Council Chambers

Tonawanda, New York

June 3, 2008

 

A Regular Meeting of the Common Council

 

Present:  Council President Zeisz

Present Councilmembers:  Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis

 

Pledge of Allegiance led by Council President Zeisz

 

Prayer led by Council President Zeisz

 

Bid Opening:            Sidewalk Replacement – Spring 2008

                        May 22, 2008

                        10:00 A.M.

 

  Campobello Construction Co., Inc.

  23 Stratford Rd.

  Buffalo, NY   14216                                                              Total Bid Price:  $37,260.00

 

  Valeri Concrete Construction, Inc.

  6655 Errick Rd.

  N. Tonawanda, NY  14120                                                      Total Bid Price:  $41,137.50

 

  Master’s Edge, Inc.

  3409 Broadway

  Cheektowaga, NY  14227                                                      Total Bid Price:  $43,500.00

 

  P&J Construction Company, Inc.

  709 Pleasant View Dr.

  Lancaster, NY   14086                                                     Total Bid Price:  $65,875.00

 

  E.J. Militello Concrete, Inc.

  P.O. Box 770

  East Amherst, NY  14051                                                      Total Bid Price:  $66,400.00

            Bid Bonds and Non-Collusive Bidding Certificates accompanied all bids

                        Referred to the Committee of the Whole

                                    Ordered filed

 

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE MAYOR

 

A letter to the New York State Liquor Authority dated May 30, 2008, regarding The Griffin, 11 Main Street, Tonawanda.

 

A resolution from the Association of Erie County Governments dated May 27, 2008, showing their support and commitment to fair and equitable assessment practices.

 

A letter from Time Warner Cable dated May 22, 2008, regarding their show entitled “All That Matters”.

 

A letter from the Department of State dated May 5, 2008, informing the City that their application for the Cities of Tonawanda and North Tonawanda Stump Grinder Project was not among the projects chosen.

 

A letter from the Erie County Department of Probation, dated May 21, 2008, asking to continue to use City Hall to service residents of the City that are on probation.

 

A Proclamation proclaiming June 25, 2008, Insurance Fraud Prevention Day in the City of Tonawanda

 

A letter to the Supervisor of the Town of Tonawanda dated May 30, 2008, regarding golf course fees for City residents.

 

A letter from the New York State Canal Corporation dated May 29, 2008, regarding the Third Annual Canal Splash.

            Ordered filed

 

COMMUNICATION FROM CITY OFFICIALS AND CORRESPONDENCE

 

The following monthly reports were received by the City Clerk:

            March minutes of the Tonawanda Housing Authority

April minutes of the Plumbing Board

            April minutes of the Tonawanda Fire Department

            May minutes of the Board of Appeals

                Referred to the Committee of the Whole

                        Ordered filed

 

A letter from the American Little League of Tonawanda, Inc., dated May 18, 2008, asking that the City consider paving the parking lot located between Tonawanda Little League and Ives Pond off of Francis Street.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

 

A letter from the County of Erie to City Treasurer Joseph M. Hogenkamp dated April 16, 2008, regarding Electric Account Analysis.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

 

A letter to City Treasurer Joseph M. Hogenkamp from the State of New York Department of Public Service dated May 19, 2008, regarding a request made by the City for an audit of our cable television franchise provider.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

 

A letter to Recreation Director Linda Foels from Tonawandas Post 264 dated May 22, 2008, regarding scheduling problems for their baseball team.

 

A letter from Niawanda Plaza, Inc., dated June 1, 2008, regarding various issues they have with the City.

 

A letter to Council President Zeisz from the Department of the Army, Buffalo District, Corps of Engineers, dated May 30, 2008, regarding the Tonawanda Landfill (FUSRAP) Vicinity Property sampling.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

                        Ordered filed

 

MOTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS

 

112.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, at the recommendation of the City Engineer, Jason J. LaMonaco, P.E., that change order #1 to the HVAC contract for the Fire Hall Roof Replacement project be accepted at a cost not to exceed $13,950.00.    

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

113.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, that the Common Council authorize and direct Mayor Ronald J. Pilozzi to sign the contract signature pages needed to complete an application contract for a Legislative Member Item Initiation Project Grant intended to provide $8,500.00 in funding for repairs to the Niagara Hose Volunteer Fire Co. #3 building located at 74 Wheeler Street.

