Cochecton hears from regional councils

By LIAM MAYO
Posted 5/18/22

COCHECTON, NY — Larry Richardson serves as Cochecton’s representative on the Upper Delaware Council (UDC) and the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway (UDSB). He provided updates from both …

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Cochecton hears from regional councils

Posted

COCHECTON, NY — Larry Richardson serves as Cochecton’s representative on the Upper Delaware Council (UDC) and the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway (UDSB). He provided updates from both councils at the May 11 meeting of the Cochecton Town Board.

The board passed a resolution that night asking the governor of New York to fulfill the state’s contractual agreement and fund the UDC’s operations to the tune of $100,000.

The UDC began a push for funding with a financial audit, completed in December, 2021, that stated the council was facing death through financial atrophy. When the UDC was formed, NY and PA agreed to contribute $100,000 each in addition to $300,000 from the federal government. Only the federal government has met its obligation, and the value of its contribution has steadily decreased owing to inflation.

Richardson said that the UDC is collecting resolutions of support from all the towns and townships along the river to back its requests that the states meet their funding obligations. The UDC has been working with Sen. Mike Martucci on the issue, said Richardson, and Martucci suggested the letters.

“We’ve been promised for a couple years that this was gonna happen, and it just doesn’t happen,” said Richardson.

“It seems like they should be able to afford $100,000,” said supervisor Gary Maas.

Richardson also provided an update from the UDSB.

The UDSB elected its officers at its previous meeting, said Richardson, choosing Richard Lowe III of Hancock as the chairperson, Rosie DeCristofaro of the Town of Delaware as its vice-chair and Richardson himself as its secretary-treasurer.

The UDSB had also discussed the possibility of National Scenic Byway grant funding, and had issued grants for vista-clearing along Route 97 approaching Callicoon, as well as several grants to support Shadfest activities from the Cochecton Preservation Society and the Outpost. The UDSB is partnering with the Delaware Company and other regional organizations to hold the Festival of the Founding Fish 2022: Upper Delaware Shadfest, which celebrates the American shad. That event will take place from Friday, May 20 to Sunday, May 22 in towns all along Route 97. For more information, see the insert on page 15 of this issue.

Lighting

The town board also passed a resolution authorizing a contract for electricity with Constellation Energy, with a bottom-line price of 6.54 cents per kilowatt-hour, and lasting through December 21, 2025. The electricity is used to power the town’s streetlights.

The town’s lighting fund balance had gone up over the past year owing to the electricity saved from the LED streetlights the town had installed, according to the town’s auditor.

“We paid for [the streetlights] and we saved,” said Maas.

Maas said that the town was looking for a three-year contract because of how volatile prices had been. The town had been paying four cents per kilowatt hour on its last contract, he said, and the prices were fluctuating between 5.9 cents per kilowatt hour and 6.9 cents per kilowatt hour as he was negotiating the contract.

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