DRAFT MINUTES OF THE
REGULAR MEETING OF THE TOWN BOARD
OF THE TOWN OF SARATOGA, 30 FERRY ST.,
July 11, 2005
Supervisor Thomas Wood opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance
at 7:00 p.m.
Roll call: Town Clerk Ruth Drumm called the roll. Supervisor Thomas Wood- present, Councilman Bruce Cornell - present, Councilman Charles Hanehan- present, Councilman Michael McLoughlin – present, and Councilman Fred Drumm- absent.
Also present: Town Attorney William Reynolds, Deputy Town Clerk Linda McCabe, Assessor/Bookkeeper Catherine DeFelice, Highway Superintendent Grant Seymour, Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway, Justice Jack Ditch, Ted Munn, Meghan Phalen, Gene Derby, Walter Flanders, Anita Flanders, Elizabeth Koval, Clarence Fosdick, Dick Comi, Dr. Uriel Oko, and Sherry Doubleday.
Presentations: Dick Comi and Dr. Uriel Oko of The Center For Municipal Solutions, gave a presentation on Regulating Telecommunication Towers and Wireless Facilities to the board. They represent a Nationwide Municipal Consulting Firm that helps municipalities control the siting of wireless facilities. The board will review the material provided and meet again with Dick Comi at a future date for a workshop. The workshop will include Town Board members, Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway and members of the Planning Board to gain further information and have questions and concerns answered.
Approval of Minutes: All board members had received and read the minutes of June 13, 2005. A motion was made by Supervisor Thomas Wood and seconded by Councilman Bruce Cornell to accept the minutes of the June 13, 2005 meeting as written. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Town Clerk’s report, June 2005: Fees paid to the County Treasurer for Dog Licenses $95.17. Dog license fees paid to the NYS Dept. of Agriculture and Markets $24.00. Fees paid to New York D.E.C. for hunting and fishing licenses $148.31. Bell Jar license fee to the NYS Comptroller $15. Fees paid to NYS Health Dept. for Marriage Licenses $67.50. Dog license fees to Supervisor Thomas Wood $269.83. Clerk fees to Supervisor Thomas Wood $159.94. Total State, County, and Local Revenues received were $779.75.
Zoning Officer’s report, June 2005: 14 Building Permits, 4 C.O.’s, and 28 Building inspections were done. A check for $1,715.25 was given to Supervisor Thomas Wood.
Dog Control Officer’s report, June 2005: The report was read by Supervisor Thomas Wood which stated Rick Sullivan answered 16 complaints, traveled 120 miles, issued 15 warnings, responded to 2 dog bites, and 15 summons’ were issued.
Town Court report: Justice Jack Ditch reported the following cases closed in June: 86 Vehicle & Traffic, 16 Criminal/Penal Law, 5 DEC/ENCON, 9 Dog cases, 5 DWI, 0 Town & Village Ordinance, 5 Small Claims/Civil, 2 Eviction, and 3 attended the Science of Speeding School. Fees paid to the NY State Comptroller - $5,290.
Supervisor’s report: Supervisor Thomas Wood presented June 2005 balances in Town funds as follows: General A $883,516.48, General B $130,040.48, Highway Outside $197,098.56, Youth Recreation & Services $9,773.68, Highway Equipment Reserve $109,255.11, Building Reserve $806,863.98, and Fire Protection $0.00. June revenues were $86,794.49 and expenses were $103,690.80. The total June 2005 balance is $2,136,548.08.
Public comments on agenda items: No one came forward.
Highway: Highway Superintendent Grant Seymour reported that there were some minor washouts caused by the heavy rains over the last few weeks. Work on Burgoyne Road has begun and all the culverts are in. Next week a company will come to reclaim the road (rip it up) and then calcium chloride will be put down in preparation for the paving. Verizon will be moving a couple of cables so the hills at the DeGarmo Road and Hayes Road intersections can be cut down to improve the site distance. The new small trailer has been picked up and is ready for use. The crews continue to mow the roadsides.
