Three more jailed in drug bust

HONESDALE, PA — One of two at-large suspects in the recent dragnet of 15 accused drug dealers surrendered to police after learning that his girlfriend and another woman friend were arrested as a result of hindering his apprehension.

Montreal Brown, 27, of Honesdale surrendered and was arraigned on charges related to the alleged delivery of marijuana on several occasions.

Sarah Ellis, 26, Brown’s girlfriend, and Jamie Lynn LaPlat, 18, were also accused of the manufacture of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Remaining at large as the only remaining fugitive from last week’s dragnet operation is Ricardo Gomez. Gomez is believed to be in New York. Anyone with information concerning Gomez’s whereabouts is asked to contact the Pennsylvania State Police at 570/253-7126.

Liberty police go hi-tech

LIBERTY, NY — Downtown Liberty will soon have advanced video surveillance in areas police perceive to be targets for criminal activity. The cameras will be funded by a $50,000 state grant. The surveillance camera project was identified as a priority for Liberty by local officials, including county legislator Jodi Goodman and community development corporation member Gary Siegel.

Police chief Mike DeFrank said the cameras were his number one request in order to enhance downtown safety. “With this technology, we will be able to keep a detailed eye all the time on areas we have concerns about. These cameras were our highest crime-fighting priority.”

The system, similar to that used in Middletown and now being expanded in Walden, will mount cameras at strategic locations in downtown Liberty. The cameras will be protected and will be able to swivel and zoom. The cameras will also record action on an ongoing basis.

Methane landfill plant

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — The Sullivan County Department of Public Works’ (DPW) Division of Solid Waste is reviewing proposals from eight private companies who are interested in building a gas-to-energy conversion facility at the Sullivan County landfill so the county can sell the methane gas it emits.

Division director John Kehlenbeck told the Sullivan County Legislature’s Public Works Committee about progress on the project at its monthly Public Works Committee meeting on November 2. The division is expected to make a formal recommendation during next month’s meeting in the legislative chambers on December 14 at 11:00 a.m.

Though early discussions had included the potential for the county to build a gas-to-energy conversion facility on the grounds of the landfill, the county is now focusing on private corporations.

“By contracting this service to a private company who can convert the gas to usable energy and then sell the energy directly to the power company, the county is at no financial risk, and can still reap the financial benefits from selling a material previously considered a waste by-product,” said DPW Commissioner Robert Meyer.

For more information call 845/794-3000, ext. 3305.

Extra water released under new program

DELAWARE RIVER WATERSHED — According to the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), as of November 3, the agency had released over 33 billion gallons of water from its Delaware River reservoirs since a new release program was implemented on September 22—almost 29 billion gallons more than it would have under previous criteria.

The program was developed by New York City in cooperation with New York State and has been approved by the other Delaware River states of Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey.

New York City makes regular releases downstream into the Delaware River, as directed by the Delaware River Master, in order to maintain river levels downstream and to provide for fishery habitats. The new program increases potential retention during storms by increasing downstream releases to over 20 times normal when the total storage of those reservoirs exceeds 80 percent of capacity.

The new program will be in place until May 31, 2007, at which time New York City expects to announce a more comprehensive program of adaptive reservoir management, currently under development with the Delaware River states.

PFBC public comment deadline approaches

PENNSYLVANIA — The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) public comment period for a proposed rule amendment to section 58 PA Code Chapter 97 concludes on October 12. The proposed amendment would require the wearing of personal flotation devices (PFDs) when on board any canoes or kayak, and on boats less than 16 feet long, from October 1 through May 31. The amendment is based on drowning statistics covering the period from 1996 to 2005, during which 114 people lost their lives in recreational boating accidents in PA.

According to the PFBC, 42 percent of those boaters died during the cold weather months from October 1 through May 31, and of those, 45 percent were boating in unpowered boats and motorboats less than 16 feet in length.

The commission also seeks public comments on an alternative proposal that would require all persons to wear Coast Guard-approved PFDs on smaller vessels on a year-round basis.

Visit fish.state.pa.us/pfd2006 for more information.

Animal control goes to Liberty

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Sullivan County has arranged to handle the county’s animal control needs through the Liberty animal control office for the remainder of this year. The agreement was forged after the county received notice from the SPCA that the latter will terminate its arrangement with the county effective December 7.

The notice and termination comes after a series of tussles between the county and the SPCA regarding a bill for $16,650, which remains unpaid, and which the county says has not been adequately substantiated.