Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Meetings of Interest Happening This Week

The coming days are chockablock with meetings. The Common Council has its first Finance Committee meeting of the new year tonight at 5:30 and its first regular meeting of 2014 at 7 p.m. Tomorrow night there is a Public Works Committee meeting at 5:30 p.m. and a Legal Committee meeting at 6:15 p.m. 

Beyond the Common Council meetings . . . today at 3 p.m., there's a meeting of the Columbia County Airport Committee in the committee room at 401 State Street. For those wonder why the airport needs to expand its safety zone or question why Columbia County needs an airport where "big jets" can land, this meeting is expected to provide information about the airport's profitability and the "economic development impact and value" of the airport. Some important background information for the meeting is provided by Sam Pratt on his blog, from which the Bing map detail below was borrowed: "Airport Algebra: How busy is Ghent, really?"

On Thursday, at 6:30 p.m., the annual meeting of the Hudson River Historic Boat Restoration & Sailing Society takes place in the back room at Wunderbar, where it all began three years ago. In addition to the business that typically happens at an annual meeting (nomination and election of board members and officers, review of the budget), there will be hors d'oeuvres and an update on the progress and next steps in restoring the historic Hudson River racing sloop Eleanor. Attendees are invited to stay after the meeting for a "Dutch Treat Dinner" at Wunderbar.

On Friday morning at 10 a.m., the Historic Preservation Commission holds a public hearing on the application to construct a new house at 215 Union Street, using the bricks, limestone sills, and Italianate door surround from 900 Columbia Street. HPC chair Rick Rector has indicated that a maximum of one hour will be devoted to hearing public comment about the proposed project, after which the commission is expected to vote on whether or not to grant the project a certificate of appropriateness.

The period for scoping comments has been extended indefinitely, and on February 20 the Public Service Commission is expected to issue new siting standards for the "energy superhighway" that's expected to run through Columbia County, and that gives everyone who will be directly or indirectly impacted by this plan to get informed. On Saturday, January 25, at 11 a.m., at the Churchtown Firehouse on Route 27 in Churchtown, Farmers and Families of Claverack are hosting a Power Line Community Meeting. It's an opportunity for Hudsonians to learn about the issues, to support our neighbors, and to protect the farmland that contributes so richly to our rurban life here in Upstate's Downtown.

1 comment:

  1. About those new siting standards for the transmission lines, I'd present the opportunities and the hazards a bit differently.

    Along with discerning new ways to support our rural neighbors and to protect farmland, Hudson residents should be looking for any changes in the proposal, or even new proposals, that put those ugly transmission lines beneath the river.

    Also keep in mind that the last time we saw changes to the overall plan was in mid-November. After the change there were no proposed lines crossing into the City of Hudson. But before that change, the lines were to cross the city at the 7th Street Park, then follow the rail spur down to the river and to points south.

    In those circumstances, and considering the Common Council's ambition to site the new police station immediately east of the proposed excavations, one wonders whether the council would have risen to the occasion of making a Public Comment to the NYS Public Service Commission?

    With the available comment time then remaining (only a little over two months ago), the council wouldn't have had the time to comment one way or the other seeing as though nobody in Hudson even knew what had been proposed until after that plan was superseded!

    That was a very close call. By itself it makes an exemplary argument in favor of the Common Council establishing for the city a Conservation Advisory Council (CAC).