ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/PLANNING/PUBLICITY COMMITTEE

Monday, May 8, 2023 - 10:00 AM

 

 

Ike Tyler, Chairperson

Roy Holzer, Vice-Chairperson

 

Supervisor Tyler called this Economic Development/Planning/Publicity Meeting to order at 10:00 am with the following Supervisors in attendance: Clayton Barber, Robin DeLoria, Stephanie DeZalia, Shaun Gillilland, Charlie Harrington, Roy Holzer, Noel Merrihew, Jim Monty, Tom Scozzafava, Matthew Stanley, Ike Tyler, Joe Pete Wilson, Davina Winemiller, Margaret Wood and Mark Wright. Derek Doty and Steve McNally had been previously excused. Ken Hughes was absent.

 

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

 

Deputies present: Dina Garvey

 

Also Present: Megan Murphy - Housing Assistance, and Laurie Davis - Cornell Cooperative Extension. Carol Calabrese and Jody Olcott - IDA were absent. Aurora McCaffrey - Essex County Historian, Jim McKenna and Mary Jane Lawrence - ROOST and Elizabeth Lee - Cornell Cooperative Extension had been previously excused.

 

 

TYLER: Economic Development, Carol and Jody are excused, I believe. So, Anna Reynolds, happy Monday.

 

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

 

REYNOLDS: Hello, I have five referrals, today. Theyíre really adding up.

 

DELORIA: Any from Newcomb?

 

REYNOLDS: No

 

DELORIA: Okay

 

REYNOLDS: The Town of Chesterfield, Auger Lake Road. Theyíre requesting a permit to build a new home. Itís a County road, so the no impact letter maybe issued, but make sure a DPW permit is acquired.

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF CHESTERFIELD

 

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

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on May 8, 2023.

 

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

Town of Chesterfield - Auger Lake Road††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Special Use Permit for new home construction†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, the referred, proposed action directly impacts a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† Be it adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that the applicant will be required to obtain a County right-of-way permit for work within the road right-of-way, including driveway and utility improvements.

 

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

 

TYLER: Questions? Concerns? All in favor? Opposed? Carried.

 

REYNOLDS: Thereís three in the Town of Ticonderoga. The first, 325 Black Point Road, itís County Rte. 3 and an area variance and site plan is required for the construction of a new single family dwelling. A DPW permit should be acquired and a no impact letter can be issued.

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF TICONDEROGA

 

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

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on May 8, 2023.

 

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

Town of Ticonderoga, 325 Black Point Road††††††††††††††††††††† area variance and site plan review

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

††††††††††† Whereas, the referred, proposed action directly impacts a county road or county property.

 

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Be it adopted by the Essex County Planning Board that the applicant will be required to obtain a County right-of-way permit for work within the road right-of-way, including driveway and utility improvements.

 

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

 

TYLER: Any questions, concerns? All in favor? Opposed? Carried.

 

REYNOLDS: An applicant is requesting the construction of a garage, adjacent to their existing home on 315 Baldwin Road, which is County Rte. 5. If there are no changes to the existing driveway a permit is not required, but if there are changes to utilities or the garage please submit a permit to DPW.

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF TICONDEROGA

 

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

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on May 8, 2023.

 

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

Town of Ticonderoga, 315 Baldwin Road††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††site plan review for construction

††† of new garage †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

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

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions 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, so long as there are no changes to the existing utilities or garage, if such changes are required a County right-of-way permit will need to be obtained.

 

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

 

TYLER: Concerns, questions? All in favor? Opposed? Carried.

 

REYNOLDS: 19 Windy Point Lane, for the construction of a new single family dwelling, site plan review is required. Itís within 500 feet of a County road, but itís not on the County road, so a no comment letter can be issued, as thereís no County impact.

 

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE TOWN OF TICONDEROGA

 

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

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on May 8, 2023.

 

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

Town of Ticonderoga, 19 Windy Point †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††site plan review for construction

††† of new single family residence†††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Whereas, none of the referred, proposed actions 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.

 

TYLER: Question, concerns? All in favor? Opposed? Carried

 

REYNOLDS: The Village of Saranac Lake is amending their Village Development Code to incorporate local laws for the short terms rentals. The code will incorporate special use permits for each STR thatís going to be permitted through the Village. So, we will received those permits through a 239M referral process. Thereís a no comment letter at this time, so that may be issued, but in the future we may need to create an exemption request for those referrals, but each apartment that could be rented could be ten per month, Iíve been told. So, just keep that in mind.

