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Lake George Village approves frugal budget

Workmen excavate the sidewalk March 26  on Canada St. in front of Shepard Park in Lake George as part of a streetscape reconstruction effort now underway. The project, which calls for new sidewalks, benches and plantings similar to the other side of the roadway, is expected to be finished in several months, according to the Rich Spoto of Woodchips Carpentry, the construction firm conducting the work. Monday night, the village board approved borrowing $563,000 for one year to bankroll the project.

Workmen excavate the sidewalk March 26 on Canada St. in front of Shepard Park in Lake George as part of a streetscape reconstruction effort now underway. The project, which calls for new sidewalks, benches and plantings similar to the other side of the roadway, is expected to be finished in several months, according to the Rich Spoto of Woodchips Carpentry, the construction firm conducting the work. Monday night, the village board approved borrowing $563,000 for one year to bankroll the project. Photo by Thom Randall.

— Water district appropriations were set at $866,300 — calling for no increase in water rates.

The village revenues, Mayor Blais noted, included $2,292 in pennies, nickels and dimes thrown by tourists into the village’s Centennial Fountain in Shepard Park.

The budgetary news prompted village Trustee John Root to do something uncharacteristic for his long tenure — he voted to approve the budget. Root has annually cast a No vote to the budget, objecting to what he says is an inequitable village sewer rate.

For years, Root has called for a rate based on water usage. In this vein, he noted Monday that the mayor pays more in sewer fees for his apartment than the local laundromat does, prompting a chuckle from Blais.

In other business conducted March 26, the village board:

• Approved borrowing $563,000 for one year from the First National Bank of Scotia — at an interest rate of 0.95 percent — to pay immediate costs of the Canada St. streetscape reconstruction now being undertaken.

• Heard village Trustee Joe Mastrodomenico’s proposal of converting the village rest rooms to operate on recycled wastewater. He showed the board details of how a $6.3 million rest area near Sharon Vt. uses orchids, plants and organisms to purify wastewater that is then reused for flushing toilets.

• Were informed that the contract between the Big Apple Circus, Warren County and the village was likely to be signed this week. The famed circus is going to be offering shows during a two-week run in late July.

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