Meeting Minutes

January 22, 2013




January 22, 2013




Present:  Mayor Christopher Sanders, Deputy Mayor Mark Blomquist, Trustees Lisa DeFeciani, Trustee John Gallucci  Jr., Trustee Steven Silverberg,  Walter Sevastian, Esq.-Village Attorney, Stephanie Tassello-Village Clerk-Treasurer


Mayor Sanders called the meeting to order and led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance.



Public Comment

Audie Moran commented she attended a Village Board Meeting 2 weeks ago and there was discussion in regards to the Railroad Station and questions to the property line.  She noted she had copies of documents pertaining to the Railroad Station which she provided a copy to the Village Attorney Walter Sevastian for review.

Village Attorney Walter Sevastian noted the County of Rockland owns a small portion of the property along the Erie Path walkway to Ash Street


Mayor Sanders commented in a quick overview this was discussed at the Village Board Meeting on January 8, 2013.  The Piermont Historical Society came to board several months ago requesting to establish a caretaker relationship between the Village of Piermont and the Historical Society,which will be discussed at a later date.


Margaret Grace commented she is a member of the Sparkill Creek Watershed Alliance and is looking for help partnering with an event that will commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Two Row Wampum treaty between Native Americans and Dutch settlers in NY State.   The paddlers will begin their journey from Mohawk River and ending at United Nations.  They requested to stop and stay utilizing the Goswick Pavilion to camp overnight on August 7, 2013.   She requested to be placed on the Agenda on the next Village Board Meeting on February 5, 2013, and will provide further details to the event.


Mayor Sanders commented he will put it on the Agenda for February 5, 2013.

Fred Devan commented the north shore walkway has been closed due to the damage sustained to the seawall during Hurricane Sandy he spoke to Phil Griffin in regards to repairing the seawall on the western end in which Mr. Griffin claimed it was not his responsibility.  The eastern seawall is the responsibility of the Piermont’s Landing Homeowners association.  Mr. Devan questioned who is responsible for the repairs to the seawall.


Audie Moran commented she has been in contact with Mark Carlucci the Property Manger of the Piermont Landing Association.  The association has submitted forms to FEMA for reimbursement for repairs.


Mayor Sanders commented he had met with Phil Griffin to discuss the repairs to the western seawall, and will be discussed at a later Village Board Meeting


Public Hearing adoption of Legislation permitting Bed & Breakfast


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented we had an open public hearing on November 27, 2012, that was adjourned until the Village Board Meeting January 22, 2012 the final drafted legislation local law to allow Bed & Breakfast use was sent out to the County of Rockland Department of Planning for comment.  They recommend the following modification;


To provided the Town of Orangetown and the Village of Grandview on Hudson the legislation for review.  Village Attorney Walter Sevastian noted the Village and the Town were provided a copy of the proposed legislation for review,


  1.  When the      impervious are on the site will be increased to accommodate the bed and      breakfast use, there shall be no net increase in stormwater runoff.



  1. Any bed and breakfast located on State Route 9W should      have parking areas designed so that it is not necessary to back out on the      state road.
  2. Parking areas that will be visible from Route 9W should      be screened from view with landscaping or other screening materials.
  3. On page 3 of the proposed law, in Subsection XXX3(J),      it is indicated that applicants must comply with Section AJ701.1-1.4 of      the Residential Code of the State of New York.  As a courtesy, we recommend that a      phrase be added explaining the topic of Section AJ701.1-1.4 of the state      law.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian referenced the recommendations stating it appears to be a site plan issue.  He also noted he received an email from one of the Board members raising several issues and made the following recommendations to clarify and redefine Owner and “Ownership” as the owner occupying shall be the person owning at least 50% interest of the LLC or corporation, and under Section XXX3.  M. where it states the owner consents to the Building Inspector having right of Entry to the Premises to verify compliance, recommends the owner consents to the Building Inspector having Right of Entry upon reasonable notice to the Premises to verify compliance.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented these recommendations are minor modifications and questioned how to address the County of Rockland Department of Planning referenced Section XXX3, in regards to Route 9W.


Trustee Silverberg commented that Rockland County Dept. of Planning recommendation for section XXX3 is a site plan issue and the board could adopt a resolution noting 1, 2 & 3 and overwrite it on the grounds it is a site plan issue that will be reviewed by the planning board at such a time the applicant seeks approval.


