Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Lake Pleasant CHIPS money delayed

LPTB June 19 2020

Lake Pleasant CHIPS money delayed
By PETE KLEIN
LAKE PLEASANT--Superintendent Randy Lavarnway reported at the June 19 meeting of the Lake Pleasant Town Board that the CHIPS money the Town receives for roads has been delayed and Lavarnway feels CHIPS money could be less next year.
Paving of sections of Page St. and Old Page Hill Rd. has been delayed because the piece of equipment that the Gorman Group was going to use has broken down on South Shore Rd.
Lavarnway was asked if he was putting in an insurance claim for the siding that was damaged at the Library? Lavarnway feels it is so small, he will ask the contractor if he has a piece of vinyl to replace the damaged one.
The steps at the Library are completed. The highway crew has hauled about 80% of the stone needed to start paving jobs. The crew has started to help the County with paving in Long Lake.
Superintendent Lavarnway and Supervisor Betsy Bain had a virtual tour conference with FEMA on June 9, still problems with getting the work started on Hamilton Lake Rd. Still discussion on the Fish Mt. Rd. bridge at Park Stream.
OLD BUSINESS
The Board has agreed to have H2O test the contaminated wells 2X a year in the Spring and again in the Fall. Councilperson Nancy Seifts reported that the Hamilton County Treasurer’s office has completed the first payroll for the Town with her help. The Town offices are working on doing deposits, mailing checks out and getting time sheets to the County for payroll. Nancy has set up spread sheets to make the transition easier. Nancy said there is a learning curve on all sides.
Supervisor Bain and Councilperson Meixner meet to review the 2020 Emergency Operations Plan. They reviewed and updated the supply list and the emergency call list. Still trying to figure out a safe shelter for Trailer park citizens if there was ever a Tornado warning. Primary Care basement was considered but rejected. North Country Bible Church, which is the former elementary school, is being considered. Kevin Braunius has been asked to speak to the Deacon of the Church to see if that could be an option if ever there was a tornado warning.
ADOPT A VACATION DONATION SICK TIME POLICY
A resolution to adopt a vacation donation sick time policy was offered by, Neil McGovern 2nd by Cristine Meixner.
“RESOLVED, Vacation Donation Time is to be used by fellow employees who experience medical emergencies, long-term personal illness, illness on the part of an immediate family member living in his or her household, or who are affected by major disasters and have exhausted all paid leave available to them; and would otherwise be subject to a severe loss of income during a continuing absence from work.
“Employees will be eligible to receive leave only after they have submitted a written request for leave that describes the specific medical emergency or medical condition and all other available plaid leave has been exhausted. There is no maximum number of times a donor may make donations to an eligible recipient. Donations must be made in hours without regard to the dollar value of the donated leave.
“Recipient cannot receive compensation through the Town of Lake Pleasant’s Vacation Donation Time Policy and the Town of Lake Pleasant’s Paid Family Leave Policy at the same time. The employee using donated vacation leave credits will not earn biweekly leave accruals or observe holidays nor do they receive personal leave or vacation bonus days if their anniversary dates fall while they are using donated leave credits. While using donated vacation leave credits, an employee will continue to have health insurance premiums; retirement contributions and other payroll deductions withheld from their paycheck provided the paycheck is of an amount sufficient to cover these deductions. Anyone who wants to donate their vacation time should contact their department head. The policy is not intended to provide supplemental income which would result in compensation levels exceeding normal wages for employees who have other sources of substitute income such as that provided by disability insurance programs.”
“ADOPTED by the following vote. Ayes: Supervisor Bain, Councilperson: Neil McGovern, Nancy Seifts, Don Braunius, Cristine Meixner. Nays: None.
OTHER BUSINESS
Councilperson McGovern has not connected with Mike Camoin about the ring of fire that would be part of the July 4th celebration, further discussion.
The Town was asked to adopt 2 resolutions from the Adirondack Local Government Review Board.
A Resolution requesting review and change of APA policy on agency review of proposals for new telecommunications towers and other tall structures in the Adirondack Park was offered by Neil McGovern 2nd by Don Braunius and adopted by all.
A resolution recommending actions to strengthen the clean drained and dry aquatic invasive species (ais) spread prevention law was offered by Cristine Meixner 2nd by Neil McGovern and adopted by all.
RECREATION COMMITTEE
Nancy Seifts and Don Braunius met and after much discussion, recommended to the Board not to have summer recreation this year because of COVID-19. Maybe there could be trips organized later in the summer if the numbers for the Coronavirus go down. Someone from the committee will inform the Rec. Director Sammy Desrochers.
ROUNDTABLE
Councilperson Don Braunius said he is getting more requests for garden plots at the community garden. There is a volunteer who is willing to replace Don in the future. He asked about the benches that are put out all over the community if they are being put out this year? He was told they were not going to be put out in the Village at this time. Would it be possible to put the few around the Town? Lavarnway will investigate this because no-one knows where the 3 benches are stored and if they can get to them. The benches would go one at Airdville Cemetery, one at the Court House and one by the Library.
Councilperson McGovern would like to see the fireworks go on this year. It is still undecided. McGovern also reported that there was a great Community turnout for a drive by birthday celebration for Ed Winchell’s 80th.
Supervisor Bain said she has contacted BST Company (audit company) about when they would be starting the 2019 fiscal audit? The Town had to put off the audit because there was no-one in the Acct. Clerk’s Office to provide reports to the Company.
Superintendent Lavarnway said that the new mechanic Donald Pinkerton 111 that was hired to replace Malcolm Cooke will start this Wednesday.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Deborah O’Rourke, Town Clerk.

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Indian Lake Community Farmers Market Season Opens

Indian Lake Community Farmers Market Season Opens

Indian Lake--Beginning July 4, the Indian Lake Community Farmers Market (ILCFM) will be open every Saturday, from 10 AM to 2 PM, through September 26, on the Indian Central School lawn, Route 28.
The Market Steering Committee's goals are to provide fresh, healthy, and affordable food to residents and visitors, provide a venue for local farmers and vendors to sell their products and to assist the Town of Indian Lake in revitalizing the Main Street.
Featured weekly will be locally-grown vegetables and fruits, maple syrup products, baked goods, plants, cut flowers, meats, dairy, poultry, preserves, honey and much more.  "The market is a great opportunity to bring fresh, affordable and healthy food to our community,” said committee chairs, Brenda Valentine and Taff Fitterer.
2020 market vendors include:
Hope Valley Farm - Vegetables, herbs, garlic scapes, pesto, annual and perennial plants
Blackberry Hill Farm and Sanctuary - Organically grown vegetables and herbs, organically raised chickens and turkeys and eggs, non-gmo heritage breed pork
Dawn's Delights - Home Baked Goods - pies, cakes, cookies, brownies, crumb cakes, loaf breads, cheesecakes, fresh salsa, and authentic Italian pasta sauce
Homemade Quits and Crafts - Jams, jellies, candy, maple syrup products and quilts
Individuals interested in volunteering to serve on the Indian Lake Farmers Market Steering Committee, become a market vendor or for more information, contact the Committee at 518-648-5636 or adkcamp1@frontier.com

Friday, June 26, 2020

Wells school superintendent on school opening task force

WCS BOE June 17 2020

Wells school superintendent on school opening task force
By PETE KLEIN
WELLS—When the Wells Central School Board of Education met on June 17, Superintendent Thomas D. Sincavage reported he was selected to be a member of the NYSED Task Force which is discussing the reopening of schools with the new regulations and guidelines in place.
Sincavage went on to say work continues on the Capital Project and it is roughly 80% complete. The third phase of asbestos abatement was approved. Mr. Sincavage went over the contingency budget balance. The Board discussed different options for use of any potential remaining funds.
Sincavage reviewed the enrollment report which remains at 145. He did note that we have a class of 20 graduating seniors and are projecting to add seven students in the fall. Sincavage reviewed the Fund Balance Report. The district remains in a healthy financial position and with the current Capital reserve fund the district plans to pay off the current Capital project in full.
 The last item is the NYSED Regional Task Force. Sincavage was selected to be a member of the task force which is discussing the reopening of schools with the new regulations and guidelines in place.
Jeremy J. Siddon, Building Principal, gave the Athletic Director’s Report. The athletic awards were hosted virtually this year. Fall sports sign ups are currently being done online.
APPROVALS
The Wells Central School Board of Education accepted the results of voting on June 16, 2020 as follows: The 2020/2021 Budget Resolution: 197 yes votes and 68 no votes Board Member Election: Rachel Lauria received 255 votes.
The motion was made by William Stuart and seconded by Kenneth Hoffman and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education approved the District Wide School Safety Plan, as presented on a motion made by William Stuart, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education approved the contract between the Wells Central School District and Girvin & Ferlazzo P.C. as presented on a motion made by Rachel Lauria, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education recessed to Executive Session at 6:36 p.m. for the purpose of discussing specific personnel matters and/or negotiations on a motion made by Dorman Reese, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education returned to Open Session at 8:31 p.m. on a motion made by Kenneth Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education accepted the resignation of Kathryn Wilt as Teacher’s Assistant effective June 30, 2020 on a motion made by Dorman Reese, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.
The Wells Central School Board of Education approved the agreement for summer school services between Lake Pleasant School and Wells Central School District as presented on a motion made by Kenneth Hoffman, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Rachelle Dwyer, District Clerk.

