ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/PLANNING/PUBLICITY COMMITTEE

Monday, March 13, 2023 - 10:00 AM

 

 

Ike Tyler, Chairperson

Roy Holzer, Vice-Chairperson

 

Supervisor Merrihew called this Economic Development/Planning/Publicity Meeting to order at 10:03 am with the following Supervisors in attendance: Clayton Barber, Robin DeLoria, Stephanie DeZalia, Derek Doty, Charlie Harrington, Ken Hughes, Steve McNally, Noel Merrihew, Tom Scozzafava, Matthew Stanley, Joe Pete Wilson, Davina Winemiller, Margaret Wood and Mark Wright. Shaun Gillilland, Roy Holzer, Jim Monty, and Ike Tyler had been previously excused.

 

Department Heads present: James Dougan, Mike Mascarenas, and Anna Reynolds. Dan Manning was absent.

 

Deputies present: Dina Garvey

 

Also Present: Jody Olcott - IDA, Jim McKenna - ROOST, Bruce Misarski and Megan Murphy - Housing Assistance, Elizabeth Lee - Cornell Cooperative Extension, and Holly Aquino. Aurora McCaffery - Essex County Historian was absent.

 

 

MERRIHEW: Good morning everybody. We will call the Economic Development Committee to order and first on the agenda.

 

OLCOTT: We submitted our monthly report, questions?

 

MERRIHEW: Questions for Jody, while sheís here? You are free to go.

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item on the agenda was Community Resources with Anna Reynolds reporting as follows:

 

REYNOLDS: Good morning, hello. Today, I have four 239M referrals. The first is in the Town of Westport, located at 38 Champlain Ave., it was the old firehouse. The proposal is a special use permit for a retail, office and potential brewery. A no comment letter, does not affect Essex County. It is within approximate of a State Road, which is why it had to be a referral to the County. So, a no comment letter is recommended.

 

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF WESTPORT

 

††††††††††† The following motion was made by Supervisor Hughes.

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on March 13, 2023.

 

††††††††††† REFERRAL††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† PROPOSED ACTION

Town of Westport - 38 Champlain Ave.†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Special Use Permit ††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions does not directly impact a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† Be it adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that no recommendation or comment on the said referrals shall be or hereby is made, and the respective referring bodies may take such final action as they deem appropriate.

 

††††††††††† This motion was seconded by Supervisor DeZalia and passed on a vote of 7 in favor, 2 excused and none opposed.

 

MERRIHEW: Questions or comments on the referral? Being none, all those in favor? Opposed? That carries, thank you.

 

REYNOLDS: The Village of Saranac Lake has proposed an amendment to the Development Code. Theyíre going to add definitions for public facilities; such as police station, firehouse and other safety facilities in certain districts within their code. A no comment letter is recommended.

 

MERRIHEW: Moved by Davina Winemiller, seconded by Mr. Doty.

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE VILLAGE OF SARANAC LAKE

 

††††††††††† The following motion was made by Supervisor Winemiller.

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on March 13, 2023.

 

††††††††††† REFERRAL††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† PROPOSED ACTION

Village of Saranac Lake††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Development Code amendment

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions does not directly impact a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† Be It adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that no recommendation or comment on the said referrals shall be or hereby is made, and the respective referring bodies may take such final action as they deem appropriate.

 

††††††††††† This motion was seconded by Supervisor Doty and passed on a vote of 7 in favor, 2 excused and none opposed.

 

MERRIHEW: Questions, comments? Being none, all those in favor? Opposed? Motion carries.

 

 

REYNOLDS: Also in the Village of Saranac Lake. The High Peaks Church, located at 97 Will Rogers Drive, has a site plan review for a one-story addition to include accessibility to all three levels of the existing structure. A no comment letter is recommended.

 

MERRIHEW: Moved by Mr. Hughes, seconded by Mr. Doty.

