Saturday, January 28, 2012

Not-so-happy hour: Proposal to keep Philly bars open to benefit schools draws fire | Philadelphia Inquirer | 01/28/2012

Let no good deed go unpunished...a Phildelphia, PA city councilperson has proposed keeping bars open an extra hour to 3 AM to raise more tax dollars for schools and other services....It's not getting a good reaction, but it's really no different than a number of other schemes to tax the public in the name of the children, or law and order or whatever else you want to cite.
Promoting gambling through lotteries...taxing cigarettes to fund health care.....making drinkers pay for our schools...It's all good politics, even if it is intellectually silly.
Not-so-happy hour: Proposal to keep Philly bars open to benefit schools draws fire Philadelphia Inquirer 01/28/2012

Topless Ukranian feminists arrested in the snow in Davos as they try and storm political event | Mail Online

Some protests are pretty much guaranteed to get covered by the MSM....At the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland three Ukranian beauties braved the bitter cold to protest the plight of the World's poor. A lot more interesting than those scruffy people at Occupy Wall Street.
Topless Ukranian feminists arrested in the snow in Davos as they try and storm political event Mail Online

Narcissism Bad for Men's Health-

Love of self can be bad for your heart......A study shows a sense of entitlement, lack of empathy for others and an inflated sense of one's own importance can create stress resulting in a heart attack....
Narcissism is pretty easy to spot and we all know people who fit the criteria. Google the topic and there are plenty of simple tests to determine if you, a loved one, or someone prominent you know in your community is a narcissist...Of course the easiest tip off is gazing into a pool of water.
Narcissism especially bad for men's health, study says -

Capitol Confidential » Judge Sharpe sets June 26 as primary date

With new legislative boundaries garnering attention, a federal court ruling is also grabbing the interest of the political class. In response to a lawsuit over denial of military overseas their right to get ballots in time, Judge Gary Sharpe has set June 26 as the state's non-presidential primary date for federal office.
Technically, state and local primaries could occur on another day, but lawmakers in Albany are expected to reach a deal for a common date that meets federal guildelines.
New York's September primary often resulted in the sending out of absentees so late that some overseas missed out. Last year a dispute over a minor party line for judge in our area delayed ballots, and that kind of stuff happens all over.
Years ago NY had June primaries and I forget why they changed.
Meanwhile the legislative boundaries have produced some strange maps, and the Congressional maps are not even drawn yet.
Capitol Confidential » Judge Sharpe sets June 26 as primary date

Friday, January 27, 2012

TV 7: Manager Situation is Clear to Me

My focus in the current climate at City Hall is to reenforce the professionalism already taking place. Since "the vote", it's been business as usual on the Third Floor with budget preparations and labor talks in the works.
The concurrent issue is to plan for succession when the manager's contract expires April 30. That will likely involve both an interim plan and a recruitment effort. I have been trying to talk to people knowledgable on such things as well as rely on my own experiences over the years in city government.
My challenge is to get a consensus on City Council for what is to happen. I will present my ideas to lawmakers in the days ahead but don't look for much other chatter from me. Just as with last years searches for clerk and judge, I will be circumspect and respectful of all those involved.
Could Corriveau Stay On Longer As City Manager? WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

First Day on Bench for New Judge

     Today was the first time on the bench for Judge Catherine Palermo, the City's new part-time judge.  Ms. Palermo told me this afternoon it was a light calendar of arraignments but a couple of them were felonies.  They get held in the slammer until a preliminary hearing.
      Judge Palermo fills in when City Judge Eugene Renzi is not in.  She is the first female to sit in City Court.

