By David Prenatt
The Sherman Village Board voted Wednesday to prepare a letter of support for the Chautauqua County Land Bank in its efforts to solicit funds to create a demolition program for rural communities.
Photo by David Prenatt
Sherman Village mayor John Patterson presents a certificate of service from the Ney York State Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officers to Geraldine Robson in front of Sherman Central School.
Sherman mayor John Patterson presented a letter from Mark Geise, deputy director of planning and economic development for the county, asking communities to pledge their support for the project. The organization is applying to the New York State Office of the Attorney General for $1.5 million in funds that would result in a 50 % match with local resources. The application is due in mid-September.
In 2011, the Chautauqua County Land Bank was created to "control and manage strategically selected, dilapidated, residential and commercial properties granted to the agency by the county from the tax foreclosure process. The CCLBC will seek to minimize the negative impacts that substandard properties and structures have on communities, thereby stabilizing neighborhood and main streets, alike." (www.planningchautauqua.com)
Patterson said if the project is successful, Sherman would receive 80 tons worth of free tipping and refuse dumping credits for materials from demolished derelict properties.
"We are fortunate in the village not to have derelict properties right now," Patterson said. "But it's definitely something we should have in our hip pocket should we ever need it."
Support for the project does not require any financial obligation, Patterson said. "They are not seeking any commitment, just support."
In other business, the council agreed to pursue a plan to paint the windowsills on Main Street properties. Patterson said that approximately $800 had been donated some time ago for downtown enhancement and this would be a good use for those funds.
"I've had so many people ask, 'when are you going to paint the windowsills on Main Street," he said. "It's such a minimal thing but it would make things look so much better."
Patterson said he would ask the Town of Sherman to pay half of the cost for the project.
Patterson also showed the council a Certificate of Public Service to be presented on Thursday to Geraldine Robson, who has served as a school crossing guard for 34 years. The certificate was provided by the New York state Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials.
The council heard several requests from residents asking for reduction or removal of charges in their water bills. The requests were denied, however, based on the fact that the reasons for them, such as a leaking toilet and the office being closed, were the responsibility of the individual.
Repairs to the museum complex are "winding down," Patterson told the council, noting that the entire project took less than two years. "I thought if it would ever happen it would take at least ten years and we've done it in a year and a half," he said.