No matter what you think of the Library issue, the trustees went through a process of elimination before hiring an architect and gave us taxpayers a choice of various designs for their proposed new building. We know why Woodstockers are limited to just one architect, but why isn’t the Town giving us taxpayers a choice of various designs regarding the proposed addition to the Comeau building?
Why are we spending close to, if not more than, 150 thousand dollars on renovating the current supervisor’s cottage when we could save tens of thousands of dollars by adding another couple of hundred square feet to house his office in the new addition? Why is it we no longer follow the Town’s tradition of leading by example and follow the same rules and regulations regarding town construction projects that is required of a homeowner? Do something, say something, write something, show you are aware and care
Library Trustee Position
There were three applicants for the Woodstock Library Trustee position that was vacated by Jill Fisher. The Library Board voted and Jeff Collins took all of the votes. I offer Jeff Collins my congratulations and I’m sure he’ll make a difference with his new responsibility.
An Unjust Dept…
The Justice Department appears to be putting Donald Trump’s friends above the law. The whole sordid mess with its rule of law crisis is an affront on our freedom…As long as Trump and Attorney General Barr are in office, the fix will be in for all of Trump’s pals! I am sure Trump is anxious to have Stone’s or anyone else’s dirty tricks available again for his 2020 campaign! “We are known by the company we keep.” Trump’s a self-serving, amoral liar and manipulator as are many, many of his associates, several of whom are in jail or are going there for their roles in his underhandedness/criminal doings. To say the GOP is unaware of this abuse is an understatement, as many of his political party cronies display openly their embrace of Trump’s unlawful presidency.
America is getting a first-hand look at what AG Barr thinks his job is. In the Stone case, Trump’s twitter mini-tirades outed him. He was tweeted and AG Barr jumped and then recommended that the sentencing be reduced. Autocrats can punish their enemies and reward their friends. With the help of savvy accomplices, the rule of law can die at their hands — before our very eyes. This is America. Things like that are not supposed to be happening in Washington DC!
Dear Senator Susan Collins: You are complicit in this. You defended #45, saying he learned his lesson by the impeachment process. Did you really believe your words, or were you paid handsomely for your decision? I hope you are voted out. No thoughts and prayers to you…
We the people…have strength in numbers. Thank goodness there are those who still care about the order of law. It is high time that legal eagles begin to fight for our country. Average citizens can only do so much when politicians do nothing. I am happy to see the USA prosecutors and judges make a stand together against what they know is absolutely wrong. Thank God that at least some of the judiciary has not yet been corrupted beyond recognition. The judge in the Stone trial is doing her job and will not be cowed by Trump or his boy Wm. Barr…She remains independent, unbiased and bipartisan.
And for heaven’s sake, it is time that civics and history became two of the most important classes taught to kids in school — again. Vote blue (on Election Day 2020) all the way through, its imperative for me and you!
In reply to Mr. Gerber’s recent letter to the editor I offer the following observations.
First: Your caricature of those of us in the “Library Alliance” as a mean spirited group of Woodstockers whose only objective is to destroy the Library is, on it’s face, absurd. The past referendum dealing with the Library District question was ambiguous and confusing resulting in what we believe was a skewed outcome.
The point of that referendum was to return the oversight of the library to the Town Board and thus to more of the community as a whole rather than continuing it as the exclusive club it is now and has been for too long.
Second: It is not the intention of the “Alliance” to see the demise of the library itself but rather to entirely renovate the existing building, add to it as necessary so that it may live another day and for generations to come. Had the referendum succeeded the library employees would have become town employees and their civil service status would have remained intact.
Third: To make the statement that the claims of the Alliance and it’s supporters are false is w/o substance and ridiculous. You may not agree but the points raised are certainly cogent to the controversy and worthy of consideration.
Among those Alliance members are several design professionals and builders with decades of design and construction experience. How this equates to your view that their opinions are not worthy and indeed are false is insulting and impossible to understand.
Fourth: I agree that at this point the bond vote is likely to be the determining factor. How that bond amount is determined is fraught with questions. They are not clearly specified at this time, to the extent so that the community can understand, what is inclusive in the bond.
If the bond is defeated it in no way signifies the end of the library, rather just to this missguided adventure. What its defeat would allow is for a new more sensible and financially feasible approach to be developed involving more input from the community as a whole.
It is not a stretch to embrace the idea that old buildings can be saved, rehabilitated, and made usable for the foreseeable future. My hope is that this is a concept you can someday understand.