 

 

Budget Impact:  -0-

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

114.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, that resolution #113 passed on May 5, 2008, be rescinded and be it further

            Resolved, that the annual Firemen’s Day Parade be held on Saturday, June 21, 2008, at 2:00 P.M. and further be it

            Resolved, that the parade start at Roosevelt and Grove Streets in Tonawanda and disband at Main and Goundry Streets in North Tonawanda, with companies marching back to Tonawanda on Main Street through North Tonawanda into Tonawanda onto Delaware Street and back to their respective companies.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

115.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Whereas, a $25.00 Special Events application fee and application was received by the City Clerk from Partners in Art II and

            Whereas, the application was reviewed and commented on by all appropriate department heads to insure the safety of our residents, now, therefore be it

            Resolved, that permission be granted to Partners in Art II to hold their annual “Art on the Riverwalk” on Sunday, July 6, 2008, from 8:00 A.M. until 6:00 P.M. and be it further

            Resolved, that a Certificate of Insurance be filed with the City Clerk naming the City as additional insured no later than July 1, 2008.

           

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

116.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Whereas, a $25.00 Special Events application fee and application was received by the City Clerk from John Mombert, 11626 Liberia Road, East Aurora, NY, 14052, and

            Whereas, the application was reviewed and commented on by all appropriate department heads to insure the safety of our residents, now, therefore be it

            Resolved, that permission be granted to John Mombert to hold a Charity Walk for Pancreatic Cancer on Saturday, September 13, 2008, from 10:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. and be it further

            Resolved, that a Certificate of Insurance be filed with the City Clerk naming the City as additional insured no later than September 1, 2008.

           

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

117.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, at the recommendation of the City Engineer, Jason J. LaMonaco, P.E., that award of the contract for Sidewalk Replacement, Spring 2008, be made to Campobello Construction Co., Inc., at a cost not to exceed $37,260.00

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

 

 

 

118.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, at the recommendation of the City Engineer, Jason J. LaMonaco. P.E., that award of the contract for Maldiner Street 18” sanitary sewer inspection be made to Drain Doctor, Inc., at a cost not to exceed $4,900.00.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

119.     By Council President Zeisz                                     seconded by Councilmember Davis

            Resolved, that in recognition and compliance with the “New York State Open Meetings Law”, this Common Council will meet in Executive Session in the Common Council Chambers for the purpose of pending exempt City business, and further be it

            Resolved, that upon conclusion of the above stated business matters, the meeting shall again be open to the general public.  The reason for the Executive Session is to discuss personnel of a particular person.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC AFTER RESOLUTIONS

 

Kim Miller, 5 Scott Street – I’m here to find out what they plan on doing for homeowners without driveways for parking.

 

Council President Zeisz - Just out of curiosity, how long have you parked somewhere else?

 

Kim Miller - I just bought my home last year so I’ve been parking there for one year and when I bought the home I was not told of the “No Parking” overnight.

 

Council President Zeisz – Oh, you didn’t know the City didn’t have overnight parking.

 

Kim Miller - No, I was from the City of Buffalo and when I came here I was not advised.  So now I have a home that’s of no worth to me.

 

Council President Zeisz – So you have, I take it you have no driveway and no place for a driveway.

 

Kim Miller – No.

 

Council President Zeisz – What the Council did tonight is, we’re going to look at what our options are over the next two weeks before our next meeting on the 17th.  Hopefully if things work out, we’ll be able to resolve the issue to everyone’s satisfaction by that time.  I’m not sure exactly what’s going to transpire but there is some things we don’t have the answers to tonight that we have to get before then but it is something we are looking at to help resolve people’s issues. 

 

Kathy Marranca, 228 Young Street – We’ve been parking there for 21 years.  Now this guy decides he doesn’t want us there.

 

Council President Zeisz - He hasn’t owned the property for 21 years.    

 

Kathy Marranca – No, he’s only owned the property for two years but for the last two years, there has not been one problem.  We don’t ask him to plow, we shovel ourselves out, we just park at night, mind our own business and go to work the next day, not a problem.  My house is garbage, you might as well buy it because I’ll never sell it, and this gentleman also. 

 

Jim (inaudible), 7 Scott Street – My problem is I have a daughter with me who drives also and the closest I’ve got is parking at Delaware School.  She is only twenty and would have to walk late at night, by herself, to get home. 

 

Council President Zeisz – Like I said, there is a couple of issues we just don’t have the answers to tonight.  One of them that we’re not sure about is we’re trying to find out exactly how much of the property is owned by that gentleman and where the City’s right- of-way starts and that we’re just not exactly sure of.  Now if, assuming things work out, what will probably happen is there’ll probably be some kind of a permit type situation where there might be some cost involved, I’m not denying there might be some cost involved, but I’m not exactly sure where that will all play out.  Assuming it’s not an issue finding a place for people, that’s what we’ll probably do is those permits.  The only thing that is difficult, now I don’t know your current situation, have you ever had a problem finding a place to park?

