A Work Session of the Clarence Town Board was held on September 5, 2007 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 members Scott Bylewski, Joseph Weiss, Bernard Kolber and Patrick Casilio. Other Town Officials present were Town Attorney Steven Bengart, Director of Community Development James Callahan and Town Engineer Joseph Latona.
Supervisor Kathleen Hallock
Supervisor Hallock received an e-mail regarding stump grinding at the parks. FEMA is re-looking at this and there is the possibility that they will grind the stumps to ground level if they pose a “trip and fall" hazard which they do. Town Attorney Bengart feels that this is a hazard that the County has to address. In the interim, it was suggested that the stumps be marked to make them visible to anyone using the parks.
Following last weeks meeting regarding roundabouts, Jim Blum did some research and has provided information to the Town Board. Councilman Casilio commented that roundabouts take up more room than a traffic signal.
Supervisor Hallock has several items to discuss in Executive Session.
Conservation Advisory Board member Peter Wolfe would like to talk to the Town Board about the installation of a pump in the pond at Town Hall. Supervisor Hallock informed Mr. Wolfe that this was discussed at the August 22, 2007 Work Session and if the Conservation Advisory Committee feels that the pond is leaking, that should be addressed. Councilman Weiss stated that it was brought up at the last Conservation Advisory meeting that a determination must be made as to whether or not the pond is in fact leaking or is it just because of the drought. If the pond is not leaking, do we want to fill it so it looks presentable? The pond is also a source of water for the trees in the arboretum. Councilman Weiss will bring up these concerns at the next Conservation Advisory meeting (September 6, 2007). Councilman Bylewski suggested that the Conservation Advisory Committee make a motion requesting the Town Board look into a solution to the problem.
Town Engineer Latona is of the opinion that the pond is not leaking. He does not feel that a well could be drilled that would yield enough water to fill the pond and further, drilling a well could affect adjacent properties. The pond is fed from run-off from the east. Councilman Casilio suggested waiting a year to see if the pond fills back up.
Councilman Scott Bylewski
Councilman Bylewski received notice from Time Warner Cable regarding their position on the NFL network.
Training for Public Safety volunteers is September 24, 2007.
Councilman Bylewski referenced the Historic Preservation grant relative to the intensive level survey. The Town received a $5,000 grant towards the survey. There is no RFP, the conditions of the grant stipulates the use of Clinton – Brown to do the survey. The Planning Department can move forward with this.
Councilman Bylewski has one item to discuss in Executive Session regarding matters leading to the appointment of individuals.
Director of Community Development James Callahan is requesting approval to attend the NY Planning Federation seminar with use of a town vehicle.
If any department head receives a call from the Department of State regarding the Adequate Public Facilities Law relative to getting the school to sign off on a Memorandum of Understanding and getting the NYS DOT to respond to us so we can begin the conversation as to what kind of level of service we want for County, State and Town roads. The Department of State is the agency trying to help the Town with the APFO.
The Board received information regarding an enforcement action regarding James Burkard Sr., Roy Jordon and Capretto Homes. Town Attorney Bengart and James Callahan are working on this.
Councilman Bylewski has one item to discuss in Executive Session under §105(1) D proposed litigation regarding East Amherst VFC.
Earlier this year Councilman Bylewski noted changes in NYS Law where public employers have to evaluate work places to determine presence of factors that would be endangering to employees. He would like to be sure we are moving forward with this. Supervisor Hallock stated that Disaster Coordinator David Bissonette has done some training with highway and parks department employees about the hazardous materials that they handle.
An e-mailed was received from John Whitney regarding the Spoth property. Supervisor Hallock stated that we are moving closing to acquiring that property and have $300,000 in grants.
Councilman Joseph Weiss
Motion by Councilman Weiss, seconded by Councilman Casilio to declare the following highway vehicle (H-13) as surplus: 1994 Ford pickup ID#1FTEF15YXRNB68916. The vehicle will be sold at an auction in Clarence on September 15, 2007. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
Councilman Weiss informed the Board that to prevent further erosion at the Main Town Park pond, rocks will be placed along the northern side of the pond.
