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November 3, 2011 - 9:37am

Political Concern

posted by Randa Williams in Election Concern.
I am writing this letter with a concern that I have regarding candidate
for County Legislator in LeRoy, Jackie Whiting.

Ms. Whiting currently serves on the school board and is seeking
election to the legislature.  It is my understanding that she is able
to serve on both bodies simultaneously and intends to do so.

When you combine the county tax rate of $9.82 per assessed thousand and
the school tax of $23.66 per thousand you get $33.48.  Adding the
library, fire, and town tax rates amounts to another $3.01 per thousand
for a total rate of $36.49 per thousand.

While I do not think there are enough hours in the day to do both jobs
properly, I am quite concerned at the possibility of one elected
official having control over more than 90% of our tax rate.  That is
too many eggs in one basket , and almost alleviating our constitutional
right to the checks and balances system.

 

Randa Williams
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Anyone else who shares this concern, please comment.

Chris Charvella
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Randa seems to think that the School Board and the Legislature should act as a check or balance against one another when, in fact, they exist in completely separate spheres of responsibility. This is the reason that Ms. Whiting could serve on both if elected to the Legislature.

Of course, I've witnessed the strange occurrence of Randa wearing a garbage bag in public, so her misunderstanding of a basic concept doesn't really shock me.

The fact is, Jackie Whiting has spent her entire adult life serving LeRoy in a hundred different ways. She works all day, every day to better her community, and she never does anything half-way. Here's an abbreviated list of the things Jackie does on a regular basis:

President of the LeRoy Knights
Past President of Sunshine Nursery School
Youth Bureau President
LeRoy Business Council Member
LeRoy Little League Board
March of Dimes Mother's March
Past President Leroy Youth Football
Member American Red Cross

Jackie does all of that and doesn't miss a beat. She's not going to have a problem serving on the legislature. Fact is, she'll end up outworking everybody there.

Lorie Longhany
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I have known Jackie since high school. I have never met anyone with any more ability to compartmentalizing her commitments and in doing so give much more than 100% to all of them. She works circles around the rest of us.

I happened to be over at Jackie's the other night and being a visual person one thing stood out to me -- her deep and abiding love for her family with pictures of the boys everywhere and her love for the community in neat organized separated piles of paperwork. On the kitchen table there were files for her job as Team Mother for the U of R football team, on a desk in another room sat a stack of LeRoy Business Council files, in the den there was information on breast cancer awareness and the work she does with that, In fact everywhere in her home I was surrounded by the presence of who Jackie Whiting is and how she impacts the rest of us. What became crystal clear to me was my own epiphany. There is no magic wand. Jackie does all this through hard work, organizational skills and a deep dedication to always do her very best in anything she takes on.

When Jackie received the LeRoyan of the Year award last month another thing stood out to me. The Legion was filled to capacity. Filled with all political persuasions. And when she was honored we all sat in amazement when things were revealed that none of us knew about. The quiet unnoticed things. Things like making 10 or 20 extra lunches and packing extra snacks on her own dime for sports teams and Rec. field trips because she never wants to see a child go without if something was forgotten at home. The revelation that while she was battling breast cancer she had to slow down a bit and her concern that she couldn't physically do all the things she normally did. But even in the battle for her life she still did more than you and I do combined.

Yes, she is my candidate and I want her to win this race, but I want her to win because I know how hard she'll work for this community.

So thank you Randa, for asking for comments.

Pamela Dayton
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It is quite common for members of school boards to have an actual full-time, paying job in addition to the school board gig. Ms. Whiting's record speaks for itself. She is a hard-working woman, dedicated to her community. I should think LeRoy residents would be grateful and relieved to know such an honest woman cares enough to serve them, rather than engaging in a lame call-out that demonstrates not only superb addition skills, but a general lack of comprehension regarding local government.

