Hartford’s Classic Car Show coming Sunday

This is copied from the Granville Sentinel newspaper – Dana

Cruise on in to the Hartford Car Show
By.Jaime.Thomas

Got a car that’s worth showing off ?

With fall comes a number of car shows in the area; this Sunday, Oct. 13, the Hartford Class of 2014 will sponsor its own with the school’s 12th annual Classic Cruise on in n’ Show it Off car show.

The event, which Class Advisor Andrea Stoddard started in 2004 as a fun fundraiser for the senior class, is currently the students’ largest source of income.

“I did it originally so that kids would appreciate the beauty of the way cars were,” she said. She stressed that the show is organized by the students and completely benefits only them.

“It’s fun for them; they really come together as a class. It’s a great thing for the kids, and it’s a great thing for the community— it gives the kids a feeling of pride,” she said.

This year’s show will provide a day of entertainment for auto enthusiasts from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

There is no cut off year for show cars for the event, which typically attracts registrants from a wide area.

“It was originally only classic cars, but the kids wanted there to be other kinds, so we brought in any year,” Stoddard said.

The cars can enter in a variety of categories, including crowd pleasers, most likely to be pulled over, favorite GM and Ford, super sixties and more.

There will be music all day long, and food and beverages will be available. The senior class will offer baked goods and coffee, and there will be hamburgers, hot dogs, soda, water and candy for sale as well.

Additionally, the first 50 participating vehicles will receive dash plates.

The show will take place rain or shine, and proceeds will help the seniors with such events as graduation and their senior trip.

“I hope that the community will come out and show their cars to help out the kids; it’s really all about them,” Stoddard said.

The cost for participating cars, which are asked to show up at 9 a.m., is $8 for early entry and $10 for day-of-show entry. Admission for spectators is $3.

For more information or to enter call 642-9251 or 632-5222, or email [email protected] or [email protected]


5 year Fire contract, 5 year Argyle EMS contract and 2014 Budget approved

Tonight the Hartford Town Board approved a 5 year agreement with the Hartford Volunteer Fire Co, 5 year agreement with Argyle EMS, and the 2014 Town Budget. The Town wide budget has a zero % Tax Levy increase.

Dana


2014 Town of Hartford Preliminary Budget

The 2014 Preliminary Budget for the Town of Hartford has been completed and approved by the Hartford Town Board.

This Preliminary Budget will be subject to a Public Hearing at the 10/8/13 7pm Town Board meeting and if approved a second time by the town board, it will become the adopted budget.

The budget this year, if adopted in its current form will call for a ZERO percent increase in the Townwide tax levy over last year.

Last year’s Town tax levy had a 0.9% increase, so you can see that the Town of Hartford works hard to keep the tax levy as low as possible while still affording the Town with enough funds to function and provide the needed services.

The Town is very frugal in spending the money allocated in the budget. We don’t spend money allocated unless we really have to and any savings from one year rolls over into the next which helps to offset the next year’s tax levy.

A good example of this is the newly built salt storage barn located behind the Town Hall that has 300 tons of highway salt in it. $28,000 was allocated in the 2013 budget for this Capital project but because it was built on weekends with volunteers we were able to build it for half that price.

Dana


Just say nope to dope

POST STAR EDITORIAL Sunday Sept 29, 2013: Supervisor is right in arguing federal grant money should be used in other drug fights.

Dana Haff, Hartford’s supervisor, looked askance last week at a $10,000 federal grant targeted at fighting marijuana growth, sale and use in Washington County.

We join him in questioning federal priorities in handing out $10,000 to fight pot smoking in a region in which heroin use is expanding.

Like Haff, we have a hard time understanding the purpose of spending public money on a losing effort to restrict the use of perhaps the most benign recreational drug in the country.

Washington and Colorado have legalized marijuana. Other states, like New York, have decriminalized possession of small amounts of pot, and some states have legalized it for medical use. There is widespread public recognition that, while not harmless, marijuana is a mild drug.

Compare the effects of pot use with the effects of alcohol, which has destroyed millions of families. Every day, innocent victims are abused and neglected by alcoholics and killed or scarred in car crashes caused by drunken drivers.

Compare the effects of pot use, as Haff was, with the effects of other illegal drugs, such as heroin. Police link heroin addiction to criminal activity, as junkies turn to crime to support their habits.

