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NEWS ARCHIVE - 2002

 

 

 

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Casino Update (12/28/02)

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Concert Promoter Says Talks Continuing (12/28/02)

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County Legislature Passes Redistricting Plan, Opposition Promise Petition Drive (12/28/02)

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County Legislature Passes 2003 Budget  (12/28/02)

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Ulster County Taxes Rise (Again) (12/28/02)

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Rondout Schools Capital Budget $1 million short (12/28/02)

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Letters to the Editor: Queens Highway Mine, Cherrytown Road Trailer Park (12/28/02)

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Legal Notices (12/28/02)

 

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Town Board agrees to 90 day moratorium on expansion of mining activity and renewal of existing permits. (12/19/02)

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Rochester Residents Association Publishes Survey of Historic Properties  (12/19/02)

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Artist’s Open Studio and Holiday Concerts  (12/19/02)

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Memorial concert to benefit Rondout HS musicians  (12/19/02)

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Students receive books and fire-truck display  (12/19/02)

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Felony Stabbing in Accord  (12/19/02)

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Employees charged in lottery ticket theft  (12/19/02)

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Surplus Boston Bridge Equipment to be used in Rochester  (12/19/02)

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Student Discipline at High School  (12/19/02)

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Ex High School Principal’s Lawsuit on Hold  (12/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor  (12/19/02)

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Ads  (12/19/02)

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Legal Notices  (12/19/02)

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Environmental Notice Bulletin – Clay Hill Mine  (12/19/02)

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Town Board Highlights: November 2002 (11/19/02)

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Town Board Restores Library Funding after Residents Appeal  (11/19/02)

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Three Day, 30,000-Person Music Festival Planned for Accord  (11/19/02)

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Town Budget Approved by Town Board; Includes Tax Increase  (11/19/02)

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Accord Shelter Cited Again for Animal Maltreatment  (11/19/02)

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Pumpkin Smashing at RVHS  (11/19/02)

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Kerhonkson Pool Expenses  (11/19/02)

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ZBA Approves Airport Road Variance  (11/19/02)

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Legal Notices: Including Fire District Elections  (11/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor  (11/19/02)

 

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Absentee Ballot Applications Available Online (10/22/02)

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Town Board Highlights (10/22/02) (10/22/02)

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Tessler's Trailer Park Expansion Plans  (10/22/02)

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Gambling in Wawarsing (10/22/02) 

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Haunted Happenings (10/22/02)

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KAFAS Training (10/22/02)

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Legal Notices (10/22/02)

 

 

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Changes in Town Board Membership (10/10/02)

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Kerhonkson Pool in Need of $100,000 Repairs (10/10/02)

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Accord Fire District Length of Service Plan Adopted (10/10/02)

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School Tax Levy Increases by 11.2% (10/10/02)

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Low Income Housing in Kerhonkson (10/10/02)

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DEC Investigating Illegal Dumping (10/10/02)

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Smart Bells / Yoga Class (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Fawn Lane/Queens Highway Subdivision (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Airport Road Garage (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Highway Dept. Sale (10/10/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Fire Department Tax Increase & Star Tax Exemption Error  (10/10/02)

 

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Town Board Highlights (9/9/02)

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Accord Fire District Service Benefit Plan; No Absentee Ballots will be Permitted 9/9/02)

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Town of Rochester Property Tax Roll Available on Internet 9/9/02)

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Community Center Volunteers Wanted for Building Bee! 9/9/02)

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CRAFT VENDORS WANTED-Hudson Valley Draft Horse Fall Festival, 9/9/02)

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Town Board Retains Planning Board Member  9/9/02)

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Legal Notices : Planning Board; Fire District Referendum Hearing; Zoning Board; School Tax Levy 9/9/02)

 

 

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Town Board Highlights

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Accord Fire District Service Plan Vote; Tax Increase Proposed

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County Legislators Approve New Jail

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Legal Notice - Fire District Vote

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Legal Notice - Tax Roll

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Letter to the Editor

 

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Update on Metro Recycling (8/7/02)

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Accord Community Festival (8/7/02)

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Cat Center a Reality (8/7/02)

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Illegal Dump on Mettacahonts Road (8/7/02)

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Town Might Reassess Property Values (8/7/02)

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Change in Property Tax Equalization Rates (8/7/02)

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Sales tax climbing to 8% in Ulster County (8/7/02)

 

 

 

 

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Casino Update (12/28/02)

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Concert Promoter Says Talks Continuing (12/28/02)

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County Legislature Passes Redistricting Plan, Opposition Promise Petition Drive (12/28/02)

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County Legislature Passes 2003 Budget  (12/28/02)

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Ulster County Taxes Rise (Again) (12/28/02)

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Rondout Schools Capital Budget $1 million short (12/28/02)

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Letters to the Editor: Queens Highway Mine, Cherrytown Road Trailer Park (12/28/02)

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Legal Notices (12/28/02)

 

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Town Board agrees to 90 day moratorium on expansion of mining activity and renewal of existing permits. (12/19/02)

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Rochester Residents Association Publishes Survey of Historic Properties  (12/19/02)

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Artist’s Open Studio and Holiday Concerts  (12/19/02)

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Memorial concert to benefit Rondout HS musicians  (12/19/02)

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Students receive books and fire-truck display  (12/19/02)

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Felony Stabbing in Accord  (12/19/02)

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Employees charged in lottery ticket theft  (12/19/02)

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Surplus Boston Bridge Equipment to be used in Rochester  (12/19/02)

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Student Discipline at High School  (12/19/02)

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Ex High School Principal’s Lawsuit on Hold  (12/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor  (12/19/02)

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Ads  (12/19/02)

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Legal Notices  (12/19/02)

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Environmental Notice Bulletin – Clay Hill Mine  (12/19/02)

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Town Board Highlights: November 2002 (11/19/02)

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Town Board Restores Library Funding after Residents Appeal  (11/19/02)

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Three Day, 30,000-Person Music Festival Planned for Accord  (11/19/02)

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Town Budget Approved by Town Board; Includes Tax Increase  (11/19/02)

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Accord Shelter Cited Again for Animal Maltreatment  (11/19/02)

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Pumpkin Smashing at RVHS  (11/19/02)

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Kerhonkson Pool Expenses  (11/19/02)

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ZBA Approves Airport Road Variance  (11/19/02)

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Legal Notices: Including Fire District Elections  (11/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor  (11/19/02)

 

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Absentee Ballot Applications Available Online (10/22/02)

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Town Board Highlights (10/22/02) (10/22/02)

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Tessler's Trailer Park Expansion Plans  (10/22/02)

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Gambling in Wawarsing (10/22/02) 

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Haunted Happenings (10/22/02)

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KAFAS Training (10/22/02)

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Legal Notices (10/22/02)

 

 

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Changes in Town Board Membership (10/10/02)

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Kerhonkson Pool in Need of $100,000 Repairs (10/10/02)

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Accord Fire District Length of Service Plan Adopted (10/10/02)

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School Tax Levy Increases by 11.2% (10/10/02)

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Low Income Housing in Kerhonkson (10/10/02)

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DEC Investigating Illegal Dumping (10/10/02)

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Smart Bells / Yoga Class (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Fawn Lane/Queens Highway Subdivision (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Airport Road Garage (10/10/02)

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Legal Notice - Highway Dept. Sale (10/10/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Fire Department Tax Increase & Star Tax Exemption Error  (10/10/02)

 

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Town Board Highlights (9/9/02)

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Accord Fire District Service Benefit Plan; No Absentee Ballots will be Permitted 9/9/02)

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Town of Rochester Property Tax Roll Available on Internet 9/9/02)

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Community Center Volunteers Wanted for Building Bee! 9/9/02)

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CRAFT VENDORS WANTED-Hudson Valley Draft Horse Fall Festival, 9/9/02)

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Town Board Retains Planning Board Member  9/9/02)

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Legal Notices : Planning Board; Fire District Referendum Hearing; Zoning Board; School Tax Levy 9/9/02)

 

 

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Town Board Highlights

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Accord Fire District Service Plan Vote; Tax Increase Proposed

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County Legislators Approve New Jail

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Legal Notice - Fire District Vote

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Legal Notice - Tax Roll

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Letter to the Editor

 

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Update on Metro Recycling (8/7/02)

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Accord Community Festival (8/7/02)

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Cat Center a Reality (8/7/02)

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Illegal Dump on Mettacahonts Road (8/7/02)

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Town Might Reassess Property Values (8/7/02)

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Change in Property Tax Equalization Rates (8/7/02)

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Sales tax climbing to 8% in Ulster County (8/7/02)

 

 

Rochester Calls for Indian Point Nuke Shutdown (7/29/02)

Fire at Camp Ravtov  (7/29/02)

Cat Shelter Planned for Main Street Accord  (7/29/02)

Zoning Board of Appeals Ruling on Airport Road Racetrack  (7/29/02)

Legal Notices   (7/29/02)

Letters to the Editor  (7/29/02)

Announcements  (7/29/02)

 

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Town Board Notes – June 27  (7/9/02)

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Metro Recycling Update (7/9/02)

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Illegal Dumping on Mettacahonts Road  (7/9/02)

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Corn Season Delayed  (7/9/02)

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Snapple Distributor Leaves Accord  (7/9/02)

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Hearing to Focus on Retirement Incentives  (7/9/02)

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Grants protect farmland in Ulster, Columbia  (7/9/02)

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Legal Notices (Planning Board, Public Law, Formation of LLC)  (7/9/02)

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Letters to the Editor  (7/9/02)

 

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Articles on Metro Recycling Hearing (6/24/02)

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Rondout Valley School District Budget (6/24/02)

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Illegal Race Track Decision Due in July (6/24/02)

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Articles on Ulster County Sales (and property) Tax Increase (6/24/02)

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Legal Notice of Bid Solicitation (/24/02)

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Saints of Swing (6/24/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Metro Recycling (6/24/02)

 

 

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Town Board Highlights (6/10/02)

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Metro Recycling Hearing and Information (6/10/02)

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Airport Road Motorcross (6/10/02)

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School Budget Vote and Election Results (6/10/02)

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Music Program Cuts at Rondout (6/10/02)

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Budget Re-Vote on June 24 (6/10/02)

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Cross Lumber Sold (6/10/02)

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Faux Academy Awards a Success (6/10/02)

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The Accord-Kerhonkson Garden Club (6/10/02)

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Legal Notice – ZBA Hearing (6/10/02)

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Legal Notice – Planning Board (6/10/02)

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Legal Notice – Bridge Closure (6/10/02)

 

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School Budget Vote and School Board Election to be Held on Tuesday, May 21st. (5/21/02)

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Aiport Road Motocross Public Hearing Rescheduled  (5/21/02)

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Metro Recycling Public Hearing  (5/21/02)

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Hudson Valley Resort Casino Deal Appears Dead (5/21/02)

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Town Gives Log Yard Owner a Deadline  (5/21/02)

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Called Off  (5/21/02)

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Rochester Residents Association Survey Results Available (5/21/02)

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School Budget Vote Hearings  (5/21/02)

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Attention Potters!  (5/21/02)

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Kerhonkson/Accord First Aid Squad Classes  (5/21/02)

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Legal Notice - Airport Road Motocross   (5/21/02)

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Legal Notice - Metro Recycling  (5/21/02)

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Legal Notice - Sale of Surplus Equipment  (5/21/02)

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Letters to the Editor (5/21/02)

 

 

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Town Board Notes: April 25 & May 2 (visit our website for unofficial meeting minutes) (5/7/02)

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Airport Road Racetrack Public Hearing on May 14 (5/7/02)

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New Referendum Seeks More Money from Rochester Taxpayers for Area Libraries (5/7/02)

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Land Auction in Rochester Subject to Residents’ Approval (5/7/02)

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Property Bidder Withdraws Bid  (5/7/02)

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School Board Election and Budget Vote on Tuesday, May 21 (5/7/02)

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School Board Proposes Budget (5/7/02)

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Rondout School District Tax Levy Hike at 15.25% (5/7/02)

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Youths Indicted for Rochester/Warwarsing/Ellenville Thefts (5/7/02)

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Ulster County might appeal rejection of legislative redistricting plan (5/7/02)

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Minnewaska to remove rock art (5/7/02)

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Elk Introduction Banned (5/7/02)

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Ulster County Tax Sale (5/7/02)

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: CASINO GAMBLING(5/7/02)

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Legal Notice - Town Tax Assessment Roll (5/7/02)

 
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Kelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow this Saturday  4/23/02

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Ulster County School Board Races Shape Up  4/23/02

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Zoning Board of Appeals to Hear Race Track Case  4/23/02

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County lawmakers approve casino pact with Modoc tribe  4/23/02

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Swimming at Minnewaska  4/23/02

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings  4/23/02

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Town Code Available  4/23/02 

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Calling All Artists  4/23/02

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Legal Notice - Land Sale 4/23/02

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Letters to the Editor - Local Libraries  4/23/02

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Letters to the Editor - School District Test Results 4/23/02

 

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Town Government Notes, April 4, 2002 and March 28, 2002 (4/9/02)

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Private Property Rights: Home Rule Reigns in Rochester (4/9/02)

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Motorcycle Racetrack Draws Rochester's Ire (4/9/02)

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Low Scores for Rondout Valley Graduates (4/9/02)

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002 (4/9/02)

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Kelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow (4/9/02)

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (4/9/02)

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Help Wanted - Video Taping  (4/9/02)

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Town Code Available (4/9/02)

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Calling All Artists (4/9/02)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.(4/9/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - Zoning Board of Appeals (4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - School Board Elections and Budget Vote(4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - Solicitation of Bids (4/9/02)

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Articles/Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (4/9/02)

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Illegal Motorcross/ATV Track on Airport Road (3/26/02)

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Former Alligerville Resident Sentenced (3/26/02)

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002 (3/26/02)

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Robert Lapp Log Yard Still Not In Compliance (3/26/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Miscellaneous (3/26/02)

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Legal Notices - NYS DEC Environmental Notice Bulletin (3/26/02)

 
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Rochester Town Board Votes to Support Senior Citizens Housing (3/5/02)

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County Legislator Proposes Ulster County Gambling Commission (3/5/02)

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Students Want Principal Back (3/5/02)

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Swimmers Group Discusses Minnewaska Agreement (3/5/02)

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Three Accord Farms on List of Top Ten Farm Aid Recipients (3/5/02) 

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Rondout Valley High National Honor Society Helps Area Seniors (3/5/02)

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Postponed (3/5/02)

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Reservoir Permits No Longer Required to Drive on Adjacent Roads (3/5/02)

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Kerhonkson-Accord First Aid Squad Classes for March (3/5/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (3/5/02)

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Rochester Town Board Asked to Consider Affordable Housing Proposal (2/18/02)

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Ulster Resort Seeks OK For Kerhonkson Indian Casino (2/18/02)

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Legislator’s Widow to Assume County Seat (2/18/02)

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County Legislature Approves $5 million Bond for County Jail Site Preparation (2/18/02)

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Town Board to Seek Bids on 35 Acres (2/18/02)

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Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting Cancelled Unexpectedly (2/18/02)

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (2/18/02)

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Animal Benefit Sale (2/18/02)

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Help Wanted - Video Taping (2/18/02)

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir (2/18/02)

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Copies of Town Budget Available (2/18/02)

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Town Code Available (2/18/02)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts. (2/18/02)

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Legal Notices: Town Solicits Bids, Hoornbeek Name Change Notice (2/18/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (2/18/02)

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Letter to the Editor - County Jail (2/18/02)

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Animal Benefit Sale (2/18/02)

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll (2/18/02)

 

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.

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Rochester 2002 Assessment Roll Dates

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Town Board Addresses Transfer Station Issues

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Ulster County Community College Layoffs

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir

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Copies of Town Budget Available

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Town Code Available

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Help Wanted - Video Taping

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Animal Benefit Sale

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll

 

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Hudson Valley Resort Proposes Gambling (1/6/02)

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Local Legislator Vincent Dunn Passes Away (1/6/02)

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Planning Board Suspends ByLaws and Re-Appoints Chair (1/6/02) 

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Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Schedule (1/6/02)

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Town Code Available (1/6/02)

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers (1/6/02)

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Letter to the Editor on Mercury Contamination (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice - Town Board Meetings (1/6/02)

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New York City Fined for Mercury Pollution in Rondout Reservoir (1/6/02)

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Former Alligerville Resident Found Guilty of Killing Cats  (1/6/02)

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Local Burglaries  (1/6/02)

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Property Tax Assessments Increase Throughout Ulster County  (1/6/02)

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Town Code Available  (1/6/02)

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Main Street, Kerhonkson Redevelopment  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Business Meeting  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Organizational Meeting (1/6/02)

 

 

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Casino Update (12/28/02)


KINGSTON - Ulster County leaders say the Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma hopes to open a casino in Wawarsing in early 2004.Attorney Bernard Wiczer, who represents the tribe, met with county lawmakers Thursday to brief them on the Modocs' progress toward establishing a casino in Ulster County.
County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd said the Modoc Tribe has placed an option on the Kelly Farm in Wawarsing, a 225-acre property near the Nevele Grande Resort that housed Horse Shows in the Sun before HITS moved to Saugerties. "Once they have an option, their next step is to attempt to get the BIA (U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs) to recognize their claim, and to put the property in land trust," said Todd, R-Shandaken. 

Attorneys for the tribe appeared before the federal bureau earlier this month hoping to win support for the claim, he said. If the claim is approved by the bureau, the tribe would negotiate a casino compact with the governor. The tribe also is drafting an environmental study of the effects a casino would have on the region. Todd expects to see results of that study by late January. A casino could bring as many as 3,000 moderate- to high-paying jobs to the region once fully operational, Todd said. 

In April, the Ulster County Legislature approved a seven-year deal for the county to receive $15 million a year should the tribe be successful in establishing a casino within county lines. But shortly afterward, state Sen. John Bonacic, R-Mount Hope, said chances were slim that the Modocs would be successful in their efforts because the tribe was not one of seven tribes federally recognized to run casinos in New York state. 
But Todd remains optimistic. "Since the day we signed the agreement with them, we have been optimistic that this would come to fruition," he said. "They are a legitimate recognized tribe, not from New York state, but that doesn't appear to be a stumbling block in any way." 

County Legislator Richard Parete, D-Accord, whose district includes Wawarsing, was at Thursday's meeting and said he thinks the county needs professional guidance in its role with the Modocs. "I think the county and the town of Wawarsing need an expert on Indian gaming on their side so we know what questions to ask," he said. "We're in there asking questions, but we don't know what questions to ask because we've never been involved with it." 

The Modocs also reportedly are negotiating an agreement with the town of Wawarsing. Town Supervisor Richard Craft could not be reached for comment on Friday. 

Parete said he also is concerned that the environmental review is being done by the Modocs themselves. "They're doing all the impact studies. That's like the fox watching the hen house," he said. "The county should be doing the study, and the Modocs should pay for it."
The Modoc Tribe has roughly 160 members and is located in Miami, Okla. Its ancestral home is in northern California and southern Oregon. The tribe currently operates bingo and off-track betting in Oklahoma. (12/21/02)


 

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Concert Promoter says talks continuing (12/28/02)

The comments from co-promoter John McLoughlin came in a telephone interview in response to a letter from property owner Charles Greene, who contends information about use of the land during a three-day event was not provided privately before an announcement at a Rochester Town Board meeting last month. 
"It was a miscommunication among family members," McLoughlin said. 
Promoters on Friday did not mention the status of talks with Greene and his brother, Norman, when the property was specifically mentioned during an interview. 
"It's pretty bad when you read a (Nov. 9) newspaper to find out that our farm is one of the participants mentioned, without our approval, by these so-called professionals," Greene wrote. 
Contacted on Wednesday, Greene said an offer to lease the property was raised from $660-per-acre to $750-per-acre for use of 60 acres after promoters were told the brothers were not interested. 
"It won't deter me if it is $2,000-an-acre," he said. 
In the letter, he wrote: "These hotshots from Connecticut-based Hothouse Presents are selling a bill of goods ... (that) reminds me of developers coming in painting a pretty picture with all the benefits, etc. then leaving after cashing in." 
Owners of two neighboring properties, which town officials said are the Davis and Kelder farms, were not available for comments about concert plans. A private meeting with promoters was expected to be conducted Tuesday, but promoters said the status of those discussions would not be released until an informational meeting next month. 
"We will have a full outline of plans," he said. 
"Nothing should be said until it's official," McLoughlin said. "It's illegal for us ... to promote it. I'd love to tell you about it, but it has to be this way." 
McLoughlin previously said the concert could be similar to the Bonneroo Music Festival, which media stories report attracted about 70,000 to Manchester, Tenn., for featured concerts by Phil Lesh and Friends with Bob Weir, Widespread Panic, String Cheese Incident, Ben Harper, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and more. (DailyFreeman)

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Ulster County Legislature Passes Redistricting Proposal (12/28/02)

KINGSTON - If Ulster County Democrats are successful in an effort to force a November referendum on a new legislative district plan, the proposal would be effectively stayed, leaving in question what districts would be on the ballot in the 2003 general election.
In a 17 to 15 vote, lawmakers OK'd a nine-district reapportionment plan. In an unusual move, several Republicans members voted against the rest of the caucus and rejected the proposal after a rancorous debate. 
County Democratic Committee Chairman John Parete said Democrats will challenge the plan before state Supreme Court Justice Vincent Bradley while mounting a petition campaign to force a public vote on redistricting. 
It was Bradley's ruling that nullified the current seven-district plan earlier this year, forcing lawmakers back to the drawing board. 
All nine Legislature Democrats voted against the plan, as did Republicans Daniel Alfonso and Charles Busick of Highland; Susan Cummings of Wawarsing; Frank Felicello of Marlboro; John Naccarato of Kingston; and Michael Stock of Woodstock. Legislator Joan Every, R-Rosendale, was absent. 
Prior to the vote, 23 people spoke at a public hearing on the plan, including 17 who disagreed with the adopted plan. Most spoke in favor of single-member districts. 
"The makeup of this body is not an accurate portrayal of the makeup of the voters of this county, and this plan only compounds the problem," said Diana Spada of Kingston. 
"I think this is nothing less than a majority protection plan," said Norm Schwartz of Saugerties. 
Opponents faulted the plan for failing to address minority representation, for not seeking an independent commission's help, and for violating the "one-man, one-vote" principle. 
Supporters applauded the plan for keeping town lines whole for the most part. Woodstock, Ulster, and the city of Kingston are the only municipalities divided between two districts in the adopted plan. 
Legislator Brian Hathaway, R-Bloomington, who authored the plan with Legislator Gerald DePew, R-Kerhonkson, said the new districts are good for the public because they are close to the current setup and would not confuse voters. 
"Voters know this plan, and the majority are happy with it," Hathaway said. "The only people who came and opposed this are Parete's Democrats." 
Legislator Fawn Tantillo, R-New Paltz, said the Democratic single-member district proposal was an attempt by the party to "divide and conquer" to gain more seats on the Legislature. She said many of the towns share common interests, and as such it is appropriate for towns to share common lawmakers between them. 
Felicello said he voted against the plan because his new district is larger than it should be. "I feel like our district, with 32,000 to 33,000 people, is just spread out too far," he said. "Being stretched out to 32,000 (constituents), I thought was just too many to represent." (Freeman 12/02)

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Legislature sets '03 budget (12/28/02)

By Paul Brooks 
Kingston - Ulster County taxpayers will have to find another $33 on average to pay county taxes next year - and they'll need a scorecard to track legislators on voting day. 
That is all a result of the 2003 budget and new Legislature reapportionment plan Republicans legislators slammed through last night. The eight Democrats on the Legislature voted against both actions in a legislative session that started nearly an hour late as Republicans argued among themselves behind closed doors. Four Republicans broke ranks to vote against the budget: Glenn Noonan, Joan Every, William Calabrese and Fawn Tantillo. 
When all was said and done, 20 Republicans banded together to approve the 2003 budget of $269.8 million in appropriations and a countywide tax levy of $38.9 million. The tax levy was up a whopping 20 percent, but Republicans were quick to point out that those figures translate to $32.54 in additional taxes on an average $100,000 home. 
Democrats slammed the Republicans for slicing only about $100,000 in spending from the initial budget proposal. The remainder of the $1.3 million used recently to cut the increase to 19.69 percent from 24 percent came from increased sales tax projections and the fund balance. 
"I am not seeing any cutting, and 19 percent doesn't seem like it is going in the right direction," Democrat Kevin Hinchey of Saugerties said. "Increasing the sales tax projection $500,000 is poor public policy," said fellow Democrat Robert Parete of Boiceville. 
Alan Lomita, a Rosendale Democrat, said that while the county was asking for cuts from its own departments, the county's independent trash agency, the Resource Recovery Agency, was giving itself hefty pay raises. Jeanette Provenzano of Kingston said Ulster County Community College was allowed a 2 percent increase for next year when agencies were told the county was in trouble and to hold the line at best.
Republican Majority Leader Rich Gerentine said that, averaged over the last four years, county taxes have actually dropped about 0.5 percent. "I am supporting this budget," he said. "I am proud we have not cut services or laid off anybody."
Republicans were heard yelling at each other in their closed session before the meeting, and it was evident later that the fight was over the Legislature's new reapportionment proposal. 
At the last minute, Calabrese substituted a new nine-district plan that carved up southern Ulster County more. Republicans approved that and then rejected Democratic demands for a different plan. The latest Republican plan goes to a public hearing at 6:15 p.m. Dec. 19 in the Legislature chambers, County Office Building, corner of Fair and Main streets in Kingston. (12/11/02)

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Taxes up in Ulster County (Again) (12/28/02)

 

KINGSTON - The $269.8 million county spending plan for 2003, passed by county lawmakers Tuesday night, will affect tax bills differently around Ulster County, depending on the municipality.
Next year's property tax levy of $38.9 million is 19.6 percent higher than the current property tax levy. Countywide, assessments have increased by more than $758 million in the past year, so there is a greater tax base over which to spread the tax levy than last year. 
The average county tax bill for a home assessed at $100,000 will go up $32.54 next year, 8.66 percent higher than this year. County taxes will range from an increase of 24 percent in Denning to a nearly 12 percent cut in Hurley. 
Because each town does their own assessments, the state issues equalization rates, which are then used to compute the municipalities' individual tax rates. The equalization rates convert each municipality's assessment to a common system, so county tax rates can be applied evenly from town to town. 
According to figures released from the County Administrator's Office, estimated taxes for 2003 for a home assessed at $100,000, the amount of change and percentage of change, are as follows: 
* Denning: $421.74, an increase of $81.64, or 24 percent higher than 2002; 
* Esopus: $383.54, an increase of $37.56, or 10.86 percent higher; 
* Gardiner: $494.98, an increase of $83.16, or 20.19 percent higher; 
* Hardenburgh: $425.67, an increase of $43.61, or 11.41 percent higher; 
* Hurley: $359.03, a decrease of $47.60, or 11.71 percent lower; 
* Kingston (town): $428.28, an increase of $55.71, or 14.95 percent higher; 
* Kingston (city): $477.61, an increase of $92.23, or 23.93 percent higher; 
* Lloyd: $429.26, an increase of $36.05, or 9.17 percent higher; 
* Marbletown: $421.52, an increase of $77.67, or 22.59 percent higher; 
* Marlborough: $384.70, a decrease of $16.66, or 4.15 percent lower; 
* New Paltz: $382.57, an increase of $1.34, or 0.35 percent higher; 
* Olive: $382.97, an increase of $15.23, or 4.14 percent higher; 
* Plattekill: $383.71, a decrease of $17.06, or 4.26 percent lower; 
* Rochester: $403.26, an increase of $33.86, or 9.17 percent higher; 
* Rosendale: $417.38, an increase of $24.41, or 6.21 percent higher; 
* Saugerties: $385.28, an increase of $37.68, or 10.84 percent higher; 
* Shandaken: $379.25, an increase of $15.86, or 4.36 percent higher; 
* Shawangunk: $416.92, an increase of $13.12, or 3.25 percent higher; 
* Ulster: $381.38, an increase of $37.43, or 10.88 percent higher; 
* Wawarsing: $432.75, an increase of $75.21, or 21.04 percent higher; 
* Woodstock: $379.94, an increase of $2.99, or 0.79 percent higher. 
(Freeman 12/12/02)


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Rondout Schools Capital Budget $1 million short (12/28/02)

KYSERIKE - The Rondout Valley school district's capital project fund was more than $1 million short as of June 30, and the deficit is expected to grow, a district auditor told school board members this week.

Joseph Modafferi, a certified public accountant who performed an annual budget audit, said he has major concerns about the manner expenditures are handled in the district's $40 million budget. But he also pointed out that there was a positive balance in the general fund, which he said had not been realized in a long time. 
"Right now the only way to fund that (capital projects) account is to transfer from the general fund or borrow the money," Modafferi said. 
Should the school board opt to borrow, voter approval would be required. 
"So with no revenue available to pay that (project) fund back ... is what we did OK?" Trustee Tavi Celenti asked Modafferi. "Because it sounds like we did only some things right or even something wrong." 
"What you did with the additional job change orders on the project were OK, but you should have gone back to the voters to cover the increased financial changes in the project budget," Modafferi said. 
Trustee Paul Gruner requested a detailed list of the overruns for him to better explain to the public how the board got $1,041,000 in the hole. 
"As a board member I do not know which are health and safety issues or unforeseen expenses," Gruner said. "It would be helpful to have this because it looks bad to be $1 million over." 
Trustee Gail Hutchins said she was confused because the project manager came to the board with changes, believing the money was set aside for any overruns. 
"The changes we heard seemed to be within the means we had," she said. "I am a bit surprised to see it is at $1 million now." 
Celenti echoed Hutchins' sentiments, but was concerned that board members may not have known what they did when they took action on the changes. 
"In my opinion, the problems came each time the change orders were made," Modafferi told him. "If you got a positive answer about the money being there, then you got a wrong answer." 
District Superintendent Marilyn Pirkle offered her explanation of the deficit. 
"The scope of the renovations at Marbletown was much more than what was originally budgeted and we had things come up such as the air quality issue and the heating system," she said. "It was much more massive than anticipated." 
Pirkle said the district is still waiting for monies from insurance claims and from claims submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 
"FEMA is slow and will not address the claim until the other areas are cleared up," she said. "But I am in constant communication with them." 
Although Pirkle could not say how much money the district can anticipate, or when it will come in, she said the claims total more than $5 million. 
Although Modafferi recommended the board take immediate action to borrow funds to cover the deficit, Pirkle said the board should wait a bit longer to see if revenue from the claims come in. 
"If not soon, then district would need to address the shortage through another bond," she said. 
Modafferi made it a point to tell trustees he was not there to criticize them, but to recommend ways to improve district accounting practices. 
"Every audit piece that is done anywhere is bound to find something that was done wrong," said Trustee Maureen Sheehan, who serves on the board's budget committee. "We will take the issues, correct them and see where we need to go with this in terms of better accounting practices." 
Modafferi also informed board members of numerous changes in financial reporting that will be required of the district next year. 
"It will become a more businesslike presentation that includes depreciation and post retirement benefit costs," he said. "Calculation alone for the post-retirement benefits is still up in the air on how to develop this, and may require an actuary or certified public accountant in your business office." 
In addition to the additional personnel costs the school district might face to handle the new accounting procedures, Modafferi said his own fee will increase by $4,000 alone to convert the district to the new system. 
"I am here to guide you as much as possible but it's going to be difficult," he said. (Freeman 12/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor (12/28/02)

 

[Reprinted Letter to the Editor}
To AccordTownCrier: (in response to information about the Queens Hwy Mine)
From Randy Dymond

Your name fits you good, If you dont like what is happening in our town why
dont you move!

[Editor's Note: The letter writer is the son of Town of Rochester Code Enforcement Officer Douglas Dymond]


Dear Editor

I have to agree with Randy Dymond. The Town Crier does fit you folks. First it was the Accord Speedway; then it was Richie Smith's garage. Then it was the cell tower above Rochester Center and now it's the mine on Queens Highway. If you really want to stop the mining people from operating, you should purchase the property from them otherwise you should try working it out with them. I'm sure the working hours could be adjusted so the noise didn't disturb people as much as well as a schedule that would keep the trucks off the road at the same time as the school busses.

Roger Hoornbeek
(Queens Highway)
[Editor's Note: The letter writer is the brother of Town of Rochester Councilman (and former Planning Board member Randy Hornbeck and the son of Ulster County Legislator Marlene Dunn (R-Kerhonkson)]



Dear Editor:

In response to Randy Dymond's editorial "Queen's Hwy Mine"

I may not have lived in this town as long as Mr. Dymond has, but I did in fact purchase a home within 200 hundred feet of the newly proposed mine site. I feel that living in this location and owning property here gives me more of a right to decide if I want to be a neighbor to an operating mine.

With Mr. Dymond's "sincere" interest to this mine, disregarding the human beings who live here, (he would rather us move than complain, make's one wonder huh?) Maybe he would be interested in purchasing my home or one of my neighbor's. Noise pollution, air pollution, and ground water contamination do not seem to bother him.

He was right about one this. This is "our" town. And we all have a right to decide if we want an industrial mine in our back yard. I think that I should say this "If Mr Dymond doesn't like us complaining about what is happening in OUR Neighborhood (not his) he should move here." Or maybe he has some better property that he would be interested in selling to Mr. Servidone. (Metro)

This is another perfect example of people only being concerned about making a buck than the health and welfare of the people in this town. It is a proven fact that the Town of Rochester wont be receiving a large property tax yearly that would make Mr. Dymond's opinion understandable. Maybe Mr. Dymond would like to tell us what his "interest" is exactly in a mine that he DOESN'T have to live next to.

Sincerely,

Marsley Holderman


[The following letter is reprinted from the Blue Stone Press related to an article about a proposed trailer park expansion on Cherrytown Road in Kerhonkson]

Dear Editor:

I was disappointed by the one-sided coverage of expansion plans for the
former Tesslers Trailer Park on Cherrytown Road in your October 18 issue.
There is no reference in the article to any attempts by the author to
contact anyone with an opposing viewpoint. Slick PR on the part of the new
owner. Aside from that, the increase from 16 to 64 trailer spaces will
cause many problems:
(1) the increase school enrollment will cause an increase in our tax rates
(assume 50 new school children at $9,000 per year),
(2) the new owner says he is has no intention of applying for tax subsidies
-- what he doesn't say is that in many communities, developers are required
to make special additional payments to local governments as compensation
for the increased strain on local services such as schools, roads, etc.
(3) Michael Baum, the new owner states: "The land is beautiful" The reason
it is beautiful is because it is undeveloped. A 64 space trailer park will
surely ruin this.
(3) Baum runs a "land lease program" which means that people bring their
trailers in and pay rent to him forever. It costs nearly $5,000 to move a
trailer and trailers start to depreciate the day they're delivered. How
can a trailer owner ever hope to create any equity when what he's buying is
never worth as much as on the first day he owns it. When was the last time
anyone actually saw a rent DECREASE?
(4) As you can see from the fact that another trailer park in Rochester on
Mettacahonts Road has been for sale for more than a year, do trailer parks
really make sense as a long term investment in our community?
Affordable housing is definitely needed. Trailer parks aren't the way to
go, as I'm sure most of the people in town would agree. At recent meeting
of the Planning Board that was on TV showed a Planning Board member saying
that we need more affordable homes for working families just starting out.
He went on to say that most of rental housing in town was junk. Perhaps
the town should pay more attention to the upkeep of properties instead of
ways to bring new projects that are doomed to add to the problem.

J. Reilly
Accord


[Reprinted from the Blue Stone Press]

Dear Editor:

I find Mr. O'Flaherty's letter in your November 15th edition distasteful
for its character assassination and misinformation. To the article "An
Eyesore No More" by Mr. Jim Abbott in an earlier edition of the Bluestone
Press, I say that article should be in the paid advertisement section, as
it contains misleading information and definitely presents only the park
owner's view without a journalist's balance of opposing views.

My opposition to the mobile home park is addressed with data in The Wall
Street Journal, a survey of mobile home conditions in 1994 by North County
Affordable Housing, Inc. (NCAH) in Jefferson County in New York State and
other reputable sources. NCAH is partially funded by the State of New York
and other government agencies. This information contradicts Mr.
O'Flaherty's version of mobile home industry "truths".

This response does not condemn those who live in mobile homes, and I make a
clear distinction between mobile homes on owned land and those that are
placed on rented spaces in mobile home parks. I'd like to point out that:
1. it is possible to buy an appreciating stick-built home for the same or
less expense than a mobile home located in a land-lease mobile home park,
which only depreciates in value,
2. Rochester taxpayers bear an unfair tax burden because mobile home
park owners do not pay their fair share of taxes based on the aggregate
housing value,
3. the huge negative impact on the local community and neighbors.

Mr. O'Flaherty's letter is an example of a ploy used to discredit concerns
raised in a letter to the editor about the BSP's handling of the "Eyesore
No More" article and adding more mobile homes in the Town by attacking the
intent of the letter. After discrediting the letter writer, Mr. O'Flaherty
goes on to present his own version of "truths", a strategy of
misinformation and distraction. We need only look at who signs Mr.
O'Flaherty's paycheck to understand his goal, which is to further the
mobile home industry's strategy of claiming that mobile homes are
"affordable housing". This effort requires him to pathetically discredit
anyone with a different point of view, or anyone who dares to cast any
doubt on any aspect of the mobile home industry.

If, as Mr. O'Flaherty suggests, the mobile home is the answer to affordable
housing, why is the current number of repossessed mobile homes 75,000 when
the total number of new units shipped industry-wide in the year 2001 was
only 193,000? That is a 39% repossession pool over a single year's shipment
of new units.

The cost of renting the land-lease park's land to park the mobile home is
about $300 per month. The average price of a double wide Astro is $60,000.
The cost of the mobile home mortgage, after $5,000 down at 12% (the average
cost of mobile home loans) for 30 years is $565.74 monthly; therefore the
combined monthly payment of the land-lease and mortgage is $865.74.
However, if the owner made the same monthly payment of $865.74 on a stick
built home he could afford a 7% - 30 year home mortgage of $130,127.27.
Additional costs to mobile home owners that stick-build homeowners don't
have to pay include mortgage rates that are usually 4% to 5% higher, for
owner-occupied mobile homes the average monthly operating expense is 123%
higher than all other forms of housing of similar size and value, plus
insurance premiums that are 50 to 60 % higher than standard homes of
similar value (reflecting a more frequent incidence of total loss in fires,
etc) and it is often difficult to get adequate coverage,



There are many quality homes, with land, for sale in our community within
this price range contrary to mobile home park proponents' claims that
"there are no homes reasonable priced locally". A quick check indicates
that on November 20, 2002 there were ten homes in ZIP Code 12446
(Kerhonkson) and eight in ZIP Code 12428 (Ellenville) at $120,000 and
under, well within the "affordable" category for similar mobile homes.
Further, the vacancy rates (percentage of residencies not currently
occupied) are 40% and 27% respectively (the national average is 14.9%)
reflecting a high rate of home availability in those communities. The
distinction is clear: stick built homes appreciate, mobile homes depreciate
.

Let's talk about the unfair tax burden imposed on Rochester taxpayers by
mobile home park owners. Owners of mobile homes who rent spaces in a
land-lease mobile home park do not pay school or property taxes, despite
owning homes with assessable value. As an example, because the park owner
is assessed only for their land, which ignores the value of the 47 mobile
homes onsite, the Town's assessment for Hidden Forest Mobile Home Park is
$517,000 paying $7,956.28 in combined taxes. At the Town's 100% assessed
value, the same homes on owner land would be assessed at $2.82 million and
pay the town $100,387.94, a difference of $92,331.66 that other property
owners must pay. Kerhonkson's annual spending-per-student of $9,685 times
two children per family in a park like that adds an additional annual cost
of $910,390 to the Town for a total of $1,002,721.66. The Town already has
seven parks with a total capacity of 118 mobile homes; Hidden Forest is
only 40% of that total. You do the math for a projection of the other 60%.
Mr. O'Flaherty has the nerve to tell us we don't have a
mobile-home-park-induced-tax problem. If this is the case, why do other
communities charge developers an "impact tax" to relieve the burden of
similar developments? Additionally, with the exception of one, all
Rochester mobile home park owners are non-residents of Rochester. Therefore
in addition to the tax problem, just the annual land-lease fee of 109
leases or $392,400 (less minimal maintenance costs) will be spent outside
of Rochester. Where is the benefit to our community?

I'd also like to point out that a mobile home park owner who sits on our
Planning Board identified a very serious problem the Town has with the
parks. He commented at a recent meeting that once a park is established the
Town has no way to control the condition or the appearance of the park
because the Town can't do anything to force the owner to keep them up.

In conclusion there are affordable alternatives that do not require us to
establish new or expand existing mobile home parks. The results of a
recent survey show the majority of people in town don't want this. Our
elected officials and their appointees should pay attention. The Town
leaders need to resolve the housing shortage, if one exists, outside the
mobile home industry's rhetoric. The Town needs to enforce its own laws
about upkeep and property maintenance. Can we as Towns people maintain our
integrity in view of the financial ruin our Town is offering local families
for housing by allowing our leaders to continue to embrace the mobile home
industry's expansion plans? If mobile home parks are a necessity why is it
that the Town of Marbletown does not have a single one? It certainly can't
be the lack of needs because Marbletown's average income and housing needs
are not that much different from Rochester's. A first step requires the
development of Rochester's Master Plan, then form a volunteer group, of
non-mobile-home industry members, to gather facts, work with local and
state politicians to find solutions through grants and low cost loans as
effective affordable housing alternatives to mobile homes and advise
Rochester's Town Board. Unless something is done to assist and educate
young inexperienced home buyers away from the mobile home syndrome,
Rochester is doomed to become the mobile home park capital of Ulster County
with devastating results to mobile home owners located in land-lease mobile
home parks, Town Taxpayers and our very own unique, rural natural beauty.

Francis Gray, Krhonkson
fgray_040302@msn.com

 

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LEGAL NOTICES (12/28/02)

PLEASE BE ADVISED that the organizational meeting of the Accord Fire District shall take place on January 8, 2003 at 7 p.m. at the CO. 1 Fire House. Alexander Chalm District Secretary (Freeman 12/16/02)

LEGAL NOTICE: PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold the End of the Year Business Meeting on December 26, 2002 immediately following the Audit/Workshop Meeting at 4:30 pm at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD. Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk Tax Collector RMC (12/19/02)


LEGAL NOTICE Please take notice that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold the Organizational Meeting on 1-02-03 at 7:00 pm at the Town Hall, with the Town Board Meeting immediately following. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk Tax Collector (12/19/02)

DEC Environmental Notice Bulletin - Notice of State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) permits 

Permittee Name and Address: Facility Name: Camp Rav Tov (Cherrytown) Congregation Yetev Lev Facility Type: Sanitary Services 543 Bedford Ave. (C)ity, (T)own, (V)illage: Rochester (T) Brooklyn NY 11211 DEC Number: 3-5144-00097/00001 Receiving Waters: GW-Mombaccus SPDES Number: NY0149632 Water Classification: GA Ranking Score: N/A Type of Waste/Flow Rate: Sanitary/ 0.0494 MGD 
Deadline for Comments: Friday, January 17, 2003 (ENB 12/19/02)

Permittee Name and Address: Facility Name: Camp Rav Tov-Napanoch Congregation Yetev Lev Inc. Facility Type: Sanitary Services 543 Bedford Ave (C)ity, (T)own, (V)illage: Wawarsing (T) Brooklyn NY 11211 DEC Number: 3-5156-00173/00001 Receiving Waters: Rondout Creek SPDES Number: NY0145807 Water Classification: GA Ranking Score: N/A Type of Waste/Flow Rate: Sanitary/ 0.0580 MGD 
Deadline for Comments: Friday, January 17, 2003 (ENB 12/19/02)



 

 

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Mine Expansion Moratorium Agreed on by Town Board  (12/19/02)

In response to appeals by approximately 20 residents who drove to Town Hall during a snowstorm, the Rochester Town Board at its meeting on December 5th, 2002 agreed to a 90 day moratorium on the expansion of mining activity in the town and on the renewal of any permits within the town. The move was in response to neighborhood concerns about the proposed expansion of the former Rock Mountain Farms Mine by Metro Recycling & Crushing. The proposed plans call for a 400 ton/hour crusher and re-opening the mine, which has been dormant for more than five years (therefore eliminating any grandfathered status). The mine is located in the middle of Rochester’s most densely populated neighborhood, on lower Queens Highway between Roberts Drive and Rock Mountain Estates. The video tape of the sometimes contentious meeting will be broadcast on Mondays: December 16, 23 & 30 on Time Warner Cable channel 23.

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Town Board Highlights - December 5, 2002  (12/19/02)

$100,000 found by the Town’s bookkeeper, an "overabundance in the general fund" was transferred to the Highway Department.

Board discussed a $2,200 bid to replace the roof in the Town’s kennel.

A plan for an Arboretum with all indigenous trees was proposed. The town will consider permitting the trees to be planted on town land.

Minor changes were made to the employment manual.

A long discussion of the proposed mine on Queens Highway took place during the public comment period resulting in a 90-day moratorium on the expansion of existing mines.

Reevaluation of property assessment values was authorized.

A letter from Shandaken asking the Board to consider endorsing a plan for single member legislative districts was tabled.

A draft of a letter from the town attorney to the Town of Wawarsing regarding the sharing of expenses related to the swimming pool was approved.

 

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Rochester Residents Association Publishes Survey of Historic Properties  (12/19/02)

The Rochester Residents Association has published a 29-page survey of properties in the Town of Rochester that are listed on the State and/or National Registers of Historic Places. The full-color report includes photographs of the 27 listed properties located within the township’s borders. In addition, excerpts from the town’s property tax map using Geographic Information Software (GIS) are included that show the exact location of the properties. In the past, due to road name changes and because many of the properties were added to the register before the current 911-based addressing system, the properties were difficult to locate using the addresses shown on the historic registers.

"The Town of Rochester has one of the highest concentration of inhabited 18th Century stone houses in the nation," said Z. Win, president of the Rochester Residents Association. "This is a fact that we should all be proud of and one that could serve as the basis for future jobs in the tourist industry. These properties are a living example of our nation’s history and our region’s rich agricultural heritage, " Win said. The Residents Association published the report in an effort to help preserve the properties and to encourage the addition of other historic properties to the registers. "We’re aware of about twenty other stone houses and numerous historic frame houses and farm buildings in town that are probably eligible but not listed on the National Register."

Section 14.09 of the New York State Historic Preservation Act of 1980 states that properties that are listed or eligible to be listed as State or Federal historic properties are offered the protection of the Act’s provisions, even if such properties are not themselves registered. One of these protections is the automatic requirement for a Type I SEQR action, which has not always been followed in the Town. "We’re trying to protect these properties for future generations." Win said. The Residents Association mailed copies of the report to the Friends of Historic Rochester, the town historian, and members of the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Planning Board.

Two of the properties on the list are now threatened by potentially adverse development. The 1790 C.K. Schoonmaker House on Queens Highway is adjacent to the site of Metro Recycling and Crushing, a proposed rock crushing and mining operation. The Terwilliger-Smith Farm Complex is next door to a planned 64 unit trailer park expansion on Cherrytown Road.

