Heating System Woes and Cellular Service Top Minerva Board Agenda

MINERVA With many weeks of cold weather still ahead, looming concerns with the Minerva Town Halls heating system dominated the recent Town Board meeting. Supervisor Michael McSweeney advised the board that the current boiler-system was in dire need of replacement, and there was additional concern that the system may fail at any time. Temporary repairs were performed by a local heating contractor, in the hopes of getting through to warmer weather. Due to the anticipated cost, a committee was formed to make recommendations on the new system, including its fuel source, before the project is submitted for bid. The lack of cellular phone service in the Minerva area continues to frustrate town residents and public officials. After numerous meetings with various cellular service providers, the Board passed a resolution authorizing McSweeney to enter into an initial lease agreement with Verizon Communications as the service provider. Board members commented that it was better to take the immediate solution presented by Verizon, rather than to continue to delay the process, since other providers showed little interest in the project. In other business, Supervisor McSweeney announced that the town had received a Federal Fish and Wildlife Nuisance Permit, with the intent to manage the ever-increasing goose and duck population at the Minerva Town Beach. McSweeney noted that several management plans were under review, but the town had not decided on a specific course of action. Following an update on Essex County business by McSweeney, board member Betty LeMay requested a formal update on the countys prescription drug voucher program. Noting the apparent lack of progress or public notification, she further commented that the programs funding had been in place for over a year. The program would provide prescription drugs to qualified county residents at a reduced rate, similar to a successful Hamilton County program already in place. The next regular meeting of the Minerva Town Board will be Thursday, February 7, at 7 p.m.

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