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November 30, 2015
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“Sarah Hale portrait” painted by James Reid Lambdin (1807-1889) — Richard’s Free Library, Newport, NH

REGION — Most Americans know that the first Thanksgiving was celebrated by the Pilgrims in the fall of 1621, with a feast that was shared with many members of the Wampanoag Tribe of Native Americans. What’s not as well known is that it did not become a national holiday celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November until many years later.

Cuomo lands at Bethel Woods; gaming hailed as breathing new life into Catskills

The old-timers in Sullivan County say that the county died as a tourist destination because of the three “A”s: airplanes, automobiles and air conditioning. Now, Governor Andrew Cuomo and many local leaders are betting that a casino or two can breathe new life into the tourism sector of the Catskills and beyond.  Read more

Training for Sullivan firefighters

MONTOUR FALLS, NY — For the 19th consecutive year Sullivan County Firefighters traveled to the New York State Fire Academy in Montour Falls to attend five different training classes.  Read more

Foundation targets watershed

DELAWARE RIVER WATERSHED — The William Penn Foundation (WPF) is well known in the Philadelphia area. In early October, the Philadelphia Business Journal reported that the foundation gave a $5 million grant to the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation to help pay for increased public access to the city’s waterfront.  Read more

Women’s gains in business proclaimed

HONESDALE, PA — Noting their diligence and the tremendous obstacles that women in business have overcome and the challenges they continue to face in the workplace, the Wayne County Commissioners on October 24 proclaimed National Business Women’s Week in Wayne County.  Read more

Pike native ends ‘National Generational Equity’ tour

WASHINGTON, DC — Nick Troiano, a Pike County, PA native and 2007 student body president of Delaware Valley High School, concluded a cross-country “Generational Equity Tour” on Capitol Hill last week with a high profile event calling for passage of the bipartisan INFORM Act.  Read more

Pennsylvania lawmaker wants False Claims Act

HARRISBURG, PA — PA State Representative Brandon Neuman, D-Washington, said the $2.2 billion settlement with Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries announced this week by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has significant ramifications for Pennsylvania.  Read more

One killed in Palmyra accident

PALMYRA TOWNSHIP, PA — A two-car crash on the Owego Turnpike in Palmyra Township on November 2 left one person dead and three others transported to hospitals with serious injuries. Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) say Manuel Mirailh, 57, of Lake Ariel was killed when he lost control of his car, a 1998 Oldsmobile, and he crashed head-on into a 2014 Mazda.  Read more

Quarter of New York property value exempt

ALBANY, NY — According to a new report issued by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, more than 25% of real property value in New York is exempt from county, city and town property taxes. The total value of these exempt properties is $680 billion. The value increases to $826 billion for properties exempt from more than one type of local government or school district taxes.  Read more

Police arrest two for welfare fraud

MONTICELLO & LIBERTY, NY — New York State Police at Liberty, working with the Sullivan County Department of Social Services Welfare Fraud Unit, arrested two Sullivan County residents after investigating two separate cases involving the filing of false public benefits applications.  Read more

Pennsylvania adopts new breast cancer bill; Goal is improving detection

HARRISBURG, PA — Gov. Tom Corbett on November 1 signed into law new breast cancer legislation that requires facilities that offer mammograms to notify patients about breast density. The legislation was sponsored by Sen. Bob Mensch, who attended the signing ceremony.  Read more

Food program cut for most vulnerable; Thousands in region impacted

WASHINGTON, DC — Food pantries in the region have been putting extra effort into their operations since the economy collapsed in 2008. Now, they will have to put forward even more effort to help feed the hungry because benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP—formally known as Food Stamps) were cut by $5 billion beginning on November 1.  Read more

Little Marcellus gas in New York

NEW YORK STATE — While many lease-holders in New York State may be wondering why Governor Andrew Cuomo keeps delaying the adoption of new rules on hydraulic fracturing, part of the answer may be that even when the new rules are in place, New York State is not likely to see much in the way of new revenues from the famed shale play.  Read more

2013 election results

These are the unofficial results for 2013 elections so far:  Read more

Four other New York propositions

New York State — Should voters in New York choose to turn over their ballots on election day they will find not only ballot propositions on gambling and the exchange of land in the Adirondacks, but also four other propositions on which they will be able to vote.  Read more

Environmental split over Proposition Five; The Adirondack Land Swap

LEWIS, NY — NYCO Minerals has been mining wollastonite in the Town of Lewis in the Adirondacks for the last 60 years. The company now wants to mine a 200-acre area located about 50 feet away from the current mine. However, that parcel is owned by the state as part of the Adirondack State Forest Preserve and subject to a “forever wild” provision of state land.  Read more

Summer residents’ voter registrations challenged

When Gary Mass, supervisor of the Town of Cochecton, heard that there were about six residents of a seasonal community who registered to vote in Sullivan County, he said he was not really concerned. But when that number rose to 24, a figure that represents about 5% of the voting population, he decided he should take action.  Read more

Wayne library seeks Pike help

As they did earlier this year, Wayne County library officials came before the Pike County Commissioners saying they deserve Pike funding because a large portion of their patrons are Pike residents.  Read more

Sullivan IDA signs Concord deal

Now that there are two lawsuits challenging the proposed casino resort at the site of the former Concord Hotel, the way seems clear for the project to go forward.  Read more

Bethel boar on the way out; Governor signs bill banning boar

According to elected officials and wildlife advocates, there are numerous operations across the country and New York State in which wild boars are kept in fenced enclosures and shot by people who pay for the experience.  Read more

Globe-trotting judge in Slovenia

LJUBLJANA, SLOVENIA —In conjunction with the U.S. State Department Rule of Law Program and the University of Ljubljana Law School in Slovenia, Sullivan County Judge Frank LaBuda was a guest lecturer on the topic of Traditional Criminal Courts and Alternative Drug Courts in the United States.  Read more