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August 7, 2020 Issue  
Lansing, New York  
Volume 16, Issue 32

posticon Lansing Schools Will Reopen

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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo reminded school officials across the state Monday that today is the deadline for submitting a detailed reopening plan if they want their schools to be allowed to open for in-person classroom learning.He added that school districts must post their remote learning plan online as well as their plan for testing and tracing students and teachers. Schools must also have three to five public meetings prior to August 21 with parents - who will be allowed to participate remotely - as well as one meeting with teachers to go through their reopening plan.

Lansing School Superintendent Chris Pettograsso gave a rundown of plans to inform families about school reopening and how it will work at Monday's Board of Education meeting.  That was followed this week by 'community conversations' Tuesday and Thursday that she said would provide more detail for families of Lansing students.

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posticon Fraud Alert

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On 08/13/20 at 4:23 PM, the Sheriff's Office received a fraud complaint.

It was learned that a Tompkins County resident received a phone call appearing to be from the Tompkins County Sheriff's Office. It is believed that the Sheriff's Office phone number was "ghosted" making it appear that it was actually from the Sheriff's Office.

The suspect claimed to be a member of the Tompkins County Sheriff's Office and conned the victim into shipping $20,000 in cash to Chicago to settle a supposed arrest warrant.

The Sheriff's Office is actively investigating this incident. It's important to know that the Sheriff's Office would never ask someone to mail money in this fashion.

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posticon Pool Contractors Settle Lawsuit With Lansing School District

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Lansing High School Pool

The Lansing Board of Education, accepted a legal settlement from pool contractors accused of making faulty repairs that kept the Lansing High School swimming pool closed for about a year and a half.  The case was mediated, rather than brought to court, with former Monroe County Supreme Court Judge Thomas Stander mediating the case.  The district filed the lawsuit in 2019, asking for damages including the $180,000 the district spent to fix the botched work, plus $138,000 in other damages.  The suit was settled in a Zoom meeting for $85,000 with the cost shared by the contractor and four sub-contractors.

The pool repairs were part of the school district's 2013 'Building Core' capital project.  The pool was closed to replace the pool shell, but soon after the repairs were completed new problems arose.  School employees identified tile failures in the pool shell in January of 2016. School Business Administrator Mary June King (now retired) reported to the Board of Education in November of 2017 that a forensic team of experts were evaluating the problem, and would recommend a solution.

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posticon Mall Subdivision Stuck On Stormwater

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Ithaca Mall

Representatives of the owners of the Shops At Ithaca Mall were back before the Village of Lansing Planning Board Monday to attempt to move their plan to subdivide the mall forward.  In a nutshell, the owners propose to sell anchor stores to the current tenants (or interested parties) to provide stability to the mall that can then be used to attract smaller tenants who don't want to locate in a mall where the anchor stores have less incentive to stay (and lose resulting foot traffic for all stores). But the discussion continued in a loop, largely revolving around stormwater management, that has not yielded any resolution since the project was proposed three years ago.

Target already owns its store and some of the surrounding parking lot and ring road.  Namdar Realty Group and Mason Asset Management, the two companies that and own and manage the mall, wants to create more subdivisions, keeping the central core to rent to smaller tenants as they do now. remains of the mall once the large stores are sold.  Only one of the parcels is outside the existing mall building,  a parcel behind the Clarion Inn that Namdar wants to sell to a hotel chain for a new extended-stay hotel.

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posticon Lansing School Tax Rate Set

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Lansing School Tax Rate

The Lansing Board of Education approved the current tax role Monday and authorized the $20,368,192 tax levy for the 2020-21 school year.  The tax rate for the upcoming school tax bill is $21.22 per $1,000 of assessed property value.  Lansing School Business Administrator Kate Heath said that a higher than anticipated district assessment will mean a slightly lower tax rate than was anticipated when the budget was passed.  For property taxpayers that will mean $23.23 more than last year on a $100,000 house, or $46.46 more on a $200,000 house, assuming your assessment has not changed.

"Our original projections in May where the projected tax levy of $20,368,192, and that was with projected assessed values at $960,000,000" she said. "That gave us a projected tax rate of $21.22 per thousand. So we got the actual, final assessed rolls with their final values today. Our assessed values were a little bit higher than anticipated at $964,661,000. And that adjusts our tax rate to $21.11574 per thousand. So the tax rate is a little bit less than we were anticipating."

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posticon Public Auction for Ithaca Waterfront Property Announced

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dot waterfront sale ithaca

A public auction will be held on September 15, for state-owned land soon to be vacated by the Department of Transportation, located at 683 Third Street on Cayuga Lake Inlet in Ithaca, Tompkins County. Originally announced by the Governor Andrew M. Cuomo in May 2018, the move of the DOT maintenance facility from the waterfront to a new, 15-acre location adjacent to the Ithaca Tompkins International Airport will not only enhance agency operations, but will open up prime waterfront property for development in Ithaca.

The sale of the property also complements the recently completed $34.8 million expansion and modernization of Ithaca Tompkins International Airport, which features a larger terminal with new passenger terminal gates and boarding bridges, and enhanced security measures, all designed to ease travel and promote economic growth for the Southern Tier.

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posticon Survey - 55% of Parents Want In-Person Learning

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