Randa Williams
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Strangely, besides wearing garbage bags to guarantee my Constitutional rights are being protected, I also am involved in numerous community groups, and have been since I have lived in LeRoy. This is my 55th year in Girl Scouts, I have over 150,000 hours as a Rape Crisis counselor, did nine years as a soft ball coach, PTSO, Scholastic Bookfair chairman for many years, have a Presidential award for volunteerism and have more than a basic understanding of government and a citizen's rights. Thank you Chris, Lorie and Pamela for your comments. Voting is not only a right, but a privilege, as is choosing a candidate to look out for our best interests. I have always chosen my candidates, not by their party affiliation, but by their qualifications to serve the community as a whole. Mr. Charvella, shame on you for making fun of a person showing support for their candidate, whether wearing a sign, carrying one, or voicing an opinion. No matter how uneducated you are trying to make me out to be, I passed Constitutional Law at UB with an A. Can you say the same?
Chris Charvella
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I didn't go to law school, so no.

How exactly did the garbage bag protect your Constitutional rights? Did it provide mystical protection from a socialist wind? Provide dry comfort from the Commie rainstorm that is Andrew Cuomo?

Don't give me that nonsense about not choosing candidates based on their political affiliation either. We're all political committee members here. You're not fooling anyone.

I heard Rick Perry is giving away a free burlap sack for every hundred primary votes you can swing his way. Better get in line before they're all gone..

Randa Williams
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The garbage bag was not used as armor, but, I do believe that the political message on it gave me the right to be seen and heard. Every day your rights are slowly being taken away, and your biggest concern is whether I am attired in a garbage bag or jeans. Pretty sad, but not unexpected.

Alan Bedenko
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Strangely, besides wearing garbage bags to guarantee my Constitutional rights are being protected,

Wearing what to guarantee what, now?

Chris Charvella
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Hey Alan, what was your letter grade in Constitutional Law? It seems to be relevant to the wearing of garbage bags and other janitorial items.

At the time I should have been attending my Constitutional Law class I was just lazing about in a foreign desert protecting Randa's freedom to wear garbage bags, so I guess I'm just ignorant on the issue.

Alan Bedenko
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I went to law school in 1994, and I don't let my school career guide my life in any sort of ongoing way, so I'd be hard-pressed to tell you any letter grade I ever received in any course, ever.

Garbage bags are quite chic.

Randa Williams
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I have never met you, but wondered where you live? The garbage bag episode has been made the most important aspect of this conversation, when the quality of the candidates and what they represent should really be the primary concern. School taxes are indeed connected to other taxes, and Hefty bags have no part in the conversation. Who my candidate is or is not also has no bearing on my questions and comments, so I believe that there are some individuals on this blog who should learn to stick to the real issues. Making sandwiches for a team does not make you a better candidate, just a sandwich maker. Let's attempt to stick with the issues, not what is for lunch.

John Roach
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This shows a good reason to vote for Sid Horgan.

Chris Charvella
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Jackie Whiting is the best candidate in LeRoy. She has the perfect combination of experience, community service and work ethic. She'll be a great representative.

Sid Horgan is honestly the second best choice and Shelly Stein is a distant third. Stein's supporters know that and that's why they're here posting shrill inanities.

John Roach
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I had Sid and Jackie reversed.

Mark Potwora
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Randa be thankful you don't live in Batavia...We pay 44.00 dollars..per thousand...You make a valid point...Nobody should serve on two different parts of government that have the taxing authority that the legislator and school board does.. ...

Randa Williams
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Thank you Mark. It is indeed a pleasure to hear from someone more interested in the subject matter than my attire at a rally or who is making sandwiches.

Charlie Mallow
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Randa, I'm curious, what right have you lost?

Randa Williams
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Whether you are aware of it or not, the government that is supposed to speak for the people has it's nose in your business a great deal more than you would want it to. Those who wrote the Constitution could have never imagined that our government would be making laws that the people who voted in Senators and Congressmen were against. Legislating morality, attempting to take God back out of the Pledge of Allegiance , health care issues, at times freedom of speech, and many others too numerous to mention. Mr. Mallow, do you honestly believe that you have the same rights as your parents and grandparent's generations?

Jennifer Keys
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I have had the pleasure of serving on committees with Jackie Whiting and can honestly say without reservation that she has an amazing amount of energy. She has impeccable follow through and an amazing ability to stand up for what she believes in regardless of what others around her have to say. She will be an excellent advocate for all Le Royans. Jackie is not afraid to ask questions. She is creative and will bring fresh ideas to the table.

School Board and County Legislature are separate entities which is why she is legally able to hold both positions. I, for one, am more concerned about campaign issues, such as assisting Le Roy to expand its economic base, which Jackie has concrete ideas about.

