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74 Trinity Avenue
Gouverneur, NY, 13642
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Local News

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Gouverneur Breast Cancer Walk is next Saturday

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

With only a week until the 18th Annual Gouverneur Breast Cancer Walk, it is time for residents and businesses owners “pink out” their buildings before the “sea of pink” descends on Gouverneur next Saturday, May 18. The Gouverneur Breast Cancer Fund will announce the three pinkest businesses and individual homes during opening ceremonies.

The 18th Annual Gouverneur Breast Cancer Walk will be held on Saturday, May 18. Registration starts at 8:30am in the Gouverneur Village Park. Opening ceremonies will be at 10:15 with the walk immediately following. First 300 walkers to register will receive a gift bag. And t-shirts for anyone donating a minimum of $35.00.

The team and individual raising the highest amount of money will be recognized the day of the walk.

The Gouverneur Breast Cancer Fund hosts this annual walk to bring survivors, fighters and supporters together to honor all who have fought this fight, are fighting or to remember those no longer with us.

This one-mile walk is organized to raise funds for those fighting breast, ovarian or a cancer that has mestastized from said cancers.

The money raised is 100 percent used to assist these patients in St. Lawrence, Jefferson, Lewis or Franklin Counties of New York with their household, utility, automobile, medical, prescription medication and many other necessary expenses during treatment.

There will be pink hair extensions, pink merchandise, raffles, bake sale and so much more available. All are encouraged to mark their calendars, and come out and join in this amazing event to celebrate the survivors, support those currently fighting and honor those no longer with us.

For more information and pledge forms, visit

Bickford Studios to be presented with Chamber Business of the Year on May 8

Dan McClelland

Bickford Studios, 3592 NY State Highway 58 in Fowler is this year's Gouverneur Area Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year. The honor will be presented to Wilson and Glenda Bickford at the Chamber Banquet on Wednesday, May 8 at the Gouverneur Elks Lodge No. 2035, 1419 U.S. Highway 11 in Gouverneur. The public is welcome to attend. There will be a social hour from 6 to 7 p.m. with the banquet following. Tickets are $23, and available at the Chamber office and local banks.

The Gouverneur Chamber of Commerce in announcing the honor said the following, “Congratulations to Wilson and Glenda Bickford, your talents have given you a business to be proud of and we admire how much your artistry has given back to our community!”

The duo of Wilson and Glenda Bickford have showcased their artistic talents under one roof ever since Bickford Studios opened to the public in October 2009. The studio displays both Wilson's paintings and Glenda's photographs.

North Country native, artist and author Wilson Bickford is well-known in the North Country for teaching art classes and painting scenes of the Adirondacks. He and wife Glenda have traveled widely, presenting workshops as far away as California, bringing his "Fast and Fun" painting techniques to communities across this country and Canada.

Wilson is an artist and art educator. He has perfected the art technique of "wet-on-wet" painting. This extremely popular painting style is easy to learn and yields fantastic results. Bickford has even shared his knowledge, work, and talent with the artistically-inclined viewers in WPBS-TV's broadcast community. His painting series can now be seen on CreateTV.

Wilson has numerous online painting tutorials and demonstrations available to anyone online. Painting With Wilson Bickford is a well-loved program on public television. His workshops, demonstrations and lessons have enriched budding artists and promoted art to those who never considered themselves an artist. This is the miracle of Wilson Bickford – his work has inspired personal creativity and the spread of art in the world.

North Country native Glenda Bickford has turned her long-time photography hobby into a thriving business, Glenda Bickford Photography. She is well-known in the local community for her exceptional skill at taking portraits of children, seniors and pets both in the studio and on location.

The entire Gouverneur community is encouraged to attend the Annual Chamber of Commerce Dinner on Wednesday, May 8 and help recognize Wilson and Glenda Bickford. For more information, call the Chamber office at (315) 287-0331.

Gouverneur Kiwanis Club Benefit Auction to be held April 26

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The time is quickly approaching to help the Kiwanis Club of Gouverneur, Inc. “serve the children of the world” starting right here in Gouverneur. The Gouverneur Kiwanis Benefit Auction, the largest fundraiser of the year for the Gouverneur Kiwanis Club, will be held on Friday, April 26, 7 p.m. at the Gouverneur Elks Lodge No. 2035, 1419 U.S. Highway 11, Gouverneur.

The Gouverneur Elks will be serving their famous Friday Night Dinner featuring prime rib from 5 to 7 p.m. All are encouraged to come early, preview the items up for auction, and bid high and often to support the many projects of the Gouverneur Kiwanis Club.

The auctioneer will be Don Peck of Gouverneur.

It was through the great support received from generous community members at last year's auction that the Gouverneur Kiwanis Club was able to maintain its many projects. The auction proceeds will benefit the Key Club Scholarship, Kiwanis Scholarship, Southwest Tech Service Award, Kiwanis Backpack Program, Holiday Food Drive to benefit local food pantries, Friday Senior Luncheon, and local sports teams. The Gouverneur Kiwanis Club is the parent organization to Gouverneur Key Club (for high school students), Gouverneur K-Kids Club (for elementary students), and the Gouverneur Builders Club (new this year at Gouverneur Middle School).

There will be a drawing for a 55-inch Samsung Smart TV, including HDMI cables, wall hanger brackets, and more, donated by Capital Assurance/AXA Advisors, Watertown, NY. Special appreciation has been extended to Micahel Leonelli and Carrie Penoyer. See any Kiwanis Club member for a ticket or call: (315) 578-2344 or (315) 276-5199.

The Gouverneur Kiwanis Club is seeking donations for the auction, including quality items or gift certificates, or even cash donations to carry on their projects. All support of the Gouverneur Kiwanis Club's many programs would be gratefully received. Contact any member for more information.

The Gouverneur Kiwanis Club is always seeking new members and new ideas. If you are interested in joining this global organization serving local kids, ask any Kiwanis member. Those interested can also check out the club Facebook page “Kiwanis Club of Gouverneur, Inc.” or the Kiwanis Wildcat Backpack Program page.

Two local contestants vie for SLC Dairy Princess crown

Dan McClelland

The St. Lawrence County Dairy Promotion will hold its 55 Dairy Princess Pageant on Saturday, April 20 at Madrid Community Building. Light refreshments and “Cowtails’’ will be served at 2:00 PM followed by the pageant. The St. Lawrence County Dairy Promotion Committee invites all members of the community to attend and most especially farmers. Reservations are not required and a suggested donation of $5.00 per person would be appreciated. Farmers are free.

Contestants running this year are: Chloe Renaud of Gouverneur, daughter of Brooke Bush and Derek Renaud sponsored by Scotch Acre Farm in Gouverneur. Elaina Wainwright on Rensselaer Falls, daughter of Michael and Heather Wainwright sponsored by Baynes Farms in DePeyster.

The Dairy Princess Program promotes and educates the public on the dairy industry, dairy products, and supports dairy farmers. Visit the St. Lawrence County Dairy Promotion FaceBook page for more information. Look for the new princess and their court at the Canton Dairy Princess Parade on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at 1 p.m.

