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Village seeks loans for sewer project; parking donated for snowmobile event

February 4, 2013

LAKE PLACID - The village has submitted a loan application to the state Environmental Facilities Corporation as it searches for low-interest financing to fund the replacement of two aging trunk sewer lines.

In December, the village received $1 million in grant funding through the North Country Regional Economic Development Council for the removal of a dam and restoration of the Chubb River, both of which are key parts of a plan to install a new, 27-inch sewer line. The total project is expected to cost about $4.8 million, so the village still needs to find a way to pay for the remaining $3.8 million.

At the Tuesday, Jan. 22 regular village Board of Trustees meeting, Mayor Craig Randall said the application to the EFC was submitted last week, well ahead of the Feb. 1 deadline.

"We've achieved one more of the many milestones in this project," he said. "The next steps are the completion of some easement agreements, which are being worked on. And the project will be put out to bid by our engineer in March."

Randall said if the current timeline holds, the project will commence in the spring.

"It looks like about an 18-month construction calendar," he said. "We'd finish in the fall of 2014. I think it's fair to say that everybody has done a magnificent job of getting this through."

Snowmobile event

The board voted unanimously to donate 13 parking spots in the municipal lot next to the Conference Center to the New York State Snowmobile Association, which is slated to hold its annual conference in Lake Placid April 18-21. The group will use the spaces during those dates to set up a snowmobile groomer exhibit.

Village Clerk Kathryn "Kook" McKillip said NYSSA plans to pay for 10 additional parking permits as well.

"Last year, the exhibit was staged near the (Olympic Center) box office, but no one went to see them," she said. "This spot will be more visible."

McKillip said April is a "quiet time of year" in Lake Placid and parking won't be at a premium.

Trustee Art Devlin suggested that the village also donate the 10 parking permits since the group brings a lot of visitors to the community and is good for business during an otherwise slow time, but his suggestion didn't gain any traction.

Traffic officer

Randall said last week that he wants the board to start thinking about when it wants to fill a vacant traffic officer position at the police department. The position opened up in December after Keegan Muldowney stepped down to take a job in New York City.

"It will need to be filled by summer," Randall said.

The question, then, is how soon? Trustee Jason Leon recommended the board hire a new traffic officer "sooner than later" because the village has several busy weekends before summer, including the Empire State Winter Games and the week of Presidents Day, both in February.

"That position is linked to village revenue," Leon said. The traffic officer is primarily responsible for doling out parking tickets downtown.

But Trustee Peter Holderied said it's also expensive to hire a full-time traffic officer when weekdays in the winter and spring aren't as busy. The village would have to pay the person's salary as well as benefits.

The board decided to wait to make a decision until police Chief Bill Moore can provide figures on the position's costs and traffic enforcement revenues. Trustees plan to discuss the position again in February.



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