(845) 386-1460 clerk@townofmounthope.org

Town of Mount Hope

1706 Route 211W,
New York 10963


The workshop meeting of the Town Board of the Town of Mount Hope was held at Town Hall on July 18, 2016 at 7:30pm with the following present: Supervisor Chad Volpe, Councilman Matt Howell, Councilman Brian Carey, Councilwoman Janet Sutherland, Councilman Dominick Cambareri and Town Clerk Kathleen Myers.

OFFICIALS PRESENT: H’way Supt. Dean Hassenmayer, Dep. Police Chief Corcoran & Attorney David Bavoso.

Following the Pledge of Allegiance, Supervisor Volpe called the meeting to order at 7:30pm. He asked for audience to silence or turn off their cell phones.

MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd by Councilman Howell that the minutes of the 07-05-2016 meeting as presented are approved. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

Police Dept. budget modification
Supervisor’s budget modification amendment
Letter from G. Plotsky re: UTA fully executed consent judgement
Certificate of Insurance re: Otisville Lions for Otisville Country Fair
Supervisor’s report June 2016
(2) anonymous letters re: Dragon Springs dated 7-8-16 & 7-5-16
Letter from Charter Communications re: merger with Time Warner Cable
Resignation from Police Officer Brian Corcoran effective 7-6-16
Highway budget modification (possible HOLD)
Letter from F. Ketcham re: possible contradiction to Local Laws #4 & #5 re: small scale, roof top & building mounted solar are permitted or prohibited in RP1 & RP2 districts.

Councilman Howell: re: email from Police Chief regarding checklist for hiring policy/procedure & written application for the town. He would like to have added the “date of completion” and a signature panel. Dep. Chief Corcoran agreed and they had talked about it as well.
Councilman Carey: Little League – All Stars- Minors, girls 9-10 won the District 19 Championship against Monroe-Woodbury. Tonight is their 2nd game of Sec. 3 tournament in Cortland NY. Football: he gave out coupons for 15% off at Modell’s to be used 7-22-16 thru 9-4-16. Devan’s Gate: He spoke with Patty. He went to hang fliers. Anna was already there. He wanted to know how the drop off was. Dep. Chief Corcoran stated they got about ½ a garbage bag. Very well received. A lot of people hadn’t read the flyer but they like the service.
Councilwoman Sutherland: spoke with Lucy Joyce in regard to contracts. Someone on their board had a question in regard to something & that’s why they haven’t signed them. Andrea will be at the next meeting in August.
Councilman Cambareri: spoke with Lisa from summer camp. It’s in full swing. Hot this year. Sewer plant: engineering firm is continuing with process to start with the renovations to treatment plant. Everything has been filed with DEC & approved.


H’way Supt. Hassenmayer thanked the VFW for the flags they dropped off for our flag pole. He thanked Julie for doing the training for the highway department. We bought programs and she’s showing the video and doing the certificates. We still have chip seal to do. It’s tentatively scheduled for next week for 2 days of chip sealing and then back to line striping. We did some striping but the 2nd day we had problems with the machine. Hope to be done with roads being resurfaced & restriped by beginning of August. Supervisor Volpe added that 2 Fridays ago they came together to do the fencing at the park. He needs someone to go to park after lunch on Fridays. Hassenmayer: yes, he will take care of it.

Asst. Chief Melton read report into record. New air packs will be in end of this week or next week. Wednesday wetting the kids at camp is going well. Large drill for September is going well. Sent emails out to other departments. He’s received about ½ returns so far. 1st meeting will be Monday at the Senior Center. Melton asked Supervisor for an update on the possible meeting with the 2 other departments. Supervisor Volpe stated no but will make sure he has it updated by our next meeting.

Dep. Chief Corcoran had no report but if anyone had questions on budget modification or any questions on the possible new hire, he would answer them.

