Stray cat found in Taghkanic

TAGHKANIC–This “stray” cat was found on county Rt. 10 in East Taghkanic in Columbia County. She is friendly and approachable adult female, fairly young, and mostly grey and white in color with very yellow/green eyes.

   Because she is healthy and clean, she is believed to have been someone’s pet. She stays close to the house, and shows no propensity to wander. She would make an excellent candidate for adoption.

   If you can give this sweet girl a home, please call Cat found inn E. Taghkanic(518) 851-3956.

Guns sales grow in hard times

GREENPORT—In the midst of this economic slump people in Columbia County—and across the country—are exercising their constitutional right to bear arms in growing numbers.

   The national trend is reflected locally in a barrage of pistol permit applications that the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office is scrambling to keep up with. It’s also seen by a gun shop owner, who has seen her gun sales shoot up recently.

   In the business of selling guns for 30 years, the owner of Shooters in Valatie, who would identify herself only as Patsy—“They call me Packin’ Patsy; everybody knows me”—told The Columbia Paper this week that in the last year her gun sales business has increased “dramatically.” She declined to share specific sales figures, but she did say that the skyrocketing demand for guns is not limited to one age group or sex.

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New radio group hopes you’ll listen to this

WGXC logo

GERMANTOWN—WGXC, the new, non-commercial FM radio station designed to cover much of Columbia and Greene counties is getting ready to begin broadcasts this Saturday, May 9. Kind of.

   The volunteers putting together the community station at 90.7 on the FM dial don’t actually expect to broadcast over the airwaves until at least June 2010, but they do want to begin developing program in the meantime on the Internet, and that’s where listeners can hear four hours of live programming this weekend along with recorded work by local musicians. The website is

   The group that holds the permit from the Federal Communications Commission to build the new station is called free103point9, although its logo calls this endeavor the Greene/Columbia Community Radio Project. The site specified for the transmitter is near Cairo in central Greene County, and its first electronic emanations will originate from the Catskill Community Center.

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She can’t say that!: Cascino to sue Copake board member for libel


COPAKE—Salvatore Cascino says he was “defamed, slandered and libeled” by town Councilwoman Linda Gabaccia and that he intends to “commence an action” against the town within 90 days.

   The statement that rankles Mr. Cascino, the subject of a temporary restraining order sought by the town for his failure to comply with local laws, was attributed to Ms. Gabaccia by the Register-Star newspaper.  But Ms. Gabaccia says she did not make the statement in question.

   If he pursues this latest legal maneuver, it will become part of a long list of legal wrangling between Mr. Cascino and the Town of Copake. Over the last 12 years Mr. Cascino, a resident of Larchmont who owns a waste-hauling business in the Bronx, has a record of violating federal, state and town laws for dumping materials and constructing things without permits on his 300-acre Copake Valley Farm property along the east side of Route 22.

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Flu watch intensifies in county

HUDSON—As the World Health Organization was preparing to raise the threat level a notch higher to Level 5, county health officials were stepping up their efforts to identify any suspected cases of the new swine flu virus and to prevent transmission of the illness if and when it appears here. There were reports of suspected cases midweek in the Capital District, including in Albany and Schenectady.

   Columbia County has now set up a local hotline for inquiries about the H1N1 swine flu virus. The number is (518) 828-1212.  Arthur Baer, Chairman of the county Board of Supervisors announced the phone number Thursday, saying it had been activated for county residents as a point of contact for all questions about the H1N1 swine flu only.

   Mr. Baer and Nancy Winch, director of the county Department of Health, said in the press release announcing the hotline that there were no confirmed cases of swine flu in Columbia County as of Thursday afternoon, April 30.

   But two cases of influenza type A in children were reported at Columbia Memorial Hospital earlier this week according to the hospital’s infectious diseases consultant, Dr. Amanthakrishnan Ramani. Neither was swine flu. The determination is made by a judgment call and points out the complexities of the problem presented by the fast-evolving epidemic.

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