September 22, 2004

TC3 hiring; County approves jail expansion planning

The Wednesday Ithaca Journal isn't what it used to be. As I noted last week, the Our Towns page is shrinking. Ads eat half the page, the demographic chart is gone, and one of the columns is on the other side of the spread. The Dryden Briefs and Groton Briefs which had condensed into Town Briefs are just gone now. The experiment seems to be fading.

There's still Dryden news, though. Tompkins-Cortland Community College is hiring, facing the retirements of fifteen faculty members over the next three years. A $325,000 budget gap created by Governor Pataki's recent vetoes presents a challenge, and the college also wants to increase the diversity of its faculty.

TC3 President Carl Haynes is also quoted in an article about New York's continuing budget warfare.

At the county level, the legislature approved the eventual expansion of the county jail from 72 beds to 136 beds, a nearly $20 million project. Few legislators sounded happy about the scale of the expansion, which the New York State Commission of Correction insisted upon.

(Update: Legislators didn't approve the expansion itself, but rather continued planning for an expansion. They've not yet committed the $20 million.)

County Legislator Martha Robertson asked to "make sure it is in the record that 136 beds is so overkill for what our experience is in Tompkins County," while County Legislator Mike Lane pointed out that "we face, once again, unfunded state mandates and graduated sanctions against us."

Both Lane and Robertson voted for the project in the 11-4 vote, as did County Legislator George Totman. Today's jail census counts 66 inmates.

On the opinion page, Maureen Brull of Dryden objects to the rising costs of American involvement in Iraq, notably a $4 billion debt forgiveness.

Posted by simon at September 22, 2004 9:51 AM in , , ,
Note on photos