Supervisor Barber’s Weekly Newsletter (No. 47)

Thursday, May 25, 2023
Town of Guilderland
5209 Western Turnpike
Guilderland, NY  12084
(518) 356-1980
Dear Guilderland Residents:

With this weekend’s unofficial start to summer, the Town’s summer programs are picking up pace.  Parks & Recreation is offering a new adult yoga class for all experience levels, and the return of football camps.  There will soon be a new state-of-the-art outdoor exercise facility, splash pad, and renovated GPAC. The 2023 Summer Camp program is only a month away.  The Comprehensive Plan Update Committee is having its second community workshop in next week at the Westmere Fire Department.  More details are below.   

Town News & Announcements
The Comprehensive Plan Update Committee is holding its second public workshop on Thursday, June 1 from 6pm to 8pm at the Westmere Fire Department, 1741 Western Avenue.  The workshop will start with an introductory presentation by the project’s consultant from 6pm to 6:30pm, followed by a “speed round” method with separate tables devoted to specific topics that will take place from 6:30pm to 7:45pm.  After about ten minutes, a group will move to the next table on a new topic. The topics include transportation and mobility, economic growth, recreation, agriculture, natural resources, infrastructure, neighborhoods, and housing.  The topics were selected based on community input in the first workshop on March 20 and concluded online survey. This interactive session will be followed by a question-and-answer period from 7:45pm to 8pm. 
On Monday, May 22, MVP Healthcare, the County of Albany, and Town held a ground breaking ceremony at Tawasentha Park for a new state-of-the-art outdoor fitness court for easy use by persons of all skill levels.  The facility is part of the National Fitness Program.  Unlike similar facilities, this fitness court is enlarged, with exercise equipment on one side and space for programs on the other side.  The fitness court is the latest addition to Tawasentha Park, including new pickleball courts and, coming in June, a new splash pad at the Park’s pool.   
On Thursday, June 22 at 7:30pm, there will a grand reopening of the Guilderland Performing Arts Center at Tawasentha Park, followed by a performance by the Guilderland Town Band.  The renovation includes six terraces of seating platforms, new sound and lighting systems, new dance floor, and improved access for handicapped patrons.  GPAC’s 2023 season has 10 concerts, all on Thursdays starting at 7:30pm, except for National Night Out on Tuesday, August 1 at 6pm.  There will also be a food truck for your dining enjoyment. 
I also pleased to announce that the PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) Chapter Program will be hosted at the Western Turnpike Golf Course this summer.  This program is designed to introduce veterans to the game of golf, and includes instructors who work with veterans with physical and cognitive disabilities.   More information about this worthy program is available here
Parks & Recreation’s 2023 Summer program starts in just over a month.  You still have time to review the “online flipbook” of camps, sports, arts & craft activities, swimming lessons and more.  The registrations for the day camp with swim lessons are nearing capacity, but, if there is no space, please make sure that you add your child to the wait list.  The 2023 summer program runs from Monday, June 26 to Friday, August 4.  We had a very impressive group of young adults who applied for lifeguard, camp counselors, and pool booth attendants.  It made for very difficult choices.  The success of the summer program is only possible with the assistance of junior volunteer counselors (14 & 15 years old) who assist counselors with engaging, motivating and entertaining young campers.  We strongly encourage teens interested in working with children to register for this program.
Parks & Rec’s 21st Annual Black & Blue Football will open for registration on Monday, May 29.  The two-week camp takes place at Guilderland High School and runs from Tuesday, May 30 to Tuesday, June 9 from 4pm to 6pm.  The FMS Flag Football Frenzy camp will take place at Farnsworth Middle School from Monday, June 12 to Thursday, June 15 from 4pm to 6pm, except on Tuesday, June 13 from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.
Parks & Rec is offering Yoga in the Parks for adults 16 years and older.  Here is the link for a description and registration for this new program.  The program runs for eight weeks from Tuesday, June 6 to Tuesday, August 15 (except for July 4) from 6:30pm to 7:30pm at Tawasentha Park.  You can sign up for one or more sessions.  Students will be guided through a series of yoga postures and flows as well as practice breathing techniques and meditation, appropriate for all levels of experience, including beginners.
On Friday, June 9 at 10:00am at Tawasentha Park, you are invited to attend the opening ceremony for the Town’s 6th Annual Hometown Heroes Banner event.  The Hometown Hero Banners are sponsored by friends, families, local businesses, and community organizations to honor former service women and men with large scaled banners with photos and service biographies.  The eight new banners for this year’s event were sponsored by the American Legion, Fort Hunter Fire Department, and several families and will be displayed in Tawasentha Park.  The Town will also display banners from prior programs.  Please take the time to join us for this special event. 
A reminder that Water Department’s lawn sprinkling restrictions started on May 1 and run until September 15.  During this period, the day and time that you are allowed to water your lawn using the public water supply is based on your street number (even or odd) and calendar date (even or odd).  For automatic sprinklers, you can water only between 1am and 4am, on odd calendar days for odd numbered addresses, and the same times for even days and addresses.  For manual sprinklers, you may use public water between 6:30am and 8am and 6:30pm and 8pm on even numbered days and addresses and on odd numbered days and addresses.  There are no restrictions for hand sprinkling non-commercial gardens.  More information is available here.
In case you missed it, the Highway and Police Departments have begun installing four permanent electronic speed limit signs on County Line Road, Curry Road, East Lydius Street, and East Old State Road.  The placements were selected based on the Police Department’s records of particularly excessive speeds on these streets. The Town also has four temporary signs that are deployed to address speed complaints at other locations.
The Town has several current openings for employment including custodial worker, laborer positions in the Highway, Parks & Rec, and Water Departments, dispatcher, and police officer. More information, including detailed descriptions, duties, salaries, and benefits, and employment applications, is available here.

