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News of Otsego County

Michelle Farwell

Despite Democrat Objections, Bliss Relected As Chair

10 AYES Vs. 3 NAYS, ABSTENTION

Despite Democrat

Objections, Bliss

Relected As Chair

Turmoil Over Oberacker’s

Vacancy Continues To Sting

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

David Bliss

COOPERSTOWN – Democratic unhappiness over how state Sen. Peter Oberacker was replaced on the county board spilled over at today’s reorganizational meeting.

County Board Chair David Bliss, R-Cooperstown/Town of Middlefield, was reelected, but the vote was 10-3, plus  one abstention.  And not before Bliss was criticized for partisanship, poor communication and a lack of vision.

“The people of the county deserve a county chair who puts the good of the county above party and does not work the rules for partisan advantage,” said Michelle Farwell, D-Morris, one of two reps speaking out against Bliss’ reelection.

The other was Jill Basile, D-Oneonta, who said, “We saw our lack of transparency, partisanship and poor communications in the appointment of the District 6 representative,” Jennifer Mickle, R-Town of Maryland, who succeeded Oberacker.

Petitions Signed By 3,295 Seek Gun Sanctuary

CLICK HERE FOR 2AS STATEMENT

Petitions Signed

By 3,295 Seek

Gun Sanctuary

Chairman Bliss Refers Issue

To Public Safety Committee

County Rep. Rick Brockway, R-West Laurens, reads a statement from Otsego 2AS this morning asking the county board to create a sanctuary from gun laws. At left is county Board Chair Dave Bliss; at right, Vice Chair Meg Kennedy. The meeting was conducted via Zoom.

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

COOPERSTOWN – The Otsego 2AS movement arrived this morning in the county Board of Representatives’ chambers.

County Rep. Rick Brockway, R-West Laurens, presented petitions on 2AS’ behalf with 3,295 signatures calling on the county board to declare Otsego County a gun-law sanctuary, where the state’s SAFE Act, consider one of the toughest such laws in the country, would not be enforced.

“To be sure, fighting in support of freedom is never easy,” said Brockway, reading a statement provided by 2AS organizers.  “Yet fighting for freedom has always been the preferred side of history.  Which side you are on will soon be revealed.”

Koutnik Votes No On Climate Pledge, Saying It’s Too Weak

Koutnik Votes ‘No’

On ‘Climate Pledge’

Draft As Too Weak

But SWECC Committee, 4-1, Forwards

Compromise Document To Full Board

The Solid Waste & Environmental Concerns Committee of the county Board of Representatives discusses on a “Climate Smart Community Pledge” resolution. County Reps. Keith McCarty, Meg Kennedy and Gary Koutnik, listen to County Planning Director Karen Sullivan.  At right is county Rep. Danny Lapin (Jennifer Hill/AllOTSEGO.com)

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

ONEONTA – Saying the language “was softened,” County board Vice Chair Gary Koutnik, D-Oneonta, today voted against sending a “Climate Smart Community Pledge” resolution, as revised, to the full board for action March 6.

However, his colleagues on the Solid Waste & Environmental Concerns Committee nonetheless agreed to forward the adjusted resolution, 4-1, for the full board’s consideration.

“The language did reduce the  sense of Climate Change being a crisis,” Koutnik said.  “My vote was largely a symbolic one, so it would be in the public record for future generations to see.”

170 PARTICIPANTS HEAR MANY IDEAS FOR FUEL FUTURE

170 PARTICIPANTS

HEAR MANY IDEAS

FOR FUEL FUTURE

Chamber’s Rubin: Exciting Information

Exchanged, But ‘Now The Work Begins’

Concerned Citizens of Oneonta’s Kate O’Donnell, the Hartwick College professor who organized an energy forum in Oneonta two weeks ago, was among today’s attendees. (Jim Kevlin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Heegan
Rubin

COOPERSTOWN – In the end, 170 – up from 125 a week ago, and 155 a couple of days ago – today listened for eight hours to presentations on the United States’ – and Otsego County’s – energy future from some of the most knowledgeable people in New York State.

The venue was the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce’s “Energy Summit:  Energy & The Economy,” which finished up in late afternoon in The Otesaga’s pretty-close-to-full ballroom.

When it was over, Al Rubin, chairman of the chamber’s board, and chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan both said they were pleased by the amount of information the 19 varied presenters delivered in mostly 15-minute segments between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

“This wasn’t about debate,” said Rubin.  “This was about listening to what other people had to say.  This event met and beat our expectations.”  But, he added, “The work begins now.”

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