It’s rare to hear an officer say a criminal was stealing so she could buy pot.

It’s rare to hear about a fistfight in which the brawlers were high on marijuana.

“We really need to take a look at cannabis laws — federal, state and local. We could legalize it, regulate it and tax it — especially for industrial hemp,” Haff said at a recent county meeting.

We don’t advocate smoking pot. But we think Haff should be listened to on this subject, because some of the worst consequences of the marijuana trade result from its prohibition.

The bloody carnage along the Mexican border, as drug gangs fight for supremacy, could be at least partly relieved by the legalization of marijuana.

Haff is right, too, that legalization would be a bonanza for government entities that could tax marijuana sales.

He is also correct in saying hemp has industrial and commercial potential that has been obstructed by laws against marijuana cultivation.

But Haff’s best point is that money being spent on marijuana eradication efforts could be better spent fighting the proliferation of more destructive drugs.

In the past week, local police have made a succession of arrests of suspects who, officers said, were carrying a variety of heroin, cocaine and cash as they traveled through the area toward Vermont.

The Rutland area has become notorious in recent years as a hub of drug activity, particularly for heroin. So many women have been arrested on drug charges in our area that the number of female inmates has surpassed Washington County Jail’s 25-woman capacity.

Boarding prisoners to other jails is expensive, but that may be the least costly effect of the use and abuse of drugs like heroin. The toll these drugs take on individuals, families and communities — in lost productivity, health care, counseling, broken families, crime and death — is incalculable.

Haff is right. Hard drugs are the priority, and any federal money flowing to local counties should be dedicated to fighting their proliferation.

It’s as if tigers were roaming our streets and the federal government was sending us checks for skunk eradication.

We need to fight the threats from drugs such as cocaine and heroin that can hurt and kill and stop using police time and public dollars on a futile and unnecessary campaign against marijuana.

Local editorials represent the opinion of the Post-Star editorial board, which consists of Publisher Rick Emanuel, Editor Ken Tingley, Projects Editor Will Doolittle and citizen representative Vincent Palacino.


8 year review for Ag District #7 to be conducted

NYS Ag and Markets will be initiating an 8 year review of Consolidated Ag District #7.

The Town of Hartford has three Ag Districts. #6, #7, and #8.
#7 is by far the largest of these districts and covers about 3/4ths of the Town from the north all the way down to parts of the southern end.
#6 covers the southwest corner of Town and #8 covers the Southeast corner.

A map of the district will be open to public inspection at the Washington County Clerk’s office.

During this review, landowners within the district may propose modifications to the district by filing with the County Clerk or the County Board of Supervisors by Sept 30th.

Dana


You will need to re-register in order to keep your Hartford STAR exemption

NYS is requiring all home owners who receive Basic STAR (School Tax Relief Exemption) to re-register this year in order to keep it.

This is to prevent fraud from those who try to have more than one home registered, get STAR from another state, or who apply while earning more than $500,000 per year.

You will soon receive a letter from the State advising you how to register. The State’s mailing date sending letters to homeowners in Hartford and Washington County will be Sept 3rd to Sept 6th.

Be on the look out for these letters and do not throw them away as junk mail because they will include instructions and a specific code you will need to know to register online or by the phone.

If you do not register you will loose your STAR for 2014 and the future.

If you receive Enhanced STAR, this does not affect you because you have to register for that every year anyway.

Dana


Project to mitigate flooding of the Youth Commission fields

Today the Town started a project to mitigate future flooding of the lower recreation fields at the Hartford school that the Hartford Youth Commission uses for all of its T-Ball, Baseball, Softball and soccer activities for youth in grades K-6.

In early June a very heavy fast rain storm made the creek that runs between State Route 40 and the lower Recreation fields jump its banks and flood the fields. The water that coursed across the boys baseball diamond had enough velocity that it scoured out quite a bit of the new infield red slate dust from 3rd base to 1st base. These fields did not flood during Hurricane Irene but they did in early June

A field survey of the stream bed that I arranged for by Washington County Soil and Water in July found that deposited gravel bars and brush debris in the stream bed cause the stream to meander and take the path of least resistance which was towards the recreation fields.

If you drive past the school at the intersection of Route 40 and 149, you will see a small excavator that Russell Wade brought in located at the creek. Excavation has started to redirect, widen the stream bed and pull out brush debris that is clogging the stream and choking the natural flow of water.

