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April 19, 2014
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News in brief


Shots fired outside Monticello housing complex
MONTICELLO, NY — Monticello police are investigating a shots-fired incident that occurred at approximately 9:40 p.m. on Tuesday, August 2 at the Evergreen Drive housing complex in the village of Monticello. A 2005 Dodge caravan being operated by a 28-year-old Monticello woman was struck twice by gunfire as she was driving out of the complex. Also in the vehicle were the woman’s four children (two sets of twins ages two and eight).

The vehicle was struck on the front bumper, and the front passenger side tire was also hit and deflated. None of the occupants of the vehicle was injured. It is not known if the woman’s vehicle was specifically targeted or if the shots were intended toward others. Officers later recovered a 12 gauge shotgun from behind a business on Forestburg Road that possibly was related to the incident.

Anyone with information about this incident can call Monticello police in confidence at 845/794-4422.

Dimock billboard taken down
DIMOCK, PA — Less than 24 hours after Dimock residents held a press conference beneath a newly installed billboard that called attention to contamination in their water wells (see last week’s briefs), the billboard was taken down.

At the press conference, a lawyer employed by Cabot videotaped residents as they spoke about living in homes with contaminated wells, and a Cabot spokesperson, George Stark called the billboard “a lie” and disputed that the discolored water came from the Sautner well. He said he was unaware that tests conducted by Duke University and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection had found dozens of contaminants in the water.

The billboard had displayed a photograph of brownish water drawn from the well of Craig and Julie Sautner, and listed some of the chemical contaminants it contained. A representative of Park Outdoors, the company that rented the space for the billboard, said it was taken down at the request of the individual who owns the property where it was located.

Help for homeowners facing foreclosure
MILFORD, PA — Homeowners can apply now for the federal Emergency Homeowner’s Loan Program (EHLP) if they are unable to make their monthly mortgage payments because of job loss or income reduction. The program will only be available through September 30.

Homeowners facing foreclosure should call 800/342-2397 to get help. They may be eligible for a loan of up to $50,000 or 24 months of mortgage payment assistance under certain conditions. Call the same number to learn of the conditions.
Pennsylvania homeowners who are not eligible for EHLP still may be eligible for Pennsylvania’s Homeowners Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program (HEAP). Visit www.PHFA.org or call 800/342-2397.

Grants open for fire and EMS
WASHINGTON, DC — Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) has announced that application materials for the federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program are now available online and that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will begin accepting electronic grant submissions on Monday, August 15.

The congressman’s office is available to assist local fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) teams with any questions they may have about the grant application process. The application guidance and materials are available online at www.fema.gov/firegrants. The application period for the Fiscal Year 2011 AFG program closes on September 9 at 5 p.m. Applications must be submitted electronically through the fire grants website.

Sullum’s building to become high-tech haven
HONESDALE, PA — The Sullum’s building in downtown Honesdale is undergoing a major makeover that will cost about $500,000. Stephen Smith and Michael Morris of Smith and Morris Holdings, Inc. have had the interior gutted, and 90,000 pounds of debris have been removed. Five trucks worth of clothes have been donated to local churches.

According to Morris, the renovated building will be Leadership Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certified. Morris’ company plans to offer training courses for people in energy efficiency design technologies and other high-tech arenas.

Smith and Morris Holdings, Inc. will offer 15,000 square feet of space in the 135-year-old building for companies looking to bring high-tech opportunities such as graphic design companies or animation studios to the area.