Friday, January 29, 2010

Last night there was a workshop on Facebook and Twitter held by WICZ, Fox 40 at the Action for Older Persons office. Tony and I attended and it was very well done. With one-on-one assistance, the hour-long class provided the opportunity for the beginner and the regular user to learn more.

Check out the video from WICZ here.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Jail Ministry Facebook Post

Broome County Council of Churches Jail Ministry Program

Broome County Council of Churches Jail Ministry Program Our Family Literacy Program teaches more than reading skills, it teaches parenting, ESL, communications and reconnects families as inmates read books to their children and a CD and book are mailed to the child to keep and to listen to over and over! We need more volunteers. Here is a link to a story on NPR about a program like ours.
According to the Department of Justice, there are more than 700,000 state and federal prisoners that are parents. A majority of those parents say they've never had a personal visit with their children since they were imprisoned. ...

Joanne Kays

Faith in Action Volunteers happenings:

Dining for Dollars - A Clergy Server Night Thursday, 3/18/10, Polish Community Center. Fourteen clergy have committed to serve family style dinner of chicken, halupke, salad, potato and veggie. They will of course also sing for tips.

Lives of Commitment Awards Breakfast, Friday morning, 5/7/10. Volunteer honorees are Cyndy Vosburgh, Joan Eisch, and Katie Legg. Keynote Speaker is Kathryn Madigan. Cost for staff is $10.

Golf Committee will meet in Feb to decide on the tournament date.

Marsha and Joanne attended BC Health Department's Strategic Alliance for Health (SAH) Consortium meeting on Wed 1/27. There are many partners involved with this initiative through a grant from the CDC. The goal of the SAH is to create policies, systems and environmental changes in the City of Binghamton that will allow residents to engage in healthier lifestyles and reduce chronic disease rates. Look for a copy of Guidelines for Healthy Meetings (a handout from the meeting) around the office.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Mayor Ryan to Deliver State of the City Address on February 8th

By WBNG News

Story Created: Jan 25, 2010 at 1:28 PM EST
Story Updated: Jan 25, 2010 at 1:28 PM EST

BINGHAMTON, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Mayor Matt Ryan will deliver his fifth State of the City Address on Monday, February 8th at 6:30pm in City Council Chambers. Council President Martin Gerchman will convene a special session for Mayor Ryan to give the annual speech.

The Chambers will open to the public at 6:00pm, and a reception will follow in City Hall’s 2nd Floor Plaza Gallery. Similar to City Council legislative sessions, the Address will be broadcast live on Time Warner Cable Channel 12.

Those attending are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food donation for the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse (CHOW). Donation barrels will be set up outside the City Council Chambers.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Coming CHOW Events


SPRING CRAFT SHOW - Saturday, March 20, 9:00 - 4:00 at the BU West Gym.

GREAT NYS CHILI CHAMPIONSHIP, Saturday, May 1 at the BU Events Center parking lot. Sign up to be a cook or just come to taste the great Chili.

CLINTON STREET FESTIVAL - August (more details to come)

28TH ANNUAL HUNGER WALK - Sunday, October 17, 2:00 beginning behind the BU East Gym.

CHOW Advisory Committee

January 12, 2010– 12:00
I – Broome Bounty
A. Pre-order Recap – Things going fairly well. Some inventory problems but most agencies happy with change.