Copies of the report can be downloaded from the internet http://www.accord-kerhonkson.com/History-Inventory-Public.pdf A 1995 reconnaissance and history of the Town prepared by Kyserike Restorations is also available by visiting the History page of www.accord-kerhonkson.com. Printed copies can also be purchased by writing to the Rochester Residents Association at PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404.

 

 

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CONCERTS AND ARTISTS' EXHIBITS  (12/19/02)

Artists’ Open Studio

Rochester artist Sara Harris will display her works on December 14 & 15 from 12:00 noon to 4:00 pm. The open studio will take place at 4 City Hall Road, (entrance on Queens Highway between Queens Highway and Cedar Drive) in Accord. Call 845-626-2843 for further information.

Rochester artist Barbara Klar will hold an open studio and display one-of-a-kind jewelry and accessories pm December 14 & 15 from 11: am to 6:00 pm. 265 Whitfield Road, Acord, 626-3700, www. clearmetals.com

If you would like to see Nancy Ostrovsky paint live with Jim Lampi (Chapman Stick) and Harvey Sorgen (Drummer)Produced by: N E D Productions and WKZE 98.1)

Stone Ridge Center for the Arts (845-687-8890, across from Corner

Store in Stone Ridge) Date: Dec 14, (Saturday) Time: 8 pm

Info: Marbletown Hardware: 845-687-2098 NEDSHOWS@AOL.COM Reserved seats available: call Marbletown Hardware: 845-687-2098. It may sell out with all this radio advertising, so making a reservations is advised. Seats are given out first come first serve from the front. The space holds about 100 people. Make a reservation with Marbletown Hardware, pay for your tickets at the door. Or, just show up!!

 

Two Concerts to celebrate the Christmas season

Carols from Around the World with

Capall, Maura Ellyn, voice; Elizabeth Panzer, harp

Saturday, December 14, 2002, 7:30 pm, Roxbury Arts Center, 607-326-7908

Sunday, December 15, 2002, 2:00 pm, Dupuy Canal Museum High Falls, NY, 845-687-9310

 

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Memorial concert to benefit Rondout HS musicians  (12/19/02)
ACCORD: Musician Ron Finck leaves a musical legacy through a student scholarship.

By Deborah Medenbach
Times Herald-Record
dmedenbach@th-record.com

Ron Finck was the kind of dad you could call at 3 a.m. and talk about gigs, riffs and transcendental musical experiences. That's because Finck was just getting in the house at the same time, having his own performances to talk about.
Ron Finck died a year and a half ago at age 59 from complications after heart surgery. His support of young musicians will live on at Rondout Valley High School, thanks to a new memorial scholarship in his name.
Matthew Finck, the youngest of Ron's four children, decided to fund the scholarship to honor his father after talking to school band leader Larry Balestra.
"I wanted to do something to carry on his name. He was always about supporting young musicians' journeys," Matthew said. The scholarship will provide $500 to Rondout Valley High School seniors who plan to study music in college.
Matthew, 30, is the only one of Finck's children to follow in his father's musical footsteps. He heeded his father's words: "If you wake up in the morning and you can't think about doing anything but your music, you should be a musician."
"He was hard-working every day. We always knew what time it was by what instrument he was playing. It was breakfast, then practice, lunch then practice, jog, then dinner and performances," Matt said.
The elder Finck caught rheumatic fever while serving as a musician in the Army. The disease damaged his heart. Finck adopted a clean-living lifestyle that included a vegetarian diet, regular exercise and careful weight control. He and his wife moved from Queens to Accord in 1971 and gave their four children a rural life with lots of animals and room to grow.
Though he favored the alto sax, Finck could play all the wind instruments and worked steadily as a professional musician at the Catskills' resorts.
"I was in band in school. He'd play lead alto chair so we could hear what a piece was supposed to sound like," Matt said. "When it came to someone learning, that was what he was about."
Matt's wife Lisa remembers the unusual music conversations between father and son, "They'd speak every day on the phone. They had this special little jazz language and would sing parts of songs to each other that they were working on."
Matt Finck is a firm believer in the worldwide family of musicians. He says the scholarship is one step in bringing young musicians into that circle.
He recalled a night when he was a freshman in college and volunteered to play a concert at a Westchester halfway house.
"I was playing solo on a Coltrain song. I felt the hand of God coming through me. There were tears in my eyes. When I got home, I played it for my father. He said that's what he'd dedicated his life to – so that when that feeling comes through, he's ready. Don't expect it. Just be ready for it. Practice. Keep yourself up on your game so you are ready. There's no worse feeling that having it come and not being able to run with it. Dad knew what it felt like," Matt said. (TH Record 12/6/02)

 

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Students receive books and fire-truck display  (12/19/02)
The Kerhonkson Fire Department recently donated $1,000 for books about firefighting and fire prevention to the Kerhonkson Elementary School.
Principal Al Baker said the donation allowed the school to buy 80 high-quality books and the materials to build a display bookshelf to store the collection.
Parent Paul Bennett designed and built the display bookshelf in the shape of a fire-truck. The unit has shelves and two bench seats for students to sit on while browsing. Jennifer Bonelli, a teaching assistant at the school, did the artwork on the display. (TH Record 12/6/02)

 

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Felony Stabbing in Accord  (12/19/02)

A Pine Bush man was arrested on November 23, 2002 on charges that he stabbed another man during a party the night before. The victim was released from the hospital after receiving stitches. Following his arrest, Jeffrey Bunt, 19, was charged with felony assault and arraigned in Rochester Town Court. He was released on his own recognizance for a future court appearance. State Police at Ellenville said they received a 911 call at about 10:00 pm on November 22 for a fight in progress at a home at 19 Towpath Road. According to police, a dispute between partygoers at the residence of James Quick, 34, had turned violent. During the party, Bunt and Quick had a disagreement, police said. Police said Quick was trying to get Bunt to leave the party when the fight escalated. Other partygoers got involved and Bunt stabbed 26 year old David A. Miles Jr. of Spring Hill, FL with a six-inch kitchen knife, according to police. (Freeman 11/24/02)

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Employees charged in lottery ticket theft  (12/19/02)
Two PX Express employees have been arrested in connection with $4,265 worth of stolen lottery tickets, state police in Ellenville said yesterday.
Cindy A. Lee, 24, and Tracy Warren, 22, both of Kerhonkson, are accused of altering records to conceal the thefts of New York State Instant Lottery tickets. Investigators said the tickets were stolen between February and October. Both women had been employees at the store, also known as Pioneer Exchange Express, for several years. An inventory in early October revealed that numerous tickets were unaccounted for.
Lee was arrested Oct. 3; Warren was arrested on a warrant Nov. 15. Both were charged with fourth-degree grand larceny and first-degree falsifying business records, felonies. They were released pending further court action. TH-Record (11/20/02)

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Surplus Boston Bridge Equipment to be used in Rochester  (12/19/02)

Surplus material from the Central Artery Tunnel Project - also known as the "Big Dig" - in Boston has been offered to any county or town that can use it. Over 200 pre-cast bridge span units are available free of charge to be used in municipal bridge replacements. In Boston, they were used for temporary bridges and ramps during construction.

The pre-cast units, called "Inverset" units, could be used for anticipated three county bridge replacements. Using the pre-cast units will save Ulster County about $60,000 per bridge, according to Donahue, who said the county only has to pay for trucking the units, which are about 70 feet long, from Boston to Kingston. This will cost about $7,000 per unit. Three pre-cast units are needed for each bridge. The bridges these units would be used on are the Barlow Bridge in New Paltz, over which Brunswick Road crosses the Klyne Kill; the Lawrence Bridge in Kerhonkson, over which Sundale Road crosses Mettacahonts Creek; and the Van Vliet Bridge in the town of Rochester, over which Tow Path Road crosses the Peters Kill Creek. 11/27/02 Freeman)

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School Discipline at High School  (12/19/02)

KYSERIKE - A tearful Rondout Valley High School teacher's aide appealed to the school board Tuesday night to address what she called a lack of discipline at the high school.

Christine Wynkoop, a teaching assistant at the high school, told the board that there is a lack of control and a failure to follow disciplinary policy at the school, making the climate "awful." She said that changes in the school's administration in the past two years has caused an inconsistency in how teachers and administrators deal with the students.

"People are afraid to open their mouths about how they feel," said Wynkoop. "People aren't happy with things at the high school. ... Many are at the point of giving up on making students accountable."

After the meeting, Wynkoop said a dividing line has been drawn among the teachers and teaching assistants between supporters of the new administration, Principal Robert Keagle's, and of his predecessor, William Cafiero.

"The bottom line is (who you support) should not matter," said Wynkoop. "It's about the kids."

Cafiero, who says the district is trying to fire him, is currently "principal on assignment." The disciplinary proceedings cited in a lawsuit filed by Cafiero follow accusations that he sexually harassed two district teachers.

"The change in administration is a big part of this," said Wynkoop. "I'm constantly holding kids accountable, but when you're not backed up by administration, it makes it hard."

Wynkoop said she oversees after-school detention as well as the in-school suspension program. "I've heard and seen things that you would not believe," said Wynkoop. "Just because the out-of-school suspensions are low does not mean the high school is not out of control."

After the meeting Board Trustee Maureen Sheehan said not all the high school teachers and employees share Wynkoop's opinion, citing letters from two high school teachers recently sent to the board. Sheehan read aloud excerpts from high school teacher Jim Lemyre's letter to the board, stating that Wynkoop represents a small segment of the staff. "Many of us in the quiet majority are pleased with the disciplinary policy," Lemyre wrote. "We are on the right track. We have a good school. As a senior member of the staff I believe we must gain respect by being role models to students."

Lemyre said Keagle and his administration have been listening to the staff and acting appropriately.

Sheehan and Board President Nancy Taylor said that the board will follow up on Wynkoop's concerns. (11/27/02)

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Ex High School Principal’s Lawsuit on Hold  (12/19/02)

Cafiero's attorney, Michael E. Catalinotto Sr., said the Rondout Valley school district began disciplinary proceedings against Cafiero this past March and, until a final decision is made regarding Cafiero's employment status, he is putting the lawsuit on hold. The suit is based partly on district's the attempt to fire Cafiero, but Catalinotto said the disciplinary proceedings must be completed before the suit can be instituted. "From management's perspective, it is always preferable to have a suit withdrawn," said the school district's attorney, Jay Siegel of the firm Shaw and Perelson. "It's a positive development for the district because the litigants are removed from the process for the time being." Cafiero, accused of sexual harassment by district teachers in 2000, filed a $15 million lawsuit this past August against eight district teachers, nine school board members and district Superintendent Marilyn Pirkle. He accused them of violating his civil rights for, among other things, trying to fire him and hiring a private investigator to follow him around. Though district officials never have admitted to attempting to fire Cafiero, Catalinotto said the district has been seeking his termination since March. Because Cafiero is a tenured employee, the district must follow state education law in disciplining him. Under the law, the school board first must determine, in executive session, if there is probable cause for a case against a tenured employee. Cafiero's suit states the board decided on May 6, 2001, that there was probable cause. If the board decides there is enough probable cause, it then must vote on a maximum penalty, the worst of which is dismissal. The case then is handed over to a hearing officer, who is chosen from a state Education Department list, and the burden of proof is in the hands of the board. (Freeman 11/20/02)

Catalinotto said final arguments for the disciplinary proceedings were submitted by both Cafiero's and the district's lawyers this week. Whether Cafiero will be fired will be decided by the hearing officer in the next couple of months.

Pirkle would not comment on the district's efforts to fire Cafiero, but said: "It is our understanding that the lawsuit is in the process of being withdrawn. If that is the case, we are very pleased."

Fired or not, Cafiero still will have the right to refile the lawsuit, Catalinotto said, and "he then has to decide if he wants to seek redress for the violation of his constitutional rights."

Cafiero, still an employee of the district, has been "principal on assignment," with duties that include applying for grants, since July 17, 2001. The change in employment status came after independent investigator Margaret Leibowitz, a Manhattan attorney, looked into claims that he sexually harassed Catherine Arra, an English teacher at Rondout Valley High School, and Heidi Von Dohlen, who taught Spanish, in 2000. Cafiero was on sick leave during part of his reassignment, but he since has returned to work.

Leibowitz recommended that Cafiero be counseled in writing and receive training about sexual harassment, and if his behavior persisted that he be disciplined in accordance with the severity of his actions. (11/20/02)

 

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Letter to the Editor  (12/19/02)

Fortunately fatal accidents like the one that befell those children are rare around here. It's the first I heard, sitting off Pautauk rd for over 20yrs. I drive past that spot daily and could never imagine passing it without remembering those 3 young lives cut so short. My daughter is that age. It really doesn't seem fair. It could of easily been someone looked the other way for a second. That steep dip serves as a memorial, the firehouse announces its approach. I think a guard rail should be installed there. It would be unforgiving for a tragedy to happen again in that spot. But I'm against white painted side stripes. They give false sense of security and instead make the foot heavier. Side stripes along a country road makes one go faster. An un-highlighted road forces one to go slower. There is no blame here. We should teach our children to drive younger, sit them on the lap behind the wheel. Make the experience one of importance. Teach them every courtesy, every piece of driving knowledge you know, over and over, until they get it. Teach them driving is the most important responsibility we share with one another as a society. 4,000pds hurling at 40 mph down a dark misty country road is an awesome feat and a total responsible action.

No conditions should ever be taken for granted, even deer beckon us to slow down. Please do not use this tragic accident to make mean spirited political points, those 3 young princesses are in God's hands, let them go in peace.

Bill Dukas

Kerhonkson

 

To AccordTownCrier: (in response to information about the Queens Hwy Mine)  (12/19/02)

From Randy Dymond

Your name fits you good, If you dont like what is happening in our town why

dont you move!

 

Dear Editor:  (12/19/02)

As a reminder, we also had achieved 'moratorium' status regarding the City Hall cell tower. It gave people a false sense of hope, but in fact, it was a merely a delay tactic (a tactic actually implies that one may have some intelligence and we know that this is not true of our 'trusted' leaders), because a moratorium gave them time to figure out what to do next. In our case as you know, we lost and the scary thing is that Judge Bradley was involved in our fate as well. All I am saying is DON'T LET UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Good Luck,

Roman Iwasiwka

 

 

Dear Editor:  (12/19/02)

Just so you know, regarding Pattys Angels, I was dog warden for 7 years and that place was a living hell for me. 1800 animals she says she has adopted out? Bull. I dont think she has adopted 18 out of there. She warehouses them has inadequate staff and everything else there. I went in and took photos of dead rats in the kennels for days in a row and gave them to the SPCA...to no good. She should be put out of the business

Jim Abbott (11/25/02)

 

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Ads and Announcements  (12/19/02)

Looking to rent an apartment or small house/cabin in the Accord area. Place must be quiet, have good water and be cat friendly, have 3 very well behaved, neutered felines. I'm mature, reliable, neat, conscious and good-natured woman with references. Can pay up to $700.00 including utilities. Please call Joy: (845) 679-6515 evenings.

 

 

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Legal Notices  (12/19/02)

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Rochester Town Board is seeking bids for the sale of one Feed Grinder and two Blending Machines. Items may be seen Monday through Friday 8 am to Noon. Call the Town Clerk 845-626-7384. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer (12/6/02)

LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE TO BIDDERS The Town Board of the Town of Rochester will receive sealed bids on the following until 10:00 am on December 23, 2002 at the Office of the Town Clerk of the Town of Rochester, 50 Scenic Road, Accord, NY 12404: Removal of metal shed located next to salt shed located behind the community center at 15 GLF Road, Accord, NY 12404, including removal of all materials from site, and the filling and leveling of the existing foundation. No materials currently at site to be used in the filling and leveling of the foundation. Specifications available at the Town Clerks Office 845-626-7384. All bids must be accompanied by a non-collusive form. These forms also available from the Town Clerk. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/RMC (12/6/02)

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Board is offering for sale to the highest bidder one 1984 GMC pick up truck w/plow - 8 cyl.sold as is. Information available at the Town Clerks Office PO Box 65 Accord, NY 12404 - (845) 626-7384. Bids to be received on or before 11/27/02 at 11:00 AM at the Town Clerks Office at which time they will be opened and read aloud. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/RMC/ TAX COLLECTOR (11/22/02)

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board is offering for sale to the highest bidder 4 NEW Steiner tires 21 x 1100 8" rim, foam filled. Information available at the Town Clerks Office PO Box 65 Accord, NY 12404 (845) 626-7384. Bids to be received on or before 11/27/02 at 11:30 AM at the Town Clerks Office at which time they will be opened and read aloud. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/RMC/ TAX COLLECTOR (11/22/02)

 

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FROM THE ENVIRONMENTAL NOTICE BULLETIN  (12/19/02)

Ulster County

Applicant: Daniel Shabanowitz

121 Clay Hill Rd

Kerhonkson, NY 12446-

Facility: Clay Hill Mine

Route 209

Wawarsing, NY 10000-

Application ID: 3-5156-00120/00003

Permit(s) Applied for: Article 23 Title 27 Mined Land Reclamation

Project is Located: Wawarsing, Ulster County

Project Description:

The applicant proposes to expand an existing clay mine currently affecting 9.5 acres on a total site of 158 +/- acres by an additional 4.2 acres. The

proposed reclamation of this additional acreage is as a building site for a retail shop. The location is northwest of Route 209 at the intersection

with Clay Hill Road.

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination: Project is an Unlisted Action and will not have a significant impact on the environment. A

Negative Declaration is on file. A coordinated review was performed.

SEQR Lead Agency: NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination: Cultural resource lists and map have been checked. No registered, eligible or inventoried

archaeological sites or historic structures were identified at the project location. No further review in accordance with SHPA is required.

Coastal Management: This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources

Act.

Opportunity for Public Comment: Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Dec 20 2002.

Contact: Lawrence G Biegel

NYSDEC Region 3 Headquarters

21 South Putt Corners Rd

New Paltz, NY 12561

(845)256-3054

lgbiegel@gw.dec.state.ny.us

 

 

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Town Board Highlights: November 2002  (11/19/02)

Town Board Restores Library Funding after Residents Appeal

Three Day, 30,000-Person Music Festival Planned for Accord

Town Budget Approved by Town Board

Accord Shelter Cited Again for Animal Maltreatment

Pumpkin Smashing at RVHS

Town Funding for Kerhonkson Pool Renovations

Legal Notices - Accord Fire District Elections

 

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Town Board Restores Library Funding after Residents Appeal

The Rochester Town Board voted to restore Ellenville and Stone Ridge funding to previous levels after initially proposing to cut funding by 50%. At a budget hearing on November 7, 2002 several residents asked the board to restore the $10,000 per library subsidy citing concerns that Rochester residents would lose their existing borrowing privileges. Approximately 33% of library users are residents of the Town of Rochester, which does not have a library of its own. The Board also voted to increase swimming pool and recreational funding.  (11/19/02)

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Three Day, 30,000-Person Music Festival Planned for Accord

The Town Board heard a presentation by Hothouse Presents representatives regarding a three-day camping music festival that they are planning for July or August 2003. The music festival, which would include concerts by "national acts" would take place on Route 209 at farmlands owned by the Kelders, Phil Davis and Norman Green. Residents questioned increased traffic congestion and how much money would be pumped into the local economy.  (11/19/02)

 

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Town Budget Approved by Town Board; Includes Tax Increase

Adding an increase of almost $116,000, or 4.24 percent, to the Accord Fire District's annual budget and borrowing to repair Sages Loop Road, total town spending comes to $2,902,614, with a $2,131,512 tax levy that is nearly 8 percent higher than the current year's amount.Also, taxpayers who live in the Accord, Kerhonkson and Berme Road lighting districts can expect to pay $1,400, $800 and $250, respectively, to fund district expenses in 2003.At a budget hearing Thursday, speakers urged the board to restore $10,000 to fund the Stone Ridge and Ellenville libraries after the board reduced the town's annual contribution from $20,000 to $10,000. They also asked for an additional $4,000 to increase a $10,000 appropriation to cover operating costs at the Kerhonkson Pool, and $5,000 to fund transportation for the town assessor while she conducts a property revaluation. Town Supervisor Harold Lipton initially sought to delay the budget vote. "We need to take into account public requests before voting on a final budget," he said. "There are a few things we really need to talk about, including the pool and library." But after an executive session to discuss personnel issues, the board voted to increase appropriations for the libraries and swimming pool, as well as include money for the assessor's transportation needs, as requested. Board members concluded the meeting by adopting the budget."Like the town of Wawarsing, the town of Rochester plans to take ut a short bond anticipation note to cover the costs of renovating the Kerhonkson Pool," Lipton said.The adopted general fund budget totals $1,293,616, which is offset by revenues amounting to $495,950 and an surplus fund balance of $126,152. General fund taxes will amount to $671,514. Highway fund appropriations of $1,200,771 will be offset by $149,000 in revenues and taxpayer contributions of $1,051,771.Annual salaries outlined in the 2003 spending plan include the town supervisor's salary at $19,000, four councilmen at $4,250 each, the town clerk at $31,000, the superintendent of highways at $36,163 and two town justices at $10,300 each. 

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Accord Shelter Cited Again for Animal Maltreatment

Accord – A white dog, her useless back legs bound in a two-wheel carriage, trundles across the brown hummocks of the driveway into the waiting arms of Patricia Aline Abezis.
Abezis is the Patty of Patty's Angel's Animal Rescue facility. The same Patty the dog nuzzles and licks is facing 116 counts of failing to provide proper food and water to the animals. That is one count of maltreatment for each of the 92 dogs, 24 cats and various rabbits and hens at the facility.
Sheriff's deputies and the Ulster County SPCA seized two cats and a dog on Wednesday.
Christine French, director of the Ulster SPCA, said the animals were emaciated and dehydrated. The cats also suffered from an upper respiratory infection. Conditions for the remaining animals at the rescue center had improved when officials checked Thursday, she said. Still, she hopes next week to gain custody of more of the animals at Patty's, she said.
Abezis, 48, Micheal Sickler, 52, and Tracey Ann Pennington, 44, are due Dec. 4 in Rochester Town Court to answer the misdemeanor charges.
Sickler, the rescue-center caretaker, dumped a wheelbarrow load of empty dog food bags yesterday into a Dumpster piled high with empty bags.
"There are no grounds to take more [animals]," he said yesterday. "The rest are in decent shape."
But, he admitted, the place had deteriorated before police arrived Wednesday. The previous caretaker was in jail. Sickler arrived only Tuesday. Windows were boarded up in the main house. The strong smell of dog feces hung in the air.
"It's a kennel," Sickler said.
Abezis hugged first one dog and then another. She does not kill any animals, even handicapped ones, unless they are terminally diseased. One dog has been with her 16 years. Over the years, she has adopted out more than 1,800 animals, she said.
She moved her operation to 412 Whitfield Road in the Town of Rochester in 1997. Two-and-a-half years later, cancer took her husband. She herself has had three operations in the past year. The rescue center sustains her. "This is my life," she said.
Does she have too many animals? "I could cut down," she said, "but it never stops."
(11/9/02 – TH Record) 
(11/19/02)

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Pumpkin Smashing at RVHS

The school's Technology Club demonstrated its award-winning pumpkin-chucking catapult - designed and built by the 16 students - on Wednesday near the high school football field.The pumpkin chucker squashed the competition last month, not only winning the annual Pumpkin Chucking Contest at Dutchess Community College, but breaking the contest's five-year record for farthest-thrown pumpkin by 177 feet. "The excitement of watching a pumpkin explode in the middle of a field is awesome," said Rondout Valley junior Kris Craig. Wednesday's demonstration drew about 30 students, teachers and parents to watch as the catapult, its pulleys anchored on a red Chevy Blazer, shot two 10-pound pumpkins over the football field. One of the flying pumpkins smacked into a tree about 300 feet away with enough force to break a limb with a satisfying crack, resulting in an explosive splatter that made the small crowd squeal with delight. The technology students began building the 16-foot wooden and metal catapult a month before the Oct. 27 competition, though some participating schools give themselves a year's head start. The teens worked on the catapult two days a week after school, though as the contest drew closer, they stayed after school every day, some days working until 9 p.m."As soon as I heard the idea, I was all for it," said Rondout Valley junior Andrew Levine, president of the Technology Club. "I immediately started drawing sketches and took the drawing boards home every weekend."Rondout Valley technology teacher and club adviser Craig Mooers said the students found the concept for the trebuchet on the Internet, but all drawings, designing, welding and construction were done by the club members. The catapult uses 650 pounds of cement counterweights and, instead of a traditional swinging pendulum design, the weights drop straight down, taking full advantage of gravitational force. Dutchess Community College, Jefferson Community College and five high schools - including Red Hook, Spackenkill, Arlington and Wappingers - all participated in the Oct. 27 competition at DCC. The Rondout Valley club also participated in the contest last year, when Red Hook won the trophy and Rondout landed its pumpkins only 38 feet downfield. This year, the Rondout students shocked even themselves as their catapult chucked a 10-pound pumpkin 570 feet. "As soon as I saw it fly, I ran into the field and started jumping in the air," said Levine, who hopes to work as an engineer someday. "I was enthralled. It was so amazing." The club members already are planning their catapult project for next year's contest, working on bigger and better designs to shatter the competition yet again. "This is definitely something I can say I'm proud of," Levine said. "I'm honored to be a part of it." (Freeman 11/15/02)  (11/19/02)

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Kerhonkson Pool Expenses

Wawarsing Supervisor Richard Craft said Monday the engineering firm of Brinnier and Larios estimates it will cost $90,000 to repair the 50-year-old pool, which needs chlorinators, a new filtration system, pipe work, which would run under the concrete deck to the baby pool, a new deck, a new backwash system and main drain repairs. For years, Craft said, Wawarsing paid the lion's share of the operating costs at the pool, or nearly $30,000 annually, while Rochester paid about $7,000 of that expense, he said. "It is the contention of the town of Wawarsing that since more than half the kids that use the pool are from Rochester and Rondout Valley students, the town of Rochester should pay half the cost of the renovations," Craft said. "Unless we get half the cost from the town of Rochester, the town of Wawarsing will abandon the project and close the pool."Craft said Wawarsing is committed to paying its share of the renovations, as well as its share of the operating costs. But, in exchange, it expects the town of Rochester to agree to pay half the $1,500 cost of getting the estimate from the engineers, half the cost of maintaining the pool and half the cost of repairing the pool, he said. The engineers' estimate has been forwarded to Rochester Councilman Randy Hornbeck, liaison to Wawarsing's Town Board, Craft said. The Kerhonkson Pool is the responsibility of the both the towns of Rochester and Wawarsing because it's located on Kerhonkson Elementary School property, as well as being within the town of Wawarsing, and 65 percent of the patrons using the pool reside in Rochester.  Town highway equipment and services will be used wherever possible to reduce costs, but Craft said he wants this to be a joint effort with the town of Rochester. "The ball is in their court now and it's up to them how we proceed," Craft said. Freeman 11/5/02)  (11/19/02)

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ZBA Approves Airport Road Variance

At the November 12, 2002 Zoning Board of Appeals meeting, the ZBA voted to grant an Airport Road resident’s request for an area variance to construct a 28x30’ garage, despite protests from neighbors citing the potential negative impact on neighboring National Register of Historic Properties-listed homes and the Whitfield Cemetary. The variance was required as its proposed siting violated the Town’s standard property set-back requirement.  (11/19/02)

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Legal Notices

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the annual Fire Commissioners Election for the Accord Fire District will take place on December 10, 2002 between the hours of 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. at the Co. 1 & 2 fire houses, for the purpose of electing One (1) Commissioner for a five (5) year term commencing on January 1, 2003 and ending December 31, 2007. All duly registered residents of the Accord Fire District shall be eligible to vote. Candidates for the district office shall file their name in writing with the Secretary of the Fire District, Alexander Chalm PO BOX 613, Accord N.Y. 12404, no later than November 20, 2002. Alexander Chalm Fire District Secretary (11/14/02)  (11/19/02)

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Planning Board of the Town of Rochester will hold a continuation of public hearing on the 19th day of November 2002, commencing at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY, on Application by Sean Boyd for approval of subdivision now revised from 3 lots to four lots (3 lots and a fourth lot to be added to an adjacent parcel). Property is located on right-of-way, known as Fawn Lane, off Queens Highway, Accord, NY, Tax Map #60.003-03-26.110. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Planning Board and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. Should this meeting be cancelled, the public hearing will be held by the Planning Board at a workshop meeting on November 26, 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. (11/7/02)  (11/19/02)

 

Help Wanted

ATTENTANT (sic) -P/T, for Rochester Town Transfer Station. Per diem. Ideal for retiree. Call (845)6263043 . Freeman 11/7/02  (11/19/02)

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Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor:

The tragic auto accident which took the lives of three young people fills me with great sadness. I am not saying that Samsonville Road was somehow responsible for this loss of life but yet I do feel that the

local roads could be made safer. During my seven years of residence in the Town of Rochester, I pleaded with Highway Supervisor Wayne Kelder to consider painting white shoulder lines on these dark roads. I have been blessed with perfect vision and I have often struggled to keep sight of the shoulders. Can you imagine how difficult it is for people with less than perfect vision, or for seniors who have vision issues? I always brought up the safety question. Add to the dark roads, an element of bad weather, and you have an increased chance of disaster. Mr. Kelder always responded in the same way by saying that, " if the Town of Rochester paints shoulder lines on Queens Highway, then we would have to paint lines on other roads, such as Mettacahonts". I was stunned that budgetary considerations were considered more important than safety for our taxpayers. Mr. Kelder told me he was against the speed limit being raised from 35mph to 40mph on Queens Highway but yet, on another occasion when he responded to my letter requesting white shoulder lines, he stated that if "everyone keeps to the posted speed limit signs, there should be no problems". Contradictions, no?

You are on your own...go vote for new blood!!!

Roman Iwasiwka  (11/19/02)

 

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Absentee Ballot Applications Available OnLine (10/10/02)

Absentee ballot applications for the November 5, 2002 election are available on line at the Ulster County Board of Elections’ website at http://www.co.ulster.ny.us/elections/absenteeapp.pdf or by calling the BOE at 845-334-5470. Ballot applications should be mailed to the Ulster County Board of Elections at 284 Wall Street, Kingston, NY 12401. (10/22/02)

 

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Town Board Highlights

October 3, 2002: Councilman Carl Edwards resigned and replaced by Brian Drabkin; Barry Lane public road hearing scheduled for October 31; Bids due October 31 for motor fuels and heating oil supply; Kerhonkson Pool expenditures discussed; Budget public hearing on November 7, Illegal dumping on Mettacahonts Road. (10/22/02)

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Tesslers Trailer Park Expansion in the Works

According to a recent article in the Blue Stone Press Tesslers Trailer Park on Cherrytown Road has been sold to Michael Baum of Modena. Baum owns and operates Aloha Home Acres, a 280 unit trailer park in Modena, NY. According to the article Baum intends to expand the 66.5 acre lot from a 16 acre mobile home park to a 64 unit trailer park. His application is pending before the Town’s Planning Board, the DEC, and the Ulster County Health Department. The site has been the subject of numerous complaints and reports indicate that the trailer park’s water supply has been infected by e. coli and that residents have been instructed to boil their water The property abuts the Terwilliger-Smith Farm, recently listed on the New York State Register of Historical Places. (BSP 10/18/02)(10/22/02)

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Gambling Plan for Wawarsing?

At a recent meeting of the Noonday Club in Ellenville, Wawarsing Town Supervisor Richard Craft reportedly told the group that he was close to signing a deal with the Modoc Indians to establish a 2,500 room hotel and ""Las Vegas style" casino at the Nevele or HITS facilities in Wawarsing. The Modoc Indians are not a recognized New York nation. (10/22/02)

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Haunted Happenings

The Town of Rochester Youth Commission presents its 4th Annual Spooktacular at the Community Center Barn, Saturday, October 26 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Cost $2.00 children, $4.00 adults. Call 626-2115 for more information. (10/22/02)

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Kerhonkson Accord Training Center November Schedule-

CPR training- Nov. 13 & 20, First Aid- Nov. 23, Call 626-3023 for info (10/22/02)

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Legal Notices

 

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that pursuant to Section 103A of the General Municipal Law of the State of New York, the Town Clerk of the Town of Rochester will receive at the Town Clerks Office, Accord, NY until 10/31/02 at 11:00 a.m., at which time they will be opened, sealed bids for #2 fuel oil, gasoline, propane and diesel fuel. Detail specifications are available at the Town Clerks Office, PO Box 65, Accord, NY 12404 (845) 626-7384. Bids to be awarded after review by the Town Board. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/ REGISTERED MUNICIPAL CLERK (10/16/02) (10/22/02)

 

LEGAL NOTICE The Rondout Valley Central School District has conducted a district-wide fire inspection of its facilities on Thursday, August 26, 2002. Copies of all fire inspection results are available at the district office, located on Kyserike Road, Accord, New York. Anyone wishing to see the specific results of an inspection for an individual school facility may do so at their local fire department. For the Kerhonkson Elementary School you may visit the Kerhonkson Fire Department; for the high school and middle school you may visit the Accord Fire Department; for Marbletown Elementary School the Stone Ridge Fire Department; and for the Rosendale Elementary School the Cottekill Fire Department. Dr. Marilyn Pirkle, Superintendent of Schools Date: 10/10/02 (Freeman 10/16/02) (10/22/02)

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Changes in Town Board (10/10/02)

ACCORD - Town Planning Board Chairman Brian Drabkin has been appointed to the Town Board to complete Councilman Carl Edwards' term.

Edwards resigned on Tuesday. The Town Board voted unanimously on Thursday to give the seat to Drabkin.

Edwards, who was on the Town Board for seven years, cited health considerations in his resignation letter.

Drabkin, 59, of Berme Road, Alligerville, will serve on the Town Board until the term expires on Dec. 31, 2003. He would have to run in the November 2003 election if he wants to keep the seat for the following four years.

"I feel extremely honored and privileged to be filling Carl Edwards' shoes, and I will do the best I can for the taxpayers of this town," Drabkin said. He said he has admired Edwards since they both were interviewed by town Republicans seven years ago during a search for Town Board candidates.

Drabkin will continue to serve as Planning Board chairman until he is replaced or his term expires at the end of this year, said Councilman Randy Hornbeck.

A 13-year town of Rochester resident, Drabkin is a lumber wholesaler who owns Lewis Lumber Ltd., which he operates from his home.

"I have a great interest in the reforestation of the area and am a member of the American Chestnut Foundation," he said. "I have planted seedlings around my own home."

Drabkin also has studied accounting at the City University of New York and served as head of the Rochester Economic Development Committee and treasurer of the town Republican Club. He is the current treasurer of the Nylta Club, a lumber fraternity.

"I am a fiscal conservative who feels taxpayers in the town are burdened," he said. "I want to see they get the best value for their tax dollar." (Freeman 10/6/02)

 

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Kerhonkson Pool in Need of $100,000 Repairs (10/10/02)

ACCORD - The Rochester Town Board will borrow money if necessary to repair the Kerhonkson Pool and ensure its opening next June, town Supervisor Harold Lipton told a contingent of residents from the towns of Rochester and Wawarsing.

"You can be assured that this board will do whatever is possible to ensure the pool is taken care of," Lipton told the group at last week's Town Board meeting. "I know how important it is for the children to have it, but we need to know how much it will cost."

Residents of both towns came out to the board meeting to urge board members to open lines of communication with the town of Wawarsing to work out the financial support needed to secure the future of the pool.

"We want the board to meet with (Wawarsing Supervisor Richard) Craft to come up with a plan to take care of the Kerhonkson Pool," said Eva Edwards, president of the Kerhonkson Youth Commission and director of the Kerhonkson Barracudas swim team.

Built nearly 50 years ago, and patched over the past several years, the pool is in need of a major renovation that could cost upward of $120,000, depending upon engineering reports and repair estimates that are expected by Nov. 1, Edwards said.

Needed repairs include chlorinators; a new filtration system; pipe work that would run under the concrete deck to the baby pool; a new deck; new backwash system and main drain repairs, Edwards said. Engineers from Brinnier and Larios have said repairs could cost the two towns as little as $65,000 or as much as $120,000, she said.

The Kerhonkson Pool, which is on the grounds of Kerhonkson Elementary School, is the responsibility of both the towns of Rochester and Wawarsing. While the pool itself is in the town of Wawarsing, 65 percent of its patrons live in the town of Rochester.

Edwards said residents fear that not enough money will be set aside in the towns' budgets for needed repairs, since the budgets would be finalized before bids are returned on the project. (Freeman 10/7/02)

 

 

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Accord Fire District Length of Service Plan Adopted (10/10/02)

By a vote of 106-37 voters in the Accord Fire District referendum on September 18 approved the implementation of a length of service pension plan. The plan, which will add approximately $70,000 (25%) to the fire district’s annual budget. Volunteer firefighters who fulfill certain annual service requirements under a points plan, will be eligible to receive a monthly payment upon retirement equal to $15 for each year of service up to a maximum payment of $450 per month. Active firefighters will immediately receive up to five years of retroactive credit, provided they fulfilled the point service requirements in those years.

 

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School Tax Levy Increases by 11.2% (10/10/02)

KYSERIKE - The Rondout Valley Board of Education adopted a $24,981,156 tax levy this month, which will result in an increase of 11.2 percent from last year.

Under the new levy, up from the $22,459,861 raised through property taxes last year, the tax rate would rise for district taxpayers in Rochester, Rosendale, Marbletown and Wawarsing.

District officials said the new tax rates per $1,000 of assessed property value, along with last year's rates and the percentage change, will be as follows:

* Rochester: $28.87, up 11.5 percent from $25.88.

* Rosendale: $29.63, up 8.7 percent from $27.25.

* Wawarsing: $747.82, up 1.8 percent from $734.41.

* Marbletown: $25.93, up 7.8 percent from $24.05.

This year's $42.1 million budget, which was passed in June, represents a 6.15 percent increase in spending over last year's austerity budget of $39.6 million. According to a school board resolution passed earlier this year, the tax levy increase will not change because $225,000 of additional state aid will be used to offset the increased spending.

According to district officials, taxes can be paid on or before Oct. 2 without penalty. (Freeman 9/24/02)

 

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Low Income Housing in Kerhonkson (10/10/02)

ELLENVILLE - An angry group of Kerhonkson residents challenged Wawarsing Town Board members this week to allay their concerns about a proposed affordable housing project in the hamlet.

"What's going on?" asked Frank Green, a spokesman for the group, at Thursday's board meeting. "We've heard it's a done deal. Has anyone seen what these people have developed? Will they have access to Kerhonkson's water and sewer? Has there been an environmental impact statement? The people in Kerhonkson, the fire department and the businesses oppose it. We don't want it."

Supervisor Richard Craft said the town was initially approached by 3-D Construction Co. about its plan to build 32 one-, two- and three-bedroom units on a county-owned parcel, but the company later opted to purchase private property. Craft said the plan does not call for subsidized housing, but said rents would be based on tenants' incomes.

The neighboring town of Rochester was offered the opportunity to participate in a housing project, but wanted only senior housing, Craft said. He said the project would bring in $30,000 to $40,000 in taxes and water and sewer fees.

Craft said the developer's market surveys show a need for affordable housing in Kerhonkson.

One resident said she had tried to put four apartments in her house and was turned down because "the density isn't there" on her acre of property. "How can they be allowed to put 32 units on five acres if I can't put four apartments on one acre?" she asked.

Craft and town attorney William Collier told the group the proposal will have to be approved by the town Planning Board and there will be opportunities at public hearings to express concerns and ask questions. "We don't make those decisions," Craft said.

Residents attending the Town Board meeting said they feel the term "affordable housing" is just a nice name for low-income housing that they say would degrade their neighborhood.

"We're talking about housing for people who need it," said Craft.

Green was unsatisfied. "We don't have that in Kerhonkson, people sleeping under bridges," he said. "Everyone here has a house. We don't want it. Let them put it in Ellenville, like the rest of it."

In other business:

* Craft said all water mains, lines and wells in the Napanoch Water District are connected, and the area has been re-seeded. "We're waiting for pumps to be installed, then we'll clean out the system and get the required certificates from the health department," he said.

Craft said he expects residents to be able to hook up to the system by late November.

* The Town Board awarded the contract to build a 30-by-36-foot building at the town transfer station to Grays Woodworks for $19,402.

* The board approved a $2,250 settlement with Tersia Easterly, who invested her own money in improvements in the renovated Napanoch School building when she expected to operate a day care center on the premises.

* A meeting was set for 5 p.m. Sept. 26 with town planners and attorneys to discuss the feasibility of upgrading the town's Comprehensive Plan.

 

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DEC Investigating Illegal Dumping (10/10/02)

If you saw the illegal burial of building debris or other materials at the former "Moonie Camp" on Mettacahonts Road, please contact the investigating officer: Marion Hoffman, State Environmental Conservation Police Officer, Division of Law Enforcement, Division 3, 21 South Putt Corners Road, New Paltz, NY 12561, Tel: 845-331-0899 or 845-256-3013

 

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Smart Bells / Yoga Class (10/10/02)

Monday nights, 6:30-8:00 pm, Stone Ridge Center for the Arts, Cost: $10, Instructor: Paul Widerman, info: 626-7710 or Paul@Thinkfit.com. Also upcoming: Smart Bells Instructor Certification Program, Nov 8-10 at the Mohonk Mountain House Weekend inlcudes: Smart Bells Instruction: Paul Widerman, Guest Speaker: Will Guild, Command Master Chief, Navy SEALS,

Live Painting Performance: Nancy Ostrovsky (Saturday night Nov. 9; open to non particpants of Smart Bells Certification, $20) www.THINKFIT.com, Paul Widerman, 845-626-7710

 

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Legal Notice - Fawn Lane/Queens Highway Subdivision (10/10/02)

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Planning Board of the Town of Rochester will hold public hearings on the 15th day of October 2002, commencing at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, N.Y., on Application by Sean Boyd for approval of subdivision to consist of three lots (2 lots and a third lot to be added to an adjacent parcel). Property located on right-of-way, known as Fawn Lane, off Queens Highway, Accord, NY, Tax Map #60.003-03-26.110. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Planning Board and Town Clerk, Accord, N.Y. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. Should this meeting be cancelled, the public hearing will be held by the Planning Board at a workshop meeting on October 22, 2002, at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. (10/3/02)

 

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Legal Notice - Airport Road Garage (10/10/02)

"NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 17th day of October 2002, at 7:00PM, at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on Application by Nicholas and Cheryl Lapp for Area Variance to build a garage 18 feet from the side boundary line. Property is located at 250 Airport Road, Accord, NY, on Tax Map 69.003-01-09 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. The above noted applicaiton and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicant must be present or represented at the hearing. (Freeman 10/4/02)

 

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Legal Notice - Highway Dept. Sale

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board is offering for sale to the highest bidder a variety of surplus equipment. Specifications available at the Town Clerks Office, PO Box 65, Accord, NY 12404. 845-626-7384. Bids to be received on or before 9/24/02 at 11:00 a.m. at the Town Clerks Office at which time they will be opened and read aloud. Equipment may be inspected by appointment Mon. through Fri., 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. by calling the Highway Superintendent 845-626-7221. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/ TAX COLLECTOR/RMC (Freeman 9/12/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Fire Department Tax Increase & Star Tax Exemption Error  (10/10/02)

Dear Editor:

I was sorry to read that the commissioners of the Accord Fire District decided not to allow people who are unable to vote in person at the special vote on September 18 to vote by absentee ballot. For those of us who have to work during the limited three hour voting time, this decision takes away our constitutional right to protection from taxation without representation. The Fire Dept.’s pension service plan might give good benefits to firefighters, but they’ve done a bad job about explaining what they are proposing, why it’s needed, what other local departments offer, what the true cost will be over the years, ad who will manage this pot of money.

I think the fire department does a great service for the town, but I can’t afford all the tax increases of the school district, the county and now the fire tax (25%+). I’d be more supportive if I knew exactly what was proposed and had a say in the vote.

D. Leiden

Accord

 

Greetings All,

I just noticed on my School tax bill my Star Exemption is noted as 28,500.00 Instead of 30,000. It is a small miscalculation but you can get form RP-556 from the New York State Board of Real Property Services and apply for a refund which we are doing. Or just "search" New York Star Program and get a link.

Dave Bell

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Town Board Highlights:

August 5, 2002: Funds requested for Senior Citizens’ Yoga program, Undersheriff Woods on municipal police assistance mutual aid program, Code Enforcement Officer reports Accord Speedway was in compliance with noise and racing time requirements on August 23, Discussions on Barry Road becoming a public road; Adult Entertainment Zone planned for two sections of Route 209; Discussion of Planning Board Member’s absences; Dangerous Curve and Accidents on Upper Whitfield Road; Lack of Enforcement of Town Law regarding burial of building materials on Mettacahonts Road (video footage was taken of burial in progress);

 

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Accord Fire District Service Benefit Plan; No Absentee Ballots will be Permitted

A pension plan is in the works for the volunteer firefighters in the Accord Fire District. The plan, which would increase the district’s budget by $69,900 [25%] annually, will be put up for public referendum on September 18 from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the firehouse in Accord. Prior to that a public informational hearing is planned for Thursday, September 12 at 7:00 pm at the firehouse.

The goal of the fire district in pursuing the plan, which is technically a service award pension program, is to make the idea of being a volunteer firefighter an attractive one. In recent years there has been a sharp decline in the number of volunteers. According to Lyle Roebuck, chairman of the Accord Board of Fire Commissioners, firefighters who have been in the district for many years can only get credit for five years of past service. When they reach retirement age they would become eligible for a monthly benefit based in their number of qualifying years of service to the fire department. (See: BSP 9/6/02)

[Editor’s note: The proposed plan is a defined benefit plan that would provide monthly benefits of $15.00 for each year of service up to a maximum of 30 years (or $450.00 per month)].

[According to the secretary of the Board of Fire Commissioners, there will not be a process for absentee ballots. You must vote in person during 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm on September 18th.]

 

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Town of Rochester Property Tax Roll Available on Internet

The Town of Rochester Property Tax Roll for 2001 and 2002 is available on the internet on www.accord-kerhonkson.com. The roll lists all properties in the Town of Rochester, by street address and/or section, block and lot number, along with the final assessed valuation. While the assessed valuation does reflect credits for STAR, Enhanced Star, Veterans, Agricultural and other exemptions, these exemptions are not specifically detailed on the property tax roll. You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the files. If you do not have Adobe Acrobat Reader, you can obtain a free copy online at http://www.adobe.com/acrofamily/familyprod/main.html

 

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Community Center Volunteers Wanted for Building Bee!

