Cheers and jeers

JEERS – To another cloak of secrecy. Oppenheim-Ephratah Central School District Superintendent Dan Russom has retired. We all hope to reach that chapter in our lives. But with Russom’s retirement comes another slap at taxpayers. Russom was placed on paid leave in February. No explanation ever was given about the complaints surrounding the need to place him on paid leave. No formal charges were filed. And now, he has retired. We tried to find out how much all of this cost the district, but those figures were not released. We will seek information related to this situation under the New York State Freedom of Information Law. Oppenheim-Ephratah isn’t the only school district or government agency that aims to keep information about the discipline of public officials secret. Taxpayers should ask questions every time little or no explanation is given regarding one of these cases.

CHEERS – To a renewed effort. For too many years, few have been willing to take the reins to lead the efforts of the once-strong Northville Merchants Association. That’s not true anymore, thanks to the regenerating actions of the new president, Mike Intrabartola, and an outstanding group of some 60 people. Although the association never was dissolved, it was dormant. Now, with the infusion of new energy into this picturesque community, we are confident people near and far will enjoy the events that surely will come to the Northville area.

JEERS – To a fly in the ointment. The straw vote to be taken on a possible merger between the Northville and Mayfield school districts is an extremely important issue, even if it is non-binding. As with any major decisions, there are some people who are for the merger and others who are not – and they will vote accordingly. The fly in the ointment is an individual or individuals who circulated inaccurate written information. The apparent effort to sabotage the vote was done anonymously. We encourage Northville voters to have the good sense to ask where information came from before basing any decisions on it.

CHEERS – To all local scholars. It is with great pride, at this time of year, that this newspaper publishes the names of our area’s local scholars – the top graduating seniors. The exceptional achievements by these young people are amazing. Not only have they shown exceptional study habits, but most have complemented their academic accomplishments with tremendous involvement in their school and community. Thanks to the school districts for doing a great job in making sure the community is well aware of the achievements of these young people. We congratulate the students, as well as the parents and teachers who have guided them to this point.