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November 25, 2014
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Panther Rock Creek and the Callicoon Creek, which converge in Youngsville, have flooded numerous times over the past decade, and now the state is moving to address the issue at Panther Rock.
At a public hearing on November 12, a representative from the NY State Department of Transportation (DOT) said the creek floods so often because the space below the bridge over the creek is too small. Root balls and trees get stuck in the opening and the water backs up and floods the surrounding buildings.

Move to rescind CVS agreement fails

In a bid to reverse the agreement with CVS over the traffic patterns at the intersection of Main and Fourth Streets, council member Bob Jennings moved to reject the agreement.

That agreement was dated December 19 and was signed by council president F.J. Monaghan and Michael W. Buckless, vice president of Pennsylvania CVS Pharmacy.

The agreement said that “within 14 days” CVS must submit to the borough revised traffic plans for the intersection. As of January 11, 23 days had passed since the agreement was signed.  Read more

E-recycling expanded in Wayne; Microwave ovens not included

DUNMORE, PA — Waste Management Company locations in Northeast Pennsylvania are expanding the list of e-recycling items in Wayne, Lackawanna and Northampton counties.

In Wayne County, the company is already recycling televisions and computer equipment, which its sites began accepting a year ago. Now, the company will accept most other consumer electronics, including VCRs, audio equipment, telephones, cell phones and most other devices that plug in or are powered by batteries.  Read more

PPL plans new substations; Infrastructure planned for improved electrical service

NORTHEAST, PA — PPL Electric Utilities has made application to the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to build three new electrical substations and a new 230-kilovolt powerline.

The project is called the Northeast-Pocono Reliability Project. The plan is to improve electric service for approximately 250,000 people in Northeast Pennsylvania and the Pocono region. The project will reach from Wilkes-Barre to Lake Wallenpaupack.  Read more

Gas drilling friction in Town of Callicoon; Comprehensive plan resolutions tabled

Two resolutions related to the process of updating the comprehensive plan posted on the town’s website, which prompted a large turnout to the Town of Callicoon meeting on January 14, were tabled.

The town supervisor, Tom Bose, said that the resolutions were tabled because they needed changes, but that did not reduce the frustration of many of the 50 or so people in attendance, because the resolutions indicate that the board intends to move forward with adopting a comprehensive plan that effectively invites gas drilling in the town.  Read more

$26,300 per acre for town barn lot

There’s no question that the Town of Delaware town barn, in order to prevent its contents from flowing downstream, needs to move. It now sits on a parcel of land on Route 17B in the Village of Hortonville where the Joe Brook and the Callicoon Creek meet up on their route to the Delaware River. They are peaceful streams, until they flood.  Read more

Sullivan farmers and newsprint; One person’s waste may be an animal’s bedding

With Sullivan County Legisl ators keeping a careful eye these days, Ed McAndrew thought that they should consider a county policy of since the late 1990s of allowing farmers to walk away with newsprint to be used for bedding for cattle or cows.

McAndrew, deputy commissioner of the Division of Public Works, said he did not have an exact figure about how much newsprint the farmers were taking, but he estimated “it’s in the neighborhood of 200 tons per year, and you’re looking at about $20,000 a year of newsprint that isn’t being marketed.”  Read more

Hawley tax abatement workshop

The proposal to designate parts of the Borough of Hawley as “distressed” will get another public airing at a workshop scheduled by the borough council to be held on January 30 at 7 p.m. at the Hawley Fire Hall on Columbus Avenue.

Investors in the Hawley Silk Mill have been advocating that part of the borough be designated as distressed in order for companies in the borough to take advantage of tax incentives through the state Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) program.  Read more

Schumer calls for broadband funds

ALBANY, NY — U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer is calling on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to relax current standards so that Hudson Valley telecommunications companies can access over $485 million in available funds aimed at deploying broadband across the country.  Read more

NY Assembly introduces DREAM Act to aid immigrant youth

ALBANY, NY — Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on January 16 introduced a comprehensive state Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, which would support the education of immigrant youth. The bill would also, for the first time, allow immigrant students to apply for state financial aid, as well as to create a DREAM Fund that would provide private scholarships.  Read more

Baker committee assignments

HARRISBURG, PA — Senator Lisa Baker retained her position as chair of the Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee and is planning a busy schedule.

