Citizens for an Informed Yorktown

 

Town Board

October 2, 2012

 

Closed session

Interview financial consulting firm (see below)

 

Open Session

 

1. Comments from the Supervisor and Board members

a. Garbage bid:  Supervisor Grace announced that two bids were received based on the revised specs; one was $1 million less than the current contract price and a second, from the current vendor, was $500,000 less. The Board is currently reviewing the bid submissions. Supervisor Grace explained that the revised specs “purged”  language that restricted other companies from bidding. Both bids were based on prevailing wages.

 

 Councilman Bianco congratulated the supervisor for going out to bid a second time instead of renewing the current contract which had an option to renew clause, adding that it was always good to go out to bid.

 

b. AMVETS bridge opening:  Commenting on the reopening of the bridge earlier today, Councilman Bianco said he hoped that the Town could convince the DOT to leave the “temporary’” traffic light at Route 129 and Route 118.

 

c. Fluoride: Councilman Paganelli gave a “heads up” that the system that injects fluoride into the Town’s water supply needs to be upgraded and that in 2002 the cost was estimated at between $75,000 - $150,000 which he assumed could mean a $250,000 cost in today’s dollars.  He said that there were pros and cons about whether fluoride should be added to the water supply (Yorktown is the only member of the Northern Westchester Joint Water Works that adds fluoride) and that the Town needed to review legal issues and have public input before proceeding with any equipment upgrade.  Councilman Patel said that in his judgment, he didn’t think fluoride was necessary.

 

2.Courtesy of the Floor

a. Costco:  Two upcoming meetings were announced: A “teach in”  on the DEIS sponsored by Yorktown Smart  Growth to be held on October 4th at 7:30pm at the Mohansic Grill at the Mohansic Golf Course, and the October 15th Planning Board public hearing to be held at 7:30 in the nutrition center at the YCCC. Paul Moskowitz noted that people who didn’t want to speak  at a public hearing could submit written comments.

 

William Primavera announced the formation of a pro Costco group, Citizens for a Progressive Yorktown, that he said was dedicated to intelligent and responsible business growth. He invited people to visit the group’s web site, progressiveyorktown.com. Speaking as a realtor, he said that the two most important things prospective buyers look for when considering Yorktown is: 1) the condition of the house, and 2) availability of local shopping.

 

b. Senior Issues. Gil Kaufmann, chairman of the Senior Advisory Committee thanked state senator Greg Ball for the planned $100,000 grant to be used to renovate the bathrooms in the YCCC but added that the money hadn’t been received yet. He said the project was to be discussed at an upcoming work session and that the committee wanted to get the project started.

 

A second resident said that seniors were already paying dues, for meals at the nutrition center, for trips and for buses and that the Town should be providing more funds for seniors.  

 

c. Yorktown Fire District audit. In response to comments made at the September 18, 2012 meeting regarding missing audits, Arthur Orneck, chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners, stated that he wanted to clear up any public confusion or concern about the audit and that the fire district is audited every year and that copies of the audit are on file in the clerk’s office. Supervisor Grace apologized for the misunderstanding, adding that the fire district isn’t the only entity that has incorrect things said about it.  It was noted that this year’s fire district budget was going up about $3,000; copies of the budget are included in the Town’s budget book.

 

d. Mill Pond/ Hunterbrook drainage:  Mill Pond resident , Mr. Scotto, asked for help to remove blockages and weeds in the Hunterbrook stream near the pump station that are causing flooding problems on his property. He said that earlier efforts have not resolved the problem and that in 2011 he was hoping that his area would be included in a list of proposed  priority drainage projects.  Supervisor Grace advised him that the Town was looking into a regional approach using MS4 money to help resolve the Mill Pond drainage problem that involved work on town-owned property on the north side of Route 202 and that the Town was “working on it.”  The supervisor added that it was no longer feasible for government alone to be able to fix infrastructure problems and that the Town had to seek out private investment to help solve the problems.  He said he was hoping that there could be “good” commercial development along the south side of Route 202 that would replace the car dealerships.

 

e. Cablevision fee challenge: In response to Ed Ciffone’s request for an update on the status of the dispute with Cablevision over past fees due the Town, Supervisor Grace said that the Town was still working with other municipalities who are challenging what Cablevision paid them.

 

f. Water rates: In response to Ed Ciffone’s question about the higher water bills, Councilman Paganelli explained that recent bills have been higher than usual for three reasons: the billing cycle included an additional month, the addition of the NYC pass thru increases that had not been done previously, and for some houses, the installation of new meters which provide  more accurate reads.

