The Essex County Board of Supervisors
The proposed 2012-13 budget for North Country Community College was passed, 16-1 (one absent - David Blades of Lewis), by the members of the Essex County Ways and Means Committee July 30.
The only supervisor to vote against the proposed spending plan, which calls for an increase in expenditures to $13,630,00 with Franklin and Essex counties contributing $1,190,000 to the school, was Edward Hatch of Willsboro.
Hatch said he felt that local colleges, like high schools, should be looking at merging their services into a more regional base.
“I think that all of these places should be looking into that,” Hatch said.
The county share for 2012-13 was the same amount they were asked to put into the 2011-12 budget.
Elizabethtown Supervisor Margaret Bartley asked why the county was being asked to vote on the NCCC budget months before they started their budget discussions.
“That is the way that the law is written that we have to approve this before our budget process is started,” County Manager Daniel Palmer said.
PILOT moved on
The committee also moved to the full board a pair of resolution centered around the Adirondack Meat Company in Ticonderoga.
The first was to approve the Essex County Industrial Development Agency’s request to enter into a 10-year PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreement with the company, which would help them by rescinding mortgage and some property taxes over the next decade. The other was a request for the North Country Regional Economic Development Council to submit a priority project nomination application to the state.
North Elba Supervisor and Ways and Means Chairman Roby Politi backed the latter, but voted against the PILOT program agreement.
“Taxpayers should not have to fund private investments,” Politi said. “People go into business to take risks, and I do not believe that the county or our taxpayers should be in the business of funding those risks.”
Terry Mountain charges
The committee also moved a resolution on to the full board to pay electricity charges for Terry Mountain tower with rent monies generated from Terry Mountain rentals.
According to Palmer, each organization that has equipment on the Terry Mountain tower is currently under a lease agreement that the county took over when they purchased the tower from WPTZ Television. Palmer said that when the current leases come up, the county would be looking to re-negotiate and charge for electricity services.
“Utilities are not part of the rent,” Palmer said. “The lease agreements we inherited from WPTZ as part of the purchase. Once those agreements expire, then we will re-negotiate.”
“The rents are all over the place and it is by what they have on the tower,” Chesterfield Supervisor Gerald Morrow said. “When these leases are expired, we will be able to re-negotiate.”
Fix Moriah road
Moriah Supervisor Tom Scozzafava asked for a resolution to send to the state Department of Transportation seeking work to be done on Route 9N/22 in the “rock cuts” section.
“There are a lot of potholes,” Scozzafava said. “The lanes are starting to collapse where the trucks have been coming through. It is a section of highway that receives a lot of traffic, and it is a dangerous roadway to begin with. This road has been neglected for a number of years and that needs to change.”