A Work Session of the Clarence Town Board was held on January 11, 2006 at Clarence Town Hall, One Town Place, Clarence, NY.
Supervisor Kathleen Hallock called the meeting to order at 9:00 A.M. Members of the Town Board present were Council member’s Scott Bylewski, Joseph Weiss, Bernie Kolber and Pat Casilio. Other Town Officials present were Deputy Supervisor Anne Case, Town Attorney Steven Bengart, and Director of Community Development James Callahan, Senior Building Inspector David Metzger, Town Engineer Joseph Latona Planning Board members Gerald Drinkard and Phil Sgamma and Municipal Review Committee member Richard McNamara.
Supervisor Kathleen Hallock
Supervisor Hallock reminded everyone of the joint meeting with the Chamber of Commerce on January 12, 2006 at 8:00 A.M.
Supervisor Hallock e-mailed everyone regarding pagers. In case of a disaster or emergency, Disaster Coordinator Dave Bissonette expects all designated people to be available. There is no disaster staff and Dave depends on the pagers. The problem with using only cell phones is that they fail in certain situations, pagers are more reliable. Traditionally two forms of communication should be available. If anyone has any other suggestion, Dave would welcome them. In the past, officials complained either that they were not informed of emergency situations or they tried to circumvent the Disaster Coordinator.
Several back issues of Town Board minutes from 1992 – 2004 were found in the Council Room. Minutes from 1986 – present are on Laser Fiche and all hard copies are filed in the Town Clerk’s office. It was decided that since all Town Board minutes are on file in the Town Clerk’s office, the copies found in the Council Room will be recycled.
Motion by Councilman Bylewski, seconded by Councilman Kolber to authorize the Supervisor to sign the agreement with the Department of State for grant funding for the motorized gators for the bike paths subject to Town Attorney approval. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
Supervisor Hallock is trying to obtain more information relative to the announcement regarding the Eastern Hills Corridor funding. Supervisor Hallock contacted Congressman Reynolds office and was put in touch with Kelly Dickson from Washington. Supervisor Hallock has been informed that we are in a holding pattern as we wait for the town to be contacted by the funding agency.
Town Clerk Nancy Metzger is going to order more dividers for the new code books. A part time employee will be working on files next week if anyone would like their code book labeled and have dividers installed.
Comments will be taken until January 18 regarding the Parks and Recreation Master Plan. All comments will be included in the final draft. A football field has been included in the Parks & Recreation Master Plan at Memorial Park.
The Supervisor’s office is sending out letters to committee members that were appointed last week. In addition to thanking people willing to serve, a message was inserted about responsibility to show up prepared and on time for scheduled meetings. Supervisor Hallock asked that all liaisons stress the same things when they meet with their committees; ask for regular attendance, make sure minutes are taken; any actions are recorded, and record attendance. If regular meetings are set up, give information to Karen Jurek so these meetings can be posted on the town calendar and web-site. It would be helpful if liaisons reported to the Town Board if anything is going on.
There was a discussion regarding liaison duties. Councilman Weiss stated that department heads must be made accountable. If they are given a directive, the liaison to that department should make sure that they follow through with it. Supervisor Hallock suggested a joint Town Board and Department Head meeting. Councilman Kolber stated that it depends on what the committee is. The liaison to the School Board has no say in the way the school board operates but should report back to the Town Board any information.
Town Attorney Bengart questioned the roll of liaisons’ to volunteer committees, how far should each liaison go and what is their task. Do you tell the committee when you think they are wrong, are you to advise them what the Town Board thinks or what each liaison personally thinks about a particular issue. This must be defined so everyone knows what their duties are. Councilman Bylewski said that part of the definition of liaison is to facilitate communication and that could include bringing information from the Town Board to that committee and likewise from the committee to the Town Board. There have been times when dealing with various boards, the liaison has been told to be more involved specifically the Municipal Review Committee. The liaisons have been told that they have to be at the MRC meetings and be involved in the SEQRA process. Under Town Law §63, the Supervisor creates the committees and that committee definition is the liaison - it is the liaison’s job as brought forth by the Supervisor to do that communication. Supervisor Hallock requested that each liaison report on their assigned committees and/or departments at every Town Board Work Session.
