YIR 2008: Economy, environment top priorities

Editor's Note: The following is a recap of news in the town of Bethlehem from the last six months of 2008. A recap of the first half of 2008 appeared last week, Dec. 26. To view Spotlight Newspapers' Year in Pictures 2008, click the link below



At its first meeting of the new school year, the Bethlehem Board of Education unanimously votes to reinstate James Lytle as its president and James Dering as its vice president. The meeting is also the first for Michael Tebbano as the district's new superintendent.

Tebbano was the district's assistant superintendent and took over the spot from longtime superintendent Les Loomis, which in turn created an opportunity for several Bethlehem administrators to move up the ranks. The district names former Middle School Principal Jody Monroe as assistant superintendent to fill Tebbano's vacancy and Assistant Middle School Principal Sandy Morley to fill Monroe's.

Newly elected board of education members Laura Ladd Bierman and Matt Downey were sworn in and introduced at the meeting as well.

Lafarge North America, Inc. announced major plans to upgrade its cement plant in Ravena in order to modernize its upstate facility.

The announcement, made on Wednesday, July 9, came on the heels of a federal Toxic Release Inventory report released in February that stated the Route 9W plant across from the Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk school released 400 pounds of mercury in 2006.

It was the first of many steps Lafarge is taking in the New York regulatory permitting process that could result in an investment to modernize the Ravena cement plant.

The plans proposed included a modernization project that replaces the existing 46-year-old cement plant's equipment with state-of-the-art cement manufacturing technology.

Bethlehem Comptroller Judith Kehoe announces she is leaving Town Hall and moving down the road to work at the Bethlehem School District as treasurer/school business administrator starting Sept. 1.

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