Councilor Contemplations – September 2020

by Sara Bollinger – Manlius Town Councilor

‘Special Districts’ are a thing in local government you may not have heard about in the past. There may be special districts for lighting, sidewalks, drainage, fire protection, water or other infrastructure that benefits some residents but not all residents. In these instances, only those residents who receive the benefit pay for the infrastructure.

Fire District Budgets

In the Town of Manlius, the largest and most expensive special districts are Fire Districts. The Town has four Fire Districts: Fayetteville, Kirkville, Manlius and Minoa. In a further twist to the boondoggle of local government in New York, the Kirkville Fire District is a self-governed entity [not a municipality] with the right to independently charge a tax levy to property owners in the Kirkville Fire District.

The Village fiscal year in New York runs June 1 to May 31. The Town fiscal year runs January 1 to December 31. The Village Fire District budgets were all included in the Village budgets that were adopted in the spring. So…  The Town has very little influence on Fire District budgets that have already been in place for several months.

Kudos to Councilor Denton who diligently dug for details and created the slides used at the Public Hearings. Our thanks to the Villages of Minoa, Fayetteville and Manlius who welcomed Elaine and Sara for extended informative visits.

Drainage Districts

The Town has three Special Drainage Districts, roughly analogous to Fremont #1, Fayetteville #2 and Manlius #3. In District #1 there is on-going infrastructure work in the Clark Hill subdivision. In District #2 there is a large effort planned to improve the Muirfield stormwater infrastructure. An Informational Meeting will be held October 19th at 6:30 about this project.  During the heavy rainstorm in July, there were several flooding incidents in District #3. There will be an Informational Meeting for District #3 on October 21st to describe plans for several stormwater management projects that will need to be scheduled over the next 2-3 years.

New Water District

Progress is finally being made on the proposed Salt Springs water district.  The Intermunicipal team is meeting monthly. The Engineer and Councilor Bollinger have met with landowners where we will need to construct infrastructure [pump station and water tower]. Surveys will be sent to residents on Salt Springs Road soon. New modeling may bring public water to North Eagle Village Road as well. If you have any comments on the proposed water district please send them to

Proposed Commercial Zoning Classifications

Councilor Bollinger presented a draft Local Law on behalf of the Planning Process Committee. She also presented in person to the ToM ZBA and Planning Board for their questions and support. There will be a Public Hearing October 14th. If you have ideas for improvement please send them to

Resident Concerns re: Noise & Safety

Residents of Signal Hill Anna O’Brien and Peter Buonfiglio addressed the Board to share the concerns of their neighbors related to a private shooting range adjacent to their property. There have been 17 shooting complaints reported to the TMPD in the past 1.5 years. Councilors Deer and Waters have met with residents and propose to amend the ToM Noise Ordinance to address the concerns of neighbors.

Comprehensive Planning

The first of three Listening Sessions was held 9/27. Thanks to ToM Engineer Doug Miller and SUNY ESF President Emeritus Neil Murphy. Please plan to attend the October session with Town Historian Barbara Rivette on October 18th.

Other News for September 

  • School Resource Officer agreements with F-M and ESM
  • Abundant Solar lease for a solar array on the Town landfill
  • Public Safety Advisory Committee is collecting input/questions
  • Sidewalk on Mott Road approved to connect with Village of Fayetteville
  • Scheduled Hearing to Override Property Tax Cap What do you think?
  • Approved CNY Stormwater Coalition agreement
  • ToM Virtual Fun Run
  • Wicked Woods October 24th 

Please check agendas and minutes at: