Welcome to The Town of Olive!
Nestled in the Catskill Mountains of New York State is 40,000 acres named the Town of Olive. In 1824, theory has it that it was so named from the biblical story of the dove returning to Noah’s ark with an Olive branch. The Ashokan Reservoir geographically divides Olive–north and south. The hamlets around the shoreline are Boiceville, Olivebridge, Samsonville, Krumville, Shokan, West Shokan, and Ashokan.
The passing of the Water Act of 1905 led to the building of the handmade Ashokan Dam on the Esopus Creek and upon its completion in 1916 created the Ashokan Reservoir, a main water supply for the City of New York-Olive’s largest landowner. The demand for pure, clean drinking water for New York City inhabitants changed the course of history for the Town of Olive and still has an impact on everyday life. The Town center and the majority of the Town’s residents were forced from the rich Esopus Valley and relocated to the nearby foothills. In May of 1997 Land Use Regulations, which could become a model for the rest of the country, became effective as a Memorandum of Agreement was signed between Watershed Towns and the City of New York to provide for protection of water quality throughout the New York City Watershed.
Traveling west on State Route 28, Olive is thirty minutes from Kingston, New York—the first capitol of New York State-and is a little more than an hour travel time to the current state capitol of Albany. Being only two hours north of New York City and totally within the Catskill State Park, Olive has been a seasonal recreational area for New Yorkers. The boarding house days and hunting camps of the 30′s, 40′s, and 50′s have vanished and are now seasonal second homes or primary residences for many city folk.
The major industries of timber harvesting, tanneries, and excelsior mills, which once ravaged the mountains of Olive, have long vanished as the Catskill Forest Preserve was created in 1885 keeping forever the preserve as wild forest lands. The Catskills have been a favorite tourist destination for over 100 years. Today’s Olive is primarily residential in nature, with a large percentage of seasonal residents, and a limited number of backyard farms with victory gardens.
Due to increases from Ulster County Resource Recovery Agency (UCRRA) the Town Board has had to look at passing those increases on to our residents. Starting August 1, 2014, the cost of a Transfer Station Card will be $50.00 which puts the cost of a 30-40 gallon bag of solid waste at $5.00. The cards you now have will be honored until you have exhausted all the punches. The Ulster County Supervisors’ Association had requested at our June meeting that the UCRRA give us another year before imposing all the increased fees. We will not be experiencing the costs of purchasing new equipment until June 30, 2015. Pull charges will also remain the same until June 30, 2015. However, increases will be seen in the tipping fees. They have advised us that since no new roll-off boxes or roll-off trucks will be purchased between now and June 30, 2015, service may be delayed at some point. We are being informed by the UCRRA that “if all municipalities that currently have a Solid Waste Management Agreement with the Agency don’t agree to a 10-year contract prior to July 1, 2015 the Agency will be forced to dissolve its roll-off service and will liquidate the assets associated with such.” The proposed contract would not allow Olive to take their refuse anywhere but the UCRRA because of “flow control” nor would it provide Olive with fixed rates on tipping fees and pull charges.