In December County Adopts Budget, Spares Transfer Station

OSWEGO, NY – At its meeting on Dec. 10, the Oswego County Legislature authorized the execution of a deed from the county to the city of Oswego relative to a certain vacant property adjacent to Route 104. The city will construct a new road on the property.

“There are two purposes for this. The first and foremost is safety reasons. If anyone’s been to Wal-Mart, Aldi’s or Staples out there, they know it’s a hard time getting back on to 104, especially if you’re going to turn left. So we plan to work with the merchants in the area and the New York State DOT to construct a traffic signal at that intersection,” Mayor Randy Bateman told the legislators.

The second reason is for future development. By getting this street it opens up the back side, or the north side, of the Staples store and allows the city to plan for development in what is now pretty much a landlocked area, the mayor explained.

The parcel is 60′ X 1,028′ adjacent to Wal-Mart and runs northwesterly from 104 to the city so that a new city street can be dedicated, which will foster economic development and improve traffic patterns and safety in the area, according to the resolution.

Also in December, Port City resident Tracy DeCann announced the formation of a group to examine all sorts of such activity.

The Oswego Paranormal Research Society will allow anyone to examine all sorts of paranormal events – from a scientific perspective. Membership is free, and DeCann encouraged everyone to join.

The TOPRS website ( is being updated regularly and DeCann can be reached via email at [email protected]

William LeVea of Fulton was found mentally competent to stand trial for murder.

An expert met with LeVea and determined that he can understand the charges against him and can participate in his own defense. A judge ruled on Dec. 11 that LeVea, 79, is mentally competent. His lawyer had claimed that LeVea was suffering from the beginnings of either Alzheimer’s Disease or dementia.

LeVea is accused of ramming his vehicle into the back of a car driven by Christopher Spack of Camillus. Spack’s pickup truck swerved out of control across Route 370 and hit another vehicle head on.

Police charged LeVea with murder, claiming he hit the back of Spack’s vehicle on purpose. He was also charged with DWI. His blood alcohol level was .16 when it was tested a couple of hours after the crash, according to prosecutors.

LeVea remains in the Cayuga County Jail.

A workshop conducted to discuss the pros and cons of possibly moving to a six-period teaching day at the secondary level took a detour.

Members of the Oswego teaching staff, administration and students met with the school board and central office administration representatives for more than two hours to discuss the topic. However, from time to time, the topic shifted to the possibility of reducing the teaching staff.

If each teacher were required to teach six periods, Oswego High School wouldn’t have adequate classroom space, according to OHS Assistant Principal Brian Hartwell who facilitated the committee.

Oswego Police arrested Fareed Hosein, 24, of 12 W. Fourth St., Oswego, in connection with the Dec. 8 incident in which police responded to Buccaneer Boulevard.

Hosein was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon on school grounds and endangering the welfare of a child.

On Dec. 8 at approximately 12:15 p.m. police were alerted by the School Resource Officer at the Oswego High School that a male was reportedly observed on Buccaneer Boulevard in possession of what appeared to be a hand gun.

Officers responded to the area where they located the suspicious vehicle and subsequently identified several individuals at the scene. A subsequent on-scene investigation determined that one of the males had been in possession of a bb gun.

The Oswego County Legislature voted Dec. 15 in favor of the 2010 budget – but not closing the Hannibal Transfer Station.

The county’s $185,334,375 budget for 2010 doesn’t increase taxes and includes no raises for the legislators.

Debate on the budget wound its way into a discussion regarding the closing of the transfer station.

In what some legislators said is a “business decision,” they were considering closing the transfer station; a move that would save the county more than $197,000 a year.

On Dec. 18, Mayor Randy Bateman announced he had chosen Dr. Luciano Iorizzo as the new City Historian.

Dr. Iorizzo is a professor emeritus of history and public justice at the State University of New York at Oswego, having received his B.A. in history and education and his M.A. in history from Syracuse University and subsequently his Ph.D. in history from the Maxwell School at S.U. in 1966.

His teaching career included junior high school in the Syracuse area and at the college level at SU, Southeast Missouri State and 36 years at SUNY Oswego, mostly in American history, immigration history and the history of organized crime.

At its meeting Dec. 14, the Common Council approved deeding the Armory to the YMCA.

The city obtained the historic site on West First Street from the state on July 14, 2006; it had been leased to the YMCA since then.

The YMCA is proposing some major alteration to the Armory, for which it must obtain funding.

It was necessary for the YMCA to have ownership of the Armory in order to obtain the needed funding for the proposed project.

Entergy notified local and federal officials of a release of radioactive tritium into a storm drain. The amount of tritium found by Entergy in a routine sample taken from a storm drain on Dec. 23 is very small, the company told the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in a public filing made on Dec. 28.

It was less than 1/30th of the amount needed to trigger automatic notification of local, state and federal officials. Entergy said that because the tritium was found in a storm drain, the company decided it was prudent to notify officials anyway.

Workers found tritium on Nov. 3 in a sump connected to the storm drain, but not in the storm drain itself or in ground water monitoring wells.

Tritium is an isotope of hydrogen. For a radioactive element, it has a relatively short half-life, a little more than 12 years. Tritium is used in the nuclear power process, but it can also be found as the glowing elements in many wrist watches.

On Dec. 29, a spokesperson for Oswego Hospital announced the Federal Inspector General had ordered the facility to pay $2.1 million in penalties and damages for its apparent failure to comply with federal regulations.

The hospital voluntarily reported itself to the Office of the Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the New York State Office of the Medicaid Inspector General in March 2008, after an audit revealed several financial transactions didn’t comply with the Stark Law – a complex series of regulations designed to prevent a physician who has a financial transaction with a hospital from referring his/her Medicare or Medicaid patients to that hospital. Also, the hospital may not submit claims for any such referrals, unless the transaction satisfies very specific rules, known as exceptions.

Because the facility voluntarily reported the non-compliant transactions the penalties weren’t as bad as they could have been.

The hospital has corrected all the non-conforming transactions and is implementing procedural safeguards to prevent any future non-compliance with the Stark Law.