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The Best Gifts from Schoharie County

Fulton County Sheriff: Throw Away SAFE Act Permit Forms

Written By Editor on 2/15/15 | 2/15/15

The Sheriff of Fulton County is making his stance on the SAFE Act more than clear. Going beyond the majority of New York State Sheriffs that oppose the controversial gun control measure, Thomas Lorey is calling for civil disobedience.

While giving a speech to the Oath Keepers, the Sheriff called upon gun owners to disobey the SAFE Act. The first person he cited in his remarks was Schoharie County resident and 2nd Amendment activist Kevin Sisson.

When legal gun owners receive the notice to re-certify their pistols under the new SAFE Act provisions, the Sheriff said that "In the state of New York, there are two types of permits, a license to carry and a license to possess. The license to carry was never meant to be restricted."

He also said that if gun owners get paperwork regarding their currently possessed firearms, they should throw it in the trash.

He told listeners, "I want to assure you that everyone in Fulton County has nothing to fear from the sheriff's office."

 Video of the event is below.

Letter to the Editor: Pipeline "Shock and Awe"

Written By Cicero on 2/13/15 | 2/13/15

To hear Christopher Stockton of constitution pipeline speak, he is now being called a communications specialist. It reminds me of a General giving a military briefing. He states the starting date is getting close, we are ready to get going. Constitution's army is planning to have 5 armored divisions attack 5 different counties at the same time, It's their version of Shock and Awe. They will systematically start their assault with expert precision. They're veterans of this kind of raid, having done this many times before. He also noted the pipe for the pipeline is waiting and will be put to use as soon as constitution's army are allowed to mobilize. It is then the invasion and onslaught begins, code name Operation Seize and Destroy. The environment, pristine woods and waterways, every living thing in the path of these invaders will be annihilated for ever. Then finally after a year of occupation the nightmare will be over. Or so we thought, for in the shadows there is yet another army assembling. The worst part of the nightmare, all of this is happening in America.

Jerry Fiore
Summit

Windchill Warning Today

NWS has issued a Wind Chill Warning for our area until noon today due to dangerously cold wind chills through this morning. Another round of dangerously cold temperatures Sunday into Monday. Daytime wind chills Sunday will reach 10-20 BELOW zero, while Sunday night into Monday is expected to produce temperatures as low as 25-35 BELOW zero. Please be aware of and protect against the following:

o Frostbite/Hypothermia possible without proper protection.
o Increase in fires from alternate heat sources, or thawing pipes with blow torches.
o Carbon monoxide poisoning due to alternate heat sources.
o Water main breaks are possible from frost penetrating deep into ground.
o People who participate in outdoor activity may be at risk for hypothermia/frost bite.

County Issues Extreme Cold Preparedness Advisory

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albany is forecasting extremely cold temperatures throughout Schoharie County for the remainder of the week and into next week. As the temperatures continue to plummet, wind chills are expected to reach -25 to -40 degrees in some areas.

The Schoharie County Office of Emergency Services has preparedness measures in place in the event of a widespread power outage and offers these cold weather safety tips:

• Continue to be aware of extreme weather conditions by monitoring Media reports.
• Make sure you always have a well-stocked Winter Home Emergency Supply Kit that includes flashlights,
portable radio, extra batteries, a first aid kit, bottled water, non-perishable food and a manual can opener. • Minimize outside activities, particularly the elderly and very young. Do not leave pets outside.
• Dress in several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight clothing, rather than a single layer of heavy clothing. Outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent. Wear a hat, mittens and sturdy waterproof boots, protecting your extremities. Cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs.
• Excessive exposure can lead to frostbite, which is damaging to body tissue that is frozen. Frostbite causes a loss of feeling and a pale appearance in extremities, such as fingers, toes, ear lobes or the tip of the nose. If symptoms are detected, seek medical help immediately.
• Hypothermia can occur in extreme cases. The warning signs are uncontrollable shivering, memory loss, disorientation, incoherence, slurred speech, drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. If the person’s temperature drops below 95 degrees, seek immediate medical care.
• Ensure you have sufficient heating fuel, as well as emergency heating equipment in case you lose electricity.
• When utilizing alternate heating sources, such as your fireplace, wood or pellet stove or space heater, take the necessary safety precautions. Keep a fire extinguisher handy; ensuring everyone knows how to use it properly. Test smoke alarms and Carbon Monoxide (CO) detectors.
• If you lose your heat, seal off unused rooms by stuffing towels in the cracks under the doors. At night, cover windows with extra blankets or sheets.
• Be a good neighbor. Check with elderly or relatives and friends who may need additional assistance to ensure their safety.

