Letters To The Editor

Letters To The Editor 12.02.21

PFAS? Parts-Per-Trillion? What’s the Big Deal?

PFAS compounds are a family of man-made chemicals including PFOA (polyfluorooctane acid) and PFOS (perfluorooctanesufonic acid). PFAS compounds are “forever” compounds that are extremely difficult to breakdown and do not biodegrade. PFOA and PFOS have been linked to the following diseases in humans: Thyroid cancer and disfunction, kidney cancer and disfunction, testicular cancer, liver dysfunction and increasing the levels of serum cholesterol (leading to heart disease including heart attacks and strokes), high blood pressure in pregnant women (preeclampsia). PFAS Compounds have been linked to immune system dysfunction and is thought to exacerbate autoimmune existing health issues. Studies of health effects from PFAS compounds are limited and ongoing; however, as more studies are funded scientists are discovering more ways in which PFAS compounds cause harm. The state of California having funded research into the health effects of PFAS compounds set the drinking water limit for PFOA to 5.1ppt (parts per trillion) and PFOS to 6.5ppt, well below New York State’s limit of 10ppt. Moreover, California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment is now petitioning the state to reduce levels further to 0.007ppt for PFOA and 1.0ppt for PFOS as a result of their latest studies showing detrimental effects at extremely low levels. Unless your home is fortunate enough to have had results of ‘Non-Detect’ your family is at risk; which one will you and your family get?

Personally, I know which ones I have; unfortunately, I reside in one of the homes that has been unknowingly using contaminated water from my well. After countless tests and mounting medical costs only to discover that my illnesses may be linked to the water in my home; I feel violated, the sanctity of my home and the safety within its boundaries was taken. Often, I wonder if my neighbors suffer similar unexplained changes in their health.

Paula Heilmann, Poestenkill

I second Ms. Hoffman’s Letter of 11/25/21! 

Ms. Hoffman in her letter of 11/25/21 makes a valid point in my opinion! I heartily second her suggestion!  

The Advertiser long before its current ownership , functioned as a local source for many of us, of services , as well as opinions on LOCAL issues that affected us.

In my earlier letter dated 6/11/21 I asked a few questions about the Tribune Content Agency, (after reviewing that site which does contain a wide variety of sources), how the columns are chosen, cost if any etc. I also asked how and who chooses these and whether there was a rotation planned for printing others. I would have asked some of that in  an email to  the publisher , but there was and is none listed on the masthead. I also had some suggestions that might  have been entertained to make it more adaptable to us locally .

For whatever reason , my letter was NEVER printed, leaving me to make my own assumptions about why , especially given the continuing plea to “send us your thoughts regarding our opinion pages”.  Whatever the case, i do think that we all have ample opportunity to access a wide variety of NATIONAL opinion pages if we choose to subscribe to the Times Union or other papers, as well as web sites, etc.

Based on that , I vote that the Advertiser convert the opinion page , keeping the letters to editor section of course , and continue to provide access for local merchants and issues. 

Ken Scallon , Nassau 

North Greenbush helped in Defreestville

I pleasantly enjoyed looking at a mound of dirt last weekend at the end of California Ave in the Defreestville area of North Greenbush. The October 21, 2021 edition of the Advertiser published a Letter to the Editor about the sewage pump needing attention. I also mentioned this sewage pump at the October 2021 North Greenbush town meeting. During the November 2021 town meeting, North Greenbush Highway Superintendent, Mark Premo, mentioned the town dumped 8 loads of dirt in this area addressing the erosion near the sewage pump. Mr. Premo also mentioned that the pipe at the bottom of the hill was replaced as well as work on the pump occurred. Residents in the area emailed me about how happy that this situation was resolved. I am glad that Mr. Premo and his crews could help out residents in North Greenbush.

Michael Myer, North Greenbush

Kenosha Football Analogy

A lot of people are looking at the Kyle Rittenhouse jury decision as a victory. I don’t exactly see it that way. For me it seems like a draw, like we’ve been on defense from the beginning and we’ve simply managed to not lose ground. Like many Americans, I see this decision as testimony in a much bigger trial.

With football as an analogy, this game began with The Left having possession of the ball, at a time of their choosing, somewhere deep in our territory.

They would usually have their most experienced players on the field in a stadium filled with cheering fans, handpicked referees and their best former players as commentators.

