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County legislators spar over memorializing resolution  

Credit:  by Carol Thompson, The Valley News, www.valleynewsonline.com 21 September 2011 ~~

Following almost 40 minutes of debate, two recesses and one amendment, the Oswego County Legislature ended back at square one when it came to passing a memorializing resolution.

The second to last item on the agenda for last Thursday’s meeting was a resolution in opposition of the Power NY Act, Article X, which was signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo in July with the intent to increase power production and lead to new investment in the state.

The intent of the county’s resolution was to oppose the revocation of Home Rule in the matter of siting wind turbines. The resolution, however, is worded so that the entire content of the state legislation is opposed.

Some legislators on both sides of the aisle were not in favor of opposing the entire bill.

The debate over the resolution ensued when Minority Leader Mike Kunzwiler requested that the resolution be tabled and sent back to the appropriate legislative committee to gather more information regarding the bill.

“I would like to have some of our state representatives come in and answer some of our questions so we can really give this the time it deserves,” he said, adding that the five-minute committee meeting held just prior to the start of
the legislative session did not give ample time for lawmakers to consider the verbiage of the resolution.

Following a lengthy debate, an amendment was offered to take out a paragraph that stated the legislature was opposed to the Power NY Act of 2011 and replacing it with specific language related to the sitting of energy facilities and transmission lines that challenge home rule.

Republican Legislator Milferd Potter moved to amend the resolution to remove the problematic paragraph. By a collective vote, Potter voted against his own proposal.
Confusion loomed as to whom voted how and after it was agreed that it had passed, Democratic Legislator Amy Tresidder offered another amendment that would remove a paragraph that read, “Whereas, said law follows a disturbing trend in New York State to remove powers from the local jurisdiction and therefore from the affected electorate and transfer such power to a faceless bureaucracy that has no constituency.”

Tresidder said she believed the paragraph was too vague, particularly the phrase “disturbing trend.”

Her offer of an amendment resulted in the calling of another recess. When session resumed, Legislator Dan Chalifoux moved to rescind the previously passed amendment.

Tresidder objected to the rescinding of the amendment.

-Look for the full story in the Wednesday edition of the Valley News…

Source:  by Carol Thompson, The Valley News, www.valleynewsonline.com 21 September 2011

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