Reports claim the decision to pull the plug on the project (Cape Vincent, NY USA) follow years of controversy in the community as the majority of residents were against the plan....ENERGYLIVE NEWS , Feb. 28, 2014
Officials in the town of Cape Vincent have an obligation to better regulate a water district whose users may be endangering the quality of drinking water.
Water District 2 has three sanctioned users, and they are permitting others to connect to their supplies. A letter from the New York State Department of Health urged town officials to take control of the district. These residents have declined to report the individuals to whom they’ve granted this access, the DOH letter said.
Is it right to send safe and efficient nuclear power plants into early retirement? And what about subjecting homes and businesses to the risk of high electricity prices from over-reliance on a single fuel — in this case natural gas?
Ginna, Indian Point, FitzPatrick, and Nine Mile Point — these New York nuclear plants are some of the power generators in jeopardy of being shut down prematurely unless federal, state and regional authorities take prompt action.
California, Germany, and Japan have one thing in common, increased carbon emissions for Earth Day. Within the past three years, each closed nuclear power plants and replaced the virtually emission free power source largely with coal and fossil fuels.
In a recent report on this issue, I documented the steep rise in green-house-gas emissions and the numbers are staggering. Here is a quick summary of the facts:
Less nuclear power leads to more carbon emissions. Numerous environmental groups seemingly ignore this fact; however, the real world experience of California, Germany, and Japan is irrefutable.
It is laudable to pursue wind and solar technologies, but not as a total replacement of baseload nuclear power.
After nearly killing their economy with over EUR 1 trillion in replacement costs, Germany is coming to realize that massively subsidizing renewables is not the answer. Japan is on the brink of restarting nuclear reactors for environmental and economic purposes. California has a much longer road to travel to get its increased toxic emissions under control, especially now that out-of-state power sources have a stranglehold on supplying their needs.
New York need not follow flawed carbon policies
New York, which is already in violation of federal clean air standards, has an opportunity to avoid some of these failed policies.
“Krugman may not want to admit it, but here’s the truth: For all of its merits and rapidly declining cost, solar energy cannot even keep pace with the growth in global electricity demand, much less replace significant amounts of hydrocarbons or allow “drastic cuts” in carbon dioxide emissions.
Climate change is among the most difficult issues of our time. If we are going to be serious about addressing it, we have to be serious about the low-carbon sources that can provide the vast quantities of energy that the world demands at prices consumers can afford. Yes, solar will play a role in the years ahead. But the fuels of the future are N2N: natural gas to nuclear.”
Solar energy can solve global warming. That’s what Paul Krugman claims in his April 18 column in the New York Times, “Salvation Gets Cheap.”
Krugman extolled “the incredible recent decline in the cost of renewable energy, solar power in particular.” He used to dismiss the claim that renewable energy would be a major source of global energy “as hippie-dippy wishful thinking.” But now, he says, thanks to the falling price of renewable energy, the process of decarbonization can be accelerated and “drastic cuts in greenhouse gas emissions are now within fairly easy reach.”
Solar is getting cheaper. And solar capacity is growing rapidly. But Krugman is still wrong. Solar won’t result in “drastic cuts” in greenhouse-gas emissions for two simple reasons: scale and cost.
Before going further, let me be clear: I’m bullish on solar. I’ve invested in solar. A decade ago, I paid to have 3,200 watts of solar panels installed on my roof. Why? Simple: I got a big subsidy. Austin Energy paid two-thirds of the cost of my $23,000 system, and those panels now provide about 30 percent of the electricity my family and I consume.
CAPE VINCENT — The village property tax rate will climb from $8.39 to $8.55 per $1,000 of assessed value to cover increased expenses, according to the 2014-15 budget approved Tuesday by the Board of Trustees.
The tax hike comes as the village plans to spend $11,000 to renovate the boat launch ramp at East End Park and needs more revenue to cover the increasing cost of health care and state retirement plans. Salary raises of 3 percent for the village’s eight full-time employees also were approved.
