K’hook sewer pronounced ‘essentially done’

KINDERHOOK–Bills for properties in Kinderhook connected to the Valatie sewer system will go out in January. The construction project to hook up 35 properties to the sewer plant is mostly complete, according to Project Manager Jim Dunham, and the Village Board approved setting up a Sewer Fund at the regular meeting Wednesday, December 10.

Mr. Dunham told the board at the meeting that they were “essentially done with the sewer.” The sewer rate from Valatie is $6.76 per 1,000 gallons, which was lower than the $8 proposed when the village residents voted to support the project in 2012.

“Everyone is hooked up with the exception of one property owner,” Mayor Carol Weaver said of the buildings in the business district of the village that were part of the original plan. Those property owners will have to pay sewer rates based on water usage plus a sewer fee, which pays for the maintenance on the sewer plant in Valatie. The maintenance fee is the same fee residents in Valatie pay.

Every Kinderhook village resident will pay a small amount on their property taxes applied to the debt of $230,000 that the Village borrowed to pay for construction of the project. The total cost for the project was over $900,000 paid for mostly with state and federal grants.

At last week’s meeting the board also debated a major village water issue. There is $31,000 in the village Water Department budget to design a new water main and for road repair on Williams Street. Mayor Weaver and Trustee Dale Leiser want the design work to go forward, but the other three trustees want to wait to see how much repairs on the village hall roof will cost before they spend the water project funds.

At last month’s meeting those board members voted against moving forward with the design work for $36,000. But at this month’s meeting, Mr. Leiser said that since the money is in the budget, the board doesn’t need to vote to spend it and can move forward with the plans. The rest of the money will come from the village general fund budget and, as the mayor noted, those funds are in the annual budget.

“All we are asking for is the design work,” Mayor Weaver told the board members. She said that work on the street would not be for another few years, when funding is found. “You have the plans drawn up and you’re ready to go when you have the money,” she said.

Board member Brian Murphy stressed that the board would be meeting with the architect for the village hall roof project, which went out to bid for about $600,000 last summer. The board received three bids but did not move forward with the project and now debating whether to seek new bids.

The money in the water budget could be moved to general fund for the village hall roof project, but the mayor said she thought that was “robbing Peter to pay Paul,” since work is needed on both the street and the village hall.

“We have old water lines on Albany Avenue and Williams Street,” said Mr. Leiser. Design work has already been completed on Albany Avenue. The mayor pointed out the street design work on Williams Street has been put off before. “The money has been in the budget for two years,” she said.

Mayor Weaver left the decision up to Mr. Leiser, since the majority of the money is in his departments budget.

Also at the meeting:

  • Gary Spielmann, president of the Kinderhook Memorial Library’s Board of Trustees, and AnnaLee Giraldo, the library director, discussed the capital campaign to expand the library. Mr. Spielmann said the library has raised $500,000 towards the projected $2.4-million project. Ms. Giraldo said that the board has a five-year plan to raise the money and begin construction sometime within those five years
  • Village Economic Development Director Rene Shur reported that a Re-Tree art sale fundraiser held in the village in November raised $575 to fund planting trees in the village.

The next board meeting will be Wednesday, January 14 at 7:30 p.m.

 

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email .

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