Monday, October 29, 2007

Issues re: Bellayre Resort

I receieved the following e-mail which the author gave me permission to post here for further discussion:

I wonder if the UCDC can take up the Bellayre resort as an issue. Despite the fact Governor pushed a number of organizations to accept what would be a damaging resort plan, to the environment, to the people in the area surrounding the proposed resort, and to the people of the Catskills at large, there are still organizations and people who are fighting the proposal.
The proposed resort will clearly damage the mountain with roads and housing at the 3000ft. level; may damage the environment with chemicals, and damage wildlife. There may not be enough water for the resort and hamlets. During and after the 10 years of construction, Route 28, the road leading from the Hudson Valley to the resort, will either be filled with traffic or will become a 4-lane super highway, both inappropriate to the Catskill Park.
In addition, there is no housing planned for the resort's proposed 400+ workers of whom most, I understand, will be paid about $9 per hour. The infrastructure of the town of Shandaken will be inadequate, leading to increased taxes, and many people who now live around the resort will no longer be able to maintain their homes.Beyond the probable destruction of a mountain, this resort, if it is approved and built,will open doors to many others who would like to eek out large profits without consideration of the welfare of the population and environment. This kind of "devil may care" capitalism has always proved destructive.

I have been a Democrat for all my voting years. For most of those, I have had the idea that the Democratic party was concerned with the welfare of the people. Will you help to insure that it continues so?Please raise the Bellayre resort as an important issue to our county. It is, indeed, a Democratic issue.I look forward to hearing from you.
Best wishes,Eve Smith
Eve P. Smith, D.S.W.Director,Center for the Study of James the Brother
Bard College,Annandale-on-Hudson, NY

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Universal Healthcare--Public Hearing Notice

Public Hearing to be held concerning Universal Health Care
for the citizens of New York State

WHAT: Public Forum: Hudson Valley residents will be
heard by Governor Spitzer’s Health Care panel
WHEN: Monday, October 29, 2007 – 7:00PM to 9:00PM
WHERE: Family Partnership Center, 29 N. Hamilton Street,
( Off Route 44/55), Poughkeepsie

Citizen Action of New York will host the Hudson Valley hearing to solicit local input for Governor Spitzer’s Health Care Coverage panel

Governor Eliot Spitzer’s Department of Health and Insurance is holding Public Hearings to “solicit input on the development of proposals for achieving health system reform, increasing access to health insurance coverage and moving toward universal healthcare coverage in New York.” ( ). They are asking for testimony from health care providers, patients, consumer advocates, business owners and all community members.

Public Hearings are scheduled in every major city in the state. Citizen Action of New York will be hosting the public hearing for the Hudson Valley in the City of Poughkeepsie. Members of Governor Spitzer’s panel will be present to hear members of the Hudson Valley community testify in regard to creating a system of Universal Heath Care in New York State. The hearing is open to everyone. Those interested in testifying must sign up in advance by calling Program CoordinatorMike Compain at: (845) 246-3271. Oral testimony is limited to 8-minutes per person and a hard copy of written testimony must be submitted that night. Time is limited, so those interested in presenting testimony must sign up as soon as possible.

Admission is free. Pease attend!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Workshop 10/25

Thursday October 25 4-6:30
a Pre- Women & Society Conference Event
The Eleanor Roosevelt Center at Val Kill Diversity Workshop:
The Freedom from Want--Examining How Structual Inequality affects our ability to uphold Freedom from Want

Introduction by Cathy Collins ERVK Executive Director,
Brian Riddell Dutchess Outreach
Shirley Adams Catherine Street Community Center
Joe D'Ambrosio Family Partnership Center

in The Henry Hudson room, 3rd floor Fontaine hall Marist college

Open to the public refreshments will be served

for more information about the conference:

The Freedom from Want : Diversity workshop

Thursday October 25 4-6:30 in the Henry Hudson Room, Fontaine Hall
Marist College Poughkeepsie NY
Pre- Women & Society conference Event
The Eleanor Roosevelt Center at Val Kill Diversity Workshop:
The Freedom from Want-- Examining How Structual Inequality affects our ability to uphold Freedom from Want

Introduction by Cathy Collins ERVK Executive Director,
Brian Riddell Dutchess Outreach
Shirley Adams Catherine Street Community Center
Joe D'Ambrosio Family Partnership Center

Refreshments, open to the Public

NY Driver's licenses for aliens?

A Community Forum on Restoring Immigrant Access to Driver's Licenses:
The Facts Beyond the Hysteria

Saturday, October 27 th
Rhinebeck Town Hall
80 E. Market Street , Rhinebeck , NY

On September 21st, Governor Spitzer announced his plan to restore access to driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants living in New York State , and to implement new anti-fraud procedures in the driver's license application process. Over the past month, the restoration of immigrant access to driver's licenses has reached the front of every newspaper in the state, and has been accompanied by fierce criticisms by certain politicians.