Mayor Sanders questioned the process to ensure it would be addressed and reviewed as part of the Site Plan under the planning board.


Trustee Silverberg commented these are all things the planning board would review,


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented any type of exterior alteration to the site the building inspector would require them to be reviewed by the board for approval.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented he is in concurrence and thinks the comments made are a good idea it will provide clarification.  In regards to the screening he believes it is already in the proposed local law and referred to Section XXX3 Regulation F. that states the parking area shall be screened from direct view of any adjacent residential use.  He is prepared to move forward with the proposed legislation, and he thinks the recommendations are ministerial modifications.


Trustee Blomquist agreed with Trustee Silverberg, and Trustee Gallucci Jr.

Trustee DeFeciani also agreed with Trustee Silverberg, and Trustee Gallucci Jr.


Public Comment

Rod Johnson who resides at 22 Stevenson Street also a member of the Planning Board of Appeals commented he had reviewed the proposed local law establishing a bed & breakfast use several months ago, he is not sure of any current modifications.  He would like the document to have a purpose and intent included in it.  He questioned why the Board is adopting a bed & breakfast use; if it’s done for commercial revitalization promotion of businesses he would like the resolution to state that.  If the resident is trying to maintain larger structures giving some judicial value to old large structures where maybe couples, emptinesters have some additional income to preserve and live in the community the board should state that in a statement of purpose.  If the residents trying to maintain larger structures that aren’t economic for smaller families to live in he thinks there is a state of policy to maintain larger structures of architectural character that helps contribute to the overall character of Piermont.  There should be a clear statement of purpose, once its decideded what the purpose is it will help make decisions later on how the board is going to approve them.  The earlier draft of the Local Law did not establish what a Bed & Breakfast was.  The current legislation defines a Bed & Breakfast as a building that is owned by someone and has a use.   He thinks a Bed & Breakfast should be defined  as a use that would be determined as permitted by a special permit use which would be subject to the standard for a for special permit under zoning code.  One of the issues raised was the relationship between a bed and breakfast use and a site plan approval he thinks it is



important in a bed and breakfast local law to reference any required site plan approval because a nice bed & breakfast has physical design requirements.  He referred to another municipality that has a local for a bed and breakfast that has requirements for parking if you have parking for as many as 10 people with 5 cars plus the residents than that is 7 cars in total.  That becomes a 7 car parking lot in a single family residential neighborhood He suggested there should be a requirement in the bed & breakfast law that states the applicant shall first receive approval from the planning board for any site plan requirements and having received a site plan approval for the external design requirements on the site than they return to the Village Board under the special permit standards.  In Summary the local law should state why the applicant is requesting a bed and breakfast use what is the purpose, and what is the intent also clearly outlining what some of the physical changes to the existing residence..  There should also be a review of the impact of the possibility of 10people with 5 cars within a single family neighborhood.  Once it is reviewed the board can approve the Bed & Breakfast only if it fits the community and the neighborhood.


Trustee Blomquist commented he does not think it’s a bad idea to list some of the reason to list the intent, but does not want to hold up the proposed local law.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented he thinks a good portion of what Rod Johnson commented on with respect to the purpose is outlined under the definition of bed and breakfast as an owner occupied building designed, used and occupied as a single-family or two-family residence, managed by the properties owner, and having as an accessory use incidental to the primary use.  This current legislation does include and define a bed and breakfast use; He is prepared to move forward.


Trustee Silverberg commented he did not participate in all the discussions on the proposed local law he thinks Rod Johnson had a few good points and if a dispute arise about what is intended placing a paragraph outlining the purpose would be helpful.  In regards to issuing a special permit as opposed to having it just a permit issued by the Building Inspector would require it to be reviewed by the Planning & Zoning Boards After the boards review it they would see the impact on the adjacent properties in regards to the parking.  The applicant would not get the same type of review if the permit is just issued thru the Building Inspector, the applicant would just check off boxes on the application.  He thinks it is a good point and not sure if it has been previously addressed but thinks if it hasn’t the board should take a step back and review it.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented the proposed local law will be part of the Zoning Code and goes across districts these types of uses are permissible and not required to obtain a special permit.  To include a special permit in the proposed local law is a significant change from the current proposed local law.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian questioned the board how much review does the board want to place on the applicant before a Bed and Breakfast is established.  He questioned if the board wants it go in front of the Planning Board for input and back to Village Board for permission, or should it just be submitted to the Building Inspector for review and if it does require significant changes to the property interior or exterior the way our code reads they will need to go in front of the planning board.


