Monday, November 30, 2009


Today was a great day for organized labor as well as the Jefferson County Democratic Committee. Although the weather wasn’t to our advantage many from across the region came to support our friends with Bricklayer and Allied Trades Local 2. The Jefferson County Committee started marching at just about 8am and we were so pleased to see many from across the region already on the march. What impressed us most was the true passion that many of the participants had for their fellow workers both Union and Non-Union.

As we walked we met many in labor that pointed out a series of faults in the $61 Million dollar expansion of the Samaritan Medical facility. There were a variety of Safety concerns for workers on the site. Some of the safety concerns include a lack of safety harnesses for workers near the edge of the building, as well as no safety fencing on platforms 40+ feet high. The Union workers also pointed out various construction flaws on the project. The eye for detail was incredible among those in Labor on the line. Ironically it was a labor leader on the line that pointed out to a non-union worker on the site that one of the finish concrete walls on the corner of Woodruff and Washington St had somehow been switched on installation. This caused a very noticeable 3” gap in alignment of the adjacent finish concrete dividers. We also found multiple instances of finish brick being pulled mid wall and replacement brick being installed in its place. One issue that concerned us was a rumor that was swirling that the newly constructed helipad will need to be replaced. That’s right..replaced. The scuttle butt was that the Helipad has in floor heating. Apparently the pex lines that are used to circulate heated fluid was filled with none other then H2O instead of Glycol (antifreeze). This caused the pad to freeze and crack. If true the Helipad that we’re sure cost a considerable amount of money will need to be replaced. We can only think that if a certified Union Plumber had been used to install those lines that this would have never have happened.

In our short 4 hour march we documented a variety of issues that concerned us about the quality of this project and the long term welfare of the employees. We call on all inspectors on this site to take special care when signing off on these jobs and make sure that the welfare of the workers is paramount. The need for Project Labor Agreements (PLA) on projects of this scale was never as apparent as it was today. The march on this site will continue through Wednesday and we ask all that are concerned about the long term safety of the workers on this site to join our friends in Labor.

Saturday, November 28, 2009




Bricklayers and allied trades local 2 will be conducting an informational picket on the Samaritan Medical Center on Monday November 30th-Wednesday Dec 2nd 2009 from 8 am to noon. The Jefferson County Democratic Committee will be marching with our brothers and sisters in Labor to bring attention to the need for strong quality controls, safe working environments for all workers, both Union and Non-Union on this site and other critical concerns. We are calling on all in Labor and those supporters of workers rights and safety to join us for this informational picket. Send emails of support to: JOIN THE FIGHT TODAY!!!! WE'LL SEE YOU ON THE LINE!!!!!!!!

Purity Pledge a Death Nail for Republicans

thinkers away from the GOP
"Thus, some conservative members of the party have come up with a list of principles they want future candidates to agree to or forfeit backing by the Republican National Committee.
The so-called purity test is a 10-point checklist -- a suicide pact, really -- of alleged Republican positions. Anyone hoping to play on Team GOP would have to sign off on eight of the 10 -- through their voting records, public statements or a questionnaire. The test will be put up for consideration before the Republican National Committee when it meets early next year in Hawaii.
The list apparently evolved in response to the Republican loss in the recent congressional race in Upstate New York, when liberal Republican Dede Scozzafava withdrew from the race under pressure from conservatives and endorsed Democrat Bill Owens, who won. Republicans had held that seat for more than a century.
James Bopp Jr., chief sponsor of the resolution and a committee member from Indiana, has said that 'the problem is that many conservatives have lost trust in the conservative credentials of the Republican Party.'
Actually, no, the problem is that many conservatives have lost faith in the ability of Republican leaders to think. The resolutions aren't so much statements of principle as dogmatic responses to complex issues that may, occasionally, require more than a Sharpie check in a little square."

Read more of Republicans race to extinction


Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell (D-Theresa) is partnering with two social agencies in Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties to further the joy of literacy through a new holiday book drive, “Addie’s Books for Children.”

