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Meeting Minutes Return to Committee
Meeting Minutes
Office of the Onondaga County Legislature
Court House, Room 407 * 401 Montgomery Street * Syracuse, New York 13202
(315) 435-2070 Fax: (315) 435-8434

Deputy Clerk





MEMBERS PRESENT:   3Mr. Liedka, Mr. Burtis, 2Mr. Knapp, 1Mr. Plochocki

also attending:  Chairman McMahon and see attached list


Chair Rapp called the meeting to order at 10:33 a.m.


A motion was made by Mr. Liedka, seconded by Mr. Knapp, to waive the reading of the proceedings from the previous committee minutes.  MOTION CARRIED.  A motion was made by Mr. Knapp, seconded by Mr. Liedka, to approve the minutes of the proceedings of the previous committee.  MOTION CARRIED. 


1.       INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY:  Kevin Sexton, Chief Information Officer

a.     Authorizing the County Executive to Enter into Agreements with Various Municipalities and Criminal Justice Agencies Concerning Participation in Onondaga County’s Criminal Justice Information Sharing System

  • Updating IMA participation agreement for CNYLEADS and CHAIRS2; CHAIRS2 new application to be implemented later in 2015, CHAIRS coming off the mainframe
  • Similar agreement approved by legislature 11 years ago, updating to include CHAIRS2 and redefine participation– what it means and what is required, 2 year agreement, allows approved agencies and users access to CNYLEADS and CHAIRS2; includes much policy around how criminal justice information is accessed


In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. Sexton confirmed that the authorized users are everyone involved in public safety. 

  • Number of important exhibits included with agenda (on file with Clerk):
  • Information Technology Use and Dissemination Agreement - states agency users must have authorization, can’t share ID’s and passwords, information must be kept confidential, can’t attempt to gain access to other systems
  • CNYLEADS/CHAIRS2 Information Sharing Policy - large component of agreement, states user must keep information confidential, must be compliant with state and federal statutes, promotes information sharing as agencies must update current information for the benefit of other agencies; PROC controls participation, has ability to terminate agreement with agencies not following procedures


In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. Sexton confirmed that termination for cause was the teeth of the agreement. 

  • CNYLEADS/CHAIRS2 Wireless Access Network Policy - participating agency must follow Onondaga County standard protocols for approved wireless secured access
  • CNYLEADS/CHAIRS2 Electronic Record Policy - all activity tracked within the application, similar to electronic signature
  • CNYLEADS/CHAIRS2 Policy on the Release of Information

Mr. Liedka made a motion to approve this item.


Chair Rapp said that this was basically a renewal of what they already have.

Seconded by Mr. Knapp.


In answer to Mr. Knapp, Mr. Sexton said that the oversight committee included Mr. Trunfio from the DA’s office, representation for the Syracuse Police, Sheriff’s, Forensics, 911….  Mr. Knapp interjecting saying that everyone was generally represented.


1Mr. Plochocki arrived at the meeting.


In answer to Mr. Liedka, Mr. Sexton confirmed that they go in and check the agencies network access to ensure that it is secure.


In answer to Chair Rapp. Mr. Sexton said that there was a training component at no cost.  Agencies must buy licenses for CNYLEADS.  Mr. Knapp said that the cost to the County is buying the software, adding that this would be migrating off the mainframe.  Mr. Sexton agreed, adding that they wrote CHAIRS2.  CNYLEADS is a third-party application that they maintain and the two applications integrate with each other.


Mr. Knapp questioned if they would be running into the same problem they have had before, i.e. 30 year old finance software, one person wrote it and knew how to use it, now in tough situation.  Mr. Sexton said that they do not have a single point of failure.  They have six developers that are well versed in the application. 


Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


In answer to Mr. Knapp, Mr. Sexton said that the new version of CHAIRS2 was the driving force in the update.



        a.     Transfer $13,500 from 666500 Contingent Account to 694010 Travel/Training Account ($13,500)

  • Planning and GIS related events:
  • Northeast American Planning Association Conference, held in Saratoga later this month, 3 Planning staff registered
  • NYS GIS Conference, held in Albany this fall, would like GIS staff to attend
  • Training opportunities for municipalities:
  • Cornell University organizing Agriculture and Land Use Institute, pilot in this area, mainly geared toward municipal; looking to fund scholarship for attendees
  • Number of municipalities to update zoning – Town of Cicero, Town and Village of Skaneateles and City of Syracuse, looking to put together training session to benefit them
  • Software related GIS training, have limited GIS resources, critical staff stays current on technology to meet the needs of County departments and municipalities


Chair Rapp said that it sounds as if Saratoga is happening and the rest is just hope.  Mr. Jordan agreed, adding that they are things they would like to pursue.


