"Trucking" with Santa

FIREHOUSE CHRISTMAS FUN —Over 100 kids brought their parents to visit Santa at the Roxbury Firehouse on Saturday including Trevor, Derek, and Jordan Fronckowiak.  Photos were taken by Catskill Images and refreshments were abundant. Fire Chief Allen Hinkley was so impressed with the turnout that he decided to make it an annual event. Planning for next year is already in the works. — Photo by Jill Ribich, Catskill Images

Census says Delaware County lost 1% population

By Brian Sweeney
Delaware County saw a population drop of about one percent during the past decade, according to 2010 Census figures released last week.
The Census numbers show Delaware’s population de-creased from 48,055 to 47,980 in the past 10 years.

Of the 19 townships that comprise Delaware County, the towns of Middletown and Franklin showed the largest population decline with eight percent. Middletown’s population dropped from 4,051 to 3,750 residents. Franklin’s numbers fell from 2,621 to 2,411 residents.

Vegan campaign debuts in Margaretville

By Pauline Liu
Whether or not they were aware of it, residents and shoppers in Margaretville took part in a global vegan event known as “Meatout,” which was held at Freshtown Marketplace on Saturday.

Fairview to be closed for renovation

The Fairview Public Library will be closing for two weeks beginning Monday April 4.
The Library will reopen on Saturday, April 16. The library will not be open for patrons or computer usage at all during this time.

During the closing, the library will be upgrading all of the windows in the original house of the building. This upgrade is part of an ongoing effort to improve the energy efficiency of the library and is made possibly by a generous grant from the A. Lindsay and Olive B. O’Connor Foundation.

Priest fighting charges that led to dismissal

By Brian Sweeney
A former Margaretville priest is strongly refuting sexual abuse allegations that led to his dismissal from the ministry last week.

The Roman Catholic Diocese at Albany announced that it had removed the Very Rev. Robert Purcell from the priesthood because of charges of sexual abuse of a minor that reportedly occurred 54 years ago.

Father Purcell was the pastor at the Margaretville parish for 25 years before his retirement in 2001.

Phoenicia library gutted by fire

By Jay Braman Jr.
The Phoenicia Library, which became homeless following an early morning blaze Saturday, is already open for business in a new but temporary place right in the hamlet.
The fire destroyed the interior and contents of the Phoenicia Library Saturday, rendering the Main Street Building uninhabitable.

Big Indian home invasion ends in injuries and arrests

Staff report
Two masked, armed robbers allegedly tried to pull off a brazen daybreak home invasion early Saturday morning at an apartment in Big Indian only to have the tables turned on them as gunfire broke out.

The occupants inside the apartment, located above Railroad Pizzeria on Route 28, not only fought back, but injured both suspects severely enough to send them both to hospitals.

Andes seeking solutions for wastewater woes


By Pauline Liu
When the Town of Andes’ Sewer Treatment Plant overflowed last autumn, raw sewage spilled into the Tremperskill Creek and then flowed into the Pepacton Reservoir, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).

DEC Spokesperson Lori Severino said there was no way to measure how much sewage went into New York City’s unfiltered drinking water system.

MCS weighs cutbacks to balance proposed aid loss

By Brian Sweeney
The Margaretville Central School Board of Education is weighing spending cutbacks as officials await final aid numbers in the state budget.

Superintendent Tony Albanese said last week that the board of education had been working on its Administrative and Capital budgets and these portions of the budget will show no increase or will decline slightly.

The Program section of the budget remains unclear, the superintendent said, because of the uncertainty over how much State Aid districts will receive.

NY tax ruling on second homeowners angers local residents

By Pauline Liu
A controversial court ruling on taxing some second home owners in the Empire State is drawing plenty of fire from both local officials and realtors.

Last month, a tax appeals tribunal upheld a lower court decision that requires some out-of-state residents to pay New York State income taxes if they own vacation homes in New York. As a result, some second homeowners could find themselves paying income taxes in two different states.  Realtors in the region are blasting the ruling.

Area residents concerned about exchange students


By Pauline Liu
In the wake of the crisis in Japan, some local families are rethinking the wisdom of sending their loved ones to exchange programs halfway around the world. Relatives here in Delaware County have been tracking the progress of 18-year-old Garret Norris of the Adirondacks, who is currently an exchange student on Hokkaido, the North Island of Japan.

He was actually a safe distance away when the earthquake and tsunami struck on March 11, nevertheless his many relatives here became worried when they didn’t hear from him at first.

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