Old Speculator ladder truck up for sale

Speculator VB June 8 2020

Old Speculator ladder truck up for sale.
By PETE KLEIN
SPECULATOR— At the June 8 meeting of the Speculator Village Board of Trustees, it was reported that to help offset the cost of the New Quint Ladder Truck for the Speculator Volunteer Fire Department, the SVFD is looking to designate the old ladder truck as surplus and sell the truck. The truck cannot be used for fire service and any sale must stipulate that fact. After discussion with Mr. Marshall, there are parts on the truck that can be salvaged for use on other trucks. The tires are in good condition and will be used for the rescue truck to eliminate the cost of having to purchase new tires. The SVFD is looking at a minimum bid of $3,500 and are targeting collectors with a possibility of two (2) with current interests. They plan to advertise in the Hamilton County Express, Facebook, and collector websites.
Trustee Donecker made a motion to designate the old ladder truck surplus, sell it for no less than $3,500 with the proceeds designated to go to the purchase of the Quint Ladder Truck. Trustee McComb seconded and the motion passed by the following vote: ayes – Barrett, Crary, Donecker, McComb, Rudes; nays – none.
WATER/WASTEWATER
Ed Scharpou, WWTP Chief Operator, submitted a written report. Additional commentary was made as follows: In the water department; the annual water quality report was sent out with the last billing cycle, all leaks and concerns with billing have been corrected or attended to, a leak at 105 Ruby Lane was found and is being repaired by an independent contractor at the expense of the homeowner, the radiator at the well building has been replaced, pump #2 was not shutting off when the tank was full so the pump was shut off for a few days and now seems to be functioning properly, lastly a new water service is being installed at the house next to the Lake Pleasant Lodge.
In the Sewer department; new SPDES reporting requirements are being met, Pumpstation #4 charcoal filter has been installed to reduce odors, operators continue operation outside the plant while waiting for the replacement of diffusers, Contract #1 has been extended into July, Contract #2 should be going out to bid in July or August, during the next month there will be discussion on Contracts 2 and 3 and the budget timeline, and after discussion with Mr. Scharpou, Trustee Donecker and Mayor Barrett, it was determined that the Village should have the funds in water and sewer to cover any shortfall we may see in the water and sewer departments resulting from COVID restrictions.
CLERK’S REPORT
Crystal O’Brien gave a verbal Clerk-Treasurer Report.
2020 Village taxes have been sent out, the collection software was installed at the end of May, and we have been receiving payments.
The month of May has been reconciled and closed and Financial Report #10 is ready to review. Mrs. O’Brien started working with Ted from Williamson Law Books Monday on closing the 2019-20 year and the closing should be completed by the end of week.
Sadly, Mrs. Farina has given her two-week notice. She was offered a full-time job. Mrs. Craven has offered to resume her part time duties as business manager while a replacement is found.
OLD BUSINESS
COVID-19 update included the Governor is now allowing outdoor graduation ceremonies up to 150 people, but this does not extend to other types of outdoor gatherings. Mayor Barrett has received a draft of guidance for the Fourth of July fireworks from the Hamilton County Public Health Department. The Village’s current plan conforms with these guidelines except there cannot be any “drive-in” style parking unless there can be a way to enforce social distancing and spacing of parked vehicles.
Chief O’Brien was asked to join the meeting to give his opinion on the fire department being able to park vehicles in the ball field. Chief O’Brien did not feel that he would be able to get the manpower to properly monitor the parking of vehicles and felt it would put the fire fighters in a difficult situation. The Board decided to adjourn making a final decision on the fireworks until next meeting which is two weeks before the planned fireworks.
Halloween Storm - FEMA site inspections are being done virtually and are ongoing, Mr. Croote from Hamilton County Soil and Water department, Mayor Barrett and Mr. Blanchard are evaluating the beach and point Tuesday June 9, 2020.
No new updates on the Verizon Small Cells or the Makomis Fire Tower currently.
Some of the information provided by NYPA for the LED Street lights needed to be corrected, so in the interim Mayor Barrett is looking into alternative funding sources and following up with other municipalities that have installed LED Street lights to provide all relative information to help with discussion in the next meeting.
BOARD ROUND TABLE
Trustee Crary thanked Mrs. Farina for all her work with the Village.
Mayor Barrett advised the Board that the inspection of the Quint Ladder Truck is scheduled for July 8. The completion of the truck is ahead of schedule. The grant request has been submitted and hopefully there will be no delays in receiving the funds, but if the grant monies are not received prior to the completion of the truck, the Village will not be receiving the truck until the funds clear the bank account. Chief O’Brien and Mr. Marshall will be going to Ohio for the inspection, all travel expenses are covered by the grant.
Mayor Barrett advised the Board that the 48th fly-in was a great success. There were ten participants traveling form as far as North Carolina. All ten participants enjoyed their experience and look forward to attending again next year on the first weekend in June 2021.
PUBLIC COMMENT
Rebecca Smith thanked the Board for having no increase in the taxes this year.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Crystal O’Brien, Village Clerk – Treasurer.

Monday, June 22, 2020

Long Lake Central Board of Education holds June 11 meeting

LLCS BOE June 11 2020

Long Lake Central Board of Education holds June 11 meeting
By PETE KLEIN
LONG LAKE--Noelle Short, Principal/Superintendent, reported to the Long Lake Central School Board of Education at its June 11 meeting that the last day of school was Monday, June 15, 2020. She said there will be a virtual end of the year celebration at 11 a.m. Teachers, students and staff have done an excellent job throughout this period, she said.
Grades are being entered and reports cards will be sent out next week.
On Friday, June 12, 2020 there was a virtual Pre-Kindergarten moving up ceremony and Kindergarten graduation. The recording for senior graduation will also happen this day. Student textbooks, supplies, and Chromebooks will be picked up next week.
Short is working on an online summer school program.
The budget vote, board of education election and proposition ballots will be counted on June 16 after 5 p.m. The last day to submit ballots in person was June 9 but mailed ballots were accepted until June 16 5 p.m.
The State is expected to issue guidance in June on reopening in September.
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR APPROVAL
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, to table the Results of the June 9, 2020 Vote.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Michael Farrell, with all in favor, the Non-Resident Student Tuition Rates for 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, the Medical Contract with Dr. Russell Rider for the 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Joan Paula, with all in favor, Sean O’Shell as Class of 2023 (9th Grade) Class Advisor for March 2020 through June 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, Policy #3221 Social Service Dogs.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Brian Penrose, with all in favor, Policy #5676 Privacy and Security for Student Data and Teacher and Principal Data.
Approved: On Motion by Joan Paula, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, Policy #7512 Student Physicals and #7530 Child Abuse and Maltreatment.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Brian Penrose, with all in favor, the Resignation of Kelsie Adams as Secretary to the Superintendent effective August 21, 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, to table the Stipend Rates of Pay/Appointments for the 2020-2021 school year.
Recognized: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, Emily Stephan as Girls’ Varsity Soccer Coach, Benjamin Conboy as Boys’ Varsity Soccer Coach and Ray Hoag as Girls’ Modified Soccer Coach for the 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, CSE/CPSE/504 Recommendations for Student #202772, 202204, 202762, 202301, 202201, 202755, 202801, 202799, 202732, 202720, 201907, 202307, 202749, 202776, 202753, 202402, and 202309.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Joan Paula, with all in favor, to Table the Transfer to Bus Purchase Reserve Fund and Employee Benefits and Accrued Liability Reserve Fund.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, the Legal Retainer with Girvin & Ferlazzo, P.C. for the 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Michael Farrell, with all in favor, the Shared Maintenance Agreement with Tupper Lake CSD for the 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Joan Paula, with all in favor, Kristin Delehanty as Mentor for Hannah Klossner September 2020 through January 2021.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Joan Paula, with all in favor, Be It Resolved that the Board of Education of the Long Lake Central School District hereby accepts the recommendation of the Superintendent to appoint Patrick Curtin for a four (4) year probationary appointment as a teacher of 7-12 Mathematics in the mathematics tenure area, commencing September 1, 2020 and ending August 31, 2024 contingent upon achievement of effective or highly effective APPR ratings necessary to receive tenure throughout his probationary period, consistent with the requirements of Education Law Sections 30122, 3012-c, and/or 3012-d pending certification by September 1, 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, to Continue Employee Benefits for Patrick Curtin July 2020 through August 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, Hannah Klossner (2/3) and Victoria Snide (1/3) as Co-Athletic Coordinators for 2020-2021 school year.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Michael Farrell, with all in favor, the Revised Conditions of Employment for Lisa Walker.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Brian Penrose, with all in favor, to Set Aside the April 8, 2019 Board Approved 2019-2020 School Calendar and Adopt the Revised 2019-2020 School Calendar.
GENERAL DISCUSSION
A discussion on what Tax Anticipation Notes were.
Policy 1st Readings: A first reading of Policy #7511 Immunization of Students.
Michael Farrell asked if there were any updates on the Clerk of the Works for the Capital Project, which there are not. He also asked if it was possible to have in- person meetings for the future. Noelle Short will check on the rules.
EXECUTIVE SESSION
On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Trisha Hosley, with all in favor, to enter Executive Session at 7:15 p.m. to discuss the employment history of three persons.
Approved: On Motion by Trisha Hosley, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, to come out of Executive Session at 8:22 p.m.
Approved: On Motion by Alexandria Harris, seconded by Brian Penrose, with all in favor, the Revised Conditions of Employment for Victoria Snide.

This article is based upon the minutes of Clerk of the Board, Victoria J. Snide.

