Grant to Hudson schools aims to help keep teachers

HUDSON—Student performance and teacher morale received attention at the Hudson City School District (HCSD) Board of Education meetings April 26 and May 3.

The meetings focused mainly on the budget and examples of where the district needs more equitable “inclusivity,” with district Superintendent Lisamarie Spindler observing that interrupted education has for decades been thought of as a problem affecting foreign countries. Now it has also occurred in the US.

But Dr. Spindler said the number one factor for determining whether students will do well in school is the socioeconomic status of their parents. When there is news of a school where students do well despite a high poverty rate, other schools should try to learn and apply what that successful school is doing.

The number two factor is the college education level of the parents, Dr. Spindler continued. In addition, children who come to kindergarten without enough prior “exposure to print” will be behind. Read more…

Ancram wrestles with enforcing respect

ANCRAM—The Town Board has voted in favor of forming a Committee for Respectful Behavior, but did not seem to agree on qualifications for who would serve on it.

At the May 19 Town Board meeting, board members tackled many topics related to the ongoing issue of how to deal with instances of disrespectful behavior among the town’s elected and appointed officials, employees, volunteers and residents.

The matter initially came to light back in January, when Jack Lindsey, resident and Town Ethics Board chair, addressed the board about numerous incidents of “dismissive, sometimes hostile or inappropriate treatment of women who serve the town or come to the Town Hall for constituent services…”

The incidents were related to him in conversations over the prior year and a half and the improper treatment came at the hands of certain men presently serving the town, Mr. Lindsey said. His presentation was the subject of a January 27 story in The Columbia Paper, “Witnesses call out Ancram officials,” which can be found at www.columbiapaper.com. Read more…

HHA taps exec with public housing in Newark

HUDSON—A new executive director, an update on an offer to pay tenant rent, and resident complaints about apartment conditions dominated the Hudson Housing Authority (HHA) meeting May 16.

The Hudson Housing Authority (HHA) runs the 135-unit income-restricted Bliss residences, which consist of the highrise Bliss Tower and three low rise buildings on its grounds.

The HHA selected Jeffrey Dodson its executive director. The appointment was announced by Revonda Smith, chair of the HHA Board of Commissioners.

Mr. Dodson has been regional manager of the Newark Housing Authority for 29 years. His position will become official when a contract is worked out, probably in mid-June, said Nick Zachos, HHA interim executive director since October. Read more…

Here’s where inflation is welcome

Sunday, May 15 brought the 8th year of the Farmer’s Daughter Gravel Grinder bicycle race, a non-competitive event for all levels of experience. Starting at PS21 in Chatham, the race set out on a 65-mile course that covered the terrain mostly on gravel roads and trails and some paved intervals from Chatham to New Lebanon, Canaan, Richmond MA, Austerlitz and back to Chatham. Pictured are the riders on Main Street in the Village of Chatham. The event is named for one of Chatham Brewing’s IPAs. Event organizer Andy Ruiz said that there were about 740 riders from all over the Northeast. He said it went well thanks to all the sponsors and the Chatham community. Beneficiaries of the event included Columbia Land Conservancy, Crellin Park, PS 21, Chatham Fire and Police departments and youth cycling. The event is owned by the Capital Bike Racing Club. Photo by David Lee

Copake Falls bridge will have one lane open during construction

COPAKE FALLS—After much public input, the decision has been made to leave one lane of the Bash Bish Bridge on Valley View Road open to traffic while the bridge is being replaced.

About 20 local stakeholders attended a virtual meeting held by Columbia County Commissioner of Public Works Ray Jurkowski back in April to discuss recent cost overruns associated with the bridge replacement, which has been planned for several years, and alternative money-saving ways to approach the project.

The most recent engineering consultant’s estimate for the project is approximately $2.2 million, which is much greater than the original estimated funding amount of $1.15 million allocated by the state. Read more…