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The Best Gifts from Schoharie County

Town of Richmondville Passes Fracking Ban

Written By Cicero on 12/14/14 | 12/14/14

It may have taken three years, but the Town of Richmondville has banned fracking. The vote was unanimous and came after efforts from David Slottje, Shane Nickle and others to ban the practice. This follows bans from many municipalities, most recently the Town of Middleburgh.

Schoharie Farm to School Dinner December 16th

Join the members of the Farm to School Project Planning Council on Tuesday, December 16that 6:00pm!
 
Our dinner meeting will be held at the farm to table venue, the
204 Main Bar and Bistro, in Sharon Springs NY.
 
Dinner cost - per person - paid at the door (with Salad, Entrée, Dessert,
Tea or Coffee, and inclusive of tax and tips) is $35.
 
Our end-of-year meeting will review activities of the past year and seek advisement from members of the committee, and of the community, as to ideas to pursue, on resources yet untapped and on possible next steps we can all take together!

Please RSVP by, or before, 10am Monday, December 15th.
 
 We look forward to a bigger and better year in 2015, with your help! Sign up
to work with us on any one of 4 subcommittees (including one for farmers/ producers.)
 
Call Project Coordinator, Regina Tillman at 518-229-1548 (cell) or
518-234-4303 (Extension Office) for more info or to RSVP!
 

Salad is Choice of green ...or a beet and goat cheese... salad with vinagrettes
Main Course is Choice of 
 --- Pan roasted chicken, adirondack potatoes, brussel sprouts
 --- May Pan Noodles (crispy rice noodles in Malaysian style sauce with chicken, shrimp and roasted peanuts)
 --- Gnudi (ricotta and parm dumplings) with mushrooms
Dessert is Chocolate Souffle with Whipped cream, Tea or Coffee

Please pay by cash, at the door. Drinks, otherwise, are on you as well as the cost of anyone accompanying you at the $35 dinner price per person. Spouses are welcomed.

Letter to the Editor: Pipeline Assertions are Wrong

In a recent letter to the Schoharie News, an anonymous author, using a fictitious name coyly referring to the nation’s largest drilling contractor, blamed pipeline opposition on “retired trust fund babies.” As the son of a factory worker and homemaker who works full time while being active in the fight to stop the Constitution Pipeline, I can’t help but wonder why I haven’t run into any trust fund babies among the hundreds of farmers, clerks, plumbers, dentists, mechanics, warehouse workers and other assorted “ordinary” folks fighting the Constitution pipeline.
The unknown author also speculated that “outsiders” participated in the recent Schoharie News poll. The proposed pipeline will run 124 miles from Pennsylvania to the Town of Wright and then connect to other pipelines running east to Boston and beyond, impacting thousands of people in multiple states. You have to wonder who the author considers “outsiders” in this case, - people in Ohio? I don’t think Ohioans skewed the poll results. I think the poll results reflect the regional nature of, and deep concern about, the proposed pipeline.
The author says that pipelines are the safest mode of “hydrocarbon transfer” but seems unaware of the dismal safety records, and long list of fines levied on, those behind the proposed Constitution Pipeline for everything from leaks, to fires and explosions. He is apparently unaware of the more than 40 people who have died and the thousands injured in pipeline explosions over the last ten years.
The author talks about heating costs and infers that this pipeline would help reduce those costs. Unfortunately, Constitution Pipeline will not provide gas to Schoharie County, a fact confirmed by a Williams Company spokesman this week on the Capital Connection radio program.  The gas is going eastward and north to Canada to eventually be exported. It may reduce heating costs for some but those people are likely to be in China and Eastern Europe.  That being said, there is someone “local” who will get the gas - $750,000 in taxpayer money has been earmarked by governor Cuomo to build a special distribution line to Delaware County’s Amphenol Corporation, a company that CNN News has included in their list of corporations who have moved American jobs overseas.
The author suggests that those opposing the pipeline are taking money from the poor, a contention that is both absurd and ironic. It is absurd to suggest that lower local heating costs will somehow result when the terminus for the proposed pipeline is ultimately an export terminal in Canada. It is ironic because the pipeline will run through Schoharie and Delaware counties which have 12% and 15% of their populations, respectively, living below the poverty level and for whom the pipeline will: devalue their properties, impact how they use their land, increase insurance costs, raise liability and exposure to litigation, make first and second mortgages more expensive and harder to get and increase anxiety, fear and risk. All of that, for people already stressed by living in a region with a seriously depressed economy.
Finally, the author suggests that opposing the pipeline somehow puts money into the pockets of rich CEOs, I suggest reading the Wall Street Journal which has reported on the precipitous drop in stock prices for Williams Company, a partner in the proposed pipeline which is more than a year behind schedule, because of an effective and well-organized opposition.