In answer to Mr. Knapp, Mr. Jordan said that they have three GIS positions and one unfunded position; nothing funded and vacant.  They requested two positions that were not authorized last year.  Chair Rapp noted that they are still short a director. 


Mr. Plochocki said that there are 5 different activities, 3 are for SOCPA staff training and 2 are for funds to train municipal officials.  Mr. Jordan said that they are geared toward creating opportunities for municipal folks.  Mr. Knapp asked if they would be doing the training.  Mr. Jordan said that they were looking at bringing resources here to help, i.e. help with zoning.  In answer to Mr. Plochocki, Mr. Jordan confirmed that the cost would be to bring the expert in, in those cases.  They are also kicking around the idea of purchasing webinars and inviting municipalities to view the session.  They proposed training for municipalities when they submitted their budget.


In answer to Chairman McMahon, Mr. Jordan confirmed that he was the Acting Director of SOCPA.   Chairman McMahon said that his comments were a little of topic.  Recently the City of Syracuse was trying to put a moratorium on Certificates of Suitability in a targeted neighborhood, which is most likely illegal.   This has been litigated over the past 6-8 years but the City Council and Mayor’s office continue to do this.  His concern is the liability to the County as County employees are now implementing this.  If the City of Syracuse continues to put forward a policy that then gets litigated, thrown out, and puts the County at risk for damages, he wants nothing to do with it.  He would rather give the city back their 4 employees and cut the ties, adding that the budget process is coming up soon.  He asked Mr. Jordan and the administration to start tracking this and has asked the Law department to give a County legal opinion on this type of legislation.  The law has not passed yet but probably will.  The SOCPA merger was to streamline services to customers, make this community more business friendly, and provide more services with expertise to the city, towns and villages.  He is putting everyone on notice that this is not working.   He is getting the same complaints today that he got three years ago and that he lived through in six years on the Common Council.  He thought the merge would help to irradiate bias behavior but, to date, it has not.  As acting director Mr. Jordan may have to deal with this.  Mr. Fisher is also going to work diligently on correcting these ills.


Chair Rapp said that the funds were put into contingency because they were not sure what they were going to be used for and this doesn’t seem much clearer.  Prior to session, Chair Rapp asked that Mr. Jordan provide a breakdown for each item, the anticipated cost and his priorities.  Mr. Jordan said that they don’t know the costs for some things but could estimate.  Chair Rapp said that a ballpark figure would provide them with a since of where the money was going and how it could be best utilized.  She loves the idea of zoning and planning workshops for training, and GIS is huge these days.  Mr. Jordan said that they put an emphasis on training.  It is very important to have these opportunities to get people trained. 


In answer to Chairman McMahon, Mr. Jordan said that he did not know the cost for the GIS training event.  Chairman McMahon said that during the budget process Mr. Maxwell referenced that SOCPA would be sending town and village representatives to the same training.  He does not think those training opportunities have been identified yet and does not see the need in releasing the funds.  With more detail and a breakdown of the funds, they could potentially release some of the funds now and then come back later. 


Mr. Knapp said that zoning and planning officials had to be retrained every so often and asked if this was done by the County or state.  Mr. Jordan said that in conjunction with the County Planning Federation, SOCPA organizes a training session that satisfies the requirement.  Funds for that training are paid for by the attendees and membership dues in the federation, and are not part of this request.


No action was taken on this item.


3.        COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT:  Robert DeMore, Director; Nina Andon-McLane, Administration Planning & Funding Coordinator

a.     Authorizing the Onondaga County Executive to Adopt the Five Year Consolidated Plan and to File the 2015 Action plan for the Community Development Block Grant, Home Grant and Emergency Solutions Grant Programs ($3,419,424)


Ms. Andon-McLane distributed handouts and presented the following:

  • Annual Action Plan submitted to HUD each year, also authorizing 5-Year Consolidated Plan (2015-2019) newly required by HUD, much more extensive, more needs analysis, market research and planning information – working on this now
  • Budget for 3 grants included in Action Plan, total grant application $3.4M, includes $2.5M in grants with other add-ons put into it


Comm Dev Budget 

  • Clay allocation due to population over 50k, award amount incorporated into the program
  • Budget and project selection approved by Steering Committee, 15 member body appointed by County Executive, includes Legislators Knapp and Shepard