The Assemblywoman is encouraging people to donate new and gently used books for children up to twelve years old. “I know children enjoy reading or having someone read to them. It is not only fun, but it is a positive activity,” she said. “Let’s put a book in every child’s hands this holiday. I encourage everyone to help by donating a book.” The Assemblywomen’s staff joined the manager of Kinney Canton Katy Flanagan and in the Salmon Run Mall picture two dedicated volunteers man the famous CAPC "Angel Tree."

Boxes have been placed in two locations: In Jefferson County at the Salmon Run Mall in conjunction with the Community Action Planning Council’s Angel Tree, and in St. Lawrence County at the Kinney Drugs in Canton in conjunction with the Church and Community Program. CAPC and the Church and Community Program will distribute the donated books to children and families in their respective counties.

Read more about this great program here.

Friday, November 27, 2009


Governor David A. Paterson today announced that four New York advanced-energy projects will receive more than $88 million in funding to support Smart Grid demonstration and energy storage projects through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. These projects were competitively selected with 28 other projects funded nationwide to help build a smarter, more efficient and more resilient electrical grid.
“The fact that our State is well represented among the states in receiving these funds is testament to New York’s position as leader in the New Economy. Smart Grid and energy storage efforts are critical pieces of my ‘45 by 15’ energy efficiency and renewable energy goals, and continue our path to creating a stronger clean energy economy and a cleaner environment for all New Yorkers,” Governor Paterson said. “Three State authorities, including NYSERDA, LIPA and NYPA, are actively involved in these projects, and we are proud of the recognition they have received. I applaud President Obama, Energy Secretary Steven Chu and our entire Congressional Delegation for their work to secure these critical funds that promote economic recovery, development and environmental stewardship.”
Read full release here.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009


The Jefferson County Democratic Committee will be spot lighting Union Labor from across our region and would greatly highly recomend using these Labor friendly Contractors for your construction needs. A full listing of Contractors can be found be clicking here.
One contractor that stood out was Lawman Heating and Cooling our of Sac
kets Harbor NY.
The Lawman name is well known in our community and has been servicing the North Country for generations. In fact Lawman was founded in 1978.
Lawman's web site states "Lawman believes in listening to its customer's needs, providing quality workmanship, realistic pricing and fast efficient service. We can provide complete turnkey projects from initial design to final turnover. With the seamless integration of our general construction, mechanical and electrical division, Lawman can successfully perform any construction projects regardless of its size or location".

Utilizing local contractors that are craftsman in their field keeps our neighbors working, keeps those dollars in the North Country and gives us a final product that generations can be proud of. The JCDC highly recomend Lawman and other
IBEW Local 910 Contractors for all of your construction needs.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Egyptian's unite for Labor - What have you done to support Labor?

Egyptian Workers Build Independent Union Movement

Dan Heck, Midwest regional director for Working America, recently visited Egypt as a member of a three-person delegation sponsored by the Solidarity Center. He writes about his impressions of that country’s emerging independent union movement and will follow up here with a series from his visit. To learn more about Egyptian workers’ struggles to form free, independent unions, click here, here, here, here and here.

I just returned from a 10-day trip to Egypt with the Solidarity Center. We met with some 300 Egyptian workers and trade union activists from Cairo in northern Egypt to Aswan at the southern end of the Nile.
Read more from AFT-CIO

1St posting for the Jefferson County Democratic Committee

The Jefferson County Democratic Committee has decided to create a blog to post opinions, pictures, video and facts that are of interest to our committee and community. Our hope is to use this blog to express our vision for the North County, NY State and the Country. We would like to thank those who have given of themselves over the years in the hopes of a more progressive North Country and we hope this blog is something that would make them proud.

Hoffman Accepts Defeat

By Elizabeth Benjamin
After taking back his election night concession to Democrat Rep. Bill Owens and threatening to challenge the results of the NY-23 recanvass, Conservative Doug Hoffman is finally ready to call it quits - once and for all.
'Yesterday, the remaining ballots were counted in the 23rd Congressional District special election,' Hoffman said in a statement released by his campaign. 'The results re-affirm the fact that Bill Owens won.'

