Friday, January 31, 2020

Speculator Halloween Storm update

Speculator Halloween Storm update

SPECULATOR—At the Speculator Village Board of Trustees meeting of January 13, Mayor Jeannette Barrett gave an update for the Halloween Storm Emergency as follows.
Bruce Jordan from the NY Office of Emergency Services reviewed the overall response during the Halloween storm, identifying what was done well and where improvements are needed. Overall, our first responders did an outstanding job. A need was identified for central emergency communication for residents which has been addressed by adding the ability to sign up for NY alert on the Village Website. NY Alert contains critical emergency-related information, including instructions and recommendations in real-time by emergency personnel and will allow the ability to post critical information on this notification system. Loss of communication was also highlighted with respect to land lines going down, and then cell service going down with the lack of backup. American Tower had submitted a permit application to place a generator on Oak Mountain well over a year ago without any results. Mayor Barrett followed up with American Tower and was told it was not cost effective with respect to maintaining it. However, after further discussion of the needs of our region, they have agreed to revisit the situation.
On December 20, 2019, FEMA approved Disaster Declaration for Hamilton, Herkimer, Fulton, and Saratoga Counties. The federal government has not approved assistance for individuals. NY Assemblyman Robert Smullen, NY Senator Jim Tedisco and Congresswoman Elyse Stefanik have all asked for reconsideration of this decision.
If we are approved for project funding, the volunteer hours logged will be used as a credit for the Village portion of any FEMA grant.
Trustee Mark Crary, Crystal O’Brien and Mayor Barrett had a teleconference with the Length of Service Awards Program (LOSAP) agents to go through actuarial tables for the plan which is currently fully funded. This information will be used for further discussions with the LOSAP lawyer. The changes will require a referendum to terminate the present program and to reinstate the new one.
Trustee Crary made a motion to approve a resolution to approve the change from a defined benefits plan to a defined contribution plan to take effect January 1, 2021. Trustee McComb seconded and the motion passed unanimously.
Mayor Barrett and Katie Smith, Village Attorney, reviewed the Verizon Master License Agreement (MLA), and raised a few issues. In general, the issues raised included; the MLA is very broad and open ended, the definition of ROW as it is used, term of agreement (15years with option to go up to 30 years) and exclusivity for Verizon on Municipal property. Last week Mayor Barrett met with representatives from the County and Town to identify the common areas of the Master License Agreement needing to be addressed. Mayor Barrett will be setting up a meeting to address these matters and to have an agreement drafted which is more specific and suited to our situation. This week representatives from Verizon will be in town to evaluate potential sites for small cell towers.
Edward Scharpou, WWTP Chief Operator, submitted a written report.
Scharpou explained the mandated disinfection, planned for in Phase two of the Wastewater Treatment Plant contract, needs to have plans completed by 2022 and in operation by 2024. He has started the process with Lamont to begin Phase two since it takes several months to really get the project going. A preconstruction meeting for contract one of phase one and a contract two of phase one meeting have been scheduled.
After a webinar on government contracted LED lighting options and pricing, Scharpou believes he can replace all lighting at the plant for between $400 and $500 dollars, reducing the cost of replacement by a couple hundred dollars.
Clerk Treasurer Crystal O’Brien’s presented the Clerk Treasurer report.
She said the transition to Gold Certification for NYS Employee Retirement System halfway completed and making good progress. Weekly update webinars help remind the transition group of the deadlines coming up and the resources available.
O’Brien has completed the reports for Job code, HR transactions and earning codes. All will allow her to give a more descriptive report in the Retirement system. This is especially helpful for record keeping purposes. A phone conference with one of the representatives helped adjust a few codes. With the low number of employees, the process has been simple and easy to complete. The next step is to update our portal, which includes adding all optional employees, validate all employee records and demonstrate the ability to properly record data.
O’Brien is in the process of completing and submitting many quarterly and annual reports due by the end of the month.
The residents of Woodward Drive have asked for the streetlight at the end of the road to be shutoff. They have provided a petition signed by all residence on the street. O’Brian said she has contacted National Grid and the removal of the light will be at no cost to the Village.
The General Election absentee ballot application has been provided to the web developer to add to our website and all pertinent election deadlines have been added to the calendar for ease of access and reference. A resolution designating March 18, 2020, as Election day due to St. Patrick’s Day falling on the second Tuesday of March, designating the polling place to be at the Village Hall from 12 pm to 9 pm and appointing Toni Morrison and Shirley Smith as Election Inspectors with Thomas Basnight as an alternate was presented.
A motion to accept the resolution for Village Election Designation of Election Date, Registration Day, and Appointment of Election Inspectors was made by Trustee Rudes. The motion was seconded by Trustee Crary and the motion was passed by all.
After talking with Mrs. Benkovich at the Chamber and Mayor Barrett, many new people and visitors are not aware of the skating rink and summer public use of the Pavilion and new signage will help to increase awareness. A proposal for a “Speculator Pavilion” and a “Skating Rink/Public Park” sign was made, with the suggestion that the public park sign is reversable; one side for the skating rink with hours provided and one side with public park and hours provided. Both signs would be hung on the front of the pavilion above the doors and would be visible from the road. KC Morrison suggested the dimensions to be 24 inches x 96 inches to allow for visibility. In his experience, a sign of that size and made of materials that weather well range from $325 to $350, with more specific details he could give a better quote. The procurement policy would be followed in the purchase of any signage. After discussion about signage budget it has been advised to add this to the 2020-21 budget.
Anthony Alfieri came to the board to discuss business owners coming to him in the last month about the sidewalk being opened to snowmobilers. Mayor Barrett updated the Board with the information that an alternative trail was established soon after the December 9 meeting, alleviating the urgency of the original petition presented to reopen the sidewalk trail closed in light of an access trail through Lakeside Licks being closed with late notice.
Alfieri asked for a board vote on the matter; however, Katie Smith, Village Attorney, advised there is only a need for a vote if a trustee makes a motion, otherwise what is in place now stays. All trustees agreed at this point there is no need to open the sidewalk to snowmobiles, but the local snowmobile clubs should continue to explore alternatives to allow better access to all businesses in the Village.
On December 13, the Village received a Notice of Claim from Moose Creek Holdings, LLC. Attorney Jonathan Schopf has been recommended by Mrs. Smith and he has been retained by the Village in the past. Mayor Barrett spoke with his references which included the Supervisor of Hoosick where he is retained as the Town attorney and the Fulton County Regional SPCA where he is their general counsel. He is experienced in municipal matters. Mayor Barrett made a resolution to retain Schopf Law, PLLC as External Litigation Counsel. After much discussion on the amount of the retainer and the ability of it to be refunded if not fully used the Board decided to approve the resolution.
Trustee Donecker made a motion to approve the Resolution for the Retention of Schopf Law, PLLC as External Litigation Counsel. Trustee Crary seconded and the motion was passed by all.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) of the US Dept Of Transportation has amended their regulations to establish requirements for the CDL Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. This took effect on January 6, 2020. The clearinghouse is a secure online national repository, the purpose of which is to identify in real-time CDL drivers who have violated federal drug and alcohol testing program requirements. It will be used by trucking employers, state and municipal agencies, and law enforcement officials. This also requires employers to query the system to determine if current or prospective CDL drivers have had a violation prohibiting them from performing safety-sensitive functions covered by the US DOT. This information follows the driver regardless of how many times they change employers or apply for a CDL in a different state. The Village is in compliance with the Clearinghouse regulation and all drivers have signed a release for the requisite testing and queries of the Clearinghouse database. The Clearinghouse rule is reflected in the updated Employee handbook.
An ice and water rescue Mutual Aid Agreement between the Speculator Volunteer Fire Department and Speculator Volunteer Ambulance Corp. was presented to the Board. The SVFD have previous and ongoing training in ice and water rescue and with the SVAC providing the equipment this will be a great partnership.
An SVFD new member application for Bill Ralph was submitted for approval. Mr. Ralph is coming onto the department as a driver and pump operator.
Trustee McComb made a motion to approve the SVFD new member application for Bill Ralph. Trustee Rudes seconded and the motion was passed unanimously.
A draft copy of the Employee handbook, not updated since Dec 13, 2010, has been provided to the Board and department supervisors. Updates are based on prior board-approved changes, review by Former Trustee Craven who has extensive experience in compensation and human resources, board resolutions, state mandates, and input from our insurance provider, Bryan Moldt. In addition, other handbooks from municipalities were used as reference. Review of updates will begin at the next scheduled Board meeting.
The ability to clean the sidewalks of snow down to the concrete was brought up by Trustee Donecker. Unfortunately, the machine used is slightly larger than the sidewalks. Rendering it impossible for the machine to clean all the snow. Talk of purchasing a slightly smaller machine with both a snowblower and sander will be discussed in the future.
Bill Paestella asked if the Village is being sued for paving Elliot Lane. Smith explained that any ongoing litigation cannot be discussed at this time.
Neil McGovern is trying to re-establish SPARC and asked if meetings could again be held at the Village Hall. He brought up the ability of adding a LED sign in the Village like the one in Wells. The board was responsive to having a LED light in the Village and agreed to discuss the matter later.

