Aaron Woolf Finds His Heritage in Visit to Arcade Antique Shop

Aaron Woolf Finds His Heritage in Visit to Arcade Antique Shop
Democrat Continues Race to the End Despite Polls and Pundits

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Palin Video Renews Speculation

A Labor Day weekend event in Iowa is said to the line of demarcation for Sarah Palin...the fish or cut bait moment when she has to declare if she is in or out..
The release of a very slick video and other clues is leading some politicos like Karl Rove to speculate that Palin will fun for the if Presidency. I still say not, but if Rick Perry can climb to frontrunner just for saying "I'm here", there must be a hankering for more candidates.
The Rockefeller Republican in the race, Jon Huntsman, is getting more aggressive in trying to carve a candidacy out of the middle of the road.....Mitt Romney is waiting till the Iowa dust settles...Bachmann got no straw poll bounce and is floundering.
If people like Rove thinks she is in, that's an opinion worth listening to.....but from my end of the street I don't see it happening.
Sarah Palin releases video of Iowa trip - Dan Hirschhorn - POLITICO.com

WDT: It's Today's Lead...But It's Been Coming for a While Now

The phenomenon of rising pension contributions for school districts and local governments is not breaking news. Its been known for at least two years the contribution rates would rise due to retiring boomers, a shaky investment market, and a spate of pension enhancements in the past twenty years.
The state retirement system services all state and local employees and while the contribution rates for teachers is rising, the rates for other classes of employees is rising too.
Police and fire workers will by 2015 require contributions over 30%....The reason is that in this defined benefit system, employees are guaranteed their pension amounts and the ability to pay current obligations drives current contributions. There is no pot of money sitting there. It's an inter-generational insurance program with whomever is working now obligated to pay whatever it takes to sustain current payments going out.
There is an investment pool and the state system is not nearly as wobbly as Social Security.
This is the case for shifting to a defined contribution system for future employees. Paying out the current benefit pool would still place a stiff upward pressure on local property taxes, but at least there would be an end in sight...
Its doubtful that type of system could be enacted in Albany, and the Governor has proposed a "tier six" plan raising retirement ages and mandating employee contributions.
To their credit, our city administrators long ago made this pending hike known in the form of five year projections. That bubble will have to be managed, but long term some kind of reform is needed.



Watertown Daily Times School district pension contribution reaches into double digits for 2011-12

Owens and BeBe Confer

I hadn't heard about Rep. Bill Owens trip to Israel. What was that all about ? Better there than the Horn of Africa...too much suffering there.....A better trip would have been to Monaco, to find out how all those rich people with corporate jets are living.
Congressman visits Israel » Local News » Press-Republican

Qaddafi’s Hold in Tripoli in Doubt as Rebels Advance - NYTimes.com

Is Qaddafi on his way out ? Months of bombing may be on the verge of toppling the long time Libyan strongman, as rebel forces aided by a US backed air war are said to be closing in on Tripoli.
We don't know if the new bosses will be any different fromt he old bosses.....And news of Qaddafi's demise has been floated before.
Qaddafi’s Hold in Tripoli in Doubt as Rebels Advance - NYTimes.com

Taxes, Test Scores, Nah.....It's Bedbugs We Need to Address

All politics is local. With all the school districts we have up here, I have never heard of anyone upset over bedbugs in schools. In NYC, a City Council member is demanding the school system do something about it.
I take it you don't have to have beds to have bedbugs. The NYC Council has 50 members who all make six figure salaries, so there is plenty of opportunity to raise issues like bedbugs.
Calling DOE ‘cheap,’ councilwoman demands bedbug answers GothamSchools

Friday, August 19, 2011

Jobs Available

I noticed the City job listings now include the two positions City Council approved for the soon independent Parks and Recreation Department. If you are not so inclined there is also a bus driver job and an engineering job.
Watertown, NY - Official Website - Job Opportunities

