tptp

TOWN OF TUXEDO
line

Recent Town News
Town Council (Town Board)
Tuxedo Union Free School District
Town Planning Board
Town Zoning Board of Appeals

Subdivisions and Development

 

line

Town Board Meeting November 23, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, November 23, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx.  Councilperson McMillen was absent.

After approving several minutes (11/9, 11/10 and 11/17) and the vouchers, Supervisor English opened the Public Hearing on Sign Law Amendments. He read a statement from Town Attorney Marissa Weiss which stated that the purpose of the amendments was to amend the current sign law which is a part of the Town Code. The main issues are:

  • Providing clarity to definitions already in the code
  • Defining types of signs that are regulated
  • Calculation of sign area
  • Types of signs that are exempt from the permit process

There were no comments from the public regarding this law.  The Town Board had also submitted the proposed amendments to the Planning Board for review and comment.  As per Ms. Weiss, that Board is largely in support of the proposed changes.  Their only comments centered around political signs. They have suggested amending the language in the law as it pertains to how long they long these signs can up as well as their removal.  The signs are permitted 30 days in advance of an election and they must be removed 1 week after.  The Planning Board has recommended using the word “mandatory” instead of “encourages” in reference to this timeline.
Town Attorney Weiss explained that mandating the timeline would be an infringement of first amendment rights.   On another note, Supervisor English pointed out that the amendment clarified several issues with sign sizes which he felt was a good addition.  Councilmembers Lindsay and May agreed.
Councilmember Reichgott added that the sign law was only one section of the Town Zoning Code, which the Town Board is presently reviewing in its entirely.  There will be opportunities to tweak it further before it is finalized.  There were no further comments and the public hearing was closed.  The amendments were then unanimously approved. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Item:

  • Resolution to set date for a public hearing on the Woodlands Sewer budget – the hearing was set for December 14th at the regular Town Board meeting. 

Supervisor’s Update:
Supervisor English reported that the Tuxedo Farms LDC for the sewer plant had met and authorized attorneys from Harris Beach to investigate whether or not there are any legal obstacles that will prevent them from opening the sewer plant.  The Board expects a report in December. The Supervisor reiterated that the LDC Board is committed to reaching the deadline for getting the new sewer plant up and running as per the needs of the community.  They are equally committed to protecting the environment and meeting the DEC’s goals for reducing waste deposited into the Ramapo River.
At the Highway Department property, things are moving along with the removal of the dirt pile as well as the stumps.  They are looking into a required sampling program for the material.  The sampling needs to be under the direction of a qualified environmental professional.  The Town has reached out to their Engineer H2M, who is in the process of reviewing what the needs are so they can make a recommendation. 
The police contract is set to expire on December 31, 2020.  Supervisor English and Deputy Supervisor Lindsay have been meeting with Town Attorney Howard Protter and Labor consultant Michael Richardson to get ready for the negotiations with the police.  They are planning an Executive Session on December 14th to update the Town Board members on this matter. 
At the Highway Department property on Long Meadow Road, the Town has tenants whose leases have either expired or will be expiring soon.  The Supervisor, along with Councilmember Reichgott, has been working with Town Attorney Protter on this matter.  They expect to have some proposals to go over with the rest of the Board during the December 14 Executive Session in hopes that they can present proposed leases to the tenants. 
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that at the most recent Zoning Workshop they had discussed conducting an updated survey in order to find out what uses were desired in/for the different districts of the Town.  The survey was subsequently created.  It was then circulated to the Town Board members, who completed it.   It will now be sent out to all municipal Board members.  Once those responses have been collected the survey will go out to community members as well.   
Next, Deputy Supervisor Lindsay revealed that a subcommittee of the Economic Development Committee, PORE (Parks, Outdoor Recreation and Events) have been working on the creation of a Pollinator Meadow.
The meadow will be created on the Palisades Interstate Park Commission’s property near the overflow parking lot at the Junction of Routes 17 and 17A. Volunteers will be removing invasive species and plan to plant an array of native species there in order to attract pollinators (butterflies, bees and other wildlife) They hope to promote it as an attraction in Tuxedo.  Information on this project will be made available on the new Town Website. 
Councilmember May stated that she,Town Clerk Dollbaum and Shari Brooks have all been trained on the new Town website which should be live within the next week or so. Supervisor English added that the Town was also in the process of upgrading the internet service in Town Hall.  

Public Comments:
Evelyn David expressed her concern over the Town’s liability with the new dam going in up in Arden.  She recounted what happened during Hurricane Irene, when the East Village flooded out due to the combination of the dam’s failure and a simultaneous release of water from communities upstream. It resulted in a serious  flood. 
Councilmember Reichgott responded that the Town did not have any jurisdiction over the dam because they did not own it.  Rather, he advised that the New York DEC was the responsible party.  The Town does not have any ownership of the dam in Arden.  In response, Ms. David stated that she believed that the Town could ask for scheduled water releases and she urged the Board to do that.  According to Ms. David, there was a conversation about this between the the Planning Board and the owners of the Arden dam who agreed to scheduled releases.  However when the papers became available, all the responsibility and liability had been put on the Town! The Board agreed that they would review the final plan for the dam.

Discussion Items:

  • Economic Development Subcommittee Event - PORE (Parks, Outdoor Recreation and Events) is planning an event for next Spring which will involve a Plein Air painting event (a number of artists to paint subjects around the Town and then display their work at an event at Powerhouse Park.)  The event will also feature a concert with local bands and artists and various food trucks.  The committee is tentatively looking at May 12-15 with rain dates a week later.  Town resident Deirdre Murphy is in charge of the project.  Ms. Murphy commented that the objective of the event will be to highlight the beauty of Tuxedo.  The themes will be water, landscape and architecture.  
  • Climate Smart Task Force to request schedule for Community Choice Aggregation presentation - The joint committee of the Town and the Park met to discuss possible joint projects.  It was pointed out that a presentation from Good Energy would enable both the Town and the Village to gain a lot of points toward their Climate Smart designation.  Good Energy has not presented for a year so it was decided to schedule a special meeting for them to do so.  The Board will also invite a presentation from Joule.