Note: This article is based upon minutes provided by Crystal O’Brien, Clerk-Treasurer.

Speculator VB audio Jan 13 2020

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Text of Supervisor Jan 24 2020

Supervisor Jan 24 2020

County acts to improve the county fleet of vehicles
LAKE PLEASANT—The Hamilton County Board of Supervisors met on Friday, January 24 at the County Court House in Lake Pleasant and passed the following resolutions to improve the county fleet of vehicles.
WHEREAS, Hamilton County owns and operates a sizable light vehicle fleet of over 50 vehicles consisting of 4 door sedans, light pickups and suburban’s
WHEREAS, the County has mostly purchased vehicle models manufactured by Chevrolet over the past several years through public bidding, state contract and piggy-back bids from other political subdivisions of New York State
WHEREAS, 76% of the county’s light vehicle fleet are currently late model Chevrolet models
WHEREAS, it is the County’s position that it would beneficial to standardize the light vehicle fleet to Chevrolet for the following reasons: Improved Maintenance Efficiency – The complexity of vehicle systems is increasing with the addition of electronic sensors and controls, new emissions technology and safety devices. The difficulty of learning of these systems for the maintenance technicians can be reduced by limiting the variety of different manufacturers systems.
Fewer Diagnostic and Specialty Tools – Specialized electronic diagnostic tools are required and require subscriptions and software updates. These are recurring costs and costs can be reduced limiting the variety of different manufacturers.
Reduced Parts Inventory – The more variety in a fleet requires more parts inventory and standardization relieves the need of a larger parts inventory stock because of more variety in the fleet.
Geographic Location – Hamilton County is a very large county geographically and has no vehicle dealers within the county and it is at least a one-hour drive to any vehicle dealers regardless of manufacturer. This requires more in-house repairs with diagnostic and mechanical repairs on the vehicle fleet.
Increased Operator Efficiency and Safety – Vehicle operators become familiar with a certain manufacturer such as where driver controls are within the vehicle. Employees of the County are in many instances operating different vehicles daily. Reducing the variety of the fleet reduces the operators fatigue factor when having to become familiar with different driver controls in a different vehicle
WHEREAS, it is not the intent of Hamilton County to limit the competition when purchasing light fleet vehicles but to increase efficiency in repairs, maintenance, parts inventory thus creating a cost savings to Hamilton County, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, that hereby the County Board of Supervisors does approve the Standardization of the light vehicle fleet to include the following vehicles – Chevrolet Malibu 4 Door Sedans; Chevrolet Pickup Trucks 1500 to 3500 series; Chevrolet Tahoe’s or Suburban’s SSV PPV’s,
and be it further RESOLVED, the purchase of the said vehicles will be done by public bid, state contract or eligible piggy-back bids from other political subdivisions of New York State and the County Treasurer, Fleet Coordinator and Clerk of the Board be so notified.
WHEREAS, Resolution No. 2-2020 duly adopted on January 7, 2020 awarded Items 1 and 5 to the lowest bidder and rejected Items 2 thru 4 for pickup trucks for Bid Specification 1-2020 Fleet Vehicles
WHEREAS, after consideration by the Board of Supervisors, the Board has decided to standardize the light vehicle fleet to Chevrolet
WHEREAS, the following bids for Item 2 thru 4 received from Carbone Auto Group, 5149 Commercial Drive, Yorkville, NY are as follows: Item 2 – 2020 Chevrolet 1500 Crew Cab Pickup Bid Price - $31,736, Item 3 – 2020 Chevrolet 2500 Crew Cab Pickup Bid Price - $35,178, Item 4 – 2018 Chevrolet 3500 Pickup -Configuration A – Crew Cab Bid Price - $35,669, Configuration B – Regular Cab Bid Price - $32,964
WHEREAS, the bids received from Carbone Auto Group for Items 2 thru 4 are now considered the lowest responsible bids, be it
RESOLVED, the Board of Supervisors does hereby amend Resolution No. 2-2020 and Items 2 thru 4 of Bid Specification 1-2020 Fleet Vehicles are awarded to Carbone Auto Group and the Fleet Coordinator, County Treasurer and Clerk of the Board ne so advised.
WHEREAS, the County Board of Supervisors have duly adopted the 2020 Hamilton County Budget
WHEREAS, within the said adopted 2020 budget the Board appropriated $250,000 for equipment purchases for the Highway Department
WHEREAS, the Highway Superintendent recommends that the department purchase three pickup trucks for use in 2020 as follows: Two 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 4X4 Crew Cab - $63,472; One 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 4X4 Crew Cab - $35,178 and be it
RESOLVED, that the Fleet Coordinator is hereby authorized to order three 2020 Chevrolet pickups for the DPW as mentioned herein for a total of $98,650 for three pickups delivered and the County Treasurer, Fleet Coordinator and the Clerk of the Board be so notified.
WHEREAS, the Social Services Department needs replacing one vehicle and the County Fleet Coordinator does recommend the replacement of the said vehicle,
WHEREAS, 2020 Chevrolet Malibu 4 Door Sedans are available under Hamilton County Bid Award at a cost of $17,270 each including delivery
WHEREAS, the vehicle that is to be replaced will be turned down to another department to be utilized and the Fleet Coordinator will determine where the most need is and place the used vehicle there, be it
RESOLVED, the 2020 vehicle will be purchased under Hamilton County Bid Spec 1-2020 for a total of $17,270 for one automobile delivered, and be it further
RESOLVED, that Revenue Account No. A4610 Federal Aid, Social Services Admin-S/S be hereby increased by $17,270 to be totally offset by increasing Account No. A6010.202, Automobile Social Service by $17,270, and be it further
RESOLVED, that the County Fleet Coordinator is hereby authorized to order said vehicle and that the funds be taken out of Account A6010.202 Automobile Social Services to cover the cost of the said vehicle and the County Treasurer, Fleet Coordinator, Clerk of the Board and Commissioner of Social Services be so notified.
WHEREAS, the Community Services Department needs replacing a vehicle and the County Fleet Coordinator does recommend the replacement of the said vehicle, and
WHEREAS, 2020 Chevrolet Malibu 4 Door Sedans are available under Hamilton County Bid Award at a cost of $17,270 each including delivery
WHEREAS, the vehicle that is to be replaced will be turned down to another department to be utilized and the Fleet Coordinator will determine where the most need is and place the used vehicle there, be it
RESOLVED, the 2020 vehicle will be purchased under Hamilton County Bid Spec 1-2020 for a total of $17,270 for one automobile delivered, and be it further
RESOLVED, that $17,270 from Federal Salary Sharing 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 Account No A4310.201 Automobile Community Services to purchase said vehicle, and be it further
RESOLVED, that the Fleet Coordinator is hereby authorized to order said 2020 Chevrolet Malibu through Carbone Auto Group and that the funds be taken out of Account A4310.201 Automobile Community Services in the amount of $17,270 to cover the cost of said vehicle and the County Treasurer, Fleet Coordinator, Clerk of the Board and Community Service Director be so notified.
WHEREAS, by Resolution No. 153-19 dated May 2, 2019 the Hamilton County Board of Supervisors appointed Timothy Smith of Lake Pleasant, NY to the position of Coroner for a term of May 2, 2019 – December 31, 2019, to fill the vacancy created by Donald Braunius’ resignation
WHEREAS, the vacant Coroner position was not on the ballot in 2019
WHEREAS, the vacant Coroner position will be on the ballot in 2020, be it
RESOLVED, that Timothy Smith of Lake Pleasant, NY is hereby appointed Coroner for a term of January 1, 2020 – December 31, 2020.

