January 14, 2013

Lookback: Jan. 14-20

25 YEARS — 1988

▶ Federal kickback charges against Malone Public Works Supervisor Ralph Jesmer have been dropped, but charges could be re-instituted, according to U. S. prosecuting attorney Michele Hirshman. Jesmer was one of five North Country highway superintendents charged in an FBI sting dubbed “Operation Double Steel.”

▶ Schuyler Falls town officials and a consulting engineer resolved a lingering financial dispute, clearing the way for work to resume on the stalled Woods Mills Water District project. Under pressure from Woods Mills residents eager to see the project continue, the Schuyler Falls Town Board agreed to pay an outstanding $900 debt to Laberge Engineering and Consulting Group Ltd.

▶ Any major expansion of the Adirondack Forest Preserve could cripple the already ailing forest products industry in Tupper Lake, foresters warn. A forester with the St. Lawrence County Forester Department said that increasing the Forest Preserve by 10 percent, a stated goal of the Adirondack Council, would mean the eventual purchase of more than 500,000 acres, the impact of which would be devastating to that industry.

▶ More than two years after three deaths occurred on the Northway involving Canadian truck drivers, New York and the province of Québec have agreed to enforce traffic convictions against drivers from both sides of the border. The agreement is expected to stop Canadian truckers from ignoring traffic summonses written in New York.

50 YEARS — 1963

▶ Edward Joseph Fontaine, 18, and Joseph John MacKay, 17, were formally indicted for first-degree murder by the Clinton County grand jury. The two Mount Assumption Institute students, charged by city police with the bludgeon slaying last December of Rowe Buick automobile salesman Harold Stratton, were brought before Supreme Court justice Harold Soden for arraignment immediately following the presentation of the indictments.

▶ Fire caused an estimated $100,000 worth of damage to the conveyors and crushers in the Republic Steel Corp. in Lyon Mountain. The blaze, which firemen think started in a faulty electric heater, will delay for at least a week the reopening of the mines a company spokesman said.

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