Upcoming Meetings at Town Hall
Below is the listing of currently scheduled meetings of boards and committees at Town Hall over the next 30 days.  Please check the Town’s calendars for the latest news about public meetings and community events, possible changes in agendas and cancellations, and the latest contents of agenda packets.  The listed meetings are livestreamed online and on Verizon channel 34 and Spectrum channel 1303.  Within days of the meeting, an indexed recording, with links to each listed agenda item, is posted online.
Tuesday, May 30 at 7pm
Wednesday, May 31 at 7pm
Tuesday, June 6 at 7pm
Monday, June 12 at 7pm
Wednesday, June 14 at 7pm
Tuesday, June 20 at 7pm
Wednesday, June 21 at 7pm

Community Events & Resources
The Guilderland Public Library’s calendar has several offerings including a presentation on Tuesday, May 30 at 7pm by Larry Moore, outreach educator for the National Baseball Hall of Fame, on the roots of baseball in western Massachusetts, including local Hall-of-Famers and baseball lore in professional and amateur baseball in western Massachusetts. The Library is also hosting a special baseball exhibit and seminars in June.
The New York State Library’s calendar of current events has interesting virtual history seminars including the author of Unfriendly to Liberty on Thursday, June 1 at Noon and a presentation on Redefining Women’s Powers in the American Revolution on Thursday, June 8 at Noon.  The State Library also offers in-person tours of its local history ad genealogy collections. 
The construction of the new roundabout at the Northway entrance/exit for Crossgates Mall is on pace, and should end in July.  Here are the proposed phased closings of different lanes during the project.  This project is a part of CDTA’s Purple Line which will provide rapid transportation between Crossgates Mall and downtown Albany. 
Albany County DOH’s COVID-19 Dashboard reported no COVID-19 related deaths over the past week and that the County’s pandemic death total remained at 636 deaths.  There are 10 persons hospitalized with COVID-19, with two patients in the ICU.  
The CDC’s new method of measuring the community spread of COVID-19 by weekly wastewater testing shows, based on the County DOH’s most recent report, that the COVID-19 virus remains detectable (10 to 50 cases per 100,000 people) in the Town’s wastewater, is lower when compared to the State overall, and the two-week trend is decreasing. 
While the end of the COVID-19 emergency eliminated free COVID-19 tests under health insurance plans, you could still order, as of this morning, four at-home COVID-19 tests for free postal delivery.  It is unclear how much longer this benefit will remain available. 
Please note that Town Hall will be closed for the Memorial Day Holiday on Monday, May 29.   The Transfer Station is closed on Saturday, May 27.   Town Hall will also be closed on Monday, June 19, and the Transfer Station on Saturday, June 17 for the Juneteenth Holiday. 

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I hope that you have enjoyable and relaxing holidays. 
Peter G. Barber
Town Supervisor