KINGSTON – Ulster County Legislature Majority Leader Donald Gregorius took some shots at legislature Chairman, and fellow Democrat, John Parete, last month, during the annual addresses by the majority and minority leaders. At that time, Gregorius suggested Parete was snubbing Democrats who did not support his election as legislature chair.
On Tuesday night, Parete gave his annual remarks, and didn’t hold back in mocking Gregorius.
“When we talked about taking over election costs, which happened by the way, and preventing an increase in SUNY tuition at Ulster, majority leader was talking about putting stickers on gas pump,” claimed Parete. “I don’t think homelessness and drugs and people dying, quite live up to a sticker on a gas pump.”
During earlier portions of his 25-minute address, Parete covered what he sees as priorities, including making the community college a priority as a top economic development tool for the county. He also wants a concerted effort to promote minority and women business, including space in the lobby of the county administration building for perhaps a concession stand operated by a disabled veteran.
A top priority is affordable housing, with one concern in particular: homeless students, in every high school in Ulster County. Onteora has four to five homeless students in the high school. Rondout five to seven, with an even higher number in Kingston.
Parete said county government needs to “make a commitment” on that and other key concerns. He said there is more talk than results.
“We need more than a roadmap. Recommendations and reports often end up with similar language, ‘more outreach,’ ‘better working relationships’, ‘more solutions’, ‘better partners’, but there’s never a plan.”