District supports lack of respect for flag, country

first_imgIf the district administration condones eliminating the national anthem from a schoolwide event, what will be eliminated next, the “Pledge of Allegiance?” I read quotes of “We support our students,” but does the district support the United States? I am beginning to wonder.The district says “we teach respect,” yet the administration allows students to disrespect our nation, our flag, our anthem and our soldiers by “taking a knee” during the national anthem. If these students could have served a tour of duty in Afghanistan, Iraq, Vietnam, Korea or Nazi Germany, perhaps they would have a greater appreciation for the country they live in.How can a school district such as this be trusted to run a taxpayer supported, multi-million dollar school budget? It’s very discouraging to see the culture of hypocrisy and denial that the Niskayuna school district administration and Niskayuna school board operates in. That is a culture that I will “take a knee” to and not support at the budget vote in May.I will “take a knee,” too, and not support at the budget vote in May.Lonsdale WalkerNiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesNiskayuna girls’ cross country wins over BethlehemEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidation Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion I was greatly concerned as I read about the elimination of the national anthem from the Niskayuna High School fall pep rally. It was also disheartening to learn that certain school athletes are “taking a knee” when our national anthem is played at sporting events.Then, to make matters worse, I read of the public support that Niskayuna High School principal (and NFL recruiting agent) John Rickert, district Superintendent Tangorra, and the Niskayuna school board have given in to these less-than-admirable students.last_img read more

GOP tax plan won’t help economy

first_imgMost financial experts agree that this GOP plan will add about $1.5 trillion to the deficit by 2027.Thirty–seven of 38 economic experts surveyed by the University of Chicago’s Initiative on Global Markets agreed that the GOP tax bill would cause the debt to increase substantially faster than the economy.Until now, there has never been a tax on the poor to benefit the wealthy.We must make our voices heard. Robert KarandyBurnt Hills More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionThe Republican tax “reform” bill is an attempt by the GOP to complete a corporate takeover of our country. Trump and his GOP minions are telling the American people that the 15 percent corporate tax cut that this plan contains will result in massive corporate investments, new jobs and middle class pay raises and tax cuts.Recently, Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan looked directly into the cameras and stated that middle-class Americans are going to see their individual incomes rise by $4,000 to $9,000 if this bill passes.All of this will create so much more tax revenue that there will be no increase in the national debt. If this all sounds too good to be true, it’s because it is. It’s a GOP supply-side economics fairy tale.Trump’s economics adviser Gary Cohen asked a room full of top business executives if lower taxes would lead them to raise capital expenditures, and only five hands went up. There’s absolutely no historical evidence that cutting corporate tax rates will result in increased wages.In 1986 the corporate tax rate was cut from 46 percent to 34 percent. Do you remember receiving big pay raises in 1987 or 1988? That’s because it never happened. last_img read more

More transparency in local development

first_imgFor example, the Metroplex Law requirement that by March of each year, Metroplex must conduct a public hearing spelling out the goals and costs of each ongoing project and each project planned in the upcoming year is simply ignored by the Metroplex board and not enforced by the county Legislature.Unfortunately, Gazette reporting on economic development in Schenectady falls short by too often relying on the press releases by the economic development agency itself as the sole source of news. For example, a Jan. 15 report noted, “Metroplex: Payment in lieu of taxes hit $15.7M in 2017. Annual report on incentivized projects released.”In asking Metroplex for a copy of the report (available under the Freedom of Information Law), I was told there is no report yet, but simply a press release citing the anticipated report. I also learned the PILOTs (payment in lieu of taxes) cited in the press release were not all awarded by Metroplex alone, but included PILOTs given by the two Schenectady industrial development agencies (IDAs). Yes, there’s a need for more transparency in economic development activities at the home town level, too. Elmer BertschNiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Niskayuna girls’ cross country wins over BethlehemEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusPuccioni’s two goals help Niskayuna boys’ soccer top Shaker, remain perfectEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes The Feb. 2 editorial, “Need more transparency in economic development”  speaks to this need at the state level, with no mention of the need for transparency by the four economic development agencies operating in Schenectady Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img read more

