Meeting Minutes

November 12, 2013

INCORPORATED VILLAGE OF PIERMONT

BOARD OF TRUSTEES MEETING

November 12, 2013

 

 

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

 

 

Executive Session

 

Trustee Blomquist moved to enter into Executive Session to discuss Pending Litigation.  The motion was seconded by Trustee Silverberg and upon vote the Board entered Executive Session.

 

Trustee Silverberg moved to exit Executive Session which was seconded by Trustee Gallucci Jr., and upon vote the Board adjourned Executive Session.

 

Regular Session

 

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

 

Public Comment

 

Mayor Sanders congratulated Trustees Blomquist, Gallucci and Judge Laura Weiss on their recent re-election.

 

Resident Greg McKillop, Paradise Avenue, noted a successful kickoff meeting for the Piermont Waterfront Resiliency Task Force. The task force is coming up with ideas and plans to protect the village from future flooding. There will be a public workshop at the View on November 25th from 6-9pm.

 

Ann Putko, Bay Street, stated that she is a member of the Orangetown Environmental Committee and they are working on ecological landscaping. A brochure was presented to the Village Board that supports the initiative of the committee. The concept reduces costs and save money for the Towns and Villages in addition to helping the environment. The primary way to do this is to mulch leaves instead of bagging them. Mulching leaves saves money. She would like to leave the brochures downstairs in Village Hall and is asking the Village Board to consider mulching.

 

 

Approval of Minutes

 

Trustee DeFeciani moved to approve the minutes from the October 12, 2013 meeting of the Board of Trustees. Trustee Blomquist seconded the motion, which carried by a vote 5-0.

 

Department Reports

 

DPW

DPW Superintendent Tom Temple reported that he received the punch list from the village engineer for the Rockland Road Bridge. He will be sending it to the contractor so that they will be able to complete the project.

 

The department also received the new F-350 pickup truck last week.

 

The DPW generator has been installed and is fully functioning.

 

The leaf collection program has started and runs thru the second week of December.

 

Fire Dept.

Chief Cavanaugh reported that the fire Department had 21 responses, 16 ambulance and 5 fire related.

 

 

Village of Piermont Board of Trustees Minutes November 12, 2013

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The department has been in contact with the Tappan Zee Bridge security and is keeping the lines of communication open. They have had a few meetings in regards to planning and responses, drills with the construction crews out on the river.

 

The department was trying to get a slip for their boat where the State troopers keep their boats but as of now it will not go forward. They will try again in a couple of months.

 

The Halloween event for Village residents held at the fire house was a success.

 

The Fire department went to Tappan Zee Elementary for a four-hour fire prevention program.

 

The Chief also reminded residents to change batteries in smoke alarms.

 

Police Dept.-absent

 

Building Dept.

Building Inspector Charles Schaub reported that it was a busy month with seven applications before the planning board and six applications in front of the zoning board.

 

He wanted the Village Board to be aware that Grant Writer Sylvia Welch and Village Clerk Stephanie Tassello have put in a lot of time in their efforts to get the Village money in grants in response to Hurricane Sandy.

 

Village Attorney Sevastian mentioned that he spoke with the Building Inspector about the Train Station and reported that, in that zoning district, the Village can put an apartment in the upstairs of the building provided it complies with the building and fire codes.

Resolution to extend the retainer for law firm Burke, Miele & Golden

Trustee Gallucci made a motion to extend the retainer of Burke, Miele & Golden to reflect that the village has retained them to move for a declaratory judgment that the village’s insurance company is responsible to cover legal fees & indemnification for litigation that is pending, and extend the existing retainer agreement to cover the cost related to the declaratory judgment action. Trustee Silverberg seconded which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

Request from Ivan Szendro to donate a sign to the Village of Piermont

Trustee Blomquist made a motion to accept a sign commemorating the Twined Villages, to be presented to the village and installed by the DPW on existing sign post on Bridge Street. Trustee Gallucci seconded which carried a vote of 5-0.

