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On the Campaign Trail: Katko calls out Maffei; Kessner backpedals on primary

At a press conference on July 2, Republican Congressional candidate John Katko criticized Democratic opponent Dan Maffei, the incumbent representative for the 24th Congressional District, for his grandiose infrastructure plan as well as his vote against a House measure that encourages oil drilling within the U.S.

Political truth in advertising

It’s time again for the ubiquitous political attack ads. We will hear the old saw, “Attack ads work!” That may be true, but consider, if you will, doesn’t the electorate deserve better?

LETTER: No bench at East Syracuse Veteran’s Park?

To the editor: I am a Vietnam veteran. When I am in East Syracuse, I almost always stop at the war monument. For me, it’s time to reflect and I have met many other veterans there who served in Vietnam and Korea. But I’m wondering, why is there no bench there anymore? Even a wooden bench, like the ones around the village would be nice.

LETTER: Relay for Life co-chairs thank community

To the editor and the F-M community: As the co-chairs of this year’s F-M Community Relay for Life, we wanted to take a moment to thank you for so generously supporting us and the American Cancer Society in our first year of our Relay. We began this undertaking in October of 2013 when our students decided to bring Relay back to our community. With a small but dedicated group, we were able to plan a 12-hour walk, schedule a carnival, find bands to play, and, in total, see more than 1,000 people attend in one way or another to support raising funds for cancer research and prevention.

LETTER: New York’s Governor may be guilty of bribery

To the editor: Late last month, the far-left Working Families Party (WFP) nearly dumped Andrew Cuomo in favor of an insurgent liberal candidate at their party convention, but Cuomo saved himself with a last minute pact brokered by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.

LETTER: Local businesses show support for volunteers

To the editor: On Wednesday, June 4, several local businesses came out in support of FM-JD area Meals on Wheels at our annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon, which was organized by creative MOW volunteers Debbie Kelley and Beth Rhea. We want to especially thank Chef Bob Henning, and management team members Rita Mazzarello and Tom Guzzo, from Maple Downs Holiday Retirement community in Fayetteville for generously providing a delicious luau-theme main course; Kathy and Vince Giordano, owners of SNO-TOP in Manlius for their donation of ice cream for our dessert sundaes and Dr. Jeff Standish and his assistant Jen of Chiropractic First in E. Syracuse, for providing thermal scans and chair massages to many of our volunteers.

LETTER: Sheriff’s candidate doesn’t say how repealing SAFE will make us safer

To the editor: Jack Garafalo ("SAFE-ACT has serious flaw, won't work in the long run," June 11) wrote a very persuasive letter about how he, as a candidate for Onondaga County sheriff, would attempt to get that law overturned. In his lengthy letter, however, he failed to mention how he would make Onondaga County a safer community for its citizens.

Enjoy summer with a visit to a state park or a night spent camping under the stars

After the long, cold winter we had here in the Central New York, it’s time to take advantage of the warm weather and the beautiful sunshine as much as we can in the days to come. We’re fortunate to be surrounded by beautiful scenery throughout New York, from our beaches to our mountains to everything in between. When it’s nice out, there is no shortage of locations for taking advantage of what can only be described as glorious weather. The month of June is Great Outdoors Month, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than by visiting one of New York’s 180 gorgeous state parks and historic sites.

An interview with Gene Conway

Recently I had the opportunity to meet with Gene Conway, Dewitt Police Chief, to learn more about him. What I found out was that Gene is a dedicated policeman and capable administrator. He knows that the police are extensions of the public, as are all government employees. Being a policeman is unique in that sometimes contact with the public is unpleasant, but that a policeman should not be unpleasant.

LETTER: Disappointed to not see Fayetteville DPW in parade

To the editor and all members of the Fayetteville DPW: I attended the Fayetteville Memorial Day parade for the first time in many years. I was very disappointed that your department was not represented in this parade. The only representatives I saw were several workers quickly removing barricades at the end to open the streets.

LETTER: Meaning behind parade is not candy

To the editor: On May 26, many Manlius children were once again able to learn the true meaning of Memorial Day. Namely, that it’s the day when the streets are filled with candy and all one has to do is pick it up. Hey, it’s even better than Halloween, no need to don a mask or costume, walk between houses, ring doorbells, etc.

Help me help the MDA

I need your help to make bail. No, not that kind of bail. I’ve never been arrested. But I am going to “jail.” I’ve been recruited to help the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) with their annual Lock-Up fundraiser. Such events occur nationwide all year long. Business owners and community leaders (and, apparently, weekly newspaper reporters) agree to be “put behind bars for good.” We’re asked to raise money from friends, family, co-workers and, in your case, readers to help make “bail,” which will then benefit the MDA’s research, medical clinics and summer camp experiences.

LETTER: What’s going on with the Manlius gazebo?

To the editor: What happened to the gazebo? Will it be rebuilt? These are the questions the Spade and Trowel Garden Club received at our annual perennial sale recently. We answered that, because of major deterioration, the gazebo had to be replaced and this is planned to happen during 2014.

LETTER: ESM lacrosse grandparents thank J-D varsity girls team, coach

To the editor: On May 8, the ESM girls’ varsity lacrosse team hosted rival J-D on Senior Night. Our granddaughter, Samantha Dooling, is four-year varsity player for ESM and because of an injury; she was unable to play in this game. Samantha is a very prolific goal scorer and at the time of her injury she was the No. 2 goal scorer in Section III.

LETTER: Responsibility for maintaining streets and highways

To the editor: Recently, my County Representative Kevin Holmquist published his reasoning for voting against the county funding maintenance of some streets in the city of Syracuse. His reasoning must have made his seventh grade social studies teacher proud. He remembered learning that back in the 1930s; cities in New York State were the economic engines with major industries and commerce. Villages were communities of local shops and homes and the rest of the areas in most were rural farm lands. He remembered that most residents of villages only went into the cities to conduct important business or for special events and that their primary life and family activities revolved around their separate villages.