What's That Smell?
1/12/21 Trustee Meeting
by Ken Signorello
January 13, 2021
There is an odor problem with the wastewater treatment facility. If you live along Cascade Street, you may have noticed. James Jutras, Water Quality Superintendent, explained at the January 12th Trustee Meeting, “our conventional means of odor control are becoming ineffective by all measures used to monitor and evaluate performance.”
The proposed solution is a system that uses ozone, mixing and aeration instead of chemicals. The new system will cost $100k but will pay for itself in chemical savings.
Implementation will be in two phases, Susie Wilson Road Pump Station first and, based on favorable performance, the West Street Extension Pump station second. The initial cost and long-term savings will be reflected in water bills. Unanimously approved.
Trustees wrestled with how to allocate $106,121 in excess funds left over from FY20. These are funds resulting from revenue exceeding expenses. Trustee Raj Chawla asked Finance Director Sarah Macy what it would mean to a taxpayer if we allocated all of that balance to FY22 taxes. After cautioning not to do this, Macy said they could and it would actually result in a tax reduction. The ReTorter estimates that reduction to be about $3 for a $280,000 assessed-value property.
Instead, the leftover taxes were unanimously allocated as follows: $68,303 for paving and $37,818 for Building Maintenance.
The Trustees unanimously approved a question for the Village Annual Meeting Ballot. Should the $82,249 remaining balance of the Village’s Land Acquisition Fund be transferred to the Economic Development Fund? That fund is currently at $405,058 with another $55,600 to be added in the current FY21. $100k of this fund is earmarked for Village parking.
Unified manager Evan Teich and more than one Trustee raised concerns about this fund in light of the potential merger. Teich, a Village resident, proclaimed that Economic Development funds should remain with the Village and be spent in the Village, post-merger. There is no mention of the Economic Plan of Merger, however.
Trustee George Tyler urged Community Development Director Robin Pierce to get the Pocket Park done done this summer with funding from this source.
At the last Trustee Meeting, Andrew Brown expressed interest in seeing sidewalks on the other side of the street plowed during COVID times, as more people are out and about walking. For this meeting the Trustees brought in Ricky Jones, Village Public Works Superintendent to explain the ins and outs.
“Can’t do it!” exclaimed Ricky initially. He explained that many of these sidewalks haven’t been plowed in 15 years, turf has grown in and will be torn up, people will complain, especially if done secondarily as a subsequent pass.
Trustees thought it might be doable, by prioritizing areas with higher traffic, and not doing areas where folks can walk in the road safely like Countryside or Woods End.
With agreement that the program would only cover roads identified by Village Staff, based on traffic patterns, as staffing allows and only this COVID winter - a motion to conditionally extend Village sidewalk plowing passed unanimously.
CVE Sound Indemnification agreement was unanimously extended through 2023. This is the waiver allowing the Champlain Valley Expo to host its annual Fair plus concerts and auto shows. It quantifies limits on noise levels, number of events, applications and monitoring processes, as well as a fine schedule.