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Mount honors John Rath and Carl Meyer at annual gala

NEWBURGH (December 10) – Mount Saint Mary College honored John F. Rath, senior vice president of commercial lending at TD Bank, and Carl E. Meyer, president and CEO of The Solar Energy Consortium, at the college’s Fifth Annual Gala reception.

More details on our Education Page


New Paltz Police reach “No-Shave” fundraising goal

NEW PALTZ - The New Paltz Police Officers that participated in American Cancer Society Fund Raiser, “No-Shave November” reached their goal and then some.  The team set a goal of $1,000 being this was our first year and ended up raising $1,710 with Sgt Duke Bunce raising the most, $540 on his own. 

“This was a great event and I appreciate the efforts of our members as well as everyone that donated to support the American Cancer Society.” Chief Joe Snyder said.  “I look forward to participating again next year.”

The goal of No-Shave November is to increase public awareness of the fight against cancer.  Many cancer patients lose their hair as a result of treatments, so we letting our hair grow wild and free in support of cancer patients and survivors.  Money normally spent on shaving and grooming for the month will be donated to the American Cancer Society to educate about cancer prevention, save lives and aid those fighting the battle. 

L-R  Sergeant Duke Bunce, Chief Joe Snyder, Officer Robert Sisco, Detective Joe Judge and Sergeant Matt Sutton.
Not pictured is Sergeant Keith Lewis.


Durbak listens as Horowitz lists her many contributions
to Sullivan County

Community activist honored with annual SYDA award

MONTICELLO – An anti-bullying program, involvement in several service programs at the community and county level, particularly programs that reach out to young people, and 11-year involvement with the Sullivan County Cares Coalition, are among the many attributes of this year’s SYDA Foundation Community Service Award winner.

The award was established in 1986 to encourage community service and to acknowledge particular individuals whose work “improves, uplifts and develops Sullivan County Community.”

A committee that includes some past winners selected each year’s recipient.

For 2014, it is Barbara Durbak, of Woodbourne, a Long Island resident who fell in love with Sullivan County after visiting, and seeing lots of pumpkins. 

Google executive Bradley Horowitz, who spends most of his time in Palo Alto, California, but describes himself as an occasional Sullivan County resident, presented the award at a recent Sullivan County Legislature meeting.  Horowitz said Durbak’s community outreach began soon after moving to Sullivan in 2002.

“Barbara started contributing to her new community immediately, by volunteering in here children’s schools, doing everything from helping second graders make toy bears for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, to volunteering for the Catholic Youth Organization,” Horowitz said.

In accepting the award, Durbak gave special thanks to her family, who always understood that dinner might be late.

“You gave me unconditional love and have helped and have always given me such a warm sense of help, which I appreciate,” Durbak said.  And when I said things like ‘we need to buy food for 125 food baskets for the church, they each grabbed a shopping cart so I’m really blessed to have them.”

The SYDA award includes a $5,000 stipend, which typically is returned to the community by the honoree. 


Central Hudson offers additional assistance for HEAP beneficiaries

POUGHKEEPSIE (November 14) - Customers experiencing a financial hardship this winter are encouraged to apply for a Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) grant through their local Department of Social Services; and those who qualify may also be eligible to receive additional benefits from Central Hudson.

“Customers who are eligible for HEAP and use electricity or natural gas as their primary heating source may receive a regular benefit $350 to $400, depending on family income guidelines, applied toward their Central Hudson account,” said Charles A. Freni, Senior Vice President of Customer Services, adding that eligible customers who use electricity or natural gas to heat their residence may also qualify for an additional Emergency HEAP benefit of $350 to $490 beginning Jan. 2, 2015.

Eligibility for HEAP benefits, which opens on Nov. 17, 2014, is determined by income and family size; this season, for example, a family of four earning up to $50,629 per year may qualify.

“All Central Hudson customers who receive HEAP benefits toward their account during the 2014-2015 HEAP season will also be issued a bill credit of between $5.50 and $23 per month on their Central Hudson bill, depending on the type of service received, for a maximum of 12 months,” said Freni. “We’re pleased to provide this support for our customers who may be facing financial difficulties.”

Central Hudson offers other assistance programs, including Deferred Payment Agreements to pay past due amounts over time, and the Powerful Opportunities Program to help income-qualified customers manage their monthly Central Hudson bills, reduce their past due amounts and learn about energy efficiency.

To avoid seasonal swings in energy bills, Central Hudson customers can also enroll in the utility’s monthly billing program. “Monthly billing divides a household’s average annual energy bill into 11 even monthly payments, with the 12th month’s payment adjusted up or down to reflect actual usage and market prices,” said Freni. Under this program, utility bills are more predictable, and it may be easier for households to budget for energy costs.

“We’ve also taken additional steps to help manage the unpredictability of electricity and gas supply prices during winter months when weather and other factors may significantly impact wholesale market prices,” said Freni. “But customers who prefer greater price certainty for electricity or natural gas supply may research the many fixed price and other alternative supply offerings available from the numerous qualified Energy Services Companies (ESCOs) that offer such options,” he said. He noted that while fixed price options may not necessarily result in the lowest given supply price during any season, they can provide the peace of mind that helps customers to better manage their household budgets.

For more on all of Central Hudson’s assistance and billing programs, visit, and click on “Your Home.”


Hudson Valley Honor Flight to debut film with local veterans at red carpet event

WALDEN (November 14) - Hudson Valley Honor Flight will be hosting a red carpet world premiere of the documentary film, “Hudson Valley Honor Flight: Generation Bridge” on January 24 at the Paramount Theatre in Middletown.

Full details on our Entertainment Page


Community links (Each link opens in a new window)

Not-for-profit community service organizations are invited to submit links to their websites. Organizations must not preach hate or intolerance in any form or advocate public discrimination on the basis of race, gender, national origin or sexual orientation.

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orange County

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County

Faith and Community ACTION - Dutchess County

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh

Hilltowns Community Board
News of Southern Albany, Greene & Schoharie Counties

Hopewell Junction Citizens for Clean Water

Mid-Hudson Horse Trails Association

National Association of Retired Federal Employees (NARFE)

Orange County Citizens Foundation-

Orange County Land Trust

Salvation Army of Newburgh

Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 537 Hudson Highlands



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