Bob Nied
Center for Sustainable Rural Communities

Heroin Arrest in Schoharie

On December 11, 2014 State Police in Cobleskill arrested a Middleburgh man on multiple charges following the report of a vehicle off the roadway on State Route 443 in the Town of Schoharie.

 Troopers arrested Noel Ortiz age 37 of Middleburgh and charged him with Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Motor Vehicle 2nd degree and Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance 7th degree. State police allege that Ortiz was the operator of a vehicle that drove off the roadway, during investigation it was determined that Ortiz had a suspended driver’s license and was in possession of heroin. Ortiz was arraigned and remanded to the Schoharie County Correctional Facility on cash bail.

Letter to the Editor: Anti-Pipeline Activists Would Give Money from Poor to Corporations

Written By Editor on 12/11/14 | 12/11/14

If the hundreds of "extra" voters in the Schoharie "News" poll this week is any indication, a lot of outsiders are weighing on on the idea of the Constitution Pipeline coming in.

It's not the same as the fight against fracking, which would devastate local water supply. Whether activists agree or not, of all modes of hydrocarbon transfer, pipelines have the safest record. By far.

If the pipeline doesn't come through, then the natural gas will come by rail. Remember that explosion that leveled part of a town in Quebec? Well, here comes those same trains through Cobleskill. They can argue that they'd rather have no gas coming through at all, but that simply won't happen. Why do they support the method with far more accidents and deaths attached?

There are a lot of comments about how the corporations hold too much influence. Damn right. Denying the pipeline will keep artificially high energy prices high, hurting the poor the most. Electricity rates are averaging about 18 cents a KW in New England, over double many parts of the country due to shutdowns of coal and nuclear plants and reduced pipelines.

Who bears the highest burden and pays the largest share of their income to heat their homes in the winter? "Retired" trust fund babies telling us how to live our lives or the working poor?

Well, they can just apply for HEAP, you may say. Certainly, but that means you support taking tax dollars from the 90+% of the local economy that is not energy based and handing it almost straight through to the large corporations. The higher surcharges and service fees that customers have to pay-- who gets them? The large utilities and energy conglomerates.

The pipeline might be a bad thing for the area and something that should be fought. But realize that in doing so, you will also be supporting taking money from the poor and working class to buy another cigar for a corporate CEO.

Richard "Halliburton"
Summit

Delhi Man Arrested on Marijuana Charges

Written By Editor on 12/10/14 | 12/10/14

On December 7, 2014, State Police in Cobleskill arrested Benjamin M. Merriman, age 26, of Delhi, for Unlawful Possession of Marijuana. Merriman was the operator of a 1999 Chevrolet Silverado which was stopped on State Route 145 in the Town of Cobleskill after being observed crossing a double solid yellow line and making a wide turn. While interviewing Merriman, a strong odor of marijuana was detected inside the vehicle. A search of the vehicle led to the discovery of a glass jar containing approximately 4.2 grams of marijuana. Merriman was issued an appearance ticket for Unlawful Possession of Marijuana, a violation, and is scheduled to appear in the Town of Cobleskill court on January 6, 2015.

Rescue Units Save Man in Summit

At approximately 7:30 pm on December 7, 2014, State Police in Cobleskill received a report of a disoriented 28 year old male from Summit, NY who had been out walking in extremely cold weather with inadequate clothing since 11:00 am. Members of the State Police, including Aviation, along with a DEC K-9 Unit, NYS Forest Rangers, Schoharie County Sheriffs, and the Summit Fire Department search and rescue team began an organized search of the area near Charlotte Valley Rd. At approximately 1:55 am the male subject was found on the front porch of a residence in need of medical attention . Summit EMS responded and transported him to Cobleskill Regional Hospital for evaluation.