 

Kathy Marranca - I don’t understand the question, finding a place where?

 

Council President Zeisz - In years past.

 

Kathy Marranca – No, we always parked across the street.

 

Council President Zeisz – So there was always a place to park. 

 

Kathy Marranca – Always a place to park.

 

Council President Zeisz – And I don’t know if your Councilmember Mr. Waterhouse or Ms. Perkins has also worked with some people on this, if they want to comment.    

 

Councilmember Perkins – I just want to make sure that anybody right now who has parked there, we’ve worked out a situation with the Police Department, we need you to call…

 

Kathy Marranca - …let me tell you about that…

 

Councilmember Perkins - …well no, we just went over that again, we started at 6:00 tonight, we had the Police Chief in, and if you call tonight…

 

Council President Zeisz – Right, call tonight and you’ll be cleared through the 18th of the month. 

 

Councilmember Perkins – And you want to talk to the dispatcher that’s on duty when you call, you don’t need to ask for anybody specific, the dispatcher’s the person that’s gonna take the calls.

 

Kathy Marranca - Well, she works 7:00 AM to 3:00 AM in the morning, my daughter whose been getting the tickets, yesterday and this morning.  

 

Councilmember Perkins – You can call for her, if you have her license plate number.

 

Kathy Marranca - She already gave it to them twice. 

 

Council President Zeisz - Well, we discussed the situation tonight and just when you get home, just call for whatever car it’s for and let the dispatcher know and it will be through the 18th

 

Kathy Marranca - The 18th of June?

 

Council President Zeisz – Right, so that we can work on this situation.  If you have any more comments, please if you could just go to the mic just because I need to have it on the record.

 

Kim Miller – That’s on any particular street, like I live on Scott Street so I can park on Scott Street and I won’t get a ticket, or are we to park on Young and we won’t get a ticket?  

 

Council President Zeisz – My understanding was to stay on your street.

 

Councilmember Waterhouse – Right. 

 

Council President Zeisz - Not to park on Young Street.     

 

Kim Miller - So if I call tonight, give them my plate, I won’t get a ticket?

 

Council President Zeisz – Right. 

 

Councilmember Waterhouse - Because of the reason, we don’t know where his property line is.

 

Council President Zeisz - I do have one question, and you know anyone can answer.  How much of the space, from the curb to the fence, would you say you’re using up?

 

Kathy Marranca -  Is there a lot of room between the car and the fence?

 

Kathy Marranca - You can open both car doors without interfering with the street, or his fence. 

 

Council President Zeisz - I drove by and it looked like there were a couple bigger trucks in there and it looked like they were taking up a lot of space.    

 

Kathy Marranca – Well I don’t understand if we’re not supposed to be parking there, why these people are parked there to begin with?  I come home today, there’s five cars parked across the street, they don’t get a ticket on them.  I come home yesterday from work and there’s four cars there.  The barmaid parks there from the time she starts her shift to the time she decides to go home and there’s no ticket on her car.  But my daughter parks in the street, with permission, and gets two tickets. 

 

Councilmember Waterhouse – We did bring that up to the Police Chief when we were talking in the back room and Ms. Marranca, I think the first night, there was a bit of miscommunication, maybe with myself too, and I apologize for that.  I was under one impression.  With the second phone call the Mayor was there too.  We got it clarified, how that slipped through the cracks is just amazing to us.  So the Chief came in a spoke to us and we got it clarified from her mouth that you call dispatch and she’s going to make them aware of that.  You only have to do it once, you’ll give them your name, your license plate, and then where you’ll be parking, if it’s on Scott Street, Scott.  There are the three streets.  Again, we can’t have you on Young Street until we determine his property line and right now that’s what we have some lawyers looking at and then, like I said, that’ll be good until the 18th.  So I’d like to apologize to you, if the miscommunication was my fault in any way, I’m terribly sorry for the inconvenience but I understand the Police Chief has taken care of that problem now.

 

Kim Miller – Yes, I talked with her this morning. 

 

Councilmember Waterhouse – And we talked with her too and I did bring up the fact that you told me that during the daytime people were allowed to park there and they weren’t ticketed. 

 

Kim Miller – That’s right and I don’t think it’s fair. 

 

Councilmember Waterhouse – It’s not.  I agree, if you can’t park there now, then nobody can.  So the Police Chief is aware of that problem. 