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE VILLAGE OF SARANAC LAKE

 

††††††††††† The following motion was made by Supervisor Hughes.

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on March 13, 2023.

 

††††††††††† ††††††††††† REFERRAL††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† PROPOSED ACTION

Village of Saranac Lake - The High Peaks Church, 97 Will Rogers Dr.††††††† Site plan review †††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions does not directly impact a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† Be It adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that no recommendation or comment on the said referrals shall be or hereby is made, and the respective referring bodies may take such final action as they deem appropriate.

 

††††††††††† This motion was seconded by Supervisor Doty and passed on a vote of 7 in favor, 2 excused and none opposed.

 

 

MERRIHEW: Questions, comments?

 

WINEMILLER: Is this the church, itself?

 

REYNOLDS: Yes, theyíre extending the bottom floor to attach the elevator to the 3rd floor.

 

WINEMILLER: Okay, thank you.

 

MERRIHEW: Further questions? Being none, all those in favor? Opposed? Motion carries, thank you.

 

REYNOLDS: In the Town of Chesterfield, the Segerstrom Family, located on 604 State Route 9 is proposing a special use permit for the development of an RV Park. Again, this is approximate to State 9, so thatís why it triggered County review. The County has no comment at this time and a letter can be issued.

 

MERRIHEW: Moved by Mr. Hughes, second by Mr. Harrington.

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF CHESTERFIELD

 

††††††††††† The following motion was made by Supervisor Hughes.

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on March 13, 2023.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† REFERRAL††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† PROPOSED ACTION

Town of Chesterfield - Segerstrom Family. 604 St. Rte. 9††††††††††††††††††††††† Special Use Permit ††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions does not directly impact a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† Be It adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that no recommendation or comment on the said referrals shall be or hereby is made, and the respective referring bodies may take such final action as they deem appropriate.

 

††††††††††† This motion was seconded by Supervisor Harrington and passed on a vote of 7 in favor, 2 excused and none opposed.

 

MERRIHEW: Questions or comments?

 

BARBER: I just want to say that the Town of Chesterfield Board is in full support of this. This is going to be a campground, short-term campground, seasonal and we are in full support. We think it will be a great addition to the Town of Chesterfield.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you, Mr. Barber. Further questions or comments? All those in favor? Opposed? Motion carries.

 

REYNOLDS: Just something to add, tomorrow, weíre supposed to have our EFC presentation. Weíre going to have a conference call at 12:00, itís going to be postponed. Theyíre going to ask me if I want to do a virtual, like a Zoom presentation, but I think if we can all agree, letís postpone it, until we can get in person. You know, itís more of a Q & A and just better to get to know them. So, thatís what I will propose, today. So, tomorrow we will not have the presentation.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you, I agree with that. I think in person is what we really need.

 

REYNOLDS: Yeah.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you for arranging that.

 

REYNOLDS: Youíre welcome

 

MERRIHEW: Just on a note for Anna, the Town of Elizabethtown will be seeking the ability to purchase or transfer a portion of property thatís behind the public health building, here in Elizabethtown. Itís part of our water capital project thatís being mandated by the Department of Health. But, before Ways and Means, I will have all that diagram and explanation through the County Attorney for you all to review and then weíll look at, at that time.

 

REYNOLDS: Okay

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you very much.

 

HUGHES: Anna, good morning. The Town of Essex just passed an amended zoning law. Does that need to come to you, to us before it goes to the Department of State for approval?

 

REYNOLDS: Yes, yup. Typically, you would want our comment letter before adopting the local law, to be honest.

 

HUGHES: Okay, good to know, okay.

 

REYNOLDS: So, you could hold another public hearing or adoption hearing.

 

HUGHES: Okay

 

REYNOLDS: After submitting the proposal to us.

 

HUGHES: Okay

 

REYNOLDS: So, thereís a 30-day window where, when we receive your complete package, the 30-day review period begins, but within that timeframe you can hold your public hearing or adoption.

