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Fri., Oct. 9
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Brasher town board endorses state Assembly bills


BRASHER FALLS — Brasher town board members have unanimously endorsed a resolution supporting two bills in Albany that they believe would add to the state’s finances and promote economic development in the region.

The resolution supports Assembly bill A7743 to change the weight limit of utility terrain vehicles from 1,000 to 1,500 pounds to allow them to be registered, and bill A7506, which would allow municipalities to determine what roads would be open to ATV traffic.

Town Supervisor M. James Dawson said changing the weight limit of UTVs, allowing them to be registered, would add revenue to New York’s coffers. Both bills, he said, would “greatly help in the area of expanded business and tourism” at a time when St. Lawrence County officials are working on establishing a 200-mile trail system.

“When this system is completed, ATVs and UTVs would bring a needed economic impact to various areas of the county, including but not limited to an increase in sales tax revenue,” he said.

However, Mr. Dawson said the bill has opposition from a powerful lobbying group in Albany. It was sponsored by Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell, D-Theresa. Cosponsors include Assemblyman Kenneth D. Blankenbush, R-Black River.

“The environmentalists don’t want this,” Mr. Dawson said.

Board members also unanimously approved a second resolution to establish a $150,000 repair reserve fund for the Brasher Falls Sewer District. Mr. Dawson said they installed lagoon treatment in 2001 and the residue in the bottom of the lagoons needs to be removed every 12 to 20 years. They anticipate, based on information provided by the engineering firm of Burley-Guminiak and Associates, that the cost will be approximately $150,000.

“We have enough money. The auditors say we have too much surplus, and we have to allocate this fund in a specific way,” Mr. Dawson said.

He said a permissive referendum would be required if the board transferred the funds to a capital reserve fund and the money could be spent by resolution.

A repair reserve fund, however, can be established by resolution and, before money is used from the account, board members must pass another resolution that is subject to a referendum.

Mr. Dawson said it was difficult to estimate how much money was needed to cover the sludge removal or when it would need to be done, but the board needs to be prepared for the eventuality.

“We don’t know when this is gong to happen. We don’t know if $150,000 is going to cover it,” he said.

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