TOWN OF NORTH HARMONY
TOWN BOARD MEETING
MONDAY DECEMBER 11, 2017, 7:00 PM
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR PRESENT
FRANK STOW, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
RICHARD SENA, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
DUNCAN MCNEILL, COUNCILMAN PRESENT
LOUISE ORTMAN, COUNCILWOMAN PRESENT
OTHERS PRESENT: Dave Stapleton, Attorney; Louis Rieg, Planning; Nancy Thomas, Town Clerk; Howard Peacock, Justice; Brad Lawson, Zoning CEO; Pierre Chagnon, Legislator; Dan Strickland, Highway Sup’t.; Robin Miller, Bookkeeper
- MINUTES: 11/13/17
- MOTION # 137 OF 2017
- MCNEILL MOTIONED TO ADOPT THE MINUTES OF THE 11/13/2017 TOWN BOARD MEETING AS SUBMITTED BY THE TOWN CLERK. MRS. ORTMAN SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- AFD VOTE FOR 2 COMISSIONER POSITIONS TUES. 12/12/17 6-9 PM AT FIREHALL
- TONH CENTENNIAL BOOK MEETING – TUES., 1/23/18, 7 PM
- TONH CENTENNIAL COMMITTEE MEETING – TUES., 1/30/18, 7 PM
The following correspondence has been received by the Town of North Harmony and is available for review at the offices:
- SOUTH & CENTER CHAUTAUQUA LAKE SEWER DISTRICT – Should be involved when issuing building permits
- PROCLAMATION REQUEST – SCHOOL CHOICE WEEK 1/21/2018 No action taken.
- PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION – List of Available Publications
- ASSESSOR – September Property Transfers – 3 above assessment and 2 below
- COHEN LAW GROUP – FREE LEGAL ASSESSMENT CABLE FRANCHISE
- NYS DEFERRED COMPENSATION PLAN
- CHARTER – FRANCHISE FEES $2,051.64 (3 months)
- CHAUTAUQUA ALLIANCE (CLWMA) has hired EcoLogic to establish a five year plan for lake management
- CHAUTAUQUA CO. FINANCE – MORTGAGE TAX $29,759.30 (2017 total $50,963.90 – down $1,870.01 from last year)
- NYS-DEC – SEQR DESIGNATION FOR OPALECKY GRAVEL PIT – to DEC if no objection, do nothing
- TOWN OF BUSTI ZBA – Notice of hearing Barker Variance, Loomis Bay
- DIVERSIFIED ENERGY (old Resource Exploration) – $3.86 in royalties received
Mr. Stow asked what are the plans for all the abandoned wells in the town.
Mrs. Carlson said that is up to the DEC.
Mr. Lawson said he thought there was a ruling and fund set up between the DEC and the drillers to take care of this. He said the DEC and drillers had left the towns completely out of the process when wells were drilled.
Mr. Stow said it troubles him because once the casing goes the water table can be contaminated. He said they are supposed to pull the casing and fill them with cement.
Mr. Stapleton said these old wells can be a hazardous and costly problem for new property owners who are not aware of them.
Mrs. Carlson said the fund that was set up is from the more recent drilling that was done. She asked if it might be worthwhile to have Mr. Stapleton write a letter to the DEC and see if they have a plan for enforcing the restrictions on old wells that are not producing.
Mr. Stapleton said he would do that and start with the Allegheny DEC office.
- AFFINITY – NY PAID FAMILY LEAVE BENEFITS – effective 1/1/2018
Mrs. Thomas said Randy Graham, our Insurance Agent sent the information to her. She said she left a message for him to contact her to better explain the towns options/responsibilities regarding this.
- OLD BUSINESS
- FORMAL RESOLUTION ON CABLE TV – Need Clarification on division of franchises
Mrs. Carlson said because our franchise expires next year everyone wants us to become involved in legal negotiations.
Mr. Stapleton said he did not feel that was necessary at this time.
- MOTION # 138 OF 2017
- STOW MOTIONED TO JOIN WITH ACCESS CH 5 ON A CABLE FRANCHISE RENEWAL RESOLUTION. MR. SENA SECONDED.
Mrs. Carlson said the town has 2 cable franchises: 1) comes from Westfield along the lake at 3% (due for renewal in 2018) 2) comes from Jamestown into Ashville at 5%. She said she does not know how they will sort this out. She said she would prefer to wait until we are ready to renew the first one.
A ROLL CALL VOTE WAS TAKEN: MCNEILL, NO; ORTMAN, NO; CARLSON, NO; STOW, NO; SENA, NO. THE MOTION WAS DEFEATED UNANIMOUSLY.