Councilman Bernard Kolber
The joint Town Board/School Board meeting is scheduled for September 24, 2007 at the Clarence Middle School. Agenda items should be forwarded to Councilman Kolber who will present them to the School Board ahead of time. Councilman Kolber will also inquire as to the status of the sewer contract.
ORPS (Office of Real Property Service) has sent their condolences on the passing of our Town Assessor Dave Folger. They further commented on his dedication and commitment to the assessment community.
Councilman Kolber suggested possibly using the property the town is purchasing on Old Goodrich Road as a practice field for little league football until the land is utilized for something else. Councilman Bylewski stated that this issue could be discussed at the Capital Improvement Committee meeting scheduled for next Friday along with the community center. Town Engineer Latona stated that drainage would be an issue. Further, the league wants a concession stand and lighting. Councilman Weiss felt that the league should be moved to a permanent location.
Councilman Bylewski stated that a football field would be discussed in the mini Master Plan for the Parks. The over-all Parks Master Plan has not been adopted. Councilman Casilio stated that even if the Old Goodrich Road property was utilized for practice fields, it would take the burden off of Sunset Park. Town Attorney Bengart stated that the Recreation Advisory Committee has indicated that having some type of concession stand is imperative to the running of the league even for their practices. Councilman Bylewski stated that this would be a capital project which needs considerable thought.
Councilman Patrick Casilio
Councilman Casilio has one item to discuss in Executive Session regarding purchase or lease of real property.
Councilman Casilio met with Steve Flaminio and Karen Jurek to review the City of Buffalo RFP for video cameras. Parts of the City's proposal will be utilized for the Town's RFP. Councilman Casilio is hopeful he will have a completed RFP by the end of next week.
Councilman Casilio will meet with NYSEG tomorrow to discuss the poles in Harris Hill, the possibility of lighting or a light district in Clarence Center, power outages around town, the lights on Main Street and the possibility of locating security cameras on NYSEG poles.
Councilman Casilio received several positive comments regarding the public safety vehicle that was displayed in the Labor Day Parade.
The Town Board received an e-mail indicating that there are 1000 people at Sunset Park during football games. Chief Security Officer Joe Meacham and staff will be more visible at Sunset Park during the football season. Town security can not enforce “no parking" on surrounding streets, if they feel there is a dangerous situation they have been advised to call NYS Police or the Erie County Sheriff.
Councilman Bylewski stated that Town Attorney Bengart is working on developing a protocol for our volunteers and some of that might feed into parks security issues. Councilman Casilio stated that the Amherst Police are on their bike tails in police uniforms and bikes. Councilman Bylewski stated we want to have a presence on our bike paths and it is important to have a presence that is visible and identifiable.
Town Attorney Bengart spoke to the Town of Tonawanda Police Department; they have an extensive volunteer program and are willing to share their ideas on public safety with us.
Councilman Kolber stated that after the October storm last year, there was some discussion regarding the CERT Program (Citizen Emergency Response Teams) and questioned whether this could be tied in with the volunteer program. Councilman Bylewski stated that he has not spoken to Disaster Coordinator Dave Bissonette lately because they are working with the Senior Center to try and get that up and running as a shelter. Part of the idea behind the Public Safety Committee was to come up with a public safety comprehensive program to incorporate standard protocols that can be used for the different volunteers. There is a debate as to what extent we want to get involved because of liability issues. Any place that we can have volunteers is a plus as long as we provide the proper training and they understand they are volunteers and not town employees.
Chief Security Office Joe Meacham is scheduling a meeting with Parks Security employees to discuss any concerns. The new public safety vehicle will be used by the Chief Security Officer and his deputy only. In the event of an emergency or a disaster our Disaster Coordinator would have use of it.
Town Attorney Bengart stated that is has been discussed at the Public Safety meeting and our Department Head meetings that we need better communication with parks security and eventually with the volunteers walking the bike paths. He suggested looking into some type of radio system as a capital project.
Disaster Coordinator Dave Bissonette will be taking the Mobile Emergency Shelter Unit to the fire chiefs showing them what we have to offer.
The Senior Center has written a resolution regarding the community center.
The sidewalk project in Clarence Center has been completed. The sidewalks in Harris Hill will be completed by the end of this week.
