Moriah, Port Henry may resume talks

PORT HENRY - Talks of a joint town of Moriah-village of Port Henry public safety building may be revived.

Moriah Supervisor Tom Scozzafava said he and Port Henry Fire Chief George Daly have learned federal grant money may be available to construct a building to house the Port Henry Fire Department along with the Moriah Police Department, Moriah Ambulance Squad and town court.

"We've had some preliminary discussions with (Rep.) John McHugh," Scozzafava said at the March 10 town board meeting. "It's possible money may be available."

Moriah has been ordered by the state to find larger, handicap-accessible court space, while the aged Port Henry fire house has been deemed as unfit.

Talks of a joint public safety building fell apart last May when Moriah was facing a June state deadline to have plans in place for a new court, while Port Henry was not yet ready to proceed with its fire house.

At that time, Moriah decided to erect its own modular building to house its court and police department adjacent to the town hall at Park Place in Port Henry.

That left Port Henry on its own to build a fire house.

Things have changed since that time.

Moriah was expecting the state to pay 70 percent of the $350,000 cost for a new court building. That money has disappeared and Moriah's board has voted to defy the state court mandate.

The court project is simply unaffordable without grant money, Scozzafava said.

Daly, who was at the town board meeting, will join Scozzafava in investigating funding for a joint town-village public safety building.

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