Statement from David Catalfamo on Stefanik Campaign's Petition Challenge
"The snow is finally gone but we still have time for reindeer games. The only fraudulent games played with this important process were by the Stefanik campaign when they knowingly signed the cover sheet of Independence petitions legally attesting that she submitted the required number of signatures to qualify for the ballot. The Stefanik petitions fell nearly 1000 signatures short of the number required by law. We are confident that our petitions will withstand any legal challenge and Matt will be the Independence Party nominee. It’s sad that the Stefanik campaign would stoop to this level in a desperate attempt to garner some press."
Indiana 22 April 2014 Broken blades worry residents Two broken turbine blades in the past three months have citizens in Tipton County concerned about the safety of the Wildcat Wind Farm. Monday’s Tipton County Board of Commissioners meeting provided a forum for residents to speak out, some in favor of shutting the wind farm down, others stating the latest blade break, caused by lightning, isn’t cause for concern. The latest blade break on April 2 has reopened debate on wind turbines in Tipton County, where 125 turbines operate . . . Complete story »
CAPE VINCENT — Town residents who belong to a small water district, including a high-ranking state official, appear to be violating state regulations by providing connections to outside users and refusing to report them, according to a letter from the state Department of Health.
In the April 7 letter, the department urged the town to take over control of Water District 2 from its three sanctioned users and expand it to include other properties. If users fail to cooperate with that plan, the town must presume a “hazardous designation” and perhaps install a backflow-prevention device to ensure outside connections do not contaminate water that flows downstream.
This evening, a JLL reader called to tell about a Great Egret that was visiting Stoney Point Road in the Town of Cape Vincent. When we went out to visit, the bird was still there and successfully feasting on frogs.
Thank you, JLL reader for giving us a call.
The elegant Great Egret is a tall, white wading bird found on every continent except Antarctica. The Great Egret is the symbol of the National Audubon Society, one of the nation's oldest conservation organizations, which was first established to protect birds from feather hunters.
...... National Audubon Society
Just down the road we found these Mute Swans enjoying a Wilson Bay sunset swim.
Deputy Supervisor, Richard Macsherry, "There's no reason to hold this public hearing up."
At the April 17 Town of Cape Vincent Board meeting, Councilman Paul Aubertine was pressing the issue that a committee from the Water Districts #2 and #3 should be formed to study and recommend to the town how they would like to address the numerous problems with those districts before a public hearing on billing issues is held.
The other members of the town board were making the point that the bills must be paid and the required public hearing should be held May 1 so the town, as Water Commissioner, can proceed with establishing a billing procedure that is fair to all members of both districts while the other issues regarding outside users and health and safety in District #2 are separate issues that will also have to be addressed separate from the billing issue.
Councilman Brooks Bragdon made the point that the bills have to be paid and that the committee that Paul Aubertine was suggesting could make their points at the public hearing on May 1.
Councilman John Byrne, who has been meeting with DANC, made the point that the billing issue was separate from other health and safety issues and there was a need for a timely solution for the billing.
Supervisor Hirschey said the bills must be paid and they will have a public hearing meeting. Hirschey stated, "The thing is, we're setting a public hearing for May 1. On May 1, that's the time to argue. I don't think we have to postpone the meeting."
Toward the end of the meeting, prior to the passing of the resolution setting the public hearing, Town Board Deputy Supervisor Richard Macsherry clarified why the public hearing is necessary and appropriate at this time.
This is a transcript of Macsherry's comment, prepared from a JLL recording of the meeting:
Richard Macsherry:For the audience and for the purpose of individuals who may be looking at this video, Paul, your Dad (Darrel Aubertine) met with us last night with Terry (Aubertine) for two solid hours. We already have a list of things that he asked us to look into. We already have an assignment that is, in all probability, very close to what the members of this ad hoc committee are going to charge us to look into. We've already started doing this. That was an impromptu meeting. I was in Syracuse with my wife. I had to really haul ass back here to make that meeting. This was an impromptu thing and it was called with very short notice. We made the effort to be there. We sat there and talked with your Dad about this. We have a list of items to work on. There's no reason to hold this public hearing up. We already have our assignments, so by that two weeks we will probably have some answers. There are going to be answers that are probably going to involve into broader issues. Whether or not the rates that have been set for this year are going to be changeable is going to be a question. We're going to have to involve our attorney as far as the contracts are concerned. It will be a slow process. It is not going to be a quick process to remedy. We have the obligation to get the bills out. Mark and John have worked to come up with one algorithm for how to do it. If that algorithm isn't correct and you want to challenge the algorithm, that's just fine. That's what the public hearing is for. This is just to get on with business. We stayed for two hours, listened to what everybody had to say, took notes, we have our assignments. Let us proceed with that. We're doing that in good faith. Districts two and three, rather than complain about it, should realize that we're listening and we're going to do something.
