SIXTH REGULAR SESSION
Johnstown, NY June 10th, 2019
Roll Call – Quorum Present
Supervisors: Argotsinger, Blackmon, Born, Bradt, Breh, Callery, Fagan, Greene, Groff, Howard, Kinowski, Lauria, Perry, Potter, Rice, Selmser, Waldron
TOTAL: Present: 17 Absent: 3 (Supervisors Handy, Wilson and Young)
Vice-Chairman Greene called the meeting to order at 1:00 p.m. Following the Pledge of Allegiance, Vice-Chairman Greene called for a moment of silence in recognition of the sacrifices borne by the men and women of the U.S. Military during the D-Day Invasion, June 6, 1944.
Vice-Chairman Greene next read an official statement regarding the previous Eminent Domain vote by the Fulton County Board of Supervisors as follows:
On 13 May 2019, the Board of Supervisors voted to authorize the Fulton County IDA to initiate an eminent domain action to obtain certain land owned by Robert Bowe. The land involved on Hales Mills Road Extension could play an important role in promoting future economic development in our county.Since last month’s vote, the owner, Mr. Bowe, passed away. Last Tuesday, the IDA held its required public hearing on the eminent domain action and there was a great deal of public opinion registered against pursuing eminent domain.
In respect to these two events, Board members have expressed reservations about proceeding with eminent domain under these circumstances. Therefore, we have prepared a Resolution to rescind the decision to initiate eminent domain for consideration today. I would like to suggest that the Board suspend the order of today’s Agenda and take up that Resolution now at the beginning of our meeting.
After the vote, we can then proceed to the balance of our Agenda.
Supervisor Argotsinger made a motion to suspend of the order of today’s Agenda to take taking action on Late Resolution No. 1 at the beginning of the meeting, seconded by Supervisor Callery and unanimously carried.
Supervisor Kinowski then made a motion to reconsider Resolution No. 166 of 2019 (RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE FULTON COUNTY INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT AGENCY TO INITIATE AN EMINENT DOMAIN PROCEDURE LAW ACTION TO OBTAIN CERTAIN LAND OWNED BY ROBERT BOWE IN THE HALES MILLS AREA), seconded by Supervisor Breh and unanimously carried.
The Chairman of the Board then read the title of the Resolution. It was seconded by Supervisor Waldron.
Supervisor Groff stated that he was opposed to eminent domain and has been from the start and that he voted no on last month’s Resolution No. 166.
Supervisor Groff then made a Motion to Amend Late Resolution No. 1 as follows: “Resolved, That the IDA is hereby directed to cease and desist proceeding with eminent domain to obtain said property from Robert Bowe, his estate or any future owners of said property”; seconded by Supervisor Howard and carried. (Supervisors Argotsinger, Kinowski and Waldron opposed).
Supervisor Argotsinger commented that he hoped someone from the agricultural community would step forward to purchase the property in question make it into a farm. He further commented that agriculture land in the area is being sold/leased to solar companies and he is against that.
Supervisor Groff advised that he wants to “close the door” to eminent domain.
Supervisor Rice asked what the County's history was regarding eminent domain. Mr. Stead responded that eminent domain has not been used by the County, at least not in the last 26 years to the best of his knowledge.
Supervisor Waldron said the “door should not be closed” on developing this piece of property because economic development is very important. He stressed that this piece of property has not been used for farming since the 1980’s.
Supervisor Kinowski advised that he agrees with Supervisor Waldron and that the door should not be closed on eminent domain forever.
A vote was taken on Late Resolution No. 1, as amended, and it was passed unanimously.
Vice-Chairman Greene asked if there was anyone from the public who wished to address the Board.
Barbara Hemstreet, 3894 State Highway 29, Johnstown, NY: Ms. Hemstreet advised that she wanted to thank Mr. Groff and everyone who voted against eminent domain. She further advised that the County has farm land sitting that is not in use. She advised that it was “nobody’s business” what the landowner used his property for. “It is their land, they can do with it what they want”. She is very concerned about IDA’s in general and sees eminent domain as a gross misuse of government power. She commented that there are vacancies in industrial parks in the county, so there are lots of places for development there. She also said that citizens should be informed ahead of time regarding such projects, so the county does not have to back track.
Karen Fagan, 2533 State Highway 29, Johnstown, NY: Ms. Fagan thanked the Board for voting against using eminent domain. She referenced a “NYS Smart Growth” document and that it is a sensible explanation. She advised that she viewed Saratoga County websites and they are promoting sustainable living as a component of smart growth. She also suggested that county officials inform citizens better about what is possibly going to be happening in the county. She said that she is working to protect local farms.