Town of Rochester residents, some of whom worked on the Barn Bee in the Town of Olive, have been coming to the Timber Frame/Stone Bake Oven Bee that started on Wed., Aug. 21, 5p.m., at the Rochester Community Center, Accord, NY. Interested folks of all ages are building a timber frame pavilion, to shelter a wood fired stone bake oven. The combined projects are hands on, using traditional tools, methods, and materials. The timbers have been very generously donated by Dave and Claudia Waruch, of Waruch Lumber, Kerhonkson, use of the tent is donated by Peter Landau of Ornamental Tree Service, in Accord, and more pledges of help are coming in daily. We need masonry material, red tin roofing, welding/fabricating work for the oven door, etc. Call us with your list of leftover cement blocks, and we will schedule a pickup. Potlucks and local music are part of the daily rhythm. Check the schedule, and come on down! The project will continue for approximately eight weeks at the Rochester Community Center, Accord, NY.

Wed.-Sat., 5p.m.-9p.m.

Sun. Noon-6p.m.

.626-2115- Community Center Info

657-2030- Project coordinator (Charlie Blumstein)

email: info@necklaceofprojects.org

http://www.necklaceofprojects.org/oven.html

 

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CRAFT VENDORS WANTED-Hudson Valley Draft Horse Fall Festival, Sept. 21 & 22. For info Kelders Farm, Kerhonkson, 845-626-7137. (freeman 9/4/02)

 

 

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ACCORD - Rochester Town Board members have unanimously agreed Thursday to allow Planning Board member Bill DeGraw to remain on the board.

The vote came after it was brought to the Town Board's attention last week that DeGraw had been absent from five consecutive meetings, according to town Supervisor Harold Lipton. 

Councilman Randy Hornbeck said last week that Planning Board Chairman Brian Drabkin told him DeGraw had exceeded the allowable number of absences this year without telephoning to let anyone know he would be detained. Drabkin requested that the Town Board remove DeGraw from the Planning Board.

A Planning Board member since 1996, DeGraw had been attending monthly meetings until recently when work conflicts prevented him from making several of the meetings.

"He is an excellent Planning Board member and we chose to let him stay on, because mostly he wants to stay on and mostly he's a good member to be there," Lipton said.

Also during Thursday's meeting, Lipton said the local senior citizen's group requested funding to continue offering a yoga class at the town's Community Center.

County funding for the program has been dropped three-quarters of the way through the year, Hornbeck said. The group did not have exact figures for the board Thursday, so Lipton said he would bring the question back to the board when those figures were available.

But Hornbeck said Friday that Youth Commission Director Carol Dennin told him it would cost the seniors somewhere close to $500 to finish out the year and $2,400 to continue the program next year.

"We need to take care of our seniors, and this is one way we can do this ... because they are the backbone of the community," Hornbeck said.

In other business, Ulster County Undersheriff George Wood talked to the board Thursday about a proposed mutual aid agreement between municipalities and local police agencies, according to Lipton.

Lipton said Wood told the board it was not necessary for it to adopt the proposed policy because the town was under the jurisdiction of state police and county sheriff's deputies. (Dawn Letus in Daily Freeman 9/9/02)

 

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LEGAL NOTICES

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Planning Board of the Town of Rochester will hold public hearings on the 17th day of September 2002, commencing at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, N.Y., on the following applications: Nicole Palmer, Special Use Permit for school on property owned by Aquarius Star Corp. and located on Lucas Turnpike, Accord, N.Y. Tax Map #77.001-2-42.100 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. Nelson DeGondea, subdivision of property located on right-of-way off Pond Road, private road, off Rocky Mountain Road, Tax Map 52.020-01-08 and in "A District of the Zoning Map The above noted applications and maps are open for inspection at the offices of the Planning Board and Town Clerk, Accord, N.Y. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other repesentative. Should this meeting be cancelled, the public hearing will be held by the Planning Board at a workshop meeting on September 24, 2002, at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, Accord, N.Y. (9/7/02)

 

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE, the Accord Fire District will hold a hearing at the Accord Fire House on Main Street, September 12, 2002 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. for the purpose of a mandatory referendum to establish a service award for the volunteer fire fighters of the Accord Fire District. Alexander Chalm District Secretary Accord Fire District

Kingston Freeman (8/28/02)

 

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 10th day of September, 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Road, Accord, N.Y., on application by Gilbert Aviles for Area Variance for front and side yard setbacks for shed on property located at 67 Lang Road, Accord, N.Y. Tax Map #68.002-01-78.110 and in a "A District of the Zoning Map. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, N.Y. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicant must be present or represented at the hearing. Kingston Freeman:845 (8/29/02)

 

RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT TAX NOTICE Notice is hereby given that the undersigned has received the 2002-03 school tax assessment roll together with the warrant for the collection of school taxes in the Rondout Valley Central School District, Accord, New York. Taxes will be collected from September 3, 2002 through November 4, 2002. Taxes for the Town of Marbletown, Rochester, Rosendale, and Wawarsing may be paid in person at Rondout Valley Central School District Office at 122 Kyserike Road Accord, NY or mailed to P.O. Box 9, Accord, NY 12404. If paid by your Escrow Account, please forward to your bank at once. Payments made from October 3, 2002 through November 5, 2002 must include an interest penalty as printed on the face of the bill. Taxes unpaid after November 5, 2ill be re-levied by the County Treasurer and added to the county tax bill in January. NOTICE: YOUR CANCELED CHECK IS YOUR RECEPIT. Make checks payable to: RVCS P.O. Box 9 Accord, NY 12404 Genevieve Tesseyman Tax Collector Rondout Valley Central School District Accord, NY 12404Kingston Freeman (8/30/02)

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Town Board Highlights:

July 22, 2002 Special Meeting: Local Law #1 of 2002 was unanimously passed providing all eligible town employees with a retirement incentive program as authorized by Chapter 69, Laws of 2002, effective July 22, 2002.

July 25, 2002 Audit/Workshop Meeting: Road Runner Service approved for Assessor’s Office. Memorial Run for Four Green Fields on August 31 on Mettacahonts Road in honor of members of their community who died on September 11, 2001. Resolution Supporting Closing of Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant passed . Youth Commission Grant Approval authorizing Toni Thompson to apply for grant funds on behalf of the Town. Time Warner Cable television to be installed on 1.8 miles of Airport Road. Authorized Supervisor Lipton to sign a grant project agreement for $3,500 for Parks and $6,500 for the Youth Commission. Supervisor Lipton authorized to contact Town Attorney regarding proposed re-zoning of Route 209. Supervisor Lipton to send a letter to Planning Board member Bill DeGraw citing his five consecutive absences. Authorized Highway Department reimbursement of legal bills incurred by Eric Eck Jr. Bills paid: General Fund $59,442.10; Highway Fund $132,314.86, Street Lighting: $237.32.

 

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Accord Fire District Service Plan Vote

The Accord Fire District will conduct a mandatory referendum on September 18, 2002 to seek approval for a retirement service plan for volunteer firefighters in the Accord Fire District. The annual cost of the plan is estimated to be $69,900. Firefighters who have five years of eligible service will automatically become fully vested in the plan, which will contribute $15.00 to each eligible volunteer firefighter for each year of service up to a maximum defined contribution of 30 years ($450.00 per month) for up to 48 firefighters. The benefits would be paid out The vote will be conducted at the Fire District Headquarters between the hours of 6:00pm and 9:00 pm. on September 18th [See related legal notice.] Information on voting by absentee ballot was not available from the Fire District at press time, however you may call Fire District Secretary Alexander Chalm at 626-3707 for further information.

Benefits under the plan would not be available until retirement age. A report prepared by the Office of the State Comptroller on the effectiveness of such plans, which are established under Article 11-A of New York State Consolidated Laws, General Municipal Law (http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?cl=48&a=27), is available online at : http://www.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/muni/perf/01ps2bod.htm. The proposed plan's annual cost, estimated to be $69,900, represents a 25% increase in the Fire District's annual budget and tax levy.

 

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ACCORD - Accord Fire District voters Sept. 18 will decide whether to spend nearly $70,000 to provide volunteer firefighters with a service award pension program.

A public informational meeting is planned at 7 p.m. Sept. 5 at the main fire district office to apprise voters of what the fire district is trying to do, and to answer their questions, said Lyle Roebuck, chairman of the Accord Board of Fire Commissioners.

"This program is an incentive, not unlike a pension plan," Roebuck said. "It encourages more new members to join, boosts morale and helps retain current members. It may be a slight increase in taxes, because the district has to allocate money to the initial cost of setting up the program, but we have not raised district taxes in at least six or seven years and we are talking about pennies when it comes to the average taxpayer."

Craig Sharman, government affairs representative for the National Volunteer Fire Council, said the Service Award Program is designed so contributions are made to a plan using either a defined benefit or a defined contribution formula for each active and qualifying volunteer firefighter.

When eligible volunteers reach entitlement age, they becomes eligible to receive a monthly benefit based on the number of years of qualifying service to the fire department, he said.

The fire district budget, currently at $274,000, would increase by $69,900, based on the 48 eligible volunteers in the district, Roebuck said.

"Nobody sees the amount of hours volunteers devote down here, keeping trucks ready to roll, or how dog-tired they get returning from a 2 a.m. call, knowing they have to get the trucks ready for another call before they can go home to bed," he said. "We are an invisible agency unless an emergency happens."

According to the law, Roebuck said, eligible volunteers have to meet federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration requirements to receive credit for service.

Roebuck, a 22-year veteran of the fire district, said he will not directly benefit from the pension plan.

Firefighters who have been involved in the district can only get up to five years credit for past service, once the plan is accepted, even if they have been with the district for 10 to 15 years, Roebuck said. Members would still have to put in an additional 15 years of service before qualifying for the pension, he said.

"Unfortunately, taxpayers have to bear the burden, but it's worth it," Roebuck said. "Our goal is basically to provide a service to benefit the community. ... As far as apples against apples, this is far less expensive than putting a paid agency in here." (Dawn Letus, Daily Freeman, August 25, 2002)

 

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Lawmakers OK new jail for county

Ulster County lawmakers approved building and bonding for the new county jail. Thursday's 25-5 vote was the final legislative approval needed to build the $71.8 million Ulster County Law Enforcement Center. Three people spoke prior to the vote during the public comment portion of the meeting. David Singer of Kingston outlined budget problems facing the county, both currently and in the near future, and said the county failed to explore alternatives to incarceration while basing the size of the jail on artificial projections.

The debate on the actual vote was taken up by both sides of the aisle. Democrats were divided in their vote, with five Democrats opposing and four supporting the project, while the Republicans voted unanimously in favor. Detractors reiterated their position that the county didn't do enough to explore other options, including renovating or adding on to the existing jail on Golden Hill, and incarceration alternatives, and said taxpayers would ultimately pay the price. The project is expected to begin in October of this year and take two years to complete. (Freeman 8-9-02)

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Legal Notice -Fire Department Vote

ACCORD FIRE DISTRICT LEGAL NOTICE OF SPECIAL ELECTION ON MANDATORY REFERENDUM REGARDING VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS DEFINED BENEFIT SERVICE AWARD PROGRAM PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Board of Fire Commissioners of the Accord, Fire District, Accord, New York, has adopted a Proposition and Resolution on July 17, 2002, subject to mandatory referendum, to establish, a defined benefit service award program for the volunteer firefighters of the Accord Fire District; by setting the estimated annual cost of such program to be up to sixty nine thousand nine hundred dollars and 00/100 ($69,900.00) dollars including administration expenses; by stating that up to 48 qualifying firefighters be eligible; by stating the projected monthly award to fifteen and 00/100 ($15.00) dollars per year for up to five years of past service; by stating the projected monthly award to be fifteen and 00/100 ($15.00) dollars per year of active service for up to thirty (30) years of service by eligible participants, with a maximum monthly benefit of four hundred fifty and 00/100 ($450.00) dollars per month; by stating that each eligible participant shall receive credit for up to five (5) qualified years of active fire fighting service prior to the establishment of the service award program; by stating that the eligible participants shall be fully vested with five (5) years of service; by stating that a pre-entitlement death benefit of $10,000 be available for insured members; by stating that payment of the benefit shall be in the form of a life annuity with 120 payments guaranteed and a regular defined award program payment to be authorized each year thereafter, which shall be in addition to any death benefits or disability benefits payable under the Volunteer Firefighters Benefits Law, and that a special election of the Accord Fire District will be held regarding the definded benefit service award program at the time and place set forth herein, and that all voters eligible to vote a the Annual Election are eligible to vote at the Special Election. SPECIAL ELECTION: DATE 9/18/02 POLLING HOURS: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. LOCATION: Accord Fire District Headquarters Accord Fire House 22 Main Street Accord,

New York 12404 Dated: August 15, 2002 Accord Fire District Board of Fire Commissioners Alexander Chalm, Secretary Kingston Freeman (8/19/02)

 

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Legal Notice – Zoning Board of Appeals

"NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 9t day of July 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on Application by Stephanie Pinto for front yard setback for porch property located at 485 Queens Highway, Accord, NY, located on Tax Map #68.003-02-21 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicant must be present or represented at the hearing. (Freeman 8/14/02)

 

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Legal Notice – Tax Roll

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, THAT THE UNDERSIGNED, THE ASSESSOR OF THE TOWN OF ROCHESTER COUNTY OF ULSTER, NEW YORK HAS COMPLETED THE ASSESSMENT ROLL FOR SAID TOWN, FOR THE YEAR 2002. A CERTIFIED COPY THEREOF HAS BEEN FILED IN THE OFFICE OF THE TOWN CLERK OF THE TOWN OF ROCHESTER ON THE 1ST DAY OF JULY 2002, FOR PUBLIC INSPECTION. DATED JULY 1ST DAY OF JULY, 2002 SHARON HORNBECK DOLE ASSESSOR (Freeman 8/14/02)

 

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Letters to the Editor: Kerhonkson

I just wanted to welcome and congratulate SwimKing for brightening their spot in Kerhonkson with fresh paint, a nice ramp, and flowers. Perhaps other businesses would follow their lead?

C Hillman, Kerhonkson

 

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Metro Recycling Update

The attorney for the Rochester Residents Association filed a brief of more than 100 pages and submitted petitions bearing the signatures of approximately 400 residents opposing the project on July 1st. The DEC has been reviewing the material with no word on any action or a date for any announcement. The Association’s attorneys have been in period contact with the DEC seeking updates.

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Accord Community Festival

The Annual Accord Community Festival will be held this weekend, August 10-11 at the Town Park adjacent to Town Hall. The event is sponsored by the Kerhonkson/Accord Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Rochester Youth Commision. Proceeds will benefit youth programs in the Town.

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Cat Center a Reality

The Zoning Board of Appeals approved a proposal by resident Diana Banks to establish a shelter for up to 40 cats in the building still known as the laundromat at the corner of Main Street and Tobacco Road in downtown Accord. A five year lease has been signed, and the shelter is expected to open in September. The approval is subject to review by the Ulster County Planning Board. (BSP 8/2/02)

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Illegal Dump on Mettacahonts Road

By: DAWN LETUS, Correspondent August 02, 2002

ACCORD - Rochester Town Board members Thursday agreed to investigate Mettacahonts Road property owners who were allegedly seen burying the remains of nearly 10 buildings in holes throughout the roughly 60-acre parcel.

Boodle Hole Road resident Steve Fornal asked the board to investigate after telling its members Rochester law strictly prohibits the dumping of any kind of waste or debris on private property. He also informed them he had contacted the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which was also investigating what happened to the burned main structure, various outbuildings and numerous large piles of debris that had been part of the former resort camp.

Supervisor Harold Lipton said he and the board would discuss the situation with town Code Enforcement Officer Douglas Dymond.

On June 19, Fornal said, there were piles of debris, consisting of cans, glass, metal, paper, rags, lumber, cinder blocks, piping and furniture, on Brent Brandenburg and Julie Cheadle's property. That day, a bulldozer and excavator arrived, followed the following day by the appearance of two garbage bins, he added.

Over the course of the weekend, Fornal said, large mounds of dirt were excavated from the site, and calls came in from concerned neighbors, saying the workers were burying refuse and waste materials in the holes.

Brandenburg and Cheadle's property is the former Camp Happy Lake, demolished about three years ago, Fornal said. Ten bungalows were knocked down, but the debris remained on the site until June 22, he said.

Councilman Randy Hornbeck said he and Lipton were called to the site that day, but all he saw were pieces of concrete and two or three garbage bins full of debris.

When asked if he thought the total debris on the site could have been contained in those trash bins, Hornbeck said no.

"I could see where a hole was dug and covered up, but I don't know what was in there. I saw concrete," Hornbeck said.

Regardless of what is in the hole, Fornal said, Section 118 of the Town Code states that burying any kind of debris or waste on private property is strictly prohibited. (Daily Freeman 8/2/02)

 

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Town Might Reassess Property Values

ACCORD - Officials from the state and Ulster County departments of real property spoke last week to members of the Rochester Town Board about the benefits of annual reassessments. At the request of town Assessor Sharon Hornbeck, Susan Tillson, deputy director of the county Real Property Office, and John Wolham, real property analyst from the state's Office of Real Property Services in Newburgh, explained the system of assessment that establishes the distribution of property taxes. Reassessments do not affect taxes, Wolham said, adding that budgets affect taxes. "When any municipality reassesses, what they are saying is that everyone should be paying their fair share - market value," he said.

Hornbeck, who is looking for Town Board support for a 2003 reassessment, said it has been five years since the fastest-growing town in the county hashad a revaluation. There are nearly 4,500 parcels that need to be looked at, she said.

"Rochester has been discovered," Hornbeck said. "I'd like to think it's because people have found what I've known all along: It's beautiful here. But it's certainly been pushed by (the events of) Sept. 11.

"We need to keep up with the times, keep up with the values and keep it equal," she added.

There is state aid to help pay for the reassessment, Wolham said. The state will fund up to $5 per parcel for one-time assessments and up to $5 per parcel for up to five years running for annual reassessment programs, he said.

Six towns in Ulster County, including Esopus, Ulster, New Paltz and Plattekill, are doing annual assessments, Tillson said. The town of Ulster has kept its assessments at 100 percent of market value for the past five years, she said.

To be able to do a reassessment for 2003, Hornbeck said she would need to start now by putting money in the budget to cover the work that needs to be done.

Though the board made no decisions on Thursday about the possibility of reassessing, Councilman Ronald Santosky's comments were well-received by the board when he said, "We are going to have to do this this year. There's no doubt about it." (Freeman 8/5/02)

 

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Change in Property Tax Equalization Rates

The NY State Office of Real Poperty Services announced that equalization rates for the towns of Marbletown, Rosendale and Rochester have changed dramatically, with a rise of approximately 20%. Other area towns such as Woodstock and Gardiner increased by 8% and 9%, respectively. The Towns of Marbletown and Rosendale are appealing the changes, while the Town of Rochester is not. Supervisor Lipton stated: "Based on the advice of our assessor, we have decided not to pursue it." Councilman Tom Ryan, however, appealed to other Town Board members to fight the rate change. "We have an obligation to keep the taxes down.. to fight the 23% rate increase." (BSP 8/2/02)

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Sales tax climbing to 8% in Ulster County

Shoppers in Ulster County will have to dig a little deeper starting in September. County lawmakers have approved raising the sales tax to 8 percent. In a 20-11 vote, the county Legislature authorized a quarter-point hike in the tax. Under the new rate, which will take effect Sept. 1, Ulster County will collect a 4 percent tax - up from the current 3.75 percent - and the state will continue to collect its 4 percent. (Freeman July 31, 2002)

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Letters to the Editor

 

Dear Editor:

As I read this article I wondered how many people know that not just 1 hole was created for the purpose of burying debris, but in fact at least 4 were used. 3 of the holes were created across the street. 2 were completely out of sight from the road and the other not more than 120ft of within another family's home.

Also there was no mention of roofing materials. Surely those buildings had roofs. Not to mention the light fixtures, pipes, toilets, sinks etc. There were a number of buildings across the street from the property mentioned in your article. Where do you think they went ?.

Sad.

 

Dear Sirs:

I wondered if you have any information regarding the change in use at Peg Leg Bates Country Club? Last year new pylons and gates were installed at the entrance. This summer, nearly every weekend, has

brought loud amplified music which goes on for hours on end. This past

Sunday, the music started at 2PM and was still going on at 9pm. A month ago, there was a huge traffic jam on Rocky Mountain Road, as cars waited to be let into the site. Those of us who live beyond, were unable to reach our houses since there was no attempt to control the traffic except at the entrance. What is going on? Is there a permit issued for these "concerts". It does not appear to be music for the overnight guests since most of the traffic arrives just before the music starts and leaves when it concludes. As a neighbor and long time resident of the area, I would like to know what can be done to limit the hours and the decibel level of the music.

Thanks,

Local Resident

 

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Dear Editor: 

Regarding Metro Rock Crushing. The Town turned it's back on the people? No surprise there as it has consistently abandoned the taxpayers well-being for the seven years that I lived in Accord. I am positive that this Town Government has ignored citizen's concerns for decades. Vote these people OUT!!! Take control of your own destinies!!! Why leave your fate in the hands of idiots? You, the taxpayer will get screwed. You, the taxpayer will pay for the repair of the roads that Metro will destroy while they drive their diesel spewing behemoths to Profitville, USA...laughing all the way to the bank. You, the taxpayer and your children will suffer from the adverse effects of ALL the associated pollution that these guys will produce.

The DEC? Totally useless!!! Someone must be held accountable for this mess. My suggestion is that you get together as a group, but I mean really get together, throw your dollars into a bank account, find the best aggressive lawyer you can find and sue the pants off everybody that will affect your quality of life, your health, and your property values. This means you sue the Town of Rochester for ignoring you as usual, sue the DEC for ignoring your very real concerns and anybody else that means to harm you!!! 

 

Don't forget to use the press / media. Stories are free. Bad publicity is quite effective.

 

Good Luck to you all,

Roman Iwasiwka

(former resident)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rochester Calls for Indian Point Nuke Shutdown
Fire at Camp Ravtov
Cat Shelter Planned for Main Street Accord
Zoning Board of Appeals Ruling on Airport Road Racetrack
Legal Notices 
Letters to the Editor
Announcements

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Rochester Calls for Indian Point Nuke Shutdown
The Town of Rochester has joined a growing number of communities in the region calling for the immediate shutdown of the Indian Point Nuclear power plant in Westchester County. Supervisor Harold Lipton cast the deciding vote in the town board's 3-2 vote on July 25th in favor of the resolution, which cited the threats of terrorism, death and injury to the people of the greater New York metropolitan area as the primary reasons why the plant, along the Hudson River in Buchanan, should be closed. Councilmen Tom Ryan and Randy Hornbeck also voted yes. In other business, the board voted to allow Toni Sindone-Thompson, a trustee of the new Rochester Community Center, to represent the town in applying for a $25,000 state grant through the Main Street New York Downtown Development Incentive program. Money from the matching grant would help convert an old loading dock at the rear of the community center into a 52'x70' outdoor pavilion and lighted performance stage. (Freeman 7/27/02)

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Fire at Camp Ravtov
Accord fire fighters responded to a fire at Camp Ravtov a camp used in the summer by a Hasidic community located at 350 Cherrytown Road in Kerhonkson. Deputy Chief Ed Miller of the Accord Fire District said the fire began at approximately 4:19 am and was put out by 10:30 am. Miller said that the building that burned was large and had an old kitchen area that was used for baking. He said the building, which was also used for storage, was unoccupied at the time. By the time fire personnel arrived at the scene, the building was completely ablace, Miller said. He said the building burned completely and the fire caused some minor heat damage to surrounding buildings. Those buildings were evacuated and the residents moved to another part of the camp. There were no injuries. Miller said the cause of the fire is unknown. The Ulster County Arson Task Force and the Ulster County Sheriff's Office are investigating. Accord firefighters were assisted by tankers from teh Kerhonkson, Napanoch, Ellenville, Stone Ridge, High Falls, Kripplebush, and Olive fire departments. There were approximately 70 firefighters at the scene. The camp had been the subject of complaints from neighbors in the past. (Freeman 7/14/02)

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Cat Shelter Planned for Main Street Accord
Town resident Diana Banks goes before the Town of Rochester ZBA in a specail meeting at town hall on July 23rd. He plan is to rent and renovate the former Accord Laundromat and Bargain Bin at the corner of Main Street and Tobacco Road for the purpose of building a cat sheler. Banks will be funding the shelter with her own funds, if ZBA approval is received." For the past 16 years, she has run the highly successful and popular Diana's Fancy Flea Market.

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Zoning Board of Appeals Ruling on Airport Road Racetrack
ACCORD - The Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals Tuesday unanimously upheld town Code Enforcement Officer Douglas Dymond's ruling that a motorcycle racetrack on Airport Road is illegal under the town's zoning law. Resident Gregory Post appealed Dymond's ruling last April, maintaining that he does not conduct races nor does he collect money at the dirt bike track on his 6.16-acre property.

Dymond cited Post in late March and attempted to shut the track down after Post began cutting down trees, removing stumps and rocks and setting out hay bales to make it safer to ride dirt bikes and all-terrain vehicles on the property, which is adjacent to the town's waste transfer station. Post said he did not change the topography of the property, saying it was already sloped. The jumps, he said, are part of the natural lay of the land. A 50- to 60-foot buffer was left around the entire course. Post told town officials that he races his motorcycle in amateur races, but does not compete on his property. 
"For myself, I like racing - from lawnmowers to NASCAR - but our interpretation should address Mr. Dymond's decision," said Marijane Knudsen-Hunlock, the zoning board chairwoman. "Was his determination correctly based on the town code's definition of a racetrack?" The zoning code defines racetracks as "any ground area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-day tractor and truck pulls." "I think Doug Dymond's decision was the proper decision, even though there are no fees or prizes," said board member Stanley Hudson. "People in the neighborhood deserve the quiet in the neighborhood." "I sympathize with (Post) and his friends, because they cleared the property, which is what created the racetrack," said board member Brian Belile. If Post wants to have a racetrack on his property, he can come before the appropriate boards and apply for area variances and special use permits, which can be a long and difficult process, Knudsen-Hunlock said. At that time, neighbors' concerns can be addressed, she said. Until then, Knudsen-Hunlock said, a cease and desist order to prevent Post and his friends from riding on the property will be filed with the Town Clerk. Dymond will have to decide if the track has to be dismantled. (Freeman 7-10-02) 

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Legal Notice
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 6th day of August 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on Application by Doreen Day-Warringer for Area Variance for side yard setback for garage. Property in question is located at 260 High Meadow Drive, private road off Maple Lane, Kerhonkson, NY, Tax Map #76.002-04-4.2 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicant must be present or represented at the hearing. Kingston Freeman 7/24/02

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Letters to the Editor - Metro Recycling

June 26, 2002

Maria E. Villa
Administrative Law Judge
Office of Hearings and Mediation Services
625 Broadway, 1st Floor
Albany, New York 12233

Dear Maria E. Villa:

I am writing concerning the application Metro Recycling and Crushing, Inc. proposing to increase the existing permit performance from crushing 150ton of stone to 400 ton per hour. I understand that the DEC has issued a "Negative Declaration", saying the project will not have a "significant Impact" on the environment. 
As a homeowner, living across the street of the location I have some very strong concerns regarding this application. I feel there will be significant impact on our lives, the folks living on Rock Mountain Estates and the lives other surrounding neighbors from Boodle Hole Road and Roberts Drive.
The neighborhood I reside with my family in consists of 11 single-family homes. There are approximately 20 children ranging in age 1 to 18 years of age. The tone of the environment in which we all co-exist is a quiet, friendly atmosphere. Often times you will find 8-10 children playing wiffleball in the cul-de-sac, a group of adults walking the street together chatting, while getting a little exercise, folks gardening, families outside working around there yards. We love our peaceful, safe, and clean surroundings. 
I purchased my home in August 1999. I bought my land, and built a modest home from a builder. The builder had purchased the land from the previous owner of Rock Mountain Farms. I understand that I should have been given "Disclosure" about the Quarry. What I was given was misinformation. "The quarry is closed and not operational". I am not looking to you for justification of this, but mention it only because for the past 3 years my family has been living under a false assumption that this neighborhood we have grown to love would continue to provide the quality of life we have enjoyed.
I have difficulty believing that the DEC has found that the project will not have a significant impact on the environment. The air we breath will contain dust and particles generated from the mass crushing permitted to operate 7:00am - 5:30pm daily Monday through Friday. The noise associated with the project will be unbearable. Both these issues will effect people's health. As a person who suffers from migraine headaches, I have an even greater concern. There are folks that suffer from allergies, and also asthma. These conditions will only worsen with the project. The equipment the company will be using for their operation will require the use of diesel fuel. All the residents in the surrounding area rely on water from either wells or natural springs located at the base of this quarry. What will we do when our water is contaminated? The trucks used to transport the materials processed from the mine will be traveling on Queens Hwy. Unlike its name this road is not a highway, but a "country road". This road serves the residents that reside both on Queens Hwy, and the residential street surrounding it. The road serves as a main route for the Rondout school buses, with several pick-up and drop-off stops on Queen's Hwy.
During the public hearing held on June 19, 2002 Mark Servidone, President of Metro Recycling & Crushing Inc., spoke to the residents. Mr. Servidone stated that his company is a small family operation and that he wants to be our friend. I have no interest in becoming friends with someone that has motivation to adversely change the lives of close to 100 families. Interestingly enough, I did find out that Mr. Servidone is affiliated with Servidone Inc., also known as ASI, a very large construction corporation. This company is not a small operation. They have been involved in some of NY States bigger construction jobs. Servidone Inc. has been doing work for the NY State and NJ State Department of Transportation. This company has the financial resources that are not available to the middle class families fighting to hold on to their environment.
Our elected town officials have walked away from the people in this matter. The fact that the mine is there and the history surrounding the conception has its questions. There is no turning back from that, but please do not allow things to move further, and disrupt our lives and the lives of many families.
I am asking that you along with the DEC reconsider this permit. I understand that there is an existing permit, and the company is looking to seek a more elaborate version of what already exists. If the residents of the area have no choice but to have this mine in operation, please do not allow for the situation to be any more a hardship on the people who make this area there home. 

Sincerely,
Kathleen Baker

CC: Governor George Pataki
Assemblyman Kevin Cahill
Senator John Bonacic



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Dear Editor,

Your piece on the D.E.C. hearing in Rochester to permit rock crushing on Queens Highway really failed to do the issue justice. It was a remarkable event in recent Rochester history. There were many more in attendance than the article estimated. Every seat was taken; people were standing on both sides and in the back of the room. People were standing outside the door trying to listen. Unfortunately, Supervisor Lipton only managed to show up after the meeting was underway and listened outside for just a little while.

There were many speakers opposed to the permit. Only one, other than a representative of the mining company, spoke in support. There was considerable discussion of the very serious danger posed by running 18-wheelers loaded with crushed stone down Queens Highway, a winding rural road with limited visibility, many curves, and changes in grade. Your article only alluded to traffic concerns.

There was also a lot of discussion about the economic impact to the town. From what I heard, the impact would be a major net loss, assuming the depreciation of adjacent properties, a significant increase in the cost of road maintenance, and a very minor contribution to town revenue from the mine itself. Moreover, this does not begin to address the cost of liabilities for health and safety issues that would be borne by the
residents of the town, or the need for residents not directly affected by property devaluation to pick up more of the burden of the town. 

Other points missing from your article were concerns expressed over degraded air quality caused by the rock crushing equipment and heavy trucking, fears for the safety of the aquifer, which is not far below the mine floor, and worry over the stability of toxic waste buried on the property. The issue of airborne particulate matter from crushed rocks did not come up, but is another hazard that has the potential to affect our air quality in the valley.

Perhaps most remarkable for Rochester, the meeting was not politicized. There were residents of the town of all affiliations and no affiliation, some familiar activists, and others who were making possibly the first
public statements of their lives. We spoke clearly of our frustration and fears. And we spoke with one voice. 

If, as family spokesperson Mark Servitude stated, Metro wants to be a good neighbor, the neighborly thing to do would be to deed the property to the Town of Rochester and leave. We don't want large scale mining and rock crushing in our residential neighborhoods. We don't want Metro Recycling in Rochester.

Philip Rose
Accord

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Announcements

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Eastern Correctional Facility - Memorabilia Sought
The Eastern New York Correctional Facility continues to work on restoration of the 1902 O&W Railway Station on prison grounds in Napanoch. The facility is making steady progress toward its goal of opening the station as a small museum, which will be open to the public once renovations are completed. Photos, postcards and/or memorabilia (that will help convey the life and times from the days of the station's operation) are being solicited to display in the museum for future visitors. Those interested in contributing items (good quality copies are also welcomed) may contact the project coordinator, Jeff Rubin at 657-4700.

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Sunday Jazz at the Colony
The SAINTS OF SWING
Featuring Miss Rene Bailey
August 4 8 pm 'til 11 pm
COLONY CAFÉ 22 Rock City Road, Woodstock, NY 845-679-5342 $10 at the Door

 

 

 

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Town Board Notes – June 27th

The Town Board interviewed a candidate for the Planning Board in executive session. The Board voted to reschedule the July meeting to July 11th and to conduct a public hearing regarding a town law relating to retirement incentives. The Board voted to require the Town Clerk to issue receipts for checks collected for the transfer station. No action was taken regarding a request for a donation to Congregation Israel in honor of Country Treasurer Lew Kirschner. The following bills were paid: General Fund:$77,956.44; Highway Fund: $175,088.54; Lighting: $243.31; Capital Expenditures: $19,396.30

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Metro Recycling Update

More than 130 people attended the June 19th public hearing regarding Metro Recycling & Crushing’s planned reactivation of a now-dormant mine on Queens Highway in Accord. The hearing was sponsored by the NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation. Most of the attendees were against the project and eleven of the twelve speakers asked the DEC not to grant the permit required by Metro to operate. The Rochester Residents Association’s attorney, Denise Fitzpatrick of Poughkeepsie, outlined residents’ legal, technical and procedural objections and asked for an issues conference and an adjudicatory hearing. The chairman of the Town of Rochester Environmental Commission also spoke out against the proposal. The hearing was attended by town officials, including the supervisor, two councilmen and the Planning Board chair, none of whom addressed the meeting. During the public comment period, which ended on July 1, more than 400 petitions were collected, and a related survey reported that more than 99% of respondents opposed the reactivation and expansion of the mine. The next step is a ruling from the hearing officer about an issues conference in which legal and technical matters will be discussed by Metro’s representatives and opposing counsel and their respective expert witnesses (including a hydrogeologist and sound engineers).

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Illegal Dumping on Mettacahonts Road

Several neighboring residents witnessed the illegal burying of demolished buildings from the former "Moonie Camp" on Mettacahonts Road during the weekend of June 22, 2002. Excavators dug a large hole on the northeastern corner of the property and buried the remains of buildings that had been demolished several years ago after a fire and left on the property. Metal was carried off in large dumpsters and recycled. Under town law, such private landfills are prohibited. Councilman Hornbeck, Supervisor Lipton, and the town Code Enforcement Officer visited the site; the NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation is investigating the matter.

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Corn Season Delayed

Heavier than usual rainfall and a couple of frosty nights have gotten the area’s corn season off to a shaky start for some local farms. According to Dan Schoonmaker of Saunderskill Farms in Accord, his first field to yield corn will be down as much as 60%, due mostly to the frost that hit just after the field was planted. That cold, plus the generally cooler than normal temperature and wetter than usual April, killed many of the seeds and left soil in less than optimal growing condition. (BSP 7/5/02)

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Snapple Distributor Leaves Accord

Snapple Beverage Group has purchased the (local) distribution rights for Snapple beverages from Nest Fresh and owner Alan Levine. Effective July 1, the Snapple distributiorship will operate out of a new building in Newburgh. Nest Fresh Farms, formerly a chicken farm, became a Snapple distributorship in 1985, acording to President Joe Poli. The business, located on Mettacahonts Road in Accord, employed 70 people, mostly from the Accord/Kerhonkson area. "All of the employees were offered positions in Newburgh," said Poli. (BSP 7/5/02)

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Hearing to Focus on Retirement Incentives

The Rochester Town Board plans a public hearing on July 11 on a proposed local caw to opt into a state retirement incentive program. The 7:00 pm meeting is re-scheduled from July 4th. Town Supervisor Harold Lipton said one of the town’s highway department employees, Douglas Decker, plans to retire after 26 years of town service. Because the state does not offer early retirement incentives every year, Lipton said, under Chapter 69 of the Laws of 2002, which became effective May 20, the town has to adopt a local law every year the monetary incentives are offered to provide incentives to employees who will be retiring within the year. According to the website of the State Office of the Comptroller, the so-called Targeted Incentive Program provides an additional month of service credit for each year an employee has at retirement up to 36 months. The additional credit can be used toward an improved benefit, such as meeting the 30 year requirement to keep current benefit allotments. Members can retire with as little as ten years of service and as early as age 50 with substantial reductions. At age 55, Tier 2,3 and 4 members who have completed 25 or more years of service credit can retire without benefit reductions. Towns become eligible to opt into the program as of July 3, according to the state agency. Because the town has to match state funding for the program, Lipton said the Highway Department will not hire an employee to replace Decker for a period of six months to make up for its expenditures. The town also has one other employee who may be eligible for the retirement incentives before the end of the year, the supervisor said. (Freeman 6/30/02)

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Grants protect farmland in Ulster, Columbia

By: HALLIE ARNOLD, Freeman staff July 02, 2002

Awards of $16 million statewide through the Farmland Protection Program will preserve 5,000 acres of farmland in New York - 629 acres of which are in Ulster and Columbia counties. Gov. George Pataki announced Saturday that 19 municipalities across New York will receive grants to help protect farmland from encroaching development. The funds will be used by local governments to purchase development rights, also known as conservation easements. The program aims to help keep farms in farming

by purchasing development rights to the farmland, making up some of the difference between the value of the land as a farm and its potential value for development.

Purchasing the development rights means the land cannot, in perpetuity, be used for anything other than farming or open space. In Ulster County, $744,375 will be used to assist in the preservation the Davenport and Misner/Palmatier farms in the town of Marbletown, protecting 380 acres of bottom-rich farmland.

Bruce Davenport, co-owner of the Davenport Farms with his brother Barth, said the funding will make it possible to consolidate land owned by other family members into a single parcel, which will then be protected from developers.

"Without it, it would be difficult, if not impossible, to purchase the land from my siblings," he said. The Davenports farm sweet corn and small vegetables on their land. Farming advocates have cautioned that Ulster County's farms are under considerable threat from development, in part due to low market prices and harsh weather, and in part due to the housing and construction boom Ulster County's experiencing as a result of growing population and a strong second-home market. A $261,000 grant to the town of Stuyvesant in Columbia County will protect a 249-acre dairy farm from development. The farm, owned by George Allen, will be taken over by the next generation of the Allen family. "That's an ideal situation for the purchase of development rights," explained Seth McKee, associate land preservation director for Scenic Hudson, which has partnered with the town to protect roughly 1,700 acres in and around Stuyvesant.

"By selling the development rights, they can realize some of the equity in the land without having to sell the property off." "It's not the silver bullet, it's one piece of the puzzle to keeping farms viable," he said.

According to McKee, there were over $75 million in applications statewide last year for the Farmland Protection Program. Because there were no appropriations made for the program last year, those applications sat until this year, when $16 million of the applications were approved by the state.

"It's a real commitment, in a real tough budget year," McKee said. "We commend that, and we're pleased the state has decided to fund these farms. But the fact is, a lot of those projects did not get funded, because the money hasn't been there. And the need is great." (Freeman 7/2/02)

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Legal Notice – Planning Board

"NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Planning Board of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 16th day of July, 2002, commencing at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY, on the following applications: Diana Banks for Special Use Permit for cat shelter on property owned by Waltraut Cadigan and located on Tow Path Road, Accord, NY, on Tax Map #77.009-01-24 and in the `HD District of the Zoning Map. Randy Hornbeck, Jr. for Special Use Permit for self-storage facility on property located on Route 209, Accord, NY, on Tax Map #69.003-03-1.113 and in a `B District of the Zoning Map. The above noted applications and maps are open for inspection at the offices of the Planning Board and Town Clerk, Accord, NY Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. Should this meeting be cancelled, the public hearing will be held by the Planning Board at a workshop meeting on July 23, 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. Kingston Freeman (7/2/02)

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Legal Notice – Public Hearing on Public Law

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town Board of the Town of Rochester has scheduled a public hearing to be held on July 11, 2002 at 7:00 p.m. to consider a local law electing a retirement incentive program as authorized by Chapter 69, Laws of 2002 for the eligible employees. The Town Board Meeting will immediately follow. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/ TAX COLLECTOR/ RMC Kingston Freeman (6/29/02)

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Legal Notice- Formation of LLC

Notice of Formation of WELLINGTON GEORGE PROPERTIES, LLC a domestic Limited Liability Company (LLC). Articles of Organization filed with Secretary of State of NY on 5/10/02. NY office location: ULSTER County. Secy. of State is designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. Secy of State shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC served upon him/her to C/O WILLIAM G. SIDORIAK & FRANK WELLINGTON DUNN, 3 DUNN FARM RD., KERHON KSON, NY 12446. Latest date to dissolve: 5/1/2032. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity.

6/30/02)

 

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Letters to the Editor:

 

In Accord, it looks like a small group of "special" people and businesses get preferential treatment while ordinary folks like you and me are ignored. I guess that since a lot of us kept quiet so long about what’s going on in our town, we are seen as "passive morons" who don’t really care or want to know what is going on in our town.

Well, lots of citizens, to judge from the number of people at the meeting about Metro Mining, do care and want to know a lot more about how this town is being run

We all have lots of questions, which just don’t seem to get answered. Why didn’t our elected officials protect us from the Metro Mining and Stone Crushing Operation? They could have stopped it in its tracks. But, like "spineless worms," they passed Metro on to the DEC, another group of "spineless worms," protected by the Albany bureaucracy.

A lot of us also want to know why our elected officials "break their backs," at the expense of its own citizens, to "protect" other illegal businesses in Accord, just like a former town supervisor secretly "Broke his back" to recodify " the zoning rules for Metro Mining to help out a relative.

Metro Mining may be the right operation but it is definitely in the wrong place. Even if you try to do all kinds of "grandfathering," times have changed and you just can’t have a business like this in a residential area any longer. It breaks all sorts of environmental laws, pollutes our air and will definitely promote damaging truck traffic on our roads.

I don’t know if you’ll laugh or not, but it’s funny that Metro has a lower assessment and pays lower taxes than most homeowners in Accord. Yet, Metro manages to depress property values and will, eventually, cause all of our taxes to go up; after all, whatever damage they may cause will be paid for by our taxes.

But, putting aside the economics for a minute, what about Metro’s affect on our lives, on the lives of your children and on our community? I bet a lot of people don’t know that Rochester has become known as "the dump of Ulster County," thanks to our politicians.

Who’s doing favors for what relative now? Is this what our elected officials are doing for Metro and a lot of other illegal businesses in Accord? Maybe it’s time for a reminder: Accord IS NOT the personal estate of the politicians elected to run the town and mandated to protect us, the citizens.

So, again. we got to ask: For whose benefit are our elected officials working? So far, it doesn’t seem to be the people of Accord.

John Eckhaus

 

 

 

 

 

                                   

                                            Metro Recycling's Rock Mountain Farms Mine from the air.

                                            Rock Mountain Estates Rd. is on the right.

 

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A Vocal Crowd Shows for Rock Crusher Hearing

Jim Abbot, Blue Stone Press, June 21, 2002

After five years of dormancy, a controversial mine on Queens Highway may be about to spring to life once more. The property, purchased from Rock Mountain Farms by Metro Recycling and Crushing, Inc. of Castleton, NY in July of 1998, sits adjacent to Rock Mountain Estates and the Sylvan Glade Development, in a residentially zoned neighborhood off Queens Highway.

Although Rock Mountain Farms was issued a gravel extraction permit in 1990 that continues to be valid, the site, which 20.5 acres, has not been continuously used since 1997.

Metro also has a valid permit to operate a portable crushing and screening machine with the capacity of crushing less than 150 tons per hour and has sporadically been crushing and carting rocks.

Metro is now proposing to install new equipment that will almost triple the capacity, up to 400 tons per hour. They also propose to install a secondary crusher as well as a 1,011 horsepower generator and conveyor equipment. To be able to install this equipment, Metro must obtain a new Air pollution Control Permit from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) who was declared the lead regulatory agency after the Town of Rochester Town Board declined.

Although a new permit was issued in 2000, a new one must be obtained because the new crusher is larger. A Negative Declaration notices was issued by SEQU (State Environmental Quality Review) in 2000 stating that the proposed project would not have a significant impact on the environment.

A legislative public hearing was held at the Accord Firehouse on June 19th to give the public a chance to comment on Metro’s application. At that hearing a crowd of almot 150 concerned citizens came to make their opinions heard to an assembled group of DEC officials and Judge Maria Villa. Many blamed the Town of Rochester Town Board for the situation, feeling if they had taken the leading agency role, they would have had more say in what happened to the property.

"You make me very apprehensive!" said a vocal and infuriated Paul Reich, referring to the DEC. "Our town fathers have a history of screwing our residents. That they would not become lead agency boggles the mind!" He went on to say that "People think that just because something was there before that it confers on them some king of privilege...if a mine existed before in Times Square, are they going to start digging?"

A newsletter, mailed to Rochester addresses by the Rochester Residents Association, a local citizens’ watchdog group, covered various concerns regarding issues like noise, effect on the water tables, air pollution, traffic and the effect on property values. The newsletter asked for a survey to be filled out, which they claim to have collected 200 of.

According to Metro and the DEC, noise levels at the site will be 93.2 decibels at 50 feet from the source. A DEC publication states that "a sound level of 60-70 decibels...creates a condition of signficant noise effect, with undisturbed speech at three feet ending at a level of 60-70 decibels." It also states that the measurement for ambient sound, such as heard in nature on a normal country day, is 45 decibels, and that an increase of more than 20 decibels over ambient ranges from "very objectionable to intolerable."

According to the Residents Association, Metro’s project calls for levels at one quarter mile from the source to be 66 decibels, or an increase of 21 decibels. Metro has stated in a respo0nse to the DEC’s report issued on August 8, 2000 that the nearest residence would only experience a noise level of 52 decibels.

Stephen Lincoln of the Sylvan Glade development recalled that as a mine worker for 40 years, he has almost no hearing left, and that the public was being misinformed. "You’ve been told there will be one larger piece of equipment," he said. "There won’t be one larger piece of eqipment, there will be many larger pieces of equipment." Water contamination was also a concern. At the hearing, Otto Frey, president of Sylvan Glade Water Company, expressed that he had previously experienced high levels of nitrates in his well water. Frey was now rorried that diesel fuel would pollute area ground water as a result of this project going through.

Amid the naysayers was one citizen who felt that Metro should proceed. Jack Pagliaroni, who said that he build all but three of the houses in the Sylvan Glade development, said that the public was on the wrong track. "People, it’s going to happen. This hearing is only to stop a larger piece of machinery. The permit for mining has already been issued," he said. "You might as well let them use the bigger machine and finish faster, or you can let them keep going with the smaller crusher and be here 20 years."

Mark Servitude of Metro was the last to speak. "I can’t be bound by prior promises... we are not a huge corporation. We are a family owned and operated business," he said. "I would like to be a good neighbor, hot an enemy." The time period for written comment extends until July 1, 2001. (BSP 6/21/02)

 

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Dawn Letus, Correspondent

June 24, 2002

ACCORD -- Many Rochester residents at a hearing last week expressed anger and frustration over the Town Board’s decision to allow the state Department of Environmental Conservation to become the lead agency in a review of Metro Recycling and Crushing’s application for a modification of an existing crushing permit. But the spokesman for the state agency says it would have battled the town for lead agency status had the town done otherwise.

