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Tuesday, October 27, 2020

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2012: Hello Taxpayer, Hello Gov’t

We are beginning to feature letters from those who have written to various NYS Powers-That-Be regarding one or more of the issues listed, and/or the responses they have received.  Please send us yours…..

Here is a response to a letter sent by Bob Cownie to Commissioner Burke.  The reply (excerpted here) is from Michael Feeney to the Cownies:

….” Thank you for your advocacy on behalf of the people who recently resided at the residence. I truly appreciate your concern for their well being and acknowledgement as valued neighbors and an extended family. We share that same level of commitment not only when addressing the changing life safety needs of those we serve to keep people safe in case of fire, but also while personally working with families and advocates to pursue solutions that are in everyone’s best interest……We also extend that same commitment to those to be served at the S. Vine Valley Residence as we develop and deploy the supports designed to meet their individual needs. Indeed, that is a longstanding commitment we stand by as a hallmark in our outstanding care. Since the Middlesex IRA opened in 1983, we have had the privilege of serving 38 different people. With that successful history in mind, we look forward to accommodating those we will serve in the future by offering personalized opportunities for continued growth.”

 He then goes on to tell us to contact Ms. Coleman-Ferrer, Deputy Director, with further questions.   Bob


Now here is a wonderful letter sent by our neighbors, Bruce and Judy St. Lawrence, for your review and ideas for your own corrspondence. 

 Mr. McDonald & Mr. Ortiz: 

My wife and I reside at 876 South Lake Rd, in Middlesex, less than a mile from the Group Home cited above.  We’re heard that this facility is to have its disabled residents relocated to various other facilities, to follow by renovating the home to house convicted sex offenders (and it WAS formerly a private residence before being purchased for the IRA home) . 
We request a copy of the analysis done to justify this action, or the specific website, and the location within that website, where this information can be found.  Funding for this project comes from tax money, I assume, so we have the right to know.  I am an engineering graduate, retired after 35 years in construction project management, and I am having great difficulty in rationalizing the fiscal responsibility of the project, to say nothing about site selection.  This is strictly a resort area made up of very high value lake property with a great influx of young families with children during the summer months. Who makes such ill-founded decisions under the guise of budget management??  I certainly understand and support the need for consolidation of assets and reduction in overhead costs, but someone needs to show me the bigger picture here, to include any additional costs necessary for facility upgrades and security requirements.  I feel that there is no one at the state level really scrutinizing these seemingly very minor projects, or the potential impact to the region. And when do local residents get the opportunity to review and comment on such planning and expenditures?   
Bruce and Judy St. Lawrence 
To contact Senator Roy J. McDonald, Chairman of the  Senate Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Committee:
Albany Office
188 State Street Room 918, Legislative Office Building
Albany, NY 12247
United States
Phone: (518) 455-2381
Fax: (518) 426-6985
To contact Félix Ortiz, the Chair of the Assembly Committee on Mental Health:
Albany Office
Legislative Office Building 826
Albany, NY 12248
If you are a member of SOS and received our recent email with email addresses of the committee members of Senator McDonald or Assemblyman Ortiz, you may find some of the addresses bouncing back to you as undeliverable.  It could be a wrong address, or it could be a full inbox; however, we have no corrections at this point but we will post corrected addresses as we are able to get them.  

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