Trustee Loeven reminded everyone of the yard sale on August 6th. Any questions can be sent to Village Hall or to Diane. She spoke re: joint DCO Tom Yonskie and some issues from Emboden Avenue. DCO introduced himself. He received a call from resident on Emboden Avenue about possible coyotes on their property. After speaking with witnesses who saw/heard the animals; his expert opinion it was a family of gray fox. He gave them info on gray fox. He gave property owner some ideas on how to deter the fox from coming on to his property. He spoke with DEC officer, Chris Lattimer who will stop by and speak with them. DCO then spoke about a possible enumeration. Ag. & Mkts. recommend that they are done every 5 years. Enumeration = you want people to license their dogs. It reminds people that it is the law that they license their dog(s). He met someone from the canine license registry. They laid out a plan. They would do a mailing. He showed the board a postcard type mailer that would go out to every home in the town. There would be a time period to send in the information. They would start by sending this card back which would be addressed to the town. 2 weeks before it ended, they would send out a 2nd mailer if we choose. It’s the most cost efficient way to do it. That company would handle everything. Chad has copies of the information. After that time period, we have the right to charge an enumeration fee. If they license their dogs after that, they may be subject to additional cost. It’s a cost efficient way to do an enumeration. If anyone has questions, he will address them. Other towns have had really good results. Councilman Carey added that the signs about dogs for the park have been ordered. H’way Supt. Hassenmayer stated they should be here next week. Trustee Loeven asked for the village to be included in this. Councilwoman Sutherland asked for suggestions to keep the fox away as she has a family of them in her yard. DCO stated don’t put garbage out until garbage day, clean your grill, feed animals inside, keep compost wired & covered. It’s a travel corridor which is why they are going through these peoples’ yard.

MOTION offered by Councilman Carey 2nd by Councilman Howell to amend July 5th budget modification to read:
Increase Summer Rec. Rev. B2001 in the amount of $48,000.00 AND
Increase Summer Rec. P/S B7310.1 by $48,000.00.
All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

Supervisor Volpe gave copies of new building department hours effective 9-1-16. Basically increasing office hours 250% with no additional cost to the town. It will be put on website. Councilman Cambareri asked for the town clerk’s hours to be put on as well. Town Clerk stated they are already on the website on the Town Clerk page.

MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilman Carey to approve the Supervisor’s report for June 2016 as presented. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

MOTION offered by Councilwoman Sutherland 2nd by Councilman Howell to accept the resignation from Police Officer Brian Corcoran effective 7-6-16. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

MOTION offered by Councilwoman Sutherland 2nd by Councilman Cambareri to approve the hire of Maxim Sander as a part time, non-competitive police officer effective 7-19-2016. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

Supervisor Volpe asked Atty. for his comments. Atty. Bavoso has been in touch with the engineer. They will put together the required SEQR documents for when it’s adopted. He recommends to have the public hearing 2 meetings from tonight.

MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilman Carey to set a date for the proposed local law on Cluster Housing Moratorium on August 15, 2016 at 7:05pm at the Senior Center. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilman Cambareri to allow Otisville Lions to hang sign for fair on the town property by the park from July 23, 2016 through August 29, 2016. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

MOTION offered by Councilman Cambareri 2nd Councilwoman Sutherland to approve the following budget modification:
Increase Revenue A2680 by $10,071.37 AND Increase Police C/E A3120.4 by $10,071.37. (For motor vehicle insurance claim) All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilwoman Sutherland to approve the police department application and checklist effective July 19, 2016 to add signature and date of completion to the list. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

Councilwoman Sutherland had a question on the Alice’s Wonderland bill and the $300 allotment for boots. Supervisor asked Dean for clarification. After review, Dean sees the boots were rang up together. He will make adjustment.

MOTION offered by Councilman Carey 2nd by Councilman Howell to approve the following bills with the noted adjustment to the highway bills:
GENERAL A:#407-444$ 76,304.35
GENERAL B:#88-99$ 17,105.23
HIGHWAY:#100-109$ 38,177.70
SEWER:#56-59$ 3,839.10.
All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.
At this time, Supervisor Volpe asked Atty. Bavoso to explain if the two solar laws have a discrepancy with permitting roof top mounted solar collectors; small scale, roof top & building mounted solar are permitted or prohibited in RP1 & RP2 districts. There is no conflict. Local Law #4 was the actual substantive provisions to where you could have which type of facility. Local Law #5 is adopting a methodology; in order to obtain a permit for something that’s permitted in your zone, you can submit the county permit instead of the town reinventing the wheel and doing a brand-new permit. We just use the county permit. There’s nothing substantive as to what facilities are restricted to, what zoning districts in local #5 – it’s just a method for how you apply for the permit. Supervisor: in RP1 & RP2 you can still do roof top solar or anything up to 12KW. Atty: it says except for those 2. The rooftop & building mounted solar are permitted in all zoning districts in the town except for RP1 & RP2. Ground mounted and free standing are also prohibited.