MSM: FLASH...Obama Wears Jeans on Shopping Trip

Lots of high paid journalists are reduced this week to reporting on what pants the President is wearing or what flavor ice cream his daughters ordered...The good news is that they too get to spend 10 days on Martha's Vineyard on expense account.
Its POTUS vacation week and America gets to see how the other half lives...Celebrity politicians and celebrity journalists all in one idyllic spot.
Obama rocks dad jeans again - CLICK - POLITICO.com

WDT: Journalists Get a Kick Out of Me at Presser

Times scribe Brian Amaral reports a few people in his newsroom "got a kick" out of me showing up at Senator Schumer's presser in Croghan.
The reporter says it was part of my "charm offensive" aimed at reelection.  
Actually, my record suggests I am one to show up at events. Like Memorial Day services at the Legion, retirement dinners for senior staff, lots of meetings, ribbon cuttings, chamber dinners, private meetings not written about here. The Croghan event was enjoyable. I ran into old friends like the Merrills and several other Lewis County folks. Also got to visit with my friend Tammy. We had both met Senator Schumer in 1998 in White Plains when he was first seeking the office then held by Senator Alfonse D'Amato. Over the years, I have developed many relationships around the state. I value them. Candidly, if the event had been in other places 45 minutes away like Gouverneur or Harrisville, I wouldn't have gone.
It was a great way to see friends and be a political tourist on a gorgeous summer day in Lewis County. I also learned first hand about an issue (DEC heavy handed ness) that I was able to use as an example in discussions Monday in Potsdam.
I have travel plans for this weekend too. I will try to snap a photo or two.
Watertown Daily Times Graham's barnstorming takes him to Lewis County

My Day in Potsdam

     Today was Friday, so it was a trip to Potsdam for your intrepid mayor....another meeting of Governor Cuomo's North Country Economic Development Council.  I will tell you the construction delays on Route 11 almost make you want to put one of those I-98 lapel pins on....Almost, I said....Way too expensive.
     Today's session was interesting...The seating was a U-shaped table...It seems the east enders (Plattsburgh) were on one side and the Watertown-centric crowd on the other (except the Adirondack lady who talked about renewable energy and growing our own food...She was on our side.)
     I won't talk about what was said as while I think it was all pretty generic, the LG kept that part of the session closed and I respect that.
     Anyway, these things are supposed to drive Governor Cuomo's remake of the state's economic development effort. It seems to be taking some shape and I had a good time there today. It's important for the City of Watertown to have a seat at the table and be on the radar of those in Albany, so I am glad to take the time to participate...
     I will say one thing...The SUNY system must be flush because they don't spare the horses on the A/C....Going green stops at the door up there.

Palin State Fair Video Coming Out...

Maybe its all a tease, or maybe its the real deal, but Sarah Palin just can't take her self out or put her self in the 2012 Presidential race.....Now she is out with a video of her visit to the Iowa State Fair.
Ms. Palin has also been on TV a lot talking about issues and her differences with other candidates......Maybe that billboard on Fort Pearl will be useful after all...Either way its too much hassle to take down, so it stays up for a while.
Sarah Palin releases video of Iowa trip - Dan Hirschhorn - POLITICO.com

Giffords Asks FEC to Use Campaign Funds for Security

Use it for whatever you want....Take a vacation...have dinner (s), buy some new clothes...You earned it Gabby.
Giffords Asks FEC to Use Campaign Funds for Security - Hotline On Call#more#more#more

Everybody Needs a Break from Bad News..Including the President

Another 400 point drop in the Dow and the jitters sweep the country...or at least the talking heads....
But should the President cancel his vacation ?
The GOP says the Martha's Vineyard holiday is too showy...to out of touch with the weekend at Wescott's Beach that the little people take...Some are saying those with the means should not live well or vacation well...They should stay home in solidarity with the down and out.
Optics, they call it in politics.
But what about all the people who make money off vacations ? The hotels, restaurants, other attractions. Remember when the President scolded America for spending time on Las Vegas and Vegas got mad...That's there living.
Good for those making a buck off the President's ritzy vacation, as they won't have to wait for the President's jobs speech slated for September.
World markets continue their sell-off Friday - Aug. 19, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Look What We Did for You

