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May 06, 2015
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TRR photo by Amanda Reed

REGION — For some people in the area, seeing a painted turtle basking in the sun on this bit of log that pokes above the water in Little Lake Erie in Narrowsburg is a sure sign that warmer days are here.

According to Wikipedia, this cold-blooded turtle regulates its temperature by basking in the sun after having spent the winter hibernating, buried in the mud, probably at the bottom of the lake for months without breathing.

For another look at this amphibian turn to River Talk on page 32.

Sullivan West adopts Alternative Veterans’ Tax Exemptions

LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — There was standing room only at the January 15 Sullivan West Central School district’s public hearing on adoption of New York State Alternative Veterans’ Tax Exemptions (AVTE) legislation. Attended by over 50 men and women veterans of wars as long ago as World War II and as recent as Afghanistan, the hearing also attracted non-veteran supporters of the proposed legislation. A dozen speakers, not all of them veterans, advocated adoption of the legislation on the grounds that it constituted sound economic policy for the community as a whole.  Read more

Tusten to repair town hall

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Tusten Town Board has been discussing it for a while, and at its meeting on January 13 they voted on it: they will begin repairs to the Tusten Town Hall building. The board voted in favor of a resolution to spend up to $30,000 from the general reserve fund.  Read more

Port Jervis utility increase opposed; Support for white-water park

PORT JERVIS, NY — Electricity and natural gas rate increases proposed by Orange and Rockland Utilities (O&R) to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) came under scrutiny at the Port Jervis Council meeting on January 12. Councilmember George Belcher said Orange and Rockland rates are already among the highest in United States, and people simply couldn’t afford another rate hike. If the proposed hike goes through, O&R supplied electricity will be more expensive by 5.2%, and natural gas by a whopping 16.8%.  Read more

Delaware fills town board position

HORTONVILLE, NY — A position on the Town of Delaware Town Board which had been left open after Councilman Harold Roeder resigned at the December meeting was filled on January 14 The board voted that the seat be filled by Chris Hermann, who ran on the Democratic line in the last election. During the meeting, Hermann was sworn in and took his seat with the rest of the board.  Read more

Freezing rains bring fatalities

REGION — Freezing rain brought numerous accidents and at least two fatalities on January 18.  Read more

Micro-breweries, parking up for zoning review

ELDRED, NY — The Highland Town Board on January 13 approved and sent two requests for zoning change reviews to the town planning board.  Read more

Man charged in nude photo case

LIBERTY, NY — On January 15, the Village of Liberty Police Department arrested Michael Eason, 28, of Thompson after an investigation into the dissemination of pornographic material to a 14-year-old juvenile in Liberty. The girl had been sent naked pictures from an account in the name of a 16-year-old female and the individual had requested naked pictures of the younger girl in return.  Read more

Fire in raptor center

MILFORD, PA — On January 8, a fire broke out in the Delaware Valley Raptor Center and the director’s personal residence at 416 Cummins Hill Rd. Executive Director Bill Streeter said, “I was thawing a frozen pipe and accidently ignited a piece of insulation paper backing which got swept up in a draft behind the wall. It was my fault. Stephanie and I got out OK and we saved the birds being treated indoors as well as our dog. Fire damage was limited to three rooms, but smoke damage has made the home unlivable for at least three months while we rebuild.  Read more

Former Mamakating supervisor accused of knocking down activist

WURTSBORO, NY — The former supervisor of the Town of Mamakating is accused of twice knocking a local activist to the sidewalk. Further, the former supervisor, Duane Roe Jr., warned the activist, Andrew Weil, not to put him or his daughter on Facebook.  Read more

USDA announces projects to improve Delaware River Watershed

HARRISBURG, PA — Undersecretary for Natural Resources and Environment Ann Mills of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced projects in Pennsylvania and New Jersey that will receive over $15 million to improve water quality in the Delaware River Watershed as part of the new Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP).  Read more

Why is Cochecton growing?

LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — Most of the discussion and action items at the January 14 Cochecton Town Board meeting were centered around two topics introduced by code enforcement officer (CEO) Greg Semenetz: a marked increase in new construction building permit applications that includes multiple subdivision requests; and his recommendation that the town amend its existing junkyard ordinance to include an ad valorem clause.  Read more

Lumberland — four years of bridge work

GLEN SPEY, NY — Pennsylvania and New York are going to spend $17.5 million to replace a historic one-lane bridge that many people didn’t want replaced. It will serve about 30 families, many of whom are part-time residents, and disrupt traffic on Route 97 for portions of four years.  Read more

Blowback against wind turbine

LIBERTY, NY — The benefit of the proposed Liberty Wind project is that a large wind turbine would result in a significantly reduced electricity bill for the Liberty Central School District (LCSD) and thereby possibly save taxpayers some money.  Read more

WJFF launches series on the heroin epidemic

JEFFERSONVILLE, NY — Heroin addiction is running rampant in our area on both sides of the river. The heroin epidemic is also a national problem. Unfortunately, lives have been lost due to this drug.  Read more

‘YouTube America’ in Liberty, NY

LIBERTY, NY — Famous comedian and actor David Cross has made an independent comedy about, and based in, Liberty. The film is called “Hits,” and it’s about a girl who lives in Liberty and is trying everything she can to become famous. Meanwhile, her dad shows up at a Liberty town meeting and makes a scene, complaining about the rampant pothole problem in the town. A video of him yelling at the town board is passed along to a group of hipsters, who share the video on YouTube—and it goes viral. Thus, he becomes famous while his daughter is still trying in vain to do so.  Read more

Directing traffic to Honesdale

HONESDALE, PA — One Honesdale businessman is continuing his efforts to get interstate highway traffic pointed toward Wayne County.  Read more

In Berlin township, if it ain’t broke…

BEACH LAKE, PA — Unwitnessed by the public, save for this reporter, the Berlin Township board of supervisors held its January 5 annual reorganization meeting, as mandated by Pennsylvania law. It took the three-person board, consisting of Paul Henry, Cathy Hunt and Charlie Gries, less than 40 minutes to nominate, appoint and reappoint themselves, other individuals, and various firms to over 20 positions of authority in Berlin Township. But then, this seasoned board knows the drill well. Gries joined the board in 2008, Henry in 2009 and Hunt in 2010.  Read more

Pike fights heroin abuse epidemic

MILFORD, PA — In an effort to actively fight a growing heroin abuse problem locally, Pike County has instituted what has been called a unique drug and alcohol treatment program for its correctional facility.  Read more

UDC making a stink about Masthope sewage

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Upper Delaware Council is attempting to press for PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) action to stop holiday weekend sewage spills from the Masthope Mountain Community.  Read more

Senator Lisa Baker begins third term in Harrisburg

HARRISBURG, PA — Pennsylvania State Sen. Lisa Baker recently took the oath of office, beginning her third term in the Senate. “I would like to thank the voters for the privilege of serving,” she said.  Read more