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Workers whose wages don’t exceed poverty level are like slaves

Saturday, March 16, 2013
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Workers whose wages don’t exceed poverty level are like slaves

Whenever you frequent a fast-food chain, restaurant, hotel, motel, retail store, grocery store, etc., you are relying on the services of low-wage workers. You can claim they are staffed by high school kids, but these places are open beyond after-school hours.

You can assert they should go to college to [get] a better job, but in the end, someone has to work these jobs. So in effect, these workers are sacrificed to subsidize you, the customer.

A $10-an-hour minimum wage would not elevate these workers to middle-class status, but it would reduce exploitation. A side effect is they would have more spending power and not have to rely so much on social services such as food stamps and Medicaid; so, in effect, taxpayers would not have to subsidize them.

If you own a business and cannot afford to pay a living wage to your employees — a wage which puts them above the poverty level — you should not be in business because your business is fundamentally reliant on slave-type labor. You have alternatives. You can lower your take and live with a little less and/or raise prices. If your service is worthwhile, people will pay for it.

People lament they can’t find American-made goods anymore, and many are willing to pay a little more when they do find them. Well, you are buying American services every day. So let’s end the subsidies on both sides and pay a fair wage to our fellow American workers so they can share in the American way of life.

Sandra Natale

Wilton

Taxpayers will win by dissolving Victory

After serving as Victory village mayor for the past four years, I have learned quite a lot about government.

March 19 is an important day for the village of Victory. There are two important issues at hand: electing a new mayor and trustee, and deciding whether to dissolve the village.

One question asked by many is: How much does the village of Victory government really do for its residents? If someone speaks openly on the issue of dissolution, it is important to consider whether they have attended village meetings and whether they are up to date on the issues.

It is important to know the facts surrounding dissolution, and not judge purely on hearsay or gossip heard around the village. In a small village like ours, it is easy to get the message misconstrued. The truth is, the town of Saratoga plowed the village of Victory for a lot less cost years ago, they did a great job and will continue to do so with Bill Lloyd helping them out.

The truth about having local control over your government is really fictional as well: There is not less or more control; town meetings are efficiently run and fair.

Vote yes for dissolution. [It] will make the village a better place with a more efficient form of government.

James M. Sullivan

Schuylerville

Abele can’t be qualified to run animal shelter

On March 19, the Saratoga County Board of Supervisors will appoint Christina M. Abele as the county animal shelter’s new director, despite a groundswell of concerns by local animal organizations and citizens who argue she lacks the necessary experience to successfully manage our new state–of-the-art shelter [March 14 Gazette].

When the former director, Dan Butler, took over the shelter over 30 years ago, he was also young and inexperienced, but the shelter was then a relatively simple operation. Dan developed the shelter from just a temporary warehouse into the complex humane institution it has become.

Today it is a sophisticated institution, designed to match homeless pets to new homes, educate the public about animal care, fight pet overpopulation with spay/neuter programs, and humanely euthanize animals that are a serious threat to the health and well being of our citizens and their pets.

Christina has no experience in managing personnel, budgets, veterinary services, volunteer programs, and public relations at a large county animal shelter. She is a December 2012 graduate of Siena College, where she majored in business, learning the skills to successfully interview for a position. Since July 2010, she volunteered as a dog walker and organized several adoption clinics — not sufficient preparation for the director’s position with a starting salary of over $61,000.

Friends of the Saratoga County Animal Shelter are concerned that the supervisors are not acting in the best interest of the taxpayers, the shelter and, most importantly, the homeless animals. This is not an indictment against this young woman, but if she is the best candidate of those interviewed, the search needs to continue.

Citizens can call, write or email their town supervisor about this situation and attend the March 19 meeting at 4 p.m., Supervisor’s Room, County Clerk’s Office, 40 McMasters, Ballston Spa. See www.saratogacountyny.gov/supervisors.asp.

Sandra D’Ambro

Stillwater

The writer is president of Friends of the Saratoga County Animal Shelter.

Disability programs are too important to cut

Please tell the government not to cut disability programs.

I go to [Schenectady ARC’s] Life Prep. I do not want the government to cut Life Prep.

Carol Doremus

Schenectady

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