September 1, 2012

Freeville Earthship

It has its own amazing blog - you really just need to see it. (It's on Ed Hill Road near the Cornell Organic farm if you want to see it from the road, in the area where Angelika's orchard was....

Posted by simon at 4:34 PM

Gas leases fading?

It's still mostly rumor, but it sounds like Anschutz and other gas companies aren't putting up resistance to lease expirations any longer. People who signed leases long enough ago for the initial expiration date to have passed can file for...

Posted by simon at 4:06 PM

October 20, 2011

Mortgages don't like gas leases

The New York Times has an extended article today about conflicts between mortgages and gas drilling agreements - basically stating that by signing a gas lease (with surface rights), you're making the property ineligible for most mortgages, especially the "Uniform"...

Posted by simon at 12:23 PM

April 18, 2011

Absentee landlords and road widening

Tompkins Weekly's previous issue (4.8MB PDF) had a couple of articles on happenings outside of Dryden that seemed relevant here. There was a piece on Jacksonville, a hamlet in Ulysses that seems to be suffering a plague much like the...

Posted by simon at 10:24 PM

Empty psychedelics

When I first saw the day-glo mailbox at 366 and Freese Road, I thought I was hallucinating. As it's stayed there, however, it's become clear that despite the colors, it's not a hallucination, but more a case of wearing a...

Posted by simon at 7:31 AM

April 2, 2011

Tribulations and teepees

This morning's Ithaca Journal tells the story of Chris Muka and Common Land, Inc., mostly from their perspective. When we read the announcement for Common Land's auction, Angelika thought it was mostly an opportunity to pay taxes on the land...

Posted by simon at 5:03 PM

March 23, 2011

Spring activities blossoming; American "in-fracktion"

Yes, there's plenty of snow coming today, but Cathy Wakeman is also right that the pulse of Dryden activities is picking up. She notes not only flowers, but a craft fair, lasagna dinner, roast beef dinner, jazz desert night, youth...

Posted by simon at 6:36 AM

December 22, 2010

Land for sale; some restrictions may apply

A commenter, Jason, has resolved the teepee mystery; the teepees were actually for public use, but the land they were on is to be sold January 8th at the Dryden VFW. You can find details of the auction at the...

Posted by simon at 5:23 AM

July 8, 2010

First Impressions of last night's Varna meeting

Last night's meeting at the Varna Community Center to discuss Stephen Lucente's plans for development was one of the strangest meetings I've ever attended. I don't think it was just the heat. A few of the highlights, from my definitely...

Posted by simon at 8:08 AM

October 22, 2009

Move in next door

A couple of years ago, the house to my west was for sale, and I took a lot of pictures of it. It's for sale once again, and I just got a notice from the realtor that they're having an...

Posted by simon at 5:23 PM

February 4, 2008

More Manos trial news

It's been a busy few days, and I need to catch up with the Journal before it becomes too much to catch up with... Saturday's paper had the latest testimony from the Manos trial, and today's has reflections on the...

Posted by simon at 12:25 PM

July 10, 2007

Neighborhood nursery news

There's been a lot happening this summer at the nurseries near my house. At The Orchid Place, they've added a huge fenced and trellised area where they're growing squash on the trellis and other vegetables below. The squash is growing...

Posted by simon at 6:45 PM

June 30, 2007

Won't you be my neighbor?

I was surprised last week to see an "Open House" sign on my neighbor's house. I was coming back from bicycling today and saw the sign again, so figured I should check it out. Steve Moraff was there, happy to...

Posted by simon at 10:09 PM

March 6, 2006

Aramark building on the move?

It turns out I'd bookmarked the listing for the Aramark building at 13 and Etna Lane, and clicked on it by accident yesterday. It's now listed as " In Contract", last updated March 2nd. Maybe something interesting will happen there....

Posted by simon at 8:10 PM

February 18, 2006

Helping the Dominican Republic

A group of teenagers from Dryden, Ithaca, Lansing, and Trumansburg will be traveling to Monte Plata in the Dominican Republic this week to deliver supplies and paint houses. Peter Mattingly, a Dryden High School freshman, collected 300 Spanish-language books for...

Posted by simon at 7:21 AM

December 5, 2005

Assessment likely moving to 3-year cycle

County Legislator Mike Lane looks poised to deliver on one of his key campaign issues, the need for a three-year cycle on assessments to reduce the annual shocks. This morning's Journal reports that the legislature will hold a public hearing...

Posted by simon at 8:18 AM

April 29, 2005

County assessments up 9.13%, Town up 8.18%

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports that taxable assessments in Tompkins County are up 9.13%. Tracking down the more detailed breakdown from the assessor's office (14KB PDF), the Town of Dryden is listed with an 8.18% increase and the Villages of...

