Adirondack Town Of Franklin
Adirondack Town Of Franklin

Town of Franklin Board Meeting

March 13, 2006

The Town of Franklin Town Board held a regularly-scheduled Board Meeting on Monday, March 13, 2006 at 7:00 pm at the Franklin Town Hall in Vermontville, NY.

Board members present:

    Supervisor Mary Ellen Keith
    Councilman Gene Goff
    Councilman Tim Goff
    Councilman Walt Kretser
    Councilwoman Janet Ordway

Others present:

    Highway Superintendent James Rascoe
    Town Clerk Sandra J. Oliver
    Scott Campbell, Friends of the North Country
    Jacob Resnick, Adirondack Daily Enterprise
    Richard Hough
    Don Yando
    Robert Weigold
    Jean Baltzly
    Daniel Plosila
    Tracy Posdzich
    Richard Jarvis
    Richard Grant


Supervisor Keith called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited; the Town Clerk called the roll and stated the full board was present.


    The following claims were presented and reviewed by the Board:

    General Warrant #3Claims 38-56$5,883.87
    HighwayWarrant #3Claim 18-32$8,567.57
    Prepay GeneralWarrant #3Claims 17-32$15,321.16
    Prepay HighwayWarrant #2Claim 3$27,710.00
    Fire ProtectionWarrant #2Claims 2-3$48,359.29

    Motion to pay approved bills (T.Goff-W.Kretser m/s/p) ALL AYE


    Balances as at February 1, 2006

    General FundCK$6,426.66
    Highway FundCK$46,279.60
    Cap Proj Hwy56,083.16
    Cap. BuildingCLASS$117,248.11

    Accept Supervisor's Report (G.Goff-J.Ordway m/s/p) ALL AYE


    Supervisor Keith requested the Board to transfer $22.00 from State Retirement to Workers Compensation.

    Motion for resolution (G.Goff-J.Ordway m/s/p) ALL AYE

    RESOLUTION NO. 16: GENERAL FUND BUDGET AMENDMENT #2 WHEREAS, transfer of funds is necessary, NOW, THEREFORE, the Franklin Town Board authorizes the following transfer of funds:

    A9010.8 State Retirement$22.00A9040.8 Work.Comp$22.00

    Those voting aye:

      Supervisor Mary Ellen Keith
      Councilman Gene Goff
      Councilman Tim Goff
      Councilman Walter Kretser
      Councilwoman Janet Ordway

    Those Voting nay:



    The Board amended the first line of the February 13, 2006 meeting minutes to change "organizational" meeting to Board meeting. The minutes were accepted as amended. (G.Goff-T.Goff m/s/p) ALL AYE


    Scott Campbell reported no one had come to the public hearing at 6:00 pm. He then updated the Board on the progress of the application for the new housing renewal grant application. Friends of the North Country had a list of 12 householders who were prepared to go through the certification process for approximately $277,860.00 in funds. There are 20 householders who are wait-listed. In order to complete the application, Mr. Campbell requested the Board to pass a resolution authorizing the Supervisor to submit said application.

    Motion for resolution (J.Ordway-G.Goff m/s/p) ALL AYE

    RESOLUTION NO. 17: AUTHORIZE SUBMISSIONOF APPLICATION UNDER TITLE I OF HOUSING & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ACT WHEREAS, the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 as amended provides for a program of Community Development Small Cities Grants; and WHEREAS, the Town of Franklin, pursuant to the Housing and Community Development Act Federal Regulations, will solicit citizen comments and recommendations as to the Community Development Program; and WHEREAS, the Town of Franklin will hold two public hearings for the purpose of providing citizens with an opportunity to participate in the development of the application; and WHEREAS, the application for said grant conforms to the application requirements as contained in Federal Regulations 24 CFR Part 570 Subpart F; and WHEREAS, said application requires certain certifications to be submitted along with and as part of said application; NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Town Board of the Town of Franklin, being the governing body thereof, that

      (1) the Supervisor is hereby authorized and directed to submit an application, including all understandings and assurances contained therein, to the fullest extent of the funding allowed and determined by the Department of Housing and Urban Development on behalf of the Town of Franklin to the New York state Community Development Block Grant Small Cities Program, under the Housing and Community Development Act.