Hemp For Victory
If there was a vote I would definitely vote for Cannabis to be legal in N.Y. State and hopefully in April that will be announced. N.Y. should be more like Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Hawaii and Washington D.C. because those states have imparted dignity to its citizens. Legalization leads to education and responsibility as much as industry and invention. Right now people think pot doesn’t do anything to them. Perhaps they haven’t read John Lust’s “The Herb Book.” Weed has many properties (Cannabis Sativa) and by the way the body produces cannabinoids on its own. I don’t want to get drunk high out of my mind. I like change and progress in our system. Arthritis is a drag too — I might like a CBD Low Life Saver or a High Life Saver so I can relax (please see Natalie Angier’s “Woman”) but maybe I cannot tolerate it.
In any case just free the herb everywhere for those with Parkinson’s and insomnia or who can’t stand the grey area of the laws. End the stigma. I believe addiction treatment could be more on the level if weed was legal because currently people disregard “herb talk” because they think weed doesn’t count. Fear, paranoia or stuffing feelings only exacerbates dysfunctions in society. We need accord and as much green/nature unity as possible in order to save the planet, encourage advances in medicine and achieve feminine equality with our male counterparts. People might want to know not to permit or encourage weed smoking/vaping before age 22 to protect brain development. Do people understand that pot education has been stymied because of the war on weed and hemp?
Totally Lacking Probity
One must continue to question how this extremely unfit person was ever, even remotely, considered as ‘presidential material.’ His multiple shortcomings continue to shout out to every one of us that he must be removed if our democratic republic is to survive. If he wins again we will become an autocracy, at best, or a dictatorship at worst. Therefore, I submit the following, and suggest you consult your preferred dictionary if necessary, to verify how totally lacking he is for the office he has occupied for these extremely long three-plus years and why he must not be allowed to desecrate all this nation stands for by helping to rig another election in his favor. Had it not been for Russian interference, he would never have won in 2016, but since he is now begging, bartering and badgering Russia and other foreign country leaders to do an even better job of interfering this year we must all make sure they don’t succeed!
Trumpf is totally lacking anything even remotely resembling probity. Seriously consider that word. It means having character, decency, goodness, honesty, integrity, morality, rectitude, righteousness, rightness, uprightness, virtue, high mindedness, honesty, incorruptibility, irreproachability, scrupulosity, propriety, ethical standards. Trumpf has absolutely none of these qualities! Quite the opposite, in fact.
Consider the antonyms of the word probity. He meets every one of them! Space doesn’t allow for all of them, but here are a few: impropriety, indecency, debauchery, crookedness, dishonesty, lowness, meanness, viciousness, vileness, corruptness. Give very serious thought before you vote. This country cannot survive as a democracy if he is re-elected. We all owe our country, our fore-fathers, ourselves and our progeny far better than anything this seriously malignant, unfit man has to offer any position, least of all the highest seat in our nation.
One of the letters in last week’s paper claimed that if the referendum to end the Woodstock Library’s Public Library District status had passed, it would not have removed the Civil Service status of our librarians. This is simply not true. It would have seriously threatened the librarians’ job security, along with ending the Library’s current secure funding.
Delgado: Support Climate Bills
Rep. Delgado may be coming to understand we are already in a global climate emergency. At a meeting on February 20, he promised a group of constituents to soon reveal his positions in three key facets of policy for changing our currently disastrous trajectory.
He was asked to support a bill declaring a national climate emergency. (H.Con. Res. 52). He was asked to support a national ban on fracking. (S3247). He was asked to support the Break Free from Plastic Pollution Act of 2020, which would ban use of certain single use plastic, and update other aspects of plastic’s industry policy.
On the local level we asked him to publicly come out in support of shutting down the fracked gas Cricket Valley Energy plant in Dover and come out against the expansion of the fracked gas Danskammer power plant in Newburgh.
Congressman Delgado was polite and welcoming. He listened to us and even stayed late to complete our meeting. However, in response to these requests, he was evasive and said he would get back to us with a definitive stance in two weeks. All of these issues are about protecting our future.
Declaring a national climate emergency sets the stage for managing our situation. We know that plastic is everywhere; adult Americans consume a credit card size amount of plastic each week. Plastic also is a fossil fuel product, adding to our climate crisis. Fracking produces methane leaks, toxic waste, contaminated water, and is a greenhouse gas 86 times more destructive than carbon dioxide.
We know that our global temperature is rising, worldwide wildfires have been raging, floodwaters are rising, wildlife is disappearing. We have no time to lose. Our fossil fuel infrastructure must be switched to sustainable energy now. We hope that Rep. Delgado will see that we are all striving for the same thing, to have a sustainable future, and state clearly that he is for all of us and our children. Please call him and urge him to do so! His Kingston office number is 845-443-2930.
