, pub-2480664471547226, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0
Showing posts with label Board of Supervisors. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Board of Supervisors. Show all posts

Board of Supervisors Names October 2-8 as National 4-H week

Written By Editor on 9/27/16 | 9/27/16

Schoharie County Board of Supervisors proclaimed October 2-8 as National 4-H week locally for the work of CCE Schoharie and Otsego Counties in providing informal 4-H educational opportunities to 400 4-H youth and 40 adult volunteers in the county.

Attending the presentation by Board of Supervisor Chair Earl Van Wormer, IV, were from left to right: Shelly Wood, Happy Hoofsters 4-H Club Leader, Melinda McTaggart, 4-H Resource Educator, Margo Kyes, Thundering Hooves 4-H Club Assistant Leader and Susan Burns-Salisbury, 4-H After School Program Coordinator.  Cornell Cooperative Extension in Schoharie and Otsego Counties provides equal program and employment opportunities.

September Board of Supervisors Meeting Highlights

Written By Editor on 9/16/16 | 9/16/16

Photo and article by Tyler James

The Board heard a presentation about the Sheriff's Department's new anti-DWI initative. There was also a report on the progress on the creek projects.

Melinda McTaggart briefly spoke to the Board about Cornell Cooperative Extension. The Board passed a proclamation of appreciation for the organization's assistance to the county, especially its youth projects. This included projects such as 4-H, which is one of the largest youth organizations in the state. The Board declared October 2-8th as 4-H month. Chair Earl Van Wormer thanked the organization.

The Schoharie County Conservation Association discussed possible new land use ideas. One idea is to construct a potential land bank. Another is a "Zombie Property" law in which banks that held vacant property could be fined for not taking care of them. Such an act would not affect local ownership. The organization has been working with the County Planning Department on potential options.

Supervisor Tague asked for a brief recess for Republican members of the Board to caucus. This took about 40 minutes.

Richmondville Supervisor Dick Lape discussed a possible new bridge project in Richmondville. He highlighted $2 million in funding acquired by Mayor Kevin Neary to fix the bridge.

Another presentation discussed the Blenheim Bridge rebuilding project. There was also a lengthy update on the creek mitigation project. The County Board also voted to withdraw from the proposed Seebold property for the jail site. Treasurer and flood recovery coordinator Cherry reported that the county building floodgate project was on time and budget. The report stated that 90% of the footings and well foundations have already been poured.

Board Withdraws from Seebold Jail Location

By Tyler James

Treasurer and flood recovery coordinator Bill Cherry gave an update on the jail and public safety facility project. He read a memo received from LaBella Associates on September 12th, the engineers wrote about new geotechnical surveys regarding the jail site. The reports show that there were several factors that may have been solvable on their own but together made the Seebold location untenable. This included archaeological sites expected to turn up historical artifacts. Cherry said that the project would need to be within about ten miles of the county courthouse and have municipal water and sewer. Cherry provided a written report to the board members, including a number of recommended jail sites that met the above checks.

Supervisor Tague asked if Sheriff Desmond was consulted on the site. Cherry replied that Undersheriff Ron Stevens was often a part of the flood recovery committee and that the Sheriff was in constant contact.

Sheriff Desmond stood and reported on concerns over the project. He stated that he was there during much of the sampling projects. The Sheriff said that he opposed placing it in Cobleskill because there are three departments in Cobleskill already. He said that instead the jail and public safety facilty should be placed closer to Middleburgh in order to assist residents in the southern part of the county that have a smaller police presence currently. He added that such a location could help bring a police presence to Conesville and Blenheim.

"How important is it that the facility be as close to the courthouse as possible?" asked Supervisor Tague of Schoharie. The Sheriff replied, "Very important." He added, "I don't think a location five or six miles down the road" would hurt the ability to bring individuals to the courthouse.

Supervisor Tague said that he hoped Treasurer Cherry would work with the Sheriff, Undersheriff, and District Attorney. "These are the people that are doing the job every day."

Supervisor Leo McAllister of Cobleskill noted the timeline of the project. "There's a limit on funds," he stated, also citing the project's 42 month timeline. "The fact is that we can't wait a year and a half to make a decision," he stated. The Treasurer agreed, seeking a location with water and sewer. "Extending water and sewer lines is an important piece." He said that the project could be done under budget should a location be found with these.

Supervisor Tague replied by asking the Treasurer whether the decision should be made today. The Treasurer responded yes. Tague then made a motion to exit the Seebold project. Supervisor Skowfoe of Fulton seconded. The County will lose a $5,000 deposit on the property.

Supervisor Pete Coppolo of Middleburgh asked why the project was looked at with a parcel without water or sewer. Treasurer Cherry said that this was not the circumstance at the time, only that there was a possibility that it could be extended over time.

