TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY
TOWN BOARD MEETING
MONDAY 9/8/2014 7:00 PM
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR – PRESENT
RALPH WHITNEY, COUNCILMAN– PRESENT
FRANK STOW, COUNCILMAN– ABSENT
DICK SENA, COUNCILMAN– PRESENT
DUNCAN MCNEILL, COUNCILMAN– PRESENT
OTHERS PRESENT: Dave Stapleton, Attorney; Howard Peacock Justice; Dan Strickland, Highway
Superintendent; Brad Lawson, Zoning CEO; Pierre Chagnon, Legislator; Lynn Smith, Clayton &
Helen Emick, Louis Rieg, Planning Board; Robin Miller, Bookkeeper; Nancy Thomas, Town Clerk
• PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Mrs. Carlson opened the meeting at 7:00 PM. She announced that Councilman Stow was absent due to illness (double pneumonia) and Justice Bensink was in hospital with pneumonia.
• MINUTES 8/11/2014
• MOTION # 104 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF THE 8/11/2014 PUBLIC HEARING
ON THE 2% TAX CAP OVERRIDE AND THE MINUTES OF THE 8/11/2014 REGULAR TOWN
BOARD MEETING AS PRESENTED BY THE TOWN CLERK. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED.
AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• PRIMARY DAY VOTING FOR ENROLLED VOTERS: Tuesday 9/9/14, 12:00 – 9:00 PM at
Ashville Fire Station #2
• PUBLIC COMMENT:
Lynn Smith stated that residents of Cheney’s Point would like to have sewer service.
- TIME WARNER CABLE – Franchise fees $1,676.76
- NYS DEPT. OF TAXATION – TONH Equalization Rate 100%
- NYS PUBLIC SERVICE – Lifeline (availability of cell phones)
- ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS MINUTES 8/27/2014
- ISO – Letter to Brad Lawson
Mrs. Carlson said a letter had been received from ISO thanking the town for participating in their survey and indicating that the town’s rating has dropped from 6 to 9.
Mr. Lawson said this should only affect those purchasing new home insurance and is due to NYS being behind in their adoption of Codes in a timely fashion.
• OLD BUSINESS
• LIGHTHOUSE PARK:
Mr. Sena said the aerators have been installed and seems to be working fine. He said next year we may want to try spacing them a little differently.
• Roof on Building
Mr. Sena said the town needs to budget about $3,000 for the replacement of the roof on the pavilion building. There was a lengthy discussion of prevailing wage cost for the project which would increase the cost to about $5,000. Mr. Sena said the Mitchell house had been done by a company that did not pay prevailing wage.
• Lighthouse Issues
Mr. Sena said he had checked with 3 companies about cleaning the mold inside the Lighthouse and none of them were interested in the job. He said the mold was causing increased decay of the structure as pressure treated wood had not been used.
Mr. Lawson said he would contact a company he is aware of called “A Hold of Mold” and see what they could suggest.
• CONTRACTS FOR 2% PROJECTS BLY HILL DITCH AND GOOSE CREEK BANK STABILIZATION
Mrs. Carlson said the County had been late in getting the contracts to us and they are also behind on the projects as they have not even purchased the stone for the creek bank stabilization project yet. She indicated that the contracts have been signed and returned to the county.
• JOHN STOW VETERANS BRIDGE SIGNS – REPLACED IN CORRECT LOCATION
Mrs. Carlson said thanks to the efforts of Senator Young and Assemblyman Goodell, the signs have been placed on either end of the overpass on I-86 as they had originally been intended.
• BUDGET 2015 MEETINGS SCHEDULED: Tuesday, 7:00 PM, 9/16/14 and 9/23/14 !
• EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK – Meeting scheduled for Tuesday 9/16/2014 at 7:00 PM
Mrs. Carlson said a special meeting needs to be held to incorporate and adopt the changes made to the Employee handbook.
• MOTION # 105 OF 2014
MR. WHITNEY MOTIONED TO HOLD A SPECIAL MEETING ON TUESDAY, 9/16/14 AT 7:00
PM TO INCORPORATE AND ADOPT CHANGES TO TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY
EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA,
MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• NEW BUSINESS:
• RAISE COURT CLERK BARB PEACOCK HOURLY RATE TO $11/HR
Mrs. Carlson said this had been overlooked when rate increases were given to Mrs. Zimmer and Ms. Vaillancourt last month.
• MOTION # 106 OF 2014
MR. MCNEILL MOTIONED TO INCREASE THE HOURLY PAY RATE OF BARBARA PEACOCK, COURT CLERK, TO $11/HR EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY. MR. WHITNEY SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• NYS RETIREMENT – 20 DAYS PER MONTH FOR ROBIN MILLER, BOOKKEEPER
Mrs. Carlson said she would like to have 20 days per month reported to the NYS Retirement System for Robin Miller. There was discussion of actual hours worked and reporting as an hourly employee or a salaried employee.
