The regular meeting of the Town Board of the Town of Homer held on Wednesday, March 5, 2014, in the board room of the Town Hall was called to order by Supervisor Frederick J. Forbes at 6:30 p.m.
Frederick J. Forbes, Supervisor
Barry E. Warren, Councilman
Dan A. Weddle, Councilman
Kevin M. Williams, Councilman
Brian D. Young, Councilman
Patrick M. Snyder, Attorney for the Town
Anita W. Jebbett, Town Clerk
Victoria Monty, Attorney for the Wind Energy Committee
Victor Siegle, Wind Energy Committee
Gordon Wheelock, Cortland County legislator
Tyrone Heppard, reporter, Cortland Standard
Mary Alice Bellardini, former Village of Homer mayor
Donald Ferris, reporter, The Homer News (arriving at 7:00 p.m.)
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
The minutes of the February 5, 2014, regular meeting were approved as presented, on motion by Councilman Williams, seconded by Councilman Young and carried unanimously.
Presented for audit by the Board were:
- The Town Clerk’s report of all receipts and disbursements for February.
- The Supervisor’s report of cash receipts and disbursements for December. 3. The Code Enforcement Officer’s report of all building permits issued in February and all open permits.
4. The Dog Control Officer’s report of all activities in January.
BILLS TO BE PAID
General bills were approved as audited on motion by Councilman Young, seconded by Councilman Williams and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that General vouchers #34 through #53 totaling $20,553.84 be approved for payment.
Highway bills were approved as audited on motion by Councilman Warren, seconded by Councilman Weddle and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that Highway vouchers #19 through #33 totaling $23,664.10 be approved for payment.
WIND ENERGY FACILITIES LAW
On motion by Councilman Young, seconded by Councilman Weddle and carried, Councilmen Weddle, Williams, and Young and Supervisor Forbes voting in the affirmative and Councilman Warren abstaining: RESOLVED: that whereas the Town Board has carefully reviewed the full environmental assessment form prepared concerning the proposed Wind Energy Facilities Local Law and taken a close look at any potential environmental impacts, the Board hereby determines that the proposed law will have no adverse environmental impacts and therefore adopts a negative declaration under SEQRA.
On motion by Councilman Weddle, seconded by Councilman Young and carried, Councilmen Weddle, Young and Williams voting in the affirmative, Supervisor Forbes voting against, and Councilman Warren abstaining: RESOLVED: that Local Law #1 of 2014 Wind Energy Facilities hereby be adopted and submitted to the Secretary of State for filing.
On motion by Councilman Young, seconded by Councilman Weddle and carried, Supervisor Forbes and Councilmen Weddle, Williams, and Young voting in the affirmative, and Councilman Warren abstaining: RESOLVED: that the Town of Homer hereby establishes a fee schedule with respect to Local Law #1 of 2014 Wind Energy Facilities as attached.
Supervisor Forbes thanked Attorney Victoria Monty, Councilman Weddle, and Victor Siegle for all their work on the Wind Energy Facilities Law. Although he personally disagreed with the size of the setbacks, Forbes said that it was refreshing to work with people like Mr. Siegle who can disagree agreeably. Siegle said that he appreciated how the Town Board handled itself during this process and that he was satisfied with the final result which will prove to be useful over time.
Budget transfers – On motion by Supervisor Forbes, seconded by Councilman Warren and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that the Town Board hereby approves the proposed budget transfers for the 2013 Town budget as attached.
Regional meeting – On motion by Councilman Young, seconded by Councilman Weddle and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that the Town Clerk is authorized to attend a regional meeting of the New York State Town Clerk’s Association to be held in Auburn on Monday, March 24th.
Planning/Zoning training – On motion by Supervisor Forbes, seconded by
Councilman Young and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that members of the Town Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals are authorized to attend a training session to be given by the New York Department of State at the County Office Building on Monday, March 24th.
Town Hall building – There was discussion about having the air quality in the
Town Hall re-tested. Tests were conducted by both the New York State Department of Health and Microbac Laboratories in the fall of 2010. Because of on-going concerns and prior to renting out space to either the Village or another entity, Supervisor Forbes suggested it be tested again.
On motion by Councilman Young, seconded by Councilman Warren and carried unanimously: RESOLVED: that the Town Board contact the NYS Public Employee Safety & Health Bureau which is authorized to enforce OSHA regulations for public sector employees to conduct air quality testing in the Town Hall at their earliest convenience.
Mary Alice Bellardini, former Village mayor, suggested that the public be made aware of the possibilities of renovating the office space in the Town Hall to make it work for both Town and Village offices. Town Board members said that they were open to ideas to better utilize the existing space and to negotiating a fair rent. The Board was also open to Mrs. Bellardini’s offer to have Randy Crawford of Crawford & Stearns, Architects, make suggestions about how the space could be renovated. It was noted that there is currently an emphasis by the State to have local governments cooperate more closely to provide services in a more cost-effective and efficient manner.
ATTORNEY FOR THE TOWN
Attorney Patrick Snyder stated that he had reviewed a revised version of New Hope View Farm’s application to the NYS DEC for spreading waste on 25 acres of land off Route 90. Snyder advised that the Town has no jurisdiction in this matter.
Attorney Snyder said that he had recently attended a meeting of Cortland County Town and Village officials during which they had an informative and worthwhile discussion of the “ash for trash” landfill proposal.
Town Agricultural Committee – Councilman Young said that the Town’s appointed Agricultural Committee will be meeting on Tuesday, March 11th, at the Trinity Valley dairy on Route 13. Besides Young, Committee members are Lawrence Jones, Bill Anderson, and Branden Brown. They will be discussing what if anything the Town could do to try to promote small agricultural businesses. They will plan to meet at least once a year.
Town personnel policy – A discussion of Town policy as it relates to retiring employees was tabled until the April board meeting.
Court audit – Supervisor Forbes said that due to the change in the office of Town Justice a more formal audit of the 2013 Court books would be done by Cahill, Knobel & Associates in April.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m.
Anita W. Jebbett