Stories for June 2013


Friday, June 28

State Trooper injured in thruway crash

Diabetic shock blamed for man hitting stopped patrol vehicle

A Middle Grove man allegedly suffered from diabetic shock and crashed into a State Police patrol vehicle stopped in a work zone.

Tease photo

Town, police settle dispute

Agreement over staffing levels involves undisclosed monetary settlement

The Town of Bethlehem and one of its police unions have come to an agreement after several of the department’s detectives filed a grievance against the town.

Tease photo

Menands market marks 80 years

Outlet serves as buy local point for wholesale and retail buyers

Since it first opened in 1933, the Capital District Cooperative, Inc. has traveled a road of changes. With the rising “buy local” movement, the Menands-based farmers market is celebrating its 80th anniversary with a bigger presence than ever.

Thursday, June 27

Tease photo

Old Songs plucking on

Acoustic roots music festival welcomes families, keeps traditions alive

Traditional acoustic music will once again be played at the 33rd annual Old Songs Music Festival, which kicks off Friday, June 28, at 3 p.m. and ends Sunday night at the Altamont Fairgrounds.

New Scotland zoning change official

Town Board will pursue further zoning refinements

The Town Board on Wednesday, June 12, unanimously approved a widespread zoning change intended to better reflect the character of the community and what the land is suited to contain.

Tease photo

Prince of planning stepping down

Morelli was Bethlehem’s point man on major developments for past eight years

The Town of Bethlehem is looking for a new director of economic development and planning, as Mike Morelli approaches his retirement date at the end of this week.

Tease photo

Changes bring rewards

Bethlehem receives $776k grant from state efficiency program

The Town of Bethlehem was the only municipality in the Capital District to receive a share of efficiency grants handed out by the state last week.

Wednesday, June 26

Sports poll: What is your favorite summertime recreational sport?

We know there are plenty of "weekend warriors" out there -- people who play sports on a recreational basis.

Tease photo

Police: Ravena man dragged woman into car

Police say a Ravena man dragged a woman into a car against her will, then drove off with her and two children in the car.

Tease photo

Honest Weight settles into new, larger location

New services, same philosophy at co-op’s redesigned store on Watervliet Avenue

On Wednesday, June 19, the Honest Weight Food Co-Op opened its brand new doors to 2,500 customers at 100 Watervliet Ave.

Mixed feelings over proposed project

Developer wants to bring retail, restaurant and apartment space to corner of Boght and New Loudon Roads

A developer is looking to knock down the Boght Road Firehouse and build a minimart, retail/restaurant space and an apartment building in its place.

LETTER: Time for an explosive change in New York

This letter appeared in the June 26, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

LETTER: Time to clean house in Bethlehem GOP

This editorial appeared in the June 26, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

EDITORIAL: To the Class of 2013: Four more years!

This editorial appeared in the June 26, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

Tuesday, June 25

Tease photo

Callanan’s upgrades draw National Grid grant

After completing construction on a new power substation, Callanan Industries has received a $250,000 grant from National Grid as a capital investment for replacing its aging infrastructure.

Town pays fine for sewer leak

Corroded pipe let small amount sewage into Krumkill in May

The Town of Bethlehem has paid a fine to the state Department of Environmental Conservation after an unexpected sewer leak.

Tease photo

Freedom Fest speakers take on gun law

Voorheesville event focuses on flag, guns and God

The second day of Freedom Fest ’13 on Saturday, June 15, focused on the Second Amendment and featured several speakers advocating for the SAFE Act to be overturned, or at the least revised.

Colonie’s finances ranked among the worst

Supervisor says news expected, while her opponent attacks her administration

Colonie is one of the most fiscally stressed municipalities in New York state, according to a report conducted by State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli. The news has also drawn the first political pot shot of in this election year.

Saturday, June 22

Tease photo

New store in Delaware Plaza

H&I Upscale Resale Store hosted a ribbon cutting on June 22 in its new store in Delaware Plaza.

