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Charles Wiff

Stories by Charles

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Down the rabbit hole

UAlbany to host unconventional performance written in Iran

"White Rabbit, Red Rabbit" has been performed all over the world and in 15 languages, but in each instance a different actor has staged it without a director, a set or even preparation.

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Firefighters respond to Slingerlands home

Firefighters rushed to a Slingerlands home this afternoon, closing off a portion of New Scotland Road near the Route 85 roundabout.

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Gallery: Selkirk Fire Department 9/11 Honor and Remembrance Ceremony

Members of the Selkirk Fire Department were joined by members of the Elsmere and Delmar fire departments in a ceremony on the evening of Sept. 11, 2013, to honor the lives lost in the terrorist attacks of 9/11. The names of the 343 firefighters that perished were read by the firefighters and members of the public.

GOP candidate pitches platform

Drake, Mahan share thoughts on current state of affairs

Republican candidate for Colonie town supervisor Todd Drake has laid out a platform that chiefly targets the town’s finances and calls for an end to “one-party rule,” a scant few years after the GOP effectively exercised singular control of town government.

S. Colonie looks to the sun for savings

Agreement inked that sets stage for largest public school solar project in state

Educators in the South Colonie Central School District think the future is looking bright when it comes to the electricity bill.

Police arrest alleged bank robber

Police catch up with Victor Shear in South Carolina

Police in South Carolina have apprehended the man who allegedly robbed a Slingerlands Trustco Bank last week.

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Kids hit the floor running

Officials, campers excited for new sporting surface at Bethlehem YMCA

The Bethlehem YMCA has a new sports surface that will help expand its recreational offerings to kids and adults.

Candidate’s past comes to light

GOP finds evidence King resides in Coxsackie and has criminal record

Bethlehem supervisor hopeful Jared King has been tossed from the county voter rolls, simultaneously ejecting him from his seat on the Albany County Republican Committee and impacting his chances to appear in the fall elections.

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.

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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.

Town grants stipend to acting highway head

Interim super will be compensated for rest of 2013

The Town of Bethlehem will be compensating Interim Highway Superintendent Erik Deyoe with a $10,000 stipend for his work to help transition the department to the control of a leader voters will select in November.

Bethlehem's budget outlook good

Leaf collection fee taken off the table

After the tax levy went up by 8 percent this year, officials in the Town of Bethlehem are painting a much rosier picture for the coming budget cycle.

BC makes last-minute budget shift

Cuts restored using expected surplus from this year

The Bethlehem Central Board of Education made changes to its adopted 2013-14 school year budget in an early morning meeting held less than two weeks after the spending plan was adopted in a 6-1 vote.

Spotlight recognized at NYPA awards

Spotlight News was recognized among the top weekly publications in the state at the New York Press Association spring conference, with the paper’s staff capturing several first-place awards in the group’s annual Better Newspaper Contest.

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Rail Trail at issue in class action lawsuit

Trail neighbors say they should have been compensated in recreational deal

A group of property owners neighboring the Albany County Rail Trail are suing the federal government over the recreational corridor.

Ex-cop’s lawsuit to go to trial

Judge rejects Town of Bethlehem’s motion to dismiss case

It will be up to a jury to decide whether former Bethlehem police officer Christopher Hughes faced a hostile work environment for expressing what he argues was protected speech.

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Such a thing as free lunch in Reubenville

Town of Coeymans wins national contest by altering its name for a month

The Town of Coeymans has won the Arby’s “Reubenville Challenge” by changing the name of the municipality for a month.

Bethlehem fundraiser takes a wacky turn

For the past six years, Bethlehem Central faculty have gathered to play in a basketball game aimed at raising money to benefit the district’s classrooms. They’ll be doing the same this year, but with some notable twists.

Hope on horizon for Colonial Acres

Local PGA chapter floats potential private involvement for municipal golf course

A possible white knight has arrived with a possible, if not distant, solution to the ongoing debate over the future of the Colonial Acres Golf Course: the PGA.

Saratoga County voters support incumbents

Marchione secures victory, Spa City turns down government change

Incumbents hoping for another term representing the people of Saratoga County got their wishes this Election Day, as voters sent familiar faces back to the Assembly and Senate.

Schenecatdy County passes budget with 5.9% tax hike

Minority says cuts are too little too late, supporters point finger at state

The Schenectady County Legislature adopted a 2013 budget tonight smaller than the spending plan previously on the table, but with a tax hike still too large for some lawmakers.

IDA reaffirms tax break policy

Agency looking for part-time economic development professional

The Bethlehem Industrial Development Agency is generally against granting tax breaks to retail businesses — but don’t expect to read about it on the organization’s website.

Empty desks save Bethlehem $1M

Leaving 17 jobs unfilled will likely shrink budget gap

The Bethlehem Town Board saw some rare black numbers Wednesday night when Comptroller Michael Cohen presented a mid-year fund balance analysis that showed the town has saved over $1 million in 2012 by leaving the equivalent of 17 full time jobs unfilled.

Ex-cop gets probation

Former Bethlehem police officer Christopher Hughes was sentenced today to five years probation for possessing a fake police identification card.

Selkirk mulls paid firefighters

The Selkirk Fire Department could see a handful of paid firefighters introduced to its ranks if it accepts a federal grant.

