This is an open letter to the residents of Olive.
I would like to offer a heartfelt thanks to all the people who supported
me. I want you to know how very much it means to me. I have always
been a firm believer in the idea that when one door closes another
one opens. I eagerly wait to see what is behind the new door. Please
be assured that I will always find a way to serve Olive, I have for
the past 32 years, and I will continue to do so as long as I am able.
Olive is a wonderful town but even more than that, Olive is HOME,
our home, and my home. Thank you for allowing me to serve you for
the last 8 years as your councilwoman I hope I made a difference.
I will wait to see what is on the other side of the door.
Olive Bridge, NY
It’s time to herald those who often go unheralded.
November 20th was the first official statewide School-Related Professional
Recognition Day. This summer Governor Spittzer signed a bill into
law creating a permanent School-Related Professional Day on the state
calendar. The Governor’s signature on this bill memorializes
New York’s commitment to deeply dedicated educators, The School-Related
School-Related Professionals make-up over 90,000 school district employees
in New York State who work very hard throughout the year to keep our
students safe and make school districts run smoothly.
The Onteora Board of Education joins Governor Spitzer in recognizing
and thanking all Onteara’s School-Related Professionals. Their
daily contribution to our students and district is invaluable.
Teachers’ aides, monitors, custodians, building maintenance
workers and helpers, school bus attendants, typists, secretaries,
clerks and cafeteria staff in a small district like ours are Jack
and Jill’s of all trades.
Hall monitors, teacher aides, school bus drivers and attendants become
mothers, fathers and social workers when caring for our students.
Maintenance and custodial workers don’t just paint, clean and
landscape. They are plumbers, electricians, carpenters and winter
Secretaries, typist and clerks acquire knowledge to be payroll specialists,
accountants and human resource managers. Staff gets hired, vendors
and employees get paid, students are assigned classes and the school
So to all of Onteora’s School-Related Professionals, thank you
for a job well done. We honor your contribution. November 20th is
The Onteora Central School District Board of Education
Mary Jane Bernholz
I was very pleased to see Paul Smart's coverage of the growing opposition
to the Belleayre Resort on Nov. 8 (in both the Phoenecia Times and
Press). In the very short time since the announcement of the 'compromise'
plan an extraordinary groundswell has appeared, accompanied by an
impressive amount of activity, including signs, bumper stickers, movie
viewings, and public meetings. The Sierra Club is an influential and
courageous ally buttressing our local efforts. An online petition
to Gov. Spitzer expressing outrage and concern about the development
is accumulating signatures at a spectacular rate, and as more and
more folks realize that the plan is not the 'done deal' it's been
touted as, they are mobilizing against this dreadful plan. People
who live in the Catskills realize it is the relatively unspoiled beauty
of these mountains that is the area's greatest asset, and that an
oversized monstrosity like the one that is being pushed so hard on
the community would harm us all.
Interested parties are urged to visit Savethemountain.net.
I have been reading the letters you have published about the Gitter
design to blast our mountain to bits and I am thrilled to hear that
so many like minds have expressed their views on this latest disaster.
I am not only concerned, I am terrified that a couple of millionaires
can have their way when so many of us are completely against this
unfair, too humungous, too dangerous, too destructive to every living
creature (to say nothing of the damage to the NYC water source, Pepacton).
Our trees, our pastures, our grasslands, our wells, our critters,
large and small will all be irrevocably damaged by a project such
as this. Our governor should be ashamed of himself. The Gitter bunch
should hide their heads in shame, as well. More power to the savethemountain.net.!!
Opposition to the proposed Belleayre resort has been growing as the
luster of the newly minted "compromise" has been tarnished
along with the reputations of Governor Spitzer, the Catskill Center
and the NRDC. The umbrella website savethemountain.net has helped
to bring out the details of the plan and organize the growing ranks
of the resort's opponents. The opposition's message that intensive
development does not belong on the steep slopes and summit of Highmount
is being heard, despite the best efforts of the captive "environmental"
groups to spin this enormous commercial development plan as a "victory"
for the environment. Shandaken's election results showed the public's
concern over the size and location of the development in the resounding
defeat of the development's backers and their replacenment with public
officials who are empowered to judge the development plan on its merits.
