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Saturday, December 8, 2007

Willowvale Fire Co. Vote, Tues, Dec. 11, 2007

We are writing this blog in response to a comment left on one of our earlier blogs. By the time the comment was left, we had already written several more blogs and this comment might have gotten overlooked by several of our visitors. The writer makes statements that we would like to address regarding Concerned Citizens and the vote on Tuesday:
Hardworking Committed Vol. FF said...
This is not wasteful. These volunteers work very hard for the citizens they serve. The volunteer Fire Dept.'s in our town save countless tax dollars over having to pay for paid fire protection services. This is not open for conjecture, it is fact.

Some people on here are against anything and everything just for spite with an added twist of venom to boot.

It's a shame some are so hell bent on getting the powers that be out, that nothing is worthy of support even if it is for a good cause.

December 5, 2007 1:56:00 PM EST
Why is it that some people just don't seem to get the point of this blog?

We are not here to tell people how to vote on any issue. Quite frankly, our main concern is to encourage every eligible voter to register and then take the time to vote...period. However, we firmly believe that EVERYONE has the right to the facts so that they can make an 'informed' decision at the polls. We also firmly believe in democracy...the majority rules. It is when the minority becomes the majority through the use of intimidation, distortion of the truth and hiding other words by "cultivating" the spread of apathy...that democracy is threatened.

The Benefit Plan for the Willowvale Fire Dept. was initially discussed at the July 11, 2007 Town Board Meeting. It took until the end of November before the department decided to hold a public hearing and send out notices to taxpayers in the Willowvale Fire Company district. In fact, several Willowvale Fire District residents wrote to tell us that they did not receive the mailing with the date of the public hearing until after the hearing took place. We would be willing to bet that if Concerned Citizens did not write about the vote, there would be no meeting or mailing.

Why? If this is a good program and economically feasible for the majority of people living in this fire district, why would you try to "hide" the facts? Why would you take away the 'rights' of the taxpayers who will be asked to fund the program? If the program is good, get out and 'sell it to the people'. Here is the response we left on the same blog:
New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...
Hardworking committed vol. ff,

It would appear that you are the one with venom. Not one word on this blog has said don't vote for the plan. Unlike the "official" town website, we do not advise anyone how to vote. That is up to every individual in the Willowvale Fire Dept. We merely brought information regarding the vote to the public.

The only thing we said was it is a shame that according to Councilman Payne at the last town board meeting the fire chief did not want to let people know about the vote.
The information we posted should have been brought to the taxpayer's attention by the Willowvale Fire Company; it should not have been news that needed to be 'broke' by us. If the Fire Company feel so strongly about the plan, give the people the information they need to make their own 'informed' decision.

December 6, 2007 8:11:00 AM EST
Below are links to every blog that we have written about the vote for the Willowvale Fire Company Benefit Plan this Tuesday, December 11, 2007. Please let us know where we told anyone how to vote. We welcome your comments and criticism. We will post all comments sent to us as long as they are "printable".


Willowvale Fire Co, Inc. Vote

Public Hearing

Please, if you live in the Willowvale Fire District, just get out and vote. Your vote DOES count.

p.s. Criticism of Concerned Citizens will not make us go away...Our fan mail consistently out-numbers our critics.


Anonymous said...

I'm really getting tired of this one pissed off person pretending to be a group of "concerned citizens". Get a life. No, seriously. Get a life. There are other things out there worthy of your energy.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...


Against our better judgment we decided to post your 'rude and crude' comment.

Obviously, reading our blog doesn't bother you too apparently keep reading for whatever reason...!

Been to any of our meetings? Maybe then you would know that there are more than one (1) of us. Feel free to contact us for information. We would love to meet you...

Everyone doesn't have to agree on everything, but no one has the right to attack someone for voicing their opinions...that's what freedom of speech is all about.

Have a good day!

Anonymous said...

Who's pissed off? If anythin reading this stuff makes me feel better knowing Times are A Changin'!!!

Retired Firefighter said...

What we have here is a person calling himself "Anonymous" who does not appreciated making others aware of how certain self-serving programs tend to enrich just a few and too, cost the TAXPAYERS an awful lot of money.

Perhaps, anonymous should stop his venomous words and try to do what is right.

There are a lot more people who appreciate the efforts of this blog than those who do not. They are and always will be the "complainers."

Mrs Mecomber said...

One small sidenote but important point: we are not a democracy. I think this is a very important thing to realize.

We are a republic-- a nation governed by laws, not by men.

The democracy think, fuel by decades of revisionism, is extrememely harmful not only to our nation but even on our own local level.

If we were truly a "democracy," then the people who currently lead in this administration have every right to do what they are doing. After all, they were elected by the majority of the people.

But the truth is, these people were elected-- and whether anyone thinks they were elected unfairly or not, it makes no difference-- to be our representatives. And they are under the same laws as we are under. Isn't that the point of your blog?

The claim that we are a democracy is not only wrong historically and legally, but it has repercussions that make your theories about open government nil.

Intervenor said...

Mrs. mecomber,

I respectfully disagree with your explanation.

The context in that which is said given a variety of interpretations, legal and otherwise does not in and of itself make a writing - incorrect!

I do believe your comments exhibit a slippery slope, one where you may not want to go - albeit well intentioned.