WDT: New Lines Draw Feigned Outrage from Political Class

The politicians are claiming that redistricting is political...No kidding....Of course it is....
St. Lawrence County is now split among three Senate districts and Central NY Members of Assembly now see tenticles from their districts plunging into the North Country. Meanwhile Assemblywoman Addie Russells district is barely changed by only adding Sackets Harbor where her chief of staff lives.
The same thing will be done soon at the County level where the planners will put together a map that protects incumbents while adhering to case law on what can and cannot be subdivided.
Look at it this way. Now we have four Assembly members and three Senators with an interest in our region.
I don't envy Ken Blankenbush, who just got elected two years ago and now has to hang out in the suburbs of Rome, NY to meet his new constituents. There's a lot of good restaurants there for sure, but it will cut in to Ken's time at Pete's.
Watertown Daily Times Lawmakers release lines met with stern rebuke

Romney and Gingrich come out swinging in latest debate –

The talking heads this morning were rallying behind Mitt Romney, claiming his aggressive style in the CNN debate last night will ward off the much feared onslaught by Newt Gingrich.
The establishment of the GOP is dragging out everyone, including Bob Dole to offer warnings about what dire consequences a Gingrich candidacy could mean. The real fear from Mr. Dole is not the Presidency, but the down ballot races. The Republican high command fears the more erratic Newt will cost House, Senate and local races.
Meanwhile Mr. Romney seems to be getting heated up and along with bushels of cash is likely to win the Florida primary on Tuesday.
Romney and Gingrich come out swinging in latest debate –

Mohawk Casino Directed to Close, Operators Refuse

Looks like sovereignty depends on your own definition. Up on the "res" the sovereign nation is having trouble with another groups calling itself sovereign that has opened up its own casino.
Maybe once Andrew Cuomo's Constitutional amendment to legalize casinos everywhere takes effect, then we call all consider ourselves sovereign.
Mohawk Casino Directed to Close, Operators Refuse WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

WDT: Court Upholds a Right...But Privacy is Still Threatened Every Day

The fight for privacy rights gets more and more daunting as technologies allow easier tracking and monitoring of what we do, where we go and who we communicate with. The Supreme Court has ruled 9-0 against the police in a case where they attached a GPS device to the car of a suspected drug dealer. The Court ruled the warrantless monitor violated the Fourth Amendment.
That's the right ruling, but GPS, little cameras, Internet tracking and more means we all have to be diligent about privacy. It's not just the government. Industry tracks us for commercial reasons. Marital disputes now offer the means to follow you to a motel.
A mosaic can easily be compiled of where you go, who you see, what you name it.
It's a Brave New World for sure.
Watertown Daily Times Police powers

Keep Crossing Our Fingers for the Second Half of the Balmy Winter 0r '11-'12

Nobody wants to mention the savings from lack of snow removal this season, for fear it will jinx us and we will get clobbered. However, as January ends like a lamb, everybody who has to pay to move the white stuff around is glad that one bill is not as high this year....I assume heating bills are not as high also, although that's harder to calculate.
I know even with a few snow storms figured in, my costs at Fort Pearl will likely be less than half the previous year. Municipalities also see savings, mostly in overtime, machine wear and salt.
Everybody likes a break now and then and we are getting one this year...We are in what statistically is the coldest week of the winter, so its all uphill from here.
So little snow, so much savings - City & Region - The Buffalo News

Thursday, January 26, 2012

North Country Ready To Battle To Save Fort Drum

When it comes to lobbying for Fort Drum, we have a passle of warriors with experience and a real dedication to the cause. I love Fort Drum, but can't possibly go to all the functions, but I appreciate those who do.
Looks like many will be suiting up again, although I have to think all the past work making the post secure will be helpful now that the Army faces budget related cuts and another BRAC process.
There are a lot of local people who understand the process and the structure of the Army and all of that will be helpful as events play out.
There are the Tony Keatings, the Corriveaus, the John Deans, the Mary Parry's, the Mike Plummer's and many, many more who are in for the fight.
More than ever, posts will have to justify their worth, as this nation does need to cut something to survive.
Nobody wants their local post cut, but Fort Drum is ready to make its it has been doing for the past thirty years.
North Country Ready To Battle To Save Fort Drum WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

WDT: Doheny takes in $306K, has $316K on hand

Fundraising is already well underway in our Congressional district and the woman claiming she will run for the GOP nod should take not of the $300K + raised of late by Republican frontrunner and likely nominee Matt Doheny.
Sackets Harbor resident Kellie Greene announces next week, but she is currently pleading for dollars on her Facebook page.
Mr. Doheny will have the resources but still faces a tough race against Rep. Bill Owens in November.
The quick start in the money race by Doheny is considered noteworthy by observers.
Watertown Daily Times Doheny takes in $306K, has $316K on hand

