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DEEP STUFF — Firefighters from Grand Gorge and Hobart traveled to the Buffalo area last week to assist local communities with efforts to cope with up to seven feet of snow that buried the area from several lake-effect storms. — Contributed photo

Railway museum plans train repair barn at Phoenicia

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By Jay Braman Jr.
The Empire State Railway Museum plans to erect a large train repair barn at the museum site on Station Road in Phoenicia, and museum officials say it has nothing to do with the Catskill Mountain Railroad (CMRR) being kicked out of Kingston last year.
The museum has received a zoning variance to build a 96-foot long, 40-foot wide, 26-foot tall barn over the railroad tracks that pass by the museum (the old Phoenicia Station), and along Sta­tion Road. The new building will be constructed and used for the restoration of historic railcars currently stored and deteriorating in the weather on the tracks.


Historic Rexmere in Stamford vanquished by flames in an hour


The Rexmere Hotel, a Stamford landmark for more than 115 years, was destroyed in less than an hour Tuesday morning when a wind-driven fire leveled the seven-story wood structure. Hundreds of firemen from at least three counties, answering a mutual aid call, were still arriving at the scene shortly after noon when the building had been reduced to a flaming pile of debris.


Card fraud continues to ring up big hassles

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By Joe Moskowitz
Death and taxes aren’t the only sure things that people are talking about in these parts were talking about over the past week.
Those two old topics of conversation have been pushed aside by the weather and credit-card fraud. The winter that won’t go away, it snowed on each of the first five days of spring, and credit-card fraud, everyone seems to know someone who has been hacked, are the hot topics of conversation on everyone’s lips. And the weather is running a distant second to what appears to be a blizzard of local credit card fraud.


DEP employee indicted for second-degree murder of a co-worker

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By Jay Braman Jr.
On Tuesday, an Ulster Coun­ty Grand Jury indicted the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) employee accused of fatally shooting a co-worker on February 3, according to the district attorney’s office.David ReeseDavid Reese

David N. Reese, 53, of 297 Flat Creek Road, Gilboa, was in­dict­ed for second-degree murder in the Feb. 3 shooting death of Aron J. Thomas, 33, of Olive­bridge, at the department’s Smith Avenue office in midtown Kingston.


O'Neal's eyesore goes down the drain

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RAZED — The former O’Neal’s Plumbing and Heating store on Main Street, Margaretville was knocked down this week by Ed Norwick and Diego Pesa. The store, which previously operated for many years as Wilson’s Plumbing, had not operated since 2008. The building was damaged by flooding from Hurricane Irene in 2011 and had become an eyesore along the village’s Main Street. Kingdon Gould Jr. of Arkville recently purchased the store and attached apartment house. The apartments are being renovated.


Officials still treading water over Margaretville Swart Street bridge repairs

By Joe Moskowitz
Margaretville residents, who have been waiting since 2011 to be able to drive over the Swart Street Bridge, will have to continue waiting and Delaware County, which owns the bridge, still doesn’t know how much longer that wait will be.
Bridge to Nowhere: When it comes to getting around Swart Street, you still have to drive around your elbow to get to your thumb. The bridge fix is still up in the air, almost three years later. Photo by Joe MoskowitzBridge to Nowhere: When it comes to getting around Swart Street, you still have to drive around your elbow to get to your thumb. The bridge fix is still up in the air, almost three years later. Photo by Joe Moskowitz


Hackers target local card holders

By Joe Moskowitz
Dozens of area people and several local banks are struggling with a wave of stolen credit and debit card account numbers.
Arkville resident Terry Johnson told the News Monday that within minutes after using his bankcard locally, someone in Florida made a purchase using his account number. His bank’s security system spotted the transaction right away and there have been no more unauthorized charges on his account.


Budget, building and high-tech on the horizon for Roxbury Central School

By Trish Adams
It’s the season of school budget votes, and Roxbury Central School finds itself in a perfect trifecta of opportunity, challenge and necessity. 
At its next budget meeting on March 26, Superintendent Thomas O’Brien and the board will be demonstrating the ins and outs of the 2014-15 budget, which must not exceed a 0.9 percent increase in the tax levy. Due to arcane formulas and exceptions, the increase allowed is not even the “two percent” number you hear in the news.


Customers shocked by high electricity bills

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By Joe Moskowitz
If you’ve looked at your electric bill lately, it’s probably been a shocking experience. In the past several months, the cost of keeping your lights on has probably doubled, or tripled, and in some cases it’s even more.
Uta Gundelach owns the Arkville Laundromat. She told the News this week that her normal monthly electric bill is about $250, but within the past two months, it has ballooned to nearly $900 a month.


Scrapping the VW Parts inventory

JUNK-ITJUNK-IT
Some of the junk cars at the former Fleischmanns VW facility on Wagner Avenue were hauled away by a Kingston recycler this week. Lot owner William Hrazanek is due to appear in Middletown Town Court next week to answer criminal charges. The State Department of Environmental Conservation, after conducting raids on this and two other Hrazanek properties, is accusing him of 11 violations. Some carry fines of up to $37,000 and/or a year in jail. — Photo by Joe Moskowitz


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