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Lake Pleasant had smokey flower barrels

LPTB June 10 2020

Lake Pleasant had smokey flower barrels
By PETE KLEIN
LAKE PLEASANT—At the June 10 meeting of the Lake Pleasant Town Board, Highway Superintendent Randy Lavarnway reported that two weeks ago someone called him about smoke coming from one of the flower barrels. Lavarnway was in Perkins Clearing with no cell service. He did not get the message until he was back in the village. Someone had moved the flower barrel away from the building. He contacted the Sheriff’s Office and the Speculator Fire Dept. After looking into the barrel, they noticed that plastic containers were used in the bottom of the planters which had hazardous material left in them. So maybe a cigarette put out in the barrel caused the fire. There was some melting to the siding as a result.
A question was asked if there are any outside camera’s around the Library. The answer was no.
The board then passed a resolution authorizing Lavarnway to order outside cameras for the Library.
The new deck/stairs are coming along at the Library. The Trex has been ordered. They do not have a non-slip product. If needed, there is a non- slip spray that can be used.
Lavarnway told the Board that FEMA is now requiring proof of ownership for each damaged road and culvert before it will do a virtual tour of the damage caused by the Halloween Storm. FEMA’s needs coordinates which Lavarnway has provided by Google Earth maps but they do not match. Lavarnway needs to purchase a more accurate GPS equipment so he can provide FEMA with the coordinates they are requesting, and he feels he be reimbursed 75% of the cost by FEMA. Asked what other Towns are doing Lavarnway told the Board that the Town of Arietta is hiring someone to do their work and the County has Lenny Croote from Soil and Water doing their work.
Culvert and bridge work are going to be the biggest and most expensive project for the Highway Dept. The large culvert on Fish Mt. Road is in area called Park Stream. The option of putting in a 20 ft. culvert would be a huge undertaking to replace the present 10 ft. culvert. The Highway crew will be building a bridge instead. The cost will be around $300,000 of which $30,000 will be for engineering costs. Highway Superintendent Lavarnway said that FEMA will be paying 75% of all projects that result from the Halloween Storm. Tracy Eldridge, Hamilton County Superintendent of Highway’s, suggested a 16 ft. bridge. The crew has completed repairs to Perkins Clearing Road. The Crew will start prep work on 2,100 ft of Page St. and 400 ft. on Old Page Hill Rd. Wednesday then pave by June 4th.
HIGHWAY HIRING
The board approved the hiring of Donald Pinkerton III as mechanic, starting at $18 per hour.
He will be starting in 2 weeks.
COMMITTEE REPORTS
Councilperson Nancy Seifts was contacted by Rec. Director Sammy Desrochers saying she is in contact with KC Morrison to order signs for the Town’s Graduates.
Councilperson Neil McGovern has been in touch with Mike Camoin about Ring of Fire, which is done on the Great Sacandaga Lake, It would be part of the July 4th Celebration. People who live around the Lake would all make a campfire and maybe a drone could fly over and take pictures. He would like to see the word get out. There will be a July 4th parade along Downey Ave. and Fireworks at the Point.
OLD BUSINESS
Supervisor Bain reported that the BTI program has been completed. This was Mark Crary’s last year, so the Town is looking for two BTI applicators for next year.
The Town Board accepted the Lake Pleasant Volunteer Fire Department’s annual Length of Service Award Program (LOSAP).
The board approved entering a contract with the Hamilton County Treasurer’s Office to take over the town’s payroll and bookkeeping reports for 2020 at a cost of $7,875 for June-December.
The County has asked former Principal Acct. Clerk Nancy Seifts to help with the transaction. Dave McComb informed the Town that there has been some vandalism again at the Pathway.
Every year it seems that the signs are damaged. He does have a student who will be volunteering this summer to help with the Pathway.
NEW BUSINESS
The Community Gardens now have a new leader, Don Braunius has volunteered to help with equipment and keep the water on. Former gardener Mrs. Crisbacher has retired. Nancy Welch will be working with Don Braunius in the gardens. There are 16 plots, 4 have been planted so far. There are two greenhouses, but no work has been done on them yet this year.
Supervisor Bain explained how the Town Municipal Building will be open during COVID. The middle door will be open, and guidelines are posted for those to read before entering. There will be retesting June 4th at the County Tennis Courts.
The board passed a resolution to hire H2O to test the 6 contaminated wells and the town’s not to exceed $250.
The board passed a resolution to approve the repair of the former R/O system not to exceed $1,000 and return the R/O system back as a backup.
After a conversation with one of the neighbors with a contaminated well, he wants his original R/O system repaired and returned. He feels the one that is in his house is not efficient. Bill Dievendorf from H2O will have a quote for us by the next meeting.
ROUNDTABLE
Councilperson Cristine Meixner asked why the Schools are not doing signs for the Graduates. She was informed that they are supplying them to the Graduates for their driveways. She does not feel the Town should be spending the money, Councilperson McGovern said it is only for this year. The Youth Rec. Director is purchasing signs for the Graduates to be placed at the four corner’s Dean Lane Park.
Court Clerk O’Rourke informed the Board that the Lake Pleasant Court is one of the first to hold an arraignment through Skype. Town Clerk reported that DEC sent a letter stating the Town would no longer be able to issue fishing and hunting licenses, because of the amount of small quantity of sales. O’Rourke sent a letter to them stating the importance of the licensing and they have reconsidered.
Councilperson Braunius would like to see County and Town leaders send letters out to get the State Campsites open. There is lot of cleaning up before they open so it needs to happen soon.

This article is based on minutes provided by Deborah O’Rourke, Town Clerk.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Indian Lake confronts garbage problems

ILTB June 8 2020

Indian Lake confronts garbage problems
By PETE KLEIN
INDIAN LAKE—When the Indian Lake Town Board met on June 8, discussion was held on the illegal dumping that residents are doing at the Parks and Rec. garage site. It was decided to start with putting up a sign stating there is NO DUMPING ALLOWED, as well as putting up cameras.
Supervisor Wells let everyone know that the Transfer Station is now open at its regular hours.
Supervisor Wells stated that he had received a letter of complaint from a second home homeowner complaining about the transfer station hours that was very offensive. He stated that there was NO intent from the Board to spite second home homeowners or any homeowner. All Board Members felt this was a very offensive letter, stating that they were trying to be equitable to ALL homeowners, second homeowners as well as full time residence. Supervisor Wells replied to the letter. Councilwoman Curry stated she would respond to the letter as well. She stated we value our second homeowners and the hours were not meant to slight anyone.
Supervisor Wells thanked Kevin King for putting together a schedule allowing two men to get back to work at the Sewer and Water plants.
Councilwoman Stanton asked if the Community Action was fluid now. Supervisor Wells stated that it was. As all Towns have been working together, the demand for food is way down. Discussion held on the flower barrels at the Memorial Site. The CDC (Community Development Committee) have purchased the flowers for the two barrels at the site.
Supervisor Brian Wells thanked Claudia Cunniff for sitting in on a webinar for him. Supervisor Wells thanked Pam Howard, Senior Account Clerk, for all her work, getting all the FEMA paperwork together. He stated she had saved the Town a lot of money doing this paperwork herself.
Supervisor Wells read the Negative Declaration page (SEQR) for the Blue Mt. Lake signage. Supervisor Wells made a motion to approve the Negative Declaration form on the SEQR, for the Blue M t. Lake signage. Seconded by, Councilman Rathbun. All approved.
Supervisor Wells told all that Dr. Erica Mahoney, Director of the Hamilton County Department of Health would be holding another Cleaning and Disinfecting webinar. If anyone would like to attend, call, 518-648-6497.
Supervisor Wells reported to all that the 90-miler annual canoe race has been canceled.
Supervisor Wells reported to all that he had been handing out masks and hand sanitizer to the area businesses that are open.
Supervisor Wells reported to all that the CDC would be sending out another letter concerning the CENSUS. He thanked them for all their work.
Supervisor Wells asked if there had been any nominations for Citizen of the Year. There were no nominations this year. Supervisor Wells stated he would like to do it differently this year and have the Board mark this year's Citizen of the year as “2020 Year of the Volunteers.” He stated there have been so many volunteers during this time and it is so appreciated he feels they all should be acknowledged but due to the numerous volunteers it would be hard to list them all, therefore, mark it as 2020 year of the volunteers. Supervisor Wells made a motion to mark Citizen of the Year as “2020 Year of the Volunteers” and it was Seconded by all.
Supervisor Wells reported that he was working on the Electric Car Station, however, due to printer/scanning problems with his computer it is causing a hold up. He stated that he is working on getting the problem fixed.
Supervisor Wells stated he is working on the policy/procedure to begin opening the Town Hall. Supervisor Wells asked the Board their feelings about the 4th of July fireworks and reopening the Beaches. Due to the complexity of the regulations that need to be in place Supervisor Wells felt it was not feasible to open the Beaches this year. Among numerous regulations, Lifeguards would also need training on how to properly disinfect. The liability for the Town is extremely high and it will be a lot of responsibility for the Lifeguards to adhere to. Social distancing is mandatory and needs to be enforced, the number of people allowed on the Beach would need to be enforced, cleaning needs to be done every hour, testing patrons need to be done before entering the Beach and many more procedures need to be followed. Councilwoman Curry volunteered to meet with Bill Laprairie, Building Grounds and Maintenance Department Head, and Jessie Bruso, swim instructor, to go over all the regulations to see if it would be feasible to open this year.
Discussion was held on the 4th of July fireworks. Supervisor Wells read some of the regulations concerning fireworks. People would have to remain in their cars, no groups standing together, no bands allowed, no parades allowed and no activities. He stated that this would need to be strongly enforced. Councilman Mahoney felt that the residence was responsible and would adhere to the protocols put in place. He also felt that there would not be as much participation this year as he felt people are staying home. Supervisor Wells made a motion to cancel the 4th of July fireworks this year and perhaps have something later in the fall. Seconded by, Councilwoman Stanton.
The motion passed.
Motion carried.
Councilman Rathbun offered setting off the canons at a certain time to commemorate 4th of July. Supervisor Wells stated that he thought that would be a good plan. He spoke of the “Taps Around America” that was done on Memorial Day. Councilman Rathbun and Supervisor Wells will meet and come up with a plan and time to set off the canons.
Supervisor Wells reported to the Board he had received two requests for building use. He stated to all that at this time, no Town owned Buildings are open at this time. He stated that the Town Board is still doing virtual meetings as well.
Supervisor Wells reported that he has been working with Peter Burns on the rafting program and contract. He stated that he is currently working on the safety plan for the put-in site.
Supervisor Wells reported to the Board that our Engineering Firm, Cedar Wood, are ready to begin moving forward on the water project in Blue Mt. He stated they would like to hire a subcontractor, Hydro Source, to begin working. He stated that Cedar Wood would be paying this Company themselves, this would come out of the money that Cedar Wood quoted us on. Councilwoman Stanton made a motion to allow Cedar Wood to move forward on the Blue Mt. Lake Water Project allowing the subcontractor. Seconded by, Councilman Rathbun.
The motion was approved.
The Board unanimously agreed to supply disinfectant spray and paper towels for the Board of Elections use on the June 23rd polling sites.
Supervisor Wells stated that he had a request for $500 from the Shakespeare in the Park director. He reported to the Board that it would be done virtually and due to the current Budget constraints, he felt this was an unneeded expense.
Supervisor Wells reported that Moose River Plans is now open.
Discussion was held on allowing Donald Liddle to give out transfer station stickers as well as handling the money and giving receipts to those needing to bring a refrigerator or air conditioner to the transfer site. This would stop the dropping off, of refrigerators while also keeping foot traffic down at the Town Hall building. The Board concurred. Councilwoman Curry suggested someone going over the procedures with Donald.
Other Town Business
Councilwoman Curry gave an update on the Weed District, stating that Lance is working on his proposal to remove bogs. Supervisor Wells stated he had received Lances Certificate of Workman's Comp.
Discussion held on TRP's. (Temporary Revocable Permit) from the State concerning the removal of bogs. Councilwoman Curry asked Darrin Harr about a walk through at Stewarts. Supervisor Wells explained that he had suggested it so the Chamber could get a feel on what they would need once allowed to go in. Councilwoman Curry thanked the CDC for the information they have been handing out. She also thanked Andy Coney and commended the Blue Mt. Lake Newsletter. She stated it was highly informative.
Discussion held on putting in the lights at the Blue Mt. Lake Restrooms. Supervisor Wells made a motion to work in conjunction with the Blue Mt. Lake Association to begin putting the lights in the restroom by the Blue Mt. Lake Fire Department. Seconded by, Councilwoman Stanton.
The motion was approved.
Andy Coney spoke to the Board concerning the two races that are held in Blue Mt. Lake annually. He reported to the Board that they are currently working on a safety plan to see if there is a way to hold them this year. He stated they were not going to cancel them until the last minute. Discussion was held. Councilwoman Curry stated that she felt they had a good handle on the situation. Andy assured the Board he would keep them updated.
Councilman Rathbun questioned Trash Day Pick Up. Discussion held. Supervisor Wells asked Jamie Roblee, Highway Superintendent, and Bill Laprairie, Building and Maintenance Department Head to put together a plan.
Councilman Rathbun reported that he had put the ribbons up around the daffodils and would begin digging them up when the time is right. He told all that he would let them know when and he would need some volunteers.
Darrin Harr, Director of the Chamber of Commerce asked the Board when he could open the Chamber. He also questioned putting up signs so people will know that the Chamber is in the Byron Park Building temporarily. Supervisor Wells asked Darrin to put together his safety plan for reopening and get it to him, the Board will decide after going over the plan. Discussion held on signage. This will be worked on.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Town Clerk Julie Clawson.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Hope cemetery to be enlarged