Friday, June 21

Town mulls canine code

New Scotland to review policies regarding dogs in town parks

The New Scotland Town Board heard from residents concerned about what rules do or don’t apply to dogs in the town’s Stephen P. Wallace Park off Swift Road at a Wednesday, June 12, meeting. Town Supervisor Tom Dolin said board members will review rules and relegations concerning dogs in town parks.

Tease photo

This old house

Group looks back three decades to start of Pruyn House renovations

When architect Vincent J. Lepera stood before the Casparus Pruyn House in 1983, he knew he had his work cut out for him.

Tease photo

Man charged with sex act against teen

Coeymans police have arrested a 20-year-old man who allegedly forced a 14-year-old girl “to perform sexual acts” at knifepoint.

Towing contract grinds gears

Some local providers question contract that sets rates for working with town

Several owners of Bethlehem towing businesses are finding it difficult to live with the terms of a contract they signed with the town to be included on the rotational list of towing operators that work with the police department

Thruway stop results in pot bust

State Police arrested a Brooklyn man on drug charges after he was pulled over for speeding in the Town of Coeymans.

Thursday, June 20

Tease photo

New Scotland Dems eye incumbents

Candidates point to prior accomplishments, hopeful for support

New Scotland Democrats are winding up to stand behind incumbents this local election season, and pointing to their accomplishments.

Primary brews on Independence line

Longtime Indy figure Ken Champagne secures party endorsement

The Albany County Independence Party is breaking with tradition and electing to endorse one of its own members rather than Democrat and incumbent Paula Mahan for the office of Colonie supervisor.

Sports poll: How will the Tri-City ValleyCats do in the New York-Penn League?

The Tri-City ValleyCats are off to a 3-0 start to the New York-Penn League season after completing a sweep of the Vermont Lake Monsters Wednesday at Joseph Bruno Stadium.

Wednesday, June 19

Baseball: Delmar brothers help Berkshire win baseball title

Delmar residents Will and Jackson Aldam helped Berkshire School win the New England Prep School baseball title this season.

Tease photo

Trail days become nights

Second Fairy Tales and Fireflies event highlights Rail Trail

Summer has begun in the Capital District, and The Mohawk-Hudson Land Conservancy is ready to make it official with its second Fairy Tales and Fireflies event on Thursday, June 20.

Tease photo

Bittersweet remembrance for BC educator

Elsmere Principal Dorothy Whitney’s name will live on through fund

A mix of tears and laughter filled the Elsmere Elementary gymnasium as loved ones gathered last week in remembrance of former Principal Dorothy Whitney.

Farmers push for property tax relief

Farm Bureau wants to see land assessments capped at 2 percent

Agricultural advocates are concerned spiraling land values are discouraging industry growth in the Empire State.

Tease photo

Four eye highway position

Primaries brewing on Democratic and Republican lines in Bethlehem

After Bethlehem residents voted down a referendum that would have abolished the office of highway superintendent, four candidates have come forward with hopes of filling the position next year.

Tease photo

Umbrella celebrates five years

Seniors helping seniors program completes 5,000 jobs

More than 200 guests joined together Wednesday, June 12, at the Beltrone Living Center to celebrate Umbrella of Colonie’s fifth anniversary. The home maintenance program helps 600 seniors annually, with a total of more than 5,000 jobs completed.

LETTER: GOP leadership’s statements false

This letter appeared in the June 19, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

LETTER: Transparency needed in Bethlehem IDA

This letter appeared in the June 19, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

LETTERS: Bethlehem Garden Club’s tour a success

This letter appeared in the June 19, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

EDITORIAL: True reform needed on farmland assessments

This editorial appeared in the June 19, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

Tuesday, June 18

Tease photo

‘Move Over’ violation results in felony charge

A man stopped for violating the state’s “Move Over Law” resulted in police discovering he has 26 active suspensions and revocations on his driver’s license on 14 different dates.

Towns finalize water deal

New Scotland will buy water from Bethlehem to form new district

The New Scotland and Bethlehem town boards each approved an intermunicipal water supply agreement for the newly formed New Salem Water District on Wednesday, June 12.

