Story by Kathleen Wilson
The Florida Village Board of Trustees held their regular monthly meeting on Wed., Aug. 8. Village of Florida Mayor Daniel Harter called the meeting to order followed by the reading of the affidavit of publication as published in the Warwick Valley Dispatch stating that the Village Board of Trustees and the Village of Florida were holding a public hearing prior to the meeting on the finalized introductory Local Law 2 of 2018 entitled “Fees.”
The proposed law was read and supporting fee examples were offered, such as the $10 fee to tow a vehicle which does not cover the cost of having a vehicle towed. In the past, the Village has been paying the difference. The purpose of the resolution is to periodically review the fee structure and ensure that the fees cover the costs of Village services including those fees associated with filing certain applications on behalf of individuals; the purpose being not to impose these additional costs on to the Village of Florida taxpayers.
It was noted that the fees have just “been that way” for years and it’s time to review the fee structure and align fees with the actual costs. The Village Board of Trustees solicited input from various department heads including the Village Engineer, Village Attorney, and the Village Planning Board to adjust fees accordingly. The Village Board wants to make sure that the Building Department is collecting fees for these services that cover the cost for each service provided on behalf of an individual.
A motion was made and seconded to pass the resolution to adopt the new fee schedule. The Village Clerk will distribute the fee schedule to all department heads and all department clerks.
Village Sewer Dumping
The Public Hearing session was closed and followed by the Treasurer’s report and each of the Trustees, who provided reports on their respective areas of responsibility. Most notable was John Barczak’s Sewer and Water report.
Recently, very large amounts of grease were poured into the system and separately large amounts of ammonia. The Village has been working on replacing the old spinning systems that have been in place for more than 40 years, all the while trying to deal with these new and unwanted liquids being improperly disposed of.
At this time the Village is in the process of rebuilding the old and worn RCV units and the ammonia has killed all the insects that eat the bacteria. The water in the plant is tested daily and has registered very high ammonia levels. It was also noted that the issues are coming from one sewer line.
Mayor Harter asks that if anyone becomes aware of improper dumping they should report it to the Village Hall for further investigation. The dumping may be accidental, but either way, it’s at a big cost to the Village and must be stopped.
Florida Village Official Banners
Trustee Barczak informed the Board and meeting attendees about a request from Beth Fuller on behalf of the Florida Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber has proposed hanging banners in the Village and Barzcak showed everyone an art drawing of the proposed banner. The plan is to hang the banners from the utility poles in the Village. They will be two by four inches and depict the date Florida was founded in the vibrant blue and orange Seward colors. The motion was approved and once available, the banners will adorn Main St. from the months of April through September.
Trustee Craig Olejniczak provided an update of the LED project citing the Village is in receipt of draft purchase agreements from O&R. The Village has 225 overhead lights and 36 underground lights. Once reviewed and the purchase of the lights complete, the Village will seek bids to make the conversion. It was noted that the actual conversion will only take two to three weeks.
Village Will Contract Sale of Surplus Water to 134 Jessup Switch Road, LLC
The 134 Jessup Switch Road LLC is proposing a three building commercial warehouse complex totaling approximately 170,000 square feet and reached out to the Village to supply water. Village Attorney Elizabeth Cassidy read the proposal which calls for an agreement with the LLC. After consulting with the Village Engineer and the Village’s Water Consultant it was determined that the Village has excess water supply and by law, the Village can sell surplus water to users outside the Village. However, Florida will impose a restriction of 30,000 gallons maximum per day, 10,000 gallons per day for each building. The agreement is not to exceed 12.5 years and includes numerous specific conditions that must be met by the LLC.
After submitting a site plan application, the Village addressed the environmental impacts associated with the project by the environmental review conducted by the Town of Goshen Planning Board as lead agency and the Village of Florida named as an interested agency for the purposes of conducting the environmental review required by the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR) on Mar. 2, 2017.
Goshen submitted a negative declaration pursuant to SEQR on Oct. 5, 2017. The Village of Florida has adopted those findings. The Town of Goshen issued a conditional major site plan approval on Dec. 7, 2017. Mayor Harter is authorized to sign such agreement if the Village Attorney confirms that the agreement is acceptable.
Next Board Meeting
The next Village Board meeting will be held on Wed., Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m. in Village Hall, located at 33 S. Main St. in Florida.