Once, again, before we start, do you wonder, as I do, why there is no electronic recording of this other than those that members of the Union Vale Democratic Committee make on their own? Public business is discussed and public tax monies hang in the balance, so why no public distribution of the conversation? If you wonder too, please call ALL of the members of the Town Board and ask why.
The first item was a discussion of a review of the improvements to the UV Town parking lot, striping, and walkway in front of the Tymor barn complex:
- choice of black top or permeable substance
- striping (paint lanes for parking) vs. cement headers
- make Tymor Rd. a private road (as public rd.,backing out on to it is not approved
- cost of drainage when parking lot is black-topped vs. the cost of the town’s using permeable materials (someone will need to check with state D.O.T).
Next item discussed was the Town Handbook
- Personal Time Off–sick days, vacation, leave, personal and bereavement time off — are there too few?
- What are the rules for taking breaks?– ambiguous now
- Employee suggested plan to revise vacation, salary, and sick leave policies—————————–(1)probation of three months at lower rate and scale (2) a scale of increments for vacation leave (3) twelve days sick leaver yeare and four days personal leave
- Health insurance–went from zero contribution from employee to 20% contribution and 50% of deductible in one year — thus creating a 13% pay cut– UV Town was the best employer of town workers and is now the worst in Dutchess County
- Ms. Maas did say this was harsh and needed to be examined again now– possibly joining NYSHIP’s insurance group to set up a fair pay base
Next item is Using Outside Payroll management
- should the town go to two times a month pay periods (15th and last day) — cuts down from 26 to 24 pay checks — those paid monthly would receive pay on last day of month — would save $600.00 a year
- no more time time clock; rather check in and out on phone app.
Next issue discussed was the procurement policy
- one big change is an update on costs to match surrounding towns: the requirement for an attorney to approve a contract has gone from 25 thousand to 35 thousand in keeping with price escalation and the practice of surrounding towns
- on May 17, 2018 (the Town meeting that permits constituent comments), citizens will be permitted to address the resolution to adopt a new procurement policy
- There was a handout on the proposed policy with the changes noted in red. We assume that any taxpayer who wants one of these may go to town hall and get one. (Maybe while there ask why that first meeting of the month is not electronically converted or documented.)
- (Editor’s note: letter H of this policy (not subject to proposed change) seems to be so ambiguous and as to permit cronyism should an unscrupulous board choose to be so. In the event that such a board might exist in the realm of all possible boards, we think the wording should be more specific so that the section says what it means rather than leaving the door open for intrigue.)
Next issue is Sign Policy
( Editor’s note: despite two requests at citizens’ speaking permitted Town Board meetings, there is no mention of political signs in this policy. Ms. Maas did say after her election that she would be willing to set a fair policy for the placement, size, and duration of electioneering signs in the town.)
There will be two categories of Sign Policy: one for Rt. 82 (Hamlet/residential) and one for Town Center (RT. 55)– where state and county policy enters the picture
- the maximum height will be ten feet or 20 feet? TBD
- there will be no flashing lights
- the sign may change–how often has not been determined
- no rolling or flashing, but sign can change periodically
- no roof mounted signs
- all lights must be LED
- possibility that there will be a limit on the number of lumens in commercial signs and there must be conformity to light pollution issues
- any part of a sign structure is part of the sign
- five foot minimum setback is required
- Town cannot monitor content of signs
Last Topic was Miscellaneous:
*2 public hearings at May 17th Town Board meeting.
- John Rapetti retired from the Planning Board– a resume of a new applicant for the Planning Bd. was handed out
- Legislator Mark Coviello is resigning from the County Legislature on May 15th so the Town Bd. of Union Vale and the Town Bd. of Beekman will meet on May 29th to replace Mr. Coviello with someone to be appointed until the next election (this November). Applicants will be interviewed prior to that meeting. (See UVTB site to get details).
- Europa McGovern will speak at the next Town Bd. meeting regarding grant application.