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Friday headlines

Mar 18, 2011 5:32 am
City code snags homeless housing — again
According to Francesca Olsen of the Register-Star, the Columbia County Department of Social Services’ plan to rent apartments in Hudson as transitional housing hit another roadblock this week when a Human Services Committee resolution authorizing a lease bumped against discovery that the city’s code requires all transitional facilities to have 24/7 staffing, plus six other very specific stipulations. The lease in question would have been for two four-bedroom apartments on Eighth Street. The matter was tabled.

Board awards bids for sewer plant project
Melanie Lekocevic of the Daily Mail writes that the Athens Village Board has voted to award contracts for its $3.3 million sewer plant upgrade project to the two lowest bidders – general contractor Kingsley Arms and electrical contractor Stilsing Electric. Initial construction could begin in about two weeks, and equipment could start arriving at the sewer plant in a month.

Knolls cleanup draws ire
The Times Union follows up on the radioactive leaks from an atomic power research facility north of Albany in the wake of Japan's nuclear meltdown. At a "public airing" this week, local residents lambasted the troubled radioactive cleanup of the Knolls Atomic Power Labs. More than dozen residents spoke during a meeting of the Niskayuna Town Board where officials from the U.S. Department of Energy, and the project's former and current private cleanup companies explained what went wrong and promised mistakes would not happen again.

Nilsson Nominated for JBF Award
Carole Osterink of Gossips of Rivertown reports on how Daniel Nilsson of DA|BA is a semfinalist for a James Beard Foundation Award as Best Chef in the Northeast. The gala awards ceremony will take place at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center. He is one of 20 nominees who will be whittled down to just five on March 21. The other nominees include Francesco Buitoni of Mercato in Red Hook, Serge Madikians of Serevan in Amenia and Bjorn Somlo of Nudel just over the border in Lenox, Massachusetts.

DOT creating road blocks for planned Hannaford
The Chatham Courier reports that a planned Hannaford's supermarket and pharmacy in New Lebanon is facing opposition form the state Department of Transportation regarding its location at the corner of routes 20 and 22, which would require closing all of the existing entrances and exits, relocating five telephone poles, removing parking spaces and confining their trucks to County Route 5. The town has been categorized as a “food desert,” defined on the U.S. Department of Agriculture website as “areas with limited access to affordable and nutritious food” since the New Lebanon Supermarket closed in December 2009. The project manager for the new supermarket said he would seek a county override of the state position... or take his plans elsewhere.

County homeless population on the rise; current plan unsustainable
CC Scoop's Mike McCagg takes on the issue of Columbia County homelessness in a story reporting beyond a recent update on the issue given to county supervisors. “Homelessness is not just a problem in the City of Hudson, it’s everywhere as you can see by the numbers,” Adam Kirkman of CARES Inc. told a board meeting last week. He outlined an April, 2010 survey that found there were 88 homeless people in the county being housed by the Department of Social Services. That compared to a 26 people in 2005, 31 people in 2006, 33 people in 2007, 51 in 2008 and 79 in 2009.