The regular meeting of the Town Board of the Town of Mount Hope was held at Town Hall on June 5, 2017 at 7:30pm with the following present: Supervisor Chad Volpe, Councilman Matt Howell, Councilman Brian Carey, Councilwoman Janet Sutherland, Councilman Dominick Cambareri & Kathleen Myers, Town Clerk.
Police Chief P. Rickard
Highway Supt. D. Hassenmayer
Town Attorney D. Bavoso
Supervisor Volpe called the meeting to order at 7:30pm following the Pledge of Allegiance. He asked for everyone to turn off/silence their cell phones.
HYDROGEOLOGIST Q & A:
Supervisor introduced Erik Hansen, hydrogeologist and Ryan McGuire from KC Engineering. They are here to answer any questions re: C/O Middletown & Indigot water shed. Mr. Hansen has been hydrogeologist for 40 years. He’s worked in T/O Wallkill since 1986. He’s studied the aquifers of Orange County and surrounding it. Supervisor: I think the situation we have is – the town found out very late as to exactly what was going on. There were newspaper articles before the town was actually told what was going on with Indigot. As a resident, we can’t figure out what one million gallons/day is. We keep hearing Amy’s Kitchen In Goshen requires this type of municipal water. They’ll need 1 million gal/day to run their facility. The piping is going to go past several businesses that only have well water. Our concern is will 1 million turn in to 2 million. Another concern is with Goshen getting LegoLand – we were told Goshen didn’t have enough water to give Amy’s kitchen – how would Goshen have enough water to give to LegoLand. We have no idea what the process is. How are we protected? Several months ago David wrote our bid package, hydrogeologist seemed the way to go to make sure we are protected. We want to protect the residents. Mr. Hansen: in terms of the process, normally the county will do whatever testing they need to do 1st under the state law ie: drilling wells, doing pump tests & analysis of how big the (?) pressure is around the wells & determine the impacts they’re going to have. At that point they will file for a WSA (water supply application) with NYS DEC. The town would want to be a party of interest to that. That’s where the NYS DEC determines what the impacts are surrounding well field. The county is going to submit a very large amount of paperwork of all pump test results which they need for their permitting. The town is gonna wanna review those reports and become a party of interest to the application/permit from DEC. When that permit is granted the Dept. of Health does the exact same thing back to back in their plan approval process. (DOH in Orange County) You’ll have 2 opportunities to be in front of the regulatory agency. There’s also SEQRA requirements that have to be met & you’ll want of be part of it. That would be done by the town or the city that’s been declared the primary agency involved. Supervisor: the lead agency is C/O Middletown. That was our concern because they’re the ones actually taking the water. The 2 administrative meetings that I attended, the 1st one I went with Red Hossan from Greenville. We voiced our concerns. They basically told us ‘we have the votes we need – thanks have a nice day’. Hansen: the C/O Middletown represents the residents of the C/O Middletown. If the residents don’t have a water need – you have rights to contest this. They’re taking water from one town and selling it to another. There becomes a use problem here because with the WSA you have to prove a need for the water. Supervisor opened this up to questions from the audience. Councilman Cambareri asked how hard it would be for them to get approval from DEC to go from 1 million per day to 2 million per day. Hansen: it’s not. They can apply as many times as they want & up it as many times as they care to as long as their info shows they can pull the water. Councilman Howell asked who would regulate/supervise that they are actually pulling their million or less. Hansen: it’s all internal. It’s up to the city to show they are not pumping more than their permit level. There’s nobody looking over their shoulders. Cambareri: They have to report their daily/weekly data to DEC? Hansen: yearly they have to submit to DEC. Jerry Cook spoke of the summer drought and the pictures he took of the reservoir. It was down 14’. He understands Amy’s Kitchen was 275,000 gal/day. His concern is another drought how low would the reservoir get and would that water level impact all our shallow wells. A lot of our wells here are shallow. Hansen: yes the drought was significant. Anyone with a shallow well will see it 1st.