 

ACTION OF THE ESSEX COUNTY PLANNING BOARD

ON REFERRAL RECEIVED FROM THE VILLAGE OF SARANAC LAKE

 

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

 

††††††††††† Where, the Essex County Planning Board has considered the following GML 239 referrals at its regular meeting on May 8, 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 Wood and passed on a vote of 7 in favor, 2 excused and none opposed.

 

TYLER: Any questions, concerns? All in favor? Opposed carried.

 

REYNOLDS: Thatís all I have today. We havenít heard from Restore New York, yet. We thought we were going to hear by the end of the month, but weíre still waiting. We have a few applications in for some of the towns and the County and weíve got CFAs on the rise, weíre thinking by the end of the month, weíll hear about those.

 

TYLER: I would just like to add, you guys do a great job over there, I donít know what the Town of Westport would do without you.

 

REYNOLDS: Thank you.

 

TYLER: Anything else? Nothing? Thank you, moving on.

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item on the agenda was the Essex County Historian, Aurora McCaffrey having been previously excused.

 

 

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

 

DAVIS: Good morning, I have our report. I donít really have much more, but I wanted to highlight a couple of things. Let you know that weíre still, I know people have been concerned, because the 4H program seemed to be getting smaller and smaller over the years, but it is now growing and growing and we had a big spring frenzy over at the fairgrounds. We had 65 attendees, had a lot of new 4H signups. So, weíre going to try and do one in the fall, as well. Try and do those twice a year just because I think in this day and age a lot of people donít know what 4H is anymore and so weíre just trying to get that out there in the public.

Our environmental field days which we hold every year with Essex County Soil and Water is coming up on May 16th. Thatís for 5th and 6th graders, going around to different educational stations at the fairgrounds, but anyone is welcome to stop in, go around see what weíre offering. I believe that starts at, I donít have the time on here, but itís at least up and running by 10:00 AM on the 16th, at the fairgrounds, if anyone wants to stop by.

The Master Gardenerís volunteer plant giveaway, sale, swap is scheduled for June 10th, Saturday June 10th and thatís at the Lewis CCE site. That usually starts around 10:00 and everything is usually done by about 10:30. Itís getting crazy over there, so weíre going to try and beef that up a little bit.

Also, just wanted to mention that our range of motion classes that weíve been offering for years in Ticonderoga and AuSable and weíre now going to have a trail class in Schroon Lake on Thursdays. I know weíre going to give it a shot and hopefully if enough people show up, that will be another class for us for seniors.

And thatís really it. Any questions on any of that? Thank you.

 

TYLER: Thank you

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item was the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST), with Jim McKenna and Mary Jane Lawrence having both been previously excused.

 

 

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††††††††††† The next item was the Housing Assistance Program with Megan Murphy reporting as follows:

 

MURPHY: Good morning, everybody. You have our report, so I just want to add one thing. On the rental assistance line of business, when we were, I attend the affordable housing task force, I believe itís called and we were asked about how many people were on the waitlist for Section 8, so I added it to this report, because I thought it would be good for everybody to know.

 

MASCARENAS: Thatís a good idea.

 

MURPHY: So, we do have a 120 people, currently on the Essex County waitlist.

 

MASCARENAS: Wow

 

MURPHY: And of those six have been deemed homeless and for those who donít attend the housing task force, if someone is deemed homeless they rise to the top of the list, immediately. They donít have to wait for a voucher, but what they do need to do is wait until one is available. So, we have a limited number of vouchers that are available to us. So, when somebody is deemed homeless they go on the list and they go to what is called the top of list and then as soon as a voucher becomes available it does become available to them and then this is the time of year, spring, when we do have a lot of movement in rental assistance. So, we will see our numbers go up and down. We have a lot of folks that move out of apartments and then folks that weíre going to try and place in, plus weíve had a lot of movement due to McKenzie Overlook. So, itís been pretty dynamic, so weíre really hoping to get those people vouchers as quickly as possible. I think thatís it, does anyone have any questions?

 

MONTY: Megan, on your Section 8, going back to a question Tommy asked, for years, about deadbeat owners that rent properties, those Section 8s have to be inspected, am I correct?

 

MURPHY: They are.

 

MONTY: Once a year?

 

MURPHY: Well, so when someone receives a voucher, so a voucher goes with the person and so when that person finds an apartment then they, what we do is we go out and inspect the apartment prior to giving out the voucher to that person for that apartment and so thatís when the apartment may or may not pass inspection and if it does, then that person can move right in, if not then we give the landlord a certain period of time to make, to fix the things that we found need to be fixed and to meet the housing quality standards that we have. There not the same standards as code enforcement. So, we have very specific standards by HUD.

 

MONTY: Are they less or more?

 

MURPHY: Weíre not going to look at all the things that code enforcement officers have to look at.

