Notes from the Cold Spring Village Board

Meeting highlights from Sept. 27 and Oct. 4

By Michael Turton

The Village of Cold Spring will increase the amount it charges the Village of Nelsonville for fire protection. Nelsonville has no fire company and its contract with Cold Spring offsets a portion of the Cold Spring Fire Company’s operating expenses, as well as the cost of the firemen’s service award, the pension earned by volunteer firefighters and fees paid to Penflex, the company that administers the pension program.

Trustee Fran Murphy reported that under the new contract, which has not been updated since it expired in 2012, Nelsonville will continue to pay 75 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value for basic fire protection. However, the cost to Nelsonville of the firemen’s service award will increase from 16 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value to 20 cents, a jump of 25 percent.

Illustration by Dana Wigdor

Illustration by Dana Wigdor

Murphy said that Cold Spring faces its own increases, including a 26 percent jump in the cost of the service award and an 18 percent increase in workers’ compensation rates. The fee paid to Penflex will increase to $3,200 annually, from $1,197, she said. Cold Spring taxpayers “can’t carry that kind of an increase” alone, she said.

The Town of Philipstown also purchases part of its fire protection from Cold Spring and will be asked to pay a similar increase.

In other business …

  • Village officials continue to revise the agreement with Seastreak, the New York-New Jersey boat company that brings weekend cruises to Cold Spring throughout the fall. The village doubled the docking fee to $6 per foot, meaning the 141-foot Seastreak will now pay $846 per visit. The village has also asked that boats depart and anchor 500 feet offshore after passengers disembark so that views from the dock are not obstructed. If the Seastreak opts to stay docked during the four-hour visit the cost will increase to $8 dollars per foot, or $1,128.
  • The Cold Spring Planning Board will be the lead agency for the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review of a project to convert a three-family dwelling at 2 Depot Square to a four-family unit.
  • Haldane Safety Committee member Kathleen Foley reported that recent changes to crosswalks in the Locust Ridge–Mountain Avenue neighborhood, combined with an increased police presence at Craigside Drive, have improved safety and traffic flows during student drop-off and pickup.
  • Officer Terrence Comisky has been rehired by the Cold Spring Police Department after a three-year absence. His pay will be based on seniority earned prior to his resignation in 2013.
  • The Poughkeepsie-based Clove Excavators will do paving on Bank Street, Oak Street and Paulding Avenue as part of a $56,805 bid accepted by trustees. Improvements to Wall Street were postponed due to the partial collapse of a distinctive stone wall owned by St. Mary’s Church.
  • The board’s two monthly workshops and monthly business meeting will be videotaped and posted on the village’s YouTube channel, accessible through a link at coldspringny.gov. The business meeting will also be broadcast on public access cable. Video of Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals and Historic District Review Board meetings are already posted by the village on YouTube.
  • Chris Hyatt has been hired as highway foreman, succeeding Ed Trimble, who retired. Hyatt, a Philipstown resident, will earn $28 per hour. Mayor Dave Merandy said the hire is conditional upon Hyatt completing a six-month probationary period. He also must receive his commercial driver’s license within three months.
  • The pay station in the municipal parking lot on Fair Street has generated $11,800 in gross revenue during its first four months of operation, according to Deputy Mayor Marie Early, “significantly more than projected.”
  • Trustees have agreed in principle to the Cold Spring Fire Company’s request for up to five parking spaces along Church Street adjacent to the firehouse for its use only. In addition, No Parking signs will be removed on the east side of Church near Main, creating four public spaces. The Parking Committee will be asked to finalize details.

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One thought on “Notes from the Cold Spring Village Board

  1. Why is the Board of Trustees so hell bent on destroying our Main Street businesses?

    The Seastreak is one of the only things we can count on in the last quarter of the year to bring us tourists who will actually spend money in our shops. Instead of welcoming the boats with open arms and doing everything possible to encourage more of this kind of activity, they go and raise the rates thus insuring that we will have fewer visitors.

    Thanks so the increased docking fees, the cost of a ticket on Seastreak is now $85 per person, which is a hefty increase from last year. Already we are seeing fewer passengers in the past couple of weekends and no wonder — if you get lunch or a bite to eat, you’re looking at paying over $100 a pop before you even think of doing some shopping.

    Every study out there shows that tourism is probably the best, most cost-effective way for a municipality to generate money. Maybe Merandy & Co. need to take some classes in business administration before they bankrupt the remaining merchants in the Village.