Hansen cont.: When you’re pulling more & more water, it’s pulling out of the same bath tub. It empties quicker. When the county does their testing, they don’t do it in drought periods; they do it in normal periods. They try to guess what the drought scenario is based on historical data. We use the 1964 drought as our baseline in NYS. Cook: spoke re: test well on Murray Road on the same reservoir. He spoke of ground water vs. surface water. Would the lack of surface water impact the pressure of the ground water? Hansen: When you build a reservoir, you have 100% for storage in a body of water. When you talk about an aquifer, you’re talking about pile of sand/gravel that stores 30% of its volume of water. The advantage is that the surface water will dry up in droughts. The aquifers-since they are bigger, takes longer period of time. You want to develop an aquifer over surface water if you can do that. When you start to pull heavily on an aquifer during drought, you are lowering the water table for miles around. Cook: will the aquifer impact the water supply in Otisville? Hansen: would have to look – he can’t answer that now. Cook spoke re: sulfur. 2008 had almost 2’ above average rain. Sulfur might not be health problem but an expense problem. Hansen: sulfur comes from shale/bedrock. You smell it more than anything else. Generally- not a health concern. It can be treated. Cook: if there is 1 million gal draw would that impact water flow to Otisville? Hansen: generally not. It will pull from whatever resources it has. Every drop you pump out of the ground has to come from someplace. They are applying for 1 million gallons because that’s what they need. In NYS, you have to show need. They’re gonna take as much water as they can from you until you scream uncle. Water law in NY is first come – first serve. Mary Maurizzio asked if we could contest the fact that Middletown itself does not need the water. Hansen: yes because the state water regs for WSA is based on need. You can’t come in and ask for a withdraw permit if you don’t need the water. The city doesn’t need it. They are getting involved to move water from point A to point C. They’re making money but that’s not a water need. The legal people fight that. Maurizzio: contesting that fact alone might not be the only thing that could argue on. She asked him to expand on that. Hansen: The T/O Mount Hope will eventually need their own ground water. Maurizzio: spoke re: drought & our reservoir & Wallkill reservoir went down. Hansen: when they do the aquifer evaluation and ask what they’re taking they have to consider that. He explained the process. The drought lowers your starting point. Councilman Carey clarified about Middletown reservoir is filled and gravity fed down to Middletown. Anyone that’s been to the reservoir/water department in Middletown you see all the water coming up out of the ground, cascading down, that’s his understanding how they get water. Cambareri: it’s pumped from one to the other. Carey: asked about people in Sullivan County putting wells in and starting getting water out of the ground, that could affect the same process that we’re asking about? McGuire: there would be another WSA and a whole new process. Cook: Deerpark has plans for a hotel and apartments to go in – there’s concerns that’s all connected to this. Supervisor thanked Mr. Hansen & Mr. McGuire for coming.
MOTION TO ACCEPT PRIOR MEETING MINUTES:
MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to accept the minutes from May 15, 2017 as presented. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
- Palmer’s Ark impound report for May 2017
- Youth Center Grant correspondence
- Other culture & recreation income/Community Day revenue budget line creation
- Fireworks display notice
- Highway dept. budget modification
- Letter from HV Water re: flushing of mains on May 17 (Letter rec’d on May 31st)
- Notice of Violation & Order to Comply from Paul Smith/PESH re: 3 violations at town park pavilion
- Free rabies clinic @ T/O Woodbury 9-12 pm June 11, 2017
- Discriminatory Harassment policy
- Emails from Russ Beres & Grace Woodard re: music at the KOA in Deerpark.
AT THIS TIME, Supervisor Volpe spoke re: KOA music issue. Everyone received the emails. There’s a Russian festival there 2x/year. We can’t enforce the music coming from Deerpark from the Mount Hope side. He noted Gary Spears, Deerpark Supervisor was on the email list.
COUNCILMAN CAMBARERI: no report.