A. Hunger Walk – Sunday October 17, 2:00 behind the BU East Gym. We need a chair for this event.

B. Chili Championship – Saturday, May 1, 11:00 – 4:00. Need a chair for this event. Will take place in front of the Events Center. Rich Grant may bring his “Dumpster Kitchen” to sell hot dogs and hamburgers. Need to check with Sodexo on this. We need a meeting soon.
C. Spring Craft Show – Saturday, March 20 at the BU West Gym.
D. Clinton Street Festival – Fr. Jim will check with his committee about the Walk down Clinton Street.
E. Round Up – We should have someone overseeing this program to make sure signs are visible in Weis Markets and word is continuing to get out about the program.
A plan for the planting at the Conklin site was presented to the committee. Part of the plan is for an educational spot called the 3 sisters patch. The idea is to show the value of companion planting. Clearing continues with Scott Barvainis, an Americorps worker assigned to CHOW, overseeing groups that are clearing trees and brush throughout the winter months.
Corn will again be planted for us on Fredericks Road in the Town of Maine. We will also have the garden space there. Other farmers have expressed interest in sharing some of their land with CHOW.


A. Johnny Hart Book – Sales were not as good as last time. We have made about $5,000 profit so far. Books are still available at the BC3 Offices. Ed will contact congregations to see if they are willing to sell some of the books on the weekends.
Next Meeting - February 9, 2010

Friday, January 15, 2010

Ray Osterhout

Ray Osterhout was a member of the Board of Directors, a Lives of Commitment honoree and has served on our Development Committee. 

Osterhout, 78, recalled as 'salt-of-the-earth' patron of arts

By William Moyer • • January 17, 2010, 11:20 pm

Despite international acuity as a reinsurance executive and local acclaim as a multimillion-dollar philanthropist, Raymond L. Osterhout Jr., stayed faithful to his small-town roots.

"He and his wife, Wanda, were salt-of-the-earth people," said the couple's pastor, the Rev. Joyce K. Allen, of Windsor United Methodist Church. "They were great supporters of the church's dinner theater."

Mr. Osterhout, 78, a Windsor native, died last month after a brief illness in Lehigh Acres, Fla., where the couple had bought a snowbird home last fall to flee the cold winters in the Southern Tier.
In 2004, Raymond and Wanda Osterhout, who both graduated from Windsor High School, donated $2 million to Binghamton University. With the endowment, $1 million was used to establish a Distinguished Professorship in Entrepreneurship in the School of Management, and $1 million supported the Anderson Center for the Performing Arts.

"Their gifts have enabled academic, artistic and cultural initiatives that touch our students, faculty, staff and surrounding community and that will benefit generations to come," said Binghamton University President Lois B. DeFleur.

In recognition of the donation, the theater at the Anderson Center was named the Osterhout Concert Theater. At the May 2008 commencement, Mr. Osterhout received an honorary BU degree.

After graduating from Syracuse University on a full athletic scholarship in cross country and track, Mr. Osterhout worked in the insurance and reinsurance businesses, becoming president of National Reinsurance Corp., American Independent Reinsurance Corp., and Swiss Reinsurance Corp. in Zurich, Switzerland.

The couple kept close ties to their hometown community, according to family.
"Everyone knows about the large gifts, but they also gave money to the community foundation to continue the summer band concerts," said sister-in-law Marcia Steinbrecher, of Windsor. "Windsor was his home. He was a one-of-a-kind person."

Without the donation, the popular free concerts on the village green might have been discontinued several years ago, Steinbrecher said.

In July 2008, a photograph in the Press & Sun-Bulletin showed Mr. Osterhout igniting natural gas that was flowing through his home's faucets. The problem was discovered after the couple drilled a well to supply water at an addition to their house. The couple's property, on Fox Farm Road, sits atop the Marcellus Shale, a massive pocket of natural gas running beneath the Southern Tier and northern Pennsylvania.

A memorial service is scheduled for Valentine's Day, according to Allen.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Press Release Sent to Media 1-13-10



Binghamton, N.Y., Jan. 13, 2010 . . . . . Residents in Broome County who need a wheelchair ramp to get in and out of their homes need to apply by March 1, 2010, to the Broome County Council of Churches to be eligible for consideration for a free ramp under the Council’s “Ramp It Up 2010” Program.

The Council of Churches will evaluate each application based on the needs of the recipients. In 2009, the Council of Churches with the cooperation of several organizations and youth groups and mentors built 13 ramps during the summer.

