And while we think that may be marginally true, the greater burden of increasing the sales tax would fall on the residents of Otsego County.
After all, we rather doubt that many tourists purchase large ticket items, such as automobiles, trucks, home appliances and so forth while visiting the area. But those of us who do live here will be facing not only higher costs for such items but also higher costs for items related to every day life.
And while we definitely need to be worried about the fate of Otsego Manor, we also need to be equally concerned about what will happen to the county if the cost of living here continues to escalate. At a time when many people are already struggling with the cost of living here, it makes little sense to hasten their departure by making the cost of living here beyond their means. In short, raising any taxes makes little sense in the long run.
Instead it is time for the county to prioritize its needs.
For example, it has also come to our attention that the county’s Office for the Aging is once again on the chopping block. We were distressed several years ago now, when the decision was made that the Cooperstown Nutrition Center could be eliminated without affecting those residents who participated in the program. We still think that was simply not true. And now, if what we understand is correct, there may will be decision made to eliminate yet another position at the Office for the Aging, namely the coordinator of health insurance information services.
Now, we must admit, the county is getting personal. Since we will be joining the ranks of those on Medicare as of Dec. 1, we know firsthand how very important this position is for those senior citizens in the county who need to make decisions regarding Medigap programs, Medicare Advantage programs and, even more difficult we think, Medicare Part D programs. We speak from experience when we say eliminating this position has the distinct potential of putting senior citizens’ understanding of the health insurance maze beyond the reach of many, ourselves included.