L. Runnalls came to alert the board to a problem he had over the recent July 4th holiday. He’s listened to a lot of fireworks since before July 4. He knows the town and state have fireworks laws. 43 Field Road had them. There were others from the village that witnessed this. On July 4 at 9:30 he went to verify the address. There were 7-8 cars parked there. He found a police officer at Veterans Park and expressed his concerns for the fireworks. 20 minutes later they started again. He believes they were professional grade with high loft & huge concussions. He recorded this on his phone. He noted that this was brought up at a village board meeting. Complaints were made to police department. 1 neighbor spoke to the police 5x. Another neighbor had an exchange with the neighbor shooting the fireworks and was threatened by him. He’s concerned with the town law and the complaints made to police with nothing done. He’s concerned that other people will think they can do anything in the town & village and nothing will happen. Dep. Chief believes it could have been handled better and will do so next year. Supervisor Volpe added that maybe next year we could add personnel. Dep. Chief stated next year he would like to have a supervisor on duty. Supervisor/Councilman Howell followed up on another statement made to someone on Beverly road from a call to 911 revealed that it was misinterpretation. State police did respond because Mount Hope was off duty. He asked procedure of officers for these complaints. Do they do a repeat drive by? Dep. Chief: yes. But it’s intermittent. Discussion ensued. Supervisor apologized to Mr. Runnalls. Mr. Runnalls believes it’s a flagrant violation of town law. Supervisor learned a lot on a state scale in the last week about fireworks. They will be more prepared next time.
Orrin Pierson: He read a petition into record and gave a copy to the board. (copy on file in town clerk’s office)
Rob Garrity: Borrego Solar: he asked the board if they would allow their application to go before the planning board so that while they are looking at the moratorium you are actually crafting your by-law as you’re looking at our projects. They are 2 large projects @ 11 acres each. They would like permission to permit as the by-laws are being crafted on the condition that we meet whatever by-law is eventually adopted. Councilman Cambareri: the moratorium is in effect. Are you asking to bypass the moratorium? Garrity: I’m asking you to consider our application while the moratorium stands & our approval would be contingent upon meeting whatever the by-law eventually says. We would be doing this at risk realizing that if you come up with something in the by-law that we haven’t met, we would have to alter our design. They’ve completed title, 1st & 2nd round studies with O&R & we have NYSERDA awards in place for the project. Where they are situated, you won’t see them from the road. Atty. Bavoso: doesn’t think it’s possible. There’s a law in direct conflict with already on the books. You’re basing an approval on a set of regulations that have not yet been determined. I don’t see how this could be legal. You could go to planning board on an informal basis and ask to take a look so when regulations are in place this is what we’re hoping to do. The town can’t grant approvals on regulations that don’t exist. Councilwoman Sutherland: you’re asking for us to have it and consider it while we’re doing this? Garrity: yes. Not asking you to change the rules; while proposing the by-law to consider our project and maybe you’ll think about things you didn’t think about because you haven’t actually looked at a project. Atty. Bavoso: that’s fine. There are going to be input steps as far as master plan & zoning law go. It sounded like you wanted some sort of approval before we had a law that allows you to do it. Garrity: John recommended that I ask that. Supervisor Volpe added that there are ongoing meetings – Matt & Dominick are both on the committee to re-do the master plan. If you give them something before their next meeting…Pierson: Borrego Solar & Mr. Garrity invested a lot of time and a lot of money. We can’t wait around for this forever. This is a win-win. Councilman Howell: asked about keeping a grazing area. This is considered a commercial scale project. Garrity: we expect it to come off the agriculture exemption and pay for those chargebacks. He asked when the next meeting for the master plan is. Councilman Howell: 7-21-16 5pm. Supervisor added that he (Garrity) could email any information to Kathleen she would make sure that they have it for the meeting. Councilwoman Sutherland: just go ahead in front of the planning board. Supervisor added that the planning board will also be here Thursday.
Ken Coppola: has an issue with the PD. Fireworks went on for 4 nights. It was handled poorly by the police department. His neighbor called police and they were told to get off his property. He then went to state police in Huguenot but they weren’t in. He’s disappointed in what happened. He asked when the officers start in the morning because he walks very early and @ 5am the raceway begins on Highland Avenue & Seybolt Avenue.
Officers start at 6am. He asked for them to possibly start at 5am. It doesn’t happen every day it’s sporadic. Dep. Chief Corcoran will speak to the landlord & look into this. There was discussion on backing up into traffic when parking. DC Corcoran: you have to yield.
