WESTFIELD - After holding three public hearings, the Town of Westfield amended its sign law, changed its regulations on outdoor markets and amended its procurement policy.
After a request was made by a property owner in the town to hold weekend flea markets, the town chose to amend this kind of market with some previsions. For example, the site has to have at lease five acres, there must be sufficient parking and everything must be taken down after 36 hours. In addition, anyone wanting to hold such a market must still apply for a special use permit and have it approved by the town board.
After 10 years without a change, the town updated its sign law thanks to quite a bit of work by the town's planning board. While Town Supervisor Martha Bills said it was a big change, those changes were necessary because of things like digital signs. She noted the law was simplified and some regulations impossible to enforce were removed.
Photo by Jenna Loughlin
Members of the Westfield Town Board as well as town residents take a look at the town’s new dump truck before the board’s regular meeting on Wednesday, May 1.
Town Attorney Joel Seachrist pointed out the prior law focused on measurements, while the new law focuses more on ascetics and gives people a chance to be creative. However, it was pointed out that these laws only apply to town roads, and not state highways such as Route 5, Route 20 and Route 394.
Finally, the change to the procurement policy came about because of a change in the state law allowing bids to be judged based on best value, not just the lowest price. The town changed its law in order to opt into the change.
Also during the Westfield Town Board meeting on Wednesday, May 1, the board gave its approval for Highway Supervisor David Babcock to purchase a structure to house the town's salt. The walls would be made of concrete, the roof would be fabric and the trussing would be made of steel galvanized three times.
While this type of structure is not mandated by the Department of Environmental Conservation yet, the building would help save money on lost salt due to rain and snow, as well as the environmental aspect brought up by board member David Brown. Half of the money for the building will come from the town's reserve building account while the other half will come from Consolidated Local Street and Highways Improvement Program, or CHIPS, funding. It was already allotted for into town's 2013 budget.
Board member Jim Herbert reported the harbor is now open and that the water level is holding for now. The hope is to be able to get by a little longer without dredging, but the logs still have to be dealt with. Bills said there may be possible funding for dredging next year with money coming to New York State for Superstorm Sandy, though the town will continue to apply for grants.
In other harbor news, Kelly Brown was officially appointed by the board as Harbor Master for 2013 while Chairperson Julie Travis, Jamie Jaynes, George Kolibar, Carter Stetson and Dan Chapman were appointed to the Harbor Commission.
In other business, the board gave Babcock permission to go out with sealed bid to sell the old harbor lights and light poles, so long as the bid price is not less then the price for selling the poles as scrap metal, as well as approval of the bid of $25,000 from Hard Rock Gravel Products to buy the town's 2000 Sterling truck.
Also, Bills reported work continues on the water line project for Barcelona as the soil boring was completed and work on preliminary drawings by the engineers was taking place.
Finally, the town passed Resolution No. 25-2013 authorizing participation in the Northern Chautauqua County Regional Local Waterfront Revitalization Program, Resolution No. 26-2013 changing the name of Reid Road to Vilardo Road in honor of long-time town board and community member Carl Vilardo, Jr., and Resolution No. 27-2013 authorizing a two year police protection agreement with the Village of Westfield's police department effective through Dec. 31, 2014 in the prorated amount of $17,500.
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss ongoing litigation.