Neighbors’ group satisfies a carving craving. In late October every year for the past four years A. Neighbors Network has organized a bake sale and pumpkin carving event to raise money for various causes, including the Pine Plains Food Pantry and the feline rescue group called Collaborative Cats. This year’s event, postponed a day by rain, was held Sunday, October 23, and attendance for the downtown Ancramdale gathering may have suffered a bit. But those who turned out got all they bargained for. Pictured (l to r) are Anthony Martucci of Ancram as he works on his jack-o-lanterns under the watchful eyes of volunteer Annie Walwyn-Jones and James and Claire Adams, both of Ancramdale. Anthony’s and Claire’s creations will be lit and placed on the bridge in Ancramdale every night until Halloween. Photo by David Lee

Two women vie for seat in 106th AD

GHENT—Two women are in the race for the 106th State Assembly District, which covers portions of Columbia and Dutchess counties.

In Columbia County, the district encompasses the towns of Ancram, Gallatin, Clermont, Germantown, Livingston, Taghkanic, Copake, Greenport, Claverack, Ghent and the City of Hudson.

In Dutchess County the district includes the towns of Milan, Pine Plains, North East, Amenia, Stanford, Clinton, Hyde Park, Pleasant Valley and Poughkeepsie.

The total population of the district is 132,881. Read more…

Valatie eyes selling cell phone tower cash cow

VALATIE–The Village Board once again discussed selling the leases to cell phone towers in the village at the October 18 meeting. Mayor Diane Argyle wants to sell the leases for a one-time payment to cover several roadwork and construction projects that need to be done. She thinks the village can get a payment of $600,000 for the towers.

Some of the members of the board worry that losing the $50,000-a-year in rent on the towers would leave a hole in the village budget that would be a problem in years to come.

Mayor Argyle warned her board that the Town of Kinderhook plans to increase the cost of providing Highway Department services by $70,000. The village dissolved its Highway Department several years ago and contracts with the town for that work. The current contract is for $84,000, according the Mayor Argyle, but Kinderhook Town Supervisor Pat Grattan has told her that based on mileage, the cost going forward will be $150,000. The current two-year contract the village has with the town is up in May of next year. Read more…

If price is right, K’hook will pave private road

KINDERHOOK–The Town Board this week discussed a petition from residents of Wildflower Road to pave the private road. The unpaved road is currently maintained by the residents who live along it, but if the board decides to have it paved at the homeowners’ expense, the town would then plow and maintain the road.

At the October 17 meeting, Town Attorney Andy Howard advised the board to send the petition asking the town to pave the road back to the residents so that they can add a dollar amount to the paving costs. The board passed a motion to have the town engineer provide an estimate on paving the road. Addressing Rupert Sharoun, the one Wildflower Road resident at the meeting, Mr. Howard said that the board didn’t want to present the neighbors on the road with a price for paving that was so high it would worry them or so low that it wouldn’t meet the needs of the job. Read more…

CABA hopes to get all aboard for ‘Next Stop: Chatham’

CHATHAM – The Village Board reviewed a new branding and logo concept for the village and surrounding area last week. The approach was developed by CABA (Chatham Area Business and Arts).

CABA President Tom Chulak said that he was showing the board the new designs for signs, shopping bags and brochures to get the board’s input rather than approval. The CABA board will be asked to approve the designs at that board’s meeting in November. Read more…

Four receive long sentences in child sex abuse case

HUDSON–The four people found guilty August 10 of multiple child-sex crimes were sentenced Tuesday, October 18 in Columbia County Court. The three men and one woman each received sentences that could keep them in prison for the rest of their lives.

The jury, which deliberated for a day-and-a-half, found each defendant guilty of at least two counts of predatory sexual assault against a child. The four were found guilty of sexually abusing a group of young children between June 2009 and February 2011. Read more…