Public hearings planned in Gloversville

GLOVERSVILLE — The Common Council will conduct a series of public hearings during Tuesday’s meeting on several proposed ordinances to modify the city code to introduce a new system of fines for minor blight violations and requiring inspection of non-owner occupied two-unit residences.

In total, the Common Council will conduct nine public hearings on Tuesday, six of which deal with the establishment of new provisions proposed for inclusion in the city code creating a system of “ticketing” for minor blight violations related to garbage disposal, recycling and snow and ice removal.

A series of proposed ordinances would establish new chapters in the city code requiring that garbage, recyclables and other refuse be put out on the curb no earlier than noon the day before scheduled collection in the proper receptacles, with garbage cans, bins and uncollected items required to be removed from the curb by noon the day after scheduled pickup.

The code requires that every dwelling in the city have an enclosed garbage storage container or facility to prevent odors and keep out vermin and wildlife. Such storage containers or facilities visible from the street must be screened from public view in an enclosed shed or outbuilding.

Garbage placed on the curb for collection must be sealed tightly in a leakproof white or clear plastic bag whether placed in a garbage can or other receptacle.

The owner of any building in violation of these requirements will be subject to an administrative fine of $30 delivered via first class mail to the address on file with the city for tax collection purposes.

The building owner will have 65 days from receipt of the notice to pay the administrative fine or the fine will increase to $90. If the fine is not paid within 90 days, the administrative fine will be attached to the first subsequent annual city tax invoice for the property.

The same system of fines will be attached to an ordinance on a proposed code modification requiring that all snow and ice be removed from sidewalks within 24 hours from the time of accumulation. Icy sidewalks can be rendered “safe” and not in danger of receiving a code violation by covering the walkway with sand or other suitable substances.

The ordinance will further require that property owners at corners and marked crosswalks clear snow deposited by city snowplow operators between the crosswalk and sidewalk for a width of at least three feet and to provide at least one opening in the snowplow bank to allow passage from the sidewalk to the street.

The city will also conduct a public hearing on the proposed establishment of an Administrative Appeals Panel composed of the city’s deputy clerk, deputy finance commissioner and assessor to hear appeals filed by property owners assessed an administrative fine. The panel will meet on the third Wednesday of each month at 6 p.m. at City Hall.

Property owners seeking to appeal an administrative fine, must file a written appeal in the City Clerk’s Office within 65 days of issuance of the fine. A hearing before the appeals panel will be scheduled for panel’s first subsequent session at least 14 days after the date of filing.

Each hearing will be limited to 10 minutes during which property owners may present any relevant information to the panel for consideration of dismissal. The administrative panel will then issue a determination to the property owner in writing.

Additional public hearings will be conducted Tuesday on proposed ordinances seeking to modify two chapters of city code that would remove provisions currently contained in several sections that will be incorporated into the newly established chapters.

A public hearing will also be conducted on an amendment to the city code that would expand the categories of residential housing subject to permit and therefore code inspection by the city fire department. The city code currently requires a permit for all buildings with three or more residential units, the proposed amendment would also subject non-owner occupied buildings with two residential units to inspection pursuant to a permit.

Two additional public hearings will be held Tuesday on a proposed ordinance seeking to modify city code to make Summer Street behind McNab Elementary School one-way eastbound between North Clark and North McNab avenues from 7 a.m. to 4p.m. and another related to the sale of 12-26 S. Main St. by the city to the Fulton County Center for Regional Growth.

The buildings proposed for sale include the former Littauer Building at 12-18 S. Main St. and four adjacent properties spanning 20, 22, 24 and 26 S. Main St. that were acquired by the city in late 2017 and mid-2018 as part of an agreement reached with former owner David Eager of Two Great Guys Corp. out of Saratoga Springs in November 2017.

The city plans to convey the properties to the CRG for the purposes of marketing the buildings for sale to developers. As part of an agreement between the city and the CRG, the agency will stabilize the front facade of the historic former Littauer Building and demolish the remainder of the partially collapsed structure utilizing funds from the Gloversville Loan Fund.

A portion of the 12-18 S. Main St. building’s rear section caved in on itself at around 10 a.m. on July 5, 2017. No injuries resulted from the vacant building’s partial collapse. The building was further damaged during a wind storm on April 5, 2018, when two large sections of roofing materials were blown off.

The sale of the five buildings is subject to passage of a local law which is expected to come before the Common Council during the May 14 meeting. The remainder of the public hearings scheduled for Tuesday’s Common Council meeting at 6 p.m. at City Hall are attached to ordinances the council is scheduled to take action on during the meeting.

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