Middleburgh Teen Arrested after Domestic Disturbance

Written By Editor on 2/12/15 | 2/12/15

State Police in Cobleskill recently arrested a Middleburgh teenager following a domestic incident in the Village of Middleburgh.

Troopers arrested Andrew M. Craig and charged him with Assault 3rd and Criminal Mischief 3rd following a domestic incident. The victim, a female family member alleged that Craig pushed and punched her after an argument escalated into a physical confrontation. Craig was arraigned in the Town of Middleburgh Court and is scheduled to return to the court on February 18, 2014 at 6:00pm.

Richmondville Man Arrested for DWI

State Police in Cobleskill arrested a Richmondville man for DWI following the report of a vehicle off the roadway near Exit 22 on Interstate 88.

Troopers arrested Christopher J. Clark age 36 of Richmondville and charged him with Aggravated DWI after receiving the report of a vehicle off the roadway. According to Troopers, Clark was on scene and admitted to driving his vehicle off the road. Clark displayed signs of impairment during the interview and was found to be intoxicated. Clark was issued a number of traffic tickets to return to the Town of Cobleskill Court on February 17, 2015 at 4:00pm.

CRCS Teacher Faces Sexual Assault Charges


Update (from the Sheriff's Office): Christman, who is twenty-five and residents in the Town of Carlisle, was arraigned in Town of Richmondville Court on charges of Criminal Sexual Act in the 3rd Degree and Endangering the Welfare of a Child, a felony and a misdemeanor, respectively.

The Cobleskill-Richmondville Central School district is in shock after reports began surfacing today that high school teacher Aaron Christman is facing charges of sexually assaulting a female student.

A local high school coach and teacher has turned himself in to Schoharie Sheriff’s Office to face accusations that he had sexual contact with a young female student.
Aaron Christman was arraigned Thursday on one charges of felony criminal sexual act in the third-degree, and misdemeanor endangering the welfare of a child. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Christman, who had been appointed a part-time physical education teacher in August, graduated from SUNY Cobleskill in 2010 with an Associates in Liberal Arts and then SUNY Cortland in 2012 with a Bachelors in Physical Education. 

In addition to the physical education position, Christman has served as both a head and assistant coach for high school modified baseball and junior varsity football team's since 2013. Before that, he had worked as a Little League umpire. 

According to the News 10 report, the teacher had reportedly engaged in sexual activity with a teenage girl under the age of sixteen within the past six months. The accused is currently on paid administrative leave from the school district. 


Analysis: Admin Likely to be Passed



After over almost a year of near-continuous debate on adopting an Administrator to oversee the daily management of county government, Schoharie's Board of Supervisors are likely to take a positive vote on creating the position within the next couple of months. 

A thorough review of local news reports and video footage from a series of public hearings held on the topic reveal that a clear majority of elected legislators support making the change. 

While some, such as Broome Supervisor Bill Smith have flip-flopped on the necessity of adopting an administrator, others have slowly come around to support the once dead in the water proposal, including Chairman Lape and Cobleskill Supervisor Leo McAllister.

McAllister, with his 16.2% weighted vote share, is crucial to securing the measure's final passage. Add his support to that of Valley supervisors James Buzon and Gene Milone, and an administrator is all but guaranteed to be created in a final vote.

Although Supervisors have voted down the proposal in the past - by a lopsided 4-12 margin - new life was breathed into the measure with the creation of a study committee to investigate the positive and negative aspects of potentially establishing the position.

Several months of research resulted in a positive response from the five-man committee headed by Conesville Supervisor Bill Federice. Federice, now in his second year on the county board, has worked diligently to secure support for the still pending legislation.  