 

 

Public Hearing (7:45) a local law #3 of 2013 to amend the Property Maintenance Code regulating the proliferation of Bamboo

 

Village Attorney Walter Sevastian reported that the proposed local law amends the Property Maintenance Code and requires that if you plant bamboo you must confine it to your property, if not you will be fined.

 

The Mayor noted the proposed legislation addresses bamboo only if it encroaches on neighboring property.

 

Trustee Silverberg made a motion to open the public hearing. Trustee Gallucci seconded the motion with a vote of 5-0.

 

Mayor Sanders opened the floor for public comment.

 

Former Village Trustee, Katherine Smith submitted the following suggestions including photos, in an unsigned letter, for public comment:

 

 

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“ADD BAMBOO TO PROPERTY MAINTENANCE ARTICLE III,

154.5 MAINTENANCE OF EXTERIOR PREMISES AND STRUCTURES”

 

  • Bamboo plantings must be in substantial containers that will prevent the roots from spreading into bare ground.

 

  • Plants currently growing outside of containers must be relocated to fifteen feet from property lines and/or cut back to a maximum height of five feet and require a permit from the Village. The fee for the permit is $100.

 

  • If a resident of property owner fails to comply within the next two summer months the Village will have the work done and bill the appropriate person or add the cost to the owner’s next tax bill. Or, fine the resident $100 a week until it’s done.

 

  • Any damage caused by the bamboo to neighboring property will be corrected by the resident or owner and will be paid for by the same party.

 

  • No “grandfather’s clause” applies to bamboo

 

 

Rob Sturgeon, Roundhouse Condominiums, wants to know who will be enforcing the local law. The Mayor stated that the building inspector will be enforcing this law and will issue property maintenance citations.

 

No further Public comment.

 

Trustee Gallucci moved to close the Public Hearing. Trustee Defeciani seconded the motion which carried by vote 5-0.

 

Trustee Gallucci moved to adopt Local Law #3 of 2013 to amend the Property Maintenance Code regulating the proliferation of Bamboo, including SEQR findings. Trustee Defeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote 5-0.

 

 

RESOLUTION OF THE VILLAGE OF PIERMONT BOARD OF TRUSTEES

 

STATE OF NEW YORK

COUNTY OF ROCKLAND: VILLAGE OF PIERMONT

——————————————————————–X

In the Matter of the Amendment to

Chapter 154 of the Code of the Village

Of Piermont entitled “Property

Maintenance Code”

——————————————————————–X 

 

 

WHEREAS, the Village Board of the Village of Piermont has noticed a Public Hearing with regard to an amendment of the Village Code with respect to the Property Maintenance Standards provisions set forth in Chapter 154 of said Code;

 

WHEREAS, Public Hearing on the adoption of this proposed amendment to the Village Code

Was held on November 12, 2013;

 

WHEREAS,  at least 10 days prior to the initial Public Hearing notification of same was published in the Rockland County Journal News pursuant to Village Code requirements;

 

WHEREAS, the Village Board of Trustees had made and published initial SEQRA review of the proposed Village Code amendments and found as follows;

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  1. 1.                   That the proposed Village Code amendment was an “Unlisted” action under SEQRA.
  2. 2.                   That it was the intention of the Village Board of Trustees to establish itself as the Lead Agency for the purpose of review of the proposed action under the provisions of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA).

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Village Board of Trustees hereby establishes itself as the Lead Agency for the purpose of review of the proposed action under the provisions of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), and determines that a SEQRA Negative Declaration is determined with respect to the action (see attached).

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the Village the Board of Trustees adopts the amendments to Chapter 154 of the Code of the Village of Piermont.

 

 

Request from Phil Griffin seeking site plan approval for addition/renovation in the RD Zoning District

 

Village Attorney Sevastian stated that in this zoning district, site plans must go before the Village Board for approval.

