Freshtown aiming to re-open in October

By Brian Sweeney
The Freshtown Supermarket in Margaretville will likely reopen by Halloween, according to store officials.

Noah Katz, vice president of PSK Supermarkets which operates Freshtown, said he anticipates that the store will be back in business in four-to-six weeks.

The building was badly damaged by the historic August 28 flood. Once the building was approved for stability, the massive task of cleaning out the store began.

“Everything was gutted. We had to literally scrub down the building and rebuild the interior from scratch,” Mr. Katz explained.

Opinion mixed on land deal for resort

By Jay Braman Jr.
The recent announcement that New York State is moving ahead with plans to purchase 1,200 acres of Catskill Mountain land from a Shandaken developer has been met with mixed reaction in that community.

The land sale is part of an agreement made in 1997 between the state, several environmental groups and government agencies and the developers of the proposed Belleayre Resort at Catskill Park.

Reduced resort

Head Start kids miss playground lost to flooding

By Pauline Liu
Classes at the Delaware Opportunities Inc. Project Headstart Arkville Center began a week late to allow the staff members to clean up after the flood.

When the facility reopened on Tuesday, it looked clean and the staff looked ready, but there was one thing sorely missing. The beloved playground had been wiped out by Tropical Storm Irene. “The playground was our pride and joy,” said Lead Teacher Kyle Holden. 

Area schools welcome new staff members

By Pauline Liu
The new school year marked the arrival of seven new teachers to three of the region’s school districts.

What these educators have to share could help shape our children’s futures. Many of them have interesting backgrounds. Among them you’ll find a former archaeologist, a former scientist in the dairy industry, and two graduates of Roxbury Central School. 

Local fire officials recall Hurricane Irene operations

The August 28 flood will surely be remembered as one of the most tragic events in our region’s history. But, amidst all of the loss and destruction, many positives have emerged. There have been many “heroes” who have contributed to the flood recovery efforts. As they normally do in times like these, volunteer firefighters from throughout the region quickly took the lead in the emergency efforts. The News takes a look at the heroic efforts made by the dedicated volunteers from area departments.

Arena Fire Dept.
By Brian Sweeney

Members of the Arena Fire Department were summoned early on Sunday morning, Aug. 28 to deal with flooding issues that choked off access to the Millbrook Valley.

In addition to restricted travel, the volunteers also had to help residents cope with power outages and lack of phone service. Fire chief Mike Sarubbi said members of his department spent much of their time cutting trees to improve access throughout the valley.

Building owner charged with arson after Margaretville blaze

By Pauline Liu
Main Street, Margaretville, still recovering from the effects of two major floods over the past three weeks, suffered another blow Saturday when an alleged arson fire destroyed a four-unit apartment building at 688-696 Main Street.

The building’s owner, Eugene Gundelach, 58, of Margaretville, was arrested Saturday evening by Delaware County Sheriff’s Deputies and charged with felony arson.

Federal flood aid explained to public

By Pauline Liu
About 50 people filled the meeting room at Middletown Town Hall last Friday to find out about three federal flood relief programs.

People whose homes or businesses were ravaged by tropical storms Irene and Lee heard presentations made by representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Small Business Administration (SBA.)

334 Middletown structures damaged in flooding

By Brian Sweeney
A total of 334 structures in the Town of Middletown sustained varying degrees of damage from the August 28 flood.

Middletown Code Enforcement Officer (CEO) Patrick Davis presented a report to the town board last Tuesday outlining the work that he performed, along with other inspectors who were engaged to help assess the damage.

Mr. Davis said 77 structures in the town, 66 in Fleischmanns and 86 in Margaretville sustained damage from the historic flood.

Phoenicia's sign to the world: "Come visit"

By Jay Braman Jr
Ever since Hurricane Irene came to visit, Phoenicia has had a dilemma.
The hamlet suffered greatly at the hands of the storm. The flood came and did damage, high winds knocked out power, Internet and phone, but right now, weeks after that mayhem hit, the biggest problem facing this locale is the fact that they have almost completely recovered and no one knows about it.

City agrees to fund Andes water repairs


By Pauline Liu
Efforts to replace Andes’ seven-year-old malfunctioning wastewater treatment system could begin as soon as next year, at a cost of about $2.3 million to the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP.)

Andes Town Supervisor Marty Donnelly made the announcement at last Thursday’s town board meeting, which was held at town hall.

“I was able to get the New York City DEP to agree to pay upwards of $ 2.3 million,” he said. “That means there will be little or no cost to the residents of our sewer district.” 

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