hill country observerThe independent newspaper of eastern New York, southwestern Vermont and the Berkshires

February-March 2022Facebook linkHill Country Observer TwitterHill Country Instagram page NEWS ARCHIVE

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In New York’s new farm overtime rules, progress or ruin?

Labor and social justice activists are calling it a huge step forward for the lives of farm workers in New York. But many farmers and their advocates say they fear the change could deliver a mortal blow to agricultural businesses across the state. On Jan. 28, the state’s Farm Laborer Wage Board voted to lower the threshold at which farm laborers become eligible for overtime pay to 40 hours -- the standard that’s been applied to hourly workers in nearly every other economic sector for decades.
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Big hearts for big ears

Pet rabbits find sanctuary at new Saratoga-area shelter.
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Delgado-Molinaro race draws national attention, dollars

The Hudson Valley congressional race taking shape between U.S. Rep. Antonio Delgado and challenger Marcus Molinaro could wind up being among the key contests nationally that determine control of the U.S. House of Representatives for the next two years, political experts say. Delgado, D-Rhinebeck, is seeking a third term in November amid a political climate in which Democrats are struggling nationally. Molinaro, the Dutchess County executive for the past decade, is considered a potentially formidable challenger who gained a statewide profile as the Republican candidate for governor in 2018.

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An artist who guided the shape of printmaking

In 1947, on West 17th Street in New York, Robert Blackburn founded what would become the oldest artist-operated printmaking workshop in the nation. It was an open and experimental place where he could grow his own art -- and a community of artists from New York City and around the world. Blackburn ran the shop for nearly 60 years in his lifetime, and he made sure it is still running nearly 20 years after his death. Now The Hyde Collection in Glens Falls is welcoming his work and his story as it hosts “Robert Blackburn and Modern American Printmaking.”

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Belcher Hollow Forge, Handforged iron