Tuesday, March 17, 2009

NtM - March 17, 2009

News That Matters
Brought to you by PlanPutnam.Org

“Putnam affords its residents beautiful views and nature opportunities. Streams, reservoirs and many lakes offer a quiet, undiscovered life. Putnam is a low key simple place to live. Cynthia and I could live anywhere in the world that we desire yet Putnam County is our home.” - Michael Gibbons, Grand Marshall, St. Patrick's Day Parade

Good Tuesday Morning,

It's Saint Patrick's Day. An estimated 2 million people are expected to attend the parade in NYC today with millions more watching on television and a live stream on the internet. I will pass on the green beer and rowdy crowds and go to work instead.

If you're like me you recently received a post card in the mail from Terminex promising that, for $30 a month they'll keep your house free of termites. Science Daily reports that gases used to perform this miracle stay in the air six to ten times longer than previously believed. Just a thought before you call.

Bank of America has repaid $400 million of its $45 billion taxpayer handout and they're so confident of their future that they're offering cash-back on purchases made of imported Chinese goods at Wal*Mart and Target. Maybe they're due for a name change. Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe, as a way of saying thanks to your grand children for bailing them out, they might offer cash back on goods and services made in America instead?

Website Watch:

Hi-Wire brings us something fun to play with, the State and Congressional District Resource for Well-Being. In an unprecedented alliance for American health transformation, Gallup, Healthways and America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) are providing a new national pulse of individual and collective health and well-being, as well as solutions for a healthy America. According to the report, the 19th Congressional District scores a 67.2 overall. The happiest Congressional District is Anna Eshoo's in California's Silicon Valley with a 73.5 rating and the saddest is Hal Roger's coal mining district in Kentucky with a 56.2 rating. Overall, Massachusetts is the happiest state and Mississippi is the saddest.

And now, the News:

  1. Mahopac commuter lot angers residents
  2. Putnam exec vetoes vote to cap landfill
  3. In Staten Island, Harnessing the Wind
  4. America cheers as satirist delivers knockout blow to TV finance gurus
  5. Wall Street is feeling unloved
  6. Enthusiasm runs deep for Hudson's 400th anniversary
  7. Hudson River Panorama
  8. Traffic Exposure May Trigger Heart Attacks

Mahopac commuter lot angers residents

Barbara Livingston Nackman
The Journal News

MAHOPAC - Residents living near a soon-to-be 60-space commuter parking lot at Mt. Hope Road and Route 6 are seeing red rather than ecofriendly green.

They are upset with the county project, saying it is too large and proper notification was not given about the work that has taken down at least 100 trees.

It is part of a nearly $3.4 million effort to increase commuter parking spaces countywide from 116 to 379 spaces in five locations and improve regional air quality.

Controversy about the Mahopac lot has prompted town officials to schedule a public meeting Wednesday night following its regular meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. County officials have said the work must continue, but promised to consider changes.

Read More

Putnam exec vetoes vote to cap landfill

Susan Elan
The Journal News

CARMEL - Putnam County Executive Robert Bondi yesterday vetoed the Legislature's decision to choose capping the county's former landfill as the best solution to address a state-ordered cleanup.

Bondi urged legislators to reconsider his recommendation to remove the waste to the former Southeast landfill. The town, also under a state Department of Environmental Conservation order, must cap its 13-acre site on Lower Mine Road and needs fill for the job.

Bondi said in his veto message that the waste removal was "without a doubt more environmentally and financially beneficial" and "would restore, reclaim and preserve this property for future generations."

Legislators didn't see it that way when they voted overwhelmingly March 3 to cap the former 4-acre landfill off Old Route 6 in Carmel, a remedy they said would cost less and was more likely to reflect the initial estimate.

Read More

In Staten Island, Harnessing the Wind

STAND for a moment by the shores of Arthur Kill, on the southwestern coast of Staten Island, and look past the choppy waves at the fuel storage tanks of Sewaren, N.J.

Stroll toward the water’s edge, by rotting barges from the old Kreischer brick factory and through a 190-unit town-house complex being built on the factory’s former site in Charleston. Then glance back, up a hill, to the vacant house once owned by a son of the company’s founder, and listen to the faint whistling and hum overhead.

Are those the sounds of the ghosts that are rumored to haunt the old house?

No. It’s the Staten Island wind turbine.

