TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY
TOWN BOARD MEETING
MONDAY 2/9/2015 7:00 PM
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR PRESENT
RALPH WHITNEY, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
FRANK STOW, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
DICK SENA, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
DUNCAN MCNEILL, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
OTHERS PRESENT: Pierre Chagnon, Legislator; Dave Stapleton, Attorney; Dan Strickland, Highway Superintendent; Howard Peacock, Justice; Robin Miller, Bookkeeper; Louis Rieg, Planning Board; Lynn Smith; Nancy Thomas, Town Clerk
- MINUTES: 1/12/15
Mrs. Carlson said the minutes are not yet available for review and that will have to be done next month.
- PUBLIC COMMENT:
Mrs. Smith said she had heard from a reliable source that our water problems are going to be remediated in the spring.
Mrs. Carlson said they are working on it and hopefully it will include sewer too. She said she is very encouraged that something positive is happening.
Mrs. Smith also commended the highway for the job they do on the roads.
- CHAUTAUQUA CO. DEPT. OF FINANCE – FORCLOSURE OF TAX LIENS
Mrs. Carlson said a list of foreclosures has been received. She said owners have until 4/15/15 to redeem those properties.
- USDA – Financial Assistance for Purchase of Equipment
Mrs. Carlson said she does not believe this assistance would apply to our town.
- NYS-DOT – Bridge Painting on I-86
- TIME WARNER CABLE
- CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY FINANCE – 4TH Qtr. 2014 Sales Tax received $145,729.85 (up _ $4,495.54)
- NYS-OSC – ELECTRONIC FILING OF ANNUAL UPDATE DOCUMENT (AUD)
- NYS-DEC – MAP SHOWING AMENDMENTS TO THE NYSDEC FRESHWATER _ WETLAND MAPS FOR CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY
- OLD BUSINESS:
- ANNUAL TRANSFER STATION REPORT 2014 – Received from Beichner’s and copy on file with DEC and Town Clerk
Mr. Stow said he would give a brief breakdown of the report.
- Total garbage tonnage for 2014 was 1,535.62 (cost of $28/ton). He said that averages out to about 1.47 tons per day (10.30 tons per week)
- Total recycling was 40.81 tons of paper; 18.70 tons of cardboard; 13.47 tons of metal; 13.32 tons of glass; 13.77 tons of plastic; for a total amount recycled of 100.09 tons.
Mr. Stow said at some point he would like to review previous annual reports to get an idea of what the numbers and trends are.
- NEW BUSINESS:
- INSURANCE CHANGE WITH NYMIR – Raised from $10,000 to $50,000 limit of liability for Public Officials – Deductable raised from $100 to $500 with a $99 increase in premium (from $263 to $351/YR) for crime coverage
Mrs. Carlson said this policy had previously been under the Hartford Insurance but is now with NYMIR.
Mrs. Thomas asked if the coverage also includes appointed personnel/officials.
Mrs. Carlson said yes, it includes anyone who handles funds.
- ANY INTEREST IN FORCLOSED PROPERTIES?
Mrs. Carlson asked the board if they were interested in any of the properties listed in the foreclosures presented by the county. The consensus was that there was no interest in the properties listed. There was a short discussion of the Buchanan property on Victoria and whether the county owns it now.
- DOCK AT VICTORIA ROAD TOWN ROW NON-EXISTENT – Limit to Boat Launch Only?
Mrs. Carlson said the Johnston’s from Victoria had come in and requested that since there is no longer a dock on the ROW, if the town would consider eliminating the possibility of a dock on the ROW which belongs to the town. She said her impression was that it was more than one family using the dock but no one put it in this year.
Mr. Lawson said that historically everyone on the entire road was able to use the dock and each user paid a small maintenance fee.
There was discussion that with the dock gone, there is no longer precedent to have one. Mr. Peacock said he would not like to see the dock permanently gone since it had been such a part of the neighborhood for so long. There was further general discussion and it was decided that no action would be taken unless there was a strong opinion voiced.
- APPOINT JEFF HOSIER AS TEMPORARY HIGHWAY M.E.O.
Mr. Strickland said he had been struggling without a 6th M.E.O. at the highway for about a year now. He said he would like to hire Mr. Hosier as a temporary employee until things are settled with Bruce Stevens. He said Mr. Hosier currently works for Suit Kote and they recommend him highly. Mr. Strickland said he is a very experienced truck driver and an excellent worker. Suit Kote does not operate in the winter so this works out well. Mr. Strickland said Mr. Hosier will go back to work for them in May if no decision has been reached regarding Mr. Stevens health.
- MOTION # 22 OF 2015
- WHITNEY MOTIONED TO HIRE JEFF HOSIER AS A TEMPORARY M.E.O. EFFECTIVE
2/10/2015, AT A RATE OF $15/HR. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED.
