Town Board approves new water rate schedule
With a new supervisor (John "Duffy" Johnston) and two new council members (Irene Myers and Tim Adamson) sworn-in, the Town of Porter held its reorganizational meeting for 2018. Tuesday's session saw a number of authorizations, appointments and approvals, including the following:
•The Town Board approved the appointment of G.H.D Inc. as town engineer for 2018 at a contracted compensation of $9,000 for services.
•Attorney Michael J. Dowd was reappointed as town prosecutor for 2018 at the compensated rate $8,670 for services. Dowd was also reappointed as town attorney at a salary of $21,930, compensated as follows: $10,914 as town attorney; and $5,508 each for services with the town's Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals.
•The board appointed Jackie Robinson as chair of the Zoning Board of Appeals and reappointed her as a ZBA member for a term through Dec. 31, 2022.
•J. Anthony Collard was reappointed as chair of the Planning Board and G. Edward "Jipp" Ortiz was reappointed as a Planning Board member for the period through Dec. 31, 2022. Amy Friermuth was reappointed as Planning Board secretary for 2018.
•The Town Board approved a water rate increase of 25 cents per 1,000 gallons. The new rate reflects the previously announced 15-cents-per-gallon increase approved by the Niagara County Water District plus a 10-cents-per-gallon increase to cover town water infrastructure improvements.
For Town of Porter residents the rate schedule is as follows: 0 to 7,000 gallons, $16 per minimum; 7,000 to 20,000 gallons, $2.51 per 1,000; 20,000 to 100,000 gallons, $2.51 per 1,000; and over 100,000 gallons, $1.75 per 1,000 (irrigation rate).
Village of Youngstown residents will be charged $1.66 per 1,000 gallons under the new schedule.
Water rates for New York State Parks (Fort Niagara State Park) include: a minimum charge of $329.61; $182.29 for the first 100,000 gallons and $1.50 per 1,000 with the aforementioned 10 percent surcharge for anticipated water structure improvements.
•Sewer rates, effective Jan. 1, are as follows: Town of Porter - 0 to 7,000 gallons, $42.35 per 1,000, and then over 7,000 gallons, $6.05 per 1,000; Village of Youngstown, $5.15 per 1,000 and Fort Niagara State Park, $5.15 per 1,000.
The Town Board discussed but took no action on its 2018 treatment rate schedule for the Town of Lewiston Water Pollution Control Center. The board is expected to finalize the measure at its Jan. 8 meeting.
•Base salaries for elected town officials are as follows: supervisor, $35,067; town clerk, $41,787; town highway superintendent, $40,469; town justices (two), $18,207; tax collector, $6,425; deputy supervisor, $7,165; and town council members (three), $7,165.
•In miscellaneous appointments, the board approved Johnston as budget officer at a salary of $1,676; it reappointed Rotella Grant Management as the town's grant writer for 2018 on the monthly basis at the retainer rate of $700 per month and 2 percent commission, with a maximum of $5,000.
The board reappointed Glenn M. Caverly as the town's storm water retention officer for 2018 and appointed Johnston and Town Councilman Tim Adamson as members of the Porter on the Lake park committee for 2018.
•The town's 2018 holiday schedule includes: Jan. 15, Martin Luther King Jr. holiday; Feb. 19, President's Day; March 30, Good Friday; May 28, Memorial Day; July 4, Independence Day; Sept. 3, Labor Day; Oct. 8, Columbus Day; Nov. 12, Veterans Day; Nov. 22 and 23, Thanksgiving holidays; Dec. 24, Christmas Eve (floating holiday); Dec. 25, Christmas Day; and Jan. 1, 2019, New Year's Day.
•Scheduled Town Board meetings for 2018 will be 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month on the following dates: Jan. 8, Feb. 12, March 12, April 9, May 14, June 11, July 9, Aug. 13, Sept. 10 and Dec. 10. For the months of October and November, board meetings will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesdays, Oct. 9 and Nov. 12.
Still more authorizations approved for 2018 included: Town Hall hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays; Key Bank was designated as the town's official bank; and the Niagara Gazette has been designated the town's official newspaper, with the Lewiston-Porter Sentinel designated the town's official secondary paper.
In Other News
Other actions of note by the Porter Town Board as part of its reorganization business Tuesday included the approval of contracts for 2018 and the naming of town officials as part of the supervisor's committees and liaison appointments.
Leading off, the Town Board approved funding for the following contracted agencies/organizations served by the town:
•Care-n-Share Food Pantry - $1,000; Industrial Development (NICAP) - $4,000; American Legion O. Leo Curtis Post 830 (maintenance), Ransomville - $2,000; Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 313, Youngstown; Ransomville Rural Retirees (lunch services) - $1,500; Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce annual contract - $10,000; Youngstown Free Library - $78,646; William J. McLaughlin Free Library, $78,646; and Ransomville Historical Project (maintenance, Historical Room) - $1,000.
•Also, Town of Porter Historical Society (maintenance, Historical Room) - $1,000; Ransomville Country Faire (Ransomville Historical Project) - $1,100; Lighting of the Wreaths (Ransomville Historical Project) - $2,000; Ransomville Business and Professional Association (community beautification) - $1,000; Ransomville flowers - $700; Niagara Pioneer Soccer League - $500; Wilson Youth Baseball (baseball program) - $500; Ransomville Rural retirees (activity program - $1,500 and Village of Youngstown/Town of Porter senior van - $15,000.
Supervisor's committees appointments included: Deputy Supervisor Jeff Baker; insurance - Barb DuBell, Mary Siegrist and Lisa Hastings; water - John "Duffy" Johnston, Scott Hillman and Larry White; sewer - Johnston, Hillman and White; land - all Town Board members and Peter Jeffery; cable TV - Irene Myers and White; refuse -Myers, Siegrist and Baker; Audit Committee - Tim Adamson and White; drainage - Hillman and Baker; GIS - Sue Driscoll (coordinator), Hillman and Siegrist; and employee compensation - White, DuBell and Siegrist.
Liaison appointments included: CWM (Citizens Advisory Committee) - Johnston, Baker and J. Anthony Collard; Village of Youngstown - Johnston; recreation department -White; Niagara Falls Area Chamber of Commerce -Baker; libraries - White; fire companies - Dave Truesdale, Youngstown, and Baker, Ransomville; human relations - Johnston, Siegrist and Mike Dowd; highways -Hillman, Adamson and White; buildings - Johnston, Jeffery, Hillman and Truesdale; Planning Board - Johnston and Myers; Zoning Board - Baker and White; historical societies -Myers; Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce - Johnston and Baker; Lake Ontario Ordnance Works (Restoration Advisory Board) - all Town Board members; and Greenway (New York Power Authority) -White and Adamson.