The Baseball/Softball Association will be constructing a new building at the former water department facility. They will construct the building on town property. The town will own and maintain the building. Once the building is complete the association will lease the building from the town. One of the last issues that remain was a schedule of hours of operation: September there will be no use of the building. October – May Monday – Friday 3PM - 11PM. Saturday and Sunday 7AM – 11PM. June, July and August, Monday – Friday 5:30PM – 8:30PM. Saturday, 9AM-6PM. If it is raining, they may want some additional time. Supervisor Hallock has talked to Parks and Security for comments. Security is recommending a 9PM closing instead of 11PM. Parks is requesting opening at 7:30AM or 8AM on Saturday and Sunday. For liability purposes, Town Attorney Bengart suggested the Town handle the scheduling of the building. Town Attorney Bengart will contact the Recreation Department in the Town of Amherst and see how they handle scheduling.
The February 1, 2006 morning Work Session will begin at 8:30 A.M.
Supervisor Hallock has two items to discuss in Executive Session.
Councilman Scott Bylewski
Based on reports received and the Leader Reports, the DEC report etc. it looks like the BDT facility has been closed down.
Senior Building Inspector David Metzger stated that the last communication from Leader was December 14, 2005 and we need closure from Leader as the Towns representative. There is already another project proposed for this site.
Town Attorney Bengart stated that the December 14 letter basically says that while they wished the site was cleaned up more, they have met all the parameters that have to be met and DEC is calling for closure. Because there are many concerned citizens, it was suggested that Leader be present at a Town Board meeting so the residents could ask any questions. Councilman Bylewski will schedule the meeting.
Town Attorney Bengart stated that the Town had no control over this project, what we provided all along was informational. The only control we had was the Town would not issue a demolition permit without them meeting certain criteria that the Town established and the DEC, BDT and all its subsidiaries went along with.
Senior Building Inspector David Metzger said that he has to issue a Certificate of Completion. Town Attorney Bengart suggested that he wait until the public meeting in which Leader gives their talk and have it put on the record. Town Attorney Bengart will contact Leader and the DEC when a meeting date has been set. Councilman Casilio suggested contacting the Concerned Citizens group of the date and time of the meeting. Supervisor Hallock has been notified that the Concerned Citizens have disbanded but will notify them anyway.
Councilman Bylewski will announce an opening for an alternate position on the Planning Board.
Martin Root has resigned from the Historic Preservation Committee. The opening has been posted on the web-site.
Town Attorney Bengart sent a follow-up letter to the DEC regarding the Heise-Brookhaven Trunk sewer.
Councilman Bylewski has one item to discuss in Executive Session regarding the Youth Center.
Councilman Joseph Weiss
Motion by Councilman Weiss, seconded by Councilman Kolber to approve the use of the Nature Center by the Melinda Gray Foundation on May 6, 2006. On the question, Councilman Weiss indicated that Mr. Gray has donated funds to refurbish the Nature Center. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
The Conservation Committee member Peter Wolfe will schedule a meeting with the school to go over the parameters for use of the Nature Center. There have been some residents that are concerned about music being played at the Nature Center.
Councilman Weiss is recommending a flat fee of $50 per day be charged for use of the Clubhouse for any use other than regular meetings. Groups of 200+ will be charged an additional $50 for parking and extra clean up. These fees will become effective January 2007. Applicants will be notified of these changes in June 2006 when reservations are taken.
Highway Superintendent Ted Donner is requesting the licensing of snow plow contractors within the Town. Councilman Weiss will have Ted come in to speak with the Board.