Saratoga County Native Announced as Chief of Staff for Tri-County Realtor Association

Written By Cicero on 2/11/15 | 2/11/15

The Saratoga Schenectady Schoharie Association of REALTORS ® Inc (SSSAR) is proud to announce Debbi Leahey as the new Chief of Staff for the tri-county Association. 

“Debbi has experience working with non-profits and serving in the public sector that will benefit our membership and enhance our Association,” says Stuart Thomas, President of SSSAR.  “We are pleased she has decided to join our Association and take on a leadership role.”

A native of Ballston Spa and graduate of Skidmore College, Leahey is excited by the opportunity to promote SSSAR, help it grow and provide more services to the community.  “Realtors help build better communities,” says Leahey.  “SSSAR is a resource for more than just our members.  We are busy planning for 2015 and the year ahead will include fundraising events to benefit community charities, continuing education opportunities and a new leadership training program that any community member who wants to better themselves will be able to attend.”  After completing her training, Leahey will become the Association Executive. 

SSSAR represents real estate professionals who are active throughout the Capital and Adirondack Regions.  SSSAR promotes cooperation and continuing education of its’ members to better serve the community.  In additionSSSAR provides services that educate, protect and improve an agent's ability to do business in the real estate profession with the goal being that greater professionalism and education means better representation for the consumer and community.  More information can be found on the SSSAR website: www.sssar.com

Snowshoes Available in Cobleskill

Cobleskill, NY (February 10, 2015) – Creating Healthy Places and Fit Coalition are working together to help improve activity in Schoharie County. Creating Healthy Places has purchased 16 sets of snowshoes that are being stored at Fit Coalition on Route 7 in Warnerville. The snowshoes are available for people to use free of charge but need to be signed out. “Snowshoes, unlike skis can be worn with regular snow boots and snowshoeing burns as many calories per hour as running”, says Maureen Blanchard Project Coordinator for Creating Healthy Places. “Snowshoes allow people to get out on trails when there is snow on the ground and get the benefits of exercise as well as the calming effects of being out in nature.” There are assorted sizes for children and adults. Snowshoe size is based on weight so it is easier to have assorted sizes that will meet a great number of people’s needs. 

Snowshoeing is easy to adjust to as it is just like walking but due to the size of the snowshoe, most people do not sink as far into the snow as with just boots. For those that want to borrow the snowshoes Monday through Friday when Fit Coalition is open, they will need to leave either their ID or a set of keys, something to assure us that they will return the snowshoes that day. On the weekends, the policy is more complicated. Fit Coalition is only open on Saturday from 8:30-noon, so planning is a must. Interested people may borrow snowshoes on either Friday or Saturday and then return them on Monday when Fit Coalition re-opens for the week. Due to the length of time, we are asking for either a credit card or a check for $50 deposit on the snowshoes; the credit card will not be charged and the check returned when the snowshoes are returned. This is only to help cover the cost if someone does not return the snowshoes or if they are damaged. These are for the community to use and do not depend on having a membership at Fit Coalition. This is a great idea with the Cobleskill Creek Trail right across the road from Fit Coalition. It is easy to access from either the student parking area at SUNY Cobleskill behind Hess or from the trail parking area on Warnerville Cut-Off. The Cobleskill Creek trail during the winter circles a field and provides a 3 mile loop passing ponds, running along side the train tracks and with stunning views of the valley. If you want to make a day out of it, there is a pavilion with picnic tables along the trail. If you create garbage, please carry it out with you as there are not funds to clean the trail or have a garbage pick up. People do not have to walk around the field but can go out and back along the trail. Please limit crossing the field as this is a working farm during the warmer weather. We also ask that if there are cross country ski tracks in the snow that you walk to either side of the ski trails and not over them. 

Creating Healthy Places to Live, Work and Play is a grant from New York State Department of Health to increase places to be active as well as access to healthy foods. It was awarded to SUNY Cobleskill in 2010 and to 21 other counties in New York State with a local 5 year award of $875,000. This money has been spent in Schoharie County to improve or create playgrounds and fitness areas in 8 communities, in the creation of the Cobleskill Creek Trail, working with 6 communities to create and pass Complete Street Policies and projects to make communities more walkable, increase access to fresh food through the creation of Schoharie Fresh and promotion of the local farmers markets that accept SNAP and other benefits, working with local restaurants to identify healthy options and increase the number of healthy side dishes offered, as well as creating community gardens throughout Schoharie County at different locations. The goal was to reduce the ability of people making excuses for why they could not be active by providing something within their community. For more information on any of these projects, please contact Maureen Blanchard, Program Coordinator at blanchma@cobleskill.edu. To reserve snowshoes, contact Fit Coalition at 410-8352 or text message to 231-5678.