Department Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department has been busy collecting leaves.  They started in Laurel Ridge and now are working in the Town before working their way out to Eagle Valley.  Leaves need to be out on the curb by December 15, which will be the last date for pick up.  Additionally, they are still working on catch basins.  A new roof is in the process of installation on the records building and Department is also working on a fence at the old sewer plant.  Finally electronic cycling will be taking place at the Highway Garage until January. 
Building Inspector Maikisch announced that there is a new owner at Tuxedo Auto Body.  Also a potential new owner for Tuxedo Gulf will be appearing at the TAC committee this week. 
Town Clerk Dollbaum announced that the new website will a button that will allow residents to subscribe to different alerts from the town so that they can essentially customize which types of information they receive from the Town.  Also, she reminded everyone that Town Hall would be closed on Thanksgiving but that recycling and garbage pick-up would occur the day after.

Supervisor English wished everyone a happy and healthy Thanksgiving and the meeting was adjourned at 8:35 pm.

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting November 23, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 17, 2020

The Town Board held a special meeting on November 17, 2020 at 5pm via WebEx.  All members were present.

Supervisor English explained that the reason for the meeting was to adopt the 2021 Town Budget with an amended Tuxedo Farms Sewer System budget levy. He said it was a 1.7% increase from last year.  Councilperson Reighgott asked if this increase was for properties within Tuxedo Farms itself with no changes for the properties in the rest of the Hamlet? The Supervisor replied that this was correct.  He added that this was to cover “anticipated increases in legal fees and Board member compensation & addition fees to Muni Cap that are related to the anticipated activation of the wastewater treatment plant in 2021.”  The budget was then adopted as amended unanimously and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Special Town Board Meeting November 10, 2020

The Town Board held a special meeting on Tuesday, November 10 at 6pm via WebEx for the purpose of voting on the 2021 Town Budget.
Following some very brief discussion, the Board voted unanimously in favor of adopting the budget as proposed.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 9, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, November 9 at 7pm via WebEx.

Supervisor Update:
There was none.

Town Board Updates:
Deputy Mayor Lindsay reported that on the Thursday previous the Economic Development committee had met with the Orange County Departments of Economic Development & Tourism and Film and took them on a tour of areas available for use/development and they were very excited!  “It’s putting Tuxedo on the map and we will continue to work with them on how to promote Tuxedo.”
Councilwoman Maria May reported that on November 12 they would be receiving training from Civic Plus on the new website.  The old website has been merged to the new one and they have also added additional content and reorganized things to give it a fresh look.  They expect the new site to be up and running by November 25.  She thanked Town Clerk Marisa Dollbaum for all of her assistance.

Monthly Reports:
Supervisor English read submissions from the Justice Court as well as Police Chief Abbott’s police report into the record.  He thanked the Chief for his report further noting that he felt it spoke volumes to the diversity of the calls that the Department faces on a daily basis. 

Vouchers:
The Board voted unanimously in favor of approving vouchers for payment.

Public Hearing: Sign Amendments:
Prior to opening the hearing, Board Attorney Marisa Weiss provided the Board with a brief over-view of the proposed amendments.  The Board has been conducting an on-going review of the Town Zoning code for quite some time, but it has recently come to their attention that there are some interim amendments that are needed to the sign code for issues that keep arising mostly pertaining to ambiguous or unspecified definitions within the code as well as whether or not certain signs are exempt.  Additionally, the Board has expressed some concern with temporary commercial and real estate signs, which in some cases have been remaining on various properties for extended periods of time.  There are a myriad of issues with many of these signs ranging from their size to lack of maintenance and there has been some overall confusion in terms of the language of the law and how things are supposed to work.    Most of the changes proposed in the amendment have already been discussed and reviewed by the Board as part of their overall zoning review and they center around the clarification of certain definitions such as the different types of signs and a more distinctive description of sign area.  Additionally, the amended law clearly identifies those signs, which are exempted from the permit requirement and cleans up some first amendment issues.  The Building Inspector has expressed some concern with the proposed provision that would allow temporary, commercial and real estate signs to be exempt from the permit requirement for 1 year, citing the potential for enforcement issues.  The attorney has recommended amending things as presented to require permits for these types of signs, however they would be no-fee for a period of one year.  This would allow the Building Inspector to keep track of when the signs went up and how long they have been there.
The public hearing was then opened.
Evelyn David requested that the Town consider installing a second directional Trail sign at the end of River Road.
There were no further comments, however the hearing was kept open.
The proposed amendments will next go to the Planning Board for their review and will be discussed again at the November 23 meeting.  Residents wishing to submit comments prior to that can submit them in writing.