Our team would usually consist of whoever happens to be in the area at the time with no experience whatsoever. We would have the rule book on our side but The Left would totally ignore it because they are convinced that there is no one to enforce the rules.

If we happen to stop their advancement at the spot where that day’s game began, that just marks the point at which they will begin the game the next time.

As I see it there have only been a few times in our history when our side started the game with possession of the ball and even then we were not deep in their territory. One of those times was when Senator Joe McCarthy had possession of the ball. The next possession was by Ronald Reagan and the most recent was of course Donald Trump.

President Trump had the benefit of having the best coach of all time on his team in the form of Rush Limbaugh.

From this day forward we have to stay on offense. We have to pick the best quarterback, along with the most experienced bench, cheerleaders, referees, commentators and coaches. We must pack the stadium with our fans in order to show the world that we are the champions of justice.

The Kenosha rioters along with their financial and political supporters must be investigated and punished if we are to deter situations like this from ever happening again.

David Crawmer, North Greenbush

No Taxpayer Dollars for Appeal of Court’s Decision

After being told by the State Supreme Court that the Town of Sand Lake’s approval of a party barn in Barnes Road was “incomplete, arbitrary, and contrary to the requirements of SEQRA,” the town appears poised to spend our taxpayer dollars to defend this nuisance.

The Town’s comprehensive plan says “The Town should review its current regulations on home occupations to ensure that they are “user-friendly” and provide effective safeguards against excessive traffic, noise, improper disposal of hazardous materials, and visual blight in residential areas.”

The party barn would produce excessive traffic, noise and disrupt farming activities in this largely agricultural neighborhood. Some of the farms have their house on one side of the road and the farm on the other side. Imagine how difficult it would be to do routine farming chores with dozens of catering trucks and partygoers unfamiliar with this narrow two lane road clog it up or worse, speed through it drunk.

The Town has provided no explanation of how it would provide traffic, littering or noise control. It hasn’t explained who in the town will respond on a Saturday night when things get out of control. Why, then, would the Town support this terrible proposal?

Regina and Joseph Winnicki, West Sand Lake

Beware NYSDEC ‘Weasel Words’ on 8 December 2021

“Weasel words” are defined as “words or statements that are intentionally ambiguous or misleading,” and no better example of the use of “weasel words” to mislead and gull the unsuspecting in Poestenkill can be found than in the slick, professional propaganda put out recently by the DEC entitled “PROTECTING POESTENKILL’S DRINKING WATER AND

INVESTIGATING PFAS CONTAMINATION, Two Public Availability Sessions Scheduled for Dec. 8, 2021,” where under the heading “Potential Source Investigations – Waste Management Transfer Station,” we were informed that a sample from the water supply well located at the transfer station was collected and analyzed for PFAS compounds in September and “No exceedances of drinking water standards were found.”

Which means that yes, PFOA or PFOS were found in the well, but they don’t want us to really know that, because if PFOA is in that well, it raises the ugly question of exactly how it got there, a question the answer to which is troublesome for the DEC and Poestenkill, as well, so they slough it off by saying “no exceedances,” instead, which is how lawyers and politicians talk, using those kind of weasel words to mislead.

True public health professionals responsible to the public for protecting and safeguarding their health and well-being do not mislead the public by lying to them, and the DEC and Poestenkill are not public health professionals by a long shot.

Which brings us to the DEC propaganda statement that “The New York State Departments of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Health (DOH), and the Rensselaer County Department of Health (RCDOH), are working together to protect the public health and environment of the Poestenkill community.”


Since when?

What a patently ridiculous statement that is because if the DEC, DOH, and the RCDOH had been doing their duty to work together to protect the public health and environment of the Poestenkill community, there would be no PFOA in our drinking water today, period.

Paul Plante, Poestenkill

Still Say NO to Party Barn

Party Barn on Barnes Road has reared its ugly head again. The zoning variance that was ruled against by the Supreme Court is being appealed. The Town of Sand Lake appears to be preparing to support the appeal of the court’s decision.

The Barn would be a nuisance, pure and simple. The dictionary says a nuisance is a use of property or course of conduct that interferes with the legal rights of others by causing damage, annoyance, or inconvenience.

That’s exactly what the Barn would do, which is why the entire neighborhood surrounding the proposed barn is united against it.

Ask yourself why, when almost all the taxpayers in the area oppose the Barn, would the Town’s elected officials support it.

Rodger Sutton, West Sand Lake

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