Last night's Town of Cape Vincent Board meeting started with privilege of the floor comments by Judge Collen Knuth who reminded the public that until May 15 the open burn ban is still in effect throughout the State. The open burn ban forbids any kind of intentionally set fire. Heavy fines can be imposed. Knuth also addressed a new law that allows local judges to address sixteen and seventeen year offenders with a "youth court". First time offenders willing to admit to their crime might receive a community service sentence and it is suggested that such service be performed in their community so that parents do not have to deal with driving them to a distant community. If there is a problem with the youthful offender and the community service then they can be immediately sent back to the "youth court" for additional determination. Emphasizing that the offenders would be local youths, Knuth expressed hopes that some agency within the village or town would be willing to participate with the community service.
Deputy Supervisor Richard MacSherry reported on town financials and said the general fund stands at $536, 325 a decrease from the month of March of $82, 241. A major items included payments for the water districts. MacSherry pointed out that water district payments are staggered throughout the year.
Councilman John Byrne reported that the Village of Cape Vincent has been cleaning up brush and was looking into assistance from Cape Vincent Correctional inmates. Mr. Mason will be installing 480 new water meters and Fourth Coast will be installing antennae for reading those meters. It was discovered that gutter drains at the Roxy were going into the village sewers and the village is working on a correction. Due to a faulty timer, the fire whistle is going off twice and the fire department has plans for replacement. The village will be looking for a replacement for Tom Kozlowski, Waste Water Manager, who is retiring. The fourth water filter project is now into long term financing.
Council John Byrne also reported that most of the board was at a Development Authority of the North County (DANC) meeting. DANC is involved with Town of Cape Vincent Water Districts #2 and #3. Between Water District #2 and #3, the town takes an allocation of 20,000 gallons from the DANC waterline that passes through the town on the old railroad bed. The town signed off on that allocation. Byrne reported that by the time the meeting was over, DANC had answered all of the town's questions.
Councilman Brooks Bragdon reported that the most of the April Town Planning Board business had to do with recent Snug Harbor development. Snug Harbor has plans for replacing older mobile home units with modular "cabin" units. Snug Harbor had first gone to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a special use permit that went through a public hearing. It was decided that the project was fit for approval with the understanding that if a mobile home is removed and replaced with a modular cabin unit then, in the future, that modular can't be replaced with a mobile home. With that understanding, Snug Harbor was granted permission to proceed with plans that will upgrade their recreation park. The Town Board also addressed some "clean up" details regarding the now defunct British Petroleum SEQR as well as the removal of their meteorological towers.
Deputy Supervisor Richard MacSherry spoke in the absence of the Town of Cape Vincent Zoning Law Review and Update Committee Chairman, Robert Brown. Macsherry said that copies of the law including draft revisions have been made and are available for final review by the committee members before their next meeting. Supervisor Hirschey commented that he was very proud of the professionalism and work by Mr. Brown's committee and he is confident that they "fixed what needed to be fixed."
Councilman Paul Aubertine reported on the April 7 Zoning Board of Appeals meeting. In the past it was understood that ZBA alternates could serve only in the case of a conflict of interest by an appointed board member. Chairman Dennis Faulknham looked into the service of the alternates and a decision was made that the alternates could serve in the case of member absence as well. Councilman Aubertine reiterated the same information concerning Snug Harbor that was previously reported by Councilman Bragdon, adding that Snug Harbor was given "resort status" by the ZBA pending the now completed review by the planning board.
