A Long Executive Session At An Otherwise Short Meeting
By Doug La Rocque
Following the approval of minutes from last month’s regular meeting and workshop, the Board went into a lengthy executive session at its March 9 meeting with attorney Kevin Young and Town Attorney Donald Tate. [private]The reason given was to discuss possible litigation concerning Berlin’s responsibility for the landfill it shared with Petersburgh, now found to be leaching PFOA.
At a public meeting last month in Petersburgh, the Department of Environmental Conservation indicated it was still in a fact finding mode as to whether or not the landfill will be declared a Superfund site. Some of the issues Young has discussed publicly are locating any liability insurance policies Berlin may have carried on the landfill, and questions about how closely Energy Answers, the firm hired to close the site, followed the rules and regulations in doing so. No other information has yet come forth about any fiscal responsibility the Town may have in this matter. Young is a partner in the law firm of Young, Sommer LLC, hired by Berlin to protect its interests.
Water District 2 Commissioner Jim Winn said the contractors installing the filtration system on the village water supply are progressing, and that the Rensselaer County Board of Health paid a visit to the site for the first time on Thursday March 9. Winn said he has not yet had a report back about that visit. As to the District itself, Winn said the only problem they have had recently is a line at Brookside Park that blew off the end of the main water line. That has been repaired.
Winn said the recent stretch of mild weather has given the Highway Department time to fix problems with the equipment that occurred from the previous storms. With the addition of the new one-ton Dodge 5500 to replace a troublesome older vehicle, he said all trucks are repaired and ready to go.
Spring Rabies Clinic Scheduled
Dog Control Officer Doug Goodermote said it has been a quiet month. He has set Thursday, April 20 as the date for the next rabies clinic. Cats will be vaccinated between 6 and 7 pm, with dogs between 7 and 8 pm. Distemper shots are also available, for $10 cash. The clinic will be held at the Berlin Municipal Complex on State Route 22, just north of the Berlin Jr-Sr High School. The clinic is open to anyone from the Taconic Valley. For more information, you may call DCO Goodermote at 658-3308.
Codes Enforcement Officer Allen Yerton said building permit activity is starting to pick up. Dollar General has acquired a permit for the construction of a new store on Route 22, on land that is adjacent to and being purchased from Eagle Energy. Construction is expected to start in April.
The Board also gave its permission to have the plastics container used at the Transfer Station repaired, at a cost not to exceed $1,000. During the comment session of the meeting, the Board asked members of the Taconic Valley American Legion Post to attend their workshop meeting on March 23 at 7 pm, to further discuss the possible transfer of ownership of the Watipi Building to the Post. Commander Chris Lecce graciously accepted the invitation and welcomed a chance for all parties to talk face to face.
Town Clerk Anne Maxon reported local, county and state revenues of $6,905 and non-local revenues of $2,584. Having no other business, the Board adjourned the meeting. [/private]