 

HUGHES: Okay.

 

REYNOLDS: So, say we have a comment that you disagree with or your town disagrees with, you can overturn our decision.

 

HUGHES: Okay

 

REYNOLDS: So, itís just one piece of the puzzle.

 

HUGHES: Understood, most, the vast majority of modifications were more on the executive in function, not necessarily planning.

 

REYNOLDS: Okay

 

HUGHES: Weíre going to do a comprehensive plan, but Iíll reach out to you.

 

REYNOLDS: Okay, because if it just administrative changesÖ

 

HUGHESL Yup

 

REYNOLDS: We wonít need to review it. If it affects different districts or land use, then we should.

 

HUGHES: Iíll share with you the recommended changes that were passed.

 

REYNOLDS: Okay

 

HUGHES: And we can talk about it.

 

DELORIA: Anna, what are the consequences if a community does not submit a 239M?

 

REYNOLDS: Your decision can be overturned.

 

DELORIA: Okay

 

REYNOLDS: Itís not a County Law, just to let everyone know. This is actually a State Law. We are here to collect all the materials and prepare this administrative review, so that you guys can have a complete package at your end. So, that if you have a neighborly complaint or a judgement, you have all the evidence that you need that the town did their due diligence to make their decision.

 

DELORIA: Okay and is there a statute of limitations on something being approved?

 

REYNOLDS: I donít know that.

 

DELORIA: Okay, Iíll look into that.

 

MASCARENAS: Yeah, just so everybody understand. The County isnít looking at any projects on whether we agree or disagree with the project and what the actual project is. Weíve had some confusion about that in the past. All weíre looking at is what are the impacts to County property. Thatís all weíre looking at. Weíre not looking, we donít care what the project is. How does it impact us, is really what weíre charged with looking at.

 

MERRIHEW: Anything further? Any other questions or comments for Anna? Being none, thank you very much.

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item on the agenda was the Essex County Historian, Aurora McCaffrey was absent and no report was given.

 

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††††††††††† The next item on the agenda was Cornell Cooperative Extension, with Elizabeth Lee reporting as follows:

 

LEE: I donít really have any additions to my report this morning, but if anyone has questions Iím happy to answer. Basically, weíve just been continuing the work that weíve been doing with lots of support for farmers, lots of 4H programs, farm to school programs and work with the International Cuisine Trails, which would be an important part of our work going forward.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you and I saw that you were in the process of setting up a pesticide collection day, running that through you.

 

LEE: We collaborate with a lot of different people and thatís one that weíre working on. Another collaboration thatís important to us is the Building Resilience in Essex County Families, thatís ongoing, also.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you, questions, comments for Elizabeth? Being none, thank you very much, appreciate it.

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item was the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST), with Jim McKenna reporting as follows:

 

MCKENNA: Iíll just hand out our end of the year report. So, thatís our end of the year report, it is online and we have a video that goes with it, but, obviously donít have that, but just pointing out a couple of highlights.

You know we look at social media. Just some of the numbers, Facebook; we have a total of 377,000 followers. Thatís all of our Facebook sites combined together. You know we manage seven different social media accounts for the different designations. YouTube; we have 636,000 minutes watched on YouTube. Instagram had 235,000 likes. Whatís good about that, I mean Iím just pointing out that by all the different sites together, we reach a lot of people with a lot of messages and a lot of the messages are the same and we interact between regions. So, that thereís a way that if Whiteface Region, for instance, as so many visitors, a lot of the same messaging goes throughout all of our regions and we attract names from all those and then combine them together.

Our websites had 2.32 million unique visitors. Meaning that somebody thatís not been on the site before, when they first come on, theyíre considered a unique visitor. If they come again, theyíre no longer unique. We had 6.7 million page views in all of our websites.