Posted by simon at 7:29 AM

March 26, 2005

Golf course sale raises conflict of interest, other questions

This week's Dryden Courier has a must-read article on the March 11th auction of the Lakeview Golf Course, where it was purchased by its current owner, George Szlasa. It's definitely worth getting up now and going out to buy the...

Posted by simon at 9:27 AM

March 6, 2005

Information Meeting on Town Hall land purchase

Thursday's hour-long information meeting on the land purchase for the new Town Hall brought over 25 attendees to find out what the town's plans were for the 47 acres the Town is purchasing behind the existing Town Hall for $100,000....

Posted by simon at 12:41 PM

February 26, 2005

Dryden man helps free kidnapped Egyptians

Sergeant Matthew Cornell, who graduated from Dryden High School in 2002, helped rescue two Eqyptian technicians from kidnappers in Iraq on February 7th. Two of the three men who fled the vehicle were captured. The Journal has a long piece...

Posted by simon at 7:56 AM

January 15, 2005

Town hall and park lands

As I mentioned yesterday, one of the major issues at Thursday night's Town Board meeting was the purchase of land for the town hall, and the interest expressed by a number of board members in including recreation land in that...

Posted by simon at 5:05 PM

September 9, 2004

Students back at school

Wednesday morning's Ithaca Journal reports on the return of students to schools. Dryden schools opened Tuesday. The Dryden Recreation Department is hosting fall sports events, including an eight-week field hockey program and the NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass and Kick contest,...

Posted by simon at 1:13 AM

June 2, 2004

Dryden legislators split on assessments

Today's Journal reports that the County Legislature voted 9-5 against a proposal for a public hearing on shifting to a three-year assessment cycle put forward by Dryden County Legislator Mike Lane. Lane voted for it, while the other two legislators...

Posted by simon at 8:26 AM

May 25, 2004

Assessment hearings today; power outages

The Ithaca Journal reports that the Tompkins County Board of Assessment Review is meeting today to review 290 scheduled grievances plus walk-ins. Scheduled sessions are from 10am to 2pm, while unscheduled sessions are from 4pm to 8pm. Both will be...

Posted by simon at 7:52 AM

May 21, 2004

Golf course discussion at Town Board

Posted by simon at 12:45 PM

Lane attempts to reduce assessment frequency

County Legislator Mike Lane put forward a resolution to shift assessment from every year to every three years, citing rapid increases in the last few years, but the meeting of the Government Operations Council wouldn't move on it. (I stopped...

Posted by simon at 8:15 AM

May 19, 2004

Dryden residential assessments lowest increase in county

Dryden has the only residential assessment increase below 10% in all of Tompkins County, with a 9.11% increase. The table of preliminary assessments by town (which accompanied this article in yesterday's Journal) also shows neighboring Groton with a 12.85% increase,...

Posted by simon at 8:34 AM

May 10, 2004

Assessment hearings and planning meetings

Today's Ithaca Journal includes schedules of assessment hearings and comprehensive plan meetings. The local advisory board for assessments will meet at the Dryden Town Hall (map) on Thursday, May 20th, from 3pm to 6pm to hear property owners who wish...

Posted by simon at 12:27 PM

May 1, 2004

Assessments, laurels, darts

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports that assessments are going to be up around 11% county-wide, and "the largest assessment increases occurred in Enfield (21 percent), Ulysses (14.83 percent), and Newfield (13.47 percent)." The City and Town of Ithaca were both...

Posted by simon at 10:06 AM

April 16, 2004

Lane challenges annual assessments

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports that County Legislator Michael Lane is proposing legislation to shift from annual assessment to a three-year cycle., though it isn't clear how much support there is for that in the legislature. A simultaneous combination of...

Posted by simon at 8:33 AM

April 1, 2004

Fair Housing Month, Art, Etna Community Association

This week's issue of The Shopper includes an ad proclaiming April to be Fair Housing Month in the Village of Dryden, an ad from the Dryden Schools Art Department asking for public support in keeping art programs from getting cut...

Posted by simon at 7:43 PM

March 31, 2004

Examining the golf course purchase

Today's golf course article does what I'd hoped the Journal would do in the Our Towns section - take a deeper look at an issue that's been building for some time. The article captures some of the division on the...

Posted by simon at 8:44 AM

March 17, 2004

Schools testing, budgets, taxes

Today's Ithaca Journal has an extended article on schools looking forward to tomorrow's state test results, and opens with discussion of Dryden Intermediate School's fourth grade. There's also a piece on the Ithaca City School District's budget plan, which currently...

