CHEERS - To Barbara DeLuca. You may have read this past week that Barbara, a cardio-pulmonary supervisor at Nathan Littauer Hospital, was appointed to serve on the state Board for Respiratory Therapy, an advisory board to the Board of Regents. That is an honor. Not only does she hold positions at the hospital and state board, she's also the chief of the Caroga Lake Volunteer Fire Department. In addition, she was the 2010 honoree of the Gregory R. Hoye Award, which is given by Mountain Valley Hospice to a person who has shown sensitive and compassionate care to the needs of patients and families dealing with life-limiting illnesses. Many of us may not have a full understanding of what the board she will be serving on does, but we do know the board is lucky to have her.
JEERS - To what may go over the fiscal cliff. By now, many average people are ready to jump off a cliff when it comes to trying to understand the possible effects of action or nonaction by Congress before the end of the month. Here's one example of a possible effect: It appears policymakers are giving serious consideration to a proposal to cap all itemized deductions. One segment this could have an adverse effect on is charitable nonprofit organizations. The proposed cap on itemized deductions probably would be used fully by fixed-cost deductions (mortgage interest, etc.), leaving little room for discretionary gifts to charities. People need to become informed quickly and contact their representatives about what should or should not be thrown off the cliff. People also may want to remind their representatives that the proposals to raise revenue will provide little help if the government fails to simultaneously cut expenditures.
CHEERS - To moving ahead. The Fulton and Montgomery Region CEO Roundtable members sponsored a symposium on downtown revitalization at the Hamilton-Fulton-Montgomery Board of Cooperative Educational Services this week. The event focused on the cities of Amsterdam, Gloversville and Johnstown. A good number of people took several hours out of their day to listen, learn and share ideas on how cities can redefine their downtown areas, which are an intricate piece to any successful regional business-development plan. The attendance by numerous local government officials and business people should be applauded. This combination of leaders working together is what's needed to improve our region. To bring about positive change, people should act on ideas expressed at the symposium.