January 8th, 2018
CANISTEO, NY – In the first official meeting of 2018, the Canisteo village board again revisited the problem of unpaid water/sewer bills.
According to Canisteo Village Mayor Monica Recktenwald, the amount owed to the village for back water/sewer bills has risen from the previous $140,000, to over $180,000. “That’s a lot of unpaid money, and I think its time we come up with some ideas on how to recoup some of this,” said the Mayor. “Ideally, we would like to come up with a way to assist villagers and towns people in paying their bill, so it does not eventually end up on their tax bills at the end of the year with additional fees piled on. We eventually get our money in the long run through delinquent taxes, at least with our village residents, but it takes so long that we are finding it hard to finance the service up front.”
One idea that Recktenwald suggested was having billing occur four times a year instead of the current two. “Our DPW employees would still only read the meters twice a year, but when we issue the bills, it would only be half the portion, and the next quarter would be a bill that would actually be the total amount for the billing period.” Another idea Recktenwald suggested was increasing the number of times a penalty was added throughout the unpaid period. “As it stands now, we only add a one-time penalty every six months, but if we increased that to continue to gradually rise by a percentage throughout the unpaid period like our village and county taxes, it might be more incentive to pay the bill on time.” More discussion about the matter will be held at future meetings.
In other news a resolution to convert a single parking space on Depot Street in front of the bank from 2 hour parking to 15 minutes was shot down, with no one seconding the motion. Most were in agreement that it was not necessary at this point.
The mayor also said that she is still receiving letters from residents about the possibility of increasing officer coverage throughout the village. She did not specify if they were for or against the idea. There is currently a big dilemma about whether to increase the number of hours the Canisteo PD patrols in the village.
The village DPW workers will now be eligible for paid family medical leave. The board unanimously approved the provision provided the workers contribute .126% of their pay to finance it.
And finally, it was announced that the village will be changing over their fuel cards to Wex Fleet. According to the Mayor, this will provide many more reward options and also tax exempt savings. Of note on this matter was a request made by Trustee Tim Harkenrider to County Legislator Tom Ryan, who was present at the meeting, to look into the town and village having their own pump/filling stations to supply their vehicles.