“Some members of these families probably hadn’t been out of their homes in years,” according to Joanne Kays, director of the Faith in Action Volunteers Program of the Council, who coordinated the “Ramp It Up 2009” Program with Greg Jenkins, Volunteer/Facilities manager of the Council.

Last year the Council of Churches raised more than $25,000 for the ramp program, including a grant of $9,000 to the First Ward Action Council from The Community Foundation of South Central New York, and $10,000 from Christ the King Evangelical Lutheran Church. Other participants were Home Depot, Broome Leadership Institute of the Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce, and several congregational youth groups. Some teams raised additional money for the ramps that they built. Estimated cost for each ramp is about $1,500.

“The Council of Churches took this opportunity to help groups work together through this intergenerational program,” said Mr. Jenkins. “It gave the youth from a dozen congregations a realistic look at what some members of the community, including the elderly, go through confined to a wheelchair. It was an eye-opener for the youth, and most residents seemed to enjoy having the young people around for a weekend.”
In 2009, 13 families received a ramp, usually constructed over a single weekend. More than 110 youth worked within the 2009 inaugural program. The ramps this year are scheduled for construction on weekends May through August.

For an application, contact Mrs. Kays at 724-9130 ext. 304, or visit Ramp application deadline is March 1.

Under the Council of Churches’ youth mentor initiative mission statement, it says “…the initiative is a volunteer mission to promote service, learning, and community involvement for youth.”

Monday, January 11, 2010

Press & Sun Bulletin Article 1-11-10

Union-Endicott hockey team donates 1,130 pounds of food to CHOW

NIMMONSBURG -- Chenango Valley remained unbeaten, Union-Endicott picked up a pair of victories and CHOW was the big winner during Broome County High School Hockey Association action Sunday at the BCC Ice Center.

Sunday marked the BCHSHA's annual CHOW Challenge, with each of the association's eight teams bringing to the rink non-perishable food items for donation to the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse.

One hour's free ice time -- awarded to the team with the greatest donation -- went to Union-Endicott, which turned over 1,130 pounds. In all, donations totaled 3,703 pounds, said Ann Bello, CHOW Challenge chairperson and Seton Catholic Central team manager.

"That's almost double the amount from last year," Bello said. "We do this every year after the holidays to help re-stock the pantries."

Friday, January 8, 2010

News 10 Now coverage

Laundry for a Good Cause
BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- Until January 15th, those at Duds and Suds laundry in Binghamton could be washing their clothes for a good cause. The laundromat is teaming up with the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse to help provide food for those less fortunate.

Duds and Suds is offering 50 cent unlimited washes on its top-load machines and 100 percent of the money is going to the Broome County Council of Churches, which runs CHOW.
"We feel that we're giving back to the customers because 50 cents on the wash is pretty good and if all that money goes straight to CHOW, which I believe is a very good cause, it's a win-win," said owner of Duds and Suds, Avi Berger.
CHOW organizers say it typically receives about 150,000 pounds of food a month, most of which is given out soon after it comes in.

Faith in Action Volunteers updates

During the week of January 4th we had Katherine Sullivan, AmeriCorps Member, back with us. She has now completed her 300 plus hours, and will receive an education award through the Rural Health Service Corps. She did a fine job for the Ramp It Up 2009 program.

Speaking of AmeriCorps members, FIA will soon have a new Healthier Lifestyle Mentoring Coordinator on board. She is Marsha Bailey, a Binghamton resident who has graduated with a Masters in Social Sciences from B.U. Please welcome Marsha over the next few weeks.

We also have new members on the FIA Advisory Committee. Rev Andrew Morrison came on board last August, and the following effective Jan 1st: Darlene Ninos, Ellen Rury, Dera Kerins, Dorothy Gardner, and Emily Gunzenhauser.