 

Trustee Silverberg noted that in the Planning Board minutes they state a concern that this proposal could set a precedent for the other townhomes in that area. Trustee Silverberg also referred to a letter received from former Mayor Denis Hardy (received earlier today) stating:”…the Riverfront District East & West zoning districts have been “capped” thereby no additional square footage were to be allowed to be built.”

 

This was reported to be passed by the Village Board sometime between 1997-2001. The mayor directed the Village Clerk’s office to review minutes from that timeframe to confirm.

 

It was also noted that the subdivision map for this property note “Any Exterior Change to the building must be approved by a majority of the lot owners of the subdivision and the Village Board”.

 

Trustee DeFeciani made a motion for the Village Board to be lead agency to hold a SEQR Review on the site plans.  Trustee Silverberg seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Trustee Silverberg made a motion to hold a Public Hearing to review the site plan on December 3, 2013 at 7:45pm. Trustee Gallucci seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Presentation from John VandenOever of the Piermont Marsh Conservancy regarding the NYS/DEC plans to restore the Piermont Marsh, removing invasive species and replacing native grasses

 

John VandenOever spoke about how the Piermont Marsh Conservancy was formed to promote free and open exchange of ideas and information regarding the Piermont Marsh and the DEC’s evolving proposals to study the marsh and explore possibilities to enhance its health.

 

The goals of the Conservancy are to support responsible salt marsh restoration and enhancement efforts. To help educate and raise awareness in the community about the state of the marsh, to work to return the marsh to a more balanced state of greater biodiversity. To work with other organizations to improve water quality in the Sparkill Creek. To promote recreational, educational and research activities in and around the marsh and to identify and advocate for funding sources to improve the ecology of the salt marsh habitat.

 

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The Conservancy welcomes the opportunity to work with people like Betsy Blair and others at the DEC and Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve. They believe that the DEC demonstrates a desire to find the best solution, if any, for the Piermont Marsh.

 

 

Review and Discuss letter from Betsy Blair Reserve Manager of the New York State DEC regarding the NYS/DEC plans to restore the Piermont Marsh

 

The Mayor noted that the letter indicates that original plans for remediating the Piermont Marsh have been pulled back.

 

The letter stated that the DEC wants to reach out to the community to review the planning process of the Piermont Marsh. The Mayor is planning on reaching out to Betsy Blair to come to the Village during the first two weeks of December to start a dialogue and planning about the marsh.

 

Margaret Grace gave to the Board of Trustees, a copy of a petition sent to the DEC, from the Piermont Marsh Alliance and Piermont residents, with over 600 signatures.

 

 

Continuation on Review of Accountants JH Cohen/Reznick Fiscal 1st Quarter report FYE 2014

 

Trustee Blomquist noted that in the revenue section, the Police fees and the Planning /Zoning fees are significantly less then this time last year. Building Inspector Schaub noted that the Planning/Zoning Fees are probably inaccurate and has recently received thousands of dollars in fees, he will check on those amounts.

 

 The Mayor reminded the board that the Village will be going over budget on Retirement expense, which will be paid in December. The Board under-estimated retirement because of the overtime during Hurricane Sandy. This will be reimbursed from FEMA.

 

DPW Supervisor Tom Temple noted that most of the Storm/Snow overtime was due to repairs at Parrelli Park, which will be transferred to the Capital Budget. The overtime will be reimbursed from FEMA.

