letters to the editor

'Workforce development needs holistic approach' and more

Posted 2/26/20

Letters to the editor February 27 to March 4

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letters to the editor

'Workforce development needs holistic approach' and more

Posted

Regarding last week’s Eldred school board meeting

I have never written to the editor before but feel obligated to do so at this time. I am doing so in regard to the last [Eldred Central School District] school board meeting. I am one of the very few who attend these meetings. I do not have children in the school system but I am concerned where my tax dollars are spent. I have roots in the community going back over 150 years. This school district has had problems fiscally in the last few years, problems that could have been avoided if managed properly. It is also plagued with publicity regarding bullying activities. On Thursday evening, I witnessed the school board president attempt to bully an attendee to keep her from asking questions. The questions were not offensive nor derisive. The district is on the defensive, as we all know, regarding bullying issues. I was appalled to see this tactic used to squash questions at a meeting where transparency is supposed to be the agenda.

Pat Buechmann
Glen Spey, NY

Workforce development needs holistic approach

I recently visited four chambers of commerce and met with my Small Business Advisory Committee to hear directly from our local businesses. From Oneonta, to Catskill, to Deposit, to Kingston, small business owners stressed the need for an education and training pipeline tailored around local job opportunities.

New York District 19 is home to excellent educational institutions and workforce development programs like BOCES and skills training organizations like the Oneonta Job Corps Academy. Together, they help students develop the skills needed for good-paying local jobs that help grow the upstate economy. However, our rural communities continue to face workforce shortages, in part because we lack access to the most basic services students need to complete their education and workers need to succeed in today’s world. Whether it’s public transportation, childcare, or affordable housing, our economy demands a more holistic approach to the workforce development challenge, particularly in rural communities.

That’s why I introduced the Gateway to Careers Act, a proposal to link academic instruction and support services in one program to yield more successful workforce development outcomes.

The Gateway to Careers Act funds partnerships between colleges, employers and local nonprofits for the development of career pathway strategies that combine job training with social services to help nontraditional and underserved students succeed. My bill provides localized job training while removing barriers that prevent people from entering or remaining in the workforce. Providing services like childcare, housing, transportation, or addiction treatment would help students finish their education and earn industry-recognized credentials.

Enabling more students to access comprehensive career pathway programs is vital to building strong local economies. I’ll keep working to move this legislation and keep listening to our local business owners.

Rep. Antonio Delgado
New York District 19

Regarding a decision from the IDA

Who would have thought that progressive maven Carol Roig, a public figure in her capacity as columnist and IDA member, would vote not once but twice to give away an unneeded tax break to the billionaire’s Eldred Preserve vanity project? This vote literally robbed the Town of Highland and the Eldred School District of over $6,000,000 or more over 15 years.

The truth is always the same – easy to be outspoken when surrounded by like-minded friends. As they say in Harry Potter, the brave find ways to disagree with their friends and peers.

Chuck Petersheim
Eldred, NY

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