Supervisor jan 24 2020 audio

Text of ILCS BOE Jan 21 2020

ILCS BOE Jan 21 2020

ILCS 2020/2021 budget treading up
INDIAN LAKE—When the Indian Lake Central School Board of Education met on January 21, it had its first look at the budget for the next school year.
What follows is the first draft of 2020-21 budget compared to the approved 2019-2020 budget.
Total Proposed Budget of $6,992,254 compared to 2019/2020 approved budget of $6,705,567 - up 4.28% - $286,687.
Total Estimated Revenues are $1,621,250 - $1,621,250
Total Estimated Tax Levy of $5,371,004 is up 5.64% above $5,084,317 approved 2019/2020 budget.
Snide said the figures are estimates for the 2020-21 budget. The estimated revenues are carried over from prior year due to the state not yet having provided 2020·21 revenue estimates.
As of January 15, the estimated tax cap levy LIMIT is $5,208,734. The state still needs to provide estimated aid figures,
He said, “We are showing a $286,687, or a 4.82%, increase in budgeted expenditures over the prior year. Our current estimated tax levy is $5,371,004. This is $162,270 over the estimated tax cap levy limit.
Superintendent Dave Snide gave the Building Project Update as follows: “Asbestos Survey was started. They are scheduled to do the core sample on the roof on Wednesday, January 15, along with Peter Hamilton, who is with the company that met with us regarding the Tremco Coating System. I believe after they take the core samples, he will seal the roof.
“Upcoming Events: Several students will be taking January Regents. Mid-terms and Final exams will be taking place during the last three weeks of January. The 2nd Quarter ends on January 24.
“Athletics: Basketball is going well. I hope to have softball and baseball sign-up numbers for you by the meeting.”
The board approved the bond resolution for the Indian Lake School District $2,021,250 capital project.
The bond resolution, dated January 21, 2020, had the board authorizing not to exceed $1,521,250 aggregate principal amount of serial general obligation bonds and the expenditure of $500,000 from the capital reserve fund to finance the reconstruction of the school building, including site work, and the acquisition of original furnishings, equipment, machinery or apparatus, at an estimated maximum cost of $2,021,250, the expenditure of such sum for such purpose, levy of tax in annual installments in payment thereof, and determining other matters in connection therewith.
The resolution stated: “WHEREAS, the qualified voters of the Indian Lake Central School District (the "District"), at a special meeting of such voters duly held on the 10'" day of December, 2019, duly approved a proposition authorizing the issuance of general obligation bonds in an aggregate principal amount of not to exceed $1,521,250 and the expenditure of $500,000 from the Capital Reserve Fund, to finance the reconstruction of the School building, including site work, acquisition of original furnishings, equipment, machinery or apparatus required for the purpose, for which such building is to be used and incidental costs related thereto at a maximum cost of $2,021,250, the expenditure of such sums for such purposes, and the levy of the necessary tax therefor, to be levied upon the taxable prope1iy of the District and collected in annual installments as provided by Section 416 of the Education Law.”
The board approved increasing Jane Hinckley from Ml5 to M30 on STEP schedule.
The board approved the old risers to be sold on Auction International web site.
The board approved Nicholas Sprague as substitute teacher pending fingerprints.
The board approval Gregg Thompson as a substitute cleaner at a rate of $15.04 per hour.
The board approved the purchase of saxophone from Mellissa Mulvey for $300.
The board approved granting Ashton Hoag and Ray Hoag granted tenure effective September 1, 2020.

Audio of ILCS BOE January 21, 2020

Friday, January 24, 2020

Text version of LPTB gets organized

Lake Pleasant Town Board gets organized

LAKE PLEASANT—The Lake Pleasant Town Board held its Organizational Meeting and regular town board meeting on January 6, 2020.
RESOLUTION #3 That Deputy Supervisor Neil McGovern was named as the Voting Delegate at the Annual Business Session of the Association of Towns of the State of New York being held on February 16 to 19, 2020.
RESOLUTION #4 2020 Town Appointments - Deputy Supervisor-Neil McGovern; Budget Officer-Betsy Bain; Attorney for Town-Young & Sommer; Historian-Annie Weaver; Official Bank-NBT; Health Insurance Rep.-Deborah O’Rourke; Justice Court Clerk-Deborah O’Rourke; Deputy Court Clerk-Faith Cleveland; Deputy Clerk-Faith Cleveland; Animal Control Officer- Mike Peck; Deputy Animal Control Officer-Laura Peck; Registrar of Vital Statistics & Handicap Permit Issuer-Deborah O’Rourke; Purchasing Agent-Betsy Bain; Youth Recreation Director-Samantha Desrochers; Park & Recreation Foreman- Randolph Lavarnway; Refuse & Recyclable Foreman-Randolph Lavarnway; Zoning Officer Code Enforcement Officer-Robert Benkovich; Official Newspaper-Hamilton County Express.
Offered by Nancy Seifts 2nd by Cristine Meixner Adopted by the following vote: 
RESOLUTION #5 Authorizations for Superintendent of Highways to make purchases of tools etc. at a cost not to exceed $2,999 and to buy oil, tires, salt at state contract pricing.
RESOLUTION #6 Set mileage for town employees @ .58 for reimbursement.
RESOLUTION#7 Town of Lake Pleasant to adopt the Holiday schedule as established by Hamilton County on file.
RESOLUTION# 8 That a regularly scheduled Town Board meetings will be held at the Lake Pleasant Public Library, 2864 State Hwy. 8, Speculator NY at 7 p.m. on the first and third Monday of each month, or as otherwise published and/or posted. There will not be a meeting on a Monday Holiday.
RESOLUTION # 9 Salaries of elected officials and appointed personnel are set forth as established in the 2020 Town Budget.
Nancy Welch 01/01/2020-12/31/2023.
RESOLUTION #11 Town Clerk/Tax Collectors office hours will be 9 A.M.-4 P.M. Monday-Friday
Lavarnway reported that all trucks are doing well the new truck that has been order has been pushed out for delivery to January 15. The backhoe is being repaired by an outside contractor. The contractor should be done soon he is waiting on a new pin. No snowmobile trails have been groomed yet, waiting on snow. The crew are cutting trees along the roads.
The zone valve has been changed for the heating system in the Primary Care.
Supervisor Betsy Bain and Highway Superintendent Lavarnway were scheduled to mark the highwater mark at 175 Golf Course Rd but due to bad weather, they need to reschedule.
Bain said that the County and the Village are waiting on hearing from the Town on the MOU regarding Verizon putting up small cell towers on municipal property. Former Supervisor Wilt felt why spend the money if the Village Attorney and the County Attorney were reviewing it. Bain has an appointment with the County this week on this matter. Supervisor Bain also let the Board know that the contract was signed for the replacement of the LED light fixtures and sent to Potentia Management Group so the work can be started.
Karen McComb, President of the Board of Library Trustees wanted the public to know that there is an opening on the Trustees Board, if anyone is interested please contact one of the trustees with a letter of interest. Karen informed the Board that the library is working on becoming a federal depository library. Councilperson McGovern asked if there was a letter done to thank Frank Mezzano for all his years as Trustee, Karen said at their meeting tomorrow they will be addressing Frank’s service and a thank you.
The Board approved Supervisor Bain to sign the 2020 with James Brennan Human Society with a couple of changes the cost of this is $500 per year.
The paperwork has been filled out by Superintendent Lavarnway and Supervisor Bain for the reimbursement from FEMA for the town infrastructure repairs that are needed after the October storm.
Supervisor Bain has been given the computer used by former Supervisor Wilt. Her new email is and her cell phone is on order her number will 518-571-1086
Gary Rhinehart from Dackland Radio questioned the board on how he is supposed to archive the Town recordings. There seems to be a question brought up by the Village Mayor about the time limit for archiving. The board said what he is doing is fine.
William Paestella questioned Highway Superintendent Randy Lavarnway if there had been a change in the plowing of Rt. 30. Lavarnway said in the past two years a new foreman in Wells feels it is safer for his trucks to turn around in the upper North parking lot, we turnaround in the South parking lot.
Councilperson Seifts asked Peter Newell who has completed setting up new emails for all Board members about a warning sign she had gotten when she went into Towpath to check her email he said to disregard.
Councilperson Meixner hoped that the new Board will address the septic inspections idea that Zoning/Code Officer Robert Benkovich suggested in the past.
Councilperson McGovern is familiar with the Town of Inlet procedure and he feels very strong about the inspections. Councilperson Meixner reported that DOT does not have Rt. 8 & 30 on its projects lists for 2020, Supervisor Bain said both will be addressed.
Councilperson McGovern would like to see Speculator Arietta Regional Council (SPARC) supported again. This was started years ago, and he would hope to get it up and running again.
Supervisor Bain wanted to let everyone know that former Supervisor Wilt has been great in helping make the transition a smooth one.
Highway Superintendent asked the board if they want him to start drawing up the contracts with the local snowmobile clubs for grooming. He normally would have started doing this but has not received the vouchers parks and recs on how much the Town will be receiving. The board suggested he go ahead a get the contracts started. Supervisor Bain told Superintendent Lavarnway if he needed help, she would be available.