Blankenbush Could Lose Most of SLC Under Redistricting Plan

Assemblyman Ken Blankenbush will have to start making new friends in Oneida and Oswego Counties as new Legislative boundaries alter his current district.
Jefferson County will gain representation from Will Barclay who will pick up much of Southern Jefferson County.
Assemblywoman Addie Russell's "River District" picks up some more waterfront property with the addition of the very tony Town of Hounsfield, home of Sackets Harbor.
Looks like Patty Ritchie's Senate district is unchanged, although the entire Senate adds one seat.
It's all inside baseball, but an interesting parlor game for those too old to play softball.
Blankenbush Could Lose Most of SLC Under Redistricting Plan WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

Temptation Placed Close to Salvation

   At the radio station a new feature of 2012 is a bowl with fruit designed to encourage healthy eating...Great wellness idea.
    So today I walk in and next to the fruit is one of those red velvet cakes...Is this a test of wills ?  Why make it tougher by doing this ?
     That's only supposed to happen during the Holidays.

One of Those Days You Know is Coming

     After a period of slowing down and losing weight, my cat Panzy reached the point this week when I knew it was time. I took her to Dr. Plante's office this AM to have her put down as she was so weak she couldn't stand.
      Panzy was an SPCA cat and was friendly and healthy for many years.  She will be missed.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, Obama have intense exchange on tarmac - Chicago Sun-Times

Governor Jan Brewer of AZ is somewhat brash and the whole immigration issue tends to make you that way.....So when the Governor welcomed President Obama on the tarmac in Phoenix this week, their out of microphone but in camera range exchange has the media abuzz....
Whether she told him off or just gestured in a photo op sort of way, the Governor becomes a hero to the far right and the MSM gets to portray people out that as racist whackos.
Surely this photo will ellicit comment.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, Obama have intense exchange on tarmac - Chicago Sun-Times

WDT: State to Spend I-98 Money on Route 11

This should pretty much end chatter about a rooftop highway. That's the plan for an Interstate connecting Watertown and Plattsburgh and has long been a dream of some in St. Lawrence County who viewed the massive project as a panacea for the county's isolation and flat economy.
NYS DOT is going to spend I-98 seed money on developing plans to improve the existing Route 11 corridor, which is widely believed to be the more cost effective approach.
A committment to Route 11 will make it more difficult to lobby for I-98. It is an emotional issue in the Big County.
Watertown Daily Times DOT will spend rooftop highway money on Route 11

Newzjunky: Former CFM Building Eyed for Apartments

A developer is asking for a zone change to allow the conversion of the former CFM Foods building on West Main Street into apartments. The planning board will consider the request which ultimately would have to be approved by City Council.
Former CFM Building Eyed for Apartments

Redistricting Latest

Assembly members got a peak at proposed district maps for the next ten years. The public will get their look tomorrow.
It's often said in politics that before voters can pick a candidate, the incumbents choose who their voters are.
Ironically, few people care about boundaries other than the incumbents, their staffers and a handful of political media and other political junkies.
More time will be spent in Albany than on any of those pesky, real issues lawmakers should deal with.
Redistricting Latest

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

BOCES Superintendent: State Education Funding Is "Desperate Situation"

Let me acquaint my good friends in the education hierarchy with the definition of the word "desperate."
Desperate is when sales are down..expenses are don't know if you can pay the bills and whether you can stay in business...
Desperate is not knowing what to do next...Desperate is learning to appreciate what you have...whatever it is.
Desperate is not making $100K and having to wonder if you can survive on $95K.
BOCES Superintendent: State Education Funding Is "Desperate Situation" WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

Pentagon Floats Army Cut Plan

This notion of cutting the number of brigades is not entirely new...I was at a briefing weeks ago where is was outlined along with a plan to add a battalion to the remaining brigades to keep them at an appropriate strength.
Obviously, this raises the issue of "what about us ?"
The impression I have gotten is that Fort Drum is well positioned...but frankly if your are going to cut spending, you have to actually cut something.
Interesting times ahead.
News from The Associated Press

Danny Glover Calls HOTLINE

     Actor and political activist Danny Glover called the HOTLINE today. Mr. Glover was promoting a February 7 appearance at Jefferson Community College.
      We had a great conversation on the air.
       Danny Glover has a long list of credits including the Color Purple, and the Lethal Weapon movies.
        He is probably the most famous person to call the HOTLINE since Ed Koch last year.
        Not only am I the area's preeminent political blogger, but I am branching out to entertainment reporter.

