March minutes, Town Board meeting

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes Halcott Grange
March 16, 2020, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk Patricia Warfield, Fleischmanns Fire Chief Todd Wickham. Public: Scott Moroff.

Call to order at 7:15 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Mark Project Proposal: Due to the advent of the Covid-19 virus, the Board will table the M-Ark Project Proposal discussion until the next round of funding is available as the thought was that grant monies would most likely be used to combat the affects felt locally due to the Covid-19 virus.

Approval of the minutes of the February 24, 2020 meeting: Motion to approve by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The Highway Department has been working on the water tank but there seems to be a discrepancy between the original cost estimate and a second itemized estimate including material delivery for much less. (B) Highway employee Greg Finch should be back at work the middle of May. The Highway Department has made provisions to hire temporary help to begin work on Town roads as soon as weather permits to ensure completion of scheduled work for early CHIPS reimbursement. (C) There have been a series of ongoing conversations between Supervisor Alan White and various members of Greene County in regards to a concrete commitment and schedule for maintenance and repair of the county roads in Halcott.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G0320 – vouchers 35 – 44 = $20,994.85. Highway Abstract #H0320 – vouchers 45 – 51= $4,159.13. Motion to pay bills by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Finance Chair Innes Kasanof presented the monthly finance report.

Clerk’s Report: Grange Rental: (3 local) @ $50.00 each: $150.00, Building Permit: 1 @ $250.00, Building Permit Renewal: 1 @ $55.00, Billy Haynes: (Jan/Feb) @ $150.00 per month: $300.00, Transfer Station Money: (Dec. 31-Jan Jan 31) $300.00, Dog License: 1 unneutered: $10.00. The Town collected and disbursed $885.00 for the month of February.

Other Business: (A) Halcott has seen an increased police presence in Town to due an on-going issue at a residence in Town. (B) Fire Chief Todd Wickham presented an overview of the Fleischmanns Fire Department. There are approximately 35 members with about 20 members active. Fleischmanns has a mutual aide agreement in place with Arkville to insure there is enough manpower to cover all calls. The fire department is still investigating options for either a new facility at a new location or expanding on what is already in place. They are aware of Halcott plans to include space to house a fire truck in town when a new highway building is eventually built.
7:50 p.m. Motion to enter into Executive Session by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

8:06 p.m. Motion to exit the Executive Session by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, 2nd by Councilman Alan Reynolds, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye. Supervisor Alan White asked for a motion to amend the 2020 Halcott Terms of Employment, 6F to read: Any leave requested in excess of the above amounts will be uncompensated and must be requested in writing and submitted to the Town Board for approval. Such requests must state the purpose of the leave, start and end dates. Motion to amend the Terms of Employment by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Next Meeting: Regular Meeting April 20, 2020, 7:15pm.

Motion to Adjourn at 8:34 p.m. by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes, February 24, 2020

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes Halcott Grange
February 24, 2020, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk Patricia Warfield, Town Tax Collector Robin White, Town Assessor Mark Neves, Town Justice Ken Williams, Town Code Enforcement Officer John Mathiesen.

Call to order at 7:15 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Tax Collector Robin White presented her annual report. Assessor Mark Neves presented his annual report.
Town Justice Ken Williams presented his annual report.
Code Enforcement Officer John Mathiesen presented his report. Town Clerk Patricia Warfield presented her annual report.

Approval of the minutes of the January 27, 2020 meeting: Motion to approve by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilman Alan Reynolds, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The Town had a new NYMIR inspector here for a safety audit. He expressed concern about the metal recycle bin location under the shed roof which is attached to the highway garage building. Should the bin contents catch on fire, he feared the garage would catch fire as well. As of right now, the bin can not be moved as it needs to be covered. He also asked the Town to hire an inspection company to inspect the boiler at the Grange Building.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G0220 – vouchers #19 – 29 = $5,668.74. Highway Abstract #H0220 – vouchers #30 – 34 = $2,589.99. Motion to pay bills by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Finance Chair Innes Kasanof presented the monthly finance report. (B)The AUD report has been finished and sent to the State. (C) The fire contract has been paid. Supervisor Alan White will reach out to Fire Chief Todd Wickham and ask that he prepare a Fleischmanns Fire Company annual report for Halcott to be presented to the Board at a future meeting. (D) With the books closed for 2019, the Town will be able to add $9,531.55 to the Highway Reserve Fund and $15,659.42 to the General Reserve Fund. Motion to approve the transfer of surplus funds to the Highway and General Reserve Funds by Councilman Alan Reynolds, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Clerk’s Report: Building Permits: 1 @ $250.00, 1 @ $1,080 = $1,330.00. Certificate of Occupancy Searches: 3 @ $25.00 = $75.00, Building Permit Renewal: 1 @ $50.00, Certified Copy: 1 @ $10.00. Billy Haynes (Dec. Pymt) $150.00. The Town collected and disbursed $1,615.00 for the month of January.