Schoharie to Unveil New Business Next Week

Written By Editor on 12/9/14 | 12/9/14

As posted on the Schoharie Promotional Association's Facebook page, Schoharie will be opening another new business next week. This followed a flurry of new openings earlier this year:

Green Wolf Brewery Prepares Opening Weekend

November 21, 2014 - Green Wolf Brewing Company will hold the grand opening of its tap room on Friday, December 12th, 2014 from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. The opening coincides with Middleburgh’s annual holiday street festival, Miracle On Main Street, but the celebration will continue on Saturday and Sunday.

Initially, the Green Wolf Tap Room will be open three days a week – Friday, Saturday, and Sunday – from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and will feature beer on draft and in 22 oz bottles. Although the Green Wolf Tap Room will not serve food, patrons are encouraged to bring in food from home or from local restaurants to enjoy with their Green Wolf ales. Thoughtfully created by local owner, Justin Behan, the space is designed to be a family friendly, cozy affair with board games available to play, couches to lounge on, books to peruse, and occasional live music.



“We’ve been working on this a long time, and can’t wait for the tap room to finally be open,” said Justin Behan, Green Wolf’s president and brewer. “We specifically chose Middleburgh for our brewery and tap room because of its supportive business community, attractive downtown, and strong local support. This town is a wonderful place to visit already, and we see Green Wolf Brewing Co. as added incentive for folks traveling through to stop and spend some time.”

Miracle on Main Street this Friday in Middleburgh

Written By Editor on 12/8/14 | 12/8/14

The Middleburgh Business Business Association published the itinerary for the Miracle on Main Street Christmas event in Middleburgh this Friday. Put on by the local Renaissance Council, there will be carriage rides, business openings, hot cocoa, Santa, and more.

Heavy Storm Expected Tuesday into Wednesday

A severe winter storm is expected to hit the area over the next two days. Eight to twelve inches are expected Tuesday and 1-3 on Wednesday. Expect many schools and offices to be closed. A Winter Storm Warning is expected from Tuesday at 4am until Wednesday at 7am. The Noreaster may also bring in a small amount of ice. Make sure to keep track of the weather on our site. It's always updated and can be found here.

Santa in Schoharie December 14th

Santa Claus will be at the Schoharie County's Diner in Schoharie, the site of the former Alley Cat on December 14th. All are welcome to get pictures with Santa with the purchase of breakfast or lunch. Kids will also receive a free gift bag.

Letter to the Editor: Protect the Environment

Love Canal, Boston Harbor, Scintilla/Amphenol in Sidney, Railcon in Sidney, General Electric's PCB's in our Hudson River....billions of taxpayers' monies because of "brilliant leadership!" The companies DO NOT PAY FOR THE CLEANUPS!! We taxpayers do. How many times have I heard "NOT ONE SPILL IN PENNSYLVANIA!" What BS! Finally they had to reveal nearly 300 with the statement, "It might be more...Records are kinda loose!" Somebody gave us a beautiful Earth and gave us the choice on how to treat it, or destroy it. In India for centuries they have dumped sewage, chemicals and garbage into the Ganges River which they also bathe in and wash their clothes in. Oh and don't forget all the cremains dumped there...all in the source of their drinking water. "Leaders" have allowed that!" I am one of at least four in Otego Village who now have cancer. We all live next to cornfields which are sprayed repeatedly with RoundUp , which like carcinogenic fracking fluids by tractor trailer loads, go into each well. Stupid is stupid!...and not leadership! Our water, land, health and economies are in the balance. Greed is surpassing common sense, and giving the finger to The Creator!

Charlie Pierce
Otego

Man Arrested in Snowmobile Theft

Written By Editor on 12/7/14 | 12/7/14

Sheriff's deputies arrested Conor E. McDonald, 18, of Coxsackie with criminal possession of stolen property in the 5th degree following an investigation of a stolen snowmobile from Greene County. Mr. McDonald was arraigned in the Town of Broome court and remanded to the Schoharie County Jail, to appear at a later date.

