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Cuomo’s office to be represented at landowners’ rights forum

LIBERTY, NY — Representatives from Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s office will take part in a community-wide Landowners’ Rights Forum with Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther on Tuesday, December 9 in Liberty. The forum will inform landowners about their rights in regard to oil and gas exploration companies. Members of the community are invited and encouraged to attend.

The event will be held at Liberty High School at 125 Buckley Street.

Bethel to establish literacy center

BETHEL, NY — The Town of Bethel will partner with Sullivan County Literacy Center, the BLDC and the Town of Bethel Youth Board to create a literacy center to provide and promote reading and learning opportunities for community members. It is expected to open in spring of 2009.

Significant building repairs and improvements will be made to the town’s current Youth Building. The building will be expanded and several energy improvements and green initiatives will be incorporated. When completed, the building will accommodate both a computer-equipped literacy center and a renovated youth area to support year-round activities.

The center is made possible through equipment, books and supplies provided by the Sullivan County Literacy Center in Monticello along with municipal funds and planned fundraising efforts, and the personal initiative of June Barrett, resident of Smallwood, and Connie Keller, director of the Sullivan County Literacy Center.

Narrowsburg signs to be dedicated

NARROWSBURG, NY —The New York State Scenic Byways Model Interpretive Signage Project in Narrowsburg has been completed. The public is invited to a dedication ceremony and lunch reception to be held at 12:00 noon on Saturday, December 6 at the Town of Tusten Community Hall, 210 Bridge Street.

The program will include brief remarks by speakers and a description of the grant-funded project that Sullivan County administered on behalf of the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway, Inc. (UDSB). UDSB City of Port Jervis representative and Minisink Valley Historical Society executive director Peter Osborne will serve as master of ceremonies.

Lunch, catered by Jill’s Kitchen, will follow. At 1:30 p.m., there will be an opportunity to visit the three sites where the graphic panels are installed: the Upper Delaware Council office at 211 Bridge Street, the Eagle Observation Deck on Main Street, and Fort Delaware Museum of Colonial History at 6615 Route 97.

The dedication and luncheon are free, but reservations are requested by 12:00 noon on Wednesday, December 3. For more information call 845/252-3022.

Car crashes into Port bus

CUDDEBACKVILLE, NY — A car smashed into the rear end of a Port Jervis bus carrying elementary school students at 12:45 p.m. on Monday, November 24. Six of the students and the bus driver suffered minor injuries and were taken to Bon Secours Community Hospital in Port Jervis.

The car was totaled, and the roof of the car had to be cut off to extricate the driver, Michael Petitti, 38, of Cuddebackville. He was airlifted to Westchester Medical Center, but his injuries are not life threatening. Petitti’s daughter, six-year-old Brittany, who had been sitting in the back seat, escaped with minor injuries.

Nineteen of the 25 students in the bus were unharmed, and were transferred to a bus going to Anna S. Kuhl Elementary School, where their parents picked them up.

Petitti’s car slammed into the bus just after it had finished dropping off a student less than half a mile from the school.

The accident is under investigation.

Office of parks finds adverse impact from NYRI powerline

ALBANY, NY — The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) has issued a finding that the New York Regional Interconnect Transmission Line (NYRI) project will have an adverse impact on historic and cultural resources along the 190-mile long route.

In a letter to the Public Service Commission dated October 28, OPRHP also expressed disappointment that NYRI, to date, has not provided the minimum required information, writing, “…the material submitted to date does not meet the level of information we generally seek for analysis… we are compelled to provide you with our comments based on the limited information that has been provided for analysis.”

Several other agencies and organizations participating in the Public Service Commission process have criticized NYRI’s refusal to provide complete information, including Stop NYRI, Inc., the Upper Delaware Preservation Commission and Communities Against Regional Interconnect.

Accused dealers to plead guilty

MONTICELLO, NY — A number of key players in a Monticello cocaine distribution ring who had been arrested in May are expected to plead guilty in December, including Adam Bloom, 25, accused of supplying the network. Along with his own supplier, Jerry Hernandez, 32, of Queens, Bloom agreed to the guilty plea on conspiracy to distribute cocaine and several other charges last week.

The terms of the deal as far as sentencing are not yet known.

The arrests were the result of a 15-month-long investigation involving several agencies. Over two dozen people were arrested altogether, of whom five more are expected to plead guilty next month.