           2015 Community Development

                Approved Capital Projects







South Shore East Trailhead Parking & Info Center



Town of Camillus

Camillus Senior Center Parking Improvements



Village of Camillus

Union Street Drainage and Road Improvements



Town of Cicero

Skyway Park Playground



Town of Clay

2015 Road Improvements



V-East Syracuse

Kinne St Sidewalks, Ph 3



Town of Geddes

Leslee Terrace Road Reconstruction



Town of Marcellus

Marcellus Park Stone Mill/Creek Hlw Restroom HA



V-North Syracuse

Village Center Streetscape Lighting Improvements



Town of Onondaga

Whedon Rd & Onondaga Blvd Sanitary Sewer



Town of Salina

Sehr Park ADA, Drainage and Parking Imp



Village of Solvay

Woods Road Park Improvements, Phase 3



Town of Van Buren

Henderson Blvd Drainage Rehab, Phase 3



Cornell Cooperative

Community Forests-Emerald Ash Borer




Contingent Projects:


Town of Van Buren

Hosmer Dr Drainage & Pavement Rehab, Ph 1



V-North Syracuse

South Main Street Sidewalk Improvements



Village of Solvay

Lower Gertrude Park Improvements, Phase 1



Town of Salina

Cold Springs Drainage and Road Improvement



Town of Geddes

Leslee Storm Sewer Outfall Stabilization



Fair Housing Activities:



Housing Referral and Advocacy Program



CNY Fair Housing

Fair Housing Education & Enforcement Project





  • Choose 5 contingent projects; several 2014 projects fell through as the rules changed in the summer after all project selection and planning was completed


In answer to Mr. Plochocki, Ms. Andon-McLane said that they were able to keep the money and are doing income surveys for some of the projects knocked out, was not practical for all.  If the results prove the areas to be low income, they could still do the project.  Currently undergoing 5 income surveys:  Village of Marcellus for Scotch Hill Road, Van Buren for Henderson Road, Skaneateles for Skaneateles Falls playground, Jordan for Clinton Street/Clinton Towers drainage and street scape improvements and Baldwinsville for Margaret Woods and Tabor Road; 4 are very manageable, the playground is large scale.  In anticipation of some of them or other projects falling through, they choice 5 contingent projects that will be funded if money becomes available. 

  • Capital Project handout (On file with Clerk) contains narrative with description of each project, emphasis on green technology, pg. 9 contains description of 2 fair housing activities funded – Arise and Fair Housing Council of CNY, Inc.
  • Emergency Solutions Grant handout (On file with Clerk) contains description of projects, most used to fund 10 different programs; Syracuse Northeast Community Center - new this year, provides rapid housing assistance for the homeless
  • Home Grant mainly used for housing rehab, required to spend 15% on non-profits, Covenant Housing awarded funding of $67k via RFP

Mr. Knapp said that the Steering Committee met several times, went over each project in depth and did a very commendable job.  Last year’s changing of the rules was unfortunate.  In answer to Mr. Knapp, Ms. Andon-McLane said that nothing materialized from Senator Schumer’s visit in that regard.  Mr. Plochocki said that he brought this issue up to the Senator, who said he would do everything, but nothing panned out.  Mr. DeMore said that HUD was a tough customer.  Ms. Andon-McLane reiterated that they are trying to complete as many of those projects as possible, through the income surveys.  Mr. Knapp said that income surveys are a lot of work. 


In response to Mr. Plochocki, Ms. Andon-McLane said that Skaneateles has decided to complete the survey.  At first they said it was too onerous, they didn’t have the staffing and could not do it.   She felt the area would qualify and convinced them.


A motion was made by Mr. Knapp, seconded by Mr. Liedka to approve this item.  Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


b.     Amending the 2015 County Budget to Accept a Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control Program and Authorizing the County Executive to Enter into Contracts to Implement this Resolution ($3,696,500)


Ms. Andon-McLane:

  • Actual grant $3.9M, resolution $200k less, grant approved and award a while ago, budget department instructed them to use part of their adopted budget for lead grant needs; started doing so, realized they would be spending at higher level than adopted budget would allow

Lead Paint Hazard Grant (2014)

Project 734191




Admin - index 180010







Total Personnel:




Office Supplies









            Obj 401:


All other admin expenses



Total Other Admin:



Facilities Mgt-Mailing



IT- Print Shop



Health Dept Services*



Total Interdepartmentals:


Total Non-Personnel:


Total Administration:


Programs - index 180020

Child Care Solutions


Southern Hills Preservation Corp


Lab & Paint inspection (Ecospect)


Contractor training (ATC/Eco)


Contract Exp-Client Serv:*



Inspectors - Salaries

Inspectors - Fringe

Inspectors - Mileage

  Inspectors Total:


Healthy Homes Direct Costs


HR Specialists - Salaries

HR Specialists - Fringe

HR Specialists - Mileage

  HR Specialists Total:


