$200 million in day care subsidies proposed

Senators Jeff Klein, Diane Savino and David Calucci gathered in Suffern yesterday to propose nearly $200 million in day care subsidies to help New York working parents with the high cost of child care. The Senators, all members of the Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference, have made affordable child care a cornerstone of their 2014 legislative agenda known as Affordable New York. The initiate is intended to help families, who in some cases spend almost half of their paycheck towards child care. The plan includes support of Universal Pre-K, Childcare tax credits and up to six weeks of family leave.

Pomona Middle School awarded grant

Pomona Middle School, in the East Ramapo School District, has been awarded with a $500,000 state grant that was enacted by Governor Cuomo last year. “The Community School Grant initiative” is intended to empower schools in distressed communities to give students extra help through health care services, family counseling, and employment assistance.

Fatal car accident on Route 202, Pomona

The fog and Icy Road conditions most likely are to blame for a head on collision yesterday morning that lead to one fatality and sent several to the hospital which occured around 7:25am on route 202 in Pomona. Firefighters took approximately 45 minute to extricate the victims after an Acura sedan (carrying three men) was hit by a Dodge Caravan (carrying one man & two woman) as it slide over the double yellow line. One 50 year old woman was killed, another woman is in critical condition at Westchester Medical Center. Two passengers from the Acura were taken to the hospital and released while one remained with non critical injuries.

Spring Valley Board Meeting continues without Mayor

The Spring Valley Village board meeting attracted a large crowd yesterday when Mayor Delhomme was questioned decisions he has made regarding moving the Midget Football League office from the William Darden Center and relocating the after school program to the Center in its place. Delhomme’s explanation of the move is that the Louis Kurtz Civic Center, where the after-school program is currently located, will be undergoing renovations and that the decision regarding the move of the football league has not been finalized. Disparity continued as Delhomme requested Jerrod Miles, Village Attorney to read his two-year revitalization plan in which Delhomme states was shared with the Village Trustees last week…. a statement which seemed to take several of the trustees by surprise! Although Delhomme left the meeting at 10:25pm, Trustees Fonvil, White and Grossman continued with 12 unanimous resolutions not included on the Mayors agenda. Among the resolutions: requirement of written memorandums on verbal orders given by the mayor, reinstatement of the office of the football league and a resolution of prohibiting the relocation of the after-school program to the Darden Center.

MTA payroll tax upheld

The MTA payroll tax was upheld in court on Tuesday when the NY board of appeals declined to hear a challenge to the controversial tax. Passed in 2009 the tax that brings in 1.2 billion annually, was enacted to help prevent service cuts as the MTA faced a record deficit. Largely disputed by Hudson Valley businesses. Governor Cuomo signed legislation in Dec. 2011 reducing the tax for small businesses and eliminating it for businesses with annual payrolls of less than $1.25 million.

Poultry processing plant impact study submitted

An environmental impact study of a proposed 3 million dollar Poultry
processing plant has been submitted to the New Square Board of Trustees and other agencies. Deputy Mayor of New Square, Israel Spitzer states that the village officials and developer are being very transparent and says, quote “Not only is there a well-done study, we’re sharing the studies with everyone. We’re giving enough time for elected officials to study and then make their comments.” (unquote) The proposed plant that would process approximately 5000 chickens a day has generated a lot of controversy regarding location, traffic and environmental issues. The developers executive summary includes a workforce of approximately 110 local workers, an enclosed design to limit odors and an upgraded sanitary sewer system. Neighbors remain strongly opposed as they await a public hearing on the project.

Exoneration sought in barge accident

Tappan Zee Constructors are facing several lawsuits following a fatal barge accident that occurred on the Hudson in July. Soon to be married,Lindsey Stewart and the best man, Mark Lennnon were killed when their boat crashed into a barge on the Hudson, driven by JoJo John. John is accused of being under the influence of drugs and alcholol and is criminally charged with causing the death of his two friends. Johns attorneys argue that the barges were not visible due to insufficient lighting and boaters where not informed of their presence. On Wednesday, Tappan Zee Constructors, in charge of building the 3.9 billion dollar bridge, asked the court to exonerate or limit their liability placing the entire blame on the boats driver. The barge owners are also seeking exoneration. JoJo John is due back in court on March 27th.

Suffern retailer drops projected earnings

Weaker-than-expected holiday sales are causing the Suffern-based Ascena Retail Group, the owner of various retail clothing brands including Lane Bryant, Justice and Dress Barn, to cut its fiscal 2014 adjusted earnings forecast. The company dropped its new full-year adjusted earnings 15 cents per share from $1.25 to $1.30 to between $1.10 and $1.15. Its stock closed yesterday at $20.36, down $1.58.

Through its subsidiaries, the company operates several thousand stores throughout the US and Canada, with annual revenues of more than $4.5 billion. In a statement Monday, company president and CEO David Jaffe called the holiday selling season “challenging” but noted that the company “successfully cleared excess inventory and has taken the necessary markdowns in the second quarter to transition cleanly into the spring season.” In the statement, the company was optimistic about increases in spring season comparable store sales and continued double-digit e-commerce sales growth. In 2014, the company plans to open 185 stores and close 135, ending the fiscal year with around 3,900 stores in operation.

School Superintendent retires

Dr. John Morgano, the Superintendent of Pearl River of Schools, has announced that he will retire by the end of the year. In a letter he sent out to the community Monday morning, which was made available on the Pearl River School District’s website, Dr. Morgano said the decision to retire was a difficult one that he came to after much deliberation. In the letter, he called his 11 years of serving the students and parents of Pearl River “the most rewarding time in his 39 years in education.” He added that he is confident he will –quote- “be leaving Pearl River in good hands and the next superintendent will equally enjoy working with such a supportive community and faculty, staff and administration”

Arrest in mall sexual assault

A Nanuet man has been arrested on sexual assault charges involving several young children at Palisades Center in West Nyack. Police investigators say twenty-two year-old David Chardon is accused of exposing himself to two of the children, who were age 8 and 9, and accused of performing a lewd act near a ten year-old girl. The three incidents took place in November and December of 2013. In one of the incidents, police say the girl was in the children’s section of Barnes & Noble, sitting on a bench as her mother shopped nearby, when a man walked up from behind, performed a lewd act near her and left.

Surveillance video taken from the Barnes & Noble store on the fourth floor of the shopping mall where two of the incidents occurred helped nab the suspect. Chardon is charged with public lewdness and endangering the welfare of a child. Chardon was arraigned in Clarkstown Justice Court and sent to the County Jail on $25,000 cash bail. He is due back in court on January 15th.

Snow Closings Updated Regularly

Please click on the image below to view all snow closings for Rockland County.