Gabe Oakley - Cruisin Car Buddies / Katie Legg - Friendship Tree / Brianna Card

Gabe Oakley comes every 1-3 months with food for CHOW through the Cruisin' Buddies Car Club.  I thought it would be nice to feature him on our blog since he is such a supporter of CHOW.  (However, CHOW is not mentioned in the article.)

Katie Legg is also mentioned in this article.  Katie formed the Friendship Tree and is involved with several of our programs.  She will be one of our Lives of Commitment honorees for 2010.  She also has worked closely with Karen in CHOW.

Brianna Card is the yound lady who has raised money for CHOW two years in a row now.  In 2009 she raised $500 if my memory serves me right.  Brian, Ralph and some others have worked with Brianna and her family and have been very impress by this young lady!

Note:  Broome County Council of Churches or the CHOW Program are not mentioned in this article.  Odd considering our connections with the honorees.

See Article Here
A salute to the Southern Tier's 2009 difference-makers
By George Basler
Staff Writer

By any measure, 2009 was a tough year.

The deepest economic recession since the 1930s meant job losses and unemployment. The region experienced profound tragedy when 13 people were massacred at the American Civic Association in April. The war in Afghanistan intensified.
Hopeful moments could easily get lost in the memory shuffle.
Amid the negativity, some people made headlines for positive achievements in 2009.
Binghamton native Paul Ridley, 26, rowed 3,000 miles alone across the Atlantic Ocean to raise money for cancer research in memory of his mother, Katherine Raub Ridley.
Apalachin native Doug Hurley, a NASA astronaut, piloted the shuttle Endeavor to the space station in July.
Kirkwood native Cmdr. Curt Jones commanded the USS New York, whose bow contains 7½ tons of steel salvaged from the World Trade Center, on a trip to its namesake city.
On a local level, many people continued to make a positive difference in large and small ways. The Press & Sun-Bulletin asked readers to nominate “difference makers” for 2009.
From the nominations, the newspaper picked the following seven people to represent all those who made the community a better place in the past year.
Chet and Anita Harding:Honoring veterans
Chet and Anita Harding are on a mission: They don’t want people to forget the sacrifices made by military veterans.
Over the past six years, the Owego couple has dedicated thousands of hours to restoring 280 damaged headstones in cemeteries in Tioga County. Eighty of the graves are in the Civil War section of Owego’s historic Evergreen Cemetery.
Along with other volunteers, they undertook the extensive effort of surveying all 65 cemeteries in Tioga County, looking for the graves of veterans from the Indian Wars to Iraq. The couple then worked for more than a year, ending in October, to compile a database of all veterans buried in Tioga — just over 5,000 in all.
The Hardings don’t do it for publicity, said Jim Raftis, an official with the Glenn A. Warner Post 1371 Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Owego Veterans Memorial Committee.
“They do it from the heart. They want to honor all veterans of all wars,” Raftis said.

The couple, both 55, began their work because, as they placed flags on graves on Memorial Day, they noticed an increasing number of veterans’ graves falling into disrepair.
“We thought somebody should do something. It was a matter of conscience for us. Then it took on a life of its own,” said Chet Harding, who is a veteran himself, having served during the Vietnam War period.
This year, they made wreaths and decorated graves of one veteran from each of America’s wars as a tribute to all veterans. They also decorated graves at Christmas last year.
Sometimes, people can forget too easily, Chet Harding said.
Katie Legg: Friendship Tree expands

Katie Legg thinks working-class families “sometimes need a little help to get by.”
For the last four years, the 41-year-old Kirkwood woman and her husband, Scott, have dedicated themselves to providing some of this help.
They do it by collecting and then delivering furniture, clothes and personal care items to families, referred by social services agencies, who are trying to rebuild their lives.
They call their effort “The Friendship Tree,” which is appropriate since it has grown and taken root in the community over the last four years, friends of the couple say.
The organization had its biggest year yet in 2009, helping 204 families, Legg said. The organization also inaugurated a new program, The Shower of Hope, a two-month campaign that collected more than $46,000-worth of baby items and gift cards for young mothers.
Besides this, the Friendship Tree also filled 198 bags with back-to-school supplies and gave 140 free hair cuts to children before the start of the school year. And the organization matched 71 of its members as “birthday buddies” to youngsters in need.
“It’s very rewarding,” Legg said. “I’ve learned people in the community want to give. Sometimes they just don’t know how to do it.”