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

Audio of Lake Pleasant Town Board meeting Jan 6 2020

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Stewarts looking to move

ILTB Jan 13 2020

Stewarts looking to move
INDIAN LAKE—At the January 13 meeting of the Indian Lake Town Board, Indian Lake Supervisor Brain Wells said Stewarts will be moving ahead with purchasing the corner lot in Town. He stated this will also involve the Town's Chamber building property. Supervisor Wells told all that he will be abstaining from any involvement in this. He told all that where the existing Stewarts is, belonged to his grandparents. He stated he now owns the property. He told all that Stewart s, being a good neighbor, had moved their fence line back closer to the building as to allow his grandfather to continue plowing. Therefore, the Town's Lawyer suggested he step back from this. He told all that Meade Hutchins, Deputy Supervisor, had been handling the negotiations. He did say that he appreciates what Stewarts is doing for the Town of Indian Lake.
Supervisor Wells reported to the Board that part of the process is, the Town needs to get an appraisal on the Town property that the Chamber sits on. He reported that the Towns Lawyer had received three (3) Proposals from appraisal company' s and asked the Board to look over them. He also told all that Stewarts would be picking up the cost of the appraisal.
Councilman Rathbun made a motion to accept the three (3) proposals received for review. Seconded by Councilwoman Stanton.
Supervisor Wells reported that the Town had been awarded $900,000 for the Blue Mt. Lake Water project grant. He stated there was a concern in the award letter stating that if the Town accepted this grant, we would also be confirming our intent to proceed without drinking water state revolving fund money. He stated he had met with Cedarwood on the 7th and they called EFC and he stated that we can sign off on it in order to meet the deadline and then we would have to do a different grant process for further monies. He suggested the Board sign the letter of intent on the EFC funding and we could move forward. Supervisor Wells stated there were still some concerns. There were questions on the dates of the letter. Supervisor Wells will be checking into this.
Supervisor Wells gave an update of the tree cutting lawsuit. He told all that the Judge ruled that it is worthy enough to go to the appeals court. He stated that a rough timeline on this would be around September, therefore we will be losing another building season.
Supervisor Wells stated he had written a letter of support for the Adirondack Experience. He told all they are looking for funding from the North East Heritage Economy Program to preserve the log hotel. Supervisor Wells also reported that the Town had received funding for a new Web site development. He asked Councilman Mahoney if he would work on this. He told Councilman Mahoney that we have been currently working with trampoline and to come in and Supervisor Wells would give him the information. He also stated that the Town of Newcomb had received funding as well for a new historical museum and center. He stated they would like to work with the Adirondack Experience. He stated that they had received 1.1 million. He stated that he would be meeting with Mr. Kahn, Director of the Adirondack Experience and Robin Deloria, Newcomb's Town Supervisor, and would be working jointly with them on this project.
Supervisor Wells told the Board Members that he had put in their boxes a schedule of his meetings in case any of them needed to get ahold of him.
Supervisor Wells stated there would be a FEMA meeting in Lake Pleasant and he told all Pam Howard and himself would be going. He told all that FEMA had stated there would be no funding available for individuals, however, a lot of people are fighting this, so he is hoping to find out more information at this meeting. This will be held on the Lake Pleasant Fire Hall at 10:30 a.m. Jamie Roblee, Highway Superintendent, stated that he would also be attending the meeting.
Supervisor Wells stated he had received an article from Bob and Frank McNamara concerning internet. Supervisor Wells stated that he and Councilwoman Stanton had attended a conference call with Chazen and NYS Dept. of State over the Grant work for the Commons. He stated that the call went very well.
Supervisor stated that he updated the NYSEG contact information. He is waiting for their contact information now.
Josselyn Bennett, Activities Coordinator, approached the Board giving her Board Report. She asked the Board for approval to put together a trip to Boston in the spring. The Board thought it was a good idea.
Darrin Harr gave an overview on the Chamber report and on Snocade.
Christine Pouch, Director of Adirondack Lakes Center for The Art s, gave an overview of the Centers contribution to Snocade.
Supervisor Wells introduced Ethan Gaddy from the Chazen Corp., who has been working with Meade Hutchins, Al Pouch and John Hutchins on the Zoning Ordinance Update.
Wells made a motion to open the Public Hearing on the Zoning Ordinance Updates and all approved.
Ethan Gaddy gave an overview of the changes. Ethan reported to all that now that the updates are done, it will be much easier in the future to change a specific part of the Zoning Ordinance.
The public hearing will remain open until the February 10 meeting, so minor corrections could be made.
Wells reported that the Resolution for Donna Husson, thanking her for her years of service, had been presented to her on her last day of work.
Wells reported to all that he had received a request from Gallop Farms. He explained that they are looking to do a Co-op delivery service here. He stated they would be taking orders and would like the Town Hall to be the drop off point. He stated he did not think that was going to work but is hoping that someone else will pick up the ball on this. He stated this would be put on the Town's Web site.
For more information go to
Wells told all he had an AATV (Adirondack Association of Towns and Villages) meeting at the Town Hall on January 10. He told all there was a surprise guest, Assemblyman Dan Stec.
Supervisor Wells stated that he would be meeting with Peter Burns to begin working on the Rafting Contract.
Wells reported that he had checked over the Town Clerk's Account for the year and all was satisfactory.
Councilwoman Curry asked if there was any further information pertaining to the E car stations. Supervisor Wells stated that he and Bill Laprairie, Department Head of Parks and Rec., have been working on this. He stated that he is looking into putting it by the Library. Councilwoman Curry suggested putting it somewhere in Town as people must wait for the car to charge and this could lead to them spending money in Town.
Councilwoman Curry also stated that the Park and Rec. Department do so much more than Parks and Rec. and she feels "Park and Rec." is not the right name for this department. She feels that it is more a building and grounds department. She stated that Bill Laprairie fields calls all the time concerning events, so she feels that the name is misleading to the public. Supervisor Wells questioned if she had investigated any of the other Town's as to what their name was? She stated that the ones who had a Park and Rec Department were activities and events. She asked that this be taken under consideration.
Councilwoman Stanton reported to all that the Snocade pamphlets should be out soon. She also stated she would be attending a Regional Rural Issues Forum on Rural Schools. She stated that she will be seeing how she can assist in education in both adult education and bringing educational opportunities to Indian Lake.
Jamie Roblee, Highway Superintendent, asked if the Board would sign the Section 284 that he had given. The Board stated they could not sign this as there is no listing of the roads, he plans on working on. He will get the list to them by the next meeting.
Supervisor Wells called for an Executive Session at 8:09 p.m. for the purpose of discussing Contractual Obligations. Seconded by, Councilwoman Stanton. All in favor. Motion carried.
Supervisor Wells made a motion to reconvene the regular Board Meeting at 8:10 p.m. to finish the discussion on picking the appraiser for the Stewarts project. All in favor. Motion carried.
Councilwoman Stanton made a motion to go with the Empire State Appraisal consultant in the estimated amount of $3,600. It was approved

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

Movie of ILTB jan 13 2020

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Text of Speculator VB Dec 9, 2019

