Cheers and jeers

CHEERS – To a possible casino. This week, we found out there is indeed a developer that wants to build a casino on land near the state Thruway in Montgomery County. The Toronto, Canada-based Clairvest Group filed a $1 million application fee with a state agency in an effort to get a license for the site. Clairvest was among nearly two dozen developers that met Wednesday’s deadline to submit application fees to build casinos in upstate New York. The state will award licenses for up to four casinos authorized in the Catskills, the Albany-Saratoga region and the Southern Tier. Montgomery County’s site is near Exit 27 on land in the city of Amsterdam and the town of Florida. It looks like a good site. The state will choose the winners in the fall.

JEERS – To stonewalling the public. Recently, two area school district administrators – Frank Pickus, the Gloversville Enlarged School District’s assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, and Laura Lawrence, the Oppenheim-Ephratah-St. Johnsville school district’s superintendent – resigned from their jobs. Both school districts refused to immediately tell the public how much the resignations are costing the taxpayers. As a result, this newspaper is trying to obtain the separation agreements via Freedom of Information Law requests. The public has a right to know how much schools are paying in these situations. Taxpayers shouldn’t have to wait to find out.

CHEERS – To cleaning up. Several community cleanup events are scheduled throughout the area today. One of them, Fulton County Clean Up Day, is organized by the Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce. In addition, localities are starting to announce their annual trash drop-off days, in which people can get rid of trash for free at specified sites. All of these efforts aim to help improve the appearance of properties, neighborhoods, downtowns and roadways. We hope local residents get into the spring-cleaning mode. It builds pride, makes the area look more appealing and ultimately improves the quality of life here.