NARROWSBURG – The final four projects completed under the Upper Delaware Council’s (UDC)
Fiscal Year 2014 Technical Assistance Grants program funded two economic impact studies, an emergencymanagement plan, and production of a township historic documentary.
In all for the 2014 round, the UDC awarded nine projects totaling $25,000 at the Oct. 3, 2013 meeting. The deadline to complete projects was August 22, 2014.
Technical Assistance Grants (TAGs) are available competitively to the UDC’s 13 member towns and
townships, and five encompassing county governments in NY and PA, for non-construction projects that address goals and needs identified in the River Management Plan for the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River.
From 1988 to 2014, the UDC has awarded a cumulative total of $745,394 to fund 219 projects. The
Town of Hancock received $5,168.01 to coordinate an “Upper Delaware River Cold Water Fishing
and Boating Economic Impact Study.”
The town’s subcontractors, the Delaware County Department of Economic Development and Friends of the Upper Delaware River, Inc., commissioned Shepstone Management Co. of Honesdale, PA to produce the study, for which the Delaware County Industrial Development Agency provided $10,000 in seed money.
The project goal was to develop and promote an economic analysis of the unique coldwater ecosystem of the Upper Delaware River watershed. Research revealed that the current net value of the fishery is $414 million, derived from $305 million in economic activity plus $109 million in second home real estate values connected with that activity.
Furthermore, the value of the coldwater fishery as both a boating and fishing resource, and as the foundation for camping and second home visitation, would be enhanced by $274 million with more consistent coldwater releases.
The study has been presented and distributed to more than 400 individuals and entities throughout the watershed, including businesses, media outlets, elected officials, tourism agencies, conservation and civic organizations.
The Town of Lumberland was awarded $5,000 for a report prepared by subcontractor Fairweather Consulting of New Paltz, NY titled “An Estimate of Tourism Visitation to the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway.”
Peter Fairweather’s analysis of data suggests an approximate range of 283,000 to 341,000 visitors coming to the state-designated byway corridor along NYS Route 97 annually for outdoor recreation-related activities.
The report analyzes existing data collection methodology, describes various types of leisure travelers that may represent an untapped market, and compares the amount of spending to the amount of selling in the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway region to help identify unrealized economic opportunities.
Shohola Township, PA received a $5,000 Technical Assistance Grant for a history project. The township worked with the Shohola Railroad & Historical Society and Dennis Lee of Dingmans Ferry, PA, owner of Tribute Productions.
They generated an indexed library of 2,700 historic photos from various collections that were identified, digitized and catalogued. The second phase of the project was Lee’s production and direction of a 40-minute DVD titled “Shohola Along the River” with historical narration, music, and imagery. The documentary had a public premiere on Aug. 9 at the Rohman Park Pavilion. The Shohola Railroad & Historical Society has copies available for $10 each.
The UDC awarded the Town of Tusten $3,500 to create a Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan. The town subcontracted with Barton & Loguidice of Syracuse, NY for this project with the objective of establishing plans and procedures for a town-wide coordinated effort to emergencies, and to minimize hazards to lives, property, and the environment.
The document plans for various types of crises, updates contacts and communication systems for
emergency alerts, establishes mobilization plans for a local Command Center, prepares for emergency shelters, sets out schedules for training drills and exercises, and addresses risk reduction measures.
Please visit www.upperdelawarecouncil.org or call (845) 252-3022 for UDC Technical Assistance Grant program guidelines and a directory of projects accomplished.