While stories of young people breaking into the empty Bennett College buildings are legion on the Internet, the new owners are taking the issue of safety seriously. The
New York State Police made five arrests of Bennett trespassers in August and September.
Oakleigh Thorne has given the state police permission to arrest anyone who trespasses on the property. Clearly visible signs warn trespassers of the consequences. The state police are called by residents of the Bennett condos when they see trespassers. Because there is a fence and the buildings are sealed, trespassing is a criminal offense punishable by fines and jail time.
We again revisit our perennial favorite for the front page, a picture of the decay and decline of Halcyon Hall, once the centerpiece of Bennett College and before that,a hotel whose patrons were the rich and famous. As it continues its final stages of death agony in full view of the entire community, we wonder why this edifice is still standing.A demolition order was issued by the Village building inspector over a year ago, yet it stands in defiance of that order, as if the order was just so much useless paper.
We would like to know, is anyone backing up the building inspector? Is anyone setting a deadline that means something?Is anyone being held responsible for the expenses the village is running up, doing what the owner should have done - building a security fence, policing the property, making an effort to keep vandals and teenagers out of an attractive nuisance, planning for the future of the property?