Bethlehem talks turkey, few cuts appeal

Attrition said to be key to balancing budget while keeping services

The Bethlehem Town Board talked over potential budget cuts for 2013, but agreed attrition is what will make significant holes in a budget gap. The trick is keeping services at the same time.

Ex-cop’s lawsuit against town in judge’s hands

Depositions revive years-old questions about internal investigation

A judge holds the decision over whether a lawsuit leveled against the Town of Bethlehem and its police chief will be shown to a jury or thrown out, while testimony collected for the case recalls tumultuous times for the town.

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BC’s tax cap challenge succeeds

Record turnout for landmark vote, 63 percent approve of budget

Voters in the Bethlehem Central School District approved a 2012-13 school year budget today by a margin of 4,035 votes to 2,405 votes.

Colonie looks to dump more trash at landfill

Board approves submitting application to state

Colonie is seeking approval from the state to up the amount of trash dumped at the town landfill in what officials call an effort to get the most out of facility.

Lockbox not a lock in Bethlehem

Receiver of taxes speaks against automated payment collection

Bethlehem Town Board members listened to arguments for adopting an automated bill payment processing system on Wednesday, March 28, but will be taking more time to review the proposal before making a decision on using a Lockbox system.

Bethlehem OKs Comp Plan review group

In an evening spent tackling perennial issues, board also sets fund balance policy

Officials in the Town of Bethlehem discussed and ultimately moved forward several items that have long been on the agendas of Town Board members, or at least the subject of past debate.

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Police pull body from Normanskill

Police earlier today recovered the body of a 45-year-old man they say jumped to his death from the Route 9W bridge over the Normanskill.

Saratoga chambers seek collaboration

Boards direct leaders to research options, deliver report

Two chambers of commerce in Saratoga County are looking to expand on the ways they work together.

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Clarkson takes the oath

John Clarkson officially became supervisor of the Town of Bethlehem this evening and pledged to residents not only a responsive and responsible town government, but one free of partisan politics.

Forum set on open Town Board seat

The Albany County chapter of the League of Women Voters will be holding an “educational forum” on the topic of the Bethlehem Town Board seat recently vacated by Mark Jordan.

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District, police respond to drug charges at BCHS

Bethlehem police arrested a teen on drug charges after three Bethlehem Central High School students apparently overdosed at the school and were hospitalized.

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Police: Teen sold drugs at BCHS, leading to overdoses

Bethlehem police have charged a 16-year-old with selling drugs at BC High School following an incident when three students apparently overdosed.

Now it’s the public’s turn on budget

Bethlehem’s tentative plan keeps 1.27 percent tax hike, but cuts borrowing

The public will be giving Bethlehem leaders comments on a 2012 budget that includes the same tax hike as originally proposed nearly two months ago, but has changed considerably in other areas.

Extra Bethlehem budget workshop scheduled

Taxes and borrowing continues to rule the debate

Members of the Town Board and Supervisor Sam Messina are continuing to grind out a budget plan, and issues including whether a tax increase should be part of the budget and what the thown’s policy on borrowing should be continue to rule the debate.

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Public sounds off on hamlet

Traffic impacts, number of apartments top concerns

The public has had months to mull over a massive hamlet project proposed for the Glenmont area, and at a recent public scoping session, it was clear there are concerns about how it would affect traffic, and if the idea’s viable in the first place.

Board wants less borrowing, less taxes

Bethlehem leaders to look at specific cuts at next meeting

Bethlehem leaders at a recent workshop feasted on a triple-layered cake of budgeting issues, considering borrowing, services and taxes.

Open space debate back on in Bethlehem

Proposal stokes discussion about plans to buy land

A proposal put forward by the private group Bethlehem Tomorrow has reignited the controversy over how (or if) Bethlehem should sink money into open space.

Wemple Corners public hearing tonight

The public will have a chance to weigh in on the Wemple Corners superhamlet project proposed for the Glenmont area.

BC audit reveals predictable trends

Administrators foresee PR problem in tax cap

An independent audit has resulted in a “clean opinion” on Bethlehem Central School District operations, but it has also given weight to a few troubling trends that have been brewing in recent years.

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Farm to You Fest another success

The Bethlehem School District’s Squash Hunger food drive resulted in the donation of hundreds of pounds of fresh, locally-produced foods for distribution to area soup kitchens and food pantries.

Slingerlands apartments taking shape

Planners say wetlands preclude this hamlet from being hamlet-like

Plans to build an apartment complex next to the Price Chopper Plaza in Slingerlands are coalescing.

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Sheriff’s Office eyes Clarksville Elementary

Move would dramatically shift police operations, create efficiencies

The Albany County Sheriff’s Office is looking into leasing the closed Clarksville Elementary School from the Bethlehem Central School District to use as a substation.

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Keep vigilant during Fire Prevention Week

Delmar Fire Department will celebrate centennial and educate about fire safety

Every year in October, the National Fire Protection Association and fire departments aim to remind that most fires are preventable.

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BC kicks off Farm Fest

The Bethlehem School District’s Farm to You Fest kicked off this week, as the district’s Healthy Kids Committee for the third year running launched into a full week of agricultural awareness and food drives.

New budget keeps tax hike, adds some raises

More pension costs means fewer purchases in Bethlehem budget

The Bethlehem 2012 budget is slowly taking shape, but it's become even more clear that it will be tough to meet all the town’s goals, especially if leaders want to limit tax increases.

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