Janet Apuzzo, Wallkill; Michele Riddell, New Paltz; William Barr, Saugerties; Liz Elkin, New Paltz; Jill Obrig, Stone Ridge
Are You Now, Or Have You Ever Been…?
Interesting that only one candidate for the Library Board vacancy was asked if he had ever deleted a Facebook post. Apparently this is the reason he was called “deceitful” by the Library Director on social media, in advance of the selection. He was of course not chosen. It’s the right of the Board to select whoever they wish, but the interview process should be the same for all candidates.
I spoke at the February 20 Woodstock Library Board of Trustees meeting and stated that I am hurt and insulted that they have not invited me and other taxpayers to the table to discuss a reasonable budget, plan and design that we all can agree on. We have the same aim to improve the library and expand, but it must be done in reality and at the best possible price with the community’s consent.
If the Board wants the taxpayers to pay for this endeavor, then we should and must be part of it, just like barn building where all the community has a part in it. We have Woodstock architects who have designs that will cost approximately two million dollars that does not include a tear down, but in fact, will use the bones if this structure with an addition.
There has been so much rancor from the library people without even looking at the architects’ plans or discussing it. This is no way to get an approval of a bond.
How many people on the board, both past and present, have building experiences to decide on such an expensive undertaking. Already, there has been so much wasteful spending going nowhere.
We, the taxpayers, have a responsibility to keep costs down so we can stay in our homes, prevent homelessness and help our young people stay in Woodstock where they can afford a home. Keep in mind, schools are closing here because of a dwindling population of students. Who will live here in the future? Will it be second home owners, the wealthy, Airbnb? Please read the Chronogram 2/20 issue on page 54 “ The Aging of the Mid-Hudson Valley.” While living in Woodstock for 52 years, I have seen our taxes continually go up where it has become almost impossible to sustain paying it. There are many people in this town struggling to make ends meet. Why should our homes be threatened?
Therefore, let us build a bridge to bring us together, work together, so we can accomplish great things together.
‘Don’t Hang Back With The Brutes’
In anticipation of Performing Arts of Woodstock’s upcoming production of Tennessee Williams’ “Suddenly Last Summer,” I decided to reread Williams’ “A Streetcar Named Desire.” One passage in particular chilled me this time around:
In Scene 4, Blanche DuBois pleads to her sister Stella regarding her sister’s husband, Stanley Kowalski — who ultimately destroys Blanche for the threat she poses to him and his frail, ravaging ego.
“He’s like an animal. He has an animal’s habits. There’s even something subhuman about him. Thousands of years have passed him right by, and there he is: survivor of the Stone Age.
“There’s been some progress since then. Such things as art, as poetry, as music. In some kinds of people, some tenderer feelings have had some little beginning. That we have got to make grow! And cling to, and hold as our flag in this dark march toward whatever it is we’re approaching… Don’t—don’t hang back with the brutes!”
I make much the same plea to each of my own sisters and brothers: If you’re someone who’s eligible to vote but doesn’t plan to…Do — do it for progress, for art and poetry and music, for tenderer feelings! And if you’re someone who plans to vote…Don’t — don’t hang back with the brutes!
Christine Rose Anderson, daughter, sister, teacher, healer, life long learner, compassion extraordinaire and friend.
To elaborate on any of these descriptive words gives credit to a person’s precious time spent here on earth. Many of you have spent time with Chrissy in different ways. Some of you have been touched and healed through her hands, others touched and expanded through conversation, or in her class at Ulster County Community College; others brought to your own self care and awareness through the Strengthening, movement and Pilates classes she taught for well over 10 years in Woodstock.
One of the ways Chrissy’s generosity and caring shined was in her capacity to listen. You knew she was really listening, not only through her attentive, alive, other-directed body language, but in the responses she offered. She thought and felt with you. Truly a gift. I have heard it said that the greatest gift you can give anyone is listening. She made time and through her listening her problem solving skills came forth, even in her last months. No wonder sound healings were welcomed by her.
Some of you know Chrissy from childhood, before school years even. Personally in our situation we were given the gift to be friends, to know each other’s families, to experience the pains and suffering that go with loss, to watch our skin expand with our life’s experiments and experiences. I never felt betrayed by Chrissy. Friendship with no betrayal runs deep in the veins in all our 70 years. We were like seeds watering each other. That’s what friends do for each other.
