BETHLEHEM — Supervisor David VanLuven opened the Town Board meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 14 with two community announcements before addressing official business.
“The Highway Department graciously allowed me to ride along in a snow plow last Thursday night, from 3 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.” said VanLuven. “And it was great to see them in action and to see what a complete pain in the neck trash cans are.”
The supervisor asked that town residents be mindful of keeping trash cans off local streets when the snow plows are out. Explaining that trash collectors have arms that can reach to residential driveways, he added, “And, keeping them in the dri veway will dramatically decrease the possibility of me knocking them over when I’m working the plow.”
Next, VanLuven read a letter from a town resident commending the Bethlehem Police Department for the work it does to help residents feel safe. “‘It is not often that one thinks of all the duties and responsibilities that are required of law enforcement and the important role they play in many aspects of our daily lives,’” he read. “‘They deserve our deepest respect and gratitude for the dedication and work they perform to keep the public safe.’
“I don’t think I could agree with that any more,” said VanLuven.
Following those announcements, the board took care of several agenda items.
Lisa Fortin was named to succeed Caryn Zeh on the Board of Assessment Review, while Fran Sheehan was appointed to succeed new Town Board member Maureen Cunningham on the Conservation Easement Review Board. Fortin’s term will begin on September 30 and Sheehan will finish Cunningham’s term, which ends on Dec. 31, 2019.
The board also approved a background check policy for the town’s Employee Manual that would allow background investigations for all potential new employees.
“With the increased publicity of inappropriate behavior in a variety of workplaces, employers have a heightened concern to explore options that provide additional protection to our employees, and the public we serve,” wrote Director of Human Resources Mary Tremblay-Glassman in a memo to the Town Board.
In addition to approving a purchase and a sale for the Department of Public Works, town board members also voted to set a public hearing for a proposed legislative amendment that would extend the Cold War Veterans tax exemption beyond ten years.