Vote for Ballot Proposition 3 and more

Letters to the editor, October 28 to November 3

Posted 10/27/21

Vote for Ballot Proposition 3

One of the propositions on the table in this year’s November 2 election is to eliminate Article II, Section 5 of the New York State constitution, which …

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Vote for Ballot Proposition 3 and more

Letters to the editor, October 28 to November 3


Vote for Ballot Proposition 3

One of the propositions on the table in this year’s November 2 election is to eliminate Article II, Section 5 of the New York State constitution, which currently disallows folks from registering to vote less than 10 days before an election. I encourage my fellow New Yorkers to vote in favor of this proposal. Here’s why: the more eligible voters who vote, the more representative our democracy is. Sadly, we’re far from every American participating in our democracy. The best turnout we’ve ever had was in 2020, and we barely cleared two-thirds of the electorate participating. The turnout in non-presidential elections is an embarrassment.

How do we improve voter turnout? It’s a fundamental principle of economics: lower the cost of a good, and more people will consume it. Let’s lower the “cost” of voting. We all know people who are lovably disorganized. If they have to register weeks in advance, what are the odds they’ll remember to do it? Dismal, of course. Should that disqualify them from participating in our democracy? Absolutely not.

Why does New York’s 10-day rule exist? Likely because when the constitution was ratified in 1938, our boards of election lacked the capability to quickly update voter rolls as new folks were added to them. Today, we have the tools to check identities and update rolls in real-time. The current registration requirement keeps New Yorkers from voting, and there’s no evidence that registering weeks in advance of Election Day makes our elections safer.

We are living in a period of breathtaking technological capabilities. It’s time to bring our election laws into the 21st century to ensure that everyone—Republicans and Democrats alike—who wants to participate in our democracy can. It’s time New York joins the 22 other states that allow same-day voting, from Utah to Montana to Maine.

Leif Johansen

Liberty, NY

Vote Democrat for change in Cochecton

Cochecton voters have a choice to make on November 2 between two parties with very different agendas as far as who deserves voter access and government support. I hope they will add a fresh new face with fresh ideas to the town council. Kambri Crews is a true Democrat with the welfare of all Cochecton residents in her heart. She will protect and preserve our environment, advocate for small businesses and family farms, and be open and transparent about her role in government. She has 30 years of experience in law, banking, marketing and more and has been honored for her volunteer work. She helped prepare state senate COVID-19 legislation that was passed and has been awarded a Covid Hero award. I have met Kambri Crews and she is an energetic powerhouse. Here’s some of what’s on her website

Top campaign issues:

Supporting the volunteer ambulance corps

Transparency and inclusion on all town business

Expanding public green spaces

Preserving natural resources

Attracting and supporting small businesses, particularly arts organizations.

Also running is Dr. Paul Salzberg, the well known and loved, recently retired, local doctor who deserves to retain his seat on the board. Please think of Dr. Salzberg and Kambri Crews as a team who can work together for the improvement of everyday life in Cochecton. We have had one-party rule for too long. It’s time for a shakeup to see things change for the better.

Allan Rubin

Cochecton, NY

Cochecton Democrats will benefit everyone

I’ve learned more about Kambri Crews while we were sharing some thoughts about our town. Kambri is 50, owns her house on Rt. 52 in Cochecton for 11 years, wants to do good things for all of us, babes on up. Kambri’s experience is in banking, business, marketing and public speaking. Her business QED is in the city and she spends four days a week in Cochecton working from home. Kambri is IT savvy, doesn’t want to leave dollars on the table (some tax dollars could have been saved, e.g., UDC grant skipped again.) The town is fiscally healthy; however there is no interest to do more than tread water. Look at Bethel, Tusten and Callicoon! Their communities are all doing more for their community using grant monies. Kambri spoke at the town board meetings, asking questions, and made an interesting suggestion of how to help our ambulance corps (too wordy to explain here) to which Mike Attianese, president of the LHVAC said, “Thank you!” Cochecton needs Kambri Crews and to re-elect Dr. Paul Salzberg. Paul sincerely has the town’s health in the forefront. He’s the only Democrat on the board. He commented that topics they talk about at meetings are mostly about the highway department. We deserve to have more town topics addressed. The American Rescue Plan aka COVID-19 rescue money is a done deal—all to go to the sewer plant benefiting about 100 residents in the sewer district. $132,000! Why hasn’t the board explored the other eligible option, broadband? There are people in town still without service, not able to work from home, do remote medical doctor visits and their kids cannot get reliable access for remote schooling during the pandemic. Please vote row A—Crews and Salzberg for Town Council.

Peggy Richardson

Cochecton, NY

Jeff Haas for Highland supervisor

We are writing to show our support for Jeff Haas for another term as town supervisor for Highland. He is selfless in his duties—everything he does is to help others. As a lifelong resident, volunteer fireman and business owner he truly knows and cares about our beautiful area and its preservation. He has practical skills and knowledge that have helped us all through the many weather-related emergencies we have experienced. In any country town, it is an asset to know all the roads and the residents who live on them. It is also essential to know how to drive (and repair) trucks, tractors, ATV’s, to operate chainsaws and other power equipment and to know others who can do the same. Jeff Haas has proven himself time and again during debilitating storms by working around the clock alongside emergency crews and mobilizing our neighbor volunteers. If he can’t do something himself, then he certainly knows who can.

His hard work and dedication is reflected in his entire family, all of whom volunteer and work for the service of our community. In their public and private lives they are tried and true.

Thank goodness we are not in a perpetual state of emergency, but it is comforting to know that our town supervisor has what it takes in all circumstances. We are honored to have him as a friend and trusted public servant.

Michael and Elizabeth Sherwood

Yulan, NY

Why I will vote for Jeff Haas for Town of Highland supervisor

It was 9 p.m. on Friday, February 1, 2019. We were in the midst of an extended deep freeze with temperatures remaining below zero for far too long. My wife and I hadn’t been to our house for the past two weeks and we were looking forward to relaxing in a warm home in front of the fireplace.

I opened the door to be met by a blast of frigid air that was well below freezing. Our furnace was not working, our alarm system had failed, our pipes were frozen and our home was a mess. I called my neighbor, Jeff Haas, to get advice on whom to call for assistance on that awful night. Before I could finish my tale of woe, Jeff said, “I will be right over,” and, don’t you know, he put aside his personal comfort and appeared at our door in what seemed like minutes. Jeff immediately got to work assessing the damage, being certain the water was turned off and calling other neighbors to provide help, including the use of their portable propane heaters and other items needed to get us warmth in relatively short order.

The following morning without being asked, Jeff stopped by early. He had lined up two plumbers to assess the extensive damage and prepare a plan of action. In due course, and with Jeff’s help, we were able to get heat generated and begin our road to recovery. All of this was done voluntarily without asking for anything in return. When I asked Jeff why he put aside his personal comfort on a Friday night to help us without even asking for remuneration of any sort Jeff said, “Because that’s what neighbors do.” And that’s why I am voting for my neighbor, Jeff Haas, for re-election as Town of Highland supervisor. I urge my fellow citizens to do the same. You will not be sorry.

Donald Derfner

Yulan, NY

Ballot proposal 3, Cochecton Democrats, Highland Supervisor


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