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Audio Feature: Hudson River stories
• The Stevens Institute reports temperatures this week in the Hudson River at Schodack Island were between 58 and 64 degrees, slightly warmer than last week.
• The Associated Press reports in The Daily Freeman the the state Comptroller's office May 10 released a report on "Overflows From Combined Sewers" that showed 200 New York waterways were impacted last year by billions of gallons of untreated sewage and stormwater. Locally, Hudson, Catskill, and Athens regularly release untreated sewage and stormwater into the Hudson River, mostly at times of heavy rains. About 11 percent of the 1,900 overflow spills in fiscal year 2016-17 in New York were from the Albany area. Read the full story in The Daily Freeman.
• William J. Kemble reports in The Daily Freeman that Amtrak will hold public forums about plans to fence off railroad lines at access points to the Hudson River in Columbia and Dutchess counties, but not yet. “Amtrak would like to wait [until] the Department of State weighs in on the plan,” Rhinebeck Supervisor Elizabeth Spinzia said. “Once the state weighs in on the plan ... they would be happy to meet with us and they are working in conjunction with New York (state) Department of Transportation, who’s their partner on this project, and they will most likely come here for a public discussion of what the actual plan is.” Under the plan, fences would go up in Rhinebeck, Rhinecliff, Tivoli, Germantown, Stockport, and Stuyvesant. Last month, protesters gathered in Germantown to oppose the plan, and so far Amtrak has few friends on this issue. Read the full story in The Daily Freeman.
• Brian Nearing reports in the Albany Times Union that the Hudson Mohawk chapter of the Sierra Club wants the state Department of Environmental Conservation to do something about the state's largest construction and demolition debris dump that is in Rensselaer in Rensselaer County. The DEC issued a 2012 permit that allowed dumping at the Dunn sand and gravel mine. In 2015, trucks from seven states began rolling in to the 73-acre site next to Rensselaer Junior-Senior High School. Now it is the biggest dumping ground in New York. The dump is so big DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos can see the facility from his office window across the Hudson River. "It is our intention to explore legal options and investigate if the permit was issued without full knowledge of the actual conditions on the ground in Rensselaer," according to a Sierra Club statement May 15. "It is evident that a number of environmental factors including noise, dust and others were not clearly documented or fully considered in the findings statement when submitted for the permit." The DEC says it is, "actively investigating community complaints related to operations at the Dunn landfill and is continuing to aggressively monitor the facility to ensure public health and the environment are protected." Read the full story in the Albany Times Union.
• The Times Union is reporting the National Weather has now confirmed a tornado touched down May 15, near Saugerties. The path of the tornado began along Route 212 between Woodstock and Saugerties around 2:29 p.m. before moving east through the western and southern parts of Saugerties. It then crossed the Hudson River and ended in Tivoli around 2:35 p.m., a distance of approximately five miles. The tornado's top winds were estimated to be 90 mph. No fatalities or injuries resulted from the windstorm, according to the National Weather Service. Read the full story in the Times Union.
• David Figura reports at New York Upstate that striped bass are biting on the Hudson River this spring. The River Basin Sports shop in Catskill says, "Excellent striped bass catch reports, from Newburgh to Troy, continuing to come in as the 2018 run winds along. There definitely appears to be a profusion of smaller fish, 18 to 30 inches, this year but stripers up to 42 inches most certainly are not missing.... It's readily apparent that this year's run has that of the 2017 beat hands down," a report from the Catskill shop said. Kevin Ryan, of Hudson River Bait and Tackle Co. in Rensselear, agreed. "In numbers and in length, this year is definitely better than last year," he said. Read the full story at New York Upstate.