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Wednesday headlines and audio

May 25, 2011 2:26 am
$6.3M budget with 2% tax hike adopted
Doron Tyler Antrim in The Daily Mail reports the Catskill Village Board of Trustees on Mon., May 23 approved a $6.3 million budget for 2011-12 with a $91,000 increase in spending and and a two percent tax levy increase. "We worked very hard as a board to say ‘two percent is all we have to work with,”’ Village President Vincent Seeley was quoted by The Daily Mail reporter, about the very real possibility that the state may pass a two percent property tax cap. The budget includes a $162,000 increase in costs for employment benefits, and trustees added almost $82,000 more this year for debt service. The budget also includes cuts to the two highest-funded departments, police and public works. Read the full story in The Daily Mail.

Fire chief plans run for town supervisor in Nov.
Bob Green in the Register-Star reports that Jeff Seymour, the chief of Stockport Volunteer Fire Company #1, wants to be on the ballot this fall for Stockport town supervisor on the Conservative, Independence and Republican lines. “I spend a ton of time as it is right now serving the town,” he said in the Register-Star. He was elected fire chief three times since 2006, and a local firefighter for 15 years, as well as an EMT for 20. “My ability to supervise, find common ground, and communicate with the many different personalities within the fire company as well as the residents of my fire district will certainly aid me in the position of supervisor,” he said in his letters to the Stockport political parties. Read the entire story in the Register-Star.

Hochul beats Corwin in NY-26
Jimmy Vielkind in Capitol Confidential reports that Democrats won a usually Republican seat in Congress in the western New York special election to replace Rep. Chris Lee. Erie County Clerk Kathy Hochul beat Assemblywoman Jane Corwin 48-42, with industrialist Jack Davis taking 9 percent of the vote. "Democrats are casting the win as a referendum on the GOP plan to replace the current system of Medicare with one based on vouchers for private insurance," Vielkind wrote. "Republicans point to Davis, and his use of the “Tea Party” name for a ballot line that drew votes. There’s also a lot of Republican blame-mongering going on about how the campaign was run." Read the entire story in the Albany Times-Union's political blog.

NYS Supreme Court Grants Preliminary Injunction, Blocks Sale of Dirty Outdoor Wood Boilers in NYS
The Supreme Court of the State of New York Tue. May 24 granted a preliminary injunction to stop the sale of outdoor wood boilers that do not meet the Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) new, improved standards. The court's ruling restrains the DEC from implementing its April 15 "emergency" rule allowing the sale of the older model wood boilers until July. The court will make a determination on June 20. "New Yorkers from Buffalo to the Bronx can breathe easier today thanks to the Supreme Court of the State of New York's decision to block the sale of dirty outdoor wood boilers," said Ross Gould, Air and Energy Program Director, Environmental Advocates of New York. "The Department of Environmental Conservation's fake 'emergency' has been called off, and everyone who cares about clean air is grateful." The DEC originally passed new regulations for the heating units as of April 15, then extended the old laws, citing unsubstantiated economic reasons.

Farm Bureau wants Farmers Regulatory Relief Act passed
The New York Farm Bureau is lobbying for the Farmers Regulatory Relief Act in the New York State legislature, a bill to ease regulation and lower taxes on farmers. “New York’s business climate needs to improve to help our farmers thrive,” said Dean Norton, president of New York Farm Bureau and a dairy farmer in Elba, N.Y. “Our farmers are subject to unreasonable regulations, fees, taxes and utilities costs—perhaps more than any other farmer on the globe,” Norton said. Sponsored by Sen. Patty Ritchie and Assemblyman Bill Magee, the bill includes a refundable investment tax credit, toll exemptions, fee changes, with other reductions in regulations for agricultural interests.

Wednesday audio clips
(Click on names to play mp3 audio clips.)

Evelyn Trebilcock from Olana interview on WGXC Afternoon Show.
Interview by Richard Roth and Ellen Thurston. Curator of Olana Evelyn Trebilcock introduces the new exhibition there, "Rally 'Round the Flag: Frederic Edwin Church and the Civil War." Twenty-six minute interview, though beginning could be excerpted.

Howard Zar from Athens Cultural Center
Interview by Richard Roth and Ann Forbes Cooper on WGXC Afternoon Show. Three-minute excerpt from beginning of interview with the President of the Board of the Athens Cultural Center, about the "prom" fundraiser they are holding Sun. May 29.

Peter Paden from Columbia Land Conservancy
Interview by Richard Roth and Ann Forbes Cooper on WGXC Afternoon Show. Paden is Executive Director of the Columbia Land Conservancy, which holds it's annual Country Bar-B-Q Sun., May 29.

Amari Hayden interviewed about Catskill Community Center youth activities.
Interview by Cory Fischer-Hoffman. Interview at groundbreaking for WGXC studio in the Catskill Community Center, about the centers youth activities, by a local youth who uses the facility.

•Poet Bill Shute at Upstate Artist Guild.
Recorded by Sam Sebren. An 11-minute poetry performance from Bill Shute. Shute will be in Hudson Sat., May 28 at the Spotty Dog Books & Ale, performing on a bill with Eric Hardiman and Ray Hare of Century Plants.

Century Plants performance at Upstate Artist Guild.
Recorded by Sam Sebren. Show presented by Albany Sonic Arts Collective. 16-minute performance.
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