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Andover Mayor Truax Keeps it Brief

Mayor Truax opened the Andover Village Board meeting at 6pm Tuesday evening by expressing his intentions to keep the meeting at 59 minutes or less, which absolutely no one believed would happen for even a second. In attendance were Mayor Truax, trustees Mel Thorpe, and Scott Updyke, Village Clerk Maria Gaylord, and DPW supervisor Matt Zengerle. Well wishes were expressed for trustee Rob Carter who was not in attendance and Sam Gavin was reported to be doing Vegas stuff that will likely stay in Vegas. The Code enforcement report was read and accepted. There was apparently some progress on some long standing code enforcement issues, but overall it was a quiet month with most codes being abided by or at the very least not being caught being violated. The police report was also read and accepted with nothing too exciting to report there either. The Justice report was a bit more complicated with all the general upheaval of February, but it sounds like the wheels of justice are slowly beginning to turn again in Andover. The public works report took up the following 45 minutes, which very nearly derailed Mayor Truax's plans for an hour long meeting. Zengerle was able to keep the mass amount of information he was presenting on track. Snow removal as well as flood and draining issues took up a large part of the DPW's time in the last month. CHIPS funding paperwork had been submitted and funds received. He also discussed the electricity repairs needed. He was very passionate on the subject as some repairs are very needed, but there are not funds available due to increased grid expenses and cost of materials as well as outstanding electricity bills. If you're having difficulty paying your electricity bill there are programs that can assist you. If you'd like to set up a payment plan to prevent shut off you can stop in to see Maria at the village office. You can also check with the county for assistance with your water bill or call HEAP for help with your electric bill at 585-268-9622. The Boil Water Advisory that began on February 19th was discussed. Mayor Truax commended Zengerle on his quick action and following proper health department protocol in this situation. Zengerle did state that the E.coli issue never did make it into the system or into homes, but was contained to the springs. It sounded like the run off from the thaw in addition to the flooding that week was the likely culprit in the issue and there have been fixes put in place. He has been continuing to do testing to follow up on the mitigation to ensure that the fixes are working. Zengerle also recommended setting up an emergency call out system to alert the public of important town news like the boil water advisory. The system would be similar to what the school uses for school announcements and information could be sent via text, voice call, or email depending on various factors. The mayor and trustees approved the emergency call out system to be implemented beginning June 1st with a up to $0.25 to be added per meter to the water bills to pay for the cost of that system. This should help to keep village of Andover residents better informed especially in emergency situations. Following Zengerle's extensive report the board approved several motions about non-discrimination that were needed to be in compliance with one of the grants they'd received. Dave Truax was also appointed as the Fair Housing Officer for Andover which he seemed really enthusiastic about. Dave then checked his watch and motioned to adjourn at exactly 7:00pm. In light of the village board meeting being exactly one hour long for potentially the first time in recorded history this meeting was a 9.5/10. I did call the former village clerk Barbara Walker to ask her how often a village board meeting had ever been under an hour and she said "Oh, never. They were never under an hour. Most of them were at least 2 hours. I can remember being at meetings until midnight a few times." Even with this record breaking brevity a lot of ground was covered with many reports accepted and motions made and passed. I think the new call out system will be really helpful especially for homebound residents and and folks who are less tech savvy. Overall an excellent meeting. © AndoverExclusive 2022

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