Housing Rehab (Deferred Loans)


Healthy Homes Rehab (Def Loans)


    Housing Rehab:



subtotal contracts/subgrantees:


Total Programs (PS):


Other Direct Costs:


Total Non-personnel:




  Budget previously loaded in PeopleSoft:


  Resolution amount:



  • $365k included in budget from Health & Home portion of HUD, specifically for health and safety related repairs – not lead related repairs;
  • Funding Health dept. at $100k over 3 years, funds lead testing, education, and provides referrals
  • $90k for outreach - Child Car Solutions has daycare connections, program specifically for families with children under 6, Southern Hills Prevention Corp. also providing outreach
  • Lab and paint inspection required before and after each job
  • Risk assessors included in administrative- EPA trained inspectors, recertified every 3 years, additional funding allowed for their salary, fringe, mileage, etc.


Mr. Burtis asked what “Budget previously loaded into PeopleSoft”, pertained to.  Ms. Andon-McLane explained that the grant was awarded at the end of 2014.  They then go through a negotiation period with HUD, sending piles of documentation to work out the final budget.  They started spending money in March as Management and Budget wanted them to use their discretionary grant funds before coming to the legislature for these funds.


Mr. Knapp said that Mr. DeMore and his team deserve a huge pat on the back for getting the word out and managing this.  The city lost all of their funding because they did not administer it correctly and now the County is picking up their side of the operation.  Chair Rapp asked if funding had increased because of the cities loss.  Mr. DeMore said that it had not.  The City was turned down last year but is applying again now.  He offered to apply for another grant, with the City as the applicant and Community Development as the administrator, but the city opted not to do so.


Chair Rapp said that the County started doing houses in the city, since the City lost their grant.  Mr. DeMore said that they are doing a lot of houses in the city, as there is a big need.  Chair Rapp said that there is probably a big need in the suburbs as well.  Mr. DeMore reiterated that he tried to do a second grant but the City did not want to take part.  Chairman McMahon said that this was another great opportunity for collaboration that the City did not take part in. 


Chairman McMahon commended Mr. DeMore and his team for handling this complex program and their ability to step in.  A large piece of this program is for homes built before 1978, and because of that, the most eligible homes are in the City and some of the inner-ring towns.  Ms. Andon-McLane said thank you, adding that this was their seventh grant and they have received over $24 million. 


A motion was made my Mr. Knapp, seconded by Mr. Liedka to approve this item.  Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


2Mr. Knapp left the meeting.


c.     Authorizing the Cancellation and Discharge of Real Property Taxes on Property Owned by the Onondaga Housing Development Fund Company ($18,080.41) (Sponsored by Mr. McMahon)


Mr. DeMore:

  • Tax property received from the County, located on Charles Ave., Fund Co. pays January bill then move to exempt the property going forward, January bill in $18k range, property greatly over assessed – 9 apartment complex, felt taxes could be waived instead of the County paying itself back for this property due to the large amount
  • Property to be deconstructed, putting up 3 new homes; fire department to do exercise before it comes down

Chair Rapp asked if they should be concerned about setting precedence. .  Mr. DeMore said that he would not ask for this again.  They have paid the January bill for each property received through the tax auctions, which include school and village arrears, and is always about $3,000 to $4,000.  This amount was not paid with the idea that they would come before the legislature and ask for it to be waived based on the amount.  In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. DeMore confirmed that he was not looking for this to be typical, it was a rare situation.

  • Property in really bad shape, people are gone, ready for deconstruction


Chairman McMahon:

  • Part of the Solvay revitalization effort, property was built by Solvay Process for its workers, probably the worst piece of housing stock in Onondaga County, will be deconstructed
  • 3 new single-family owner-occupied homes will be put up with a Parade of Homes type effort, competitive process for builders


Mr. DeMore:

  • People in Solvay excited for deconstruction
  • Met with architects Monday, have some ideas, property is sloped, could have walkout basement, adds nice space to a home
  • Village of Solvay agreed to waive part of 2015 village taxes for the 4 parcels they own, reducing by half; exempt properties in March but doesn’t take effect until the fall school tax bill


A motion was made by Mr. Liedka, seconded by Mr. Burtis, to approve this item.  Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


d.     Transfer County Properties – Tiny Houses


Chair Rapp asked if there was a resolution.  Mr. DeMore said that Tiny Houses was moving forward but the Law department was reviewing different options for transferring the property.  Mr. Fisher said that there may not be a resolution.  It may be a local law, which would need to be on the desks by June 26, for the July session.  They are just working out the best mechanism for the transfer.  Chair Rapp asked if they were thinking of using the IDA or Home Headquarters.  Mr. DeMore that it was one of the options.