Save the Mountain's petition to the governor has attracted over 1100
signatures in just over a week. The documentary, "Resorting to
Madness: Taking Back Our Mountain Communities" will be shown
at four area venues over the next few weeks-see the website for details.
The website also has information about getting Save the Mountain lawn
signs and bumper stickers. The developer and his political allies
will have to prove that this mega-development planned for the steep
slopes and summit of Highmount is environmentally responsible and
economically sustainable. And we thought ours was an uphill battle!
Matthew Frisch, coordinator
Highmount Preservation Association
A friend of mine owns a bed and breakfast in the area. Recently she
came upon one of her guests speaking on his cellphone. Naturally,
having no cell towers in the area, she queried him about this. He
responded by saying he had a special hookup to a satelite transmission.
On questioning him further, she learned he is with the CIA. She has
every reason to believe he was legitimately connected with the government
and not just pulling her leg. Now here's my question: if the capability
exists for communicating with cellphones via satelite, what are we
doing defacing the landscape with unsightly and possibly unhealthful
cell towers? Does anyone out there know any more about satelite transmission
for cellphone capability?
Local papers were full of letters to the Editor during the recent
election cycle. Some were promoting their favorite candidate and some
were in opposition to a certain candidate. For the most part letters
in our local papers were about electing Town Board members in Towns
located in the Onteora School district. There were probably many reasons
why some writers wanted to see their candidate get elected. It could
have been because their candidate was a friend of the writer, a relative
or perhaps they felt that their choice would hold the line on taxes.
Budgets prepared by Town Boards affect the General property tax. School
Board members accept budgets prepared by the school administrating
and affect our pocket books the most.
Here’s the thing. Why isn’t there more interest shown
in what’s going on at the Onteora School. There’s a lot
going on in the Onteora School District and the School Board has a
lot of decisions to make in the near future. Decisions that affect
tax payer’s pocket book. There’s been plenty of talk about
the possibility of the Phoenicia school closing; schools in West Hurley
just sitting there costing tax payers plenty of money and most importantly
nothing has been made public that the board is taking any cost effective
measures. The majority of decisions made by the School Board cost
tax payers more and more money. Being cost effective saves tax payers’
Please print this petition to Governor Spitzer as an LTE...
We, the undersigned citizens concerned about the far-reaching and
irreparable damage the proposed Belleayre Resort at Catskill Park
would do to our environment, our homes, our water supply, our economy,
and our way of life, do hereby strongly declare our opposition to
the development of this mega-resort in the heart of the Catskill Mountains
as proposed in the Agreement in Principle effected under the auspices
of your office and negotiated with developer Crossroads Ventures,
LLC, and partners Dean Gitter, Emily Fisher and Ken Pasternak.
We continue to oppose the devastation this mega-resort and its high
elevation buildings and roads would wreak on the magnificent view
shed and night sky of these mountains, on the constitutionally protected
‘forever wild’ State Forest Preserve and the Catskill
We continue to oppose the creation of what would effectively be a
new city wholly inconsonant with the surrounding hamlets, with the
character of the community, and the intimate hospitality the region
has traditionally offered to visitors;
We continue to oppose the destruction of Belleayre Ridge and Highmount
through the clear-cutting, bulldozing, and blasting that would take
place during the construction of this mega-resort;
We oppose the damage to a unique eco-system and to its thriving habitat,
plant and animal life, and we fear the danger of excessive flooding
that this environmental destruction will exacerbate, threatening our
homes and property;
We continue to oppose the compromising of our water resources, which
also supply pure, unfiltered drinking water to downstate residents
including New York City, through the deforestation, erosion, construction
blasting, risk of toxic substances entering surface and ground water
in stormwater runoff, and the excessive draining of our aquifer;
We continue to oppose the negative consequences we believe this development
would bring to our economy and our way of life: a sudden and disproportionate
population growth exacerbating the current crisis in affordable housing,
the potential for uncontrollable secondary growth, a spike in property
taxes that could displace many homeowners, pressures on our property
values, traffic congestion that would adversely affect business and
commerce, rapid and radical change that could imperil the core strength
of local communities;
We continue to oppose the use of our taxpayer dollars to provide incentives
including ski lifts and snowmaking to a private, for-profit developer,
and we oppose the granting of special access to a public ski center
for users of a private, for-profit facility;
We continue to oppose the loss of this storied WILD PLACE, historic
for its early preservation by the People of New York in our State
Constitution, that is a prized, irreplaceable asset belonging to all
the people of New York, in order to provide financial gain for a few;
We therefore petition you, Governor Eliot Spitzer, DEC Commissioner
Alexander Grannis, and all local, county, state, and Federal permitting
agencies to reject and deny all applications relating to the revised
proposed Belleayre Resort at Catskill Park.
