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Wheatfield officials criticize National Grid's recent response to light outages

Fri, Mar 10th 2023 11:00 am

By Lawrence Kaznica

When town highway crews are not plowing snow at all hours of the night, they are always on the lookout for light pole outages across the town, according to Wheatfield Highway Superintendent Paul Siegmann.

He cited an instance where a town resident requested a lamp to be fixed in January of 2022 and it reportedly was not fixed until last week.

“We are having a real issue this year. We pay for every street light (in this town) whether it is working or not,” Siegmann said. “We’ve been having to (make multiple) phone calls (to National Grid.) Other years, when I called in a light, unless there was a major problem, it was fixed in a day or two.”

Councilman Curt Doctor asked if the department formulated a list, citing a handful of intersections and roads he noticed needing attention throughout town.

In a related matter during Monday’s Town Board meeting, the councilmen held a public hearing for a lighting district for the Whistling Straits subdivision. There was no public feedback.

In other action, the board heard from Recreation Director Mike Ranalli, who reminded residents that the baseball registration deadline is March 24.

The board also:

•Authorized the Water/Sewer Department to send surplus equipment to Auctions International for sale. The list includes a 2009 Ford F-250, trash pumps, lawn mowers and generators. The proceeds will go toward the purchase of future equipment for the Water/Sewer Department.

•Approved amendments for additional federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act. The general fund received a boost of $19,700, which can be transferred to other funds. The water and sewer funds received an increase of $9,850 each.

•Approved the purchase of a new 2022 Ford 250 XL for $33,485 for the Water/Sewer Department upon the request of Mark Clark, deputy superintendent of the water sewer department. Also, the board approved a request for the purchase of 100, 64-gallon recycle bins at a cost of $6,749.

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