Mary Maurizzio: (Emboden Ave.) spoke to DEC re: coyote vs.fox. They didn’t indicate anything about fox. She asked the DCO what he’s basing his opinion on for the fox vs.coyote. DCO: he’s basing it on the description he received from eye witnesses. She added that she could see the fireworks over the trees on Rte 211 towards the village. She read her questions into record re: 4H property; Supervisor added that we were waiting for them to sign the contracts so that tonight we would vote to sign the contracts on our end. It hasn’t happened. This is for a proposed contract of sale. She asked the following: will the town have the land assessed? What was the original purchase price? How much is 1 or more comparative acres worth today? What is Cornell’s offer for 56 acres? Is that land still parkland or town owned land? If it is parkland, it cannot be sold without state legislation. Land sold has to be replaced. What will new land cost? Will town board pass a resolution to have a public vote for sale and bypass a petition referendum? Which town budget A or B is the town property/parkland maintained out of? If it is A – the village is included in that. Is there new land available? Shouldn’t the town make a fair amount of profit on the sale at least current assessment value if it’s now more than the original price paid? The new Otisville school is built on former town parkland traded for the old Otisville school and the new land where 4H is now was purchased as a replacement for that parkland. What has the old school cost the town to date including insurance? If you do sell the land, what are you going to do with the money? You may have to buy more land. You could use it to pay whatever the old school future costs are going to be or you could give the public a tax break. Supervisor stated will answer some of the questions. Maurizzio: why are you going into contract of sale without bringing it out to the public what the moneys are? Supervisor: as soon as we know what the monies are when we have a fully executed proposal. I’d rather not tell you one thing and that’s not the case. Some for your questions…we traded the property where the Otisville school is for the old school. Those monies I am still dealing with now from the comptroller’s office. Those monies were paid for out of B and parkland shouldn’t be bought out of B because I don’t go there with a sign saying ‘you’re from the village, get out of the park’. It should have been bought out of A. There was never a loan payment to pay this money back. The comptroller says it should have been taken out of an A account not a B account. That was $550,000; technically A owes B. That money has to be paid back. The only money paid on it so far is the 3-$1,000 payments that Cornell has paid to us so far. Maurizzio: she would a response to her questions. Supervisor: not everyone is going to agree with the decisions that the board makes. You can’t have a resolution to have a public vote. You have to do it by permissive referendum. We’re simply getting out of the landlord business.
Frank Ketcham: He thanked the supervisor for clarification on solar law #4 & #5. He wanted to clarify that he was on the town board when Minisink Valley was looking to build a new elementary school. They wanted to keep an elementary school in Mount Hope in this side of the school district. They were looking to build one in Greenville or on their main campus. That’s the reason they dealt with the school in regard to that property back there. The original property was back in the woods but the engineer claimed it was wooded wetlands and that whole site slid forward. There was never any comment about the Otisville school until after that deal was done. Minisink came to us and said ‘we’re looking to get rid of the school, do you guys want IT’. We said yes. We had the dream making it into a townhall, court, police station and many other services centered out of that building. Over the years I continue to hear it was traded for that property. It was not traded. It was an after-thought. If Minsink Valley sold that building, whatever monies came out of that would be split between the Minisink school district. If Mount Hope owned the building and we decided to sell it, the monies would come here to the town. Supervisor: so that building wasn’t given to us in lieu of the property? Ketcham: no. Supervisor: what were we given for the property? Ketcham: nothing. We gave them the property. The ability to have an elementary school here on this side of the Minisink district. Otisville school has always been very special to the Minisink school district. Our main objective was to keep it here. Councilman Cambareri: so we subsidized the entire school district as a gift? How is that legal? That’s not legal. Supervisor: Otisville school should have been the burden of Minisink Valley not the town. Ketcham asked if there was an update on Time Warner? Atty. Bavoso spoke with them today. He spoke to head of legal department for NYS. The most recent franchise agreement is from 1982 which likely expired in 1992.
We are going through the process of a new franchise agreement. He received the papers today and he will look at them this week. He was told that the practice has generally been that they would require 35 homes/mile to provide coverage. Since the merger, the charter wants to be more aggressive and go below that # in more rural areas. He has to get more info from the residents and the town. They possibly would be able to cover those areas. They can’t say for sure. They have to see maps & density. They sent their model agreement to him and has not had a chance to look at it. Ketcham asked for update with Deerpark Commons. He had looked at a set of maps/plans but they were for Dragon Springs buildings which has nothing to do with Deerpark Commons. Supervisor: that’s all I have. Ketcham noted Dragon Springs has a ZBA meeting 7-21-16 re: illegal non-conforming driveway they created on Galley Hill Road & an 8’ fence they’re going to put around their whole facility. Mary Maurizzio: asked for Frank Ketcham to answer why the old school building sat in disrepair for all the years without a single window being boarded? Ketcham: soon after the deal was completed he had to resign from the town board as a town councilman due to the hatch act. Soon after John Bell got sick and Novak was a procrastinator.
D. Loeven: spoke re: fireworks discussion at village meeting. Their concern is that it will snowball next year. A recommendation at their meeting was that prior to the 4th of July next year information gets out to the residents that those types of fireworks are very illegal. Fireworks that are actually legal are very limited. She suggested it go in the Voice and the village newsletter, facebook, twitter.
Tom Yonskie: spoke re: he is doing a free rabies clinic in October in Deerpark at the firehouse. He will confirm a date and let the board know.