Mr. Fisher said that the local law, as written, has direct transfer of the property, which could be construed as a gift made to a private entity.  Chairman McMahon asked about selling the property for a dollar.   Mr. Fisher said that the practice has been to have an appraisal before selling county property, then bringing the appraisal to the legislature for consideration and advertising the property before selling.  The County Executive would like to continue that practice.  In this case, the property would not be appraised or advertised therefore they need a way to transfer the property without creating any legal exposure.  They are currently considering three options for the transfer:  1) a local law, 2) transfer to the Fund Company, who then sells it for a dollar, and 3) a long term lease.   The item is being brought forward now, due to the compressed schedule for the July session. 


Mr. DeMore:

  • 4 units, property on W. Kennedy off from South Ave., south bordered by creek, almost country setting, all houses in area removed for sewage treatment plant that never happened
  • Tiny Homes organization has money in place and is working with the VA for referrals; VA excited about the project
  • 2 units attached side by side, 200 sq. ft. with Murphy bed, small kitchen, garden between 2 sets of buildings
  • Signed lease tenants, could evict if they don’t follow the rules, total of 4 people
  • Scheduling meeting at Southwest Community Center to meet with neighbors


In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. DeMore said that there was not room for more homes on this property.  There is a piece of property next to it and another property around the corner that might work.  Chair Rapp said that the neighbors would not have to be concerned about a critical mass taking up the neighborhood, just four little houses.  Mr. Burtis added that there would not even be driveways.  Mr. DeMore said that it was a nice setting and a suitable spot for Tiny Homes, adding that they are not looking for funds, just land.


In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. DeMore said that the land has not been appraised but the City assess all three parcels at about $8,000. 


No action was taken on this item.


Chairman McMahon said that he wanted to applaud Mr. DeMore and his staff.  They have been working very closely on the revitalization efforts in Solvay and have put together a couple of different initiatives, expanding their outreach from what they normally do, and they are very good at what they do. 



a.     Amending the 2015 County Budget to Make Surplus Room Occupancy Funding Available for Distribution to CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity in Support of the 2016 American Hockey League All-Star Game ($75,000) (Sponsored by Mr. McMahon)


Chairman McMahon:

  • Over past month Crunch working to attract AHL All-Star-Game
  • Frozen Dome Classic tremendous success, broke single season attendance record; Crunch has proven they are very good at what they do and marketing
  • Need $250k package to host AHL All-Star-Game, comfortable with $75k host fee – don’t believe heads and beds themselves will create $75k in ROT, overall event will generate a huge economic impact; representatives from 29 franchises

Chair Rapp asked if 29 teams were coming.  Chairman McMahon said that there would be representatives from each of the franchises but it would not be their entire teams.  Chair Rapp said that it was one big game and not a tournament.   Chairman McMahon agreed.  Mr. Liedka said that they would have a skills competition the day before. 

  • Owners, players, families, and friends coming in; great way to showcase the community, huge boost to downtown businesses

In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. Liedka said that the event was scheduled for February 2016.   

  • Nationally televised event, helps CVB, SMG and others to attract different types of events; Frozen Dome Classic used to try and compete for a Women’s Frozen Four, this event would provide another notch on their belt
  • Funds coming out of ROT surplus account, encourage support


In answer to Chair Rapp, Mr. Holder:

  • Could easily perform economic impact, look at events through 3 different filters:
  • Will it generate room nights – would generate some, won’t produce return on investment in room nights alone
  • Does it complete a community goal, i.e. do many things with Onondaga Lake, want to see the lake come back as it enhances the image
  • Is there media value – media value enormous for this event, can calculate figures and show what media value will be


A motion was made by Mr. Burtis, seconded by Mr. Liedka, to approve this item.  Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


5.       CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAUDavid Holder, President

a.     Amending the 2015 County Budget to Make Funds Available for Distribution to CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity for Use by the Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau ($262,500)


Mr. Holder presented the following:

  • Samples of branding handouts provided to committee (luggage tag, spatula, and post it notes)
  • Requesting 2nd release of contingency funds


Lead Paint budget   CVB PP

  • Many partnerships with NYS Tourism, poster of above image in a Time Square subway station, generated much publicity for the area, many talking about it online



  • Included Oneida Lake in NYS fishing publication, being inserted into USA Today,1 of the top bass lakes in the country
  • I Love NY traveling promotion pod coming through the area; at Destiny USA in a few weeks, then Jazz Fest and the NYS Fair



  • Participating in many regional partnerships, $15k investment provides over $200k in public relations services
  • Partnered with Rochester for heavy media relations and advertising in Toronto area, generating much response



  • Couple Rochester advertising with the Do Your Thing campaign running in Ottawa and Toronto; website business continues to grow since adapting promotional message to the brand


Chair Rapp asked if they had been able to tie this to actual new room nights.  Mr. Holder said that they have not been able to do so.  They are finishing the research that will show how the marketing campaign has translated into actual visitation, and he will discuss this further in a moment.  Keep in mind that when the campaign was lunched it was right when the Canadian dollar value started to plummet.  They have dedicated dollars that must be spent in Canada and have incredible interest but the challenge is the additional 30% due to the exchange rate.

