Charter change will bring additional costs
As the Saratoga Springs City Council begins the challenge of putting together a 2021 city budget in the midst of a pandemic and national economic crisis, it will have to keep in mind the additional spending the city will be required to do if the charter proposal to change to a city manager and ward system passes this November.
While a city manager would not be officially hired until the new charter takes effect in January 2022, the search for this new hire will have to take place during 2021 and be done by the current City Council.
The City Council members could try to take on this task themselves (in addition to their other duties and responsibilities), but most municipalities find they need the assistance of professional search firms to find and evaluate the best candidates. Those costs typically run from $25,000 to $30,000, plus travel expenses.
The proposed charter also requires the city to appoint and fund two task forces: First, a Charter Transition Task Force, including counsel, to actually plan the new government; and, second, a Reapportionment Commission which can hire staff and have a budget to review the 2020 census data and draw ward boundaries.
The task of crafting a budget for 2021 in the midst of the uncertainty of the pandemic and the national economic crisis is daunting for our city, especially knowing that significant additional funding will have to be found if the charter change proposal passes in November.
Police have advantage over unarmed citizens
Several letters to the editor of The Daily Gazette have appeared in recent days objecting to the publication of a cartoon in the Aug. 31 edition of the newspaper.
The four-panel cartoon depicted a police officer shooting someone with the words “You have the right to remain silent” spread among the panels.
I fully understand that not all law enforcement agents routinely ignore suspects’ rights in a cavalier fashion. But lately it has become evident that there have been many instances from coast to coast across this country in which individuals’ rights have been appallingly ignored by those in uniform, and cruel punishments imposed, sometimes resulting in death.
And all too often, this has occurred when the individual was unarmed. Are there “good cops”? Absolutely. But let’s be clear: Unless an individual accosts or threatens a law enforcement officer with a weapon, who has the upper hand? The answer is simple: the one with the gun.
Downtown turn lane arrows are confusing
In downtown Schenectady, where Broadway meets State Street, next to Bow-Tie Cinemas, the right hand lane has a painted right turn (only) arrow. But the arrow in the stop light above allows a left hand turn from both approaching lanes.
There doesn’t appear to be two lanes to turn onto on State Street. Which is it? Is the right turn lane to be used for right turns only, or can it be used for a left turn, ignoring the painted arrow on the pavement?
Support Republicans to end the rioting
The president defeated Republicans, then Democrats, and under adverse conditions he improved the economy, jobs out of this world, military increased, raised minimum wage and tax breaks.
We were moving in the right direction until COVID-19, but he also jumped to contain it.
He bailed out New York, which spent our tax dollars on travel to Puerto Rico and sending crews to restore power.
Gov. Cuomo didn’t have enough machines; the president got them here to save lives. All Democratic states have rioters, causing havoc. Mayors and governors are supporting them, BLM and Antifa.
I don’t think you want to support people burning private property or defunding the police. You would have no law and order; you’d have to defend yourself.
The Democrats did nothing. Why? The police were told stand down. Instead, they were arresting people defending their property and they took their guns, which is unconstitutional.
Is this how you want to live? I don’t.
The New World Order wants Trump out so they can run rampant.
If Trump loses and we can’t regain Congress and the Senate another four years, riots will continue. Vote Republican across the board.
Claude Rizzicone, Jr.