Butterfly naming effort takes flight

Students voted in the computer lab during the week of Oct. 29. The election drew an astonishing 97 percent participation by the three grades. The tiny Karner Blue, only 1-inch in diameter, was a big winner, garnering 252 votes and winning the election by a landslide.

News of the student election caught the attention of state Assemblyman George Amedore, R-Rotterdam, who made a visit to Pinewood on Friday, Dec. 21.

"I bet you're anxious to know the outcome of the state election, but it's a slow process," he told the class. "You did a great job with your research and television program."

Amedore gave the students a lesson on how a bill comes about in the Legislature and the subsequent process of how a bill becomes a law. "It all begins with an idea," he said, "kind of like the way a butterfly starts out small, as a caterpillar."

Amedore said that adopting an official state butterfly is a great idea and that he would talk to fellow law-makers to make inquiries about reported votes from schools across the state when the Legislature returns to session in January. He said he'd do what he could to speed up the process and to provide the Pinewood students with an answer to their biggest question " Will the Karner blue be the official butterfly of New York?

"It's important to work together as you have worked on this project " as a class and as a whole school. You worked together as a team," said Amedore. "I have a suspicion that even the governor is going to know about this."

The state butterfly project is part of an initiative led by state Assemblywoman Sandra Galef, D-Ossining. Galef urged students across the state to hold elections for an official state butterfly after she read a letter by a fourth grade student who wondered why New York had an official state fish, but didn't yet have a butterfly of its own. Galet said the Assembly would tally all reported votes. According to Amedore, the Assembly could draft legislation for a state butterfly as early as January or February.""

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