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Carthage board upholds late fees on hospital’s water bill

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CARTHAGE — The village board has turned down a request by Carthage Area Hospital to waive a water bill late fee.

The hospital requested two late fees in the amounts of $765 and $857.25 be waived.

Citing the financial condition of the hospital, Trustee Kathleen E. Latremore moved to waive the fee but received no second.

Village President G. Wayne McIlroy said although it is vital to keep the hospital, he often gets calls from single mothers who are charged late fees that aren’t forgiven.

Trustee Michael F. Astafan expressed regret but said the hospital should pay the late fees since he felt it wasn’t fair to make exceptions.

The board also authorized the village president to sign a contract with Westelcom for fiber-optic phone and Internet services at $406.77 per month. According to village Clerk/Treasurer Kristy L. O’Shaughnessy, the switch will cut the bill in half. The Development Authority of the North Country will install the needed cable to the municipal building and Department of Public Works, which will take about three months.

In other business, the board was informed there are about 40 addresses left on the water shut-off list generated from unpaid January water/sewer bills. Under village law, owners have 30 days to make payment or the water will be shut off. There is a $50 fee to have the water service reinstated.

The village received notice from the Pratt-Northam Foundation that it will receive a recreation grant in the amount of $5,000, a $1,000 increase over last year.

Mr. McIlroy said he was very grateful for the increase since there will be no state youth funding this year. The funds will help defray the cost of transporting children from the Carthage Park to West Carthage for swimming and to the annual field trip to Water Safari in Old Forge.

The combined village and town of Wilna court will receive a Justice Court Assistance Program grant in the amount of $488. The funds will help to decorate the courtroom.

The board gave its approval for the American Legion Auxiliary to hold a Poppy Drive May 1 and 2. Elks Lodge 1762 was granted permission to hold a Flag Day Parade on June 14, starting in West Carthage and continuing across the bridge, down State Street to North James Street and ending at the lodge, 511 Fulton St. The parade will be part of the lodge’s 65th anniversary.

The board set a budget workshop for 4:15 p.m. Monday at the village offices, 120 S. Mechanic St.

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