The game worked....Let the Port Authority leak toll hike proposals sure to upset someone....and then the Governors of NY and NJ announce what the real hikes will be and everyone says....."whew....that was a close one."
Its a great country.
Gov. Cuomo & New Jersey Gov. Christie sign of on $1.50 hike for Port Authority tolls - NYPOST.com

Schumer to Bat for Croghan in Fight With DEC

    It was a beautiful day to be in Lewis County....In Croghan on the shores of the Beaver River.
    By lowering the height of the dam, the water power is gone and homeowners upstream are left with mud as waterfront.
    Today Senator Chuck Schumer was there to rail against the DEC and pledge to lobby the Governor to do something about it.
    It was a trip back in time to see the sawmill run by belts and pulleys.  The good solid salt of the earth people....And while the Senator's appearance was a great photo op, the people there appreciated the attention they hope will solve their problem.
   

More Gay Marriage News....POTUS Gets Away From It All.....and Another Trip This Week

-In the news....Two North Country lawmakers have family members who took advantage of the new same sex marriage law...The Members of Assembly were from the Plattsburgh area....The next battle is over repealing the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which Rep. Bill Owens has signed on to the effort to do. I thought the issue was over with....By the way, five SSM's have been performed at City Hall with no unraveling of society noted to date.
-Meanwhile the President is off to Martha's Vineyard for a celebrity filled ten days of R & R after having to spend three days in that bus driving through places he wouldn't want to vacation.
-And tomorrow I get to travel to Potsdam again for a meeting of the Governor's North Country Economic Development Council...Its the third trip this month as many meetings are in the pipeline between now and November. Recently, my opponent in the election joked I should spend as much time as possible in Potsdam as it would impede campaigning....If it does some good for the local economy, I will do so gladly, regardless of the political consequences.
Besides, I am banking on the public opting for someone who is "getting the job done..." Oh wait, that's my slogan , isn't it !
Local Assemblywomen’s family members wed in same-sex ceremonies - AdirondackDailyEnterprise.com News, Sports, Jobs, Saranac Lake region — Adirondack Daily Enterprise

WDT: Schumer in Croghan Today..Needs to Stop and See Tammy !

Senator Chuck Schumer will be in Croghan today....That's right, Croghan, home of the Maple Museum, Croghan Bologna, and the Wicked Ways Tavern owned by my old friend Tammy Bramhall.
Senator Schumer is there to discuss the dam that is always in the news. Mr. Schumer might remember Tammy from 1998 at the Crowne Plaza in White Plains. While having dinner prior to an Indy Party convention, Senate candidate Schumer came over and sat at our table. I think John Moore was there too. 
The Senator needs to stop at the Wicked Ways on his trip through the sleepy Lewis County village. Tammy is on duty at the tavern till 5.....
Watertown Daily Times Sen. Chuck Schumer will discuss Croghan dam Thursday

WDT: Fur Flies in Maple City over Housing Flap

Wow, this guy is putting himself on the line. The city planner in Ogdensburg got up at a Council meeting and called City Manager Art Sciorra a liar....All over the handling of a tax sale house that was rehabilitated while the family living in it is said to have lived rent free.
The manager says there are many details of city government he is not aware of and that emails from the planner went unread.
This is a headache not needed by Mayor Bill Nelson, who suddenly has an opponent in his reelection bid.
While the planners charges are serious (calling someone a liar is about the worst), the manager's comments about the house "being just another address" are curious too, as the Maple City has but 12,000 residents and you would think a three year controversy would be on his radar.
Watertown Daily Times Ogdensburg city planner calls for investigation into rent-free deal