Mr. Sena asked how many hours a week Mrs. Miller works and suggested that she be made a salaried employee.
Mrs. Miller said at this time she did not wish to be a salaried employee. She said during certain times of the year (i.e. budget, annual report, board meeting) she works more hours than the normal 24 hours per week.
Mrs. Thomas indicated that the town had a passed a resolution (#69-2010) establishing standard work days for elected and appointed officials for the purpose of reporting to the NYS-ERS and provided a copy to the Board.
Mr. Sena said if she works 30/HRS per week he saw no issue with the request.
• MOTION # 107 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO GRANT 20 DAYS PER MONTH TO ROBIN MILLER, BOOKKEEPER, FOR THE PURPOSE OF REPORTING TO THE NYS EMPLOYEE RETIREMENT SYSTEM. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• CASELLA WASTE – ANNUAL DEC TRANSFER STATION REPORT FOR 2013
Mrs. Carlson said that the report which was due in March, 2014 had not been submitted by Casella.
She said the Town Clerk had made numerous attempts to ensure compliance and finally Mr. Stapleton, Town Attorney had contacted Casella’s Attorney about the matter after the town received a Notice of Violation from the DEC dated 8/28/14. She said Casella has subsequently submitted the report to the DEC and a copy to the town for its records.
Mrs. Thomas thanked Mr. Stapleton for his help in the matter.
• TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY WEBSITE
Mrs. Thomas said that the website program, Microsoft Front Page, the town currently uses is no longer supported and our current operator Elizabeth Gleason at Tint Press has suggested that we switch to Word Press. The cost of the new program plus 2 hours of consultation at a 35% discount is $1,170.00.
Mrs. Emick said it would be a good idea to have 2 persons trained to update the website. Mrs. Thomas said that was a good idea and she would have Ms. Vaillancourt sit in on the consultation.
• MOTION # 108 OF 2014
MR. WHITNEY MOTIONED TO AUTHORIZE THE PAYMENT FOR THE UPGRADE OF THE TOWN WEBSITE USING CONTINGENCY FUNDS TO A WORD PRESS PROGRAM THROUGH OUR CURRENT VENDOR TINT PRESS. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• PLYMOUTH ROCK ENERGY SUPPLIERS – Supply Town Electric
Mrs. Carlson said the town has received an offer from Plymouth Energy to supply the town electric at a 3 year fixed rate of .0754.
Mrs. Miller said she had spoken to their representative and they will accept all 8 of the town’s accounts including the light districts. She also said that the town can opt out of the 3 year contract at any time if they are not satisfied.
• MOTION # 109 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO ENTER INTO A 3 YEAR FIXED RATE CONTRACT OF .0754 WITH PLYMOUTH ROCK ENERGY SUPPLIERS FOR THE TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY ELECTRIC ACCOUNTS. MR. WHITNEY SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED. !
• TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY DOG CONTROL OFFICER (DCO) POSITION
Mrs. Carlson said 3 applications had been received in response to the advertisement for a DCO. She said applications had been received from John Stow/Brittany Weise; William Ortman and Colton Swan. She said of the 3 applications only Mr. Stow and Ms. Weise had indicated any experience or background in handling dogs. There was general discussion of the applicants.
Mr. Sena said even though the Stow family holds other positions at the town he felt the experience. Mr. Stow and Ms. Weise have would be assets in the position. Mrs. Carlson said since the town kennel is located on the Mitchell premise which they rent that would also be a plus. It was noted that the position of DCO is an appointment that is made yearly and subject to review at that time. !
• MOTION # 110 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO APPOINT JOHN STOW AND BRITTANY WEISE TO THE POSITION OF DOG CONTROL OFFICER OF THE TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY, WITH SALARY TO BE DISCUSSED.
Mrs. Emick stated that sometimes complacency goes with experience and at times new eyes can make a difference in the performance of duties.
MR. WHITNEY SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0).
THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
• ROUTE 394 – YEAR ROUND SPEED LIMIT OF 55 MPH
Mrs. Carlson said a year round speed limit of 55 MPH on NYS Rt. 394 in the Town of North Harmony has been discussed in the past and Sheriff Gerace is in favor of this. She said currently the speed limit is adjusted from 55 MPH for most of the year to 45 MPH during the summer. She said we never know when the speed limit signs will be changed. There was discussion that usually the signs are changed around Memorial Day but this year they were changed around the 1st of May and this causes a lot of confusion for drivers.
