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Corvetti loses one

Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - Updated: 8:39 AM

By PETE KLEIN

Express News Staff

LAKE PLEASANT -- It was in January this year that Diane Corvetti of South Shore Road once again served papers in connection with a civil rights complaint against the Town of Lake Pleasant.

At the Jan. 27 meeting of the Lake Pleasant Town Board, Supervisor Neil McGovern told the board Corvetti was seeking an unspecified amount from the town, town assessor, and past and current members of the town's Board of Assessment Review for allegedly violating her civil rights in connection with property assessments.

But when the Town Board met Monday, July 21, McGovern had some good news.

McGovern said state Supreme Court Richard T. Aulisi recently ruled out the section of the lawsuit suing the town assessors and past and current members of the BAR. Now it is just between the town and Corvetti.

McGovern said, "I am happy those honorably serving the town will no longer be harassed by Corvetti."

McGovern wasn't sure when the balance of the lawsuit would go forward. He said a court date of July 29 had been postponed indefinitely.

RECENT HISTORY

In August 2012 the town board approved a settlement between the town and its assessor and Corvetti concerning her assessments for 2007, 2008, 2011 and 2012.

McGovern complained this most recent lawsuit would only add to the over $250,000 the town's taxpayers have spent defending the town against Corvetti's allegations over the years.

Corvetti maintains that since moving here in 1985 her Red Pines lakeshore property has been incorrectly assessed. "The town assessors have used every method possible to increase my assessments," she has said.

The lawsuits began when James O'Rourke was supervisor and continued through the terms of Frank Mezzano and now McGovern.

Town assessors have included Frank Fish, Edward Winchell and currently Victoria Buyce. In addition, too numerous to mention, have been all who have served on the BAR who have been named in the various lawsuits.

Corvetti believes she has been discriminated against over the years, damaging her health and finances.

HIGHWAY

Superintendent of Highways Randy La Varnway said the 1984 John Deere grader is back in service after having transmission problems, and he expects the repair bill to be somewhere between $6,000 and $7,000.

The cost resulted in some discussion on the value of continuing to put money into repairs.

La Varnway said he has checked prices for renting graders and the cost would be about $6,000 for a month and with a minimum of a month rental.

The problem with renting, La Varnway said, is they aren't always available when needed them and renting for a month means postponing anything else and getting the work done that only a grader can do.

There aren't any good options when it comes to graders. New or almost new ones cost over $250,000. To get under $100,000 means something from 2002 or earlier.

No decision was made at this time and the board is keeping its fingers crossed that repairs will continue to be at or below the cost of renting for the near future.

La Varnway also mentioned that people continue to show up asking to get rid of brush on town property.

"I keep telling them that we can't take any brush because we have no place to store it and by law can't burn it. I tell them to call a forest ranger to get a permit to burn it on their property."

The state Department of Environmental Conservation allows property owners to burn brush on their property if they apply for a permit.

OTHER BUSINESS

-- The board approved spending up to $500 to purchase recycling bins for the office and highway garage. "We need to set an example if we expect people to properly recycle cans, glass, plastic and paper," McGovern said.

-- Lake Pleasant Library Board of Trustees President Richard Frisk stopped by to invite board members to an open house at the library July 23 or a second Wednesday, Aug. 6, from 7-9 p.m. The open house will feature refreshments, door prizes and information on expansion plans.

The Town Board will next meet Monday, Aug. 4, starting at 7 p.m. in Town Hall.

peteklein@hamiltoncountyexpress.com

     

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