Andes Highway Superintendent addresses complaint about Weaver Hollow

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Highway Superintendent John Bouton discussed the Town’s need for a new truck and gave his response to a resident’s complaint when the Andes Town Board met on March 12.

When the Board last met on February 19, Justin Soules made a complaint about the treatment of Weaver Hollow Road. Soules, who contested Bouton in the last election for Highway Superintendent, stated the road was not properly plowed nor sanded after snowstorms.

“Safe and passable”

On March 12, after having investigated the matter, Bouton addressed the complaint and denied any negligence on his department’s behalf. “I checked with my employee of four plus years on that route of plowing and sanding Weaver Hollow. He stated that he has plowed and sanded that road each and every time it snowed or rained. He has done that route with the same truck and load with Weaver Hollow being the first one of his routes to be done,” Bouton said. “Knowing this employee as long as I have I have no question that he has performed his plowing and sanding duties as required or needed. I have done spot checks on various roads and found them to be safe and passable.”

Need new truck

Bouton also told the Board that he has been in contact with several dealers for a new Dodge 6500 series truck. The 6500 will replace a 2011 Dodge 5500 that officials consider too costly due to consistently needed repairs. Bouton told the News that the 5500 had spent 35 months in repair shops in all. Bouton and the Board discussed a 2019 or 2020 model which will cost Andes around $50,000 and will need to be put out to bid. The Board expressed a desire to sell the 2011 model on Auctions International before committing to a new one as to know how much money they have to work with. The Board voted to let Bouton move forward with the process and put a bid together which he will send to the appropriate dealers.

First increase in 15 years

During Artie Short’s Building Inspector’s Report which was read by supervisor Bud Gladstone, it was relayed that Short has suggested Andes make a small increase to its building permit fees. The building permit fees haven’t been raised in Andes since 2004, town clerk Kimberly Tossi noted.

“It is a minimal increase,” said Gladstone with Bouton adding, “It’s not going to stop anyone building, that’s for sure.”

The Board passed a motion to move forward with the fee increase, though it is not official yet. The motion will allow for a local law to be written up, which will then be addressed at April’s meeting. The Board will then hold a public hearing on the matter in May, before the fee increase is finalized.

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