 

3. Advertisements

a. Public hearing: for the Sanctuary Golf Course special permit request

b. Bids for inspecting and testing the Town’s sprinkler systems and rebids for elevator maintenance and HVAC work. (The initial bids for elevetor maintenance and HVAC work were rejected.  See 9/26 meeting notes regarding the elevator bid. There was no explanation of why the HVAC bid was rejected.)

 

4. Bid awards

Bids were awarded  to Interstate Ford Truck Sales for the purchase of two F-250 trucks for the sewer department (see 9/26 meeting notes) and to E.J. Prescott and HD Supply Waterworks  for cold water meters for the water department.   (Note: the bid award for electrical work was pulled from them tentative agenda.)

 

5. Volunteer Boards

 Without any discussion, Roxanne Visconti was appointed to ABACA (Advisory Board of Architecture and Community Appearance for a three year term.

 

6. JV Mall: Proposed zoning ordinance amendments for regional shopping center requirements

In response to objections raised by Councilman Bianco who said he hadn’t seen the proposed amendments, the Board did not vote to refer the amendments out to advisory boards, staff and other agences.  When Supervisor Grace explained that he had received the amendments earlier that day, Councilman Bianco responded that he believed the Board should review the document first before it was referred out. “Don’t you think we should talk (about) it first?” he asked. “Why rush.” Supervisor Grace said the changes had been discussed at any earlier meeting with representatives of the JV Mall but Councilman Bianco said he knew nothing about that meeting.  Town Attorney Koster added that she hadn’t seen the text yet and that it was premature to refer it out.

 

While the Board did not vote to refer out the proposed changes, Supervisor Grace said he would refer the amendments to town staff which he said he could do without a Board resolution.

 

Supervisor Grace said the amendments were substantial and updated the existing “archaic” requirements in the code.

 

7. Selected resolutions  on the agenda

The following resolutions were passed unanimously:

a. An agreement with WSP Sells for additional work for the Greenwood Street bridge for  $25,160.

b. An agreement with Birdsall Services Group for the Sparkle Lake dam project for $34,000.

c. Resolving the discrepancy of water accounts after the installation of new meters only when the consumption recorded from the old meter is in excess of 50,000 gallons difference to the external device.

 

8. Resolutions NOT on the agenda

The Board unanimously passed the following resolutions for which no written text was available.

a. Personnel:  To transfer Thomas Gallello, a laborer assigned to the YCCC, to the library to replace Stuart South, the maintenance worker/repair who recently retired.  In response to a question during the second Courtesy of the Floor, Supervisor Grace said the Town was planning to fill the now vacant YCCC maintenance position.

 

b. Financial consultant: to hire the firm of Duffy Terenzi to act as the Town’s financial consultant and assist the finance department until the end of the year at a cost of up to $9,000 a month. The firm will begin work immediately. (Note: the Board interviewed the firm in a closed session prior to the open meeting.)

 

c. Outside auditors: to issue an RFP for outside auditing services. Supervisor Grace noted that 2011 audit done by the firm that was completing the third year of a 3-year contract had “serious mistakes in it.”

 

d. YCCC rents: to increase rents next year by 3%. This had been previously discussed at the 9/26 work session.

 

9. Granite Knolls barn

An item not on the agenda, Supervisor Grace brieflymentioned that the contractor who was selected for the asbestos abatement job for the barn has withdrawn his offer. (It was not clear what the reason was.)He said he would now seek a new third quote before proceeding.

 

10. Crompond Crossing Performance Bond Fee Acceptance

While accepting a performance bond from a developer for planned infrastructure improvements is typically a routine matter, this resolution generated some discussion when Town Attorney Koster asked that this resolution be pulled from the agenda as she had an issue with the names on the letter of credit and Town Clerk Roker took exception to delaying the passage of the resolution. Town Engineer Robinson explained that in the past, letters of credit associated with this type of bond were always reviewed by the Finance Department and were never sent to the Town Attorney for review. She said that the bond was on the Board’s work session agenda last week at which time no problems were raised.  She added that if the Board postponed acting on the resolution tonight, she would have to cancel a pre-construction meeting that had already been set up with the applicant.

 

Supervisor Grace overruled Ms. Koster explaining that as long as there was a letter of credit in the Town’s favor, it didn’t make a difference what third party name was on the document.