News of Otsego County

Kim Muller

Trailblazer Awards to be given at Oneonta City Hall

Trailblazer Awards to be given at Oneonta City Hall

STAFF REPORT • Special to

The Trailblazer Awards will be handed out at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 14, at Oneonta City Hall.

Originally, they were supposed to be given out at Damaschke Field but this was changed due to the potential of bad weather.

The award will be given to former mayor Kim Muller, SPCA Director Stacie Haynes, Judge Lucy Bernier and Oneonta High School teacher Cathy Lynch.

Mayor Gary Herzig will be presenting the awards.

“All are encouraged to join us in recognizing four women whose selfless work has made the Oneonta community an even better place to live,” Herzig said in a press release.

Weather permitting, the winners of the award might still be honored at Damaschke field the same day.



Former Mayor, SQSPCA Director Named As Oneonta Trailblazers

Former Mayor, SQSPCA Director

Named As Oneonta Trailblazers


ONEONTA – Former Mayor Kim Muller and Susquehanna SPCA executive director Stacie Haynes were announced as the winners of the 2020 Trailblazer Awards, Mayor Gary Herzig announced this evening.

The annual awards, given in honor of Women’s History Month (March), the Woman Trailblazer Award recognizes a woman in the Oneonta area who has enhanced the visibility and importance of women through her employment, volunteering and community engagement.

NYS Comptroller Urges Dems: ‘Remain Laser Focused’


‘Remain Laser Focused,’

DiNapoli Tells Democrats

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, who keynoted last evening’s county Democratic annual dinner, urged the party faithful to focus “laser-focused” on the presidential election in November 2020.  “My fear it that we will make the mistake again of looking for perfection,” he said, “and in the end it will hurt us … Reach outside your comfort zone of your support base and don’t just talk to people who agree with you.”   Above, DiNapoli chats with, from left, Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig; Caitlin Ogden, who is running for county board in the Otego-Laurens district, and former Oneonta Mayor Kim Muller during the social hour at SUNY Oneonta’s Hunt Union Ballroom.  “Our county us poor: 25 percent of children in Otsego County live below the poverty line,” Herzig said in his welcome. “…We must remain focused on the concerns of the people we serve, because too many times those who elect us cannot meet their own basic needs.”  County Democratic Chairman Aimee Swan, inset, said local Democrats are on the march: “We are energized. Many of our meetings are standing room only. We are seeing record-breaking attendance.  Local Democrat turnout has doubled since we turned Faso out.”  Congressman John Faso lost the 19th District seat to Democrat Antonio Delgado last November.  (Ian Austin/

Transit Hub Planning Study On Common Council Agenda

Transit Hub Planning Study

On Common Council Agenda

Separately, DRI Grant Approvals Due In Early March

ONEONTA – Common Council will be asked to approve a $155,000 contract for planning a transit hub around the Downtown Parking Deck when it meets at 7 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall.

Paid for with state money available through the DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative), the contract will be with Wendel, a consulting firm in Williamsville, the Buffalo suburb, for a Transit Hub Conceptual Planning Study.

Ethics Board Chair Kim Muller Resigns


Ethics Board Chair

Kim Muller Resigns

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Kim Muller

ONEONTA – A year and a month since it was revived and with no cases heard yet, the Otsego County Board of Ethics has suffered another setback.

Its chairman, Kim Muller, the former Oneonta mayor who recently stepped down at Otsego County Democratic chair, has advised county board Chair David Bliss, R-Cooperstown/Town of Middlefield, that she will depart when her term expired at the end of this month.

“My professional obligations are likely to become an impediment for scheduling Committee meetings moving forward,” she said in an e-mail to Bliss.

County Ethics Board Begins To Develop Procedure

County’s Ethics Board

Developing Procedures


ONEONTA – Otsego County is close to gaining an ethics board.

Otsego County Ethics Board members Kim Muller, Michelle Canton and Brett Holleran met Monday at 5 p.m. to hammer out some details. The board is tasked with investigating and ruling on violations committed by any Otsego County employee as well as any elected or appointed official working for Otsego County

“Before we can accept any complaint of an ethics violation, we need to decide how we will deal with the complaint,” Muller said. “Today, we are working on the standard operating procedures.”

Kim Muller Takes The Helm Of County Democratic Party

Kim Muller Takes The Helm

Of County Democratic Party

Former Oneonta mayor Kim Muller addresses the Otsego County Democratic Committee after her election to the chair last evening in Cooperstown Village Hall.  At right is Hank Nicols, former county chair and secretary of the caucus.  At left are Aimee Swan, Oneonta, the party’s female vice chair, and and Dennis Laughlin, the Cherry Valley lawyer, who served as male vice chair for the meeting, where Andrew Stammel, Oneonta, was elected to the position.  (Photo courtesy Jim Dean)
Democrats Elect New Chair

Before Electing New Chair,

Democrats Debate Finances

The Democratic County Committee meets this evening at Cooperstown Village Hall to elect former Oneonta mayor Kim Muller as its chair.   But first, committee members closed the doors to the public and debated finances for an hour and a half – a discussion still underway at this hour – although Muller’s elevation was still on the agenda.  Democratic Vice Chairman Dennis Laughlin presided; also at the front table is Hank Nicols, secretary.  (Parker Fish/
Otsego County Women Marching On The Mall


Otsego County Women

Marching On The Mall

Oneonta’s former mayor Kim Muller, left, a member of the state Democratic Committee, ran into U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY, this morning on the National Mall, where women (and men) from all over the country are gathering for the Women’s March on the Washington, to express concern about how President Donald Trump will handle women’s health, environmental and civic rights issues. (Keep checking back with, where photos will be uploaded as they arrived from the Nation’s Capital and local protests.)

Oneonta’s Red Caboose Closing After 4-Year Run In Downtown

Oneonta’s Red Caboose Closing

After 4-Year Run In Downtown

The Red Caboose in downtown Oneonta is hosting its own farewell party at 6 this evening.

ONEONTA – The Red Caboose on Muller Plaza is planning a farewell party at 6 this evening, after announcing on its Facebook page earlier this week that it is closing after a four-year run.

The proprietor is Tim Masterjohn, son-in-law of former mayor Kim Muller, who previously had been in the restaurant business in Washington D.C.

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