• MOTION # 111 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO REQUEST THAT NYS-DOT CHANGE THE SPEED LIMIT ON STATE ROUTE 394 IN THE TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY TO 55 MPH YEAR ROUND. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
PIERRE CHAGNON, LEGISLATOR (DIST. 8)
Mr. Chagnon said the following occurred at the August Legislature meeting:
The previous “Summer hours” of County offices have now been made the permanent hours. Except as may otherwise be mandated by law, the regular hours of all County offices shall commence at 8:30 A.M. and shall terminate at 4:30 P.M.
The County Executive is planning to include in his tentative budget through the Planning Department a look at a contract arrangement for an independent study on the future viability of one airport or both airports.
Since the Financial Analyst to the Legislature resigned his position effective September 12, 2014, it would be advantageous to expand the hours of the Clerk of the County Legislature to perform the duties of the Financial Analyst for the remainder of 2014. Therefore the Clerk of the County Legislature, Katherine K. Tampio, will be increased from 49% to 80% time.
Eleven applications for the 2015 round of 2% Occupancy Tax funding in 2015 for lake and stream protection and enhancement projects were received, and seven of the eleven projects as recommended by the Waterways Panel were approved as follows:
The Environmental Sub-Committee met and reviewed the status report on the progress of implementation of phosphorus management strategies required to achieve Chautauqua Lake TMDL designated load reductions. We would like to acknowledge the hard work and dedication put forth by the members of the Chautauqua County Water Quality Task Force in preparing this report, and extend our sincere appreciation.
Our Sub-Committee unanimously recommended the following actions to the full Legislature to assist, increase, and accelerate implementation of phosphorus management strategies in the Chautauqua Lake watershed:
1. The Legislature should encourage the Chautauqua County Board of Health to update the Chautauqua County Sanitary Code to require a mandatory septic system inspection every ten years, with priority given to the Chautauqua Lake watershed.
2. The Legislature should send a letter to the NYSDEC requesting that phosphorus monitoring be required for all 16 private, commercial, and institutional (PCI) dischargers in the Chautauqua Lake watershed.
Project/Agency or Organization Rank
Dewittville Creek Streambank Stabilization
Edward Seebald/ Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation 1 $ 39,950
Goose Creek Streambank Stabilization
Robert Delahoy and The Cabin, Inc./Chautauqua County Soil and Water
Conservation District 2 $ 31,600
Canadaway Creek Streambank Stabilization
Michael Faulkner/Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District 3 $ 27,500
Dutch Hollow Streambank Stabilization
Town of Ellery/Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District 4 $ 37,000
Camp Findley Drainage Restoration
Camp Findley/Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District 5 $ 21,112.60
Findley Lake Dam/Breakwall Repair
Findley Lake Watershed Association/Hill Engineering 6 $ 40,000
Findley Lake Stream Stabilization Upgrade
William Boria/ Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District 7 $ 7,900
3. The Legislature should encourage all towns and villages in the Chautauqua Lake watershed to implement the full model local laws providing oversight on site plan review, and stormwater, erosion and sediment control developed by the Chautauqua County Department of Planning.
4. The Legislature should accept the very constructive offer from the Chautauqua County Soil & Water Conservation District to assist in improving phosphorus management for urban stormwater runoff and agricultural runoff. Specifically, they will (1) install and maintain erosion control practices both during and after any soil disturbance by county or municipal highway departments within the Chautauqua Lake watershed, including hydroseeding all disturbed surfaces upon construction completion at no cost to the highway entity; and (2) during the off-season of construction, focus increasing producer participation in the Agricultural Environmental Management program for farms in the Chautauqua Lake watershed, making those farms eligible for NYS Agriculture Non-Point Grant Funding. To accept this offer, the Legislature will need to increase the County support of the Chautauqua County Soil & Water Conservation District in the 2015 Budget by $35,000.
5. The Legislature should pursue an increase in the Chautauqua County sales tax, with one-quarter of one percent going to a fund dedicated to implementing the recommendations in the Chautauqua Lake Watershed Management Plan.
Respectfully submitted by the members of the Environmental Sub-Committee: Pierre Chagnon, Chairman;
Jay Gould; Ron Lemon; PJ Wendel; Dave Wilfong
Mr. Sena asked if the septic testing will be for all homes in the county.
Mr. Chagnon said yes the code would encompass the entire county.
Mr. Sena asked what this would mean to low income homeowners who don’t pass and lack funds to become compliant.
Mr. Chagnon said he had met with the Board of Health before tonight’s meeting and they will have to determine that. He said there is grant funding available for elderly and low income and there are other options available. He said the details have to be worked out and the Legislature will have to figure out funding.
Mr. Sena said that is important as a septic system is a big ticket item.
Mr. Chagnon said there are roughly 22,000 septic systems in the county and 40 years ago the Board of Health started documenting plans for the systems and today they have records on about 60% of the systems.
