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Town of Wheatfield Council approves zoning plan

Fri, Sep 22nd 2017 01:50 pm
Plan, 2 years in works, passes through Town Board
By David Yarger
Tribune Editor
At a somewhat busy meeting Monday night at Wheatfield Town Hall, the Town of Wheatfield Town Board approved several motions and heard from several members of the public.
One of the main issues brought up was the rezoning of the Niagara Falls Boulevard overlay. Town Supervisor Robert Cliffe mentioned it was an issue he brought up almost two years ago, where some businesses in the town would be part commercial, and part residential, because part of the business would be out of the 200 feet zone from the boulevard that was deemed commercial. With this approval, land that is contiguous with the boulevard will now be deemed commercial.
"We have an awful lot of untaxed land on Niagara Falls Boulevard and we need to protect them," Cliffe said. "We need to make sure that we don't end up with all of our land along the most important corridor tax-exempt. ... As you can see driving north to Niagara Falls and driving south to the University of Buffalo, all the way it's commercial on both sides, all the way until you get to Wheatfield. So, it's a natural development for Wheatfield to have that corridor become commercial."
Cliffe said there were several meetings about the issue, open to the public, and the board took the public's opinions into account when planning this all out. Cliffe added that this is a vision for down the road and people who own a residential home on the boulevard are not harmed by this, but if someone wanted to rebuild their home, they would be unable to build it as a home, it would need to have it built back as a business.
In other news, the Town Board approved a motion for a fair housing law to maintain compliance with federal law for the receipt of federal funds.
"In the process of going over those documents (proposal for the Summit Mall) our consultant brought it to our attention that we're missing some aspects, newer aspects, of a fair housing law. It all has to do with discrimination.
"It's important to let everyone know we do not discriminate. It's against our law to discriminate and if you discriminate, it's our job to stop you from doing that. Not only the federal government, but we do, too," Cliffe said. 
The Town Board also approved a motion to authorize Wendel, the town engineering firm, to provide services for the town's pump station permanent generator installation project. Cliffe said this motion was related to preparedness, so, if the power goes out and there's nothing to pump  sewer lines, the generators are there to keep  sewers flowing and not to be backing up into people's homes.
NIMAC (Niagara Military Affairs Council) spoke at the meeting and expressed their gratitude to the board and Wheatfield taxpayers for their generous support.
The group gave updates on the 914th Air Wing and the 107th Attack Wing, including the replacement of the C-130 Hercules planes and the addition of the KC-135 R Tanker planes. NIMAC also announced a new commander, Col. Mark S. Larson.
Along with the updates, NIMAC announced the "Thunder of Niagara" airshow will be back in 2018. The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds make their return to the Falls on June 9-10.
Also in attendance at the meeting, Eddy Collyns of K Period Media. Collyns, the production supervisor for the film, "The True Adventures of Wolfboy," presented the group's plan of filming the film behind the Summit Mall from Sept. 18-27.
Collyns asked the board for permission to continue the filming from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, Sept. 22. Collyns said the filming would not be disturbing or loud to the apartment homes behind the mall, and he would send out a letter to each residence, so citizens will be aware of the situation.
The scene being filmed on Sept. 22 will be a controlled burn that will be supervised by local law enforcement and the Bergholz and Frontier fire companies, all under New York state compliance.
Cliffe said he was excited to hear about the movie filming in the area and said unless a good reason is brought to him, approval would be made the following day.
Town Board approved a motion to authorize Paul Siegmann, superintendent of the Town Highway Department, to accept the lowest quote he received for removal of 11 trees located in and owned by the town. Andy's Tree Service was the lowest quote, at $19,700.
The board also approved a motion to switch the town's budget public hearing from Oct. 16 to Nov. 6.
Also approved by the board, was a project that had also been two years in the works. The board moved to accept the completed PIP improvements for pavement and curbs, storm sewer and drainage, sanitary sewer and water line facilities for the Aiden Estates subdivision following the condition that downspouts and roof leader systems associated with the homes should be redirected and discharged to the abutting regulated wetland.
David Britton of GHD Engineers said it was a long time coming and said he's excited to see it closed out.
The board announced the public work session is scheduled for 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 11.
Board member Gilbert Doucet moved to receive the approval for the St. Johnsburg Volunteer Fire Co. to add several firefighters. The motion was approved.
The next Town of Wheatfield Town Board meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 2.

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