Eric Craven resigns for village board
SPECULAOR—At the December 9 meeting of the Speculator Village Board of Trustees, Mayor Barrett read the resignation letter of Trustee Eric Craven. Trustee Craven felt that as his speech continues to deteriorate, he believes he is not as effective as he should be, and it has become a hinderance. He also believes it is unfair to the Board and the public to have Mayor Barrett repeat his words. With the meetings being broadcast by Dackland Radio it would become confusing for those listening, therefore he was reluctantly resigning to allow another member of the community to serve in his absence. Mayor Barrett accepted his resignation noting the many contributions Trustee Craven has made during his brief tenure in the areas of budgeting, finance and medical insurance. Mayor Barrett appointed Mark Crary to fill the term left vacant by Trustee Craven, to run through April 2020. Mark Crary signed the Oath of Office at the time of appointment.
Edward Scharpou, WWTP Chief Operator, gave a six-month update on his budget, as of now, all expenses are accounted for and his budget is right on track with no expected overages.
Mayor Barrett informed the Board there was a Bookkeeping and Reporting Services proposal from Lamont Engineers for the WWTP project that would be covered under the administrative costs of the grant. They would provide these services at a cost of about $250 per month or $3,000 annually.
Trustee Donecker made a motion to approve the agreement of Bookkeeping and Reporting Services with Lamont Engineers in connection with the Wastewater Treatment Facility upgrades. Trustee McComb seconded and the motion was passed unanimously.
Crystal O’Brien presented the Clerk - Treasurer report as follows:
Donna Benkovich from the Speculator Regional Chamber of Commerce approached Mrs. O’Brien with an idea of a skate sharing program for the skating rink at the Speculator Pavilion. With this program Benkovich hopes to expand the use of this recreational facility by giving those who do not have skates the opportunity to still use the rink. The Chamber would acquire skates by donation and hang them at the pavilion for the winter season. After discussion on the liability of having donated skates for anyone to use, Benkovich stated they would post a sign with the skates stating the skates are provided by the Chamber of Commerce to be used at your own risk. The Board agreed to try this program for the 2019-20 winter season.
Trustee McComb made a motion to try a pilot program for the 2019-2020 winter season for the utilization of donated skates sponsored by the Chamber at the Speculator Pavilion for participants to use at their own risk. Trustee Crary seconded and the motion was passed unanimously.
No new information on the LED streetlight project.
Governor Cuomo has filed the request for FEMA support to the Federal Government with regards to the damage from the Halloween Storm and we await the decision.
Mayor Barrett had spoken with Croote of the Hamilton County Soil and Water Department to evaluate three sites within the Village for the Emergency Watershed Program (EWP). The sites were the Point, the Public Beach area and the Marion Avenue Culvert. Unfortunately, NCRS rejected these sites stating that EWP funds may not be used to repair coastal erosion to beaches and shoreline and the culvert is not an imminent hazard. Hamilton County Emergency Services has scheduled a review meeting on February 13 for the Halloween Storm. Mayor Barrett, Supervisor Wilt and Barbara Taylor will also be meeting to review the Emergency Operation Plan for the Village and Town developed earlier this year.
Anthony Alfieri was invited to the meeting to present his petition to open the sidewalk from the Speculator Fire Department to the Four Corners to snowmobiles. The matter became a problem within the last two weeks ago when the DRAG volunteers were informed the snowmobile trail across the Marsh’s property, providing access to Mountain Market was being closed. The trail on Marsh’s property was part of the BAT (Business Access Trail) and without it, snowmobilers do not have easy access to Mountain Market and several other businesses on Route 30. Alfieri stated he had spoken to many of the businesses on Route 30, including Cedarhurst, Charlie Johns, King of the Frosties, Mountain Market and Sunrise Diner, who expressed their businesses have been impacted since the strict closure of the sidewalk to snowmobiles in 2014. With the closure of the current trail across from Mountain Market, these local businesses would be more severely impacted. Alfieri suggested lifting the ordinance for the 2019-20 winter season only, allowing the snowmobile groups much needed time to establish a trail for the 2020-21 season. Part of the proposed future trail would be on Town of Lake Pleasant property behind businesses on the east side of route 30. Creating this trail takes time and cleanup which they said could not be done with snow on the ground. Trustee McComb stated she had spoken to a small group who live in the Village and walk the sidewalks, they all said, except for icy conditions, they enjoy having the ability to walk in the winter without being close to traffic. Additionally, Mayor Barrett cited legal responsibilities that included Local Law #1 of 1990 and Local Law #1 of 2019 prohibiting the use of snowmobiles on plowed sidewalks, Section 46 of the NYS Highway Law directing Cities, Towns and Villages on their responsibility for maintaining sidewalks, direction from the Attorney General stating that Villages are authorized to adopt regulations restricting snowmobiles on the sidewalks, and Municipal Home Rule Law specifically authorizing the municipality to adopt laws to protect public safety. Mayor Barret also mentioned the enormous liability issues for the Village stating that snowmobiles on the sidewalks force pedestrians to walk in traffic which is a major issue with insurance carriers as this would force pedestrians to walk in traffic. A lengthy discussion of other viable options ensued with the Board asking Alfieri and the present business owners to explore the alternative routes with local snowmobile clubs before there is any decision made on temporarily opening the sidewalks to snowmobilers. The discussion was then tabled to the December 23 Board Meeting with the possibility of holding a special meeting if the Holiday interferes.
Mayor Barrett presented the ability to work with Verizon to bring small cell towers into the Village. After witnessing the nonexistent cell service at the Bear and Wine Festival and Oaktoberfest, Mayor Barrett contacted the Assistant Secretary of Economic Development to create a solution to our growing need for cellular service. Verizon is approaching the problem with two possible solutions; 1 raising the cell tower 15 feet requiring APA approval; 2 adding small cell towers in key areas that will increase the capacity for cell service. Verizon has been unsuccessfully negotiating with the NYS DOT for ROW access. Mayor Barrett suggested the use of Municipal property in Speculator and Lake Pleasant. Following a call between Verizon and Mayor Barrett, Town Supervisor Wilt and Hamilton County Chairman Farber, the Town of Lake Pleasant and the County Board of Supervisors have agreed to proceed provided there is no cost to the municipality and county.
Trustee McComb made a motion to enter into a lease agreement with Verizon allowing the installation of utility poles of small cell towers on Village property and that there would be no cost incurred by the village but those would all be borne by Verizon. Trustee Donecker seconded and the motion was passed unanimously.
Out of several grants submitted this year, the award of a $100,000 DEC Smart Growth Grant for the restoration and reconstruction of a fire tower was granted to the Village of Speculator. At the time of the application, Mr. Lane had offered to donate a fire tower which has since been deemed unusable, but the Village will be looking for another fire tower for the project. Having a fire tower in Speculator would be a major attraction with the renewed interest in fire towers and easy accessibility from the pavilion area. If we accept the grant, we would be responsible for some costs provided through in-kind services.

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

Audio Speculator VB Dec 9 2019

Friday, January 17, 2020

Text of WCS BOE Jan 15 2020 .

WCS BOE Jan 15 2020

No fiscal stress at Wells Central.
WELLS—WCS Superintendent Thomas D. Sincavage reported at the Jan 15 meeting of the Wells Central School Board of Education meeting that the School District received the fiscal stress and environment stress scores from the Office of the State Comptroller. The district had a perfect score of 0, indicating no fiscal stress. The score of Environmental stress was 8.3; any score below 30 indicates no environmental stress. The Board was pleased with these ratings.
Sincavage stated the One District One Book program started last Friday, January 10 with a kickoff party. This year the school is reading “Life According to Og the Frog”. This book is written by the same author as the “Life According to Humphrey” series and is told from the Frog’s perspective. This is the districts fourth year using the program.
The next item was the Capital Project. The first contractor meeting was held on December 23, 2019. Contractors will start working on the school over the February break. The next contractors meeting will be held on Monday, January 20. The school district received a proposal from Mosaic Associates to complete a building condition survey which is required every 5 years. The school district uses these surveys to plan for future capital projects.
Lastly, Sincavage gave the early look at 2020/2021 Budget. He is still waiting on preliminary State Aid figures which should be released after January 22.
The January Enrollment Report by Jessica Damphier listed the current enrollment at 146.
Jeremy J. Siddon, Building Principal, gave the Athletic Director’s Report. He noted that the winter sports season was underway. Several games have been rescheduled due to the weather. The most up to date schedule is available on the school’s website. The school district is using the remind app to notify parents of any changes. Parents and the community can contact the school to sign up for the notifications. There is also a sports app for smartphone users on the school district website that has the updated game schedule.
The Wells Central School Board of Education established the non-resident tuition rate for the 2020/2021 school year as follows: $7,000 for full-time students and $2,333 for early admit non-resident students who attend a full time BOCES program or FMCC as an early admission student. Additionally, it is noted that parents are responsible for any FMCC tuition and no WCS transportation is provided. The motion was made by Rachel Lauria, seconded by William Stuart, and carried 5-0.
The Board approved the mileage reimbursement rate of the IRS approved rate of 57.5 cents per mile, retroactively to January 1, 2020. The motion was made by Ken Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
The board appointed Mosaic Associates to complete the mandated 2020 Building Condition Survey and accepted the proposal in the of amount $2,235 as presented. The motion was made by William Stuart, seconded by Dorman Reese, and carried 5-0.
The board approved the fire inspection reports for the main building and the bus garage dated January 7, 2020 as presented. The motion was made by Ken Hoffman, seconded by Rachel Lauria, and carried 5-0.
The board reviewed the Calendar of Events. Sincavage noted the Honor Roll Celebration this quarter would be a breakfast and welcomed the Board Members to attend.