To add your name to this growing petition go to www.SavetheMountain.net
and follow the link to the online petition.
UC EMC Rep. Town of Hardenburgh
HART: Hardenburgh Association of Residents and Taxpayers,
a Save the Mountain Group
First I'd like to thank you for your unbiased reporting of the Belleayre
Resort. Showing both sides of an issue whether you are for or against
it is very important. Everyone has the right to hear both sides of
a story and make their own decisions. If it weren't for the press
everyone would think this resort is a done deal, and it's not.
In my travels I have actually met people who know nothing about what's
going on with this resort or how it will destroy our beautiful mountain.
It will change our way of life and not for the better. It's hard to
believe with a project the size of this that people still come up
and ask me what SavetheMountain.net is. Get your heads out of the
sand people before it's too late.
Next I'd like to address a billboard on Route 28. It boasts about
living here and jobs and our children. It says 542 full time jobs,
it must be nice to be so sure of yourself. We were told at one of
the meetings that this number has already downsized, at least something
about this resort has. As far as our children living here I'd love
it, but as maids to the rich I don't think so. There has been a lot
of talk going around about wages and how great they will be. There
was a mention of fourteen dollars an hour. I doubt unless they are
union jobs and after taxes if they will ever reach that amount. Ask
the people who have worked at Belleayre Ski Slope for twenty years
how much they make right now. Even if these jobs should reach fourteen
dollars an hour could your children afford to buy and pay taxes on
a three or four hundred thousand dollar house? With this resort is
going to come higher house prices, higher taxes, and a higher cost
of living. So when your children make this fourteen dollars an hour
and walk out the door at the end of the day and find they can't afford
to live here anymore, what good is fourteen dollars an hour going
to do them? So the answer to this question is no, I don't want my
children working at this resort. I'd rather they went to college and
had beautiful mountains to come home to. These signs by the way which
haven't been stolen or destroyed like our Save the Mountain signs
have to be taken at face value. They have told us lies before, why
believe their billboards?
I'd like to say there are people out there who are still willing to
take on the big money. Who give a lot of time and energy to this cause.
Find out the facts, pass them on to your neighbors and friends. Don't
let their fight be in vain.
On that I'd like to leave on a personal note. I was raised here on
a dairy farm. My dad and my grandfather and my great grandfather were
farmers. When I turned eighteen and met my husband I left the farm.
My dad told me I didn't know what I was leaving. He told me to go
out in the woods and sit under a tree and watch the animals and listen
to nature. He said you could not put a price on what was there. Thank
God my dad had the sense to hold on to the farm till I reached the
age to appreciate what he had told me. I'm back on the farm where
I grew up and every day I look out my window I thank my dad for his
wisdom. He never had a lot of money but what he had was priceless.
So I ask you to think for yourselves why do you chose to live here?
Is it to be rich or is it because you like your way of life? Do you
want your way of life changed by chain saws, blasting, jack hammers,
endless traffic etc. for years? I hope your answer is no. Whether
you are for or against this resort do you like your elected officials
making important decisions about your life behind closed doors with
big money? I think this is leading to a bad precedent, it kind of
makes you wonder what else is being decided behind closed doors.
Bravo to Dennis Kucinich!! Congressman Dennis Kucinich has placed
Impeachment of Dick Cheney on the floor of the House of Representatives,
and it has been sent to the Judiciary Committee. Hopefully, it will
be given the full public hearing that it deserves. The public supports
the move for impeachment by a wide margin. It's important to let Chairman
Conyers if you agree that the impeachment process is vital to the
health of the United States.