      (2) Mary Ellen Keith, Supervisor of the Town of Franklin, be authorized and directed to act as the authorized representative of the Town of Franklin and to provide such additional information as may be requested.

      (3) The Supervisor is hereby authorized and directed to execute on behalf of the Town of Franklin, such certifications and assurances as may be required under the Federal Rules and Regulations, as set forth in 24 CFR Part 570.

    Those voting aye:

      Supervisor Mary Ellen Keith
      Councilman Gene Goff
      Councilman Tim Goff
      Councilman Walter Kretser
      Councilwoman Janet Ordway

    Those Voting nay:


    Mr. Campbell then requested the Board for a resolution adopting the Consolidated Plan, the Citizens Participation Plan and the Anti-Displacement Plan, all as required for the Application.

    Motion for said resolution (W.Kretser-T.Goff m/s/p) ALL AYE


    Mr. Campbell reported the draft of the Plan is almost complete; FONC is waiting for 2 or 3 schedules, but that the Plan is due in May.

    The Board thanked Mr. Campbell for his appearance.


    Highway Supt. James Rascoe gave the following report:

    1. Incorrect Street Names. The Adirondack Daily Enterprise published the County's list of Town roads, and did not take into account the E-911 name changes. The Town Clerk was requested to publish the corrected street names in the Enterprise.

    2. Department Operations. Loader and backhoe working well. Department staff are pushing the snow banks back, cleaning ditches, greasing trucks, changing oil, and in spare time, painting the garage.

    3. Repairs and Bills.

      A Repairs on Unit 11 and Unit 2, both Internationals were made; both repairs under warranty. Although an invoice was received for repair, Supt. Rascoe contacted M.A. Jerry and advised the Board to ignore the bills.

      B Staff rebuilt slushers in the spare time and saved the Town substantial dollars.

      C The Department has switched suppliers and will be ordering from Fastenal, which is under State contract.


    1. Surplus Equipment. Coun. G. Goff reported three vehicles will be advertised for sale, and the Highway Committee is working with Supt. Rascoe on the ads.

    2. State Route 3. Coun. W. Kretser stated six miles of State Route 3 from before Kate Mtn Park to the County line in terrible shape. Supt. Rascoe agreed and expressed concern about large trucks and out-of-towners sliding when driving over frost heaves. Coun. Kretser suggested the Town Board draft a letter to the Regional Director of NYS Dept. of Transportation and send a copy to the Commissioner. The Board concurred and requested the Town Clerk to draft same for Board review at the March 20th special meeting.


    1. Appreciation for Highway Department. Led by Coun. Kretser, the Board expressed appreciation for the good work being done by the Highway Department under the management of Superintendent Rascoe. Coun. G. Goff noted that Supt. Rascoe is definitely in charge and the Board is full confidence in him. Supv. Keith stated she was grateful that the Highway Dept. was working full-time in the Town's behalf. Supt. Rascoe thanked those present and said he would pass the compliments on to his staff.

    2. Drainage Issues.

      (a) Richard Jarvis, Fletcher Farm Road resident, submitted a letter concerning drainage on his part of the road; Supt. Rascoe advised the problem had been addressed.

      (b) Tracey Posdzich, Fletcher Farm Road resident, requested the Highway Dept. to investigate the ditch drainage issues near her residence. Supt. Rascoe said he would look at it tomorrow and have it taken care of.


    Supv. Keith indicated that although Mr. Gonyea was scheduled to appear before the Board to discuss the proposed Wal-Mart Super Center in the Village of Saranac Lake, he had telephoned earlier to inform her he was unwell and would not appear.