Currently, Metro has a permit to operate a portable crusher with a capacity of 150 tons per hour. The company would like to install a 400-ton-per-hour crusher at its Queens Highway site.

At a public hearing at the Accord Firehouse, Steve Fornal, a Boodle Hole Road resident, said, "The good people of the town of Rochester are gathered here tonight to express their concerns as well as lament the complete breakdown of legal safeguards in place to protect their health, safety and welfare, for our local officials and state Department of Environmental Conservation have abandoned us."

"The New York state Department of Environmental Conservation has conducted itself with arrogance and complete uncaring as to profound impacts on residents of this community, turning a blind eye and deaf ear to the many complaints brought to its attention over a span of seven years, from 1995 to 2002. In addition, our local government has completely dropped the ball in regards to its sacred obligation to safeguard its citizenry," he said.

Fornal told state Department of Environmental Conservation Administrative Law Judge Maria Villa the state Mined Land Reclamation Law, which limits local involvement to four simple elements - ingress, egress, routing of truck traffic, and enforcement of reclamation conditions - stands in direct contradiction to home rule. He also implored her, with her decision, to send a message to the state Legislature that it should revisit the law.

However, Villa said unless asked to at a later date, she will not be making a decision on the permit application, she was merely there Wednesday to preside over the hearing, take public comment and protect the record.

The actual decision on the permit will be made by the Department of Environmental Conservation.

Town Planning Board Chairman Brian Drabkin said the town could have requested lead agency in the permitting process, but chose not to because it has no expertise in dealing with the change in a piece of equipment in a permitted mine that produces over 1,000 tons of gravel per year.

Robert Martin, state Department of Environmental Conservation Mined Land Reclamation specialist said overseeing and permitting mining operations comes under the state's purview. Zoning is a town matter, he said.

"We would have contested the decision if the town had chosen to retain lead agency," Martin said.

According to the Mined Land Reclamation Act, effective Sept. 1, 1991, local control of matters dealing with the operation and processes of mining and mined land reclamation was superseded by the state.

The town can enact and enforce zoning laws as well as determine permissible uses within zoning districts; however, where mining is designated a permissible use in a zoning district and allowed by special permit, conditions placed on those permits are limited.

Zali Win, president of the Rochester Residents Association, said Thursday, "Rob Martin is correct in stating that the (state Department of Environmental Conservation) has the authority to regulate all mining activity in line with the permission of the municipality. The town, however, has the right to prohibit mining through zoning and the granting and/or revocation of special use permits, thereby having the ability to prevent any mining activity.

"A good comparison would be that the town has the right to determine if mining is permitted while the (state agency) has the ability to regulate the mining activity once the town has agreed that it is permissible within the municipality," he added.

 

Crusher plan worries residents

By Dawn Letus, Correspondent June 19, 2002

ACCORD - A significant turnout of Rochester town residents is expected tonight at a public hearing on Metro Recycling and Crushing's application for a permit to install a 400-ton-per-hour rock crusher at its Queens Highway site, according to the chairman of a local group opposed to the move.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation, the lead agency in the permitting process, will begin hearing public comment at 7 p.m. at the Accord Firehouse.

Currently, Metro has a permit to operate portable crushing and screening equipment with a capacity of less than 150 tons per hour. Zali Win, president of the Rochester Residents Association, said, "So far, people opposed to the project have been slow in organizing. I do not know if the DEC is aware of the extent and scope of the opposition." Win cited local water contamination, truck traffic and noise as being among

residents' concerns.

The Worley Subdivision, just south of the mine, is a residential neighborhood made up of nearly 40 homes on one-third-acre lots in one of the most densely populated areas in the town, Win said. Thirty-five of the subdivision's properties get their water from two wells fed by a spring that goes underground just past the mining site, he said. Those wells could be contaminated or rendered useless if Metro was issued a permit to

operate its crusher, he said.

Each home has its own septic system, but the lots are too small to drill individual wells, so homeowners are dependent on the existing wells, Win said. The owner of the wells, Sylvan Glade Water Company of Accord, recently sent a letter to the state agency saying the source spring that feeds the sole-source

aquifer for the wells surfaces at the eastern foot of a 100-foot ridge that runs almost parallel to the Rochester Creek. Otto Frey, Sylvan's president, said the top of the ridge forms the eastern border of the existing Metro Recycling pit. Given the elevation of the point where the spring surfaces, he said he would estimate that it is very close to the elevation of the floor of the pit.

"The placement of any heavy equipment in the base of the pit would, therefore, jeopardize the source of the spring. Vibrations caused by a crusher could disturb the water source. Any fuels or other spills in the pit would also pose a significant threat of contamination of the Worley Subdivision's water supply,"

Frey wrote. According to Frey, this matter was discussed with the state agency before it issued a permit to the previous owner of the mine, Rock Mountain Farms, in 1994. At that time, he said, the state agency neither acknowledged the water company's letter, nor inspected the site.

Proposed truck traffic along Queens Highway is also a problem, Win said. Metro is proposing to pull out 1.4 million tons of gravel, enough to fill 75,000 20-ton dump trucks, he said. "They (Metro) only pay $3,000 per year in property taxes. We as taxpayers will have to maintain the roads and emergency services, and we will have to pay for it with dropping property values and unwanted noise," Win said. Residents have contacted sound and water experts for advice on the potential disruption in their quality of life if the crusher is installed, Win said. Engineers hired by residents do not agree with a potential noise and traffic impact report submitted to the state agency by Metro, he said. "Rochester residents have asked for an issues conference (with the state Department of Environmental Conservation) following the public hearing to discuss what we consider to be discrepancies in Metro's account," Win said. (6/19/02)

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Round 2 for Rondout budget battle

By Cynthia Werthamer, Freeman staff June 12, 2002

KYSERIKE - Emotions flared during a public hearing Tuesday for and against passage of the revised $42.1 million Rondout Valley school district budget, which goes to a vote in less than two weeks. "I came to this board meeting because I think the board has a misconception of people who vote no," said Susan Greaves of Marbletown, who added Tuesday's meeting was the first board session she'd ever attended. "I've voted no for the past several years, and I plan to vote no again next time." "We're letting the jazz band go, but keeping an administrator," said Stone Ridge resident Stephen Shirak. "That's unfortunate."

"Numerous community members are making passionate speeches about how unfortunate it would be if music programs were to be cut," Rondout Valley High School senior Karen Jones responded. "Defeating the budget would be a very unwise choice, and, luckily, voters still have control over that." "I can ill afford an increase in my tax bill, but the children come first," said Dan Young, another budget proponent.

The second-round budget proposal, which the board adopted at the same time as a $42.8 million budget defeated by voters last month, would raise the overall tax levy an estimated 11.2 percent, to $24.9 million.

Also discussed before a crowd of about 75 at the high school was a nonbinding proposition on the ballot to restore a total of $225,204 to the budget for fifth- and sixth-grade choral and instrumental music program, junior varsity and modified athletics, and a one-year nurse practitioner position.The proposition would be "tax-levy neutral," school district officials said, because the amount restored to the budget would be balanced by an increase in state aid. The board did not discuss what the tax levy increase would be if the revised budget passes but the advisory proposition fails. The proposition will not take effect if the budget fails.Assistant Superintendent of Finance Dennis Geisler said a $100,000 house would see estimated annual tax increases of $212 to $241, based on tax information available as of June 1. "I guarantee you that will change, because the equalization rate is still tentative, as are the tax rolls," he said.

If the district is forced to go to an austerity budget of $41 million, he said, average taxes are estimated to go up by about 7.8 percent, or about $150 on a $100,000 residence. The second-round budget would cut a total of 38 positions, including two more administrators than the three to have been cut in the budget that was defeated. District resident Casey Kurtti said she supported the budget but felt "ripped off" the community had not been told which administrator posts would be eliminated.

Superintendent Marilyn Pirkle said more information from the state was needed before determining which administrators would be dismissed, "but we have made a commitment to do this." The revote is June 24 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the high school. (6/12/02)

 

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Accord racetrack decision due in July

By DAWN LETUS, Correspondent June 12, 2002

ACCORD - The Rochester town Zoning Board of Appeals Tuesday agreed to wait until its July 9 meeting to decide the fate of a motocross course on Airport Road the town building inspector says is an illegal racetrack. The board has 62 days from a May 29 public hearing to make a decision on Gregory Post's appeal of the town building inspector's determination that a motocross course on Post's property constitutes an illegal racetrack under town zoning code.

Marijane Knutsen-Hunlock, chairwoman of the Zoning Board of Appeals, said, "Since we haven't had a chance to review 24 pages of minutes from the meeting, we will discuss it at our July 9 meeting. I would like to make a well-informed, educated decision since it appears either way it will wind up in litigation."

Post appealed the building inspector's interpretation in April after emphatically denying owning and operating a racetrack on his property. He has maintained throughout that he does not conduct races, nor does he collect money at the site.

The motocross course was a trail cleared in March to make it safer for friends riding on the property, Post has said. A 50- to 60-foot buffer was left around the entire course, which occupies about 6.16 acres adjacent to the town transfer station. The maximum number of dirt bikes on the track at any given time is six or seven, Post has said. And no one rides before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m., he has said.

Building Inspector Douglas Dymond has defended his interpretation. He has said if there are hay bales and jumps on that trail, it's assumed it's a racetrack under the town zoning code. The May hearing drew nearly 100 people and went on for about an hour and a half. Residents who agreed with Post argued the town's definition of a racetrack was vague. Many of them said a racetrack is a commercial enterprise, which should be accompanied by officials, rules, starters, emergency personnel and a start and finish line.

Those opposed to its continued operation said the town zoning code, which defines racetracks as "any ground area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-day tractor and truck pulls," is clear and should be enforced.

Daily Freeman 2002 (6/12/02)

 

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Ulster's GOP legislators favor hike in sales tax to level budget

By Paul Brooks

Times Herald-Record

pbrooks@th-record.com

Kingston Look out, Ulster County. Higher sales taxes may be coming to a store near you, thanks to the county Legislature. Faced with what county administrators project is a $22 million increase in

expenses, the Republican-controlled Legislature is turning toward a hike in the county's sales tax.

The increase in the county's share of Medicaid payments alone is projected at $4 million. The county is also $7.6 million short of the $19.6 million in surplus it budgeted in the current $260 million county budget. The proposal pushes the total sales tax in Ulster County to 8 percent from the current 7.75 percent.

The administration projects that the added one-quarter of a percentage point will funnel $4.7 million more into the county coffers next year. The city of Kingston would get another $828,213, while 20 towns in the county would split up $164,038. The Legislature was still debating the measure last night, and Republicans usually fall in line with what their leadership wants. "Nobody wants to raise taxes," said Majority Leader Richard Gerentine, "but we have a serious financial problem." He said the county is also looking at a motel and hotel tax, reviewing contracts with agencies like Cornell Cooperative Extension the Ulster County Development Corporation, and asking the county trash agency to cut its $3.3 million bill to the county. Those are only part of the plans under study to raise more money, Gerentine said.

Without the additional sales tax, the Legislature will have to raise county property taxes 70 percent, according to the administration. Democrats blasted the idea, calling it another in a string of last minute

"emergencies" trumped up by the Republicans. Republicans said the measure had to be approved last night in order to get it to the state Legislature before the latter adjourns June 20. "It is irresponsible to vote on something this important when it falls on your desk the same night," Democrat Gary Bischoff said.

"If we pass this tonight," said Alan Lomita, "we will never get rid of it." The measure still has to be made into law by the state Legislature and returned to the county for two more votes before it would go into effect in the fall. (6/18/02)

 

Ulster will ask state to OK tax increase

By Paul Brooks ,Times Herald-Record ,pbrooks@th-record.com

Kingston ? The county Legislature is one step closer to boosting the county sales tax to 8 percent, but taxpayers still face a property tax increase of more than 50 percent. The Legislature approved 22-9 a request to the state Legislature to raise the county's sales tax another one-quarter percent. That would make the total sales tax in Ulster 8 percent instead of 7.75 percent. The request was approved in a special meeting so the county could get the bill to the state Legislature before the Albany lawmakers end their session Thursday. If it is approved and the governor signs it ? which seems likely ? then Ulster County legislators will likely approve the increase next month. Shoppers would feel the bite in September, officials have said. The vote on the additional tax generally followed party lines. Eight Democrats voted against it; 22 Republicans voted for it. Among the Republicans, only Glenn Noonan, who is running for state Assembly, voted against the increase. Republican Richard Gerentine and Democrat Jeanette Provenzano were absent. The Republicans say the additional sales tax will bring in $4.6 million next year ? money desperately needed to offset a gaping $22 million hole in next year's budget. Administrators say Medicaid costs alone are going up $4 million. Then there is $3 million projected for employee pay increases and a $7.6 million shortfall in surplus designated to lower taxes in the current budget.

Without the additional sales tax or other adjustments, the county administration has said the county will have to raise property taxes a staggering 70 percent. But the added sales-tax revenues only cuts the projected increase to 55 percent. Republicans want to revive the county's hotel and motel tax, raise fees on

cell phones, property transfers and those levied by the Health Department. They want to freeze hiring in most cases and put off some construction projects. Department heads have been asked to "budget conservatively" for next year. But Ways and Means Committee Chairman Sue Cummings said republicans have not asked for an across-the-board spending cut. Nor will they delay or downsize the proposed, new county jail, the cost of which may hit $100 million, she said. "We have no idea what the tax increase will be," she said after the meeting last night (6/18/02).

 

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Legal Notice - Bid Solicitation

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester will receive sealed

bids on the following until July 9, 2002 at 11:00 a.m., at the Town Clerk's Office at which time they will be opened and real aloud. Provide a new oil fired furnace and adequate air conditioning to the Town owned Community Center. Electrical work to be included in bid. OR Install new air conditioner to present

oil fired furnace, including electrical wiring at the Town owned Community Center. Specifications available at the Town Clerk's Office- 845-626-7384. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/ TAX COLLECTOR/ RMC Kingston Freeman (6/18/02)

 

 

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Saints of Swing Performance

On Friday evening, June 28th, at 8pm, the "Saints of Swing", featuring Rene Bailey opens for the Joe Piscopo Show at the Broadway Theater at UPAC (Ulster Performing Arts Center). A great venue, sharing the stage with the great Comic/Singer from "Saturday Night Live". Joe will be doing a Frank Sinatra tribute with Big Band as well as his usual brand of comedy. Come hear us try to bring down the house! Siants of Swing: Rene Bailey - red hot swing, gospel, blues, and jazz vocals Dale DeMarco - sax/clarinet Ken Foy – trombone Mike Kull – piano Gene Randolph – drums Mike Rosler – trumpet David Winograd - tuba/bass info: UPAC Box Office phone: 845-339-6088 check us out at: www.SaintsOfSwing.com and the UPAC venue: www.upac.org

 

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Letters to the Editor – Metro Recycling

I am writing to express my opposition to the application by the now dormant Metro Recycling and Crushing mine to restart mining operations and to increase their operation from a 150 ton per hour rock crusher to a 400 ton per hour rock crusher. I recently toured the site off of Queens Highway and could not believe how big the operation is. It makes Greg Post's motorcycle trail look like a needle in a haystack. The valleys are huge and the

mountains of cobblestone are equally as high. The worst part is, that the mine goes right up against our fellow Accord resident's backyards, and could possibly damage their only supply of water. Also, I am also very concerned that there is no fence around the mine. There are many families with small children and pets that live right next to the mine. If someone were to wander in and fall down one of those valleys, the injury would be serious.

Our neighborhood is no place for a large scale commercial mining operation. Queens highway, unlike it's name, is no highway. It is a small country road in a residential neighborhood. The number of trucks that would be required to support this mine would endanger all that travel this road. This is a heavily and densely populated area of the Town of Rochester, however the owners of the mine are not part of that population. Unlike many of the smaller locally owned mining operations in our town, Metro will be pulling out as much in one day as one of the small locally owned mines pull out in a whole year.

Terry Blosser

Accord

 

Dear Editor:

Metro Recycling proposes to install a 400 ton/hour crusher and related gravel processing equipment at its facility on Queens Highway in Accord. The DEC is in the process of reviewing Metro’s permit application, which states that Metro plans to remove 1.4 million tons of gravel (75,000 truckloads) over the remaining 20-year life of the mine.

Metro’s proposal is objectionable on several fronts. (1) The noise will be unbearable for neighboring property owners. (2) The location is in the middle of Accord’s most densely populated neighborhood. (3) There are potential drinking water contamination and aquifer issues. (4) The lower part of Queens Highway is already an unsafe road – additional truck traffic will make the situation worse. The stopping distance of a 20 ton truck well exceeds the clear line of sight on the road. (5) Property values will decrease significantly, raising the tax burden on other residents. (6) The original permit to mine and crush gravel appears to have been granted based on false information, without complete disclosure. For example, it was never disclosed that the property had long been used as a dumping ground for biohazardous solid waste, which remains buried on the property.

Metro and its affiliated company, Servidone, have a tragic safety record, with at least two fatalities in the past few years. If the group can’t reasonably protect the safety of its own employees, how can we depend on them to keep our residents safe?

 

Z Win

Accord

 

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Town Board Highlights:  Click here to see unofficial town board minutes.

May 8th --At a special meeting, the Town Board discussed the new employee manual for town employees.

June 6th – The Town Board authorized the Supervisor to enter into an agreement for a resident to install a fence on his property abutting the rail trail. The Town Attorney was authorized to pursue legal action against Robert Lapp to require him to remove illegally stored logs from his property on Kyserike Road. The Code Enforcement Officer and Planning and Zoning Board recommended increasing the minimum lot size for certain areas of town from 1 to 2 acres. There was a review of bids for the air conditioning of the Community Center. There was no action on prohibiting parking across from the High School. The Town accepted a bid for surplus highway equipment and authorized the Highway Superintendent to spend funds pending reimbursement from the State. Residents initiated the process of giving Barry Road to the Town. The Town Board passed a resolution of support for a bill that would provide property tax credits for volunteer firefighters, paramedics and emergency service volunteers and authorized the Town Clerk and Deputy Town Clerk to attend the State meeting of Town Clerks.

May 30th Audit Meeting – The Town Board rescinded the April 25 resolution accepting a bid from Harry Jansen for surplus land on Sand Hill Road. The Board discussed (a) Youth Commission trip emergencies, Rail Trail maintenance, the Robert Lapp logyard situation, and the poor condition of the Town Courthouse.

Complete unofficial notes of these meetings are available on our website. Videotapes of these meetings are broadcast on Time Warner Cable at 7:00 pm on Mondays.

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Metro Recycling Hearing

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation will hold a legislative public hearing on Wednesday, June 19th at the Accord Fire House to hear public comments on Metro Recycling’s application to operate a 400 ton/hour crusher at its site on Queens Highway. The Rochester Residents Association is hosting a BBQ at the home of Mark and Maria Lybolt on Saturday June 15th from 4-6 pm (11 Rock Mountain Estates – all are welcome) to discuss the matter prior to the hearing. The Association distributed a report on the Metro proposal.  Click here to view the report online.

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Airport Road Motorcross

The Zoning Board of Appeals heard an appeal by Gregory Post on May 29th relating to the operation of a racetrack on his property on Airport Road. Local residents also voice their opinion. The ZBA has 62 days to announce a decision.

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School Budget Vote and Election Results

KYSERIKE - For the second consecutive year, voters in the Rondout Valley school district have rejected a proposed budget, but district Superintendent Marilyn Pirkle called the result "tentative" Tuesday night.

The $41.1 million was rejected, 1,457 to 1,258, including 100 absentee ballots, but 367 affidavit ballots were left to be counted today. Voters whose forms of identification were challenged by election inspectors had to vote by affidavit. In the contest for three seats on the school board, attorney Paul Gruner led balloting with 1,622 votes, followed by retiring teacher James Ayers with 1,205 and incumbent Maureen Sheehan with 1,093. Trailing were former trustee Kent Anderson with 1,069 votes, appointee Richard Lanzarone with 883 and newcomer Scott Magliola with 643.

"We had complaints from people who had to produce identification with an actual residential address," Pirkle said. "We have a process where they could fill out paper ballots with their name and address. Last year, this was an issue, and there were newspaper articles ... people knew to bring their tax papers or

license or something showing their actual residence. This year we put it on our district mailings and said it in many different places, but many people didn't seem to know it."

Pirkle said the affidavit ballots will be checked with the Ulster County Board of Elections today for confirmation that those who cast the votes are district residents. "This result tonight is tentative. We will have the final result tomorrow afternoon," Pirkle said Tuesday night.

Even so, Sheehan expressed disappointment at the apparent budget defeat. "This budget going down, especially with no one openly distributing oppositional material, is a real shame," she said. "People are saying they don't care about the kids."

The proposed budget had projected a 15.25 percent increase in the tax levy, to $25.8 million, and called for a 7.86 percent increase in spending over the current year's $39.6 million budget. The plan would have eliminated 28 full-time positions through layoffs and attrition.

The jobs cuts would have included teachers, three administrators, and other staff. Almost all extracurricular activities, including varsity and intramural sports and music, would have been maintained.

A backup plan adopted by the board would put to a vote a $42.1 million budget that would increase spending by 6.15 percent, increase the tax levy by 12.23 percent, and eliminate 39 staff positions. If that plan fails, a $41 million austerity plan, which would increase spending by 3.38 percent, raise the tax

levy 7.35 percent, and eliminate 54 positions and funding for extracurricular activities, would be implemented. Staff writer Paul Kirby contributed to this report. (Freeman 5/22/02)

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Music Program Cuts at Rondout

KYSERIKE - Tears welled up in the eyes of several Rondout Valley school board members Tuesday as parents, teachers, students and alumni implored trustees not to cut the district's music program. The Board of Education meeting had to be moved from the district office to the middle school cafeteria, where nearly 100 supporters of the district's award-winning music program told trustees it would hurt the program's foundation to eliminate fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade music education from the curriculum.

"After coming off a contingency budget last year, we want to build the budget to include everything you want in it," board President Nancy Taylor said. "But sometimes our expectations don't meet our financial expectations. ... When local support is not there, we have to look to state mandates to consider what to

keep in the budget. The state does not mandate a fourth-grade band." A proposed $42.8 million budget, which called for an estimated 15.2 percent hike in the tax levy, was defeated by voters last week. When the board adopted the initial spending plan, it also approved a second plan of $42.1 million, representing a 6.15 percent increase over the current budget, which would raise the tax levy by 12.2 percent.

Spending cuts in the second plan include eliminating the fifth- and sixth-grade band and chorus, consolidating music and art classes, and eliminating modified and junior varsity sports. The fourth-grade band program was eliminated in the first budget proposal.

"Cutting the fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade program is putting a nail directly in the coffin of the music program," said Tim Barcone, owner of Barcone's Music in Kingston. "Cut in the ninth- through 12th-grade, not the fourth through sixth, because, without a feeder system, you will not have a music program in a

few years." "Research shows music is a core program, an integral part of education, not an extracurricular activity," added Lynn Peck, a parent and Ulster County music educator. "Being part of band or chorus promotes self-esteem, creativity, discipline, and teamwork. It builds confidence and character."

Her husband, Gregory Peck, added, "Music is a language that all people speak. It cuts across all barriers of language, race and religion. ... Please, use any additional state aid to reinstate the fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade programs." Their two daughters followed with a rendition of "America the Beautiful" on woodwind instruments, and a friend finished the performance, playing "Taps" from the back of the room. (5/29/02)

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Budget Re-Vote on June 24

KYSERIKE - The Rondout Valley school board has settled on June 24 as the date for a second public vote on the 2002-03 budget, but trustees have yet to decide what that budget will be. A proposed $42.8 million budget that would have raised the tax levy an estimated 15.2 percent was defeated by district voters on May 21. When the board first adopted that plan, it also approved a backup plan of $42.1 million, carrying a

6.15 percent increase in spending and a 12.2 percent increase in the tax levy.

The second plan called for the elimination of the fifth- and sixth-grade band and chorus programs, as well as consolidating music and art classes and eliminating modified and junior varsity sports. The fourth-grade band program was eliminated in the budget proposal defeated by voters. But whether that plan will wind up on the June 24 ballot has yet to be decided.

A special board meeting at which budget option will be discussed is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at the school district office on Kyserike Road. "There are a lot of important issues out there, music being one of them, that people and the board feel strongly about," said board President Nancy Taylor. "I can't say what will be discussed, but a number of things are on the table."

The board will conduct a budget hearing at 6:30 p.m. June 11 in the high school auditorium, Taylor said. The budget vote will be from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. June 24 in the high school cafeteria. Nearly 100 people showed up at a board meeting last Tuesday to protest proposed cuts to the district's music program and plead with the board to use additional state aid to fund the continuation of early musical education.

"Every time something is cut, people get impassioned," Taylor said. "If we could avoid these cuts within the funds we have to work with, we would." Besides eliminating music programs and junior varsity sports, the smaller budget adopted by the board also calls for cutting 39 jobs through layoffs and attrition, including 18.6 teaching positions, five building and grounds positions and 4.5 clerical staff and computer support services positions.

Also under the plan, class sizes would be larger and buildings may not be available to community groups because the cleaning and custodial staff would be reassigned to handle an increased load. (6/2/02)

 

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Cross Lumber Sold

Williams Lumber of Rhinebeck has agreed to purchase Cross Lumber on Kyserike Road. New inventory has been added by the new owners, which are affiliated with ACE Hardware. Williams owns five other stores in Southern New York. Dan Johnson, the former owner who purchased the business from John Cross in 1997, will continue to work for Williams, as will many of the former employees. The U-Haul business will continue indefinitely (BSP 6/10/02)

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Faux Academy Awards a Success

The Kerhonkson/Accord Chamber of Commerce honored Jack and Alice Schoonmaker, Franklin and Janella Kelder and the late Rabbi Alice Stein at is fourth annual Faux Academy Awards dinner on June 1st. Approximately 180 people attended the event, which was held at the Twin Lakes Lodge in Hurley. Proceeds from the dinner will go towards next year’s Chamber of Commerce Scholarship.

 

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The Accord-Kerhonkson Garden Club

Founded in 1997, the Club is an informal group of local gardeners that include avid green-thumb types, occasional dabblers and all shades in between. We typically get together twice a year, spring and fall, at the home of one of our members. We exchange plants dug up from our gardens, trade tips and lore, share information, pool resources, do lots of socializing, schmoozing and muttering about deer. Our Spring 2002 meeting was held on Saturday, June 8th. New members are always welcome. For details call 212 885-3656 weekdays or 845 626-3857 weekends.

 

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Legal Notice – ZBA Hearing

``NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold public hearings on the 11th day of June 2002, at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on the following matters: 7:00 p.m., Applications by Michael & Gina Hetcher for Area Variance for side yard setback for garage on property located at 56 Granite Road, Accord, NY, on Tax Map #76.002-2-8.410 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. 7:15 p.m., Application by Sandy Krupp fo Area Variance for setbacks between buildings and proposed property line to be created in subdivision of 3 acre parcel with existing buildings into 2 lots. Property located at Rt. 209 and Queens Highway, Accord, NY, on Tax Map #76.002-2-6.2 and in a `B' District of the Zoning Map. The above noted applications and maps are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicants must be present or represented at the hearing. (5/31/02)

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Legal Notice – Planning Board

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Planning Board of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 18th day of June 2002, commencing at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY, on Application by Kristin Baracca for Special Use Permit for one horse on parcel less than 3.1 acres, located on Schwabbie Tnpk., Kerhonkson, NY, on Tax Map #67.002-01-56 and in a `A' District of the Zoning Map. The above noted application and map are open for inspection at the offices of the planning Board and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. Should this meeting be cancelled, the public hearing will be held by the Planning Board at a workshop meeting on June 25, 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall, Accord, NY.'' (6/7/02)

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Legal Notice – Bridge Closing

LEGAL NOTICE BRIDGE CLOSING County Bridge #151, Hayden Bridge located on Boice Mill Road crossing the Falls Mill Brook in the Town of Rochester will be closed to all traffic effective Wednesday June 12, 2002 to facilitate the replacement of the existing superstructure. Traffic may use Boice Mill Road northwest 1.06 miles to Dunn Farm Road, Dunn Farm Road northwest 0.32 miles to Krum Road, Krum Road esat 1.54 miles to Queens Highway, Queens Highway south 0.98 miles to NYS Rte 209, NYS Rte 209 west 0.35 miles to Boice Mill Road Kingston Freeman (6/3/02)

 

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School Budget Vote and School Board Election to be Held on Tuesday, May 21st. See article below.

 

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Airport Road Motocross Public Hearing Rescheduled

Due to an expected high turnout, the ZBA public hearing for Greg Post's property has been postponed to Wednesday May 29th at 7:00 pm at the Accord Fire House (the fire house was not available on the original date). At the town board meeting on May 2nd, the Town Board voted to request that two security personnel be present (after an indicent at the last hearing). A copy of the legal notice of the meeting appears below. 

 

               

                Gregory Post Racetrack

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Metro Recycling Public Hearing

A public hearing will be conducted by the Department of Environmental Conservation on June 19 to discuss Metro Recyling and Crushing's application to operate a 400 ton per hour crusher at the former Rock Mountain Farm mine on Queens Highway (between 300 Queens Highway and Rock Mountain Estates Drive.). A group of adjacent residents is continuing its protest of the project and is considering possible options. Metro was recently cited for negligence in an accident at its Phillipsport mine in which a worker was killed. A copy of the legal notice appears below.

 

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Hudson Valley Resort Casino Deal Appears Dead

A casino deal for the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson would hardly appear to be on the fast track to reality. A spokesman for the Blackfeet Nation of Montana, the tribe that had been investigating possibilities with the resort's management, was quoted in the Times Herald-Record last week as saying, "The whole deal is off." Hudson Valley Resort general manager Steven Gorse did not return calls [by the Blue Stone Press] seeking his opinion. The Blackfeet cited a desire to avoide competing with New York tribes as their reason for backing off, and they're probably wise. Governor Pataki has sent clear signals that the only tribes he wants to cut casino deals with are those with a legitimate claim on some New York real estate. (Blue Stone Press 5/17/02)

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Town Gives Log Yard Owner a Deadline

At the monthly Town Board meeting on May 7, the Rochester Town Board stated that they would give Robert Lapp 30 days to clean at least 25% of the wood off his property or face legal action. Lapp has been operating an illegal log storage yard at his property on Kyserike Road for several years. (Blue Stone Press 5/7/02) Unanswered questions have been raised about the legality of "partially" enforcing the law, and what actions the town would take if Lapp refused to comply. 

                           

                            Robert Lapp Illegal Logyard, Cross Lumber is at the upper right

 

 

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Called Off

Given the possibility of a permissive referendum petition drive that would invalidate the sale of surplus real estate owned by the Town adjacent to the town land fill on Airport Road, the sole bidder, Harry Jansen of High Falls, withdrew his $75,000 bid, and according to one source his 10% deposit was returned. The Town Board will vote to rescind the transaction at its next meeting.

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Rochester Residents Association Survey Results Available

The results of a survey conducted by the Rochester Residents Association in October 2001 regarding land use, development, and other conditions in town have been published. If you would like a copy of the report, please email: resident@accord-kerhonkson.com. The report has also been published in downloadable pdf format .

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School Budget Vote Hearings

KYSERIKE - Some people attending a public hearing on the proposed $42.8 million Rondout Valley school district budget Tuesday criticized salary and benefit increases, while others called for reinstatement of a nurse practitioner position slated to be cut. "Sometimes the least-cost budget is not always the best package for the students," said Wayne Kelder, a 17-year school board member and board president for 15 years in the 1970s and 1980s. "Since this is a proposed budget, you still have time to discuss this cut and reinstate this position of school nurse practitioner." As he concluded, "It is important that this position be reinstated now," the audience of about 75 broke into loud applause. The proposed budget is $3.11 million - or 7.86 percent - higher than the current contingency budget of $39.68 million. The overall tax levy would increase an estimated 15.25 percent, rising from the current $22.45 million to $25.88 million. Some in the audience Tuesday bemoaned the proposed cuts in staff while others, such as district resident Bob D'Angelo, complained that about $2 million of the $3 million budget increase consisted of employee salary and benefit increases. Under the plan, 28 full-time positions would be eliminated. Three are administrative jobs, including the $60,000 nurse practitioner position held by Lois Frazzetta, a 26-year district veteran. Dennis Geisler, assistant superintendent of finance, said state aid and other revenues are down since Sept. 11's attacks, and insurance premiums are way up: "The insurance market has literally skyrocketed. ... Even though we are now in an insurance consortium with other school districts, it is still up at least 17 percent. Workers' compensation alone was up 32 percent this year." A fund balance this year of $150,000 is projected at zero in the proposed budget. Added Eileen Camasso, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, "This year the supply budget was slashed, technical services were slashed, we cut $40,000 to $50,000 in staff development. We cut a number of areas behind the scenes. But it's like spending out your savings account. Those resources now are not there." James Economos, who sat on the budget advisory committee made up of board members, administrators and community members  urged passage of the budget: "This was part of a shared decision-making process. ... We used to have line items down to the last gallon of gas we use, and that's not what education is about." The vote on the budget and three school board seats is May 21 from 10 a.m. to 9 pm in the high school auditorium (5/15/02)

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Attention Potters!

The Hudson Valley Pottery Trail met with Emily Caigan and Karen yesterday at their meeting and as a result we met with Ulster County tourism today. Emily was a lightening bolt of energy . Ulster County Tourism has offered to devote a spread in the Ulster County tourism Guide to potters in Ulster County who would like to be open to tourists visiting their studios. This could be by appointment only or with open hours. The print run of this is 200,000. We need to locate any potters who are interested in this opportunity, they should contact us at 845 687 7256 or 845 687 7828 or 845 626 4932, before the end of July . The pottery trail will be expanding to 10 members welcoming Laura Wilensky, Henry Cavanagh and Zoya Geacintov. The new map will be available online at WWW.potterytrail.com Ulster County tourism will also offer online links on their websight as well as listings for the potterytrail.

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Kerhonkson/Accord First Aid Squad Classes

Next First Aid class- May 25 @ 9AM @ KAFAS CPR 5/28 & 6/4 @ 6:30 PM

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Legal Notice - Airport Road Motocross

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold a public hearing on the 29th day of May 2002, at 7:00 p.m., at the Accord Fire House Social Hall, on Main Street, Accord, NY, on Appeal by Gregory Post of determination by the Town's Code Enforcement Officer that use conducted on Appellant's property located on Airport Road, Accord, NY, Tax Map #69.003-02-38 and 39 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map, is a racetrack as defined in Section 107-2 of the Code of the Town of Rochester. The above noted Appeal and map are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearing may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The Appellant must be present or represented at the hearing. Kingston Freeman (5/17/02)

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Legislative Public Hearing - Metro Recycling

Legislative Public Hearing: In accordance with the provisions of 6 NYCRR Parts 617, 621, and 624, a legislative public statement hearing will be held to receive unsworn statements from the public on the application, on Wednesday, June 19, 2002 at 7:00 p.m. at the Rochester Fire House, 22 Main Street, Accord, New York, telephone number 845-626-3707. All persons, organizations, corporations or government agencies which may be affected by the proposed project are invited to attend the hearing and to submit oral or written comments. It is not necessary to file in advance to speak at the legislative hearing. Lengthy statements should be submitted in writing and summarized for oral presentation. Reasonable time limits may be set for each speaker to afford everyone an opportunity to be heard . Equal weight will be given to both oral and written statements. The hearing location is fully accessible to persons with a mobility impairment. Pursuant to the State Administrative Procedures Act (``SAPA``), interpreter services shall be made available to deaf persons, at no charge, upon written request to the Administrative Law Judge, at the address below, at least ten days prior to the hearing. Written Comments; In addition to, or in lieu of providing oral comments at the legislative hearing, all interested persons may submit written comments at the hearing or mail those comments so that they are postmarked prior to July 1, 2002. Address comments to Maria E. Villa, Administrative Law Judge, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, First FLoor, Albany, New York 12233-1550. As noted above, written comments will be given equal weight with oral comments made at the legislative hearing. Department Staff will determine if any oral or written comments raise potentially adjudicable issues; thus, further proceedings may be required. COMMENT PERIOD: The comment period for this application and revised draft permit ends on July 1, 2002. Statutory and Regulatory Provisions: Environmental Conservation Law Article 1 (``General Provisions``); Article 3, Title 3 (``General Functions``): Article 8 (``Environmental Quality Review``); Article 19 (``Air Pollution Control``); Article 23, Title 27 (``Mined Land Reclamation``); Article 70 (``Uniform Procedures``); 6 NYCRR Part 201-5 (``State Facility Permits``); Parts 420-426 (``Mined Land Reclamation``); Part 621 (``Uniform Procedures``); and Part 624 (``Permit Hearing Procedures``). Document Availability: Project information is available for review at the Department's Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, First Floor, Albany, New York 12233-1550 (telephone 518-402-9003) (contact Administrative Law Judge Maria Villa), and at the Department's Region 3 Headquarters at 21 South Putt Corners Road, New Paltz, New York 12561-1696, telephone number 845-256-3041 (contact Lawrence G. Biegel, Environmental Analyst I). Albany, New York May 8, 2002 Daniel E. Louis Chief Administrative Law Judge Kingston Freeman (5/14/02)

 

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Legal Notice - Sale of Surplus Equipment

LEGAL NOTICE: PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board is offering for sale to the highest bidder a variety of surplus equipment. Specifications available at the Town Clerk's Office, P.O. Box 65, Accord, NY 12404, 845-626-7384. Bids to be received on or before 5/30/02 at 11:00 a.m. at the Town Clerk's Office at which time they will be opened. Equipment may be inspected by appointment Mon. through Fri. 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. by calling the Highway Superintendent 845-626-7221. The Town Board has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/ TAX COLLECTOR (May 2002)

 

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Letters to the Editor

 

Dear R.R.V.,

Thank you for the mailing and the informative website. I have some comments on your survey if you don't mind. Why are logs ugly? Shapes, hues, species, logs died a noble death. Ever stop by a one man saw mill? Also, nothing can be created no home, no road and no community, without gravel or fill, from a local family's initiative. Mines are a town's collateral and an artist's supply. A town is a happy balance between newcomers, grandfather rights and presupposed needs. Ulster has aged nicely and provincial Rochester still offers holistic comfort with ode roads mirroring Vincent and Monet. It's in the atmosphere as well as the real estate. 100 cars in a yard are funny and weird, so what. Most of them are behind discolored discreet fences. Talk about art yard history. If a town thinks a trailer park ugly, help make it pretty, stop assuming bossy laws and stop with the lawyers already, protect all our assets, we're in it together. As if one could pray to a town. There's a suggestion that house sites on mountain roads should be 5-acreminimum. 5-acres is the size needed for a family to build a self-sufficient homestead and a minimum acreage serves to protect rural charm. Deigning farmland into green zones adds legitimacy to already poisoned fields that new farming can wash clean. There is so much property on this planet that if Americans provided track houses and supermarkets to the desiring amongst the world, there'd be less reason to immigrate and stress local development.

Bill Dukas, Kerhonkson

 

Dear Town of Rochester Residents:

What is the possibility of having all motorcycles on the course required to have extremely good mufflers?

Would that be a compromise everyone could live with?

Has anybody else suggested this?

Personally, I am not a motorcross person myself, and I don't live anywhere near the site, but I am all for people doing what they want, within reason, on their own property. Except for the noise, is it an okay location? Seems like the primary neighbor is the landfill which is a good thing...

Paul Widerman

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Town Board Meeting Highlights:

May 2, 2002

Robert Lapp Illegal Log Yard addressed by letter requesting legal compliance

Zoning Maps to be updated from 1969

Authorization of sale of surplus highway department equipment

Public discussion: Permissive Referendum for sale of Sand Hill Road surplus property

Kyserike Road student parking problem

Supervisor of Public Works: reduced title and additional hours

Board of Assessment Review appointment - Wes Cross

 

April 25, 2002

Videotaping Procedures passed

Sale of Sand Hill Road property, bid accepted

Robert Lapp Illegal Logyard discussion

Purchase of back hoe for transfer station

Health insurance benefits for animal control officer

Funds for Accord Fire Department

Memorial Day cemetary clean up

Chamber of commerce donation

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Airport Road Racetrack Public Hearing on May 14

The Zoning Board of Appeals will conduct a public hearing relating to Gregory Post’s appeal of a citation relating to the operation of an illegal racetrack on Airport Road, adjacent to the town transfer station. The meeting will begin at 7:00 pm. Due to an altercation at the last meeting on the subject, the Town Board has requested that the Sheriff’s office or other security be present. (5/7/02)

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New Referendum Seeks More Money from Rochester Taxpayers for Area Libraries

On Saturday, May 18, the Stone Ride and Ellenville Public Libraries will host a kickoff event to provide information about legislation that will be presented to Town of Rochester voters in November. The legislation is known a the "414 Referendum" and will allow taxpayers to have a direct vote on library funding.

The Town of Rochester, which does not have its own library, is served by the Ellenville and Stone Ridge Libraries, which contract yearly with the Town of Rochester for funding. The amount allocated by Rochester is considerably lower than the other funding bases and the upcoming legislation will address the need for more equitable allocation, thus ensuring the full continuation of full library services for Rochester residents.

The program will take place at the 11:00 am to 2:00 pm on May 18th. Stone Ridge author and illustrator Barbara Bash, Wurtsboro author Pat Panza, singer/songwriter Kurt Henry, and Stone Ridge author Laura Cunningham will be present. (BSP 5/3/02)(5/7/02)

 

Libraries seek $100,000 from town of Rochester residents

By Dawn Letus, Correspondent May 05, 2002

ACCORD - The Stone Ridge Library and Ellenville Public Library and Museum, attempting to make up a funding deficit from the town of Rochester, hope to put a proposition on the November ballot to tax town of Rochester residents $100,000 for library services. The libraries will co-host a public information forum on May 18 to provide residents with details about state legislation, known as the 414 Referendum, which allows taxpayers to have a direct vote on library funding.

Stone Ridge Library Director Jody Ford said because the town of Rochester does not have its own library, residents use either the Ellenville or Stone Ridge libraries for services ranging from checking out books to video rentals and computer resources. "Funding has not been nearly what it should have been," said Pam Stocking, the director of the Ellenville Public Library and Museum. "This is an attempt to rectify the situation." Stocking said both library boards have been considering how to handle funding inequities for nearly 10 years. But the need to address the problem became more pronounced after the Stone Ridge Library became a special tax district in August 2000, Ford said.

Currently, the town of Rochester, as part of a contract with the two libraries, provides $10,000 per year to each. That funding represents 1.5 percent of Ellenville's 2003 budget of $650,000, which was approved last month, and a 5.2 percent of Stone Ridge's $192,500 spending plan for 2002, the library directors said. Stone Ridge voters have yet to adopt a 2003 budget. Of a total of 2,651 registered borrowers at the Stone Ridge Library, 891, or about a third, are Rochester residents, Ford said. Likewise in Ellenville, Stocking said, Rochester residents make up about 17 percent, or 290, of Ellenville's 1,694 registered borrowers.

Both libraries are funded by tax districts. The majority of Stone Ridge Library's revenue, some $140,000, comes from taxpayers in the town of Marbletown through special district funding, Ford said. Ellenville's revenues of $600,000 come to the library through Ellenville school district taxes, Stocking said. The remaining $50,000 is allocated from a library reserve fund, she said. Under state legislation enacted in 1995, Ford said, libraries can ask residents to petition to bring the funding question to a public vote.

If the libraries convince at least 224 Rochester voters, representing at least 10 percent of the number who voted in the last gubernatorial election, to sign the petition, a proposition to raise $100,000 will be included on the November ballot, Ford said. The revenue, to be divided equally between the two libraries, would be raised through a town tax levy of 26.8 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value, costing the average taxpayer with a $100,000 home about $27 per year, Stocking said. Currently, Marbletown residents contribute $26 per capita per year to the Stone Ridge Library, while Rochester residents allocate only $4 per capita. "If the referendum was to pass, Rochester residents would be paying for 26 percent of our total budget. Marbletown residents, 52 percent, and the other 22 percent would come from state and county funding and fund-raisers," Ford said. Contributions from Ellenville school district residents and town of Marbletown residents would be reduced by the share received from Rochester residents, Ford said.

An informational kickoff party will be held at the Ellenville Public Library and Museum from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 18 to raise awareness about the issue, Ford said. Library directors and members of the 414 Committee will be on hand to answer questions about the referendum process and current library needs.

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Land Auction in Rochester Subject to Residents’ Approval

With questions of impropriety handing in the air, the Town of Rochester Town Board, at their monthly meeting of Thursday, April 25, voted to endorse a bid for a town-owned property which has been sitting unused for years. The property, which consists of two separate but adjoining parcels totaling 35 acres adjacent to the town’s transfer station on Airport Road in Accord, is vacant, but does contain wells which have been contaminated during the closure of the Town’s landfill in 1995. Those wells are still monitored by the town and will continued to be as a condition of the eventual sale. Possible contamination may have occurred during the closure of the landfill.

The possible impropriety was due tot he fact that the bidder for the property, Harry S. Jansen of High Falls, is a brother in law to Randall Hoornbeek, whose family has recently been in the news for a DEC wetlands infraction involving large parcels of land. The rumors were that Jansen was bidding for Hoornbeek, who steadfastly denies any interest in the property. Jansen’s reported bid was $75,000, 10% of which was is due by noon on Thursday, May 2, and will be non-refundable in the event he is unable to close on the property. The remaining $67,500 will be due at closing.

The entire transaction is subject to a permissive referendum, which by law gives town residents 30 days to petition the board to bring the bid approval to a public vote. The town clerk has ten days from the date of the bid opening to publish a written notice of resolution, to which residents may respond. If there is no petition, approval of the sale is assumed and the bid will be approved. As of press time (5/3/02), there is evidence that some residents will urge the Town Board to reconsider the sale of the land at the May 2 Town Board meeting. If there is a petition filed at that time, it has to consist of at least 5% of the number of total votes cast for governor in the last election (total 113 signatures necessary) and the signatures have to be registered votes in the town. (James Abbott, BSP 5/3/02)

 

Some Rochester residents object to town's property sale

By Dawn Letus, Correspondent May 03, 2002

ACCORD - Nearly 20 residents came out to a Rochester Town Board meeting Thursday, many to contest the $75,000 bid awarded to a High Falls resident on two parcels of town property located on Sandhill Road adjacent to the town transfer station. Former town supervisor Richard Terwilliger asked how the town came up with the price of the land, and said the Town Board needed to look to its future before selling property.

