Germantown adopts new set of building fees

GERMANTOWN—The Town Board approved new Building Code Department fees at its meeting Monday. “We looked at other towns’ fees,” said Councilwoman Andrea Foley, who spearheaded the revision, “and came up with a basic plan.”

The plan is promised for the town’s website (germantownny.org) but had not yet appeared there as of Tuesday. One-year residential building permits are now 40 cents per square foot, with a $50 minimum. Agricultural building permits pay a flat fee of $50, no matter the size.

An in-ground swimming pool requires a $75 fee, aboveground $50. A fence permit costs $50 for the first 200 linear feet, and $20 for each additional 100 linear feet.

A certificate of occupancy—confirming that the building is safe to live in—costs $25 per residential dwelling unit. A demolition permit (waived if in conjunction with a building permit) is $50 per residential building and $100 per commercial building. A search and/or verification of records costs $35. Having a home occupation requires a $50 fee “for the construction or alteration of a sign” and “the construction of a major home occupation,” as defined in the town’s zoning law.

Residents should check the website or call town clerk Joyce Vale (518 537-6687) for more information: Town policy now includes the following condition: “Any work performed prior to obtaining a building permit will be charged double the normal building permit fee when issued.”

In other business at the July 27 meeting:

  • Two engineers from Delaware Engineering in Albany reported the status of two grant applications. Lindsay Ostrander has been working with Councilman Donald Westmore on the town’s application to the state Department of State for a yearlong planning grant for a Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan. That application, which includes three letters of support and the verbal support of Assemblymember Didi Barrett (D-106), was on target for submission before the July 31 deadline.

Stephanie Vetter has been working with George Sharpe Jr., superintendent of the town Sewer Department, on an engineering report for a treatment upgrade for the town’s wastewater plant. The original deadline of July 31 has been extended to September 4. Mr. Sharp had provided all the information needed. A surveyor from Clark Davis Engineering & Surveying, PC, surveyed the facility and surroundings Monday. Ms. Vetter looked to send the board a draft report in mid August. After board review, Supervisor Joel Craig may call a special meeting, in order to make the deadline

  • Councilman Matthew Phelan reported on the 4th of July celebration, which drew between 3,500 and 4,000 people to the town park. Sixty volunteers worked the event, which ran from 4 p.m. through fireworks, which started at 9:30 p.m.

“Traffic was the biggest issue,” said Mr. Phelan. “I think we did a good job of managing the traffic, but some people complained that it was slow to get out.” Next year: more volunteers, portable toilets and an early start to planning, in October, with a formal committee are changes in the works

  • Supervisor Craig announced that the Planning Board would not meet as scheduled on July 30 because of an anticipated lack of quorum
  • Mr. Craig reported that the town has received a $500 grant from the Bank of Greene County to help establish an email program to inform residents of what’s happening in and around town. He expected the Community Arts & Tourism Committee to handle this
  • Resident Martin Overington pointed out that the town website has a date error in the June 29 “Notice of Utility Easement” on the home page. June 22 is listed twice, when the second date should be July 22. On June 22 the Town Board adopted a resolution, subject to a permissive referendum, to sell a 30-foot-wide utility easement across town property adjacent to the town sewer facility to David Stocks and Martin Sinkoff for $2,000. Mr. Overington said that he had intended to collect signatures for a permissive referendum and had been confused when the notice said that the resolution would become effective on June 22 (not July 22). He disputed the notice’s claim that the “land has no value to the Town, is surplus land and has no public purpose.”

The board members made no comment. Tuesday Mr. Craig said that the notice posted in town hall, and the published Public Notice about the matter, both had the correct date of July 22.

The next regular town board meeting is Monday, August 24 at 7 p.m. in town hall.

 

 

 

 

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