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a safety initiative to control motorist speeding...traffic congestion could be reduced in Hartsdale
Thank you George, Andrea and Tom for helping town receive $3.2 million in unanticipated revenue...a safety initiative to control motorist speeding...congestion could be reduced in Hartsdale...
The 2020 proposed budget was released last week and contains a zero percent tax rate increase. Significant credit should go to County Executive George Latimer, Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins, Assemblyman Tom Abinanti for working with localities on a shared sales tax initiative which enabled the town to anticipate about $3.2 million in unanticipated revenue in 2019 and 2020. I spoke with County Executive Latimer Saturday night --he was very pleased that the town, like the county, will not be raising taxes this year. He mentioned that some communities in Westchester are using the revenue for other initiatives and he is trying to find out how many other government entities are going to have a zero percent increase this year. One of our goals: to end the distinction of Westchester taxpayers having the highest taxes in the nation. The town, unlike other government bodies, has never approved a budget that overrules the tax cap that the state approved years ago. And, I don't think we ever will.
My proposed budget includes an exciting new initiative dealing with a major problem: safety. In addition to building more sidewalks around the town I am recommending that the town appropriate $50,000 for initiatives to help us control motorist speeding around town. We want our children to be able to walk around town safely. Funding could be used for speed humps, installation of permanent speed boards on streets around town that would advise motorists if they are speeding, improved crossings, etc.. We will explore what other communities are doing around the nation to make their streets safer -and can test out different approaches.
Regarding the accident that occurred near Sacred Heart Church on Central Ave recently - high ranking officials at the NYS Department of Transportation will be meeting with me, the police, other town officials and church leaders probably next week to inspect the location. The town and many residents are asking for a traffic light that activates when pedestrians are crossing. The state has already approved a blinking crosswalk on Central Ave. Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins arranged the meeting.
Finally, am finalizing the capital budget for 2020 and have spoken with the Commissioner of Public Works and Police Chief about traffic congestion on E Hartsdale Ave-especially during rush hour. One of the problems: The traffic lights are very old and don't use modern technology (sensors). We are exploring the possibility of replacing the lights with more up to date lights that use sensors and can ease traffic congestion leading to and from the Hartsdale train station.