KINDERHOOK–The new village website is up and running, Mayor Carol Weaver announced at the regular meeting of the Village Board Wednesday, May 8. Residents can sign up for alerts, receiving emails from the village when important events are coming up, by going to www.villageofkinderhook.org.
The board also appointed Code Enforcement Officer Glen Smith to be the fair housing officer for the village. Ms. Weaver said that due to the federal and state grants the village received to connect several buildings in the village business district to the Valatie waste water treatment plant, the board had to adopt a resolution establishing a fair housing program.
Mr. Smith said that his new position, which is not paid, will be to try to make every effort to accommodate “all protected-class citizens” who want to find housing in the village. According the federal and state laws that Mr. Smith provided to the Columbia Paper, fair housing statutes “include prohibitions about denial of equal opportunity and treatment, aiding/abetting discrimination, harassment and interference for rentals, sales, financing and insurance related to the following protected classes.” Those classes include race, color, national origin, religion/creed, families with children under 18 years old, handicap (mental or physical), marital status, age (over 18), military status and sexual orientation.
Mr. Smith stressed to the board, “We are not making Section 8 housing,” a reference to federally funded affordable housing. But there are apartment buildings and rental spaces in the business district in the center of Kinderhook.
Plans for the sewer project are moving forward. Mayor Weaver and project manager Jim Dunham have been with meeting with property owners who will need to sign easements for portions of their land where the sewer lines run.
“Most of the residents have been receptive,” said Ms. Weaver of the non-binding agreement that property owners must sign saying they agree to the easements. Mr. Dunham said the board cannot get the official easements until the archeological work on the project is done. “The big thing is the completion of the archeological study,” he said.
Ms. Weaver said she is meeting with the bond counsel and the village attorney to discuss the loan the village must take out for the project. “We need some working capital to pay the bills,” she said. Though about 80% of the $900,000 wastewater project is covered by grants, the village will still need to lay out many of the up-front costs.
The other project that will get under way later this month is the sidewalk between Kinderhook and Valatie on Route 9. That project is also mostly funded with federal and state money, and pipes for the new sewer lines will run beneath the new sidewalk. Mr. Dunham is hoping that project will be done in the fall.
The board also discussed a survey sent out by village’s Economic Development Committee in last month’s water bill asking what residents wanted in the business district. Rima Bostick, a resident who is reviewing the surveys for the board, said that about 30 had been returned and village officials are hoping for more responses, especially from village businesses.
The next board meeting will be Wednesday, June 12 at 7:30 p.m. at the Village Hall.
To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email .