Village replaces treasurer with firm

CHATHAM–In addition to adopting Local Law #2 to rescind Local Law #1 on a commercially zoned section of Route 66 (see accompanying story), the Village Board this week hired an accounting firm to take over the duties previously performed by a village treasurer.

The treasurer resigned last month and after meeting with representatives of Sickler, Torchia, Allen & Churchill of Hudson, which has been advising the clerks on the new accounting software, Mayor Tom Curran asked the board to approve hiring the firm as treasurer. “We are in a crunch at this point,” said Mayor Curran, “This firm will get our stuff in order.” At its last meeting, the board discussed the proposal from Michael Torchia to use the firm’s services for a fee of $47,000 a year. The village currently pays the firm $1,000 a month for help with the software. Mayor Curran said he got a positive reference from Copake, which also uses the firm as its treasurer.

Village Clerk Barbara Fischer will remain in her position.

The board also will hire Delaware Engineering, PC, an engineering firm from Albany that works with several local municipalities, including Valatie, to do a full water system review for $3,500. Mayor Curran and Water and Trustee Adrienne Morrell, the village water and sewer commissioner, met with five different companies before recommending Delaware to conduct the review.

Ms. Morrell said that Delaware is familiar with the village and was very clear about the issues the board would need to address to upgrade the system. The engineering firm will help the board decide how much residential water rates must rise to pay for upgrades and has determined that Chatham’s rates are low compared to other systems in the area.

She said that Delaware will help the board find “pricing that is fair but in line with what our needs are.” She also hopes that Delaware will create a priority list for the broad of what needs to be upgraded or fixed in the system.

The board is also looking to improve the village website now that the Website Committee has created a draft proposal for what needs to change online. Trustee Joanne DelRossi, who is on the committee, said committee members hoped to hire a person in the community to work on the website, There is no budget for the project and the committee is hoping to find some volunteer help. She also said the committee had considered the option of outsourcing the project to an online vendor.

The board has rescheduled its next meeting for Thursday, September 6 at 7:30 p.m. at the Tracy Memorial.

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email .



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