CLP – Ellery cannot be lead agent on SEQRA – (Letter from Hopkins, Sorgi, & Romanoff) County or DEC must be lead agent
Mrs. Carlson said we have received letters indicating that Ellery cannot be lead agent on the SEQRA for the Town of North Harmony on the CLP proposed actions. She said it indicates the Town of North Harmony would need to do its own SEQRA even if Ellery is the lead agent. She said Mr. Stow has questioned whether there is any liability to the town since we have budgeted funds for the CLP and he suggested that the check to them not be issued.
Mr. Stapleton said there have been letters from the Chautauqua Institution and anonymous letters feel that the town should not deal with the CLP. He said we have not heard from the county except that Mr. Chagnon feels that at some point the county might become involved. He asked Mr. Chagnon if the county has any intent on the issue.
Mr. Chagnon said there are many people encouraging the county to step in and become lead agent on this action. He said according to the law to be lead agent you must meet at least one of three criteria: 1) you must be the party that is applying for the permit to take the action 2) you must be supplying funding to the party that is applying for the permit 3) you have to be an agency that is making the determination in the approval of a permit. He said the County does not meet any of these criteria. He said people indicate that in 1990 the county did the SEIS. In 1990 the CLA was applying for the herbicide permit and the county was supplying funding directly to the CLA and therefore met the second criteria. He said today, the county is not supplying any funding for the CLP action.
Mr. Stapleton said it comes down to political will.
Mr. Chagnon said at this time the county has no interest in applying for a permit.
Mrs. Carlson said Chautauqua Institution implied in their letter that they were concerned about their drinking water which comes from the lake.
There was general discussion of the issue going forward.
- NYS-DEC – Transfer Station – Transition requirements for Revised Part 360 Solid Waste Management Facility Regulations – Application for registration submitted to DEC by Town Clerk on 11/17/2017
- RICHARD FINCH, CONTRACTOR – Windows at town building
Mrs. Carlson asked if we have heard anything from Mr. Finch.
Mr. Stow said he had tried to call and had left a message, but has not heard anything to date.
It was noted that some of the windows have lost their moisture seal. Mr. Finch came to the town and measured the windows. Mrs. Miller said she believes the windows were warrantied for 10 years.
Mrs. Thomas said she would send a letter to Mr. Finch about the matter.
Mr. Sena said to ask who Mr. Finch purchased the windows from and perhaps the warranty could be handled that way.
- NEW BUSINESS:
- AUTHORIZE SUPERVISOR TO EXECUTE COURT OFFICERS CONTRACT WITH CHAUTAUQUA CO. SHERIFF, Minimum 4 hr./wk; Maximum $7,000/yr
- MOTION # 139 OF 2017
- STOW MOTIONED TO AUTHORIZE THE SUPERVISOR TO SIGN ALL DOCUMENTS TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH THE CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY SHERIFF FOR COURT SECURITY FOR 2018 IN AN AMOUNT NOT TO EXCEED $7,000.00. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- CHALLENGE TO ELLERY’S LEAD AGENCY STATUS FROM CHAUTAUQUA INSTITUTION
- TONH CEMETERY CHARGES
Mrs. Carlson said Mrs. Thomas has provided information on the expenditures of the town for cemetery charges and provided information from other towns on what their charges for grave lots and services are.
Mr. Sena said the town spends a great deal on the cemeteries and the revenues are not covering it.
Mrs. Thomas said perhaps the board would like to review the information and make suggestions as to what charges should be so that a decision can be voted on at the year end. She said we have not increased our prices for services in about 8 years.
- MOTION # 140 OF 2017
- SENA MOTIONED TO TABLE DISCUSSION ON CEMETERY CHARGES FOR FURTHER REVIEW. MR. MCNEILL SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- LOCAL LAW – SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEMS REGULATIONS – Set Public Hearing
- LOCAL LAW – COLD WAR VETERANS EXEMPTION
- MOTION # 141 OF 2017
- SENA MOTIONED TO HOLD A PUBLIC HEARING ON MONDAY, 1/8/2018, AT 6:45 PM AT THE COMMUNITY BUILDING, STOW, NY ON THE FOLLOWING PROPOSED LOCAL LAWS:
LOCAL LAW #1-2018 – SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEMS REGULATIONS
LOCAL LAW #2-2018 – COLD WAR VETERANS EXEMPTION
- MCNEILL SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK – Adopt Changes
Mrs. Carlson said she would like to table action on the Employee Handbook for further review.
- MOTION # 142 OF 2017
- SENA MOTIONED TO TABLE CHANGES TO THE EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK FOR FURTHER REVIEW OF THE CHANGES UNTIL THE YEAR END BOARD MEETING SCHEDULED ON 12/28/17. MR. STOW SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- 2017 YEAR END BOARD MEETING – Set Date
- MOTION # 143 OF 2017
- STOW MOTIONED TO HOLD THE YEAR END TOWN BOARD MEETING ON THURSDAY, 12/28/17, AT 12:00. MR. SENA SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- NYS-DEC – Notice to Register Public Owned Sewer System (South & Center Sewer Dist.)