Free movie matinee at Gouverneur Community Center this Saturday

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

Town of Gouverneur Supervisor David Spilman Jr. announced at the April 9 Town of Gouverneur board that the Gouverneur Community Center will be open this Saturday, April 13, noon to 2 p.m. for a free movie matinee.

The movie is scheduled to be “Peter Rabbit,” the feature adaptation of Beatrix Potter's classic tale of a rebellious rabbit trying to sneak into a farmer's vegetable garden.

All are encouraged to attend.

Health & Hope Mission 1 John 3:18 Gouverneur Free Clinic closes its doors

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The Health & Hope Mission 1 John 3:18, commonly referred to the Gouverneur Free Clinic, closed its doors on March 29, 2019.

Health & Hope Mission 1 John 3:18 was part of a larger not-for-profit organization called Christ Health Care Ministry. The mission of Christ Health Care Ministry is to support physical and spiritual healing of the least… and raise appropriate funds to operate the free clinics. Locally, Pastor Orv Eacker and Rachel Raven remain on the Board of Trustees.

“God had the clinic here for a season,” Rachel Raven said. “It served an amazing purpose and I am so glad to say we were a small part of it.

On Friday, March 29, volunteer staff helped load a U-Haul with the equipment and furniture from the Gouverneur Office. Much gratitude is extended to those volunteers that assisted in closing the clinic, including the following: Pastor Howard Maxson, James and Donna Moore, Vincent Ferry, Bill and Donna Thorpe, Mark Lingerman, Herb Fuller, Terry Meyers, Rachel Raven, and Noreen Boclair.

Executive Director Mark Lingerman delivered all the clinic content to a new clinic in Warwick NY. The new clinic has volunteer providers, nurses, and clerical staff in place and will open in the upcoming months. Christ Health Care Ministry also has a free clinic in Ferndale NY which is open weekly for uninsured.

“We would like to thank all our sponsors, individuals and local organizations that have helped us keep our doors open for the last six years,” Rachel Raven said. “We have met the healthcare needs of about eighty uninsured adults annually during this time. We (through God’s love and compassion) have provided an invaluable service of physical, emotional, and spiritual healing to our patients and our volunteer staff. We met patients where they were in life and provided the means to help care for the physical health issues, provide medication, routine cancer screenings, monitoring and diagnostics labs, and imaging.

“This was accomplished through the generous donations of our greater community. We have also had a pastor available during operational hours to meet with our patients on an as desired basis.”

Releases for medical records can be directed to PO Box 510 Gouverneur NY 13642 and any future donations to Christ Health Care Ministry can be made online through the website:

“Again, we would like to thank the community for being the hands and feet of this medical mission,” Rachel Raven said.

Capital Project Update: Voters to decide whether GCS uses $1 million capital reserve

Dan McClelland

by Jessyca Cardinell

The Gouverneur Central School District has been under a major overall, involving lots of construction and renovations. The first two phases of the $31.45 million dollar project have been completed. Phase one involving the East Side school's transformation into the upgraded Gouverneur Elementary. Phase two of the project upgraded the West Side school to become the new and improved Gouverneur Middle School.

Lauren French, GCS Superintendent of Schools, gave an update on the project to the Board of Education at their regular meeting held Monday March 25th in the high school auditorium. The project which was set to begin the third phase of construction in the high school had a setback as Mrs. French explained the Board would have to make a decision.

“The bids we received are far in excess of the amount of funds that we have. We have to look at the way to resolve that. What is difficult about this project, is it is not a stand alone project. So you cannot take down the Dean building, without having the ability to finish the area where the Dolan building and the 1961 high school come together. That has to be finished. That involves not only construction but it also involves all the mechanical, plumbing and electricity. Those bids were in excess of the funds that we have.” said Mrs. French

There were four options presented to the Board of Education to consider. Option one would be to rebid the project, option two would be better pricing, option three would be to completely cancel the rest of the project, option four, which was recommended, would use the $1 million dollar capital reserve. This capital reserve has been set aside for projects such as these to use if needed.

“We scaled back the project and have a suggestion for you to consider. That is that we had already put $1 million dollars in a Capital Reserve, that is a separate account. One thing I want to make very clear is that this Capital Reserve can only be used on the building project. So, I want you to make sure that you understand that I can't take that money and balance the budget. It can't be used for salaries or field trips. Just so that is out there, very clear. But that money can be used if the voters pass a referendum by saying we want to use the money that we've set aside for Capital Project to finish this portion of the project so that we can move everyone back into the high school. What that would do is address all the fire alarm systems in the high school, the Dolan building and the 1961 structure. It would take care of all the safety features, with the door closing in the double entry way and the swipe cards. It would remove all the remaining asbestos. It would remove the Dean building, it would also create areas in the Dolan building so that we have a way to enter the building and a way to egress out of the building. This would mean a new set of stairs. As I said, all the safety issues, it would renovate the bathrooms for school use on the first and second floors.” said Mrs. French, who went on to give the items that would have to be removed from the construction completely.

“What this would remove is technology closet, the closet that runs the internet and the local area networks for the school. That would be all up to date and completed ready to use.

“We would not be able to do anything with the third floor, this is the administration offices, that's not an issue to us. We're more than happy to sit upstairs as long as we have running water and heat. It would not address the areas that we wanted renovated in the cafeteria, in terms of the kitchen. It would not renovate the freezer areas, it would not address the old windows. Windows alone came in at $1.2 million. So when looking at the fact we had $5.2 million left, that had to be pulled out.” said Mrs. Lauren French

“The suggestion I am making to you, both Carol and I, would be that we educate the community and the use of the $1 million dollars in Capital Reserve, how beneficial it will be to be able to go back to the high school and get that building as safe and secure as the Elementary and the Middle School buildings are.” said Mrs. French

David Fenlong, President of the Board of Education then spoke to the Board explaining that there were four options the Board had to think about and decide on.

“The fourth option is of course the one Lauren said is most feasible and makes the most sense, but all four are on the table. She went into some detail on the fourth one, if you want to discuss the other three in more detail we can.” said Mr. Fenlong, as he went over the other three options.

“Rebidding this, just as she spoke, will come out worse. They will not rebid like they did the first time. If we rebid this I think we will fall back even further.

“Better prices offers the same exact scenario and finally to cancel the project entirely I think would be a foolish mistake. I think we need to preserve what we've started and everything gathered here completes the security and safety aspects that we started. Again if anyone would like to discuss options one through three or four further we can.” said President Fenlong.

Board member Nick Ormasen stated his opinion on the options presented to the Board of Education.

“I don't seriously want to consider this, but if we were to cancel the project, we would forfeit any additional money from the state and it would go back to the state that was approved for Capital Project?”

Business Manager Carol LaSala replied to Mr. Ormasen's question.

“I don't know that the money would go back, if we did not spend all the money. My concern with that is we already spent money on Phase Two as far as design and things like that. With that project being included, I don't know how we would prove we had those expenses.” said Mrs. LaSala.

“You wouldn't.” replied Board member Dr. William Cartwright.

“If you just trashed it, you would have problems in the future that you are going to have to figure out how to pay for it. Repair the roofing, the asbestos and probably water problems and so forth. They probably won't grant you another building project for five or six years, under the document, someone could come in and say, “why haven't you gotten rid of the asbestos here?” said Dr. Cartwright.

