SENECA FALLS — The town Police Department and the three month-long closure of a portion of West Bayard Street may spark the most discussion at today’s Town Board meeting.
The police issue was prompted by Supervisor Greg Lazzaro’s announcement on Nov. 21 that he plans to introduce a motion today to demote Police Chief Stu Peenstra and Lt. Tim Snyder to sergeant ranks. That follows a petition being filed by Peenstra and Snyder for recognition of the two of them as a separate bargaining unit within town government.
Lazzaro said he wants to demote the two to sergeant to put them in the same union that represents rank and file officers and sergeants in the department. He said if approved, he would seek applicants to serve as acting chief and lieutenant, who would not be in a union.
Peenstra and Snyder oppose Lazzaro’s proposal, as do several board members. Town resident Frank Sinicropi has asked to address the board on the proposed change in police titles.
Another petitioner is Mary Grace, who will speak on the ongoing closure of West Bayard Street from Ovid to Bridge streets to through traffic, a closure announced Aug. 29, with no end in sight. The closure is due to a deteriorating culvert pipe under the street taking water from a pond on the south side of the street under the roadway to the Cayuga-Seneca Canal on the north side.
The situation is said to endanger the road surface if traffic is not limited. The closure has caused detours onto Center, Barker, Mechanic and Maynard streets. The state and town also are debating whose responsibility it is to fix the drainage culvert and pipe.
The board also is scheduled to discuss the situation as part of the new business portion of the agenda.
In other agenda items, the board will:
LEGAL SERVICES: Open bids received in response to a request for proposals for professional and legal consulting services in 2020. The current system of having a full-time town attorney appears to be ending Dec. 31. Under new business, the board may take action on the RFPs.
SHORT-TERM VACATION RENTALS: Continue, under old business, its discussion of whether to impose a moratorium on issuing permits for short-term vacation rentals.
GRANT-WRITING SERVICES: Discuss the proposals received for grant writing services and possibly set up a procedure to analyze the proposals and make a recommendation.