Billie Jo Lear, 247 Co. Highway 155, Gloversville, NY: Ms. Lear advised that people in Fulton County do not know what the Board of Supervisors was thinking when they voted to enact an eminent domain proceeding. Apparently, the Board does not know the “core values” of their citizens. Perhaps the Board does not want the citizens in Fulton County to know what it is doing.
Matt Ebert, 38 N. Division Street, #C, St. Johnsville, NY: Mr. Ebert said that he was speaking on behalf of the newly-founded “Fulton County Agricultural Development Agency”. He thanked everyone for voting not to use eminent domain to seek the property of Mr. Bowe and stated that it was a major step. He would also like Fulton County to “think outside of the box” and would like to help through volunteerism and agriculture development. He advised that the Board made a great decision today to keep the agriculture farm movement moving.
UPDATES FROM STANDING COMMITTEES
REPORTS OF SPECIAL COMMITTEES
Adirondack Government: Supervisor Selmser advised that he attended a meeting on June 3 in Saranac Lake, NY. The group was updated regarding ATV use and the impression left by APA officials was they want to ban ATV use on private land as well as on state land. There was a discussion on cell phone and broad band efforts to address needs in the north country. He said there was a discussion on FirstNet and that if looks like 32 towers have been approved for construction throughout the Adirondacks. He advised that boat washing stations may become mandatory, but there is no talk of the state providing any funding for such mandate.
Soil and Water Conservation District Board: Supervisor Blackmon advised that the District Board met on May 21. There was a final audit of the books that has been completed. At Tryon they are continuing to assist with excavator work and with stump removal. Also, they are helping with the electrical entrance project. They have sold the boat washing station for $23,000.00 to Saratoga. The District participated in “Earth Day” at the Johnstown Park. The tree and shrub programs are going well, as well as the fish program.
Resolutions on the Agenda were then deliberated upon. No. 225 (Resolution Opposing Proposed State Legislation Known as the “Drivers License Access and Privacy Act” Concerning Undocumented Individuals (S01747-A, A03675-A): Mr. Stead advised that this is now also being called the “Green Light Bill”.
No. 230 (Resolution Extending a Temporary Part-Time Mail Clerk Position in the Information Technology Department): Supervisor Callery advised that the person in the Graphics and Web Specialist/Mail Clerk position passed away recently.
Supervisor Callery asked why Don Brown Bus Sales buses are parked at Tryon. Mr. Stead said that he believes that it is a “good neighbor policy” by the IDA and that it is at no cost because it is temporary. Mr. Stead said that he read this in recent minutes for the Industrial Development Agency.
Supervisor Potter advised that earlier today, the Board passed a Resolution opposing the “Driver’s License Access and Privacy Act” proposed in the State Legislature. He further advised that Senator Tedisco is sponsoring a state bill that would indemnify County Clerks from facing lawsuits or removal by the Governor when they act in good faith and with a reasonable belief that they are upholding their oath of office and the U.S. Constitution by not granting licenses to those here illegally.
Supervisor Potter requested that because there was not time today to submit for a formal Resolution supporting Senator Tedisco’s legislation, a motion be done asking the Chairman of the Board to send a letter to the Senator encouraging him to push forth with this bill.
Supervisor Potter made a motion that the Chairman of the Board write a letter to Senator Tedisco encouraging him to push forward with Bill S.3868/A.6317 (County Clerk’s Protection Act) to indemnify County Clerks from facing lawsuits or removal by the governor when they act in good faith and with a reasonable belief they are upholding their oath of office and the Constitution of the United States by refusing to issue driver’s licenses to those here illegally, seconded by Supervisor Born and unanimously carried.
Upon a motion by Supervisor Waldron, seconded by Supervisor Callery and unanimously carried, the Board adjourned at 1:54 p.m.