Mrs. Carlson said this would have to be done.
- ALL OTHER BUSINESS AS NECESSARY
PIERRE CHAGNON, LEGISLATOR
Mr. Chagnon said the following occurred at the November 2017 Legislature meeting:
- Adjusted 2017 budget to reflect significantly increased costs in Health and Human Services for the Early Intervention Program; Foster and Institutional Child Care; Handicap Preschool Education; and NYS Office of Children and Family Services. He said the social cost of the opioid epidemic continue to spiral out of control.
- Allocated $10,000 of Occupancy Tax proceeds for 2018 professional services to advocate for federal projects and funding for our lakes and waterways. He said this is our federal lobbyist who is doing an amazing job.
- Established 2018 equalization rates for towns. North Harmony at 99.50%.
KEVIN OKERLUND, ASSESSOR
Mr. Okerlund’s report indicated that the files have been sent to the county for the creation of the tax roll. His report also discussed the Cold War Veterans Exemption issue. He reminded that all applications for exemptions need to be in his office by 3/1/18.
DAN STRICKLAND, HIGHWAY SUPERINTENDENT
Mr. Strickland said that Pat O’Brien, M.E.O., was hit in the back by a 15’ piece of a tree that the town was cutting. An incident report was filed with Workman’s Comp. Mr. O’Brien currently has another comp case that is active for hernia surgery which will now have to wait for further results of the back issue. He said the plows are ready to go and the two new employees are working out well.
Mr. Stow asked how long it takes from the time you order a new plow truck to the time it goes on the road.
Mr. Strickland said a minimum of 6 months.
HOWARD PEACOCK, JUSTICE
Mr. Peacock read the following report into the record.
COURT REPORT FOR MONTH OF NOVEMBER 2017
December 11, 2017 Board Meeting
$26,583.00 in fines, fees, and surcharges was collected by the Court and given to the Town of North Harmony CFO for the court cases reported to the NYS Comptroller for November 2017. We opened 177 new cases and closed 207 cases.
Of the $30,329.00 collected by the Court in October 2017, the Town retained $10,697.00
BRAD LAWSON, ZONING C.E.O. (Copy of report in Minute Book)
Mr. Lawson reviewed his report for those present. He said permits are down this year and he has only issued 48 so far, this year. He said complaints and violations are up and he has been sending out some letters on those.
BRAD LAWSON, AFD COMMISSIONER
Mr. Lawson announced that he has resigned from the Fire District because he felt he was just spread too thin.
JOHN STOW, DCO
Mr. Stow indicated that he had one phone call regarding a dog. He said he had returned the call and left a message, but he has not heard anything back on that.
NANCY THOMAS, TOWN CLERK (Copy of report in Minute Book)
Mrs. Thomas said she would like to participate in a LGRMIF grant sponsored by Southern Tier West for scanning of records both cemetery and other (marriage, payroll, birth, etc).
- MOTION # 144 OF 2017
MRS. ORTMAN MOTIONED TO AUTHORIZE THE SUPERVISOR TO SIGN DOCUMENTS TO PARTICIPATE IN A NYS ARCHIVES LGRMIF GRANT SPONSORED BY SOUTHERN TIER WEST FOR SCANNING OF RECORDS. MR. STOW SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- MOTION # 145 OF 2017
- STOW MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE TOWN CLERKS REPORT AS PRESENTED. MR. SENA SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
SALLY P. CARLSON, SUPERVISOR (Copy of report in Minute Book)
- MOTION # 146 OF 2017
- STOW MOTIONED TO ACCEPT THE SUPERVISORS REPORT AS SUBMITTED. MR. SENA SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- MOTION # 147 OF 2017
- MCNEILL MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE GENERAL FUND VOUCHERS AS AUDITED AND REVIEWED EARLIER IN THE AMOUNT OF $57,951.37. MRS. ORTMAN SECONDED.YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- MOTION # 148 OF 2017
MRS. MCNEILL MOTIONED TO APPROVE THE HIGHWAY FUND VOUCHERS AS AUDITED AND REVIEWED EARLIER IN THE AMOUNT OF $25,654.07. MRS. ORTMAN SECONDED. YES (5): STOW, SENA, MCNEILL, ORTMAN, CARLSON. NO (0). THE MOTION WAS CARRIED.
- MOTION # 149 OF 2017
ON A MOTION MADE BY MR. STOW, SECONDED BY MR. SENA, AND NONE BEING OPPOSED, THE MEETING WAS ADJOURNED AT 8:05 PM.