The time to celebrate our victory is over. We're proud of our Aaa bond rating (the highest rating possible), the fact that we have never approved a budget that exceeded the tax cap and our excellent services. However, we can't rest on our successes. There is a lot of work that needs to be done during the next two years. And, we can't wait to get started! Among goals:
MAKING GREENBURGH A MORE PEDESTRIAN FRIENDLY TOWN---In recent years we have added miles of new sidewalks to the town. We will continue that initiative to add sidewalks --especially near schools. The safety of pedestrians and our children is so important. We are looking at crosswalks around the town - trying to make them safer. New sidewalks are planned next year for Columbia Ave, Central Ave (between Marion and Glendale) and Juniper Road. There are many other locations where sidewalks are needed and we will appropriate funds annually. It's going to take time to make greenburgh a pedestrian friendly community. Every year we will get a little closer.
4 CORNERS--MIXED USE DEVELOPMENT--The four corners in Hartsdale (West Hartsdale Ave, Central Ave, E Hartsdale Ave) has been experiencing difficulties attracting and keeping tenants. Many stores are vacant. A proposal to rezone the 4 corners to mixed use has received significant support from the community. We will be reviewing the proposed rezone during the upcoming term and hopefully taking action to revitalize this corridor. Among benefits: we will ask the developer to contribute towards the construction of a sidewalk on West Hartsdale Ave from Secor to Central Ave.
TECHNOLOGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE-- I hope the town will upgrade our website, make it more user friendly and plan to create a technology advisory committee so the town can be up to date and take advantage of the latest technology advancements. Lots of qualified residents have expressed interest in assisting. The Town Board is reviewing a proposal to turn our MIS office into a full department.
SPRAIN ROAD/ARDSLEY ROAD INTERSECTION SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS - We are meeting with a traffic safety consultant who will be recommending some traffic safety improvements at this location--the improvements could be implemented next year.
RIVERTOWNS SQUARE SHOPPING CENTER NEEDS A BUS STOP- Rivertowns Square is our regions newest shopping center consisting of restaurants and a movie theater. A large apartment complex, hotel and supermarket will soon open. Employees, students and others who don't have cars have to cross the dangerous Saw Mill River Parkway to get to and from the shopping center. I am lobbying the county to create a bus stop at this dangerous location. The closest bus stop is not sheltered and is located on Saw Mill River Road- a block and a half away. In recent years there was one pedestrian fatality -someone crossing the dangerous Saw Mill River Parkway by foot was killed.
CONVERTING THE SHUT DOWN WESTHELP HOMELESS HOUSING INTO AFFORDABLE SENIOR CITIZEN HOUSING--About two weeks ago the County Executive worked out an agreement with the town to convert the abandoned Westhelp homeless shelter into affordable senior citizen housing. The proposal now goes before the Board of Legislators. Hopefully, in early 2018 renovations could start and seniors can enjoy the housing.
HOUSING ON DOBBS FERRY ROAD, MANHATTAN AVE --Elmwood Country Club closed their operations in 2017 after many years. The Town Board will be asked to approve over 100 new homes or a condo development for those who are 55 years of age or over. We are also working with the Greenburgh Housing Authority on an exciting initiative to build more over 80 new apartments for seniors on Manhattan Ave. A new assisted living facility will see construction starting in 2018 at the abandoned Frank's nursery. The town, school & fire districts anticipate receiving over a half a million dollars annually in taxes.
REGENERON EXPANSION-- Regeneron has helped put Greenburgh on the map as the bio tech capitol of the Hudson Valley. I anticipate that significant expansion at the Regeneron site will take place during the next two years.
SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS ON JACKSON AVE-- Need to implement recommended safety improvements on Jackson Ave. Will be working with Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano trying to secure state funding to offset some of the road safety improvements.
ALLOW NON MOTORIZED BOATING ON SPRAIN LAKE-- I have been pushing, unsuccessfully, to allow a limited number of non motorized boats to row on Sprain Lake. Westchester County has resisted this initiative. With a new County Executive in office - I will resume this lobbying effort. Most colleges and high schools that have rowing teams practice early in the AM (before rush hour--around 5 AM). If rowing would be allowed it would provide Edgemont, Ardsley, Greenburgh, Irvington, Hastings, Dobbs Ferry and Ardsley High Schools with the opportunity to provide students with the chance to compete in a new sport. And--more college scholarship opportunities.
COMPLYING WITH TAX CAP AND MAKING GOVERNMENT MORE EFFICIENT--We will work hard to comply with the tax cap and to make government more efficient. We have hired a firm to conduct an audit of operations of the Public Works department. Last year an audit was conducted of the courts. Most of the recommendations in the court audit have been implemented. We plan to approve the first recommendation of the DPW audit: developing health and safety procedures for employees..
WORKING WITH GREENBURGH SCHOOL DISTRICT ON A TECHNOLOGY GRANT TO HELP PREPARE STUDENTS FOR JOBS THAT WILL BE NEEDED TOMORROW! We recently applied for a prestigious grant that could help the Greenburgh school district become a model for the nation. We want to develop a unique partnership: students will be taught robotics, coding, computer programming (jobs that are needed). Working with colleges to provide participating students with free college tuition. The goal: participating students will be able to get hired for great jobs after graduation.
FOOD SCRAP RECYCLING INITIATIVE--We are working with the Greenburgh Nature and creating a food scrap recycling drop off location at AF Veteran park. If residents would compost their food scraps it will significantly reduce the amount of garbage sent to the transfer station and save the taxpayers dollars.
ON LINE PAYMENT OF WATER BILLS-- Water customers should be able to pay their bills on line. Anticipate that this will happen within months.
WATER DEPARTMENT INFRASTRUCTURE ENHANCEMENTS-- The town recently received a grant of almost 5 million dollars from NYS for infrastructure enhancements in our water department. We will be working hard to address water district infrastructure needs in 2017.
POSTAL SERVICE- During the past few years I have actively pushed for improvements in our postal service. I have
been in touch with ranking officials at the US Postal Service, members of Congress. We need to depend on our postal service. Will continue to give this the highest priority.
EDGEMONT INCORPORATION POSSIBILITIES It's possible that a referendum on incorporation of Edgemont as a village could take place in 2018. Under NYS law only Edgemont residents will get to vote. However there will be town wide impacts. We need to prepare for this possibility, whether we think it will happen or not. It's my hope that before a vote takes place that residents of the entire town, including Edgemont, will become aware of the risks, possible service cuts and tax hikes if Edgemont does break away. Between now and any referendum will continue working hard to provide Edgemont residents and the rest of the town with the best services possible.
These are just a handful of initiatives that will be pursued. Again, thank you for your support. And, please feel free to reach out to me anytime you have concerns. My cell phone is 438 1343, my office: 989 1545. My home: 914 478 1219. We want you to love the experience of being a Greenburgh resident. And will continue to treat every concern you have very seriously.
Greenburgh Town Supervisor