The measure passed unanimously.

Creek Project Faces a Variety of Delays, Progress

By Tyler James

The Schoharie County Board of Supervisors heard an update on the continuing delays over the post-flood creek mitigation project.

Jim Bridges, representative from McLaren Engineering gave an update on the county's creek project. Much of the discussion revolved around the upper site project close out at Dave Brown Mountain. The group has the final $162,000 funding request from NRCS. He said that this money should be available to the county in the next one or two weeks. There is another $127,000 reimbursement pending from New York State pending completion of the entire project. There would be no penalties from the state if the work completed by the County is not maintained by it.

The lower site is slated for completion soon. The "remediation work was done in July. Completed in August." This included a $362,000 project completion request from the contractor, who should be paid next week. Two change orders slightly modified the project due to different site conditions and to meet regulatory approval. These tally to about $30,000 in costs. There are other reimbursements that are upcoming. In total, this includes about $700,000 in reimbursements pending for the lower site, expected over the next several months.

Another site discussed was Plattekill. The representative stated that there has been work in the last month to move from approval from NRCS for action to a set of plans. There is hope that these changes could save approximately $100,000 in savings for that portion of the process. This process was ongoing and was expecting more comments from the organization in about a week.

The engineering firm is finalizing plans for how the stream cleanup on site will occur in cooperation with Rifenburg construction. "It's very difficult for them to give us a price." There's a cap of $350,000 for such consulting with the expectation that the total should be lower. Approval from DEC could further lower the cost. The representative stated that there was regulatory concern about some work done in 2015 with hope that it can be resolved without cost.

"There is slightly more than $2.2 million in reimbursement available," for the remainder of the project.

Of the projects, the Little Schoharie was described as the "most complicated," in the presentation. Work was described in four sections, denoted by letters. Ridge D, worked during winter 2014-2015 was suspended due to the harshness of the season and then damaged in water runoff in spring 2015. This portion is now completed. Two of the other sections were damaged due to recent water flow in Huntersland. Ridge A has been stalled due to funding issues and due to summer storms. AECOM is currently in "delicate negotiations" to resolve who is responsible for funding.

The final site discussed was Line Creek. This included NRCS concern about the current hydraulic model. New modeling has been done in the last several months and "has taken longer than we wanted." The model is currently undergoing hydraulic calculations. If these are not satisfactory there could be another period of planning required.

All permits are required for reimbursement. "In many cases we don't have the permits in place," for reimbursement. The entire project of reimbursement through different agencies should take significant time.

The last part of the presentation was about the AECOM contract. Supervisor Chris Tague of Schoharie made a motion to enter into executive session. The board unanimously approved the measure, which lasted for about an hour.

Sheriff's Department Launches New Teen DWI Prevention Initiative

By Tyler James

At the Schoharie Board of Supervisors meeting two deputies spoke of a new initiative that the Sheriff's Department worked on to prevent teens from driving while intoxicated. The lively presentation expanded on the effort, which has seen many organizations partner with the Sheriff's Department.

Deputy Bruce Baker was given privilege of the floor to talk about Project CRASH. In the presentation, the Deputy discussed the Sheriff's Department partnership with SCCASA and other groups. The project intends to prevent drunk and ability impaired driving. Baker was introduced by Deputy Zach Reinhart. Deputy Baker said the group, "involved every high school in the county" as well as emergency services. The Deputy thanked a variety of volunteers and officials that assisted in the production. The project created a 30 minute movie that "depicts a two car crash with a fatality." On October 6th every Junior and Senior in high school in the county will be attending the film's screening at SUNY Cobleskill. It will be followed by a presentation from a law firm. Many public officials are invited, including County Administrator Steve Wilson and Assemblyman Lopez. He added that the presentation and film will be placed on SCHOPEG and social media.

"We want the students involved," Baker said. He also added that in the spring there would be another event at the college similar to a health fair that would bring in students from all of the schools in the county. Money raised at the event through sponsorships will be used to fund schools' proms and reduce the risk of unsafe driving afterwards. He offered the idea of a joint committee between schools, local government, and others.

The movie had almost 50 hours of editing and four cameras. It includes a helicopter flight and as the Deputy stated, over six figures in production value with great assistance from SCHOPEG. Overall, the project has not cost taxpayers a dime. "It's all volunteer, it's all for the kids." He added that he hoped that a reduction in drunk driving could prevent people from having to hear about fatalities.

The Best of the Summer

Donate to Support Local Journalism


By phone: 518-763-6854 or 607-652-5252
Fax: 607-652-5253
Mail: The Mountain Eagle / PO Box 162 / Schoharie NY 12157


Site Archive

Submit your information below:


Email *

Message *