Some of the things that youíll see in there and thereís lot to look at it, if you have a chance to look at. We did a new brand for the Whiteface Region, last year. Lake Champlain, first time adventure guide. Whiteface Region guide, we did for the first time, an Upper Hudson Rec Hub brochure, for both the summer and also winter. Whiteface Region got a new website. Town of Jay got a new logo. Thereís a lot in there, Iíll just give you a couple of the highlights.

A couple of other things I wanted to discussed was that we did get together with Supervisors from Minerva and also from Essex and we started talking about designation management and how we might structure moving that forward for all of our towns and I guess we spent a little bit of time on really trying to identify and give the definition to the difference between designation marketing and designation development and management. I think we made a little progress on that.

Also, we had a ROOST Board Meeting. We had the Supervisor of Jay and the Supervisor of North Hudson with us last week and we thought that was really good and both Supervisors were not shy, which I thought was pretty good. So, that was good. There was some comments from each. I think that was really good and I think, hopefully from their point of view, got a little feeling about how our Board acts and what our responsibilities are.

Has anybody been to War Canoe Spirits? I was there for lunch, Charlie, yesterday and it was great and a great atmosphere in Crown Point. Itís really a good place, so I encourage everybody to check that out when they get a chance. The building looks great. I mean the inside of it and the food was good. So, it was real good.

The only other thing that Iíll point out. You know, those World University Games are over, but you know the reason for those games and getting those facilities done was to be in a position to do other events. We certainly pointed out at the last meeting that the World Cup Ski jumping, that wouldnít have happened with the improvements of those facilities and itís the first time that that event has been in, really in our County since 1990 and in the State since about 2008 or so. So, thatís a great example. Another example is this past week. We had the NCAA Division I Skiing Championships, both in the Town of Wilmington and the Town of North Elba. Would not likely have happened without the improvements and what weíre seeing now is that, you know, with climate change and letís be clear that itís a struggle to plan a lot of these types of events. The way that our Essex County sports facilities are, now, weíre, people are lining up, because they know that we can guarantee it. So, I think weíre just starting to see the beginning of the results of getting those facilities upgraded for the University Games and itís just going to be ongoing. I mean theyíre sort of knocking on the door, if you know what I mean. They know that the facilities are up to world standards, plus theyíre pretty much guaranteed that the conditions will be there.

So, thatís all I had.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you very much. That is quite a report. Do we have questions, comments?

 

MCNALLY: Jim and I and MJ, that was an excellent meeting. The division between designation marketing and designation planning and we have some new groupings of towns that are going to work better than the four that we have now for this. Thereís quite a difference with this. We could all use the designation planning, because it deals more with our infrastructure and being prepared to host people. Youíre going to get out of it what you put into it. Theyíre not going to be able to come to your town and do your planning for you. Theyíre going to hold your hand and give you advice, but if you want to be involved in this project, youíre going to have to put in some time yourself and I think thatís the key that I pulled out of it. Donít you, Ken?

 

HUGHES: Yes, I absolutely agree. You or maybe a proxy or somebody else in your town that wants to.

 

MCNALLY: So, we love the idea, I think itís going to work out very well.

I just have one more question, Adirondack Experience in Hamilton County, the rising tide lifts all ships. They do a great job with the tourism. Do they contribute towards this?

 

MCKENNA: Yes, you mean Hamilton County? We have a contract with Hamilton County for $195,000.00.

 

MCNALLY: Because, Hamilton County, as of now they do not have the occupancy tax.

 

MCKENNA: They do not. It comes out of their general.

 

MCNALLY: Itís wonderful, everyone should go to that museum. Itís wonderful. Thatís all I have, thank you.