Mr. Sena asked if Mr. Strickland is sure Mr. Hosier will be able to run a plow.
Mr. Strickland said yes.
Mr. Stow asked what type of procedure Mr. Strickland used to choose prospective highway employees (i.e. fill out application; check on driving records; references; etc.).
Mr. Strickland said he reviewed Mr. Hosier’s application, spoke to him at length and checked his references.
Mrs. Carlson stated that requiring a physical exam in relation to workman’s comp would be a good idea. She said some type of procedure should be established for hiring because there will be vacancies in the future.
YES (5); WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- VETERANS MEMORIAL FUNDRAISER DINNER – MAY 17TH, LAKEWOOD LEGION POST 1286 12:00 – 5:00 PM
Mrs. Carlson said more details will be available after the February Memorial Committee meeting.
She said items for the raffle / Chinese auction would be welcome.
- APPOINTMENT TO BOARD OF ASSESSMENT REVIEW
Mrs. Carlson said there is a vacancy on the BOAR due to Mrs. Best resignation. She said she did not know if anyone had any recommendations for that position, but she had spoken to Norm Czubaj who lives on the lake front at Hadley Bay. She said he indicated that he would be interested.
- MOTION # 23 OF 2015
- MCNEILL MOTIONED TO APPOINT NORMAN CZUBAJ EFFECTIVE 2/9/2015, TO COMPLETE THE TERM OF PENNY BEST ON THE BOARD OF ASSESSMENT REVIEW (10/1/13 – 9/30/17). MR. STOW SECONDED. YES (5): WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
It was noted that Mr. Czubaj will have to complete the training course for the BOAR. There was also discussion of whether or not a replacement for Assessor Holcomb who is retiring has been found. All agreed they had heard nothing at this point.
- MOTION OF SATISFACTION OF AUDIT OF JUSTICE COURT / TOWN CLERK 2014 BOOKS
Mrs. Carlson said she knows that the board members are reluctant to make a motion on this because of concerns about the way one of the Justices books are being done. She said we need to look at a different procedure for that.
Mr. Sena asked if the books have been corrected.
Mrs. Carlson said she does not believe so because the justice has been ill.
Mr. Sena said it cannot be a motion of satisfaction.
- MOTION # 24 OF 2015
- SENA MADE A MOTION TO DECLARE THAT THE 2014 JUSTICE COURT BOOKS HAVE BEEN AUDITED. MR. STOW SECONDED. YES (5): WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- MOTION # 25 OF 2015
- MCNEILL MOTIONED TO DECLARE SATISFACTION OF AUDIT OF THE 2014 TOWN CLERK BOOKS. MR. STOW SECONDED. YES (3): STOW, MCNEILL, CARLSON. NO (0). ABSTAIN (2): WHITNEY, SENA. THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
Mr. Sena and Mr. Whitney stated that they had not reviewed the Clerk’s books and that is the reason for their abstention. Mr. Sena suggested that perhaps the justice should make a copy of the page he is required to fill out each month and then transpose it to the book.
Mrs. Carlson said she had suggested that perhaps someone else could do the writing for him.
Mr. Sena said there are so many corrections and the writing is not clear. He said unpaid fines are also not listed in his books.
Mrs. Carlson said the Justice has admitted that his hand is shaky and it is difficult to make his writing legible.
Mrs. Carlson said perhaps someone from the State could come in and go over how the books are supposed to be done with him.
- NOAH SCHMUCKER REQUEST TO USE WRODA’S AUCTION AS GROCERY STORE
Mrs. Carlson said Mr. Schmucker had appeared before the Zoning Board of Appeals on this matter and the ZBA had forwarded it to the Town Board for consideration. She said the Town Board will be forwarding it to the Planning Board for review and recommendation tomorrow night.
- STAR EXEMPTION DEADLINE IS MARCH 1ST
Mr. Stow reminded everyone that they must have their paperwork for this exemption filed by 3/1/15.
PIERRE CHAGNON, LEGISLATOR
Mr. Chagnon said the following had occurred at the January, 2015 Legislature meeting:
- Established a Chautauqua County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council to serve in an advisory capacity to the County Legislature and County Executive, initially consisting of members to serve without compensation, as follows:
One County Legislator, the County Court Judge, Dunkirk City Court Judge, Jamestown City Court Judge, Sheriff, District Attorney, Public Defender, and one representative each of the Probation Department, Mental Hygiene Department, Health and Human Services Department; and invitations to participate to be sent to the State Magistrate’s Association, Police Chief’s Association, SUNY Fredonia, Jamestown Community College, and not-for-profit organizations including The Resource Center, Chautauqua Opportunities, Inc., Aspire, National Alliance on Mental Illness, and the Chautauqua County Mental Health Association.
- Authorized the FBO and Hangar Lease Agreements at the Chautauqua County/Jamestown Airport for a five-year term to commence January 1, 2015, with option to renew for two additional five-year terms. We were successful including the provision the County can cancel the agreements during the first three years, preserving our options that may develop from the study being conducted this year of the two County airports.
