Letters to the editor May 13 to 19
Bringing laughter and humor into our lives is a powerful way to move through the pandemic and somehow stay balanced. My own sense of humor about life has kept me balanced. I often use drawing as a way to remind myself that there are more feelings we can experience other than despair. Humor is not always in an external event; sometimes it is a frame of mind.
In their press conference on the steps of the Sullivan County Courthouse, four of my colleague legislators called for my resignation as chair. They claimed I don’t communicate with them. The exact opposite is true, and I can prove it.
Through our clerk Annmarie Martin, I sent them notice of a proposed change in April 22’s meeting to April 23. That email went to them on Tuesday, April 20, three days before the meeting! They had at least 48 hours to email me or her back. Not one of them did, even though emails, instead of texts, are the way they have told me they want to communicate. If the topics of that meeting were so controversial that legislator Rajsz had to invoke Rule 36 to table them, why didn’t any of them say something before the meeting?
I wonder if some of them even read their emails. For example, at the last minute, they wanted to wait on approving the Code of Conduct, which has been under development for two years, because they thought it had some sort of secret political trap. But they had had a draft in their emails since February 24, and in all those weeks, I heard nothing.
For the record, I had zero to do with Nadia or Luis having trouble logging on to participate in the April 23 meeting. And I didn’t move it to make it harder for them to attend. I work hard to make sure I have at least five votes for every resolution, but as past big votes prove, it’s great to have a bigger majority or even a unanimous vote.
Maybe legislators Rajsz, Perrello, Alvarez and Steingart need to explain to their constituents why they don’t communicate with me. Voters put them in office to work for their interests, not fight for personal or political agendas.
I am available to meet with any legislator to discuss any issue that they are prepared to discuss at any time.
Robert A. Doherty
District 1 Legislator, Chairman
Sullivan County Legislature
Mongaup Valley, NY
Juli Fuhse and Christine Buttaro are running for Shohola tax collector. I recently learned that some of Ms. Buttaro’s supporters are disparaging Ms. Fuhse because, as the gossip goes, “She has never held a job.”
Not true! Juli began working as an office assistant at the age of 15 and is financing her campaign from monies earned while working for two local businesses in which she handled order fulfillment, billing, document processing and customer relations.
Juli’s career path took an unexpected turn even before she graduated high school when her dad was seriously injured in an accident that left him unable to walk or use his arms. From 2018 to 2020, Ms. Fuhse’s “job” was to be her father’s arms and legs. She assisted her mom 24/7, nurturing her dad to health and maintaining the family’s large homestead. Despite this commitment, Juli stayed current with schoolwork and graduated on time.
She used the unexpected delay in launching a career to assess how to apply her acquired knowledge and skills in a way that would serve her community once her dad was restored to health. Upon learning in late 2020 that Shohola’s tax collector was retiring, she studied the PA Tax Collector’s Manual to understand a tax collector’s duties. As she tells the story, she had an “ah-ha!” moment when she recognized that she could apply her attention to detail, document-processing, research, software and organizational skills to serve the township she so loves as tax collector.
Years ago, I co-founded a unique database business. There were no “perfect” job candidates because no business did what we did. In that regard, our business was similar to that of tax collecting. The only way to acquire tax collecting experience is to serve as a tax collector. Our company learned that an open, inquiring mind, attention to detail, a willingness to learn and self-confidence were far more important factors in a successful hire than any prior job experience.
I met Juli when she knocked on our door to introduce herself as a candidate for Shohola tax collector. After spending 20 minutes with her, I knew that, had she applied for a job at our former company, she would have been an instant hire. Juli Fuhse has earned my vote in the May 18 primary.
David D. Farrington
I am writing to endorse Juli Fuhse for the position of Shohola Tax Collector.
I have known the Fuhse family for roughly 40 years and have been privileged to watch Juli grown into an intelligent, capable young woman who is wise beyond her years. Juli was homeschooled through graduation, learning the value of thorough, accurate work in a rigorous academic curriculum. She is a responsible, trustworthy young woman who exemplifies the Christian values with which she was raised. Juli has always been able to learn from the life experiences of those around her—a quality that is rare in young adults, and one that spared her the difficulties so many face on their path to adulthood.
From a young age, Juli shouldered much of the responsibility of running a household: caring for nephews, raising livestock and crops, and preserving food to help feed her family through the winter. She participated in all aspects of operating a small manufacturing company, from office and clerical work to customer service, production, shipping and adherence to FDA regulations.
Juli was raised in a family that enjoys the outdoors, including hunting and fishing. She has hunted and fished in many states across the U.S. When Juli’s father was severely injured in an accident three years ago, Juli was an active participant in his care and rehabilitation, driving him across the country for specialized medical treatments.
Juli shares in her family’s love of the beautiful township of Shohola and, for years, has volunteered at community events in Rohman Park. In the past year, she became interested in the position of tax collector. She thoroughly researched the intricacies of running for a public office and made the decision to pursue the position of tax collector. She knew that her strong math background, attention to detail and meticulous recordkeeping skills would make her a perfect fit for this role. Seeing all that this young woman has achieved, I am convinced that she is capable of handling anything she sets her mind to.
Juli is running on the Republican ticket for the position of Shohola tax collector. Those who are registered Democratic can write her name in. Remember, it’s Juli with an “i.” I fully support her for the position of Shohola tax collector, and I hope you will too.
My name is Sarah Cooper. I’m running for the Sullivan West Board of Education to continue in the seat I was appointed to fill in the fall of 2020.
I am the mother of two Sullivan West students who have attended since Kindergarten. As a single mom, I know what it’s like to be one of the 43 percent of families in the district who live in poverty. I also know what it’s like for children of color, kids like mine, to feel they don’t have a voice in a place where other students ask if they can buy them, make comments about their hair and their skin. I started a local chapter of Parents Against Racial Disparity in Education last summer and began working with Sullivan West to address issues that ensure equal education for all students.
I have spent my kids’ educational lives fighting for racial equality in education. My work has only just begun, and as the only parent of children of color currently serving or running for a seat on the board, I bring to the table a unique understanding of how to advocate for marginalized children.
I also bring to the table an extensive understanding of the struggles of poverty and the opioid epidemic that’s caught our small towns in its grips. I am a Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor and the program director at Villa Veritas Foundation, a rehab center in Kerhonkson, where I help individuals struggling with addiction get back on their feet.
I joined the school board because I believe every child should have an advocate who understands their life and who wants to make it better. If you return me to the board, I will continue to ensure the board considers the whole child in every decision. I will continue to fight to ensure that every kid has an equitable education and they are not held back because of the color of their skin, their sexuality, their gender, or their family’s income. Simply put: I am asking for your vote because I believe in doing what the kids need.