The month of July was busy with many issues and events. The total rainfall was almost double the norm, however, summer moved ahead anyway! The Fourth of July parade and fireworks at the City Beach were well attended. The Mayors Cup and Regatta festivities scheduled various entertainment, boating events, Airborne Speedway Mayors Cup Challenge, and downtown fireworks. The efforts by the Sunrise Rotary, city employees, volunteers, and Mayors Cup Committee were tremendous and very much appreciated by me. The generosity of local sponsors made all of this happen and I personally thank every one of them for their support. If we continue next year with these events, we have some areas to improve upon as we always listen to new ideas and concerns. I find it interesting, however, that members of the public continue to criticize the efforts by those involved in the planning of these events. I had the privilege of attending the police academy graduation and participating with the Citizen Naturalization Ceremony. Judge Kevin Ryan, County Clerk John Zurlo, and their staffs do an outstanding job in organizing this special and emotional event. I attended the opening of the Clinton County Fair. Glenn Gillespie, his Board of Directors, and staff members do an outstanding job each year holding this event. Our national fishing tournaments continued and included the Paralyzed Veterans. I was so proud to be part of that event! I spoke at the Kiwanis and Rotary luncheons held at the Elks Club. I performed two wedding ceremonies in July which I thoroughly enjoy. I was the official starter for the annual YMCA bike ride. The ARC employees donated playground equipment through their own contributions to the City and Town which was such a wonderful act of generosity. City business included meetings with PARC officials, several potential developers, Media Central regarding the new city Web site, a public hearing on the Miller Street Railroad Crossing, and City Department Heads as the 2009 budget work begins. I met with New York State officials from Department of State, Department of Transportation, and the Department of Labor. The everyday problems we face continue regardless of the time of year. As I mentioned previously, the 2009 budget work now becomes our priority. The city is dealing with serious financial issues and difficult decisions will be considered. Union negotiations continue with four bargaining units. Plattsburgh State students will soon return and this presents the annual city/college challenges. I will do my best to balance the needs of our residents with the resources we have during these difficult times. Thanks in advance for your patience! Donald Kasprzak is the mayor of the city of Plattsburgh. His column appears regularly in the Clinton County Free Trader Today.