September 21, 2009

A regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Trustees was held on Monday, September 21, 2009, in the Village Hall. Mayor Maedl opened the meeting at 7:00 p.m. Also present were Deputy Mayor Conley, Trustee Bateman, Trustee Sarchia, Trustee Westcott, Coordinator Dodge, Police Chief Swick, Clerk-Treasurer Schweigert, and Daniel E. Seaman, attorney. Clerk Schweigert led the Pledge of Allegiance. There were a few Village residents in attendance, as well. A motion was made by Deputy Mayor Conley, and seconded by Trustee Bateman, to approve the minutes of the August 17, 2009, meeting. Carried. A motion was made by Trustee Westcott, and seconded by Trustee Sarchia, to authorize payment of bills submitted on Abstract No. 04-0910. General: $34,102.68; Water: $1,458.75; Sewer: $3,067.43 Total: $38,628.86. Carried. A motion was made by Trustee Bateman, and seconded by Trustee Westcott, to authorize the following budget transfer: TO FROM AMOUNT A1910.4 A1990.4 $ 63.91 A7110.4 A1990.4 4,000.00 TOTAL: $4,063.91. Carried. A motion was made by Deputy Mayor Conley, and seconded by Trustee Sarchia, to approve payrolls 6, 7, and 8 for weeks ending August 22, September 6, and September 19, 2009. Carried. The Treasurer’s report was submitted and accepted for the month of August 2009. The Public Works report was submitted and accepted for the month of August 2009. The Village and Town Police reports were submitted and accepted for the month of August 2009, with Chief Swick reading the highlights. Correspondence: Letter received from Wendel Duchscherer regarding the issue of closing the reservoir. Board instructed to read the letter, and it will be discussed at October’s meeting. Received a letter of resignation from Office (P/T) Ken Moore. He has resigned as of September 16, 2009, due to full-time employment elsewhere. Chief Swick will have a recommendation for a replacement for Officer Moore at the October meeting. Trustee Westcott reported that the draft is ready responding to the agencies from the June public meeting. There were general comments and the agency responded. He will also keep the board posted on the legal mechanisms regarding the Coe property. FMC is putting restrictions on it and has filed them with Niagara County and is sending to the agencies. The Village should get a copy of this. FMC is sampling north of the canal to the county line. The results should be mailed out on September 15. A revised work plan is under motion. Vapor intrusion at the FMC plant is done. Trustee Westcott will get a copy of where they are, comments, and projected dates. They are looking at 2011 to 2018 for remediating properties. Discussed FMC purchases and restrictions they intend to impose. They are supposed to contact Mr. Seaman regarding all of this, but they have only been doing so after the fact. Mayor Maedl advised that Mayor Hayden from Barker passed away. Village will send condolence card. Clerk Schweigert advised that she learned that the Village must update the resolution in place establishing work hours and days for elected and appointed officials who are hired or elected after August 12, 2009, and who join the NYS Retirement System. Information will be sent to Mr. Seaman for review. Mr. Dodge asked that two old lawnmowers be declared excess property so he can sell them. A motion was made by Trustee Westcott, and seconded by Trustee Sarchia, that the two old lawnmowers are excess property and may be disposed of as is by sealed bid. Carried. Mr. Dodge advised the Board of some boater issues that arose over the past weekend. We need to determine if camping is allowed on the canal bank by NYS and if that area is considered a state park. Discussion ensued regarding RV parked on canal bank. Mayor Maedl stated that as no motorized vehicles are to be on the towpath, on either side of the canal, the RV should not have been parked there. Will discuss RV issue in future, as more and more are being set up here. This issue will be resolved before next summer. At this time Christ Bystrzak from the LaSalle Yacht Club addressed the Board. His group was the group here over the weekend. He had a check to present to the Board in the amount of $638. Due to a clerical error, he had to take the check back and will reissue it. Discussed the relationship between the LYC and Middleport, as the LYC has had their Red Flannel Run to Middleport for decades. Don’t want to see it end. They appreciate the feedback concerning the number of boats and the RVs that have been joining them, as well as maintaining the area they use. They expressed a concern that the relationship between Middleport and their organization is changing, as they had an issue with a local resident over the weekend. Mayor Maedl advised that some people don’t realize that the group makes a sizeable donation each year. A few residents don’t realize that the cost of power & water offered to the boaters is usually covered by donations. Mr. Bystrzak asked if the following could be addressed: The power that is available is outdated and there is no secondary breaker. This isn’t an issue if the circuit can handle what is hooked into it. Discussed issue of why they can’t get reservations. Explained that as we are not a marina & therefore, cannot offer reserved spots. Mr. Bystrzak claims that they can make reservations in North Tonawanda. Mayor Maedl asked if there wasn’t enough space for them. Space isn’t an issue; it’s getting enough power. The power issue & what we offer was debated. Group members using RVs will increase in number. They would appreciate guidelines as to what they can and cannot do. Mayor Maedl asked what the boaters typical pay elsewhere for use of the facilities. Mr. Bystrzak said that most places charge by the foot, by the time used, or give for free and ask for donations. Mayor Maedl said that the Village relies on donations and grants to install and take care of the amenities that we offer. We may have minimal power and it may be outdated, but we don’t have the funding to update. We also don’t having the money to pay someone to collect a fee. Discussed increasing the donations. Mr. Bystrzak said that the Village should initiate a rate schedule, post it, and put the onus on the boater to make donations. What’s posted now makes our request sound trivial. He suggested $10 per day wouldn’t make boaters feel slighted. He said the Village shouldn’t feel apprehensive to ask for donations. Mayor Maedl said that the biggest issue this year is the RVs. Mr. Bystrzak said that it would have a negative impact on the group if they were unable to have RVs join them. Perhaps a designated area could be created. He asked that the Board consider options other than turning away RVs. Discussed other issues involved with boaters: Do they have generators? Most don’t, or don’t use much, as they are noisy, costly, and create unwanted fumes. Many people think it’s costly to have boats and RVs using the amenities that are available The Village already pays a cleaner for the restrooms It costs time and money to move picnic tables as requested by large groups Mr. Bystrzak suggested finding a way to keep the boaters coming as if the canal isn’t used, NYS will fill it in. Mayor Maedl said that the Board understands & will sit down and get organized for next year. Mr. Bystrzak said that this is a very accommodating venue for his group. Larry Krolak, 107 Telegraph Road, asked about the campers. He was under the impression that this issue was resolved two years ago. He also asked what is the cost for power and water to the Village for boaters and campers. Mayor Maedl said the Board will look into these costs. Discussed long-term stays by RVs and boats. This shouldn’t be allowed. Attorney Seaman advised that the Village will have to take a look into the policy; the Code may address it, but it may not be strong enough. Since the Village maintains the canal bank, we have some control as to what we want to allow. The department heads need guidelines to operate with regarding this issue. Mr. Seaman will draw up a proposed local law and the Board will discuss it. Ken Wagner, 2 Carolyn Street, wants the issue of unattended alcohol to be addressed. The boaters have alcohol on their boats, then leave the boats unattended and underage people have access to the alcohol. He is also concerned about people wandering about with alcohol in violation of the Village’s open container law. Mr. Krolak asked what the Village’s costs were for the pavilion at Margaret Droman Park. Clerk Schweigert explained that it was a $45,000 project, but with state grant money and donations from local organizations, the Village’s costs were about $7,000 in materials plus the men’s wages and benefits. Mr. Wagner asked what the Village has budgeted for street repairs. Gave him the figures from the 2009-2010 budget. Mr. Dodge explained that, although the cost of gasoline has dropped, the cost of petroleum based products hasn’t, so he’s hoping he can get two more streets done this season. Mr. Wagner asked about crosswalks being painted. As Main Street belongs to NYS and State Street is a county road, we have to be careful about painting them. Mr. Wagner asked if the Village handles the brush from when a homeowner has a tree taken down. No, the contractor is supposed to do that, and we are vigorously enforcing that now. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Trustees will be Monday, October 19, 2009, at 7 p.m. The next Northwester Frontier Association of Village Officials will be held Wednesday, October 21, 2009, with the Village of Barker as host. A motion was made by Deputy Mayor Conley, and seconded by Trustee Bateman, to move into executive session for the purpose of consultation with the attorney. Carried. Mayor Maedl opened executive session at 8:10 p.m. A motion as made by Trustee Bateman, and seconded by Trustee Westcott, to return to general session. Carried. Mayor Maedl reconvened general session at 9:00 p.m. Mayor Maedl thanked the Police Department and the DPW for their help during the Middleport Festivities and she thanked Mr. Dodge and his department for organizing the car cruise. She heard many good reports about it. Mr. Dodge reported on the car cruise. There being no further business, a motion was made by Deputy Mayor Conley, and seconded by Trustee Bateman, to adjourn. Carried. Meeting adjourned at 9:04 p.m. Respectfully submitted, Rebecca A. Schweigert Clerk-Treasurer
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