Local Government

Local Government 03.12.20

County Legislature Discusses the Burning of PFAS at Norlite in Cohoes

RENSSELAER COUNTY – The Rensselaer County Legislature held their monthly public forum on Wednesday March 4th. Former EPA Administrator Judith Enck attended and spoke about the recent discovery that the Norlite Plant in Cohoes has been burning firefighting foam. The foam is classified as a hazardous material and contains PFAS, the same class of chemicals that has contaminated the water systems in Hoosick Falls and other communities in Rensselaer County and beyond.

When the news about Norlite broke, the Legislature Majority quickly drafted a resolution asking New York State to install air monitoring devices in parts of the county that are impacted by the plant’s emissions that blow east into our county. The Legislature is also calling for monitoring of the Tomhannock Reservoir in Pittstown that provides drinking water to over 100,000 area residents.

During the public forum, Legislator Todd Tesman expressed his frustration, “Why are we just hearing about this now, if this has been going on since 2018? It is disturbing, and we are concerned, and we need answers from DEC.”

Majority Leader Ken Herrington who operates a family dairy farm in Brunswick was also concerned. “We grow crops on a couple of thousands of acres of land. We grow alfalfa and clover for our cows that produce milk, so we are concerned about what is going into our food chain.” said Herrington. Legislator Jeff Wysocki operates a dairy farm in Hoosick that and shared Herrington’s concerns.

Legislators Tom Grant and Dan Casale both expressed the frustration with the lack of communication that allowed the burning of the dangerous foam to occur without public knowledge.

Chairman Michael Stammel and the Legislature Majority will also be introducing a resolution to support new State legislation that will ban the burning of firefighting foam in New York State.

-Submitted by the Rensselaer County Legislature Majority

Schodack Supervisor’s Report for February 2020

SCHODACK – In a continuing effort to keep residents informed of my activities as well as issues pertaining to the Town, I submit to them this report for February of 2020. As always, further information can be found on the Town’s website or it’s social media pages.

From the 16th through the 19th, I was in NYC for the annual Association of Towns conference. These conferences have proven a wonderful opportunity to network and share ideas with local municipal leaders from across New York State as well as attend various workshops or lectures on topics of importance. Communities across the state face similar challenges, and sharing what was successful for some and learning from where others came up short helps us all make better decisions.

I was proud to stand alongside a number of my colleagues in local government, as well as law enforcement representatives from across NYS on February 20th as Rensselaer County hosted the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Acting Director Matthew Albence for a press conference opposing the NYS Green Light Law’s prohibition of sharing DMV database information with various federal authorities. Upon passage of the Green Light legislation, NYS now allows those who are in this country illegally to apply for driver’s licenses while simultaneously making the DMV database unavailable to ICE and Border Patrol agents for the conducting of their day to day duties, a step no other state takes. Regardless of wherever we each may stand on the issue of granting driving privileges to those who are not here legally, the denying of this essential information to those who are charged with protecting us and our borders is wrong. I urge NY to do the right thing and make this information available to our federal authorities.

And finally i want to thank all the local fire and ambulance companies for their generous hospitality in inviting me to their installation banquets. Congratulations and good luck to all the newly sworn in officers.

Supervisor David Harris

Troy City Council District 3 Residents Invited

TROY – Residents of Troy City Council District 3 are invited to attend an informal gathering with City Councilwoman Sue Steele on Wednesday, March 18th. The District 3 Conversation will be held at the Park Pub, 2701 Lavin Court, Troy from 6:30-7:30pm. Council District 3 includes the Beman Park, Frear Park, Sycaway and nearby neighborhoods.

The gathering will provide an opportunity for residents to ask questions, share concerns and learn more about city issues. There will be materials on Neighborhood Improvement Award projects, Community Choice Aggregation Program, Pothole Reporting and other city services.

Future sessions are scheduled for April 21 and May 19. For more information contact Steele at sue.steele@nulltroyny.gov.

Price Increase for the Schodack Transfer Station

SCHODACK – Bruce Goodall, Director of Transfer Station Operations, wishes to remind residents that effective April 1, 2020, there will be a price increase for the following items at the Schodack Transfer Station: 52-bag Punch Card $110.00, 12-bag Punch Card $32.00, Refrigerators $14.00, Tires $6.00/$8.00, Bulky Furniture $12.00 and Household Construction Debris $14.00.

If you have any questions, please contact the Transfer Station at (518) 477-8491 or the Schodack Town Clerk’s office at (518) 477-7590.

Defreestville Fire Department March Report

DEFREESTVILLE – The calendar changes, the weather changes, but the mission of the Defreestville Fire Department to provide the same top quality public safety services hasn’t changed in 75 years.

In February, the DFD responded to a total of 40 calls for service. These calls included two structure fires, one vehicle fire, and five vehicle/traffic rescue events. The DFD continues to have a strong and quick response to calls for assistance and for this we thank our members.

By the time this is published, Daylight Savings Time will have started. This is always a good time to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) produces a report called “Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires” with a lot of useful information. You can download a copy of the report on their website.

According to the NFPA’s report, smoke alarms were present in 74% of reported home fires during the period they studied. Almost three out of five home fire deaths in that same study period were caused by fires in properties with no smoke alarms or smoke alarms that failed to operate.

