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Blenheim Appoints Deputy to Become Highway Superintendent, Remembers Felter

Written By Editor on 6/3/14 | 6/3/14

It was both a serious and somber occasion Monday evening, as the Blenheim Town Board moved to fill the substantial void left by longtime Highway Superintendent Gerald Felter's unexpected passing in May, and to remember his years of dedicated service to the close-knit community. 

Starting the meeting with a moment of silence to remember "Gerry," as he was known by family and friends alike, the town board voted unanimously to approve a resident's suggestion to name the town's pavilion/park area behind the town hall in his honor. An official naming ceremony will be held at a date to be determined. 

Moving on to the vacancy, town board members voted to appoint Dave Mattice, Felter's deputy in the public works department, to succeed him as Highway Superintendent. The board would also voted to grant Mattice an annual $3,000 stipend to off-set his loss in wages from accepting the position and to perform any additional duties. 

In an attempt to reduce costs for the town, which operates on a shoe-string budget at approximately $300,000 annually, town board members decided to run the department with only two employees and to rely on part-time assistance when additional help is needed in the winter, or to cover sick time and vacations.

In other action:
  • The town board voted to extend Cobra health insurance coverage to Felter's wife until she can acquire public assistance. The extension was approved to August.
  • The town board voted to pay for a $60 advertisement in the Maple Festival brochure, after a mis-communication led to the town historian approving the ad after the board initially voted against it.
  • The town board voted to authorize Councilwoman Anne Mattice-Strauch to purchase up to $600 in materials for a local park to be built in conjunction with SUNY Cobleskill's Creating Healthy Places program. 
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