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Boston puts Erie County highway department on notice

BOSTON — During a relatively quiet meeting of the Boston Town Board on May 21, Highway Superintendent Robert Telaak spoke up to bring to the public’s attention to the current condition of county roads within the town of Boston.

“I think it’s time to put the Erie County Highway Department on notice, once again, for unsafe roads, unsafe shoulders, unsafe ditches and unsafe trees,” said Telaak. “The county roads in our town are a mess. Every road in town needs work, and I don’t see the county doing anything. So, I think the town board should make a motion to have Town Attorney [Mike] Kobiolka send the county a notice and put them on notice.”

Telaak was not alone in making these observations, as Councilman Jay Boardway added his thoughts, as well. “Likewise, I also recommend the highway superintendent’s recommendation on this,” the councilman said. “The county highways in this town are atrocious, and I believe probably every member of this board, possibly the town clerk’s office, and the highway superintendent also, on numerous occasions, has made reports to the county, regarding the condition of our roads.”

The onset of warmer weather has the board only more urgent in seeing work done to improve the roads. “Summer is coming up right now,” Boardway continued. “We have some big events that are going to be held in town, which are going to have to utilize these county roads. Quite honestly, I don’t think this board or this town should have to take on the liability of having an accident or an injury on an unmaintained county road.”

Boardway made the motion to have Kobiolka put the county on notice, and the board carried it unanimously.

In other board matters:

– Boardway publicly thanked “anybody who participated in showing up to vote in the Hamburg school elections,” noting that there was an “absolute record turnout” the night of May 20. “I do want to congratulate the incumbent Tom Flynn. That one’s very important: Tom’s a resident of the town of Boston. It’s very important for us to have a town of Boston resident on that Hamburg school board. And also Cameron Hall, I’m really, truly hoping that that is going to restore a lot of integrity to that school board. It’s going to hopefully get that moving in the right direction again.

“The budget passed also. The budget passing was very important. People hate to raise taxes. They hate to see even a 4.2 percent increase, but in our town, in the Hamburg school district, that increase was really necessary, this particular year. That campaign got really nasty, but I personally think the best folks won. I congratulate them both and am looking forward to working with them, over the years.”

– A bid opening for selective clearing of the Eighteenmile Creek streambed was scheduled for June 26 at 10 a.m. “We selectively clear Back Creek from year to year and do a portion of it,” explained Councilman Larry Murtha. “This year is going to be a long portion.” Murtha added that there is going to be a pre-bid walkthrough on June 14 at 8 a.m., at the intersection of Back Creek and Patchin Roads.

– The board approved a bid opening for the Boston Telephone System Upgrade Project for June 2 at 10 a.m. The motion carried 4-0, as Boardway refrained from voting.

The next meeting of the Boston town board is scheduled for June 4 at 7:30 p.m. All meetings are held at the Boston Town Hall, which is located at 8500 Boston State Road in Boston.


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