Discussion Items – Review of Public Comments 0n 2121 Budget:
The Board discussed the public comments received during the budget hearing at their previous meeting. 
Town Board member Jay Reichgott provided an overview of the comments in order to mobilize the discussion.  Noting that there would be no action associated with the complementary comments of gratitude that were received during the hearing, Councilman Reichgott thanked those residents for their positive remarks.
Next, a request from the Silver Dollars to carry over their unused funds into the next fiscal year was addressed.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay is working with the bookkeeper in hopes of finding a way to make this happen. 
Moving on, the Board discussed comments centered on dissatisfaction with the proposed 2% raises for Town Board members during the pandemic as well as some objections to the larger increase in stipend proposed for the Deputy Supervisor.
Supervisor English proposed that the Town Board members forgo the proposed 2% increase. 
Councilman Reichgott pointed out that, after determining there were sufficient funds, the Town Board had proposed what was essentially a 2% cost-of -living increase to every Town employee that was not otherwise covered by collective bargaining.  This happens to include the Town Board, the Planning/Architectural Review Board, the Zoning Appeals Board and other various Town employees.  For the individual Town Board members, not including the Supervisor, it comes out to roughly $150 each.   This being said, he agrees that these are tough financial times and is willing to forgo the increase.  He feels they should forgo the increase for all of the appointed boards, but it should remain for the other Town Employees. 
The Board was in agreement.
Supervisor English wondered why this was only being considered for Town Board members and appointed officials and not all elected officials.  “Where does it stop?” he queried. 
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay noted that the other elected officials included the Town Judges, Highway Superintendent and Clerk.
Councilman McMillan suggested that the line was drawn for him between those who work for the Town for a living and those who do it for civic duty. 
The Supervisor countered that he believed any elected official was motivated by civic duty.  He further suggested that while he had no issue with forgoing the increase for himself, he did have a problem with making that decision for others.
This was discussed at some length.  Ultimately it was decided that the Town Board members would forgo the increase for themselves only.
Moving on to the proposed increase in stipend for the Deputy Supervisor, Supervisor English stated that it was view that there needed to be an Executive Administration presence in Town Hall on a regular basis during the daytime.   This is necessary so that they can conduct business with contractors, consultants, department heads, Town Employees and residents.  The Deputy needs to work directly with the Supervisor.  For a long time the Town’s executive structure has mostly run on an evening schedule.  In the interest of full disclosure he announced that he would be retiring from his day job in January and that a big part of the motivation behind this decision was his position as Supervisor, which he takes very seriously.  “There is no way that this job can attend to all the concerns that this Town is facing with a Supervisor that can only be mostly available in the evenings,” he stated.  “Most Town Council people have full-time jobs and don’t have the opportunity to be able to work in Town Hall in the daytime on a regular basis.  I think we are very fortunate to have a Deputy Supervisor now who is available and does spend many many hours at Town Hall.  This is an executive administration presence that I think is totally required.  This is $5,000.  Lets not lose sight of that.  It’s $5,000 to allow somebody to able to provide this extra service to work with me in Town Hall.”
Councilman McMillan stated that he respectfully disagreed, noting that the level of hours and participatory effort that had been put forth by other officials in those roles, including himself for 3 and1/2 years, had never been fiscally recognized.  “I never thought of recognizing myself for the extra hours and the weekends that I spent.  I thought it came with the territory,” he noted.  He further stated that in his 7 years on the Board he had not heard of this discussion before much less seen it come to fruition.  It’s not that he doesn’t understand what the Supervisor has outlined.  He recognizes that there is frustration associated with the extra hours required by the job, but in his view there is no good argument to create this new stipend for the Deputy Supervisor.
Councilwoman May commented that the Deputy Supervisor role as enacted by Deputy Supervisor Lindsay over the last year has included $250,000 for the Town, mostly due to the grant work that she has done.  This kind of work is hard to do when one has a fulltime job.  She feels that having an executive team in Town Hall is a good idea.  Just because it has never been done before does not mean that it should not be done now or that it doesn’t make sense to do it.  “We are a large Town with few people running all of the things that have to be done,” she stated.  “I don’t have a problem with re-envisioning the role of the Deputy Supervisor as more than just a councilperson,” she said further commenting that she felt they should “definitely do it.”
Councilman Reichgott suggested that the five most dangerous words in the English language were “we’ve always done it this way,” further commenting that just because the proposed stipend has not existed in the past, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t change things now.  He noted that what was being discussed was a stipend associated with the position and not “money for Michele.”  If the reason for the increase is that Deputy Supervisor Lindsay is available and is doing more work as a result, he feels this is not the way they should be thinking about things.  Rather the question at hand is whether or not to establish a larger role for the Deputy Supervisor position, which would in turn deserve a larger stipend.  He further suggested that they should develop a job clear description of what the role was going to be so that in the future, the Deputy Supervisor would know what they were getting into when they accepted the position.  There followed a discussion of the various responsibilities, tasks and duties associated with Supervisor and Deputy Supervisor roles, specifically those that involve time investment such as the Tuxedo Farms LDC, management of Town properties and rental contracts, Police contract negotiations and the mulch pile cleanup efforts/DEC Consent Order.  “There’s no way that all of these actions could be handled by a Board that basically meets twice a month on two Mondays from 7pm until however long we can keep people’s attention span focused,” commented Supervisor English.
Councilman McMillan responded that everything that had just been laid by the Supervisor out in terms of tasks associated with these jobs had always been present.  There was nothing new. He had accomplished most of these things himself in many years fulfilling the role.  He does not agree with the meat of the Supervisor’s argument and does not see this kind of thing happening in other Townships.
The Supervisor replied that if this line item was going to be a sticking point for Councilman McMillan, the way he understood it, the Councilman could vote against the entire budget.
Councilman McMillan suggested that further conversation on this topic could, and should in his view, be held “off-line. “I think we have said what we had to say for public consumption,” he added.
“Yeah, it comes down to voting on the budget,” reiterated the Supervisor.
The Deputy Supervisor commented that she felt that what was being proposed was a change in the position for the benefit of the Town.
“When you talk about adding an additional stipend,” added Councilman McMillan “just keep in mind that there are several people in the Town Hall that do this as their every day job who had to sacrifice their stipends over the past few years for the financial good of the Town.”
Moving on to another topic, the Supervisor referenced an email sent by Councilman McMillan with regard to tax reduction and suggested they discuss it.
Councilman McMillan agreed and proceeded to outline the contents of the email, explaining that the Town had been through some tough times working to become financially solvent over the past 7 years and that this had only just occurred.  There are some unknowns on the horizon, many of which are fueled by Covid, such as tax revenue from the County.  “To give a tax reduction right now after coming out of six years of proverbial hell trying to get back on track is very risky to me,” he stated.  “Our Moody’s rating is not in the A category yet, we are still in the high Bs.  There are still unkowns out there as far as the development of Tuxedo Farms.  There is even some question as to whether or not Related will really open up the sewage treatment plant even though there is a resolution that says it will open on June 1.”  While he is a supporter of keeping taxes under the cap so that residents can enjoy the associated rebates, he suggested that a tax reduction at present would bring an element of risk during an uncertain time. 
Supervisor English responded by detailing where the reductions were coming from, focusing on a $250,000 fund balance restoration fund that is no longer necessary.  There have also been some changes to fees, particularly the reduction of Workman’s Comp by $55,000 and $14,000 in NYS retirement funds.  Additionally, after conversations with Chief Abbot, $53,000 in equipment funding was removed from the Police Budget.  He went on to detail some of the other expenses within the budget and how they factored in to projected financial health over the coming years. 
While he understands what Councilman McMillan is saying, he feels they are moving forward in a responsible way.
The Deputy Supervisor concurred, commenting that they had been able to reduce expenses and that she didn’t believe they should be taxing people in order to restore a fund balance that doesn’t need restoration.  “We’re basically taxing the taxpayers on what the expenses are going to be,” she added. 
Councilman McMillan responded that he was so used to being backed into a corner financially that he is extremely cautionary, which is why he had voiced his views the way he had in the email.  He asked the Supervisor whether or not he believed the Town was properly insulated financially from any litigation that may arise from the Related project either at the level of he project itself where they are building the homes or at the sewer plant.  “I know that we could possibly get the old plant put to us if they don’t comply on June 1.  Do you feel confident that if one of those scenarios were to come true and it got put to us either way that we would be financially stable enough to stave off that effort?”
Based on the work of the attorneys and the engineers and his best evaluation of the current budget, the Supervisor responded that yes, he did have confidence.
There followed some further discussion about the sewer plant.
Councilman Reichgott commented that while he appreciated Councilman McMillan’s point, he felt the Town was currently in a position where they had sufficient reserves in the fund balances that if they should have something unexpected happen, they would be able to cover it…and given the current state of the economy with Covid, it is in his view a reasonable approach to take the gamble and not increase the fund balances this year.
The Supervisor reminded everyone that the books had not yet closed on 2020 suggested that there was a possibility that they might add to the fund balance in this fiscal year, which would also help.
The lack of budget workshops was discussed.
Councilman McMillan suggested that there were parts of the line-item budget that were hard for the general public to understand and that workshops allowed them to ask questions and gain clarity while also gaining some insight into the overall process.
Councilwoman May responded that she had attended the workshops the year previous and was one of only two people in attendance and one of them and the only one present at the other.  “It was informative for me as a citizen to understand what was going on, however at this time of Covid and with 400 pages of worksheets, it might have been almost impossible to do in the way that they were done last year.”  She further commented that she supported the proposed tax break and that she had made a point of working directly with both the Supervisor and the Deputy Supervisor so that she could fully understand the numbers and feel comfortable with them.
“Hopefully this Covid thing will be over next year,” replied the Supervisor, further noting that he had begun working on the budget the previous July. Unfortunately, he had a health emergency, which required hospitalization, over the course of the past month and this had impacted the process.
Deputy Lindsay added that she felt that they had put together a great explanation of many of the decisions that had been made, which was presented at the budget hearing, and that this had been their attempt to make it more understandable for people. 
Councilman McMillan stated that he was not opposed to a tax reduction, but he felt the need to make sure in a responsible way that leadership was confident that the Town was positioned in a good place “ in case the apple cart did flip over that we were going to be somewhat insulated moving into the next year.” He thanked them for the conversation.