Hope TB June 8 2020

Hope cemetery to be enlarged
By PETE KLEIN
HOPE—At the June 8 meeting of the Hope Town Board, Supervisor Steven Tomlinson stated that the town Highway crew have been removing trees to open land that is part of the cemetery. Next step is adding soil and sand to level the area out. Once all is complete, there may be up to 125-130 plots available. This is an important project to complete as the town was limited on available plots.
HIGHWAY SUPERINTENDENT REPORT
Highway Superintendent Zachery Colson is out of town for the week. Supervisor Tomlinson states that work is continuing the cemetery project. He states the Highway Department also cleared an area of old stumps at the transfer station, leveled the area and placed rocks.
Councilperson Dianna Downing asked if the area ton the Hope Falls Road that is bad is going to get fixed. Supervisor Tomlinson states that the county will let us repair that.
Supervisor Tomlinson added that garbage pickup continues. June is doing the garbage pickup and that seems to be going well. Clean Up week was a success.
UPDATE INFORMATION REGARDING THE FIREHOUSE PROJECT
Supervisor Tomlinson states there is nothing new to report. He states the town’s attorney is still waiting to hear from the Fire Department’s attorney. Chief Robinson will call their attorney again.
CABLE TV FRANCHISE AGREEMENT
The board approved a resolution to open the public meeting regarding the cable TV franchise agreement between Time Warner Cable and the Town of Hope. There were no members of the public present.
The board then Resolved to close the public hearing regarding the cable TV franchise agreement between Time Warner Cable and the Town of Hope.
PUBLIC COMMENTS
Present were Joann Robinson and Peter Robinson.
Peter Robinson explained an incident in which he received a flat tire due to nails in boards at the Transfer Station. He asked if such material should be going somewhere else. Councilperson mark Stuart asked if there were signs indicating brush only at the brush pile. Supervisor Tomlinson added there are ‘Brush Only’ signs as well as ‘Have Load Checked’. Supervisor Tomlinson will follow through with Superintendent Colson.
BUILDING/CODE OFFICER REPORT
Supervisor Tomlinson advised there was no Code Officer report for this month.
Town Clerk Jill Dunham stated she issued a new 911 number to Harold Wood. She asked how the town would be made aware if someone was building a new house. Supervisor Tomlinson will ask Mr. Stewart for his protocol in issuing building permits.
UPDATE ON THE CORONA VIRUS IN HAMILTON COUNTY
Supervisor Tomlinson advised we were in Phase 2. There are no new cases since the last report a month ago. He provided a handout that included total number of people tested for COVID and Antibody tests. Things are progressing forward to reopening.
TOWN CLERK COMMENTS
Town Clerk Jill Dunham advises she was notified in writing from DEC to discard of the license machine that was used to issue fishing and hunting licenses. She has been advised that all the towns and villages that are not issuing enough licenses will not be doing them anymore.
The Hamilton County Board of Elections has asked the towns with polling sites to provide paper towels and sanitizing spray for the election officers to use during the elections.
All pavilion reservations have been cancelled. Supervisor Tomlinson asked about putting the Porta Potty at the pavilion site. DeJong is no longer in business to put it there. He will call Harry Haile to see if he can place one there.
The Town Picnic planning will continue. The date has been set for September 13 from Noon – 4PM. Supervisor Tomlinson will see if Don Beach can do a chicken BBQ.

Respectfully submitted by Jill Dunham, Town Clerk

Friday, June 12, 2020

No cost change for Benson health insurance

Benson TB June 2 2020

No cost change for Benson health insurance
By PETE KLEIN
BENSON—When the Benson Town Board met on June 2, it heard from Peg Booth, representative of NBT Health Ins., who answered questions as to why the board should choose NBT Health Ins. Booth said the cost is the same as you are paying now. There will be renewal information each January.
HIGHWAY/TRANSPORTATION
Five applicants have responded to an ad for an employee for the highway dept.  Interviews will begin next week; none have proper license.
Paperwork done for North Rd. improvement approx. $50,350 from CHIPs and general fund.
There are two culverts to be placed on North Rd. Signs have been ordered for Town of Benson. Culvert on Manzer Hill needs opening.  Caution signs need to be discussed.
BUILDINGS/GROUNDS/EMERGENCY SERVICES
The committee is getting estimate for chimney work at town hall.
The town barn is not worth the cost of rehabilitating.
Approx. cost of generator for town hall - $10,000 installed with first year service included, after that service is $250/yr.
FINANCE
Committee is considering forming a Reserve Fund Balance for Roads and Equipment
LEGAL
Form for waiver during work for Town brought to Board. Junkyard Law to be discussed at Reg. Mtg.
CEMETERY
The committee has sent out pictures of Kern proposed vault structure.
Repair gate at Washburn/Hall Cemetery was requested.
Tad Davis was interviewed for Town of Benson Board member.
The Equalization Rate for Benson now stands at 85% as fixed by New York State.  Reassessment may be necessary.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Town Clerk Jeanne Cox.