    Supv. Keith, Coun. G. Goff and Town Clerk Oliver attended the March 8th meeting organized by Harrietstown Supervisor Larry Miller at the Harrietstown Town Hall. Coun. G. Goff reported that the first part of the meeting was a presentation by Multi-Med, a Syracuse medical billing company which administers billing on the part of local ambulance services. This would be a method of producing additional revenue for the ambulance/rescue service instead of the plan proposed by the Village of Saranac Lake, to base contract fees on total assessed property values of each participating municipality. Coun. G. Goff indicated that local fire/rescue departments are governed by Town Law 209(b) and cannot invoice its services unless they are separate entities. The Saranac Lake Fire Dept. does not wish to separate itself from the ambulance and rescue service because it would cause a drop in morale and a loss of volunteers. However, another method has been discovered which may enable the service to invoice consumers. In addition, a committee is to be formed consisting of one board member from each participating municipality.


    Coun. G. Goff reported on the status of the Town's dry hydrants. They are located on Alder Brook, Goldsmith Road, Bass Pond, Bogie Pond, Rainbow Narrows, Oregon Plains (near Skiff), Muzzy, Fletcher Farm, and Plank Roads and Lyon Brook at Route 3. Since installation of the dry hydrants fire department technology has evolved to the point that the fire department will not use the dry hydrants, but instead a portable pump to obtain water. Coun. Goff noted unit at Rainbow Narrows has a pump platform and recommended the rest of the dry hydrant units be set up the same way. This could be accomplished by Town Maintenance person, Glenn Swinyer, this summer.


    A meeting has been scheduled with DEC, Lyme Timber and the Nature Conservancy with Supervisor Keith and Coun. Kretser. The Town of Franklin will not, at this point in time, support the proposed easement until definite answers are given to its concerns, including trails open and available to all, and an accurate definition of "limited access". Supervisor Keith noted that despite DEC claims that the easement would increase tax revenue, Assessor Douglas Tichenor estimated the increase in tax revenue would only be $40,000. Coun. Kretser stated following the meeting with all concerned next week, the Town will hold another public information meeting on the subject.


    Supervisor Keith reported that after doing some research on the Loon Lake Fire Tower, she discovered that the Tower is on NYS land; DEC owns the Tower and access to it is across land owned by International Paper. She suggested the Board adopt a resolution in support of the fire tower designation as historic.

    Motion for resolution (W.Kretser-J.Ordway m/s/p) ALL AYE

    RESOLUTION NO. 19: IN SUPPORT OF DESIGNATION OF LOON LAKE FIRE TOWER AS HISTORIC BUILDING WHEREAS, the Loon Lake Fire Tower has been in existence for many years and has served the public; and WHEREAS, said Fire Tower is a building which engenders a feeling of security for residents of the area; NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Town Board of the Town of Franklin supports the consideration by the NY State Review Board of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation of the Loon Lake Fire Tower as a historic building to be placed on the National and State Registers of Historic Places.

    Those voting aye:

      Supervisor Mary Ellen Keith
      Councilman Gene Goff
      Councilman Tim Goff
      Councilman Walter Kretser
      Councilwoman Janet Ordway

    Those Voting nay:



    Supervisor Keith stated a special board meeting will be held next Monday, March 20, 2006 to discuss the Town's building infrastructure, including the Town Garage, the Vermontville Town Hall, a possible structure for the Recreation Park and the Merrillsville Town Hall. FUNDING AND FINANCES. Supv. Keith stated the Town is in very good financial condition, with only $50,000 owing on one vehicle which will be paid off next year. Following is a list of structures which require upgrading or building. Some bonding will be required to accomplish what is needed. She will meet with a Vermont firm, Yellow Wood, next week, along with Ann Holland and Terrie Martino of ANCA, to discuss possible grants to fund these improvements.

      A. Vermontville Town Hall. Supv. Keith advised that several years ago the NYS Legislature passed an unfunded mandate concerning local justice courts and that the Town must upgrade the Vermontville Town Hall to accommodate the court and to provide office space for Town officials.