Many opponents of the plan have used the opportunity to spread misconceptions about immigrants, driver's licenses, and New York 's security.

This Saturday, experts on the driver's license policy will be in Rhinebeck to explain the facts behind the plan and why it's smart policy for New York State . Speakers will include security experts, religious leaders, civil rights advocates, academics, and legal professionals.

Come listen to the experts and show that New York supports immigrants!

Presented by Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner, the Real Majority Project, La Fuente, NYCLU Lower Hudson Valley Chapter, the New York Immigration Coalition, SEIU 32BJ, Professional Staff Congress AFT Local 2334, Workers’ Rights Law Center, Somos La Llave del Futuro—Mid-Hudson/Catskills, Rural Migrant Ministry, Grace Episcopal Church, UFCW International.

This is a public education event. An organization’s participation in this event does not constitute an endorsement of any candidate.

For more information, contact

Friday, October 19, 2007

Decriminalizing Pot

There has been some discussion about the drug laws and their impact since Hugh Reynolds' article on DA candidate's stance on Marijuana --he advocates that the legislature should decriminalizing it...

I did some quick and dirty research and found that while with a drug conviction you may enlist in the military, but under the Higher Education Act you may not receive any federal scholarship or loan monies for college. A very good reason to decriminalize pot, it woulod allow more people to go on to college, rather than become cannon fodder (my opinion, but then I am biased :) ).

The average cost to the tax payers for each arrest is $10,400. NY State's 2005 budget had over $1 BILLION for criminal marijuana law enforcement (its &.6 billion nationally) see

Here are some articles and websites on NYS Rockefeller Drug Laws which many call draconian, and are the cause of the overcrowding of our jails. . .

Article 2006
The Ruinous Drug Laws 2002 /

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Alix Olson @ Marist 10/26

Alix Olson, the young feminist award winning slam poet who has graced the cover of MS Magazine will be performing the keynote address at The 16th Women & Society Conference
Friday Oct 26 at 8 p.m. in the Nellie Goletti Theater, Student Center (FREE)

For more info about this conference go to

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sexual Harasssment Suit at the Emerson

Sexual Harassment Lawsuit at the Emerson

Jena- Bringing it Home 10/24 7pm KHS

OCTOBER 24 TH , 2007 at 7pm
Kingston High School Auditorium
Jena-Bringing It Home

Last August, when nooses were hung on a tree at the Jena High School in Louisiana, it was deemed a “prank” by school authorities and whatfollowed over the next several months were increasinglyescalating tensions, violence, a fire and ultimately the arrest of 6 young black students accused of attempted murder for a fight at schoolwhile white students received only minor charges. Had the community in Jena acknowledged the noose as a symbol of racial terrorism, had the adults taken responsibility to bring the community together to talkabout the evils of racism it is likely that no such escalation would have occurred and there would be no Jena 6.
Because the situation in Jena reflects a long history of racism and unequaljustice for African Americans not only in the South but throughout thecounty, over 30,000 people were drawn to Jena on Sept. 20 th to speak out justice, including several people from Ulster County.
On Wed. October 24 th , the Ulster County Justice for the Jena 6 Committee and the YWCA of Ulster County are co-sponsoring a public forum . Speakers will include Rev.James Childs, Jr. – Pointe of Praise Church, Dr.Modele Clarke – New Progressive Baptist Church,Paula Childs, Terry LeRoyand Sue Rosenberg who will give a report of their experiences in Jena (with slides and video) , representative of the Kingston Teachers’Association and others. Paula Childs will emcee.
Herein Ulster County let us open the door for honest discussion,communication and debate so that we can work effectively to bring ourcommunity together. Please join us.
We invite others who were in Jena to contact and join us.
For information call: Sue Rosenberg @ 246-3449 or Gale McGovern @ 657-5759 or gale@hvi.

Drivers licenses for illegal immigrants

Gov. Spitzer is granting driver' licenses to illegal immigrants. This policy has drawn praise and criticism. See
What do you think?

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

What a difference a blog or my space makes

Here is an article from Online Journalism Review on the impact of blogs, my space, youtube, etc. makes on campaigns

Old and Gay in America

Today's NYT has an article on the prejudice older gays and lesbians face, and the detrimental affects this prejudice has on their physical and mental health.

The Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center ( is hosting 2 groups that focus on our elders:
*OLOC (Older Lesbians Organizing for Change) is meeting there Friday Oct. 12th at 7.
*SAGE a luncheon on Oct. 21 featuring the director of SAGE USA is the kickoff for the Sage chapter here.

Monday, October 8, 2007

For Women: War = Rape

Rape is a WAR Crime! Once again, we are witnessing women in war zones being raped. The latest are women in the Congo who are being brutalized.
See The New York Times article from 10/7/07