September 1, 2020
Litigation and negotiation
1. Announcements from Supervisor Slater
Electricity: He reported on the measures he has taken to oppose the proposed increase in NYSEG rates and also his participation in a hearing dealing with NYSEG and Con Ed’s poor performance during the recent storm.
Hallocks Mill sewers: The town has taken small but incremental steps in coming to an agreement with the county about the release of the $10 million in East of Hudson funds.
Census: There’s still time to complete the 2020 census before the September 30 deadline. Residents can complete the Census questionnaire online at my2020census.gov or call 1-844-330-2020. To date, the town has a 77.5% response rate.
Reopening of town buildings: The town expects to reopen town buildings within a week or so on an appointment basis and the library is also working on plans to open the building with restrictions,. Check the town web site for details.
Early voting: From October 24 thru November 1, at the ACCC. Check the town web site for times.
Organic Recycling facility: The facility will be returning to its regular schedule.
Kim Angliss Gage, head of the town’s refuse and recycling department has retired after 30 years with the town. The board thanked her for her service.
3. Drug addiction program.
A presentation was made of the Police Department’s joining the Hope Not Handcuffs addiction recovery program that steers substance abusers into treatment. Anyone seeking help with a substance addiction can come to the Yorktown Police Department and ask for help from the program.
4. Courtesy of the floor
Trees: In light of the recent storm and the number of downed trees, Linda Miller reminded residents that as part of the new Tree Law homeowners do not need tree permits to remove dead, dying or diseased trees on their property, or to prune existing trees, or to remove up to nine trees in 10,000 sf.
Yorktown for Justice Task Force: (See Town Board 7-28-2020.) A member of the task force asked the board to move forward on implementing the governor’s executive order dealing with police practices. In response, the board reiterated its stand to wait until the state issues guidelines for the review before beginning its review. The board did, however, vote for a resolution requesting that the guidelines reflect the different status of departments, like Yorktown, that are accredited and are audited on an annual basis for compliance with 110 standards.
North County Trail. In light of the recent fatal incident on the North County Trail at Birdsall, Maura Gregory asked the board if it could paint a crosswalk as a warning to drivers. In response, Supervisor Slater explained that three entities were involved with the Trail: the state, county. and the town, and that it would make sense to have a joint discussion over possible safety improvements. Highway Supervisor Paganelli added that where the trail crosses the organic recycling facility, bikers frequently ignore stop signs.
Foreclosure petition: Susan Siegel, the person writing this summary, asked for a status update on the foreclosure petition filed last December and whether the deadline for paying back taxes had been extended again due to covid-19. In his response, the town attorney did not address the status of the petition but said that progress had been made to collect back taxes..
5. Stormwater permit, 1538 Jacob Road
The board tabled the item pending additional reports from the Planning Board and responses from the applicant that addressed issues raised in the town engineer’s initial review of the plan. The Tree Commission said that a mitigation plan was needed to address tree removal.
6. Employee collection bargaining agreements.
The board voted to approve five year contracts running from January, 2020 thru December 31, 2024 for the CSEA and PBA.
The CSEA agreement calls for a zero increase for 2020 and 2.5% increases for each of the next four years. The agreement also includes a provision dealing with medical benefits for retirees.
The PBA contract calls for a 1.5% increase in 2020, 1.75% in 2021 and 2.5% for the next three years. The contract also includes a retirement incentive.
In response to a question during Courtesy of the Floor, Supervisor Slater said he was unable to say what the dollar impact of the increases would be on the budget.
Also during Courtesy of the Floor, Maura Gregory suggested that the town postpone signing the PBA contract until the town addressed the yet to be announced requirements for reviewing police operations, adding that there might be provisions in the new contract what were not compliant with the review.
(See Town Board 7/16/20.) The board approved a resolution to hire the Laberge group, in an amount not to exceed $10,500, to prepare grant applications for the Local Waterfront Revitalization Program and the DEC Municipal Waste Reduction and Recycling program. Supervisor Slater said that the town still doesn’t know whether the waterfront program will be funded this year, but if funding became available in 2021,the application would be considered. He said the board had not decided on whether to include Mohegan, Sparkle and Osceola lakes in one application or three separate ones. The recycling grant would be to get on the list for a replacement for the “beast” used in the town’s organic recycling yard.
8. Hill Blvd. bridge replacement and Veterans Road culvert replacement
The board awarded a $2.995 million contract to Transmit Construction Corp. Because the lowest bid exceeded the amount of the two state grants, the board approved a $263,871 transfer from the general fund fund balance to cover the shortfall. Town Engineer Quinn suggested that because the two projects will involve road closings, that the board do a public presentation about the plan. The project should take nine months to complete and must be finished by December, 2021 when the grants expire.