'Since, the morning of November 4th, many of my supporters have asked me to challenge the outcome of this race. Their concerns centered on the veracity of the new voting machines used, for the first time, in the majority of the eleven counties that make up the Congressional District.'
'Over the past three weeks, we nearly cut Bill Owens' lead in half. Sadly, that is not enough.'
'The shift in support since election night highlights one fact; the Boards of Elections, both state and county, need to work closely to ensure the seamless use of these machines in the 2010 statewide and midterm elections.'
Hoffman blew his self-imposed Monday deadline for announcing his intentions. He had previously suggested the election was somehow stolen by the Democrats and their labor allies, particularly the right's Public Enemy No. 1 of the moment: ACORN.
Hoffman has already raised the possibility that he might seek a re-match. In his statement today, he said the following:"
Check out the full story on The Daily Politics

Monday, November 23, 2009

Hypocrisy Alert: 67 House Republicans Take Credit for the Economic Bills They Opposed | DCCC

"Hypocrisy Alert: 67 House Republicans Take Credit for the Economic Bills They Opposed
Share Posted by DCCC Press
Nov 23, 2009
The DCCC has unveiled the latest entries into the House Republicans Hypocrisy Hall of Fame, which has now grown to 67 Members. These Republicans have been caught trying to celebrate the benefits of projects they opposed in President Obama's recovery bill, the 2009 Omnibus Appropriations bill, and the Omnibus Public Land Management Act.
'With the economy showing early signs of recovery, it's no wonder that more and more House Republicans are scrambling to take credit for the benefits they opposed,' said Ryan Rudominer, National Press Secretary for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. 'Times are tough. Hardworking Americans need solutions, not more hypocrisy from the Republican Party of No.'
House Republicans Hypocrisy Hall of Fame
Representative Eric Cantor (VA-07) – “Nearly half of the 30 organizations participating in a job fair Cantor is holding Monday in Culpeper were recipients of the stimulus.” [Dems call Cantor a hypocrite on stimulus, Washington Post, 11/18/09]
The Culpeper Star-Exponent (Allison Brophy Champion) reports that Democrats are calling out Republican Whip Eric Cantor for what they claim is contradictory support of federal funding for high-speed rail in Virginia. The funding would be part of President Barack Obama’s stimulus package — the same stimulus package Cantor vehemently opposed earlier this year. [Dems: Cantor a hypocrite on high-speed rail, Culpeper Star-Exponent, 6/24/09]"
Hypocrisy Alert: 67 House Republicans Take Credit for the Economic Bills They Opposed DCCC:



Thanks You Denny!

Long time friend and past chair of the NYS Democratic Party is stepping down as Chairman of the Manhattan Democratic Party. Denny has traveled the North Country during his tenure as chair of the NYS Democratic Party and he will be sadly missed by Chairs across the Empire state. Liz Benjamin of the The Daily Politics wrote a story today about Denny and we thought you might like to read it. Liz wrote:

"Assemblyman Herman 'Denny' Farrell Jr.'s reign as the longest-serving chairman of the Manhattan Democratic Party will come to an end at 6 p.m. tonight at the Brown Gardens Community Room when members gather to elect Assemblyman Keith Wright as his replacement.
This change has been coming down the pike for some time now. Wright is not facing opposition, despite some speculation that Assemblyman Adriano Espaillat might try to make a play fro the chairmanship.
I chatted briefly with Farrell earlier this afternoon, and he insisted he isn't sad to be leaving the post he has held for the past 28 years. He'll still be a district leader, and he will - of course, still be chairman of the powerful Assembly Ways and Means Committee.
'I've never been impressed with who I am, and I'm still not,' Farrell said. 'That's the bottom line. That's how I've been able to survive.'
The outgoing chairman reflected briefly on his tenure (he also served as chairman of the state Democratic Party from 2001 to 2006, becoming best known for driving himself in a red convertible during visits to all 62 counties), and said he's most proud of pushing a progressive agenda and getting people to work together."
Click Here to Read More about Denny on The Daily Politics...

