To the editor,
The date was Dec. 12, the place was the Oswego County Legislature meeting.
At that meeting, there was a resolution renewing the contract with Oswego County Opportunities for transportation to nutrition sites thoughout the county for senior citizens.
The transportation is twice weekly for some sites and once a week for others.
I requested an amendment to the resolution asking for transportation to increase at each site.
Let me point out that this is the same legislative body that approved $495,000 for a parking lot in Mexico for the Taj Mahal (Department of Social Services) to increase the parking there by 70 parking spaces at a cost per space of $7,071.
This is also is the same legislative body that approved the purchase of an airport hanger for $800,000 that will hold up to four jet planes at a cost per plane of $200,000.
Then, some legislators were going to approve raises for themselves and all department heads in the amount of $275,000. That is 25 legislators and somewhere around 15 department heads.
My request was for an increase of $168,000 for 2,500 additional riders for the year at cost of $67.20 per rider.
The increases were as follows:
Fulton would increase by two times a week for a total of four times.
Central Square would increase by two times per week for a total of three times.
Hannibal would increase by two times per week for a total of three times.
Mexico would increase by once per week for a total of two times
Parish would increase by two times per week for a total of three times.
Lacona would increase by two times per week for a total of three times.
I pointed out that seniors need nutrition and socialization for a healthy life style.
I asked how many in the crowd only ate once or twice a week. There were no hands raised. I told them yet that is what they are saying is all we need to feed and help socialize the seniors in our county.
I pointed out over and over again that the main function of government is to supply a service to the taxpayers. Transportation to the nutrition sites was a service to one of our treasured groups.
When it came time for a vote on my amendment the vote was all 18 Republican legislators voting nay and the 5 Democrats voting aye.
So there is money for a parking lot, money for an airport hanger and money for raises but not a dime to increase the services for the senior citizens.
Frank Castiglia Jr.
Oswego County Legislator
25th District, Fulton