Above: New York State Agricultural Society President Diane Held congratulates Schoharie County farmer Richard Ball, recently appointed as New York State's new Commissioner of Agriculture, at the group's 2014 forum on New York agriculture. Photo from the New York State Agricultural Society's Facebook page.
The Northeast is thawing out this weekend, after several days of intense subzero cold. In the Catskills and across a wide area of upstate New York, a combination of rain in the forecast and melting snow and ice from rapidly-warming temperatures has the region under floodwatch from Saturday afternoon to Sunday evening. Read more
Above: "This is a life expectancy, folks," says John Parete, the new chairman of the Ulster County Legislature, holding up a tailor's tape measure. "Well, on the average, that's what I got left. And I'm not going to spend one minute anymore on partisan politics or bickering.” Video shot by the Daily Freeman's Patricia Doxsey at a January 7 meeting of the Ulster County Legislature.
John Parete, a longtime Ulster County Democratic operative, allied himself with 10 Republicans and two rogue Democrats to seize the chairmanship of the Ulster County Legislature last night in a 13-10 vote, according to the Daily Freeman and the Times Herald-Record.
In 1999, [Phil] Sinagra, R-Hurley, was poised to be elected chairman of the Legislature, but Democrats joined forces with some Republicans to stage an 11th-hour coup, resulting in the election of Daniel Alfonso, R-Highland, as chairman.
This time, the power play put a Catskills local in charge. Read more
On Tuesday evening, with temperatures in the single digits and subzero wind chills, Central Hudson was reporting widespread power outages in the Ulster County towns of Woodstock and Olive.
As of around 10 p.m., 1,841 Central Hudson customers were without power: 1,073 in Woodstock, 741 in Olive, 23 in Hurley and four in Denning.
According to the Central Hudson website, the Woodstock and Olive outages were expected to be resolved by 11:30 p.m. No restoration time was listed for the Hurley or Denning outages.
Some outages also occurred in the area early Tuesday morning and throughout the day, according to reports on social media. Information on the cause of the outages was not immediately available. Read more
Local forecasters at the National Weather Service in Binghamton are predicting that temperatures Monday night and Tuesday could be the coldest in a decade or more. In a detailed briefing issued Monday morning, NWS forecasters warned that Tuesday would be the coldest day of the cold snap, with temperatures down to 10 below zero or lower and wind chills of up to 30 to 35 below zero in their forecast area, which extends to the western Catskills.
We're tracking the local impacts of the cold front in real time on Storify. Let us know of any road accidents, power outages or other issues in your neighborhood at [email protected], and we'll post them to the liveblog below. (We'll gladly share your gorgeous ice pictures, too.) The latest updates appear at the top of the liveblog.
Skies over the Catskills are dazzling blue today, in the wake of a snowstorm that left over a foot of snow in some areas. But watch out -- with temperatures in the single digits, and expected to fall below zero overnight, it's still frostbite weather out there. Read more
In the Hudson Valley, I-84 will be closed to commercial traffic starting at 5 p.m. At midnight, I-84, the New York State Thruway south of Albany, and the Long Island Expressway will all be closed to all traffic.
Officials tentatively plan to reopen the roads at 5 a.m., but will make a decision based on road conditions by 4 a.m., according to a report by the Associated Press.
A snowstorm moving into upstate New York from the southwest is expected to dump heavy snow on the Catskills, starting this afternoon and continuing overnight.
A combination of heavy snow, blowing winds and subzero temperatures will make travel in the region extremely dangerous during the fiercest part of the storm. Total snow accumulations should reach 6 to 12 inches across most of the Catskills, with up to 15 inches in some areas. Read more