Have you spoken with Jackie, Randa? I don't recall seeing you at the Candidates' Forum last week where this question could have been asked of all candidates in the open.

kevin kretschmer
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How does one person become a "they"? I'd like to know because if it's possible for me to morph into a group of people maybe I can finally catch up on my ever-growing "to do" list.

Chris Charvella
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The Founding Fathers couldn't possibly be angry about taking 'God' out of the Pledge of Allegiance. They had all been dead for a century before God was even put in there. Not that it matters because no one is seriously trying to take that word out.

Mark, Randa's candidate is the one who will allow the continuation of ridiculous practices at the GCEDC like compensating a public employee at a quarter million dollars. Unacceptable.

I'm curious as to which rights of Randa's are being taken away and, if she can name some, how are those things related to a county legislature race?

I think Randa may want to add a tinfoil hat to her fall wardrobe.

Randa Williams
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Mr. Charvella seems to be like others who when they have very little to add, make fun of others. Stay with the facts, and keep your mind on the issues. The garbage bag, or anything else I choose to wear has nothing to do with either candidate. I believe that my protest must have hit home since you are still talking about it years later. Success is wonderful!

Bea McManis
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Randa wrote:
The garbage bag, or anything else I choose to wear has nothing to do with either candidate. I believe that my protest must have hit home since you are still talking about it years later.

Years later?
The garbage bag caper took place a year ago, Oct. 25, 2010.
http://thebatavian.com/blogs/howard-owens/democrats-pack-larrys-hear-cam...

Randa has a way of making up timelines as she goes along. A in Constitutional Law?
Was that after you took the same course at GCC?

Randa Williams
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News flash !!!!!!! It was not Randa who keeps bringing up the garbage bag incident, but Mr Charvella. You should read from the beginning, and assume nothing. No , it was when I went to the University of Buffalo . You really are a little behjind the times.

Randa Williams
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You are more amusing than even you know. At no time in any of this blog did I mention who I would vote for. It must be one of those freedoms you didn't learn about in school, since we vote on Tuesday, and today is only Friday. What other facts do you know from reading my mind?

Mark Potwora
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Chris i didn't realize that.About GCEDC...And i don't know much about the players in this race ..I was just agreeing with her point that no one person should sever on two public offices that can tax .....Its Either one or the other not both...Would you want some one to be your county legislator and your city councilman at the same time...

Chris Charvella
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And Randa, if you want to know where I live, just ask your friend, fellow committee member and soon to be former-legislator, Jay Grasso.

Matter of fact, tell him to call me first if he plans on making a visit to my house on election day this year. I'll be sitting on the front porch with a plate of cookies and a life size Chewbacca cut out. We wouldn't want any misunderstandings this time around.

Howard B. Owens
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The pledge was written by a socialist, Francis Bellemy, in 1892, so the Founders would be flummoxed by its very existence.

It wasn't adopted by Congress until 1942.

"under God" was added in 1952.

I do, however, support the right of somebody to wear a garbage bag, or anything else, in protest of whatever political issue one wishes to protest. I wouldn't expect somebody who supports freedom of speech to ridicule another person for their choice of protest. It's rather beside the point of the issue being protested. And I'm sure, Chris, you've seen much stranger garb being worn at the Occupy gatherings.

Chris Charvella
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"And I'm sure, Chris, you've seen much stranger garb being worn at the Occupy gatherings."

Actually, I haven't. At least not in person.

Howard B. Owens
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"Mr. Mallow, do you honestly believe that you have the same rights as your parents and grandparent's generations?"

Rhanda, you're a Republican, right?

Most of what you complain about Congress doing to limit freedom falls squarely on the shoulders of George W. Bush and Congressional Republicans, primarily the Patriot Act and the very existence of the Office of Homeland Security.

You oppose the Republicans on that, of course, right?

Randa Williams
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As I stated earlier, though I am a party member, I vote and believe in educated selection of both candidates and issues. I am an American, not a believer in any one party's voting record. It is my aim to get the facts, and decide for myself.

John Roach
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Didn't Congress recently renew the Patriot Act?

Chris Charvella
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Oh, I'm fairly certain I interspersed some facts amidst the hilarity.