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

Audio WCS BOE Jan 15 2020

Hope Town Board gets Organized

Text of Hope Town Board gets organized

Hope TB Jan 13 2020

Hope Town Board gets organized
HOPE—The Organizational and Regular Board Meeting of the Town of Hope, Hamilton County and the State of New York was held at the Town Hall, Route 30, Hope, New York on the 13th day of January 2020. Supervisor Steven Tomlinson called the meeting to order with the Pledge to the Flag at 7 p.m.
Supervisor Tomlinson addressed all board members and public guests that were present. He recapped 2019. In doing so, he thanked Superintendent Colson for all he does. Some examples he used were the new garbage pickup, the continued successful Annual Clean Up and the amount of brush cutting that was completed. He added that Highway Department added a new truck and are waiting for the delivery of a second one.
Supervisor Tomlinson stated that the Town of Hope and its board members have successfully kept the town budget under the 2% state tax cap for 3 years in a row.
Supervisor Tomlinson gave end of the year fund balances. He was happy with the balances even with increasing the Fire Department budget, added building projects, equipment repair and preventative maintenance.
He went to add that at a County level, garbage now goes to Mud Road and this seems to benefit all the towns. He stated there is still a waiting period as Mud Road looks to change over to Single Stream recycling and when this happens, the Town of Hope will have changes in the way that recycling is currently done.
Supervisor Tomlinson states he is happy with the community involvement with the Town Picnic as it grows each year. He looks forward to adding community events possibly in the future.
He stated an area the Town lacks in, is an Emergency Preparedness Plan and this will be worked on starting ASAP.
Supervisor Tomlinson recapped the Halloween Storm of 2019. He states he has an upcoming meeting with other county reps with FEMA and will be given the results of reimbursements. Superintendent Colson will be joining him at the meeting. He states at the point, NYS has donated the material to fix the roads and this project will begin in the spring. Hamilton County Highway Department will be assisting.
Supervisor Tomlinson asked if anyone wanted to make changes to the regularly scheduled meeting dates and times. All town board members agreed to keep it the same.
Resolved is that the date and times for the Regularly Scheduled Town Board Meetings will continue to be the second Monday of each month, starting at 7 p.m.
Resolved that Supervisor Tomlinson has been approved to pay town salaries.
Resolved that Zachery Colson, Highway Superintendent has been authorized to spend up to $2,000 without approval of the Town Board.
Resolved that the travel allowance rate will be $0.58 per mile.
Resolved that the official bank for the Town of Hope will be NBT Bank.
Resolved that the official newspaper for the Town of Hope will be The Leader Herald.
Resolved that Supervisor Tomlinson has been authorized by the Town Board to pay power, phone, payroll, retirement monies, and other contractual expenses before audit is made.
Resolved that the following committees have been approved.
Buildings: - W. Witts and M. Stuart
Cemeteries: - J. Stuart and D. Downing
Highway: - M. Stuart and J. Stuart
Landfill/Transfer Station: - D. Downing and W. Witts
Parks and Recreation: - D. Downing and M. Stuart
Resolved that Dianna Downing has been appointed to the position of Deputy Supervisor.
Resolved that Supervisor Steven Tomlinson has been appointed to the position of Budget Officer.
Resolved that Jaret Welch has been appointed to the position of Deputy Highway Superintendent.
Resolved that Jill Dunham has been appointed Registrar of Vital Statistics.
Resolved that Marleen Webster has been appointed to the positions of Deputy Town Clerk, Deputy Tax Collector, and Deputy Registrar of Vital Statistics.
Resolved that Mike Stewart has been appointed Code/Building Inspector for the Town of Hope.
Resolved that the ambulance contract between the Town of Hope and Northampton Ambulance Service has been reviewed and approved for the year 2020.
Resolved that the fire contract between the Town of Hope and Northville Fire Department has been reviewed and approved for the year 2020.
Resolved is the approval of the current Town of Hope and Town of Benson Transfer Station contract.
Resolved that an agreement by and between the Towns of Hope, Benson, and Wells for assessment purposes has been approved.
Supervisor Tomlinson distributed copies of the Code Officer’s Report given to him by Mike Stewart, Town of Hope Code Officer.
All fire extinguishers should be inspected and maintained – this was in process as we walked through the building.
The Town Hall should have a combo smoke/carbon monoxide detector installed.
The outside combustion air should be hooked up to the furnaces.
All outlets in the garage should be GFCI protected.
A proper receptacle and cord should be installed for the welder.
Disconnected wiring should be removed.
An exit light and emergency light combo should be installed over the back exit in the Town Hall and an emergency light should be installed in the truck bays.
Supervisor Tomlinson distributed copies of quotes, given to him by Superintendent Colson, of dump inserts available for the Ford pickup. The board discussed this in length and chose two similar designs that were similar in price and gave Superintendent Colson approval to purchase one of them, at his choice, for the Ford pickup.
On a motion by Councilperson John Stuart Jr., seconded by Councilperson Mark Stuart, the following resolution was ADOPTED Resolved that Zachery Colson, Highway Superintendent has been authorized to purchase a dump insert for the Ford pickup truck.
On a motion by Councilperson William Witts, seconded by Councilperson Mark Stuart, the following resolution was ADOPTED. Resolved to purchase 2020 GMC pickup.
On a motion by Councilperson William Witts, seconded by Councilperson Mark Stuart, the following resolution was ADOPTED. Resolved to purchase a new plow for the new 2020 GMC pickup.
Supervisor Tomlinson advised that Mike Stewart is willing to take over as Administrator of the Town of Hope website. He is very familiar with website work and has a good working relationship with Digital Towpath, owner of the website. He has many ideas to transform it into a user-friendly site for the community to use as great informational resource. All town board members were in agreeance.
On a motion by Councilperson William Witts, seconded by Councilperson John Stuart Jr., the following resolution was ADOPTED Resolved was the approval to make Mike Stewart the Administrator of the Town of Hope website.
Highway Superintendent Zachery Colson presented the board with the following for his monthly report:
We cleaned up all the bottles and cans that were lying on the ground and in the bottle building. There were two large loads that we hauled down to a redemption center in Amsterdam.
Our new pickup truck is here. This Friday it goes down to have the plow put on it and I will be scheduling it to have the letters put on it.
We discussed the possibility of logging the property once before and I still have the forest lot analysis. With permission, I would like to contact another forester and have an up to date analysis done. Once the analysis is completed, we can talk about logging the property.
This was discussed by the board members and they all agreed to have Superintendent Colson call a forester to get another analysis.
We received approval for our gateway sign on Route 30. I am waiting on our insurance company to send me the Certificate of Insurance. Ince that is received, I will send in the permit for work and we will put the sign up this spring.
I completed the permits for the work on the River Road. This was in the spring we can get working on the washouts as fast as possible.
Supervisor Tomlinson discussed further the need to put an Emergency Preparedness Plan in place as soon as possible. He advised he wants to set up a work night to begin on this. It was agreed that all board members would come to a work session at 5:30 p.m., prior to next month’s meeting on February 10, 2020.
Jill Dunham stated tax season is under way and there are no concerns. She has also completed her training to be able to do Electronic Death Certificates. There are some minor details to get on the NYS DOH site that she is working directly with DOH to do so. This should be completed by the end of the week. Jill also requests that the railing coming into the town hall be removed for safety reasons and the ground be made flush with the walkway. One last request from Jill was made. She requested the doorknob be replaced to the building as the current one is too hard to open and lock. Superintendent Colson advises that he bought a new one and will have it installed the next day.
JoAnne Robinson spoke and advised that her and her husband took two loads of bottles to the Redemption Center. They will be continuing this weekly in hopes to stay up with the returns. She did state that due to ice and unsafe conditions, they were unable to get to them prior to now. Superintendent Colso0n added that he also took two loads to a Redemption Center and is awaiting the check from those returns. Supervisor Tomlinson added, with the blessing from the town board, that they will deposit that check and write a check made out to the Fire Department once they receive the monies from the Redemption Center. Pete Robinson asked if the building could be moved back up to the Transfer Station. He added that him and his wife would pick the returnable up weekly and during open Transfer Station hours. Superintendent Colson agreed to do this.
Pete Robinson asked if the town board was still moving forward at looking at the fire department for a place to renovate and make a new maniple office location. Supervisor Tomlinson stated plans to move ahead with a project in 2020 are continuing and he will hopefully have final answers to the details of that project soon.

