TOWN OF SANTA CLARA BOARD MEETINGS

Minutes of Regular Monthly Meeting of the Santa Clara Town Board held on Thursday, April 8, 2021 via Zoom due to Covid-19, at 6:00 P.M

Roll as follows for the Regular Monthly Meeting:

    Present:
  • Andrew McGill - Supervisor
  • David Perry - Councilman
  • Richard Lyon - Councilman
  • Marcel "Mickey" Webb - Councilman
  • John Murray - Councilman

    Absent:
  • Scott LaMay - Superintendent of Highways

    Recording Secretary:
  • Laurie McGill - Town Clerk

Regular monthly meeting called to order by Supervisor McGill at 6:00 P.M.

Motion by Rick Lyon, seconded by John Murray to dispense with the reading of the minutes of the previous meeting. All members voting Aye. Motion carried. Motion by Mickey Webb, seconded by Rick Lyon to accept the minutes. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

Motion by Mickey Webb, seconded by Rick Lyon to go into Executive Session at 6:05 P.M. The Executive Session is to discuss the Board of Ethics advisory report with the Town's Special Counsel. This report is not covered under the Freedom of Information Act; therefore it is only available to the Town Board to review. No decisions or actions will be taken during this executive session. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

Motion by Mickey Webb, seconded by John Murray to return from executive session at 6:17 P.M. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

Ethics - Special Counsel Mike Hill stated the Town received an ethics complaint from Eleanor Chappo dated July 18, 2020. She supplemented it with various correspondence dated through January 6, 2021. The Complaint and all supplemental correspondence was referred to the Town's Board of Ethics for its review. They conducted a careful and thorough review and provided their advisory report to the Town Board. The Town Board members have reviewed the report and discussed it at length in the Executive Session held during the Town Board meeting on March 11, 2021. Are all Board members ready to move forward and make a decision with regard to the Complaint?

Mickey Webb stated the Town Board has completed reviewing the Board of Ethics Advisory Report. Mickey advised the Board of Ethics did a super job. The BOE took their time and did an excellent job and advised of no unethical violations on any Town members per the Town's Local Law.

RESOLUTION No. 8 of 2021

INTRODUCED BY: MICKEY WEBB. SECONDED BY: RICK LYON

RESOLUTION WITH RESPECT TO ETHICS COMPLAINT

WHEREAS, Eleanor Chappo submitted a Complaint to the Town dated July 18, 2020, alleging that a number of members of boards of the Town had committed various violations of the Town's Code of Ethics Law, and
WHEREAS, Ms. Chappo submitted various correspondence through January 6, 2021, to supplement her Complaint, and
WHEREAS, the Complaint and all supplemental correspondence was referred to the Town's Board of Ethics for review, and
WHEREAS, the Board of Ethics held several meetings and made appropriate inquiries in order to look into and review the allegations made in the Complaint and supplemental correspondence, and
WHEREAS, the Board of Ethics conducted a diligent and thorough review process and provided its advisory report to the Town Board, and
WHEREAS, the Town Board has carefully reviewed the advisory report and has discussed it and deliberated about it,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT
RESOLVED, that the Town Board hereby finds that there is a lack of conclusive evidence that anyone named in the Complaint and all related supplemental correspondence violated any provisions of Article III of the Town's Code of Ethics Law in any alleged actions, statements or conduct while acting in his or her official capacity for the Town.
The question of the adoption of this Resolution was duly put to a vote on roll call which resulted in votes by each Town Board member as follows:

AYES: 5 Mickey Webb, John Murray, Rick Lyon, Dave Perry, Andy McGill
NAYS: 0
ABSENT: 0
The Resolution was declared duly adopted by the Town Board.

Statement of Town Board to the Public Regarding Ethics Complaint

In July of 2020 the Town received a complaint stating that a number of individuals had committed ethical violations. Additional correspondence was submitted through early January of this year to supplement the original complaint. The initial complaint and all supplemental correspondence was referred to the Town's Board of Ethics (BOE) for its review.

Due to the serious nature of ethics complaints, the BOE follows a very careful and thorough process. It is time-consuming by nature. The time required was lengthened by several supplemental submissions received in December and January.

The BOE held several meetings and made appropriate inquiries in order to look into and review the allegations made in the complaint documents. The BOE provided its advisory report to the Town Board, which reviewed these matters in executive session during its meeting on March 11th.

After the Town Board finished its review at tonight's meeting, it adopted a Resolution finding there was a lack of conclusive evidence that anyone named in the complaint (including all of the supplemental correspondence) had violated any provisions of Article III of the Town's Code of Ethics in any alleged statements or conduct while acting in his or her official capacity for the Town.

It is extremely important to note that the Town Board's finding stated above applies to the named individuals while acting in their official capacities working for the Town. The Town's jurisdiction over its officials, employees and appointees extends only to their actions, statements and conduct in an official capacity. The Town's Code of Ethics does not apply to actions, statements or conduct by an official, employee or appointee in his or her capacity as a private citizen having private interactions with other private citizens.

Almost all of the allegations in the complaint documents concern actions, statements and conduct that appear to have taken place in the private dealings and interactions of the individuals named. The Town's Code of Ethics does not apply to such situations and the Town does not have any jurisdiction over Town officials, employees or appointees for actions, statements and conduct undertaken in their private, non-official capacities. The Town Board makes no findings and takes no position with regard to the propriety of statements, actions or conduct of the persons named in the complaint while they were acting in their private capacities in their private, personal dealings and interactions with others.

Update on Special Committee for Marina Regulations - Mickey Webb reported that the committee has met twice with Chazen Corp. The Committee will now start meeting twice a month from here on with the next meeting April 14th. The Committee does not feel that they can finish and do a proper job of updating the regulations by June 30th. The Committee feels they need to extend the moratorium. Rick Lyon stated that the Committee wants to work quickly and responsibly on this but they need more time to do a thorough job.

RESOLUTION No. 9 of 2021

INTRODUCED BY: MICKEY WEBB SECONDED BY: JOHN MURRAY

RESOLUTION WITH RESPECT TO EXTENDING MORATORIUM

WHEREAS, on February 11, 2021 the Town Board duly-approved the adoption of a Moratorium on commercial development in the R-C 1.3 and R-C 3.2 zoning districts in order to allow time for the Town to develop and enact regulations governing commercial marinas, and that Moratorium will expire on June 30, 2021 unless extended, and
WHEREAS, the Town Board created a Special Committee to draft regulations governing commercial marinas, and the Town engaged the Chazen Companies to assist the Special Committee with such drafting work, and
WHEREAS, the Special Committee has met twice and plans to meet approximately every two weeks until the draft regulations are completed, and
WHEREAS, it appears that it will not be possible to enact commercial marina regulations before the expiration of the Moratorium on June 30, 2021, and
WHEREAS, the Town Board believes the Moratorium should be extended to allow more time for the preparation and adoption of commercial marina regulations, and WHEREAS, a Public Hearing is required prior to adoption of a Local Law to extend the Moratorium,
NOW, THEREFORE, THE TOWN BOARD OF THE TOWN OF SANTA CLARA HEREBY RESOLVES AS FOLLOWS:
1. The Town's Special Counsel is hereby authorized and directed to prepare the text of a proposed Local Law with the necessary form and content to extend current the Moratorium on commercial development and re-development and/or modification of commercial properties in the Town's R-C-1.3 and R-C-3.2 zoning districts for a period of six months, to December 31, 2021.
2. The Town Board shall meet on May 13, 2021, at 6 PM to hold a Public Hearing to hear all people who are interested in the proposed Local Law to extend the current Moratorium for six months, to December 21, 2021.
3. The Town Clerk is hereby authorized and directed to publish a Notice of Public Hearing in the Town's official newspaper not less than ten (10) calendar days before the date of the Public Hearing and to make a copy of the proposed Local Law available for public inspection during regular business hours when the draft is received from the Town's Special Counsel, and to provide a copy of the proposed Local Law at no charge to anyone who requests it.
4. The Town Clerk is hereby authorized and directed to forward a copy of the proposed Local Law to the Town's Planning Board for its report in accordance with the Town's Land Use Law.
5. The Town Clerk is hereby further authorized and directed to: 1) refer the proposed Local Law for review and comments as provided in Article XII of the Town Land Use Code, 2) to cause written notice of the Public Hearing on the proposed Local Law to be given as provided in Article XII of the Town Land Use Law, and as may otherwise be required pursuant to New York State law, and 3) to make any other referrals and provide any other notices with respect to the proposed Local Law as may be recommended by the Town's Special Counsel.
6. Town The Town's Special Counsel for planning and zoning matters; the law firm of Miller, Mannix, Schachner & Hafner, LLC; is hereby authorized and directed to assist the Town Clerk, Planning Board, Code Enforcement Officer and Town Board with the preparation and/or review of any and all documents necessary for the adoption of the proposed Local Law and to otherwise advise and assist Town officials in the process of timely adopting the proposed Local Law.
7. This Resolution shall take effect immediately. The question of the adoption of this Resolution was duly put to a vote on roll call which resulted as follows:

AYES: 5 Mickey Webb, Dave Perry, Rick Lyon, John Murray, Andy McGill
NAYS: 0
ABSENT: 0
The Resolution was declared duly adopted by the Town Board this 8 day of April, 2021

Regular board meeting for May 2021 will be May 13, 2021, at 6:00 P. M. Public Hearing on Moratorium Extension then the Regular Board Meeting will immediately follow. Public Hearing and Board Meeting will be in person at the Town Hall. Accommodations may be made for Board members that cannot attend in person to meet via zoom. Public can join by zoom if it is available. Information will be posted on website about meeting and hearing.

Open Discussion

Nothing from the public

Good of the Town

Rick Lyon thanked Special Counsel Mike Hill for doing an outstanding job on all of the Town issues.

Andy McGill thanked Rick Lyon and Mickey Webb along with the other Special Committee members for all the work they are doing on the Marina Regulations.

On a motion by Mickey Webb, seconded by Rick Lyon the Town Board approved sponsoring the Pine Tree Quilters to use the community room 2 days a month. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

General Fund vouchers No. 61 to 81 in the amount of $10,780.90 and Highway Fund vouchers No. 21 to 31 in the amount of $5,579.73 were audited by the Board. Motion by John Murray seconded by Rick Lyon to approve vouchers and pay audited vouchers. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

Adjournment

Motion to adjourn at 6:47 P.M. made by Dave Perry, seconded by Rick Lyon. All members voting Aye. Motion carried.

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Town Of Santa Clara
5359 State Route 30  ·  Saranac Lake, NY 12983
Phone: 518-354-8477  ·  Email: info@townofsantaclara.com
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