 

Council President Zeisz - I think the only thing I would ask, if anyone does have a problem in the next two weeks, so that we don’t have one person calls one person, then they call somebody else, if you have issues, why don’t you call Mr. Waterhouse so that it can go through him and then we don’t have conflicts of, well this person said, and that way Gary can get back to me and then we can get to the Chief and get whatever it is resolved.  You shouldn’t have a problem, but if you do, I think that will make more sense to do it that way.     

 

 

COMMENTS FROM THE COUNCILMEMBERS AFTER RESOLUTIONS

 

Councilmember Davis – Myself, Councilman Kossow and the Mayor and Legislator Michele Iannello attended the re-dedication of the fire memorial this weekend.  I’d just like to thank them for the invite and it was a very nice ceremony.  The Army Corps has finally bring back to us on the landfill.  It was pretty much a waste of paper.  All it stated is they had no idea as far as the new testing methodology that’s going occur at the landfill and also if any testing was going to occur on residents properties.  A little bit disappointed, but as a side note, the Army Corps is changing their Chief Lieutenant. Colonel in charge and it will be happening some time in July and that will throw a monkey wrench into the plans of getting some type of testing down pat as far as how the Army Corps is going to proceed with the second round of testing over at the landfill.  I’d like to thank Linda Foels and Neal Myers for a few issues that I brought to their attention the past two weeks.  I’d also like to thank our esteem City Clerk Jan.  My brother and future sister-in-law were having issues with their marriage certificate and she ended up staying past the close of business to address that for them and I greatly appreciate it.  And I’d also like to thank the hard work of our City Engineer, Jason LaMonaco.  The last few weeks he’s been all over the place, whether it’s been Fire Headquarters, the water plant, reconstruction of Main Street, Virginia Street, Spaulding Fibre, I could probably go on and on.  He is one dedicated City individual who we definitely get our money’s worth out of.  His work ethic is probably second to none and I’d just like to applaud him for the work that he’s been doing these last few weeks.  And lastly, this Saturday in Elmwood Park the Zack family will be having a lemonade stand.  All proceeds will go towards Childhood Cancer in the name of Gabrielle Tyrone who a few years ago passed away from leukemia and lived up in my ward, I’d like to ask any of you, if you’re not doing anything this Saturday from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM, go out and support a great cause.  They raised approximately $750 last year for cancer research for children which is phenomenal when you think of it just as a lemonade stand so please go out and support that cause.  And lastly, I’d like to thank all the youth for being here tonight.  It’s nice to see them taking such an interest in City government and that they had nothing better to do on a Tuesday night.

 

Council President Zeisz – All right, so they weren’t dragged to the Council meeting, they came of their own volition because if they don’t they aren’t going to pass their class. 

 

Councilmember Kossow – First, last week I attended a Table Top Disaster Drill.  Mr. Hogenkamp was there, Carl, the Mayor, Jan Bodie and myself.  It was an interesting exercise.  The scenario was a large explosion down at Canal Fest and all the chaos that we would have and what would be needed to be as prepared as possible to deal with this situation, so it was a very worthwhile exercise and I was glad I participated in that.  Secondly, on the Firemen’s Day Parade, we should have a great turnout on the 21st, hopefully with the downtown merchants, having it go down Main Street it helps them a little bit. I hope we have a great turnout.  And lastly, to the students that are here, just remember when you turn 18 you have got to get registered to vote.

 

