TOWN BOARD MEETING
MARCH 5, 2007
The Clermont Town Board held its regular meeting on Monday, March 5, 2007 at 7:30 P.M. at the Town Hall. Those present were Councilman Harned, Councilwoman Lent, Councilman Staats and Councilman Nolan. Supervisor Banks was absent. There were fourteen others present including Richard Roth of the Independent.
The meeting was opened by Councilman Harned with a salute to the flag.
Councilman Harned had a question on the minutes of the February 5th meeting under correspondence #6 - To clarify the questions there should be a semi-colon between ‘wetlands’ and ‘even’. Councilman Nolan noted a correction on page 3 - second bullet should read ‘Denise Sheehan was actively reviewing it but with administration change, lost her commission. The plan will be resubmitted to new administration.’ A motion was made to accept the minutes of February 5th regular meeting as amended and the February 20th public hearing minutes by Councilman Staats, seconded by Councilwoman Lent. All in favor. So Carried.
· Tcwn Clerks report for February 2007-Checks in the amount of $393.73 for General fund and Trust & Agency for $267.25. A motion was made by Councilwoman Lent, seconded by Councilman Staats to accept the Town Clerk’s report. All in favor. So carried.
· There will be two seminars by the Columbia County Planning Board at Columbia Greene Community College on April 26, 2007 involving Land Use Tools for Creating Affordable Housing and Planning and Zoning Case Law. Attendance by Zoning and Planning members will count towards required four-hour training.
· Letter from Greg Fingar on air monitoring seeking Governor Spitzers support.
Towns were copied. Councilman Nolan has been corresponding with Greg. He has also written a letter to Representative Kirsten Gillibrand to put pressure on new DEC administration and follow up with Governor for support.
· Letter from February 1 regarding meeting with Northern Dutchess Paramedics and Town Supervisors from Clermont, Germantown, Livingston, Taghkanic and Gallatin in attendance. Discussed need for increased support from ambulance service. Also showed proposal completed in Southeast Dutchess Consortium, for which our towns could do a similar proposal. Did not have call breakdown as requested at prior meeting. NDP will get that information for next meeting. Supervisor Brown will contact NDP on next date, which will be hosted by Livingston Supervisor Williams. Also, discussed shared services with Southern Columbia towns for police officers to be utilized within towns.
· Councilman Nolan has written to Representative Kirsten Gillibrand’s office requesting funds for windows at Community House.
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· Dagmar Payne - at last board meeting it was mentioned about water for community house having been contaminated by salt from the salt shed and that Councilwoman Lent wouldn’t use it for the Easter Egg Hunt. Councilwoman Lent responded that the water has been regularly tested and it has come back okay, but she chooses not to use it. Ray Tousey explained that there was a year when the well at the Community House went dry and rather than use it they switched to the well from the Town Hall. At that time a schematic of wells was done by Highway Superintendent Potts which should be on file in the Clerk’s office. There were some concerns when the salt shed was uncovered and allowed to wash out, but that is now covered. The wells have been tested every year.
· Phil Leonard - asked if anyone is attending the conference on farming in Hudson Valley at Columbia-Greene Community College - Charles Larsen will be atttending and this was addressed at the Keep Farming meeting.
· Resolution #4-07 Lease with Canaan Fellowship - The Clerk reported that our attorney has reviewed the lease and did make one addition - Page 1 - after the fifth section regarding legal remedies, add ‘Should the Town commence such legal action they shall be entitled to reimbursement of all attorney fees, court costs, and disbursements associated with such action.’ Councilwoman Lent will talk with Chief Saulpaugh and ask him to go through building and make sure the exit doors are working. Councilwoman Lent motioned to approve Resolution #4-07 as long as fire department can go through and make sure it is safe. Councilman Staats seconded. All in favor. So carried. Councilman Nolan voiced several concerns: that the lease is deficient in terms of protecting the town of liability; there should be a town evacuation plan posted; restrictions as to how many people can be on second floor; also, since Fellowship is responsible for any damages, has this been assessed? Councilman Staats asked if it is the Chiefs responsibility to post an evacuation plan? Agrees that we should have the Chief check the doors upstairs and downstairs to be sure that they work properly. Councilman Staats asked if we have spoken to the Church about looking for another place? It was discussed, but no motion was made. We should let them know that they should be looking for another place. Councilman Nolan’s concern is that we are providing all services, utilities, etc and are subsidizing the use of the building by the church. Ray Tousey noted that the Fellowship turns down the heat and the hot water heater is turned down. The heat would have to be kept on in the building even if no one was using it. Charlie Larsen noted that with our historian is in nursing home, once everything is moved from her house to the Community House there won’t be too much room for anything else and that this should be considered soon. Councilwoman Lent noted stated that Deputy Historians Louise Kalin and Gary DeLaurentis will assist. Councilman Nolan is not opposed to leasing to the Canaan Fellowship but in protecting the Town against liability and
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exposure. It was decided to review the lease as to protection and the deed for restrictions
· Local Law #1-07 RA1 to RA2 - SEQRA copies given to all members to review.
Copies will go to zoning review committee.
· Local Law #2-07 Uniform Building Code - Councilman Nolan asked if we need SEQRA on this local law? No, just adopting state code. Councilman Nolan motioned to adopt Local Law #2 - 2007. Councilman Staats seconded. All in favor. So carried.