Landfill: Supervisor Thomas Wood reported that the quarterly report from Hudson Environmental Services shows no unusual conditions at the town landfill and all tests are within acceptable limits.
Insurance: Supervisor Thomas Wood reported that our insurance coverages, including Health insurance, are being reviewed in preparation for their renewal.
Youth Committee report: Supervisor Thomas Wood stated that Jeannie Duval, Youth Program Director, has reported that 130 children have enrolled in the Summer Swim Program. The classes go from June 29th through August 10th.
Buildings: Supervisor Thomas Wood reported that the sixth meeting of the Building Committee met on July 7th. Engineering firm, C.T. Male, and Architectural firm, Olsen Associates, presented and described the projects that they have done and the procedures that they follow. Butler, Rowland & Mays presented last month and next month SD Atelier Architecture firm will present. The results of the new town hall survey, that was sent to 2,323 households in the Town of Saratoga on June 1st, has been summarized by Survey Committee member Justice Jack Ditch. There was a 20% return rate which is very good. Four areas were analyzed - services, structure, “green building” and location. Services that were strongly selected were State Police and Senior services. The structure selected was for the long term. The “green” building (energy efficient) was about 50 -50. The fourth issue analyzed was the location. The present location got the most responses with the vicinity of the Town Garage on Route 32 as the second choice. The comments received are being reviewed and will be discussed at the next meeting. The committee recognized that more in-depth information is needed and the formation of focus groups throughout the town are being considered. Frank Merrill presented a parcel of land for consideration. Supervisor Thomas Wood noted that the final report from Dente Engineering on the test borings has been received and will be reviewed at the next meeting. It was recognized that more time is needed at the Building Committee meetings. After some committee discussion, it was decided to change the meetings to Wednesday evenings. The next meeting will be on Wednesday, August 3rd at 6:00 p.m.
Senior Citizens report: Councilman Bruce Cornell reported that the seniors are on summer break and will meet again in the fall.
Park Committee report: Councilman Michael McLoughlin reported that they are still working on getting the deed filed for the Quaker Springs Mineral Park. A signature is needed and Town Attorney William Reynolds will follow up with Attorney Trevor Coulter.
Zoning Amendment Advisory Committee (ZAAC):
Councilman Charles Hanehan reported he is planning to meet soon, still trying to work around busy summer schedules.
Supervisor Thomas Wood reported that he met with Stillwater Supervisor Greg Connors and Bob Ivanelli, owner of the Saratoga Glen Hollow Water Supply Corporation, regarding the private water system going in around Saratoga Lake. A Saratoga Lake Water District Survey Form will be distributed to Saratoga Lake residents to see if they have an interest in connecting to the private water system being installed along Route 9P. The line will be available to Town of Saratoga residents around the lake in about two years. If an interest exists then further steps will be taken establishing a Saratoga Lake Water District. This water district will not cost the Town of Saratoga anything since it is a private system paid solely for by its users.
Supervisor Thomas Wood explained that due to many complaints, a noise ordinance has been under review by the town board. A Noise Ordinance, drafted by Town Attorney William Reynolds after reviewing neighboring towns’ ordinances, has been reviewed by the town board. The board suggested that additional wording be added to the exemption for Agriculture work to include animal noise and crop protection devices. After board discussion, Supervisor Thomas Wood asked Town Attorney William Reynolds to add the wording, put the law in its final format, and advertise a Public Hearing for the next Town Board meeting on August 8th.
Supervisor Thomas Wood noted that he has met with Julie Stokes, Alane Chinian, Kate Maynard, and David Behm of the NYS Ag & Markets Farmland Protection Board regarding the Purchase of Development Rights on the Nate Darrow property at 1174 Rt. 29. It was determined that the Town of Saratoga needs to work more closely with Saratoga Plan on the contract. A special meeting with Alane Chinian of Saratoga Plan and the Town Board has been scheduled for Tuesday, July 12th at 8:00 p.m. at the town hall where it is expected to call an Executive Session to discuss the contract.