      B. Town Garage. The Town Garage is in need of renovation and upgrading, as mentioned during previous meetings.

      C. Rec Park. A new structure to accommodate all social and fund-raising events is proposed to be built at the Rec Park.

      D. Merrillsville Town Hall. A grant was obtained through Sen. Betty Little to upgrade the Merrillsville Town Hall, including heat and indoor plumbing with handicapped accessible bathrooms.


    Town Clerk Sandra Oliver advised that Kathy Fadden, Chair of the Ethics Committee, had submitted her resignation; Clerk Oliver suggested that Deputy Town Clerk Lauren LeFebvre be appointed to replace Ms. Fadden. She noted that the position of Deputy Town Clerk is unpaid, and that Ms. Oliver had served as Deputy Town Clerk and Ethics Chair before being appointed to the Town Clerk position. The Board concurred.

    Motion for resolution (M.Keith-T.Goff m/s/p) ALL AYE

    RESOLUTION NO. 20: APPOINT LAUREN LEFEBVRE AS CHAIR OF THE OF ETHICS COMMITTEE WHEREAS, Kathy Fadden, Chair of the Ethics Committee has submitted her resignation; and WHEREAS, Lauren LeFebvre has knowledge of the intent and procedures of the Committee and, when asked, expressed interest in the position; NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Lauren LeFebvre is appointed to the position of Chair of the Town of Franklin Ethics Committee.

    Those voting aye:

      Supervisor Mary Ellen Keith
      Councilman Gene Goff
      Councilman Tim Goff
      Councilman Walter Kretser
      Councilwoman Janet Ordway

    Those Voting nay:


    The Town Clerk was requested to contact the other members of the Ethics Committee, Charlotte Mitchell and David Litty, to ascertain their interest in continuing service on the Committee.


    1. BUILDING COMMITTEE. A special board meeting will be held March 20, 2006 to discuss building infrastructure.


      A. Inspection. Coun. Ordway consulted Roger Symonds concerning the playground inspection, and he will provide copies of the inspection procedure used by the school system for its playgrounds. Coun. G.Goff suggested both Couns. Ordway and T.Goff perform the playground inspection.

      B. Skating Rink. Despite best efforts, a skating rink was never created. Supv. Keith noted she has been waiting for 4 weeks for a part.

      C. Replacement of Tarp. Coun. G. Goff suggested replacement of the tarpaulin covering the roof of the deck at the Rec Park with some sort of enclosure. Couns. Ordway and T.Goff will research.

    3. CELEBRATION COMMITTEE. Coun. Ordway commented that everyone is away at Easter, so no Easter party will be held.

    4. CEMETERY COMMITTEE. Supv. Keith received an email that deer will in fact eat yew bushes and trees. However, the email was sent from an area with more deer than here, and Coun. Kretser noted the animals only eat yew when there is nothing else to eat. Supv. Keith suggested that Coun. T. Goff investigate the purchase of several yews for the cemeteries.


    1. Town Clerk. The Annual Town Clerk Conference will be held in Saratoga Springs in April. The Town Clerk requested permission to attend. The Board agreed.

    2. Highway School. Supv. Keith indicated that Supt. Rascoe and Deputy Supt. Merrill would like to attend the Cornell Univ. Highway School in June. The Board agreed.

    3. APA Conference. Supv. Keith requested permission to attend the APA conference to be held next week at the Hotel Saranac. The Board approved. Motion to approve attendance at conferences (J.Ordway-W.Kretser m/s/p) ALL AYE


    Don Yando, Swinyer Rd. resident, asked whether his property values would be affected by his neighbor's messy yard. He was advised to contact Ed LaGree, the Codes Officer for the Town.


    There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:45 pm (M.Keith-J.Ordway m/s/p) ALL AYE

Respectfully submitted, Sandra J. Oliver, Town Clerk

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Town of Franklin
P.O. Box 209, Route 3, Vermontville, NY 12989  ·  Tel: 518-891-2189  ·  Fax: 518-891-6389  ·
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