Peaceful protesters gather in Hudson after Ferguson decision

Protesters in Hudson gathered on the steps of the Columbia County Courthouse Tuesday morning, November 24 to share their dismay over the St. Louis County grand jury decision the evening before not to indict the police officer who shot in Ferguson, Missouri, resident Michael Brown, 18. About 100 protesters came out to share their frustration with what they called the “lack of justice” in case. Protesters carried handmade signs, chanted and marched to demonstrate their views. Photo by Lance Wheeler




TH sees way to restore radio contact with buses

CRARYVILLE—Richard Viebrock, supervisor of transportation for the Taconic Hills Central School District, has proposed that the district adopt a digital radio communications system for its buses.

At the November 19 meeting of the school board, Mr. Viebrock called the current state of the district’s bus radios “a safety and security issue.” Mr. Viebrock says that a 2012 federal mandate required the district to change the bandwidth it used for radio communication to free up space for medical, fire and law enforcement first responders. The bandwidth switch cost $70,000 for equipment upgrades—and caused the school district’s radio coverage to drop from about 70% to 50% of the district. Read more…

Chatham poised to suspend downsizing

CHATHAM–A year after district voters rejected the $13.8-million capital project proposal, Chatham’s Board of Education is looking to take its consolidation plan off the table. Board members agreed that while consolidating students into two buildings will eventually be necessary, it would not be feasible to execute the plan in the fall of 2015 without a capital project. Where the next steps should begin and the pace at which those steps are taken is where members of the board disagreed.

The discussion of consolidation began four years ago, when the board at the time began looking into ways to save money after seeing reports of declining enrollment and looming financial pressures that were said to threaten educational programming down the line. After studies were done, the board determined that it would be feasible to move students out of the middle school building on Woodbridge Avenue and fit all of the district’s students into the high school and Mary E. Dardess Elementary School. To accommodate the consolidation of students into the remaining two buildings, the board developed a capital project plan costing $13.8 million that called for renovations and additional classrooms that the district said were needed in order for the schools to offer the programs they wanted after consolidation. Read more…

Slow moving sewer project costs engineers

KINDERHOOK – As the sewer project in the village comes to completion, Village Mayor Carol Weaver has told the engineering firm that designed and inspected the project there is no more money to pay the firm’s overtime.

Mayor Weaver, who attended the November 12 Village Board meeting via Internet video feed from out of town, addressed representatives from Ryan Biggs, Clark, Davis Engineering and Surveying at Village Hall. The company has asked for an additional $42,000 based on services rendered when the project took longer than anticipated. Read more…

Superfund site gets new treatment system

NASSAU – As announced by the Environmental Protection Agency last July, a new treatment system (HiPOx) is being added to the water treatment plant at the Dewey Loeffel Landfill Superfund site to further address the long-term treatment of the chemical 1,4-dioxane.

Direct discharge from the plant to the Valatie Kill at an effective flow rate of 0.5-0.6 gallons per minute is expected to begin on or around December 1. Read more…

Hillsdale gets cracking on sidewalk details

HILLSDALE—The Town Board took the next step in its ongoing project to repair the Town’s sidewalks this week, authorizing creation a special sidewalks development account, which will make it easier to keep track of the money involved in the sidewalks project.

The account will not be entirely separate from the general account, but it will separately list incoming funds and expenditures having to do with the sidewalks project.

With the town receiving over $500,000 for the project from the state, “eventually, we’re going to be audited on the sidewalk project,” said Supervisor Art Baer at the board’s Tuesday, November 18 meeting. Read more…