It was reported that a meeting of Old Saratoga on the Hudson will take place on Tuesday, July 12th at 6:00 p.m. at the Saratoga Town Hall. The Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP) will be discussed. Kate Maynard of the Saratoga Plan and George Hodgson, are co-administering the $35,000 grant which is a multi-municipality plan to revitalize the Hudson River/Champlain Canal corridor.
The $60,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) for the Old Saratoga on the Hudson Champlain Canal Trail Project will be managed by Alane Chinian. The grant will update the Champlain Canal Towpath.
Resolution #05-65 an amendment to the Town of Saratoga’s Employee Handbook to include a second floating holiday for all full-time employees as agreed upon last January was introduced by Councilman Charles Hanehan and seconded by Councilman Michael McLoughlin as follows:
WHEREAS, the Town Board of the Town of Saratoga agreed by Resolution #05-08 on January 10, 2005 to add an additional personal day for full-time highway employees, and
WHEREAS, the additional day was omitted from the Employee Handbook adopted May 9, 2005, and
WHEREAS, the board feels that all full-time employees should get this benefit and to reference it as an additional floating holiday, therefore be it
RESOLVED by the Town Board of the Town of Saratoga to amend the Town of Saratoga’s Employee Handbook, Section 801 – Designated Holidays - #13 to read 2 Floating Holidays.
Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Supervisor Thomas Wood explained that there is a used computer monitor that is no longer needed stored in the basement. A town resident has expressed interest in buying the monitor. Its estimated value is $25. After some board discussion, a motion was made by Councilman Bruce Cornell and seconded by Councilman Charles Hanehan to sell the used computer monitor for $25 to Charles Irish. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Supervisor Thomas Wood noted that the Dix Bridge at Lock 5 connecting Saratoga and Washington counties has been closed since 1996 due to erosion of the piers that support it. He explained that the Hudson Crossing Bi-County Park Steering Committee is seeking funds to repair the bridge so that it can be reopened. He added that a Letter of Support for the funds to reopen the bridge is needed from the town and would be sent to Senator Joseph Bruno. A motion was made by Supervisor Thomas Wood and seconded by Councilman Michael McLoughlin to authorize Supervisor Thomas Wood to write the Letter of Support for funding to repair the Dix Bridge and that it be sent to Senator Joseph Bruno. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Fire Chief Rick Drew of the Schuyler Hose Company wrote a memo stating that there have been discrepancies reported with the 911 addresses in the town. Some areas that were noted with problems were at Saratoga Lake, North Broad Street, and Coveville Road. Supervisor Thomas Wood stated that Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway is our 911 address coordinator for the Town of Saratoga. After talking with Duane Lesson at the County Emergency Services, it was disclosed that the town must identify the discrepancies and report the corrections to the county. Councilman Bruce Cornell said he would check with the David Nevins Fire Department to see if they know of any additional address problems and Supervisor Thomas Wood would talk with Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway to try to clear up the discrepancies.
The concerns over drainage problems at George Gasser’s Fitch Road property have been looked at by the Town Engineer Kenneth Martin, the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE). It has been determined that it is not a town issue since it falls under the DEC’s and ACOE’s jurisdiction. George Gasser will work with them and follow the correct procedures.
Supervisor Thomas Wood noted that the stage at the Schuylerville beach has been brought up to code and is being booked for concerts by the Schuylerville Area Chamber of Commerce. The question of ownership has been brought up. Resolution #05-66 - Donation of the stage to the Village of Schuylerville was introduced by Councilman Bruce Cornell and seconded by Councilman Charles Hanehan as follows:
WHEREAS, the Town Board of the Town of Saratoga acknowledges that the stage was purchased with money awarded to the Town of Saratoga through the Hudson River Improvement Fund Grant in the year 2000 and was originally located at Lock 5 in the Town of Saratoga, and
WHEREAS, the stage was moved to Fort Hardy Park on the Hudson River on land owned by the Village of Schuylerville and therefore now should be turned over to the Village of Schuylerville, therefore be it
RESOLVED, by the Town Board of the Town of Saratoga to donate the stage to the Village of Schuylerville for public use at Fort Hardy Park.
Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Councilman Charles Hanehan spoke on the recent Supreme Court decision increasing the scope of the Eminent Domain Law and the threat it poses to individual’s property rights. He attended a press conference and question and answer session of the Republican Assembly Task Force at the McMahon Farm where this subject came up. Assemblyman Roy McDonald spoke and suggested that people start at the local and county level passing resolutions to give the rights back to the property owners. Councilman Charles Hanehan got in touch with the Property Rights of America Organization and obtained a draft resolution that states its disapproval of the decision and gives the rights back at a local level. He gave copies to the board and Town Attorney William Reynolds to review.
Supervisor Thomas Wood announced the following events:
Old Saratoga on the Hudson meeting Tuesday, July 12th at 6:00 p.m. at the town hall.
Town Board Special Meeting – PDR of Nate Darrow – Tuesday, July 12th at 8:00 p.m. at the town hall.
Thursday evening concert on the Schuylerville Beach – 7:00 p.m.
Hudson Crossing Fest on Saturday, July 16th at Lock 5 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
British Motor Fest at Ft. Hardy Park, Saturday & Sunday, July 16th and 17th.
Schuylerville Central School Alumni Banquet on Saturday, July 23rd at the Holiday Inn.
Privilege of the floor:
Sherry Doubleday reported that the new building for the General Schuyler Emergency Squad is coming along slowly. She added that the address for the new building is 901 Route 29.
Clarence Fosdick asked when the work on Bryant’s Bridge would begin and Supervisor Thomas Wood stated that it would be in the spring of 2006. The project was slowed by archeological investigations.
Gene Derby, 8 Chestnut St., spoke regarding the 150% water rate recently charged to the outside users. He is forming a group of residents from Chestnut Street and Burgoyne Street to organize and fight the increase in their rates. He asked if this would conflict with anything the town may be looking into about a water district. Supervisor Thomas Wood responded that he felt it would not have a negative impact and to continue with their efforts. It was noted that there has been no success in finding the Grant contract of 1980. Clarence Fosdick suggested that we check with HUD for the original Grant contract.
Town Attorney William Reynolds suggested that the Calvin Gong file be discussed in executive session. A motion was made by Supervisor Thomas Wood and seconded by Councilman Charles Hanehan to enter into executive session at 8:32 p.m. to discuss possible litigation against Calvin Gong. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
A motion to end the executive session was made by Councilman Charles Hanehan and seconded by Councilman Michael McLoughlin at 8:40 p.m. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Supervisor Thomas Wood explained that in the interest of public health and safety the property owned by Calvin Gong at 1390 Rt. 9P must be cleaned up. He has been asked to do so but has not responded.
A motion to authorize Supervisor Thomas Wood to enter into a contract for the demolition and removal of the damaged building at 1390 Rt. 9P owned by Calvin Gong, provided it has not been sold to a third party, was introduced by Councilman Charles Hanehan and seconded by Councilman Bruce Cornell . The cost will be added to Calvin Gong’s tax bill as provided by local law. Supervisor Thomas Wood - aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Michael McLoughlin - aye, and Councilman Charles Hanehan - aye. Carried 4– 0.
Councilman Michael McLoughlin left the meeting at 8:45 p.m.
v Building committee meeting - Wednesday, August 3rd at 6:00 p.m.
v Town Board Agenda meeting - Thursday, August 4th at 6:00 p.m.
v Town Board Regular meeting - Monday, August 8th, at 7:00 p.m.
Audit the Bills: Per abstract 07/11/2005 (7G): General A $17,207.70, General B $985.73, Youth $412.99, (7H): Highway Outside $35,316.70, Building Reserve $10,992.00 for a total expense of $64,915.12.
A motion to adjourn was made by Councilman Charles Hanehan at 9: 00 p.m. and Councilman Bruce Cornell seconded it. Supervisor Thomas Wood – aye, Councilman Fred Drumm – absent, Councilman Bruce Cornell – aye, Councilman Charles Hanehan – aye, and Councilman Michael McLoughlin – absent (left at 8:45 p.m.). Carried 3– 0.