Village of Saugerties trustees will pay the town of Saugerties $15,000 annually for the next four years as part of a shared services agreement.
“This is a good faith agreement that will save the village money on a number of projects such as snow plowing and street paving,” said Mayor Bill Murphy at the Dec. 7 Village Board meeting.
The agreement calls for the town to provide paving equipment along with skilled labor, which saves the village from having to rent or purchase such equipment. The town will also provide a number of snowplows and labor to plow some of the village streets during the winter, including all of Washington Ave. Usually, the town stops at the village line, by the high school. In turn, the village will take over plowing all of Overbaugh St. and most of the small dead-end streets in the Barclay Heights section of the town.
The town will also provide equipment to assist the village water department when there are line breaks.
The $15,000 will help offset some of the expenses the town will incur when providing the village with the equipment and manpower.
“When you look at how much it would cost us to rent equipment, this agreement really makes sense for the village,” said Murphy.
He said sharing services on the paving of West Bridge St. last summer saved the village about $32,000 in equipment rental and employee overtime. On that job, the town provided a number of workers and trucks used to haul asphalt.
For the last several months, Murphy, town Supervisor Greg Helsmoortel, village Trustee Terry Parisian, town Councilman Fred Costello, town Highway Superintendent Doug Myer and village Department of Public Works supervisor Robert Fanelli have been hammering out the details of the agreement, which is exclusively between the town highway department and the village DPW. No other departments from either municipality are involved.
The town and village have been sharing equipment for years, but never previously with a formal agreement. Trustee Terry Parisian said such an agreement is necessary to obtain state grants available to municipalities under a program designed to encourage government consolidation, although there was no discussion of any specific grants the village and town might be eligible for or plan to pursue.
The agreement will go into effect on Jan. 1. Because the town operates on a calendar year, while the village operates on a June 1 to May 31 fiscal year, the village will not have to make its payment until June when the next budget will be in effect.