During the meeting with Erie County, the County indicated they would install signage announcing the two-way stop sign on Thompson Road. Councilman Bylewski suggested the County take a look at some of their existing signage at Shimerville and Roll Road, the reflective paint has faded.
Councilman Casilio has received complaints from residents in Loch Lea about 4-wheelers and golf carts running up and down the streets especially at night. It was noted that if the vehicles are not licensed, they should not be in the street.
Conservation Advisory Committee member Peter Wolfe arrived at the meeting. Supervisor Hallock advised Mr. Wolfe that the Board had an extensive discussion regarding the pond at Town Hall. She suggested that a motion be made at the next Conservation Advisory Committee meeting and present that to the Town Board as a recommendation.
Peter Wolfe stated that for years, the Parks Department has been spending money stocking the pond with trout. Peter suggested turning the town hall pond into a warm water fishery. The bass fish will survive and reproduce. The water that flows into the pond comes off of Goodrich Road. When the development goes in across the street, there will be chemicals from lawn sprays and other contaminants. Mr. Wolfe is suggesting something be done about this problem. Supervisor Hallock would like to know that Mr. Wolfe is representing the entire Conservation Advisory Committee, not that each individual committee member comes in separately with the same concerns. She requested that the Conservation Advisory Committee discuss this and make a motion at their next meeting and forward their recommendations to the Town Board.
Youth Advisory Council
Youth Advisory Council Chairman Holly Zuffranieri was present as a follow-up to the resolution the Youth Advisory Council passed recommending the Town Board implement plans for a community center. As stated in their resolution, there is an over whelming need and support from families and senior citizens. The Senior Center Board intends to submit a similar resolution therefore the entire political spectrum of residents are behind this project. Ms. Zuffranieri also inquired as to when the budgets are drawn up for the various departments and under which category this project would fall under. Further, she inquired as to whether funds will be appropriated in this fiscal year for the following items: a feasibility study, the RFP for architect consultation and design of the community center, the hiring of a full time parks and/or recreation director. She is also looking for increased funds for winter programs at the schools for this year and during construction of the new facility. Ms. Zuffranieri is using the Town of Perinton as a benchmark of success and can provide information on this project. She is planning on taking members of the Youth Advisory Council and the Senior Center Board for a site tour sometime in early October and asked that members of the Town Board to accompany them as well.
Supervisor Hallock stated that normal budgets are operational budgets within one year. Capital budgets are above that, we do not have a time limit on them. The community center would be a capital budget item; it is not an annual budget item and would be ongoing process within our Capital Improvement Program. The Capital Improvement Program Committee meets several times a year, the community center would be budgeted and discussed during those meetings.
Holly Zuffranieri stated that she was under the impression that budget items had to be submitted by September.
The Assessor's Office will be closed tomorrow to allow the staff to attend the funeral.
Supervisor Hallock asked Director of Community Development James Callahan to follow-up with James Hartz regarding the Community Development Block Grant Application for Harris Hill.
Motion by Supervisor Hallock, seconded by Councilman Kolber to set a Public Hearing for September 26, 2007 at 7:55 P.M. to consider the Town make application to Restore New York Funding from Empire State Development for grant money in the amount of $2,500,000 for the Roll Road Commerce Park area which said funding intended for the creation of sewers to extend to Harris Hill. On the question, the application has to be submitted by September 28th, it is non-committal. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
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, matters leading to the appointment of particular person(s), the appointment of a corporation; § 105(1) H the proposed acquisition of real property; § 105(1) D proposed litigation regarding East Amherst VFC. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
The Work Session adjourned at 10:02 A.M.
Motion by Supervisor Hallock, seconded by Councilman Bylewski to adjourn the Executive Session at 11:10 A.M. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
The Work Session reconvened at 11:10 A.M.
Motion by Supervisor Hallock, seconded by Councilman Bylewski to grant one year extension on residency requirement to David Burke with the condition that the Town Board is provided quarterly progress reports regarding his residency. Upon roll call - Ayes: All; Noes: None. Motion carried.
There being no further business, the Work Session adjourned at 11:15 A.M.
Darcy A. Snyder