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Boston’s Mill Street drainage project nearing completion

BOSTON — Not only have drainage issues on Mill Street been relieved, as the Boston Highway Department nears completion of that project, but the town has experienced “true cost savings,” in the process, according to town board members.

This was done by the board’s opting to undertake the task, within the town’s means, instead of bidding out the project. During the Boston Town Board meeting held Dec. 5, board members said they were happy about the plan’s outcome.

“The [project] is pretty much over,” Highway Superintendent Robert Telaak said. “All the pipes are in the ground; the only thing left to do is a little bit of cleanup, on the shoulders. The job turned out fairly well.”

“I think it went very well,” said Councilman Jeff Genzel, the board’s engineering liaison. “I thank the highway workers for all the work they did on that project and we’re waiting to hear for phase two.”

While other towns have paid contractors to complete tasks like the Mill Street project, the town of Boston utilized its own workers to cut costs. “These are real cost savings for the town,” Supervisor Martin Ballowe said. “When the highway [department]’s down working on Mill Street, those are true cost savings, because, if we didn’t, we’d have to farm that out.

“When you have to bid those out, the price of the project skyrockets,” he continued. “It goes enormously through the roof, so, when the highway guys come over and they work on Mill Street for a week – with trucking and with laying blacktop, with flagging; whatever needs to be done there – those are true cost savings for the town, instead of the town bidding out and taking taxpayers’ dollars and increasing the cost of the project.”

To Telaak and the highway department, Ballowe said, “Thank you; that was a big project and that relief on Mill Street is going to be tremendous, up there.”

In other board matters:
– Town Historian Keith Kaszubik reported that the town’s Tallcut Patchin historical marker on Boston State Road had been discovered broken, but has since been repaired. The damage is believed to have been caused by high winds.

“I looked [the marker] over, but it was beyond anything I was capable of fixing,” Kaszubik said. “To replace the marker with a new one would cost about $1,500. I turned to someone we can always depend on: our highway superintendent. He didn’t hesitate, for a moment, to offer his help. Obviously, our steadfast employees pay special attention to details.”

Kaszubik thanked Telaak for “saving us a bundle of money.”

Kaszubik also publicly thanked Councilman Larry Murtha, who was not in attendance, for attending the Boston Historical Society’s museum cleanup on Oct. 28.

– The board approved the supervisor to sign his letter to Charles Stickler, principle civil engineer for Erie County Highways, expressing Ballowe’s approval of installing shoulders on a section of Boston State Road. This section runs “from just south of the Boston Town Hall, to the intersection of Boston Colden Road,” according the supervisor’s letter.

“We, as a town and a town board, see the necessity of this installation, due to the fact that there are no existing shoulders on either side of Boston State Road, offering vehicles an opportunity to pull over,” Ballowe said, in the letter, adding that he believed this issue is a safety concern for travelers on that section of Boston State Road.

– The board scheduled a public hearing “to consider the renewal of the ambulance service contract” for Wednesday, Jan. 2 at 7:40 p.m.

– Deputy Town Clerk Elizabeth Martin discovered that the town would save approximately 15 percent on its utility bill over the next year, by signing a contract with New Wave Energy Corporation. “What this is, is a new energy company that the town is going to hire,” said Genzel. The board authorized the supervisor to sign a contract with NWEC.

– Genzel, the planning board liaison, reported that the planning board approved Dana Darling to “go ahead for the final site plan” for his patio home project. “This was strictly a recommendation to the developer to move into the final site plan phase,” Genzel clarified. “The final approval does come to the town board for site plan approval.”

– “We actually did have a real fire this month,” Councilman Jay Boardway said. “On Nov. 22, a real call for a real fire came at 2:59 in the morning.” The damage reported was “minimal,” and there were no injuries, according to the report. “These guys were up and out there at 3 in the morning,” Boardway continued. “I’d like to thank them for that.”

The Boston Town Board’s next meeting will be held on Wednesday, Dec. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the Boston Town Hall, located at 8500 Boston State Road in Boston.

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