Letter to the Editor: Stand Up for Property Rights Against Pipeline

The following is an open letter to property owners from Robert Neid of the Center for Sustainable Rural Communities:
Please be advised that Constitution Pipeline has received only conditional approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). They DO NOT have the right to seize your property, enter your property or conduct any activity on your property at this time.
Recent letters sent to landowners by pipeline lawyers contained inaccurate information and empty threats. The Center for Sustainable Rural Communities has filed a formal complaint about those letters with the NY State Attorney General and called for an investigation.  The Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic has demanded a retraction of the threatening letters.
Landowners who have not signed easement agreements are urged to do the following:
·         Post “No Trespassing” signs.
·         Deny pipeline crews access to your property.
·         Call the police if pipeline crews come on your property without your permission.
·         Ask your neighbors to watch your property when you are not home, photograph any unauthorized activity by pipeline crews, and call you if someone tries to trespass.
·         Document any activity by pipeline crews on or near your property – take video or photographs, and record dates, times, license plate numbers and what activity occurs.
·         Discuss your situation with an attorney experienced in eminent domain.
Please remember that before the pipeline company can attempt to seize your property through eminent domain they must take you to court, usually Federal Court. For that to happen you must receive official papers via “personal service,” which requires the documents to be personally handed to one of the property owners (“served”), not sent by FedEx or mail.
For additional information visit: www.stopthepipeline.org and/or contact the toll-free Landowner Assistance Line: 800-795-1967.
Landowners are encouraged to call the Office of the NY State Attorney General at
800-771-7755 if they have received threatening correspondence from the pipeline company or their representatives.

The above is offered for informational purposes only and is not offered as, nor should it be considered, legal advice.

Vote in Our Poll: Do You Support Pipeline Decision?

FERC made headlines several weeks ago by declaring the Constitution Pipeline environmentally safe. Last week they made more waves by approving the project, leading to a timetable where it could start construction within several months.

What do you think?
Do You Support FERC's Decision to Approve the Constitution Pipeline?



pollcode.com free polls

Sharon Man Arrested for Aggravated DWI

State Police in Cobleskill arrested a Sharon man for Driving While Intoxicated following a traffic stop in the Town of Seward.

Troopers in Cobleskill arrested Joseph F. Nolette age 46 of Sharon for DWI following a traffic stop on State Route 10 in the Town of Seward. Nolette was issued a traffic tickets for Aggravated DWI and various other traffic violations before being released to appear in the Town of Seward Court on December 10, 2014 at 7:30pm.

Poll: Readers Support a New Party

Schoharie News readers are not pleased with the direction of local politics. Most readers that voted in the most recent poll state that they wish there was a third party available for choice. A strong minority back the local Republican Party with a smaller proportion believing that both parties are about equally right.

How Would You Describe Current Politics in Schoharie County?

- The local Republicans are usually right 25% - 26 
- The local Democrats are usually right 6% - 6 
- The two parties are about equally right 18% - 19 
- I wish there was a local third party 51% - 54 
 105 total

Legal Challenge Fights Pipeline Decision

The Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic has launched a counter attack to the recent Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's decision to okay the Constitution Pipeline. Representing the local Stop the Pipeline organization, the group sent out a letter that made clear its objections.

 It reads in part:
According to your firm’s website, you specialize in eminent domain proceedings. Therefore you must know that your letter is replete with misleading information. It is apparent to STP that the intent of your letter is to bully landowners—who are already under duress from the December 2, 2014 decision by FERC that granted your client a conditional certificate of public convenience and necessity (“CPCN”)—into waiving their property rights. While we expect such unconscionable tactics from shady bill collectors, we do not expect them from a prestigious law firm such as Saul Ewing.
The law firm also challenged the legal standing the pipeline proprietors have used to support their project:
Please be advised that your misrepresentations of the facts and law to recipient landowners may violate the New York Rules of Professional Conduct. In particular, Rule 8.4, states that a “lawyer or law firm shall not: (c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation.”
The move is supported by the Center for Sustainable Rural Communities, which is calling for the NY Attorney General to investigate tactics used by backers of the pipeline project.

Police Respond to Heroin Overdose

Written By Editor on 12/4/14 | 12/4/14

On November 29, 2014, State Police in Cobleskill responded to a residence in Middleburgh for a report of a possible drug overdose. Upon arrival they found an unconscious 30 year old female with shallow breathing who had recently injected heroin. Troopers on scene administered one dose of intranasal Naloxone which revived the victim. The female was transported via ambulance to St. Peter's Hospital in Albany for further treatment.

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