I wish Chrissy were with us longer. Those who go before us continue as guides. Passing from one state to another is not a bad thing. It allows us both to bow our heads with the weight of sadness stirred up through loss and lift our heads and look upward to an expansive infinite space awaiting our potentials to flourish. A walk at the Ashokan Reservoir, as Chrissy was likened to do time and time again, says it all.
After trouble, comes peace.
After darkness, comes the sun.
Rest In Peace Dear Chrissy, we love you.
The Library Board now has a perfect opportunity to reassess the efficacy of their hiring a down river architect to build a new, excessively expensive and grandiose library. The demolition of our landmark town Library and the destruction of the vintage trees surrounding it is totally unnecessary. Now is a time for the Board to show decency and self respect. The Board must now re-examine the trajectory they have mistakenly followed. I know there are quite a few Board members who have been on the fence about their decisions, and would rather take a more reasoned approach to expanding the Library. Now is their chance to reconsider where they are headed. I am afraid they are approaching a dead end of wasted efforts and illegally used taxpayer funds. They have set themselves up as targets of litigation for their misuse of funds budgeted for other purposes by the Library. Is there a reason that they are taking this risk?
Since 2007, the Library Board has been spending Woodstock tax dollars without the town’s support on foolish ideas, like the illegally sited Annex. 71% of Woodstock residents responded to the Library sponsored survey by choosing No Tear Down! Is the Board deaf? Why aren’t they listening? What is their investment in being stuck in a rut? They seem insistent on throwing bad money after badly spent money.
We all want an expanded Library. Why are they set on unnecessarily tearing down the Library we love. Stop now! They would be wise to not give Tilly another cent! The contract allows them to stop now. It is time for the Board to save face and turn to other alternatives. There are three well thought out designs for renovation and addition on the website http://libraryalliance.org/. They would be wise to examine them carefully. All three alternatives cost a fraction of the gargantuan Tilly concept..
The new mantra of the 71% who want “No Tear Down” is: Fix the library! Don’t tear it down! Renovate, Revitalize and Upgrade.
The Same Business
The best detectives once were criminals.
Imagine, at the February Library Board meeting, a recent newcomer to Woodstock suggested to the Board that the new Library should not be where the current Library is because of potential flooding. This newcomer does not have emotional baggage on this issue. I am giving his idea full voice.
Imagine 8,000 square feet of new Library all on one level next to the community center, with a vaulted ceiling and clerestory windows lighting the central chamber of the Library.
Imagine a 2,000 square foot presentation room. This is the newly renovated community center. Imagine a 1,000 square foot work project room. This is the rear of the renovated community center.
Imagine having access to a large room of video cameras with direct connection to the public access Woodstock TV station. This is the newly renovated community center. Imagine children learning how to use those cameras and how to broadcast their videos.Imagine a 1000 square foot teen section. This exists now next to the community center.
Imagine 2000 square feet of a children’s section with a view out onto a sprawling field.
Imagine all of this costing 4 million dollars. Imagine off street parking for 50 cars. This exists now. Imagine that the lawn in front of the existing library be deeded to the town as a park.
Imagine the current Library structure being preserved on the outside with affordable housing units on the inside and with a stipulation that the new owner must keep the existing library structures as is on the outside.
Imagine half a million dollar profit from the sale of the existing library.
Imagine that this idea might shake a lot of feathers.
This vision is possible on property owned by us, the tax payers. The fact is that it is impossible to have all the benefits of this proposal at the location of the current Library if the existing library is torn down.
In the past four years the Library Board has six new members. In view of the wisdom of a newcomer it is time to revisit this proposal.
5G — Robot Friendly But Human Threat
Most of 5G (fifth generation) frequencies will be in the extremely high frequency band (EHF) of the electromagnetic spectrum called millimeter waves, ranging from 30GHz to 300GHz but staying under 120GHz. Verizon currently is using 28 and 39 GHz for its 5G deployment. A 2018 study in Scientific Reports, a peer-reviewed journal, documented how microwave EMF energy was absorbed into insects much more when the dimension of the wave equaled the size of the insect. This means the potential harm is not totally dependent on power density or strength of signal, which the FCC guidelines are based on, but which specific frequencies one is being exposed to.
Specific frequencies may be more harmful than others. A study in The Journal of Environmental Pathology in 1996 documented that exposure to a 5G frequency of 50 GHz, “induces activation of the Epstein-Barr virus genome in latently infected human lymphoid cells.” Consider the ramifications with 5G everywhere.
Then we have the 60GHz frequency, which uniquely can affect oxygen absorption, admitted by Telecoms. This means that exposure to 5G 60GHZ can affect your breathing and hemoglobin function by impacting your body’s ability to process oxygen.