TV 7 Tonight...Oops I got bumped

     The dean of NNY reporters came to City Hall this afternoon to interview me. John Moore came to talk about continuity of operations and the budget process in the wake of recent events.
       We will see if what i said makes sense.
        John certainly stands among the greats of the industry, and he is pretty smart for a TV person.
        John later told me I was bumped to tomorrow...Apparently what I said wasn't that newsworthy or they are certain no one else will ask me the same questions in the interim.

Doheny: America At a Crossroads

Likely GOP Congressional candidate Matt Doheny has penned his response to the Presidents SOTU address last night. Mr. Doheny says the President's plans are disaster at a time when America is at a crossroads.
Doheny is running against Rep. Bill Owens in the November election. He narrowly lost to Mr. Owens in 2010, but the race is considered very competitive this year.
Doheny: America At a Crossroads Doheny for Congress

WDT:North country economic forecast bright for 2012: Unemployment to decline as employers start hiring

Sweeping overviews of an entire economy are always risky as what is prosperity to some is not to others. Having said that, its encouraging to hear good predictions for the overall local economy for 2012 offered up at a Chamber panel discussion held this week.
All the experts say what has been said here for some time. Fort Drum spending, troop returns and Canadian shopping are significant drivers that many upstate communities do not have.
Whatever the reasons, hopefully the opportunities help those willing and able to take advantage of it all.
Watertown Daily Times North country economic forecast bright for 2012: Unemployment to decline as employers start hiring

WDT: Court Street Building Attracts Little Interest

A call for development proposals for a vacant Court Street building has produced little interest and City Council will now have to decide on what to do with the former Berow and Monroe building. The most likely scenario would be an auction. The request for proposals process was supposed to elicit actual plans for doing something with the structure.
The City had taken title after the previous owner failed to pay taxes.
In other matters, the City is on the verge of losing a $100K federal grant for a sewer project on Gaffney Drive after Council abandoned the pump station project when additional sewer capacity opened up on Arsenal Street. The USDA granted the dollars, but with no suitable alternative project, the dollars will go back to the USDA.
The developers of the Creekwood housing project on Mill Street have suggested "Creekwood Drive" as the name for the private street traversing the property. Concern had been expressed over haphazard naming of private streets due to 911 response issues. This name is being coordinated through the planning department.
Watertown Daily Times Little interest in Berow and Monroe building on Court Street

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Obama State of the Union speech: 'No bailouts, no handouts, and no copouts'

Both parties seemed inclined to take a little bite out of the rich...President Obama called for a minimum 30% tax rate on incomes of over a million dollars and in the GOP response, Governor Mitch Daniels said rich folks cannot expect to receive social benefits they can pay for themselves.
The dueling speeches were a bit less partisan as both sides are chagrined by public disdain of DC.
In his State of the Union address the President said America is back and he trumpeted the killing of bin Laden and Khadaffy and predicted the demise of the Assas regime in Syria. Mr. Obama praised our armed forces as example setters for how we should all live our lives.
The 65 minute speech was well delivered but like all such tomes was too long.
The President hits the road Wednesday to sell his ideas, although there were not a lot of sweeping proposals made tonight.
Obama State of the Union speech: 'No bailouts, no handouts, and no copouts' - Jennifer Epstein -

Bank Customers Wonder Where to Go Next

     The announcement that the orphan HSBC branches in Jefferson County will be mostly sold off to Community Bank leaves the dwindling customer base in the existing branches wondering what's up....
     Clearly the downtown HSBC branch is likely a goner as Community owns its own building two doors down...Same is true on Arsenal Street.
     The HSBC building goes back to when Marine Midland Bank was here and was a powerhouse. Money was flowing so freely the original building had heated sidewalks although those fell prey to the energy crisis of the 70s.
      People liked HSBCs worldwide status and range of services but all the assets will be turned over to Community this summer...The remainder of upstate NYs HSBC branches were sold to First Niagara, but that bank didn't want anything to do with NNY...
     That makes us feel special.

