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AROUND THE STATE

Cayuga Nation scraps plan for casino in Monticello

MONTICELLO (AP) -- The Cayuga Nation of New York isn't building a casino in Sullivan County after all.

And another tribe with eyes on Sullivan -- the Seneca Cayugas of Oklahoma -- isn't such a sure bet, either.

In October, Catskill Development said it was teaming up with the Cayuga Nation to build a casino at Monticello Raceway. Catskill said it planned to file its Bureau of Indian Affairs application by late November. That never happened. Now it looks like it never will.

"The deal's off," says Cayuga spokesman Clint Halftown.

Also in October, Rochester developer David Flaum unveiled his casino plans for Mamakating -- one high atop the wooded Shawangunk Ridge, just off Route 17, and another a few miles east in the Wurtsboro Hills.

The tribe, the Seneca Cayugas of Oklahoma, hasn't taken any formal steps.

And there's fierce opposition to a casino in this town of nationally known ecologically sensitive spots. The Basha Kill Area Association promises a huge turnout to protest the casinos at the final public hearing on the town's master plan later this month.

River contaminated by PCBs also contains lead, cadmium

SCHENECTADY (AP) -- PCBs aren't the only contaminants in the Hudson River.

Sediment cores taken from the southern end of the Thompson Island Pool -- a 5-mile stretch of the river where dredging is slated to occur -- also show high levels of lead and cadmium.

"There is gross contamination throughout most of the sediment," said Richard Bopp, an associate professor of earth and environmental science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, during a seminar Wednesday night.

The PCBs found in the sediment come from General Electric Co., which discharged 1.3 million pounds of the chemical into the river between 1946 and 1977, when it was banned.

The metals have no connection to GE, which could be held responsible for the $460 million cleanup. They came from the Hercules and Ciba-Geigy factory site in Queensbury, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

The 60-acre site -- listed on the state's Superfund list -- was used by various companies between 1901 and 1987 for manufacturing pigments and wallpaper. The waste was dumped in a lagoon and creek that flowed into the Hudson River.

State OKs plan for bridge to 'Last of Mohicans' cave

GLENS FALLS (AP) -- A state agency has approved a plan to build a pedestrian bridge to the cave made famous in James Fenimore Cooper's novel "The Last of the Mohicans."

The state Office of Historic Preservation endorsed the proposal to build the bridge from the South Glens Falls side of the Hudson River to the island overlooking the historic cave 45 miles north of Albany.

The project is expected to cost about $182,000, but the state Department of Transportation has pledged to pay $300,000 for access to the cave as part of a $30 million project to replace a vehicle bridge over the Hudson River.

The next step, according to city Councilman J. Scott Pauquette, is to draft plans for the whole Cooper's Cave project, from viewing platforms to railings. The cave gained fame as the setting of a scene in James Fenimore Cooper's 1826 classic, "The Last of the Mohicans." Until 1961, residents and tourists who went to the rocky river island could walk down to the cave using a spiral staircase from the bridge above.

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