Peek-a-Leaf

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FALL BEAUTY — With spectacular weather predicted right through the end of September, leaf peepers might be well served to visit the Central Catskills this coming weekend. Leaves are changing quickly and the fall color could peak within the next several days. Margaretville’s annual Cauliflower Festival will be held Saturday in the village park from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will feature lots of good food, music, local history, and the always-popular Tractor Parade at 11:30 a.m. —Photo by Dick Sanford

Bonacic wants reservoirs lowered to cut down on flooding chances

By Jay Braman Jr.
State Senator John Bonacic says that water levels in New York City’s upstate reservoirs are too high and should be brought down to reduce the risk of flooding, but the Delaware River Basin Commission says it won’t matter much what the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) does because flooding will still happen even if the reservoirs are empty.


Hinchey wants water quality protected from gas drilling

By Jay Braman Jr.
U.S. Representative Mau-rice Hinchey has told the state Department of Environmental Conser-vation (DEC) that he has numerous concerns about drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale formation in the Catskill Mountains and has issued comments outlining 11 steps that he believes must be taken before any drilling is allowed.


Margaretville Hospital begins renovation and expansion

Emergency Dept. updates, Women’s Health Center, ambulance garage work
among projects underway

Margaretville — Work is underway to expand and modernize Margaretville Hospital’s Emergency Department, create a Women’s Health Center within the hospital and to refurbish the ambulance garage. The construction began mid-December and is expected to be completed by early April 2010.


DEP calls for watershed gas drilling prohibition

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By Brian Sweeney
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection has requested a prohibition on any gas drilling in the city’s upstate watershed.
The action by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) was made last week in response to its review of the Draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement released in September by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). The DEC is the sole agency responsible for overseeing gas drilling in the state.


Charity Dinner on Christmas Day donated by Phoenicia restauranteur

By Jay Braman Jr.
Two events, one just passed and the other coming on Christmas Day, really show that the Christmas spirit is alive and well in Phoenicia, where two businessmen, showing a sense of appreciation for those facing difficult times, have devised clever and effective ways to offer help directly to those in need.


No new ambulance for Shandaken

By Jay Braman Jr.
When Shandaken Ambulance squad members wake up Christmas morning they won’t find a shiny new ambulance parked underneath their Christmas tree.At their December meeting the Shandaken Town Board has decided against buying one, despite the recommendation from the department to do so.


Judge stalls foreclosure on Fleischmanns Theater

By Jay Braman Jr.
An attempt by the Village of Fleischmanns to foreclose on the long-vacant Fleischmanns Theater building for non-payment of village taxes has been blocked by Delaware County Judge Carl Becker.
The judge determined last week that the owner of the property, or the local bank that holds a mortgage on the property, has a right to pay the delinquent taxes and maintain ownership.


School officials fear aid 'delays' may become permanent cutbacks

By Julia Green
Area school officials are maintaining their skepticism that the “delays” in payment of 10 percent of school aid announced by Gov. David Paterson last week won’t ultimately become cuts.
Paterson announced on Dec. 14 that he was ordering that 10 percent of state aid payments to schools and local governments be delayed due to the state’s worsening financial woes.


Middletown scales back Transfer Station days of operation

Staff report
The Town of Middletown will no longer operate its solid waste Transfer Station on Mondays, effective Jan. 4. The town board voted unanimously at its November meeting to cut Transfer Station operation to six days as a budget-cutting measure. The move is projected to save more than $14,000 in salary and benefit costs.


Bonds authorized for Arkville Water District project

Staff report
A resolution authorizing nearly $1.8 million in serial bonds to pay for Arkville Water District upgrades was approved December 8 by the Middletown Town Board.
The project to expand and renovate the Arkville Water District was initiated several years ago. Last December, after a series of public meetings, the town board voted to proceed with the project.


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