A Good Revenue Month

Developer asks if village will rent space at Butterfield

By Michael Turton

It has been a good revenue month for the Village of Cold Spring as it received approval for three grants totaling $202,000 to fund what Mayor Ralph Falloon described at the June 17 meeting of the Village Board as “much needed projects.”

The grants include $75,000 from NYSERDA to update the Village Zoning Code, bringing it into compliance with the Comprehensive Plan. A Certified Local Government Grant of $17,000 will be used by the Historic District Review Board to update the ordinance governing the historic district and to upgrade standards. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also provided a grant of almost $110,000, which will enable the village to move the flood-prone West Street pumping station to higher ground on New Street.

A committee of five will be appointed to complete the zoning update. By appointing qualified committee members the village will be able to claim $25,000 in in-kind service as its contribution to the project.

At Tuesday’s meeting Trustee Mike Bowman objected to Trustee Stephanie Hawkins’ suggestion that the Village Board begin interviewing candidates to fill the zoning update committee because he had just received the final contract between the village and NYSERDA (New York State Energy Research and Development Authority). Village Attorney Mike Liguori responded that it was appropriate to begin “to tee up the committee” while ensuring that all changes requested by the village are included in the final contract language.

Bowman also questioned if it was appropriate to name Greenplan upfront as the consultant to assist with the project rather than issuing a Request for Proposals. Liguori said that including Greenplan in the application was in accordance with NYSERDA’s requirements and that an RFP was not called for.

Bowman also said that he thought the Zoning Committee would be comprised of 11 members, including those serving on the Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals; however, Hawkins said the consultant had originally suggested the new committee include only three members and that a five-member committee was ultimately agreed upon. Trustees and Liguori will review the contract and discuss it at the July 1 board meeting.

Trash in the news

Discussion continued regarding possible village acquisition of two compacting trash cans. Falloon confirmed that the solar powered units cost $2,995 and that models that also handle recyclables cost $5,990. Trustee Cathryn Fadde has been speaking with Putnam County officials regarding possible funding for the purchase of two units, likely to be used near the riverfront.

Hawkins asked if the funding would be in lieu of the $7,500 that the county already provides to help fund Cold Spring’s garbage disposal. Fadde said she had not received any information regarding whether funding for the trash compactors would be in addition to the existing $7,500.

The possibility of selling advertising space on the compactors was also discussed. Liguori suggested that sponsorships might be more desirable since the village would have to control format and appearance used, whereas the look of advertising would largely be determined by the purchaser.

Butterfield space rental

Trustees briefly considered a letter from Butterfield Realty’s Paul Guillaro, asking the Village Board to notify him regarding their intent to lease office space when the former hospital site is redeveloped. The letter states: “It is now time for us to proceed to site-plan approval with the Planning board … [This] is where occupancy, size, location and any special tenant needs can be addressed.”

Falloon said that he will initially contact officials from the Town of Philipstown and Putnam County to clarify their intentions regarding renting space at Butterfield. “It would be nice to get the police (department) there … but at what cost?” to taxpayers, he asked.

Fjord Trail, Boat Club lease

The proposed Fjord Trail would create a safer, clear path past Mayor's Park while improving parking and realigning the fence.  (Photo by M. Turton)

The proposed Fjord Trail would create a safer, clear path past Mayor’s Park while improving parking and realigning the fence.  (Photo by M. Turton)

Falloon reviewed a large-scale, detailed diagram of the Cold Spring portion of the proposed Hudson River Fjord Trail, which will link the village with Breakneck Ridge and Beacon. The Village Board has pledged $14,000 in in-kind services to extend the sidewalk that currently ends at Riverview Restaurant on Fair Street to the village border just below Little Stony Point Park. At Mayor’s Park, creation of the new path will result in improvements to parking and a realignment of fencing. The diagram has been forwarded to the Recreation Commission for comment.

Trustees approved a letter to the Cold Spring Boat Club, confirming that the condemnation of their building as part of the remediation of coal tar found beneath it will not affect the club’s long-term lease, which runs until 2023.

West Street and HDRB member

The Village Board moved forward with plans to make West Street one-way from North to New Street, to eliminate traffic congestion at the corner of West and North Streets. Liguori was asked to create the legal documentation for the change. If revisions cannot be made by the Fourth of July, the Police Department has the authority to act on a temporary basis. A public hearing on the issue was scheduled for July 1.

Former Haldane School Board President Michael Junjulas was appointed to the Historic District Review Board.

At the end of the public session the Village Board went into executive session to discuss “current litigation involving a member of the police department.”

2 thoughts on “A Good Revenue Month

  1. Michael Turton, thank you for reporting the good news of the Village’s multiple awards of funding totally $202,000! Three quick clarifications: 1) The $75,000 NYSERDA grant was awarded to the Village in December 2013; 2) The revised draft of the NYSERDA agreement shared with the Village this week is not the “final contract”; it is still pending review and possible adjustment by NYSERDA’s legal department as well as additional contributions from the Board of Trustees. 3) NYSERDA representatives are scheduled to participate in the Village Board’s discussion at its July 1 workshop to answer trustee’s questions and help us reach final agreement. We are fortunate to have such supportive and collaborative negotiating partners in NYSERDA!

  2. I’m not very impressed by claims that this grant money represents a “good revenue month.” In reality, this article illustrates everything that’s wrong with government — nearly half the money will be used to expand the role of the bureaucracy to make it more difficult to get things done. Nothing of any substance or real benefit will come out of the $92 grand, for ever more rules and regulations to strangle the citizens. With all the REAL things that need to be done to improve the Village, like street light and sidewalk improvements, how can they possibly justify spending money like this?