On Wednesday, August 24, I attended the Chautauqua County Legislative meeting. The agenda seemed full as might be expected since budget-planning time isn’t far away. The New York State mandates, the 2 percent tax cap and the general economic downturn in the country are serious matters that will affect our taxes. With an 18 million deficit already a County problem, I expected some rather serious discussion. Initially, I was right. Lyle Hadju and Jeff Diers presented a report to the Legislature on the Lake Management Plan. It will be under funded this year and many worthy organizations that are funded by the 5 percent bed tax will receive nothing.
Though the Lake report was received with thanks, there was NO discussion of any of the report or of any of the unfunded agencies. In fact, as the evening progressed, adolescent levity instead of serious discussion dominated the atmosphere. Humor is not inappropriate, but time-consuming teasing and attention-getting behavior certainly are, particularly when the leadership of both political parties was involved. Ladies and Gentlemen of the Legislature, you were elected to shoulder responsibility. Please act responsibly.
Laura P. Damon