Village explores routes leading to a shared DPW

KINDERHOOK – Village Mayor Carol Weaver announced at the Village Board’s regular meeting last week that a committee had been formed with the Town of Kinderhook to look into sharing Department of Public Works (DPW) services. The village DPW garage and most of its equipment were destroyed in a fire in May.

At the August 12 meeting, Mayor Weaver said the board was looking into all its options on how to move forward with the DPW. The board could choose to rebuild the garage and replace the equipment or the village could enter into a contract with the town to have the town DPW take over public works in the village. The Village of Valatie, which is also in the Town of Kinderhook, dissolved its DPW several years ago and has a contract with the town to perform the services, which include snowplowing, road repair and other construction projects.

“We’re doing parallel studies,” Mayor Weaver said at the meeting.

Several residents attended the meeting to ask about the plan and Mayor Weaver stressed that the public would be informed as the plans progress.

At a special meeting July 30, the board approved hiring Morris Associates for $18,250 to design a new DPW building. In the notes from that meeting, which are on the village website, the board said the village insurance policy would cover the engineering services.

The board is moving forward with engineering plans and Trustee Dale Leiser said plans could go as far as the bidding process for construction companies. But Mayor Weaver said at the August meeting that no decisions have been made about how to proceed.

Trustee Leiser said that as a result of the damage from the fire the village has purchased a new mower has had one of its trucks repaired.

“We’re still looking at the numbers,” said Mayor Weaver. When a resident asked about reviewing the village DPW budget for the last two years, Trustee Rich Phillips said he had compiled those numbers and given them to the mayor for review.

Mayor Weaver said she is waiting to hear back from the Town Board members who are on the committee to review sharing services. “They know we’re in a time crunch,” she said the town. Town Board members Deb Simonsmeier and Paul Voltz are on the committee with representatives from the village board.

Also at the meeting:

  • The board waived the law restricting sandwich board signs on the Village Square for six months as the village Planning Board and Historic Preservation Commission review the current sign law. Businesses will still have to get approval from the Village Board to place signs on the green
  • The village has received a copy of a resolution from the Town of Greenport that could be used to make all village property tobacco free. Mayor Weaver said that Greenport officials sent the resolution after hearing that the village DPW garage was destroyed by a fired started when a cigarette butt was not properly stubbed out. The board tabled the resolution until the village attorney can review the wording.

The next village board meeting will be Wednesday, September 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Village Hall.

 To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email

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