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BOARD WANTS TO GET WATER FROM LAKE

The Fredonia Village Board Monday decided to make all preparations for pumping water from Upper Cassadaga Lake to refill the reservoir after last week's water main break.

The Board authorized Mayor Frank Pagano to notify the State Office of Emergency Management that 2,300 feet of 8-inch pipe and a compressor will be needed. Pagano said he has been in touch with Chautauqua County officials and the county may help by transporting the pipe and equipment.

The state requires the local government to pay for transportation from the warehouse, which Pagano said is in the central part of the state.

The Board decided to have everything in place and then formally request the necessary permit from the Department of Environmental Conservation. Such a permit is only good for 30 days, although an extension may be granted if necessary, Pagano said.

When Pagano noted the current warm weather and lack of rain in the forecast, one trustee added: "It would take about two weeks of downpour to refill the reservoir."

The Board has retained consulting engineer Rex Tolman of Falconer and wants him to suggest alternatives for a water supply. His report is due in January.

Trustee Susanne Marsh wants to look for alternative sources of water, including wells in the village-owned Glasgow Park near Upper Cassadaga Lake.

Pagano reported that the waterline break near Route 20 was repaired. Repair of a break on University Park is expected to be completed today.

"The water is safe, but we all still need to conserve," Pagano added.

The Board also discussed finances, especially since the 3 percent county sales tax on clothing will be eliminated as of Jan. 1.

The county shares half of the sales tax revenue with municipalities, using a formula based on population and assessed valuation. Pagano gave a worst case scenario that the village could lose up to $300,000, about 30 percent of the total $1 million of sales tax revenue usually received.

He also said the governor and state Legislature are considering eliminating the utility tax, which would cost the village $115,000 annually. The New York State Conference of Mayors is against this, he added.

With an unappropriated fund balance of $1,184,000 at the end of its last fiscal year, Pagano suggested the Board consider paying off a bond anticipation note of $150,000. The Board could also decide to pay cash for the $90,000 cost of constructing a pole barn for the Department of Public Works.

The Board could set aside $100,000 in the water fund and $100,000 in the wastewater treatment fund. The mayor noted work needs to be done at the reservoir.

Village Administrator James Sedota suggested that the Board request department heads to write five-year capital projects plans for their departments. Then projects could be prioritized.

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