Needs decisions from Cold Spring, Philipstown governments by Oct. 1

By Liz Schevtchuk Armstrong

Paul Guillaro of Butterfield Realty, owner of the old Butterfield Hospital site, said Monday (July 21) that he is engaged in serious discussions with Putnam County and the U.S. Postal Service over taking space at an inter-governmental building at a redeveloped Butterfield site, on Route 9D at the southern edge of Cold Spring.

In a telephone interview, he also said that he can give the Town of Philipstown and Cold Spring Village governments about two months, or until approximately Oct. 1, to make decisions about occupying space in the envisioned “municipal” facility.

Diane Ferris, general manager of Unicorn Contracting Corp., Guillaro’s construction firm, also said in an email on Sunday (July 20) that the company had sent letters of inquiry to the postal service and county, as well as to the village and town. Mayor Ralph Falloon and Supervisor Richard Shea, chief executives of the village and town, respectively, both received June 6 letters from Guillaro. “We have not heard anything from the Village of Cold Spring and Town of Philipstown” so far, Ferris told

Paul Guillaro File photo
Paul Guillaro
File photo

Guillaro said Monday the two municipalities have a little leeway yet. “I’m sure I could wait a couple of months. But I would like to know” their intentions and need that information in order to plan how to fit village and town offices into the building alongside the county or other occupants, should Cold Spring and Philipstown opt to take space, he said.

He added that he had not contacted Nelsonville’s government but left open the door to its participation in shared town-village services or functions at Butterfield. “Without the town and Village of Cold Spring being interested, I don’t think they [Nelsonville] would come in by themselves,” he said. For several years, the possibility of merging the town and two villages’ justice courts has been bandied about and this spring the Town Board hosted discussions of a three-municipality building department, although Cold Spring’s Village Board last week seemed to veto further review of the idea this year.

Falloon and Shea have both urged a common county-town-village approach to the question of Butterfield tenancy. Nelsonville’s Mayor Tom Corless has expressed reluctance to have his village included. [See: Cold Spring, Philipstown Officials Seek Unified Stance on Butterfield Occupancy, July 19]

According to Guillaro, a public, county-affiliated senior center is “absolutely” included in consideration of any county quarters at Butterfield. “It’s the focal point,” he said.

Should any or all of the local government entities not opt to take space, he said, he would open it up to other levels of government, such as state and federal agencies, as well as to private office tenants.

The Butterfield concept plan (or design schematic) notes that the building designated as the intergovernmental complex, approximately 15,000 square feet, “shall house one or more of the following uses: municipal, post office, first-floor retail store space and/or first-floor bank and/or first-floor personal service shop not to exceed 6,000 square feet, and first- or upper-floor business and professional offices.”

Behind The Story

Type: News

News: Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

Armstrong was the founding news editor of The Current (then known as in 2010 and later a senior correspondent and contributing editor for the paper. She worked earlier in Washington as a White House correspondent and national affairs reporter and assistant news editor for daily international news services. Location: Cold Spring. Languages: English. Areas of expertise: Politics and government

2 replies on “Guillaro Says Serious Discussions Underway with County and Postal Service”

  1. Why, in all reasoned common sense, would Nelsonville attempt to conduct its official business outside of its own jurisdiction in another village? First, the village doesn’t need it, nor would it serve any positive purpose, especially when the village possesses a perfectly good facility. Not to mention a slap in the face of the residents of the village, to which they pay their taxes. Consolidation of services is one thing, but dissolution is quite something else.

  2. I know, I know, the fire departments consolidating is an old festering sore thumb but there are other duplications that could translate into lower taxes and streamlined service. New York State actually gives money…yes, just gives money – and lots of it…for consolidations.

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