MAYVILLE - New concerns about amendments to the countywide Public Facilities Shared Services Agreement to address derelict structures were brought up Thursday.
The County Legislature Audit and Control Committee reviewed and passed five resolutions, including one regarding the Shared Services Agreement, in a meeting that lasted less than 15 minutes. Each resolution the committee reviewed had already been reviewed during various other committee meetings.
The committee first authorized a resolution to accept a grant offer from the New York State Department of Transportation, which will be used to improve guidance signs at the Jamestown Airport. The grant is part of a project which was approved in 2010. On Monday, the Public Facilities Committee also heard from Sam Arcadipane Jr. regarding the project.
The second resolution the committee reviewed and authorized was to expand the countywide Public Facilities Shared Services Agreement to address derelict structures. Although Steve Abdella, county attorney, was at the committee meeting, few questions were asked of him. He also spoke at the Public Facilities Committee meeting and the Administrative Services Committee meeting Monday, as well as Wednesday's Public Safety Committee meeting.
However, George Borrello, R-Irving, did question Abdella about property assessments on land after buildings were demolished.
"My concern is, if we are going to incentivize them to knock the building down, is there some way we can insure that it is reassessed to be a vacant piece of land?" Borrello asked. "If a building is assessed at $50,000 and it gets knocked down, we're going to waive the tipping fee and we're still paying $50,000 a year assessment for a vacant piece of land."
According to Abdella, assessments are to be updated by March 1 of each year, so vacant land will be assessed as such.
"We could just operationally make sure that each case where this is done, the assessor is informed," Abdella said.
The third resolution of the morning, which was passed, was accepting a Region Partnership Grant for $47,000 under the 2012 Hazmat Grant Program. The resolution also passed through Wednesday's Public Safety Committee meeting.
The committee also accepted Thursday a Homeland Security Grant to purchase technology for new command vehicles. The $244,810 grant, which was accepted in 2009, is winding down in funding. The Public Safety Committee also approved of the grant's use Wednesday.
The Audit and Control Committee's final resolution, also seen by the Public Safety Committee, was to authorize County Executive Greg Edwards to create a contract for an Office of Homeland Security Program Grant for $208,097.
Capt. Darryl Braley with the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department explained that the grant allows the department to pay for vehicle and boat fuel, overtime expenses, security initiatives, equipment and more.
According to Kathy Tampio, Chautauqua County Legislature clerk, resolutions go to the appropriate committees according to the legislature's "rules and regulations." Each of the six committees are associated with corresponding county government departments.
"Many times, especially when the resolution involves the expenditure of county funds, it goes first to one of the committees and also to the Audit and Control Committee," Tampio said.
Using the resolution regarding derelict structures as an example, Tampio explained that it went through three different committees. Because the resolution involved the County Landfill, it went through the Public Facilities Committee. It also involved the county legal department, which is why the resolution went through the Administrative Services Committee. Finally, it went through the Audit and Control Committee because the resolution involves waiving charges, which is related to finance.
"Our committee secretary, Becky Cady, makes sure the resolutions are on the applicable committee agendas," Tampio said.
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