Renovation, demolition options presented to Main Street owners

By Pauline Liu
Several Margaretville business owners met with engineers and local officials Friday to discuss three options for their block of upper Main Street buildings that were left flood damaged by Tropical Storm Irene. 

The presentation of the much-anticipated study by Lamont Engineers drew a packed-house crowd to the village boardroom at the Gottfried Municipal Building on Main Street.

Arson charges dropped in village case

By Pauline Lu
There’s been a major new development in the arson arrest of 58-year-old Eugene Gundelach of Margaretville.

In a phone conversation on Monday, Delaware County District Attorney Richard Northrup explained to the News that Gundelach was released on bond last week and, as a result of new evidence, the arson charge against him is being dropped.

“In the face of the conclusion reached by the fire investigator, we would be unable to obtain an indictment at grand jury and certainly not proof beyond a reasonable doubt,” said Northrup.

ORDA backs off Belleayre acquisition

By Jay Braman Jr.
A plan to turn the management of state-owned Belleayre Mountain Ski Center over to the authority that already runs the state’s two other ski areas appears to have stalled.

It was reported last week in the Press Republican, a newspaper that covers the Adirondack Region, that the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) is taking a wait-and-see attitude about taking over management of Belleayre from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) which has managed the facility since it opened.

Candidate forum planned for October 24

By Brian Sweeney
A Meet the Middletown Supervisory Candidates Forum, sponsored by the Catskill Mountain News, will be held Monday, Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. at the Arkville Firehall.

In an unprecedented occurrence, the Town of Middletown has four candidates running for supervisor: Wayd Jaquish of Fleischmanns and Marjorie Miller, Joe Moskowitz and Jake Rosa, all Arkville residents.

Republican Supervisor Len Utter decided not to seek re-election after 12 years in office, but no candidates filed petitions on the Republican or Democratic lines by the July deadline.

Clean Sweep launched to help with post-Irene work

Arkville — In the aftermath of disaster, the impulse to rebuild and re-inhabit our homes and businesses is extremely urgent. In the wake of Irene, however, The MARK Project is spearheading a program to harness the energy of volunteers and the expertise of building and rehab specialists to make sure rebuilding and recovery is done correctly with long-term sustainability in mind.

Displaced families return to Granary Building

By Pauline Liu
The seven families that have called the historic Granary Building in Margaretville their home have moved back into their second story apartments.

With great anticipation, the last family was preparing to return home to the Bridge Street building at press time on Tuesday.  It’s been about one month since the ground floor flood damage caused by Tropical Storm Irene forced them all to evacuate. The building is owned by Eric Wedemeyer of Andes. “I’m hopeful that things will soon be returning back to normal,” said Wedemeyer.

Property owners gain school tax extension

By Brian Sweeney
Area taxpayers will receive a 21-day extension for paying school tax bills, during which no interest or penalties will accrue.

Officials in the Andes, Onteora and Roxbury school districts have all voted to approve the tax payment extension that was issued by the governor as a result ofthe historic August 28 flooding. The new deadline for tax payments without deadlines for property owners in these districts is October 21.

Fleischmanns flood relief fundraiser set for Sunday

By Jay Braman Jr.
The Village of Fleischmanns was hit hard by flooding caused by Tropical Storm Irene and weeks after the water subsided the village continues to struggle with expenses wrought by the flood.
And so, on Sunday, Oct. 9 from 1 to 4 p.m. an old-fashioned fund-raiser will be held to raise some money for the village.

Nothing fancy. The event will not take place in some posh eatery or mansion, but right on the Main Street parking lot, which was itself underwater a month ago.

No new taxes projected in Shandaken budget

By Jay Braman Jr.
After a solid month’s worth of bad news, most of it having to do with flooding and other disasters, the taxpayers of Shandaken got some good news this week.

According to Shandaken Town Supervisor Rob Stanley, the preliminary budget plan for the town calls for only a tiny tax increase.

To explain it, Stanley put it this way. “If you paid $1,000 last year in town taxes, this year you will pay $1,000.50.”

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.

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