Mayor Sanders commented the current proposed local law is structured just to be a building permit with an annual review.


Rod Johnson commented would this promote the demolition of a building and construction of a building within intent to build a bed and breakfast.

Trustee Silverberg questioned what would be the trigger for a site plan review.   If the applicant is changing the parking would that automatically trigger the site plan review.  He referred to the Rockland County Dept. of Planning letter if there are changes to the outside there needs to be some trigger that the changes would be reviewed by the boards.  He would like this to be in the ordinance, and would like the modification changed before the board adopts the current proposed local law.


Walter Sevastian referred to Village Code §210-77 No building permit or certificate of occupancy shall be issued for construction in any zoning district, except for a building or


structure that complies with and meets requirements of the definition of the “buildable lot” as set forth in this chapter and that is in conformity with a site development plan previously approved by the Planning Board, the Village Engineer, and the Village Building Inspector.


Trustee Silverberg questioned if someone adds asphalt in their driveway to make room for additional cars would that require a building permit.


Mayor Sanders replied it would require a building permit but not sure if it would need to be reviewed as a site plan.


Trustee Silverberg referred to the proposed local law XXX3 paragraph F. which states when 4 or more parking spaces are provided and the parking layout is changed from that previously existing on the site, the parking area shall be screened from direct view of any adjacent residential use; he recommends that such change shall be subject to site plan review.  He would like to add any exterior alterations of the site changes be referred to the planning and zoning boards for site plan review


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented this is a significant change the applicant will be referred to the land use boards.  These items can be modified adding any exterior alterations or increase in impervious surface changes shall be referred to the planning and zoning boards for review in the proposed legislation.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented the proposed legislation would need to be amended and sent out for review.


There were no other further comments


Trustee Gallucci Jr. moved to adjourn and continue the Public Hearing on legislation permitting Bed and Breakfast until the Village Board Meeting March 5, 2013 at 7:45pm.  Trustee Silverberg seconded the motion, which carried by vote 5-0


Public Hearing 2013 Community Development Block Grant Program


Trustee Silverberg moved to open a Public Hearing on the 2013 CDBG Grant program.  The motion was seconded by Trustee Gallucci Jr. and upon vote the public hearing was opened.


Sylvia Welch met with the CDBG committee on January 15, 2013 and the committee had the following recommendations for the grant application:



  1. Installation of an Adult Handicap Accessible Bathroom on the 2nd. Floor of the Piermont Community Center- estimated cost of $3,800


Mayor Sanders invited Comments from the Public. There were no comments from the Public

There were not board comments.


Trustee Blomquist moved to close the public hearing. Trustee DeFeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.


Resolution to accept the recommendations of the Piermont CDBG Committee as stated was made by Trustee Gallucci Jr. and seconded by Trustee Blomquist.  Upon vote the motion carried.



Approve additional Position Police Officer Part-Time


Mayor Sanders commented the Village is looking to create another position for a part- time police officer.


Chief O’Shea commented we saw the need for additional Police during Hurricane Sandy, and would also assist during filming and Village events

Trustee Silverberg commented he thinks it’s a good idea.





Mayor Sanders commented the new position would not add to the budget, hours would be shared between the other part time Police Officers.


Trustee Silverberg moved to add the position of Part-Time Police Officer.  Trustee Blomquist seconded the motion, which carried by a vote 5-0


Resolution to appoint Part-time police officer

Mayor Sanders appointed Michael Healy to the position of Part-Time Police Officer at a rate of $28.00 per hour.


A motion was made by Trustee Blomquist and seconded by Trustee Silverberg

Upon vote the motion carried by vote 5-0



Review & Discuss Pier Building Agreement


Mayor Sanders commented at the last Village Board Meeting that DPW Superintendent Temple reported he had received a call from the facilities department at Lamont Doherty Geological Observatory of Columbia University requesting access to review damage at their pier building.  He reported they wanted to repair the building and requested the Village vacate the building removing all Village owned equipment.  We are currently under a lease agreement where Columbia University agrees to supply the Village with 100 tons of stone each year.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented this Lease -Access Easement agreement was originated in 1983.  It does have provisions in the agreement that they would deliver annually 100 tons of stone or a monetary equivalent.  Also in the agreement it is their responsibility to repair and maintain the building.  The agreement can be terminated 60 days prior to its annual renewal, which is April 22, 2013.  He recommended to the board to negotiate a new lease agreement.


