The Regular Town Board Meeting was held August 10th, 2011
at the Lindley Town Hall, 637 US 15, PO Box 62
Lindley, New York 14858.
Official Minutes held at Town Clerk’s Office
Town Board Members Present:
Richard Biggio – Town Supervisor
Lloyd DeMun, II – Councilman
Gerry Simcoe - Councilman
Paul Mortzheim – Councilman
Paul Stermer – Councilman
Richard Johnson – Highway Superintendent
• Meeting was called to order by Richard Biggio at @ 7:02pm.
• Pledge to the flag completed.
• Minutes of the prior meeting was accepted as amended. Please see minutes in Town Clerk’s Office.
• Reports received from Town Clerk, Historian, Justice, Code Enforcement Officer, Finance Director, and Chemung SPCA.
Announcements by Richard Biggio:
• A letter was received by Governor Cuomo discussing efforts to reform local government.
• A letter was received by Senator Schumer regarding money available to preserve the history and culture documenting Democracy. Kitty will receive a copy.
• The DEC is offering grant money to support residential concerns and education addressing environmental dangers to the communities, as well as other grant opportunities:
• Interprofessional Collaboration
• Water Tankers on River Road – Made a complaint to Vince Spagnoletti. Within 3 hours the trucks had been rerouted. Paul Mortzheim asked about water removal at the boat launch – this could be Cold Springs drawing water. They have a permit.
• There are mandates coming regarding sewage treatment plants – they will soon be required to remove pollutants like nitrates and phosphorus. This is in spite of the fact that these pollutants are not locally created.
• NYSDOH - There was a brown bat checked for rabies. Unfortunately the specimen was in poor enough shape that a test could not be conclusively drawn.
Dick Pierce – raised concern about the intersection by Lindley Church at Watson Crk Rd. Trucks have to line up and traffic slows. It’s dangerous.
Gerry Simcoe – they’re going through Lawrenceville and the back road to get here.
Dick Pierce – also, the mailbox next door is obstructing the view of the southbound traffic when leaving the Town Hall parking lot.
Richard Biggio – Paul McAnanny has put up more signage. He says that the level of complaints about rumble strips would necessitate removal within a couple weeks.
Dick Pierce – could we widen the turn?
Kitty Pierce – could we make from Green Shingles to Presho a construction zone?
Richard Biggio – Different activity levels mandate signage. We may need to tough it out until 2014.
Jim Lundgren – Will it be 2014 or 15? The Field Office is telling me at least 2015 now. Truck traffic is a State of NY issue.
Richard Biggio – it’s a money issue. It’s a balancing act between normal maintenance costs, and sometimes big projects suffer. It’s a safety hazard but they’re signed, and they’re enforcing it.
Dick Pierce – it’s an issue of common sense.
Jim Lundgren – McAnanny told me they adjust the highway speed based on how fast people are driving.
Dave Fuller – Just to let the Board know, Bending River Estates is going to be doing some digging and repairs. Nothing yet that needs a permit.
Fran Woodring – What about that DEC permit issue on River Rd. - Hawbaker section?
Richard Biggio – Mr. Army has sent everything the Board needs except the drawings. We are reviewing this and there’s no need for action for a mine. Their sole purpose of acquiring that entry across from the Clark’s is to avoid competition in the future. Hawbaker’s will still need to come to the Lindley Planning Board before it becomes an active site, or Lindley Town will sue DEC.
Fran Woodring – does that permit allow mining?
Richard Biggio – It needs improved drainage and correction action first. They will need to go through a re-permitting process first.
Gerry Simcoe – are they liable for the damage to Watson Crk Road?
Richard Biggio – as they take action we will keep an eye on them.
Lloyd DeMun – and there’s no other access?
Richard Biggio – it’s too steep or roundabout.
Steve Ritter – The Planning and Zoning Boards have reviewed the Comprehensive Plan and the Zoning Laws to check for any gaps. The inconsistencies seem to be around Conditional Use Permits. Our goal is to align these documents. As we continue working, we will come to the Board with our recommendations.
Willis Haar – to Dave Fuller – there is a single-wide trailer now on River Road behind a barn, where the trailer burned this year. Discussion about whether there was an appropriate permit in the past, with contingencies. Dave Fuller will review paperwork.
Dave Fuller - requested the Planning and Zoning Boards attach property number with decisions so Dave can more readily access information in his files.
Linda Swan – What do we do about trespassers and theft on our property?
Richard Biggio – call the sheriff/troopers.
