Town adds two new roads to be paved

by Emmitt B. Feldner of The Review staff

PLYMOUTH – The town added two new roads to their map Tuesday.

The Town Board voted to accept Jennifer Lane and Windchime Court, both off County J east of State 67, as town roads in order to pave the unfinished roads.

With developer Allan Stader in the audience to write a check to cover the $37,201 estimated cost for finishing the roads, the town agreed to take them.

“In order for the town to do this under Act 10, we have to accept these roads as town roads before hiring the county to do this,” Town Chairman Jim Lubach explained.

In the past, he said, the county Highway Department would do the paving and the developer would pay directly for the project, but state law now requires the county to do such work only for a municipality, not for a private developer, according to Lubach.

“It’s got to get done,” Stader told the board.

Lubach said that the paving should be completed this fall - $11,188 for the unpaved portion of Jennifer Lane and $26,013 for Windchime Court, according to the estimates from the Highway Department.

Stader told the board he would pay any additional costs if the project runs over the estimate, and board members agreed to reimburse the developer if the work comes in under the estimate.

The town tabled action on an offer from American Tower Corp. to increase the rent they pay for their cell tower located on land jointly owned by the town and the village of Glenbeulah in exchange for a 20-year lease extension.

Supervisors agreed to give Glenbeulah officials a chance to discuss the offer before moving ahead to either accept or make a counter-offer.

Town Attorney Jim Hughes said the current agreement for the former town/village dump property runs through 2030 and ATC would like to extend it through 2050.

The rent is currently $7,200 a year, scheduled to go to $19,200 in 2016 through the end of the current lease.

Hughes said ATC is offering to raise the rent to $19,200 annually ($1,600 a month) immediately. In addition they would increase the rent 20 percent in 2020 and 10 percent every five years after that through the end of the lease.

Based on the property ownership shares, the town gets 75 percent of the rent payment and the village of Glenbeulah 25 percent, Hughes said.

“It’s a substantial increase over the arrangement we have now,” Hughes admitted.

Lubach said an official from the company “told me right out, point blank, we (the town and village) aren’t getting enough money. They’re afraid somebody is going to come along and take the tower out from under them in 2031,” which is why they are seeking a 20-year extension.

“To me or to you, 20 (more) years seems like a long time, but for them it’s not,” Lubach stated. “If they want to get somebody on board (the antenna), they don’t want a two-year lease when they can sign somebody up for a 35-year term.”

“Do we want to tie the town’s hands up that long,” Supervisor Gene Blindauer asked.

“You’re already tied up to 2030,” Hughes responded.

Glenbeulah Village President Douglas Daun, who was present at the Town Board meeting, said his board had not yet discussed the proposed lease change.

“I think we’ve got to wait and let the village of Glenbeulah hash this over with their board and, if we have to, we can sit down together with them and hash it over,” Lubach suggested.

The board agreed and tabled the issue.

The board voted to pay a little more for more coverage in deciding on insurance for the town for the coming year.

The board voted to accept a higher bid from Rural Insurance over one from Community Insurance.

Board members noted that the proposal from Community did not have as high a replacement value coverage for town vehicles – mainly fire trucks – and did not break down replacement values for the individual vehicles, which Rural did.

“My preference is to go with more coverage for the vehicles. They’re not getting any younger,” Lubach said in endorsing the bid from Rural.

“I don’t mind paying a little more if we get more,” Blindauer agreed.

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