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Boston town board clears up Chestnut Lane controversy

SPRINGVILLE — For the second consecutive meeting of the Boston town board, Boston resident Brian Burns sought out answers for his concerns regarding property adjoining Chestnut Lane and Hillside Drive. On March 5, Supervisor Martin Ballowe and Town Attorney Mike Kobiolka took the time – and, as was revealed, taxpayer money – to ensure that the controversy was cleared up. By meeting’s end, Ballowe referred to the matter as “dead,” saying, “I’m done with it.”

Burns began his inquiry by asking if the board required approval for “a job like the one that was proposed at the end of Chestnut Lane, the one where they were considering developing the end of the road.” The board referred questioning to Kobiolka, who clarified that the approval comes “under the supervision of [Bob Telaak], highway superintendent.” The work Burns referred to was a proposed snowplow turn-around, which never materialized.

“[Telaak] was donating land to the town for a turn-around for safety, for plowing,” Ballowe said, “When we all five accepted it, we gave him permission to start cutting the trees down and making a turn-around.” Kobiolka affirmed that no other approval was needed, because the work was done on private property.

Burns said, “So the highway superintendent has the authority to conduct road construction without the town’s approval, to that extent, at the end of Chestnut Lane. Is that a yes or no?”

“You’ve got to be specific in terms of what you’re saying,” said Kobiolka. He added, “[Telaak’s] going to take care of that road in the manner which he feels is most efficient and safe for all the residents in the town. And we’re splitting hairs, in terms of whether or not the board has to do it.”

Burns pointed out that surveys were done for the intended construction at the cost of the town.

“If there needed to be a survey done,” said Burns, “was that a large enough job where the town board would have had to approve – yes or no – that type of job?”

“When we got to the point of the turn-around, absolutely,” said Ballowe. “There would have had to be town approval. The paper road belongs to the town, and if Bob feels the need to extend it, he can extend it.”

Burns asked to speak with each board member individually, regarding approval for anything done on that property, but Ballowe said he could answer for everyone, stating, “We all wanted the turn-around.”

Ballowe clarified, “There was approval to accept the land that Bob Telaak was going to give us, the highway superintendent. There was approval to go ahead with a survey, so we were making sure we were on town property. There was approval for him to go up and start clearing some of the trees.

“When you came up and said you didn’t want a turn-around
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