Paul Mortzheim – My opinion is to contact Vince Spagnoletti and see about making all the town roads 40 miles per hour. Discussion about whether this is actually a State decision. Richard B. indicated this might be something that could spin-off from the Road Use Agreement. Ron Mosher suggested a website address that he could provide. Richard Biggio also indicated he would do a search for this site. This provides information regarding townships to setting their speed limits.
Richard Biggio raised the discussion about what to do regarding the Highway Superintendent Position (put on ballot for public to decide if it becomes appointed or remains elected). Discussion about giving up the right to vote by making it appointed; allowing more people (Board Members) input on the use of the budget (if appointed). Next step would be to decide as a Board to hold a public hearing and then vote based on public views on whether the question is placed on the ballot in November. If the public votes in November to make the position appointed, then the discussion becomes what level of service is the town willing to fund.
Gerry Simcoe commented that it appears, based on the petition initiated by Al Schoonover, that the Board should move ahead and let the voters decide at the election. Paul Mortzheim agreed. Paul Stermer indicated he was neither for nor against. He commented that this was the third time this has come up, to his knowledge. Lloyd DeMun wondered what it would hurt to put it on the ballot.
Jim Lundgren expressed his concerns with the effort the town’s and nation’s military have put into keeping our freedoms and it seems freedoms are removed one at a time. Further discussion about the drawbacks including more work for the Board, removal of voter’s rights, fears about whether this then means another position of management to manage the appointed person; Pat Clark commented on the potential to have more control over how a person functions and possibly get someone better if appointed.
Ron Smith asked if anyone had spoken to Dick Johnson. Paul Mortzheim indicated that Dick has said he doesn’t like the idea of an appointed position. Richard Biggio commented that he doesn’t like the appointed position idea, because then the person serves at the pleasure of the Board and can always wonder “when are they going to get rid of me.” Kitty Pierce pointed out that the current Board make-up won’t always be the same. Richard Biggio acknowledged and said that would be why there would be amendments made to the law. Further discussion about majority rule, pros and cons of appointed or elected.
Paul Mortzheim made the motion to put as a Public Referendum to change the elected Highway Superintendent position to an appointed Highway Superintendent position. Seconded by Gerry Simcoe. Roll: Lloyd DeMun: yes; Gerry Simcoe: yes; Paul Mortzheim: yes; Richard Biggio: yes; Paul Stermer: no.
Richard Biggio indicated that the next meeting will cover when to organize the public hearing for this motion.
Richard announced that the Deputy Town Clerk and the Custodian have resigned after many years of service. He stated that this will be a loss in both cases and difficult to replace. Richard indicated his plans to recognize their service with a plaque or some token. This will be discussed further. Paul Mortzheim indicated he thought there was about $200 in the budget to allow for this.
Richard opened the Bid from Ron Smith of Addison for the Cemetery Mowing. Richard reminded the public that the bid was in response to the one mowing episode earlier this year. The bid was read and Richard indicated Ron will need insurance. The Board will need to call his references. Process will go from there.
Jim Lundgren asked about the procedure for bids and commented he had planned to offer to do this for $200 per mow, with the 4th free. Richard indicated it had been in the papers and posted at the Town Hall, with a due date of August 6th. Richard B. indicated if Ron Smith works out for the Town, they will not re-bid the job if happy with his work. Jim Lundgren asked to be informed, if bidding again.
Ron Smith indicated he does Cemetery mowing in Addison and will be present next week to answer questions from the Board per Richard Biggio. Ron stated that he will mow both Lindsley and Fairview for $550 total each time. Richard indicated they will go over details at the next meeting.
Richard commented on the Dog Census. There has been a good response. There are about 100 people to double check with through visits by Chemung SPCA, either because they didn’t respond, or needed more time for rabies shots. There are currently 360 dogs licensed in Lindley, up from 187. The money coming in pays for the contract with Chemung County SPCA and licensing fees at the Town Clerk’s office, since NYS is no longer paying for tags and renewal forms/postage/ink.
Richard indicated that the Engineer Report for the Road Use Agreement for Delta is complete. The Board will review. Discussion about how this will protect the roads if they come under heavy road use; who keeps track of the information/road use; training that goes with the report. Richard B. will talk with Delta regarding the time frame for the training.
Richard stated that there has been a request from the Election Inspectors that they have a key to the Town Hall on the days of elections. Gerry Simcoe made the motion to provide a key to the Election Inspectors for the day of election. Lloyd DeMun seconded. Roll – all agreed.
Bills were reviewed. Paul Mortzheim made the motion to pay the bills. Gerry Simcoe seconded. Roll – all agreed. Motion Carried.
Paul Mortzheim made the motion to adjourn the meeting. Richard Biggio seconded. Roll – all agreed. Meeting adjourned.
Lindley Town Clerk