- Authorized a one-year lease extension with Cornell Cooperative Extension for the Frank W. Bratt County Agricultural Center in the Town of Ellicott, while the County continues efforts to sell the building or find additional tenants.
- The S&CCLSD has entered into an agreement with O’Brien & Gere Engineers to produce a detailed engineering report for extension of service as recommended in the approved Integrated Sewage Management Plan for Chautauqua Lake. The NCLSD has entered into an agreement with AECOM USA to produce a detailed engineering report for extension of service as recommended in the approved Integrated Sewage Management Plan for Chautauqua Lake. They hope to have the reports done by June, 2015, so they can submit for funding from NYS this year. They are also in contact with the BPU because of North Harmony’s desire to extend water service. The S&CCLSD report will not exceed $100,000.00 and they anticipate it will be fully funded by a state grant and will not go to a referendum vote. Only those permanent eligible residents in the areas affected will vote on this.
- The Interim Board of the Chautauqua Lake and Watershed Management Alliance has filled the Executive Director position. Ms. Erin Brickley was hired, and will start work on February 23rd. Erin is a resident of Bemus Point and has a Bachelors degree in Biology and a Masters in Environmental Management. She has work experience in New York, California, and Ohio having worked as a Manager of Quality Systems, a Water Lab Supervisor, and held positions in banking and in the steel industry. She grew up in Chautauqua County, has a passion for the organization’s mission, and is highly motivated to make a difference. And perhaps best of all, she is an excellent listener.
RANDY HOLCOMB, ASSESSOR
The Assessor’s written report indicates they are planning Grievance Day for North Harmony on Wednesday, 5/27/15, from 4-8:00 PM. STAR applications are being completed. All exemptions must be in to the Assessor by 3/1/15.
DAN STRICKLAND, HIGHWAY SUPERINTENDENT
Mr. Strickland said there have been lots of equipment breakdowns this winter and the M.E.O.’s have been working hard and are getting tired.
There was discussion of the condition of the roads.
HOWARD PEACOCK, JUSTICE (Report in Minute Book)
Mr. Peacock read the January, 2015 Justice Report for those present. He said Mrs. Stow has also provided a summary of court activity for the last 2 years. Mr. Peacock indicated that Barb Peacock had told Justice Bensink that she would take a look at his books but he had not responded and she did not wish to push the issue.
Mrs. Carlson said she thought this was a good idea and she would speak to Mr. Bensink about it.
There was discussion in relation to shared services of the Busti Court and Judge Peacock said that he would like to visit some court night to see how they do things.
BRAD LAWSON, ZONING C.E.O. (Report in Minute Book)
Mr. Lawson said he was encouraged to have received some phone calls on new house starts this year. He reviewed his report for those present and made a correction which is reflected in his report.
Mr. Rieg said he had heard on the news that sprinkler systems in new houses were going to be required.
Mr. Lawson said it has been discussed for many years. He said the IBC Pennsylvania is going to adopt it. He said NYS has not done that yet but he feels it will be adopted in the future.
NANCY THOMAS, TOWN CLERK (Report in Minute Book)
Mrs. Thomas said tax collection has been a challenge this year. She said there have been many issues with forwarded mail to Florida involving residents not receiving their bills. She said she would satisfy the Supervisors Warrant on 2/10/15. She provided the following report on collections to date:
- Adjusted Warrant $3,598,770.96
- Full Payments Collected -$1,926,203.82 (Approx. 54% collected)
- Taxes Outstanding $1,672,567.14
- MOTION # 26 OF 2015
- SENA MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE TOWN CLERKS REPORT AS PRESENTED. MR. STOW SECONDED. AYE (5); WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0),
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR (Copy of Report in Minute Book)
- MOTION # 27 OF 2015
- SENA MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE SUPERVISORS REPORT AS PRESENTED. MR.
STOW SECONDED. AYE (5); WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0),
- MOTION # 28 OF 2015
- WHITNEY MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE GENERAL FUND VOUCHERS IN THE
AMOUNT OF $201,927.79 AS REVIEWED AND AUDITED EARLIER. MR.MCNEILL
SECONDED. AYE (5): WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY:(0).CARRIED.
- MOTION # 29 OF 2015
- WHITNEY MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE HIGHWAY FUND VOUCHERS IN THE
AMOUNT OF $77,650.78 AS REVIEWED AND AUDITED EARLIER. MR. MCNEILL
SECONDED. AYE (5); WHITNEY, STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, CARLSON; NAY(0). CARRIED.
- MOTION # 30 OF 2015
ON A MOTION MADE BY MR. MCNEILL AND SECONDED BY MR. SENA, THE MEETING WAS ADJOURNED AT 8:00 PM.
Nancy M. Thomas