COUNCILWOMAN SUTHERLAND: ZBA meets 6-7-17; Planning Board meets 6-21-17. There are 106 library cards sold to date. She had a copy of the Ketcham Fencing quote. She spoke with the Police Chief about the next medicine drop and speaking to the seniors about the senior scams in the area.
COUNCILMAN CAREY: He thanked the VFW – and thanked Lois Adamson for pictures. Little league is looking for clay sooner than later. Football final reg is 6-7-17 @ Greenville senior center. He went to Devan’s Gate re: septic smell complaint. The red lights on the septic systems were not on. When he went back he couldn’t smell anything. All counselors have been hired for summer rec. Still signing up campers. 1500 copies of reg forms to the schools. He and Matt will do the court audit on 6-9-17. 4H animal fun day this Saturday 10-3. Holy Name Church is having a tricky day on Saturday 6-10-17 at Otisville FH.
COUNCILMAN HOWELL: Master plan meeting on July 20 @ 5pm at town hall. The comprehension draft is being prepared and will need final approval. They just started the zoning portion of the comprehensive plan. Veterans Ceremony will be expanded to add a parade. He noted 2 letters he passed out before the meeting to request 2 facilities. Pending approval of the letters, we will start at the fire station going down Highland Ave, turn on Main Street and conclude at the Veterans Park. We are requesting from the village the use of the park and the fire station on November 11, 2017 for the parade assembly. He will forward a copy of the proposed parade route.
Supervisor Volpe thanked Brian for taking care of the stage for the community day events. He thanked Dean for the Flag box and asked if it’s possible to move it over by the front door. Supt. Hassenmayer asked about a lock for it. Councilman Carey noted that the decals for the flag box have been ordered. It was agreed the VFW should put the lock on it. Supervisor asked Dean about the violations at the park. He will have Roger look into them tomorrow. Supervisor thanks Dean for securing light towers for community day. He noted the sponsor letters have been sent out. There have been donations that have come in. There will be an all day band. Councilwoman Sutherland asked who the band is. Carey: it’s out of Bloomingburg. It’s actually 2 bands.
H’way Supt. noted the roof construction meeting is Wed 3:00pm. All materials have been received. They did a scan of the roof. There’s nothing wet enough to be a concern. Supt. added the Crown Vic auction closed Friday. Bid was $1725. Board would need to accept that or not. He needs Chad and David to sign off on the road mower grant.
MOTION TO ACCEPT BID FOR FORD CROWN VICTORIA:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to accept the high bid $1,725 for the Crown Vic from T. Murphy through Auctions International site. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
Chief Rickard asked for approval on the discriminatory harassment policy. He requested executive session to discuss a personnel issue. The contract is done with the county for community day. There was a little issue with the workers comp but thinks it’s all ironed out. Supervisor added that the fire dept. will handle the smoke house for the entire day. If they need assistance, they will reach out to Howells. Chief Rickard noted that he hasn’t received anything back for the roof (snowload). They received the original plans back. Supt. Hassenmayer added that it should be certified with the trusses. Councilman Cambareri: it would be the truss manufacturer who decides where you’re supposed to put those. Chief Rickard: after talking to Chad, Dominick & Julie we think that KC should dictate where they should actually be placed.
VILLAGE OF OTISVILLE:
Trustee Loeven stated that their flag drop box is back in place. They are starting to plan for the yard sale. She asked Chief who the primary contact person will be. Chief: not sure but the permit is done. There was workers comp paperwork but it’s been resolved. We don’t actually have the permit yet but should be coming soon. Loeven: we are starting to have meetings & to let her know who the contact would be.
AT THIS TIME, Highway Supt. noted the golf outing put on by the OC Highway superintendents will be held on July 11, 2017 and proceeds will go to the Hudson Valley Honor Flight. There are applications available on the desk.
POOL BUILDING GRANT:
Supervisor Volpe spoke re: $100,000 grant received from Sen. Bonacic in 2014. We are at the final step. For KC Engineering he has packages for the roof and columns. We need to stop the bleeding from the roof – leaking in several spots. The columns – a few are rotting. The architect design is really nice. We want to keep that.
