Notes from the Saugerties Village Board

Legion centennial celebration

Kevin Pendergast

American Legion  Lamouree-Hackett Post 72  turns 100 this year, and the post is looking forward to a full week of celebrations in October.

The post was chartered July 8, 1919, post member Kevin Pendergast told the Saugerties village board at its meeting on Monday, August 19. “We have a hundred years of history that we are going to honor and celebrate; not just from World War I, but war veterans from the whole period,” he said.  

A centennial military dinner at Diamond Mills is planned for October 16 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Colone; Roger Donlon is expected to attend. The Woodstock Brass Quintet will perform. Speakers will include historian Dr. Mark Isaac, “who will keep you intrigued with his knowledge of history” and Bill Payne, who will speak on behalf of the post.


A “centennial military parade” is planned for October 19, Isaac said. “About 100 applications have gone out recently, with a deadline of September 15 to return the applications, “so we can formulate the size of the parade,” Pendergast said.Following the parade the 77th New York Regimental Balladeers and the Paul Luke Band will perform, and the Smokin’ Pony will sponsor a cookout. Pendergast said.

The post will host an open house all day tha5t Sunday, October 20. Music from the World War I era will be performed by the Veterans in a New Field. A World War I nurse reenactor will be coming from Greene County. The history museum at the post will be open for tours all day.

“So that’s what we’ve got going on,” Pendergast said. Trustee Jeannine Mayer responded, “That’s a lot.” 

The planning committee for the event consists of Pendergast, post commander Warren Whitaker, trustee Vince Buono, Paul Peyser, Bob Chapelle and Mike Karashay.

Traffic control issues

Daniel Guzman is worried about the lack of adequate traffic control on Ulster Avenue near the Price Chopper supermarket. Although the speed limit along that part of the road is 30 miles per hour, cars speed through at up to 50 miles per hour, he told the village board.

Guzman had appealed to the board at its August 5 meeting. He said he had hoped for an answer at the meeting Monday.

Guzman, a resident of the neighborhoods, says he finds it dangerous and sometimes nearly impossible to cross the highway at times. “We noticed on Washington Avenue there’s that sign that says. You’re going at this speed, be aware,” he said. “I was wondering whether we could get that type of sign on Route 212 [Ulster Avenue] as well.” The sign in question displays the speed at which drivers approaching it are traveling.

While speed traps might seem a good idea, the traffic goes through all day, and it would be impractical to station an officer there full-time, Guzman acknowledged. The problem is made worse by the fact that the light at Price Chopper doesn’t stop traffic four ways, he added.

Cars approaching the intersection aren’t looking for pedestrians, and for people with children, “it’s scary,” he said.

“I witnessed it this week. There were two little kids on bikes, and a car was turning from Ulster [Avenue] onto Cross [Street] and he almost hit one,” said his wife Barbara.

Trustee Jeff Helmuth said he had seen a speed trap on Ulster Avenue near the Sawyer Car Wash. Guzman acknowledged that the police do use speed traps at times, but they can’t maintain them all the time. He suggested a speed indicator sign like the one near the library.

While Washington Avenue is a village street, mayor William Murphy explained, Ulster Avenue is a state road, “and I don’t have as much flexibility” A movable speed indicator sign could be set up near the Price Chopper intersection, the mayor said.

The Price Chopper store owns the light at the intersection leading into the store’s entry, trustee Terry Parisian said. The store is responsible for maintaining the light.

Bluestone sidewalks

The outstanding issues with the state Department of Transportation regarding the bluestone project – the installation of bluestone sidewalks on Main Street – have been resolved, special assignment officer Alex Wade reported. “I had an excellent meeting with the best person I have had to deal with in the DOT in the time, almost 20 years that I’ve been dealing with them now, and he came up and resolved a lot of the problems that [contractor John] Mullen had with the way the engineers had laid this out. I think we’re all set to go.”

One thing still left over is “this horrible thing called ‘equitable business opportunities,’ which is a foolish thing, a federal website that simply replicates everything,” continued Wade. “I get Mullen’s payroll with all the information they want on this website, where everybody has to have a secret password.”
It was a harrowing experience. “The EBO representative for Region 8 resigned and everybody else tried to put it together but messed it up completely,” explained Wade. “It took a trip all the way to the software writer in Ohio, and days and days. I was on this all the rest of the week.”

The problem was that someone had entered an incorrect project number, and nobody could correct it except the guy who wrote the software.”

After all the delays, do-overs and problems, “it is finally time to finally approve this contract so Mullen can sign it and get going,” Wade said. The board unanimously approved the contract.