Councilman Bernie Kolber
The Zoning Board of Appeals has an issue with an applicant that was issued a variance for a garage/ pole barn on Stahley Road. The applicant requested permission to construct the pole barn prior to moving a house to the site. He is now using the pole barn to run his landscaping business. The applicant is in violation of his approval. Director of Community Development James Callahan has shut the project down.
Councilman Pat Casilio
Councilman Casilio met with the Traffic Safety Board.
Town Engineer Latona stated that if the Traffic Safety Board makes recommendation to the Highway Department, the Highway Department has ultimate discretion as to whether they want to approve or disapprove a recommendation. Further Mr. Latona questioned that if the Traffic Safety Board makes a recommendation to the Highway Department and they decide not to implement it, what is the liability to the Town. Town Attorney Bengart stated that there could be a liability issue by following a recommendation or not.
Supervisor Hallock stated that it is the Highway Departments responsibility to notify an applicant if their request was approved or disapproved.
Councilman Casilio stated that in his meeting with the Traffic Safety Board, they indicated that they are only a recommending body and you don’t use stop signs to control speed.
Town Engineer Joseph Latona
Supervisor Hallock suggested that if Town Engineer Latona could not be in attendance at Town Board meetings, Tim Lavocat should attend and he should also attend the February 1, 2006 meeting. Supervisor Hallock stated that at a previous meeting, there was a discussion regarding the proposed subdivision on Roll and Newhouse Road and whether this was part of the Heise-Brookhaven 1000 taps. This development is in Sewer District #5 and not part of the Heise-Brookhaven trunk sewer.
Town Engineer Latona stated that there are two main areas where sewage runs through Clarence to Amherst, one being the Peanut Line and the other is at Dodge Road. Erie County Sewer District #5 includes the entire strip along the east side of Transit Road and Meadow Lakes; the majority of it goes to Dodge Road. Mr. Latona is collecting data and it has come to his attention that there is a flow meter on the Clarence side of the Peanut Line that Erie County maintains for us that has not been calibrated properly and has been erroneously reading low. The actual flow is approximately 85% greater than has been indicated. With this information, Mr. Latona set up flow calibration schedule to make sure that the meter is really accurate. Subsequent to that, Mr. Latona has taken action to calibrate the meter; this Friday is the last meeting in the field to calibrate it. He has also conducted flow monitoring on the Amherst side. The parallel sewer is called the Dodge Road relief sewer. There is a capacity issue relative to excess flow. At the Peanut Line there is a capacity issue into the size of the pipe. The Peanut Line takes Clarence Center, SD #6 and SD #9. The Heise-Brookhaven goes into the Peanut Line at Heise Road.
Councilman Kolber asked about the capacity issue on the Peanut Line sewer. Mr. Latona stated that on our side of Transit Road, there is a 24” line that goes into a 30” line. The 30” line crosses Transit Road when it gets to the Amherst side, there is an 18” line and it can not fit into the 18” line. That is the capacity constraint.
Councilman Kolber stated that of the proposed projects that the Town Board is considering, we have a contractual obligation to handle the Heise-Brookhaven trunk sewer 1000 lots. We are being told there is an additional 40 lots that are part of the Heise-Brookhaven sewer for a total of 1040 lots that we have to provide for. Town Engineer Latona stated that goes into the 18” line and that is the capacity that we are establishing. The proposed Dodge Road relief sewer is not to relieve the Peanut Line it is to relieve SD#5.
Councilman Kolber further stated that if we are looking at projects that are going into the Peanut Line, we have been told that the Peanut Line capacity on the Amherst side (the 18” line) once the 1000 taps and Clarence Hollow are put into it, that line is full. Town Engineer Latona stated that theoretically that is true.
Councilman Kolber said that with projects that are coming before the Town Board our concern is that they do not impact our contractual obligation or over load the sewers.
Town Engineer Latona stated that his office has been tracking the number of units that go into the Peanut Line from Heise-Brookhaven and the Hollow and they have initiated full monitoring to verify that fact which he will present on February 1.