MOTION TO GO TO BID FOR THE ROOF AT THE POOL BUILDING:
MOTION offered by Councilman Carey 2nd by Councilman Howell to go to bid for the roof for the pool building. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO GO TO BID FOR THE COLUMNS AT THE POOL BUILDING:
MOTION offered by Councilwoman Sutherland 2nd by Councilman Carey to go to bid for the pool building columns. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO APPROVE THE HIGHWAY BUDGET MODIFICATION:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilman Howell to approve the following: Increase revenue B2560 $2,199 & increase Refuse/Garbage B8160.4 by $2,199.
All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO APPROVE LIONS CLUB REQUEST TO USE HIGHWAY GARAGE FOR THE FLOATS SET-UP:
MOTION offered by Councilman Carey 2nd by Councilman Howell to approve the Lions Club request to use the highway garage subject to providing a hold harmless agreement and insurance certificate is submitted. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
Supervisor Volpe spoke re: fireworks notice he gave to everyone. He would like the board to review it. He is assuming it should be sent out 20 days prior to the event. He would send it to Finchville, Mount Hope Ave. & surrounding area. Councilman Cambareri added both sides of the road all the way around the block. Atty. Bavoso did not see a problem with the notice.
MOTION TO APPROVE THE DISCRIMINATORY POLICY AS PRESENTED:
MOTION offered by Councilwoman Sutherland 2nd by Councilman Cambareri to approve the Discriminatory Policy as presented. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO CREATE NEW REVENUE BUDGET LINE FOR COMMUNITY DAY:
MOTION offered by Councilman Carey 2nd by Councilman Howell to create a revenue budget line for “Other culture & recreation income/Community Day”.
All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO AUDIT THE CLAIMS:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilman Howell to approve the following bills for Abstract 11:
GENERAL A: #285-319 $ 85,922.78
GENERAL B: #39-45 $ 3,326.85
HIGHWAY: #79-86 $ 41,292.60
SEWER: #38-44 $ 4,487.83
MOUNT HOPE FIRE: #1 $ 124,500.00
CAP RES GEN B: #8 $ 2,880.00.
All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO ENTER INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION:
MOTION offered by Councilwoman Sutherland 2nd by Councilman Cambareri to enter into executive session at 8:24 PM for police personnel issue. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO RECONVENE REGULAR MEETING:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to reconvene the regular meeting at 8:45 PM. NO ACTION WAS TAKEN IN THIS EXECUTIVE SESSION. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
MOTION TO PROMOTE ANNA BRICENO TO POLICE SERGEANT:
MOTION offered by Supervisor Volpe 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to promote Anna Briceno to police sergeant. All in Favor – Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; ABSTAIN: Howell & Carey. Motion carried.
MOTION TO AUTHORIZE THE SUPERVISOR TO SIGN THE PBA CONTRACT:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to authorize the supervisor to sign the contract with the Mount Hope PBA for the sergeant position. All in Favor – Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; ABSTAIN: Howell & Carey. Motion carried.
Nancy Komonczi asked about senior center fee & if it could be waived as it is for a fundraiser for Gary & Joanne Ketcham’s granddaughter who was diagnosed with leukemia. She is renting the hall June 25; 2pm. The baby is 10 months old. She’s had one round of chemo and will be starting her 2nd round. The medical costs are very expensive. Supervisor asked for info about the fundraiser. She explained that it’s an essential oil make & take fundraiser. It’s $25/ticket. Out of the $25 ticket she (the baby) would get about $15. Mrs. Komonczi will not take a profit for this fundraiser. All proceeds will go to baby.
MOTION TO APPROVE WAIVING FEE FOR SENIOR CENTER RENTAL:
MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to waive the rental fee for the senior center rental for Nancy Komonczi‘s fundraiser for Hailee Decker on June 25. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri. Carried.
