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The Telegram
  • Mohawk accepts bid on warehouse site

  • The village of Mohawk received only one bid to purchase the former Mohawk Valley Warehouse site and the village board voted Monday to sell the property to Mike Ramsey for $15,475.

    Ramsey has an auto repair shop near the site.

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  • The village of Mohawk received only one bid to purchase the former Mohawk Valley Warehouse site and the village board voted Monday to sell the property to Mike Ramsey for $15,475.
    Ramsey has an auto repair shop near the site.
    The one-acre parcel of land on Canal Street was home to the former Mohawk Valley Warehouse until June 2000 when fire destroyed the structure.
    Rebecca Young, a member of the village planning board, said the bid amount was low and asked if the board had considered advertising it through media other than the local newspaper.
    Village officials said the state Department of Environmental Conservation retains the right to conduct tests on the property. There are also a number of restrictions on how the property can be used. For example it can’t be used for food service, residential, health care or day care.
    Village Attorney Karl Manne said the board could reject the bid and have a market analysis done on the property.
    Mayor James Baron noted the village has had to put money into the property - some $20,000 for initial cleanup fees after the fire - and had to negotiate with the county about back taxes. If the village had received more than the $20,000 it had into the project, that money would have gone to the county for back taxes owed by the former owner.
    Trustee Kathleen Eisenhut said Hummel’s, which is located next to the warehouse site, had no interest in purchasing the property.
    Baron said he was in favor of accepting the lone bid on the property.
    Trustee George Cryer agreed.
    “This has been a thorn in the village’s side for a long time,” he said.
    A question was raised about whether any restrictions could be placed on the deed regarding use of the property. Baron replied the use of the property would fall under village codes.
    According to a DEC fact sheet, the property was originally developed around 1869 when a manufactured gas plant began and was later improved with a large, brick manufacturing building in 1906 by Duofold, Inc. and was used for clothing production from 1906 to 1985. It was then used as a warehouse from 1985 until 2000, when the building was destroyed by fire. The village acquired the vacant property in the spring of 2006.
    The United States Environmental Protection Agency conducted a debris removal at the site in 2005 and removed a 5,000-gallon oil underground storage tank. National Grid also conducted an environmental site investigation in April 2006.
    The village began an environmental study at the property in November 2006 with help from the Department of Environmental Conservation’s Environmental Restoration Program.
    In other business, the board:
    o Appointed summer recreation staff members as follows: Phil Streeter, director; and Emily Streeter, Carly Gassman and Frederick Schell, attendants. Three workers from the county employment program will complete the staff. Eisenhut asked what the program attendance was last year, adding, “Three years ago we were way overstaffed.” When the program sponsors a field trip, however, all of the workers could be needed, she said.
    Page 2 of 2 - o Discussed codes violations that included overgrown lawns. The mayor said property owners are given a 10-day notice before the village goes in and mows the lawn. The cost of mowing is then added to the owner’s taxes. Village crews have mowed most of the lawns that were in violation of village codes, but several more have been added to the list.
    • Agreed to pay the $86.75 cost of fingerprinting two police recruits.
    • Authorized police Chief Joseph Malone to sign the agreement for a new records management system for the police department. The village won’t have to pay anything for the system until 2014.
    • Agreed to change carriers for workers’ compensation after hearing a presentation by Tim Dunn of Bailey, Haskell and Lalonde. The change will result in a savings, but the savings will be spread over two years.
    • Heard fire Chief Dan Mabbett report that department members have been participating in training exercises. Extrication training was held two evenings at the highway department, he said. He also reported Mark Walts completed Firefighter I training. Mabbett said he received two complaints about open burning and talked to the people involved.
    • Scheduled summer board meetings for July 8 and Aug. 12. An additional meeting would be scheduled if needed.
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