Foss: Reflecting on maternity leave

first_imgI’ve learned a lot since having a baby, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that a supportive network of friends and family, combined with an ample amount of time off from work, makes everything easier and more manageable. It helps immensely when people bring you food, or stop by to stay hello.Having a baby — especially a winter baby — can be isolating, and visitors make you feel like you’re still a part of the world. In the weeks after my son was born, I completed several post-partum screenings that assess whether new mothers are suffering from post-partum depression. I wasn’t — in large part, I think, because of the steady flow of friends and family bearing meals and the steady, calming presence of my husband. New parents need help, and they don’t always get it. During my maternity leave, I occasionally found myself marveling at single parents, wondering how they got through the day without collapsing in complete exhaustion. How did they feed themselves? I wondered, while my husband cooked dinner and I tended to the baby. How did they ever run errands? Or take a break? Strong support from friends and family makes adjusting to life with a newborn about a million times easier.  As a society, we can do more to support parents as they adapt to life with a newborn. We can bring them food and help with errands, but we can also support policies and programs that will make it easier for them to take care of their children. In the long run, we all benefit from this, because it helps families establish a strong foundation for the future. As the weather has gotten warmer, we’ve been taking my son out more and more. We’ve taken him on walks, and to the homes of friends and relatives and even to a poetry reading. We’re excited to show him the world, and we’re thankful for the support we’ve received from our friends, families and employers. It’s the support every new parent deserves, and I hope one day we’ll live in a world where it’s the norm. Reach Gazette columnist Sara Foss at sfoss@dailygazette.net. Opinions expressed here are her own and not necessarily the newspaper’s. Her blog is at https://dailygazette.com/blogs/thinking-it-through.More from The Daily Gazette:Schenectady department heads: Budget cutbacks would further stress already-stretched departmentsSchenectady NAACP calls for school layoff freeze, reinstatement of positionsSchenectady man dies following Cutler Street dirt bike crashCapital Region COVID-19 Tracker for Friday, Oct. 16, by countyTroopers: Schenectady pair possessed heroin, crack cocaine in Orange County Thruway stop But let’s not kid ourselves — money matters, too. Being able to take time off from work to recover from childbirth and bond with my baby without suffering a loss of livelihood was a huge gift — one I’ll always appreciate. Caring for a newborn is anxiety-inducing enough without the added stress of worrying about how you’ll pay for groceries and housing. If there’s one thing I give Gov. Andrew Cuomo credit for, it’s pushing the state Legislature to pass New York’s new Paid Family Leave program, which went into effect this year. This program enables workers to take time off to care for a baby (or a sick relative) and still get paid, and it should make life easier for families throughout the state. Babies are a financial strain, as the steady stream of medical bills I’ve received since leaving the hospital attest to. I’ve lost count of the number of people who have told me that taking care of a newborn is the hardest thing they’ve ever done. And it is hard. But it doesn’t have to be as hard as it is. center_img Categories: Opinion, Schenectady CountyTwo weeks ago, the thought of returning to work after nine weeks of maternity leave filled me with a strange sense of dread. I just couldn’t imagine leaving my son for the day. Or any amount of time, really. But I couldn’t imagine staying home with him until he was old enough to go to school, either. I wanted to return to writing and reporting, and as the date of my return drew closer I found myself reading news stories and thinking it would be fun to comment on them or explore them in-depth. By the time I left for work on Monday, I felt ready to go, but also a little regretful. If anything, I wished I could be in two places at once — at home and at work. This is a feeling many parents have, and I was familiar with it thanks to conversations with friends and articles I’d read. But I still wasn’t entirely prepared for what it would be like to experience it myself — to worry about leaving my child in other people’s care, or to consider how best to maintain a healthy work/life balance. When someone asked me what I wanted from a day care, I replied, “I want them to keep my baby alive.” last_img read more

Legalizing pot will be crazy, idiotic or both

first_imgThose who vote it in should be put in jail. They and their friends will have a jolly old time.If someone is using it at the time of an accident, he or she should be put in jail along with those that vote it in.How many are in jail for selling and distributing it on the streets? How many will be let out of jail?Also, what is going with the police — one having an alcohol limit over 0.08 and another with child pornography?James MaxfieldScotiaMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationSchenectady teens accused of Scotia auto theft, chase; Ended in Clifton Park crash, Saratoga Sheriff…Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes Crazy government, wanting to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes.Are they nuts or idiots or both? Are they doing it so they can smoke it while in session? They should have their heads examined.Just what we need, more accidents on the road.  Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img read more

City Office Lettings – West End occupiers move

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Strange days

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Wharf leasing agents make staff changes

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Kenmore hits £200m mark

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£50m facelift for Derby to halt leak to Nottingham

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