Monday, June 8, 2020

County works with schools and communities

Supervisors June 4 2020

County works with schools and communities
By PETE KLEIN
LAKE PLEASANT—When the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors met on June 4, it passed several resolutions relating to provide schools with clinical Social Worker and/or Resource Officer services.
LPCS AND COMMUNITY PREVENTION INITIATIVE SERVICES
“WHEREAS, Community Services has developed a Hamilton County School and Community Prevention Initiative that offers Hamilton County Schools Clinical Social Worker and/or Resource Officer services at a cost of $10,000 per year for one day of each service per week, and
WHEREAS, Lake Pleasant Central School has agreed to contract for one (1) day per week of School Resource Officer (SRO) services at a total cost of $10,000 for the year beginning July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021, be it
RESOLVED, that upon approval of the County Attorney, the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, the Director of Community Services and the County Sheriff are hereby authorized to contract with Lake Pleasant Central School for School Resource Officer services for a term of July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021 for an annual amount of $10,000 to be billed in ten monthly installments of $1,000 beginning September 1, 2020 and ending June 30, 2021.”
WELLSCS AND COMMUNITY PREVENTION INITIATIVE SERVICES
“WHEREAS, Community Services has developed a Hamilton County School and Community Prevention Initiative that offers Hamilton County Schools Clinical Social Worker and/or Resource Officer services at a cost of $10,000 per year for one day of each service per week, and
WHEREAS, Wells Central School has agreed to contract for one (1) day per week of School Resource Officer (SRO) services at a total cost of $10,000 for the year beginning July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021, be it
RESOLVED, that upon approval of the County Attorney, the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, the Director of Community Services, and the County Sheriff are hereby authorized to contract with Wells Central School for School Resource Officer services for a term of July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021 for an annual amount of $10,000 to be billed in ten monthly installments of $1,000 beginning September 1, 2020 and ending June 30, 2021.”
ILCS COMMUNITY PREVENTION INITIATIVE SERVICES
“WHEREAS, Community Services has developed a Hamilton County School and Community Prevention Initiative that offers Hamilton County Schools Clinical Social Worker and/or Resource Officer services at a cost of $10,000 per year for one day of each service per week, and
WHEREAS, the Indian Lake Central School has agreed to contract for one (1) day per week of School Resource Officer (SRO) services and two (2) days of Social Worker services at a total cost of $30,000 for the year beginning July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021, be it
RESOLVED, that upon approval of the County Attorney, the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, the Director of Community Services, and the County Sheriff are hereby authorized to contract with Indian Lake Central School for Social Work services and School Resource Officer services for an annual amount of $30,000 for a term of July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021 to be billed in ten monthly installments of $3,000 beginning September 1, 2020 and ending June 30, 2021”
LAKE PLEASANT SHARED SERVICES CONTRACT
“WHEREAS, the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors has set the agenda for Shared Services Plans with all the Towns, Villages, and School Districts within Hamilton County, and
WHEREAS, the Town of Lake Pleasant has requested bookkeeping and payroll services from the Treasurer’s Office, and
WHEREAS, the Town of Lake Pleasant and the County Treasurer have worked out the details necessary to begin this implementation, be it
RESOLVED, that the Chairman of the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors is hereby authorized to enter into an agreement with the Town of Lake Pleasant to provide Bookkeeping and Payroll services for the remainder of 2020, with the approval of the County Attorney, and be it further
RESOLVED, that the contract is set at $7,875 for the period June through December, 2020, and be it also
RESOLVED, that the County Treasurer be so authorized, and the Clerk of the Board and Personnel Officer be so notified.”
NORTH COUNTRY REGIONAL YOUTH JUSTICE TEAM (NCRYJT)
“WHEREAS, it is necessary for the Hamilton County Department of Social Services to enter into an agreement with The Children’s Home of Jefferson County, and
WHEREAS, the MOU is for the Jefferson Home to be the lead agency for the NCRYJT and will act as a liaison between the NCRYJT and the New York State Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) in communication and all administrative tasks, be it
RESOLVED, that the Commissioner of Social Services is hereby authorized to sign the MOU between the Department of Social Services and the Children’s Home of Jefferson County.
EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS AND RESPONSE GRANT
“WHEREAS, the New York State Department of Health through Health Research, Inc. (HRI) has offered renewal of Contract No. 1611-10 with Hamilton County Public Health Nursing Service for Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response for the period July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021, and
WHEREAS, the grant year overlaps the 2020 and 2021 County Budgeted fiscal year, and
WHEREAS, the total grant contract is for $49,625.00, and
WHEREAS, the necessary funds have been appropriated in the 2020 Municipal Budget and the remainder will be proposed for the 2021 Municipal Budget, be it
RESOLVED, that the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors be authorized to sign the Contract with the NYS Department of Health through Health Research Inc., pending approval by the County Attorney and the County Treasurer be so advised.”
PUBLIC ADMINISTRATOR EXPENSE ACCOUNT
“WHEREAS, the County Treasurer can be appointed Public Administrator duties via the County Court Systems, and
WHEREAS, these appointments are becoming more and more frequent and involve up front expenditures prior to estate settlements which are falling to the County Treasurer to expend, and
WHEREAS, these expenditures routinely get reimbursed on estate closure, be it RESOLVED, that Account No. A1175.401 Public Administrator, be created and funded in the amount of $1,000 to be totally offset by creating and funding Revenue Account No. A2210.0500 Public Administrator in the amount of $1,000 to cover any up front expenditures made by the County Treasurer as Public Administrator, and the County Treasurer be so authorized and Clerk of the Board notified.”
WIC CONTRACT
“WHEREAS, the New York State Department of Health, Agency # 12000, requests the renewal of the Contract No. DOH01-C35458GG-3450000 with Hamilton County Public Health Nursing Service to provide Women, Infant and Children Program (WIC) Services, for the period of October 1, 2020– September 30, 2021, and
WHEREAS, the grant year overlaps the 2020- 2021 County Budgeted fiscal year, and WHEREAS, the total grant contract is for 51,446, and
WHEREAS, the necessary funds have been appropriated in the 2020 Municipal Budget and the remainder will be proposed for the 2021 Municipal Budget, be it
RESOLVED, that the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors be authorized to sign the Contract with the NYS WIC Program, and the County Treasurer be so notified.”
PAYMENT TO WARRENSBURG COLLISION CENTER
“WHEREAS, Public Health Vehicle #765 was involved in an accident and the repairs for the damage were completed by Warrensburg Collision Center, Inc., and
WHEREAS, the Fleet Coordinator recommends the payment of the said repairs of vehicle #765, be it
RESOLVED, the County Treasurer is hereby authorized to increase Account No. A1910.0402 Repairs to Vehicles-Insurance by $2,877.01 to be totally offset by increasing Revenue Account No. A2680.0000 Insurance Recoveries by $2,877.01, and be it further
RESOLVED, that the County Treasurer is hereby authorized to make a check payable to: Warrensburg Collison Center, Inc. for Invoice #2866 in the amount of $3,877.01 and the funds be taken out of Account No. A1910.0402 Repairs to Vehicles-Insurance and the Fleet Coordinator and Clerk of the Board be so notified.
SAND FOR SNOW & ICE CONTROL
“WHEREAS, each year the DPW Superintendent needs to purchase sand for snow & ice control, and
WHEREAS, Peckham Materials has the contract for the road rehab for State Route 28 between Blue Mountain Lake and Inlet, and
WHEREAS, Peckham put down sand for backup shoulders along this state route, and WHEREAS, the sand had to be removed and replaced with another more suitable aggregate
and Peckham has contacted the DPW Superintendent to see if Hamilton County would like to purchase the sand for snow & ice control, and
WHEREAS, because of the location of the sand related to hauling expenses the Superintendent inspected the said materials and found them to be very acceptable for snow & ice control, and
WHEREAS, there is estimated to be 4,500 to 5,500 yards of material at this location in Raquette Lake and Peckham Materials has offered the materials to Hamilton County at a price of $4 per yard, and
WHEREAS, the Superintendent recommends the purchase of sand because of location for hauling expense to the northern end of Hamilton County and because the price is less per yard than the stone & gravel bids received for 2020, be it
RESOLVED, that the Board of Supervisors does hereby authorize the DPW Superintendent to purchase the materials from Peckham Materials and to sign a purchase order for the purchase and the County Treasurer and Clerk of the Board be so advised.”
TAG ALONG TRAILER FOR DPW
“WHEREAS, the DPW has a need for a tag along trailer for moving small equipment, and WHEREAS, the DPW has CHIP’s funding available for the said trailer, and
WHEREAS, the County DPW Superintendent has received a written quote for a new 2020 Tow Master Trailer from Finke Equipment under Sourcewell (Formally NJPA) Contract delivered for $19,483.80, be it
RESOLVED, that hereby the County DPW Superintendent is authorized to order said trailer from Finke Equipment under Sourcewell Contract pricing at a cost of $19,483.80 and the funds to be taken out of Account No. D5112.202 Permanent Improvements and the County Treasurer and Clerk of the Board be so notified.”
REPAIRS TO TRAILER
“WHEREAS, the County DPW owns a 1999 Spec-Tec Ejector trailer that needs frame repair immediately, and
WHEREAS, the Superintendent had the said trailer taken to Dunham’s Spring and Repair Shop for estimate and repairs, and
WHEREAS, the repairs have been estimated at a cost of $11,582.35 to complete, be it RESOLVED, that hereby the Fleet Coordinator is authorized to have the repairs done by Dunham’s Spring and Repair Shop, Johnstown, NY to the 1999 Spec-Tec trailer and the County Treasurer and Clerk of the Board be so notified.”
REPAIRS TO ROAD TRACTOR
“WHEREAS, the County DPW owns a 2013 Freightliner road tractor that is powered by a Cummins engine, and
WHEREAS, during hauling of heavy stone fill the engine had a catastrophic failure and caused major internal damage to the engine, and
WHEREAS, the Superintendent had the said tractor taken to Cummins Sales and Service in Albany to diagnose the failure and it was determined that the engine needed a complete rebuild, and
WHEREAS, the Superintendent has spoken with the Public Works Committee and was approved to move forward during the May committee day concerning this engine repair, and
WHEREAS, the Superintendent has received notice the repair is complete and has picked the said tractor up, be it
RESOLVED, that hereby the County Treasurer is authorized to make payment to Cummins Sales and Service, PO Box 419404, Boston, MA 02241-9404 in the amount of $17,661.74 for the above stated engine repair and funds be taken out of Account No. DM5130.401 Repairs and the County Highway Superintendent and Clerk of the Board be so notified.”
PURCHASE OF MINI EXCAVATOR FOR DPW
WHEREAS, the DPW has a need for a mini excavator, and
WHEREAS, the DPW has CHIP’s funding available for the said excavator, and WHEREAS, the County DPW Superintendent has received a written quote for a new 2020 Caterpillar 306 Tracked Excavator with Attachments from Milton Cat under New York State Contract PC66988 delivered for $131,356.41, be it
RESOLVED, that hereby the County DPW Superintendent is authorized to order said tracked excavator from Milton Cat under NYS PC66988 Contract pricing at a cost of $131,356.41 and the funds to be taken out of Account No. D5112.202 Permanent Improvements and the County Treasurer and Clerk of the Board be so notified.”
SELL GASOLINE AND DIESEL FUEL TO THE NEW YORK STATE
“WHEREAS, Hamilton County currently has a contract to sell gasoline and diesel fuel to the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT), and
WHEREAS, it is a five (5) year contract and will expire on July 31, 2020, and WHEREAS, the New York State Department of Transportation would like to extend the contract for an addition five (5) years with the same terms and conditions, and
WHEREAS, the County Highway Superintendent recommends entering the extension of the said contract, be it
RESOLVED, the Chairman of the Board is hereby authorized to enter into an agreement with the New York State Department of Transportation for five (5) years beginning on August 1, 2020 and ending on July 31, 2025 subject to the approval of the County Attorney to procure and sell gasoline and diesel fuel to the NYSDOT and the said contract be on file with the Clerk of the Board and the County Treasurer and the Highway Superintendent be so advised.”
HYPER-REACH SERVICES AGREEMENT, FUNDING AND PAYMENT
“WHEREAS, Resolution No. 129-20 adopted May 7, 2020 authorized an agreement with Sam Asher Computing Services (aka Hyper-Reach) with the incorrect total agreement amount because the cost of training is a onetime charge, and
WHEREAS, the Emergency Services Director and Sheriff have requested approval for an agreement with Sam Asher Computing Services, Inc. (aka Hyper-Reach) for a notification system that will enable the County to instantly send voice and text messages to any number of recipients, and
WHEREAS, Public Health and Community Services have DSRIP funding that has not been spent, and
WHEREAS, Public Health received COVID funding in the amount of $7,700 to be used for such services, be it
RESOLVED, that Resolution No. 129-20 is hereby rescinded, and be it further RESOLVED,  that upon  approval of the  County Attorney the  Chairman  of the Board of Supervisors is hereby authorized to enter into an agreement with Sam Asher Computing Services, Inc. (aka Hyper-Reach) for the Hyper-Reach Notification System for a 3 year term, for a total contract of $16,250, and be it further
RESOLVED, that said contract will be paid in two 18-month payments, and be it further RESOLVED, that $1,125 of DSRIP money currently in the unappropriated general fund balance be transferred from the Unappropriated General Fund Balance in accordance with Section 366 Subdivision 1 of the County Law to the following Accounts: Community Services Account No. A4310.0419 AHI DSRIP $1,125.00 and be it further
RESOLVED, that upon receipt of the invoice for the first 18 months of said services, the County Treasurer is hereby authorized to issue a check in the amount of $8,825 to Sam Asher Computing Services, Inc. (aka Hyper-Reach) to be paid from the following Accounts: Public Health Account No. A4189.4540 Emergency Preparedness Misc. $7,700 Community Services Account No. A4310.0419 AHI DSRIP $1,125.
and be it further RESOLVED that Public Health commits $7,425 DSRIP funding to the second payment of said agreement, and be it further
RESOLVED, that the Emergency Services Director, Sheriff, Director of Public Health, Director of Community Services and County Treasurer be so notified.”
HEALTH EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS COORDINATION CONTRACT
“WHEREAS, the New York State Department of Health through Health Research, Inc (HRI) intends to award Hamilton County Public Health Nursing Service continued funding to support the 2020-2021 Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Grant activities, and
WHEREAS, a coordinator is required to meet the yearly required local health department public health emergency preparedness program deliverables and maintenance deliverables, and
WHEREAS, Barbara Taylor has demonstrated experience in providing such functions as an independent contractor, whereby allowing the County to meet the grant requirements, and
WHEREAS, through said contract, Barbara Taylor would functionally serve as the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator for public health emergencies and fulfilling grant deliverables, and
WHEREAS, the term of this contract shall be from July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021 with the rate for said service to be $30 per hour of contractual service provided, for an amount not to exceed $33,000, plus mileage at the current IRS rate, be it
RESOLVED, that the Chairman of the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors is hereby authorized to enter into a contract with Barbara Taylor, 486 Kickerville Lane, Long Lake, NY, 12847 for Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Services, upon approval of the County Attorney, on behalf of the Hamilton County Public Health Nursing Service, for the purpose of rendering services to meet the 2020-2021 PHEP Grant requirements.”

