HERKIMER — The town of Herkimer has received $2,400 in overdue water payments from the owner of an East Herkimer trailer park, located at 220 Main Road.
What the town has not received, at least as of Monday’s town board meeting, is a final payment plan for the delinquent funds.
Town Supervisor Dominic Frank told residents of the park who attended Monday’s meeting that he had had a verbal discussion with the owner’s attorney regarding an agreement on a payment plan and one payment of $1,000 and another of $1,400 had been made.
"They did send a plan for the board to review," said Frank. "The board edited it and sent it back to the owner’s attorney and we have not heard back."
He pointed out there is still a Jan. 11 deadline for a water shutoff and once the town receives the agreement the board will have to decide whether it satisfies members’ requirements and decide how to proceed.
When asked if the owner had paid back taxes on the property, Jodi Rivers, receiver of the taxes for the town, said she had called the county Monday and was told the taxes had not yet been paid.
Pauline Worden, a resident of the park, asked if it would be too expensive to install water meters for each trailer once the matter is resolved so the whole park would not face a possible water shutoff due to one person’s failure to pay the bills.
Councilwoman Kathy Penree said the cost is not the issue; the water meter must be under the name of the person who is legally responsible for the property.
Councilman Daniel Stalteri asked Town Attorney Christopher Bray to "reach out to the owner’s attorney and see if he can get this document to us." If the owner is willing to accept the payment plan and keeps up with current and future payments, the board would likely continue service to the park.
He added, "We’ll reach out to you by the end of the week and let you know what we’re doing."
Residents of the trailer park attended a town board meeting in early December after receiving notices that their water service would be shut off unless the owner of the park, Andrew Owen, paid the bill. They pointed out that they paid their rent and had no way of knowing the owner had not been paying the water bills.
Frank told them the owner had not paid taxes on the property or water bills in two years and the town’s efforts to contact him had been unsuccessful. Board members hoped that the water shutoff notice would spur him to pay the bills. The board agreed at that time to extend the deadline until Jan. 11.