Airport Kicking Butt

Finally a carrier at the Watertown Airport people want to fly on...American Eagle is doing very well as travelers opt for convenience even if ticket prices are a little highter than elsewhere.
Remember when Mohawk flew in here...Those were the days...but the ensuing years produced a string of dubious carriers. Its good to see the County doing so well with the Airport.
Watertown Daily Times American Eagle airline traffic balloons despite relatively high ticket prices

Tax the Rich Likely a Theme in Obama Speech Tonight

       Betcha Mitt Romney gets a shout out from the President in tonight's State of the Union...Not by name, but by tax rate.
       With Mr. Romney making 21 million last year and paying about 14% in federal taxes, I am sure Mr. Obama will mention how the Warren Buffetts and Mitt Romneys of the world pay lower marginal rates than their secretaries.
         Other than soak the rich, the POTUS will be in full campaign mode, and the speech will be just another rhetorical flourish for him.
         Meanwhile, tomorrow its back to GOP politics in Florida.

WDT: Endorsee and Endorser Estranged

    When reading this letter I thought of the monks in Vietnam immolating themselves in the street to make a point.  Wow, this was a strong letter.
 I know Milly to be a stong woman of convictions who says what's on her mind and she certainly did so today.
   Watertown Daily Times Editorial on city manager insulted husband, ignored facts

WDT: Call for Plan ?...No Kidding

In the past year, I have had the pleasure to be at the middle of two search and hiring ventures. One for City Clerk and the other more recently for part-time City Judge. Both are high profile, professional posts that require careful thought and deliberation.
In both cases there were numerous applicants who were screened and winnowed discreetly and effectively. Two fine hires came out of it and there was no spectacle or embarassment to anyone.
With the office of City Manager apparently opening up soon, I will draw on the experiences of the past year and seek the counsel of those I respect and trust. With the manager change now in clear focus, I have been having those conversations. The City Council will see that the government we oversee is tended to.
The possibility of what happened has been simmering since well before last year's election, but recently a majority of City Council voted not to renew the contract of manager Mary Corriveau, setting in motion the need for some planning and action. Barring a successor contract or extension, the position vacates in April or possibly sooner,
The job is to be a manager of services and money as well as leader of the City's 350+ member workforce.. Make sure the services are delivered and costs are contained, while doing so in context of the laws and practices governing public bodies. It's a serious job, but let's not make it into more than it is.
This is not an exercise in searching the Nation for a unique person of vision and virtue to lead us from the wilderness, nor can it be allowed to become a community-wide effort to impose individual agendas. The solution I believe should be local, as the difficulties recruiting from afar are manifest in this area.
We need a manager, not a Messiah, and my 16 years as mayor has taught me the system at hand and given me the judgement to handle this situation.
Anyone with input or ideas is welcome to contact me.
Watertown Daily Times What now? Plan needed to fill city manager post

Proposed Law Would Make Amish Clean Up Horse Poop

Horse diapers ? Didn't know there was such a thing, but that may be one solution sought in Gouverneur as village officials ponder fining the Amish for equine droppings on village streets.
Local Amish bring their buggies into the village and into many communities including Watertown. While nettlesome, some feel going after the Amish is not worth the hassle. Under the proposal, the village with a giant LifeSavers replica in its downtown would charge up to $250 per offense.
Proposed Law Would Make Amish Clean Up Horse Poop WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for Watertown, NY Local News