Councilman Howell: he asked F. Ketcham: the Otisville school doesn’t owe the town anything? Ketcham: it doesn’t owe anything as far as that deal went down.
Councilman Carey: stated the old school is boarded and alarmed. He asked Yonskie for the sounds fox vs. coyote. Yonskie explained.
Councilwoman Sutherland: 4H family day is 7/23/16. Their showcase is 7/20/16 through 7/24/16. She spoke regarding the after camp program and giving money back for 2 of the summer rec kids. Does that affect the budget now that we’ve only got 6? Supervisor: we had 10 now we have 8. The after camp program is the only part of summer rec that produces money for the town. Sutherland: do they have their own budget? Supervisor: no, it’s all incorporated. Cambareri: the payroll expense is less than what we take in. Sutherland: she knows someone possibly interested in signing her kids up for camp. She suggested that she go to Brian. She wasn’t sure if this was possible. Supervisor: stated when he went there today Lisa said one of the custodians at the school was looking to sign his son up. If they’re willing to pay the money for the full amount. She said 1, 2 or 3 more kids would not be a violation as far as ratio. Sutherland asked Brian when the date for the play is. Councilman Carey does not know. He will find out. He added that no one has contacted him either email or phone and that it is himself and Dominick that are the liaisons for summer rec. Supervisor thinks the play is the last Thursday of the last week.
Councilman Cambareri: none.
Supervisor Volpe golfed in the OC Highway Supt. golf outing. Supt. Hassenmayer: looks like almost $5,000; the association will probably round it up to $500 & that would be our donation. Dean was informed that Stan (from 4H) is done at the end of the month. Councilwoman Sutherland asked if they were going to do anything special for him? Dean: she didn’t say they are very busy this week. He also reported that the science camp cancelled their 2nd week.

MOTION offered by Councilman Howell 2nd by Councilman Carey to adjourn the meeting at 8:59pm. All in favor: Howell, Carey, Volpe, Sutherland, Cambareri; carried.

Next meeting is scheduled for August 1, 2016 at 7:30pm in the Town Hall in the meeting room.

Respectfully submitted,

Kathleen A. Myers, RMC
Town Clerk