 

 

Resolution: Authorize the Village Clerk-Treasurer to submit the Return of Unpaid Village Taxes to the County of Rockland

 

Trustee Silverberg made a motion to authorize the Mayor, Deputy Mayor & Clerk-Treasurer to sign and for the Village Clerk-Treasurer to submit the Return of Unpaid Village Taxes to the County of Rockland. Trustee Blomquist seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Authorize Village Clerk to seek Public Bids for the Northshore Walkway project

 

Trustee Silverberg made a motion to authorize the Village Clerk to seek Public Bids for the Northshore Walkway project, and schedule a bid opening on December 16th at 12noon. Trustee Gallucci seconded which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Request from the Piermont Rowing Club to use Village hall for a meeting on Saturday, November 16, 2013 for a member meeting

 

Trustee Blomquist made a motion to approve the request from the Piermont Rowing Club to use Village Hall for a meeting on November 16, 2013 for a member meeting. Trustee Gallucci seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Request from Piermont Ladies Auxiliary to set up a Holiday Festival Booth/Table in front of Village Hall

 

Trustee Silverberg made a motion to approve the request from the Piermont Ladies Auxiliary to set up a Holiday Festival Booth/Table in front of Village Hall on December 8th.  Trustee DeFeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Approval of Warrant

Trustee Blomquist moved to approve the Warrant in the amount of $ 237,197.23 attached to the Minutes.  Trustee Gallucci seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Old/New Business

 

Village Attorney Sevastian asked the Board of Trustees to schedule a Public Hearing on December 17, 2013 to approve the adoption of the Flood Damage Prevention Local Law.

Trustee Gallucci made a motion to hold a Public Hearing on December 17th on the Flood Damage Prevention Local Law at 7pm. Trustee Blomquist seconded the motion and was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

Trustee DeFeciani reported that she met with the Chamber of Commerce and they agreed to adopt one of the two medians in the North Parking Lot.

 

Trustee Blomquist reported that the Fire Department originally received an offer for the pumper for $38,000. After the offer was made the air conditioning system malfunctioned, and the repair estimate is $7,000. The department reported this to the person who made the offer to inform them about the air conditioning. The Board should expect a revised offer.

 

Trustee Gallucci continued the discussion about the renovation of the Train Station. The Building Inspector will get quotes about renovating the Train Station, including renovating the bathroom and putting in a kitchen. One idea is making a 2nd floor apartment and preserving the first floor as historical, or making a one family apartment throughout.

 

The Mayor is concerned about the final punch list for the Rockland Road Bridge. He will reach out to the Village Engineer about the fact that the contractor has not been to the site in awhile.

 

Trustee Silverberg noted that the Storm Surge Resiliency meeting was a success. Scenic Hudson made it a worthwhile meeting. They brought in people from the DEC, who indicated that they will be having representatives attend all future meetings. The next meeting will be held on November 25th at 6pm at The View, for public input. They would also like to start including other people from the County to give input on certain specific issues as they go forward. Mayor suggested having Chris Jensen join the task force.

 

The Mayor asked Trustee Blomquist about the BAN/Bond schedule. Trustee Blomquist met with the Village Clerk, Stephanie Tassello and is recommending the Village continue with BANs and hold off on committing to Serial Bonds at this time. The Mayor would like to look at the schedules of bans and bonds at the next Board of Trustees meeting on November 19th.

 

The Mayor noted that he reached out to the committee for the Pier Building. Members of Lamont and residents of the Village are on the committee.  The first meeting will be held on November 19th from 6-7.30pm.

 

The Village Holiday Party is scheduled for Dec 17th at Cornetta’s Restaurant.

 

 

Executive Session

 

Trustee Gallucci Jr. moved to enter into Executive Session to discuss Personnel Discussion.  The motion was seconded by Trustee DeFeciani and upon vote the Board entered Executive Session.

 

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Trustee DeFeciani moved to exit Executive Session, Trustee Blomquist seconded and upon the vote, the motion was passed and the board returned to regular session.

 

Adjournment

Trustee Gallucci Jr. moved to adjourn for the meeting at 9:35pm. Trustee DeFeciani seconded the motion, which was carried by a vote of 5-0.

 

                                                                                               

                                                                                                           

Respectfully submitted,

Michele Koblick

Deputy Clerk-Treasurer