WDT: $20 M Project in City a Go

A $20million, 96 unit housing project has cleared its final hurdle and construction will now begin on Creekwood Apartments on the City's northern edge. Norstar Development will build the project on land adjacent to Seaway Shopping Plaza and near the Starwood complex already built by the firm. This is the third major development the City and Norstar have teamed up on.
It was a complicated deal that involved DANC and the Watertown Local Development Corporation, among others.
Watertown Daily Times Creek Wood Apartments construction to begin on Watertown’s north side

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Danica Becomes Good Old Boy in 2012

Gonna be some serious money made by Danica Patrick now that she is going full time to NASCAR next year....She will compete in the Nationwide Series before going to Cup series in 2013.
The talented driver is a media sensation and the marketing possibilities are endless...She already has her Go Daddy spots in every commercial break during race coverage. Her value is she increases the size of the pie by bringing in new fans and followers...
Life is about talent and skill, but lets face it, looks are the tiebreaker that takes you to the next level.....Its show biz.
NASCAR - Danica Patrick to NASCAR a win-win - ESPN

WDT: Dems Rally With Phone Strikers

I honked my horn on the way to Pete's....Does that count ?
Watertown Daily Times Dems, including 2 county Leg candidates, walk with Verizon workers

Bachmann: I'll get gas under $2

If its OK for politicians to promise to "create" jobs, then I guess its OK to defy the rules of the market and pledge you will get gas under $2 a gallon if elected.
Get these people out on their bus tours and town hall meetings and they will say anything...The silly season is now year round.
Bachmann: I'll get gas under $2 - Dan Berman and Molly Ball - POLITICO.com

Mailman Brings Greetings from the State of NY

    Wow, that's service, even if he didn't have anything to do with it...Today the mailman delivered my $1400 check from NYS for overcharged fees for cigarettes licensing from 2009 and 2010. 
    Yesterday Attorney General Eric Schneiderman was in town and today my check came....I had carped here about social justice for small business. I will just assume that nice Asst. AG, Ms. Nelson,  got something done.
     Anyway, while $1400 is not a lot of money to many, for a middle class guy like me its a nice little extra during the dog days of summer.

President Obama's Canadian-made Bus

Promising jobs for Americans and riding in his custom, rock-star, Canadian-built bus dubbed "Greyhound One", President Obama continues his three day dog and pony show. Now the White House says Mr. Obama will make a "major" speech on jobs when he returns from his three state tour.....He has to fit the speech in before he leaves for his multi-million dollar vacation in Martha's Vineyard.
Jobs result from entrpreneurs taking risks, investing capital and working hard. The President is just the latest in a long series of pols purporting to "run" the economy...Now the economy is not bending to his will because his policies are the antithesis of what leads to growth. The answer...Summon the MSM for another speech.
Its a nice bus.
President Obama on Midwest tour with bus made in Canada - NYPOST.com

WDT: Cape Voting Law Won't Stand...But Effort Did Raise the Issue

Its no surprise an attempt to maintain the purity of the voting pool in Cape Vincent is going nowhere...The Town Board had sought to make voters show ID with a Cape address to vote in this year's municipal elections. The idea was to combat what some see as undo meddling in town affairs by seasonal residents who are registering to vote in Jefferson County perhaps in hopes of electing anti wind board members.
The resolution passed by the board never really had the force of law, but was more an effort to publicize the registrations in hopes of making the election an us against them vote.
Election officials and now Attorney General Schneiderman have dismissed the effort as something the Town cannot do.
However, those who want pro-wind board members so that local property owners can cash out have raised an issue. They can use that issue to perhaps stimulate turnout of their flock. In that sense the board's resolution accomplished its goal.
Watertown Daily Times Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Who Are These Women ? Downstate Elites Pick Media Power Girls

Here's something Attorney General Schneiderman can launch a probe of....New York Observer has published its list of 50 Media Power Bachelorettes, and Liz Benjamin is prominent in her absence from the list.
I am not pandering, as there are few women who wield her influence over politics and government. Just how is this list put together ? The AG needs to look into this, and force the Observer into a consent decree and a cash settlement.
There are lots of YNN women who should have made the list, but I guess you have to work for Bloomberg News or the Village Voice to make an impression on these elitists.
Maybe there should be an upstate Media Power Bachelorettes list put together by a more down to earth paper like the Buffalo News.
The Free Agent List: 2011′s 50 Media Power Bachelorettes The New York Observer

Thoughtful Students Tell What They Love About Life in Watertown

   Today I got a very nice and thoughtful collage from Mrs. Bird's students at Wiley School in Watertown.  It was a collection of all the things students like about the North Country along with some wonderful hand written notes.
   I look forward to sharing them with City Council at the next meeting.