“I think it would also damage our credibility with the community.” said Board member Lisa McGregor.

“If we said to them we're not going to do this after you said its what you want.”

Board member Laurie Roberts posed the question of whether that $1 million dollars mentioned was in place for future projects and if it was in fact there for the capital reserve. Mrs. French confirmed that yes her thinking was correct.

“Hopefully in the future we can get that funding back up.” said Mrs. Roberts.

“That was my concern that if we did not move forward, we've lost not only the momentum on this, but what Dr. Cartwright points out. I think it would be very difficult to go back to the state and say, “we're ready now.” said Mrs. French, as she explained the funding may not be there in the future, as it is now.

“We looked at the cost of steel alone, that was a significant increase from the initial phase to when the tariffs went into place.” said Mrs. French, who explained there is only one firm that does a certain aspect of the construction, there is an 18 month wait. If the District does not stay on top of getting construction done, this could be an issue of things getting completed.

“Using the $1 million dollars that we already have set aside is going to be a matter of educating our community as to why we need to use that now to finish this project.

“I think we also hold out as much possible that is not directly student related. We all benefit from having a safe and secure and locked facility. We all benefit from swipe cards. Looking at the third floor alone, that was going to be an expense of I believe $489,000. We don't need that for office space, that was an easy thing to peel away. Some of the other things we don't want to peel away, so we've taken out everything else that you can take out and still have functioning. You can't have plumbing through floors one and two and not go to floor three. The same thing goes with electricity.” said Mrs. French

“So major construction will be on floors one and two, bridging the building back together and the large part of that is going to be the technology, setting up for second floor secure technology space for what runs the district.” said Mrs. French

“We have people who have turned in bids and they are willing to hold their bids at the level that we would accept through the duration of our project. So that is very nice to hear from them, because they don't have to do, but they are willing to do that.

“The timing is going to be not as pleasant as what we would have liked because now we can't move forward, until we get voter approval. Technically tonight you would have been accepting bids and now, we can't until May and we will take action in June, opposed to April, and that's if it passes.” said Mrs. French

Mr. Ormasen inquired if the district would have to scale back more of the project if the community does not vote to use the $1 million in reserve.

“There's nothing in this really left to remove. When you start taking this apart, the General Contractor number is about $4 million dollars, when you start layering in as I said, the plumbing, the electrical, the mechanical and the technology, that has to be an all or a none. You can't just say you'll do two thirds of the electrical, that's not going to work.

“I personally think, my intent is to run with your support of this project is to run this just like I ran the initial project, that is I will go out and speak to the people. I did 32 presentations for the initial project in 2014. We will speak with our staff, we'll speak with our community and we'll speak with the parents. The focus on this is safety and security of our students. The feedback that we've had on our Safety Resource Officer has been phenomenal. People want their children safe and I think that they will go ahead and say that we'd like our children safe in the high school as well.

This is not going to be an additional burden financially because we are using money that is set aside. It's just to have people understand that in my household the checking account and savings account go back and forth. I have that ability, but in a school I can't just take capital reserve funds and hire a teacher. That's going to be an educational point of view. That's not how people run their homes but that's how you have to run a school budget, so that's going to be a point of education.” said Mrs. French, as she asked the BOE members for their support in this fourth option.

Mr. Fenlong and Dr. Cartwright both explained that there is no wrong doing or mismanagement that caused this to happen with the Capital Project, but rather the 30% increase in tariffs. Mrs. Carol LaSala as well stated that there is a lot of work right now for construction companies so their bids are going to be higher at this time.

The Board of Education discussed what had been presented to them and it was then time to make a decision on the proposed proposition.

BOE member Lisa McGregor made a motion to approve the proposed proposition to be on the budget vote for registered voters of the community to have the ability to vote whether to use the $1 million capital reserve or not. Dr. Cartwright seconded the motion. The motion carried with one abstention.

As the future of the remainder of the Capital Project is up in the air, be sure to get out and vote on Tuesday, May 21, 2019.

Gouverneur business owner purchases iconic Jumbo’s Diner

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The Town of Gouverneur has conditionally accepted a purchase offer from Clark Porter of Gouverneur for 1, 3, 5 and 7 East Main Street in Gouverneur at the price of $30,000, payable upon passing the deed. This includes the vacant commercial properties from the former Jumbo’s Diner at the corner of Clinton and East Main Street to the former Deep Down Divers Shop. The Town of Gouverneur board unanimously approved Town Supervisor Dave Spilman, Jr. to sign the purchase offer, contingent upon legal counsel approval.

As was earlier reported, The Town of Gouverneur purchased the property, which was last owned by former Gouverneur resident Tammy Groves, after being the only bidder at a foreclosure auction in December 2018. Groves filed for bankruptcy in 2017, and she owed $76,448 on the property, including roughly $49,000 that remained on a $50,000 micro- enterprise loan she received. The Town of Gouverneur purchased the building to protect their assets, and subsequently put it up for sale.

Town of Gouverneur Supervisor Dave Spilman, Jr. reported at the March 12 town board meeting there was interest from two parties, but the other potential buyer backed out on March 5. “I am hoping we can make Mr. Clark Porter the new owner of the Jumbo’s building,” he said. “I have been talking with him since before we took the building back. He was interested in purchasing the building from Mrs. Groves, but unfortunately when she was in bankruptcy nothing could happen till we came to this point. I told him I would pass along the big word that he hit me with. He said he was going to start with the gentrification process on the building as soon we can get all the legal stuff done... It’s a word that he learned from all the stuff he does in Potsdam, and it does refer to the historical renovation of these types of buildings.”

Supervisor Spilman also added that while Mr. Porter’s plans for the building are not definite, he is considering using the ground level as retail space on the ground floor, and putting apartments in on the second floor. “There will be more news to come on that,” Supervisor Spilman said.

The Town of Gouverneur board agreed to reconvene the regular monthly board meeting on Wednesday, March 13 to read the purchase offer and take preliminary action. During that meeting, Supervisor Spilman informed all gathered in the town offices building that the purchase offer was contingent upon the seller (the Town of Gouverneur) being willing to pay all real estate taxes assessed against premises up to and including 2020 town and county taxes, contingent on the sale and including all furniture, furnishings, equipment presently located in the premise, and contingent on the allocation of purchase price of real property and furniture, furnishings, equipment to the satisfaction of the court system. It was at this meeting that the Town of Gouverneur board unanimously approved Town Supervisor Dave Spilman, Jr. to sign the purchase offer, contingent upon legal counsel.

On Thursday, March 14 Supervisor Spilman met with Town Attorney Henry Leader of Case & Leader Law Firm, LLP in Gouverneur to sign the purchase agreement. This fact was made public knowledge at the March 19 meeting of the Village of Gouverneur board of Trustees.

Village of Gouverneur Mayor Ron McDougall said the following: “On Thursday, while the ink was still wet, he was up on the roof…” Town of Gouverneur Supervisor Dave Spilman, Jr. the commented: “Yes, he was up on the roof making temporary fixes to it. He got it slowed down I believe from 50 gallons per hour to 1 gallon per day.”

At the village board meeting, the trustees decided to use their shared services agreement in exchange for the unpaid water/sewer bill in the amount of $4,246.08. For an explanation on this matter, Mayor McDougall turned to the village’s legal counsel, Henry Leader of Case & Leader, LLP in Gouverneur.

