Lt. Governor Hochul joins protest. A “STOP THE BAN Day of Action” demonstration was held at the Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood Health Center in Hudson Tuesday, May 21, coordinated with other demonstrations around the country organized in response to the new laws passed in several states that would ban virtually all abortions. New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul (c) addressed the crowd of about 150, reminding them that the state legalized abortions in 1970, three years before the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalized the it nationwide. And at that time, she told the gathering, the state had a Republican governor and a Republican legislature. Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood President and CEO Chelly Hegan (holding bullhorn) told the gathering, “We are still here and we are not going anywhere–we are not backing down.” Photo by David Lee

Valatie tests produce slight whiffs of trouble

VALATIE–The results of sewer line smoke tests designed to look for cracks and leaks were discussed by the Village Board at their May 14 meeting.

The testing was conducted by New York Rural Water Association (NYRWA) May 7 and 8 on some of the pipes in the village. Mayor Diane Argyle said that through the testing some issues were found, though she said after the meeting that they all required only minor repairs that were the responsibility of the property owners.

The village did have to cap a sewer line in front of the Valatie Theatre, which is owned by the village. The problem there was also discovered through the smoke test. The mayor said the village will be doing more testing on other pipes soon. Read more…

Canaan gets news on Rte 22 repairs, drivers’ licenses

CANAAN–Columbia County Clerk Holly Tanner came to the Town Board May 14 meeting with a presentation on compliance with federal identification requirements when securing a driver’s license in New York State.

Also last week the town received some good news May 17, when the state officially announced repairs on a 3.5-mile section of Route 22 from one-half mile south of state Route 295 to three miles north of Route 295 in the town.

At the meeting, Councilperson Brenda Adams brought the board and public up to date on the status of an upgrade for state Route 22 in Canaan and New Lebanon. The good news is that a project for repaving sections north and south of the state Route 295 intersection is being put out to bid. Securing the go-ahead was helped along by many local leaders, including Michael Tucker, president and CEO of the Columbia County Economic Development Corporation. Read more…

Copake Fall holds annual BBQ Saturday

COPAKE FALLS–The Columbia Paper accidentally omitted the ad for the annual Memorial Day Weekend Barbeque in Copake Falls.

The event, with Texas Brisket and North Carolina Pulled Pork, takes place Saturday, May 25 at 5:30 p.m. on the Green Across from the Park Entrance, Copake Falls. Take-out is available. It’s BYOB

Tickets, $20, are available at the Depot Deli, Bash Bish Bicycle, Taconic State Park Office, Town Hall or by calling 518-329-3251

The event is sponsored by the Copake Falls Day Committee.

In case of rain there will be take-out only.

District raises bar to vote

CRARYVILLE—Trying to cast a vote in the Taconic Hills School District election this week proved to be an unexpected challenge for some registered voters who were denied absentee ballots.

State Education Law and State Election Law seem to have clashed, creating a scenario in which voters legally registered to vote in national, state, county and local elections are suddenly not eligible voters in their own school district, at least as far as Taconic Hills (TH) is concerned.

Brad and Mary Stein of Ancram are among them. Read more…

Vanyo resigns ICC post

KINDERHOOK – The Ichabod Crane Board of Education released a statement this week saying that Superintendent Michael Vanyo has agreed to resign effective June 30.

The statement, issued Wednesday morning, May 22, says that “based on a resolution passed by the Board of Education last night, Mr. Vanyo’s leave of absence has ended as of May 21, 2019. Effective today, Mr. Vanyo will be providing transition work to the district through the end of the 2018-2019 school year, until June 30, 2019. During this time, Mr. Vanyo will work with the district from a remote location to help prepare for his departure and ease the eventual transition period of a new superintendent. After that time, Mr. Vanyo will submit his resignation from the position of superintendent.”

Mr. Vanyo, 51, was arrested last month by the Saratoga Sheriff’s Office for DWI–operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or greater–leaving the scene of a property damage accident and an improper right turn. According to a press release from the sheriff’s office, deputies “responded to a call of a property damage motor vehicle crash on Maple Avenue in the Town of Wilton on April 6 at 8:33 p.m. where one of the involved vehicles reportedly left the scene.” Read more…