  • Annual publication via Amtrak, sticks with the brand message



  • Examples of partnerships for trade and consumer shows; partnership with Julie Taboulie taken to higher level, went with to Ottawa Women’s Show, cooking demonstrations were a huge hit, gave away spatulas, one side says Syracuse Do Your Thing/other side Julie Taboulie, Ms. Taboulie fantastic ambassador for the area, over the summer and fall will be using her for convention promotions
  • Heavy international marketing, 3 trade shows since last presentation, are producing sales material in specific languages; video clip produced in mandarin to appeal to the Chinese marketplace, know exactly where their market is, starting to build partnership with universities, a different level that no other destination is putting together


  • Local organizations are hopping onto the Do Your Thing message; starting conversation to bring OHA on as a retail partner, selling branded materials from Syracuse Do Your Thing, have received many requests
  • Familiarization very big, photos show group tour company owners from Australia, program from NYS, will see new Australian business, NYS going after the market proactively, reactive market for our area



  • Bring in journalists and show them the area, above see examples of the results; will use AHL All-Star Game to promote the area, bring in travel and sports media to showcase the area in a way they may not have experienced before, results in media that generates travel, i.e. Women’s Travel blog talking about the Yankee Pot Roast at the Sherwood Inn



  • Examples of press mentions for first 6 months of the year, media outlets picked up their message based on the work of their communication manager
  • Continuing quarterly visitors guide with the Post Standard, finding different ways to push travel products through the publication, well received by the market place



  • Syracuse Connective Corridor buying 11 kiosks to be located in  publicly visited areas, i.e. Convention Center, MOST, Shine Student Center, Landmark Theatre; on-site website for visitors to learn more about the community and purchase tickets to events, i.e. Chief’s game or Syracuse Stage
  • Website being redesigned, will have big vivid imagery tying in with the Do Your Thing message, responsive design that allows for multiple platforms, i.e. mobile phone or desktop computer



  • Heavily engaged in social media, reached milestone of 1k followers on Instagram, staying on top of Facebook, Twitter and all platforms, great way to push message to prospective visitors
  • Justin Lynch handles the social media, honored by trade association, receives free trip to annual convention



  • Hitting sales hard, going to many trade shows, partnering with the Oncenter and some hotels
  • Many promotion opportunities; MDI diving into data base and pulling out new sales opportunities, working on telemarketing contract with them, sales team could work on closing prospective leads while MDI works on generating more leads; educational events have been good for the area this year



  • Economic impact from groups over $39M for first 5 months of the year, includes NCAA event
  • FAM tours specifically around the brand in Aug. and Sept., taking part in large events coming here



  • Wrapping up study for July presentation, encourage all to attend, will provide since of what visitors are doing while here and their needs which they will be addressing in the Strategic Plan, results to be rolled into the work of the Regional Economic Development Council and planning efforts of Upstate Revitalization
  • Big events this summer, lacrosse championship coming to Syracuse in Sept., international games drawing big attention to the community; Syracuse Nationals continues to grow;  partnered with the Oncenter to go to KY and visited with quilters, excited about them coming here
  • Need release of next contingency to finish doing all these great things


Mr. Liedka said that if there were no questions he would vote, otherwise he had to leave.  Chair Rapp said that $39 million in six months was worth releasing $262,500.


A motion was made by Chair Rapp, seconded my Mr. Plochocki to approve this item.


Mr. Burtis said that this was releasing some of the contingency but not all.  Mr. Holder said that it was the remaining portion of the dedicated contingency.  They still have the tourism incentive contingency, and will likely come back before the end of summer for release.  They are holding back on a few staff items.


3Mr. Liedka left the meeting.


They need to have confidence that funds will available for use.  Nothing has changed in the giant sheet previously provided, that showed all the programs coming up.  Chair Rapp said that they have done yeoman's work.  She has been on this board for a long time and has never seen so much stuff, in so little time, and they continue to keep churning it out.  The staff is unbelievable.