“It is very important and the Town has worked very, very hard to preserve a landmark known as Jumbo’s Diner,” Attorney Leader said. “They are working diligently to get the property back on the tax rolls. As for the water/sewer bills, the Village would like to cooperate and forgive that bill but they are unable to. A municipality cannot make a gift. However, it appears the Town has provided several days of assistance for snow removal, use of equipment, and Internet service, so there can be consideration, not in the form of monetary consideration, but in the form of equal exchange of services. And that would allow the Village to consider the water/sewer bill satisfied. It will be an accounting thing to.”

Deputy Mayor Charles Newvine then asked, “To put it in layman’s terms?” “You can’t forgive it, but you can trade,” Attorney Leader replied.

Continuing the discussion on the properties’ water/sewer, Mayor McDougall said “He has seven units presently. It’s actually one deed. We are proposing that when he starts he be billed for one sewer unit, until he gets up and running and he when he puts his first business in there, he’ll still have one, but when he gets his second business in there, he’ll have the second sewer unit, etc., and of course with the water meter for all seven that makes that a moot issue, but we have to make a motion to accommodate this.”

The motion was made by Deputy Mayor Charles Newvine, seconded by Trustee Richard Wood. Mayor McDougall asked if there was any more discussion. Trustee Troy Besaw asked, “We aren’t setting a precedence by doing this?” “I don’t think we are,” Mayor McDougall said. “You are well within your rights,” Attorney Leader said.

“The only thing I ask, because I am sure Clark will cooperate, is we ensure that when he does get another unit on that he is charged on the sewer bill in a timely fashion and that it follows the local law as far as it should be restaurant or diner, it’s one and a half units, whatever the local law reads. Just to ensure that Clark cooperates with us, which I am sure he will be, so that when he adds another unit on, it is billed properly.”

Mayor McDougall then said the following: “Along those lines, we are working on (even though it is in private property now), the Main Street grants, downtown grants do qualify. We’ve been working very hard. We talked to Bernier & Carr about that, and that grant allocation has not come out yet, but when it does we will be getting on that, in particular for that property.”

“To ensure that the planning and zoning is not followed strictly, but followed just like it would be anyone else, that we are not doing anything different than what should be allowed, and that it is going through the proper channels, planning and zoning as far as what businesses can be there, what apartments can be there… If there are apartments there, there would be more parking issues which would make it more difficult for us to clean the municipal parking lot. So there’s a lot of things. This is going to need attention, so that we don’t let it fall through the cracks like some other things have.”

Mayor McDougall then commented, “Along those lines, we were quite pleased when the town went to the foreclosure sale, and was able to get that, and at least get it in to what I perceive to be a re-developer.”

The village board then approved the motion regarding the water/sewer billing at the properties in question.

The next meeting of the Town of Gouverneur board is to be held on Tuesday, April 9 at 6 p.m. in the town offices building. The next regular monthly meeting of the Village of Gouverneur Board of Trustees is to be held on April 16 at 7 p.m. in the municipal courtroom.

GHS to present Aladdin Jr. on March 22-23

Dan McClelland

by Jessyca Cardinell

Everyone is invited out for a night of enjoyment, as the Gouverneur high school drama club presents Aladdin Jr.

Performances of the musical will be held on the evenings of Friday March 22nd and Saturday March 23rd beginning at 7p.m. in the high school auditorium. The cost per ticket is $7.00 for adults and $5.00 for children and senior citizens.

Emily Bason, Gouverneur high school teacher and director of this year's musical, is very excited for this show.

“The students have been working so hard to make up for rehearsal time lost due to early dismissals and snow days, but it is a labor of love and it's really coming together. I'm very proud of them all,” said Mrs. Bason.

“This is my first year directing the high school musical. I did direct shows for the middle school drama club for 10 years,” said Mrs. Bason of the experience.

“I was in several shows when I was in high school here and also did some of the community theater performances. I've also helped with hair, make-up, set construction and costumes for the high school shows when needed,” said Mrs. Bason of her experience in theater.

As this year's theme is a Disney show, she said children attending are encouraged to dress as their favorite Disney character if they would like.

“There will be audience participation,” said Mrs. Bason. “It should be a night of entertainment for all indeed.”

Be sure to come and support the high school drama club and enjoy a fantastic show!

BOE responds publicly to previous voiced concerns of bullying

Dan McClelland

by Jessyca Cardinell

The Board of Education publicly responded to the concerns and comments from parents and community members given at the previous BOE meeting held on Monday, February 11th.

Many had stepped up and stated how bullying was affecting their children and the concerns how these situations were being handled.

Board of Education, President David Fenlong, was able to shine some light on this issue, as well as the protocol the BOE follows upon hearing these voiced concerns at the BOE meeting held Monday, March 11.

“At the last meeting, we had several people here that brought up some issues on discipline, specifically bullying. As we stated earlier in the comment section, we typically do not answer questions, on occasion we may clarify if something is stated incorrectly. However, for the most part we will wait and collect our thoughts and everyone else's information before we respond.” said BOE President Fenlong

“At the heart of what it takes for our scholars to survive are support, respectful and trusting relationships. When students and staff feel safe, they are more willing to focus on learning from and with others and take academic risks. It is paramount that our parents, staff and students feel safe in this school, everyone is dedicated to safety and we have strict policies and procedures to both prevent and stop harassment or bullying. The District takes allegations seriously and it follows rigorous procedures to document and investigate all allegations. We also make sure we protect all scholars during those times of an investigation.” said President Fenlong, who went on to state what these situations need as an approach.

“We also need a holistic approach with overlapping efforts from the school and at home to achieve the results we desire. This is what this challenge will take, so please talk to everyone, talk to your neighbors, to your friends, parents, teachers, administration, but please use the chain of command. We can help sunset this problem together. Please, don't bash the school or bully in anyway that tarnishes you're own integrity. Our school staff spends a lot of time with children and peers and I have unequivocal support for educators and personnel. They get to see how everyone interacts together, they get to notice patterns and recognize classroom dynamics. They establish collaborative relationships with your teacher in school. That is as important as advocating for your child, as it helps them with educational questions and talks about concerns of social interaction that may actually involve the bully. I have the honor of working with many of our staff, both professionally and as a parent and I recognize those roles as monumental and I thank them endlessly for their services as a professional educator and all that entails. I also hold that role of the parent and guardian to that same degree.” said BOE President Fenlong

When it came to handling the problem, he was firm in his response, “As you can see there are no plans from anyone here to minimize the problem. We are all caring and respectful adults and at our meetings we hold the same respectful line. We want to show respect, while managing our emotions. This diverse group of people are also parents and volunteer because they genuinely care. They deal with a lot and like you have seen before most times cool heads and warm hearts make the best decisions. We also like to listen, as a good prerequisite for this position, a lot of times we listen more than we speak. As listening gives us data and sometimes our own thoughts and opinions are not enough. We listen to both sides and never assume, we don't interrupt and we limit responses and criticism. As criticism and defensiveness increase, listening decreases, so we focus on the job at hand, solutions to problems and we keep the emphasis on every scholar and what everyone needs to succeed.” said Mr. Fenlong, who went on to give the specifics of the Gouverneur Central BOE and the procedures and policies of the District.