Other Business: (A) Peg Ellsworth of the M-Ark Project could not attend the Town Board Meeting but did e-mail a proposal to Supervisor Alan White for review. The proposal calls for the Town to hire the M-Ark Project to do the grant writing for Halcott in relation to the new Town Highway Garage.
The first stage of the proposal entails planning which is essentially building design and a cost estimate which then allows for the second stage which would be to apply for available funding to build it. The Town would apply for a planning grant from the O’Connor Foundation in the amount of $40,000.00 which Halcott would match with $10,000.00 to get the Town through the planning process. If awarded the grant, the Town would put out for an R.F.P. for consultants to do the planning with the Town. In return for the grant writing and then over-seeing the R.F.P. process, Peg Ellsworth proposed the Town pay the M-Ark Project $2.500.00. The Board will re-visit the proposal at the next board meeting to give members more time to look over the proposal for themselves. Supervisor White will try to have Peg Ellsworth at the next board meeting.

Next Meeting: Regular Town Board Meeting March 16, 2020, 7:15pm.

Motion to Adjourn at 8:25 pm by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Town Board Meeting Minutes, January 27, 2020, 7:15 pm

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes Halcott Grange
January 27, 2020, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council Members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk, Patricia Warfield. Greene County Sheriff: Peter Kusminsky. Absent: Council Members Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto.

Call to Order at 7:15 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Greene County Sheriff Peter Kusminsky: Newly elected, Sheriff Kusminsky came to Halcott to introduce himself to the Board. Some of the items discussed for the Town were increased patrols in Halcott, an issue with speeders on County Rote 3, the installation of a new data base to better route 911 calls from Halcott and creating a Senior Call-In Program in Halcott where by senior residents of Halcott (who sign up for the program) call into the Sheriff’s department between 8-10 am each day. If no call-in is received, a member of the Sheriff’s department would come to Town to check on that individual. This program already exists in other communities.

Approval of the minutes of the meeting: With the following typo correction: Councilwoman Innes Kasanof instead of Councilwoman Yukari Day where it shows up twice. Motion to approve by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilman Alan Reynolds, Supervisor White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The lawn tractor used by the Highway Department for mowing by the Grange and other locations is in need of work. Given the age and condition of the mower, the Highway Department will look to purchase a replacement at some point. (B) The Highway Department will have an employee out for an extended period of time but Highway Superintendent Bouton assured the Board that the position is well covered.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G0120 – vouchers 01-12 = $42,216.84. Highway Abstract #H0120 – vouchers 13-18 = $3,826.10. Motion to pay bills by Councilman Alan Reynolds, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Supervisor Alan White presented the monthly finance report. (B) The Finance Chair has been working on the Town’s AUD report. (C) The 2020 Budget has been amended, the bottom line is the same but some amount totals needed adjustment. Motion to approve the amended 2020 Town of Halcott Budget by Councilman Alan Reynolds, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Clerk’s Report: Building Permits: 1 @ $80.00, 1 @ $340.00: $420.00, 1 Flood Plain Development Permit: $250.00, 1 BP Fine: $250.00, 1 C/O Search: $25.00, Garbage Money(Sept-Dec): $403.00. The Town collected and disbursed $1,348.00 for the month of December.

Other Business: The Catskill Mountain News Newspaper is currently not publishing and with no committed time to restart, the Town needs to find another paper to use as the “official” Town of Halcott newspaper. Supervisor Alan White recommended the Mountain Eagle as a replacement. Motion to amend the Town of Halcott Organizational Document to list the Mountain Eagle as the official Town of Halcott paper by Councilman Alan Reynolds, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Next Meeting: Regular Town Board Meeting, February 24, 2020, 7:15 pm.

Motion to Adjourn at 7:50 p.m. by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilman Alan Reynolds, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Organizational Meeting Minutes 2020 January 6, 2020

Organizational Meeting Minutes 2020 January 6, 2020
Grange Hall, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Town Councilmembers Alan Reynolds, Yukari Day, Innes Kasanof, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk Patricia Warfield, Town Justice Ken Williams, Tax Collector Robin White.

Meeting opened at 7:15 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Town Justice Ken Williams administered the Oath of Office to Town Supervisor Alan White, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Councilwoman Yukari Day, Town Councilman Alan Reynolds, Town Clerk Patricia Warfield, Tax Collector Robin White.