Agenda Items:
Resolution to Appoint Fire Commissioners Jeff Dowding and Paul Eichengreen – The Board voted unanimously in favor of appointing Appoint Fire Commissioners Jeff Dowding and Paul Eichengreen with a term commencing January 2021 and expiring December 31, 2025.
Set Date for 2021 Budget Date – The Board scheduled a special meeting for Tuesday, November 10 at 6pm for the purpose of voting on the 2021 budget.

Department Updates:
Town Clerk – Town Clerk Marisa Dollbaum began by thanking all of the election workers who helped on Election Day.  There were a total of 18 workers spread between three polling locations.   Seven of them were Tuxedo residents. 
The ADA complaint restroom and ramp renovation project is going well.  Work should hopefully be completed by Thanksgiving.
Town Hall will be closed on Wednesday, November 11 in observance of Veterans Day.  Mrs. Dollbaum thanked all Veterans for their service.
The Supervisor interjected to thank Mrs. Dollbaum for a job well done managing the election, which entails a lot of work.
Mrs. Dollbaum thanked the Supervisor, noting the former Clerk Donna Matthews had been a huge help.
Highway Department – The department has been busy picking up leaves and getting ready for the winter months.  They are working on repairing catch basins while the weather is still good.  Additionally, they completed work on the dirt pile utilizing the rented equipment, which was subsequently returned.  They are now looking to contract with an environmental engineer to sample all of the materials that have been “sifted and sorted” The DEC has outlined protocols for analyzing and disposing of the materials and the Town continues to work on this.  Superintendent Dollbaum continues to try and identify authorized people who might possibly be able to take some of the materials away.
Electronic Recycling is currently underway at the Highway Garage. There is a box in the front by the gate, with drop off available between the hours of 7-3 M-F and on Saturdays from 8-12.  No televisions or monitors will be accepted.  Detailed information is on the Town website. 
Orange and Rockland will be performing tree trimming and removal on or around November 24 on Hospital Road, School House Lane, Schoolhouse Road, Mountain Road, Hillside Avenue, Circle Drive, Contractors Road, Orange Turnpike/Old Route 17, and associated side streets.  Effected residents will be informed in advance by notice if there are any trees on their property which need to be trimmed. 

