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COUNCIL MULLS LETTING SNOWMOBILES ON SOME STREETS

The City Council on Wednesday will look at a proposed ordinance that would allow snowmobiles on certain city streets.

Aldermen Frank Dragotta of Ward 2 and James Mongillo of Ward 4 are sponsors of resolution. Snowmobiles currently are allowed on city streets only in a snow emergency at certain road crossings and at special events.

The change will allow snowmobilers to enter the city from the West on Broad Street Extension to Center Street, or Route 353, and travel north on Route 353 to the city line at the Town of Salamanca.

They would also be able to travel from Allegany State Park on Scenic Drive on the south to Parkway Drive and east, providing access to Round Top Mountain and the Red Garter Playhouse, a restaurant and bar.

Snowmobiles would be prohibited from using city streets between midnight and 8 a.m. and would be required to operate at less than 20 mph. Operators must be older than 16.

If approved by the Council, the ordinance would take effect as soon as proper signs are posted.

The Council also will look at whether to reduce the sewer-rental rates. If the proposed reductions are approved, a public hearing will be scheduled.

The Board of Public Utilities assesses sewer usage at 158 percent of city water consumption, and the Council wants to lower the percentage to 153. The Council increased the rate from 142 percent in December 1996 as way to raise revenues without increasing property taxes.

For the current year, the city is expected to receive $239,900 for sewer usage, a major source of revenue in the budget.

The reduction comes just as the Board of Public Utilities announced that the average residential water bill will go up by about $2.30 a month in April.

The meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. in City Hall.

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