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Catskill officials to remove Tannery Bridge fencing

Jul 25, 2021 6:00 am

Sam Raudins is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media the Catskill Town Board has voted to remove the temporary fencing installed at the Tannery Bridge swimming hole in Palenville. Officials will now consider other ways to keep the area under control after receiving more public input. The town board heard public comment on the matter last week, removed the temporary fencing and is looking into the possibility of adding signage at the swimming hole. Residents made various suggestions, including signage and a community stewardship program. Some residents said out-of-town visitors were taking advantage of the area and creating problems for locals. Residents who live near the hole and the Kaaterskill Creek said there is noise after dark, parked vehicles blocking access to homes and children jumping off the Tannery Bridge. Greene County, the owner of the bridge, is planning to install an 8-foot fence on the bridge by mid-August to prevent jumping. Resident and former Palenville Fire Chief Kevin Lennon is against that move, saying that closing the hole creates an issue for the fire department by preventing access to a water source. The stewardship program would engage community members in educational conversations with swimming hole visitors was proposed by resident Rick Vincent, who said a similar program was implemented with the Catskill 3500 Club. “They talk to the people that show up, they go over and introduce themselves and they don’t argue with them, they don’t have the authority to arrest anybody, and that’s not the point ... We asked them to be considerate, not loud,” Vincent said. The board asked that anyone interested in the stewardship program email the town clerk with contact information. The board decided in July 2020 to temporarily cut off public access to the swimming hole after it became overcrowded and overrun with trash amid the pandemic. Town Supervisor Dale Finch said the town has not moved forward with permanent fencing to block access, adding that fencing would be expensive. “I think we have better ways to spend our taxpayers’ dollars than to put up fencing,” he said. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.