Jim St Croix Wins District 15

The Jefferson County Democratic Party would like to send out their congratulations to Jim St. Croix in his win over Anthony Doldo for Legislative District 15. Both Candidates fought hard for this district seat and we're very pleased that the numbers in the end supported Jim's win.

Jim St Croix is one of the longest standing legislators on the Jefferson County Legislature. His wisdom of local issues has been a treasure to the North Side of Watertown and the Sand Flats. The Democratic Committee congratuate him on his win and on his years of service to his community.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

US healthcare Bill clears significant hurdle - The Irish Times - Mon, Nov 23, 2009

Indonesian official admits vessel was overloadedAnglican head troubled by Vatican stance on disaffectedExit polls give Romanian president a narrow leadAttack on train part of Maoist campaign to wrest control over large parts of IndiaUK floods claim second victim as emergency supplies deliveredFort Hood gunman Hasan paralysedLARA MARLOWE in WashingtonWITH THE US Senate’s approval of a motion to proceed on Saturday, US president Barack Obama’s chief domestic priority passed what the president’s office called “a critical milestone” on the road to healthcare reform.
The House voted its version of healthcare legislation on November 7th. Saturday night’s Senate vote was necessary because the Republican minority has triggered unending debates intended to delay legislation – standard practice for filibustering.
With the requisite filibuster-blocking 60 votes, the Senate will now begin debating the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act after the Thanksgiving holiday recess. Senate majority leader Harry Reid hopes to bring the Bill to a vote before Christmas.
But Mr Obama’s goal of a healthcare Bill by the end of the year will not be met. Even if the Senate manages to vote before Christmas, House and Senate versions must then be merged in conference. Both houses of Congress would then have to vote on the resulting legislation before the text is signed by the president. Democrats now hope this can be achieved before the State of the Union address in late January"
Click here to read the full text at The Irish Times

Russell asks for probe of V.A. clinic switch - We're Always On!

Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell is asking for an investigation into the Veterans Administration decision to terminate its contract with Carthage Area Hospital.
The V.A. has instead awarded the contract to a Washington firm, Valor Healthcare, which plans to move the clinic to Watertown.
Ms. Russell hopes Congressman Bill Owens and Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand can initiate a federal investigation.
The V.A. cited no problems with Carthage Area Hospital in pulling its six-year contract from the hospital and awarding it to Valor.
Carthage Area Hospital will be forced to close the clinic shortly and Valor won't open its clinic in Watertown until 2010, leaving a gap in service of several weeks."


"Senate Ag Chair Aubertine Hosts Public Hearing on the Issues Facing New York Farmers
WATERTOWN (November 19, 2009)—State Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Darrel J. Aubertine today held a public hearing in Watertown to discuss the critical issues facing agriculture here in the North Country and throughout New York State.
“We are working to address many concerns in Albany, most critically our budget deficit. However, that does not change the fact that agriculture is our number one industry and must be part of our state’s plans to emerge stronger from the recent economic downturn,” Sen. Aubertine said. “The input we gather here today along with what we’ve heard at roundtables throughout the state will be used to better address the needs and concerns of farmers, agribusinesses and all associated with our agriculture industry.”
Agriculture in New York State is a multi-billion dollar industry that supports hundreds of thousands of jobs beyond those on the farms. These small to mid-sized businesses make up the backbone of our state’s economy supporting jobs in sales, machinery, banking, insurance, tourism, retail and many other sectors of the state’s economy."

1st posting for the Jefferson County Democratic Committee

The Jefferson County Democratic Committee has decided to create a blog to post opinions, pictures, video and facts that are of interest to our committee and community. Our hope is to use this blog to express our vision for the North County, NY State and the Country. We would like to thank those who have given of themselves over the years in the hopes of a more progressive North Country and we hope this blog is something that would make them proud.