People’s Column

Tax engine

not slowing


I just received my Brocton School tax bill. I could not believe how much my taxes went up again. I called the town of Pomfret assessor’s office to make sure it was correct. The person I spoke to informed me that the Cassadaga and Fredonia school systems, which are part of the town of Pomfret, also had increases.

Cassadaga school taxes went up $2 and some cents per thousand, Fredonia school taxes went up $3 and some cents per thousand, and Brocton school taxes went up $9.67 per thousand. I also spoke to a Brocton school board member and that person did not have a clue that the taxes increased that much.

If they aren’t aware, then who is? I now pay more than $5,300 in school taxes per year, which is outrageous.

I am retired and on a fixed income and cannot continue to pay these increases. I know I have complained before as far as Pomfret town taxes, but how can the average person keep paying these increases.



Support library, area artists


Come help the James Prendergast Library and support local artists at the same time.

An exciting new community event will take place from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Prendergast Library, and I encourage all area residents to attend.

The library is trying something new – an auction featuring the work of local artists, many of whom have exhibited in our gallery over the years. Many talented individuals have contributed pieces to be sold for the benefit of the library.

From 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., ticketholders will enjoy music by Davis and Eng, hors d’oeuvres and sweets, beer and wine and an opportunity to browse items to be sold.

Auctioneer Lee Davies will open the bidding at 7:30. Winning bidders are asked to take their items home that evening.

Tickets at $30 each are available at the library’s circulation desk or online at An online catalog will be posted, and a printed catalog will be distributed at the auction.

We hope you will help us make this inaugural local art auction fundraiser a success. Buy your tickets today!



Prendergast Library Board of Trustees

People’s Column

Donors, stores help veterans


The Charles Tinley Post 142, Dunkirk, recently had a forget me not fundraiser and would like to thank Walmart on Bennett Road, Fredonia, and Tops Markets, Vineyard Drive, Dunkirk.

Without these businesses allowing us to set up outside their establishments, we would not have been able to be successful. A big thanks for your support!

Most of all, thank you to the folks who made it possible for this organization to continue in aiding other organizations and individuals who are struggling in today’s complex world, again thank you from The Disabled American Veterans, we salute you.

A very special thank you goes to young Katie Davis, who used her savings to purchase a case of water for the volunteers working at Walmart, then donated the rest of her savings to the organization.


Disabled American Veterans,


County native’s lasting gifts


Rexford Guy Tugwell (1891-1977), born and buried in Sinclairville, spent but his first 11 years there. He made a career as an economics professor in Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, and Santa Barbara, taking time to serve as Undersecretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (1933-1936) and Governor of Puerto Rico (1941-1946).

“The Light of Other Days” (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1962), one of 20 books he wrote, is the autobiography of his first 18 years which largely formed his positions on agriculture, conservation, education, and health care. This is apparent from specific incidents that he recorded in the book, all reflected upon from his 70th year.

The Works Progress Administration (WPA) and the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), both federal agencies, left marks throughout the USA. In Chautauqua County, they include the Cassadaga Valley, Brocton, and Mayville high schools, all noteworthy for quality of materials and exquisiteness of detail, as well as the Dunkirk and Fredonia Post Offices.

Three-hundred-acre conservation areas include Boy Scout Camp Merz (Mayville) and the College Lodge (Town of Portland). State parks nearby include Allegany and Letchworth State Parks. Tugwell’s federal service played a key role in these enduring works.



Lots at stake

in election


Often watching Fox News, CNN and especially C-SPAN, I have come to this conclusion.

If Mr. Donald Trump wins the presidency it will be a victory for him.

If he is defeated it will be a loss for the American people.


Silver Creek

People’s Column

Columnist has blinders on


This is in regard to columnist Connie Schultz who called Hillary Clinton, “the most qualified candidate to run for office in your lifetime.” Who’s been living on the planet Dagobah?

Ms. Schultz, how can you constantly write about Donald Trump’s negatives and completely ignore Clinton’s vices? She’s a cold, lying, deceitful person who cannot be trusted and could care less about you or me. That’s right men and women.

She has a rap sheet a mile long and should be in jail, not running for president. Are you proud of the fact she dodged another bullet (no assassination threat intended) by not being indicted?

We all know who you will vote for it’s your right but please stop playing the gender card and spare us all the convenient little stories about babies and grandsons and try to be a little more, (no a lot more) objective in your writing.

It’s about trust and honesty Connie. TRUST AND HONESTY.



Not standing disrespectful


Respect. This is something that has been sorely lacking in our country for some time.

This is in regard to the athletes not standing for the national anthem. It is not, as the president stated, that this is their right to protest it is a blatant act of disrespect.

It is disrespect for the country that allows them to live, and do something which they enjoy to earn a living, and for the people (men and women) who paid the price to allow them to do this.

There are many ways they can work to change the things they deem wrong in our society, which will draw attention to them and hopefully enlist others to recognize the problems and work to correct them. But part of the duty of being a professional athlete, and someone who is in the public eye, is to show respect themselves.

Let’s put a stop to this disrespect now! In all things there should be consequences for actions which are less than desirable. This is one of those actions. In the future let it cease to occur, or let there be consequences.



‘Playground’ is togetherness


My daughter has had the privilege of participating, for the third year, in “Playground,” a week of musical theater day camp for children and teens at SUNY Fredonia.

From a Monday to a Saturday, a script is miraculously transformed into a Junior version production of a Broadway musical, complete with costuming, set design, props, lighting and choreographed dances.

What strikes me most about this process isn’t simply the talent pulled from youth, many who would never envision themselves applauded on their home-school stages. The most important part of “Playground” is what happens in the hearts of these young actors and production crew. As they sit on a, once again, bare stage passing a microphone to share their individual experiences after their Saturday performance, the theme is consistent every year.

They talk about feeling loved, respected, affirmed, and being accepted as family. They are reminded to take what they have learned that week and feel empowered to tackle all of life’s challenges with the same confidence and belief that they are capable of anything.

The “Playground” experience is profound. Congratulations to Ted and Janie Sharon, and the league of professionals who take the time to teach character and mentor youth in this unique musical theater program.



People’s Column

Setting record straight on fine


This is in response to the OBSERVER’s View (Aug. 25) about Westfield taxpayers footing the bill for our operator’s fine. It’s this simple: if the editor had read his own paper’s article on the overflow he would have realized that not one penny of taxpayer funds will go to pay the fine. But I’m guessing he doesn’t read his own paper.

Also, John D’Agostino continues to show he is unable to observe the simple facts that the pump station was already overflowing into the creek and the pumps weren’t working. After it was repaired, 497,000 gallons of waste water was pumped to the treatment plant that day. That would have ended up in the creek.


Westfield mayor

Another choice for president


Could you support a candidate for president who wants to balance the budget and bring spending under control?

How about a candidate for president who believes in being socially inclusive, who believes we can make our own choices about how to live our lives as long as those choices do not harm others?

You can have both in the Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson. We do not have to continue to support the increasingly divisive two-party war that is tearing us apart as a country. A recent Gallup Poll shows between 56 and 61 percent of people do not like either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. If those people made a different choice we could break free of the corrupt two party system that is failing miserably to represent us.

Gary Johnson will be on the ballot in every state as the Libertarian candidate for president. Never before have we had two major party candidates with such high negatives. This is the year that we can make a difference by supporting a new party. Please at least look at Gary Johnson, learn about his positions and background, and then make your voting decision.

We all have a voice.


Van Buren