Save Wiccopee Press

 

 

Save Wiccopee Organization exists to protect our quality of life, protect the environment and natural resources, to promote historic preservation, save our community character, and to provide news and information about issues that impact residents in Wiccopee and East Fishkill.

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StewartsWiccopeeSignsV5

Local historic buildings should also be saved

To The Editor:

We react with horror when hearing about antiquities being destroyed by radical elements in conflicting regions of the world, yet we sit on our thumbs as our own historical past is destroyed in front of us by “progress.”

East Fishkill’s historic Wiccopee Hamlet has remained virtually unchanged from the late 1700s when it was a vibrant colonial-era hamlet. The Beers map of 1867 lists a schoolhouse, carpenter, blacksmith, a real general store and post office, parsonage, wagon shop, farmers and even a vineyard in Wiccopee Hamlet, which was then know as Johnsville. Wiccopee Hamlet is now a quaint residential area with the highest density of historic houses in East Fishkill’s inventory of historic structures.

Stewart’s Shops, Inc. plans to tear down three historic structures and replace them with an ugly, boring building, gas pumps and tanks over a critical aquifer and along the Fishkill Creek watershed. Instead of our peaceful hamlet, we’ll see LED signs pushing gas prices, not a sign proudly proclaiming Historic Wiccopee Hamlet.

I say shame on the town and any board members who even think this proposal belongs here. It is common sense to not place such a detrimental proposal in such a sensitive area. Stand with me in opposing this. Attend the public hearing when announced. Visit Save Wiccopee Organization at www.wiccopee.org for news and updates.

Brigitte Amodeo
Wiccopee Hamlet, East Fishkill

NO STEWART’S GAS STATION IN WICCOPEE

To The Editor:

Attention East Fishkill residents, Fishkill residents, and aquifer - watershed advocates, Stewart’s Shop wants to build a gas station in the Historic Hamlet of Wiccopee. Contrary to rumors this is NOT a done deal. They have NOT purchased the property to date.

We are asking for your help to tell the town, AGAIN, that we do not want nor need a gas station in this Historically sensitive and environmentally critical area. Stewart’s wants to put thousands of gallons of gas on top of a major aquifer that residents in East Fishkill and Fishkill depend on for water, water that IBM/Global Foundries depend on for manufacturing, and feet away from Bloomer Brook, a tributary of the Fishkill Creek Watershed.

The idea of a gas station here flies smack in the face of any pretense that East Fishkill cares for Historic preservation, wetlands protections, and aquifer and water protection. It is a terribly inappropriate site for this project.

Be a supporter by visiting www.wiccopee.org to contact our elected officials and tell them NO to this project. There will be a public hearing, check website for date. PLEASE ATTEND! Stewart’s has a pattern of items appearing late on board agendas and sometimes suddenly removed. Visit www.wiccopee.org for updates and news. Sign up for email alerts. There’s a list of “things you can do to help”.

Ten years ago you told them NO, please help us tell them AGAIN – NO STEWART’S GAS STATION in Historic Wiccopee Hamlet.

Ann Bell
Wiccopee Hamlet, East Fishkill

Stewart's Gas Shops Public Hearing May 5th CANCELLED

After coming back in after their discussion on the February 17, 2015 meeting was over, and knowing the attending interested public had left, Stewart's Shop got the East Fishkill Planning Board to set a Public Hearing date on their proposal to locate a gas station in the heart of Historic Wiccopee Hamlet. Stewart's failed to comply with East Fishkill's Public Hearing Notification Laws, so the Public Hearing date of May 5th has been canceled.  SWO members continue to be concerned that Stewart’s is receiving preferential treatment as public discussion and review of this application has been limited and it appears the Town is fast tracking review of this application and normal procedures are not being followed. 

We do note that Stewart's Shops is still on the East Fishkill Planning Board May 5th 2015 agenda as:  DECLARE LEAD AGENCY AND SET PUBLIC HEARING: Stewart’s Shops, Route 52.

We will continue to closely monitor this application and update you as we learn more and will info you of the next public hearing date.