The lower fields and stream bed are properties of the Hartford Volunteer Fire Company (Girls baseball diamond) and the School District (Boys diamond). Even though these properties are not Town property, the Town decided to be the lead agency to remedy the potential for flooding. This is because the Hartford Youth Commission, at this time does 100% of their home youth T-ball, baseball, softball. and soccer programs on these fields. The Youth Commission is by far the majority user of these fields and expenses to build dugouts, import infield slate dust, etc are born by the Youth Commission while the school mows the fields.

The Town and the School have agreed that the expenses for this project will be shared 50% School, 25% Youth Commission, 25% Town General Fund. By using all volunteers we anticipate that the actual expense will be quite small for the amount of work accomplished.

This stream is a class D stream meaning that no permits are required to work within it. There are also no State or Federal wetlands in this area adjacent to the lower fields. Even though no permits are required, I arranged for Washington County Soil and water to survey the area, take elevation shots and come up with a written plan using good environmental practices that we could follow.

Today while the project was underway, DEC officer Gonyea stopped by at the site in response to a complaint from a neighbor. I happened to be there watching Russell dig and I told him about our plans, the class of stream, location of wetlands, and how we were following written recommendations of WashCo Soil and Water. This satisfied Officer Gonyea and he departed confident that were were not just a bunch of yahoos.

Unfortunately, at this time these lower fields are all the fields the Youth Commission has for their programs. It is vital to the program that we save these fields and all the labor expended upon them from the encroaching creek. Because effort and funds are being devoted to this project, the upper Youth Commission Recreation field construction project (west of the Varsity Soccer field) most likely will not resume until late fall or even next year. With limited budgets and volunteers you need to prioritize and should only bite off what you can chew at one time.

Dana


Eldridge Lane property online auction is up and running.

The Auctions International online auction for the County owned Hartford Eldridge Lane Property is now up and running. This 485 acre property is owned by the County but they are now selling it after much prompting by Hartford because the need to construct an ash landfill for the Hudson Falls burn plant never happened.

The property is listed as 3 deeded parcels; 241 acres, 129 acres, and 115 acres.
All parcels own road frontage on Eldridge Lane.

I have pasted the link below which will take you to it. From this site, you will need to copy and paste it into your browser.

I have heard that there will not be much real action until the very last day but I think it is encouraging that there is some action at this early point.

If you want to see the bidding history and who is bidding, go to each parcel and click on “more info” and then click on “bidding history”.

http://www.auctionsinternational.com/servlet/Search.do?auctionId=1966

Dana


Painting Town Hall part 2

Hartford Group,
The Alternative Sentencing project to paint the exterior of the Town Hall and Highway Garage is complete. The building looks very nice. Pasted below is an article from this past week’s Granville Sentinel about the project. Dana

County offenders work off sentences
By.Jaime.Thomas
While they may not be on a chain gang, local offenders are working hard around Washington County.

As part of an alternative sentencing program, these workers are repainting the exterior of Hartford’s town hall and highway garage.

According to its website, “Washington County Alternative Sentencing offers an array of Alternative to Incarceration programs that focus on reducing the costs associated with incarceration and/or placement in juvenile detention facilities, holding offenders accountable, restoring the community/ victim back to a pre-crime state, maintaining public safety using ‘best practices’ to ensure positive outcomes, reducing recidivism and providing pre-trial/sentencing options to courts.”

Hartford Supervisor Dana Haff said this is not the first time Hartford has benefitted from this setup; several years ago the same program provided manpower to paint the old highway barn and the Hartford Baptist cemetery iron fence.

“They asked us because they were really pleased with the work we did before, so they asked us to do it again,” said Scott Stoughton, who runs the community service program. Anyone who is sentenced to service as an alternative to jail time does so through him. He said the youth and adults he works with have all committed low-level crimes, violations or misdemeanors.

Haff believes this is beneficial in multiple ways.

“Seeing them sit in jail is useless other than punishment; this way they get to work off their crime. At least they’re being productive and contributing to society,” he said.

And perhaps benefiting the most from this program are those who are doing the projects, rather than the recipients. Stoughton said a lot of them are trying to turn their lives around, and a l t e r nat ive sentencing helps that endeavor.“Some of them learn they’ve made a mistake. It gives them a chance to talk with each other in a different environment—it’s therapeutic for them,” he said. “A lot of people from felony treatment court come back as volunteers because they want to see it through. They really take ownership of the project.” Additionally, Stoughton said these participants, especially the younger ones, learn valuable life skills to which they might not otherwise be exposed. Some have even found jobs through their worksites. He said few counties have someone in his position, but that he does many projects and saves a lot of money for not-forprofits, schools, churches and municipalities.