Trustee Silverberg questioned what is the monetary value of 100 tons of stone?


DPW Superintendent Temple replied $20 dollars a ton.


Trustee Blomquist commented he thinks it would be a good idea to negotiate and draft a new agreement


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented he does not think the Village is benefiting under the current lease agreement


Trustee DeFeciani agreed with Trustee Gallucci Jr. and does not see how the Village is benefiting under the current agreement, and also thinks it’s a good idea to negotiate a new lease agreement.


Trustee Silverberg commented before we terminate the lease we should make sure they repair the building.  He thinks that we should put a monetary value within the lease.


Mayor Sanders commented  he would like to see the agreement continue but negotiate a new agreement, to include more about the purpose of the building that it bring a more educational piece to the students.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented he would write a letter outlining the Village board has discussed and understands that Lamont Doherty purpose for using this building has changed and we are expressing a desire to implement a partnership and develop a more interactive use of the building within the community to further the study of the Hudson River.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented the letter should indicate a time frame for them to respond. If they don’t respond the agreement will be terminated.


Trustee Silverberg commented the letter should also include that Lamont Doherty will be responsible to repair the building.




Request from Doug Stone & Rachel Mack to hold the Piermont Bike Festival


Doug Stone commented at the Village Board Meeting held in December the board was interested in his idea but expressed some concerns and encouraged him and Rachel to meet with the Piermont business council.


Rachel Mack commented some of the advantages for having an outdoor festival showcases a community with unique assets and gives residents and visitors the opportunity to sample the amenities a community has to offer.  It will raise the profile of the Village of Piermont and stimulate local business, raise money for a local cause, engage with the bicycling community in a wholly positive way and create a family-friendly event for all to enjoy.  She is requesting to hold the event Sunday October 13th, 2013 from 12:00pm-8:00pm to include an off-Road Bike Challenge, clinics, DJ, Live Music and Food & Drink. He has met with some of the Piermont’s Business council, and Chief O’Shea is ok with the event.  She would like to hold the event in Fly Wheel Park, Main Street Parking lots, and or Lot D.


Doug Stone commented the Boards first objection was closing the pier to a commercial event.  He would still like to use the pavilion for entertainment, food and bicycle training, and will include an event entry fee. All other expo areas in fly wheel park, or the parking lots would be free.  He believes having the event Columbus Day weekend is the best weekend


Trustee DeFeciani commented she likes the fact that Rachel and Doug took into consideration the board’s concerns and they scaled back the size of the event.


Trustee Silverberg commented he agrees with Trustee DeFeciani and likes the idea that the event has moved into the village rather than out on the pier.  He is concerned of impact of traffic and questioned if there was a review by Chief O’Shea


Chief O’Shea commented he does not have enough information about the event to provide any report


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented if they are going to use Flywheel Park they will need approval from the property owner, and thinks the event is a good idea.


Mayor Sanders commented Flywheel Park is private property but the board approves these events due to road closures, which would include Police detail.  He thanked Doug and Rachel for listening to the board’s concerns.  He remains concerned about having a paid event at the pavilion.


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian commented the pavilion has not been used for charging fee for events but has been used for fundraising benefits.


Rachel Mack commented some of the proceeds could be used for restoration of the pavilion for damage it sustained during Hurricane Sandy.


Mayor Sanders also commented he is concerned with the time the event is ending at 8:00pm it will be dark when the bicyclists will be leaving.


Doug Stone commented he would provide bike racks for bicyclists at his expense.


Rachel Mack does not think the location of bike racks is going to be a problem, there are plenty of parking lots available.


Mayor Sanders looked to the Board if they would be inclined to approve


Trustee Silverberg commented he would need more details he suggested to Doug and Rachel to provide insurance, and designate the profits to be donated to benefit the Village.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. He agrees with Trustee Silverberg his biggest concern is charging a fee for profit at a park.


Trustee Blomquist commented he would approve the event, as long as all of the concerns are addressed




Trustee DeFeciani commented she would consider approving it also, but would need more detail.


Mayor Sanders commented one of his concerns is charging a fee at a Public Park.  He suggested they use Flywheel Park instead of the lots along Main Street, and would like more detailed information


Mayor Sanders commented this will be tabled for further review to the Village Board meeting February 5, 2013.


