The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Mark Simonson

May 12, 2014

Changes to landscape, local media made news in May 1974


A delay in the production of steel was preventing further progress on the garage, at the corner of Market Street and Chestnut Street Extension. “Sarkisian Brothers Construction … told City Engineer John Buck Wednesday they were not expecting deliveries of necessary small steel pieces until the beginning of August.” The garage wasn’t completed until the late months of 1975.

Delays had also been plaguing the construction of Interstate 88 in the Oneonta area since November 1973. It was reported on Saturday, May 25, that a legal path had been cleared for work to resume on two sections in Oneonta. A lawsuit in 1973 had charged that the Federal Highway Administration had failed to perform the proper environmental impact studies on the highway, and a judge’s injunction had put a halt to construction. Work resumed immediately and the local portion of the road was opened to traffic in the late fall.

That story of “Oneonta I-88 sections get green light” became the final front page headline in the newspaper that had been called The Oneonta Star for decades. Come Tuesday, May 28, the newspaper had a new look and a new name, The Daily Star.

On another media front, five prominent Oneontans joined together to begin another attempt at regular local television programming in the city.

Lawyer Joseph P. Molinari, James Lettis, Mel Farmer, Bill Bright and Gerald VanDusen became major stockholders in a new operation called OKTV. The Star reported on Friday, May 10, that OKTV would start programming over cable channel 5 the following Monday, with local programs on weekday evenings.

Farmer, whose previous attempt at local programming on an operation called CV-5, went off the air earlier in the year.

Early local shows included a nightly 10 p.m. newscast with Ron Shapley, then a sports director at WDOS radio. Friday night Little League games were shown, as well as other locally hosted shows, in addition to reruns of popular 1950s TV series and popular movies of the 1930s and ‘40s.

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Mark Simonson

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