 

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††††††††††† The next item was the Housing Assistance Program with Bruce Misarski reporting as follows:

 

MISARSKI: Good morning, folks. We submitted our report to the Board of Supervisors. I just wanted to highlight a couple of things. As you see, our Rental Assistance Program and our Home Repair Program, Mobile Home Replacement, our Affordable Housing Development line of business. Then with our Home Buyer, I just wanted to let everyone know that we, this month got our second home, HUB Certified Housing Counselor, certified and now we have two certified housing counselors on staff. One will be focusing on foreclosure mitigation and default counseling and then our, Sarah Prey, our newest housing counselor, will be really focusing on home buyer assistance and counseling. First time homebuyer, she had her first client on Friday and things are going well. So, weíre looking for great things from her.

And then this month, my work has been quite a bit involving Albany and advocacy with housing programs for New York State and for rural New York. So, I just wanted to let you know that thereís a lot of talk in New York State with the Housing Compact, which was the Governorís, kind of urging for all communities to increase their housing production and the Governorís request is for 3% increase in housing units in downstate and 1% in each and every community, upstate. So, itís a challenge and sheís trying to match that with funding to support it. So, thereís a lot of housing support in infrastructure development for housing, in single family development and for rental housing. One of the big things that weíve been fighting for here, is small rental development that is funded for low and moderate-income families, primarily and you know we did see McKenzie Overlook come to Lake Placid, recently and that was a 60-unit project. Weíre not likely to get any more of those, any time soon. Thereís talk about maybe Ticonderoga landing a housing project in the next few years and it looks favorable, but itís tough and usually these projects require 40-60 or more units of housing in a community and most of our communities of 1,000-2,000 people thatís not appropriate housing situation. So, weíve been pushing for this small rental development program which was funded this year and it is not funded in the Governorís budget in 2024 and although I know she wants, itís a program she believes in, but waiting for the legislature to put some money back into that. So, right now weíre working on an application thatís funded this year, but hopefully weíll have the program again next year and in the future years. So, thatís one of the big battles that weíre working on the State budget, right now.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you, questions, comments?

 

DOTY: So, Bruce then, the program as a whole is more designed for more populous areas then these rural communities?

 

DOTY: The small rural rental development initiative is four units to 20 units and in communities under 25,000 people in population is what the proposed legislation. So, right now thereís a program that got funded for one year. Thereís no legislation, currently that creates the program. Right now, itís a one off program, but itís something that weíve been wanting in rural New York for a long. We donít get to access those funds, unless youíre Plattsburgh, Glens Falls, Watertown, most of those projects go to communities of 25,000 or more and so weíre never going to get anything in Bloomingdale. You know, we arenít going to get anything in Minerva, but we could build a 4-unit apartment building that would be perfectly suited for a small community like that, but without this program, thereís really no funding opportunities for us to do that.

 

HUGHES: You mentioned that you went to Albany to do some advocacy.

 

MISARSKI: Yup

 

HUGHES: Just curious if you could maybe provide some details? Who did you see? What were the reactions?

 

MISARSKI: Weíll, first we visited out legislative partners. We went to Senator Stecís office. We met with our two assembly people and that was my first visit. Supporting our rural housing collation and rural advocates at legislative agenda. Which has a whole list of things, including ARPC funding, the certi program, increase for restore program. All these tools that we use and all of us and housing folks, we all use these programs and we have to advocate for them or they wonít be there and if we donít have the tools, then we donít have the ability to do work that we want.

So, then my second day I was at the budget testimony of the houses, the Senate and Assemblyís housing budget testimony. So, that was very interesting. I sat there and listened to the commissionerís testimony for two hours and then the grilling from the housing and the senate and assembly folks. Thatís always interested because youíve got the Governorís representative, the housing representative and then youíve got the legislative body, youíve got this back and forth over budget priorities and interesting to hear downstate folks, like the areas around New York City, especially Nassau County and parts of Long Island really are not happy about the housing compact, because they feel like theyíre in areas that are already fully built up and now theyíre being challenged to increase by 3% and if youíre within a Ĺ a mile of a transit area, they want housing density of something like 250 units per acre. So, that, for them that means knocking down single-family neighborhoods and putting up high rises. How else are going to achieve that? Other than mowing down communities and turning them from suburban to urban. So, that doesnít seem to be working for them. You know, but large parts of the State are really supporting this effort. So, a lot of the talk is around that discussion.

