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On the campaign trail: First responders endorse Maffei

Rep. Dan Maffei (D-Syracuse) announced last week that he had earned the endorsement of local public safety officials in his campaign to keep his seat in the 24th Congressional District. Several first responders joined Maffei at a press conference to announce their support for the incumbent, who is running against former federal prosecutor John Katko of Camillus.

Village board mulls 2015 car show fireworks

B’ville Diner owner Jim Orlando is seeking a new site to set off fireworks at one of his classic car shows next year, but he will have to wait a bit longer for an answer from the village of Baldwinsville’s Board of Trustees. Orlando appeared in front of the board Sept. 4 to request the use of Baldwin Canal Square July 16, 2015, but the board would only grant him a “soft hold” — a promise not to book any other event that day. The board cited coming changes to the village’s park reservation system for tabling Orlando’s request. “I don’t think it would be prudent to make a commitment when everything could be changed,” said Deputy Mayor Bruce Stebbins.

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Trustees create more overnight permit parking in village

Post office short-term parking also changed from 10 to 15 minutes

In its continuing effort to better utilize the 22 Lincklaen St. parking lot and improve village parking, the village board last week unanimously agreed to create 20 overnight permit parking spaces in the historic business district as well as to increase the time limit for the short-term post office parking spaces.

Village board approves Western Gateway rezoning law

After four months of contentious public hearings and debates amid rooms full of spectators, the conclusion was almost anticlimactic. Only a handful of people attended a special hearing Wednesday night at which the village board unanimously approved the proposed “Western Gateway” rezoning law. The result is that while authorized zoning on Ledyard Avenue is for single-family homes only, special use permits may now be issued by the planning board for certain low-impact non-residential uses.

Democrat party primary for statewide offices scheduled for Sept. 9

All of the election districts in the city of Oneida and the towns of Madison County will hold a primary election for the Democratic Party only on Tuesday, Sept. 9. Polls will be open from noon to 9 p.m. The primary will be for the offices of governor, lieutenant governor and member of the assembly – 121st district.

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Manlius town board eliminates opt out option of trash and brush pickup policy, makes surcharge mandatory

The Manlius Town Board last week approved a town-wide resolution to eliminate the opportunity for residents to opt out of trash and brush pickup in the two town trash and brush districts. The new policy will take effect Jan. 1, 2015. The intent of the resolution is to save the town money and make trash and brush pickup and payment more fair, although at least one board member offered concerns over the removal of residents’ freedom to choose who their trash and brush haulers will be.

Three dozen residents attend public hearing on therapist’s plan for Birch St. home

It’s a gorgeous three-level, 14-room home at the base of Birch Street facing Onondaga Lake Park. Since it was constructed by Liverpool businessman Val Lamont two decades ago, the house has remained vacant. Lamont initially planned to move his family into the mini-mansion at 101½ Birch St., but when his late wife, Victoria, decided against it, he put it on the market for more than $500,000. Known by many as “the Christmas Tree house” because a holiday fir stands year-round in one of the home’s many expansive windows, the property attracted interest but no serious offers. Now a potential buyer, Janet Marie Urban of Nedrow, says she’ll purchase the house if she can secure a special permit from the village to allow her to operate a home-based business there. A tobacco treatment specialist, Urban’s permit application is presently under review by the Village Planning Board.

Village police get grants

At the Aug. 18 meeting of the Village of Liverpool Board of Trustees, Police Chief Don Morris updated the board about recent grants and donations he has secured, totaling more than $17,500. Grants received from the State Law Enforcement Terrorism Prevention Program have equipped each LPD vehicle with digital cameras, binoculars and flashlights. The funds also paid for the installation of a license plate reader on the department’s new patrol car and for enhancement of security at the Village Hall, at 310 Sycamore St., where police headquarters is located.

On the campaign trail: Katko responds to allegations: ‘I was the victim of a crime’

Republican Congressional candidate John Katko is fighting back against accusations of wrongdoing relating to a gun crime that took place in April of 2000. According to the Syracuse Post-Standard, Katko purchased a personal firearm to protect the safety of his family in late 1999. On April 3, 2000, Katko and his wife attended an event at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on the city’s west side. He left the gun, loaded, out of view in his car. While Katko was inside the church, someone broke into his car and stole a duffel bag, which contained the gun.

Van Buren Town Board in brief

The Van Buren Town Board met Aug. 19 for a brief session to discuss and act on the following items.  The Seneca Knolls year seven drainage project was awarded to Liverpool-based JJ Lane in the amount of $181,777. The board received bids that ranged from JJ Lane’s base bid up to $286,450.

Minoa Fire Department receives more than $23,000 in funding

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and U.S. Representative Dan Maffei announced last week that the Minoa Fire Department has been awarded $23,731 in Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) funding through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The Minoa Fire Department will use this grant to purchase a large-diameter fire hose.

Town zoning board rejects Owera appeal, says winery must abide by stated hours of operation

ZBA also rules winery event tent is not a building and therefore cannot run events past approved hours

Owera Vineyards’ three-season event tent is not an indoor building, as the winery owners claim, but an outdoor facility; and all events held at the winery — whether in the tent or not — must abide by the prescribed hours of operation as approved by the town planning board in 2012, hours which are enforceable by the town. This was the decision of the Town Zoning Board of Appeals, issued Monday, Aug. 25, at the ZBA’s regular monthly meeting, in response to an appeal by Owera seeking to overturn a town zoning enforcement officer determination concerning allowable facility events.

Lysander Town Board to continue Aug. 25 meeting on Thursday, Aug. 28

The Lysander Town Board’s meeting of Aug. 25 was adjourned until 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 28. The work session planned for that evening will be held after the Aug. 28 meeting is adjourned. The first two resolutions on the Aug. 25 agenda are being discussed and will be voted upon on Thursday, said Supervisor John Salisbury.

Take precautions against mosquitos

Every year, the Onondaga County Department of Health begins surveillance and control of the mosquito population in May. They monitor more than 20 traps across the county, testing mosquitoes for West Nile and EEE. EEE was identified in the Cicero Wildlife Management area in early July which prompted an aerial spraying on July 22 after obtaining the necessary approval from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. This helped to reduce the mosquito count, but with the recent wet-weather, additional spraying throughout the neighborhoods surrounding the management area was authorized and the truck spraying occurred Aug. 17. This will continue to be monitored by the department of health.

League of Women Voters to host information meeting on upcoming redrawing of state legislative and congressional districts

The Leagues of Women Voters of Cazenovia and the Syracuse Metropolitan Area are co-hosting an informational meeting on Thursday, Sept. 18, concerning the plan to reform the manner in which state legislative and congressional districts are drawn in New York State.