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Village board endorses fire department service awards program

Will go to public referendum vote in June

— While the department is under the auspices of the village and the village pays the ultimate cost for its operation, the surrounding towns of Cazenovia, Nelson and Fenner sign fire contracts to receive coverage and budget money each year for the service.

Wheeler said the intention of the village board is to keep all fire contracts “to no more than a 2 percent increase per year,” which would help prevent contracting towns from exceeding the tax cap.

Zupan asked if the village would be willing to enter into a long-term contract with the town to keep those costs down to the 2 percent limit, to which Wheeler said he could not promise to do it, but believes the village board can “operate on that premise” during the upcoming budget process.

“We think this is a financially prudent thing for everybody,” he said.

Because LOSAP participants must first qualify with their annual 50 points, if the program were approved by the village in 2014, the first payouts would not occur until 2015, he said.

Also at the meeting, the board:

—Scheduled a public hearing for 6:55 p.m. Monday, Feb. 3, to review a proposed local law to revise the senior village tax adjustment minimum income requirement. Currently, senior citizens who make less than $18,500 per year are eligible for a 50 percent reduction in their yearly assessment. That minimum income has not changed in decades, so the board will consider changing the minimum to a yearly income somewhere around $25,000.

—Agreed to authorize the creation of a draft Request for Proposals (RFP) for the vision and master plan regarding the anticipated improvements and renovations of Lakeland Park and Carpenter’s Barn. The plan will be paid for with the $22,000 grant from the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation that the village recently received.

—Authorized village officials to work with CACDA to begin exploring the next round of state grants to which the village can apply to help offset the costs of renovating or replacing the Lakeland Park wrought-iron fence.

Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at editor@cazenoviarepublican.com.

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