Philmont soon will watch what you do

PHILMONT–“You’re either going to have snow on your sidewalk or snow on your road,” said Mayor Clarence “Skip” Speed at Monday’s Village Board meeting, even as another major storm loomed. “It’s got to go somewhere.”

He spoke in response to resident Brian Wheeler’s complaint that the village clears snow from Main Street sidewalks, but not those along side streets.

Trustee Brian Johnson explained that village workers clear four-foot-wide sidewalks with a snow blower (borrowed from the Town of Claverack) that cannot handle the three-foot-wide sidewalks on side streets.

Using a front-loader to pick up snow and deposit it in a dump truck is not a practical alternative; side-street residents must clear their own sidewalks.

“I don’t believe we ever have given a ticket for unshoveled sidewalks,” Mayor Speed said.

Also at the meeting, Trustee Laurence Ostrander presented two estimates from S&F Technologies of Greenport for security surveillance systems.

The pricier option, at just under $11,000, provides two video cameras, one atop the village office building and the other pole-mounted elsewhere, each controllable from a central location and providing video recordings of everything it “sees.” Less costly, just under $3,000, is a vehicle-mounted video recorder with interchangeable lenses and memory card storage of images.

The board has been mulling installation of surveillance cameras in response to recent incidents of vandalism, including smashed windows at the Village Hall. Trustee Ostrander and other officials saw an S&F system in operation in Catskill and came home impressed.

In other business, the board:

*Appointed Renee Maxwell assistant director of the Philmont Public Library

*Agreed to pay Morris Associates $1,193 for design work on the new Department of Public Works building, which engineer Ray Jurkowski said is now ready to go to bid as soon as financing is determined

*Heard from Dick Howard that the next meeting of the Community Day Planning Committee is February 7 at 7 p.m. in the Village Hall, and that volunteers are warmly welcomed

*Heard from Clerk/Treasurer Eilene Morris that the village office will be closed Monday, January 17 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The meeting was adjourned in memory of lifelong village resident Clifford Brandow, who died recently.

Winners of the 2010 village holiday lighting contest are:

*First Place ($50 worth of garbage stickers donated by Village Board members): Philip Brown, Union Court

*Second Place ($50 gift certificate from Montague Oil): Darlene Abrial, Upper Main Street

*Third Place (oil change from Speed’s Garage): Anita Bridgham, Highland Avenue

*Fourth Place ($25 gift card from Vanderbilt Inn): Erin D’Alessio, Prospect Street.

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