To my mind, Dennis Kucinich is the strongest candidate for the Democratic
Presidential nomination. In a recent national grassroots poll, Kucinich
easily topped the list with a stunning first place finish in 41 of
50 states. According to results released last week by Democracy for
America (DFA), of the 150,000-plus ballots cast, Kucinich received
more votes than former Senator John Edwards and Senator Barack Obama
combined. Kucinich was the top vote-getter in 41 states, including
the early-voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada. In South
Carolina, another early voting state, Kucinich came in second to Obama
by less than one half of one percent.
He's the only candidate among Democrats (or Republicans) to push for
national not-for-profit "Medicare for All" health care system
to take the profit and waste out of health care. He deserves our support.
It's a scandal how the national media continues to ignore him even
though he consistently tops the polls among Democrats when asked who
agrees most with their policy choices.
I recently sent him a donation, and urge all readers to do the same.
Go to: http://www.dennis4president.com/ to support his candidacy.
My name is Adele Pearlman. I’m the person that had a run-in
(literally) with a bear a few weeks ago and now find myself in the
curious position of having to defend myself against written assaults
on my intelligence, and accusations of predatory intentions toward
wildlife in general. So, to all who have written letters to the editor
or actual editorials pointing out my stupidity in thinking I could
let my dog out to go to the bathroom when the possibility existed
that there might be bears around, or in actually trying to defend
my dog when she was attacked. I’m sorry. What WAS I thinking?
The truth of the matter was, I wasn’t thinking at all. The whole
episode took all of 2-3 seconds-my brain doesn’t function that
quickly. Was I attacked? Certainly. Was it with malicious intent?
Of course not. She had me on the ground and could have done anything
she wanted to me, but turned around and went back to her cubs and
her acorn eating or what ever I had so rudely interrupted. But the
fact remains I was injured in the incident and was advised by the
DEC wildlife specialists to start rabies shots as a precaution since
the bear was acting unusually aggressive. Please realize that I have
“coexisted” with bears, deer and other wildlife on this
farm and in these mountains for 50 years without any previous serious
incidents. I have lived an agricultural lifestyle and have put up
with crop predation by bears, deer, rabbits and other creatures without
taking sanctions against them virtually all my life. So please excuse
me for having fruit and oak trees, a barn with horse feed, chickens
and chicken feed. These were not set out as attractions to lure the
bears to their death.
As it turned out this was a smallish female bear with cubs, probably
pushed off the mountain by larger bears and spending to much time
in Phoenicia dumpster diving and losing her natural fear of humans
and dogs. While I could be very sympathetic to her situation, I am
protective as she was to my family, pets, livestock and living area.
I find it unacceptable that some people feel we must be captives in
our houses, unable to set foot outside of our doors for fear of being
upon by one of “God’s creatures”.
The bear unfortunately had to be destroyed and tested for rabies.
With the bear population exploding there is going to be a natural
increase in disease and altercations with humans. This happens in
any animal population, including humans; so rather than spouting a
sanctimonious drivel, you people need to come up with concrete ideas
on how to solve this problem. How about writing letters explaining
to people that intentionally setting out food to attract bears so
can watch them is ultimately fatal to the bears? How about pointing
out that when you see a bear, immediately leave the area instead of
going towards it to get a better look? Once a bear realizes how easy
it is to injure a human they become dangerous and will ultimately
be destroyed. How about education programs in the schools and community
Oh, and by the way, Eric Hansen, just for your information, my dog
is as deaf as a rock.
After recently having lunch with friends, they suggested I send a
picture of my Dad's price list from May 10, 1966 for your paper. My
Dad was a local barber in Accord for over 60 years. He died six years
ago. His name was Albert "Spike" Barley. A wonderful man.
A friend to All. Thanks for considering this picture for publication.
: The photo wasn't quite clear enough to reproduce adequately, but
here's what it said:
Crew Cut, Flat Top $1.90
Children's Haircut $1.50
(under 12 years old)
(On Saturdays, And
day before holiday) $1.75
Razor Haircut $3.00
Beattle Haircut $2.50
Price increase effective May 10, 1966
Open Monday During July & August