September 9, 2002
Town Board Minutes
Southwest Community Center
Supervisor: Victoria M. Mullen
Town Board Members: Tim DeSacia, Greg Herrmann,
Margaret Mahaney, Richard Pratt
meeting of the Oswego Town Board was held on September 9, 2002 at the Southwest
Community Center at 7:00 PM. Supervisor Mullen opened with the Pledge of
Allegiance. The following members were present:
Supervisor's Report: My preliminary budget process is almost complete. I will be filing my budget with the town clerk on the 16th, if completed. There will be no increase in taxes for either the town or the highway for 2003, even though I have included a garage payment. This was accomplished by trimming spending on all contractual accounts. Our workforce has become leaner in some cases and is under study in other cases so we can improve on our service to our residents.
In the supervisors office I have one employee, instead of one full time and several part time workers. My bookkeeper's salary is $5,000 less than the previous bookkeeper's salary was. The bookkeeper handles her job quite well as is evident by the fact that our bills are paid promptly and our town board receives financial reports on a monthly basis. Having these reports on time and accurate allows the town board to make informed and confident decisions.
I am in the office on a daily basis; making myself available for meetings and to do the administrative and most of the clerical work myself. The supervisor's office budget savings are over $15,000.00 from 2000.
To continue to keep the spending down we now have only one constable who serves both justices. That is a saving of $5,500.00. Also our constable does not submit mileage vouchers for bank runs, and he does not run errands for the supervisor's office this year. This allows me to cut the spending in that contractual line.
I will seek to consolidate positions and to cut spending even further. This is a true budget and was the result of months of analyzing the last 6 years figures. The message is clear. All departments MUST lower spending.
In the area of budgeting, I do not pay myself the $1500.00 to be the budget officer. I have appointed Rick Hogan to that position, and it has paid off well. His expertise has eliminated many of the mistakes that have been repeated over the years. This shows us a true picture of our finances and we are very happy with the improvement in this area.
Since no petition was filed on the consolidation of the water districts, I will now move forward on this. There will be no hydrant fees on the tax bills. Hydrant fees were $17.80 per household. This will be eliminated for the entire town for several years. This is a positive development for the taxpayer.
Barton and Loguidice have completed their report on Sleepy Hollow and the plan for corrective action is being sent to the DEC and the Town. After the report is filed with the DEC, the town will meet with them to see what the next step in this consent order will be. After that meeting, I will set up another meeting with the residents of Sleepy Hollow. I have received many questions from the residents that they would like answered. I have forwarded those questions to the engineers and at that meeting I hope they will all be addressed.
It is time for the residents to reinstate a sewer committee or perhaps more formally a Board of Commissioners for management of their sewer district. The residents of Sleepy Hollow must get involved in the decision making process, since it is only their funds that can be used on this project. I would like to make that perfectly clear as I have heard there is some miss-information going around about that. I have filed a pre-eligibility determination with the Federal Financial Assistance for Water System Upgrades for the Sleepy Hollow Subdivision looking for grant money to help defray the cost of the rehabilitation. Also, Senator Wright's office and Assemblywoman Sullivan are working with me to get some financial assistance. These are things that the Sewer Commission could be working on.
Because of the petition that was filed regarding the funding for the town garage, the town is forced to hold a special referendum. The referendum will be held on Tuesday, October 8th from noon to 9:00 p.m. The polling places will be The Oswego Town Fire Barn and the Southwest Community Center. Bids came in just under $500,000.00. I had planned on using $150,000.00 of the surplus and the $50,000.00 grant that I had been able to obtain from the state, and to bond for $350,000.00. I am working on finding further funding for the project and this garage will not mean an increase in our taxes next year. We have to face the facts on our buildings. They need to be maintained, and this project would have been a positive move forward and still can be. I'm sure the residents of this town will come out to vote in the affirmative. I hope in the future people will seek correct information and come to the public hearings when they are held on issues.
We will be holding an Open House at the Town Garage on Wednesday, October 2nd, from 4 - 6 p.m. so that the public can once again see the desperate needs for a new garage facility.
Public Comment:The public had questions and concerns regarding the open house on October 2nd at town hall, will there be a presentation, question regarding the bids on the highway garage, why a public hearing after the bids were sent out, where is the capital project plan? Many questions were raised regarding a local business in the town and if that business was legal? Local resident would like a copy of the ZBA officer's monthly report for August. What was going to be done about the business to correct possible violations?
Resolution 2002- 122 Be it resolved that the Oswego Town Board approves the minutes from the August 12, 2002 town board meeting. Moved by Supervisor Mullen and seconded by Councilor Mahaney. All ayes motion carried.
Resolution 2002- 123 Be it resolved that the Oswego Town Board approves the bills on Abstract 9.
Resolution 2002- 124 Be it resolved that the Oswego Town Board approves the budget modifications as follows:
Resolution 2002- 125 Motion by Supervisor Mullen and seconded by Councilor DeSacia to move into executive session at 7:55 PM to discuss the employment history of a particular person. All ayes motion carried.
Resolution 2002- 126 Motion by Supervisor Mullen and seconded by Councilor Mahaney to resume the regular meeting of the Oswego Town Board at 8:15 PM. All ayes motion carried.
Motion by Councilor Mahaney and seconded by Councilor Pratt to close the regular meeting of the Oswego Town Board at 8:16 PM. All ayes motion carried.
Theresa A. Cooper, RMC
Oswego Town Clerk