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Meeting

  • Warren County Board of Supervisors, Friday

Top story

  • County Administrator Paul Dusek informed supervisors that shipments of stone from the former iron ore mines in Tahawus will begin on Saratoga-North Creek Railway in the coming weeks. He said the railway’s chief executive officer, Ed Ellis, called him this week to inform him the stone shipments will begin shortly. Dusek said the railway is in the process of seeking approval from the town of Corinth to “stockpile” stone in Corinth pending completion of rail trips. The freight traffic on a nearly 30-mile stretch of rails between North Creek and Tahawus would be the first shipments since the mines closed in the late 1980s, when NL Industries shuttered them. The tailings are believed to hold metals that could be salvaged for industrial use.

SNCRR has also been periodically taking material from Barton Mines in Johnsburg south on the county-owned rail line.

Other news

  • Queensbury resident Travis Whitehead questioned the Board of Supervisors’ belief that there is insufficient documentation for a court challenge of an easement near Warren County airport. He said the property deed and a 2007 covenant include detailed descriptions of the county’s rights to clear trees and other obstructions, language that he read to the board. A lost map has resulted in the county agreeing to spend more than $1 million to buy new easements and property to improve the safety zone around the backup runway. Five percent of the tab would come from county tax dollars. Fred Austin, the county’s former public works superintendent, spoke in response and said “it’s a safety issue” and 5 percent of the tab being paid from local funds did not bother him. The discussion became a bit adversarial when Whitehead sought to respond to Austin’s remarks, but board Chairman Kevin Geraghty would not allow him to because he had already been given an opportunity to speak. Queensbury at-large supervisors Mark Westcott and Doug Beaty, with whom Whitehead has been working, made a presentation earlier this week on the matter. They did not speak about the issue Friday, with the topic to be discussed instead at an April 1 Facilities Committee meeting.
  • The Board of Supervisors approved the appropriation of an additional $1 million to be used for road repairs this year.
  • Bolton Supervisor Ron Conover, chairman of the county board’s Finance Committee, appealed to towns to forward their property tax payments to the county. He said the payments were coming in late from a number of towns, and the county was a few million dollars behind the pace from last year.
  • The board’s Invasive Species Subcommittee is going to investigate doing the environmental impact assessment of a possible county boat inspection law in-house with county staff, instead of paying consultants who sought up to $250,000 to do the assessment.
  • Glens Falls Ward Supervisor Peter McDevitt voiced concern about the safety of oil shipments by train in the region, and asked that the board request that oil tanker cars be required to be double-walled instead of single-walled. The board’s Legislative Committee will take up the issue.

Next meeting

  • Public Works Committee, 9:30 a.m. Thursday
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reporter

Don Lehman covers crime and Warren County government for The Post-Star. His work can be found on Twitter @PS_CrimeCourts and on poststar.com/app/blogs.

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