K’hook fatal crashes prompt call to go slow

KINDERHOOK–At the last regular Town Board meeting of the year, Councilwoman Patsy Leader thanked emergency responders who dealt with two fatal car accidents on Route 9 last month. She said at least one of the accidents involved speeding on the state route that runs through the town. “We have to start watching our speeds,” she said at December 4 meeting.

Ms. Leader thanked the local fire companies and the rescue squad, as well as local law enforcement, for their response to the accidents on November 16 near Golden Harvest and on November 22 near Birch Road, saying they “were not easy scenes.” Each accident involved one fatality.

Town Supervisor Pat Grattan said the county Sheriff’s Office had asked to borrow the town’s electronic speed sign–which shows drivers their speed as they drive by it. Mr. Grattan said that the sign was set up along a section of Route 9. He said Sheriff’s Office had “stepped-up” patrols in that area as well. Ms. Leader said state police were also patrolling the road.

Ms. Leader also reported on an Ichabod Crane School District committee called School and Community Coalition, which focuses on illegal drug use. Ms. Leader, who represents the town on the committee, said a big issue for that coalition and for the town’s Neighborhood Watch Committee is people disposing of old prescription drugs in ways that might give teenagers access to those substances.

“It’s such an issue with kids,” she said of prescription drug abuse, “and then that causes more addiction.”

She said unused and unwanted drugs can be taken to the Sheriff’s Office, which will safely dispose of them.

“We’re trying to get the community educated,” Ms. Leader said, referring to the committees.

Also at the meeting:

• The board approved a new contract with the county to use the county’s assessor services at a cost $7 a parcel. The contract will run through 2019. According the Mr. Grattan, the board started using the county’s assessor’s office to conduct property assessments in Kinderhook in 2015 at the $7 a parcel rate. Last year, he said the town paid the county about $27,400. He said that going with the county assessor has saved the town money in not having to have its own assessor’s office

• The board is looking to fill vacancies on the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals. Mr. Grattan said there may also be a vacancy on the town Board of Assessment Review. He said there may be at least one vacancy on each board. The Town Board won’t be interviewing applicants for the positions until the new year

• The board will hold a public hearing on the property tax exemption for veterans of the Cold War. The town currently has an exemption that sunsets in 2018. The board would vote to make the exemption permanent after their public hearing on January 8 at 7 p.m.

• Resident Ed Simonsen thanked Councilman Paul Voltz for his four years on the board. Mr. Voltz did not run for reelection in November. Sally Hogan was elected to the board.

The board will hold an end-of-year meeting Wednesday, December 27 at 7 p.m. The next regular board meeting will be Monday, January 8 at 7 p.m. in the Martin H. Glynn Municipal Building.

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email

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