Schneiderman Cries Foul Over Predatory Lending Aimed at Soldiers

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman stayed on message today at a press conference in Watertown...He talked about an effort to crack down on predatory lending targeted at soldiers.
Mr. Schneiderman made his first visit to the Watertown AG office today.
Several community and Fort Drum leaders were on hand.

Busy Afternoon...Then I Get to Work Tonight at Fort Pearl.

   Busy day coming up...as CNN comes to City Hall as part of a story they are doing on the tenth anniversary of 9/11.
   I think the thrust is on the mood of the lingering wars as seen from a military town. I know they are visiting Indian River Schools today too.
    I really wanted to get over to the SOB to meet Attorney General Eric Schneiderman who is in town today, but I have a Board of Audit meeting at the same time, and another meeting after that.
     I just finished looking over a study done on the three pools operated by the City, and its clear there will have to be some decisions on those made at some point...
     Today the Civil Service Commission meets to approve new job descriptions for Parks and Recreation Superintendent and Recreation Program Manager.  The two jobs head up a newly realigned department. I was looking over the minimum qualifications and criteria and they seem to strike the right balance.
     Later in the day, I am going out to help someone with their independent line petitions as those are due next week.
    

Radical overhaul of military retirement eyed - CBS News

Along comes recommendations on reforming the military pension system.....and quickly the opposition mounts...The current defined benefit system pays off for those who serve at least 20 years, and a proposal has been floated to adopt a 401-k style plan with defined contribution that would allow those with less service to walk away with something, but critics say recruitment and retention will suffer as signing up to fight wars is not the same kind of career choice as being a private sector office or factory worker.
Big ideas will be needed to solve the deficit problem as debates like the recent one in Congress are a joke. Changes to the systems that drive costs are needed and pension plans are big drivers in the public sector.
Radical overhaul of military retirement eyed - CBS News

Ritchie Wonders If Amish Should Get a Pass on Tax Filings

So Amish people are complaining about the State's ominous letters about filing their taxes electronically. Seems they don't have computers.
The State of NY is in a big push to halt business owners from filing sales tax by mail, but its an interesting point on whether a lifestyle sans computers should exempt you from the new way of doing things.
ONE SIZE WON’T FIT ALL New York State Senate

Dumb Debate Over Love of Country Catches On

    Watching Morning Joe and today's faux outrage is over someone asking Governor Rick Perry is he thinks President Obama loves America.  Mr. Perry responded, "why don't you ask him ?"
      It was a stupid gotcha question and Perry gave an appropriate response.
      The AM chatter on MSNBC was about how insulting this was to the President.
       What is obvious is that the liberal MSM has to get into gear in the effort to portray Perry as a cowboy, racist, swaggering Texan who by the way reminds us all of George W. Bush.  (It does look like Perry could topple Mitt Romney who front-runner status looks like a house of cards).
        Meanwhile on FOX and Friends they were chirping about some video in which a Tea Party activist confronted the President over a Joe Biden remark about the Tea Party being budget terrorists.
        If the President has to explain VP Biden's utterances, well that's a full time job.
        Cable news makes mountains out of mole hills 24/7.

