Monday, February 5, 2018

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Upper Delaware Council threatens shutdown over lack of funding

NARROWSBURG – The Upper Delaware Council, Inc. (UDC) will shut its doors on March 30 if the non-profit organization remains unable to access the federal funds it relies on to operate after 30 years of Cooperative Agreements with the National Park Service (NPS). The council is a partnership between the federal government and several municipalities in Pennsylvania and New York, from Port Jervis to Hancock.

Since the new fiscal year began on October 1, the UDC has had no income due to an ongoing review by the U.S. Department of the Interior of all federal grants and Cooperative Agreements over a $50,000 value.

No timetable has been offered for completion of that review, and the UDC’s unrestricted fund account that it uses to advance payment of its federal task expenses while awaiting monthly reimbursement from the federal government is quickly dwindling.

Therefore, the Council will implement a closure plan with staff layoffs on March 30 unless or until the DOI authorizes the NPS Northeast Regional Office to release any portion of the $300,000

If the UDC closes its Narrowsburg, NY office, all non-essential programs and services will be suspended and three full-time positions of Executive Director, Resource Specialist, and Secretary will be subject to layoff.

Among the activities in jeopardy are:

  • Reviews of land use projects and zoning ordinances that the UDC conducts for its 13 member municipalities to assure substantial conformance with the Upper Delaware Land and Water Use Guidelines, a task which would then fall directly to the National Park Service;
  • Technical assistance guidance and grants that the UDC provides, through which $845,605 was awarded from 1988-2017 to fund 247 river valley projects


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