What's going on in Germantown?

GDO My Notes on the Town Board Meeting of 8/25/2014

The meeting was called to order at 7PM by Supervisor, Joel Craig. Board members Mike Mortenson, Don Westmore and Matthew Phelan were present; Andrea Dunn was absent. Joyce Vale, Town Clerk, was there as well.

The Board members approved the minutes of the previous meeting and the list of audited bills to pay. The Town Clerk had no communications for the Board.

Department Reports:

Parks & Maintenance: Anthony Cidras reports that the two “floating islands” have been installed in the Lake and were thriving. This is part of a long-range plan to improve the lake by ecological means. The floating islands are planted with a variety of grasses that serve as “wetlands” to purify the water and to provide healthy competition tot he invasive plants such as duckweed. There will be a few more established over time. There has been a constant round of mowing, weeding because of the lush conditions this summer. He has removed two large stumps from trees that were felled by a storm last year. The new security doors have arrived and they are awaiting the proper time to install them, He has received complaints from users of the Dog Park about overgrown grass. He says he cannot mow when there are dogs in the park, and if some come while he is doing maintenance inside the park he has to leave. He may need to have a sign indicating no dogs allowed in when maintenance id being done….or something .

Highway Department: Don Westmore reports an example of inter-community cooperation. The Highway Departments of Livingston and Clermont and Germantown have cooperated in black-topping several roads that cross the border from one town to another. This makes the best and much more efficient use of the labor and the equipment.

There was an oil spill in the Hudson * (see note below) and Don thanks the Highway Department plus all the other responders from the county and towns all around for the quick and expert response to the emergency. The spill was contained thanks to the quick action . Don says this was a good preview of what would need to be done if there ware a larger spill.

Sewer Department: no report

Police Department: Brian DuBoise reports: 155 hours of patrol service worked in July. The Police patrol visits made to the local areas: Cheviot: 23. Anchorage:22. Schools: 22, Palatine Park: 24, Dales Bridge: 23. Actions included: 17 tickets issued, 15 warnings, 1 DUI, 1 alarm response, 1 trespass complaint, 1 aggravated vehicle operation, 1 disabled auto.

History Department: Sue Raab first thanks Anthony Cidras for his continuing help with repairs and maintenance at the Parsonage. She tells of the new well, built up with rock

[picture the traditional wishing well] She says that shingles are still falling off. Announces that there will be a Palatine Heritage Day event later in September.

Economic Advisory Board: Roy Brown reports, related to the parking issue, there were two weekend events recently that resulted in blocked parking areas along the curbs in front of the businesses in the village. In each case, drivers were approached and asked if they would park in the Municipal lot, which they all did, quite happily. He feels that people of good will will park in the Municipal lot if they are aware of the situation and the location of the Lot. He brought in a sample of the sign they would like to have which reminds parkers that any long term parking is best available at the Municipal lot. No new laws to be enacted, and no consequential enforcement. Everyone thinks this will work.

Because Main Street is County Rt 8 they will need to run this past the Highway Dept of the County. Joel says he will se the Dept head on Wednesday and bring the situation to his attention. There is a signage problem at 9G &Main St—too many signs resultingis some being blocked from vision.

On Sept 18th Roy will go as a GEDC committee rep. to a meeting of the Columbia Economic Development Committee at Columbia-Greene Comm. College. On Oct. 21st he will attend a meeting of the Chatham Business Group.

The next GEDC will be on Sept 17th at 7 PM at the Central House.

He reminds us that on September 20th is the date for the Hudson Valley Apple Festival, sponsored by the Lions Club. With 3 (yes=Three!) large tents it will be Bigger and Better in this the third year of what hopes to be an annual event. Fireworks!

He congratulates Corrine Curry and the Arts & Tourism Committee for the successful opening of the recent ArtSpace show with over 100 people attending the opening.

New Business:: Joel tells of complaints about some advertising circulars being thrown about residents property, unwrapped and not secured with rubber bands and then blowing all around. He proposes an ordinance to authorize the Police department to issue tickets to anyone contributing to a condition of littering. All Board members against littering? All Aye.

Joel asks for another resolution this time authorizing Judge Robert Beaury to apply for this year’s JCAP grant to upgrade the Town Court the maximum amount allowed. All Aye. [ JCAP grants have provided the Town Hall lwith the new chairs and the new security doors that will soon be installed. The Town Hall benefits because the Court is held in the same room. Those of us in the audience appreciate Judge Beaury’s efforts-ed]

Joel asks for a resolution to designate the Kellner Activities Building as a Red Cross emergency shelter. Red Cross officials visited the site and said it could only be a temporary site because there are no handicap toilet facilities and no shower facilities. However, it would serve as a cooling or warming shelter for a short period of time They liked the full kitchen very much. The School, with its comprehensive facility is still the primary focus for emergency shelter. The resolution was tabled for further discussion.

Joel asks for a resolution to authorize a contract with Greenman-Pederson [Engineering] to oversee the sidewalk construction and inspection. “Plan is to go to bid this fall and construction in the Spring!” All Aye.

Supervisor’s Report:

Joel tells of the screening of a film about Germantown: “Germantown, Our Stories” on Sept.9th at 2 PM and 7 PM at the library.

Sept 11th There will be a Service in Palatine Park at the 9/11 memorial at 9 AM

There will be a Town Board Workshop meeting on Sept 15th at 7 PM Public is welcome to attend.

Public Comments.

Frank Mammone, spoke about the issue of the littered property next door to him on Rt 9G. He was at the last month’s meeting and wanted to know why nothing had been done

since then to move the situation closer to resolution. [The wheels of justice grind slowly in these cases.-ed] Joel commiserated with the man and told him that they would press forward, “but it takes time”. Matthew urges more pressure to resolve this. Joel says they need to demonstrate that all actions to achieve the cleanup have been made “in good faith” in order to go to Court with a successful case.


  • OIL SPILL: Although the news was covered in the various press outlets, I had not heard about it ; perhaps you didn’t know about it either. At about 4:30 PM Sunday a boater spotted an object floating in the river that seemed to be leaking oil. Once the notice was put out emergency response agencies came from all directions, the DEC, the Coast Guard, County HAZMAT, and, of course, our local team. The object was a 50 FT flexible pipe used to transfer oil from a fixed source to a floating receiver. It had apparently broken off and was floating free in the river still containing some oil. Officials estimated that the spill was from 50 to 100 gallons of #6 fuel oil. After the comprehensive cleanup effort the spill was       contained and then declared cleaned up. Fortunately none of the oil reached the shoreline. State officials are investigating the original source.—Ed.

Sept 20th Hudson Valley Apple Festival, Palatine Park Fireworks at night. Everyone welcome!

Joel thanks the various agencies and departments from around the County that helped with the oil spill.

The Board went into Executive Session at 7:57PM with no expectation of doing any business after coming back. We all left.

Reported to the best of my note-taking ability,

Kay Abraham 537-5404




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