December 2, 2009


Common Council sets rental permit fee

Staff Reporter

The city Common Council Tuesday night approved a registration fee for the city’s new rental housing permit program, the creation of an environmental advisory committee and renewal of the city garbage collection contract.
The council voted 7-1 to implement a $60 registration fee into the city’s rental housing permit program, which the council passed June 16. City attorney Lawrence Knickerbocker has said the law will take effect after the state Department of State files it.
The fee would be $60 for all rental properties, regardless of the number of units. The rental permit registration is a one-time fee, and any time a title is transferred a new registration is required.
Alderman Val VanGorder (R-1st Ward) voted against the proposal.
Alderman Brian Tobin (D-4th Ward) suggested shutting off the water in rental properties that have not been registered and inspected as a penalty, which he said the Syracuse Common Council plans to do. No one supported the motion, and council members said it could be unconstitutional.
The council still has to decide on a fee for registering rental properties late and an inspection fee.
The council voted unanimously to create an Environmental Advisory Committee, a motion brought forward by Alderman Susan Feiszli (D-6th Ward), the city’s mayor-elect. She said an unofficial committee of six people has been meeting for the past couple of months and would like to be recognized by the council.
The council will have to confirm all of the committee members, who would have two-year terms.
Feiszli said the committee was developed after Tops proposed to build a gas station that would be over the city’s sole source aquifer in Cortlandville. The city no longer has a water commission, and the advisory committee could replace it, Feiszli said.
The council voted 7-1 to approve a contract for Kovatch Mobile Equipment to build a new $424,760 fire truck for the fire department. Feiszli asked for the contract to be tabled because she wanted more time to review the contract, which she said she was given out just before the meeting.
The new truck will replace a fire truck made in 1981, said Mayor Tom Gallagher. The city fire department created a design for the new truck and Kovatch Mobile Equipment submitted the second lowest bid, he said. A bid for $419,997 was submitted, but the company that submitted it did not meet the department’s specifications, Gallagher said.
The council needed to sign the contract for the proposed design before Jan. 1, when new environmental requirements for fire trucks will take effect.
The council also voted 7-1 to renew Superior Disposal Services’s contract to collect the city’s garbage in 2010. The fee for garbage collection will remain at $124 per ton, and the city will continue to pay a $60 per ton tipping fee to the county for disposing of its trash in the county landfill, Gallagher said.


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