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Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Case of Consolidation Dilly-dallying???

Interesting...Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente wants to charge New Hartford and Utica for start-up costs of consolidating 911..."at least for the first few years" so says Picente in today's Observer Dispatch article, 911 center consolidation discussions under way again.

According to the article, Picente says:
“I don’t want to keep having meetings in terms of the exploration” “I want to talk to them both and say are we going to do this or not.”
Really? Then by now Mr. Picente or someone from his office must have contacted the Department of State regarding a Shared Services Grant. Right, Mr. Picente?

A recent Letter to the Editor from Lorraine Cortes-Vazquez, New York secretary of state said in part:
An important goal of the Paterson administration is to reduce our local property tax burdens and ensure that all New Yorkers are receiving value from their tax dollars. We at the Department of State encourage towns, villages and school and special districts to work with us and each other to make certain that this happens.
Ms. Cortes-Vazquez goes on to say:
Through the Local Government Efficiency Grant Program, the Department of State works with local governments to reduce the cost and complexity of services. In the last three years, local governments saved some $350 million with a $40 million public investment in 240 shared-services projects all across the state.
Interesting...because on October 26, 2009, after reading an article in the Observer Dispatch about consolidation "talks", Concerned Citizens initiated a telephone conversation with Mr. Robert Roeckle at the State Department regarding consolidation of 911. A copy of the report and a summary of our conversation with Mr. Roeckle was emailed to Councilwoman Christine Krupa on November 4, 2009.

Mr. Roeckle told us that right now the State has money available under their Shared Services Program to help with the costs of consolidation. Mr. Roeckle sent us a copy of the consolidation report done by Schenectady County using money from a Shared Services Grant they obtained from the State. In the case of Schenectady County they received $100,000 for their study and another $1 million to implement the consolidation.

Let's stop playing politics, Mr. Picente! There is grant money available so that no one has to bear the burden of any related consolidation costs. Besides, upon information and belief, Oneida County is the designated Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP), and all New Hartford and Utica have to do is give the County notice that they are out of the 911 business and Oneida County has to take it over!


Anonymous said...

Does anyone in local government know what they are doing???Reading NH online is like having a crystal ball, NH online discovers something and then a few weeks later it's in the OD. Politicians around here are always quick to punish the tax payers for THEIR inability to do the job..what a shame, I used to like living here...Let the punishments begin

Anonymous said...

Isn't Mr. Picente up for re-election this fall?

This man will do anything to stop progress in this County. All he is worried about is his political cronies getting him re-elected.

Mr. Picente, perhaps you need to look for another job. McDonald's and Burger King are hiring. Are you qualified?

Anonymous said...

Picente ------Another MUST GO politican.

Anonymous said...

Oneida County collects a sizable amount of sales tax from the area's largest shopping hub yet only returns a small percentage back to the Town but New Hartford residents are expected to pay for fire and police services to keep that area safe.

Sounds like a wash to me Mr Picente. Answering the emergency call is the least the County can do for what you collect from our retailers every year. Any money needed for consolidation should come from grants only or else what's the point?

Anonymous said...

Tony Picente had better choose his words carefully about New Hartford. If you think we're going to pay more for 911 than anybody else, Mr. P, you are raw nuts.

And if you keep floating this poppycock, Mr. P, we WILL visit you where it hurts --- In the New Hartford voting booth.