NARROWSBURG, NY — The Upper Delaware river corridor, the territory that covers the river and a strip of land on either side, helps guide the municipalities along the river in protecting its …
NARROWSBURG, NY — The Upper Delaware river corridor, the territory that covers the river and a strip of land on either side, helps guide the municipalities along the river in protecting its natural qualities. Development projects that take place in the corridor are subject to additional oversight to ensure they don’t harm the river. The reviewing agencies include, for example, the Upper Delaware Council (UDC).
Now, the Town of Tusten has an additional tool to use in enacting the protections of the river corridor.
Susan Sullivan, Tusten’s longtime representative to the UDC, presented the town board with a physical map at the board’s meeting on December 13. The map clearly delineates the area of the Upper Delaware River Corridor, and is meant to help the planning board and the zoning board of appeals determine whether projects are within the river corridor or not.
The information is available online, but a lot of planning and zoning board officials wanted a physical map they could use, said Sullivan.
She also updated the town board on the region’s latest environmental use.
The boat ramp at the Ten Mile River access point on the Delaware had been discussed at the UDC’s water resources management committee. The project to have a improved boat ramp there wasn’t going anywhere due to the changing management, but the UDC was following up with the current owner, the Conservation Fund, and talking with a representative from the future owner, the Department of Environmental Conservation.
“It’s just a continuous item, that we’d like to see a better boat ramp there where people don’t get stuck in the mud,” said Sullivan.
Additionally, the UDC’s telecommunications subcommittee is continuing its work, preparing a position paper to address the problem of poor cell communications in the river corridor.
The Delaware River Basin Commission has issued its final rules on fracking byproducts, reported Sullivan. “I think if you’re on the side of ‘ban all of it,’ you’re unhappy, and if you’re on the side of ‘no regulation,’ you’re unhappy,” she said. “I think they just made it stricter.”
On a more personal note, Sullivan announced that she was stepping down from her role as Tusten’s UDC representative: she was needing a little more space in her life, she said.
The current alternate for the position, Evan Padua, wasn’t interested in the full role, Sullivan said; she was willing to stay on as a second alternate. She suggested that members of the town’s boards—the planning board, the zoning board of appeals or the comprehensive plan committee—would be the people for the position.
“It’s not the easiest position to step into,” said Tusten supervisor Ben Johnson. On behalf of the board, he thanked Sullivan for her 14-plus years of service.
“I have had a good time with it,” she said.
Johnson told the board that highway superintendent Don Neiger wanted to hire some temporary workers. The workers would only be called in when Neiger needed, said Johnson; “[it’s] mostly due to the flu and COVID season… these people would only be called in when he needs them because he’s got men out.”
The board accepted the request. “I’m in no position to second-guess him; he’s the highway superintendent,” said board member Kevin McDonough.
“The boards haven’t always felt that way,” said Johnson.
The meeting closed with a heartfelt tribute to the Town of Tusten.
Charles Reisser Sr., from Wilkes-Barre, PA, sent the town a letter, said board member Jane Luchsinger, who read the letter to the board. Reisser had visited Tusten when he was 14 and loved it, but a series of life circumstances—his parents’ divorce, service in Vietnam and his disability—had kept him from returning.
Reisser wrote that he looked at Tusten every day over the internet. “Please keep your town as it is, it’s perfect… I will look at your town every day until I die.”
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