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Long Lake hopes for opening normalcy

LLTB May 27 2020

Long Lake hopes for opening normalcy
By PETE KLEIN
LONG LAKE—Long Lake Supervisor Clay J. Arsenault began the May 27 meeting of the Town Board by saying, “I’m sure everybody knows most of this, but I was just going to hit on a few things, the governor's re-opening play in phases.
“Even in Phase Two, the region must not open attractions. They are businesses that draw many visitors from outside the area. We would not be able to hold our events until Phase Four, Basically, the purpose of all our events is to draw on as many visitors as we can.
“We are currently in Phase One, which allows construction, agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting, retail.
“In Phase Two, professional services, retail, administrative support, real estate, rental, and leasing can open. Phase three are restaurant's, food services.
“In Phase Four entertainment, recreation and education are all allowed open.
“From the New York State Economic Development Corp website municipal government operations should practice physical distancing and telecommuting as much as possible. However, it is up to the individual municipality. How they determine which functions are essential. All governments are operating at a maximum of 50% in person workforce presence.
“FYI, Alex recently received guidance for opening the beaches, which were e-mailed to you and the highlights of the regulations are included in your packet, which are very lengthy, So thanks the Lord, she went through all that for us.
“And another FYI is we got a response letter from the Adirondack Experience regarding their decision to not open this year and our letter that we sent to them regarding that.
“I delivered hand sanitizer to, most, if not all of the local restaurants and hotels for them to use and businesses in general, in Long Lake and Racket Lake. I am waiting on a small delivery to bring over to Raquette Lake to leave at the highway garage so that we can tell any businesses who missed out on it. Wayne at the highway garage will have a little stockpile there.”
The shared maintenance agreement for bus maintenance with the Long Lake Central School District was on the agenda but Arsenault said, “I am removing this item, pending further information with town attorney. There is more of this that we need to discuss.
Next up was a resolution accepting Kathy Buxton’s resignation as Dog Control Officer, effective May 31, 2020.
Arsenault said, “Kathy Buxom e-mailed me on May 7, resigning her position.
“I would like to move that we accept Buxton’s resignation effective May 31 and I would like to thank Kathy for years of service to the Town in doing that position.”
The board accepted the resignation.
The board then passed a resolution appointing Andrew Pauls as Dog Control Officer.
Before the close of the meeting, Dean Pohl said, “I would just like to say that the county did a great job sweeping the streets and roads over here, and very sharp striping machine did a great job.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Dixie Lee LeBlanc, Town Clerk.
The next Town Board Meeting will be June 24 at 7 P.M.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Wells Central budget up slightly by $35,303

WCS BOE May 27 2020

Wells Central budget up slightly by $35,303
By PETE KLEIN
WELLS--Superintendent Thomas Sincavage presented the 2020-2021 budget to the Wells Central School Board of Education at their meeting of May 27.
He said this year's budget is going up $35,303, an increase of 0.85%. The tax cap is 0.82%. This increase will be about $9 for a home with an assessment of $100,000. The district is proposing to offset state aid losses with fund balance. The district is also eliminating one full time FTE teaching position (0.5 FTE in elementary special education and 0.5 FTE in high school social studies.) This reduction was made for 2020-21 school year due to declining enrollment. The district has also been increasing spending in expense-based aid categories for which the state reimburses the district a portion of the cost of the services in the following school year. Expense based aids are exempt from the governor’s proposed state aid cuts.
During his report, Sincavage reviewed the Fund Balance Report which showed the health of the district's finances. He also reviewed the Enrollment report which remains at 144.
Sincavage spoke to the board about the school closure which extended through the end of the school year. The last day of at-home learning will be Wednesday, June 17.
The Capital Project is expected to be completed ahead of schedule. New tile, carpets, and lockers have been installed.
Construction crews are currently working on resurfacing the rubber roof. Finally, Sincavage had a discussion with the board about the high school graduation ceremony. The Board would like to do a live outdoor graduation to honor the class of 2020. They will plan the ceremony within the limits of the current public health and executive order guidelines. The graduation date has been moved up to Friday, June 19 at 7pm. St. Ann’s Catholic Church will be hosting this year's Baccalaureate service on Sunday, June 14 at 6 pm. The plan is to hold an outdoor service within the guidelines allowed.
Jeremy J. Siddon, Building Principal, gave the Athletic Director’s Report. He is creating an online sign up for fall sports. He is also going to have a virtual ceremony for the annual sports awards.
APPROVALS
The Board of Education accepted the recommendations of the CSE/CPSE Chair for the classifications, recommendations and programs for the following students: 982420095 , 71920006, 982420120, 982420171, and 202023 on a motion by Ken Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
The board approved the memorandum of understanding and a five-year contract between the Wells Central School District and the Wells Support Staff for the time period July 1, 2020 through June 30,2025 on a motion made by Dorman Reese, seconded by Ken Hoffman, and carried 5-0.
The board authorized the funding of the District approved reserves with the excess of 4% from unassigned fund balance at June 30, 2020. The allocation of such fund balance will be determined after June 30, 2020 and prior to setting the tax levy on a motion made by Ken Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
The board accepted the Statement of Values as determined by the District’s Insurance Company on a motion made by Dorman Reese, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.
The board waived any required readings of policy 7.627 Home Bound Instruction Policy prior to adoption of such policy, and effectively adopts such policy effective May 27, 2020 on a motion made by Ken Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
After holding an executive session, the board accepted the resignation of Hazel Mann as Bus Driver effective June 30, 2020 on a motion made by Rachel Lauria, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5- 0.
The board appointed the following Fall Coaches to serve at the will of the Board for the 2020/2021 soccer season pending adequate numbers: Jeremy Bornt as Girls Varsity Soccer Coach and Brian Richards as Boys Varsity Soccer Coach on a motion by Ken Hoffman, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Rachelle Dwyer, District Clerk.