WDT: Council Bids Best Wishes to St. Croix On His Retirement

City Council took time out last night to thank Parks and Recreation Superintendent Jayme St. Croix as he retired after 36 years in the city's employ. Mr. St. Croix was lauded for his committment to working with a generation of young people running programs for many sports.
Today the Civil Service Commission meets to consider job descriptions for a reorganized Parks department and if approved, it is hoped to have top spots in the department filled by the end of September.
Meanwhile long time buildings and grounds supervisor John VanBrocklin runs the day to day operations until the new boss is hired.
Watertown Daily Times Longtime parks superintendent retires after 25 years

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Sackets Hops Spot

I was talking to the owner of the Hops Spot the other night at the Zoo event, and it seems like the kind of place I'd make a point to visit the next time I am in Sackets. Great concept and nice people....
The Sackets Hops Spot

Don't Look for a Casino in the Near Future

Senator Ritchie's survey on casino gambling will show a majority opposed and that will fit with the position she needs to take with the people of substance, virtue and vision.
There really isn't a fair way to grant non-Indian casinos as a handful of rich businessmen will get the franchise, and small mom and pops will be in the cold...Of course, that's the natural order of things in Oneida County where the Indians reign.
Just allow slots in convenience stores, bars and fraternal clubs and the children will get the education they deserve.
Of course, that's a facetious remark and in no way reflects my true feelings.
Anyway, allowing such things would require and amendment to the State Constitution and that doesn't happen overnight....

WDT: Southpaw AG Visits NNY

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman visits the North Country tomorrow....Among the questions I would ask is the inmate census count which he advocated in the State Senate when he was there....The tally of criminals in their hometown of NYC will systematically lesson upstate representation...
Not that such things would motivate a crusader for social justice.
Although its peculiar to my industry, I would as a matter of curiosity, be interested in the state's collection of cigarette license fees in contradiction of a court order and now their systematic refusal to refund the money now that the Legislature has reduced the amounts owed.
Mr. Schneiderman....the rule of law please.
Small business owners need a little justice too.
Watertown Daily Times AG to visit Watertown

Dicker: Andy May Take a Back Seat to Hillary in 2016

The great thing about idle speculation is there is no consequence to being wrong...So this morning's Dicker piece carrying speculation that Andrew Cuomo's 2016 presidential plans will have to take a back seat to a resurgent Hillary for President effort....well that's great speculation from on of the better talking heads...former PA Governor Ed Rendell.
Rendell even blows out a Cuomo for VP run as the 12th Amendment forbids electors from voting for a presidential and vice presidential candidate from the same state....Both Secretary Clinton and Governor Cuomo live in Westchester County.
I don't think Mrs Clinton runs in 2016, but with President Obama's approval rating now at 39%, she may want to consider 2012.
Meanwhile on the GOP side, there seems a boom for Governor Rick Perry, perhaps because no one was overjoyed with the purported front runner, Mitt Romney, and most experts still don't thing Michele Bachmann can win a general election campaign.
Top Democrat says Hillary will be party's presidential nominee in 2016 - NYPOST.com

Wild boars go hog-wild as upstate threat - Times Union

New York's latest invasive species is not sneaking in through ships on the waterways...its rooting and burrowing through gardens and farms of upstate...
Once a phenomenon of the nation's South, feral swine , aka wild boars, are creeping further north through upstate NY. They are now ravaging counties north of Albany.
The big pigs are a rampaging blight, and they look like something you would not want to run into while hiking or camping.
Wild boars go hog-wild as upstate threat - Times Union

Straw Poll Produces Three Way Contest Sure to Excite the Base

The GOP's new leading man and woman were in Waterloo, IA last night for a dinner and their fight for the Presidential nomination looks like it will surely energize the base of the party.
Meanwhile President Obama is off on a Midwest bus tour dubbed by critics, the "Magical Misery Tour."
Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann are thought to be fighting it out for Tea Party and social conservative allegiances, while one wonders if nominal front runner Mitt Romney can keep his lead in place.
Governor Perry is especially vexing for Romney as he is the nation's longest serving governor from the second largest state. He also is thought to have prodigious fundraising abilities as had Ms. Bachmann.
This should be a great race.
Republican presidential candidates: Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry wow in Iowa Mail Online

