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July 28, 2016
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editorial

Liberty library deserves support

There have been many changes in society since 1894 when the Liberty Library first opened its doors. But people still read books, although increasing numbers of them do so by downloading ebooks and reading articles in online publications.  Read more

Visitors’ center belongs along the river

It’s the project that wouldn’t die. Almost everyone thought it was dead, or nearly so, in 2013, which was the last time this newspaper reported on the new visitors’ center. At that time, it was proposed to be built at Fort Delaware in Narrowsburg, NY. But recently the idea of a visitors center has returned to life with about $510,000 secured by former Congressman Maurice Hinchey more than a decade ago. (Another $250,000 secured later by Sen. John Bonacic is apparently no longer available).  Read more

Money talks in the NY 19th Congressional District

With the primary behind us and the summer moving on, it won’t be long before the money being spent by the candidates makes itself felt in the form of political ads on television, radio, print, Internet and other sources.  Read more

Fallsburg’s building moratorium would likely be upheld by courts

On June 27, the board of the Town of Fallsburg adopted a one-year moratorium on the construction of new developments that would contain more than five units. Critics, including a prominent local construction company, complained that the moratorium was intended to slow the growth of the summer Hasidic community, which is driving an unprecedented construction boom in the town.

But a look at the issues, and a quick read about what the state has to say about building moratoria, suggest that should the matter end in litigation, the courts would uphold the moratorium.  Read more

Baseline studies for Highland?

The townspeople of the Town of Highland and the Sullivan County Legislature are to be lauded for their efforts to push for a study of the potential health impacts of the proposed Highland compressor station. Any addition to our body of knowledge about the impacts of natural gas infrastructure in a world in which natural gas is being promoted—mistakenly, in our view—as part of the solution to our energy needs rather than as part of the problem, is a step in the right direction. But we need to be clear about what we are hoping to accomplish with such a study, and what cannot be accomplished.  Read more

Slaughterhouse dreams fade away

For the past 10 years or so, the Sullivan County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) and others have been trying to launch what could be called a boutique slaughterhouse in Liberty, NY. But after a wild ride of ups and downs, the project has finally met its demise.

The red meat facility was first proposed by the Sullivan County Agricultural Local Development Corporation in 2004, but that agency made no real progress, and the IDA adopted the project four years later.  Read more

What’s wrong with Tusten ZBA law?

The Tusten planning board in March approved a special-use permit that allowed developer Phillip Geras to move forward with his plan to convert a former seasonal hunting camp into a year-round apartment building with 10 units.

At the public hearing about the project, Wanda and Geoffrey Gangel, who live next to the building in question, brought up some points that they interpreted to mean that the project would be in violation of several aspects of the town’s zoning code. The planning board did not agree with their arguments and granted the special-use permit.  Read more

Another healthcare surprise

The track record for newly created entities providing healthcare in New York State in compliance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, is not a very good one.  Read more

Pesticides in your toothpaste

As the end of the New York State legislative session draws near, environmental groups in Albany are pushing to have triclosan banned from most products sold in the state.

The New York State League of Conservation Voters (NYLCV) is one such group. According to its website, the presence of triclosan, which was first registered as a pesticide in 1969, has been found in New York waters, and it “impairs muscle function in both animals and humans, including heart muscle.”

So what is it, and how did it get into our soaps and toothpaste?  Read more

Embracing the sunshine

In some places in Sullivan County, it’s clear that the county is already home to some large-scale solar installations. The one outside the Travis Building in Liberty, NY, which went online in 2012, generates 49.9 kW of power with 208 panels.

Another system, which was powered up behind the Sullivan County Community College in 2016, cranks out 2.15 MW of electricity with more than 7,000 panels.  Read more