This story is based upon minutes provided by Jill Dunham, Town Clerk.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Movie of Wells TB Dec 27 2019

Text of Wells TB Dec 27 2019

Wells TB Dec 27 2019

Wells contracts with NCPR
WELLS--The Close-Out Meeting of the Town Board of the Town of Wells was held at the Wells Ambulance Bldg./Mealsite on December 27, 2019.
Board. Supervisor Beach led off with the Pledge to the Flag and continued with the following Resolution: authorizing the Town of Wells to enter a five-year revocable lease with North Country Public Radio.
On a motion of Councilperson Saltis, seconded by Councilperson Hunt, the following was approved “WHEREAS, the Town of Wells is a Municipal Corporation of the State of New York, having its offices at 1438 State Route 30, with a mailing address of P.O. Box 205, Wells, NY 12190 (Town); and
“WHEREAS, North Country Public Radio is a licensee of St. Lawrence University, governed by the St. Lawrence University Board of Trustees, Canton, NY 13617 (NCPR); and
“WHEREAS, the Town is the owner of a 100’ by 100’ piece of real property off West River Road (parcel ID 130.017-1-2.100) upon which a 500,000-gallon concrete water tank and controls are located; and
“WHEREAS, the Town and NCPR previously entered into an agreement granting NCPR permission to access said land and install radio antenna(s) and equipment to improve coverage of their signal in the Town of Wells, said agreement beginning on October 8, 2007 and ending in 2012; and
“WHEREAS, NCPR continued to pay the sum of two hundred dollars ($200.00) per year through 2016 and is willing to pay two hundred dollars ($200.00) per year for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019, as “back rent”; and
“WHEREAS, NCPR has expressed an interest in entering a new lease to continue to use a radio receiver/transmitter antenna which is currently installed on said town property to improve transmission of their radio signal in the Town of Wells; and
“WHEREAS, the Town is willing to grant NCPR a lease to permit NCPR to continue to use the radio receiver/transmitter which is currently installed on said town property in a manner that is beneficial to NCPR and the residents of the Town of Wells in general; and
“WHEREAS, Section 219, Article 13 of Town Law specifically grants the power, with the approval of the majority of the Town Board, to lease any real property owned by the Town after a public hearing is held giving residents within the Town the opportunity to be heard “for or against” leasing said real property; and
“WHEREAS, a public hearing within the Town of Wells was duly held for the purpose of considering whether a lease should be granted to NCPR, pursuant to Section 64, subdivision 7 of Town Law, which public hearing was held on November 18, 2019;
“Now, therefore, be it RESOLVED, that in consideration of the mutual promises contained in the Lease Agreement, the Town hereby grants NCPR a five-year revocable lease to continue to use a radio receiver/transmitter which is currently installed on town property to improve transmission of their radio signal in the Town of Wells, and
“RESOLVED, that NCPR will pay the Town of Wells the sum of three hundred and fifty dollars ($350.00) per year in consideration for the Town providing space for the radio receiver/transmitter on the property on West River Road for the term of the lease, and retroactive rent of two hundred dollars ($200.00) per year for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Supervisor Beach reported on the Lake Algonquin Hydroelectric Plant for December 2019. Revenues totaled $0; expenditures totaled $592.58. Year to date revenues are $91,426.64, expenditures total $ 15,771.13.
The Board reviewed the Town Justice Report for 2019.
The Board reviewed the Town Clerk Report for 2019.
Supervisor Elect Nick Mauro Jr. announced that Leona Aird will be stepping down as the Town Historian. He received a letter of interest from Joan Marsh which he shared with the board. He has heard that there may be other individuals interested and if received will forward any further letters of interest prior to the 2020 Organizational Meeting where typically the Historian is appointed. Rebekah Crewell asked if we had to appoint at the Organizational Meeting. No, the board could wait until the February Meeting.
Highway Superintendent Earley reported that George Paige is not interested in continuing as the Animal Control Officer which has always been the part of the Water District employee’s position. There was discussion among the board as he is paid under the Water District Salary hourly rate when he is called out to address an Animal Control situation. Currently there is no separate Animal Control Officer salary.
To move the meeting along, Councilperson Lauria suggested possibly enter Executive Session at the next meeting to discuss the job description of the Water District Position and the Animal Control Officer.

This report is based upon minutes provided by Maryellen Stofelano, Town Clerk

Audio of Wells TB Dec 9 2019

Text of Wells TB Dec 9 2019

Wells TB Dec 9 2019

Wells approves fuel contracts
WELLS—The Wells Town Board met on December 9 and passed resolutions to approve fuel contracts and water main repair bids.
On a motion of Councilperson Saltis, seconded by Councilperson Lauria, the following resolution was approved by all.
“WHEREAS, fuel oil bids, in accordance with specifications on file with the Town clerk, were publicly opened and read on December 6th, 2019 at 12:00 noon as advertised and referred to the Building Committee to be reviewed for recommendation, AND WHEREAS, after reviewing two bids AND WHEREAS, it has been determined that the delivery differential bid by Shepard Oil Co., Inc. was 2.1088 cents per gallon for No. 2 Heating Oil, 2.2789 cents per gallon for 50/50 Winter Blend Diesel Fuel and 1.8360 cents per gallon for Regular Grade Gasoline, AND WHEREAS, it has been determined that the delivery differential bid by G.A. Bove & Son Inc. was 2.173 cents per gallon for No. 2 Heating Oil, 2.526 cents per gallon for 50/50 Winter Blend Diesel Fuel and 1.954 cents per gallon for Regular Grade Gasoline,
“NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that a Fuel Oil contract for 2020 be awarded to Shepard Oil Co., Inc. at the fluctuating bid price, which price will be revised in accordance with the bid specifications, of $ 1.8360 for Regular Grade Gasoline, AND, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a Fuel Oil Contract be awarded to Shepard Oil Co., Inc. at the fluctuating price, which price will be revised in accordance with the bid specifications, of $2.2789 for 50/50 Winter Blend Diesel and $2.1088 for No. 2 Heating Oil, AND, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Town Supervisor is hereby authorized to execute contract(s) with Shepard Oil Co., Inc. to provide Heating Fuel and Winter Blend Diesel transportation fuel and Shepard Oil Co., provide Regular Grade Gasoline to the Town of Wells for the year 2020.
A resolution authorizing the Town of Wells to enter a five-year revocable lease with North Country Public Radio was tabled until the next meeting so Supervisor Beach can clarify the lease arrangement.
Supervisor Beach reviewed quotes from two engineering firms to replace the water main on the bridge. CFI Contracting, Inc. quote is $147,000 and Cedarwood Engineering Firm at $168,500. Another option is for us to purchase the pipe directly from the manufacturer. Supervisor Beach is looking into the possibility of obtaining an Emergency Assistance Water Grant which could provide up to $150,000 and we would have one year to repay the loan. He should know more within 2 to 3 weeks and could apply online. Councilperson Lauria asked about potential assistance through FEMA. No way of knowing how long any FEMA assistance would take.
The Board reviewed the Building Code Officers report for November 2019. Kevin Helm provided the Board with a request from Timothy Mell to subdivide a property he owns into two separate lots at 1439 St. Rt. 30 for the purpose of building a new lakefront cabin (approximately 900 sq. ft.). Kevin Helm is suggesting Mr. Mell have a survey done. Mr. Mell would like to personally approach the board with his plan of sub dividing the property and explain what other government entities he has been in contact with. The board is requiring Mr. Mell provide a survey prior to being placed on a Regular Meeting agenda.
Councilperson Hunt asked if National Grid has been contacted regarding the pole near the dam. Supervisor Beach has placed a call to them, has not received an answer back.
Councilperson Saltis reported gift cards were being sent to the CIT’s as a thank you.
Councilperson Lauria asked about the status of the Hydro Plant repairs. Supervisor Beach replied the estimated costs is approximately $97,000.00. It is covered by insurance with a $25,000.00 deductible. Generator has been sent out to kiln dry, gear box is in good working order. The plant should be online tomorrow.
Councilperson Stuart reported ice is being made for the skating rink.
The meeting, commencing at 7:00 p.m., was held for the purpose of addressing any and all business that came before the Board. Supervisor Beach led off with the Pledge of Allegiance.
Councilperson Lauria made a correction in the November 18, 2019 Regular Meeting minutes. Under Public Access, Michael Waterhouse from Adirondack Motorist Enthusiast Club (A.M.E.C) not presented the Town with a $1,000.00 donation from their club. Approval of the minutes of the November 18, 2019 with noted correction.
Supervisor Beach reported on the Lake Algonquin Hydroelectric Plant for November 2019. Revenues totaled $5,826.80; expenditures totaled $883.38.
Rebekah Crewell asked if we have been in contact with the insurance company regarding the water main break due to the flooding. Yes, and unfortunately it is not covered. She suggested getting in touch with NYS DOT. She also shared an update on FEMA. Don Purdy has confirmed we are still moving in the right direction. On November 29, 2019 Governor Cuomo elevated all the affected counties loss of $33 million to the Federal Government. Unclear at this point as to when if any funds will be awarded.
Sharon Grisenthwaite asked if the Town could assist with a turned over headstone in the cemetery. Superintendent Earley said he could look at it possibly in the spring. Councilperson Hunt said he would assist with the use of his bucket loader.
Kevin Cafaro commented that only one gate is partially open.
Vince Abbott-Forgione commented that emergency services and elected officials responded wonderfully during the Halloween flood. He mentioned an alarm that was discussed at the last meeting. The Town has been fortunate to have had long term supervisors in office over the last 30 plus years with Brian Towers, 20 plus years and his predecessor, Allen Hunt for 14 years. He believes now we should have a protocol, basic procedures for when a disaster occurs and learn from the past to prepare for the future. We received 5 to 7 inches of rain; the Hurricane Irene storm amounted to 4 to 14 inches of rain. The damage to the community, residents and Town were devastating and costly. He went on to ask the board two things. If 3 inches of rain is predicted that the protocol be to open the gates and drain the lake. Secondly, regarding the monthly Hydro report. That it possibly be called a Hydro Facility Report which would include all income and expenses for the prior month and additionally identify what’s not working. He recalled at the December 2018 meeting it was brought up then that we were having problems with the gates. The last time the dam was updated was in 1993 and that’s what we are working with.
John Margies recalled how much more press there was prior to the Hurricane Irene storm opposed to the 2019 Halloween storm. He also thanked Supervisor Beach for his tenure.
Vince Abbott-Forgione added that he believes there is a need for technology to modernize the dams function ability. NYS is looking at $10 million in grant money to assistance with modernizing dams and hydro plants.
Roy Grisenthwaite, kudos to the Board, thank you, and Don didn’t raise taxes!