It is the policy of the Gouverneur Central School District Board of Education to hear comments from the public during open session at the regular board meetings. However, these public comment periods are not meant to be a discussion and the role of the board members is to listen only not provide feedback. In some cases this means the board does not correct false statements or respond to allegations against school personnel or the board. When appropriate, the Superintendent or Board President may follow up with individuals to correct false information or hold a discussion at a later time.

Above all, Gouverneur Central School District strives to protect the safety and dignity of all scholars. The District abides by strict policy procedures when it comes to allegations or concerns of bullying, and all instances are thoroughly investigated.

When a school staff member is first notified of a possible bullying situation, the situation is immediately investigated within 24 hours. School staff may take complaints or reports from parents or other relatives, students or bystanders. These reports can be made in person, through a written message, email, or via phone call. Each and every report is documented according to NYS Law in the parent log, discipline referral or the completion of Dignity for all Students Act (DASA) form.

Each building has Board of Education appointed designees called DASA coordinators who are responsible for handling all reports of bullying.

The District uses the following definitions as outline in the Board Policy and the Student Code of Conduct:

1.Harassment: verbal threats, intimidation, or abuse that creates a hostile environment that substantially interferes with a student's educational performance, opportunities, or well-being or reasonably causes(or would be expected to cause)a student to fear for his/her safety.

2.Bullying: unwanted and aggressive behavior stemming from a perceived or real imbalance of power. Repeated over time, and the victim feels helpless to respond.

If a report is investigated through the proper channels and it is determined to NOT be a case of bullying or harassment, the District and school administration will work with those involved to reach a mutually agreeable solution to the problem.

“We will continue to educate parents, staff, administration and the board members to do this all together. Thank you for listening.” BOE President Fenlong said in closing.

Town of Fowler appoints animal control officer

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

Daniel Moyer of Moyer's Wildlife Control was appointed as the animal control officer for the Town of Fowler at its March 5 regular board meeting.

The motion was made by Town Councilwoman Karen Simmons, and seconded by Town Councilman Jeff Andrews. Deputy Town Supervisor Rick Newvine, Town Councilwoman Karen Simmons, and Town Councilman Jeff Andrews voted in favor, and the motion passed.

Town Councilman Lynn Bishop and Town Supervisor Michael Cappellino were not in attendance.

The next meeting of the Town of Fowler board is to be held on April 2, 7 p.m., at the Fowler Town Hall.

Town of Fowler board hears animal control report

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The Town of Fowler heard the following report from Animal Control Officer Daniel Moyer at its March 5 meeting:

“We got one dog in the pound that was actually picked up today,” he said. “We already checked him for a microchip, and put pictures on the website. I haven't had any hits on it yet. And issued tickets for dogs running at large.”

Deputy Supervisor Rick Newvine asked, “What kind of dog?”

“It's a small Terrier mix, I'd say,” ACO Moyer said. “Just a small female.”

“And you picked it up on the Northwoods road?” asked Councilwoman Karen Simmons. ACO Moyer replied in the affirmative. “Someone said it had been there for about a day and a half, and figured it was a drop-off. Nobody has called. Nobody has posted on the site that they have claimed it at this point.”

No other comments were made by the town council members.

The next meeting of the Town of Fowler board is to be held on Tuesday, April 2, 7 p.m., Fowler Town Hall.

Town of Gouverneur revises employee manual

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The Town of Gouverneur board unanimously approved revisions to the town's employee manual, and made the changes retroactive to January 1, 2019.

“The biggest part was equalizing sick days, personal days and that type with our regular employees compared to the contracted employees in the highway department,” said Town Supervisor Dave Spilman, Jr. “We also added a line item in there about the deferred compensation program that we initiated.” Other minute changes were made in wording.

A motion to approve the revision was made by Town Councilman Jay Bowhall, and seconded by Deputy Town Supervisor Eldon Conklin (with the stipulation that it be made retroactive to January 1, 2019). Town Councilman Jay Bowhall, Deputy Town Supervisor Eldon Conklin, Town Councilman Curran Wade, and Town Councilwoman Jaimee McQuade voted in favor, and the motion carried.

The next meeting of the Town of Gouverneur board is to be held on Tuesday, April 9, 6 p.m., at the town offices building.

Gouverneur Police Blotter

Dan McClelland

The Gouverneur Police Department released the following police blotter from Monday March 4 through March 9, 2019 to the Gouverneur Tribune Press on Sunday, March 10 as follows:

Monday, March 4, 2019

Nicole L. Cash, 30, Gouverneur, NY, arrested at 8:16 a.m. for Inadequate/No Stop Lamps, Aggravated Unlicensed Operation 3rd, Harassment 2nd Degree, Resisting Arrest, and Assault 2nd Degree. Defendant was observed to be operation a vehicle on East Main Street with a defective driver’s side brake light. Further investigation revealed that the defendant has a suspended New York State driver’s license. Defendant became disorderly by screaming and yelling profanities, causing a scene for passing traffic. Defendant attempted to bite a Gouverneur Village police officer’s hand while gaining custody of the defendant. Defendant then kicked and scratched a New York State Trooper in the face for which he suffered facial lacerations while removing the defendant from the vehicle. Defendant was arrested, transported to the Gouverneur village police department where she was processed. Defendant was arraigned in the Gouverneur Town Court before Judge Stanley Young and released under the supervision of probation. Defendant is to return to Gouverneur Town Court on a later date.

John R. Lajoy Jr., 33, Gouvernuer, NY, arrested at 11:14 a.m. for Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance 7th, Disorderly Conduct, Harassment 2nd and Resisting Arrest. Defendant did, during the early hours of the morning and into the early afternoon, play his music loud enough to warrant two phone calls from the upstairs tenant to the police to report the defendant for his music. Subsequent to police investigation the defendant did slam his apartment door in the police officer’s face causing said door to strike the police officer after the defendant was told he was under arrest. After the defendant was taken into custody, a small container was found in the defendants left front pants pocket with a white powdery substance that field tested positive for methamphetamine. Defendant was arraigned in Gouverneur Town Court in front of Judge Travis Dann and remanded to the St. Lawrence County Jail on $500 bail/ $1,000 bond.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

James R. Petrie Jr., 35, Gouverneur, NY, arrested at 7:56 p.m. for Unregistered Motor Vehicle, Aggravated Unlicensed Operation 2nd, Uninspected Motor Vehicle, Improper Plates, Operating without Insurance and Displayed Forged Certificate of Inspection. Defendant was driving a vehicle traveling west on South Street with an unregistered motor vehicle. The defendant also had improper New York State plates, no inspection, no registration, a revoked NYS driver’s license for a previous conviction of DWI and was displaying a forged inspection sticker. Defendant was given uniform traffic tickets returnable to Gouverneur Town Court at a later date.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Dustin A. Hitsman, 30, Gouverneur, NY, arrested at 2:14 p.m. for Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Motor Vehicle 3rd. Defendant was observed to be traveling on East Main Street; a driver’s license check revealed that the defendant has a suspended New York State driver’s license. Defendant was issued a uniform traffic ticket returnable to Gouverneur Town Court on a later date.

