Madison County news

Community health assessment results announced

Over the past year, the Madison County Health Department, Oneida Healthcare and Community Memorial Hospital assessed the health of our community. After a review of the assessment results, the Community Health Assessment Committee identified substance abuse and cancer as the two primary focus areas.

The decision was based on the feedback from Madison County residents and community-based organizations, data analysis of county rates, a review of county resources and trend data. The Health Department’s next steps are to engage our community partners and plan how to address these issues over the next three years. We hope to identify services and programs, community resources, and educational and outreach opportunities to tackle these issues. These activities culminate into the Community Health Improvement Plan, which will provide a framework for action.

The CHA consisted of four assessments designed to collect community input on important issues and health concerns. Included in those assessments were phone surveys and in-person focus groups. 

Every three years, the Madison County Health Department partners with Oneida Healthcare Center and Community Memorial Hospital to identify and address local health priorities through the Community Health Assessment. During this assessment, the Health Department gathers information from its community partners, other health organizations and members of the public.

Local law enforcement to participate in STOP-DWI Halloween Impaired Driving Crackdown Oct. 31 to Nov. 3

Madison County STOP-DWI Coordinator Matthew White announced that Madison County police agencies will participate in a special enforcement effort to crackdown on impaired driving.

Halloween is meant to be scary, but not when it comes to driving. When it comes to drunken-driving, Halloween can turn the roads into a horror fest. While we spend time trick-or-treating and hosting parties with our loved ones, law enforcement officers across the state will take to the roads in an effort to stop impaired driving, prevent injuries and save lives. State police, the Sheriff’s Office and municipal law enforcement agencies across the state will be out in force.

Research shows that high-visibility enforcement can reduce impaired-driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent. Sobriety checkpoints play a key part in raising awareness about the problem.

The Halloween Weekend Crackdown is one of many statewide enforcement initiatives promoted by STOP-DWI NY and the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee. Throughout the remainder of the year, the statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign will also target Thanksgiving and the national holiday season in December.

While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have led to significant reductions in the numbers of alcohol- and drug-related fatalities, many lives are lost due of crashes caused by drunk or impaired drivers. Highly visible, highly publicized efforts like the STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign aim to further reduce the incidence of drunken and impaired driving.

You can help to make a difference by having a sober plan. Download the mobile app “Have a Plan,” and you will always be able to find a safe ride home stopdwi.org/mobileapp. Impaired driving is preventable; all it takes is a little planning. Have a safe and happy Halloween weekend.

Archives Week is Oct. 7 through 11, 2019

Multiple museums across Madison County are coming together for one weeklong event at the Madison County Office Building. Archives Week begins at 10 a.m. Monday, Oct. 7, 2019, and runs through noon Friday, Oct. 11, 2019.

Previously known as Archives Day, the event has been extended to a week. Archives Week will take place in the main lobby of the Madison County Office Building (the building that houses the Department of Motor Vehicles) and will feature special displays by local historical institutions.

Contributing organizations this year include the Brookfield Historical Society, Canastota Canaltown Museum, Cazenovia Public Library, Erieville-Nelson Heritage Society, Fryer Memorial Museum (Munnsville), Hamilton Historic Commission, Madison County Historical Society, Madison County Historian’s Office, Morrisville Historic Commission, Oneida Community Mansion House, National Abolition Hall of Fame and Museum, New Woodstock Regional Historical Society, Peterboro Area Historical Society and Town of Madison Historical Society.

Displays will feature hop and railroad memorabilia, presidential pins, journals of former residents and much more. It is a great opportunity to learn local history and how a number of organizations are working to preserve it.

The event is Free. For more information, call Madison County Historian Matthew Urtz at 315.366.2453.

Rabies vaccination clinics scheduled

Rabies continues to be a problem in New York state and Madison County. Two raccoons, one feral cat and three bats have tested positive for rabies this year in Madison County.

“Residents should play it safe,” said Environmental Health Director Aaron Lazzara. “Avoid contact with wild animals and pets you don’t know. It is also important to make sure your pets are up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations. Protect yourself, your family, as well as your pet from rabies.”

Madison County Health Department holds rabies clinics for dogs, cats and ferrets; these clinics are free for county residents. There are four rabies clinics remaining this year: Oct. 9 at the Bridgeport Fire Department from 5 to 7 p.m., Oct. 26 at the Wampsville Highway Department from 9 a.m. to noon, Nov. 6 at the Smithfield Highway Department from 5 to 7 p.m., and Dec. 7 at the Oneida Veteran’s Memorial Field from 9 to 11:30 a.m.

Voluntary donations are appreciated to help defray clinic costs. All animals must be at least 3 months old. Restrain pets using a leash and collar, harness, cage or pet carrier.

If you have an unvaccinated pet that contacts a rabid or suspected-rabid animal, you may have to make the tough choice to either euthanize or quarantine your pet for six months at your own cost. Avoid making a difficult choice. Make sure your dog, cat or ferret’s rabies vaccination is up-to-date.

Public health law requires all dogs, cats and ferrets to be vaccinated by 4 months old. A second vaccination must be given within one year of the first and continually updated per Public Health Law. This typically requires a booster vaccination every three years for dogs and cats and annually for ferrets.

If you are bitten, scratched or have contact with any animal you believe to be rabid, immediately wash the wound and seek medical attention. Always report animal bites to the Madison County Health Department at 366-2526.

For more information, visit healthymadisoncounty.org or call 366-2526.

Open enrollment for Madison County agricultural districts is October 2019

Agricultural Districts play a vital role in protecting agricultural land in Madison County. Farmland accounts for close to 45 percent of Madison County’s entire area.

As described by the Agricultural Protection Unit at the state Department of Agriculture and Markets, the purpose of agricultural districting is to encourage the continued use of farmland for agricultural production. The Program is based on a combination of landowner incentives and protections, all of which are designed to forestall the conversion of farmland to non-agricultural uses. Included in these benefits are preferential real property tax treatments e.g. agricultural assessment and special benefit assessment and protections against overly restrictive local laws, government funded acquisition or construction projects, and private nuisance suits involving agricultural practices.

October has been designated as Madison County’s open enrollment period, during which properties can be added to an existing agricultural district.

Contact the Madison County Planning Department at 315.366.2377 and ask for a survey form.

You can also stop at the Planning Department in the County Office Building in Wampsville from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to pick up the form or download a form from madisoncounty.ny.gov/358/Agriculture.

Each survey form asks for the tax parcel ID number and acreage of the property. A description of the land must be included with the request. All requests for inclusion into an Agricultural District must be postmarked by Thursday, Oct. 31, 2019.

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