Marsha Maroney: Dealing with tragedy
On April 3, Marsha Maroney knew something serious was happening when she heard sirens and saw police vehicles speeding down Main Street past her office at Catholic Charities of Broome County.
A short time later, she found out how serious.
Catholic Charities received a telephone call from emergency responders asking the agency to be the central meeting point to reunite families whose loved ones were in the American Civic Association during the massacre that left 14 people dead, including the shooter.

For the next three days, Maroney and others at the agency coordinated counseling, religious support, aid and comfort to families impacted by the tragedy
Maroney also, to some extent, became the face of the community as she did interviews with CNN, ABC News, Fox News, the Associated Press, Reuters and other media outlets from as far away as Brazil and Japan.
All the while, she had to deal with her own emotions.
“It was by far the worst thing I’ve ever seen,” said Maroney, 47, development officer for the agency. “It took every bit of energy I had not to cry.”
The help that Catholic Charities provided on those traumatic days was an extension of what the 72-year-old agency does quietly all year, she said. In 2009, the agency served more than 50,000 clients with mental health services, youth counseling and activities, residential housing for the physically and developmentally disabled, food pantries and other services.
“Unfortunately, the numbers are going up,” Maroney said.
Brianna Cart: Shipments of caring

None of Brianna Cart’s family has ever been in the military. And, at age 13, she’s too young to serve.

Yet a television program four years ago that talked about the hardships deployed troops were experiencing in Iraq motivated the Owego teenager to support them by collecting and sending packages filled with nonperishable food and other comfort items.

The effort didn’t stop with a handful of shipments. Brianna has kept it going through her early adolescent years, a time when even the best intentions can be derailed by other teenage concerns.
In fact, 2009 was the most active year yet for the effort, “Angels over Iraq and Afghanistan,” the Owego teenager said.
The “angels” — Brianna and a core group of 15 friends — have held collection drives every six weeks or so at local groceries; organized a garage sale that raised about $1,300; organized two concerts which raised about $2,000; and ran a car wash that raised about $1,000 more.
All told, the “angels” have shipped more than 260 boxes weighing more than 6,000 pounds and valued at $20,000 in the last four years. More than 350 servicemen and women have benefited.
“I felt they were fighting for us, and we should give them something in return,” Brianna said.
She plans to keep up the effort through high school.
John Johnson:Fighting a disease

Multiple sclerosis has weakened John Johnson’s body, but not his drive.
“I probably have more on my plate than the average Joe,” said the 44-year-old Kirkwood resident, who owns apartments and a downtown business.
Much of that drive goes into raising awareness and money to fight the autoimmune disease that affects the nervous system and can lead to a loss of balance, slurred speech and pain in the arms and legs.
Johnson was diagnosed with the disease in 2006, after he began dragging his legs while he walked.
“I’m kind of a realistic person. I knew something major was wrong. I kind of accepted the fact that this is a long-term thing,” he said.

Since being diagnosed, Johnson has joined the board of the Upstate Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and has raised well over $10,000 in donations over the last three years for the local MS Walk. His latest fundraising technique is to hold 50-50 raffles at auctions he runs at an auction house he recently opened in Kirkwood.
While the disease has affected his life, he’s more fortunate than some because he can still support himself financially, Johnson said.
“I know what the disease is doing to me. But I can afford to deal with it,” he said. “I do it (the money raising and volunteer work) for people who don’t have the resources.”
Gabe Oakley: Cruising for charity

On Christmas Day, Gabe Oakley got some of his “buddies” together for a drive to Elmira, where they stood in line to get packages of toys and clothing from the Arctic League, a local charity, for distribution on Christmas Day.

