To The Editor:
Oswego County Legislature has seen a plethora of ground breaking firsts in the first six months of 2016.
First up was the Oswego County Five. You remember, I’m sure, how for some reason five seasoned legislators failed to sign and turn in their oath cards as is required by law.
Now there has been one or two before but not FIVE of the same caucus.
Now this was one first but right behind it was the piggy-back first of having state elected officials pass a bill allowing those Oswego County Five a reprieve and allowing them the grace of not having to run again this year as required by law.
Second up on the firsts list is truly ground breaking.
Most present Legislators can’t remember in recent history a minority caucus member ever being appointed to the position of chairman of any committee be it a sub-committee or other. Well, it happened when Chairman Kevin Gardner appointed me to the position of chairman of the sub-committee to investigate the pros and cons of a County Wide Fire District.
The committee was comprised of two members from each caucus.
Now comes the next first. The sub-committee to investigate a County Wide Fire District unanimously voted in favor of three recommendations. All of which would have benefited every town, village and city in Oswego County with no local costs.
Wait for it — here is the next first. Right on the heels of the recommendation of the sub-committee, the Public Safety Committee failed to pass the recommendations of its own sub-committee.
These recommendations were also supported by the Oswego County Fire Coordinator. Two of those recommendations were to support increased monetary supplements to each and every volunteer fireman.
The other was only to apply for a grant.
The next first surprised some but in light of the way the year started out, it doesn’t surprise me.
The Chairman of the Oswego County Legislature on his own, shut down the shooting range in his home district. This shooting range was used by the Sheriff’s Department (along with the city of Fulton’s and other town’s and village’s Police agencies) to meet the requirements to remain a deputy.
This action was in violation of two signed contracts. The county is required to supply a shooting range for two unions to remain qualified.
The chairman or any legislator does not have the authority to shut down any county facility without going through committee.
This action did not go through committee. It was mentioned but was not voted on.
This site may be unsafe and it may have to be shut down. However, it must be done properly and legally.
That is unless you’re a member of the majority caucus. Then you can do whatever you want.
Legislator Frank Castiglia Jr. 25th District