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Archive for the ‘update’ Category

Kenneth C. Andersen (Dad)

The huge number of loved ones that showed up for today’s 8th Annual Out of Darkness Walk for suicide awareness, research and prevention in Saratoga was incredibly moving. Many of us were there in memory of those that we had lost suddenly, leaving pain that only time, faith, and the support of others can soften. I walked in memory of my father,
Kenneth C. Andersen, an intelligent, gentle, funny, generous, and loving man that took his life in 1974. There were many from Amsterdam that attended in support of the Fiorillo family remembering AHS student Vinnie Fiorillo, as you can see demonstrated by the number of purple shirts below. Organizer Marianne Reid’s family shared this day for her brother that passed five years ago.

There were a few thoughts that I came away with from this day:

1. Our loved ones succumbed to illness, many times resulting from depression or substance abuse. Shame and guilt are unecessary as this illness and its tragic end are no more desired or the fault of the family than cancer or diabetes. The taking of a life is the action of a desperately suffering individual.

2. Survivors do not carry a contagious disease. In dealing with those that have suffered this loss, please be compassionate, respectful, warm, and directly acknowledge their grief. It is the oddest sensation to have people casting furtive glances one’s way and speaking in hushed tones, or to avoid conversation completely. It’s 2012; suicide should not be stigmatized any longer. Suicide is not a dirty word.

3. There is so much love that surrounds us. Today’s walk proves it. For more information on suicide prevention, click here.

Thank you to all that paricipated.

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AUGUST
Mayor’s Report

Community Engagement:
• Community Task Force: Wishful Thinking
• Department Criminal Juvenile Justice Grant
• 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament – HUGE success
• 7 on 7 Kickball Tournament planning (September)
• Neighborhood Association “Meet & Greet” planning (September 22)
• Lois McClure Riverlink Park visit planning (September 22)
• Homecoming planning (October 5)


Economic Development:
• Interviews conducted for CEDD position
• Developer Luncheon planned – September 6
• MVREDC strategic plan – final touches for submission
• Train Station Relocation: meeting at DOT, August 9th – projected $45M impact
• Pedestrian Bridge community forum co-hosted with Amsterdam Common Council
• Land Banking Advisory Committee meeting
• BOA meeting: finalizing reports (East End, Northern Trolley Neighborhoods, Waterfront Heritage)
• CEO Roundtable Discussion hosted by Dusty Swanger: public/private investment and partnering for revitalization
• NYCOM Executive Committee meeting: mandate relief, training
• Hydro-electric study
• Waste Water Treatment Digester study
• Highland/Holland PILOT


Engineering/DPW:
• Market Hill water/sewer/road infrastructure improvements completed
• Market Street Traffic Improvements
– excavations nearing completion
– one bad valve identified
– State to start repaving in next few weeks
• I/I contracted, start September (need $90K to do manhole inspections)
• Traffic Re-patterning progressing rapidly
• Bell Hill: rebuild retaining wall
• Series of sink holes/excavations to be remedied in the coming weeks
• Only 19 hydrants out of service

• Interviews conducted: Codes – Wilkie Platt appointed

 Insurance/Trust Issues being resolved; accounting must be set up, finalize Delta/Davis contracts

Need attention:
• Capital Projects
• Professional Assistance: Controller
• IT Contract: County
• Dove Creek solution

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Thank you to all of the good people that helped me, supported me, and spirited me through this difficult process.

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Click here: www.mayorthane.com

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Part Two and Three may be found by clicking on the YouTube icon to take you to the other entries.

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Thank you so much to the Recorder and Reporter Jessica Maher for this web interview. Please take time to visit the Recorder’s home page each and every day at the following link: best news in town.

Oh, and by the way, I misspoke. We have between 3,000 to 4,000 new visitors to our city website each MONTH!

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New York State announced today that the City of Amsterdam received a $600,000 CDBG grant award to make improvements to our water distribution system. After a tragic fire last March, staff and I had drafted an action plan to address the ongoing problems of the aging system. Over the past year, we made our grant request, we’d been working on policies and procedures, and making incremental progress identifying areas of need.

Thanks to the efforts of our partners at McDonald Engineering and successful Grant Writer Nick Zabawsky, we have been awarded the maximum amount allowed in this competetive round to make important improvements to our hydrants, valves and water mains. Bravo!

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Update: Via Ponte Pedestrian Bridge Project

The Draft Design Report, serving to coordinate and condense background information regarding project scope and objectives, alternatives, site history and conditions is being prepared. A NEPA Environmental Assessment and SEQR Full Environmental Assessment Form are being prepared along with the supporting documentation. Required agency coordination with USCG, USACOE, NYSDEC, NYSOPRHP, NYSDOT and the City is on-going. Subsurface borings for geotechnical purposes and environmental purposes are being scheduled. Test pits required for archaeological assessment have been approved by the SHPO and are scheduled to begin shortly. Property lines and rights of way are being finalized and the process to begin acquiring necessary parcels is on-going with the NYSDOT.

Regarding engineering, approximately six bridge alignment options are being investigated. The bridge type being progressed is a steel multi-girder in accordance with the results of public feedback (votes). The “Brooklyn Bridge” concept is not being progressed, again based on the results of public feedback and anticipated additional future maintenance needs.

Straight, curved and combination alignments are being investigated to determine required beam depth, substructure requirements and clearances. Some difficulties in the proposed river pier locations have been encountered due to portions of the pier foundations of the “old” bridge remaining below the riverbed.

In order to further public involvement in the project, another Public Information Meeting just about the bridge type and approaches will be scheduled for mid-July. After that meeting, the Draft Design Report/Environmental Assessment will be circulated for review and comment. Completion of the Environmental Assessment and Design Approval is still on schedule for January 2011, as is the September 2012 project letting.

Coordination and cooperation between agencies involved has been on-going and very good. We are on schedule.

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