Town Supervisor Harold Lipton said the town took $67,000, the assessed value of the two parcels totaling 35 acres, and added $8,000 to come up with an even $75,000. At the April 4 Town Board meeting, the board voted to sell the two parcels, the lesser of which is 5 acres and contains wells the town continues to monitor since the landfill closure. Both parcels would be conveyed by one deed. An auction was held April 24, and the only bidder, Harry S. Jansen of Mohonk Road, High Falls, was awarded the bid at the town audit meeting April 25, subject to a permissive referendum. Jansen gave Sommer a check for $7,500 early Thursday to satisfy the 10 percent deposit required to hold the property. The remaining $67,500 is due at closing, which cannot be held before June 1. "I suggest you look at this to see if this is in the best interest of the town to sell this property, this way," Terwilliger said. The town of Rochester is growing, Terwilliger said. The property has value in mining, timber and future use possibilities, he said. The town should establish the property's highest and best use before considering selling it, he said. (Freeman 5/3/02)

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Property Bidder Withdraws Bid

ACCORD - A High Falls man who bid $75,000 for two parcels of Rochester town property on Sandhill Road last week withdrew his bid early Friday after residents contested the sale of the land at a Town Board meeting Thursday night. After consulting with the town attorney, Supervisor Harold Lipton said the board

will have to decide at a workshop meeting Wednesday whether to allow Jansen to rescind the bid.

Harry S. Jansen of Mohonk Road was awarded the bid at the town audit meeting last week, subject to a permissive referendum. Jansen gave the town clerk a check for $7,500 early Thursday to satisfy the 10 percent deposit required to hold the property. The remaining $67,500 was due at closing. Former town Supervisor Richard Terwilliger contested the sale, saying the town did not get enough money for the property since it did not consider the property's highest and best use before offering it for sale.

Lipton said the town took $67,000, the assessed value of the two parcels totaling 35 acres, and added $8,000 to come up with an even $75,000. The town of Rochester is growing, Terwilliger said. That property has value in mining, timber and future use possibilities, he said. (Freeman 5/6/02)

 

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School Board Elections and Budget Vote

The election to fill the seats whose terms have expires and the annual school district budget vote will take place on Tuesday, May 21. All voters will be required to show identification. If you are unable to vote in person, you may request an absentee ballot from the District Clerk at 845-687-2400.

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School Board Proposes Budget

KYSERIKE - The Rondout Valley school board on April 23rd adopted a proposed budget that would increase spending by nearly 8 percent and eliminate 28 jobs in 2002-03, but trustees wouldn't provide an estimate of its tax impact. The board also approved two backup plans, including an austerity budget that 

would hike spending by 3.38 percent. The proposal that the district's Budget Advisory Committee favored would increase the overall budget by 7.86 percent to $42,804,202, a hike of $3,118,000 from the current budget. That plan was adopted by the board in a 9-0 vote. Under the plan, 28 full-time positions would be eliminated through layoffs and attrition. The cuts would include teachers as well as three administrators and

other staff, though specific positions were not named. Nearly all extracurricular activities, including varsity and intramural sports and music, would be maintained.

Under the second proposal, which calls for an increase of $2,439,307, or 6.15 percent, to $42,125,506, some 39 positions would be eliminated. That plan would increase class sizes, said board member Maureen Sheehan, who chaired the budget committee. The third plan, an austerity budget, would total $41,029,345, and would include $80,000 in emergency repair money. It would eliminate 54 positions and extracurricular activities. The district is currently operating on an austerity budget of $39,686,199.

A public hearing on the budget is planned for May 14 at 7:30 p.m. at a location to be determined. The budget vote will take place May 21. (Freeman 4/24/02)

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Rondout tax levy hike at 15.25%

By Cynthia Werthamer, Freeman staff April 25, 2002

KYSERIKE - The tax levy increase resulting from the 2002-03 budget passed by the Rondout Valley school board is projected at 15.25 percent, district officials said on April 24th, but several school board members said they did not know the figure when they adopted the spending plan. The board Tuesday night passed three versions of the budget: one with a 7.86 percent spending increase that will appear on the May 21 ballot; one with a 6.15 percent increase; and an austerity plan carrying a 3.38 percent increase.

The 15.25 percent projected tax levy hike goes with the plan voters will consider on May 21. It would increase the amount raised through property taxes from about $22.5 million in the 2001-02 school year to about $25.8 million for 2002-03, according to Interim Business Administrator Dennis Geisler. If the first budget does not pass, the second plan would be put to a vote, with a projected tax levy increase of 12.23 percent; and the contingency budget would mean an estimated tax levy hike of 7.35 percent, said Trustee Maureen Sheehan, chairwoman of the Budget Advisory Committee. But tax increases did not enter into budget discussions Tuesday. In fact, school Trustee Richard Lanzarone said Wednesday, Sheehan handed sheets listing tax levy projections for the three budgets to board members as they left Tuesday night's meeting. Freeman4/25/02)

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Youths Indicted

KINGSTON - Four Ellenville teens were indicted by an Ulster County grand jury this week in connection with a string of vehicle thefts in March from Wawarsing, Ellenville and Rochester, including a car belonging to a town judge. Jeffrey Marchuck and Darryl Conklin, both 17, were each indicted on eight counts of criminal mischief, seven counts of grand larceny and seven counts of possession of stolen property, felonies; three counts of unauthorized use of a vehicle and two counts of criminal trespass, misdemeanors; and one count of trespass, a violation. Nicholas Conklin, 17, was indicted on eight counts of criminal mischief, five counts of grand larceny and six counts of possession of stolen property, felonies; two counts each of unauthorized use of a vehicle and criminal trespass, misdemeanors; and one count of trespass, a violation. Krystal Wintermeyer, 17, was indicted on eight counts of criminal mischief, six counts of grand larceny and seven counts of possession of stolen property, felonies; three counts of unauthorized use of a vehicle and two counts of criminal trespass, misdemeanors; and one count of trespass, a violation.

The four teens and two juveniles, whose names were not released, were arrested in March after state police at Ellenville and Ellenville village police spent about four days investigating thefts and destruction of several vehicles that occurred over the weekend of March 8. Assistant District Attorney Paul Tsui said

the six teens stole three all-terrain vehicles from Wide Open Motor Sports, two of which were later found damaged in an abandoned barn in the Ellenville area. The third was found on Berme Road, Tsui said. Police also found a severely damaged Honda Accord in the village, which had been stolen from a local town justice, and a destroyed Ford Aerostar van, which had been stolen from Lonstein's Motors on Canal Street in Ellenville. A Chevrolet Suburban sustained damage after the teens stole it from Ron's Auto Repair on U.S. Route 209 in Accord and crashed it through a locked gate to get away, Tsui said. (Freeman 4/25/02)

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Ulster County might appeal rejection of legislative redistricting plan

By Paul Brooks, - Times Herald-Record pbrooks@th-record.com

Kingston Ulster County has filed an notice of appeal to keep its options open about the court decision that struck down the county's latest legislative redistricting plan. County Attorney Frank Murray filed the papers with the Appellate Court in Albany. "This gives us sufficient time to decide whether to appeal," Ward Todd, chairman of the Legislature, said yesterday. Last month, Supreme Court Judge Vincent Bradley overturned the county's 2001 redistricting plan. The county had to shift the lines to reflect changes in where people lived according to the 2000 U.S. Census. The election last November saw 33 legislators picked to represent residents in seven districts across the county. They did not provide for equal representation, Bradley said. For example, in the largest districts, six of the seven legislators elected were from Saugerties. None came from the town of Ulster. Murray said in his notice that even plans like the current one, where the size of districts varies a total of 12.9 percent, can be found acceptable if "a rational and legitimate purpose is being served." John Parete, chairman of the county Democratic Committee, which sued over the 2001 plan, blasted the Republicans who control the Legislature. "They are so corrupt-minded all they want is to preserve their own power." Todd said the 2001 plan was about evenly split as to whether Democrats or Republicans had the majority. "It was about as even enrollment-wise as a plan could be," he said. The Democratic chairman also questioned who authorized Murray to proceed with the appeal since it had not been voted on by the entire Legislature. Todd said the action was discussed but that Murray can act on his own authority as county attorney in the matter. Todd said he plans to appoint a committee to decide within the next 30 to 60 days whether the county will appeal the case or start work on drawing up new legislature districts. Time Herald Record 4/26/02

 

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Minnewaska to remove rock art

By Alan Snel Times Herald-Record asnel@th-record.com

Rochester. Minnewaska State Park Preserve will "more than likely" remove dozens of unauthorized pieces of art fashioned out of rock because the "rock garden" is also home to illegal fires, graffiti and litter, park manager Tom Cobb said. "We will look into it," Cobb said this week. "We will not look the other way." The eclectic collection of rock art is scattered across a white-rock clearing several football-fields wide. The setting of the Shawangunks' famous slab-like white rock, a few dwarf pines and the rock art offers picturesque views of the Rondout Valley and the Catskills to the west. It's a popular place for SUNY New Paltz students to admire the art and sunsets. The wide variety of rock art ranges from amorphous works, a bench and a lean-to-style shelter, a butterfly and a trash receptacle. There's even a four-leaf clover made from rock with broken green bottle pieces inside the outline of small rocks. None of the state preserve's designated trails lead to the rock garden. People reach the rock garden by parking off Route 44-55 in the Town of Rochester, about a mile west of Minnewaska's main entrance.

 

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Elk Introduction Banned

An effort to reintroduce elk to the Catskills has been dealt a serious blow by the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which has banned any importation of the animals until further notice. The action was taken as a precaution to prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease, which affects deer and elk, state officials said. Even so, supporters of the effort to bring 100 elk to state forests in Ulster and Greene counties are holding out hope for seeing elk in the Catskills within three years. After several years of work by a handful of area residents and a large and well-funded national sportsmen's organization, the effort continues. A Boston-based firm was hired by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to conduct a required environmental review, hopeful of convincing the Department of Environmental Conservation that bringing elk here would be a positive move. But last month, on the heels of the foundation completing a draft scope of that review, state Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Nathan L. Rudgers and Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Erin M. Crotty announced a prohibition on the importation of deer and elk into New York state. The announcement was deemed a precautionary step to prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease into wild and farmed herds of animals in the deer family

in the state. The regulations took effect immediately. (Freeman 5/2/02)

 

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Ulster County Tax Sale

County of Ulster One Day Public Auction 2002 Sale will take place on May 23, 2002 9:30 AM at the Student Dining Center - Vanderlyn Hall Ulster County Community College Stone Ridge, New York For a list of properties that are up for auction, please visit: http://www.co.ulster.ny.us/auction/brochure02.pdf

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: CASINO GAMBLING

Dear Editor:

I have written letters to many of our state and federal representatives about the negative effects of locating casinos in our neighborhood. I feel it would increase traffic to the point of bumper to bumper on the weekends. As well as contributing other negative impacts. How do we stop this process of approval for these casinos before they are built and it is too late?

Jon Nedbor

 

Dear Editor: (from the Woodstock Times)

The April 18 Woodstock Times reported that "the Ulster County Legislature approved a resolution to allow legislative chairman Ward Todd to enter into an agreement with the Modoc tribe of Oklahoma, to open a gambling casino in the Town of Wawarsing. The resolution passed without the notification of the town supervisor. The article also reported that tribes with historic roots and land claims pending against New York State have an advantage in the granting of casino permits resulting from the renouncement of such claims. As an out-of-state tribe, the Modoc "appear to have little bargaining power." It looks as if Ward Todd and his cronies are at it again, but this time they want to put the cart before a dead horse. Why would our County Legislators pass a resolution authorizing a negotiation that has little chance of fruition? Perhaps the legislature special casino committee should focus first on the more important issues of the potential site development, public infrastructure impact, traffic mitigation, employee housing and increased demands for law enforcement. Wouldn't this make more sense than chasing after multi-million dollar deals that, even if they would even become real, would most likely end up as additional revenue for discretionary expenditure?

 

The Sullivan County Legislature has been dealing pro-actively with theseissues over recent years while negotiating with both the representatives of prospective tribes as well as their respective contracted casino development corporations. Who would build and operate a casino for the Modoc tribe and where is the development plan? A gaming casino along the route 209 corridor will undoubtedly place new demands on an already congested thoroughfare. Public safety should be the first concern of our elected officials. Revenue enhancement for the county coffer should not take precedent over citizen well-being.

Most importantly, both local officials and specialized consultants should be involved in the process. County District 1 (the towns of Marbletown, Rochester, Wawarsing and Denning) would experience the greatest impact from a new casino. Our town boards should be included in the negotiations for development. It is heartening to know that our elected representative, District 1 Republican Ed Jennings sits on the legislature special casino committee, but his published comments in your article of "It was done much too fast," "I didn’t have a clue¦" "we went ahead and passed it... But it doesn’t mean anything" and "We don't know exactly how to handle this" leave room for speculation on exactly what level of scrutiny is being abandoned in favor of legislative alacrity.

Clifford Faintych

Councilman, Town of Denning

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Legal Notice - Town Tax Assessment Roll

APPENDIX C NOTICE OF COMPLETION OF TENTATIVE ASSESSMENT ROLL Notice of completion shall be published once in the official newspaper of the town and a copy of the published notice posed on the signboard at the entrance of the Town Clerk's Office stating that the Assessors have completed the Tentative Roll, where the roll may be examined and when and where Grievance Day will be held (RPTL, 506, 526(1), 1526). Notice is hereby given that the Assessor(s) of the Town of Rochester, County of Ulster has completed the tentative assessmetn roll for the current year and that a copy has been left with The Assessor at the Town Hall, where it may be seena dn examined by any interested person until the fourth Tuesday in May. The Assessor will be in attendance with the Tentative Assessment Roll on Wednesdays May 8th & 15th and Thursdays May 2, 9, 16th between the hours of 9:00-11:00 a.m. and 1:00-3:00 P.M., and on Saturday, May 11 between the hours of 9:00am & 1:00pm, and Wednesday May 15th between 6:00-9:00 p.m. The Board of Assessment Review will meet on Tuesday, May 29, 2002 between the hours of 6:00 PM and 10:00 PM in said town, to hear and examine all complaints in relation to assessments, on the written application of any person believing himself to be aggrieved. Dated this 1st day of May, 2002. Sharon Hornbeck Assessor Kingston Freeman 5/1/02

 

 

Randy Hornbeck, Paul Widerman, Steve Fornal,

Alison Abbruzzi, Chris Bradley, Brinton Baker & Debbie Avery

Join in cleaning up Boodle Hold Road on Earth Day, April 20th.

Over 7 tons of garbage and debris, 2 1/2 tons of metal, and 450 tires were cleared town-wide

 

 

 

bulletKelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow

A Spring Plow will be held at the Field of Dreams Farm on Route 209 on April 27th and 28th. There will be plenty of vendors, a chicken barbeque and a dessert booth. Demonstrations of historic plowing methods and an antique tractor pull will be featured. Call 626-7137 for more information

bulletUlster County School Board Races Shape Up

By:CYNTHIA WERTHAMER, Freeman staff April 23, 2002

Most Ulster County election ballots May 21 will offer voters a choice of candidates. Petitions for board of education candidacies were due Monday at most district clerks' offices in Ulster County. Nearly every school district will see contests May 21 when voters elect school board members and vote on budgets and propositions. In the Rondout Valley district, six candidates seeking three seats on the nine-member board, each with three-year terms. One incumbent is running, as is an appointee to fill the seat left vacant by Chic Sciarrino's resignation. Candidates run at-large. The candidates are incumbent Maureen Sheehan, 21 Lawrence Hill Road, Accord; appointee Richard Lanzarone, 146 Bone Hollow Road, Accord; Kent Anderson, 22 Candlewood Lane, Stone Ridge; James Ayers, 759 Samsonville Road, Kerhonkson; Paul Gruner, 3320 state Route 209, Stone Ridge; Scott agliola, 440 Woodland Road, Accord. (Freeman 4/23/02)

 

bulletZoning Board of Appeals to Hear Race Track Case

ACCORD - The Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals Tuesday agreed to hear an appeal from an Airport Road resident who says he is not operating an illegal racetrack on his property. A public hearing has been set for May 14. "We are not holding races. We are riding for recreation and enjoyment," said property owner Gregory Post. "I don't understand why we are going through all this."

Post was cited March 13 by the town building inspector for operating the track on his 6.16-acre property, located next to the town transfer station, without a permit. Post also owns an adjacent lot, which brings the total property he owns to 9-plus acres located in a district zoned residential. Subsequently, the Town Board authorized the town attorney to bring litigation against Post to stop him from using the track until the Zoning Board of Appeals reaches a decision on his appeal. Town zoning code defines racetracks as "any ground area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-day tractor and truck pulls." Nearly 60 residents came out to the Tuesday meeting. Although no public comment was allowed inside the Town Hall, outside residents were commenting for and against the course. Neighbor William Nixon said, "Our complaint is not with Greg, ATVs or dirt bikes. The track was built illegally without obtaining the proper permits. And, instead of waiting to get the permit, Greg is continuing to use the course. To me, that is like taking the law into your own hands." 

Elizabeth Panzer, a classical musician who shares the house with Nixon, said, "It was quieter in my Manhattan apartment." Post's supporters on the other hand said the course doesn't fit the guidelines of a racetrack under town Zoning Code. Leonard Bernardo, a frequent of the course, said, "There are no marked start or finish lines and no prizes offered. It's a trail. You can have a trail on your own property. If it's a trail, it's not a racetrack."

Town Councilman Randy Hornbeck, who attended the meeting, said he is very concerned with the rights of people in the immediate area. But, he said, he is also concerned for the younger people who need a recreation area to play on on private property.  "I would like to see the neighbors reach a compromise with Post, maybe limiting the hours he uses the track, cutting down on the number of people riding or using mufflers," Hornbeck said. (4/10/02)

bulletCounty lawmakers approve casino pact with Modoc tribe

By: HALLIE ARNOLD, Freeman staff April 12, 2002

KINGSTON - Ulster County lawmakers took the first official action towards siting a casino on Thursday, approving a last-minute agreement with the Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma to pay the county $15 million a year for seven years if the tribe opens a casino in the town of Wawarsing. The resolution passed the Ways and Means Committee unanimously, but faced strong objections from Legislature Democrats who objected to having to decide on an important issue of this kind without being given more than a couple of hours to review the agreement. As such, several Democrats tried to get the resolution sent back for committee review, a measure that failed in a 25-8 vote largely along party lines.

Legislature Chairman Ward Todd, R-Shandaken, and Majority Leader Richard Gerentine, R-Marlboro, both members of the county's Special Committee on Casino Gambling, said the agreement with the Modoc tribe, a federally recognized group, was finalized earlier in the day Thursday. Only federally recognized tribes will be approved for casinos in New York, according to state legislation enacted late last year. Todd said while no specific site is in the contract, the tribe is affiliated with the Western Mohegan tribe, which owns the Tamarack Lodge in Greenfield Park. Gerentine said state legislation makes no provisions to compensate the county if a casino is sited in Ulster County, and the Modoc representatives had made it clear that they would go straight to the state if the Legislature did not approve the resolution Thursday.

"The tribe said we can walk out of this room, and not deal with you at all," he said. He said compensation for school districts, emergency services, roads and other infrastructure would be dealt with separately. He said the committee had planned to meet with representatives of Wawarsing - but had not prior to Thursday's vote - to discuss how the county would compensate the town. Eight of nine Legislature Democrats, except for Minority Leader Joan Feldmann, D-Saugerties, voted against the contract. Feldmann is a member of the casino committee, and had a copy of the contract before her, although other Democrats said they had not seen it.  Other objections included a lack of consultation with local government and Legislators from the Wawarsing district; concerns that the first deal on the table may not be the best for the county; and the idea that lawmakers were endorsing gambling with their vote. "Realize that we are making a tacit approval of casino gambling in Ulster County," Legislator Gary Bischoff, D-Saugerties, said.

Todd said the agreement drafted with the Modoc Tribe is similar to two agreements between neighboring Sullivan County and other recognized tribes. All hinge on state approval. Although Feldmann said there were references in the contract to a casino project having to meet an environmental review, County Attorney Frank Murray said there were no county-level permits required prior to siting a casino in Ulster County. (4/12/02)

bulletSwimming at Minnewaska

MINNEWASKA - Members of the grassroots organization Swim Without Interference at Minnewaska have reached an agreement with the state to open an additional swimming area at Minnewaska State Park.

Judy Mage, coordinator of the group, said a verbal agreement was reached Friday with the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to open the old Family Beach at Lake Minnewaska in the town of Rochester and to keep the swimming areas open an hour later, until 7:30 p.m. Under the agreement, the swimming area at the southeast end of the lake will have a 200-yard buoyed cable stretching from the shore out into the water, providing a 400-yard swim area for qualified swimmers, Mage said.

Swimmers who wish to use the area will have to pass a test showing they can swim 500 continuous yards using a variety of strokes, Mage said. She said the test would require swimmers to use the breast stroke, side stroke, front crawl and back crawl for 25 yards each and any type of stroke for the remaining yards. Mage said the Minnewaska Distance Swimmers Association, which her group is forming, will oversee the new swimming area and administer the tests. She said anyone wishing to sign up to take the test must contact the association before the testing dates to register, pay $15 in yearly dues and sign a waiver releasing the association and the state from liability. No walk-ins will be accepted for testing, Mage said. She said the tests will take place April 28 and May 5 at Kingston High School. The association plans an organizational meeting for 6 p.m. Sunday at the New Paltz Town Hall, where people will be able to register for testing and meet possible "swim buddies." Anyone wishing to use the new area must have a swim buddy and be at least 18. The state imposed those requirements as a condition for opening the new swimming area. It also is requiring Mage's group to take out a $1 million liability insurance policy.  Minnewaska State Park's swimming season officially opens the weekend of June 22. People interested in taking the test should call (845) 255-7671 or e-mail minnewaskaswimmers@yahoo.com. (4/10/02)

bulletLegal Notice - Land Sale

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE THAT THE TOWN OF ROCHESTER is seeking bids for the sale of surplus real property owned by the Town and designated as Section 69.3, Block 2, Lot 41,100 and Section 69.3, block 2, Lot 41.200 on the real property tax maps, at public auction to be held on the 24th day of April at 10:00AM at the Town Hall, 50 Scenic Road, Accord, New York 12404. Both parcels are to be sold together and to be conveyed by one deed. The minimum bid which shall be accepted for the properties is $75,000, the fair market value as determined by the property assessment. Any sale shall be subject to permissive referendum. It is further resolved that the Town Clerk is authorized to advertise this public auction. the monitoring wells are on the five (5) acre parcel. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC 4/10/02

bulletLetter on Local Libraries

Dear Editor,

Rochester does not have a library. Historically we have availed ourselves of the Ellenville and Stone Ridge libraries with full borrowing and use privileges. That may soon come to an end. At present, Rochester donates $20,000 of taxpayer money annually to both libraries, ($10,000 each). This works out to about $4.00 per household. Taxpayers in Marbletown, (for comparison), pay approximately $35.00 per $100,000 of assessed value for the same library privileges, while Ellenville residents pay $105.00 per $100,000 of the 2001 assessed valuation and equalization rate. Residents of Rochester comprise about 33% of the 2500 active users of the Stone Ridge library while paying aprox 5% of its annual budget. We represent approximately 17% of the 9918 Ellenville library cards, while contributing less than 2% of their annual operating costs. Many of our residents use both libraries. While this is a good deal for us, it may soon end.

The Directors of both the Ellenville and Stone Ridge Libraries sent letters to Rochester residents in the fall of 2001 alerting us to this inequity. They have asked us to ante up our fair share or risk being demoted to second class library users (i.e. in house library book use only, wait listed for all workshops and childrens' event, no video rentals, etc.). Building a new library in Rochester would cost millions of dollars and is something we cannot afford. The use of the existing Stone Ridge and Ellenville facilities, both excellent institutions, is a cost-effective way of having the benefit of library services for ourselves and our children.

Some town council members think that the current $20,000 should be diverted to The Little Ones Library because it is located in Rochester. The Little Ones Library, while a worthy endeavor, is housed in one small room, serves children aged 2-5 years old, and includes on its advisory board staff of both the Ellenville and Stone Ridge Libraries. It currently receives its funding from the Cooperative Extension and private donations. The Little Ones Library offers excellent programs for small children, however, it does not serve the needs of our town's older children, students, or adults.

To reduce the unequal burden of expenses, the libraries are asking for a total annual contribution of $100,000 from Rochester ($50,000 to each). This would amount to $27.00 per $100,000 of assessed property value, about the cost of a new hardcover book. To ensure the rights of Rochester residents to use the libraries in the future, a tax initiative referendum (414) is being planned for November's ballot. This initiative would ask the voters to agree to a tax increase, that $27.00 per $100,000 assessed value figure, to be specifically allocated for the libraries. We have formed a small committee that includes Rochester residents and the directors of both libraries to address this serious concern. We will be holding a kickoff to our 414 petition drive at the Ellenville library on May 18th, 11am to 2pm, with readings and performances by local authors and artists. Committee members will be on hand to answer questions, disseminate information, and also to enlist new committee members.

It never occurred to me that we were not paying for our libraries.

Best regards,

 

Nicole Quinn

Rochester Resident & Library User

bulletLetter on School Test Scores

Dear Editor,

The statistics reported for the Rondout Valley School District by the Blue Stone Press and printed in your publication are provocative and interesting. As a member of the Rondout Valley Board of Education if feel personally responsible for creating a better academic atmosphere for the continued success of all children in our area.

I am concerned that the statistics reported from the School Report Express website do not take into account the very low and steadily declining drop out rate for our school district. The web site does not have that information, so their compilation of facts and figures may be somewhat skewed. Just think for a minute that if we are working so hard to retain our children through highschool in a structured learning environment when most of these young adults would have dropped out, then the pool of SAT-takers for RVHS is very different from those of the other areas.

Remember that the SAT is only one small performance indicator used to assess the strength of a school system. Other indicators such as student retention, and availability and diversity of special programs, are quite strong for our district.

Holly Elliott

 

 

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Town Board Meeting Notes  (Video tapes of all town meetings are available for a nominal fee.)  Click here to view unofficial minutes in Adobe Acrobat format. 

 

Town Board - April 4, 2002

Moratorium on adult entertainment activities

Requirement for weekly transfer station reports

Authorization of sale of Sand Hill Road property

Elimination of position of Municipal Works Supervisor

No action taken on Supervisor Lipton’s proposal to increase hours of Transfer Station Attendant without increase in pay.

Authorization of Town Clerk to attend Town Clerk’s Association conference.

Adoption of interim harassment policy for town employees

Vote to join Hudson Valley Greenway

High School Parking on Kyserike Road

Purchase of Road sweeper

Update and publication of town zoning map

Money for Fire Department

Public Comment Topics:

Surplus Property

Earth Day Roadside Cleanup

Scenic Byway Report

Park Safety Inspection by former Municipal Works Supervisor

Illegal businesses on Airport Road, Queens Highway, spilled gravel cleanup expense, Accord Speedway flea market

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Town Board Audit Meeting -- March 28, 2002

Review and Payment of Bills

Authorization for Town Attorney to pursue litigation to stop illegal racetrack

Renewal of Accord Speedway Operating Permit

Declaration of Surplus Property on Sand Hill Road

Employee Insurance Buyback

Resolution to Amend Bond Anticipation Note Issuance Resolution dated March 1, 2001

Loan of Two Voting Machines to Rondout Valley Central School District

Transfer Station Backhoe

Samsonville Road Lighting Appropriation

Discussion of No Parking Signage on Kyserike Road

 

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Private Property Rights: Home Rule Reigns in Rochester

By Eric Gullickson, Blue Stone Press

Last week’s decision by the Town of Rochester to "bring any and all necessary litigation" against Gregory Post, a property owner on Airport Road who has set up a motorcycle racecourse on his land, raises questions as to what an individual can and cannot do with his or her own property.

Rochester town attorney, Mary Lou Christiana, said that the town’s Code Enforcement Officer, Douglas Dymond, has issued a letter to Post stating that he was in violation of the town’s zoning code. The code describes a racetrack as "any ground, area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-time tractor and truck pulls."

Section 107-4 of the law states that "No person shall operate any racetrack, as defined herein, without possessing a permit to operate the same as hereinafter provided."

Post, however, appealed the decision to the Zoning Board of Appeals, stating that it is not a commercial racetrack but something he uses privately. "We’re not a sanctioned racetrack," said Post. "We’re a group of friends just having fun."

Post said that Dymond issued him a ticket for an "illegal race track," but nobody has told him to stop riding on his property. He also said that besides receiving the ticket, he knew of no neighbors in the area who were against it. "If they had a problem with the noise they should have come and said something," he added.

However, both will Nixon and Elizabeth Panzer, neighbors who live uphill from the track, say that they have gone to the Zoning Office to complain about the noise. "It looks like one (racetrack), it sounds like one, any by the town’s definition it is one," said Panzer. "The noise is an issue," said Nixon. "We live over the crest of the hill - we can’t see if but we certainly hear it. I feel bad about this. I don’t’ want to create ill will, and I can appreciate where he’s coming from, but I think the fact that the town has asked him to stop and he’s continued to do it is an act of defiance.

Post, who races motocross for recreation in Walden, NY and other locations in the region, said that he initially cleared some trees from one portion of the nine-acre parce a few years prior in preparation to building his house. Currently he has a driveway permit filed with the town and it wasn’t until he created the motorcycle course that he was cited for having cut down trees, and for changing the topography of the land, he said. Post added that he has an eight paged petition signed by people who support his situation and that he plans on presenting to the Town Board. "I know I’m not doing anything illegal. It’s for recreational use," Post said.

Rochester supervisor, Harold Lipton, said the he personally is not against the motorcycle course, but it does violate the town’s zoning code. "The thing that he’s got there looks like fun, but it could get dangerous -- it is something that could catapult into a problem, " Lipton said. "If he wants to ride around on it by himself that’s fine, but the town cannot condone it the way it is." "Things have to be defined and they have to go through the ritual to do it. I’m in the position to have people conform to the rules."

Now that Post has an appeal to the Zoning Board, Lipton said he has to stop using his property for motorcycle riding. "According to the law it’s illegal if he continues," said Lipton. "If he gets a permit it’s ok, but it’s wrong right now."

Dennis Doyle, Ulster County’s Principal Planner said that any town in New York has the right to adopt and amend local laws under the Municipal home Rule Law. The law gives local governments the power to abridge state and federal government. "It’s up to the individual community, " Doyle said. "The community can abridge that right through their statute.’

Mary Lou Christiana’s recommendation to the Town Board to force Post to comply with this law is an effort to protect the town from potential litigation from affected neighbors in the community. Under the laws of nuisance and trespass, an individual has the right to use his or her property, but not in a way that injures others. Nuisance laws are applied by the following criteria: Did a violation of property rights occur? Who is liable for the damage? How is the amount of liability assessed?

The common law of nuisance forbids individuals from using their property in a way that causes harm to others. A private nuisance refers to an activity that interferes with an individual’s reasonable use or enjoyment of his or her property. A public nuisance is an activity that threatens the public safety, health or welfare, or damages community resources, such as public roads, parks and water supplies. "You just can’t do anything you want," Doyle said. "Does a town have the right to leagally do this? The answer is yeah, they do. No only do they have a right, the next door neighbor has a right as well." (BSP 4/5/02)

 

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Low Scores for Rondout Valley Graduates

An indpendent report published by the School Report Express showed that of area schools, Rondout ranked the lowest I both verbal and math Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) scores, with an average 481 verbal and 506 in math. Only Ellenville Central School District scored slightly lower on math scores, although students there scored slightly higher on the verbal test. Additionally only 65% of seniors at Rondout actually took the tests and 37% went on to 4-year colleges or university. At Kingston 45% of seniors went on to 4-year colleges and 70% took the exam, with an average 526 math and 540 verbal score. Of Rondout’s graduating seniors, 23% go direcly into th work force compared to 11% for Onteora, 12% for Ellenville, 4% for New Paltz and 7% for Kingston. (BSP 4/5/02)

 

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Motorcycle Racetrack Draws Rochester's Ire

By Dawn Letus, Correspondent, Daily Freeman

The Rochester Town Board on Thursday (3/28/02) authorized Town Attorney Mary Lou Christiana to "bring any and all necessary litigation" against an Airport Road property owner to stop him from operating a motorcycle racetrack on his property. Supervisor Harold Lipton said Gregory Post has been cited by the town's zoning code enforcement officer for cutting down tress, changing the topography of his property and developing a dirt motorcycle track on his property with out a permit. Post, in turn, has filed an appeal with the town Zoning Board of Appeals. His position is that the track is being used privately, not commercially, and is contained within his property. Therefore, it does not need a permit. However, Lipton said, Post has refused to cease and desist the racetrack's operation until the Zoning Board reaches a decision in the matter.

Unfortunately, Councilman Randy Hornbeck said at the meeting, the town's zoning code, which defines racetracks as "any ground area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-day tractor and truck pulls," needs to be refined.

As far as board members knew, they said, Post has not collected any money for operating the track and is using it for the recreation and pleasure of himself, his family and friends. Located in a residential district adjacent to the town's landfill, the property is being used primarily by teens on dirt bikes, board members said.

In other business, the Town Board renewed Twin Track Promotion's special permit to operate Accord Speedway, a quarter-mile, dirt motorcar racetrack off Whitfield Road and approved 40 Wednesday and Saturday race dates, beginning April 12. The permit also included three rain dates to allow the track to fulfill its 40 day season. (Freeman March 29, 2002)

 

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002

The Town of Rochester is preparing for its annual Earth Day roadside clean up scheduled for Saturday, April 20, 2002. Rochester Resident and Earth Day committee member Brinton Baker updated the Town Board on clean up plans. The Town Board has waived transfer station tipping fees provided that trash is in designated orange bags that are available only at the Youth Center. Volunteers are invited to a pot-luck spaghetti dinner on Saturday afternoon. All volunteers must register before hand by calling the Youth Commission Office at 626-2115. (BSP 3/15/02)

 

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LEGAL NOTICE ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold public hearings on the 9th day of April 2002. at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on the following matters: 7:00 PM Application by Dr. Holly Elliott and Pam Duke for Area Variance to subdivide a 1+/- acre parcel with an existing residential structure and a professional office building into two undersized lots, approximately one-half acre each; one with the residential structure and the second with a professional office building. Property located at Route 209 and Samsonville Road, Kerhonkson, NY, Tax Map 76.010-01-25 and in a `B' Zoning District of the Zoning Map 7:15 PM. Application by April Sasick-Uchitel for Area Variance for rear yard setback for proposed garage on property located at 81-2 Towpath Road, Accord, NY, Tax Map #77-009-01-12.122 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map 7:30 PM Application by Anthony Wright for Area Variance for sideyard setback for addition to barn on property located on Queens Highway, Accord, NY, Tax Map #68.003-02-19 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. The above noted applications and maps are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicants must be present or represented at the hearings.''

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LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking bids for (1) one used tractor/loader/backhoe - 1991 or newer with not more than 2750 documented hours of use. Specifications available at the Town Clerk's Office (845-626-7384) 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY 12494. Bids to be received on or before April 22, 2002 at 11:00 AM at the Office of the Town Clerk, at which time they 

will be opened and read aloud. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman 4/4/02

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NOTICE OF ANNUAL BUDGET VOTE AND BOARD ELECTION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Annual Budget Vote and Board Election 

will be held in the gymnasium at the High School on Kyserike Road, Accord, New York, on Tuesday, May 21, 2002, between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. NOTICE IS ALSO GIVEN that a copy of the statement of the amount of money which will be required for the ensuing year for school purposes may be obtained by any resident in the District during the fourteen (14) days immediately preceding the annual vote and election except Saturday, Sunday and holidays, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. at the following locations: Kerhonkson School Marbletown School Rosendale School High School Middle School District Office NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that a Public Hearing on the Budget will be held on May 14, 2002, at 6:30 p.m. (prevailing time) at the High School on Kyserike Road, Accord, New York, for the purpose of presenting the budget document for the school year, July 1, 2002 - June 30, 2003. NOTICE IS ALSO GIVEN that petitions nominating candidates for the Office of member of the Board of Education must be filed with the Clerk of the District not later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 22, 2002. The term of office is for (3) years. The following vacancies are to be filled: Term of Richard Lanzarone, expiring June 30, 2002 Term of Maureen Sheehan, expiring June 30, 2002 Term of Jo Shuman, expiring June 30, 2002 Each petition shall be directed to the Clerk of the School District, shall be signed by at least 66 qualified voters of the district, shall state the residence of each signer, and shall state the name and residence of the candidate. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that, pursuant to the Education Law, any qualified voter of the District may vote without prior registration. NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that 

the School District shall require ALL persons offering to vote at the Annual Election and Vote to provide one form of proof of residency, including but not limited to: Driver's License with physical address Non Driver Identification Card Voter Registration Card Check Book State Tax Form Heading with School ID #543 NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that pursuant to Section 2018-b of the Education Law, applications for absentee ballots for the Annual Election and Vote may be obtained at the Office of the District Clerk at least seven (7) days prior to the vote if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter or the day before the vote if the ballot will be picked up personally by the voter. Written requests for absentee ballots must be made at least seven (7) days and no more than thirty (30) days prior to the vote. Absentee ballots must be received at the Office of the District Clerk by no later than 5:00 p.m., prevailing time, on the day of the vote May 21, 2002. A list of all persons to whom absentee ballots shall have been issued will be available for inspection to qualified voters of the District at the Office of the District Clerk during regular office hours, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p. m., prevailing time, until the day of the Election and Vote. Any qualified voter may file a written challenge of the qualifications of a voter whose name appears on such list, stating the reasons for the challenge. AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that any proposition or question not requiring official notice in the call of the annual vote and election may be voted upon at said vote and election, providing a petition signed by at least one hundred (100) qualified voters, together with the legal residence of each, is filed with the Clerk of the District no later than thirty (30) days before the vote. Dated: March 25, 2002 BY ORDER OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT By: Lorraine P. Sciarrino, District Clerk Kingston Freeman (4/5/02)

 

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NOTICE TO BIDDERS BIDS FOR 2002-2002 TRANSPORTATION (OPTIONAL 2003-2007) The Board of Education of the Rondout Valley Central School District at Accord, County of Ulster, Accord, New York 12404, (in accordance with Section 103 of Article 5A of the General Municipal Law) hereby invites the submission of sealed bids on: TRANSPORTATION OF PUPILS for the 2002-2003 School year Bids will be received until 10:00 AM on the 11th day of April at the District Office, 122 Kyserike Rd. Accord, New York 12404, at which time and place all bids will be opened publicly. Specifications and bid forms may be obtained at the same office between 8:00 AM and 3:30 PM. Bids specifications will be available on March 21, 2002. The Board of Education reserves the right to waive any formalities in or 

to reject or to accept any or all bids. No bidder may withdraw his bid within sixty (60) days after the actual date of the opening thereof. BOARD OF EDUCATION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT Dennis T. Geisler Asst. Supt. For Finance DATED: APRIL 2002 (Freeman 3/24/02)

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CASINO GAMBLING

Dear Neighbors,

As homeowners in Ulster County, we vehemently oppose the opening of casinos in either the Hudson Valley Resort or Nevele Grande, or anywhere, for that matter.

Frightening results ensue in small, rural communities such as the ones that surround the Foxwoods Casino: Social Services cases, porn shops, congested traffic, and lower property values. As suggested by a previous letter writer, read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com). >>

Or take the time to visit Atlantic City, not the web-site, but the real live place. And make sure you go beyond the glitz and into the neighborhoods that are a little ways away from the corporate money-center to the places where the people actually live. There is wasted humanity there - people trying to scrape their way on the waste of the ones who can afford to have their "fun" at the casinos - and that my friends, my neighbors, will be us, if our beautiful Hudson Valley offers a welcome to gambling casinos.

Please stop this from happening here...

Tracy Leavitt

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WSJ.com - Major Business News.htm April 4, 2002

Indian Casinos Today

Last month these columns criticized New York Governor George Pataki's midnight legislation to create six new Indian-run casinos in his state, part of a national gambling boom. We've since been called racist and part of a "growing national backlash against Indians." Maybe we're getting somewhere. Indian Country Today, the nation's leading Native American newspaper, accused us of "perpetuating Native American stereotypes" because we referred to "Big Chief Pataki," among other perceived insults. We thought we were having fun with Mr. Pataki, not Indians. But in any case the race card has become the first refuge of scoundrels in American politics. The folks who play it are usually trying to deflect attention from the real issues. The very big issue here is a $10 billion Indian casino industry that has grown with little public scrutiny into a huge political force. Indian Country Today is part of that force, since it's funded by gambling interests with a major stake in Mr. Pataki's casino deals. The paper is controlled by the Oneida Nation of New York, which already owns one casino in the state and is vying for the right to build another.

We were especially amused by Indian Country Today's assertion that "Indian gaming is among the most regulated industries in America." The rest of American business should be so lucky. The industry is regulated by the National Indian Gaming Commission, which has a budget of $8 million, or a fraction of the millions that the Indian casino lobby shovels at politicians. A former NIGC regulator-turned-lobbyist told Indian casino executives last year that "your best strategy is to keep the commission at its current size," the Boston Globe has reported. Gaming advocates like to cite "cooperation" with law enforcement, but the reality is that Indian casinos are largely self-regulating. If Congress is going to get serious about casino corruption, it might give the NIGC some teeth. The commission is responsible for monitoring more than 300 Indian gambling halls, but it has fewer than 30 full-time auditors and investigators. New Jersey gaming authorities, by contrast, employ more than 200 auditors for only 12 casinos .

Another reality is the presence of criminal interests in the industry. The chief of the FBI's Organized Crime Section described mob influence at casinos this way to the Los Angeles Times: "Our position is, 'If you build it, they will come.' They understand not only the mechanics of gambling , but also how the industry works: the labor unions, the equipment, the pawn shops, the trucking industry, the housekeeping services, all the collateral industries. They set up kickback schemes, extortion schemes, sweetheart

contract schemes." And come they did to Indian country. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune has reported links between Minnesota Indian casinos and "East Coast Mafia families"; companies named in the report denied knowing of any involvement with mob figures, saying any ties had been "coincidental and indirect." In California, the Rincon Indians say they have turned the corner on corruption, but through the 1990s they were plagued by mob takeover attempts, with convictions of a tribal council member and figures linked to the Pittsburgh and Chicago mafia. In Florida last year, the St. Petersburg Times reported that the Seminole Tribe's own police investigators had learned of a link to organized crime figures -- and were fired after bringing the information to the NIGC. Indian gaming looks like a corruption scandal waiting to happen. It already is a political scandal. Political figures in both parties have abused the federal tribal recognition process, which has granted groups of dubious lineage official tribal status and with it the right to open casinos. A recent report by the Interior Department's Inspector General found that the two Clinton-era heads of the Bureau of Indian Affairs -- Kevin Gover and Michael Anderson -- abused their authority by granting recognition to six tribes, despite objections from BIA professionals. Messrs. Gover and Anderson both left BIA to join law firms working on Indian casino deals. And here's the best part: Mr. Gover is now a columnist for Indian Country Today. Interior's IG also reported that an "egregious" share of the profits at Connecticut's Mohegan Sun Casino were taken by gambling mogul Sol Kerzner. He and his partners will rake in about $1 billion of profits through 2014, according to the Boston Globe. The IGC was powerless to stop Mr. Kerzner from fashioning a loophole that allowed him to evade Congressional

regulations limiting non-Indian partners to no more that 40% of the Mohegan tribe's profits. We think it's a sure bet that the same is slated for New York, thanks to Mr. Pataki and the casino lobby. Indian Country Today would better serve its readers if it tried to uncover such rotten deals instead of flacking for them.

April 4, 2002 Copyright © 2002 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

 

Dear Editor:

I personnaly am for gambling at the local resorts.

Most of the people who are sending in mail did not live here in the 60"s or early 70's. This place was hopping. Myself and hundreds of school age kids made more money than our parents and more than some locals make now. The hotels were booming and traffic was a great thing to see on Friday night. The Gelles', The Rubins, The Friedman's and many others supported the Towns of Rochester and Wawarsing.

Hundreds of people migrated from the city each weekend. Yes, they walked in the middle of the road and yes they got lost getting to there destination, but NO they didn't cause any major problems.

Look around. The place is dead. There are no more bungalow colonies, there are no people stopping at what is left of the local business. Transients are supporting the new business sprouting up on 209. They do not spend the night or the weekend. They pass through. As a local property owner who has raised his family here in the valley, I welcome Gambling.

As a teen, I purchased my first car, for cash. At 17, I was making $400 on weekends, plus extra work and $1000 for a full week during the busy season. Many people made more. I admit that there are people who gamble and can't afford it, but for the most part we will see the ones who come here to spend money for the weekend and go back home. They will stay at our resorts, laugh at the shows and drop a few dollars at the slots. They are not addicted, they are recreating. Most of the people who will come here are looking for a rest and the slots are a part of that .

Nay Sayers, Go back where you came from. This is part of the heritage of "The Mountains". We now have traffic ties ups with people passing thru. Why not give them a reason to stay here and spend their money. You must know that they will and are going someplace else.

John C. Motzer

Kerhonkson

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Illegal Motorcross/ATV Track on Airport Road

An motorcross/ATV track was recently set up on a six-acre parcel of land immediately north of the Town of Rochester Transfer Station on Airport Road. According to neighbors, the track has been used for racing by a wide variety of people. The Town’s Code Enforcement Officer issued town court summons to certain individuals noting that such racing was not permitted in R-1 residential zones. [3/26/02]

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Former Alligerville Resident Sentenced

In a case that has received international attention, Ronald Hunlock, a former 20-year veteran New York State corrections officer and former resident of Alligerville was sentenced to five concurrent one-year terms in prison after he was convicted of five counts of aggravated cruelty to animals after an incident in which he put five kittens into a trash compactor at the NYS correctional facility at Sing Sing, where he was employed. The judge in the case said that the crime [was] "so offensive and so calculated and so gratuitously cruel it diminishes the humanity of everybody." According to the judge, ten letters received recommended leniency and 468 recommended a harsh sentence. Hunlock’s attorney requested protective custody because other inmates might know him as a former corrections officer. He was also terminated by the Department of Corrections, a move which could cost him nearly $500,000 in lost pension and other employment benefits. (New York Post & Daily Freeman 3/23/02)

 

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002

The Town of Rochester is preparing for its annual Earth Day roadside clean up scheduled for Saturday, April 20, 2002. Rochester Resident and Earth Day committee member Brinton Baker updated the Town Board on clean up plans. The Town Board has waived transfer station tipping fees provided that trash is in designated orange bags that are available only at the Youth Center. Volunteers are invited to a pot-luck spaghetti dinner on Saturday afternoon. All volunteers must register before hand by calling the Youth Commission Office at 626-2115. (BSP 3/15/02)

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Kelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow

A Spring Plow will be held at the Field of Dreams Farm on Route 209 on April 27th and 28th. There will be plenty of vendors, a chicken barbeque and a dessert booth. Demonstrations of historic plowing methods and an antique tractor pull will be featured. Call 626-7137 for more information . [3/26/02]

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Robert Lapp Log Yard Still Not In Compliance

In the three months since the town Zoning Board of Appeals ruled in early December against giving Robert Lapp a permit to continue operating his business in a residential area, nothing has been done to clean up the property, town officials said. Zoning Board of Appeals Chairwoman Marijane Knudsen-Hunlock said the board entertained the application from last spring through most of the summer, holding a public hearing open from May through September. But she said Lapp never gave the zoning board a completed application, or any of the documentation requested to determine the log yard's environmental impact on the area. In September, Lapp's attorney, Wayne Lonstein of Ellenville, asked to resubmit the application and conduct an environmental review, but Knudsen-Hunlock said those documents were never completed. Lonstein could not be reached for comment Thursday. Lapp has previously told the board that the property should have been covered under a "grandfather clause," because a previous owner had been issued a special use permit to operate Turner's Bus Garage on the property. Douglas Dymond, the town building inspector and code enforcement officer, said he has issued several letters asking Lapp to comply with town law, but so far, he said, Lapp has just pulled some of the logs back from the road. Ultimately, Dymond said, it is up to the Town Board to decide if it wants to take Lapp to court over the matter. "My responsibility is to turn it over to the town attorney and let the board decide the next move," he said. "As far as I know, it has not been addressed by the town attorney and it has not been turned over to the Town Board," Supervisor Harold Lipton said after Thursday's Town Board (Daily Freeman 3/8/02)

 

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling

 

Hi, I agree with others that the Hudson Valley Resort is NOT the place for gambling. This area is the gateway to both the Mohonk and Minnewaska preserves and would be destroyed by the construction and other drastic changes that would be necessary for gambling here. The Nevele is obviously a better choice, with room for increased construction, although even there the increased traffic could be disastrous.