Public Comments:
The Deputy Supervisor went through the list of attendees, un-muting each one to ask whether they had any public comment.
Hallie Gaines thanked the Town Board for all their work, further noting that she greatly appreciated the open conversation and reconciliation amongst them when they did not easily agree on things.  She further thanked them for fighting for “important things” for both the Board and the nominal increase for both the people who are working hard and for people who are struggling like she is. 
A resident who identified himself as Hank commented that it had been a good meeting.  He further extended an offer to utilize a large sign in his front yard that is currently used by the Renaissance Faire for two months out of the year.  Noting that he did not want anything political there, he suggested it could be used for any functions or events such as the Farmer’s Market. 
Irene Denaro thanked the Board for all the hard work they were doing in addressing “so many issues in the Town that have been neglected or just not dealt with for such a long time.”

back to top

line

Notice for Special Town Board Meeting November 10, 2020

Click here to view the Notice

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting November 9, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Notice of Town Board Zoning Workshops November 4 & 9, 2020

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing November 9, 2020

TOWN OF TUXEDO

NOTICE OF HEARING

INTRODUCTORY LOCAL LAW

 

           PUBLIC NOTICE is hereby given that there has been introduced before the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo, New York, on September 28, 2020,

            a local law entitled, “Sign Law Amendments,” which local law would revise the exemption provisions of the sign code. A complete copy of the Introductory

            Local Law is available for inspection at the Clerk's Office.    

NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to Section 20 of the Municipal Home Rule Law, the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a virtual

public hearing on said proposed local law via Webex at 7:00 P.M., on November 9, 2020, further details of which will be included in the public

hearing notice, meeting agenda, and on the Town website, and

            The Town of Tuxedo will make every effort to assure that the hearing is accessible to persons with disabilities.  Anyone requiring special assistance

             and/or reasonable accommodations should contact the Town Clerk.

 

            Dated:            October 27, 2020

                                                       

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 26, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, October 26 at 7pm.  All members were present. 

DEPARTMENT REPORTS:
Recreation Department – Shari Brooks reported that trick or treating will be permitted on Halloween, pursuant to CDC recommendations. (masks, social distancing, passing out candy as opposed to having kids grab it out of a bowl etc.) Additionally there will be a Trunk or Treat event at Powerhouse park during the day where children can come for trick or treating.  There is a strict schedule for the various age groups, which should help to keep the crowd spread out over the afternoon.  Everyone must wear a mask and gloves will be distributed.  Fire Company #1 has decided not to move ahead with their annual event this year due to Covid concerns.  The event will resume next year.
Police – Lt. Norton noted that there would be a police presence at the Trunk or Treat and further there would be some extra patrols on for Halloween night.  Commencing November 1 the PBA will be participating in “No Shave November.”  The money saved by not shaving for an extended period of time will be collected and donated to their charity of choice, which is St. Jude’s Medical Center.  This year they are hoping to step things up a bit by hosting a fundraiser at Powerhouse Park on November 14.  PBA members will set up grills and fire pits and show off their beards while flipping burgers and enjoying live music from Councilman Dave McMillian and friends.
Building Department – Supervisor English indicated that the Board was in receipt of a very thorough, detailed report and that they were planning to divert discussion until their next meeting on November 9 so that they could “really dig in” to some of the questions and comments therein. 
Town Clerk – Donna Matthews reported that construction at the Town Hall was going very well.  People have been inquiring about voting and whether or not the polls will be open as usual.  The answer is yes.  Each District polling place will be open on November 3 from 6am-9pm.  Information pertaining to early voting can be found on the Town website.  Lastly, Mrs. Matthews expressed her gratitude to Claudia Bakhtiary, who recently donated office supplies to the Town Hall. 

PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEMS:
There were none

PUBLIC HEARING ON THE 2021 PRELIMINARY TOWN BUDGET:
Summary of 2021 Budget:
Supervisor English reported that he and Deputy Supervisor Michele Lindsay had been working with the various Department Heads and members of the Town Board to put together a budget that would remain under the tax cap and keep Tuxedo an affordable place to live.  The proposed budget presents a -.68% levy change from last years budget.  They are looking to reduce expenses by making long-term investments in durable equipment such as new trucks for the Highway Department and new police cars. These will be procured through low interest municipal lease-to-own programs. This aging equipment has reached its dependable life span and needs to be replaced. Budget analysis shows that this will reduce expensive maintenance costs for labor and parts and ensure that our public service teams have the tools they need to do their jobs.  They are attending to a long-term liability at the Town’s Long Meadow Road property.  This 24-acre site continues to be under DEC monitoring.  The DEC has imposed a consent order 9 years ago that set expectation for cleaning up a large deposit of construction debris and other contaminants that were illegally dumped on the site.  When completed, the remediation will remove the liability exposure resulting from the potential fines, which could be up to $3,000 per day.  The excavation, material screening and sample analysis is being done by the heavy equipment operators in the Highway Department utilizing rented equipment.  There is an on-site DEC monitoring who is essentially guiding the process to ensure that the required work is being doing.  They have also allocated fund reserves for contractual obligations with the Police to cover unpaid vacation and sick days upon retirement.  Current Tuxedo PBA obligation estimates total $165,000 for officers eligible for retirement.  This will prepare the Town to meet contractual expenses expected in the near future due to the impending retirement of officers.  The Town Board continues to seek grants and State funds for infrastructure improvements.  They are currently working on ADA bathrooms and accessibility ramps at Town Hall with a$225,000 federal grant. Additionally, the Town Hall roof is going to be replaced with funding from a $100,000 SAM grant (State Aid to Municipalities) that was secured through Senator Jenn Metzger.  The Town has invested in LED street lights programs offered by O & R that will reduce electricity cost by an expected $30,000 annually and they have already seen that savings in 2020.  Both the Tuxedo Park Library and the Tuxedo Joint Fire Districts have submitted budgets with no increase.  They hope to reduce tax burdens for residents and business owners by contracting with Beckmann Appraisals to provide appraisals of New York State land in Tuxedo.  This firm was successful in appraising State lands, including Harriman State Park, in the Town of Stony Point and that resulted in a fairer distribution of the tax levy among all taxpayers in that town.
On the revenue side, the Board has been conservative in anticipating State revenues due to possible Covid reductions in New York State sales tax, State aid and mortgage transfer tax revenues.  The sales tax revenue projections from the County have been set at very conservative levels given the uncertainty of the State’s financial condition.  Again, the goal is to keep Tuxedo affordable for residents and businesses and to continue improving the Moody’s Bond Rating success.  They have also been conservative with the Justice Court revenue estimates.  Because they were closed for months due to Covid, the court is still in the process of trying to clear the backlog of appearances, the vast majority of which are traffic violations.  They expect that actual fine collections will surpass their conservative estimates.  The Hamlet Sewer Distict is a situation in flux.  The existing plant is badly deteriorated and needs to be replaced by the new plant that was constructed with the $30,000,000 bond issued by the Tuxedo Farms Local Development Corp..  The LDC Board has passed a resolution intended to bring the new plant on line by July 1, 2021.  As a result, the budgeting is somewhat ambiguous.  The increase of tax level for this District only will be earmarked either for repairs to the existing plant or the transition to the new plant, which is supposed to have higher operating costs.  There is a fund balance of approximately $430,000 that will be partially used to resolve these issues.  Regarding personnel, all non-contractual employees were afforded a 2% increase.  This includes those who serve on appointed Boards.  They are also allocating a modest increase in funds for a Town Prosecutor who works in the Justice Court to streamline the judicial process and ensure that Tuxedo continues to get its fair share of the fines received.  The Supervisor has also proposed an upgrade in the position of Deputy Supervisor because he feels it is necessary in order to attend to the daily requirements of running the Town.  The executive administration requires a daytime presence in Town Hall in order to conduct business with contractors, consultants, department heads, Town employees and Town residents.   The Deputy works directly with the Supervisor and the workload requires a level of engagement that goes far beyond the evening schedules of Town Board meetings and occasional workshops.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay has successful authored and managed several large grants and cost savings initiatives totalling over $350,000 in 2020.  The executive team also manages project oversite for the sewer plant and the cleanup of the Long Meadow Road property as well as contract negotiations and development projects. 
There are also monies in the budget to hire a new full time police officer to replace retired Sgt. Decker.  Funding to add part-time officers in order to fill all shifts will also be provided. 
The Public hearing was then opened. 
Evelyn David stated that her comment did not pertain to the budget but rather she wanted to discuss the construction of a new dam in Arden, the Emergency Action Plan and who is liable.  She requested that the Board put this on an agenda for discussion in the near future.
Claudia Bakhtiary commented that going through the line items could sometimes be a bit “befuddling” and she wished that there could be some kind of guidance the public could look up to follow along.  Noting that 2% was not a terribly big increase across the board for everyone who was working to run the Town, she thanked the Board for their time and efforts.
Kim D agreed that navigating the budget had been a bit confusing but that 2% was seemed a relatively small increase and she also thanked the Board for their hard work. 
Jerry Mattola wondered whether there would be a meeting with Town residents to discuss the sewer plant and the potential increase in rates.  He was told that this would be addressed later in the meeting.
John McNamara commented that times were tough at the moment and Covid was making things especially difficult for a lot of people many of whom found themselves out of work and unable to pay their taxes or their mortgage.  The Town is anticipating lower revenues from the State.  The previous administration worked hard to build back the reserves and he finds it to be complete unacceptable for the Town Board members to give themselves a pay raise. “I appreciate the hard work, but you all knew what the pay was when you were running for the Board and to give yourselves raises in the time of a pandemic when people are out of work is completely unacceptable and especially if you are dipping into the reserves for that.”
Mary Graetzer agreed that a raise a Board raise was inappropriate.  Further she wondered whether there had been any public budget workshops that people could listen to in order to understand how they had arrived at what was being presented.  “Usually, the way it has gone, is that the budget is presented and then the Board has workshop meetings so that the different Board members have a chance to ask questions and discuss what’s going on with the budget…and to my knowledge, that didn’t take place this year.  If it did, it wasn’t in public and I didn’t see any of it.”  She further noted that she had been following the Town Board for decades and that she did not know of a single Deputy Supervisor who had had any salary other than the one that every other Town Board member receives.  She then reiterated that she felt it was extremely inappropriate as well as hurtful to people in the Town that this year had been chosen to raise the Deputy’s salary.
Michael Reardon noted that he hoped everyone was remaining safe and healthy during these difficult times.  He then inquired as to when the budget workshops had been held, further noting that this particular Board had ben “very big” on workshops in the past, but he had not seen anything done for the budget.  Secondly, he wanted to know whether or not police 24-hour police coverage had been restored, suggesting that before any money should be spent, it should go towards the first responders who are protecting residents during these difficult times.  “The explanation of the Deputy Supervisor getting over 70% pay increase from the Supervisor made it sound like the Supervisor needed help.  If the Supervisor needs help, the money should come from his salary not from the taxpayers.”
Andy Berish commented that the Silver Dollars had not been able to go anywhere to spend their allotted money and he wondered whether the Board might carry this funding over into next year so that they might be able to use it in the future or if they would lose it. 
Next, each of the Town Board members were given an opportunity to comment.  Dave McMillan noted that he had provided feedback as requested via an email.  He agreed with some of the public comments, specifically pertaining to the increase in salary for the Deputy Supervisor, suggesting he felt it might not be warranted.  “I didn’t know there was a pitch counter going on for all the efforts,” he commented.  “I certainly put in a lot of effort when I did the job for over three years so, I guess I didn’t understand what the catalyst for that was.”
Maria May stated that she wasn’t sure that people realized that the work of the Town was huge.  “Unless you are on the Board and you see the work that the Deputy Supervisor does, you do not realize the amount of time, the amount of hours, the amount of effort and also the amount of money that comes into the Town because of the work of the Deputy Supervisor….so I think it is definitely ok and right and to the benefit of the taxpayers in this Town that this position would be made more of a fuller-time position.  The increase is definitely warranted.  It’s a lot of work.”
Jay Reichgott noted that he did not have any particular comments to make other than that he had heard the comments from the residents and would take them under advisement. 
Supervisor English then stated that he felt the Town Board should give all of the comments careful deliberation so that they could respond effectively at their November 9 meeting with real focus.  Public comments will be accepting in writing until Thursday, November 5.  These can be submitted via email to the Town Clerk.  The budget is due to the State by November 20.  If necessary the Board will set special meetings to accommodate the process.
The hearing was then closed subject to the receipt of written comments.