Mayor Pilozzi – I think the first order of business for me this evening is to introduce the new guy on the block, a guy by the name of Sam Iraci.  Sam is taking the place of Don Witkowski who has left for the Village of Hamburg.  Sam comes to us with a lot of experience and I know he’s been here for a couple of weeks so far, but I’ve been working very closely with him and I’m very impressed with his knowledge, his background and his willingness to get involved in our fair City, so welcome aboard Sam.  Something that was already mentioned was the Tabletop Drill on the 28th and it was a very worthwhile experience.  We had people not only from the City of Tonawanda, namely our Fire Chief, Police Chief, also members of the disaster team from North Tonawanda, so we had a good, mutual outlook on what could happen and how to work closely with our sister community on the other side of the Canal.  Very worthwhile experience and we’ll probably be doing more of that in the very near future and hopefully, we’ll never have to use it.  But just so everybody’s aware that the Hygrade building that recently was sold and they’re putting new siding on, is the same organization that bought that building had that huge fire that took 24 hours to put out on Niagara Street in Buffalo just yesterday, so you never know.  Someone called me up and said look at the TV.  I’ve been the Mayor for two and a half years and I think I’ve turned that TV on twice and all of a sudden I’m looking at this building that is totally engulfed so you never know what can happen.  These are the kind of things that we try to avoid and if it does happen, we’ll be prepared.  From the folks that expressed their concern over the parking, we’re all sorry for the mix-up and I know the Chief took care of the ticket situation with you, but it still is a pain to have to go through all of that junk.  I think this Council is committed to coming up with some solutions, hopefully they’re the right solutions but we do have to respect the private property and hopefully we can work around that.  Give us a couple more weeks to work that through.  Councilman Davis already mentioned it, Jason LaMonaco, this guy’s phenomenal, we’ve been blessed in the City of Tonawanda with some excellent Department Heads and he’s one of them, just a workaholic, he’s a very professional engineer by any stretch of the imagination.  I worked with engineers over 30 years of my life, mostly mechanical type engineers but still, regardless, this guy has a work ethic and a way with people that get things done, and his willingness to go the extra mile really helps in our City.  The last thing, well actually the Firemen’s Parade Day, please come out for the Firemen’s Parade.  When I was a youngster, growing up in North Tonawanda, I hope you guys don’t hold that against me, but at any rate, the Firemen’s Parade Day was about four or five people deep in any street you want to go down.  These people are volunteers and they’re there for your safety and they keep your property and your lives in a safe environment as best they can, so pay them a little respect if you would, come out to the parade and have a good time, hopefully it will be good weather and it is going to be going down Main Street, hopefully the downtown merchants will put their best foot forward in that.  Last thing I want to mention is if you came in the door today and saw the sign “Walk the Villages”, Senator Rath and her senatorial district started this a few years ago, it took us a while to get on board with it and if I could take your indulgence here I’d ask Kory to come up to the mic and just explain the program.  It’s a great program, it’s basically one where people are asked to get out and walk from business to business and there’s a stamp involved, there’s a prize involved, and Kory maybe you can explain it a little bit better.  It’s pretty exciting.  

 

Kory Schuler – I’m loosing my voice and was trying not to talk today.  Walk the Villages is Senator Rath’s fitness and tourism campaign.  Like the Mayor said, this is the first year the City of Tonawanda’s had the honor of being part of it.  It’s called Area 1, there’s several different areas,. listing several different senator’s districts.  What it is, is it encourages people to pick up brochures and I have a copy of each folder for each Councilmember but it encourages people to pick up a folder from several different locations throughout the City and there’s actually a mapped out tour that starts at Clinton Park, goes up Clinton Street to Fletcher, down Main, comes to the Long Homestead, down Niagara, back to Clinton Park.  People along the way can get coupon stamps at several different locations, whether it’s the Historical Society, Long Homestead, one of the merchants, and then they can enter into a drawing for several prizes.  The City of Tonawanda’s grand prize is a $250 gas card from Noco and this goes through the Village of Williamsville, City of Tonawanda, Batavia, LeRoy, but it’s a great way to represent the City, it has no cost to anybody, we put a lot of time, a lot of effort into it and I’ve really enjoyed working with Senator Rath, Christine Pilozzi was a great help, Jan thank you for getting the word out, she was given it kind of late, but our kick-off party at the Long Homestead which was very nice.  I’d like to thank the Mayor for giving the opening speech but we encourage everyone to get out.  Senator Rath’s worked on this campaign for a few years now.  Fortunately for us, we’ve gotten into it, unfortunately this is Senator Rath’s last year, but most of the people running for office in her district have guaranteed us that the campaign will continue after she’s gone so we just encourage everyone to get out, follow those signs, and walk through the City, learn what your City has to offer, it’s historic architecture, it’s historic buildings, and a lot of new merchants throughout the City, so that’s what it is, we hope we’ll see you out there walking. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi – Thank you all the downtown merchants for your involvement.       

 

Council President Zeisz – I just had a brief comment, Mr. Davis already touched on it, it was the response that we got from the Lieutenant Colonel from the Army Corps and I do have to say that I’m pretty disappointed, not surprised, but disappointed because I felt like the letter was, unfortunately, just some more lip service about, you know, what they plan to do with the new testing and the sampling at the landfill site and adjacent to our homeowners.  And I also, I guess I take exception to the fact that we didn’t understand how they did the sampling the first time around even though it seemed pretty clear to me how they did the sampling, and that’s all I have at this time on that matter.  I mean, there’ll be a lot more opportunities for us to express ourselves with the Army Corps.  I thank everyone for taking the time to come out tonight and hope to see you again.  Have a great night and drive home safely. 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

120.     By Councilmember Waterhouse                  seconded by Councilmember Kossow

            Resolved, that this Common Council adjourn until, June 17, 2008.  

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Kossow, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

 

 

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