Carol Hillman

Kerhonkson

 

Gambling can be groovy to most, I guess. I like gambling like a junkie likes his fix. I've had a compulsive relationship with it for 40+ yr. I sat on a stoop for a year watching Atlantic City debate itself; If Resorts was to be permanent or not. I brought stocks the week before decision, which was the quickest 100% I ever made. Casinos will change your neighborhood, forever. Not only the feeder roads, the quick conveniences, the weak will perish, the strong will survive. You don't know where the weakness will come from, be it a son or daughter or husband or wife. Thieves and prostitutes will not only come from out of town they will be your own kids. That's why Indians won't let their own gamble. They know those dangers. Many will enjoy the good times, say only 15% fatality. In truth it might be more like 40% unless one's a masochist. I've only met a few who were having a 'real' good time. It usually starts out that way but. Smart people don't gamble they take the cash. The people who gamble need the fire.

Bill Dukas

Kerhonkson

dukas@earthlink.net

 

Dear Editor

Especially since my property abuts that of the Hudson Valley Resort and I am defenseless against them--but also on more important grounds--I am totally opposed to gambling casinos here (or anywhere else, for that matter).

Traffic, expensive infrastructure problems, the introduction of (even more) organized crime, the facilitation of compulsive gambling leading to family breakdown, stealing, etc. and even light pollution, making it impossible to see the heavens--all are reasons to ban gambling casinos.

As for positive claims, a trip to Atlantic City ought to convince anyone. Where before there were the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk and the slums, Now there are the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk, the casinos and the same slums. It is all a plot to enrich the owners of the casinos (and only them) and it takes money out of the productive economy and devotes it to something perfectly useless or pernicious.

Jack Arnold

Kerhonkson

 

Dear Fellow New Yorker,

As homeowners in Ulster County, we vehemently oppose the opening of casinos in either the Hudson Valley Resort or Nevele Grande.

Frightening results ensue in small, rural communities such as the ones that surround the Foxwoods Casino: Social Services cases, porn shops, congested traffic, and lower property values. Please read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com).

Please, do not seal the same fate for our sweet valley.

Todd & Sandra Foster

 

Dear Friends and Rondout Valley Residents,

As you can see from the Poughkeepsie Journal article below, Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd has appointed a committee to study the issue of gambling. Joan Feldman is quoted as saying that Ulster County officials need to work with officials in Sullivan County to plan casinos. Well, that's a typical case of the blind leading the blind. (And that's being kind.) Sullivan has no idea what they're in for, or so they seem to act. As many frantic articles in the Record indicate, Sullivan officials are already realizing that they cannot possibly be ready for the gargantuan influx gambling brings - the increase in crime, drunken driving, gambling addiction, loan-sharking, organized crime, health care emergency, traffic problems, housing shortage, and the adverse economic impact on communities, families, etc. etc.

Of course, all they needed to do was to look at the many studies ong ambling and what has happened to the neighborhoods around Atlantic City and the once peaceful communities surrounding Foxwoods Resort Casino. Studies of the impact of casinos on neighboring communities and society abound.

Here are two:

Gambling Impact and Behavior Study from the Ntl. Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago:http://www.norc.org/new/pdf/gamble.pdf

A special edition of the Journal of Business and Public Affairs: http://www.murraystate.edu/qacd/cbpa/bber/search/gambling.htm

What they don't mention in the Poughkeepsie Journal is that if a casino is approved at the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson, there is a plan to make a new exit off the NY State Thruway to connect with 44/55 which they want to turn into a four-lane highway to speed up the traffic to the casino. Who, we should ask the Ulster County committee is going to pay for the relocation of thousands of families along 44/55, not to speak about compensation for the disruptions of their lives. Well, the answer is: the taxpayers.

 

It is most urgent to write many, many more letters to the editors of local papers and tell them and your legislature that we can't afford casinos...that we love the Shawangunk Ridge and the peaceful Rondout Valley...that we don't want the apple orchards and farms destroyed. Please take a moment to express your opposition to this madness, and ask all your friends to do likewise, before it's too late.

Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd: wtod@co.ulster.ny.us

Blue Stone Press: bluepress@aol.com

The Times Herald-Record: letter@th-record.com

Woodstock Times: news@woodstocktimes.biz

Freeman: publisher@freemanonline.com

Poughkeepsie Journal: www.poughkeepsie.journal.com

Thank you!

Astrid Fitzgerald

Kerhonkson

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Letters to the Editor - Miscellaneous

 

Dear Editor

I don't know where Councilman Hornbeck thinks that adults in the town of Rochester go to borrow books to read, but obviously many of us use the Libraries in Ellenville and Marbletown and are certainly in favor of supporting both of them. Perhaps he only meant that the town budget should be increased substantially in order to support them and also support the Little Ones Library?

Carol Hillman

Kerhonkson

 

Dear Editor:

I am so tired of the good OLE boy club in the town of Rochester! The corruptness in this town is close to putting DC politics to shame. I have seen so many laws passed to benefit the good OLE boys. That's right, we don't mention nor show what is going on till it has been voted on & passed.

It is time people that right tax payers take a step up & start asking questions. I am so Happy to see the town meeting are going to be broadcast so those of us that are mom's & need to spend our time with our children can see what is going on. (although they'll find someway I'm sure to stop tape as something needs to be snuck in.)

I am also very angry that every year I have to call to see when special activities take place for children such as Easter egg Hunts etc. & How low to be told when I call townhall & ask when things are taking place, that it is posted at the local PX hmmm quess one of those things again only club members are allowed to benefit. (not all of us hangout at the local px)

How hard is it to post it in the website, local Bluestone aha that's right then it would allow all the local tax payers to join in.

Donna Post

Accord

 

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New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - Environmental Notice Bulletin & Related Legal Notices

 

LEGAL NOTICES & NYS DEC ENVIRONMENTAL NOTICE BULLETIN

NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION NOTICE OF COMPLETE APPLICATION Date: March 11, 2002 Applicant: MINNEWASKA HOSPITALITY CORPORATION

400 GRANITE ROAD KERHONKSON, NY 12446 Facility: HUDSON VALLEY RESORT & SPA 400

GRANITE ROAD KERHONKSON, NY 12446 Application ID: 3-5144-00007/00002 Permits(s)

Applied for: 1 - Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private / Commercial / Institutional

SPDES Project is located: in ROCHESTER in ULSTER COUNTY Project Description: The

Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollution Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES) permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 150,000 gallon per day of treated sanitary waste to the Rondout Creek tributary. Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for a hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number: NY 010 2903 State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination Project is not subject to SEQR because it is

a Type II action. SEQR Lead Agency None Designated State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations. Availability For Public Comment Comments on this project must be submitted in

writing to the Contact Person no later than 04/12/2002 Contact Person ERIN L. BURNS NYSDEC 625 BROADWAY ALBANY, NY 12233 (518) 402-9167 Kingston Freeman (3/17/02)

3/13/02

Applicant: Alephi Alliance For Jewish Renewal

99 Mill Hook Rd

Accord, NY 12404-5821

Facility: Elat Chayyim

99 Mill Hook Rd

Accord, NY 12404-

Application ID: 3-5144-00004/00002

Permit(s) Applied for: Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private/Commercial/Institutional

SPDES

Project is Located: Rochester, Ulster County

Project Description:

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES)permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 15,000 gallons per day of treated sanitary waste to the Rochester Creek tributary.

Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number: NY 009 9911

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination: Project is not subject

to SEQR because it is a Type II action.

SEQR Lead Agency: None Designated

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination: The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.

Coastal Management: This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act. Opportunity for Public Comment: Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Apr 12 2002. Contact: Erin L. Burns NYSDEC Headquarters 625 Broadway Albany, NY 12233 (518)402- 9167 elburns@gw.dec.state.ny.us

 

 

Applicant: Minnewaska Hospitality Corporation

400 Granite Road

Kerhonkson, NY 12446-

Facility: Hudson Valley Resort & Spa

400 Granit Rd

Kerhonkson, NY 12446-

Application ID: 3-5144-00007/00002

Permit(s) Applied for: Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private/Commercial/Institutional

SPDES

Project is Located: Rochester, Ulster County

Project Description:

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollution Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES) permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 150,000 gallon per day of treated sanitary waste to the Roundout Creek tributary.

Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from, or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for a hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number : NY 010 2903

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination: Project is not subject to SEQR because it is a Type II action.

SEQR Lead Agency: None Designated

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination: The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.

Coastal Management: This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act.

Opportunity for Public Comment: Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Apr 12 2002. Contact: Erin L. Burns

NYSDEC Headquarters

625 Broadway

Albany, NY 12233

(518)402-9167

elburns@gw.dec.state.ny.us

 

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Town Board Votes to Support Affordable Senior Citizen Housing (3/5/02)

At its audit/workshop meeting on February 28, the Rochester Town Board voted to support the proposed low income housing project proposed its previous meeting. The project, if approved, would straddle the Wawarsing/Rochester town line near the Post Office in Kerhonkson. The project was not supported as originally proposed, however, with the Town Board adding the requirement that the project be exclusively for senior citizens as a condition of approval. If approved, the project would require an amendment to the Town's 1 acre density zoning requirement. Separately, at the same meeting, the town voted to endorse a proposal to add the additional name of the Vincent Dunn Memorial Road to Samsonville Road (County Route 3), and to accept a bid for the sale of a front end loader. The Town Board also approved the expenditure of approximatley $1,400 for the purchase of two-way radios for the Transfer Station. When bills were being reviewed, Councilman Hornbeck mentioned his concern that $20,000 (combined) was contributed annually to public libraries in Ellenville and Marbletown, he indicated his belief that funds should be given to the Little Ones Library in Rochester.

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County Legislator Proposes Ulster County Gambling Commission (3/5/02)
The future of casino gambling in Ulster County is on the minds of many local lawmakers, one of whom is suggesting the formation of a county gaming commission to oversee any casino gambling projects currently in the planning stages. "I think we need to take more of a proactive approach. I do think we're lagging behind," said Legislator Richard Parete, D-Marbletown. "Two groups have casino gambling commitments in Sullivan County, and there's three resorts actively seeking casino gambling in Ulster County. We need to ask the questions now instead of five years later, when it's too late." Parete said the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson, the Nevele Grande in Ellenville and the Tamarack Lodge in Greenfield Park have all been exploring casino gambling since state legislation was passed last October to allow three Indian-run casinos to open in Ulster and Sullivan counties. The state Legislature focused on casino gambling as a revenue generator to counter anticipated state budget gaps caused, in part, by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. All three of the resorts are in Parete's legislative district, and he said some of his constituents have begun raising concerns about casino development. Traffic congestion and unfair competition with local businesses are chief among their concerns, Parete said.

Majority Leader Richard Gerentine, R-Marlboro, said county leaders have been doing some legwork regarding casino gambling, including meeting with representatives from Gov. George Pataki's office, talking to local elected officials in the state Senate and Assembly, and meeting with Sullivan County officials to learn how they're approaching the issue. He added there have already been discussions with Legislature Chairman Ward Todd, R-Shandaken, about forming a gambling oversight committee of some sort. Of the three resorts in Ulster County that are frequently discussed as potential casino sites, only the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa has gone on-record with its plans. General Manager Stephen Gorse has said the resort is working with a group of Indians from out of state and a well-known casino operator on a casino gambling proposal, but would not publicly name either the tribe or the developer. Gorse could not be reached for comment Monday. Representatives of both the Nevele Grande and the Western Mohegan tribe, which purchased the Tamarack Lodge last year, have thus far declined to publicly discuss casino gambling at their respective facilities. Sullivan County lawmakers have negotiated deals with two tribes interested in siting casinos there. Both the St. Regis Mohawk tribe and the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans have reached agreements with the county Legislature to provide $15 million per year apiece in impact payments should their Sullivan County casinos open as proposed. (Daily Freeman, 2/26/02)

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Students Want Principal Back (3/5/02)
Six Rondout Valley High School juniors Tuesday presented the district's Board of Education with a petition signed by hundreds of students asking the board to reinstate former high school principal William Cafiero. Board President Nancy Taylor confirmed Cafiero is currently working in the school's district office as "an administrator on assignment." But, Taylor, along with district Superintendent Marilyn O. Pirkle, suggested the students talk to acting Principal Robert Keagle about their concerns, before asking the board to step in. The petition, signed by hundreds of high school students, said Cafiero treated students fairly, consistently and with respect. Danielle Taylor, one of the petition's presenters, said this year's freshmen were excluded from signing the petition. Most never knew Cafiero and could not speak to the changes, since Keagle took over in fall 2001, said Danielle Taylor, who is not related to the school board president.  Cafiero went out on sick leave at the end of July 2001. Pirkle has declined to say whether the leave was connected with findings last year by independent investigator Margaret Leibowitz that Cafiero had sexually harassed two teachers. (Daily Freeman 2/27/02)

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Swimmers Group Discusses Minnewaska Agreement (3/5/02)
Members of the group Swim Without Interference at Minnewaska hope to have an agreement worked out with the state that will open a new area at the park for long distance swimmers. Judy Mage, the coordinator of the group, said she and others met with representatives of the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation last week to discuss a proposal to open a second swimming area at Lake Minnewaska at what used to be called the family beach. Mage said under the proposal the state would install a buoyed line 200 yards from the beach to give swimmers a 400-yard round-trip space in which to swim. In return for the new area, the state is requesting that the group form an association of distance swimmers to obtain a $1 million life insurance policy and to certify swimmers to make sure they are capable of swimming the distance. Mage said the association would certify that the swimmers can go the distance using a variety of strokes, have the swimmers sign a waiver in case of accident, and issue photo identification. She said qualified swimmers would have to be at least 18 years old and agree to use the area on a buddy system since there would be no lifeguard provided by the state. Mage said there are still many details that need to be worked out and her group will be meeting with the state again on March 4. Mage said anyone who is interested in becoming certified to use the new area or to help administer it after an agreement is reached can contact her group at swimfreeny@yahoo. com, or can call (845) 255-7671. (Freeman 2/19/02)

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Calling All Artists (3/5/02)
The Rochester Residents Association is compiling a list of artists who reside or work in the Town of Rochester to facilitate the introduction of local artists to others in the area. Eventually, we would like to see if there is sufficient interest to sponsor an Open Studio Day or a local exhibition. The list will be published on-line on www.accord-kerhonkson.com and we are considering the possibility of displaying examples of local artists' work on the site. In any event, we encourage you to let us add a link to your website if you have one. If you are an artist or if you know of any in the Town of Rochester, please send us an email with the name and telephone number to Resident@Accord-Kerhonkson.com

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Three Accord Farms on List of Top Ten Farm Aid Recipients (3/5/02)
The Environmental Working Group (www.ewg.org) has recently published a county-by-county list of the recipients of Federal Farm Aid. Three Accord farms were included in the top ten recipients of federal farm subsidies in Ulster County. The group has compiled the database to gain support for a more equitable distribution of Federal Farm Aid, citing that, nationwide, most aid benefits large agribusiness corporations and not small family farms as intended. For the complete list of Ulster County recipients, see: http://www.ewg.org/farm/top_recips.php?stab=NY&county=36111

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Rondout Valley High National Honor Society Helps Area Seniors (3/5/02)
The RVHS National Honor Society has announced a community service project directed towards assisting our community's senior citizens. National Honor Society Members have volunteered to assist seniors at no charge with yard clean up, shopping, rides to doctor appointments and other services that seniors might require. For further information please contact Nathan Shemella at 687-2208 or by email at nshemella@yahoo.com.

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Postponed (3/5/02)
According to Town Clerk Veronica Sommer on 2/19/02, the legal notice of the sale of land on Sand Hill Road was delayed pending the receipt of further information. The legal notice of sale will probably be posted in March after the additional information is received.

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (3/5/02)
In its continuing effort to provide information on events in the Town of Rochester, the Rochester Residents Association has arranged to video tape town government meetings and broadcast them on Time Warner Cable. The tapes will be replayed every Monday night on the Time Warner public access channel 23 at 7:00 pm. The first broadcast will show the Town Board meetings of January 3, 2002, January 31, 2002 and February 7. Copies of tapes of these meetings are also available at a nominal cost. Due to lack of notice, no video tape was made of the special Town Board meeting of January 11, 2002. The Rochester Residents Association is also publishing unofficial notes of the meetings on its website, www.accord-kerhonkson.com.

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Help Wanted - Video Taping (3/5/02)
We are looking for volunteers with video equipment to attend and video tape meeting of the Rochester Town Board, Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals. The tapes would be used to inform readers about Town government proceedings and copies would be made available to any interested party. A small stipend would be paid to cover expenses, etc. Please e-mail TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com if you are interested in volunteering.

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Reservoir Permits No Longer Required to Drive on Adjacent Roads (3/5/02)
For further information call the Town of Olive's assesor's office at 845-657-8137.

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Kerhonkson-Accord First Aid Squad Classes for March  (3/5/02)
First Aid Class- Sat. March 23- 9:00 -1:00 pm
CPR- Tues. March 26th & April 2nd- 6:30pm - must attend both classes for certification; renewal- attend 4/2 class only

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Town Code Available (3/5/02)
Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts. (3/5/02)
We would be interested in publishing any letters about the recent proposal to permit gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort or at other nearby facilities. Please send your letters to TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com for publication. Please see the letters received on this subject so far, which are posted below.

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (3/5/02)

Dear AccordTownCrier:

We are opposed to the establishment of any form of legalized gambling in the area. Our knowledge and experience of elgalized gambling in Atlantic City, NJ is that the institution of gambling engenders an atmosphere whereby crime and a general dissipation in the morality of the community exists.

Nancy Copley & Bernard Rubin
Accord

Dear Editor:

I am very worried about the proposal to introduce gambling to the Hudson Valley Restort. I live only about a mile from the resort, and I fear that introducing a casino would have devastating effects on the beautiful rural environment. The increased traffic alone would be a nightmare, on the narrow, twisting country roads (think of a gambler from NYC encountering the hair-pin turn on Route 44-55 in the dark), and widening the roads would be destructive to the delicate ecosystem of the Shawangunks. Even without gambling, the Hudson Valley Resort, with its high-rise construction, is an anomaly in the area; with a casino it would be a piece of Atlantic City or Las Vegas in the middle of a lovely rural area -- totally inappropriate in
appearance and function.

And then there are the worries about increased crime, mob involvement, drunk driving, legal problems with "imported" Indian tribes, and so forth, as discussed in the recent issue of the Accord-Kerhonkson Town Crier. We don't need this kind of trouble. The kind of development that would be beneficial to a rural area should be emphasized, such as making sure that every household has high-speed Internet access, to enable more people to work at home on their computers, rather than clogging the roads and polluting the air by driving automobiles to and from work. With high-speed Internet access, you don't have to be in New York or San Francisco to do the most advanced types of knowledge work. I have been doing computer development and writing at home for about 12 years now, and my communications have recently become more efficient with TimeWarner's introduction of RoadRunner service to Ulster County. This is the type of development we need.

Helen Feddema
Kerhonkson, NY

Especially since my property abuts that of the Hudson Valley Resort and I am defenseless against them--but also on more important grounds--I am totally opposed to gambling casinos here (or anywhere else, for that matter).
Traffic, expensive infrastructure problems, the introduction of (even more) organized crime, the facilitation of compulsive gambling leading to family breakdown, stealing, etc. and even light pollution, making it impossible to see the heavens--all are reasons to ban gambling casinos. 
As for positive claims, a trip to Atlantic City ought to convince anyone. Where before there were the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk and the slums, Now there are the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk, the casinos and the same slums. It is all a plot to enrich the owners of the casinos (and only them) and it takes money out of the productive economy and devotes it to something perfectly useless or pernicious.

Jack Arnold
Kerhonkson

 

Gambling can be groovy to most, I guess. I like gambling like a junkie likes his fix. I've had a compulsive relationship with it for 40+ yr. I sat on a stoop for a year watching Atlantic City debate itself; If Resorts was to be permanent or not. I brought stocks the week before decision, which was the quickest 100% I ever made. Casinos will change your neighborhood, forever. Not only the feeder roads, the quick conveniences, the weak will perish, the strong will survive. You don't know where the weakness will come from, be it a son or daughter or husband or wife. Thieves and prostitutes will not only come from out of town they will be your own kids. That's why Indians won't let their own gamble. They know those dangers. Many will enjoy the good times, say only 15% fatality. In truth it might be more like 40% unless one's a masochist. I've only met a few who were having a 'real' good time. It usually starts out that way but. Smart people don't gamble they take the cash. The people who gamble need the fire.

Bill Dukas
Kerhonkson

 

 

 

 

Rochester Town Board Asked to Consider Affordable Housing Proposal

A proposal by Bruce Levine of Buffalo for an affordable housing project was discussed at the February 7 Town Board meeting. Mr. Levine indicated that his firm was asked by the Wawarsing Supervisor to develop a plan for an affordable housing project. The plan is being made for a parcel of approximately 5 acres on the Wawarsing/Rochester town line and 4.69 acres sits in Wawarsing (all except 1 acre is in a flood plain) and .89 acres sits in Rochester. The plan calls for approximately 34 housing units/townhomes to be located behind the Key Bank and Post Office in Kerhonkson (Peter & West Streets). Mr. Levine and his co-developer, Dawn Sanborne, are preparing a proposal to be submitted to the NY State Housing Trust Funding Corp to obtain long term low interest loans. Applications are due March 25,2002. Federal tax credits would also be obtained and sold to investors to raise the necessary equity. The units would be available to people who earned less than 60% of the median income in the area, or approximately $18,960 to qualify for a 670 square foot one bedroom unit (up to 2 people), $21,360 for a 850 sq. ft two bedroom unit for up to four people, and $26,700 for a 1,050 sq ft three bedroom unit for up to five people). The project will be managed by Two plus Four Management in Syracuse. Mr. Levine requested a letter of support from the Rochester Town Board.

 

Of the 34 units, 14 units would be sited on the .89 acres in Rochester. These 14 units at full capacity would have approximately 11-14 children. The 20 units in Wawarsing would have a maximum capacity of about 20 children. The firm calculated the population density in Rochester to be about 1 unit per 2,700 sq. ft of land, and the population density in Wawaring to be about 1 unit per 10, 200 sq ft of land. Overall, the density would be 1 unit per 7,100 sq. ft.

 

Once funding approval is received from the State, the project managers will submit a plan requesting either a zoning variance or an amendment to the town’s zoning law, which currently requires one acre per housing unit. Water and sewerage for the project would come about through a connection to the Wawarsing system. It was noted that the flood plain map indicated that the 100 year flood plain came right up to the edge of the building.

 

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Ulster Resort Seeks OK For Kerhonkson Indian Casino

By Steve Israel, Times Herald-Record, sisrael@th-record.com

Kerhonkson.   A new Ulster County player wants in on the Catskill casino game. But the odds are stacked against it. The Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson has hooked up with a gaming operator and a group of Indians to open a casino on its 350-acre property, said its general manager, Stephen Gorse. "We are very much interested and very much involved," said Gorse, who added that he's meeting with Gov. George Pataki's office next week. Gorse would not name the operator. But he did claim it's "one of the top ones in the world." He also would not name the Indians. But he said they're not from New York and are not federally recognized. Those are two major problems. At least four tribes with New York roots want one of three spots the state OK'd for Catskill casinos. Each tribe has a land claim against the state that needs to be settled. One tribe, the Oneida Nation of New York, sent the PricewaterhouseCoopers accounting firm to the Catskills this week, to check out such casino sites as the Concord, Grossinger's and the Nevele. Plus, a tribe must be recognized by the Bureau of Indian Affairs to apply to take non-Indian land in trust for a casino. Gaining federal recognition can take 20 years. This week, the Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs told the House of Representatives the process is growing slower. "We're going to lose ground, not gain ground," Neil McCaleb said. Even if the Hudson Valley Resort beats the odds and Gorse says he and his team that includes lawyer Scott Bonacic, the son of state Sen. John Bonacic, are confident  they could face local opposition. The resort could widen the wooded Route 44/55 to four lanes. It also could build a new road and new exit off the New York State Thruway that would bypass New Paltz. That may cause quite a stir in environment-conscious Ulster County. "This area will get mobilized against that pretty quickly," said a member of an environmental group who did not want his name used. TH Record (2-9-02)

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Legislator’s Widow to Assume County Seat

The Ulster County Legislature unanimously voted to have Marlene Dunn, the widow of the late Vincent Dunn (R-Kerhonkson) who died on January 1, succeed him in his county legislative seat until a special election in November 2002. Mrs. Dunn, 64, has said that she will run in the November election to serve the remainder of her husband’s two-year term (Freeman 2/17/02)

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County Legislature Approves $5 million Bond for County Jail Site Preparation

The County legislature, by a vote of 28-4, agreed to issue $5 million in bonds for site preparation for a new county jail, a project that is expected to cost approximately $70 million. The dissenting legislators were Richard Parete (D-Accord), Robert Parete (D-Boiceville), Kevin Hinchey (D-Saugerties), and Gary Bischoff (D-Saugerties). Richard Parete suggested that the county house inmates at the Eastern Correctional Facility in Napanoch, which he said has 200 empty beds. In addition to authorizing the $5 million bond issuance, the legislature has authorized $9.3 million in spending for the new jail, and has spent $4 million so far in planning, site purchase, and site development costs. (Freeman (2/16/02)

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Town Board to Seek Bids on 35 Acres

At its February 7, 2002 meeting, the Town Board authorized the solicitation of bids for the sale of 35 acres owned by the Town on Sand Hill Road, adjacent to the transfer station. Bids are due on February 25, 2002.

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Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting Cancelled Unexpectedly

The 2/12/02 meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals was cancelled at the last minute. Meetings are usually held on the second Tuesday of each month. No information was provided on when the meeting would be rescheduled.

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings

In its continuing effort to provide information on events in the Town of Rochester, the Rochester Residents Association has arranged to video tape town government meetings and broadcast them on Time Warner Cable. The tapes will be replayed every Monday night on the Time Warner public access channel at 7:00 pm. The first broadcast will show the Town Board meetings of January 3, 2002, January 31, 2002 and February 7. Copies of tapes of these meetings are also available at a nominal cost. Due to lack of notice, no video tape was made of the special Town Board meeting of January 11, 2002. The Rochester Residents Association is also publishing unofficial notes of the meetings on its website, www.accord-kerhonkson.com.

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Legal Notice - Misc.

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking sealed bids for HAULING OF ROAD MATERIAL. Bids to be received on or before February 26, 2002 at 11:15 am at the Town Clerk's Office, at which time they will be opened and read aloud. Specifications available at the own Clerk's Office - 845-626-7384. The Town Board has the right to reject and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that pursuant to resolution of the Town Board, Town of Rochester, Ulster County, New York, sealed bids for Hauling and Placement of Asphalt Concrete Pavement will be received at the office of the Town Clerk at Accord, NY 12404 until 11:30am on February 26, 2002 at which time they will be opened and read aloud. Bids will be submitted in duplicate in sealed envelopes, which shall bear on the face, the name and address of the bidder and title, ``Bid for Hauling and Placement of Asphalt Concrete Pavement''. Detailed specifications and bid forms are available at the office of the Town Clerk, Accord, NY, 845-626-7384. The contract for the above item will be awarded by the Town Board to the lowest responsible bidder. In cases where two or more responsible bidders submit identical bids as to price, the Town Board may reject any or all bids in its discretion. The Highway Superintendent also reserves the right to cancel the bid during the bid period due to unprofessional, or substandard worksmanship. The Town Board reserves the right to waive any informalities in or to reject any or all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking sealed bids for the rental of equipment to the Town of Rochester Highway Department for the purpose of Asphalt Paving. Specs available at the office of the Town Clerk, Accord, NY 12404 - 845-626-7384. Bids to be received on or before February 26, 2002 at 11:00am, at which time they will be opened and read aloud. The Town Boad has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

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Legal Notice - Name Change

State of New York Supreme Court: County of Ulster.

In the Matter of the Application of Randall L. Hoornbeek for leave to echange his name to Randy L. Hornbeck. Notice of Publication Notice is hereby given that an order entered by Supreme Court, Ulster County, on the 28th day of January 2002 bearing the Index Number 02-140, a copy of which may be examined at the office of the clerk, located at 285 Wall Street, Kingston, New York grants me the right effective on the 23rd day of February 2002 to assume the name of Randy L. Hornbeck. My present address is 4540 Route 209, Stone Ridge, New York, Ulster County, the date of my birth is May 26, 1955, the place of my birth is Kingston, New York, Ulster County, my present name is Randall L. Hoornbeek. (Daily Freeman, 2/4/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Gambling

 

Dear Editor:

Governor Pataki's ill-considered and, thank God, still contested legislation allowing for three Casinos in the Catskill Mountains has thrown residents, second home owners, small business people into terrible turmoil and dread from Mamakating to Marbletown and Gardiner to Sullivan. Thoughtful and informed people are already banding together to fight the intrusion of gambling with its devastating impact on our communities.

An effort by Nevada Gold (aka Blue Diamond Resorts) to construct a casino on Wellesley Island, N.Y. was "cut off at the pass" by an anti-casino group through dissemination of information revealing the negative effects of gambling casinos on the community. We can do the same here in the Rondout Valley. But we have to act fast!

According to the Boston Globe, the communities around Foxwood Casino in Connecticut cannot cope with the rising cost they have racked up because of the impact of the casino. The mayor of Ledyard has spent more than $2.2 million responding to Foxwood. North Stonington spent over $600,000 annually, said First Selectman Nicholas Mullane, just to deal with the impact of the casino, which doesn’t include the $780,000 it has spent in court fighting further expansion. The opening of porn shops, more drunken drivers, traffic jams and lower property values are among the negative impacts in North Stonington. "Foxwood has devastated our small town," Mullane said. "We are looking over our shoulder to see what is going to be next." We in the Rondout Valley can't afford casinos!

 

Most of us live and work in the Rondout Valley because we love its rural beauty and relative peace. Second home owners have come here for the same reasons and have thus contributed to the steady growth in the Rondout Valley. Throngs of weekenders visit Minnewaska State Park and the Mohonk Preserve to hike, bike, ski and swim, and enjoy the incredible beauty of the Shawangunk Ridge. We are indeed blessed by this natural beauty! We don't need casinos!

 

The dramatic growth of gambling is not the result of popular demand. Rather, it is driven by the gambling industry with its high priced lobbyists and outright lies about economic growth for the areas where they appear. Even Governor Pataki, who made a campaign promise never to allow gambling in N.Y. State, has, since September 11, fallen under the spell of the all-powerful gambling lobby. It seems that all our politicians are suffering from the mistaken notion that "gambling will fill the state treasury" and "cure the ailing tourism industry" in the Catskills. Wrong! Gambling is good for the gambling industry, not tourism. So called "tourism"; will come back when the developers build the kind of establishments that appeal to young families and the soon-to-retire "boomers", who prefer rustic inns in a natural setting with water sports, hiking and skiing to the outmoded, high-rise mammoth hotels with their chlorinated pools, nightclubs and ballrooms. The Pine Grove Resort Ranch, Mohonk Mountain House and the Minnewaska Lodge are but a few examples of establishments that meet present demands, as are all the wonderful Inns and B&Bs in our area.

 

The question arises, why can't Governor Pataki dole out an economic stimulus" package without the hidden agenda - casino gambling? Can he be in the pockets of the Gambling Industry? And why does State Assemblyman Kevin Cahill "sit on the fence"; on the gambling issue, while he personally disapproves of it? Where are men of conscience who will stand on the side of the people?

 

The politicians tell us that gambling will bring local jobs. Wrong again! The fact is, local jobs will be lost as businesses fold, and homeowners are forced to flee from the devastated villages. In addition, the gambling industry and the Indian tribes will bring in their own trained employees and some of the tribes will not share their revenues, not even with government. Nor do gamblers spend money locally. Casinos are designed to keep the gamblers fed, drunk, entertained and high on their addiction, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Gamblers do not stop at local restaurants and hardware stores, nor buy agricultural equipment, produce, pottery and antiques.

 

A study published in Managerial and Decision Economics in 2001reveals that there is a much greater hidden price to pay when it comes to gambling. For each dollar of benefits associated with casinos (nation-wide) there are two dollars in costs to society at large. This figure doesn’t even include casino-related prison costs, or higher insurance premiums to accommodate gambling-related claims.

 

Another study on the effects of casino gambling on society was done at the University of Chicago and can be read onhttp://norc.org/new/pdf/gamble.pdf

 

In other words, as an editorial in The N.Y. Times (11/29/01) noted, "In the end, Mr. Pataki's casinos will cost New York far more than they can ever deliver in state or local benefits".

 

I urge all Rochester residents and second home owners to learn more about the adverse effects of gambling on the environment, crime rate, property values and quality of life. Look upwww.whynocasino.orgor www.ncalg.org

Organize and write to your local papers and your legislature and stop this cancer before it spreads.

 

E-mail your protest against gambling to:

Senator Majority Leader Joe Bruno: bruno@senate.state.ny.us

State Sen. John Bonacic: bonacic@senate.state.ny.us

Kevin Cahill: cahillk@assembly.state.ny.us

Ward Todd, Chair Ulster County Legislature: wtod@co.ulser.ny.us

 

Astrid Fitzgerald, Kerhonkson

 

 

Dear Town Crier,

I am completely opposed to gambling casinos. All of the money spent by the gamblers will be taken out of the productive economy and used to further enrich the owners of the casinos and, no doubt, some of their friends. This is to say nothing of the traffic increase (for which we are in no way prepared and which would have to be accommodated by increasing our taxes) and the facilitated entree for organized crime. A glance at the paradise which gambling has made of Atlantic City ought to be enough to convince anyone.

John D. Arnold

 

Dear fellow Accordians/Kerhonksonians/Alliger-and-Samsonvillians:

We are property owners in Accord for the past 20 years, active in our local neighborhood, a supporter of the food bank, rent-a-kid summer program, and a frequent visitor to both the Rondout golf course and the Accord Speedway! Here is my stream-of-consciousness opinion concerning casino gambling in the Town of Rochester:

 

One of the worst things that could possibly happen to our town is gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort. Anyone who enjoys, on any level, the current world of Accord needs to understand that gambling at HVR will mean crime, an enormous expense to our town government, higher taxes to pay for those expenses, enormous parking lots, bright signs and lights all night long, and a honky-tonk atmosphere that will lower property values; there will be a huge increase in traffic and the attendant accidents, speeding, drunk driving and deaths - all the first-response responsibility of our already over-burdened local rescue squad. And that's if gambling is a success! If it's a failure, the result will be our own mini-version of Liberty New York.

 

It gets worse: anyone who thinks gambling will increase property values or our quality of life should read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com) about the mega-casino in Connecticut which grew from a naive idea to pump a few dollars into a poor community and which has grown into a corrupt, crushing entity absolutely destroying what was once a region similar to our own. This book will scare you. I am not against gambling in a hotel as a source of nightlife, jobs, entertainment, etc - but only if the casino is someplace where there is already a infrastructure to service it (Atlantic City, Monticello, Vegas). Granite Road and the Town of Accord does not meet that description. A suitable site (beneficial to our county tax rolls as a whole) could be the Nevele/Fallsview - right on a main road, close to Rt. 17, easily patrolled by State Police on the 209/Rt.17 corridors, with the possibility of depressed Ellenville getting a positive spillover of restaurants, cafes, and theaters (making it as it was 30 years ago). The obverse is true in Accord: the Granite/HVR site would necessitate a substantial widening of town roads, Rts 44/55 and 209 would be hopelessly clogged with traffic (forget popping over to New Paltz in 20 minutes) - as would Berme and Towpath when people try to "beat" the traffic - the bright lights from a casino would adversly affect Mohonk, the Minnewaska State Park, and all of us who want to enjoy a dark evening; On the other hand, a casino at the already-bright Nevele might help our county and our property values by introducing people to our town and local businesses without changing the nature of Accord. As to "Indian gambling", please read the Foxwoods book - "importing" a tribe is a dangerous sham that will result in lawsuits as further adjoining properties are claimed for casino use - and fighting these claims become issues for federal court. Yes, there may be some more hotel maintenance jobs if there was gambling in Accord, but the good resort jobs always go to outsiders, and what few jobs are gained locally will not outweigh the costs to our town in road maintenance, providing fire and rescue service to the stricken drivers who will now clog our roads, and the nightmare and necessity of constantly fighting ‘big money attorney situations’ where any questioning of what the casino demands will land our local government in state and federal court, causing our taxes to skyrocket unless we acquiece to whatever the casino demands. There is no getting around it: a casino in Accord will change our town, for the worse, forever.

 

Thanks for your offer of this platform for my thoughts,

Neil Cohen

 

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Letter to the Editor - County Jail

 

Dear Editor

The Ulster County Legislature is moving forward with a plan to build a "mega" jail at a time when federal and state governments are warning of serious financial shortfalls and are tightening their belts. This "mega" jail would take three years to complete and cost $80 million to $100 million to build.

 

In 1998, when this idea was steamrolling through the Legislature, it was projected as being only a $35 million to $40 million project. No hard figures were provided, but comparison with Orange County's jail, recently built for $92 million, suggest the lower figures were never serious. Of course, any "realistic" numbers were withheld until after the 2001 election.

 

Consider that the original reason for the jail -- to solve Ulster County's overcrowing problem -- is no longer valid. Here were are in 2002 with 281 jail beds with an average of over 60 beds empty every day. This new jail project is for 400 beds. That's 119 more beds than we have today at the current facility on Golden Hill. At a cost of $80 million, that comes to over $600,000 per extra bed! Yet our current jail was built in the early 1970s with the condition it could be easily added on to.

 

Though I've always had serious reservations about this huge project, I wanted to get as much information as possible from the other side of the debate. While attending the Jail Oversight Committee meeting two weeks ago, I asked three questions:

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Was there a report on site preparation for add-on construction at the existing Golden Hill site?

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Was a study done on the costs of reconverting an existing wing to a secure facility? (The current community corrections building at one time was a 24-bed housing unit, for example).

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Was a study done on renovations needed to eliminate variances on the existing jail building ? (I imagine a study would reflect direct supervision concept, program space requirements, and necessary support services.)

 

The committee advised me that these studies were done and I would get a copy of the reports. After a week with no reports, I sent letters to Legislator Tantillo, (R-New Paltz), Chairman Ward Todd (R-Shandaken), Majority Letter Gerentine (R-Marlboro), and Minority Leader Feldman (D-Saugerties). That night I received a call from Todd advising me that the leadership never explored the cost studies for adding onto the current jail; never explored the possibility of reconverting the community corrections wing back to a maximum security facility; and never explored the possibility of making the 60 bed modular a permanent facility.

In effect, they never considered, never studies, and never reviewed any option other than building a new "mega" jail.

 

It is difficult to keep an open mind on such a huge and costly project when the planning and prepartion have been so horribly incomplete. I defy anyone to show me a rational or moral reason to spend this $80 million to $100 million on this "mega" jail. I'll be amazed and even stand corrected if one can.

Richard Parete

Ulster County Legislator, District 1

(D-Accord)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.

We would be interested in publishing any letters about the recent proposal to permit gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort or at other nearby facilities. Please send your letters to TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com for publication. For a link to recent articles on gambling in the Catskills, please see the following link: http://www.recordonline.com/news/special_reports/casino.htm

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Rochester 2002 Assessment Roll Dates

This and other information on property taxes and the tax calendar can be found online at the NY State Office of Real Property Services website for Rochester at http://www.orps.state.ny.us/MuniPro/muni_theme/muni/00fiscal.htm?514400

Fiscal Year Dates: 1/1/2003 to 12/31/2003

Valuation Date: 1/1/2002

Tentative Roll Date 5/1/2002

Grievance Day 5/28/2002

Final Roll Date 7/1/2002

Budget Approval 11/20/2002

Tax Levy Date 12/31/2002

Tax Lien Date 1/1/2003

 

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Town Board Addresses Transfer Station Issues

The Town Board on January 31, 2002 reviewed transfer station practices and fees in an attempt to break even after last year's revenue shortfall. Buddy Hornbeck, town transfer station coordinator, said according to his figures, revenues for the year should be close to $191,000 if household garbage can be disposed of for $1.50 per bag, construction and demolition refuse can be dropped off for 5 cents per pound or $100 per ton and refrigerators can be discarded for $12 each. Tire disposal will cost $1.50 for tires under 16 inches in size, with the rim removed, the board agreed. On the rim, they said, will cost $3 each. Larger tires, 16 to 24 inches in diameter, will cost $15 and 24 inches and over will cost $30. Hornbeck estimated expenses at about $183,000. "We want to break even or make a few dollars, but we are not in this to lose money," newly elected town Councilman Randy Hoornbeek said. Last year, according to a report by former town Councilman Tony Spano, revenues fell short of expenses at the transfer station. The report cited poor oversight as the reason for the shortfall. Since then, Hornbeck said, he has been checking scale weights against Ulster County Resource Recovery bills and checking the number of household garbage punches on town-distributed punch cards against the value of the punches and the bills from the county agency.  So far this year, he said, revenue streams have been fine. At the previous Town Board's request, Hornbeck has also been keeping log books to document what the town allows the town Highway Department, the new community/youth center and local non-profit agencies to dump free of charge, as well as logging recyclables, refrigerators, or anything with compressors, and the difference between truck weights coming into and leaving the station, and tires, he said. "I did a December report for the Town Board, but it is not completely accurate," Hornbeck said. "The information is useful, because it lets the town know the revenue that is coming in." The report is missing some of the punches that went into the construction and demolition bin, he said. "The next one will have all the punches we did," Hornbeck assured the board. "At the end of this year, we will have a much better picture of what is going on at the transfer station." Supervisor Harold Lipton interjected, "Yeah, because now we are going to keep an eye on what's going on up there." Daily Freeman (2/1/02) 

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Ulster County Community College Layoffs

Due to a $500,000 budget deficit, 54 part time and six full time employees of UCCC will be laid off. The layoffs represent about 15% of the college’s 400 full and part time employees. According to the college, a statewide freeze on all budget negotiations as a result of the WTC attack resulted in a loss of approximately $350,000 in anticipated revenues. In addition, health insurance expenditures increased by more than $250,000 (a 20% increase). (BSP 2/1/02)

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir

Bring your automobile registration to the Town of Olive's assesor's office next to Davis Park West Shokan (off Route 28A). The office is open Tuesday through Friday 9-4; and Saturdays 9-3. Their telephone number is 845-657-8137.

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Copies of Town Budget Available

Copies of the 2002 Budget for the Town of Rochester are available for $2.00 per copy (to defray copying and postage costs). To obtain a copy, please send a check payable to the Rochester Residents Association, Inc., PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404. Please include your mailing address.

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Town Code Available

Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Help Wanted - Video Taping

Several of our readers have asked if it would be possible to make video tapes of Town Board meetings available. At present, the Town does not tape such meetings and we are looking for volunteers with video equipment to attend and tape them. The tapes would be used to inform readers about Town government proceedings and copies would be made available to any interested party. A small stipend would be paid to cover expenses, etc. Please e-mail TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com if you are interested in volunteering.

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Animal Benefit Sale

Dianas Fancy Flea Market will hold a high end Costume Jewelry sale every Friday, Saturday and Sunday in February from 11 am to 5 pm at Barking Dog Antiques in High Falls. Funds raised will benefit Ulster County animals.

 

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll

LEGAL NOTICE Notice of Receipt of Tax Roll and Warrant PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that I, Veronica Sommer, collector of taxes in the Town of Rochester, County of Ulster and State of New York, have received the tax roll and warrant for the collection of taxes within the Town of Rochester for the year 2002 and that I will attend the Town Hall, Accord, New York, in the said Town of Rochester each and every day during the month of January 2002 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. excepting Saturdays and Sundays and holidays for the purpose of receiving the taxes listed on said roll. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that taxes may be paid on or before the 31st day of January without interest. On all taxes received after such date, there shall be added interest of (1%) one percent of the amount of the unpaid tax for each month or fraction thereof until taxes are paid or until the return of unpaid taxes to the County Treasurer pursuant unto law. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that pursuant to the provisions of law, the tax roll for the Town of Rochester will be returned to the County Treasurer of the County of Ulster on the first day of June, 2002. Dated: 12-31-01 Veronica I. Sommer Collector of Taxes for The Town of Rochester (Freeman 1/8/02)

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Hudson Valley Resort Proposes Gambling 1/6/02

Stephen Gorse, general manager of the Hudson Valley Resort (formerly the Granit), said the hotel is "exploring all of our options at this point" with regards to bringing gambling to the facility.

State legislation approved in October 2001 paved the way for the largest expansion of gambling in New York's history, allowing for three Indian-run casinos to open in Ulster and Sullivan Counties and for others to operate in the Buffalo-Niagara Falls region. Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, state lawmakers have focused on legal gambling as a potential revenue generator that could ease the economic impact of the attacks.

"First, we have to find a recognized Indian tribe. This is probably the hardest challenge," Gorse said. "Then the next hardest part is negotiating with the governor," who has the final say on Indian-run casinos in New York.

Gorse said the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa has contacted the seven tribes in New York that are recognized by the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs in an effort to create a mutually beneficial alliance.

"We're going to see what options could pay out or could not," Gorse said, adding that even if an agreement can be reached with one of the tribes, the approval process could take between six months and three years. "It's a very long and tedious process," he said.

Both the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa and the Nevele Grande in Ellenville have been mentioned by state lawmakers as potential locations for casinos in Ulster County, as has the Tamarack Lodge in the Wawarsing hamlet of Greenfield Park. There has been talk of the Western Mohegan tribe operating a gambling endeavor at the Tamarack, but the tribe is not recognized by the federal government and people with knowledge of the process say recognition is unlikely.

The Western Mohegan Tribe and its counsel have been tight-lipped about their plans, but a state representative says Gov. George Pataki won't even consider any plan by the tribe if it doesn't gain recognition.