 

HUGHES: Thanks for that update, appreciate it.

 

MCNALLY: Did they happen to mentioned zoning?

 

MISARSKI: Right and really for local governments to find new policy ways to increase, in some way, zoning prevents more construction of more units.

 

MCNALLY: The zoning is the Adirondack Park Agency, is like hanging a rope around your neck and I mentioned this to Shaun and I mentioned this to the Governor, that AATV will have a meeting with some County reps on this. Weíre not going to get housing unless we make some changes and that zoning. The zoning is driven by the Adirondack Park Agency. So, that is what our role is. I think of all the millions of acres, I think thereís 53,000 acres of hamlet in the entire Park, compared to 18 million of private land. So, thatís got to be addressed and also when you cover the zoning that also comes to a cell phone issue. Thereís a lot to the zoning, but the zoning is not our issue here in this room. I think our towns have decent, fair zoning. The zoning is driven by the Adirondack Park Agency and theyíre the ones that are going to make the move if weíre going to expand housing.

 

MISARSKI: Right, if you look at Minerva, you probably have 400-500 houses in one of Minerva. So, 1% is really 4 to 5 houses.

 

MCNALLY: Three houses

 

MISARSKI: So, thatís your goal. Iím sure you make it.

 

MCNALLY: We could use 10 or 15 houses. The problem is, we do not have lots that anybody can afford, because everything is 3.5 acres or above or 8.7. The only people that can afford to build there are the people that can afford a big lot.

 

MISARSKI: Exactly

 

MCNALLY: Our hamlets need expansion, thatís what this all comes down to.

 

MASCARENAS: Mr. McNally, just so youíre aware and the rest of the Boardís aware. The Housing Task Force asked that we send a letter to the APA, DEC and OCR, requesting that we have a meeting on this program and kind of start to open up that dialogue in regards to, weíre in support of the Governorís initiative on housing, but we need them to tell us how we can get it accomplished and break through some of those barriers that the State offices have created in terms of those zoning requirements that you talked to.

Another thing I might want to look at, down the road, I havenít put full thought into this, yet. Is doing a study of our hamlet areas that we can prove with real data that we do or donít have lots available. I think some hamlets we probably still do. North Hudsonís hamlet is pretty large for the size of North Hudson, but in the Town of Lewis, itís less than a 1/10th of a mile. So, if we can show that with real information and real data in our hamlets and either we have the property, donít have the property then could potentially approach the APA for some sort of hamlet expansion, down the road, once we have that information. I just got to figure out how to collect it properly.

 

MCNALLY: AATV will be meeting with the Governorís staff.

 

MASCARENAS: Okay, good.

 

MCNALLY: They reached to us.

 

HARRINGTON: Ah, yes. I think the APA needs to redefine or revisit the definition of hamlet, which now states that in order to have a hamlet it has to have a water district and a sewer district and for some areas in our towns that is totally not feasible. Thatís a loggerhead with hamlet expansion.

 

MCNALLY: Not to mention, youíre dealing with a 50-year old document. A 50-year old plan.

 

HARRINGTON: As I said, it needs to be revisited.