Romney Comes Out Swinging on NBC

You can tell he sees himself as losing...or at least no longer the clear frontrunner. Mitt Romney lauched a ferocious attack on Newt Gingrich this week and peppered the former Speaker with accusations at a televised debate last night in Florida.
Romney is billing Gingrich as erratic and unethical...a man chased from Congress by his own party and unfit for office.
So much for the 11th commandment...Don't speak ill of a fellow Republican.
Going after Gingrich is risky but at least two polls taken since Saturday showed the former Speaker in the lead in the Sunchine State. A loss in a large state like Florida could leave Romney too crippled to recover as it would undermine his basic premise that he is inevitable.
Today Mr. Romney releases his tax returns and the media attention will turn to President Obama's State of the Union Address.
Romney comes out fighting in Florida against rival Gingrich as latest GOP presidential debate heats up Mail Online

WDT: Possible DOT Move a Matter of Concern

Currently, when you go into the Dulles State Office Building, it has a feeling of emptiness with the vast lobby only ocupied by a lone guard checking IDs.
There is chatter the Cuomo Administration may consider consolidating the DOT at another location leaving up to three floors worth of people in question.
Watertown is a regional hub and its important to keep jobs there.
Watertown Daily Times If DOT moves down the road, will downtown Watertown suffer?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sun-Times To Quit Making Endorsements « CBS Chicago

One of the Nation's leading newspapers has thrown in the towel on endorsing candidates. The Chicago Sun-Times says they are passe, people don't heed them and there are enough other sources of information that voters don't need the gatekeepers to think for them.
Of course they can still shade coverage to help someone....
But sometimes even with shading and a hostile endorsement, people win anyway.
Sun-Times To Quit Making Endorsements « CBS Chicago

Coarsening Language Standard Fare for Many

    A couple of commenters were dropping F-bombs in their posts because I had misspelled a word and they were upset about it. I did not delete them as I wanted to make a point.
     Also over the weekend, I was chatting with some female customers who routinely used the same word in their conversation...I couldn't help but think how much old-school types like me judge a person on their vocabulary and that's especially true when a young lady is busy dropping the F-bomb.
      Expletives have a place in language as occasional exclamation points in certain limited circumstances. They are supposed to make a point.
       Sorry about my prejudices, but I judge people on language as much as some judge on appearance, color, religion, political affiliation or favorite football team.
       Mamas, don't let your daughters grow up to use F-bombs.

Judicial Post Had Some Value in $$$ and Prestige

     When I appointed to the so called part-time city judge position, I didn't really previously know any of the five applicants and didn't even bother to check their party registration. But when you think of it, you can see why even this part time gig was sought after and considered a plum.
      When you add up salary, retirement, medical and the like for the six year term, the package is probably worth close to $300K.
       For some that's a significant sum, for others its not and maybe the challenge of the bench or the prestige is enough.
       As I said before, a lot of work went into reviewing the choices although some wags in the legal field were dismissive saying all you need is a law degree and a pulse to be a judge.
      However, since appearing before one is likely one of the most wrenching experience most will face, I thought picking someone who realized that might be a good choice.
       This Friday, Judge Palermo will hear her first cases.

A Week Off....Make it Two Weeks

        After last week's City Council meeting, the calendar gives lawmakers two consecutive Mondays off as there are five Mondays in January.
        Budget preparation is underway and last week I prepared my list of goals and objectives for the coming fiscal year and listed things we got done last year against last year's list of goals.
         It's a feature of the budget the city manager requires of all departments, but it is seldom reviewed by the media and public as the emphasis is on the numbers...Mostly the tax levy.
        Of course the large gorilla in the room is what happens next in the wake of Council's vote in favor of not extending the manager's tenure.