AGENDA ITEMS:
Resolution to appoint the Town Clerk- Donna Matthews is retiring effective October 31, 2020. The Board voted unanimously in favor of appointing Marisa Dollbaum to the position of Town Clerk to fill the unexpired term ending 12/31/21.

OTHER BUSINESS:
Budget Modification – Supervisor English made a motion to make a modification to the 2020 budget allowing for an increase of $250,000 to cover expenses associated with the dirt pile remediation cleanup at Highway Garage.  The money will be taken from the unassigned fund balance in the A fund. 
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay noted that the Town was finally moving to remediate the dirt pile and comply with the DEC consent order.  “We are really saving a lot of money by renting equipment and having our highway machine operators actually running the machinery to sort the dirt.”  She cautioned that if they did not move forward with this, they could be facing DEC fines of up to $3,000 per day, as noted earlier in the budget summary.  They feel it is a prudent way to deal with a serious situation.  They had previously allocated monies for repairs to the Town roof, and that allocation has covered the costs of dirt pile remediation. They are now at the point that a further allocation needs to be made that will fully cover the costs of the remediation. Funds for the Town Hall roof will remain allocated and that project will soon be in the bid phase.  
Mr. McMillan wondered if the $250,000 would finish the project or whether or not this was only phase 1 of the project.
The Deputy Supervisor responded that it was just for this year and that there was an additional $250,000 budgeted for 2021 to keep the project moving forward.
Following some further discussion, the Board voted unanimously in favor of approving the modification.
Highway Department Report –Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum reported that rental agreements for the equipment being utilized for dirt pile project had been closed out that day.  The next phase of the project entailed cleaning up by sorting through and separating the material that is left.  They will work on this over the winter.  The department has been busy picking up leaves.  The Superintendent cautioned that if residents rake their leaves and leave them by the street for pick up, they should be sure to remove sticks and branches from the piles so as not to clog the machines. 
They have also been busy readying the plows and trucks for winter and snow season. 
Lastly, it was noted that there is still mulch available for residents at Quarry Field.
Supervisor English commented that he visited the Mulch Pile at the highway garage at least three times per week and he felt that under Superintendent Dollbaum’s leadership the Department was doing a fantastic job.  He thanked everyone for moving the cleanup efforts forward.   There followed a brief discussion
about the mulch pile cleanup and the associated process.
Discussion – Prior to adjourning the meeting, the Board briefly discussed and agreed that they would put the budget statement from earlier that evening into letter form so that it could be widely circulated via the Town website as well as email.

 The meeting was then adjourned.   

back to top

line

Agenda forTown Board Meeting October 26, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

Click here to view a copy of the preliminary budget

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing for the Preliminary 2021 Town of Tuxedo Budget October 26, 2020

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Agenda for Zoning Workshop October 7, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Updated Meeting Notices for the Month of October

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Notice of Town Zoning Workshop October 7, 2020

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 28, 2020

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English said that he had no update for this meeting.
Councilperson McMillen stated that, starting with the next meeting, he would be streaming the meetings live.  This will be in addition to recording the meetings for the Town’s You Tube channel as well as the WebEx. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
The Supervisor stated that there would be no public comments on agenda items at this meeting.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to set rate for Alarm Permits – At the suggestion of Town Attorney Marissa Weiss, the Board agreed that as of January 1, the fee would be $50 a year for residents and $100 for commercial facilities. After the first year, this fee would be cut in half to $25 for residents and $50 for commercial facilities.  It only pertains to alarms that work through a central monitor.  The resolution passed unanimously.
  2. Arden Homestead/Echo Lake Dam request for relief from moratorium – This action is required in order to move this application to the Planning Board. It was passed unanimously.
  3. Orange County Historical Society Arden bridge request for relief from moratorium – this resolution covers the bridge over the dam.  It was also passed unanimously.
  4. Introductory Local Law Sign Permit Amendments and set public hearing date – The changes being considered will be posted on the Town website and the public hearing will be held at the next Town Board meeting on October 13.  The resolution was passed unanimously.

Department Head Updates:
Town Clerk Donna Matthews stated that ADA construction on the Town Hall has started.  They are doing considerable work in the Town Clerk’s office and, as such, it may be necessary for her to work remotely for a couple of days.  If this happens, she will notify everyone.  She also stated that with the election coming up, she recommends that everyone who can should vote early.  The closest place for Tuxedo residents to do this is Monroe.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department was coming to the end of their sign replacement program.  He also noted that there was still mulch available at Quarry Field. 
The Supervisor added that the work to clean up the Highway property was coming also very nicely.

Public Comments:
For the second meeting in a row, Supervisor English decreed that there would be no public comments.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 pm.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 28, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 14, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, September 14, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx. All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English began the meeting by recapping the recent meeting of the Sewer LDC in which it was decided to bring the new plant online as soon as possible and no later than July 1, 2021.
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay stated that as part of her economic development efforts, she has gone ahead and had a a design put together for the Quarry Field billboard.  The sign will promote the Town as a place to live and do business. 
Councilperson May reported that she had had a conversation with garbage contractor IWS about glass recycling which has been an issue lately.   The problem according to IWS is that in Orange County, there is comingled recycling. The method used by IWS to pick up recycling entails the glass getting crushed and then shards get mixed in with the other materials making them all unusable.  The company suggested that the Town set up 2 stations, one in the north and one in the south part of town and then residents could take their glass to those places.  This doesn’t seem like such a good idea to Councilperson May and she is still working on coming up with a way to get Tuxedo residents’ glass recycled. 
Supervisor English added to his report saying that the DEC is very pleased with the progress being made to clean up the dirt pile at the highway garage. 
Councilperson McMillen wanted to know about the progress of mounting the mock website for the town.
Councilperson May responded that she has been in touch with the company several times and they keep saying that they are working on it.
Councilperson Reichgott advised that the ADA improvements to Town Hall (bathrooms, ramps) is now in the paperwork stage and he hopes that the actual work will begin soon.