We need your help and support, please visit www.wiccopee.org to learn more. Save Wiccopee - Save our 200 plus year old historic hamlet and protect our water supply! – SWO

For Immediate Release - Is This Our Future With Stewart's? Oil Spill Found On O’Dell/Scanlon Property

The Save Wiccopee Organization (“SWO”) has learned that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (“DEC”) has identified a petroleum spill at 16 Fishkill Hook Road, the property owned by O’Dell/Scanlon and slated for redevelopment as part of the proposed Stewart’s Convenience Store and Gas Station.  On April 14, 2015, DEC assigned Spill No. 15000466 to the O’Dell/Scanlon property.  The spill is identified as being No. 2 fuel oil from an equipment failure.  DEC identifies there being an abandoned above ground 275 gallon storage tank on the Property.  Spill is listed as impacting soil and air.

SWO trusts the Town of East Fishkill as well as DEC will protect the residents’ drinking water and property values.  SWO hopes that all necessary remediation, including removal of contaminated soil and investigation into any impacts to the groundwater will be undertaken.  SWO further hopes DEC will test area resident’s drinking water to make sure they were not impacted by the petroleum spill.

This latest incident helps drive home the concerns that residents as well as the Town Board, members of the Planning Board and members of the Zoning Board should have concerning Stewart’s proposal to locate 15,000 gallons of gasoline in underground storage tanks as part of their proposed Stewart’s Shops Gas.  According to the DEC website: Gasoline is one of the most dangerous chemicals you will encounter on a regular basis. Anyone who is familiar with the history of spills in East Fishkill would recognize that locating petroleum storage above the Wiccopee Aquifer is a recipe for disaster.  Let’s hope the Odell/Scanlon April 14, 2015 spill is not the appetizer.

We need your help and support, please visit www.wiccopee.org to learn more. Save Wiccopee - Save our 200 plus year old historic hamlet and protect our water supply!

For Immediate Release – Stewart's Gas Shops Fails to Comply with Public Hearing Notice Requirements

At its February 17, 2015 meeting, the East Fishkill Planning Board closed its discussion on the Stewart’s application and then after the public had left, representatives for Stewart’s approached the Planning Board and requested a public hearing be scheduled. Without the pubic being present, the Planning Board went ahead and scheduled the public hearing for May 5th. SWO members continue to be concerned that Stewart’s is receiving preferential treatment as public discussion and review of this application has been limited and it appears the Town is fast tracking review of this application and normal procedures are not being followed.

SWO members have now learned that Stewart’s has failed to comply with the Town’s notice requirements for the May 5th public hearing. SWO has written to the Planning Board Chair requesting the May 5th public hearing be cancelled. Town Code requires providing notice of a public hearing to residents within 500 feet of the property twenty-five (25) days prior to the public hearing. Stewart’s was also required to post a notice on the property advising the public of the public hearing at least twenty (20) days before the public hearing. Unfortunately, continuing the practice of not informing the public, Stewart’s neither mailed notices of the public hearing to local residents nor the posting of signs on the property. Accordingly, SWO has urged the Town of East Fishkill Planning Board to cancel the May 5th public hearing. SWO has also encouraged the Planning Board to discuss any scheduling in the future of public hearing dates in public on advance notice as part of a regularly noticed agenda so that SWO and other concerned members of the public can observe the discussion. We trust and hope Town officials will honor our request and that in the future Stewart’s will abide by the law.

We need your help and support, please visit www.wiccopee.org to learn more. Save Wiccopee - Save our 200 plus year old historic hamlet and protect our water supply! – SWO

Keep Stewart’s Shops out of Wiccopee Hamlet - Poughkeepsie Journal April 8th. 2015 - Letters to Editor

Wiccopee Hamlet in East Fishkill is again in danger of being destroyed by a gas station. We successfully fought the placement of a gas station in the past after demonstrating the detrimental impact such a project would have in the hamlet, but now Stewart’s Shops gas station plans to bulldoze the Wiccopee General Store and house, and possibly another house, buildings that are in East Fishkill’s Survey of Historic Structures.

Wiccopee residents live here because of its historical and scenic ambiance. We’ve spent years and a lot of hard work maintaining our late 18th and 19th centuries houses; the Town of East Fishkill erected signs declaring “Historic Wiccopee Hamlet.”

