Can school board function without paper in hand?

CHATHAM–The school board this week discussed the next step toward a proposed $5-million capital improvements project. The plan calls for repairs or upgrades at the district’s buildings and would be paid for with capital reserve funds and federal economic stimulus money, with no additional tax burden placed on district taxpayers.

The board also talked about sharing the position of treasurer with another district, future professional development days for teachers, which would add two half-days to the school calendar, and moving to paperless board communications.

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Greenport spells out its roads policies

GREENPORT–“Keep the Green in Greenport” is the anti-littering slogan adopted by the Town Board at its October meeting last week.

The signs, said Highway Superintendent Mark Gaylord, will remind litterers that they risk fines up to $1,000 for strewing trash.

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Stars align in Chatham

FilmColumbia marks a decade with over 50 movies and events

CHATHAM– FilmColumbia is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

The film festival, which FilmColumbia director Calliope Nicholas calls a labor of love, started in 1999 with 12 films over two days. This year there are more than 50 films over four days–October 22 to 25. Screenings include some big- and not-so-big-name films, as well as the work of first-time filmmakers, shown at the historic Crandell Theatre on Main Street, at the Morris Memorial around the corner on Park Row and at the Tracy Memorial, which is the village hall. Last year the film club sold over 6,000 tickets to people from all over the country, says Ms. Nicholas.

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Funds help child abuse victims

Economic stimulus money expands hospital program for kids

HUDSON–The number of child abuse cases in the county, including sexual abuse, is increasing and is likely to exceed 200 by the end of this year. So the news this week that federal funds will pay for two more staff members at the Stephen and Suzanne Menkes Child Advocacy Center at Columbia Memorial Hospital was applauded by professionals in many fields, all of whom share a responsibility for helping children who become the victims of violent crimes.

The Child Advocacy Center will receive $265,416 over the next three years to pay the salaries of a new, full-time child advocate and a part-time pediatric mental health therapist. The first two years of the funding will come from federal economic stimulus money under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, with the third year paid from a federal fund set up years ago to channel the money from criminal penalties, fines and fees into programs that help crime victims.

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Talk looks at swine flu and families with kids

CHATHAM–The Family Resource Centers of Columbia County invites the public to a workshop this Saturday, October 17, at 11 a.m. at the Morris Memorial on Park Row with guest speaker Sarah Teasdale, M.D., pediatric resident at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Teasdale will lead a discussion about H1N1 swine flu, including information on the new vaccine. A question and answer session addressing parents’ concerns regarding the flu and the vaccination will be part of the workshop.

This workshop is free and open to all. Reservations are not required and children are welcome.