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Schuyler approves incentive for retirement

SCHUYLER COUNTY—The Schuyler County Legislature approved two local laws to elect a retirement incentive program for eligible county employees at the regular meeting of the Schuyler County Legislature Monday, July 12.
New York State has offered an early retirement incentive program that must be enacted before Aug. 31. There are two separate options to the program that eligible employees can choose and it will be effective Aug. 10.
According to County Administrator Tim O’Hearn, the program will be most cost effective if positions are eliminated. Savings to the county will be evaluated to see if it is worth it to refill certain positions after employees retire.
One of the options requires the county to pay for retirement funds, because if employees retire before they have actually earned it a gap is created. The legislature approved an application and agreement for an early retiree reinsurance program. The United States Department of Health and Human Services has funds available for a portion of the costs for the early retirement program. Plans can be reimbursed for certain claims between $15,000 and $90,000.
The legislature also approved a resolution to authorize an agreement with ProAct Inc. for a county discount prescription drug card program. The resolution states that the legislature recognizes that there are families and individuals who do not have health insurance or who are underinsured. ProAct Inc. is a subsidiary of Kinney Drugs Inc. and it offers a discount program that can be used by all Schuyler County residents regardless of income or age. The card would be of no cost to the county or to the residents.
The Schuyler County Legislature approved the implementation and funding of the federal aid and state “marchiselli” program eligible costs of a transportation federal aid project. The replacement of a part of Bower Road over Butler Creek in the town of Hector with costs of $150,000 will be in the upcoming budgets and made available to cover the cost of participation in a phase of the project. All necessary agreements, certifications or reimbursement requests for Federal Aid and/or Marchiselli Aid with the New York State Department of Transportation were effective immediately upon approval.
The legislature also approved to authorize an addendum to New York State Data Services for a contract adding Corning-Painted Post School District and a letter agreement between the county, NYS Data Services and the school district. A small number of Corning-Post School District residents live in Schuyler County. The district has requested the board of elections to provide an electronic format with necessary voter data for their budget.
The county’s annual Children with Special Health Care Needs Grant for $15,818 was accepted by the legislature. The grant will last from Oct. 1, 2010 until Sept. 30, 2011.
The legislature also approved to adopt a revised Arson Control Plan “to provide a comprehensive plan that gives guidance and a systematic process by which all fires in Schuyler County shall be investigated,” the resolution states.
The legislature agreed to table a resolution to support a project to expand the Schuyler County Humane Society Shelter in the town of Catharine. The plan for the expansion is to combine the spay and neuter clinics, and the cat and dog shelters into one modern facility to improve conditions for the animals and the community. A town of Catharine resident brought up the issue of special permits, only one well on the parcel, and barking dogs in a residential area. Legislator Glenn Larison suggested that the legislature wait until after the town of Catharine board and the town planning board discuss the expansion.
In order to increase youth employment in Schuyler County the legislature approved to authorize an agreement with the county youth bureau for the operation of a summer youth employment program. The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) will release $19,345 in funds to assist with the employment program. The program will employ about 20 youth through Sept. 30, 2010. Their wages and supervisors will be paid with the funds.
A contract between the Schuyler County Home Health/Public Health Agency and Corning Community College was approved by the legislature. The contract will allow the agency to be a nursing education facility for students enrolled in Corning’s Nurse Education Program.
The advertisement for bids for the development of the Catharine Valley Trail into Seneca Harbor Park was authorized by the Schuyler County Legislature as well.
The legislators also approved to recognize August 2010 as National Immunization Month. The resolution also recommends all Schuyler County residents receive appropriate vaccinations to ensure their protection and the protection of the community.
The legislators approved to recognize July 18-24 as probation, parole, and community supervision week as well. The resolution also encourages NYS citizens to honor these professionals and recognize their achievements in the communities they serve.
The Schuyler County Legislature approved the authorization to accept a 2009 agricultural district annual enrollment request in district #2 after a public hearing was held at the Monday night meeting.
A final hearing has also been set for Aug. 9, regarding the review and modification of Schuyler County Agricultural District #3 at 6:45 p.m.
The legislature also approved to authorize a contract with Behavioral Interventions Inc. for electronic home monitoring equipment upgrade to include global positioning system (GPS) capabilities. There are funds available in the 2010 probation department budget to pay for the new system. There is no cost to the county for the upgrade because the client is responsible for paying the $5.50 per day for the system.
Legislator Stewart Field Jr. and Philip Barnes were also appointed to special committees and boards as a result of Legislator Paul Marcellus resignation.
The nest regular meeting of the Schuyler County Legislature will be Monday, Aug. 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the legislative chambers.

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