I will be most impacted. When the swamp where they want to build this is filled in, my properties will be flooded. Since the filling at this site years ago, we already have two sump pumps going at all times. And in the event of a gas spill, it would go into the aquifer and Fishkill Creek Watershed, where areas like Lake City, Wiccopee Hamlet, Old Grange Road and IBM get their water.

Mailings from East Fishkill officials asking for my vote say that they have “preserved our way of life, our history and our open spaces.” But this project does not fit that description. I will remember this next election. You should too!

Show your support and attend a public hearing at 7 p.m. May 5. For news, updates, email alerts and to learn more, visit www.wiccopee.org.

Dianne Hickman

Wiccopee Hamlet, East Fishkill

Save Wiccopee Organization - FOR IMMEDIATE PRESS RELEASE

Wiccopee Residents Oppose Massive Stewart’s Gas Station on top of their drinking Water and in the Heart of the Historic Wiccopee Hamlet

Stewart’s Shops Corp., of Saratoga, NY, proposes to construct a massive gas station with eight (8) fueling stations, a 4,000 square foot convenience store and an additional 4,000 square foot commercial building in the heart of the idyllic Colonial Wiccopee Hamlet in East Fishkill, Dutchess County, NY. Local resident Tim Leed, Member of the Save Wiccopee Organization (“SWO”), observed that “East Fishkill residents have already experienced their drinking water contaminated by the Hopewell Precision Superfund Site, the Shenandoah Superfund Site and some gas stations. It is irresponsible for a family owned business such as Stewart's Shops to place 25,000 gallons of gasoline on top of the Wiccopee Aquifer, which is the principal drinking water source for hundreds of residents.” Local resident Dianne Hickman, who lives next door to the proposed gas station, commented, “I don’t want a ticking time bomb next to my house. Will Stewart’s pay for clean water when there is the first gas spill? It is ludicrous that anyone would propose a gas station next to a stream, in a flood plain, within a wetland buffer and on top of my drinking water.” Adds SWO member and Wiccopee resident Ann Bell, “Stewart’s has already had five reported gas spills in Dutchess County alone, just in the last year.”

Stewart’s is scheduled to appear before the Town of East Fishkill Zoning Board of Appeals on March 10th to request a variance to have its gas pumps located within a required 100 foot setback on Route 52. Members of the SWO were not made aware of this proposal until it was added to the ZBA agenda late this week. SWO is concerned that in addition to threatening their drinking water, the development promises to bring with it traffic, noise, littering and light pollution. “These impacts will destroy the historic character and quaint charm of our proud community, which has been in existence since the 1700s. Even worse, the enormous underground storage tanks, which hold 25,000 gallons of gasoline at a time, could lead to lasting contamination in the Wiccopee Aquifer and Fishkill Creek watershed. In other words, our way of life and the very water we drink and air we breathe is at risk!,” stated Tim Leed. SWO Member and Wiccopee resident Annette Galloway urges, “Sometimes there’s a moment in time to act – the time is NOW to save our Historic Wiccopee Hamlet.

IMPORTANT DATES – March 10th, 2015 – ZBA non-public session with Stewarts (@ Town Hall) and May 5th. 2015 - Planning Board Public hearing (@ Town Hall). The Public Hearing will be critical for residents to attend and voice their concerns.

We need your help and support, please visit and contact us at www.wiccopee.org to learn more. Sign up to get news and updates, and find out how you can help. Save Wiccopee - Save our 200+ year old historic hamlet and protect our water supply!

Hopefully, this will not be us in 5 years – Could Wiccopee be the Next Hopewell Precision?  Read this Poughkeepsie Journal Editorial

"The Hopewell North Water District."

Kind of has a nice ring to it. And considering it has taken more than a decade to get this far, residents living in the last Superfund site in Dutchess County without a permanent fix must be eager to see the district come to fruition.

This arduous path matters — or should matter — to more than the residents of the Hopewell Precision area in East Fishkill.

It should matter to anyone concerned about clean water, environmental degradation and industrial pollution.

It should matter to anyone who pays taxes.

It should matter to everyone.