Cobleskill Police Blotter

Written By Editor on 2/10/15 | 2/10/15

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Alexander J. Acompora, 21, of Harrison on charges of driving while intoxicated and other traffic tickets. He was released to return to court on February 24.

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Nicholas K. Arthurton, 19, of Oneonta on charges of petty larceny. He was released to return to court on February 24.
The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Robin L. Harpp, 29, of Cobleskill on charges of petty larceny. She was issued an appearance ticket and released to return to court on March 3.

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Roger S. Graham, 19, of Cobleskill on a warrant on charges of fourth-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass. He was arraigned and sent to jail in lieu of $500 bail or $1,000 bond to return to court on February 10.

The Cobleskill State Police arrested Brian Johansen, 51, of Richmondville on charges of second-degree harassment and fourth-degree criminal mischief after a woman alleged that a verbal argument with him turned physical with him pushing her against a wall. In a later argument, he allegedly punched a separate wall causing damage at the victim’s home located in the Town of Wright.
Mr. Johansen was arraigned and released on an appearance ticket to return to the Town of Wright Court on February 16, according to police. The court issued an Order of Protection in the case.

The Cobleskill State Police arrested Dale C. McGregor, 41, of Jefferson on charges of second-degree harassment, fourthdegree criminal mischief, and second-degree criminal contempt following a 911 call reporting a domestic incident in the Town of Jefferson.
Mr. McGregor left the home prior to the arrival of police, according to police. He was located by Troopers in the Town of Harpersfield. He was arraigned and sent to jail in lieu of cash bail and an order of protection was issued by the court.

Middleburgh Man Arrested for Vehicle Larceny

Written By Editor on 2/8/15 | 2/8/15

Sheriff's Deputies charged Sean D. Bouck, 44, with one count of Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree and one count of Petit Larceny following an investigation of a larceny to a vehicle. Mr. Bouck was released on appearance tickets to return to the Town of Middleburgh court at a later date.

Winter Storm Warning Until 6 AM Tuesday

Written By Editor on 2/7/15 | 2/7/15

The National Weather Service has issued the following winter storm warning for the area. Keep it tuned to our always updated Schoharie News weather page.
...Winter Storm Warning remains in effect until 6 am EST Tuesday...
* locations...east central New York and adjacent western New England.
* Hazard types...persistent accumulating snow.
* Accumulations...storm total snowfall of 9 to 18 inches through Monday night.
* Maximum snowfall rates...one half to one inch per hour... mainly Sunday afternoon through Monday.
* Timing...light snow continuing overnight into Sunday morning... with periods of moderate to locally heavy snow Sunday afternoon through Monday. Steady snow is expected to finally taper to snow showers late Monday night.
* Impacts...hazardous travel conditions due to snow covered roadways and reduced visibilities for a prolonged period of time.
* Winds...generally east to northeast around 5 to 10 mph... becoming north to northeast to around 10 to 15 mph on Monday.
Precautionary/preparedness actions...
A Winter Storm Warning for heavy snow means severe winter weather conditions are expected or occurring. Significant amounts of snow are forecast that will make travel dangerous. Only travel in an emergency. If you must travel...keep an extra flashlight... food...and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.

Richmondville Man Arrested after Domestic Disturbance

Written By Editor on 2/6/15 | 2/6/15

State Police in Cobleskill arrested a Richmondville man following the report of multiple domestics that occurred over a two day period.

 Troopers charged Brian Johansen age 51 of Richmondville with Harassment 2nd and Criminal Mischief 4th after a female subject alleged that a verbal argument with Johansen turned physical with him pushing her against a wall. In a later argument Johansen allegedly punched a separate wall causing damage at the victims residence located in the Town of Wright. Johansen was arraigned and released on an appearance ticket to appear in the Town of Wright Court on February 16, 2015 at 7:00 pm. The court issued an Order of Protection in this case.


