And while we are trying to focus on upcoming events in our community, we are still immersed in discussions about issues that are affecting the community. In fact, it almost seems that every day we are presented with a new twist on an old issue or a question about a new issue. We are finding it hard to keep up. Nonetheless, we have decided that talking with others has given us some new perspectives that we had not considered.
For example, we were reminded that restaurants here have to do enough business in the summer to carry them through the winter. And if they are unable to do that, they will not be able to stay open all winter, which will mean their employees will be laid off, forcing them to go on unemployment. This, of course, would not be good for the economy or for those of us who stay here in the winter and might like to eat out. So we find the reports that business at local restaurants does not seem to be what it normally is this time of year, as many of the local customers do not seem to be eating out, to be somewhat disturbing. Of course, since it is still early in the season, it is difficult to tell what the final outcome will be. But we certainly hope that a result of the village instituting paid on street parking does not result in a loss of jobs down the road. That would indeed be a very unfortunate unintended consequence of paid parking.
We have also had a discussion about the fact that at no time has mention been made of reducing village spending. Of course, reducing spending is rarely a popular undertaking. However, we do have to wonder about some of the village expenses, such as the cost for its public library. It is our understanding that at least as many library cards are issued to non-village residents as there are cards issued to village resident yet the village pays $88,000 plus free rent and utilities for its operation while the town of Otsego pays $10,000 and the town of Middlefield pays $3,000. Attempts have been made over the years now to get the towns to donate more as so many of their residents use the library on a regular basis. However, there still does not seem to be much balance when it comes to support for the library.