Oakley and his pals are part of “Cruisin’ Buddies,” a club that organized in 2001 to show off antique, classic and customized cars.

Part of the club’s mission since it first hit the road has been raising money for charity, said Oakley, 60, of Binghamton, the club’s events coordinator who drives a 1940 Dodge classic car.

The 138 club members now help support four children’s charities: the Children’s Home; Epilepsy Foundation; CFC Family Network; and the Arctic League, an organization similar to Toys for Tots that serves the Elmira area, where a number of club members live.
To date, the club has raised more than $35,000 for the organizations through 50-50 raffles at its car rallies, twice-a year-pasta dinners, Valentine’s Day dance and other fundraising efforts.
“You just get a good feeling in the end that you’ve reached out and touched other people, especially younger people,” Oakley said.

Channel 34 Up to the Minute News

Up To The Minute News
See Article Here

Songwriter Showcase to Benefit CHOW
Last Update: 1/07 5:00 pm

Songwriter Showcase to Benefit CHOW, Others…The “Songwriters Showcase” featuring Zarni with songs from her debut CD, “Friday Night Lights” will perform at the Cyber Café West, 176 Main Street Binghamton, at 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 16th, to benefit CHOW (Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse) of the Broome County Council of Churches and WHY – Artists Against Hunger & Poverty.

Suggested donation at the door is $5, with half of the proceeds going to CHOW and the other half to WHY. The audience is also encouraged to bring food donations to benefit the two charities.

Zarni will have a backup band featuring Joe Lane, Jamie Osterhout and Sean Kanazawich. Also scheduled to appear at the showcase are Todd Evans, Dan Fluegel, John Kanazawich, Jeff Stachyra and Steve Strauss.

Press Release 10-7-10

Binghamton, N.Y., Jan. 7, 2010 . . . . . The “Songwriter Showcase” featuring Zarni with songs from her debut CD, “Friday Night Lights” will perform at the Cyber Café West , 176 Main St., Binghamton, at 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 16, to benefit CHOW (Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse) of the Broome County Council of Churches and WHY-Artists Against Hunger & Poverty.
Suggested donation at the door is $5, with half of the proceeds going to CHOW and the other half to WHY. The audience is also encouraged to bring food donations to benefit the two charities.
Zarni will have a backup band featuring Joe Lane, Jamie Osterhout and Sean Kanazawich. Also scheduled to appear at the showcase are Todd Evans, Dan Fluegel, John Kanazawich, Jeff Stachyra and Steve Strauss.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

In Memory of Frederick A Sarnecky Sr

Frederick A.Sarnecky, Sr. of Endwell
Frederick A. Sarnecky, Sr., who celebrated his 90th Birthday on November 10, passed away peacefully on Saturday, December 26, 2009. He is survived by his loving wife of 23 years, Marie Bennett Sarnecky and was predeceased by his first wife, Claire in 1977. he is also survived by his three sons, Steve Sarnecky and his wife, Cindy and grandsons, Jeremy and Jake of San Mateo, California; Chris Sarnecky and his wife, Tomoko and grandson, Taiga of Chiba, Japan; and Fred Sarnecky, Jr. and grandsons, Connor and Michael of Germantown, Maryland. He is also survived by three step sons and one step daughter, Mark Bennett and wife, Colleen and grandson, Tyler of Endwell; John Bennett of Annapolis, Maryland; Carol Scalzo and grandchildren, Bennett and Adrianna of Walpole, Massachusetts; and Phillip and Lucia Bennett and grandson, Ryan of Italy. He was employed for over 42 years at General Electric Company and was an avid golfer who belonged to the Enjoie Golf Course and Endwell Greens. Fred served his country proudly during World War II, serving in Europe and Africa in the 813th Signal Service Company as a Cryptographic Technician.

