In 1979, the Town Board made a decision that there would be a town-wide water system. Every town road has public water on it. This is a significant accomplishment for a town the size of Williamson. There was some money borrowed or “bonded” to fund different portions of this project. Those bonds have been paid off and we have a healthy reserve for capital improvement to the system.
The water treatment plant, located in Pultneyville, takes the water from Lake Ontario and processes it to make drinking-quality water. The plant was built in 1914 and has had some upgrades to it over the years. The plant operators have noticed a decline in performance due to much of the equipment being at the end of its useful life. For example, in 2011 the maximum plant output for 1 day was 3.4 million gallons. In 2018 that is down to 3.0 million gallons. In 2017 the Town Board hired an engineering firm to review the water plant and develop a report that would detail what is needed to bring the plant to current health department standards. In April the Town Board approved “Phase 1” of this extensive project. This includes the formation of an electronic monitor system, replacing some filters and valves. “Phase 1” is estimated to cost about $900,000 and will be completed by June of 2019.
“Phase 2” will be the balance of the plant and is estimated to cost between 7 (seven) to 9 (nine) million.
I was notified in July that the Town is receiving a grant for a new water fluoridation process. The grant amount is for $504,000. Town employees continue to apply for grants to lower the cost to town users. I want to thank all the water department personnel for their dedication and expertise in keeping the plant and system running very well. During the recent “drought” there were days it was very challenging to keep the water reservoir filled enough without issuing water usage restrictions.
Some of you may have noticed the new parking lot at the Town Park. The town was able to get the milling from the Williamson Central School Capital project. Town highway personnel were able to take the top soil off, spread and roll the milling and seed the top soil. This was an excellent project and gives the park much needed additional parking for large events.
There has been some discussion about “empty” houses and property not being maintained in town. Generally, if the taxes are being paid the town has little authority to do anything with the property. If there are property maintenance issues, such as the lawn not being maintained, the Town Code Enforcement Officer will get involved. He will usually contact the owner/banks to get the property maintained. If it is not done in a reasonable time the Code Enforcement Officer can issue a ticket and/or get the property Nuisance Abatement started. This process is in town law and takes a long time to work through all the legal processes. I recommend if any residents have a property concern stop in the Town Complex to fill out a complaint form. The Code Enforcement Officer will investigate complaints.
Recently there has been some criminal activity, break-ins, vehicles pilfered, etc. This is always unfortunate in any community. What can we do as a community to prevent these things? Some areas of town have started Neighborhood Watch programs. The Wayne County Sherriff’s Office offers training to start and maintain watch programs in neighborhoods. Our local Wayne County Sherriff and New York State Police cannot be everywhere all the time. This is where the community comes in. If you see something, say something. If there is something suspicious is your neighborhood call 911.