Letter to the Editor: Where is Lopez, Seward on Pipeline?

Written By Editor on 2/5/15 | 2/5/15

Who let the pitbulls out of their cages? I see Senator Seward and Assemblyman Lopez are running loose, growling and ready to take a bite out of Governor Cuomo's leg over his education policy and rightfully so. Yet when it comes to the big gas companies taking our land and turning Schoharie County into an interstate for pipelines, not even a whimper.I wonder why? Mr Lopez has called on the public to help him fight Mr Cuomo's policy via letters to the Governor and also the editor. Thats just what the  opponents of the pipeline have been doing for the past couple of years, maybe you have read a few of those letters Pete? The Assemblyman will use his membership on the Education Committee to lead the charge against Cuomo. Mr Lopez also is a member of the Assembly's Enviornmental Conservation Committee. But I have never heard him speak out or use his membership on that committee to take a stand against the Constituion Pipeline. The destruction of our land and the denuding of the forests is a criminal act It will cause irreversible damage to the environment. I hope the pit bulls will still have some fight left in them, when Kinder Morgan comes calling looking to take more of our land for a second pipeline and easement. But I expect by that time they will both be locked up back in their kennels.

Regards,
Jerry Fiore Summit

Jefferson Man Arrested after Domestic Incident

State Police in Cobleskill arrested a Jefferson man for multiple charges following a 911 call reporting a domestic in the Town of Jefferson.

Troopers arrested Dale C. McGregor age 41 following a 911 call reporting a domestic incident at a residence in Jefferson. McGregor left the residence prior to the patrols arrival and was later located by Troopers in the Town of Harpursfield. McGregor was charged with Harassment 2nd, Criminal Mischief 4th, and Criminal Contempt 2nd. McGregor was arraigned in the Town of Jefferson Court and remanded to the Schoharie County Correctional Facility in lieu of cash bail. An Order of Protection was issued by the court. 


Cobleskill Police Blotter

Written By Editor on 2/3/15 | 2/3/15

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Timothy E. Armstrong, 31, of Carlisle on charges of felony driving while intoxicated and other traffic tickets. He was arraigned and sent to jail in lieu of $4,000 bail or $8,000 bond to return to court on February 3.

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested Sopporia N. McLean, 18, of New York and Keilanie R. Leitch, 18, of Queens on charges of petty larceny. They were issued appearance tickets and released to return to court on February 17.

The Cobleskill Village Police arrested James J. Effner, 25, of Cobleskill on charges of petty larceny. He was issued an appearance ticket and released to return to court on February 17

ATV Accident Investigated in Schoharie

The Schoharie County Sheriff’s Office investigated a car/ATV accident that occurred on 2/3/15 at 7:30AM on Terrance Mountain Road in the Town of Schoharie.

George K. Lawton, age 74, was using an ATV to plow snow in front of his driveway when he back out into the road. A vehicle driven by J.M. Schoenecker, age 33, of Schoharie was operating a vehicle southbound, and struck the ATV ejecting its operator. Neither the driver nor the 2 passengers (a 1 year old and a 4 year old) in the car were injured. The ATV operator suffered a minor head injury and was transported by the SCHO-WRIGHT Ambulance to Ellis Hospital.

Roller Rink Offering Events

Written By Cicero on 2/2/15 | 2/2/15

B&B Roller Skating Rink schedule for Presidents Week: February 16-18 open skate 2-5PM; February 19 open skate 2-5PM and 6:30-9PM, and Zumba 5:15-6:15PM; February 20 open skate 2-5PM and 7-10:30PM. Address 1469 State Rte.7, Warnerville. For information call 518-294-2006 and 518-294-8812.

Poll: Readers Skeptical of Lape Chairmanship

Written By Editor on 2/1/15 | 2/1/15

Readers are skeptical of the coming term of new County Board Chair Richard Lape. Some readers see fit to give the Richmondville Supervisor a chance for his one year term while nearly half would choose someone else. A large portion is still undecided.

 Do You Approve of Richard Lape Being Chosen Chair?

Yes 33% - 52 
No 47% - 74 
Don't know 19% - 30 
156 total

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