Would Stewart's Shops Gas attract more crime to Wiccopee? Stewart's Shops - Excerpts from Poughkeepsie Journal - www.poughkeepsiejournal.com

Police seek 2 men who fled Wappinger armed robbery

Nina Schutzman, Poughkeepsie Journal 8:42 a.m. EDT September 16, 2014

WAPPINGERS FALLS – State police are looking for two subjects who fled after committing an armed robbery in a Town of Wappinger Stewart's Shop on Sunday, police said via news release
At 11:20 p.m., state police responded to the Stewart's Shop on Route 9D.

"Investigation revealed that two male subjects" went into the store, displayed a handgun and demanded money, police said. "The two men took an undisclosed amount of money before fleeing in a small black SUV."

and

Gunman robs Stewart's Shop, January 10, 2014

Town of Poughkeepsie police are looking for information about an armed robbery reported to have occurred about 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Stewart’s Shop at 6 Manchester Circle off Route 55.
Police said Thursday that a male suspect entered the store, went up to a cashier at the register and demanded money while displaying a handgun.

The robber hit the cashier in the face with the gun, and left the store on foot with an undetermined amount of cash and merchandise, police said.

Letter to the Editor Poughkeepsie Journal, February – 28, 2014 from Historic Wiccopee Hamlet resident Dianne Hickman

Gas station would ruin hamlet's ambiance

In response to a letter by Ann Bell, I agree that a gas station is not wanted or needed in a quaint, historic hamlet (“Save Wiccopee, aquifer from Stewart’s Shops” Feb. 17). The residents living in this hamlet chose it for its historic significance and ambiance. All of us spent years and a lot of hard work to renovate and keep these 200-year-old houses intact.

When our town officials were running for election or re-election, voters received cards that said officials wanted to preserve the historic integrity of our town. This is a poor example of doing that. I have a map showing that the Wiccopee General Store was in existence in 1859. Now, Stewart’s Shops wants to bulldoze it to make way to run Fishkill Hook Road straight out to Route 52. Who will be the major benefactor of this? Stewart’s! Who will pay? Taxpayers!

With delis and gas stations less than one mile east and west of the proposed site, I see no need for another one. A gas spill over a large aquifer that many people and businesses depend on for their water would be devastating to not only the Wiccopee hamlet but also to IBM, John Jay High School, Lake City Development and Old Grange Road.

Please help preserve the historic Wiccopee hamlet as it stands by contacting East Fishkill planning and zoning board members. You can also get involved by contacting us at: Savewiccopee@aol.com, or see our website at: www.wiccopee.org. Thank you.

Dianne Hickman, Hopewell Junction

Letter to the Editor Poughkeepsie Journal, February – 17, 2014 from Historic Wiccopee Hamlet resident Ann Bell

Historic Wiccopee is being threatened with inappropriate and harmful development plans that would forever destroy the only intact East Fishkill historic hamlet that has existed much as it did back in the 1800s. The threat again is wanting to put a Stewart’s Shops and gas station over the vital primary Wiccopee aquifer and alongside Bloomer Brook, a tributary of the Fishkill Creek watershed.

The current owner wants to sell to Stewart’s, an out-of-town business (Saratoga Springs) that I believe has no concern about the environmental and historic impacts on this mainly residential historic hamlet.

Stewart’s Shops would demolish the existing general store and the house to the left of it. The proposed map shows a road going in where they now stand.

Stewart’s Shops has not bought the property as of today. We need your support and efforts to prevent an operation like a gas station being built on our primary aquifer, one that we rely on for water and even IBM counts on for their Wiccopee well fields. We cannot afford to threaten this precious water supply with possible contamination as accidents and spills do happen, just ask the residents of Lake City across from John Jay.

Please write to the East Fishkill town and zoning boards at East Fishkill Town Hall, 330 Route 376, Hopewell Junction, NY 12533 to voice your concerns. The community does not want or need another gas station. We need to preserve and protect our resources. If you want to get more involved, please visit us at www.wiccopee.org or email savewiccopee@aol.com.

Ann Bell, East Fishkill

Copyright© 2014-2015 Save Wiccopee/Wiccopee.org All Rights Reserved
Information believed accurate, not warranted.

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