OSWEGO, NY – At what is likely the last Common Council meeting of the year, members bid farewell and thank you to four of their own.
Councilors Connie Cosemento, First Ward; Cathy Santos, Third Ward; and Bill Sharkey, Sixth Ward all didn’t seek re-election. Neither did Mayor Randy Bateman.
At the conclusion of Monday night’s meeting, the mayor recognized the three parting councilors and presented them with tokens of the city’s appreciation of their years of dedicated service.
“I’d like to thank out-going councilors Cosemento, Santos and Sharkey for their years of service,” he said.
They each received a commemorative city coffee mug.
The mayor all praised Council President Ron Kaplewicz for getting everyone to work together so well over the past year.
“And, I want to thank the hard-working city employees for coming to work every day and doing a lot more with a lot less,” Bateman said. “In conclusion, I’d like to say that it has been an honor and a privilege to be your mayor the last six years.”
“It’s been a pleasure working with this council,” Cosemento added. “The people in the city of Oswego need to know, I hope they know, that the folks who work in the city for you are some of the most dedicated you’ll find anywhere. I have found this to a learning experience of the best kind. I will continue to dedicate myself to the betterment of the city.”
Then Kaplewicz, Seventh Ward, took the council floor to also honor his three fellow councilors and then the mayor.
“On behalf of the council, I’d like to take a minute to recognize several of our fellow councilors that will not be joining us in January,” he said.
He cited Santos as an important part of the chemistry of the council with her progressive thinking.
Councilor Sharkey was one of the outspoken members of the council, Kaplewicz noted. “Sometimes, we may not have agreed, but I always respected what he had to say,” he added. “Bill, we’re going to miss you.”
She was appreciated for all she has done for the city, he told her.
Kaplewicz recognized the mayor for his many years of service to the city (including his tenure as Fourth Ward councilor), “on behalf of this council, and certainly the citizens of this city.”
“It was a pleasure to have open, honest and sincere discussions,” the council president said. “There were some disagreements from time to time …”
“Occasionally,” the mayor interrupted.
“Occasionally,” Kaplewicz continued. “This may well be the mayor’s last official (council) meeting. Randy, in all sincerity, on behalf of the city of Oswego, we want to thank you for your years of dedicated service.”
DPW Commissioner Mike Smith officially presented the mayor with the refurbished plaque for the Utica Street Bridge.
The large bronze plaque was dedicated in honor of the Port City’s Gold Star Mother’s. Fred Crisafulli, the city tourism director, noted that his mother was the first Gold Star Mother in Oswego as his brother, Charles, was the first casualty from this area in World War II.
“It’s been a privilege and an honor to serve with Mayor Bateman,” Smith said as he unveiled the plaque. “We’re very proud of what we were able to accomplish. As a lasting tribute, I want to unveil the re-dedication plaque.”
The plaque had been removed from the northwest corner of the Utica Street Bridge while it was being refurbished. It was re-dedicated during a brief ceremony this spring as part of the Memorial Day observance.
The re-dedicated sign will now also bear the names of the current councilors and mayor.