Read More

America cheers as satirist delivers knockout blow to TV finance gurus

For the past 10 days the US has been gripped. Even President Obama tuned in as the country's foremost TV comic, Jon Stewart, unleashed an extraordinary broadside against TV's top financial commentators for their part in the unfolding economic crisis.

Dave Smith The Observer, Sunday 15 March 2009

First came the imperial marching music and a fiery explosion. "You've watched snippets of them for days, or meant to after your friends sent you the link," a voice boomed with mock gravity. "Tonight, the week-long feud of the century comes to a head."

It was a comically absurd drumroll for what, on the surface, was merely a squabble between TV presenters. In one corner, Jim Cramer, the closest thing to a celebrity in American financial journalism. In the opposite corner, Jon Stewart, the satirist and host of the fake news programme The Daily Show on Comedy Central. But unlike many a big fight, this one more than surpassed the hype. Nothing less than financial reporting itself was put on trial – and found severely wanting.

Read More

Wall Street is feeling unloved

By: Victoria McGrane
March 16, 2009 04:09 AM EST
Freshman New York Rep. Michael McMahon had a chance meeting with President Barack Obama last week, and he used it to issue a word of warning: Watch what you say about Wall Street.

“There’s a certain venom out there in the rhetoric that I hear in the halls of Congress or on television that is dangerous not only to these markets but could have a very damaging effect up on the people whom I represent,” McMahon said. “It’s a grave concern to me.”

It’s a grave concern for a lot of New York-area representatives.

Americans united around New York in the wake of the terrorist attacks eight years ago, but the Big Apple is now a different kind of ground zero: the target of white-hot anger from people who have lost their jobs or lost their savings.

Read More

Enthusiasm runs deep for Hudson's 400th anniversary

Michael Risinit
The Journal News

Organizers from Manhattan to Troy aren't letting the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson's voyage up and down his eponymous river pass without recognition - even if money is short.

Planning for the quadricentennial marking Hudson's exploration, as well as that of Frenchman Samuel de Champlain's discovery of the lake bearing his name, began in 2002. With the anniversaries just months away and the state in the midst of an economic mess, dollars are tight but enthusiasm is high.

"With less money, we do less, but it's more meaningful. That's how we feel," said Tara Sullivan, executive director of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial Commission. "2009 is here. We're not going to cheat New Yorkers in honoring their great American history."

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Hudson River Panorama

Albany Institute of History & Art's new exhibit, Hudson River Panorama: 400 Years of History, Art, and Culture, features hundreds of pieces of artwork, artifacts, interactive displays, and rare archival documents. The exhibit encompasses five major themes relating the many agricultural, industrial, and cultural influences of this historic waterway: community and settlement; natural history and environment; transportation; trade, commerce, and industry; and culture and symbol.

Here is more from the press release:

Hudson River Panorama explores and narrates the influential force that the Hudson has had on our region, including settlement, agricultural cultivation, industrial growth, tourism, and the cultural prominence of the region's talented and creative artists, writers, architects, and landscape gardeners. For more than three years, the Albany Institute has been researching topics related to the Hudson River in preparation for the exhibition and accompanying educational programs.

Visitors will rediscover the flora and fauna of the Hudson River Valley and compare historic and contemporary images that reveal how the human presence has shaped and changed the appearance of the river over the last 200 years. The exhibition is also designed to reveal interconnections among the various topics, with occasional surprises and unexpected associations.

The exhibit will run until Jan. 3, 2010. The Albany Institute of History & Art is located at 125 Washington Avenue in downtown Albany, one block from the New York State Capitol. www.albanyinstitute.org or 518-463-4478

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Traffic Exposure May Trigger Heart Attacks

ScienceDaily (Mar. 14, 2009) — People who have had a heart attack are likely to report having been in traffic shortly before their symptoms began, researchers reported at the American Heart Association’s 49th Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention.

In a German study of patients who had a heart attack, researchers found the patients to be more than three times as likely to have been in traffic within an hour of the onset of their heart attack. The researchers also observed small but statistically significant increases in the chance that a heart attack occurred within six hours after exposure to traffic.

Driving a car was the most common source of traffic exposure, but taking public transportation or riding a bicycle were other forms of exposure to traffic. Overall, time spent in any mode of transportation in traffic was associated with a 3.2 times higher risk than time spent away from this trigger. Females, elderly males, patients who were unemployed, and those with a history of angina were affected the most by traffic.

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