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Officials Unsure of Leaf Program's Fiscal Impact on Municipal Works

Facilities Management Director Christine Fetten to make up a "wish list" as costs shift from highway to municipal works department.

After Highway Superintendent Alex Gregor earlier this year in response to , town leaders are crunching numbers to determine what the fiscal impact will be on the town's Municipal Works Department.

Facilities Management Director Christine Fetten, speaking at the town board's weekly work session on Friday afternoon, said she foresees a man-hour shortfall each week of 176 hours due to the strain of the new leaf system on the town's transfer station. However, calculating the exact cost of the increased workload would be hard to put a number on, Fetten said.

"At this point in time I think it would be difficult to monetize the information that has been submitted to the public," Fetten said. "The leaf program is a difficult program to manage."

In June, Gregor — who was not able to attend Friday's meeting — announced an overhaul of the leaf program. Rather than loose leaf, curbside pickup, residents will have to bag their leaves and the town's will make one pass per road in the fall and pick up remaining waste in the spring.

Gregor also before bagging them.

Brush will not be accepted; however, residents will receive free vouchers to drop their leaves and brush at the town's transfer stations. Fetten said logistical issues such as punching the vouchers given to residents could cause problems.

Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst, I-Sag Harbor, suggested that Fetten make a "wish list" of equipment she may be able to borrow from Gregor's department. Because Gregor's plan will save his department costs, but strain the municipal works department, officials said finding a number to level the playing field will be the next task moving forward.

"The costs are being shifted," said Councilwoman Bridget Fleming, D-Noyac. "If that's the case, we need to budget right."

Mark Wilson October 24, 2011 at 07:24 PM
It sounds like the guy who thought this up, also thought up the socalled American Recovery Act for Obama...and with the same degree of certainty about the numbers !
b. hardy October 25, 2011 at 03:35 PM
Maybe a little less fencing & landscaping at the transfer station would free up some money for services that would really help the community. I wonder how many leaves I can get in my trunk?????

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