By ANN BELCHER
BROCTON - Board members in Brocton are plugging their way through January with village happenings, and are looking for a few agenda items to be added onto their spring agendas.
Brocton Clerk Karen Ardillo reported during their meeting that paint chip samples have been received for the arch restoration, but that the final color approval will rest with State Historic Preservation representatives. Acknowledging that the final color will definitely be green in color, Ardillo added that as soon as approval is granted for the color, iron workers will be ready to apply the paint and ready the structure for reinstallation.
She and the board also publicly thanked Jim, Michele, Connor and Peter Dolce for their generous donation toward the arch returning to the center of the village.
Trustee J. Dale Abram also reported the rest of the board that he has been working on the recognition plaque that will be raised in the Village Commons area to thank those who have donated $250 or more at one time or over a period of time.
"I've been working on the plaque and have at least 10 to 12 names to add to it. We're making sure to accommodate everyone and are working with our engraver to find the best solution for the length of names," stated Abram.
Mayor Dave Hazelton offered the plaque could have a labeled section to indicate how the donation was given, for example "in memory," or "in honor" instead of repeating that phrase on each engraved plaque.
Abram agreed and noted that every donor will be allowed the opportunity to edit their information before the final tiles are officially engraved. He also noted that Electric Lineman Joe Majkowski would like to see part of an existing post of the arch be incorporated somehow in that display. Solutions to the type of lighting to be installed are also still being looked at between the village and the project's funding sources.
In other matters, with spring in sight the mayor also reviewed a proposed new dumpster law with Village legal counsel Sam Drayo.
"I'd like to see something in place before spring, with the purpose being to alleviate neighbor to neighbor disputes and setting some official boundaries and pick up regulations," stated Mayor Hazelton.
The mayor requested a rough draft of the proposed law to be drawn up by Drayo for the board to review at a future meeting time.
Regarding a proposed merger between Brocton's and Portland's fire departments, the mayor updated the board that both departments have voted with Portland offering a resounding "No" and Brocton voting a resounding "Yes."
Trustee Art Donovan asked of the mayor what the assumed reason might be that Portland fire representatives so clearly voted the proposal down.
"My guess would be a simple matter of identity," responded Hazelton.
The mayor offered that the measure could still take flight if it were decided to make it an official public referendum, in which the people of both fire coverage areas did the deciding.
"Would that allow enough time for the upcoming March election?" asked Clerk Karen Ardillo.
The mayor noted that it would not be an item listed on Brocton's election slate, but would rather be put on the town of Portland agenda if that was to happen.
Acknowledging the possibility of tax rates changing for village and town taxpayers if a proposed merger took effect, Trustee Dale Van Vlack asked "Would most village tax rates go up?"
"If we kept the same budget and the assessment stayed the same, the village's probably would go up and others in the town might go down. But I think there are ways to save money in that opportunity too," answered Hazelton.
"The only problem is a newly elected board of fire commissioners would be the ones who would have the decision to make on that, and from this current standpoint, we would have no control over that."
As the meeting neared its adjournment, and a fire call was paged out for members of the Brocton department, Mayor Hazelton read with regret the resignation letter submitted by Fire Chief Bryan Pugh.
With his term set to expire in April, Pugh resigned from his role as chief and as a member of the fire department citing relocation for career opportunities.
Van Vlack questioned the mayor, who would be considered to be at the helm of department business with the fire call in progress during the meeting.
"By succession, Brian Woleben has already assumed that role and is the new fire chief for the department. It is with regret that we accept this resignation letter from Bryan Pugh as he has put in a lot of hours dedicated to the village and department and we certainly acknowledge his service to this community," stated Hazelton.
The board will meet again on February 6 at 7 p.m.