WGXC-90.7 FM

Monday headlines and audio

Aug 01, 2011 12:05 am
Corruption charge against Pebler reportedly dropped
Doron Tyler Antrim in The Daily Mail writes the most high-profile story of his short tenure at the paper: He reports that the felony charge against Edward Pebler for falsifying his time sheets at the Coxsackie Correctional Facility, "according to a source with knowledge of private conversations at the maximum-security prison," Antrim writes. His single source claims workers at the prison, "have bragged about the outcome and say it’s 'all thanks to [Greene County District Attorney] Terry Wilhelm,'" he writes. The charge was dropped this January, according to Antrim's source. Neither Wilhem nor Pebler’s attorney, Dennis Schlenker, returned Antrim's calls about the case. Pebler is still working at the prison, according to Antrim's source, supervising vehicular and plant maintenance at almost $69,000 per year. An inspector general report showed Pebler claiming to work 13 times when he was actually acting as Coxsackie’s code enforcement officer, and made over 570 phone calls with a town-issued cell phone while on state time. "Earlier this year, the Coxsackie Town Board tabled a resolution to reappoint Pebler, saying it was awaiting DOCS’ decision whether to grant him permission to work for the town," Antrim writes. Pebler was charged with offering a false instrument for filing, a class E felony, the maximum sentence for which is four years in prison. Read the full story in The Daily Mail.

Valentine case dismissed
Doron Tyler Antrim reports that charges were dropped against Greene County Legislator Keith Valentine, Republican of Catskill, and his wife Cynthia, for violating a law he voted for in the legislature, not allowing adults to serve alcohol to minors. While Antrim, or an editor at the paper, writes he has been cleared of the charges, that does not seem to be the case. The charges, however, have been dropped. "In a written decision, Hunter Town Justice William Simon said, “no useful purpose would be served” by prosecuting the Valentines under a 2007 county law making it a crime for a person in control of a residence to host a open house party at which they knowingly allow[ed] underage drinking," Antrim writes, and though he twice writes they have been cleared of charges, his detailed explanation says otherwise. "In what’s known as an affirmative defense, a defendant can have the aforementioned charge dropped if they’ve not been convicted of it in the last five years and complete the state Alcohol Training Awareness Program," Antrim writes. Columbia County First Assistant District Attorney Michael Cozzolino told Antrim that the Valentines completed that awareness program May 9. Valentine was elected to his third term as a Legislator in 2009 and, according to Antrim, "pushed for the adoption of the house party law," that he was later charged with violating. Read the full story in The Daily Mail.

Mt. Merino open again
Audra Jornov in the Register-Star writes that Mount Merino Road is reopened, after being closed since March because of water erosion. The road, which circles the west side of the small mountain just outside of Hudson, connects with Route 9G. Read the full story in the Register-Star.

County seeks town’s OK for cellular tower
W. T. Eckert reports that cell phone reception may improve in Columbia County if the Claverack Zoning Board approves adding a new cell phone tower where a water tank currently stands on the Pine Haven Nursing and Rehabilitation Center property. The water tank currently holds antennae for AT&T and Sprint, and a new tower would be higher, for better reception, and would add Verizon Wireless and possibly another carrier. If approved by the Claverack Zoning Board, the tank would be torn down and the tower would replace it. Columbia County Public Works Commissioner David Robinson said, “The water tank hasn’t been in use for 25 years, maybe longer. The new tower will really give the coverage needed,” he said, claiming that cell coverage drops off to the west and the south, and is “sketchy at best” on the nearby Taconic Parkway. Read the full story in the Register-Star.

Click on the headline or "PLAY CLIP" to hear mp3 audio files.

A Very Incomplete Calendar: 20110801
Produced by Terry Doyle. Listing of upcoming events, from "Imprint" program Sundays at 11 p.m. on WGXC. PLAY CLIP