Mr. Plochocki thanked Mr. Holder for taking a chance on Julie Taboulie, adding that he would like to think that it his introduction has worked out well.  Mr. Holder said that it has and they are looking forward to more partnerships with her.


Passed unanimously; Motion Carried.


The meeting adjourned at 11:40 a.m.


Respectfully submitted,



Onondaga County Legislature


sign in sheet


* * *



MEMBERS PRESETNENT:    Mr. Shepard, Mr. Burtis, Mrs. Rapp, Dr. Chase

ALSO ATTENDING:  see attached list


Chair Plochocki called the meeting to order at 12:01 p.m.


Chair Plochocki said that there was only one item on the agenda, calling for a public hearing.  However, since everyone was present he would like to go over the item in detail as he expected to have be a busier meeting next month.


A motion was made by Dr. Chase, seconded by Mrs. Rapp, to waive the reading of the proceedings from the previous committee minutes.  MOTION CARRIED.  A motion was made by Mrs. Rapp, seconded by Dr. Chase, to approve the minutes of the proceedings of the previous committee.  MOTION CARRIED. 


1.     WATER ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION:  Tom Rhoads, P.E., Commissioner

        a.     A Resolution Calling a Public Hearing in Connection with Proposed Improvements for the Onondaga County Sanitary District ($1,980,000)


Mr. Rhoads distributed and presented the following:

  • Public hearing asking to borrow $2M in round numbers - Suburban Green Program to remove extraneous flow
  • Borrowed $2M for competitive bid program in 2012, towns and villages submitted proposals totaling $4M, spent the $2M in 2012, completed remaining approved projects in 2013 & 2014 via WEP budget using funds from Honeywell dredging fees


Save the Rain

2015 Suburban Green Innovative Program


1)     Continue to affirm that extraneous flow should be removed from the sanitary sewer system – the essential message of Save the Rain.

2)     Communicate that green infrastructure and innovative technologies are fundamental to Save the Rain.

3)     Reduce extraneous flow caused by inflow and infiltration (I&I) to protect the water environment and also reduce the dollar cost and the environmental costs of conveying, pumping and treating clean rainwater and clean groundwater.

4)     Remove extraneous flow from sewers to restore the capacity of pipes, pump stations and treatment plants to allow for economic growth.


Problem statement:

Many of the older municipally-owned sewers in the Consolidated Sanitary District are in very poor condition. Especially in the villages, the sewers are often broken and in need of considerable capital investment. Unfortunately, broken village (and City) pipes and manholes cannot be cured by green infrastructure, but innovative cured in place and pressure grout term service contracts available in the County’s procurement system can fix these problems.

WEP photoWEP photo

While town sewers are seldom in great shape, generally their pipes and manholes are in somewhat better condition. Also, the towns typically have areas of flooding, which create inflow, and these problem areas are more readily addressed by the use of green infrastructure solutions to prevent inflow in combination with innovative solutions to repair infiltration caused via broken collection system assets.


Submerged Manhole, can be cured by green infrastructure


Suggested Program – applicable only to Municipalities in the Consolidated Sanitary District:

  • Villages (and Meadowbrook-Limestone service area of the City) – allocate $120,000 per municipality as a direct grant to do innovative trenchless technology to repair aging assets (net $1,080,000)
  • Towns – allocate $900,000 for green/innovative grant projects to remove I&I. This portion of the program would be a competitive grant, anticipating four (4) awards of $225,000 each, with projects being selected based upon the County’s goals including:

a)     Strong emphasis on green infrastructure solutions;

b)     Municipalities contributing matching funds to better leverage the use of County dollars to reduce I&I;

c)     Reduction of extraneous flow sources;

d)     Restoring capacity in local and County infrastructure to better serve economic development and the creation of permanent jobs;

e)     Helping to preserve and improve the water environment resources of Onondaga County


4 awards @ approximately $225,000, totaling $900,000


Total Program Cost:

  • $1,980,000 which would need to be approved as a bond issue.


Process and Program Announcement:

  • The bond process requires public hearing resolutions followed by bond resolutions.
  • Program announcements would be made at the same time as the approval of public hearings.
  • Competitive grant applications would be received and reviewed with a likely award of competitive grants in the Fall, subject to recommendation of the County Executive and approval by the Legislature.


In answer to Chair Plochocki, Mr. Rhoads confirmed that the pipe in the photo was made of clay.  Chair Plochocki said that clay pipe does not fit together well and cracks overtime.    The entire Marcellus system looks like this but is outside of the CSD. 


Mrs. Rapp asked if they were talking about using the technic of putting a balloon in and blowing it up to line the pipe.  Mr. Rhoads said that it would be one of the solutions.  Chair Plochocki said that it is very cost effective, for the most part. 


