County assessor pays visit to H’dale

HILLSDALE–Property reassessment is under way here.

Suzette Booy, director of Columbia County’s Real Property Tax Department, who made a presentation regarding the reassessment process to the Town Board at its monthly meeting Tuesday, October 10, said the reassessment will impact school taxes in 2019 and property taxes in 2020.

Ms. Booy noted that Hillsdale’s last reassessment was in 2008, “So Hillsdale is overdue.” She added that the state recommends reassessments be conducted every 4-6 years because “inequities creep into the system.” Read more…

Assemblyman Lopez picked as new EPA regional administrator

Reprinted with permission from the Times Union

ALBANY — Former State Assemblyman Peter Lopez (R – 102nd) will take over as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s top official in a region that reaches from the Adirondacks to the storm-wracked Caribbean.

The Schoharie County Republican was named Thursday, September 28, as the new administrator of the EPA’s Region 2, which covers New York and New Jersey as well as the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Mr. Lopez, who did not respond to interview requests, was slated to join the agency last Sunday. As assemblyman in the 102nd, Mr. Lopez represented Stockport and Stuyvesant in this county. His district also covers Schoharie and Greene counties and reaches into parts of Albany, Ulster, Delaware and Otsego counties. Read more…

G’towners voice mixed reviews for dollar store plan

GERMANTOWN–Convenience was one theme of the September 28 public hearing held by the Planning Board on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) prepared by Primax Properties as part of its application for a Dollar General retail store on Route 9G.

Planning Board Chairman Stephen Reynolds opened the hearing by noting that the board was still in the State Environmental Quality Review process. “Any proposed action,” such as the subdivision that would be developed by Primax for tenancy by Dollar General, “has to be evaluated as to its environmental impact,” he said.

The Planning Board gave the project a “positive declaration” in April 2016, Mr. Reynolds reminded the audience of about 60, finding 11 possible adverse impacts it might have. The board asked the applicant to answer its questions, “which they have done in a detailed DEIS,” said Mr. Reynolds. The board declared the DEIS “complete” and ready for public comment. Read more…

Hudson school briefed on buses, serenaded by students

HUDSON–Additional bus routes, My Brother’s Keeper, a new student representative, and musical instruments from the Elks Club dominated the Hudson City School District (HCSD) Board of Education meeting Monday, September 26.

The Board approved four additional buses for the district, effective Monday, October 2. As a result some children will arrive home earlier than before. Previously, some buses made two return-home runs, and children on the second run had to wait at school until their bus transported the children on the first run home. With the new buses, the district website alerts parents and guardians, these students will be home or at their stop “approximately 20 minutes earlier than they currently are.”

At the September 26 meeting district Superintendent Maria Suttmeier said that, for example, some students at John L. Edwards Primary School (JLE) whose classes end at 2:30 p.m. but whose bus home did not come until 3:20 will now arrive home earlier. Read more…

Chatham village takes bath on new water rates

CHATHAM–The village is facing major shortfalls in both the water and sewer budget lines this quarter and the trend looks like it will continue for the rest of the year, reaching $159,000 in water and $149,000 in sewer by the end of the village fiscal year next spring.

At a special Village Board meeting last Thursday, September 28, Mayor Tom Curran said, “It’s looking like we’re going to have to bring our rates up.”

Board member and water and sewer Commissioner Mike Wollowitz expressed concern about why the village faces such a large shortfall. He pointed out usage has not dropped much since the village changed the rates in March. Mr. Wollowitz said that when the board changed the rate structure members looked at usage and budgeted accordingly. Read more…