"The Western Mohegan is not a federally recognized tribe, and the governor's office would not negotiate with a tribe that's not federally recognized," said Stacy Walker, a spokeswoman for the state Racing and Wagering Board.

Only three of New York's tribes - the Seneca Nation of Indians, the St. Regis Mohawks and the Oneida Indian Nation - have deals for lawful gaming in the state.

The St. Regis Mohawks, who currently run a casino in Franklin County, near the New York-Canadian border, inked a deal in October with Park Place Entertainment to open a casino on the Kutshers Country Club property in Monticello, Sullivan County. The Oneida nation, which runs the Turning Stone casino in Rome, N.Y., also is in negotiations to establish a casino in Sullivan County. And the Senecas have a pact, which predates the new legislation, to open three casinos in the Buffalo-Niagara Falls area.

On Nov. 19, the state Attorney General's Office filed a lawsuit against the Western Mohegans, seeking a permanent injunction against illegal gaming at the Tamarack. The lawsuit came after a local bingo supply company told the state Racing and Wagering Board that it had been contacted by Ronald A. Roberts, the Western Mohegan tribal chief, saying Roberts was planning to operate a high-stakes bingo hall at the Tamarack.

Officials from the Nevele Grande - the hotel that resulted from the merger of the Nevele and the adjacent Fallsview - did not return calls seeking comment. (Daily Freeman 1/5/02)

 

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Local Legislator Vincent Dunn Passes Away

KERHONKSON - Vincent Dunn, who served two decades as a Republican Ulster County legislator and had been a town of Rochester supervisor before that, died on January 1, 2002 at Ellenville Regional Hospital. He was 81. Dunn, who had been ill for some time, was described by political leaders such as Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd, R-Shandaken, as a lawmaker who cared deeply about public service. Dunn, who was a retired fuel oil dealer and lifelong Kerhonkson resident, served the public in various capacities such as six years as Rochester supervisor in the 1970s into the early 1980s and, most recently, as an Ulster County legislator. This coming Monday, Dunn was to be sworn in for his 11th term along with 32 other members of the Legislature including Susan Cummings, R-Wawarsing. Cummings serves in Dunn's District One, an area that covers the towns of Denning, Marbletown, Rochester and Wawarsing. Dunn, who lived on Elizabeth Street and was a graduate of the former Kerhonkson High School, was born on Aug. 16, 1920. His wife, Marlene, survives along with seven children. (Daily Freeman 1/2/2002).

 

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Planning Board Suspends ByLaws and Re-Appoints Chair 1/6/02

At a special December 19, 2001 meeting, the Town's Planning Board voted to suspend its by-laws and re-elected Brian Drabkin as Planning Board Chairman. The former by-laws imposed a term limit on the Planning Board chairman, which would have been exceeded had they not been amended or suspended.

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Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Schedule 1/6/02

Happy New Year from The Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Center! Classes for January are: First Aid 4 hour: Saturday 1/26; CPR 2 mandatory sessions 1/29 and 2/5 6:30 pm; CPR renewal attend 2/5 session only.  To register or for additional information, call 626-3023.  Volunteers are needed for the First Aid Squad.

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Town Code Available 1/6/02

Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers 1/6/02

The Food Pantry, a local organization that distributes food to local families in need, is itself in need of volunteers to pack food baskets for clients. The volunteers serve for one week about every 7 weeks. Generally, the maximum time is about 1 hour per day if there are clients. There are days when nothing happens. Calls are made by the bagpacker from home and they only go to the Pantry when there is a client. There is also a need for other volunteers for simple services. Call 626-7501 and leave a message.

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Letter to the Editor on Mercury Contamination 1/6/02

Dear Editor,

Sources of the mercury contamination in the NYC reservoirs and almost all NYS waters are reported to be from coal fired power plants responsible for the acid rain contamination here in NY and the entire Northeast. As I understand it, there is a complex environmental impact of the decades of acidification which has destroyed the ability of watersheds to neutralize the acids and soils to bind up heavy metal contaminates contained in the exhaust of these dirty power plants.

It's a shame that the awakening need to retreat from reliance on foreign crude oil and a growing focus on coal as a power source does not also contain the awareness that we MUST have clean water to drink and forests to filter the air we breathe . . .

Frank Spada, Samsonville, NY, Spadafm@aol.com

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Legal Notice - Town Board Meetings 1/6/02

LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Town Board of the Town of Rochester holds its regular monthly Town Board meetings at the Town Hall, Accord, NY on the 1st Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. The Audit Meetings are held the last Thursday of each month at 4:30 p.m. at the Town Hall. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector/RMC (Freeman: 1/4/02)

 

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New York City Fined for Mercury Pollution in Rondout Reservoir 1/6/02
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection plead guilty releasing mercury-tainted water into the Rondout Valley Reservoir in August 2001. The DEP was fined $50,000 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and placed on probation for three months. The source of contamination was seals containing mercury used in sluice gates in the reservoir's gatehouses. The reservoir feeds into the Rondout Creek, which flows through Accord, High Falls and Rosendale. According to the EPA, contamination levels have never reached levels sufficiently high to threaten human health or safety. Fish have not been tested for contamination effects, however, the New York State Department of Health issued a public advisory warning people not to eat more than one meal per month of fish from the Rondout, Ashokan and Neversink Reservoirs. (BSP 12/21/01)

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Former Alligerville Resident Found Guilty of Killing Cats 1/6/02
In a case that has received international attention, a Sing Sing correction officer who crushed five kittens to death in a prison trash compactor was convicted yesterday of aggravated cruelty to animals. Westchester County Judge Peter Leavitt rejected Sgt. Ronald Hunlock's defense that the animals were so sick that he had no alternative but to kill them the way he did. The judge also refused to dismiss the most serious charges, rejecting the defense contention that a state law making aggravated animal cruelty a felony is unconstitutional. Hunlock, 47 and a former resident of Rochester, was convicted of five felony counts following the non-jury trial and could face up to two years in state prison when he is sentenced on March 19. Another judge will sentence the 20-year prison guard because Leavitt is retiring. The kittens were born to a black tabby named Midnight in early March and were cared for by inmate John Williams. On March 11, Hunlock saw Williams with a bag of contraband and searched the inmate's cell. He found the cats and ordered Williams to put them in a sealed box. He then accompanied Williams to the compactor and told him to throw the box inside. When Williams refused, Hunlock tossed the cats into the compactor and held the button down as the kittens were crushed. Midnight managed to jump out of the compactor when it went on. Hunlock was also convicted of attempted aggravated animal cruelty, a misdemeanor, for - trying to kill Midnight, who appeared at the trial and has since been adopted.

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Local Burglaries 1/6/02
There have been a number of local burglaries in the past few weeks. Two were reported on near Mettacahonts Roads and the PX in Kerhonkson was burglarized with an unspecified amount cash taken from its automatic teller machine.

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Property Tax Assessments Increase Throughout Ulster County 1/6/02
By Hallie Arnold, Freeman staff December 13, 2001
Ulster County's assessments have risen dramatically, fueled by a vigorous real estate market and strong new home construction during the year. Based on municipal assessments, the county's taxable value grew by 12.93 percent over the past year, an increase of $775 million. Once the equalization rate is applied to the county's taxable value, the increase swells to $931 million in 2002, 10.75 percent higher than this year.
The equalization rate is set by the state to even out differences in the way municipalities assess property value to provide a common ground for levying county and school taxes. While equalized values are not an exact representation of property value, they do give a broad view of growth trends, despite variations in the assessment processes that may account for large shifts in equalized value.
County Real Property Tax Service Agency Director Dorothy A. Martin said in some cases, what the equalized rates show is an inflated real estate market and not actual value. "They may not have new construction or business causing the growth," she said. "It's happening because their market is so inflated, and not because of the value."
Growing assessments have allowed some local governments to raise spending while, in most cases, cutting the burden on individual taxpayers.
Ulster County's recently adopted 2002 budget calls for a 3.89 percent increase in the property tax levy next year. Lawmakers project the average county tax bill for next year will decrease by 22 cents per $1,000 of assessed value because of increased assessments. (Freeman 12/13/01)
The Equalized value for the Town of Rochester was $326,512,347 in 2001 and $351,003,109 in 2002, represeenting a 7.50% increase. According to Town Assessor Sharon Hornbeck as quoted in the Blue Stone Press, changes are mainly due to new construction, adding more value to individual lots. "Sales are scattered and not specific. "We are so diversified and do not really have specific neighborhoods -- so the changes are basic." 

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Town Code Available 1/6/02
Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers 1/6/02
The Food Pantry, a local organization that distributes food to local families in need, is itself in need of volunteers to pack food baskets for clients. The volunteers serve for one week about every 7 weeks. Generally, the maximum time is about 1 hour per day if there are clients. There are days when nothing happens. Calls are made by the bagpacker from home and they only go to the Pantry when there is a client. There is also a need for other volunteers for simple services. Call 626-7501 and leave a message.

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Legal Notice: Main Street, Kerhonkson 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE The Town of Wawarsing Town Board is seeking Proposals for the sale of Town Property in the Hamlet of Kerhonkson. Property is located on Main Street, Kerhonkson, NY. One parcel 76.13.5-3 is vacant land on Main St., the other parcel 76.13.5-2 at Main Street, Kerhonkson, NY. Proposals should be submitted to the Town Clerk at 108 Canal Street, Ellenville, NY no later than January 3, 2002 by 12 noon. By Order of the Town Board Jane Eck, Town Clerk Freeman 12/11/01)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Business Meeting 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold
the End of the Year Business Meeting on December 27, 2001 immediately following the Audit/Workshop Meeting at 4:30 p.m. at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector/RMC (Freeman 12/19/01)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Organizational Meeting 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE Please take notice that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold the Organizational Meeting on 1-3-02 at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, with the Town Board Meeting immediately following. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector (12/19/01)

 

 

 

 

 

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Town Government Notes, April 4, 2002 and March 28, 2002 (4/9/02)

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Private Property Rights: Home Rule Reigns in Rochester (4/9/02)

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Motorcycle Racetrack Draws Rochester's Ire (4/9/02)

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Low Scores for Rondout Valley Graduates (4/9/02)

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002 (4/9/02)

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Kelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow (4/9/02)

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (4/9/02)

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Help Wanted - Video Taping  (4/9/02)

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Town Code Available (4/9/02)

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Calling All Artists (4/9/02)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.(4/9/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - Zoning Board of Appeals (4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - School Board Elections and Budget Vote(4/9/02)

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Legal Notice - Solicitation of Bids (4/9/02)

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Articles/Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (4/9/02)

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Illegal Motorcross/ATV Track on Airport Road (3/26/02)

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Former Alligerville Resident Sentenced (3/26/02)

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002 (3/26/02)

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Robert Lapp Log Yard Still Not In Compliance (3/26/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Miscellaneous (3/26/02)

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Legal Notices - NYS DEC Environmental Notice Bulletin (3/26/02)

 
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Rochester Town Board Votes to Support Senior Citizens Housing (3/5/02)

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County Legislator Proposes Ulster County Gambling Commission (3/5/02)

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Students Want Principal Back (3/5/02)

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Swimmers Group Discusses Minnewaska Agreement (3/5/02)

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Three Accord Farms on List of Top Ten Farm Aid Recipients (3/5/02) 

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Rondout Valley High National Honor Society Helps Area Seniors (3/5/02)

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Postponed (3/5/02)

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Reservoir Permits No Longer Required to Drive on Adjacent Roads (3/5/02)

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Kerhonkson-Accord First Aid Squad Classes for March (3/5/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (3/5/02)

 

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Rochester Town Board Asked to Consider Affordable Housing Proposal (2/18/02)

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Ulster Resort Seeks OK For Kerhonkson Indian Casino (2/18/02)

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Legislator’s Widow to Assume County Seat (2/18/02)

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County Legislature Approves $5 million Bond for County Jail Site Preparation (2/18/02)

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Town Board to Seek Bids on 35 Acres (2/18/02)

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Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting Cancelled Unexpectedly (2/18/02)

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (2/18/02)

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Animal Benefit Sale (2/18/02)

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Help Wanted - Video Taping (2/18/02)

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir (2/18/02)

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Copies of Town Budget Available (2/18/02)

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Town Code Available (2/18/02)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts. (2/18/02)

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Legal Notices: Town Solicits Bids, Hoornbeek Name Change Notice (2/18/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling (2/18/02)

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Letter to the Editor - County Jail (2/18/02)

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Animal Benefit Sale (2/18/02)

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll (2/18/02)

 

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.

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Rochester 2002 Assessment Roll Dates

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Town Board Addresses Transfer Station Issues

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Ulster County Community College Layoffs

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir

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Copies of Town Budget Available

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Town Code Available

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Help Wanted - Video Taping

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Animal Benefit Sale

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll

 

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Hudson Valley Resort Proposes Gambling (1/6/02)

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Local Legislator Vincent Dunn Passes Away (1/6/02)

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Planning Board Suspends ByLaws and Re-Appoints Chair (1/6/02) 

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Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Schedule (1/6/02)

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Town Code Available (1/6/02)

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers (1/6/02)

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Letter to the Editor on Mercury Contamination (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice - Town Board Meetings (1/6/02)

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New York City Fined for Mercury Pollution in Rondout Reservoir (1/6/02)

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Former Alligerville Resident Found Guilty of Killing Cats  (1/6/02)

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Local Burglaries  (1/6/02)

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Property Tax Assessments Increase Throughout Ulster County  (1/6/02)

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Town Code Available  (1/6/02)

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Main Street, Kerhonkson Redevelopment  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Business Meeting  (1/6/02)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Organizational Meeting (1/6/02)

 

 

 

 

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Town Board Meeting Notes  (Video tapes of all town meetings are available for a nominal fee.)  Click here to view unofficial minutes in Adobe Acrobat format. 

 

Town Board - April 4, 2002

Moratorium on adult entertainment activities

Requirement for weekly transfer station reports

Authorization of sale of Sand Hill Road property

Elimination of position of Municipal Works Supervisor

No action taken on Supervisor Lipton’s proposal to increase hours of Transfer Station Attendant without increase in pay.

Authorization of Town Clerk to attend Town Clerk’s Association conference.

Adoption of interim harassment policy for town employees

Vote to join Hudson Valley Greenway

High School Parking on Kyserike Road

Purchase of Road sweeper

Update and publication of town zoning map

Money for Fire Department

Public Comment Topics:

Surplus Property

Earth Day Roadside Cleanup

Scenic Byway Report

Park Safety Inspection by former Municipal Works Supervisor

Illegal businesses on Airport Road, Queens Highway, spilled gravel cleanup expense, Accord Speedway flea market

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Town Board Audit Meeting -- March 28, 2002

Review and Payment of Bills

Authorization for Town Attorney to pursue litigation to stop illegal racetrack

Renewal of Accord Speedway Operating Permit

Declaration of Surplus Property on Sand Hill Road

Employee Insurance Buyback

Resolution to Amend Bond Anticipation Note Issuance Resolution dated March 1, 2001

Loan of Two Voting Machines to Rondout Valley Central School District

Transfer Station Backhoe

Samsonville Road Lighting Appropriation

Discussion of No Parking Signage on Kyserike Road

 

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Private Property Rights: Home Rule Reigns in Rochester

By Eric Gullickson, Blue Stone Press

Last week’s decision by the Town of Rochester to "bring any and all necessary litigation" against Gregory Post, a property owner on Airport Road who has set up a motorcycle racecourse on his land, raises questions as to what an individual can and cannot do with his or her own property.

Rochester town attorney, Mary Lou Christiana, said that the town’s Code Enforcement Officer, Douglas Dymond, has issued a letter to Post stating that he was in violation of the town’s zoning code. The code describes a racetrack as "any ground, area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-time tractor and truck pulls."

Section 107-4 of the law states that "No person shall operate any racetrack, as defined herein, without possessing a permit to operate the same as hereinafter provided."

Post, however, appealed the decision to the Zoning Board of Appeals, stating that it is not a commercial racetrack but something he uses privately. "We’re not a sanctioned racetrack," said Post. "We’re a group of friends just having fun."

Post said that Dymond issued him a ticket for an "illegal race track," but nobody has told him to stop riding on his property. He also said that besides receiving the ticket, he knew of no neighbors in the area who were against it. "If they had a problem with the noise they should have come and said something," he added.

However, both will Nixon and Elizabeth Panzer, neighbors who live uphill from the track, say that they have gone to the Zoning Office to complain about the noise. "It looks like one (racetrack), it sounds like one, any by the town’s definition it is one," said Panzer. "The noise is an issue," said Nixon. "We live over the crest of the hill - we can’t see if but we certainly hear it. I feel bad about this. I don’t’ want to create ill will, and I can appreciate where he’s coming from, but I think the fact that the town has asked him to stop and he’s continued to do it is an act of defiance.

Post, who races motocross for recreation in Walden, NY and other locations in the region, said that he initially cleared some trees from one portion of the nine-acre parce a few years prior in preparation to building his house. Currently he has a driveway permit filed with the town and it wasn’t until he created the motorcycle course that he was cited for having cut down trees, and for changing the topography of the land, he said. Post added that he has an eight paged petition signed by people who support his situation and that he plans on presenting to the Town Board. "I know I’m not doing anything illegal. It’s for recreational use," Post said.

Rochester supervisor, Harold Lipton, said the he personally is not against the motorcycle course, but it does violate the town’s zoning code. "The thing that he’s got there looks like fun, but it could get dangerous -- it is something that could catapult into a problem, " Lipton said. "If he wants to ride around on it by himself that’s fine, but the town cannot condone it the way it is." "Things have to be defined and they have to go through the ritual to do it. I’m in the position to have people conform to the rules."

Now that Post has an appeal to the Zoning Board, Lipton said he has to stop using his property for motorcycle riding. "According to the law it’s illegal if he continues," said Lipton. "If he gets a permit it’s ok, but it’s wrong right now."

Dennis Doyle, Ulster County’s Principal Planner said that any town in New York has the right to adopt and amend local laws under the Municipal home Rule Law. The law gives local governments the power to abridge state and federal government. "It’s up to the individual community, " Doyle said. "The community can abridge that right through their statute.’

Mary Lou Christiana’s recommendation to the Town Board to force Post to comply with this law is an effort to protect the town from potential litigation from affected neighbors in the community. Under the laws of nuisance and trespass, an individual has the right to use his or her property, but not in a way that injures others. Nuisance laws are applied by the following criteria: Did a violation of property rights occur? Who is liable for the damage? How is the amount of liability assessed?

The common law of nuisance forbids individuals from using their property in a way that causes harm to others. A private nuisance refers to an activity that interferes with an individual’s reasonable use or enjoyment of his or her property. A public nuisance is an activity that threatens the public safety, health or welfare, or damages community resources, such as public roads, parks and water supplies. "You just can’t do anything you want," Doyle said. "Does a town have the right to leagally do this? The answer is yeah, they do. No only do they have a right, the next door neighbor has a right as well." (BSP 4/5/02)

 

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Low Scores for Rondout Valley Graduates

An indpendent report published by the School Report Express showed that of area schools, Rondout ranked the lowest I both verbal and math Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) scores, with an average 481 verbal and 506 in math. Only Ellenville Central School District scored slightly lower on math scores, although students there scored slightly higher on the verbal test. Additionally only 65% of seniors at Rondout actually took the tests and 37% went on to 4-year colleges or university. At Kingston 45% of seniors went on to 4-year colleges and 70% took the exam, with an average 526 math and 540 verbal score. Of Rondout’s graduating seniors, 23% go direcly into th work force compared to 11% for Onteora, 12% for Ellenville, 4% for New Paltz and 7% for Kingston. (BSP 4/5/02)

 

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Motorcycle Racetrack Draws Rochester's Ire

By Dawn Letus, Correspondent, Daily Freeman

The Rochester Town Board on Thursday (3/28/02) authorized Town Attorney Mary Lou Christiana to "bring any and all necessary litigation" against an Airport Road property owner to stop him from operating a motorcycle racetrack on his property. Supervisor Harold Lipton said Gregory Post has been cited by the town's zoning code enforcement officer for cutting down tress, changing the topography of his property and developing a dirt motorcycle track on his property with out a permit. Post, in turn, has filed an appeal with the town Zoning Board of Appeals. His position is that the track is being used privately, not commercially, and is contained within his property. Therefore, it does not need a permit. However, Lipton said, Post has refused to cease and desist the racetrack's operation until the Zoning Board reaches a decision in the matter.

Unfortunately, Councilman Randy Hornbeck said at the meeting, the town's zoning code, which defines racetracks as "any ground area or track upon which races, contests or demonstrations of skill or stunts involving motor vehicles are conducted, except for one-day tractor and truck pulls," needs to be refined.

As far as board members knew, they said, Post has not collected any money for operating the track and is using it for the recreation and pleasure of himself, his family and friends. Located in a residential district adjacent to the town's landfill, the property is being used primarily by teens on dirt bikes, board members said.

In other business, the Town Board renewed Twin Track Promotion's special permit to operate Accord Speedway, a quarter-mile, dirt motorcar racetrack off Whitfield Road and approved 40 Wednesday and Saturday race dates, beginning April 12. The permit also included three rain dates to allow the track to fulfill its 40 day season. (Freeman March 29, 2002)

 

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002

The Town of Rochester is preparing for its annual Earth Day roadside clean up scheduled for Saturday, April 20, 2002. Rochester Resident and Earth Day committee member Brinton Baker updated the Town Board on clean up plans. The Town Board has waived transfer station tipping fees provided that trash is in designated orange bags that are available only at the Youth Center. Volunteers are invited to a pot-luck spaghetti dinner on Saturday afternoon. All volunteers must register before hand by calling the Youth Commission Office at 626-2115. (BSP 3/15/02)

 

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LEGAL NOTICE ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Zoning Board of Appeals of the Town of Rochester will hold public hearings on the 9th day of April 2002. at the Town Hall, located at 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY, on the following matters: 7:00 PM Application by Dr. Holly Elliott and Pam Duke for Area Variance to subdivide a 1+/- acre parcel with an existing residential structure and a professional office building into two undersized lots, approximately one-half acre each; one with the residential structure and the second with a professional office building. Property located at Route 209 and Samsonville Road, Kerhonkson, NY, Tax Map 76.010-01-25 and in a `B' Zoning District of the Zoning Map 7:15 PM. Application by April Sasick-Uchitel for Area Variance for rear yard setback for proposed garage on property located at 81-2 Towpath Road, Accord, NY, Tax Map #77-009-01-12.122 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map 7:30 PM Application by Anthony Wright for Area Variance for sideyard setback for addition to barn on property located on Queens Highway, Accord, NY, Tax Map #68.003-02-19 and in an R-1 District of the Zoning Map. The above noted applications and maps are open for inspection at the offices of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Town Clerk, Accord, NY. Persons wishing to appear at such hearings may do so in person or by attorney or other representative. The applicants must be present or represented at the hearings.''

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LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking bids for (1) one used tractor/loader/backhoe - 1991 or newer with not more than 2750 documented hours of use. Specifications available at the Town Clerk's Office (845-626-7384) 50 Scenic Rd., Accord, NY 12494. Bids to be received on or before April 22, 2002 at 11:00 AM at the Office of the Town Clerk, at which time they 

will be opened and read aloud. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman 4/4/02

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NOTICE OF ANNUAL BUDGET VOTE AND BOARD ELECTION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Annual Budget Vote and Board Election 

will be held in the gymnasium at the High School on Kyserike Road, Accord, New York, on Tuesday, May 21, 2002, between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. NOTICE IS ALSO GIVEN that a copy of the statement of the amount of money which will be required for the ensuing year for school purposes may be obtained by any resident in the District during the fourteen (14) days immediately preceding the annual vote and election except Saturday, Sunday and holidays, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. at the following locations: Kerhonkson School Marbletown School Rosendale School High School Middle School District Office NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that a Public Hearing on the Budget will be held on May 14, 2002, at 6:30 p.m. (prevailing time) at the High School on Kyserike Road, Accord, New York, for the purpose of presenting the budget document for the school year, July 1, 2002 - June 30, 2003. NOTICE IS ALSO GIVEN that petitions nominating candidates for the Office of member of the Board of Education must be filed with the Clerk of the District not later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 22, 2002. The term of office is for (3) years. The following vacancies are to be filled: Term of Richard Lanzarone, expiring June 30, 2002 Term of Maureen Sheehan, expiring June 30, 2002 Term of Jo Shuman, expiring June 30, 2002 Each petition shall be directed to the Clerk of the School District, shall be signed by at least 66 qualified voters of the district, shall state the residence of each signer, and shall state the name and residence of the candidate. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that, pursuant to the Education Law, any qualified voter of the District may vote without prior registration. NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that 

the School District shall require ALL persons offering to vote at the Annual Election and Vote to provide one form of proof of residency, including but not limited to: Driver's License with physical address Non Driver Identification Card Voter Registration Card Check Book State Tax Form Heading with School ID #543 NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that pursuant to Section 2018-b of the Education Law, applications for absentee ballots for the Annual Election and Vote may be obtained at the Office of the District Clerk at least seven (7) days prior to the vote if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter or the day before the vote if the ballot will be picked up personally by the voter. Written requests for absentee ballots must be made at least seven (7) days and no more than thirty (30) days prior to the vote. Absentee ballots must be received at the Office of the District Clerk by no later than 5:00 p.m., prevailing time, on the day of the vote May 21, 2002. A list of all persons to whom absentee ballots shall have been issued will be available for inspection to qualified voters of the District at the Office of the District Clerk during regular office hours, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p. m., prevailing time, until the day of the Election and Vote. Any qualified voter may file a written challenge of the qualifications of a voter whose name appears on such list, stating the reasons for the challenge. AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that any proposition or question not requiring official notice in the call of the annual vote and election may be voted upon at said vote and election, providing a petition signed by at least one hundred (100) qualified voters, together with the legal residence of each, is filed with the Clerk of the District no later than thirty (30) days before the vote. Dated: March 25, 2002 BY ORDER OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT By: Lorraine P. Sciarrino, District Clerk Kingston Freeman (4/5/02)

 

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NOTICE TO BIDDERS BIDS FOR 2002-2002 TRANSPORTATION (OPTIONAL 2003-2007) The Board of Education of the Rondout Valley Central School District at Accord, County of Ulster, Accord, New York 12404, (in accordance with Section 103 of Article 5A of the General Municipal Law) hereby invites the submission of sealed bids on: TRANSPORTATION OF PUPILS for the 2002-2003 School year Bids will be received until 10:00 AM on the 11th day of April at the District Office, 122 Kyserike Rd. Accord, New York 12404, at which time and place all bids will be opened publicly. Specifications and bid forms may be obtained at the same office between 8:00 AM and 3:30 PM. Bids specifications will be available on March 21, 2002. The Board of Education reserves the right to waive any formalities in or 

to reject or to accept any or all bids. No bidder may withdraw his bid within sixty (60) days after the actual date of the opening thereof. BOARD OF EDUCATION RONDOUT VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT Dennis T. Geisler Asst. Supt. For Finance DATED: APRIL 2002 (Freeman 3/24/02)

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CASINO GAMBLING

Dear Neighbors,

As homeowners in Ulster County, we vehemently oppose the opening of casinos in either the Hudson Valley Resort or Nevele Grande, or anywhere, for that matter.

Frightening results ensue in small, rural communities such as the ones that surround the Foxwoods Casino: Social Services cases, porn shops, congested traffic, and lower property values. As suggested by a previous letter writer, read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com). >>

Or take the time to visit Atlantic City, not the web-site, but the real live place. And make sure you go beyond the glitz and into the neighborhoods that are a little ways away from the corporate money-center to the places where the people actually live. There is wasted humanity there - people trying to scrape their way on the waste of the ones who can afford to have their "fun" at the casinos - and that my friends, my neighbors, will be us, if our beautiful Hudson Valley offers a welcome to gambling casinos.

Please stop this from happening here...

Tracy Leavitt

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WSJ.com - Major Business News.htm April 4, 2002

Indian Casinos Today

Last month these columns criticized New York Governor George Pataki's midnight legislation to create six new Indian-run casinos in his state, part of a national gambling boom. We've since been called racist and part of a "growing national backlash against Indians." Maybe we're getting somewhere. Indian Country Today, the nation's leading Native American newspaper, accused us of "perpetuating Native American stereotypes" because we referred to "Big Chief Pataki," among other perceived insults. We thought we were having fun with Mr. Pataki, not Indians. But in any case the race card has become the first refuge of scoundrels in American politics. The folks who play it are usually trying to deflect attention from the real issues. The very big issue here is a $10 billion Indian casino industry that has grown with little public scrutiny into a huge political force. Indian Country Today is part of that force, since it's funded by gambling interests with a major stake in Mr. Pataki's casino deals. The paper is controlled by the Oneida Nation of New York, which already owns one casino in the state and is vying for the right to build another.

We were especially amused by Indian Country Today's assertion that "Indian gaming is among the most regulated industries in America." The rest of American business should be so lucky. The industry is regulated by the National Indian Gaming Commission, which has a budget of $8 million, or a fraction of the millions that the Indian casino lobby shovels at politicians. A former NIGC regulator-turned-lobbyist told Indian casino executives last year that "your best strategy is to keep the commission at its current size," the Boston Globe has reported. Gaming advocates like to cite "cooperation" with law enforcement, but the reality is that Indian casinos are largely self-regulating. If Congress is going to get serious about casino corruption, it might give the NIGC some teeth. The commission is responsible for monitoring more than 300 Indian gambling halls, but it has fewer than 30 full-time auditors and investigators. New Jersey gaming authorities, by contrast, employ more than 200 auditors for only 12 casinos .

Another reality is the presence of criminal interests in the industry. The chief of the FBI's Organized Crime Section described mob influence at casinos this way to the Los Angeles Times: "Our position is, 'If you build it, they will come.' They understand not only the mechanics of gambling , but also how the industry works: the labor unions, the equipment, the pawn shops, the trucking industry, the housekeeping services, all the collateral industries. They set up kickback schemes, extortion schemes, sweetheart

contract schemes." And come they did to Indian country. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune has reported links between Minnesota Indian casinos and "East Coast Mafia families"; companies named in the report denied knowing of any involvement with mob figures, saying any ties had been "coincidental and indirect." In California, the Rincon Indians say they have turned the corner on corruption, but through the 1990s they were plagued by mob takeover attempts, with convictions of a tribal council member and figures linked to the Pittsburgh and Chicago mafia. In Florida last year, the St. Petersburg Times reported that the Seminole Tribe's own police investigators had learned of a link to organized crime figures -- and were fired after bringing the information to the NIGC. Indian gaming looks like a corruption scandal waiting to happen. It already is a political scandal. Political figures in both parties have abused the federal tribal recognition process, which has granted groups of dubious lineage official tribal status and with it the right to open casinos. A recent report by the Interior Department's Inspector General found that the two Clinton-era heads of the Bureau of Indian Affairs -- Kevin Gover and Michael Anderson -- abused their authority by granting recognition to six tribes, despite objections from BIA professionals. Messrs. Gover and Anderson both left BIA to join law firms working on Indian casino deals. And here's the best part: Mr. Gover is now a columnist for Indian Country Today. Interior's IG also reported that an "egregious" share of the profits at Connecticut's Mohegan Sun Casino were taken by gambling mogul Sol Kerzner. He and his partners will rake in about $1 billion of profits through 2014, according to the Boston Globe. The IGC was powerless to stop Mr. Kerzner from fashioning a loophole that allowed him to evade Congressional

regulations limiting non-Indian partners to no more that 40% of the Mohegan tribe's profits. We think it's a sure bet that the same is slated for New York, thanks to Mr. Pataki and the casino lobby. Indian Country Today would better serve its readers if it tried to uncover such rotten deals instead of flacking for them.

April 4, 2002 Copyright © 2002 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

 

Dear Editor:

I personnaly am for gambling at the local resorts.

Most of the people who are sending in mail did not live here in the 60"s or early 70's. This place was hopping. Myself and hundreds of school age kids made more money than our parents and more than some locals make now. The hotels were booming and traffic was a great thing to see on Friday night. The Gelles', The Rubins, The Friedman's and many others supported the Towns of Rochester and Wawarsing.

Hundreds of people migrated from the city each weekend. Yes, they walked in the middle of the road and yes they got lost getting to there destination, but NO they didn't cause any major problems.

Look around. The place is dead. There are no more bungalow colonies, there are no people stopping at what is left of the local business. Transients are supporting the new business sprouting up on 209. They do not spend the night or the weekend. They pass through. As a local property owner who has raised his family here in the valley, I welcome Gambling.

As a teen, I purchased my first car, for cash. At 17, I was making $400 on weekends, plus extra work and $1000 for a full week during the busy season. Many people made more. I admit that there are people who gamble and can't afford it, but for the most part we will see the ones who come here to spend money for the weekend and go back home. They will stay at our resorts, laugh at the shows and drop a few dollars at the slots. They are not addicted, they are recreating. Most of the people who will come here are looking for a rest and the slots are a part of that .

Nay Sayers, Go back where you came from. This is part of the heritage of "The Mountains". We now have traffic ties ups with people passing thru. Why not give them a reason to stay here and spend their money. You must know that they will and are going someplace else.

John C. Motzer

Kerhonkson

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Illegal Motorcross/ATV Track on Airport Road

An motorcross/ATV track was recently set up on a six-acre parcel of land immediately north of the Town of Rochester Transfer Station on Airport Road. According to neighbors, the track has been used for racing by a wide variety of people. The Town’s Code Enforcement Officer issued town court summons to certain individuals noting that such racing was not permitted in R-1 residential zones. [3/26/02]

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Former Alligerville Resident Sentenced

In a case that has received international attention, Ronald Hunlock, a former 20-year veteran New York State corrections officer and former resident of Alligerville was sentenced to five concurrent one-year terms in prison after he was convicted of five counts of aggravated cruelty to animals after an incident in which he put five kittens into a trash compactor at the NYS correctional facility at Sing Sing, where he was employed. The judge in the case said that the crime [was] "so offensive and so calculated and so gratuitously cruel it diminishes the humanity of everybody." According to the judge, ten letters received recommended leniency and 468 recommended a harsh sentence. Hunlock’s attorney requested protective custody because other inmates might know him as a former corrections officer. He was also terminated by the Department of Corrections, a move which could cost him nearly $500,000 in lost pension and other employment benefits. (New York Post & Daily Freeman 3/23/02)

 

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Town of Rochester Prepares for Earth Day 2002

The Town of Rochester is preparing for its annual Earth Day roadside clean up scheduled for Saturday, April 20, 2002. Rochester Resident and Earth Day committee member Brinton Baker updated the Town Board on clean up plans. The Town Board has waived transfer station tipping fees provided that trash is in designated orange bags that are available only at the Youth Center. Volunteers are invited to a pot-luck spaghetti dinner on Saturday afternoon. All volunteers must register before hand by calling the Youth Commission Office at 626-2115. (BSP 3/15/02)

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Kelder’s Farm and Ulster County Draft Horse Association Spring Plow

A Spring Plow will be held at the Field of Dreams Farm on Route 209 on April 27th and 28th. There will be plenty of vendors, a chicken barbeque and a dessert booth. Demonstrations of historic plowing methods and an antique tractor pull will be featured. Call 626-7137 for more information . [3/26/02]

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Robert Lapp Log Yard Still Not In Compliance

In the three months since the town Zoning Board of Appeals ruled in early December against giving Robert Lapp a permit to continue operating his business in a residential area, nothing has been done to clean up the property, town officials said. Zoning Board of Appeals Chairwoman Marijane Knudsen-Hunlock said the board entertained the application from last spring through most of the summer, holding a public hearing open from May through September. But she said Lapp never gave the zoning board a completed application, or any of the documentation requested to determine the log yard's environmental impact on the area. In September, Lapp's attorney, Wayne Lonstein of Ellenville, asked to resubmit the application and conduct an environmental review, but Knudsen-Hunlock said those documents were never completed. Lonstein could not be reached for comment Thursday. Lapp has previously told the board that the property should have been covered under a "grandfather clause," because a previous owner had been issued a special use permit to operate Turner's Bus Garage on the property. Douglas Dymond, the town building inspector and code enforcement officer, said he has issued several letters asking Lapp to comply with town law, but so far, he said, Lapp has just pulled some of the logs back from the road. Ultimately, Dymond said, it is up to the Town Board to decide if it wants to take Lapp to court over the matter. "My responsibility is to turn it over to the town attorney and let the board decide the next move," he said. "As far as I know, it has not been addressed by the town attorney and it has not been turned over to the Town Board," Supervisor Harold Lipton said after Thursday's Town Board (Daily Freeman 3/8/02)

 

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Letters to the Editor - Casino Gambling

 

Hi, I agree with others that the Hudson Valley Resort is NOT the place for gambling. This area is the gateway to both the Mohonk and Minnewaska preserves and would be destroyed by the construction and other drastic changes that would be necessary for gambling here. The Nevele is obviously a better choice, with room for increased construction, although even there the increased traffic could be disastrous.

Carol Hillman

Kerhonkson

 

Gambling can be groovy to most, I guess. I like gambling like a junkie likes his fix. I've had a compulsive relationship with it for 40+ yr. I sat on a stoop for a year watching Atlantic City debate itself; If Resorts was to be permanent or not. I brought stocks the week before decision, which was the quickest 100% I ever made. Casinos will change your neighborhood, forever. Not only the feeder roads, the quick conveniences, the weak will perish, the strong will survive. You don't know where the weakness will come from, be it a son or daughter or husband or wife. Thieves and prostitutes will not only come from out of town they will be your own kids. That's why Indians won't let their own gamble. They know those dangers. Many will enjoy the good times, say only 15% fatality. In truth it might be more like 40% unless one's a masochist. I've only met a few who were having a 'real' good time. It usually starts out that way but. Smart people don't gamble they take the cash. The people who gamble need the fire.

Bill Dukas

Kerhonkson

dukas@earthlink.net

 

Dear Editor

Especially since my property abuts that of the Hudson Valley Resort and I am defenseless against them--but also on more important grounds--I am totally opposed to gambling casinos here (or anywhere else, for that matter).

Traffic, expensive infrastructure problems, the introduction of (even more) organized crime, the facilitation of compulsive gambling leading to family breakdown, stealing, etc. and even light pollution, making it impossible to see the heavens--all are reasons to ban gambling casinos.

As for positive claims, a trip to Atlantic City ought to convince anyone. Where before there were the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk and the slums, Now there are the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk, the casinos and the same slums. It is all a plot to enrich the owners of the casinos (and only them) and it takes money out of the productive economy and devotes it to something perfectly useless or pernicious.

Jack Arnold

Kerhonkson

 

Dear Fellow New Yorker,

As homeowners in Ulster County, we vehemently oppose the opening of casinos in either the Hudson Valley Resort or Nevele Grande.

Frightening results ensue in small, rural communities such as the ones that surround the Foxwoods Casino: Social Services cases, porn shops, congested traffic, and lower property values. Please read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com).

Please, do not seal the same fate for our sweet valley.

Todd & Sandra Foster

 

Dear Friends and Rondout Valley Residents,

As you can see from the Poughkeepsie Journal article below, Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd has appointed a committee to study the issue of gambling. Joan Feldman is quoted as saying that Ulster County officials need to work with officials in Sullivan County to plan casinos. Well, that's a typical case of the blind leading the blind. (And that's being kind.) Sullivan has no idea what they're in for, or so they seem to act. As many frantic articles in the Record indicate, Sullivan officials are already realizing that they cannot possibly be ready for the gargantuan influx gambling brings - the increase in crime, drunken driving, gambling addiction, loan-sharking, organized crime, health care emergency, traffic problems, housing shortage, and the adverse economic impact on communities, families, etc. etc.

Of course, all they needed to do was to look at the many studies ong ambling and what has happened to the neighborhoods around Atlantic City and the once peaceful communities surrounding Foxwoods Resort Casino. Studies of the impact of casinos on neighboring communities and society abound.

Here are two:

Gambling Impact and Behavior Study from the Ntl. Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago:http://www.norc.org/new/pdf/gamble.pdf

A special edition of the Journal of Business and Public Affairs: http://www.murraystate.edu/qacd/cbpa/bber/search/gambling.htm

What they don't mention in the Poughkeepsie Journal is that if a casino is approved at the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson, there is a plan to make a new exit off the NY State Thruway to connect with 44/55 which they want to turn into a four-lane highway to speed up the traffic to the casino. Who, we should ask the Ulster County committee is going to pay for the relocation of thousands of families along 44/55, not to speak about compensation for the disruptions of their lives. Well, the answer is: the taxpayers.

 

It is most urgent to write many, many more letters to the editors of local papers and tell them and your legislature that we can't afford casinos...that we love the Shawangunk Ridge and the peaceful Rondout Valley...that we don't want the apple orchards and farms destroyed. Please take a moment to express your opposition to this madness, and ask all your friends to do likewise, before it's too late.

Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd: wtod@co.ulster.ny.us

Blue Stone Press: bluepress@aol.com

The Times Herald-Record: letter@th-record.com

Woodstock Times: news@woodstocktimes.biz

Freeman: publisher@freemanonline.com

Poughkeepsie Journal: www.poughkeepsie.journal.com

Thank you!

Astrid Fitzgerald

Kerhonkson

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Letters to the Editor - Miscellaneous

 

Dear Editor

I don't know where Councilman Hornbeck thinks that adults in the town of Rochester go to borrow books to read, but obviously many of us use the Libraries in Ellenville and Marbletown and are certainly in favor of supporting both of them. Perhaps he only meant that the town budget should be increased substantially in order to support them and also support the Little Ones Library?

Carol Hillman

Kerhonkson

 

Dear Editor:

I am so tired of the good OLE boy club in the town of Rochester! The corruptness in this town is close to putting DC politics to shame. I have seen so many laws passed to benefit the good OLE boys. That's right, we don't mention nor show what is going on till it has been voted on & passed.

It is time people that right tax payers take a step up & start asking questions. I am so Happy to see the town meeting are going to be broadcast so those of us that are mom's & need to spend our time with our children can see what is going on. (although they'll find someway I'm sure to stop tape as something needs to be snuck in.)

I am also very angry that every year I have to call to see when special activities take place for children such as Easter egg Hunts etc. & How low to be told when I call townhall & ask when things are taking place, that it is posted at the local PX hmmm quess one of those things again only club members are allowed to benefit. (not all of us hangout at the local px)

How hard is it to post it in the website, local Bluestone aha that's right then it would allow all the local tax payers to join in.

Donna Post

Accord

 

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New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - Environmental Notice Bulletin & Related Legal Notices

 

LEGAL NOTICES & NYS DEC ENVIRONMENTAL NOTICE BULLETIN

NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION NOTICE OF COMPLETE APPLICATION Date: March 11, 2002 Applicant: MINNEWASKA HOSPITALITY CORPORATION

400 GRANITE ROAD KERHONKSON, NY 12446 Facility: HUDSON VALLEY RESORT & SPA 400

GRANITE ROAD KERHONKSON, NY 12446 Application ID: 3-5144-00007/00002 Permits(s)

Applied for: 1 - Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private / Commercial / Institutional

SPDES Project is located: in ROCHESTER in ULSTER COUNTY Project Description: The

Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollution Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES) permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 150,000 gallon per day of treated sanitary waste to the Rondout Creek tributary. Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for a hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number: NY 010 2903 State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination Project is not subject to SEQR because it is

a Type II action. SEQR Lead Agency None Designated State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations. Availability For Public Comment Comments on this project must be submitted in

writing to the Contact Person no later than 04/12/2002 Contact Person ERIN L. BURNS NYSDEC 625 BROADWAY ALBANY, NY 12233 (518) 402-9167 Kingston Freeman (3/17/02)

3/13/02

Applicant: Alephi Alliance For Jewish Renewal

99 Mill Hook Rd

Accord, NY 12404-5821

Facility: Elat Chayyim

99 Mill Hook Rd

Accord, NY 12404-

Application ID: 3-5144-00004/00002

Permit(s) Applied for: Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private/Commercial/Institutional

SPDES

Project is Located: Rochester, Ulster County

Project Description:

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES)permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 15,000 gallons per day of treated sanitary waste to the Rochester Creek tributary.

Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number: NY 009 9911

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination: Project is not subject

to SEQR because it is a Type II action.

SEQR Lead Agency: None Designated

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination: The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.

Coastal Management: This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act. Opportunity for Public Comment: Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Apr 12 2002. Contact: Erin L. Burns NYSDEC Headquarters 625 Broadway Albany, NY 12233 (518)402- 9167 elburns@gw.dec.state.ny.us

 

 

Applicant: Minnewaska Hospitality Corporation

400 Granite Road

Kerhonkson, NY 12446-

Facility: Hudson Valley Resort & Spa

400 Granit Rd

Kerhonkson, NY 12446-

Application ID: 3-5144-00007/00002

Permit(s) Applied for: Article 17 Titles 7 & 8 Private/Commercial/Institutional

SPDES

Project is Located: Rochester, Ulster County

Project Description:

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has received an application to re-issue the following EPA minor Private/Commercial/Institutional State Pollution Discharge Elimination System (P/C/I SPDES) permit. DEC has made a tentative determination to re-issue this permit for a five-year period, maintaining the current effluent limitations and monitoring and reporting requirements. This permit involves the surface discharge of up to 150,000 gallon per day of treated sanitary waste to the Roundout Creek tributary.

Additional information including the current permit, renewal applications, and supporting documentation may be obtained from, or inspected at the NYSDEC central office in Albany. Substantive comments on the permit or requests for a hearing or both must be submitted in writing to the contact person. SPDES Number : NY 010 2903

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination: Project is not subject to SEQR because it is a Type II action.

SEQR Lead Agency: None Designated

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination: The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.

Coastal Management: This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act.

Opportunity for Public Comment: Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Apr 12 2002. Contact: Erin L. Burns

NYSDEC Headquarters

625 Broadway

Albany, NY 12233

(518)402-9167

elburns@gw.dec.state.ny.us

 

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Town Board Votes to Support Affordable Senior Citizen Housing (3/5/02)

At its audit/workshop meeting on February 28, the Rochester Town Board voted to support the proposed low income housing project proposed its previous meeting. The project, if approved, would straddle the Wawarsing/Rochester town line near the Post Office in Kerhonkson. The project was not supported as originally proposed, however, with the Town Board adding the requirement that the project be exclusively for senior citizens as a condition of approval. If approved, the project would require an amendment to the Town's 1 acre density zoning requirement. Separately, at the same meeting, the town voted to endorse a proposal to add the additional name of the Vincent Dunn Memorial Road to Samsonville Road (County Route 3), and to accept a bid for the sale of a front end loader. The Town Board also approved the expenditure of approximatley $1,400 for the purchase of two-way radios for the Transfer Station. When bills were being reviewed, Councilman Hornbeck mentioned his concern that $20,000 (combined) was contributed annually to public libraries in Ellenville and Marbletown, he indicated his belief that funds should be given to the Little Ones Library in Rochester.