PUBLIC PARTICIPATION continued:
Diane Loeven added that donations to the aforementioned fundraiser can be made if you cannot attend. Just not sure who to make check out to. Ken Pinkela could not attend but asked her to say thank you on his behalf for the cable being run on his road. She verified with the attorney that he received the info she sent about Kohler Road. He did receive it. He spoke to his contact at Spectrum this morning. They dropped the ball re: franchise agreement. They will follow up with that. Ms. Loeven noted the annual volunteer recognition luncheon for Hometown Helpers on June 14th. The 3 girls from town hall are invited and she asked the board the authorized them to attend.
She added that on June 13 there will be an emergency preparedness presentation at the senior center. It’s open to anyone. It’s on the website. Please let her know that you will attend. There’s a senior trip on 6-19-17 through 6-21-17. Trip is to Finger Lakes. Cars will be parked here.
Jerry Cook thanked the board for the hydrogeologist coming to the meeting.
Dr. Roeder spoke re: dog parks. She likes the idea of a dog park. Dog park is a privilege. People that use it should be held accountable for their use of it. It should be enclosed so the dogs can be off their leashes. Those that aren’t playing nicely with others should respectfully take their animal out. There has to be rules. A dog park would be beneficial to the area. From health standpoint, there are things that will be contagious. If someone’s dog is sick, the owner should have common sense to not bring their dog. There will be altercations. Owners should be cognizant. People using the park should not hold the town responsible for anything that happens there. Supervisor stated that he doesn’t know how anybody can be on town property and would have zero liability. Dr. Roeder doesn’t understand that. Supervisor added that the issues would be policing it. After 3-4 days of rain the grass grows so fast.90% of the people that live in Hidden Valley have dogs – 75% walk around with a bag in their hand doing the right thing. Rules sign would be bigger than the fence.
Dr. Roeder spoke re: sign posted on fence & to add: ”if you choose to enter this confined space, you are assuming these responsibilities”. Supervisor asked the attorney if it’s on our property are we accepting liability. Atty: that would be an argument the insurance company has to make. If he was the plaintiff, he would name everybody. That’s usually what happens. We can post a sign and do releases. There’s no fool proof method. There’s options to explore. Councilman Cambareri added that he has 17 articles from different vet assoc., ASPCA, kennel groups all going over pros and cons of dog parks. He asked Dr. Roeder for her opinion on disease transmission. Dr. Roeder: you send kids to school; kids get sick at school. You need to understand that that can happen. You vaccinate for, and there are things you have no control over. The owner would have to take on responsibility. Councilman Carey spoke with Dr. Roeder as well. She enlightened him. His issue is policing it. He’s worried about the percentage of people that wouldn’t abide by the rules. Cambareri: the articles from the lawyers that have represented the towns with dog parks – the only way to protect the town is to make all the rules, to have someone there in charge of the dog park while the dog park is open & if anyone files a complaint about a dog, if you don’t act on it then you are totally liable. There have been lawsuits with municipalities with dog parks. The signs don’t protect you. Julie Musial added that when we initially were talking about a dog park we spoke with our insurance carrier and he did say that we are covered in the park for those who people do bring their dogs there from time to time. If you decide not to do the dog park, would you consider allowing people to bring their dogs to the park on a leash? Cambareri: where the main park is, most people bring a bag and take care of what they have to take care of. Musial: people are more likely to pick up after their dog if people are around and watching them. Carey added that the signs were put there because of the dog catcher saying he can’t enforce the rules if there are no signs there. That’s why we followed through with getting the signage.
Mike See walks Dec-March because of a back condition. He picks up garbage in the park – he brings a big bag with him to collect along the path. There are people that go beyond their dog and pick up garbage. Councilwoman Sutherland added that when she reached out to other places with dog parks and yes there can be issues with dog feces, normally if other people are around that people are normally good. People are good at policing what everybody else is doing. She thanked Dr. Roeder for coming.