Aaron M. Bush, 30, Gouverneur, NY, charged at 9:50 p.m. for Uninspected Motor Vehicle on Johnstown Street following a traffic stop. Subject issued a summons returnable to the Gouverneur Town Court.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Derrick S. Marcellus, 48, Gouverneur, NY, arrested at 7:51 p.m. for Criminal Possession of a Weapon 3rd and Unlawful Possession of Marijuana. Defendant was reported waving a handgun inside Serendipity bar. Defendant was found to unlawfully have a Raven model P-25 pistol inside his pants pocket and was found to unlawfully have marijuana on his person. Defendant was placed under arrest and transported to Gouverneur Police Department for processing. Defendant was then arraigned in Gouverneur Town Court in front of Judge Travis Dann and released under supervision of probation. The pistol was flagged as stolen, further investigation to continue.

GCS readies for third and final stages of capital project

Dan McClelland

by Jessyca Cardinell

The Gouverneur Central School District has been undergoing many extensive upgrades and changes throughout the three phases of the Capital Project.

The first two phases included the transformation of the East Side into the newly renovated Gouverneur Elementary and the West Side into the upgraded Gouverneur Middle School.

The third and final phase of the Capital Project is in the works currently at Dean-Dolan building and the High School, located on Barney Street.

Bids for the project are currently out and will be opened on Friday, March 15 to give a better scope of the project and all that it will involve.

This phase will include the roof, window replacements, upgrades to technology infrastructure and security measures.

What is currently known as the Dean building will go through a demolition process which will provide an area for a handicap accessible entrance. There will be a new elevator available, this will provide access for the Dolan building as well as the high school.

The Village of Gouverneur years ago donated a stained glass window to honor the Dean family, this piece will continue on as it will be incorporated in the new entrance.

The District is working hard to ensure that as little impact is made on the students as possible during this part of the renovation. The Central Office Staff has been divided and relocated in two areas to help alleviate some confusion. The Gouverneur Middle School is now temporarily housing the Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent, Registration and CIO at the CSE offices. Across from the auditorium, the Business Offices have been placed in an empty classroom.

All of these temporary placements are to allow the construction crews to work along and complete their work in a timely manner.

“The goal will be to have central office relocated on the third floor of the Dolan building when all abatement, demolition and reconstruction is finished. In just the short period of time we have been located in the Access Center I already feel disconnected from my student and staff population. A superintendent should be available and accessible for her students and staff. I know March 1st, I had a student find me in the high school and indicate that she had been looking for me and it's just not the same. I couldn't agree more,” said Superintendent Mrs. Lauren French.

Mrs. French also stated, “I have asked everyone else in the District to be inconvenienced and relocate yet keep a happy demeanor, I shouldn't expect anything less from myself or my staff. What we are doing is for the instructional quality and physical safety of everyone, that will always be a priority. Our move is facilitate that process.”

As for the staff of building and grounds, headed by Harold Simmons, Mrs. French has been quite pleased with their efforts and work performance.

“Our staff is exemplary. They helped us on Saturday and the holiday Monday to get everything boxed, moved and reassembled,” she said. “I am so proud of this team and thankful they are part of our school family.”

While these changes can cause some inconveniences, they are assured to be temporary and in the end worth it as Gouverneur Central School District is in the final stages to being a completely renovated, updated and upgraded school system.

Empire State Mines lays off 108 workers Core group to focus on production, development

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The operation at Empire State Mines in Fowler is now being restructured with a near-term focus on underground development as well as continued near-mine and district exploration.

Empire State Mines (ESM) is owned by Titan Mining Corporation, an Augusta Group company which produces zinc concentrate. ESM is a group of zinc mines which started production in the early 1900s. The announcement detailing the optimization strategy at ESM was made on Thursday, February 21.

The mine will lower its throughput while focusing on development. A revised mine plan, incorporating the #2D zone and the higher-grade New Fold zone in the #4 mine, is expected to be completed in mid-2019.

In order to optimize cash flow and productivity at the operation, the workforce is being reduced, and a smaller group of miners retained to focus on production and development. A total of 108 positions (23 permanent, 85 temporary) are impacted by layoffs. A core group of 87 employees will be retained.

Donald Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of Titan, said, “During the ramp up at ESM, we have faced a number of challenges and, with our focus on production, we have fallen behind on mine rehabilitation and development. The changes being implemented will address the shortfall of producing stopes and faces with the goal of lowering our costs and better positioning the mine for future success. In order to optimize cash flow and productivity at ESM, we are reducing our workforce, but we expect to benefit from greater efficiencies associated with a smaller group of miners focused on production and development. With these changes, we expect to achieve balanced mine development while our exploration group continues its program targeting large, high-grade deposits in the district.”

As expected, in the fourth quarter of 2018, production at ESM was impacted by the transition from contractor-mining to owner-mining and a shift from the planned stopes to a lower-grade section of the mine. Mill throughput was 48,302 tons, or 525 tons per day, and milled grade was 6.2% zinc. In January 2019, the average daily mill throughput improved by 16%, and milled grade by 26%, from the prior quarter.

Richard Warke, Executive Chairman, stated, “Our team is working hard to secure a strong future for the mine and the community. Rightsizing is a hard decision, but it is also the right decision. We remain confident in the potential of this prolific district and continue to invest in both exploration and development at ESM.” As previously announced, a company controlled by Titan’s Executive Chairman entered into a second ranking secured credit facility of up to US$18.7 million, maturing in December 2020.

Town of Fowler Supervisor Michael Cappellino said he was surprised initially with the announcement last Thursday morning, and set out to ensure that ESM was not closing.

“That is one of the first things that they said, “We are not closing,” Supervisor Cappellino said. “I got a text early in the morning, and so I immediately emailed (Human Resources Director Clara Cummings of Gouverneur) at work, and she called me about an hour later and explained to me what was happening. And then she did send me an email as well confirming what they had done… I am thinking that it is a temporary setback, and that they will bring those people – or at least some of those people – back in the near future.”

For more info on ESM, visit

Easter cantata rehearsals start Sunday

Dan McClelland

by Don Schuessler

Come one, come all! Once again this year The Gouverneur First United Methodist Church will sponsor a cantata to bring our community together and help prepare our hearts for Easter. Our work this year will be The Song Everlasting, a sacred cantata based on early American songs. The Song Everlasting combines instrumentalists, singers and narration to tell the story of the wonder of Jesus coming into our world and our lives.

There are no auditions ... all high school students and adults are welcome to come sing.  We will be joined by a chamber orchestra, a narrator, and a piano accompanist.  If you plan to come, please call the church office (315-287-2440) or Don Schuessler (315-287-0746) to help in making sure we have enough music. But, no matter what, come to sing.

The chorus will rehearse Sunday afternoons from 3-4:30 PM February 17 & 24, March 17, 24 & 31, and April 7. We will have a dress rehearsal on Saturday, April 13 at 10 AM.

The cantata will be presented to the community at the Methodist Church on Sunday, April 14, 2019 (Palm Sunday) at 4 PM.