Chris Charvella
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Ahh, I see. Randa Williams, LeRoy Republican Committee member and Republican poll worker meanders over to The Batavian to make a non-sequitor attack on the qualifications of the Democratic candidate for legislature and we're to believe she spends her time as an undecided voter.

You're not fooling anybody.

Randa Williams
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I vote for who I believe is the best person for the office, and do not feel the need to make anyone else's Party a subject of public knowledge. I asked a question that was not a foolish one, and was met with ridicule and foolishness. I did not bring up any public information concerning "your" candidate, because Police Blotter or sandwich making info has nothing to do with the issues. Once again, the issue concerns taxes and control, not my attire or party affiliation. You seem to not want to discuss the facts and issues that I questioned in the first blog.

Chris Charvella
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@John, yes they did and it was a bad idea.

John Roach
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Chris,
Good or bad, both parties had to support it to get passed is my point.

Chris Charvella
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Yeah, John. Hate it, there's not much more to say than that. Honestly you would have thought that the libertarians and the liberals would have teamed up to kill it.

John Roach
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There are very few, if any, real libertarians in Congress. Ron Paul comes closest.

Mike Weaver
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I see the childishness among the party members has ramped up again just in time for election season.

You all make an excellent public image for yourselves. Grow up.

Randa Williams
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I did not come here to downgrade anyone, or make fun of them. I asked a question in an open forum, and have been beaten on since I got here. I do not know any of you personally, and do not care what your opinion of me is. My aim was to discuss an issue, but the class bully's showed up and have been downgrading me personally. Thsi is a public forum, not a high school classroom.

Chris Charvella
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People have a right to know who is doing the attacking and why. You don't get to pretend you're just a curious citizen.

Randa Williams
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I am both curious and a citizen. Your actions concerning me speak volumes, since you have been opn the attack since I first posted. I do not even know you.

Chris Charvella
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Randa, it's ok to be a political hack as long as you're honest about it.

Randa Williams
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It takes a big man to admit something like that. Good for you!!!!!!

Chris Charvella
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Once again, you're not fooling anyone.

Jennifer Keys
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Assuming this is the question you are referring to "While I do not think there are enough hours in the day to do both jobs
properly, I am quite concerned at the possibility of one elected
official having control over more than 90% of our tax rate. That is
too many eggs in one basket , and almost alleviating our constitutional
right to the checks and balances system."

This has been answered. First, there is no checks and balances in the system of County Legislature vs. School Board, which is why legally she can serve on both.
Second, I believe that there are 9 county legislators and 5 BOE members (my bad if I have that wrong), the point is that ONE person is NOT in control.

Also, something that seems to be forgotten when we run for local politics is that we (the people voted to represent you) pay the same taxes as you, except for Jackie and me in your case specifically as we also pay Village taxes, so if you think that Jackie is looking to raise the taxes you are wrong. In addition, going back to the second point above, she does not single handedly have the power to do so. She does, however, have the power to say "no" if/when everyone else says "yes" and vice versa.

The good points made above about things such as making sandwiches for the team, do in fact have something to do with the issues. They point to Jackie's warm heart, ability to take care of others AND organize in the midst of the chaos of campaigning, in other words, her ability to balance her time and schedule and still follow through on all of her committments regardless of the number of hours in the day. So, while you or I, or the average person, might not have enough time to be able to do both jobs, Jackie does. She will do it well. She will speak for everyone. She will speak up when others are afraid to and she will advocate for us.

Whatever your agenda in writing this, I don't see any remarks here to contradict what I've said.

Charlie Mallow
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Randa, so I am clear. You do blame both parties for our rights being taken away?

Randa Williams
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Actually, I blame the voters from all parties for allowing the events that have occured. We, if we question nothing, are to blame.

Jennifer Keys
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@ Mark, I'm not sure if I would want someone to serve on both Village Board and County Legislator, I'd really have to think about that one some more, BUT I can tell you that I do not mind one person serving on BOE and County Legislature. They do not govern the same issues. Again, Jackie would be one member.

Hey, it just struck me, maybe she really does have a magic wand and can control how others vote on issues. Hmmmmm, I might need to borrow that, Jackie. :7 (insert sarcasm here)

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