· Report by C.T. Male on twenty Acre site: Councilman Harned reported that the preliminary report on 20 acres has been sent to DEC. State has not gotten back to C.T. Male on any remediation or if there is any required. Councilman Harned is anticipating a public meeting in April. Dagmar Payne spoke with DEC in the past few weeks as an adjoining landowner and an introduction letter explaining the testing, etc. were sent to others but no letter was received by the Payne’s, and she says they are not listed as adjoining landowners. Councilman Nolan asked if there is a copy of preliminary report sent to town? We have received maps but no report. There will be a special meeting with C.T. Male and a public hearing, after which, there will be a 45-day comment period. It will then be sent back to DEC.
· Highway Garage - Councilman Harned was not at last months meeting, however, there was discussion about the plans for a highway garage. For the last seven or eight years it has been discussed that we are in need of a new building. No place has been discussed on where this is going. We are looking for an estimate on a garage and salt shed to determine what we can afford, when we can afford it and how we are going to pay for it. We are looking ahead with a plan to determine what we can do and have discussed several locations, however, nothing has been decided. George Davis agrees it is good to plan for garage, it is a good idea for the town to plan ahead. Councilman Nolan noted that the estimate is about 1 million dollars for the garage. We have a budget of about $8000 in engineering fees this year and out of this budget we are paying $573.50 and $1,067.50 this month to D. F. Wheeler for this plan. Are there any other anticipated services for other engineering services, which may require an RFP to be done? Are we getting a monthly status report from the new accountant? We don’t know how much money has been expended to date from accounts. At the review of books in January, Justice Banks was receiving all town funds on his justice statement, but it was the bank’s error. In Supervisor Banks’ absence, Councilman Harned explained that the Supervisor is the chief financial officer. His audits have always come back every year with no errors. Councilman Staats noted that we received more money than was budgeted through mortgage taxes. Money has been set aside for buildings, $100,000.00. Councilman Harned was talking about putting away more money.
· The Annual report is done for 2006 and will be available at April meeting.
· Councilwoman Lent reported in the past the VFW members have taken care of veterans gravesites at cemetery properties in town, including the private cemetery on
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Dianne O’Neal’s road by placing flags on gravesites and cleaning up. Larry Saulpaugh has offered donating time & labor to clean up that cemetery because it has not been kept up. Councilwoman Lent will ask Larry to talk with Dianne O’Neal and get permission to do this. Town law provides the town with the authority to maintain cemeteries in town. Phil Leonard suggested making a donation to the veterans for doing this.
· Resolution #03-07 - Adjustment to February General Fund abstract - Town Clerk advised board that Supervisor Banks requested this correction for vouchers that were paid from the Engineering account A1440.4 which should have been paid from the Zoning account A8010.4 for $977.50 and Planning A8020.4 for 399.50. Discussed adjustment. A motion was made by Councilman Harned and seconded by Councilwoman Lent to approve. All in favor. So carried.
· Councilwoman Lent reported on plans for the Easter Egg Hunt to be held on Saturday, April 7 from 12:00 to 2:00 P.M. She will also be having a drive for items for troops through Hugs from Home, hoping to have several boxes of items to ship. UPS will ship a 50 lb. Box for $11.00. Judy Neary said if letters are getting sent they should be checked before being sealed. Carol would expect it to be mostly pictures from the kids coloring contest.
· Keep Farming Farmers Forum - Turnout was great at the recent meetings held in Germantown and Clermont. Economic committees set up forums. The food products and services, natural resources teams, esthetics team have not gotten off the ground. Anyone knowing of anyone who owns a farm and who did not get the recent letter, please let one of the committee members know. Questionnaires will be followed up with a visit. Todd Erling and Chuck Abrams made presentations. Phil Gitner from Kirsten Gillibrand’s office and Assemblyman Peter Lopez came to the meeting, as well as Roland Vosburgh from Columbia County Planning. There will be additional community meetings in the future. Councilwoman Lent thanked Judy Neary and Charlie Larsen for the report. Judy Neary, is the regional coordinator for the three towns, and has been hearing very positive feedback. Attendance by Clermont residents has been overwhelming.
A motion was made by Councilwoman Lent, seconded by Councilman Staats to approve Trust & Agency abstract #2, vouchers #25-28 in the amount of $281.25. All in favor. So carried.
A motion was made by Councilwoman Lent, seconded by Councilman Staats to approve Highway abstract #3, vouchers #15-25 in the amount of $6,964.94. All in favor. So carried.
Councilman Nolan asked about expenditure on the General abstract for the Easter Egg Hunt. It was explained that each event, the Easter Egg Hunt and the Barbecue have separate accounts kept by the committee and the funds are donated from the Celebrations account in the budget. A motion was made to approve General abstract #3, vouchers
#52-85 in the amount of $9,326.31 by Councilman Nolan, seconded by Councilman Staats. All in favor. So carried.
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Phil Leonard asked if the agenda could be posted on the website prior to the meetings
Councilman Harned will work on this.
Bob Desmond agrees with the agenda idea. He is disappointed that there was no action on Local Law #1, the zoning change. It is dragging out and has taken too long. He also pointed out that board members were getting along well for awhile and that seems to be deteriorating.
A motion was made by Councilwoman Lent, seconded by Councilman Harned to adjourn at 9:00 P.M.
Mary Helen Shannon