A Memorial Mass will be held at the Church of the Holy Family in Endwell on Saturday, January 2, 2010 at 11 a.m. The family will receive friends at the church from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. A special thanks to the Hospice Unit West Wing of Lourdes Hospital for their care during Fred's final days. In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Fred may be made to Faith in Action, 3 Otseningo St., Binghamton, NY 13903; or the American Heart Association , PO Box 3049, Syracuse, NY 13220. Arrangements are by the J.A. McCormack Sons Funeral Home, 141 Main Street, Binghamton.

Monday, January 4, 2010


WBNG-TV: News Sports, Weather Binghamton, New York

Ryan's Second Term Begins in Binghamton

Originally printed at

Watch The Video Here

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) After a heated campaign in the fall, and the recount of the closest election in county history, Binghamton Mayor Matt Ryan was sworn in for his second term today.

Action News reporter Reed Buterbaugh tells us the mayor's goal is to save taxpayers' money by making government more efficient.

And just like that, Matthew T. Ryan was sworn for his second go-round as mayor of Binghamton.

Despite a struggling national and local economy the mayor is confident the city can rebound by cutting costs and focusing on energy efficiency.
"We're uniquely positioned to take advantage of that and that's what government is going to be like for the next few years," (D) Ryan said. "We need to really create an affordable government, one that's efficient as possible."

He anticipates federal grant money for weatherizing homes, businesses and city buildings will lead to the recovery.

"That will not only save our taxpayers and our businesses money. The energy costs but it will also affect the carbon footprint of anything else you can do," Ryan said.

Ryan is optimistic Binghamton University's investment in the community will pay dividends.

As it looks to spur innovation for the new green economy.

"All the different promises of technology that really could transform not only our economy but also help our environment," Ryan said. "We need to be really vigilant about keeping those ideas here."

Ryan is pushing for further consolidation of services with neighboring municipalities to lessen the burden on property owners.

"We're going to start a real significant dialogue about how we could possibly share whether it be police, fire, public work different functions. We all have to be looking at ways to control costs," Ryan said.

In his speech Ryan emphasized that despite the recent struggles, he is sure the city's best days are still ahead.

After the swearing in ceremony, Mayor Matt Ryan presented a $500 check to the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse.

Press & Sun Bulletin Article

January 1, 2010

Ryan focuses on creating an affordable government
By Jennifer Micale

BINGHAMTON -- By any account, 2009 was a rough year in Binghamton: the worst recession in decades, the tragedy at the American Civic Association on Front Street and state government in turmoil.

And going into 2010, the city will still face challenges, Mayor Matthew Ryan acknowledged Friday as he took the oath of office for a second four-year term.

Ryan said the city -- without the aid of the state of New York -- faces saving to do more with less. Creating affordable government is a goal, he said.

As Binghamton Judge William Pelella administered the oath of office to Ryan in city hall, the audience stood and applauded. November's election against Republican challenger Richard David and Douglas Walter Drazen, an Independence Party candidate, was close.

Ryan, a Democrat, won re-election after capturing 4,068 votes to 3,960 for David and 2,048 for Drazen.

Close elections show people how important their vote is, Ryan said.

"We need more people to vote and more people to be involved," he said.

Part of creating affordable government will be a renewed look at shared services with other municipalities. The city is poised to start a significant dialogue on the matter with neighboring Johnson City, he said.

Other goals include attracting businesses and fostering a relationship with Binghamton University, whose research facilities may hold the key to producing jobs in the region.

While Ryan said the city's best days lie ahead, he acknowledged times are tough for many residents and gave a $500 donation to the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse of the Broome County Council of Churches.

"Our food pantries are facing an unprecedented amount of demand," he said while handing the check to Deacon Ed Blaine of CHOW. "I want to make sure people get fed in the city in these tough times."