Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Libraries aren’t becoming less relevant just because technology is making books less popular. Look no further than the James Prendergast Library for proof. Two thumbs up to the James Prendergast Library for its ongoing Critical Issues discussion series. On Monday, the library hosted a discussion on the topic of health exchanges that are part of the Affordable Care Act. Regardless of one’s views of the federal health care law, it will affect county residents. Such forums make it easier for everyone to understand the law’s implications – which is important given the law’s sheer length and complexity. City residents should take advantage of such forums.

Sometimes, the grass isn’t greener on the other side of the fence. Thumbs up, then, to Lakewood and Busti officials for nearing an agreement that more equitably splits the cost of the Lakewood-Busti Police Department between the town and village. Both sides should also be commended for taking their time to make sure there wasn’t a better deal elsewhere. Taxpayers demand their elected officials do everything possible to save money – so Lakewood and Busti officials researched alternative options before deciding the existing department is indeed the best thing for town and village taxpayers. The boards should be commended for their efforts.

Thumbs up to the Westfield Memorial Hospital Foundation for exceeding its 2012 Campaign goal of $195,000. The foundation members raised $237,527 for the hospital through fundraising activities, support from the hospital auxiliary and grants from the Saint Vincent Health System, parent hospital of Westfield Memorial Hospital; Lake Shore Savings Bank, M&T Bank, Phillips Lytle LLP, Radiology Solutions Associates, Wal-Mart Foundation and the Ripley Community Heritage Fund. The auxiliary’s tireless efforts help Westfield Memorial Hospital add new equipment every year, including two new EKG machines, a new traction machine and an orthopedic drill in 2012. Life would be much more difficult for many area residents if Westfield Memorial Hospital didn’t exist. Those patrons should thank the Westfield Memorial Hospital Foundation and the Westfield Memorial Hospital Auxiliary for helping to ensure the hospital remains properly equipped.