Vaping An Ever-Growing Issue For Middle School Students

Dan McClelland

by Jessyca Cardinell

A discussion was held at the regularly scheduled Gouverneur Central School District Board of Education meeting held November 19 involving the new trend which unfortunately has made its way onto school grounds, vaping.

“It was brought to my attention that people have been witnessing or observing students vaping while they are still on school property and wondering what our responsibility is,” said Mrs. Lauren French, Superintendent of Schools.

“Our responsibility is if we are aware of it, we are to acknowledge the student's behavior and use our Code of Conduct. In talking with the attorney about this, we are probably going to have to revise a statement in our policies to 7320 which we did just do in August because we refer to them as E-Cigarettes, vaping is not the same thing as an E-Cigarette. We would have to add the term vaping to that, which we will do.

“The other thing is just to encourage our staff and administrators that when they see this occurring, that they address it. Unfortunately some of our students don't recognize or realize the health hazards that are associated with vaping.” said Mrs. French, who stated that right now the Middle School is largely affected by this problem.

“No one is looking the other way, when we see and observe it, they are held responsible and accountable for it,” said Mrs. French, who stated to the Board she would bring the policy with that word added to it for the next Board meeting held December 17.

Mrs. French added that more informational instruction could be done through health class to ensure students are more aware of the potential hazard vaping can cause.

“What is difficult is some of the individuals with whom I've spoken to do not look at it as a health issue and some parents are aware that it is taking place and don't look at it as a health issue,” she said. “It's one of those things where you're in the position of educating not only the student but the parent as well.”

Mr. Steve Coffin, Gouverneur Middle School Principal stated that many students have received a presentation on the dangers of vaping and there is a lot of advocacy available.

“We, at the Middle School, do a lot with presenting the dangers of vaping and students who are caught vaping have to do intensive research on the dangers of vaping,” said Mr. Coffin, of the present issue.

Mr. David Fenlong, President of the GCSD Board of Education, stated how important it is to correct the policy to reflect that vaping is unacceptable as the district does not want to look as though they are accepting one act over the other.

GH Lunch and Learn: Talking about vestibular physical therapy

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

Gouverneur-area residents gathered in the Community Room at Gouverneur Hospital on Oct. 31 to fill their bellies with a delicious chili lunch and to learn about this month’s topic “Vestibular Physical Therapy” as presented by Emily Cotey, PT.

By way of introduction Emily Cotey, PT, told all gathered that she has been working in Gouverneur Hospital’s Physical Therapy Department since July 2017, and is one of the hospital’s two physical therapists.

Emily Cotey, PT, after addressing the crowd at Gouverneur Hospital’s Lunch and Learn on Oct. 31. (Rachel Hunter photo)

Emily Cotey, PT, after addressing the crowd at Gouverneur Hospital’s Lunch and Learn on Oct. 31. (Rachel Hunter photo)

“When people think of physical therapy, they often think of us treating muscles, joints, pain – those traditional things,” Cotey said. “But one thing that physical therapists can do is treat symptoms of dizziness, vertigo, and imbalance. And that’s what falls under vestibular physical therapy.”

Cotey then asked: “Has anyone here had any episodes of dizziness or vertigo?” Heads nodded all over the room. “Its fairly common,” she continued. “I think not many people know that physical therapists can treat it. The big thing is: It does depend on what is causing it. Now some things have to be treated medically, but there is a whole list of different conditions that a physical therapist can help treat to help improve your dizziness, vertigo, or the sense or feeling of imbalance.

“This past June I was lucky enough to get to fly down to Tampa Bay in Florida and I took a three-day course in Vestibular Physical Therapy and Concussions. I haven’t seen a single person since I have been here with a concussion and I have seen a handful of vestibular patients, so I chose to talk to you guys more about vestibular.”

Cotey then gave the Lunch and Learn attendees an in-depth look at the functions of the vestibular system.

“Your vestibular system gives you your sense of where you are in space,” she said. “So if someone were to pick you up and tip you upside down and your eyes were closed, you would still know that you were upside down because you have this system in your body that tells you where you are in relation to gravity. It is kind of a weird concept because we don’t say, “Gravity is pulling me this way, so I know I am over here.” It is kind of an intuitive system that is working behind the scenes. But when that system is off, you can start getting that dizziness or vertigo.”

Cotey then shared that three components are involved in keeping a person’s equilibrium – vestibular, visual and somatosensory. “Your vestibular system actually contributes two-thirds of the information to your brain, and it is giving you that sense of balance and spatial awareness to allow you to coordinate your movements.” The other two systems – visual and somatosensory – make up the other one-third.

“Those three systems all send information to the brain, so that you can keep your balance and coordinate your movements,” Cotey said.

Cotey then told the crowd that the “vestibular system is actually located in your ear. It is very, very small and it is located behind the structures that allow you to hear.”

She then showed a video that allowed all to get a visual of the structures she was referring to, and answered questions about them as the audience members asked.

Cotey that gave a glimpse into the common disorders that can lead to symptoms of vertigo, dizziness, and imbalance – including ear disorders, Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), head trauma, Meniere's Disease, toxicity, neurological diseases, Multiple Sclerosis, migraines, rheumatological and immune conditions, problems with cervical spine or neck, arthritis, or scar tissue from whiplash.

Also, Cotey shared that these symptoms can be the result of cardiac issues.

“If somebody has low blood pressure and they stand up, a lot of people get that lightheadedness. That’s not necessarily vertigo, but people might come in saying, “Oh I have vertigo” and then we check their blood pressure and then that’s managed a little more medically.”

Symptoms of dizziness can also be the result of pharmacological issues.

“If you have ever looked at the side effects of medication, a lot of times it says lightheadedness or dizziness,” Cotey said. “So if you are taking a list of 20 medications, and six of them have the side effect of dizziness, it may be worth it to have your physician to look at your list of medications and see if there is something that they can change… if you are having dizziness.”

Cotey shared that diabetes could also cause some issues with the vestibular system.

“That would be more medically managed, but with diabetes that is a macrovascular disease so the blood supply is compromised to the structures of the ear, you are going to have some problems. Not as common, but that can be the cause in some cases.”

At the conclusion of the long list of possible causes, Cotey then said it can be difficult to tease out where these symptoms are coming from. “So, it is really very helpful to have a full physical evaluation by your primary physician or neurologist and then if you get sent to me, I am also going to do a very thorough evaluation like we just talked about. I am going to check blood pressure and I am going to check a whole host of things and try to tease out where symptoms are coming from and whether or not I can treat them.”

Cotey then gave the crowd an idea of what physical therapy might look like if they came in for treatment of a vestibular system related disorder. While not a comprehensive outlook, Cotey provided an overview that educated all persons in attendance.

First, sit down and chat.

“Sometimes just sitting down and listening to what your problems are can narrow down what the root problem is, and how it is going to be treated. So basically, by talking to you, I would determine your symptoms. A lot of people use dizziness and vertigo interchangeably. But they are different. So dizziness is a sensation inside your head that things are spinning and often times if someone is dizzy that is a little more cardiac or blood pressure related. Vertigo is a sensation that the room around you is spinning, so kind of externally things are spinning. When somebody has vertigo that is more vestibular related. So it is always important to tease those two things out. And then the other one is imbalance. I have had a lot of people tell me that they are dizzy but come to find out they just feel quite off balance when they are up trying to move around. They are not having something spinning around in front of them or feel spinning in their head. So like I said, I spend a lot of time, sitting down and chatting to see what is actually going on before I do anything with a patient.”