“There is a lot of important work to be done for our veterans, for emergency responders, and for community protection. The issues this committee handles involve concerns I hear about constantly, from families, from local officials and from service providers,” Baker said.  Read more

Hawley council considers eight miles of trails; Courting outdoor recreation

The Hawley Borough Council voted on January 9 to assume the role of applicant and grant writer for three trails that would wind through the town and into the Lake Wallenpaupack area.

An extensive presentation was made by Sue Currier, executive director of the Delaware Highlands Conservancy, who explained the long-range plan, currently in the development stage, which would include trails covering an eight-mile expanse.  Read more

Sullivan chair takes the blame for auditing firm controversy

“I screwed the process up, guilty.” Those were the words of Scott Samuelson, chair of the Sullivan County Legislature, at a meeting on January 17, regarding a resolution about an agreement with a firm named PKF O’Conner Davies, which has audited the county’s books for the past few years.  Read more

Local drilling costs unknown; Delaware drilling commission explores economics

In contrast with natural gas industry claims that Marcellus Shale drilling brings jobs and revenue to th e localities in which it occurs, economist Jannette Barth, Ph.D., owner of J.M. Barth & Associates, Inc., asserted that local government costs associated with natural gas extraction have yet to be determined. At the invitation of the Town of Delaware Gas Drilling Commission, Barth addressed commission members and the invited public at the commission’s January 7 meeting in Hortonville.  Read more

Fins and Feathers doubles space

Things are going so well for Fins and Feathers Pet Supplies at 222 Willow Avenue that it is nearly doubling its space by 1,200 sq. ft to a maximum of 3,200 sq. ft.

It has taken over the space next door that was occupied by R3 Hardware, which has moved to larger space on Honesdale’s Main Street formerly occupied by the state liquor store.

“This industry is one of the top 10 businesses in the country,” said owner Brian Batten, 36, a life-long Wayne County resident.

“Even when business is bad, people want to keep their pets,” he said.  Read more

Cochecton councilman proposes drilling ban; Fellow lawmakers not interested

Larry Richardson said his views on gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing have evolved over the years. He’s now convinced that the best way to protect the town against the possible harms of drilling is to follow the lead of four other Sullivan County towns, and adopt a ban on gas drilling.  Read more

Sean Lennon and Yoko Ono deliver comments; Groups submit over 200,000 comments on fracking

ALBANY, NY — According to a coalition of groups and individuals opposed to hydraulic fracturing, the more than 200,000 comments delivered regarding proposed new regulations constitute a record. During the last comment period regarding fracking, some 66,000 were submitted.
  Read more

Lumberland power outage discussed; Town fire department lauded for deer rescue

A six-hour power outage that affected the Town of Lumberland was caused by a breaker defect, supervisor Nadia Rajsz reported at the January 9 board meeting. “It was very unexpected,” Rajsz said of the January 4 outage.

The supervisor said she was told by a representative of Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc. that the defect in the breaker caused it to blow. According to the Orange and Rockland website, the outage affected about 1,000 customers.

The outage lasted from about 7:20 a.m. until about 1:20 p.m., Rajsz said.  Read more

Sullivan legislature votes to change charter; Majority seeks new county manager

The Sullivan County Legislature voted four to one in committee to revise the county charter to change the provision that requires a supermajority—or six of the nine legislators—to appoint a person to or remove him or her from the position of county manager.

In introducing it, legislator Alan Sorensen said, “This resolution will restore the original intent of the Sullivan County Charter bringing it back to a simple majority.”  Read more

Wayne Memorial warns about flu

In the face of an aggressive flu season, Wayne Memorial Hospital is asking all visitors with flu or flu-like symptoms to “visit on another day” or “visit by phone,” a recommendation from the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

Over the three months of October, November and December 2012, the hospital confirmed 24 cases of influenza A. Between October of 2011 and March 2012—six months—the hospital confirmed only three cases of the same disease.  Read more

Bonacic on proposed gun law

ALBANY, NY — Senator John Bonacic released the following statement regarding the proposed gun law: “Calls to my offices have been overwhelmingly against more gun control. When my constituents are overwhelmingly against something, and the bill we are asked to vote on is rushed through without any public review, that is nearly always a good reason to vote ‘no.’  Read more