By Caitlin Croft

The March meeting of the Ellicottville Village Board opened with good news. The quarterly sales tax from the county was received, totaling $102,922.21.

This marks the final payment for the current fiscal year and the total received is approximately $411,000. This is up considerably from the year before.

A check was also received from Charter Communications for their franchise fee, totaling $18,340.80.

There was some discussion regarding a bill that was flagged during the meeting. Trustee Greg Cappelli asked for a follow up on the status.

The bill in question was regarding legal fees for the project at 5 Park Square. Originally it was labeled for the project at 23 Washington St.

Cappelli asked if there was a process and procedure in place yet that these extraneous fees can be billed back to the applicant.

Town/Village Engineer Niles Pierson advised there is a process in place that advises applicants that any work/costs above and beyond permits will be sent to the client.

There was a meeting with Iskalo Development regarding the former site of the Signore Plant and their potential involvement if the DRI Grant is awarded to Ellicottville. They are on board and open to project proposals. 

Regarding the ongoing issue with the Village Accounting Bill from RA Mercer, recent talks have gotten closer to a solution and no further payments will be made regarding last year’s bill that was exponentially higher than budgeted. This was due to the software from Williamson Law not being compatible and performing to the standards that were promised.

The Town/Village CFA Engineering Grant funds have yet to be received, but Pierson advises he is in contact with the Department of State and we will be reimbursed but unsure of when.

There was a Request for Proposal sent out for a new village attorney and four firms have responded. The next phase will be interviews and discussion amongst the board.

The New York Local Leaders Conference is being held at Holiday Valley April 2 and 3. The annual NYCOM meeting is May 5 to 7.

It is time to update the NYMIR Insurance and the rates have increased 5 percent. This is a larger-than-normal increase, but due to upgrades in vehicles, equipment and all village facilities are now insured at full replacement value. For what is being gained this is a very reasonable increase.

Dr. Green Lawn Contract was approved for this summer in order to get a small discount on the price. The Charter Communications Franchise Agreement is up for renewal and will be addressed in the coming month. Lastly, the Southern Tier West 26th Annual Local Government Conference has been announced for May 9.

IN THE Planning Report, there was discussion regarding the policies on Planning Board meetings when a quorum cannot be reached. Initially the April meeting was cancelled but an alternate date was conducive to holding a quorum. This April’s meeting will be held on the third Tuesday instead of the second Tuesday.

Seeing as the construction months here are limited, it is ever important that meetings in the spring happen. The mayor advised he will speak to the Planning Board regarding the concern. 

In January, the Engineering Department was selected by RIT to work closely with two Engineering Student Groups on a project for their degree.

The students will, at no cost to the village, learn about the current facilities, processes and procedures. They are then charged to design a state of the art DPW Building.

Part of this project will include studying the economics of remodeling vs. building new. Work on this project started with the students this past month.

With the weather beginning to break for spring, the next phase of the GIS program will commence. This phase will consist of marking and mapping the village trees, street signs and stormwater system. 

In Refuse, Trustee Patra Lowes advised she is going through the Trash Law and working on updates and amendments. 

The next meeting of the Ellicottville Village Board is scheduled for April 15 at the Town/Village Hall at 6 p.m.