Cotey the told the crowd that she likes to get her patients “up and moving” for various assessments – including postural stability, balance, and ocular motor assessment – so that she knows if there is an issue with the vestibular system or perhaps the somatosensory system or the visual system.

“I can’t look at your inner ear,” she said. “I can’t visualize that there is a problem, but between your ears and your eyes, there’s reflexes. So if I can look at those reflexes and say either they are normal or abnormal, then I know what to work on from there.”

Cotey then shared the treatment options for a patients that is diagnosed with the number one cause of vertigo – BPPV. “With BPPV it happens when you look up quickly, so if somebody goes to wash their hair, or if they turn over in bed, bending forward, and other quick movements in the head,” she said in explanation. She then showed a video that exhibited the techniques utilized in the Epley and Semont maneuvers, and how they corrected the problem.

“A good analogy for this is if you think about your shoe if you get sand in it, and you get that sand out of it,” Cotey said. “You don’t just tip over and dump it out, You kind of tip it over get it into the heel and then dump it out. That’s exactly what we are doing with the ear. We are manipulating your head to get the crystals back into the right spot where it should be.”

She then asked if anyone had ever tried to do the maneuver themselves, and a few people said that they had.

“I do highly recommend seeing someone, because they can walk you through which maneuver to do to correct it,” Cotey said. “It could take one treatment session, and then the person is clear. It could reoccur again in the future, but generally it is just one to three treatments with me if it is BPPV and it is cleared up, which is nice.”

She then addressed other treatment options that could be used for vestibular disorders other than BPPV – including vestibulopathy, adaptation, habituation – offering detailed information for all those in attendance.

Since the Oct. 31 event was the last session of the Gouverneur Hospital’s monthly Lunch and Learn program until Spring 2019, Cotey concluded the program by providing detailed, step-by-step instructions on some chair exercises that all those present could do to keep them moving even during the winter months.

Keep an eye on the Gouverneur Tribune Press community calendar for the announcement in Spring 2019 of the next Gouverneur Hospital Lunch and Lean Program session. The topic will be determined at a later date.

Gouverneur voters elect Newvine, Besaw as village trustees

Dan McClelland

by Rachel Hunter

The results of the contested race for the two seats on the Village of Gouverneur Board of Trustees was unofficially announced by the St. Lawrence County Board of Elections following the 2018 General Election on Tuesday, November 6. Incumbent Charles Newvine (Democrat, Republican) was the top vote-getter with 673 votes. Political newcomer Troy Besaw (Republican) received 461 votes. Donna M. Lawrence (Democrat) received 327 votes.

Jay L. Bowhall (Democrat, Republican) won the one-year term on the Town of Gouverneur Council after earning 1,230 votes in an uncontested race.

Other election results are as follows:

The New York State Governor and Lt. Governor race went to Incumbents Andrew M. Cuomo and Kathy C. Hochul with 3,184,496 votes over Marc Molinaro and Julie Killian (1,967,984 votes), Howie Hawkins and Jia Lee (90,916), Larry Sharpe and Andrew C. Hollister (87,224), and Stephanie A. Miner and Michel J. Volpe (13,602). In St. Lawrence County, however, voters chose Molinaro and Killian (17,613) over Cuomo and Hochul (10,222), Hawkins and Lee (496), Miner and Volpe (371), and Sharpe and Hollister (1,464).

In the race for Comptroller, Thomas P. DiNapoli received 3,727,170 votes over Jonathan Trichter (1,775,895 votes), Mark Dunlea (63,924), Cruger E. Gallaudent (32,337). St. Lawrence County voters also elected DiNapoli (16,334) over Trichter (12,764), Dunlea (328), and Gallaudent (208).

For NYS Attorney General, Letitia A. James was elected into office (3,453,446 votes) over Keith Wofford (1,989,386), Michael Sussman (66,989), Nancy B. Silwa (24,720), and Christopher B. Garvey (41,159). In St. Lawrence County, it was a close race between James and Wofford with James getting 13,114 votes and Wofford getting 13,544 votes over Sussman (346), Silwa (147), and Garvey (336).

U.S. Senator Kristin E. Gillibrand regained her seat (3,732,014 votes) in the race over her opponent Chele Chiavacci Farley (1,882,251 votes). In St. Lawrence County, voters elected Gillibrand (16,404) over Farley (13,309).

In the heated race for NY-21 Congressional seat, Elise M. Stefanik received 122,863 votes over Tedra L. Cobb (90,526 votes) and Lynn Kahn (3,211). In St. Lawrence County, voters elected Stefanik (16,773 votes) over Cobb (13,626) and Kahn (643).

Patricia A. Ritchie reclaimed her seat on the New York State (48th District) with 65,405 votes.

In the heated contest for the New York State Assembly seat (116th District) Mark C. Walczyk received 19,512 votes over Incumbent Addie A. E. Jenne (16,829 votes). In St. Lawrence County, voters elected Walczyk (9,432) over Jenne (9,388).

Kenneth Blankenbush reclaimed his seat on the New York State Assembly (3,348 votes) in an uncontested race.

The race for St. Lawrence County Coroner was won by Joseph E. White (18,165 votes) and James M. Sienkiewycz (15,542) over Christopher Velez (11,954).

In the race for the 4th District seat on the St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators, William J. Sheridan of Hammond received 1,465 votes over Barbara A. Finnie of Fowler (745 votes).

Henry J. Leader of Gouverneur was re-elected to the 5th District seat on the St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators (1,246 votes).

Larry D. Denesha of DeKalb was re-elected to the 6th District seat on the St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators (1,833 votes).

For the seats on the Village of Rensselaer Falls Board of Trustees, Connie McAllister (89 votes) and Charles Fifield (78 votes) were re-elected.

Town of DeKalb Town Justice Howard Putney was re-elected with 439 votes.

In the race for the one-year term on the Town of DeKalb Council, Constance J. Elen received 322 votes over Andrew Fenton (283 votes).

Town of DeKalb voters were asked in Proposition Number One: Should local Law No. 3 for the year 2018, changing the term of the Town Supervisor’s office from two years to four year be approved? The result was a tie with 281 “yes” votes and 281 “no” votes.

Town of DeKalb voters were also asked in Proposition Number Two: Should Local Law No. 4 for the year 2018, changing the Town Highway Superintendent’s office from an elected position to an appointed position be approved? The result was 409 “no” votes over 151 “yes” votes.

In the contest for the one-year term on the Town of Edwards Council, Jeffery D. Shippee received 225 votes over Frank E. Wagner, Jr. (31 votes).

In the uncontested race for Town of Fine Town Justice, Julie A. LaTray received 379 votes.

In the race for the one-year term on the Town of Hermon Council, John A. Reed received 198 votes over Frank D. Ashley (135 votes).

In the uncontested race for Town of Pitcairn Town Justice, Rusty Tuttle received 193 votes.

Tomorrah Nezezon Averill received 325 votes in the race for the one-year term on the Town of Russell Council.

The official results will not be made available to the public until all the absentee ballots are opened and counted.