Post-midnight gatherings at a burned-out house and property on River Street have annoyed an elderly neighbor who took her complaints to the Town Board Wednesday, Sept. 14.
Mary Frunzgeld, 84, complained to the board that between 1:30 and 3:30 a.m. each night, she is awakened by noise and lights of neighboring newspaper delivery workers. She said a vehicle drops off bundles of Post-Star newspapers to the porch of 119 River St., where drivers gather and divvy them up to deliver to customers in the early morning hours. She complained that she is regularly wakened up by the noise of the next-door conversations, closing car doors, and lights from vehicles.
“It sounds like they are having a picnic out there,” she said. “I’d like to get a good night’s sleep,” she said.
Frunzgeld also complained about the burnt-wood odors still emanating from the building, which suffered substantial damage in an April 2, 2008 fire and has not been renovated or repaired since.
Warrensburg Code Enforcement Officer Christopher Belden contacted Warren County Building Codes Administrator Karen Putney in June, stating that the structures on the property were in “horrible” condition and were posing a significant health and safety hazard.
Several weeks later, a building code violation notice was sent to Sylvia Webster, demanding that the barn must be repaired or demolished, and that both the barn and house must be assessed by a professional architect or engineer to determine its fate.
Perna responded that he’d be repairing the home and removing the garage this fall. Belden notified Perna of how if appropriate action is taken, the town can proceed under its Unsafe Buildings act to demolish the structures and charge him and Sylvia Webster for the demolition work, enforced through a lien on their property.
Supervisor Kevin Geraghty said Sept. 14 that town officials would be working with the county Code Enforcement office to get action taken on the building.
After Frunzgeld said her complaints to police were futile, Councilmen Dean Ackley and Austin Markey suggested that if the excessive noise continues, she lodge a complaint with the county Sheriff’s Department, and a Disorderly Conduct violation might be warranted.
Larry Perna responded that the group keeps the noise down, and that it was Frunzgeld’s own dog that woke her up at night.
He added that the property was zoned commercial, and it was the best place he knew to have the papers dropped off and divvied up. He also pledged to take action on the property, while he contended it did not pose a health hazard.
Geraghty called for Perna to take action.
“We want that housed ‘rehabbed’ or torn down,” he said.
In other business, not one individual spoke out at the public hearing Sept. 14 on the town’s Draft Comprehensive Plan, which has been in development for several years. It calls for maximizing recreational, tourism and business opportunities in town through zoning changes and establishing incentives.
The board appointed Kathy Ferullo to the Warrensburg Board of Assessment Review to fill the unexpired term of Teddy Kalisz, who recently resigned. She is to serve through September 2014.
The date of Oct. 3 at 4:30 p.m. was set for Town Clerk Donna Combs to present the proposed 2012 town budget to the Town Board.
Town Supervisor Kevin Geraghty noted that the town has filed an affidavit with the state Supreme Court citing the town’s expenditures of $247,370 as its share of the multi-million-dollar environmental cleanup of the former Warrensburg Board & Paper plant, off state Rte. 418 on the Schroon River.
For decades in the early 1900s, the plant manufactured cardboard. A business developer received grant money to develop it in the early 1980s, but he never put people back to work as he promised state and federal authorities. Thereafter, the plant and the plant and extensive machinery sat idle and became unusable.
In the 1990s, the state Department of Environmental Conservation launched a joint effort with the town to demolish the building and clean up pollution at the plant site, primarily oil and solvents that had leaked into the ground. It has now been certified as a clean site.
This week, Geraghty said the town was seeking to develop a riverside town park at the plant site, or sell it to a real estate developer as a site for condominiums.
No action was taken on a proposal to replace a corroded aluminum plaque on the exterior front of the town hall. Town board member John Alexander proposed that a cast bronze plaque be crafted, at a cost of $2,200, to replace the original plaque, which would be given to the town museum.
The money would come from an endowment left by the Emerson family for the town hall’s upkeep Citing budgetary concerns, councilman Austin Markey said the idea should be shelved in favor of earmarking the money for potential facility repairs.