Displaying items by tag: John Romano, Ballston Spa, Saratoga County, Noah Shaw, CHA

BALLSTON SPA — During a regularly scheduled meeting on April 24, Ballston Spa Mayor John Romano reported that the state of New York—as part of its budget process—is requiring all counties to review how government services can be shared.

“Nobody’s speaking about it yet,” Mayor Romano said.

Romano went through a long list of examples to prove how Ballston Spa has been sharing services with the towns of Ballston and Milton, plus Saratoga County, for years.

“We, in turn, help them out when they need help,” Romano said, referring to Milton road construction crews who sometimes assist in patchwork on village roads.

Romano requested that the four trustees on the Village Board submit their suggestions about shared services to him by May 12.

By September 15, according to Romano, Saratoga County is required to convene a special shared-services panel that will conduct a public hearing on the matter no later than October 15.

Saratoga County Administrator Spencer Hellwig did not return a request for comment in time for publication.

In a summary posted online, the New York Department of State explains that the shared-services requirement is “designed to generate property tax savings by facilitating operational collaboration between local governments.”

The department says “the chief executive officers of each county (outside of New York City) will: establish a shared services panel; develop a county-wide shared service property tax savings plan; save taxpayer dollars, engage the public and have the opportunity for state match funding.”

The Department of State reports that the shared-services measure is part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “commitment to reducing property taxes and incentivizing local government modernization.”

In other business on April 24, the Ballston Spa Village Board unanimously approved a measure that will allow a developer to tap a water main on Rowland Street north of the village.

Romano informed the board that a 20,000-square-foot commercial building is being planned for long-vacant land between the Ballston Spa National Bank and Cumberland Farms. On a daily basis, he said, the development is expected to use an estimated 2,500 gallons of water.

Water is pumped from a watershed farther north to Ballston Spa by a 20-inch water main along Rowland Street, to which the developer will attach a 2-inch line.

The mayor said the state Department of Health mandates various conditions on any tapping of 20-inch water lines. In this case, a booster pump must be installed in the development; the village must issue a $1,500 permit; and village officials “must witness the tap,” Romano explained to the board.

Trustee Noah Shaw expressed his concerns about an unrelated measure involving village water lines and the firm CHA Consulting, Inc. (formerly Clough, Harbour and Associates).

Romano presented to the village board a measure that authorized the expenditure of nearly $17,000 for water pump and motor maintenance and “related work that has to be done” by CHA.

Shaw claimed that the village board received no prior notice of that measure’s terms, though he agreed to vote in favor.

“The next time, I’m voting no,” Shaw said. “On these kinds of things it requires more process.” 

Published in News