Councilman Bylewski asked that the Engineer Office submit a monthly sewer report indicating the number of sewer taps issued, similar to the Building Permit report submitted by the Building Department every month.
Town Engineer Latona stated that the real issue is the planning where the sewage is going to go. Councilman Bylewski stated that according to the Environmental Impact Statement, there were to be 500 taps east of Goodrich Road and 500 taps west of Goodrich Road. Now they are coming back saying that it is something different. Town Engineer Latona stated that right now all we have is Waterford and a generic 500 taps east of Goodrich Road which has not manifested itself.
Town Engineer Latona stated that as of right now our agreement with the Town of Amherst includes flow in the Peanut Line and treatment at the treatment plant. The agreement is silent about infrastructure of sewers and who pays for them.
According to the Master Sewer Plan, Harris Hill will eventually go north into the Peanut Line and across to Amherst for treatment. Right now there is no money available for any of this. One of the components of the relief sewer was to have capacity in the relief sewer for Harris Hill when it ever manifested itself. We want to allocate capacity for Harris Hill, we will need money to run a trunk sewer to Harris Hill and then we will need 10 xs the amount of money needed for Clarence Hollow to put sewers in Harris Hill because it is all rock.
The Bryant-Stratton lift station is at capacity. Country Meadows and everything south of Main Street goes into Bryant-Stratton pump station. Councilman Kolber asked if Lancaster was at capacity. Town Engineer Latona stated that Lancaster is ECSD#4 and they are at capacity. (SD#4 goes to Buffalo).
If the Dodge Road relief sewer goes in now, it will put pressure on the southern and northern part of Clarence. It puts no pressure relative to the Peanut Line. There is however, a little “tweaking” - if completed at the connection, it would open up the Peanut Line which is not in the planning at this point. There is a connection that is a relief for the Transit Road sewer. The Transit Road sewer goes underneath our Peanut Line, when they come across Transit Road from the Transit Road sewer and run their parallel line, they will be below our Peanut Line but our Peanut Line will not connect to the parallel sewer. If they (they meaning anyone that is doing the study) make a direct connection from our Peanut Line to the relief sewer it opens up the Town. The study omits the aforementioned connection because Mr. Latona would not allow it to go in; it will not go into this proposal. The Town of Clarence needs to be totally involved in that decision which is why it is not in the study.
Town Engineer Latona has been speaking with the DEC regarding the Dodge Road sewer. They have called him to discuss the merits of it and its impact on Clarence. The question is how we control capacity.
Councilman Kolber stated that the immediate problem at hand is what the Town can handle given our contractual obligations. Theoretically, Mr. Latona stated that it is his understanding that there is no capacity for the Middle School without impacting the 1000 lots. He is however doing actual measurements upon which to render some decisions.
Town Attorney Bengart suggested the Town Board and Engineering Office send a letter to the school letting them know where they stand relative to sewer capacity. Councilman Bylewski suggested as part of that letter, inviting the school to the February 1 meeting so they can better understand how the sewers will impact the school district.
Motion by Supervisor Hallock, seconded by Councilman Kolber to enter into Executive Session pursuant to § 105 (1) F of the Open Meetings Law to discuss the employment history of a particular person(s), the employment of a corporation and §105 (1) D proposed litigation relative to the Youth Center. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
There being no further business, the Work Session adjourned at 10:40 A.M.
Darcy A. Snyder
Motion by Supervisor Hallock, seconded by Councilman Kolber to adjourn the Executive Session at 11:30 A.M. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried. No action taken.
Motion by Councilman Casilio, seconded by Councilman Bylewski to enter into Executive Session at 11:31 A.M. pursuant to § 105 (1) H of the Open Meetings Law to discuss the proposed acquisition of real property. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
Motion by Councilman Bylewski, seconded by Councilman Casilio to adjourn the Executive Session at 11:45 A.M. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes; None. Motion carried. No action taken.