K’hook puts off vote on new emergency access law

VALATIE–The Kinderhook Town Board decided this week to adjourn until next month the public hearing on a proposed local law requiring emergency access to alarmed buildings in the town. No one from the public commented on the law, but Supervisor Pat Grattan wanted to give residents more time to review the proposal.

The purpose of the proposed law is for “providing emergency service organizations with a safe, secure and dependable method of gaining rapid entry into locked buildings in order to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the occupants inside any such building, as well as those responding emergency crews.”

If adopted, the law would require all buildings in the town with automatic fire alarms and/or fire suppression systems to have a key box with “keys to important areas within a structure and information that may be vital and necessary” in the box. The emergency crews would have access to the key box. There is a list in the proposed law of what documents should go in the box.

Any buildings having three or more false alarms within a six-month period are also required to install a key box. Exceptions to the law include one and two-family dwellings, buildings with a guard system and the post office.

“Any person who shall fail to comply with any of the applicable provisions of this chapter or any lawful order, notice, directive, permit or certificate of the Building Department made hereunder shall be punishable by a fine of $250,” the proposed law reads.

The board will meet again about the law and reopen the public hearing at the next meeting on October 1.

Also at the September 10 meeting:

• The board appointed Joseph McCullum as fall soccer program director on the recommendation of the town Recreation Committee. They are still looking for a co-director for the program. They also accepted the resignation of Barbara Heimroth-Johnson from the Recreation Committee. She has moving out of the area. The board is accepting letters of interest to fill the rest of her term, which is up in 2020

• The board appointed Ron Caponera to the Board of Assessment Review for a five-year term

• The board opened bids for Electric Car Charging Station the town plans to install. The three bids ranged from about $11,500 to $37,000. Councilman Phil Bickerton will review the bids and report back to the board

• The board passed a revised motion asking the state to reduce the speed limit on County Route 25 from 55 mph to 35 mph.

The next Kinderhook Town Board meeting will be Monday, October 1 at 7 p.m.

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email

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