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Springville board looks into transient merchant laws

SPRINGVILLE—Traveling merchants will have to follow a new set of regulations after the Springville board of trustees amended the village law surrounding transient merchants sales. During an Aug. 25 public meeting, the board voted to pass the law which will regulate the manner in which transient merchants conduct business in the future.

The addition comes less than a year after the board received complaints from residents and business owners about the business practice of transient merchants.

“Merchants are setting up shop in the village, doing business and leaving with no recourse for the customer,” said board member Nils Wikman. “We got involved because of the customer, not to restrict business.”

Mayor William Krebs described a transient merchant as any business that is engaged temporarily in the sale of goods, wares, services and or merchandise from a temporary location. He highlighted that small, annual sales, non-profits and produce stands are exempt from the regulations.

The board stated that this would not restrict transient merchants from selling in the village, but rather make sure they’re performing in an honest way.

“Business in Springville should be ethically and honest,” Krebs said. “This language will make sure transient merchant is done in a lawful manner.”

Krebs stated that the law addition is for a chapter on licenses and permits and that the new language would be drafted to ensure it fits in with current language on transient merchants.

“This is a good law, for the village,” Krebs said. “There has been a lot of diligent work done.”

Wikman added that the new language is no more or less invasive than other municipalities in the region. After being looked into, Wikman said there are issues with transient merchants all over Western New York.

Both Wikman and Krebs agreed that this language is to protect the consumer but it won’t be overly regulated in a way that drives away merchants.

The board also approved the transferring of funds to allow the Springville Volunteer Fire Department to purchase a new ambulance. The board explained that money will be transferred from the reserve fund, which was set up a few years ago to make sure there was money for equipment purchases.

Fire Chief Dennis Dains stated that the department has looked into different ambulances and had some at the department for demonstrations.

‘We’ve done our homework,” he said. “And we feel we’ve come up with the best solution at a reasonable cost.”

Krebs said that, after the approval, the department could open bids in September and move forward from there. Wikman applauded the foresight of boards passed for setting up a reserve fund.

Timothy Horner, village administrator, announced that the village will be receiving a Community Development Block Grant of $100,000 for their water line project. The water lines must be placed and paid for before the village receives the grant. Another village was supposed to receive the grant, but couldn’t complete their project in time, Horner said.

The project will replace the lines on Franklin and Smith streets, which are among the oldest in the village, according to Krebs.

“This is federal money coming to Springville,” Krebs said. “Another water line project, that’s good. That’s a good thing.”

In other board matters:

–The board approved the appointment of Dawn Simmons as temporary deputy clerk in the absence of Horner. Simmons has the authority to complete any transactions the clerk would.

–The Aug. 25 meeting was the last for village attorney Johanna Healy, who gave her resignation at the Aug. 11 board meeting.

The next Springville village board of trustees meeting will be Sept. 15 at 7 p.m. in the Springville Municipal Building, located at 65 Franklin St.

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