Tease photo

Guilderland man sentenced to eight years in stabbing

After pleading guilty to stabbing a Colonie man several times, Guilderland resident Elias K. Deligiannis was sentenced to eight years in State Prison, according to Albany County District Attorney David Soares.

Tease photo

UAlbany unveils RNA Institute

State-of-the art facility will be home to genetic research on Alzheimer’s, HIV, cancer and more

A unique, state-of-the-art concept turned into a reality Tuesday, June 11, when the University at Albany opened the doors to its brand new biomedical technology development facility.

Friday, June 14

Troy man arrested on weapons charges

State Police arrested a Troy man after he was allegedly found with a handgun he did not have a permit for.

Tease photo

Common Core questions

Education forum focuses on new testing requirements, state mandates

State Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk, D-Duanesburg, and Assemblywoman Patricia Fahy, D-Albany, organized a forum, “Education at a Crossroads: A Forum on the Impacts of Testing and Mandates,” on Wednesday, June 5, in the Legislative Office Building at the Capitol.

Thursday, June 13

Biernacki subdivision clears first hurdle

New Scotland planners give preliminary approval for 12-lot project

A 12-lot subdivision in New Scotland saw considerably less public protest in its second public hearing before the town’s Planning Board, leading the board to move the project forward in the planning process.

Tease photo

Life by the strings

Colonie Central grad and cellist inducted into school's Hall of Fame

Kenneth Olsen has been the assistant principal cellist for the symphony for the past eight years. Because of his accomplishments, Olsen is joining two other alumni to be inducted in the Colonie Central High School Hall of Fame this year.

LETTER: Show respect during the National Anthem

This letter appeared in the June 12, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

EDITORIAL: June’s arrival means paperwork for politicians

This editorial appeared in the June 12, 2013, editions of Spotlight newspapers.

POV: Pass public funding of elections

This point of view column appeared in the June 12, 2013, editions of Spotlight newspapers.

Wednesday, June 12

Tease photo

Anniversary makes a splash

Bethlehem celebrates Elm Avenue Pool Complex’s 40th birthday

Bethlehem celebrated the 40th anniversary of its Elm Avenue Pool Complex on Sunday, June 9, with a slide of cake, live band, bouncy house and of course swimming. There are several more events scheduled this year to continue the celebration.

Police: Three men arrested with stolen weapons

Three men were arrested Tuesday for possessing stolen property, including rifles and shotguns, according to the Colonie Police Department.

Tease photo

A hairdresser’s homecoming

Family and friends greet sailor upon her return home

Danielle Martinez went from hairdresser to sailor right out of Colonie Central High School.

Menands chooses new superintendent

Eight-month search yields Maureen Long, currently at Scotia-Glenville

The Menands School District Board of Education has selected Maureen A. Long as superintendent after an eight-month search.

Tease photo

Cavottaball changes the game

Fast-paced sport combines elements of basketball and handball

Cavottaball might be the most difficult sport to describe and the most fun to watch. It combines elements of basketball and team handball, but it also adds twists which lead to fast games and intense action.

Stuyvesant Plaza adding parking

Project will include improvements at small adjacent park

Finding a parking spot at Stuyvesant Plaza will be a little easier after 24 parking spaces are added at the shopping center.

Sports poll: What is your favorite summer sports venue?

With the end of the high school sports season, it's time to look ahead to the fun we can have as spectators at this region's summer sports venues. So, where do you go to have a good time while watching the action?

Man arrested on warrant for threatening mass shooting

Slingerlands man allegedly threatened to ‘shoot up’ Monmouth University, kill woman

Guilderland police arrested a Slingerlands man wanted by police in New Jersey on charges he threatened to kill a woman and shoot up a university.

Candidate under fire from own party

GOP serves supervisor hopeful Jared King with accusatory letter

Republican and Bethlehem supervisor hopeful Jared King is on the outs with his own party.

Tease photo

Getting your financial house in order is a must

Spotlight on Finance

By taking the time to organize and eliminate unnecessary paperwork and policies, review your budgets and evaluate your income, not only can you de-clutter your financial life, but you can also develop a master plan that will improve your relationship with money and, quite possibly, your family?