One conclusion the NFPA makes is the risk of dying in home structure fires is 54% lower in homes with working smoke alarms than in homes with no alarms or none that worked.

Also, in 2010, Amanda’s Law took effect in New York State requiring carbon monoxide (CO) alarms to be installed in all new and existing one and two-family houses, multifamily buildings, and rentals having a fuel-burning appliance, system or attached garage, according to the NYS Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES).

The law was so-named in honor of Buffalo, NY teenager Amanda Hansen, who lost her life to CO poisoning from a defective boiler when sleeping over at a friend’s house. For more information on CO, visit www.dhses.ny.gov/ofpc

Finally, the DFD reminds residents that the annual burn ban in the state, is in effect from March 16th through May 14th.

Meeting Dates for The Village of Nassau 2019-20

NASSAU – The following dates have been established for the Village of Nassau Board of Trustees Meetings. All meetings will be held at the Village Municipal Building, 40 Malden Street, Nassau, NY at 7:30pm unless otherwise posted.

March 18, 2020 Special Meeting Election 9:00pm

April 6, 2020 Annual Meeting 7:30pm

April 8, 2020 Public Hearing Budget 7:00pm

April 8, 2020 Regular Meeting 7:30pm

May 13, 2020 Regular Meeting 7:30pm

May 27, 2020 Year End Meeting 7:30pm

The Planning Board meets on the 1st Monday of each month (as needed) at 7:00 p.m. at the Village Municipal Building; The Zoning Board meets on the 4th Monday of each month (as needed) at 7:00 p.m. at the Village Municipal Building.

Town of Poestenkill’s Monthly Meeting Dates

POESTENKILL – The following are the dates for the Town Board of the Town of Poestenkill’s monthly meeting dates. March 19, 2020, April 16, 2020, May 21, 2020, June 18, 2020, July 16, 2020, August 20, 2020, September 17, 2020, October 15, 2020, November 19, 2020, December 17, 2020. The meetings are held the third Thursday of each month.

Susan Horton, Town Clerk

What is the Nassau Sunshine Fund Emergency Loan Program?

NASSAU – Are you a resident of the Town or Villages of Nassau? Has your household budget taken a hit? Got a car repair with nothing to spare? Or, are you having to choose between heat or eat? We know it happens, we’re here, we can help.

Norman Young, a well-known Nassau resident and antique dealer, had a birds eye view of the Great Recession of 2008. As his business involved buying household items from individuals needing to sell such items, he was struck by how hard hit many in the town were by the financial crisis. Norman came across an old cookbook that had been used as a fundraiser by a local organization called Open Porch Sunshine Society, which was around the early 1990s. While that organization had long faded away, he loved its neighbor-helping-neighbor philosophy. He conceived of a new Nassau Sunshine organization in which local residents would provide emergency financial assistance to other town residents dealing with a personal financial crisis.Norman and two friends agreed to reach out to others as well as religious and locally based organizations.

At its first meeting the attendees approved of a simple plan – create a non-profit that would offer interest-free loans to residents of the Town and Villages of Nassau facing a financial crisis that exceeded their resources and for which local agencies, public and private, were unable to offer assistance. As our first chairman, Sam Whaley said, “We decided on no-interest loans instead of just giving money away because it provides dignity, not a handout.

Entering our eleventh year, the Nassau Sunshine Fund has made 54 loans totaling over $21,000. Please contact us to ask about a loan or to make a donation. Nassau Sunshine Fund, PO Box 10, Nassau, NY 12123 (518) 256-2878; Please leave a message. www.nassausunshinefund.org;


We remain faithful to our motto: Neighbors – Helping – Neighbors!

Stephentown Historical Society is creating Welcome To Stephentown package

STEPHENTOWN – Welcome to Stephentown! We can help you with that!

Moving is always stressful, and a hassle, and, let’s face it – a lot of work! And once you’ve moved to your new location, you have a whole new set of situations and obstacles to overcome. You need to find out where to send the kids to school, or where to find someone to fix your plumbing or wiring. Or maybe you want to check out the local organizations and get involved in area groups. So………. in order to help make all of that just a little easier to navigate, the Stephentown Historical Society is creating a “Welcome to Stephentown” package.

We envision this package having lots of informational “stuff”, like names and contacts to help people find just about anything in town. We’d like to provide information from our local organizations, such as the Fire Department, Library, Historical Society, Veterans, Seniors, local churches and synagogues, and any others that exist. We would like to provide a listing (along with business cards where possible) of all local tradespeople and businesses. We want to include any groups in town – for instance, the Heavenly Quilters and Boy & Girl Scouts. We’d love to have menus from restaurants and maybe “new customer” discounts or other coupon-type discounts.

As you can see, this is a formidable task and we do not want to leave anyone out! So, we are asking for your help. If you are a local business or tradesperson and would like to be included in this package, please contact us at shs@nullfairpoint.net. Let us know who you are and what you have to offer – be sure to leave us your contact information so that we can get back to you!

This project has been in the planning stages for quite a while and we’d like to get it off the ground in early 2020, so please act now!

We expect this project to be hugely helpful to new families, but also to our townspeople!

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