Dr. Chase asked how much could be done with $120,000.   Mr. Rhoads said that they could make a dent in it.  For the first time the state has allocated $200,000, over a three year period, toward infrastructure for any municipality under 300,000.  Once approved, they would send a letter to the city and villages encouraging them to leverage the $120,000 for the state funds.  Chair Rapp said that the towns would also be able to apply for state funds.   

  • Villages and city don’t have real property to manage green infrastructure, directly allocating $1,080;000
  • County Executive and WEP also interested in green and innovative solutions, priority for people to understand the power of green infrastructure; towns have green real estate, competitive process for towns in the amount of $225,000
  • Image (see page 2) shows manhole overtopped and flooded – the source of inflow, green infrastructure project could remove ponding water from the sanitary sewer, resolve the I&I issue and provide all the community benefits associated with green infrastructure
  • Program provides good balances, helps villages get started and gives towns opportunity; would also encourage  towns to apply for state CFA money


In answer to Dr. Chase, Mr. Rhoads said that the Meadowbrook-Limestone area of the city would be a recipient as proposed here. 


In answer to Mr. Shepard, Mr. Rhoads confirmed that parts of the Town of Van Buren are in the CSD.  Mr. Shepard asked the reason why the town would not be eligible for the SGI funding.  Mr. Rhoads said that they would be.  Mr. Shepard said that they were confused since they were not listed as eligible.  Chairman Plochocki asked where the list was.  Ms. Lesniak said that she received the list in the past.  Mr. Rhoads said that in the past municipalities had to sign an IMA to become eligible and in fact, the Town of Van Buren has signed an IMA.  Chair Plochocki asked to be provided with an update list.  Mr. Rhoads said that they no longer require a signed IMA to be eligible. 


Chair Plochocki asked if the entire town would qualify, if only part of the town were located in the CSD.  Mr. Rhoads said no because they must be improving assets in the CSD with CSD funds.  In discussing various legislative district’s that would be eligible Mr. Rhoads said that the CSD goes from the northern part of Pompey almost all the way north, on the eastside the line is in the Town of Manlius and to the west it goes to Village of Camillus and a little beyond.  Northwest they have Baldwinsville, Lysander and Van Buren with sizeable portions in the district; anywhere in Van Buren with public sewer is within the CSD. 


Chair Plochocki said that very little of his district was included but he still thinks this is a good idea; people that are outside of the CSD are not penalized, as they are not paying into the system.



  • Illustrates what happens when there is broken infrastructure; blue bars at top illustrate rain
  • Not part of combined sewer area – Salina, Dewitt, East Syracuse,& Liverpool; flow increased 30M gallons a day in 4 hour period, all extraneous flow, had to be treated


In answer to Mrs. Rapp, Mr. Rhoads confirmed that this was all leakage.  They must deal with this each time there is a strong rain.  At the red line, they go overboard into Ley Creek raw and would have to report a violation.  With enough violations, they could get a consent judgment and would be spending $10 or $20 million to fix it. 


Mrs. Rapp said that this needs to be fixed.  Mr. Rhoads said that Rome was not built in a day.  The aging sewer infrastructure in the towns and village is a real problem for them.  These grants are to encourage towns and villages to repair their infrastructure using trenchless technologies and green infrastructure technologies.  Broken sewers only get worse, and as they worsen, WEP becomes penalized.


Mr. Burtis said for one million gallons, it was $10 million dollars.  Mr. Rhoads said that this was what they are paying for a treatment plant and tankage.  It gets expensive in a hurry.


In answer to Mr. Burtis, Mr. Rhoads said that they bumped over with some of the recent storms.  At Baldwinsville on June 9, they went from 3.25 million gallons a day (MGD) flow rate to 28 MGD, an 8-fold increase of extraneous flow.  In answer to Mrs. Rapp, Mr. Rhoads said that they did not hit the red line for that event.  However, when they have that kind of flow, there can be a compromise in treatment and they can run into problems resulting in a failure on the monthly number for nitrogen, phosphorus, ammonia or solids.  All of these things create a condition where it is difficult to maintain compliance.  They would also have capacity for growth, if they took out all of the clean water.  Chair Plochocki said that it was an enormous waste of money to treat clean water. 


Chair Plochocki said that they were voting on the public hearing today and would vote next month on moving the project forward. 

A motion was made by Mrs. Rapp, seconded by Dr. Chase, to approve this item.  Passed unanimously; MOTION CARRIED.


The meeting adjourned at 12:23 a.m.


Respectfully submitted,

attendance sheet


Onondaga County Legislature


attendance sheet


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