This report is based upon minutes provided by Maryellen Stofelano, Town Clerk.

Audio of Benson TB Jan 7 2020

Text of Benson TB Jan 7 2020

Benson TB Jan 7 2020

Benson considers being part of new fire district
NORTHVILLE--The Benson Town Board went to a meeting on January 7, 2020, held in the Northville Central School, the purpose of which was to take part in a public hearing on the proposal that the Town of Benson join the Town of Northampton and the Village of Northville Fire District that is to be formed.
Public present from Benson included Peg Schutze, John Stortecky, Charles Biche, Jeanne Cox, David Pincombe and Dick Barlow.
The lawyer for the proposed fire district, Mr. T. Hannigan explained the working of such a district.
Peg Schutze asked how the officials would be chosen. The lawyer responded that the first year they would be appointed; after that all five would be elected.
More on this as the story develops.

This story is based upon the minutes provided by Town Clerk, Jeanne Cox.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Audio version of LLCS BOE Jan 9 2020

Text of LLCS BOE January 9 2020

LLCS BOE January 9 2020

Long Lake Central shares a psychologist
LONG LAKE—Long Lake Central Superintendent Noelle Short reported at the January 9 meeting of the Board of Education that the new shared school psychologist Olivia Lee will start in Indian Lake on January 21 and in Long Lake January 23.
Elisha Cohen and Megan Nevins, along with a Saranac Lake CSD employee and Dr. Michael Small, helped cover the psychologist/CSE position while it was vacant.
Our new Home Run specialist is Robin Hausle. Laura Wilt has moved to the southern end of the County.
Currently we have ten students receiving services from our Mental Health specialist. Services are kept confidential.
The end of the second quarter is at the end of January. This year we will be holding mid-term exams during class on Regents week.
Senior Syana Sandiford has been accepted at SUNY Adirondack.
Elementary basketball has started with Kami Farr as the coach. Third graders will participate in practices and will participate as Team Managers during the games.
We received a $1,000 donation for our “In the Meantime Fund” from John Strachan. Our new math teacher Patrick Curtin is settling in.
Teacher evaluations are underway. Non-tenured teachers have two announced observations and tenured teachers have one.
The Backpack Program is moving along smoothly with Helen Kentile and Lorrie Hosley as our main volunteers and Elisha Cohen and Michelle Billings as delivery people.
Our new Franklin-Essex-Hamilton BOCES District Superintendent is Dale Breault and the new Assistant Superintendent is Lori Tourville.
Our next True North Meeting is in Indian Lake on January 21. BOCES District Superintendents from WSWHE, FEH and CVES have been invited to attend.
Our Capital Project is under review at NYS Education Department.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, Policy #7554 Student Gender Identity.
Approved: On Motion by Joan Paula, seconded by Michael Farrell, with all in favor, the Class of 2020 overnight field trip to New York City March 19 to March 22, 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Alexandria Harris, with all in favor, RESOLVED, that the Board of Education creates a 1.0 Spanish position, effective September 1, 2020.
Approved: On Motion by Michael Farrell, seconded by Brian Penrose, with all in favor, the retirement of Joseph Koehring, French Teacher, effective June 30, 2020.
The Board reviewed the first draft of the 2020-2021 school year budget, including the Tax Levy Limit Calculation.
A first policy reading of #5681 School Safety Plans, #6550 Leaves of Absence and #7550 Dignity for All Students was held.
Michael Farrell reminded all the Family U Night on January 23, 2020 focusing on vaping education. He also suggests that the school purchase a pickle ball net to be used for racket sports and adult education.
The next regular meeting date is Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 6 p.m. in the cafeteria.

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

Monday, January 13, 2020

Text of Inlet TB Dec 10 2019

Inlet TB Dec 10 2019

Inlet works on keeping roads free of snow and trails groomed
INLET--The regular meeting of the Inlet Town Board, held on December 10, was called to order by Councilman Herb Schmid, in the absence of Supervisor John Frey, at 7:30 p.m. with the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.
Present were: Highway Superintendent Shawn Hansen, Peter Funk, and Jamie Organski.
Officials present were: Councilman Levi, Councilman Townsend, Councilman Schmid, Councilman Brownsell and Town Clerk Yvonne Lutz.
Superintendent Hansen reported on the numerous projects that they have been working on, in addition to plowing, sanding, taking the plow for an update. The trails are ready to open. He also mentioned that he will need to get a shorter wing for safety reasons. With the new guiderails, it pushes the plow far over the yellow line and too far into oncoming traffic. Hansen stated that he will keep up on the sidewalks as best as possible and that during storms it is difficult. He wanted to stress that it is illegal to discharge snow on a State highway.
Town Clerk Yvonne Lutz mentioned that the paper reflected the wrong hours that the transfer station would be open to. She had reported to the paper 6:30 pm, as originally talked about, however, it was decided to stay open to 7 pm with the limited amount of days open. Peter Funk has been covering for Tina’s time off and Superintendent Hansen thanked him.
Intersection and trail signs have been ordered. The trails have been checking for downed trees and Superintendent Hansen thanked all the property owners for use of their land for trails. Repaired washouts at culvert on FX Matts trail. Reported that he cannot groom to Eagle Bay this weekend because of the bridge out on Jasper Day Trail. It will be open and repaired by Monday.
Schmid reported the town is still working on getting more height approved for a cell tower. “We are looking at strictly going with the tower as an emergency use and having the contract for the lease of the property signed with IVES,” said Schmid.
The work in the records room is just about complete. All boxes have been sorted as to the proper retention and properly indexed. Alden and Barbara Stevens have done a great job and the grant was made possible with the help of Christine Holt, as it was a mutual grant between Town and school.
There has been some concern of the safety of Tourism Director, Codes/Zoning and Town Clerk in the absence of police and/or other employees in the building at times. The distance from each office sometimes does not allow for the other employee to know what is going on in their co-worker’s office. The issue was brought to our attention with a few incidents where an irate person has gone to the Town Clerk’s office looking for police. Quick discussion as to what could be done to warn someone of an incident in another’s office. One idea was to have 911 on a quick dial button on all the phones.
There was discussion regarding an unimproved medical device for one of the employees. The employee has asked permission to use the balance of their medical deductible card to help with the costs of the device needed for the employee’s home. Councilman Brownsell made a motion to allow the use of the balance on the card, Councilman Levi seconded, and the motion carried.
After discussion, Councilman Townsend made a motion to hold the Annual Organizational Meeting for January 7 at 7:30 pm and hold the Regular Meeting on the 14 of January. Councilman Levi seconded and the motion carried.

This article is based upon the minutes provided by Yvonne Lutz, Town Clerk.

Audio of Inlet Town Board meeting December 10, 2019