Legislator loses courage on cuts

In an effort to cut costs, Chautauqua County Legislator Fred Croscut voted to sell the Chautauqua County Home in Dunkirk.

In an effort to not cut costs, Croscut is against closing the Sherman location for the county Department of Public Facilities shop.

How do these two ideologies make sense?

Politics never has to make sense, especially when it comes to self-serving county legislators. And though we do not want to make it a case of us versus them, if savings can come from the closing of the Sherman facility, then why not?

But this is not reducing expenses, it is about keeping a job. Croscut does not care if there are expenses to be saved because he represents Sherman. He would rather – no matter the cost – keep the Sherman shop open though it is not a revenue generator.

Last month, a group of Sherman residents, the village mayor and Croscut were in attendance for a community meeting on the shop with County Executive Greg Edwards.

“We fought like a son of a gun to get where we are now, and we’re going to be just like a puppy on a rope,” said Sherman Mayor John Patterson said. “We’re not going to let this go. We’re not going to slide backward. We’re going to do everything that we possibly can to keep this facility open.”

Really? Sherman will slide backward if the shop closes? Here’s a better question: Is Sherman currently going forward? Is there some sort of population boom there that we in the north county are missing out on?

For years, misguided Sherman has believed it is entitled to its own school district. As long as the state keeps giving the district money, we guess it is. But students are not receiving the best education possible as a small district.

Countywide, residents are not receiving a bang for their buck by keeping the Sherman site open if it can be closed and done more efficiently elsewhere. We know Croscut can objectively see the financial losses at the County Home, but why can’t he see it with the Public Facilities site near his home?

Let the County Legislature vote on this issue. It happened with the Home, it needs to happen here.