Pubdate: Sun, 26 Sep 1999
Source: Ogdensburg Advance News (NY)
Copyright: 1999 St Lawrence County Newspapers Corp.
Address: P.O. Box 409, Ogdensburg, New York 13669
Author: Charles Kelly (Editorial) Kelly Comments
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Could Canton Legislator Peter FitzRandolph (D-Canton) have been serious
when he asked at a Legislative Committee meeting Monday if alleged crack
and cocaine dealers are "truely dangerous." I was surprised to read that
Mr.FitzRandolph asked such a question. I am sure the question was meant to
be humorous, I certainly hope it was.

Fighting the drug battle is not going to be cheap, in fact it's expensive,
but it's the only way to go.  It's time for cuddling to stop. If County
Judge Eugene Nicandri or acting County Judge Kathleen Rogers sentenced a
person to serve jail time, you can bet they have looked at all the
alternatives.  When they receive the Probation Department report and look
at the person's criminal history, you can believe they are better informed
than anyone to make the decision. They don't need advice from the
politicians on how to do their jobs.

The county legislators (politicians) are responsible for housing the
prisoners, whether it's in St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility or
boarding them in a jail outside of St. Lawrence County.  If the legislature
does it's job, the Sheriff, State Police and the local police agencies will
perform theirs very well.

The county legislators would do well to support the police agencies, let
the judges do their job, and act like a responsible legislative body by
making the funds available to house prisoners.  It's the responsibility of
the sheriff to house the prisoners.  It's my opinion that more people
convicted of drugs should be in jail.  It should not be a decision based on
dollars and cents.  Massena, Potsdam and Gouverneur should be putting
dollars through manpower to support the effort put forth by the St.
Lawrence County Drug Task Force.
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