Posted by simon at 7:08 AM

March 5, 2004

Annexation, golf course in Dryden Courier

I wish the Dryden Courier was more readily available. Its sister publication, the Ithaca Times, is widely available, both for free in the Ithaca area (extending out to at least the Route 13/366 overlap) and online, while the Dryden Courier...

Posted by simon at 5:34 PM

Local issues, county taxes

This morning's Ithaca Journal includes two articles looking at issues affecting towns throughout the county, though neither has much Dryden-specific detail. The first looks at how towns outside the City and Town of Ithaca plan not to accept marriage certificate...

Posted by simon at 8:55 AM

March 3, 2004

Commuters, ballots, assessment

It's another quiet day for news in Dryden, but the Ithaca Journal has a story on commuters who drive from other counties to Tompkins County, many of whom drive through Dryden, as well as information on absentee ballots for upcoming...

Posted by simon at 8:30 AM

March 1, 2004

Assessments and taxes

The Ithaca Journal's editorial today examines the annual assessment process. This process has come under fire lately, largely because taxes and assessments have risen at the same time. I think the Journal is right that annual assessment and a central...

Posted by simon at 3:52 PM

February 29, 2004

Affordable housing in Dryden

Rising assessments, roads filled with 14,000 out-of-county commuters, and questions about how best to develop the town all connect to a common problem: Tompkins County's lack of housing, especially affordable housing. A guest column in the Ithaca Journal (about affordable...

Posted by simon at 10:19 AM

February 28, 2004

Assessment Disclosure Notice arrives

As noted earlier, the Department of Assessment mailed new Dryden assessments on February 27, and ours is here today. It went up 17.5% for us this year, less than the 23% it climbed last year....

Posted by simon at 2:00 PM

February 25, 2004

Property and related taxes

There are lots of small pieces in the Journal today on property taxes: STAR Enhanced and Senior Citizen's renewals must be returned to the Department of Assessment by Monday Tompkins County is considering increasing the mortgage recording taxes Farmers spoke...

Posted by simon at 5:58 PM

February 20, 2004

Real estate value issues

Tompkins County will consider ending annual assessment, after a number of years in which real estate prices and assessments have increased substantially. State aid supporting annual assessments may not come this year, and property-owners have been unhappy. On the other...

Posted by simon at 8:51 AM

February 13, 2004

Tompkins County housing costs

Assessments are going up, but so are housing costs and apparently rents as well. The Ithaca Journal has both an article and an editorial on the subject. The median price of a home in Tompkins County is $119,500. As I...

Posted by simon at 10:50 AM

February 11, 2004

Housing costs in Tompkins climb

The Ithaca Journal reports on rising real estate prices in Tompkins County, driving assessments higher and making it harder for people to buy homes in the county. People are moving further out as a result, it seems. The Community Foundation...

Posted by simon at 10:32 AM

February 10, 2004

First assessment class held

The Ithaca Journal reports on the first of three classes explaining the assessment process in Tompkins County. Future classes are at Lansing Town Hall (map) from 7-9pm on February 24, and at Ulysses Town Hall (map) from 7-9pm on March...

Posted by simon at 10:15 AM

February 7, 2004

Hazard mitigation, assessments, slippery roads

The 1996 Virgil Creek flood leads a story on hazard mitigation in today's Ithaca Journal, examining how the county and the towns are working on plans to protect themselves from various kinds of disasters. There's also more on assessments. The...

Posted by simon at 9:40 AM

February 3, 2004

More Varna properties for sale

While driving through Varna the other day, I noticed a house with a Century 21 sign in front of it. I was curious how much it cost relative to the rental properties I'd noticed last month, so I looked it...

Posted by simon at 8:58 AM

January 26, 2004

Assessment information

Valeria Coggin, director of the Tompkins County Department of Assessment, has a guest editorial in today's Ithaca Journal on how property assessment works, including a listing of informational meetings. (None are in Dryden, unfortunately.) As reported in an earlier article,...

Posted by simon at 8:56 AM

January 19, 2004

More rental sites

Last week I noted that some rental properties in Varna were for sale, and Kimball Real Estate's site had a lot of information on them. Looking around further, I found some other rental agencies with a fair amount of information...

Posted by simon at 6:14 PM

January 16, 2004

No news, sort of

I'd guessed that there would be an Ithaca Journal story today on the Town Board meeting last night, but there isn't - maybe tomorrow? I'll be writing up my own story, though that'll have to wait until later today, as...

Posted by simon at 8:29 AM

January 12, 2004

Apartment buildings for sale in Varna

I noticed a few weeks ago that several houses in Varna had for sale signs on them, all from Christopher George Real Estate, which tends to focus on Ithaca rental properties. Christopher George don't seem to have a web site,...

Posted by simon at 12:40 AM