Tusten goes to the dogs

By LINDA DROLLINGER
Posted 6/17/20

NARROWSBURG, NY – They come from miles around to enjoy views of the Delaware River’s Big Eddy and the iconic bridge that spans it. That, combined with ready parking, picturesque houses …

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Tusten goes to the dogs

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NARROWSBURG, NY – They come from miles around to enjoy views of the Delaware River’s Big Eddy and the iconic bridge that spans it. That, combined with ready parking, picturesque houses and flat terrain, makes the Narrowsburg flats a walkers’ destination of choice. With the walkers come their dogs. And with the dogs comes something else.

“There’s poop everywhere,” said resident Iris Holfeld at the June 9 Tusten Town Board meeting, held via Zoom. Holfeld went on to say that a virtual army of walkers and their dogs has descended on the flats daily since the start of the pandemic shutdown and the resulting influx of second-home owners, Air B&B guests and other tourists. What was a nuisance has become a public health hazard.

A recent dog attack incident introduced the decades-old town leash law to many previously unaware of its existence. That law requires dog owners to pick up after their pets, in addition to leashing them. To educate the public, signage containing leash law provisions was placed at strategic sites in Narrowsburg and at the Ten Mile River access site. Three signs have been placed on the flats already with plans for another to be placed in the former medical arts building parking lot, which many out-of-town walkers recognize as the “flats walk” trailhead. A mailer with leash law provisions will also go out soon to all Tusten residents.

Holfeld fears the signage alone will not motivate dog owners to be responsible pet parents, which prompted supervisor Ben Johnson to say that dog control officer Nico Juarez may have to do some “information enforcement” during peak walking hours.

In other business, the board voted unanimously to accept the only bid it received for replacement of the town hall roof. Although four other construction firms performed the inspection mandatory to bid submission, Reeves Mountain Construction’s $185,000 bid was the only one submitted, and it came with suggestions for work beyond the scope outlined in the bid specifications. The board weighed those suggestions and decided, for now, to go forward with the roof replacement as originally specified, reserving the right to contract for the additional work as the project proceeds. The project is expected to be completed by September 1. 

The energy committee reported that the 18-by-23 HORSE food waste digester, scheduled for delivery by mid-September, will be housed in the parking lot of the town highway barn. Information about its operation can be obtained from a booth near the Victory Garden at the Narrowsburg Farmers’ Market in August and September. The market is located at the Narrowsburg Union on Saturdays, between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The board voted to accept from Lang Enviroventures, Inc. the donation of a portable toilet for the children’s playground on the flats.

For New York’s primary election this year, Tusten’s designated polling place is in the Town of Highland. Carpooling may be available for those unable to drive to the polling place.

Before the meeting was recessed to Tuesday, June 23 at 6:30 p.m., deputy supervisor Jane Luchsinger said she had given comprehensive plan consultant Peter Manning a five-hour tour of Tusten. “His opinion: we are very lucky to live here.”

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