Ladies of Benson seek more beauty in Benson

Benson TB May 19 2020

Ladies of Benson seek more beauty in Benson
By PETE KLEIN
BENSON--Peg Schutze presented the following letter to the Benson Town Board at its May 19 meeting>
This letter is written to you to ask you to bring up at the upcoming Board meeting a request that the Ladies of Benson would like to make. We have a project we would like to do at the Town Hall for the purpose of delineating the flagpole lawn/garden from the driveway/ parking area. It would involve placing some cedar poles around the perimeter of the garden/lawn area (temporary stakes have already been placed), and then pulling a rope through the holes that would be drilled near the top of the poles.
The poles are being donated by me, the work will be done by Jeanne Cox and me with some help from Bob Cox. We have spoken with Highway Superintendent George Blowers and he has graciously agreed for his department to dig the holes. We are including in our plans room for the mower and/or plow to get into the area when necessary.
I have also run this by Councilman Dave Rogers, Chairman of Building and Grounds, and now, as instructed, I am bringing it to the Board for their approval. I understand that this procedure is for "major " projects and does not include the work the Ladies do during the growing season to upkeep the gardens at both the Town Hall and the Sign area at the corner of Rt. 30/ Benson Rd . If I have misunderstood this latter point, then I would like to suggest that the regular seasonal work be revisited by the Board each year in January when you approve all those things in preparation for the new year.
Peg would appreciate the issue in her letter be taken care of as soon as possible.
HIGHWAY/TRANSPORTATION
own Barn Heat – Waiting for estimates. Rogers is getting estimates for siding the Town Barn. Discussed need for extra stop signs.
Rogers made a motion to ask Hwy. Supt. for 3 additional Stop signs at approx. $50 ea. Total cost of all signs not to exceed $3,000: 2nd Dave Pincombe. Motion carried.
D. Clemens wishes Benson to put crushed run or similar on .4 miles of Old Tannery Rd. in 2020 for the purpose of requesting CHIPS money.
Paving plan is currently a portion of North Rd. that was severely damaged by winter, 2020.
The ad is in the LH newspaper to hire a third employee for the Hwy. Dept.
Benson Roads need to be surveyed.
BLDG. AND GROUNDS
Rogers is getting quotes for a generator to be installed at the Town Hall; he is also getting estimates for the repair of the Town Hall chimney.
Rogers made a motion for the purchase of a 4-speaker voice recording system at $699 for the Board to be purchased by John Stortecky with the Town credit card; 2nd C. Biche. Motion carried.
CEMETERY
Cemetery Comm. to mark out plots and Hwy. Comm. to put in corner markers.
Supervisor John Stortecky made a motion regarding the personnel change on the cemetery committee removing himself and replacing himself with Pincombe; 2nd Dave Pincombe. Motion carried.
This motion was requested to be changed to reflect Pincombe as the chairperson of the committee as he is familiar with the aspects of all thing’s cemetery; 2nd Charles Biche Motion carried.
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Ham. Cty. may reach NYS requirements for Covid – 19 reopening by July 4, if all is appropriate.
All Ham. Cty. Testing for Benson, Hope and Wells were COVID–19 negatives.
FINANCE
Pincombe requested the Board be aware of the expenditures for the coming decade as the State may not be forthcoming with revenue for CHIPS.
Rogers made a motion to investigate the purchase of a 4 speakers’ system for the town board: 2nd Charles Biche. Motion carried.
BUDGET ADJUSTMENTS ON 2020 BUDGET
The board approved the following resolution.
WHEREAS, the Hamilton County Treasurer’s Office, our bookkeeping service, has requested that the Supervisor/CFO adjust the budget monthly, and
WHEREAS, following this process will alleviate numerous end- of- year adjustments and
WHEREAS, on the budget report for April 2020 there are two accounts showing a shortfall of funds, now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, that the Supervisor/CFO is authorized to make the following two budget adjustments by transferring funds as follows:
TO ZAB.1910.401 Unallocated Insurance Cost- NYMIR $881.64; ZAB.1920.401 Municipal association Dues $394.
FROM ZAB.1990.401 Contingent Fund $1,275.64.
CREATE A NEW REVENUE ACCOUNT SALE OF CEMETERY PLOTS
The board passed the following resolution.
WHEREAS, the Town Clerk has completed the sale of 2 cemetery plots requiring a new revenue account to record the sale, now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, that the Supervisor/CFO is authorized to instruct the Hamilton County Treasurer to create Revenue Account ZAB.2190 Sale of Cemetery Plots.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Town Clerk Jeanne Cox.

Thursday, June 4, 2020

Ranger Report June 4 2020

Ranger Report June 4 2020

Indian Lake--On May 31 at 1:47 p.m., a hiking group on Blue Mountain contacted DEC's Ray Brook Dispatch reporting a 16-year-old girl from Herkimer with a non-weight-bearing ankle injury. Forest Rangers Melissa Milano and Bruce Lomnitzer, along with Assistant Forest Ranger Allison O'Connell, responded to the trailhead.
The hiker was reportedly continuing down the trail with the assistance of her hiking party when they were located by Forest Rangers at 3:35 p.m. Once the ankle was assessed and splinted, Forest Rangers and members of the Blue Mountain Lake Fire Department and Rescue Squad assisted the hiker down the trail and were out of the woods at 5:03 p.m. EMS personnel assessed the girl and she advised she would seek additional medical treatment on her own.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Pandemic closes Camp of the Woods

LPTB May 18 2020

Pandemic closes Camp of the Woods
By PETE KLEIN
LAKE PLEASANT—When the Lake Pleasant Town Board met on May 18, Jim Hammond, President/CEO of Camp of the Woods gave the Board an update on what Camp of the Woods plans are for the Summer due to the Wuhan China Virus (COVID-19).
He reported that he has canceled all operations before the stay at home phase was put in effect. Camp has been closed there have been no guests or staff since March. The staff who have apartments at Camp have been told no temporary visitors and anyone new coming into area need to self-quarantine for 14 days.
Jim Hammond will be giving his presentation to the Regional Health Dept., Erica Mahoney, and Chairman of the Board William Farber.
The staff that will be working at Camp this year has been cut in half and when they do arrive, they will have to self- quarantine for 14 days. There will be no chapel services, all will be done in a virtual way. The children’s programs will be canceled for the summer there was no way Jim felt comfortable trying to keep the kids at a safe distance.
Camp Tapawingo will not be opening this summer either. Camp will be running at a 40% capacity and of course social distancing and wearing masks will be required.
Supervisor Bain thanked Jim for all the steps he is taking to keep everyone safe.
HIGHWAY
Highway Superintendent Randy Lavarnway reported that he, Councilperson Braunius and Supervisor Bain meet at the Elm Lake Road tennis courts and decided to close the eastern court because of all the cracks causing an unsafe court. The court on the west side, the regulation size court will be open with some repair as will the courts at the Court House.
Superintendent Lavarnway was able to locate the old bike trail maps. Laura O’Brien (Oak Mt.) will GPS the present trails and see if they compare to the old bike trail on the map. If most of the trails are the close hopefully DEC will issue a temporary revocable permit to do trail repair work.
Lavarnway reported that there are still sections of Perkins Clearing Road closed in the middle, but he hopes to have the other areas open by the weekend. If anyone wants to get into their camps at Pillsbury Mt., they must park at Sled Harbor and walk the remaining trail about a ¼ of a mile, there is still so much washout.
Councilperson Braunius did drive to both ends of the Road and reported that the Highway Crew is doing a great job.
The Gorman Group will start grinding the blacktop on Page St. and old Page Hill on June 3 then start black topping after the road settles for 2 weeks. Hamilton Lake Road work should start around the 3rd week in June.
FEMA wants Superintendent Lavarnway to do virtual tour of the road but that is not possible as there is no cell service. A lot of dirt work needs to be done before the black top can be started.
Supervisor Bain informed Lake Pleasant Sacandaga Association that Lavarnway will move the Wash Station to its location. The Library step prep work has been started. Lavarnway asked the Board if anyone knows where he can find Trex system that has an anti-slip material for the stairs. Councilperson Seifts suggested Curtis Lumber as they are a dealer for Trex. Lavarnway will contact them. Lavarnway asked the Board what they want him to do about the stone pillars at
Still no response to the Senior Mechanic position that has been advertised. The present Senior Mechanic is firm on his retirement date in August. Councilperson Meixner remembers a large advertising network of newspapers and is willing to reach out to them which would give the ad a great exposure.
The new hours for the Transfer Station are Monday 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., Wednesday 10:00 a.m.- 6:00 p.m. Saturday 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Transfer Station Post-Closure Monitoring will now be done once a year instead of two times a year. Discussion on if the old Transfer Station should be mowed. After discussion Superintendent Lavarnway will have it mowed in August.
YOUTH REC
Youth Rec. Director Samantha Desrochers is unsure of what is going on this summer with the summer rec. program. She still has money remaining in her budget and made many suggestions to acknowledge the kindergarten, eight grade and high school graduates.
Councilperson Braunius agreed that putting up signs acknowledging the graduates would be great idea and suggested putting them on the Corner of Dean Lanes Park. Supervisor Bain said let us go with the signs first.
Samantha will investigate the signs with KC Morrison Sign Company. There will be further discussion at the next Board Meeting.
OLD BUSINESS
Supervisor Bain and Councilperson Seifts met with the Hamilton County Treasurer’s office about taking on the Town of Lake Pleasant’s payroll and reports. They agree that they will need Nancy Seifts (Former Principal Account Clerk) to help with the transition.
Town Clerk Deborah O’Rourke informed the Board that the Annual Financial Report for the Period of January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019 has been filed in the Town Clerk’s Office and it has been electronically filed with the N.Y.S Dept. of Audit and Control.
TOWN HISTORIAN
RESOLUTION #53 APPOINT AARON WEAVER TO BE TOWN HISTORIAN.
OFFERED BY Neil McGovern 2nd by Don Braunius
RESOLVED, that after review of applicants for the Town Historian by the personal committee, Aaron Weaver will now be the Town Historian to replace Anne Weaver who died. Same amount of pay as stated in the Budget.
ADOPTED by the following vote. Ayes: Supervisor Bain, Councilperson: Cristine Meixner, Neil McGovern, Nancy Seifts, Don Braunius. Nays: None
ACCOUNT CLERK
RESOLUTION #54 TO ACCEPT ACCOUNT CLERK KATHLEEN AIRD’S RESIGNATION LETTER.
OFFERED BY Neil McGovern (with regret) 2nd by Cristine Meixner
RESOLVED, that the Board received a letter of resignation from Account Clerk Kathleen Aird effective immediately. The Board thanks Kathy for her years of service.
ADOPTED, by the following vote. Ayes: Supervisor Bain, Councilperson: Neil McGovern, Nancy Seifts, Cristine Meixner, Don Braunius.
EMPLOYEE FOR THE LAKE PLEASANT LIBRARY
RESOLUTION #55 TO ACCEPT THE HIRING OF GARY RHINEHART JR. AS PART TIME EMPLOYEE FOR THE LAKE PLEASANT LIBRARY.
OFFERED BY, Neil McGovern, 2nd Nancy Seifts
RESOLVED, Whereas, the Lake Pleasant Library Board of Trustees has received a letter of resignation from Tanisha Hinds effective May 21, 2020
WHEREAS, The Lake Pleasant Library Board of Trustees have approved the hiring of Gary Rhinehart Jr. starting May 25, 2020 budgeted at 12 hours per week @ 12.00 per hour.
ADOPTED by the following vote. Ayes: Supervisor Bain, Councilperson: Cristine Meixner, Neil McGovern, Don Braunius, Nancy Seifts. Nays: None
LIBRARY TRUSTEE
RESOLUTION #56 THE BOARD APPROVED ELIZABETH KNAPP AS A LIBRARY TRUSTEE.
OFFERED BY Nancy Seifts, 2nd by Don Braunius
WHEREAS, The Lake Pleasant Library Board of Trustees recommend Elizabeth Knapp to fill a vacancy.
WHEREAS, Elizabeth Knapp’s term of office will be May 18, 2020-December 31, 2020 ADOPTED by the following vote. Ayes: Councilperson: Nancy Seifts, Cristine Meixner, Mike O’Connor, Robert Peck Nays: None.
ROUNDTABLE
Councilperson Meixner asked if Supervisor Bain if she received the Lake Pleasant Fire Dept. the LOSP report which is an annual report that is supposed to be presented to the Town Board with a list of credits earned by the fireman that gets applied to their retirement benefit. Supervisor Bain said she had not received it. Councilperson Seifts said that the annual actuarial report (AUD) includes that information.
Supervisor Bain said that all 283 COVID-19 tests that were taken last week all came back negative.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Deborah O’Rourke, Town Clerk.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Fourth of July in doubt in Speculator

