Why are city police ignoring homeless?

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion My wife and I were homeless for many years, but not homeless, as several individuals who pan handle across from the Schenectady Community College claim to be. We were homeless because we had the good fortune to work for as many as three employers, each 24/7, raise two children and pay the mortgage. A day off was rare.I’m perplexed as to why the police do not bother them. Do they have a permit? If they have a permit, please tell me where to apply. I can fit several hours a day to supplement my retirement pay. Thank for your support.Jim KownackScotiaMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusSchenectady teens accused of Scotia auto theft, chase; Ended in Clifton Park crash, Saratoga Sheriff…last_img read more

State should rethink its new testing rules

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionI read with interest the Jan. 23 article about new accountability rules for New York’s schools. Having taught for over 30 years in this state, I’m used to seeing regulations come and go. Some ideas have clear and appropriate goals. Others seem to have been created on the fly.Particularly difficult for me to swallow in the new batch of rules is the directive about districts being held accountable for student participation in state tests. This strikes me as lacking any clear thought and being another case of the state passing the buck to districts, as it so often does.The opt-out movement is an example of democracy at its best. An important constituency (parents) realized that something was wrong and took action.There’s a complete lack of logic in holding districts accountable for increasing participation rates. How on Earth can they be expected to do this when there is a concerted effort to the contrary by parents? The state obviously has no answer, so it just kicked the can. Why would the state try to quash a well-organized and thoughtful act of resistance? We try to teach students to be active participants in our democracy. When we try to suppress actions, we are sending a contradictory message.The state Department of Education would do well to include all stakeholders in a comprehensive and inclusive discussion of what is really wrong with testing in the state. Forcing districts to be bullies is not the answer.Martha MeskutoveczGlenvilleMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristslast_img read more

Assault gun ban would protect us

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion I’m a sportsman. Growing up, our primary forms of recreation were fishing and hunting. I have fond memories of days spent with my father hunting those erratic woodcock with a 20-gauge pump shotgun. To my thinking, that’s the epitome of shooting sports. I can imagine no sport that requires an assault rifle. There’s no room in the shooting sports for such a weapon.I agree with those who argue that it’s not guns that kill people, but people who kill people. However, people with assault weapons kill exponentially more people than people with ordinary firearms. We may not be able to eradicate all senseless mayhem, but we can reduce the carnage.I’m also sympathetic to those who vigorously argue for their Second Amendment rights. I have spent my entire professional career defending the constitutional rights of citizens. The framers of our Constitution intentionally gave us a document that protects us against government abuse as well as allows for change to meet circumstances that the framers couldn’t foresee.The pressing need of our day isn’t for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves from their government by force of arms, but to protect each other, and especially our children, from madmen with weapons of mass slaughter. We must take steps to ban the general availability of assault weapons.Michael T. HoranSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:Schenectady police reform sessions pivot to onlineSchenectady’s Lucas Rodriguez forging his own path in dance, theater, musicMotorcyclist injured in Thursday afternoon Schenectady crashEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesSchenectady man dies following Cutler Street dirt bike crashlast_img read more

Niche market

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The riled west

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Bath regeneration: A little local difficulty

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Burbage quits LSH

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Going places

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Thousands flee severe flooding in New Zealand

first_imgSevere flooding forced thousands of residents in New Zealand’s South Island to flee their homes on Wednesday and left hundreds of tourists stranded at the remote Milford Sound beauty spot.The Southland region declared a state of emergency after being deluged with more than 1,000 mm of rainfall in 60 hours, triggering landslides on major roads and causing rivers to burst their banks.Authorities told residents in the low-lying areas of Gore and Mataura to evacuate immediately early on Wednesday as floodwaters in the Mataura river peaked, warning those further downstream in Wyndham to prepare to leave. “We have issued notices to evacuate and to prepare to evacuate to 6,000 people across the region,” an Emergency Management Southland (EMS) spokeswoman told AFP.Residents were advised to grab medication, clothing and identification documents, then head to higher ground.Power to affected areas was cut off as a precaution and evacuation centres were set up in local churches and schools.Floodwaters washed away sections of the only road to Milford Sound, a popular hiking spot for international tourists, and EMS said almost 200 people were being airlifted to nearby Te Anau.”The tourists… have been well catered for,” it said.”Morale has been high amongst the visitors and staff, as they received regular briefings and have been in contact with friends and family.”Only two minor injuries have been reported after a landslide hit a hut on the Routeburn walking track, with both people receiving treatment at the scene.Topics :last_img read more

EU budget summit ends with no deal

first_imgAn EU summit called to set the bloc’s next seven-year budget ended in impasse late Friday, riven by competing groups among the 27 member states and pressure to fill a funding gap left by Brexit.Differences were “still too great to reach an agreement,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters at the end of the two days of talks in Brussels.No date had yet been set for another summit to try again, but Merkel added that “we are going to have to return to the subject”. ‘Goup vs group’ European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who is counting on a big enough budget to meet her executive’s “geopolitical” ambitions, said the EU discord was sign of “democracy”.Despite Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron teaming up to back Michel in his search for an acceptable compromise, two groups of countries dug in their heels.One was the so-called “frugal four” made up of Austria, Denmark, the Netherlands and Sweden, which wanted the budget reined in to reflect the UK’s absence and to avoid them having to shoulder a bigger budgetary burden.The other was the “friends of cohesion”, 17 member states including Spain, Portugal, Greece, Poland and Hungary that want to protect EU spending on things like infrastructure as well as farm subsidies.”We ended up in a situation of group versus group. That’s why it failed,” a source close to the negotiations told AFP.Germany and France stood apart from those groups but had their own interests to defend. Merkel is determined to retain a budget rebate her country has received ever since Britain wrangled one for itself while a member. Macron, who is against the rebates, is resolute that the farm subsides — from the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) — not be cut.”The CAP cannot go to pay for Brexit,” Macron said as the summit broke up. The French president was to visit a national farm show in Paris on Saturday.He has sought to push the EU to be more united and more ambitious and insisted Thursday that Britain’s departure should not clip the bloc’s wings. The trillion-euro-plus budget, the multiannual financial framework, is meant to be operational from next year and run to the end of 2027.But the summit revealed stubborn differences between a handful of wealthy “frugal” states and a larger group wanting more money to meet both big European ambitions and to fill the 75-billion-euro shortfall left by Britain’s exit from the EU last month.”Unfortunately we have observed it was not possible to reach an agreement, we observed we need more time,” said European Council President Charles Michel, who had called the extraordinary summit and stewarded the talks.He said, however, he was right to make the effort: “As my grandmother said, to succeed you first have to try.” A battle over percentages Much of the summit’s haggling focused on how much of a percentage of GDP the member states would have to cough up.The “frugals” were entrenched at paying no more than 1.0 percent. “My prime minister has been very clear from the start — we will not pick up the tab,” said a diplomatic source from one in that group.Michel’s revised proposal made Friday was for 1.07 percent, which would have resulted in a seven-year budget of 1.09 trillion euros. That would be just a bit above the previous one of 1.08 trillion euros while covering the Brexit hole.Far above those figures is the one waved about by the European Parliament, which is pressing for 1.3 percent of GDP. That would be to cover Brexit, fund all current programs and go to ambitious new ones such as fighting climate change, increasing EU investment in space and technology, and boosting the bloc’s external borders.Almost all leaders at the summit view the MEPs’ ask as way too much. But they are also aware that the parliament has to give its assent to a budget deal among member states, whenever that might be worked out. Topics :last_img read more