Deputy Town Clerk: Jamie VoglerDeputy Bookkeeper: Sheri Reynolds

911 Committee: The Board will ask Bob VanValkenburgh they need to add another committee member to fill the vacancy left by Ted Randazzo.

Grange Oversight Committee: Inventory of tables and chairs at the Grange will be taken to see if additional items need to be purchased. These items are usually purchased with money from the Community Fund.

Planning Board: The Board will ask Andrew Kelder if he would like to continue to serve on the Planning Board with the new term ending in 2024.

Zoning Board of Appeals: The Board will ask Eric Johansen if he would like to continue to serve on the Board of Assessment Review with the new term ending in 2022.

Cemetery Maintenance: Will increase from $1100.00 to $1133.00.

Standard Guidelines for Response Times: Response to requests for information to any of the elected or appointed officials shall be initiated within 24 hours from the time of the request. Most of our town officials work from remote locations on a part time basis. We will do our best to respond as quickly as possible.

2020 Town of Halcott Terms of Employment: (A)Truck/Heavy Equipment Operator wages to increase from $19.00 to $19.50 per hour based on experience. (B) Laborer wages to increase from $10.80 to $13.00 per hour.

Motion to accept the Town of Halcott Organization Schedule for 2020 with modifications by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Motion to Adjourn at 8:08 pm by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Town Board Meeting Minutes, December 16, 2019

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes
Halcott Grange
December 16, 2019, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk Patricia Warfield. Delaware Co. S.W.C.D. Gale Neale, C.W.C./C.E.O. Town of Halcott John Mathiesen, NYC DEP Adam Trescott.

Call to order at 7:15 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance.

LFA Discussion: Councilman Alan Reynolds asked if the Elk Creek toe-cut area had been added to the report and were there any recommendations. The area had been addressed and the recommendation was to remove debris from the area below the toe-cut. A work group will be formed to figure out the steps needed to move forward to make the LFA recommendations a reality. On Town roads, a tactical plan will be put into place to tackle smaller projects that can be accomplished this year;  then looking ahead, perhaps add funds to the 2021 budget allocated for additional projects recommended in the LFA report. To facilitate the implementation of the LFA recommendations on roads eligible for funding, the Town will invite Peg Ellsworth from the M-ARK project to the next board meeting to discuss the grant writing process. The Town can apply for funding for various projects when the LFA is accepted by the Town.  Motion to accept the LFA Report by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Approval of the minutes of the November 18, 2019 meeting: Motion to approve by Councilman Alan Reynolds, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The Highway Department purchased better lighting for both large plow trucks.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G1219 – vouchers 187 – 195 = $1,224.88.  Highway Abstract #H1219 – vouchers 196 – 202 = $3,412.42.  Motion to pay bills by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, 2nd by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, Councilwoman, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Finance Chair Innes Kasanof presented the monthly finance report. (B) The Town received a loyalty check in the amount of $500.00 from the Workers Compensation program for adhering to recommended safety guidelines and also received $51.77 from NYMIR in the form of a reimbursement check. (C) The costs of compensation packages (health insurance and retirement) incurred by the Town is more than the wages paid to those individuals.

Clerk’s Report: Billy Haynes: $150.00. The Town collected and disbursed $150.00 for the month of November.

Town Board Meeting Minutes, November 18, 2019

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes Halcott Grange
November 18, 2019, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council Members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk, Patricia Warfield.

Call to Order at 7:15 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Approval of the minutes of the September 16, 2019 meeting: With the following spelling correction: Paul and Sybil Margaritis. Motion to approve by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Yukari Day, Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The Highway Department has been working towards the purchase of a water tank and are weighing various options, they would like to have one in place by brooming season this coming spring. (B) A mechanic was here installing a new injector pump system in the Town’s Chevy pick-up truck. (C) The Town will reach out to Greene County and explain our concern about maintenance and repairs on the County roads in Halcott and ask that a representative come look at road conditions and come up with a dedicated schedule for road and bridge work going forward.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G1119 – vouchers 163 – 177 = $16,836.12. Highway Abstract #H1119 – vouchers 178 – 186 = $40,673.27. Motion to pay bills by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2ndby Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Finance Chair Innes Kasanof presented the monthly finance report. (B)The Town received more CHIPS reimbursement money than was originally budgeted. (C ) Vouchers were presented for payment on the internal loans for Town equipment purchased which will go back into the Highway Reserve Fund.

Clerk’s Report: 1 C/O Search: $25.00, Billy Haynes: $150.00. The Town collected and disbursed $175.00 for the month of October.

