Payment set on water tower dispute

An ongoing dispute over payment for the exterior painting of the Benton Street water storage tank has apparently been settled.

When Common Council meets Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in City Hall it will consider a resolution authorizing Mayor Anthony J. Dolce to make the settlement official.

Cheektowaga firm AmStar of Western New York was selected to do the job in August 2010 with a low bid of $149,900; having been recommended by Hill Engineering, Inc, the city’s engineering consultant on the water system repair and upgrade project, and Director of Public Works Tony Gugino. The company filed a claim against the city in December, asking for payment of $99,900 it said it was due for the work. AmStar had been paid $53,400 as of June, when it notified the city it wanted the balance of the $153,300 it stated was the final cost of the project.

According to Resolution 04-2013, it is in the city’s best interests to resolve the dispute “in an attempt to avoid the large expense and uncertainty of litigation.” The resolution also states the city’s consulting engineer and Director of Public Works endorse 04-2013.

The city is set to resolve the dispute for up to $75,000.

There are two other pre-filed resolutions, two communications and three notices of claim.

Resolution 02-2013 authorizes Mayor Anthony J. Dolce to complete paperwork allowing the city to accept a $250,000 grant from the New York State Office of Community Renewal under its Main Street Program. City officials have said the Coburn Block on Central Avenue, the site of Chautauqua Rural Ministries, would be the focus of the grant.

The change in status of recently appointed Fiscal Affairs Officer Richard Halas from an outside contractor to part-time employee will be covered in 03-2013, along with providing the funding for the purchase of the city’s new rescue vehicle. The resolution moves $30,000 between two fiscal affairs office budget lines along with moving $122,650 from the Fire Department’s EMS revenue line to its equipment line.

The Great Lakes Experience, a non-profit organization supporting the US Fish and Wildlife Service, is requesting the use of Memorial Park on Saturday, June 15 to hold a Great Lakes Experience Festival. Festivals are currently held in Buffalo and Niagara Falls to “educate the community about local natural resources, celebrate our ecological success stories, and to reinforce the simple truth that everyone has a role in protecting our shared environment. … The GLE Festival targets all members of the public, young and old, avid fishermen and those attempting their first cast,” Executive Director Beth Smeader wrote.

Frank Acquavia Memorial Post #1344 Auxiliary Poppy Chairperson Nancy L. Smith wrote to request permission for the annual Poppy Drive sale in Memorial Park on Memorial Day, May 27, from 9 to 11 a.m.

Notices of claim include two involving sewer backups allegedly the fault of the city.

Sylvia Hernandez-Burgos has filed for approximately $15,000 in damages from a Jan. 2 backup at 1165 Central Ave.

Allan Zurawski has filed for the $187.50 it cost to have a licensed plumber to snake the city sewer serving 290 Ruggles St.

City resident Kimberly Donaldson has filed for “pending” damages from a fall she alleges happened Jan. 10 on the sidewalk in front of 501 Central Ave., the site of a recently demolished church.

Send comments on this story to gsnyder@observertoday.com