fraternity Council at SUNY Oneonta, says that if Common Council fines people for providing alcohol to minors, there will be “unintended consequences,” including drinking in public spaces. (Parker Fish/AllOTSEGO.com)

By PARKER FISH • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

ONEONTA – Despite Hartwick College and SUNY Oneonta students protesting that the “Social Hosting” law could have “unintended consequences,” Common Council voted unanimously to pass a law which would create a fine of up to $1000 for any person holding a party or social gathering where minors were found to be consuming alcohol or using other illicit drugs.

“I’m concerned that many students at both Oneonta and Hartwick will start drinking in other places,” said James Kavanaugh, a SUNY senior and president of the Inter-fraternity Council at SUNY Oneonta. “God forbid someone were to fall off Table Rock after drinking a little bit. I believe that there could be unintended consequences if [the council] were to vote yes on this resolution.”

Foxes, Skunks Concern Center City Neighbors

Foxes, Skunks Concern

Center City Neighbors

Patricia Crow asked Common Council to consider hiring a wildlife expert after she saw a fox running loose in her Center City neighborhood (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
Police Chief Doug Brenner warned that if citizens see a sick animal not to approach it, but to instead call police or the DEC.

ONEONTA – Patricia Crow, 14 Myrtle Ave, told Oneonta Common Council that she spotted a fox near her home in Center City on Thursday, Sept. 14.

“I clearly sighted a fox traveling across my neighbor’s back yard.” she said. “Never in my nearly 70 years have I seen a fox in Center City.”

Though she warned that foxes were “not safe for the citizens of Oneonta,” The Humane Society says that foxes are not considered dangerous and are generally scared of humans, especially if they make a loud noise. Dogs and adult cats are generally safe from foxes, but kittens, rabbits and other small animals could be considered prey and should be kept inside.

However, Police Chief Doug Brenner says there has been an “uptick” in sick animals, namely skunks, including four in one week. “These animals were not well,” he said. “They were rolling in the street.”

YMCA Parks Program Cut From City Budget Talks
2 COUNCIL MEMBERS DECRY ‘BABYSITTING

Y’s Summer Parks Program

Removed From City Budget

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Council Member Dana Levinson, Fifth Ward, pleads with Council to keep funding the YMCA's summer Parks Program during tonight's budget workshop.  Behind her, from front, are Council member Joe Ficano, John Rafter and Russ Southard.   (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
Council Member Dana Levinson, Fifth Ward, pleads with Council to keep funding the YMCA’s summer Parks Program during tonight’s budget workshop.  Behind her, from front, are Council member Joe Ficano, John Rafter and Russ Southard.   (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

ONEONTA – The YMCA Parks Program is on the chopping block to help closed a $338,067 gap already reduced from $2 million in the $15.2 million budget target Common Council is seeking to keep taxes stable in 2017.

“We’re not a babysitting service,” said Council member Paul van der Sommen, First Ward.  “We can’t justify the cost.”

The Y’s Parks Program offered kids two sets of supervised activities; in the morning at Neahwa Park and afternoon at the Wilber Park pool, for $10 a week per child for city residents.  The city paid the Y $22,000 this year to run the eight-week program, but the Y found that it was unable to keep up with the cost of whole-day staffing, and cut the program back to just the morning.

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