Request from Dennis McHugh Foundation


Una McHugh from the Dennis P McHugh foundation requested to hold their annual 5k run to begin at 9:30am on April 27, 2013, and to hold the event at Flywheel Park from 11:00pm to 3:00pm


Trustee Gallucci Jr. moved to approve 10th Annual Dennis P. McHugh Run for Fun on April 27, 2013 at 9:30am.  Trustee Silverberg seconded the motion, which carried by vote 5-0


Review 2013 Assessments

Mayor Sanders introduced the preliminary assessments. Last year the board made significant deductions to the assessments.  Grievance is set for February 19th at 6:30pm


Trustee Blomquist commented the only changes were made to the storm damaged properties.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. would like more clarification and detail as to the changes on the assessments


Trustee Silverberg commented he would like clarification from the assessor consultants report where it state in that the equalization rate will exceed 100% which in reality means essentially a 100% ratio


Mayor Sanders commented he will contact the assessor consultant for further detailed information.


Review Accountants JH Cohn Fiscal 2nd Quarter Report 2013


Mayor Sanders commented that JH Cohn’s Fiscal 2nd Quarter Report was thru November 30, 2012 which includes some budget overages, mainly due to expenses related to storm damage.


Trustee Silverberg noted one of the issues raised from the accounts was on a revenue line that appears to be overstated and would need to review in when preparing the budget for this coming year.


Mayor Sanders requested the Village Clerk reach out to JH Cohn to prepare a report thru February 15, 2013, which will assist in preparation of the Fiscal Year End 2014 Budget.



Review Fiscal Year to Date Budget


Mayor Sanders commented the fiscal year to date budget 2013 runs thru January 17, 2013.

There are some revenue line items that appear to be under budget, but some revenue items are exceeding the budget.


Trustee Blomquist commented the majority of the expense line items that are over budget are due to expenses related to storm damage repairs.



Review proposed Budget Workshop Dates

Mayor Sanders commented the proposed Village Workshop dates are;



Tuesday March 5, 2013 at 6:30pm Police Department

Wednesday March 6, 2013 at 7:30pm Highway Department

Monday March 11, 2013 at 7:30pm Justice/Building/Planning/Zoning

Tuesday March 12, 2013 at 7:30pm Fire Department

Thursday March 14, 2013pm at 7:30pm Clerk Revenue/Expenses/Benefits


Mayor Sanders requested to hold an executive session on the Village Board Meeting on February 5, 2013 to discuss Employee Compensation.



Approval of Minutes


Trustee Silverberg moved to approve as amended minutes from the January 8, 2013 meeting of the Board of Trustees.  Trustee Gallucci Jr. seconded the motion, which carried by a vote 5-0


Approval of Warrant

Trustee Blomquist moved to approve the Warrant in the amount of $ 107,633.38 attached to the Minutes.  Trustee DeFeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.


Old/New Business


Village Attorney Walter Sevastian asked the board for an executive session to discuss a pending litigation.


Trustee Silverberg commented he received a draft on the amendment of the zoning from Robert Geneslaw.


Mayor Sanders commented the draft will need to be reviewed by the board and tabled this to the Village Board Meeting February 5, 2013.


Department Reports



DPW Superintendent Temple submitted his written report and has nothing further to report.


Trustee Gallucci Jr. commented he received an email in regards to Rockland Road Bridge –A-Tech will begin arch work repair first and will get started within 2 weeks.


Police Dept.

Chief O’Shea submitted his written report and had nothing to add.


Building Dept.

Building Inspector Charles Schaub absent


Executive Session

Trustee DeFeciani moved to enter into Executive Session to discuss personnel / contract issues and pending litigation.  The motion was seconded by Trustee Blomquist and upon vote the Board entered Executive Session.


Trustee Silverberg moved to exit Executive Session, Trustee DeFeciani seconded.  Upon the vote, the motion passed and the board returned to regular session.


Resolution to authorize the Mayor to execute the Letter of Understanding for the Clerk Treasurer and Deputy Clerk Treasurer:


Trustee Silverberg moved to authorize the Mayor to sign the Letters of Understanding as presented.  Trustee Blomquist seconded the motion, upon the unanimous vote the motion carried.



Trustee Galucci Jr. moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:40pm.  Trustee DeFeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.