RANDY HOLCOMB, ASSESSOR
Mrs. Carlson said that the Assessor reported that there had been no small claims of assessment petitions and school tax bills will be mailed out soon. She said Mr. Holcomb will be attending the Annual
Conference on Assessment on 10/5/14 and will not return to work until 10/13/14, so there will be no report for October. She said she had also received a property tax freeze report that indicates that total household income must be $500,000 or less for this tax cap. If a town passes the 2% tax cap they will need to rescind that in order to be included in the rebate check process. We will need to show new shared services in the 2nd year of the program and rebate checks will be based on the assessment of the home and the higher the assessment of the home the higher the refund check. She said he indicates in the 1st year he expects the rebate checks to be no higher than $50.00.
DAN STRIKLAND, HIGHWAY SUPERINTENDENT
Mr. Strickland said the highway is winding down summer work. He said they are trying to finish oiling 2 miles on Wells Bay, Woodlawn, Cheney between Butts and Carpenter-Pringle, and Bly Hill between
Butts and Carpenter-Pringle. He said there will be 9/10ths blacktop that the county will be doing. He said they are doing a lot of hauling for the county among other things.
Mrs. Thomas said the lot next door to the town building really looks good. Mrs. Carlson agreed and thanked the highway for the work. !
HOWARD PEACOCK, JUSTICE (Copy of Report in Minute Book)
Mr. Peacock read the Justice report for August for those present. He said Judge Bensink was in the Hospital with pneumonia and did not think he would be able to attend conference 9/21-24/2014. !
BRAD LAWSON, ZONING C.E.O. (Copy of Report in Minute Book)
Mr. Lawson said we have dealt with some water issues in problematic areas on Longview. He said he and Dan had spoken to people and although the issues are not the towns problem they feel they have come up with a solution that will work and hopefully both parties will take the necessary steps to implement the remedies. He said there have only been about 39-40 permits this year as compared to the approximately 100 in previous years. He said the illegal dumping violation has been submitted to the court as a long form information and the court is handling it ongoing. He said the process for this has taken almost 2 years. He said he spoke to a gentleman who purchased one of Muriel Bramble’s properties (next to her new home) and he intends to build a home on that property. He said the Return Receipt notice he had sent to the Buchanan’s on the Victoria Rd. property had been returned, but the one sent by regular mail had not come back. He assumed they received it but will double check the address. He said code school had started today. He said the development that Carlton Homes had been looking at doing on the Seitz property at Ashville Bay has been cancelled.
Mr. Sena asked about the old Church property on Victoria.
Mr. Lawson said he had spoken to the owner who is a contractor from Buffalo and he had sent plans on the front porch that had been redone as well as the renovations to the inside. He said they also provided information on the roofs that had been redone and he had permitted the work they had done and would be meeting with them on Saturday.
Mr. Sena said it was probably time that we had a fine structure that fined them for not pulling a permit.
Mr. Lawson said we do not currently have a fine structure like that. He said that it probably should be a Local Law and he would provide some information on that.
There was discussion of whether there would be a Planning Board meeting on 9/8/2014.
Mr. Sena said there was a standing date for the meetings.
There was further discussion on the Planning Board meeting as it related to a joint Planning Board,
Zoning Board and Town Board meeting on Subdivision Law.
NANCY THOMAS, TOWN CLERK (Copy of Report in Minute Book)
Mrs. Thomas said that she had received a permit issued to Sundlov Construction for Abers Gravel Pit located on Fox Rd. from the NYS-DEC effective 9/3/2014 – 6/30/2019. She said she had also received information on Free Rabies Clinics sponsored by the Chautauqua County DOH and the Towns of Carroll and Gerry that she would post to the town website.
• MOTION # 112 OF 2014
MR. MCNEILL MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE TOWN CLERKS REPORT AS PRESENTED. MR. SENA SECONDED. AYE (4); WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0), CARRIED.
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR (Copy of Report in Minute Book) Mrs. Carlson said that she had attended a Soil & Water tour of 2% Bed Tax projects that had been very impressive.
• MOTION # 113 OF 2014
MR. SENA MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE SUPERVISORS REPORT AS PRESENTED. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4); WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0), CARRIED.
• MOTION # 114 OF 2014
MR. WHITNEY MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE GENERAL FUND VOUCHERS IN THE AMOUNT OF $31,140.13 AS REVIEWED AND AUDITED EARLIER. MR.MCNEILL SECONDED. AYE (4): WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0).CARRIED.
• MOTION # 115 OF 2014
MR. WHITNEY MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE HIGHWAY FUND VOUCHERS IN THE AMOUNT OF $38,229.56 AS REVIEWED AND AUDITED EARLIER. MR. SENA SECONDED. AYE (5); WHITNEY, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY(0). CARRIED. !
• MOTION # 116 OF 2014
ON A MOTION MADE BY MR. MCNEILL AND SECONDED BY MR. SENA, THE MEETING WAS ADJOURNED AT 8:15 PM.
Nancy M. Thomas