WGXC-90.7 FM

Weekend in review

Oct 19, 2015 12:03 am
Some of the stories that made the news Fri., Oct. 16 through Sun., Oct. 18

The Greenport Fire District announced last week it will hold two public information sessions to discuss plans for a new fire house. A vote on the referendum to approve a construction bond for the project will be held Tue., Nov. 17. Open houses will be held 8 a.m., Sat., Oct. 24 at Greenport Station #2 on Route 14; and, 8 a.m., Sat., Oct. 31 at Greenport Station #3 on Washington Boulevard. A full presentation on the project will be made to the town board 6 p.m., Wed., Nov. 4, at town hall. The proposal calls for the replacement of Becraft station, located on Route 14. That station protects the district's largest response area, which includes Columbia-Greene Community College, Olana State Historic Site, and Mt. Merino and Frese roads. According to the district, the existing station provides insufficient space to house fire trucks and equipment, and lacks adequate community space for meetings and emergency shelter.

Jim Planck reported in The Daily Mail the public hearing on the hardship waiver request filed by the developers of the proposed Dollar General store near Tannersville will continue next week. The public is being asked to weigh in on whether the project should undergo a site plan review despite the town of Hunter site plan moratorium extension. The developer wants to build on a parcel directly adjacent to the western boundary of Tannersville and on the south side of Route 23A. The project is headed by Primax Properties, of Charlotte, North Carolina, which leases its sites to Dollar General stores. Primax has said any construction delays could jeopardize the project and is seeking a waiver from the ban. Members of the public that spoke at the hearing last week suggested Dollar General would be largely unaffected by any financial impact the delays might cause, so a hardship waiver was not justified. It was also suggested that at most, the waiver would save only three months on the project, but granting the exception would skirt the intent of the freeze, which is to safeguard the town while new rules are developed and adopted. Hunter Planning Board Chairwoman Sarah Killourhy said the hearing will remain open until the town board meeting, Oct. 20, so the public can still submit comments in reference to the hardship waiver request.

WGXC improved its audio signal last week, with a staff visit to the station’s transmitter site to change the audio signal path. Before, the signal switched back and forth between analog and digital. The changes made last week create a straight digital line to the transmitter from the station’s three studios or the station's many remote broadcasts.

Bethany Bump reported at Capitol Confidential the task force charged with reviewing the state’s Common Core program will hold at least a dozen public sessions over the next several months and create an advisory committee to help with that review. The 15-member group is led by Richard Parsons, a senior advisor for Providence Equity Partners. Parsons also chaired the governor’s commission on education reform in 2012. The task force met for the first time Fri., Oct. 16, in Manhattan to review the history and timeline of Common Core in New York and plan out the course of its review. The advisory committee will guide the task force through its review. The committee will include educators, administrators and parents from across the state. A schedule of public sessions to be held in each of the state's 10 regions will be announced in the coming days.

Melanie Lekocevic reported in The Daily Mail the proposed new water and sewer rates brought Coxsackie residents out en masse for a village board meeting last week. The proposed increases would more than double the rate residents currently pay. Under the rate structure proposed last month, everyone would pay the same amount for water and sewer, regardless of usage. The rate hikes were introduced as a way to resolve financial shortfalls in the village's water and sewer funds. Echoing the comments of others, resident Brian Wallace said, “To institute anything other than a tiered system is grossly unfair and largely falls on the backs of seniors who use very little water and sewer. This seems to give young families a pass and is a burden on seniors.” Mayor Mark Evans said the board had not yet settled on a rate. He said the matter will remain under discussion in the coming weeks.