The meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM. All members of the Town Board were present— Supervisor Robert Beaury, and Council Members Austin Sullivan, Don Moore II, John Kukon, and Brittany DuFresne, and Town Clerk Joyce Vale.
Motions were made to approve the following:
- December 2017 Town Board meeting minutes
- Payment of December 2017 audited bills
- Payment of approved audited bills for January 2018
All motions were approved.
There were no written communications to the Board.
Department reports were as follows:
- Maintenance– Working with new electricians for service to the Parsonage. All Christmas decorations have been taken down. There has been clean up of the Activities Building, and summer items are being cleaned and painted.
- Highway– 128.83 tons of sand hauled. Getting ready to start yearly inventory. Looking for update on snow ordinance law.
- Sewer– Average flow 22,000 gallons per day.
- Police – No complaints last month. Officer attended sex offender workshop. County has been sending all sex offenders to Rensselaer County. Rensselaer Co. recently passed a law to relocate sex offenders. But no one is sure where they will be sent. Officer attended domestic violence task force meeting, which is working on finding better ways to deal with this issue, and is working on developing guidelines to follow. In 2017, police had a total or 431.5 hours.
- History– no report given.
All department reports were accepted as read.
There will be a second workshop on January 22nd at 5:00PM to discuss the updated Comprehensive Plan.
The required minimal annual training for Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals members will be held on Saturday, February 10th, from 9:00AM to 1:00PM. The training will be provided by the town attorney and the code enforcement officer. There will be a two hour session on commercial events. A $25 stipend was approved.
Fee Schedule for Building Permits—The 2018 fee schedule for building permits will be available next month. A comprehensive analysis of fees in surrounding towns is being done. The information will be made available online. A public hearing for comments will be scheduled.
New Local Law—Columbia County has requested that Germantown adopt a new local law for a cold war veteran’s property tax exemption. A public hearing will be held on February 13th.
Street Lights—National Grid will have a work order available for the new street lights. Digging may be required for a new electrical conduit. The street lights can be expected to be installed by mid-March.
Sewer — There will be two presentations by Delaware Engineering, one about bonding, and one about redrawing the lines for the district. Originally lines bisected or were not within the district.
The Town Board would like to re-form the Economic Development Committee, and is looking for volunteers.
Ms. DuFresne asked if there were any plans to install street lighting in the municipal lot this year. Supervisor Beaury stated that he is looking for sources of funding to pave the lot, install lighting, and landscaping. State Senator Marchione’s office and Delaware Engineering are assisting in finding the funding. As it takes some time to secure funding, a temporary solution to providing lighting to the lot will be explored.
Supervisor’s report— New office hours at Town Hall were announced. The next Town Board meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 13th, 2018 at 7:00 PM
The meeting was open for public comment.
Several residents spoke on the subject of the proposed Commercial Venues Law. Steve Savoris read and submitted his statement opposing the proposed law. Genette Picicci-Oehlke again addressed the board in favor of the law, and later stated she will submit signatures of other residents who agree with her. Melinda Reichlin read and submitted a letter from a neighbor opposing the law. Emily Michael submitted a signed petition opposing the law, and stated that additional signatures of Germantown residents will be given to the Board. Supervisor Beaury stated that careful consideration will be given to this issue, and that it will be handed over to the Planning Board for study and recommendations. There will be a deliberative process that will take some time to complete.
Norman Mintz, chairman of the Comprehensive Plan Committee, asked the Board to consider compensating the consultant, Alan Sorensen, who has worked on the Plan previously, for additional work that will be done on the Plan. Mr. Mintz feels that the consultant’s services are necessary to insure that any changes made to the Comprehensive Plan during the upcoming workshop are written into the plan correctly. Mr. Sorensen is requesting a fee of $1,250. The request will be considered.
Stephen Reynolds, chairman of the Planning Board, asked to be informed of balance remaining in the escrow account.
Ellen Jouret-Epstein asked that the Board wait to consider any new laws until a comprehensive zoning law review is done, which will occur as a consequence of updating the Comprehensive Plan.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:45PM.