Will Olive Police Commissioner Robert Schanck Be Forced To Resign?
By Gary Alexander
Robert Schanck, chairman of the Olive Police Commission, noted
that it was the first time in his 13 years of service that he
had been called to appear before the town board as he addressed
that panel earlier this month. He was there to answer several
allegations made by Chris Johansen of West Shokan.
Schanck, who has held his position as commissioner since Olive
formed its police force from a constabulary in early 1991, produced
documents from the state Division of Criminal Justice Services
(DCJS) which appeared to demonstrate that the records upon which
Johansen based his claims were incomplete. Schanck produced
copies for the board which he said proved that the DCJS had
him listed as a "commissioner" and not, as Johansen
contended, as a "police officer." Johansen, husband
of former town board member, Cindy Johansen, claimed that he
had a letter from the DCJS stating otherwise but had not brought
it to the meeting.
Sadly Our Joe Passes
The Catskills Community Mourns The Tragic Death Of Boiceville
By Martha Frankel
They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, it
certainly took a whole town to bury Joe DeBellis Jr last Tuesday.
The shock that stretched through Boiceville when word came that
an accident had killed the young (49) owner of Boiceville Lumber
--- a town already reeling from the fire that killed Frank Calrow
on July 8th and the car accident that took the life of the beloved
Mirella Bresciani on June 26th--- threatened to bring Olive
to a complete standstill. At the supermarket and the gas station,
people turned to each other and held on, wailing. At the
mill the next day, loggers and lumber guys mixed with Joe‚s
brothers, friends and his longtime companion (who he jokingly
referred to as his arch enemy), Valerie Fanarjian. They told
stories about excavation jobs that everyone else deemed impossible;
the tagline of each story was how Joe had come and done the
job without a problem. They talked about impossible loads that
Joe had carted to New Jersey, or trucks he had rigged together
until they could be fixed properly. They talked of how
little Joe said, of the blush that would spread up from his
neck like wine on a tablecloth, of how gentle he could be with
someone‚s aging mother. They laughed and they wept.
Mostly they wept.
ISSUES CONFERENCE TIMETABLE Firehouse, Margaretville,
top floor 9AM -5 PM
August 24th - Community character, cumulative
August 25th - Aquatic habitat
August 26th - Storm water
SAD WEEKS... Twice in the
last news cycle, death ruptured the Olive peace. First, community
legend Bob Burgher died. Then a tragic accident took Boiceville
Lumber's Joe De Billis, Jr. And now the summer ends...
Large Parcel Vote By Onteora Board Now Switched To Aug.
19 For Quorum's Sake
By Gary Alexander
With only four of the seven members of the Onteora School
Board potentially available for the final vote on the
Large Parcel Law on Tuesday night, a decision was reached
at a meeting with Real Property Tax Service Agency Director,
Dorothy Martin, to postpone the school board vote until
"We polled the board and knew for sure that, on
Thursday, we would have 5, and possibly 6 (board members),"
explained Superintendent of the Onteora
School District, Justine Winters, who elaborated that
vacations and medical necessities prevented full attendance.
"So we're going to postpone in hopes
as having as many attend as possible."
With the legal deadline for the vote set at Sunday,
August 22nd, ten days prior to the levy, there were
only a few days grace within which to reschedule.
Activities will commence at 6 pm, Thursday, with a meeting
in executive session to proceed the public meeting at
Bob Burgher's Legendary Life
By Paul Smart
The obituary reads simple, and doesn't tell the story.
"Robert C. Burgher, a lifelong resident of West
Shokan, died on Sunday, Aug. 1, 2004, at his residence.
He was 79."
Bob was a graduate of Kingston High School, Boise
State College and the University of Colorado at Boulder
with a degree in civil engineering. As a professional
engineer and land surveyor, he was employed by New
York State Department of Transportation for 22 years
and was superintendent of highways for Ulster County.
He served as an engineer for the firm of Abdullah
AI-Homoud Al-Shuwayer Engineering Company in Saudi
Arabia, 1979-80. He then co-founded the engineering
and land surveying firm of West and Burgher and later
was still active in the firm of Robert C. Burgher