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FROM THE ASSEMBLY: CNY offers spring fun for the entire family

With winter finally behind us, Central New York offers a variety of family-friendly ways to enjoy the spring and summer seasons with affordable community events and entertainment. Right here in our region, families can enjoy parks, museums, the local zoo, arts and entertainment and of course, the hallmark of the season — local, professional baseball.

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50 years of Cicero Parks and Rec

The town of Cicero’s Parks and Recreation Department recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. Local elected officials, denizens of the CanTeen and parks employees past and present gathered at the American Legion April 2 for an emotional evening of proclamations, presentations and heartfelt memories of the town’s recreation programs.

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FROM THE LEGISLATURE: Book dispensers serve as mini libraries

In 2012, I was able to secure funding for two library book dispensers that were put into service in 2014. Now that the dispensers are open for business, they serve as mini loaning libraries for the residents of Onondaga County.

FROM THE ASSEMBLY: State budget includes largest school aid increase since 2008

I supported this year’s state budget because it provides crucial funding for our schools, while also preserving local control over important issues like teacher evaluations. The 2015-16 state budget provides a total of $23 billion for education, an increase of $1.6 billion over last year’s budget. Almost $1.3 billion of that increase goes directly to individual school districts.

LETTER: Cicero Dems seek candidates for supervisor, town board

To the editor: "People for Improved Cicero Government” (aka Cicero Democratic Committee) is searching for candidates to represent Cicero residents as town supervisor and two positions as town councilor.

U.S. Congress bulletin: Calling all CNY high school artists

Each spring, the members of the U.S. House of Representatives sponsor a high school art competition to acknowledge and promote artistic talent. The winning piece of artwork from each congressional district across our country is displayed for one full year in the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C.

FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Help preserve the Canalway Trail on April 19

Here in Central New York, we’re fortunate to have access to so many beautiful parks and historic sites. From hiking and horseback riding to swimming and fishing, there are many activities for the entire family to enjoy right here in our own backyard. This spring, join me in supporting and preserving our recreational and historic parks by paying a visit with your family and friends.

Here comes the sun

Salina councilors consider saving money with solar power

Twenty years ago, solar power grabbed the attention of consumers frustrated by decreasing supplies of oil and natural gas and encouraged by the lower cost of photovoltaic (PV) systems which convert sunshine into electricity. Since the year 2000, worldwide growth of photovoltaics has averaged 40 percent per year, and now the Salina Town Board is thinking about taking the town solar.

FROM THE LEGISLATURE: Industrial development agencies key to economic growth

I supported a resolution at our March legislative session that is very important to Onondaga County’s future economic development. This resolution recognizes the vital role that local industrial development agencies (IDAs) play in New York State to create jobs and encourage economic growth.

FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Our children deserve a top-notch education

When our kids get a good education, they can go out into the world ready for success. That’s why I’ve always made it a top priority to get our schools the resources they need to provide a top-notch education.

Village sewer tax reduced

Public hearings set April 13 to discuss village budget, noise concerns

If the Liverpool board of trustees approves its proposed budget for 2015-16 as expected, spending will increase by more than $70,000 and the tax rate will rise slightly, by 1.64 percent. On the other hand, the annual sewer-fund assessment will be reduced from $150 to $130 per year. “So it’ll be a wash for our taxpayers,” said Mayor Gary White.

Feedback wanted on modernizing local government

‘Consensus’ forum March 31 at Salina Town Hall

Most Central New Yorkers pay taxes to the federal government, the state, the county, their town, their village and their school district. All of those entities provide needed services, but there is some overlap and occasional duplication of services. In order to address such issues, a 19-member commission on local government modernization called Consensus has been formed and is now conducting public forums, including one at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 31, at Salina Town Hall.

FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Assembly’s budget puts students first

I helped craft a state Assembly Families First budget proposal, which would help expand opportunities for all of New York’s students, especially during a time when a college education is becoming increasingly difficult to afford.

FROM THE LEGISLATURE: Burtis reflects on hist first month

My first month in the Onondaga County Legislature has been an exciting experience. I feel that serving at the town level certainly prepared me for public service; however, the issues that face the county are much more in-depth, and the decisions that are made impact a much larger constituency.

In brief

Taste of L'pool, Cicero special election canceled

The Taste of Liverpool festival (March 11) and the town of Cicero's special election (March 31) have been canceled.

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