60 GHz,is being touted as the next popular frequency by Telecoms for their 5G networks, in spite of and because of its admitted bioactive properties. There are a whole lot of other 5G frequencies that we have no idea what they can do to us biologically being admittedly untested.
That all being stated, note that Wahun, China where the Corona Virus broke out, was a pilot city for 5G Technology & infrastructure. Did exposure to 5G higher frequencies facilitate the spread of the Corona Virus there? Do we want to find out here after the fact allowing 5G into our town because we had no town ordinance?
We the people need to take a stand now before the fact, while we still can, and let our voices be heard. Demand our local leaders ban 5G with a town ordinance and make safe “Fiber to the Premises” a reality for our communication needs. The Nuremberg Treaty/Code proclaims we are not to be experimented on without our consent. Do we really want to create an earth with no escape from exposure to 5G manmade frequencies, and create an artificial environment friendly for robots but not friendly for humans? Stop 5G before 5G stops us. Visit ehtrust.org, scienists4wiredtercnology,com and thetruthsayerswoodstock.com.
Never A Positive Thought…
I would like to extend my sympathy to Mrs. Harris. It must be difficult living with someone who is always so negative. His weekly letters never have a positive thought on anyone or anything.
Life is much too short to be so negative. There is good in all, especially Mr. McKenna.
I never had any personal contact with anyone in Woodstock until I occasionally helped my father deliver the mail bags to the post office. At that time, the post office was in the center of town, opposite the Village Green. Everyone there was friendly, so for years there have been nice people in Woodstock.
Please, Mr. Harris, try to have a positive outlook on people
I have been waiting for others to write a tribute to Chrissy, as I had been gone for so long, I just didn’t feel ‘close’ enough to do it justice. But after having read last week’s ‘memory’ post, I realized I had to say my piece.
Chrissy and I were high school friends. Then I moved away for many years and we lost touch. When I returned to the area about five years ago, I so admired the woman she had become: A fierce health advocate, a loving instructor, an altogether gentle soul.
My last encounter with her was at the Legion Hall for the unveiling/presentation of the Richard Quinn quilt. She was yet to feel the full effects of her disease and we had a lovely conversation while we indulged ourselves in delicious chocolate chip cookies. We didn’t discuss her illness, but I did let her know that she was surrounded by loving friends who wanted to help her in any way they could, and that she should let them. She thanked me for saying that and we then went our separate ways.
Chrissy was a very private person, so I stayed away towards the end, respecting her privacy. Notice of her death hit me hard. She was one of us. She still is.
Beth Nussbaum Rohrkemper
The proposed steel/pre-cast cement plant of Tom Auringer, 850 Rt 28 LLC, is totally surrounded by the constitutionally State protected Bluestone Wild Forest. His driveway for his trucks is the only unprotected piece of land, allowing him to enter into this Catskill Park engulfment.
His engineered SWPPP, Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan, will require a permit to discharge through NYS D.E.C. protected lands. There is no way out. Surrender and come out with your hands up.
Town of Ulster
An Ecological Conscience
Aldo Leopold, the great naturalist and father of the American Ecology Movement and author of the seminal book The Sand County Almanac, wrote that “One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one lives alone in a world of wounds.” Indeed, here in the Hudson Valley and along the great eastern gateway to the Catskill Park, “we,” or those that have an “ecological conscience,” are living in the midst of a succession of ecological wounds that are unraveling the very essence of the biological community that has existed here for millennia.
From the opening of the Ashokan Rail Trail last October that will unleash hordes of people and dogs onto the Catskill ecology, to the imminent environmental catastrophe of the steel/pre-cast cement plant, next to the Bluestone Wild Forest on Route 28, the natural world of the Catskills is becoming a “Manscape” of diminished biodiversity, polluted water and urban parks designed to assuage the guilty conscience of ecological bandits and self -serving “propaganda spouting” conservation organizations.
That is why we need to develop the kind of land ethic which Aldo Leopold envisioned — to take care of the land as a living breathing organism needing love and respect. The disrespect for the land and the creatures living on it, is obvious to all who visit here in the Hudson Valley and the Catskills. These visitors can see how we are treating the natural world, in a man centered universe with the ruins of a shattered natural landscapes and polluted waterways extending all around us.
A “Rights of Nature” movement right here in the Catskills and Hudson Valley would establish nature with the inalienable “rights” to exist, flourish, thrive, and to evolve. It is only through such a “nature centered land ethic” that we can hope to defeat the forces of industrialization and human development engulfing the Hudson River Valley and the shrinking biodiversity that once was the green Catskills.
Town of Ulster