Jon R. Stead, Administrative Officer/DATE
Clerk of the Board
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING RENEWAL OF SPECIFIC EXCESS EMPLOYERS LIABILITY INSURANCE POLICY FOR 2019-2020 (WORKERS COMPENSATION PLAN)
RESOLUTION SETTING THE DATE OF A PUBLIC HEARING REGARDING THE PROPOSED 2019-2020 FMCC BUDGET
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING RENEWAL OF SPECIFIC EXCESS EMPLOYERS LIABILITY INSURANCE POLICY FOR 2019-2020 (WORKERS COMPENSATION PLAN)
RESOLUTION REVISING THE THRESHOLD FOR APPROVAL OF TRANSFERS BY THE BUDGET DIRECTOR/COUNTY AUDITOR
RESOLUTION AMENDING THE FULTON COUNTY PURCHASING AND AUDIT GUIDELINES
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A CONTRACT WITH FIRSTLIGHT CORPORATION FOR INTERNET SERVICE CAPACITY (INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT)
RESOLUTION EXTENDING A TEMPORARY PART-TIME MAIL CLERK POSITION IN THE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING APPLICATION AND ACCEPTANCE OF NYS BOARD OF ELECTIONS CAPITAL GRANT (100% STATE AID)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING APPLICATION AND ACCEPTANCE OF NYS BOARD OF ELECTIONS AID TO LOCALITIES GRANT (100% STATE AID)
RESOLUTION WAIVING THE WORK WEEK LIMITS POLICY FOR PER DIEM VOTING MACHINE CUSTODIANS IN THE BOARD OF ELECTIONS OFFICE
RESOLUTION REVISING THE PAY SCHEDULE FOR ELECTION INSPECTORS TO ADDRESS EARLY VOTING MANDATES (BOARD OF ELECTIONS)
RESOLUTION OPPOSING PROPOSED STATE LEGISLATION KNOWN AS THE “DRIVER'S LICENSE ACCESS AND PRIVACY ACT” CONCERNING UNDOCUMENTED INDIVIDUALS (S01747-A, A03675-A)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A CONTRACT WITH MXI ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES FOR A HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE COLLECTION PROGRAM IN 2019 (SOLID WASTE DEPARTMENT)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A CONTRACT WITH AJ SIGN COMPANY FOR INSTALLATION OF A NEW ENTRANCE SIGN AT THE FULTON COUNTY AIRPORT
RESOLUTION APPROVING “FULTON MONTGOMERY REGIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE SOUTHERN ADIRONDACK ANTIQUES AND COLLECTIBLES EVENT” AT THE FULTON COUNTY AIRPORT (2019)
RESOLUTION AMENDING THE 2019 ADOPTED BUDGET TO REFLECT ACTUAL CHIPS AND PAVE NY REVENUE
RESOLUTION ADOPTING THE COUNTY OF FULTON TITLE VI PLAN
RESOLUTION CREATING EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES COORDINATOR POSITION IN THE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT OFFICE
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING APPLICATION OF SLETPP HOMELAND SECURITY PROGRAM GRANT FOR 2019-2020 (SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING APPLICATION FOR A 2020 PUBLIC SAFETY ANSWERING POINTS (PSAP) OPERATIONS GRANT FROM NYS OHSES
RESOLUTION ACCEPTING DONATION FROM BENJAMIN MOORE AND COMPANY FOR EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES TO BENEFIT THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
RESOLUTION CHANGING TITLE OF ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF INFORMATION SERVICES TO “ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY”
RESOLUTION ADOPTING STANDARD WORKDAY AND RETIREMENT REPORTING
RESOLUTION RE-APPOINTING THERESA SOUZA TO POSITION OF PERSONNEL DIRECTOR
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING ACCEPTANCE OF NORTH COUNTRY DSRIP PROGRAM FUNDS FOR SENIOR HOUSING AND TRANSPORTATION PROGRAMS (OFFICE FOR AGING)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING ACCEPTANCE OF NYS OFFICE FOR AGING UNMET NEEDS FUNDS FOR 2019-2020 (OFFICE FOR AGING)
RESOLUTION AWARDING BIDS FOR CHILDREN WITH HANDICAPPING CONDITIONS TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM (2019-2020 SCHOOL YEAR)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING ACCEPTANCE OF NORTH COUNTRY DSRIP PROGRAM FUNDS FOR THE PURCHASE OF CERTAIN OFFICE SUPPLIES AND PROMOTIONAL SUPPLIES (PUBLIC HEALTH)
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A CONTRACT WITH MELISA FEINOUR TO PROVIDE EMERGENCY ON-CALL SERVICES (COMMUNITY SERVICES)
RESOLUTION RESCINDING RESOLUTION 166 OF 2019 THAT AUTHORIZED THE FULTON COUNTY IDA TO INITIATE AN EMINENT DOMAIN PROCEDURE LAW ACTION TO OBTAIN CERTAIN LAND OWNED BY ROBERT BOWE IN THE HALES MILLS AREA