Dave Croft reported on the town Recreation Park. Mr. Croft reported on the multiple activities at the park, recent inspections of fire protection devices, maintenance and delays in usage of the ball field as a result of the late spring. Regarding his duties with the water districts, Dave reported that spring "turn ons" often turned into spring "turn offs" as a result of the uncooperative weather. Although delayed by weather everything is ready to go for the opening of Tibbetts Point and the repair of roofs on some of the buildings.
Highway Superintendent Danny Hubbard reported that the town received from the State $127,000 for paving. Work will be done on Bedford Corners, Branch Road, Grant Road, and Stoney Point Road. Drainage work will be done on Favret Road. Hubbard extended an invitation to any who would like to stop by the Town Barn to see the new grader, a recent major investment. The Town will use their equipment to assist the village with large piles of brush while the village workers will deal with the smaller piles. Hubbard gave an extensive report on numerous town highway activities planned for the spring. He also reported that water is available at the town office for those who want to pick it up. Hubbard reported that the weather has caused his department to be about a month behind with normal spring activities.
Zoning enforcement officer, James Millington, reported that "it has been pretty quiet" and he issued only four permits for March.
Supervisor Hirschey reported that the water committee for District #6 met with Matt Cooper of Bernier Carr. The time frame for new Water District #6 looks like a Fall 2014 start with the possibility of water on Tibbetts Point by summer of 2015 depending on when permission to proceed is granted. There was some discussion with the Department of Health who was recommending that the new water line go along the road and in front of the homes. Hirschey said that placement would be very difficult and, according to Matt Cooper, they would be receptive to putting the line behind the Tibbetts Point homes.
Brooks Bragdon reported that he and others representing Cape Vincent attended a recent Clayton meeting about the designation of the Thousand Islands between Morristown and Tibbetts Point as a Scenic Area of Statewide Significance. The designation does not give the area control or restriction over appropriate development but is a recognition of the high quality of the area.
Richard Macsherry was asked by Supervisor Urban Hirschey to report on an Emergency Medical Service meeting they attended in Clayton. Macsherry reported that the Cape Vincent Fire Department has concerns about the future of local providing local EMS volunteers. TIERS of Clayton may have to become more actively involved in expanding services to the Town of Cape Vincent. If that is the case, Macsherry warned that emergency medical services may eventually become a big budget item for the town.
The rest of the one hour meeting was spent with a heated discussion regarding problems with Water Districts #2 and #3. People from the floor became out of order, often interrupting the town board meeting. Regarding the water district problems, it appeared that the town must resolve two issues:
1). Immediate attention must be given to the setting of fair billing for both districts. Thus, a resolution was passed setting a public hearing.
2) Aside from the billing issues, Water District #2 legal users are passing on their DANC allocation and apparently billing "outside users". They have built what they have described as a private water delivery infrastructure. One "outside user" of the "private infrastructure" has expressed concerns that he was paying more for his water in Cape Vincent than he does for DANC water in Limerick although DANC charges all municipalities the same rate. The Board of Health and the Department of Conservation have, in the past, have expressed issues with outside users of New York State water districts and it is the town that is ultimately responsible for the health and safety of the water supply systems.
Update The public hearing for the setting of water rates for Town of Cape Vincent Water Districts #2 and #3 will be held at the Town Recreation Park on May 1, 6:00 PM.
Prior to the May 1 public hearing, at 4:00 PM, the Town Board will interview candidates to fill the vacated position of former Town Councilman Clif Schneider.
At the end of tonight's town board meeting, during the passing of the resolution to set the public hearing for the setting of rates for Water Districts #2 and #3, meeting order broke down when audience members voiced objections to the setting of the hearing date. Members of District #2 apparently wanted to form a committee to work things out before a public hearing was set. One citizen commented that they had been working on the issue for four years, so what does another two years matter?
Supervisor Hirschey told the objecting group, including Councilman Paul Aubertine, that on April 16 he and others had spent two hours with Darrell Aubertine, Paul's father, and had worked some things out that would have been addressed by a committee. Hirschey also made the point that the billing issues needed to be addressed immediately and that other issues like health and safety were matters aside from the billing.