 

MONTY: So, theyíre less.

 

MURPHY: Yes, you can look at that way. Theyíre about housing quality and so if we see things that we know wonít pass from a code enforcement perspective, we will let the landlord know first, but if we have someone thatís in an apartment, so then every year, when their recertification comes up, we send an inspector the apartment and so those quality standards could be anything from some code-like standards, you know for the operations of the actual apartment, but they could also be for cleanliness of other quality of life issues there. So, then we would, we have in the past, weíve given then time, again, we try and work with both landlords and tenants. We also sometimes work with other community based organizations, such as Mental Health Association. We worked very closely with them, with DSS or Adult Protective and others. Actually, one that we work a lot with is Office for the Aging, so we try and engage them to see if thereís something going on thatís not a code enforcement in there to try and work with that individual to keep them housed and to improve their living conditions. So, we will do that before we call code enforcement.

 

MONTY: So, say thereís illegal activity happening in a home, being rented as a Section 8 by the renters, does that disqualify them from that home?

 

MURPHY: I would have to look at exactly what the process is, I donít know. Iím not going to say. I have not worked in Section 8, so Iím not going to, I canít respond to that, because I donít know the answer to that question, but I can find out.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: Yeah, I received a call on Friday, I canít remember what the young ladyís name now, from HAPEC.

 

MURPHY: You talked with me.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: That was you?

 

MURPHY: Yup

 

SCOZZAFAVA: Okay, anyway, great explanation on how the program works and we do have a full time inspector, right now and they did get a little stack during Covid.

 

MURPHY: Yeah, during Covid there was an issue with getting into apartments.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: So, I have a better understanding of how the whole system works now.

 

MURPHY: And Mr. Scozzafava did ask about a list of landlords and whatís why I called him, because there is a disclaimer right at the top of our contract with landlords. Our data and information can only go to HUD, it canít be shared with others, at all, with anyone else.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: So, the one thing I did request, though, if you have an empty apartment and youíre looking into that, before that apartment is rented out and if it is a Section 8 that you ask to see the certificate of occupancy.

 

MURPHY: Yes and that is something that I do need to find out whether thatís a standard practice.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: Because that would go a long way, right there, because you get them in, Mike and I did this dance for year, once you get them in, itís very difficult to get them out, because of the housing storages if there are code violations.

 

MURPHY: Right

 

SCOZZAFAVA: And the other thing that I just wanted to mention and Iíll bring it up at the housing task force is that the Republic Steel Office Building maybe available once again. the individual that purchased it, he was going to do housing, I think heís from St. Armand or Wilmington, Iím not certain, but, anyway, heís not going to be able to get it together, because of health reasons and so on. So, the County originally owned that building and we talked about moving offices down there, we talked about doing a lot of different things with it that never panned out, so we decide, the town used it for a while, it was out health center for a while. There are, the County paid for an engineering study was done on the building, structurally itís very solid and then I believe at that time, Dan Palmer was manager at the time, you could do 12-15 units in there, of single family or 1-bedroom, 2-bedrooms. Iím just bringing it up, that you know the individual, you can follow up on what the individual had to say to you, but thereís a definite need in that hamlet of Mineville and Witherbee and that building could be put to good use, finally.

 

MONTY: Is that something that could go to the Housing Trust?

 

MURPHY: Yeah, that would be a possibility. I also brought up the BHSN project with that person.

 

MONTY: Because they more money than we do, at the task force.

 

SCOZZAFAVA: Exactly

 

MURPHY: And also the BHNS project. I thought that that might be something that would if that BHNS project is able to switch over to scattered sites, because itís not large enough to fit 40-units and then 14, which was their mandate from their funding, so I did mention that and the individual that owns it was very interested in that. So, I was going to give them a call this week just to see where they are with that and see if this might be a possible location that they would be interested in, because they would be able to get the capital funding. That sounds like that building, isnít not apartments, currently and so it would need quite a lot of renovation to create apartment units there, is my understanding.

 

MONTY: Did you get your phones fix?

 

MURPHY: Yes, we had a problem.

 

MONTY: Because I called twice in the last ten days and never got a return, left messages, nobody returned my calls.

 

MURPHY: Yeah, Friday morning a server went down and now the phones are like computers, so we had some issues, Twin State got that fixed.

 

TYLER: Thanks, anything else to come before this committee? We are adjourned.

 

 

AS THERE WAS NO FURTHER BUSINESS TO COME BEFORE THIS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/PLANNING/PUBLICITY COMMITTEE, IT WAS ADJOURNED AT 10:17 AM.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

Dina Garvey, Deputy

Clerk of the Board