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July 7, 2017

Legislature Works to Improve Communities County-Wide

OSWEGO COUNTY-The Oswego County Legislature took several steps aimed at improving neighborhoods and enhancing the quality of life for residents during its June meeting.

Legislators voted unanimously to authorize the transfer of nearly a dozen tax-foreclosed properties to the Oswego County Land Bank for rehabilitation or demolition. They also voted unanimously to authorize a reduction in tipping fees for the disposal of materials from both municipal residential demolitions and the former Nestlé site in the city of Fulton.

Oswego County Legislator Roy Reehil, District 5, chairman of both the Oswego County Legislature's Economic Development and Planning Committee and the Oswego County Anti-Poverty Task Force, said, "I'd like to recognize the efforts of Legislator (Stephen M.) Walpole (District 14, chairman of the Legislature's Infrastructure, Facilities and Technology Committee) and (Oswego County Solid Waste Director) Mark Powell for their hard work moving some of these important initiatives forward. Anything we can do to alleviate blight throughout the county is a major step in the right direction."

Oswego County Legislator Shane Broadwell, District 17, chairman of the Oswego County Land Bank agreed, "The land bank has come a long way in a short period of time. Last year, we worked to improve the neighborhoods of six different properties either through demolition or rehabilitation. This year we're looking to double that number by tackling 11 properties in communities throughout the county."

The county's land bank was formed in 2016 to address the problem of run-down or vacant properties that create economic strife in their respective communities.

Broadwell added, "Deteriorated properties can lower the property values of neighboring homes as well as cause health and safety issues for neighbors. The land bank offers a means of improving these properties to make them attractive to responsible buyers and return them to productive use."

The county is also working with local municipalities to help them make improvements to their own communities through a reduction insolid waste tipping fees. Municipalities that take responsibility for blighted residential properties in their areas can dispose of the demolition debris and waste at a lower rate. All other disposal policies and procedures remain in place.

Oswego County Legislator Jacob A. Mulcahey, District 15 supported the resolution stating, "I'm so proud of this legislative body for giving municipalities the tools they need to succeed. These are progressive new steps we're taking and it is exciting to be a part of it."

In other action, the Legislature also approved a reduction in tipping fees for the disposal of waste from the site of the former Nestlé factory in Fulton. Lower disposal rates help the city which has taken responsibility of the site's demolition and clean-up so that it can return the property to productive use and benefit its residents.

Oswego County Legislator James Karasek, District 22 said that he appreciated the support from the Legislature. "This is a huge clean-up project, but it will create jobs and contribute to the tax base in Fulton."

Other Fulton area legislators, including Frank Castiglia, Jr., District 25, and Daniel T. Farfaglia, District 24, also supported the resolution and thanked the Legislature for its consideration and assistance.

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