Paul Barth spoke re: putting cameras at the dog park to monitor the potential offenders. He added that the attorney for MH fire sent a letter to the town that the dissolution needs to be signed by the town. Atty. Bavoso: the certified minutes were sent before he left for vacation. They should have it by now. It was sent approx. 3 weeks ago. Mr. Barth just received his letter 3 days ago. He asked the attorney if he could check that it was sent out. Mr. Barth asked about the fire alarm system at the senior center. BI Musial: no because we’re also gonna include the other buildings ie: town hall. We have to get you guys back to give us a quote. We want to consolidate. Barth: I understand. The other buildings have fire protection and the senior center doesn’t. Cambareri: we have smoke heads at the senior center correct? Barth: they don’t work. Musial: smoke detectors work. Barth: the fire alarm panel is not fired up and they don’t work. That’s why I brought it up a couple months ago. Hassenmayer: smoke detectors yes; & carbon monoxide detectors. Barth: they’re battery operated? Hassenmayer: they’re not hooked up to any system. Barth: if the building got hit with lightning, the only way you’re gonna know is if MHPD is in the building. Supervisor wants to get 3 prices that are actually apples to apples. Three companies we received we got 3 different price ranges. Musial: Adam & I went over this together & as long as the occupancy level is under 299 the smoke detectors we have in there is perfectly fine for that portion of the building. A. McCarey (Asst. BI): if that building is occupied & there’s systems in there then yes – Paul is correct. If they’re not required to be there, they can be removed in their entirety and the battery operated ones would be sufficient. If it’s there – it’s gotta work. The battery ones are fine – but you can’t do both. The last time he was there they did the notes on the deficiency. Musial: it’s my understanding we were ok until the contract comes due and have them all on one contract. McCarey asked where the deficiency is. Barth: the fire alarm panel itself. It’s not fired up or functioning. The 4 smokes that are on it are not fired up or functioning. McCarey: that’s the only thing on those panels? That was the dial out panel? Barth: local – it was installed 20 years ago. McCarey: it not even going to a central monitoring station? Basically it is its own self-contained unit so removing it would be advantageous to us. He thinks the system there is antiquated. Full fire alarm building is good. It lowers insurance rates. It’s up to the board if they want to spend the money to do that. Barth: if you have a vendor in the police department side just let them extend it.
Cambareri added that one of the quotes we received was from the company that monitors the police department side of the building. We can’t award the bid because the 3 bids are not the same. We have to start all over to get 3 estimates.
Mary Maurizzio mailed correspondence to the whole board and Kathleen didn’t say it was received.
H’way Supt. Hassenmayer asked about the alarm system at the old school. The day of the closing he received 4 calls. Supervisor added that a letter was sent to the old school committee. After the closing the keys were turned over to them but he forgot to give them the alarm code.
Councilman Howell commented that he finds it a little disturbing/aggravating when a board member requests documents which we have to vote on were not provided. It doesn’t allow him the time he would have liked to put into make a decision. When you submit a request in writing for documents it would have been nice to have that extended to him.
Councilman Carey commented that he seconds what Matt just said. He added that there’s a Russian festival at the KOA this weekend. They’ve had an overwhelming amount of people. There’s tents every 2 feet. He camps there. He would like to put the fence proposal to next meeting as he has information about the Ketcham fence proposal that the board should know about.
Councilman Cambareri congratulated the old school committee. He has documentation on the asbestos testing that he forwarded to KC but he will get it from them to give to old school committee. What ever documentation Kathleen may have in archives you could have also.
At this time Mrs. Maurizzio asked what documents Matt was referring to. Councilman Howell answered it was something discussed in executive session. Atty. looked it over. The terms of employment would be public not any personal information. Howell added it was about the sergeant position.
Chris Corwin Car Show was re-scheduled from tonight to June 12, 2017 due to rain.
MOTION TO ADJOURN MEETING:
MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilman Carey to adjourn the meeting at 9:25 pm. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
The next meeting is scheduled for June 19, 2017 at 7:30pm.
Kathleen A. Myers, RMC