Tuesday, June 11

Tease photo

Custodian acts quickly when student chokes

Steve O’Connor performed Heimlich maneuver on Roessleville first-grader

Last Wednesday seemed like just a typical day for Roessleville Elementary School Custodian Steve O’Connor. Students were packed into the school’s cafeteria, enjoying their food and talking with one another. O’Connor was dumping some of the lunchroom’s garbage when he noticed one of the first-graders jumping up and grabbing her throat.

SCCC contract approved

Project at county offices will cost $87k more due to delay

Renovations paving the way for Schenectady County Community College to fill a floor at the Albany County’s offices can now officially begin, after some lawmakers questioned the contractor’s legitimacy.

Tease photo

Bethlehem Y officially opens new pavilion

$490k project years in making, already being used by summer campers

More than a year after the Bethlehem YMCA broke ground on a new lunch pavilion to accommodate the organization’s summer campers, the structure is complete.

Tease photo

RCS opens greenhouse as a teaching tool

Learning tool eight years in the making

On Tuesday, June 4, faculty, students and parents gathered at RCS High School for a dedication ceremony and open house to showcase the school’s new greenhouse.

Sunday, June 9

High school: Shaker announces sports award winners

Shaker High School and the Shaker All-Sports Booster Club held its annual athletic awards program Tuesday, June 4.

Saturday, June 8

Tease photo

Golf: Consistency the key for Jensen

Shaker senior wins state high school title by three strokes

Being consistent paid off in a big way for Davis Jensen. The Shaker High School senior shot a first-round score of 74 and a second-round score of 73 to win the New York State Public High School Athletic Association golf championship June 2 and 3 at Cornell University's Robert Trent Jones Golf Course.

Friday, June 7

Tease photo

Day at the Museum

Guilderland students bring historical figures to life at Living Museum

Stepping into a museum and having the famous faces come to life isn’t just a Hollywood fantasy for the silver screen. Guilderland High School students offered a chance to step into the fantasy.

Tease photo

Colonie artists have a league of their own

Group's meetings foster creativity and camaraderie

The Colonie Art League has more than 250 members of the Colonie Art League, and gathers around the Capital District for art workshops, demonstrations and to feature their own work in local exhibits.

Thursday, June 6

Tease photo

Overdue honor

Guilderland veteran receives his high school diploma 50 years later

Guilderland Central School District awarded Robert Lynch, a 69-year-old Vietnam veteran, his high school diploma through Operation Recognition, which is a program allowing certain veterans to apply to receive a diploma if they didn't graduate from high school.

Tease photo

This city wants you!

Uncle Sam heritage to be celebrated in Troy on Saturday

Though he wasn’t widely recognized until long after his death, a well-known meat packer from the City of Troy is the pride and joy of Trojans today.

Tease photo

Students float on recycling

RCS students build floating creations for second Recyclable Boat Regatta

Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk High School students in Scott Peck’s Design and Drawing for Production course constructed boats complete with oars or paddles capable of powering an operator 75 yards across Lawson Lake for the district's Recyclable Boat Regatta.

Tease photo

Literacy through lyrics

‘Composer to Center Stage’ brings songwriting to students, courtesy Albany Symphony Orchestra

It isn’t always an easy task to get kids excited about literacy, but one local school recently teamed up with the Albany Symphony Orchestra to combine reading with the medium of music.

Police: Woman drove drunk to DWI panel

Guilderland police arrested a woman who allegedly showed up to a DWI victim impact panel drunk.

Apartments on the rise in Bethlehem

Developers have moved away from the single-family homes

Members of the Bethlehem Town Board are studying the town’s housing makeup to consider whether it would be more prudent to approve housing developments in the planning process as outlined in the town’s Comprehensive Plan, or to advocate for more open space.

Wednesday, June 5

Sports poll: Which Delmar/Guilderland sports team had the best spring season?

In this week's poll, we want to know which team had the best spring season. Here are your five choices in the Delmar/Guilderland area.