WDT: Sunday Hours Still Talked About..Not Done Yet

There was a day in America when Sunday was a day of rest....when we had Blue Laws....and there are still some businesses that don't open on Sundays as its considered a "family day".
Not so anymore. We are a 24/7 society and the public expects to be able to do what they want to do when they want to do it. If you are not working on weekends, then you want to be able to go shopping at Wal-Mart and you should be able to visit the Library as well. In an Internet-driven world, Libraries have to compete for the attention of the public.
While I understand change does not come easy, the notion of just not wanting to work on Sundays doesn't hold water. All sorts of organizations open Sundays and holidays for that matter and the staffing issues get worked out.
The Library Board operationally runs the Library and the director works for them. However, the City budget is the source of virtually all the $1.3million used to run the facility. Those appropriating the money certainly can expect to get certain results from their dollars.
Watertown Daily Times Talks continue on extending Flower Memorial Library hours

Sunday, January 22, 2012

L.I. education guru hit by Gov. Cuomo defends her income  - NY Daily News

State dollars are paying an education consultant a $3.2 million salary. But don't worry, it's for the children.
L.I. education guru hit by Gov. Cuomo defends her income - NY Daily News

NY Giants return to Super Bowl for 2008 rematch vs. New England Patriots after Lawrence Tynes nails game-winning 31-yard FG to beat 49ers - NY Daily News

A field goal ten minutes into overtime sent the NY Giants to the Super Bowl next month in Indianapolis and a rematch with the New England Patriots who earlier today defeated Baltimore for the AFC title.
The Giants gelled late in the season and defeated Atlanta, Green Bay and San Francisco in the playoffs.
The NY-Boston rivalry is always there and this pairing will make for an exciting game this year.
Congrats to all the Giants fans in NNY.
NY Giants return to Super Bowl for 2008 rematch vs. New England Patriots after Lawrence Tynes nails game-winning 31-yard FG to beat 49ers - NY Daily News

Gabrielle Giffords to resign from Congress - Jonathan Allen and John Bresnahan and Seung Min Kim -

The resignation of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords this week will set up a special election in AZ's Eighth District...While she has made amazing progress since being shot in the head a year ago, Ms Giffords says she wants to work on her rehab full time without the demands of office. Only the most cynical would not wish her the best.
Gabrielle Giffords to resign from Congress - Jonathan Allen and John Bresnahan and Seung Min Kim -

Mitt Flips Again...Now He Will Release Returns

OMG...He flipped and flopped again...This time on releasing his tax returns...
Mitt Romney will put them out on Tuesday..the day of the State of the Union Address...And he will only release one year...
Apparently it was Romney's dad who initiated the release of returns by a Presidential candidate back in 1967.
I don't know why we need to see any of them...We know he is wealthy.
Reversing course, Mitt Romney will release tax returns Tuesday -

Report: Local Conservative Chair Hints Party May Not Play Ball

The Oswego County Chair of the Conservative Party says he is not so sure about who will appear on his party's line for Congress in the upcoming NNY race pitting Matt Doheny against Democrat incumbent, Rep. Bill Owens.
County Chair Len Schick says he is not certain that his group will back a cross endorse of likely GOP nominee Doheny, although most observers think the party's state chair, Mike Long, will not repeat the Doug Hoffman scenario that is widely thought to have allowed Mr. Owens reelection in 2010.
Doheny's possible challenger is now calling herself the "principled conservative" in the race and that perhaps is a window into the strategy of Kellie Greene, who is an Oswego County native who recently moved back to NNY after years of living in AZ.
Principles aside, the Conservative Party must cross endorse if it hopes to block Mr. Owens.
I just don't see anyway Chairman Long goes off the reservation on this one.
The Valley News Online

Dutch teen sailor completes solo world tour

Most parents cringe at their 16 year olds driving, but a Dutch family has let their 16 year old daughter circumnavigate the world in a sailboat. Laura Dekker had to go to court to get permission for the risky trip.
She won't get a slot in the Guinness Book, as they don't recognize inappropriate stunts by minors.
Now my cynicism. What is the point of indulgent parents allowing their kids on these risky trips ?
Dutch teen sailor completes solo world tour

The Journal | City To Consider Knox Street House Sale

I wonder if people just drive by the house on Knox Street in Ogdensburg just to see what the fuss is about ? Or whether the family of occupant and potential buyer Brett Burke and family get stopped in the supermarket and asked about living in a house that has garnered more publicity than that one in Amityville ?
Now City Council will debate selling the once rent-free home and there is disagreement about whether to sell to the residents or go to auction.
Let these people live in peace and take 819 Knox Street out of the news.
The Journal City To Consider Knox Street House Sale