In Hampton, for example, Supervisor Dave O’ Brien said last fall that the town received up to 800 hours of labor from alternative sentencing participants during the construction of the community’s town hall.

He estimates that labor saved the town as much as $60,000 in skilled labor.

“People hear about community service, but now they’re actually seeing if it’s being done. It really stretches Hartford’s tax dollars. It’s a nice product, and it’s free. All we’re paying is about $3,500 for materials— how can you beat that?” Haff said.

Highway Superintendent Greg Brown agreed, and he said the offenders’ work is as good as professional services.

“I thought they did very good quality work. Scott does a good job overseeing the project. I think it’s a good program; instead of sending people to jail they’re putting them to work,” he said. He and Stoughton estimated the workers had put about 240 hours into the project as of Thursday for work that might have cost at least $12,000 otherwise.

Stoughton said in addition to special projects, his workers do regular maintenance at cemeteries, parks and a church. They’ve previously taken on such tasks as working on Hadlock Pond when the dam broke, cleaning up the Salem courthouse for months after Hurricane Irene and more.

Any nonprofit organization interested in setting up a project can contact Washington County Alternative Sentencing at 518-746-2333.


Compassionate Relief Assistance Program

• JON ALEXANDER — Post Star Newspaper 7/19/13

FORT EDWARD — Washington County supervisors might soon cover a year’s worth of property taxes for local residents who lost their jobs or experienced financial hardship because of a serious illness.

Hartford Supervisor Dana Haff introduced the Compassionate Relief Assistance Program, or CRAP, at Friday’s monthly meeting of the county Board of Supervisors.

“This could give some kind of short-term, compassionate relief,” Haff said, noting that his plan’s acronym might need some work. “I think I can come up with something better.”

It would be paid for by proceeds from the county’s annual foreclosure auction, potentially $50,000 similar to the county’s recently adopted brownfields cleanup fund. The county made more than $400,000 in last month’s foreclosure auction.

The county can foreclose on a property-owner if three years of taxes go unpaid, under state law. Haff’s proposal would pay the first year’s county taxes after diagnosis of anyone who was gainfully employed prior to becoming ill.

Most hospitals have staff who negotiate with the cancer patients creditors’ because the afflicted so often go from gainfully employed to out-of-work upon diagnosis, according to Vickie Yattaw, a resource navigator at Glens Falls Hospital’s C.R. Wood Cancer Center.

Three Washington County residents told her within the last six months that they couldn’t pay their taxes because they could no longer work, Yattaw said.

Haff’s proposal sprang from discussions with Yattaw, a Hartford resident.

“I can work with the creditors, I can write grants for medical bills, utilities and even food, but there’s nothing I can do right now about county taxes,” Yattaw said following the board’s meeting.

Properly vetting potential recipients of the aid could pose an issue, some supervisors said.

Haff countered that allowing local goodwill organizations, Community Action Angels and hospital staff with access to patients’ financial records to administer the program would assure applicants are properly vetted before receiving the funding aimed at keeping the sick out of government foreclosure.

“In my opinion, we should just be the bank and let Action Angels administer it,” said county Treasurer Al Nolette, when asked what oversight guidelines the county should put in place if the program is adopted.

“If you look at The Post-Star, you’ll see there are more and more cancer victims in this county, said Cambridge Supervisor William Watkins, a brain cancer survivor. “This is exactly what we need.”

Hampton Supervisor Dave O’Brien worried the program assumes constant positive revenues from county tax auctions.

The program would be for any serious illness, not only cancer.

Haff is traditionally the county board’s most conservative member. He noted that his proposal was more in the traditional wheelhouse of Greenwich Supervisor Sara Idleman, a Democrat.

“Maybe everyone else in the middle will see this is a valid proposal,” he said.

CRAP will be initially discussed at Monday’s meeting of the county board’s Government Operations Committee. It will come up again later this month at the Human Services Committee, supervisors said.

“There are a lot of details involved,” said Granville Supervisor Matt Hicks, chairman of the Government Operations Committee. “But I think it has some merit.”