Sports poll: Which Colonie sports team had the best spring season?

In this week's poll, we want to know which team had the best spring season.

Tease photo

Cohoes Heritage Day extended across weekend

City’s history, culture and art will be on display for second event

At the request of the public, this year Cohoes Heritage Day will add an “s” to its name, an will take place over the course of the entire weekend of Friday, June 7, through Sunday, June 9. The weekend-long event will feature street vendors, parish-wide garage sales, activities and tours of the city to celebrate its culture.

Tease photo

Flyers’ forgetfulness helps homeless veterans

Clothe a Homeless Hero program implemented at Albany International Airport

The Albany County Veterans Service Bureau is working with the Albany County Airport Authority, the Transportation Security Administration and the Homeless and Travelers Aid Society to distribute unclaimed clothing left at airport security checkpoints to homeless veterans.

Police: Man arrested for sexual assault

A Niskayuna man was arrested in connection with an alleged sexual assault this weekend, Colonie police said.

Tease photo

Eleventh PolishFest deemed a success

Weather fails to keep hungry crowds away from Latham gathering

Families and friends of different cultures from around the Capital District gathered at the Blessed Virgin Mary of Czestochowa Polish National Catholic Church on Old Maxwell Road in Latham for the 11th annual PolishFest Friday, May 31, through Sunday, June 2.

Softball: Guilderland's dream season ends in regional final

O'Hara carries no-hitter into seventh inning for Cicero-North Syracuse

Having ended a 15-year wait for a Section II championship, the Guilderland softball team entered a new realm when it played Tuesday in the Class AA regional finalist at the Gillette Road Middle School Complex.

LETTER: IDA’s tax breaks must be reined in

This letter appeared in the June 5, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

LETTER: Jared King for supervisor

This letter appeared in the June 5, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

EDITORIAL: The writing on the (shared) wall

This editorial appeared in the June 5, 2013, editions of Spotlight newspapers.

LETTER: Give the highway rhetoric a rest

This letter appeared in the June 5, 2013, edition of The Spotlight.

Tuesday, June 4

Tease photo

Guilderland GOP emboldened for victory

Chairman touts endorsed candidates, optimistic to topple Dem stronghold

Guilderland Republicans have struggled over the years in the heavily Democratic community, but this year’s slate of candidates has the party’s chairman optimistic it’s time for the tides to change.

Tease photo

GOP names slate

Party announces a ‘Bethlehem United’ coalition

The Bethlehem Republican Committee has endorsed a slate of candidates belonging to multiple political parties for the November local elections under the banner of “Bethlehem United.”

Tease photo

A trail of troubles

For local landowner, ATV trespassing hints at a broad, complicated issue

ATVs trespassing on private land is a growing problem, and one that has real consequences for some landowners.

Tease photo

Heads up for safety

Albany County officials educate on bike safety, hand out helmets to kids

As the days grow warmer, so too do the concerns of public safety officials who see residents biking around the Capital District.

Colonie candidates step forward

GOP to run Todd Drake against Supervisor Paula Mahan

Colonie Democratic and Republican committees have begun announcing their endorsements for the open spots in the Town of Colonie elected offices.

Monday, June 3

Tease photo

Softball: Guilderland gets the jump on Bethlehem

Early runs propel Lady Dutch to Sectional title

The Guilderland-Bethlehem softball rivalry took on an added dimension Friday at Clifton Common.

Sunday, June 2

Tease photo

Albany County flood plains being updated

Preliminary maps comment period open, affects insurance rates and building requirements

The official flood maps in Albany County are in the process of being redrawn. Flood maps lay out floodplain boundaries and identify where flooding is most likely to occur in storms of varying strengths. The boundaries of flood zones can have a major effect on homeowners because it can greatly influence the need for flood insurance and what rates it might be offered at.

Tease photo

Fun Run with a serious goal

Race geared towards kids raises money for local pediatric care

As a Saratoga Springs business owner, Ames felt she had a tool to help give back to the community, and in 2008 put together the first Cantina Kids Fun Run, a run designed from start to finish with kids in mind.