Speculator VB May 11 2020

Fourth of July in doubt in Speculator
By PETE KLEIN
SPECULATOR—At the May 11 meeting of the Speculator Village Bord of Trustees and with the restrictions COVID-19 has brought on, including prohibiting large social gatherings, requiring social distancing, and wearing masks in public, a discussion of different possibilities for our areas Fourth of July celebration was conducted.
Mayor Barrett invited Richelle Martz and Donna Benkovich to speak about the parade. At this point, having a traditional parade is improbable, so the Parade Committee has come up with a few ideas to continue to have a festive Fourth of July but still stay safe and healthy and well within the Governor’s orders. The first idea is to have a reverse parade where floats are lines up on the road and people drive by to view them. The second idea is to have a pop-up parade where people sign up to make floats, construct and show them on their property and a map would be provided for people who want to drive around to view them. Both options have been brought to the public for comment and will be discussed at the next parade committee meeting. Additionally, the Speculator fireworks scheduled for the evening of July fourth is also being discussed to try to find a way to conduct the fireworks but stay within the Governor’s orders to social distance and wear masks. Thoughts of having people view the fireworks from various points on and around the lake while staying in their vehicle or boat was discussed as well as the idea of having the fireworks set off from the top of Oak Mountain. The matter was tabled to a next meeting to better gather ideas and information.
In conversation with Barry Baker, Hamilton County Real Property Tax department, to process the 2020 Tax Levy, an error was found in the amount for the 2019 Tax Levy. It was confirmed the approved and adopted budget for 2019-20 had increased the amount to be levied from $865,962 to $876,294, an increase of $10,332. The Real Property Tax department received correspondence from the former Clerk – Treasurer incorrectly providing the 2018-2019 budget summary, leaving the amount to be raised by taxes the same as 2018 and resulting in a shortfall of $10,332. Additionally, after looking through paper documents, binders and electronic files, no documentation certifying the tax levy could be found. Knowing the year will be completed with a fund balance in excess of the $10,332 shortfall, FEMA reimbursement expected in the next few months and increased revenues from Verizon small cell tower, we remain in good standing to keep the tax levy at a zero percent increase.
Two resolutions were presented to correct this mistake; 1) Resolution to amend the 2019-2020 Budget to reduce A1001 – Real Property Tax collected from $876,294 to $865,962 and decrease A8160.4 – Refuse Collection and Disposal from $24,650 to $14,318; 2) Resolution to amend the 2020-2021 budget to reduce A1001 – Real Property Tax from $876,294 to $865,962 and increase the appropriated fund balance from $31,316.76 to $41,648.76 and to take corrective actions to ensure the timely and accurate execution of tax warrants in the future.
Trustee Donecker made a motion to accept the resolution to amend 2019-2020 Budget to correct tax levy error. Trustee Crary seconded and the motion was passed by the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
Trustee Rudes made a motion to accept the resolution to amend 2020-2021 Budget to correct tax levy error. Trustee Donecker seconded and the motion was passed by the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
Verizon has sent documentation to complete the agreement between the Village and Verizon Wireless for several small cell towers. The documentation received is as follows: Verizon Lease agreement indicating that Verizon will be paying a total annual rental fee of $2,400 to be paid in advance on the commencement date and on each anniversary.
Trustee Rudes made a motion to authorize Mayor Barrett to sign the agreement on behalf of the Village. Trustee Crary seconded and the motion was passed with the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
Trustee Crary made a motion to approve the resolution for the Verizon Lease Agreement. Trustee Donecker seconded and the motion passed with the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
A Memorandum of lease agreement providing the recording of the agreement to the County Clerk.
Trustee Donecker made a motion to authorize Mayor Barrett to sign the memorandum on behalf of the Village. Trustee Rudes seconded and the motion was passed with the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
A Resolution form the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) was needed to confirm the declaration the project will not result in any significant environmental impact and hereby issues a negative declaration pursuant to SEQRA with reasons supporting the negative declaration.
Trustee Rudes made a motion to approve the resolution for the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) as provided. Trustee Crary seconded and the motion was passed with the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
A tax return form as Grantor to be filed with Verizon containing information about the Village including its EIN number.
The final draft of the Speculator Employee Handbook was distributed in the previous week containing all edits, additions, corrections, policies, and forms referenced in the document. Mayor Barrett asked for any additional comments on the employee handbook, and without any further discussion the handbook was approved and to become effective May 12, 2020.
Trustee Rudes made a motion to approve and accept the Speculator Employee Handbook final draft for implementation effective May 12, 2020. Trustee Donecker seconded and the motion was passed by the following vote: aye – Barrett, Crary, Donecker and Rudes nays – none. Trustee McComb absent.
WATER/WASTEWATER
Edward Scharpou, WWTP Chief Operator, submitted a written report. Additional commentary was made as follows:
There was a break at the Wolfe complex on May 11. The issue was resolved but at some point, the line will need to be replaced according to current standards and guidelines; originally it was installed with insufficient materials. Scharpou is still trying to confirm ownership.
Hydrants will be flushed this week and many calls are coming for meter installations, the water department is attempting to do this when the homeowners are not present, if this is not possible then they wear their masks.
After Mayor Jeannette Barrett spoke to Garry Gifford with OSC office in Glens Falls about the potential impact of the COVID-19 restrictions on water and sewer revenues, Mayor Barrett, Scharpou and Clerk Crystal O’Brien had a meeting to discuss the potential impact. Scharpou and O’Brien are in the process of putting together calculations for the past two years to try to estimate those potential losses and be able to present different scenarios to the Board.
Progress continues on the wastewater treatment plant upgrade project and is coming close to being completed. Scharpou has been working with Lamont Engineers to potentially combine the next two phases into one project. There is some hesitancy from the Board on combining these phases, so a meeting will be scheduled to discuss this with Mayor Barrett, Trustee Donecker, Scharpou and Becker from Lamont.
CLERK’S REPORT
O’Brien presented the Clerk Report. Additional commentary was made as follows:
Elections for the Village have been postponed to September 15, 2020. Current terms of office will continue until elections are held and certified when the newly elected officials can take office. Additional Absentee ballot guidance has yet to be given. Notices will again have to be posted to the paper and locally. Voter registration is extended. The Village’s official year does not change, it still began in April. The organizational meeting will take place after elections have been certified.
The website will continue to be updated regularly with only slight delays with required recordings and the transcriptions of meetings needing to be posted.
Conversations with the Hamilton County Real Property Tax Department to begin the process for the 2020 Taxes.
Like Scharpou said in his report, Stacey Farina and O’Brien got together and mailed out the quarterly water and sewer bills with the annual water quality report last week.
OLD BUSINESS
COVID-19 update included new temporary signs with a sturdy backing have been posted at the Village Parks with a big thank you to Heather Philo and Lake Pleasant School for printing and laminating those signs for us. We have currently 4 confirmed cases in the county, three are isolated and one is at a nursing home. We are still waiting for guidance from the state on camps, beaches, and resorts. Farmers markets are considered essential with social distancing and Campgrounds will be opening in June with limited resources while many summer events are left in limbo or canceled due to the amount of people or the ability to social distance.
All the FEMA workforce, resource, and equipment documentation for CAT A – debris removal and CAT B – emergency protective measures have been submitted; donated resources are the next to be submitted then administrative costs. A public thank you to Monique Simmons from FEMA and George Shongar from NYSDHES for all their help in this process.
Mayor Barrett is waiting to hear back from NYPA.
BOARD ROUND TABLE
Trustee Donecker commented on the impact the fireworks may have on the community and businesses in our area.
Mayor Barrett advised the Board the Department of Transportation is beginning repair of the sink holes by drainage gates on Route 30 Tuesday May 12, 2020. Mayor Barrett also stated she is in the process of identifying grants that the Village can apply for that will support the Wastewater Treatment Plant upgrades as they relate to the required updates to the SPEDES Permit. She will also be having a meeting with the Department of Environmental Conservation, Lake Pleasant Supervisor Bain and Oak Mountain to discuss a Recreational Management Plan relating to trails in our area with much interest to revitalize and create more family friendly recreational opportunities for locals and visitors.

This article is based upon minutes provided by Crystal O’Brien, Village Clerk – Treasurer.