Other Business: (A) The Board had a conversation about the logistics of part-time local government positions and response time to public inquiries, and will work to come up with a uniform time line for answering them and address the issue at the Organizational Meeting.

Next Meeting: Regular Town Board Meeting December 16, 2019, 7:15 pm.

Motion to Adjourn at 7:42 p.m. by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Minutes, Town Board Meeting October 21, 2019, 7:15 pm

Regular Town Board Meeting Minutes Halcott Grange
October 21, 2019, 7:15 pm

Present: Town Supervisor Alan White, Council Members Yukari Day, Alan Reynolds, Innes Kasanof, Judy DiBenedetto, Highway Superintendent Russell Bouton, Town Clerk, Patricia Warfield. Public:Paul Margolis, Sybil Margolis.

Call to Order at 7:15 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Opened Public Hearing on the Preliminary Budget at 7:16 pm. The Preliminary Budget stayed below the 2% tax cap with a levy increase of 1.99% which includes a 3% pay increase for all who work for the Town, including the following yearly wages: Town Supervisor: $3,695.00, Town Board members: $1,848.00, Town Clerk: $4,635.00, Highway Superintendent: $48,222.00. Paul Margolis asked if health insurance costs were factored into the presented budget and the answer was yes, the insurance cost increase was modest with a 6% increase and reflected in the budget. With no other public input the Public Hearing was closed at 7:28 pm.

Opened Regular meeting at 7:30 pm.

Approval of the minutes of the September 16, 2019 meeting: Motion to approve by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Highway Superintendent’s Report: (A) The new tractor is working well. Superintendent Bouton would like to keep the old mower tractor for a while as it will not bring in much revenue if sold due to its age, but is very useful to the Highway Department. The Town of Middletown may take care of some brush mowing for the Town, but this would not happen until this winter or next spring at the earliest.(B) Greene County will be in Halcott to patch holes on County Route 3. Supervisor White asked Highway Superintendent Bouton if the County has a schedule for the resurfacing/topping of the county roads in Halcott because extensive ditch work needs to be done before any topping work should begin. Supervisor White recommended the Town have a comprehensive conversation with the County in regards to the scope of work needed to be done to maintain our roads, with the LFA documentation of the bridge repair/replacement work that needs to happen added into the conversation as well.

Voucher vote: General Abstract #G1019 – vouchers 147 – 154 = $2,943.20. Highway Abstract #H1019 – vouchers 143, 155– 162 = $29,91613. Motion to pay bills by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Finance Chair Report: (A) Finance Chair Innes Kasanof presented the monthly finance report. The Town is in good fiscal standing heading towards the end of the year. (B) The new to Halcott John Deere tractor will need to be added to the equipment list on the Town finance report and added to the Town’s insurance coverage as well.

Clerk’s Report: 1 Building Permit: $160.00, 4 C/O Searches @ $25.00 each: $100.00, Transfer Station Bagged Garbage Money: $259.00. The Town collected and disbursed $519.00 for the month of September.
Other Business: (A) Zoning Board Appeals Chairwoman Karen Rauter has asked to step down from her position for personal reasons, with ZBA member Warren Reynolds willing to fill the vacancy.Motion to appoint Warren Reynolds as Chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye. ABSTAIN: Councilman Alan Reynolds. (B) LFA Final Public Hearing: MMI presented the preliminary final report to the public at the meeting, outlining the need make the bridge on County Route 3 (coming into Halcott) and the relocation of the Highway Garage a priority. MMI did make contact with someone at the County level when working on this study. It was brought to the attention of the Board that the area known as the Elk Creek toe-cut was not addressed by MMI in the LFA study. MMI will be notified of the oversite and asked to add this area to the study and included in the report. The last step in the LFA process is for the final report to be drafted and posted, a comment period to take place, any revisions made and then the Board will be able to have a vote on the adoption of the LFA study. Once the LFA has been adopted, the Town can then begin to solicit grant money. Peg Ellsworth of the M-ARK project will be asked to come to Halcott and give a presentation on grant proposal options. (C) Supervisor Alan White asked the Board for a motion to adopt the preliminary budget. Motion to Adopt the 2020 Preliminary Budget by Councilwoman Yukari Day, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilwoman Innes Kasanof: aye, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.

Next Meeting: Regular Town Board Meeting November 18, 2019, 7:15 pm.

Motion to Adjourn at 7:59 p.m. by Councilwoman Innes Kasanof, 2nd by Councilwoman Judy DiBenedetto, Councilman Alan Reynolds: aye, Councilwoman Yukari Day: aye, Supervisor Alan White: aye.