Austinwalker said...

What wasn't in the newspaper story today is detail on the annual cost that will be paid to Affordable Benefit Concepts of Syracuse to administer the program.Over $12,000 annually to run a program for 45 firemen? Were any local annuity providers contacted to quote on similar progams? If my math is right we're talking over 18% in administration costs. I've got a retirement annuity and the annual fees are less than 2% and even that is too high according to investment advisors. Also,how is the administrator going to invest the $64,000. and what is the track record of their investments? Seems like somebody got sold a bill of goods by a sharp salesman.

Mrs Mecomber said...

A slippery slope? "Well intentioned"?? Stating the corect form of our government is a slippery slope. Sorry, but some folks need some lessons in civics... we are not a democracy, plain and simple. To say so is to say it in error. Populism is the slippery slope.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Austin-Walker knows his math and is very sharp with the figures.

Someone, somewhere has their hands in the till on this one. Such high Admin cost is reprehensible.

Seems like we a select few people in the Willowvale Fire Department that want more than just their piece of pie...they want the whole thing.

This lunacy must stop...NOW!

Anonymous said...

To Mr. "Get a Life:"

#1: NO current town board member will pay this tax - they all live outside this fire district!

#2: The fire tax for NH is about $51.00 on a $100,000 house. THe current WIllowvale fire tax is $200 !! - FOUR TIMES what the NH Board members pay for NH fire protection.

Adding another .51 per 1000 to the rate means that 100,000 house will now pay $251 for fire protection, not $51 like NH !! Thats FIVE TIMES as much!

#3: Volunteer means ... without pay or compensation. If we are being taxed to give some members BENEFITS then it's NOT VOLUNTEER anymore.

And attacking the web hoster for disseminating information shows how inanely crass you are.

Go ahead, get mad at the mailman. But when the tax bill comes, remember who told you.

THe Willowvale fire tax rate is about EQUAL to the town tax, and this will carry it well over the mark.

So when Earle Greed says he's for it, along with Bob Payne and Dave Reynolds, sure they are! Why not, they will never have to pay ONE DIME of this bill.

If there is ever a cry to consolidate firehouses, districts and metropolize fire protection, this is it in a nutshell. Only when it can be spread out over a large tax base can it even begin to be considered.

Lastly, I read something about retroactive in the OD. Is that for all old members, honorary, or just some of them? These things tend to be distributed on favoritism, so the "good guys" will be taken care of while the less-popular guy often doesn't get the same treatment.

Yes, I will get a life when you move into the district and pay 5 times more than you do now for the SAME THING - Fire Protection.

Anonymous said...

Hi, it's me the first "anonymous" that left the rude comment. I regretted it the second it sent it. Thanks for being benevolent enough to post it. It's just that confusion boiled-over inside of me at that very moment after reading pages and pages of blog where seemingly the same person rants on and on about the town of New Hartford. I just keep asking myself...why not move to another town? You seem to have gone beyond just being curious and concerned. Yes, I do read this blog. I'm concerned, too. I just haven't reached the same level of anger and spitefulness that you have, that's all. You (or your "group")are no longer objevtive, no matter how much you'd like to think you are or how much you project the image of objectivity in this blog. Rather, you are on the OFFENSIVE against the town, as it were.

In the end, you have the right to put anything you please here. I'm not trying to take away your free speech right. It actually makes for some very interesting reading. But then, most literature is interesting once fact and reason are forgone in favor of drama and embellishment for the purpose of effect.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...


Thank you for writing back. Our blog is meant to ‘shed light’ on a growing problem within the Town of New Hartford. We are not here to support corruption.

Your statement…” It actually makes for some very interesting reading. But then, most literature is interesting once fact and reason are forgone in favor of drama and embellishment for the purpose of effect.”…shows that either you are still in total disbelief that this could actually happen in our town or you choose to live your life by looking the other way. We never make a statement that we cannot backup with FOILed copies of documents. FOILed documents come directly from the Town Clerk’s office…we do not make them up.

If it appears to you that it is being written by one person, please let us know how we can make it look like a group effort, because it is. Obviously, one person does the actual writing…do you really think one person could be this involved…it would take more than 24 hours a day to gather the facts and we can tell you that writing this blog is no small task. And if you think it is one (1) angry person, you can believe that each of our members would be more angry with ourselves if we knew what was going on and did nothing.

We work very hard to be objective…we have never told anyone how to vote on any issue. We could present both sides of each story, but the town ‘leaders’ do a good enough job at ‘tooting their own horn’. We feel that is it more productive to write the ‘untold stories’ and to investigate what appears to be obvious attempts to deceive the taxpayers. After all...just like taxpayer dollars, our time is not infinite!

Whether you choose to believe it or not, there is corruption within the Town of New Hartford and it has to stop. Your suggestion that we move if we don’t like it is unbelievable. Most of the members of our group have lived here for several years, why do we need to move? We would like to think that most residents are happy that there is a group of people who are willing to take time from their lives to get to the bottom of this baloney. We will not help to ‘cultivate apathy’ rather we will stand up for what we believe.

We hope you keep reading our blog; maybe, just maybe we will “open eyes” and more people, not only in New Hartford, but everywhere will start to stand up and be counted. We can only hope…