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County Legislator Proposes Ulster County Gambling Commission (3/5/02)
The future of casino gambling in Ulster County is on the minds of many local lawmakers, one of whom is suggesting the formation of a county gaming commission to oversee any casino gambling projects currently in the planning stages. "I think we need to take more of a proactive approach. I do think we're lagging behind," said Legislator Richard Parete, D-Marbletown. "Two groups have casino gambling commitments in Sullivan County, and there's three resorts actively seeking casino gambling in Ulster County. We need to ask the questions now instead of five years later, when it's too late." Parete said the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson, the Nevele Grande in Ellenville and the Tamarack Lodge in Greenfield Park have all been exploring casino gambling since state legislation was passed last October to allow three Indian-run casinos to open in Ulster and Sullivan counties. The state Legislature focused on casino gambling as a revenue generator to counter anticipated state budget gaps caused, in part, by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. All three of the resorts are in Parete's legislative district, and he said some of his constituents have begun raising concerns about casino development. Traffic congestion and unfair competition with local businesses are chief among their concerns, Parete said.

Majority Leader Richard Gerentine, R-Marlboro, said county leaders have been doing some legwork regarding casino gambling, including meeting with representatives from Gov. George Pataki's office, talking to local elected officials in the state Senate and Assembly, and meeting with Sullivan County officials to learn how they're approaching the issue. He added there have already been discussions with Legislature Chairman Ward Todd, R-Shandaken, about forming a gambling oversight committee of some sort. Of the three resorts in Ulster County that are frequently discussed as potential casino sites, only the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa has gone on-record with its plans. General Manager Stephen Gorse has said the resort is working with a group of Indians from out of state and a well-known casino operator on a casino gambling proposal, but would not publicly name either the tribe or the developer. Gorse could not be reached for comment Monday. Representatives of both the Nevele Grande and the Western Mohegan tribe, which purchased the Tamarack Lodge last year, have thus far declined to publicly discuss casino gambling at their respective facilities. Sullivan County lawmakers have negotiated deals with two tribes interested in siting casinos there. Both the St. Regis Mohawk tribe and the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans have reached agreements with the county Legislature to provide $15 million per year apiece in impact payments should their Sullivan County casinos open as proposed. (Daily Freeman, 2/26/02)

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Students Want Principal Back (3/5/02)
Six Rondout Valley High School juniors Tuesday presented the district's Board of Education with a petition signed by hundreds of students asking the board to reinstate former high school principal William Cafiero. Board President Nancy Taylor confirmed Cafiero is currently working in the school's district office as "an administrator on assignment." But, Taylor, along with district Superintendent Marilyn O. Pirkle, suggested the students talk to acting Principal Robert Keagle about their concerns, before asking the board to step in. The petition, signed by hundreds of high school students, said Cafiero treated students fairly, consistently and with respect. Danielle Taylor, one of the petition's presenters, said this year's freshmen were excluded from signing the petition. Most never knew Cafiero and could not speak to the changes, since Keagle took over in fall 2001, said Danielle Taylor, who is not related to the school board president.  Cafiero went out on sick leave at the end of July 2001. Pirkle has declined to say whether the leave was connected with findings last year by independent investigator Margaret Leibowitz that Cafiero had sexually harassed two teachers. (Daily Freeman 2/27/02)

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Swimmers Group Discusses Minnewaska Agreement (3/5/02)
Members of the group Swim Without Interference at Minnewaska hope to have an agreement worked out with the state that will open a new area at the park for long distance swimmers. Judy Mage, the coordinator of the group, said she and others met with representatives of the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation last week to discuss a proposal to open a second swimming area at Lake Minnewaska at what used to be called the family beach. Mage said under the proposal the state would install a buoyed line 200 yards from the beach to give swimmers a 400-yard round-trip space in which to swim. In return for the new area, the state is requesting that the group form an association of distance swimmers to obtain a $1 million life insurance policy and to certify swimmers to make sure they are capable of swimming the distance. Mage said the association would certify that the swimmers can go the distance using a variety of strokes, have the swimmers sign a waiver in case of accident, and issue photo identification. She said qualified swimmers would have to be at least 18 years old and agree to use the area on a buddy system since there would be no lifeguard provided by the state. Mage said there are still many details that need to be worked out and her group will be meeting with the state again on March 4. Mage said anyone who is interested in becoming certified to use the new area or to help administer it after an agreement is reached can contact her group at swimfreeny@yahoo. com, or can call (845) 255-7671. (Freeman 2/19/02)

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Calling All Artists (3/5/02)
The Rochester Residents Association is compiling a list of artists who reside or work in the Town of Rochester to facilitate the introduction of local artists to others in the area. Eventually, we would like to see if there is sufficient interest to sponsor an Open Studio Day or a local exhibition. The list will be published on-line on www.accord-kerhonkson.com and we are considering the possibility of displaying examples of local artists' work on the site. In any event, we encourage you to let us add a link to your website if you have one. If you are an artist or if you know of any in the Town of Rochester, please send us an email with the name and telephone number to Resident@Accord-Kerhonkson.com

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Three Accord Farms on List of Top Ten Farm Aid Recipients (3/5/02)
The Environmental Working Group (www.ewg.org) has recently published a county-by-county list of the recipients of Federal Farm Aid. Three Accord farms were included in the top ten recipients of federal farm subsidies in Ulster County. The group has compiled the database to gain support for a more equitable distribution of Federal Farm Aid, citing that, nationwide, most aid benefits large agribusiness corporations and not small family farms as intended. For the complete list of Ulster County recipients, see: http://www.ewg.org/farm/top_recips.php?stab=NY&county=36111

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Rondout Valley High National Honor Society Helps Area Seniors (3/5/02)
The RVHS National Honor Society has announced a community service project directed towards assisting our community's senior citizens. National Honor Society Members have volunteered to assist seniors at no charge with yard clean up, shopping, rides to doctor appointments and other services that seniors might require. For further information please contact Nathan Shemella at 687-2208 or by email at nshemella@yahoo.com.

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Sand Hill Road Land Sale Postponed (3/5/02)
According to Town Clerk Veronica Sommer on 2/19/02, the legal notice of the sale of land on Sand Hill Road was delayed pending the receipt of further information. The legal notice of sale will probably be posted in March after the additional information is received.

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings (3/5/02)
In its continuing effort to provide information on events in the Town of Rochester, the Rochester Residents Association has arranged to video tape town government meetings and broadcast them on Time Warner Cable. The tapes will be replayed every Monday night on the Time Warner public access channel 23 at 7:00 pm. The first broadcast will show the Town Board meetings of January 3, 2002, January 31, 2002 and February 7. Copies of tapes of these meetings are also available at a nominal cost. Due to lack of notice, no video tape was made of the special Town Board meeting of January 11, 2002. The Rochester Residents Association is also publishing unofficial notes of the meetings on its website, www.accord-kerhonkson.com.

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Help Wanted - Video Taping (3/5/02)
We are looking for volunteers with video equipment to attend and video tape meeting of the Rochester Town Board, Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals. The tapes would be used to inform readers about Town government proceedings and copies would be made available to any interested party. A small stipend would be paid to cover expenses, etc. Please e-mail TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com if you are interested in volunteering.

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Reservoir Permits No Longer Required to Drive on Adjacent Roads (3/5/02)
For further information call the Town of Olive's assesor's office at 845-657-8137.

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Kerhonkson-Accord First Aid Squad Classes for March  (3/5/02)
First Aid Class- Sat. March 23- 9:00 -1:00 pm
CPR- Tues. March 26th & April 2nd- 6:30pm - must attend both classes for certification; renewal- attend 4/2 class only

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Town Code Available (3/5/02)
Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts. (3/5/02)
We would be interested in publishing any letters about the recent proposal to permit gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort or at other nearby facilities. Please send your letters to TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com for publication. Please see the letters received on this subject so far, which are posted below.

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (3/5/02)

Dear AccordTownCrier:

We are opposed to the establishment of any form of legalized gambling in the area. Our knowledge and experience of elgalized gambling in Atlantic City, NJ is that the institution of gambling engenders an atmosphere whereby crime and a general dissipation in the morality of the community exists.

Nancy Copley & Bernard Rubin
Accord

Dear Editor:

I am very worried about the proposal to introduce gambling to the Hudson Valley Restort. I live only about a mile from the resort, and I fear that introducing a casino would have devastating effects on the beautiful rural environment. The increased traffic alone would be a nightmare, on the narrow, twisting country roads (think of a gambler from NYC encountering the hair-pin turn on Route 44-55 in the dark), and widening the roads would be destructive to the delicate ecosystem of the Shawangunks. Even without gambling, the Hudson Valley Resort, with its high-rise construction, is an anomaly in the area; with a casino it would be a piece of Atlantic City or Las Vegas in the middle of a lovely rural area -- totally inappropriate in
appearance and function.

And then there are the worries about increased crime, mob involvement, drunk driving, legal problems with "imported" Indian tribes, and so forth, as discussed in the recent issue of the Accord-Kerhonkson Town Crier. We don't need this kind of trouble. The kind of development that would be beneficial to a rural area should be emphasized, such as making sure that every household has high-speed Internet access, to enable more people to work at home on their computers, rather than clogging the roads and polluting the air by driving automobiles to and from work. With high-speed Internet access, you don't have to be in New York or San Francisco to do the most advanced types of knowledge work. I have been doing computer development and writing at home for about 12 years now, and my communications have recently become more efficient with TimeWarner's introduction of RoadRunner service to Ulster County. This is the type of development we need.

Helen Feddema
Kerhonkson, NY

Especially since my property abuts that of the Hudson Valley Resort and I am defenseless against them--but also on more important grounds--I am totally opposed to gambling casinos here (or anywhere else, for that matter).
Traffic, expensive infrastructure problems, the introduction of (even more) organized crime, the facilitation of compulsive gambling leading to family breakdown, stealing, etc. and even light pollution, making it impossible to see the heavens--all are reasons to ban gambling casinos. 
As for positive claims, a trip to Atlantic City ought to convince anyone. Where before there were the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk and the slums, Now there are the ocean, the sand, the boardwalk, the casinos and the same slums. It is all a plot to enrich the owners of the casinos (and only them) and it takes money out of the productive economy and devotes it to something perfectly useless or pernicious.

Jack Arnold
Kerhonkson

 

Gambling can be groovy to most, I guess. I like gambling like a junkie likes his fix. I've had a compulsive relationship with it for 40+ yr. I sat on a stoop for a year watching Atlantic City debate itself; If Resorts was to be permanent or not. I brought stocks the week before decision, which was the quickest 100% I ever made. Casinos will change your neighborhood, forever. Not only the feeder roads, the quick conveniences, the weak will perish, the strong will survive. You don't know where the weakness will come from, be it a son or daughter or husband or wife. Thieves and prostitutes will not only come from out of town they will be your own kids. That's why Indians won't let their own gamble. They know those dangers. Many will enjoy the good times, say only 15% fatality. In truth it might be more like 40% unless one's a masochist. I've only met a few who were having a 'real' good time. It usually starts out that way but. Smart people don't gamble they take the cash. The people who gamble need the fire.

Bill Dukas
Kerhonkson

 

 

 

 

Rochester Town Board Asked to Consider Affordable Housing Proposal

A proposal by Bruce Levine of Buffalo for an affordable housing project was discussed at the February 7 Town Board meeting. Mr. Levine indicated that his firm was asked by the Wawarsing Supervisor to develop a plan for an affordable housing project. The plan is being made for a parcel of approximately 5 acres on the Wawarsing/Rochester town line and 4.69 acres sits in Wawarsing (all except 1 acre is in a flood plain) and .89 acres sits in Rochester. The plan calls for approximately 34 housing units/townhomes to be located behind the Key Bank and Post Office in Kerhonkson (Peter & West Streets). Mr. Levine and his co-developer, Dawn Sanborne, are preparing a proposal to be submitted to the NY State Housing Trust Funding Corp to obtain long term low interest loans. Applications are due March 25,2002. Federal tax credits would also be obtained and sold to investors to raise the necessary equity. The units would be available to people who earned less than 60% of the median income in the area, or approximately $18,960 to qualify for a 670 square foot one bedroom unit (up to 2 people), $21,360 for a 850 sq. ft two bedroom unit for up to four people, and $26,700 for a 1,050 sq ft three bedroom unit for up to five people). The project will be managed by Two plus Four Management in Syracuse. Mr. Levine requested a letter of support from the Rochester Town Board.

 

Of the 34 units, 14 units would be sited on the .89 acres in Rochester. These 14 units at full capacity would have approximately 11-14 children. The 20 units in Wawarsing would have a maximum capacity of about 20 children. The firm calculated the population density in Rochester to be about 1 unit per 2,700 sq. ft of land, and the population density in Wawaring to be about 1 unit per 10, 200 sq ft of land. Overall, the density would be 1 unit per 7,100 sq. ft.

 

Once funding approval is received from the State, the project managers will submit a plan requesting either a zoning variance or an amendment to the town’s zoning law, which currently requires one acre per housing unit. Water and sewerage for the project would come about through a connection to the Wawarsing system. It was noted that the flood plain map indicated that the 100 year flood plain came right up to the edge of the building.

 

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Ulster Resort Seeks OK For Kerhonkson Indian Casino

By Steve Israel, Times Herald-Record, sisrael@th-record.com

Kerhonkson.   A new Ulster County player wants in on the Catskill casino game. But the odds are stacked against it. The Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson has hooked up with a gaming operator and a group of Indians to open a casino on its 350-acre property, said its general manager, Stephen Gorse. "We are very much interested and very much involved," said Gorse, who added that he's meeting with Gov. George Pataki's office next week. Gorse would not name the operator. But he did claim it's "one of the top ones in the world." He also would not name the Indians. But he said they're not from New York and are not federally recognized. Those are two major problems. At least four tribes with New York roots want one of three spots the state OK'd for Catskill casinos. Each tribe has a land claim against the state that needs to be settled. One tribe, the Oneida Nation of New York, sent the PricewaterhouseCoopers accounting firm to the Catskills this week, to check out such casino sites as the Concord, Grossinger's and the Nevele. Plus, a tribe must be recognized by the Bureau of Indian Affairs to apply to take non-Indian land in trust for a casino. Gaining federal recognition can take 20 years. This week, the Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs told the House of Representatives the process is growing slower. "We're going to lose ground, not gain ground," Neil McCaleb said. Even if the Hudson Valley Resort beats the odds and Gorse says he and his team that includes lawyer Scott Bonacic, the son of state Sen. John Bonacic, are confident  they could face local opposition. The resort could widen the wooded Route 44/55 to four lanes. It also could build a new road and new exit off the New York State Thruway that would bypass New Paltz. That may cause quite a stir in environment-conscious Ulster County. "This area will get mobilized against that pretty quickly," said a member of an environmental group who did not want his name used. TH Record (2-9-02)

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Legislator’s Widow to Assume County Seat

The Ulster County Legislature unanimously voted to have Marlene Dunn, the widow of the late Vincent Dunn (R-Kerhonkson) who died on January 1, succeed him in his county legislative seat until a special election in November 2002. Mrs. Dunn, 64, has said that she will run in the November election to serve the remainder of her husband’s two-year term (Freeman 2/17/02)

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County Legislature Approves $5 million Bond for County Jail Site Preparation

The County legislature, by a vote of 28-4, agreed to issue $5 million in bonds for site preparation for a new county jail, a project that is expected to cost approximately $70 million. The dissenting legislators were Richard Parete (D-Accord), Robert Parete (D-Boiceville), Kevin Hinchey (D-Saugerties), and Gary Bischoff (D-Saugerties). Richard Parete suggested that the county house inmates at the Eastern Correctional Facility in Napanoch, which he said has 200 empty beds. In addition to authorizing the $5 million bond issuance, the legislature has authorized $9.3 million in spending for the new jail, and has spent $4 million so far in planning, site purchase, and site development costs. (Freeman (2/16/02)

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Town Board to Seek Bids on 35 Acres

At its February 7, 2002 meeting, the Town Board authorized the solicitation of bids for the sale of 35 acres owned by the Town on Sand Hill Road, adjacent to the transfer station. Bids are due on February 25, 2002.

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Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting Cancelled Unexpectedly

The 2/12/02 meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals was cancelled at the last minute. Meetings are usually held on the second Tuesday of each month. No information was provided on when the meeting would be rescheduled.

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Time Warner to broadcast Town of Rochester Government Meetings

In its continuing effort to provide information on events in the Town of Rochester, the Rochester Residents Association has arranged to video tape town government meetings and broadcast them on Time Warner Cable. The tapes will be replayed every Monday night on the Time Warner public access channel at 7:00 pm. The first broadcast will show the Town Board meetings of January 3, 2002, January 31, 2002 and February 7. Copies of tapes of these meetings are also available at a nominal cost. Due to lack of notice, no video tape was made of the special Town Board meeting of January 11, 2002. The Rochester Residents Association is also publishing unofficial notes of the meetings on its website, www.accord-kerhonkson.com.

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Legal Notice - Misc.

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking sealed bids for HAULING OF ROAD MATERIAL. Bids to be received on or before February 26, 2002 at 11:15 am at the Town Clerk's Office, at which time they will be opened and read aloud. Specifications available at the own Clerk's Office - 845-626-7384. The Town Board has the right to reject and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that pursuant to resolution of the Town Board, Town of Rochester, Ulster County, New York, sealed bids for Hauling and Placement of Asphalt Concrete Pavement will be received at the office of the Town Clerk at Accord, NY 12404 until 11:30am on February 26, 2002 at which time they will be opened and read aloud. Bids will be submitted in duplicate in sealed envelopes, which shall bear on the face, the name and address of the bidder and title, ``Bid for Hauling and Placement of Asphalt Concrete Pavement''. Detailed specifications and bid forms are available at the office of the Town Clerk, Accord, NY, 845-626-7384. The contract for the above item will be awarded by the Town Board to the lowest responsible bidder. In cases where two or more responsible bidders submit identical bids as to price, the Town Board may reject any or all bids in its discretion. The Highway Superintendent also reserves the right to cancel the bid during the bid period due to unprofessional, or substandard worksmanship. The Town Board reserves the right to waive any informalities in or to reject any or all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester is seeking sealed bids for the rental of equipment to the Town of Rochester Highway Department for the purpose of Asphalt Paving. Specs available at the office of the Town Clerk, Accord, NY 12404 - 845-626-7384. Bids to be received on or before February 26, 2002 at 11:00am, at which time they will be opened and read aloud. The Town Boad has the right to reject any and all bids. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD VERONICA I. SOMMER TOWN CLERK/TAX COLLECTOR/RMC Kingston Freeman (2/15/02)

 

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Legal Notice - Name Change

State of New York Supreme Court: County of Ulster.

In the Matter of the Application of Randall L. Hoornbeek for leave to echange his name to Randy L. Hornbeck. Notice of Publication Notice is hereby given that an order entered by Supreme Court, Ulster County, on the 28th day of January 2002 bearing the Index Number 02-140, a copy of which may be examined at the office of the clerk, located at 285 Wall Street, Kingston, New York grants me the right effective on the 23rd day of February 2002 to assume the name of Randy L. Hornbeck. My present address is 4540 Route 209, Stone Ridge, New York, Ulster County, the date of my birth is May 26, 1955, the place of my birth is Kingston, New York, Ulster County, my present name is Randall L. Hoornbeek. (Daily Freeman, 2/4/02)

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Letters to the Editor - Gambling

 

Dear Editor:

Governor Pataki's ill-considered and, thank God, still contested legislation allowing for three Casinos in the Catskill Mountains has thrown residents, second home owners, small business people into terrible turmoil and dread from Mamakating to Marbletown and Gardiner to Sullivan. Thoughtful and informed people are already banding together to fight the intrusion of gambling with its devastating impact on our communities.

An effort by Nevada Gold (aka Blue Diamond Resorts) to construct a casino on Wellesley Island, N.Y. was "cut off at the pass" by an anti-casino group through dissemination of information revealing the negative effects of gambling casinos on the community. We can do the same here in the Rondout Valley. But we have to act fast!

According to the Boston Globe, the communities around Foxwood Casino in Connecticut cannot cope with the rising cost they have racked up because of the impact of the casino. The mayor of Ledyard has spent more than $2.2 million responding to Foxwood. North Stonington spent over $600,000 annually, said First Selectman Nicholas Mullane, just to deal with the impact of the casino, which doesn’t include the $780,000 it has spent in court fighting further expansion. The opening of porn shops, more drunken drivers, traffic jams and lower property values are among the negative impacts in North Stonington. "Foxwood has devastated our small town," Mullane said. "We are looking over our shoulder to see what is going to be next." We in the Rondout Valley can't afford casinos!

 

Most of us live and work in the Rondout Valley because we love its rural beauty and relative peace. Second home owners have come here for the same reasons and have thus contributed to the steady growth in the Rondout Valley. Throngs of weekenders visit Minnewaska State Park and the Mohonk Preserve to hike, bike, ski and swim, and enjoy the incredible beauty of the Shawangunk Ridge. We are indeed blessed by this natural beauty! We don't need casinos!

 

The dramatic growth of gambling is not the result of popular demand. Rather, it is driven by the gambling industry with its high priced lobbyists and outright lies about economic growth for the areas where they appear. Even Governor Pataki, who made a campaign promise never to allow gambling in N.Y. State, has, since September 11, fallen under the spell of the all-powerful gambling lobby. It seems that all our politicians are suffering from the mistaken notion that "gambling will fill the state treasury" and "cure the ailing tourism industry" in the Catskills. Wrong! Gambling is good for the gambling industry, not tourism. So called "tourism"; will come back when the developers build the kind of establishments that appeal to young families and the soon-to-retire "boomers", who prefer rustic inns in a natural setting with water sports, hiking and skiing to the outmoded, high-rise mammoth hotels with their chlorinated pools, nightclubs and ballrooms. The Pine Grove Resort Ranch, Mohonk Mountain House and the Minnewaska Lodge are but a few examples of establishments that meet present demands, as are all the wonderful Inns and B&Bs in our area.

 

The question arises, why can't Governor Pataki dole out an economic stimulus" package without the hidden agenda - casino gambling? Can he be in the pockets of the Gambling Industry? And why does State Assemblyman Kevin Cahill "sit on the fence"; on the gambling issue, while he personally disapproves of it? Where are men of conscience who will stand on the side of the people?

 

The politicians tell us that gambling will bring local jobs. Wrong again! The fact is, local jobs will be lost as businesses fold, and homeowners are forced to flee from the devastated villages. In addition, the gambling industry and the Indian tribes will bring in their own trained employees and some of the tribes will not share their revenues, not even with government. Nor do gamblers spend money locally. Casinos are designed to keep the gamblers fed, drunk, entertained and high on their addiction, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Gamblers do not stop at local restaurants and hardware stores, nor buy agricultural equipment, produce, pottery and antiques.

 

A study published in Managerial and Decision Economics in 2001reveals that there is a much greater hidden price to pay when it comes to gambling. For each dollar of benefits associated with casinos (nation-wide) there are two dollars in costs to society at large. This figure doesn’t even include casino-related prison costs, or higher insurance premiums to accommodate gambling-related claims.

 

Another study on the effects of casino gambling on society was done at the University of Chicago and can be read onhttp://norc.org/new/pdf/gamble.pdf

 

In other words, as an editorial in The N.Y. Times (11/29/01) noted, "In the end, Mr. Pataki's casinos will cost New York far more than they can ever deliver in state or local benefits".

 

I urge all Rochester residents and second home owners to learn more about the adverse effects of gambling on the environment, crime rate, property values and quality of life. Look upwww.whynocasino.orgor www.ncalg.org

Organize and write to your local papers and your legislature and stop this cancer before it spreads.

 

E-mail your protest against gambling to:

Senator Majority Leader Joe Bruno: bruno@senate.state.ny.us

State Sen. John Bonacic: bonacic@senate.state.ny.us

Kevin Cahill: cahillk@assembly.state.ny.us

Ward Todd, Chair Ulster County Legislature: wtod@co.ulser.ny.us

 

Astrid Fitzgerald, Kerhonkson

 

 

Dear Town Crier,

I am completely opposed to gambling casinos. All of the money spent by the gamblers will be taken out of the productive economy and used to further enrich the owners of the casinos and, no doubt, some of their friends. This is to say nothing of the traffic increase (for which we are in no way prepared and which would have to be accommodated by increasing our taxes) and the facilitated entree for organized crime. A glance at the paradise which gambling has made of Atlantic City ought to be enough to convince anyone.

John D. Arnold

 

Dear fellow Accordians/Kerhonksonians/Alliger-and-Samsonvillians:

We are property owners in Accord for the past 20 years, active in our local neighborhood, a supporter of the food bank, rent-a-kid summer program, and a frequent visitor to both the Rondout golf course and the Accord Speedway! Here is my stream-of-consciousness opinion concerning casino gambling in the Town of Rochester:

 

One of the worst things that could possibly happen to our town is gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort. Anyone who enjoys, on any level, the current world of Accord needs to understand that gambling at HVR will mean crime, an enormous expense to our town government, higher taxes to pay for those expenses, enormous parking lots, bright signs and lights all night long, and a honky-tonk atmosphere that will lower property values; there will be a huge increase in traffic and the attendant accidents, speeding, drunk driving and deaths - all the first-response responsibility of our already over-burdened local rescue squad. And that's if gambling is a success! If it's a failure, the result will be our own mini-version of Liberty New York.

 

It gets worse: anyone who thinks gambling will increase property values or our quality of life should read the book WITHOUT RESERVATION,The Making of Foxwoods Casino, by Jeff Benedict (HarperCollins, about $5 on Amazon.com) about the mega-casino in Connecticut which grew from a naive idea to pump a few dollars into a poor community and which has grown into a corrupt, crushing entity absolutely destroying what was once a region similar to our own. This book will scare you. I am not against gambling in a hotel as a source of nightlife, jobs, entertainment, etc - but only if the casino is someplace where there is already a infrastructure to service it (Atlantic City, Monticello, Vegas). Granite Road and the Town of Accord does not meet that description. A suitable site (beneficial to our county tax rolls as a whole) could be the Nevele/Fallsview - right on a main road, close to Rt. 17, easily patrolled by State Police on the 209/Rt.17 corridors, with the possibility of depressed Ellenville getting a positive spillover of restaurants, cafes, and theaters (making it as it was 30 years ago). The obverse is true in Accord: the Granite/HVR site would necessitate a substantial widening of town roads, Rts 44/55 and 209 would be hopelessly clogged with traffic (forget popping over to New Paltz in 20 minutes) - as would Berme and Towpath when people try to "beat" the traffic - the bright lights from a casino would adversly affect Mohonk, the Minnewaska State Park, and all of us who want to enjoy a dark evening; On the other hand, a casino at the already-bright Nevele might help our county and our property values by introducing people to our town and local businesses without changing the nature of Accord. As to "Indian gambling", please read the Foxwoods book - "importing" a tribe is a dangerous sham that will result in lawsuits as further adjoining properties are claimed for casino use - and fighting these claims become issues for federal court. Yes, there may be some more hotel maintenance jobs if there was gambling in Accord, but the good resort jobs always go to outsiders, and what few jobs are gained locally will not outweigh the costs to our town in road maintenance, providing fire and rescue service to the stricken drivers who will now clog our roads, and the nightmare and necessity of constantly fighting ‘big money attorney situations’ where any questioning of what the casino demands will land our local government in state and federal court, causing our taxes to skyrocket unless we acquiece to whatever the casino demands. There is no getting around it: a casino in Accord will change our town, for the worse, forever.

 

Thanks for your offer of this platform for my thoughts,

Neil Cohen

 

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Letter to the Editor - County Jail

 

Dear Editor

The Ulster County Legislature is moving forward with a plan to build a "mega" jail at a time when federal and state governments are warning of serious financial shortfalls and are tightening their belts. This "mega" jail would take three years to complete and cost $80 million to $100 million to build.

 

In 1998, when this idea was steamrolling through the Legislature, it was projected as being only a $35 million to $40 million project. No hard figures were provided, but comparison with Orange County's jail, recently built for $92 million, suggest the lower figures were never serious. Of course, any "realistic" numbers were withheld until after the 2001 election.

 

Consider that the original reason for the jail -- to solve Ulster County's overcrowing problem -- is no longer valid. Here were are in 2002 with 281 jail beds with an average of over 60 beds empty every day. This new jail project is for 400 beds. That's 119 more beds than we have today at the current facility on Golden Hill. At a cost of $80 million, that comes to over $600,000 per extra bed! Yet our current jail was built in the early 1970s with the condition it could be easily added on to.

 

Though I've always had serious reservations about this huge project, I wanted to get as much information as possible from the other side of the debate. While attending the Jail Oversight Committee meeting two weeks ago, I asked three questions:

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Was there a report on site preparation for add-on construction at the existing Golden Hill site?

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Was a study done on the costs of reconverting an existing wing to a secure facility? (The current community corrections building at one time was a 24-bed housing unit, for example).

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Was a study done on renovations needed to eliminate variances on the existing jail building ? (I imagine a study would reflect direct supervision concept, program space requirements, and necessary support services.)

 

The committee advised me that these studies were done and I would get a copy of the reports. After a week with no reports, I sent letters to Legislator Tantillo, (R-New Paltz), Chairman Ward Todd (R-Shandaken), Majority Letter Gerentine (R-Marlboro), and Minority Leader Feldman (D-Saugerties). That night I received a call from Todd advising me that the leadership never explored the cost studies for adding onto the current jail; never explored the possibility of reconverting the community corrections wing back to a maximum security facility; and never explored the possibility of making the 60 bed modular a permanent facility.

In effect, they never considered, never studies, and never reviewed any option other than building a new "mega" jail.

 

It is difficult to keep an open mind on such a huge and costly project when the planning and prepartion have been so horribly incomplete. I defy anyone to show me a rational or moral reason to spend this $80 million to $100 million on this "mega" jail. I'll be amazed and even stand corrected if one can.

Richard Parete

Ulster County Legislator, District 1

(D-Accord)

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Gambling in Rochester and the Catskills -- Let us know your thoughts.

We would be interested in publishing any letters about the recent proposal to permit gambling at the Hudson Valley Resort or at other nearby facilities. Please send your letters to TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com for publication. For a link to recent articles on gambling in the Catskills, please see the following link: http://www.recordonline.com/news/special_reports/casino.htm

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Rochester 2002 Assessment Roll Dates

This and other information on property taxes and the tax calendar can be found online at the NY State Office of Real Property Services website for Rochester at http://www.orps.state.ny.us/MuniPro/muni_theme/muni/00fiscal.htm?514400

Fiscal Year Dates: 1/1/2003 to 12/31/2003

Valuation Date: 1/1/2002

Tentative Roll Date 5/1/2002

Grievance Day 5/28/2002

Final Roll Date 7/1/2002

Budget Approval 11/20/2002

Tax Levy Date 12/31/2002

Tax Lien Date 1/1/2003

 

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Town Board Addresses Transfer Station Issues

The Town Board on January 31, 2002 reviewed transfer station practices and fees in an attempt to break even after last year's revenue shortfall. Buddy Hornbeck, town transfer station coordinator, said according to his figures, revenues for the year should be close to $191,000 if household garbage can be disposed of for $1.50 per bag, construction and demolition refuse can be dropped off for 5 cents per pound or $100 per ton and refrigerators can be discarded for $12 each. Tire disposal will cost $1.50 for tires under 16 inches in size, with the rim removed, the board agreed. On the rim, they said, will cost $3 each. Larger tires, 16 to 24 inches in diameter, will cost $15 and 24 inches and over will cost $30. Hornbeck estimated expenses at about $183,000. "We want to break even or make a few dollars, but we are not in this to lose money," newly elected town Councilman Randy Hoornbeek said. Last year, according to a report by former town Councilman Tony Spano, revenues fell short of expenses at the transfer station. The report cited poor oversight as the reason for the shortfall. Since then, Hornbeck said, he has been checking scale weights against Ulster County Resource Recovery bills and checking the number of household garbage punches on town-distributed punch cards against the value of the punches and the bills from the county agency.  So far this year, he said, revenue streams have been fine. At the previous Town Board's request, Hornbeck has also been keeping log books to document what the town allows the town Highway Department, the new community/youth center and local non-profit agencies to dump free of charge, as well as logging recyclables, refrigerators, or anything with compressors, and the difference between truck weights coming into and leaving the station, and tires, he said. "I did a December report for the Town Board, but it is not completely accurate," Hornbeck said. "The information is useful, because it lets the town know the revenue that is coming in." The report is missing some of the punches that went into the construction and demolition bin, he said. "The next one will have all the punches we did," Hornbeck assured the board. "At the end of this year, we will have a much better picture of what is going on at the transfer station." Supervisor Harold Lipton interjected, "Yeah, because now we are going to keep an eye on what's going on up there." Daily Freeman (2/1/02) 

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Ulster County Community College Layoffs

Due to a $500,000 budget deficit, 54 part time and six full time employees of UCCC will be laid off. The layoffs represent about 15% of the college’s 400 full and part time employees. According to the college, a statewide freeze on all budget negotiations as a result of the WTC attack resulted in a loss of approximately $350,000 in anticipated revenues. In addition, health insurance expenditures increased by more than $250,000 (a 20% increase). (BSP 2/1/02)

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How to get a Permit to Drive Around the Reservoir

Bring your automobile registration to the Town of Olive's assesor's office next to Davis Park West Shokan (off Route 28A). The office is open Tuesday through Friday 9-4; and Saturdays 9-3. Their telephone number is 845-657-8137.

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Copies of Town Budget Available

Copies of the 2002 Budget for the Town of Rochester are available for $2.00 per copy (to defray copying and postage costs). To obtain a copy, please send a check payable to the Rochester Residents Association, Inc., PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404. Please include your mailing address.

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Town Code Available

Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Help Wanted - Video Taping

Several of our readers have asked if it would be possible to make video tapes of Town Board meetings available. At present, the Town does not tape such meetings and we are looking for volunteers with video equipment to attend and tape them. The tapes would be used to inform readers about Town government proceedings and copies would be made available to any interested party. A small stipend would be paid to cover expenses, etc. Please e-mail TownCrier@Accord-Kerhonkson.com if you are interested in volunteering.

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Animal Benefit Sale

Dianas Fancy Flea Market will hold a high end Costume Jewelry sale every Friday, Saturday and Sunday in February from 11 am to 5 pm at Barking Dog Antiques in High Falls. Funds raised will benefit Ulster County animals.

 

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Legal Notice - Tax Assessment Roll

LEGAL NOTICE Notice of Receipt of Tax Roll and Warrant PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that I, Veronica Sommer, collector of taxes in the Town of Rochester, County of Ulster and State of New York, have received the tax roll and warrant for the collection of taxes within the Town of Rochester for the year 2002 and that I will attend the Town Hall, Accord, New York, in the said Town of Rochester each and every day during the month of January 2002 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. excepting Saturdays and Sundays and holidays for the purpose of receiving the taxes listed on said roll. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that taxes may be paid on or before the 31st day of January without interest. On all taxes received after such date, there shall be added interest of (1%) one percent of the amount of the unpaid tax for each month or fraction thereof until taxes are paid or until the return of unpaid taxes to the County Treasurer pursuant unto law. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that pursuant to the provisions of law, the tax roll for the Town of Rochester will be returned to the County Treasurer of the County of Ulster on the first day of June, 2002. Dated: 12-31-01 Veronica I. Sommer Collector of Taxes for The Town of Rochester (Freeman 1/8/02)

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Hudson Valley Resort Proposes Gambling 1/6/02

Stephen Gorse, general manager of the Hudson Valley Resort (formerly the Granit), said the hotel is "exploring all of our options at this point" with regards to bringing gambling to the facility.

State legislation approved in October 2001 paved the way for the largest expansion of gambling in New York's history, allowing for three Indian-run casinos to open in Ulster and Sullivan Counties and for others to operate in the Buffalo-Niagara Falls region. Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, state lawmakers have focused on legal gambling as a potential revenue generator that could ease the economic impact of the attacks.

"First, we have to find a recognized Indian tribe. This is probably the hardest challenge," Gorse said. "Then the next hardest part is negotiating with the governor," who has the final say on Indian-run casinos in New York.

Gorse said the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa has contacted the seven tribes in New York that are recognized by the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs in an effort to create a mutually beneficial alliance.

"We're going to see what options could pay out or could not," Gorse said, adding that even if an agreement can be reached with one of the tribes, the approval process could take between six months and three years. "It's a very long and tedious process," he said.

Both the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa and the Nevele Grande in Ellenville have been mentioned by state lawmakers as potential locations for casinos in Ulster County, as has the Tamarack Lodge in the Wawarsing hamlet of Greenfield Park. There has been talk of the Western Mohegan tribe operating a gambling endeavor at the Tamarack, but the tribe is not recognized by the federal government and people with knowledge of the process say recognition is unlikely.

The Western Mohegan Tribe and its counsel have been tight-lipped about their plans, but a state representative says Gov. George Pataki won't even consider any plan by the tribe if it doesn't gain recognition.

"The Western Mohegan is not a federally recognized tribe, and the governor's office would not negotiate with a tribe that's not federally recognized," said Stacy Walker, a spokeswoman for the state Racing and Wagering Board.

Only three of New York's tribes - the Seneca Nation of Indians, the St. Regis Mohawks and the Oneida Indian Nation - have deals for lawful gaming in the state.

The St. Regis Mohawks, who currently run a casino in Franklin County, near the New York-Canadian border, inked a deal in October with Park Place Entertainment to open a casino on the Kutshers Country Club property in Monticello, Sullivan County. The Oneida nation, which runs the Turning Stone casino in Rome, N.Y., also is in negotiations to establish a casino in Sullivan County. And the Senecas have a pact, which predates the new legislation, to open three casinos in the Buffalo-Niagara Falls area.

On Nov. 19, the state Attorney General's Office filed a lawsuit against the Western Mohegans, seeking a permanent injunction against illegal gaming at the Tamarack. The lawsuit came after a local bingo supply company told the state Racing and Wagering Board that it had been contacted by Ronald A. Roberts, the Western Mohegan tribal chief, saying Roberts was planning to operate a high-stakes bingo hall at the Tamarack.

Officials from the Nevele Grande - the hotel that resulted from the merger of the Nevele and the adjacent Fallsview - did not return calls seeking comment. (Daily Freeman 1/5/02)

 

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Local Legislator Vincent Dunn Passes Away

KERHONKSON - Vincent Dunn, who served two decades as a Republican Ulster County legislator and had been a town of Rochester supervisor before that, died on January 1, 2002 at Ellenville Regional Hospital. He was 81. Dunn, who had been ill for some time, was described by political leaders such as Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ward Todd, R-Shandaken, as a lawmaker who cared deeply about public service. Dunn, who was a retired fuel oil dealer and lifelong Kerhonkson resident, served the public in various capacities such as six years as Rochester supervisor in the 1970s into the early 1980s and, most recently, as an Ulster County legislator. This coming Monday, Dunn was to be sworn in for his 11th term along with 32 other members of the Legislature including Susan Cummings, R-Wawarsing. Cummings serves in Dunn's District One, an area that covers the towns of Denning, Marbletown, Rochester and Wawarsing. Dunn, who lived on Elizabeth Street and was a graduate of the former Kerhonkson High School, was born on Aug. 16, 1920. His wife, Marlene, survives along with seven children. (Daily Freeman 1/2/2002).

 

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Planning Board Suspends ByLaws and Re-Appoints Chair 1/6/02

At a special December 19, 2001 meeting, the Town's Planning Board voted to suspend its by-laws and re-elected Brian Drabkin as Planning Board Chairman. The former by-laws imposed a term limit on the Planning Board chairman, which would have been exceeded had they not been amended or suspended.

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Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Schedule 1/6/02

Happy New Year from The Kerhonkson Accord First Aid Squad Training Center! Classes for January are: First Aid 4 hour: Saturday 1/26; CPR 2 mandatory sessions 1/29 and 2/5 6:30 pm; CPR renewal attend 2/5 session only.  To register or for additional information, call 626-3023.  Volunteers are needed for the First Aid Squad.

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Town Code Available 1/6/02

Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers 1/6/02

The Food Pantry, a local organization that distributes food to local families in need, is itself in need of volunteers to pack food baskets for clients. The volunteers serve for one week about every 7 weeks. Generally, the maximum time is about 1 hour per day if there are clients. There are days when nothing happens. Calls are made by the bagpacker from home and they only go to the Pantry when there is a client. There is also a need for other volunteers for simple services. Call 626-7501 and leave a message.

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Letter to the Editor on Mercury Contamination 1/6/02

Dear Editor,

Sources of the mercury contamination in the NYC reservoirs and almost all NYS waters are reported to be from coal fired power plants responsible for the acid rain contamination here in NY and the entire Northeast. As I understand it, there is a complex environmental impact of the decades of acidification which has destroyed the ability of watersheds to neutralize the acids and soils to bind up heavy metal contaminates contained in the exhaust of these dirty power plants.

It's a shame that the awakening need to retreat from reliance on foreign crude oil and a growing focus on coal as a power source does not also contain the awareness that we MUST have clean water to drink and forests to filter the air we breathe . . .

Frank Spada, Samsonville, NY, Spadafm@aol.com

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Legal Notice - Town Board Meetings 1/6/02

LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Town Board of the Town of Rochester holds its regular monthly Town Board meetings at the Town Hall, Accord, NY on the 1st Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. The Audit Meetings are held the last Thursday of each month at 4:30 p.m. at the Town Hall. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector/RMC (Freeman: 1/4/02)

 

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New York City Fined for Mercury Pollution in Rondout Reservoir 1/6/02
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection plead guilty releasing mercury-tainted water into the Rondout Valley Reservoir in August 2001. The DEP was fined $50,000 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and placed on probation for three months. The source of contamination was seals containing mercury used in sluice gates in the reservoir's gatehouses. The reservoir feeds into the Rondout Creek, which flows through Accord, High Falls and Rosendale. According to the EPA, contamination levels have never reached levels sufficiently high to threaten human health or safety. Fish have not been tested for contamination effects, however, the New York State Department of Health issued a public advisory warning people not to eat more than one meal per month of fish from the Rondout, Ashokan and Neversink Reservoirs. (BSP 12/21/01)

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Former Alligerville Resident Found Guilty of Killing Cats 1/6/02
In a case that has received international attention, a Sing Sing correction officer who crushed five kittens to death in a prison trash compactor was convicted yesterday of aggravated cruelty to animals. Westchester County Judge Peter Leavitt rejected Sgt. Ronald Hunlock's defense that the animals were so sick that he had no alternative but to kill them the way he did. The judge also refused to dismiss the most serious charges, rejecting the defense contention that a state law making aggravated animal cruelty a felony is unconstitutional. Hunlock, 47 and a former resident of Rochester, was convicted of five felony counts following the non-jury trial and could face up to two years in state prison when he is sentenced on March 19. Another judge will sentence the 20-year prison guard because Leavitt is retiring. The kittens were born to a black tabby named Midnight in early March and were cared for by inmate John Williams. On March 11, Hunlock saw Williams with a bag of contraband and searched the inmate's cell. He found the cats and ordered Williams to put them in a sealed box. He then accompanied Williams to the compactor and told him to throw the box inside. When Williams refused, Hunlock tossed the cats into the compactor and held the button down as the kittens were crushed. Midnight managed to jump out of the compactor when it went on. Hunlock was also convicted of attempted aggravated animal cruelty, a misdemeanor, for - trying to kill Midnight, who appeared at the trial and has since been adopted.

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Local Burglaries 1/6/02
There have been a number of local burglaries in the past few weeks. Two were reported on near Mettacahonts Roads and the PX in Kerhonkson was burglarized with an unspecified amount cash taken from its automatic teller machine.

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Property Tax Assessments Increase Throughout Ulster County 1/6/02
By Hallie Arnold, Freeman staff December 13, 2001
Ulster County's assessments have risen dramatically, fueled by a vigorous real estate market and strong new home construction during the year. Based on municipal assessments, the county's taxable value grew by 12.93 percent over the past year, an increase of $775 million. Once the equalization rate is applied to the county's taxable value, the increase swells to $931 million in 2002, 10.75 percent higher than this year.
The equalization rate is set by the state to even out differences in the way municipalities assess property value to provide a common ground for levying county and school taxes. While equalized values are not an exact representation of property value, they do give a broad view of growth trends, despite variations in the assessment processes that may account for large shifts in equalized value.
County Real Property Tax Service Agency Director Dorothy A. Martin said in some cases, what the equalized rates show is an inflated real estate market and not actual value. "They may not have new construction or business causing the growth," she said. "It's happening because their market is so inflated, and not because of the value."
Growing assessments have allowed some local governments to raise spending while, in most cases, cutting the burden on individual taxpayers.
Ulster County's recently adopted 2002 budget calls for a 3.89 percent increase in the property tax levy next year. Lawmakers project the average county tax bill for next year will decrease by 22 cents per $1,000 of assessed value because of increased assessments. (Freeman 12/13/01)
The Equalized value for the Town of Rochester was $326,512,347 in 2001 and $351,003,109 in 2002, represeenting a 7.50% increase. According to Town Assessor Sharon Hornbeck as quoted in the Blue Stone Press, changes are mainly due to new construction, adding more value to individual lots. "Sales are scattered and not specific. "We are so diversified and do not really have specific neighborhoods -- so the changes are basic." 

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Town Code Available 1/6/02
Copies of the complete Code of the Town of Rochester are available for $20.00 (including delivery within Rochester). This includes all laws adopted by the Town and codified in 1997 as well as chapters relating to subdivisions and the planning/zoing code as well as all amendments through the present. The cost of the complete Code if purchased from town hall is approximately $100.00. If you would like a copy, please make your check payable to "Rochester Residents Association, Inc." and mail it to PO Box 257, Accord, NY 12404; please include your home address and telephone number for hand delivery.

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Food Pantry Needs Volunteers 1/6/02
The Food Pantry, a local organization that distributes food to local families in need, is itself in need of volunteers to pack food baskets for clients. The volunteers serve for one week about every 7 weeks. Generally, the maximum time is about 1 hour per day if there are clients. There are days when nothing happens. Calls are made by the bagpacker from home and they only go to the Pantry when there is a client. There is also a need for other volunteers for simple services. Call 626-7501 and leave a message.

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Legal Notice: Main Street, Kerhonkson 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE The Town of Wawarsing Town Board is seeking Proposals for the sale of Town Property in the Hamlet of Kerhonkson. Property is located on Main Street, Kerhonkson, NY. One parcel 76.13.5-3 is vacant land on Main St., the other parcel 76.13.5-2 at Main Street, Kerhonkson, NY. Proposals should be submitted to the Town Clerk at 108 Canal Street, Ellenville, NY no later than January 3, 2002 by 12 noon. By Order of the Town Board Jane Eck, Town Clerk Freeman 12/11/01)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Business Meeting 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold
the End of the Year Business Meeting on December 27, 2001 immediately following the Audit/Workshop Meeting at 4:30 p.m. at the Town Hall, Accord, NY. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector/RMC (Freeman 12/19/01)

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Legal Notice: Town Board Organizational Meeting 1/6/02
LEGAL NOTICE Please take notice that the Town of Rochester Town Board will hold the Organizational Meeting on 1-3-02 at 7:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, with the Town Board Meeting immediately following. BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD Veronica I. Sommer Town Clerk/ Tax Collector (12/19/01)