LAKEWOOD-February's mass casualty drill has a new location.
Fire Chief Kurt Hallberg said the mass casuality drill location has been changed to Community Park from the Lakewood Yacht Club at Monday's village board meeting. The drill will be taking place on Feb. 22 at 8:30 a.m.
"I just want to make a point that this drill is not meant to inconvenience anyone," Hallberg said.
The drill will be a Level 3 rescue, which will require a lot of equipment, including 15-20 ambulances, heavy rescue units and fire trucks, as well as the fire suppression truck from the airport, Starflight and Coast Guard personnel and equipment.
There will also be actual "victims," who will be part of the Coast Guard, on the ice in Hazmat suits who need to be rescued, and dive teams will go into the water to mark evidence.
Hallberg said this will be only the third time the Coast Guard has done this drill, and it was originally going to be held at Lake Erie. However, the history of the ice during that time of the year was not safe. Lakewood was selected because it was in the glide path of both the approach and departure from the Chautauqua County Airport in Jamestown.
"I just want to make a point that this drill is not meant to inconvenience anyone."
Fire Chief Kurt Hallberg
More information will be released on the drill as it becomes known.
ADULT NOVELTY STORES
In other news, Lakewood will be holding a public hearing on Jan. 13 at 6:45 p.m. for a proposed amendment to Lakewood's Zoning Law regarding adult novelty stores.
In April, Jill Laemmerhirt approached the Lakewood Planning Board to open an adult novelty store.
Called Endless Love. the store was to be opened in the America's Mattress Plaza, located at 305 E. Fairmount Ave. behind Kwik Fill.
At the time of the original proposal, Charlie Smith, village code enforcement officer and building inspector, said there was no language in the village's zoning code to prevent an adult novelty retail store. Smith said the zoning code can be written to restrict the location of adult-themed businesses, but cannot prevent them. However, the owner of the property would not lease to Laemmerhirt, and in May, Lakewood decided to put a moratorium on the issue.
Not to be deterred, Laemmerhirt opened at 165 E. Fairmount Ave, next to Jamestown Unit Parts and NAPA, despite a moratorium and a citation from the village's code enforcement officer and building inspector for operating. In June, court proceedings began when Lakewood filed a lawsuit against Endless Love, which finally ended in August in a mutual agreement from both sides.
"First and foremost, my client never intended to be involved in a court case. She reasonably believed that she had all the appropriate permissions because the Lakewood zoning code was silent as to her type of business, and her location is squarely within the business district," said John Gullo, Laemmerhirt's attorney, at the time. "My client simply wanted to conduct business and was mortified to be charged with a violation of this sort. She wanted to be a good corporate citizen, and still does."
Gullo stated the second reason for the agreement is because litigation costs are very high.
"Taxpayers pay for the village attorney, but my client must bear all of her legal expense herself," Gullo stated. "While we were very hopeful of winning the case, there is no guarantee of victory. That cost and risk is just too high for a new business to bear. Winning in court and going out of business anyway due to the cost of litigation, is no victory."
Currently, Laemmerhirt operates her business online and awaits the new Lakewood zoning restrictions at the end of the moratorium before deciding to locate in the village again.
There were two public hearings held at the village meeting on Monday regarding proposed amendments to signs and automobile sales of the Lakewood Zoning Law.
Proposed amendments to the sign zoning laws include: making the maximum height 9 feet from the ground to the top of the sign; the elimination of contractor signs; political signs will be allowed to be put up 30 days prior to the election; sandwich-style signs in front of businesses may only be displayed during business hours; the elimination of commercial electronic variable message signs; and once a business closes down, the signs must be removed within 30 days of closing - including all sign frames and supports.
Proposed amendments to the sale of automobiles include: lot size, off-street parking, a detailed site plan, all vehicles for sale should be set 25 feet away from the street edge with those not for sale behind the main building, all signs must comply with supplemental sign section and the lot must have an approved building for office space.
An express lube and car wash proposed by William McFadden was issued a negative declaration, meaning nothing could be found which would prevent the project from moving forward.
The business would be located at 205 E. Fairmount Ave. and consist of four bays, three used for service and one wash bay. At the Oct. 12 village board meeting, McFadden said he expected the business to service 35 cars per day initially, and within three years, it would service 60 cars per day with 40 percent of the business expected to be generated by drive-by customers.
Lakewood-Busti Police Chief John Bentley said he was still working on the fundraising for the K-9 unit. He announced he received donations of $100 from the Rod and Gun Club, $200 from the American Legion and $5,000 from a private donation.
"I talked to the homeland security people, including the contract gentleman, and we should see it by the first of the year, probably," said Bentley.
The village board authorized Treasurer Andrea Windoft and village attorney Edward Wright to renew the bond anticipation note in the amount of $36,000 for the 2007 Elgin Street Sweeper, which is due Jan. 17.
The board tabled the promotion of Officer Jeffrey Spencer to police sergeant to fill the opening created by the retirement of Sgt./Investigator Paul Gustafson due to confusion about the salary. The board approved the appointment of Matthew McClelland, of Olean, as a part-time police officer to be effectively hired on Wednesday. McClelland will be compensated at a rate of $16.49 per hour.
Acting as the board of fire commissioners, the village board approved Kurt Hallberg as fire chief, Stephen Smouse as first assistant fire chief and Todd Gilbert as second assistant fire chief for 2014. They also approved Emma Blasius, of 19 Owana Way, as a new member of the Lakewood Volunteer Fire Department.