Agenda Items

  1. Resolution on Retention of Records – This will bring the Town in compliance with State standards regarding records and documents and which ones the Town should keep and for how long.
  2. Sign Application Discussion – This was a long discussion about which signs had been approved and which had not.  Also discussed was what the role of the Building Inspector should be in enforcing sign laws.  The current inspector, Dave Makisch doesn’t feel he has the authority to do much about signs which not in compliance with the code. The Board decided to ask the attorneys to review this section of the code and make suggestions. 
  3. Resolution appointing Jacobowitz & Gubits to defend the Town of Tuxedo in the following tax certiorari proceedings:  JP Morgan Chase Bank, the Tuxedo Club, Inc., Millenium Pipeline Company LLC – This authorizes hiring the Town Attorney to work on these cases.

Department Updates:
Supervisor English has been researching a new lock for the new gate at Lucky Park.  The one he is recommending would have 500 keys that could be distributed to Town residents only. 

Public Comments:
Supervisor English stated that having public comments was optional after which he commented “since it’s 8:43, I’m going to move to vouchers.” He added that anyone having a comment could submit it via email or wait until the next meeting. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 14, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Notice of Town Board Meeting - Exectuive Session Only - September 15, 2020

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting August 24, 2020

Click here to watch a video recordning of this meeting

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting August 24, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting August 10, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, August 10, 2020 at 7:00 pm via Web Ex.  All members were present

Public Hearing Park Rules and Regulations Amendment to local law:
The recent problems in Powerhouse Park, with too many non residents crowding into the Park and then littering and not cleaning up afterwards, were the motivation for putting together a local law that would allow the police to regulate use of the park.  Unfortunately, the Board had not discussed the proposed law among themselves and a copy of the proposal had not been made available to the public, which made having a hearing where the public could comment almost impossible.  Therefore the Board chose to read through the proposal and discuss it workshop style.  The hearing was continued until the next Town Board meeting on August 24.  Click here to read the part of the Town Code that was discussed.  Before the hearing continues, a new copy of the proposed new code will be posted on the Town website. 

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English began his report by announcing that there would be a Sewer LDC meeting held via Web Ex on Tuesday, August 11 at 3 pm.  
The Town received a Judge’s order to remove DeMarino’s equipment from the Highway Department site so that was taken care of. 
The Supervisor further reported that he has been scheduling budget meetings in preparation for the 2021 Town budget.  He also commented that the Town is still accepting bids for the cleaning contract (to clean Town Hall, Police Department, Train Station, Highway Department and the bathrooms at Murphy Field. These bids are due on August 17.  
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that she was finishing up work on the SAM grant (State and Municipal Facilities Programs) for $100,000 to replace the Town Hall roof. 
Councilmember Reichgott gave a quick account of his work on the grant for adding an ADA handicap accessible restroom to the first floor of Town Hall in order to accommodate people using the court.  Since the Town has now received more money than they initially thought they would need, they have decided to make changes to the second floor restroom in order to make that ADA compliant as well. 
Councilmember May reported that the new town website, currently in development, would be moving on to the next step, which involves the developer building a “staging website,”

Discussion Topics:
1-Image for Quarry Field billboard – the plan is to reproduce the main image from the new website with a line underneath that reads “visit our new website” followed by url.  Under that will be the slogan ‘Gateway to Orange County.”

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Mary Graetzer wondered why the Town was hiring another assessor to reassess the stand lands in Town when they already had an assessor in their employ.  She further wondered why the current assessor couldn’t do the work.  She was told that this would be addressed  when that item came up on the agenda.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to approve reopening plan for Tuxedo Town Hall-Covid 19 pandemic – The Town Board has written a plan for reopening the building which follows the executive orders from the Governor.  The plan was approved unanimously although the details of the plan were never divulged to the public.
  2. Resolution approving Beckmann Appraisals proposal for reassessing State Lands – Assessor Jim Davies stated that the reasons for hiring an outside assessor are 1-he’s not an expert on vacant land and 2-he will be considered as biased by the State where an outside assessor would not.  The Board had more questions and decided to put off the decision on this until the next Town Board meeting.  In the meantime, they will work on getting answers.

New Business:
Planning Board Chair John Banyo appeared to bring the Board up to speed on 2 projects that are currently before the Planning Board.  The first one is an Audio Visual Production Center for the Jehovah’s Witnesses.  This is a large project which encompasses 249 acres only 7 of which are in the Town of Tuxedo (the rest is in the Town of Ramapo). The site plan doesn’t show any development on the 7 acres.  The rest of the development is extensive and includes a 880,000 sq. ft. building with studios, a clinic, and a cafeteria.  There are also plans for 645 residential units (studio or 1 bedroom) and 1255n parking spaces.  They will need a freshwater wetlands permit from Tuxedo as well as a driveway permit.  The Ramapo Town Board has requested lead agency status and the Planning Board has agreed to that but requested that the Tuxedo Town Board be designated as an involved agency.  The other project is an addition to St. Joseph’s Home.  This is entirely in the Town of Ramapo but the access road (which is the current St. Joseph’s access road) is on the Tuxedo town line.  They are proposing a 20,000 sq. ft. addition with 24 additional beds.  Also a separate 3700 sq, ft, house with 5 bedrooms is being proposed.   Mr. Banyo also informed the Town Board that the Planning Board would be discussing the rebuild of the Echo Lake dam at their meeting on Tuesday, August 11.   

Public Comments:
Jerry Mottola commented that there have been many bears on his road and wondered if there was any way to get them tranquilized and moved.  The answer was no.  The DEC will not do this. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting August 10, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Tuxedo Town Hall Reopening Monday August 3rd, 2020


Esteemed Town Employees, Town Board colleagues, Tuxedo residents, and visitors.

The Tuxedo Town Hall is now open to the public. This follows many weeks of restricted access that was intended to protect Town employees and the general public. