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Lebanon Town Council to discuss gas wells, other issues Monday

Lebanon town board members will meet Monday April 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the Smith Valley Community Center on River Road in Randallsville for its monthly town board meeting.

The public is invited to attend.

Items on the town board agenda include:

1. Opening of washed road sand bids for 2009-10

2. Discussion on a proposed solar energy system for the town office and highway garage, and possible grants or stimulus funds that might be available.

3. The status of gas well development in the township and any gas well rig fire safety updates and related issues including a proposal by the DEC to grant a gas well permit to be drilled in an agricultural district in a flood plain near a stream bed off River Road.

The state proposal to enact a severance tax on natural gas production for state purposes only will be discussed, and the strong industry opposition to this plan will be discussed as well as information becomes available. The town board has advocated local authority only for a fuel production tax so that the most impacted areas get the most benefit.

The state proposal threatens to take revenue away from local governments and use it for state purposes.

4. The town's tentative road plan for 2009 which hinges greatly on the status of the condition of local roads and the state budget CHIPS program.

5. Update on concerns about the assessment revaluation in the town that has generated a significant number of complaints.

6. Appointment of a new member to the Assessment Board of Review, as John Mayer recently submitted his resignation after many years of service. The ABR reviews all assessments that are grieved on Grievance Day later this spring. The town is looking to fill this position with interested applicants.

7. Town participation in the Madison County Fair Board and upcoming county fair. The new revamped fair wants membership from each town in the county and displays from each town in the county for the Madison County Fair this year.

8. Update on the status of the SOMAC ambulance contract proposal and planned meeting on April 27 with SOMAC to discuss their proposals for continued service in the area.

9. Other items related to the status of town finances, budgets and investments.

As always, there is a period of public comment at the start and end of each town board meeting where members of the public are welcome to address the board with any concerns.

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