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Andy's Essential Air Service Program

So what if the Governor flew home to Westchester to be with Sandra Lee...Wouldn't you want to get there by the fastest means possible ?...A little perk for Mr. Cuomo harms no one as the Governor is paid less than most of the state's 700 plus school superintendents.....
Besides, he needs to get around the state....If you want to worry about excessive travel costs, look at POTUS....Not just this one either...
The Associated Press: AP Enterprise: NY gov. flew home in state aircraft

Five Fort Drum Soldiers Die in Combat

Another five brave soldiers of the Tenth Mountain Division at Fort Drum were killed in action Thursday in Afghanistan
10th Mountain News Releases and Advisories

MSM Begin Their Palinoscopy of Bachmann

Now that she is officially the political flavor of the week, Michele Bachmann can begin answering the MSM queries about year's old statements including the one about being "submissive" to her husband....While its hard to imagine someone who has accomplished as much as Bachmann being a shrinking violet...and the statement in question reads to me to be somewhat tongue in cheek...she has to answer to...Also on the media agenda are 2004 remarks about gays.
She is getting her own Palinoscopy and if she survives, will have to go toe to toe with Governor Perry for the Tea Party, Evangelical vote.
Ms. Bachmann has come a ways in this race and it will get tougher, not easier...Let's see how she holds up.
Bachmann: "Submissive" doesn't mean subservient - CBS News

T-Paw Out....Gang of Three Takes the Stage

The bland, folksy, centrist former governor of a blue state is out...Former MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty ended his campaign this morning after a third place showing in the Ames Straw Poll....Wow ! A bunch of people angling for a free pulled pork and fried butter lunch have set the field for the GOP nomination.
Its Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann and Texas Gov Rick Perry who now comprise the first tier of candidates.
T-Paw is gone, Newt is just there to talk, Huntsman is fizzling before he got started, Paul will never break out from his loyal cadre, and the rest are just that...the rest...
Tim Pawlenty leaving presidential race - Jonathan Martin and Marin Cogan - POLITICO.com

Action This Week on Reorganization of Parks and Recreation

On Tuesday, the Watertown Civil Service Commission meets to consider and likely approve job descriptions for two key positions in the newly constituted and restructured Parks and Recreation Department. Current Recreation chief Jayme St. Croix retires this week and the interim head had already planned retirement for later this year, so the department will have new leadership shortly.
The jobs of superintendent and program manager are part of the City Council approved plan to provide a management structure more consistant with current uses.
Also, the former head of the NYS Liquor Authority, Anthony Casale, recently completed a visit to the city sites where alcohol is sold and is researching documentation on past usage.
Mr. Casale is helping the City devise a licensing plan consistant with law and good practice. He will be back in Watertown to meet with City Council at a public session later this month.
Meanwhile, data gathered on this past summer's events will be useful in devising fee structures and appropriations necessary to facilitate concerts and other events next year, as well as the traditional activities like pools, skating, playgrounds and youth leagues.
Watertown Daily Times Report tallies up Watertown’s fairground summer concert season

WDT: Potsdam's Brave New World Has Many Unknowns

With the Village of Potsdam considering dissolution, the question is being asked, what will exist for municipal services if the area now known as the village is just part of the Town of Potsdam ? For instance, should a town police department be formed ? Should a special taxing district be formed to continue what is now the village department ? Should there be nothing new added to the panoply of town services.
I suspect the latter. The reason for advocating dissolution is to equalize taxes as many people like town governments with their more auster structures.
With no village, the state and county will handle law enforcement.
It does seem strange that dissolution plans are moving forward with so many variables, but the job of unwinding the complexities and expenses of all these governments is not easy or simple. If the people want to end their village, just do it. Things will sort out over time. If they like it the way it is, that's fine too....Just don't end one government and then create single purpose use districts. That's not accomplishing a thing.
Watertown Daily Times Potsdam unsure what police, other services, will look like