Round Five of Restore New York funding to Mid-Hudson Announced

Of the $11 million that Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced would be awarded to the Mid-Hudson, only one community in the Hudson Valley received a piece of the action. The Village of New Square will receive $1,000,000 for the reconstruction of the former New Square Matzah Bakery at 11 Eisenhower Avenue. The vacant, 10,000 square-foot building will be reconstructed with modernization of the first-floor bakery and a second floor repurposed with eight offices.

HEAP still available for those who need help with heating bills

For those who qualify, a federally funded Home Energy Assistance Program provides grants to help eligible residential customers pay their energy bills based on income. It’s been a bitter winter, so those with high fuel bills who are eligible should call the Rockland County Department of Social Services at 364-3480. HEAP ends when funding runs out, so if you meet eligibility requirements, apply before it runs out of funding. For more information, visit www.oru.com

Tuxedo Farms LDC discusses education options for children

Tuxedo Farms, which begins in the Village of Sloatsburg and ends in the Orange County Town of Tuxedo, is looking for options for the school-age children who will be coming into the district as the 1,200-unit project, comprised of apartments, condos and single-family homes, begins construction. The George F. Baker school has become a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) school with only 75 students, and Tuxedo Supervisor Michael Rost says it is not an option for potential homebuyers. Tuxedo Farms’ LDC is looking at schools across the border in New Jersey’s Mahwah area. There is some talk about converting the high school into the grammar school and re-purposing the existing grammar school. Rost told The Rockland Times the proposed YMCA, which was to be open to the public, is not going to be part of the development.

CPV resumes natural gas-fired plant testing

Competitive Power Ventures in the Orange County village of Wawayanda, is going back on line to resume start-up testing. Before CPV goes on line, it will also include a continuous emissions monitoring system. The plant is part of the strategy, along with Champlain Hudson Power Express in Rockland, to replace the electricity lost when Indian Point closes in 2020. Despite the political corruption surrounding the building of the plant, including the conviction of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “third brother,” Joseph Percoco, it is expected to go on line this summer, using natural gas to generate electricity.

McConnell Pushes for Hemp Legalization

If Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) Hemp Farming Act of 2018 makes it through congress, hemp would become a legal agricultural product. Currently it is a federally controlled substance but McConnell’s bill aims to allow states to control their own hemp regulations. He announced the bill with Republican Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles. McConnell’s home state is conducting a pilot program through the Department of Agriculture while the University of Louisville has been harvesting the crop on campus since 2016 for biofuel and energy research.

Coutler No Longer Trump’s Biggest Fan

Ann Coutler, the woman behind “In Trump We Trust,“ is now having second thoughts about Trump’s presidency. During a debate at Columbia University on Tuesday, Coulter acknowledged Trump’s lack of kept promises. “He’s not giving us what he promised at every single campaign stop,” she said to her debate partner Mickey Kaus. Last week Coutler tweeted about Trump becoming impeached before accomplishing his goals since he signed the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill containing funding for Democrat programs, without his “wall” funding. Regarding his candidacy and presidency, Coulter said she “went into this completely clear-eyed,“ since President Trump campaigned on strict immigration regulations. During the debate she was targeted by a few comments from audience members before security guards interrupted.

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