Koetzle still never made case for full-time job
After attending three recent forums related to changing the Glenville supervisor’s salary from $19,000 to $83,000, I remain without concrete knowledge as to the justification. In fact, several members of the board insist the supervisor would be taking on none of the current Director of Operations’ (Jamie MacFarland) responsibilities.
Jamie was invaluable related to his 25-plus years of experience and his roles managing HR [Human Resources], coordinating 10-plus departments, and overseeing 100-plus union and civil service employees. However, the position will be eliminated as an unneeded “layer of bureaucracy,” according to [Supervisor Chris] Koetzle.
Mr. Koetzle posted his resume (on Linked In) listing his employment with Baker Public Relations as ending in September. However, when questioned about receiving full-time pay, he said he is on extended leave because he could not “serve two masters.”
Mr. Koetzle is trying to create a career for himself in local politics (with a salary $30,000 higher than the average resident), rather than fulfilling a public service post.
He chastised the public for not understanding how democracy works and stated that the president of the United States is the CEO of this country. If the president tried to give himself a 400 percent increase in salary just days after the election, we would all be saying “hell, no!”
Drinking, snowmobiling are deadly combination
There are a total of 9,991 miles of trails in the state Snowmobile Trail System that come under funding and regulation of the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation [OPRHP]. Last season, there were 116,725 state snowmobile registrations and 1.65 reported accidents per 1,000 registrations, with 14 fatalities.
According to the OPRHP, during the 2012-2013 snowmobile season, the major causes of snowmobile accidents were excessive speed and intoxication. The law states that a snowmobile accident that involves bodily or property damage of $1,000 or more must be reported to the local law enforcement agency and the OPRHP. From my observations of debris left along the trails, I believe there are many accidents that go unreported.
Most of the accidents are attributed to excessive speed, which is also a side effect of intoxication. Risk taking, lack of inhibition, slow reaction time, lack of coordination are all a part of the effect of alcohol on the brain.
The majority of snowmobilers appreciate the sport in a healthy way and enjoy the fresh air, beautiful scenery, and being with friends and family. Yet it only takes one person’s bad choice to ruin the fun forever.
The OPRHP funds snowmobile safety courses each year that are provided by local snowmobile clubs and associations. The OPRHP states that it also supports the International Association of Snowmobile Administrators’ Zero Alcohol Campaign. We also have a new nonprofit group in New York state called “Ride Clean NY,” whose mission is to promote awareness about drinking and riding.
Please pass on the message that speed and alcohol or drugs make snowmobiling dangerous for everyone on the trail. Make sure to take a snowmobile safety course that most clubs sponsor and help support Ride Clean NY, as well as the Zero Alcohol Campaign of New York state OPRHP.
The writer is a credentialed prevention professional for the HFM Prevention Council.
Fund-raiser’s scope widened with natural disasters
I was pleased to see photos of several Dining for Dollars volunteers on the front page Dec. 12, a welcome acknowledgment for the many who donated time and materials to this fund-raiser.
More than 45 volunteers prepared 374 full-course vegetarian lasagna dinners and delivered them to 133 homes across 11 zip codes, most in Schenectady and Saratoga counties.
This is to offer sincere thanks to those hard-working people, and to the businesses that donated or discounted foods that went into Dining for Dollars, including Coffee Diem Coffee Roasting Co., Perreca’s Bakery, Price Chopper, Hannaford Supermarkets and Sam’s Club. We are also grateful to the Social Action Committee at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Schenectady for sponsoring this event.
Dining for Dollars continues because the need for it continues. We originally began seven years ago to support relief efforts on the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina. Since then, we have expanded our efforts to support those affected by other disasters closer to home. While we continue to support ongoing relief efforts in and around New Orleans, we also reach out to neighbors who suffered losses in Hurricanes Irene and Lee and Superstorm Sandy.
As donations come in from this year’s Dining for Dollars project, we plan to send financial support to these valuable community nonprofits: Covenant House, New Orleans; Pray the Word, Say the Word Ministries, New Orleans; St. Tammany Parish Pre-K Program, Covington La.; SALT [Schoharie Area Long Term, Inc.]; and Unitarian Church of All Souls Sandy Relief, New York City. On their behalf, and in the names of all those who volunteer and support Dining for Dollars, we thank the Gazette for acknowledging our efforts.
Ellie von Wellsheim
The writer is Dining for Dollars’ organizer.
Even Obama’s celebrity pals can’t sell ACA
It’s interesting to see that the Obama administration has taken some cues from tobacco executives and illegal drug dealers.
You have a product that will give people a short-term rush, but in the long run is bad for their health and drains the wallet. So the best way to promote it is to distract with deceptions and celebrities touting how cool it is.
Don’t worry about the cost, just sign up for Obamacare and be like the cool people.
Foss told it like it is on repackaged pork
I wish to commend Sara Foss’ Dec. 15 column, wherein she uncovers the “pork” now repackaged as economic development awards. If it walks like a duck...
The dog-and-pony show last week was correctly headlined as a farce. Well done.
I look forward to more of her thoughts and opinions.
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