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Board hears cell phone concerns

BLUE MOUNTAIN LAKE Last weeks town board meeting for Indian Lake was held at the Blue Mountain Lake Fire Department Aug. 11, covering several notable topics. During the public comment portion of the meeting, attendees raised issues such as the status of contracts with Verizon for the placement of cell phone towers in Blue Mountain Lake. Comments were made voicing the concern of having to endure another winter without the convenience of cell phone service in such remote areas where a cell phone call could be crucial in severe weather situations. The board noted that progress in this area had been delayed due to the number of sites being considered by Verizon, as well as extended research of the Indian Lake historical survey to make sure the land is acceptable for use. Town Supervisor Barry Hutchins commented that applications should be made shortly. There was also notable discussion about the conditions of playgrounds in the Blue Mountain Lake area. One mother of a young child felt that some playgrounds in the area were unsafe and needed prompt attention from the town. Supervisor Hutchins said that he had met with the President of the Blue Mountain Lake Association and found that the problem was on their list to examine. The meeting also focused on the Blue Mountain Lake Water Watch, a group that monitors the quality of the water in the lake. The group is especially concerned about invasive species coming into the lake, particularly eurasian milfoil. Lake steward John Acker has been working this summer to keep invasives out of Blue Mt. Lake, an effort that the group would like to see developed further in the future. What I try to do is interact with boaters and bring about awareness of invasive plants, Acker said. We want to give information about milfoil identification and prevention; were monitoring shorelines and launches. Were going to compile a full survey of the lake and develop a plan to prevent invasion. For the moment, we want your support to look for grants and backing when we look to develop further plans, added group chairman John Collins. Others present at the meeting agreed with the need for increased efforts to prevent milfoil from coming to the lake. One attendee mentioned the large funds used by other area lake communities to eradicate the plant once it had already gotten in, suggesting that it would be wise to use preventative measures, as it would be far less expensive. Supervisor Hutchins entertained a motion in support of the effort, with a unanimous vote of aye from the council. Another issue that came up was the need for placing crossing signs in the middle of crosswalks, particularly in Blue Mountain Lake. Concerns were raised that many drivers are not aware of New York State crosswalk laws. Many at the meeting cited that the biggest problem was the crosswalk at the public beach in Blue Mountain, where families regularly traverse busy Rte. 30. Its almost like playing chicken with the cars; people are flying through there, said Eric Christensen, Blue Mountain Lake waterfront supervisor. Suggestions were made for the town to put up as many as five new signs, and the board nodded toward action pending the making of maps for where the signs will be placed. Mention was also made of a Commons Ground meeting to be held Oct. 14 at Paul Smith's College. The group intends to unite diverse groups of people in the Adirondacks to explore many issues surrounding the Adirondacks. Turnout at previous meetings has reportedly been impressive, with approximately 175 people including those from local governments, state agencies, and federal agencies attending the last meeting.

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