 

MCNALLY: Right, itís 50 years old, it needs to be.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: So, just to pick up where Charlie left off. Youíre absolutely right and in my community, weíre fortunately have a lot of hamlet. We do, when they did the map, they just went through, you 5 zip codes, where the populated areas were, they made them a hamlet with the exception of Grove Hills, which is moderate intensity, which is the most condense populated area in the entire Adirondack Park, so whatever genius that drew those maps up, back then. I donít even think they went out to be honest with you. In our situation in Moriah and we have a very large infrastructure system with water and wastewater, but most of that dead ends at the end of the hamlet. We tried, years and years ago, Mike, where you live, Tarbell Hill, once we put water and sewer down, thatís still moderate intensity, but that had some potential there, but itís all modern intensity. So, I agree with what youíre saying, Steve, they absolutely need to take a look at maps that they did over 50 years and take a look at these areas and a lot of those areas, today, usually itís moderate intensity that is just outside the hamlet area and I am sure in a lot of communities those areas, today have water and sewer. Where it should be re-designated as hamlet. There is a lot of it the Governorís obviously doesnít understand that is involved in this. Itís not just a question of building houses, youíve got to have the infrastructure there to support those homes.

 

STANLEY: I think this is a great opportunity to open the dialogue to hamlet expansion, because of stuff has happened in 50 years, Irene. The Town of Jay sits along the AuSable River and the amount of property we lost in our hamlets, to be able to build on by FEMA buyouts. We need to expand the hamlets so we can actually gain and meet some of these state mandates. So, I think taking the initiative that the Governor has set out there and start to use her words against some State agencies I think will be a great thing.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you for that input.

 

MCNALLY: Yeah, AATV has been working on this hard, we do have a meeting thatís been postponed this week. But, again this comes back to being prepared. Each town needs to know where their hamlet is and they need to plan moving forward. I have a plan. I have two hamlet and I am going to try to combine them, put them together, because thereís houses visible on every spot on that land. Thereís no reason thatís not hamlet, but again you have to be prepared. So, when you meet these people, you canít just say, I want a hamlet expansion. Youíve got say here is where it makes sense for the people of, in your town. So, you have to be prepared, I think thatís what weíre going to get out of this meeting with them. I think the people that have the hamlet expansion plans for their communities are the ones that are going to see the benefits or it and this is a really a good time. We got a bite of the apple, because sheís been saying, we need zoning change. Well, the zoning is the Adirondack Park Agency. So, weíll see how she is about zoning changes, but be prepared, please.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: And have some money, because itís not that simple to say, hey, I want to expand the hamlet from, you know from Plank Road down to Fisk Road. We got to do a map plan and report. Youíre going to have to hire an engineer. I mean thereís a lot involved in it.

 

MCNALLY: Right, but you donít need to do that upfront. Another thing theyíve always done, if you ask for 500 yards, theyíre going to give you 100 yards. They never give you want you ask for. I donít know if thatís something in their handbook for all employees (laughter). The first rule in their handbook. So, shoot the moon on these and hope for the best.

 

HARRINGTON: Yes, the Town of Crown Point has explored hamlet expansion with the APA and we found it to be a very easy process and the APA did not try to present all kinds of hurdles in regards to this. So, I believe that they are open in this. Another thing that has to be concerned are the need for mini-wastewater systems instead of the major system that supports the whole town. The Adirondacks has valleys and hills and this creates a problem with pump stations. Whereas, if you had mini-wastewater systems that would eliminate those issues. Thereís a lot to be explored here.

 

MERRIHEW: Indeed there is.

 

DOTY: I would just like to confirm, Mr. Harrington just said that APA is open to discussion; we were the benefactors of density increases for the High Peaks System, which is 270 units. So, yes, new director, lot of new staff, open to talking. I just recently met with Barb and I offered an invitation to come speak to this Board. Sheís very open to it. Would like time to plan things that are on our minds and sheíd bring some of her top staff people, as well. So, I think bridging that cap with good communication is the secret to any success.

 

MERRIHEW: Thank you for reaching out. That would be a nice opportunity, some day at Economic Development to invite them here, youíre right.

Further questions or comments to come before the Committee? Being none, we stand adjourned.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AS THERE WAS NO FURTHER BUSINESS TO COME BEFORE THIS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/PLANNING/PUBLICITY COMMITTEE, IT WAS ADJOURNED AT 10:40 AM.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

Dina Garvey, Deputy

Clerk of the Board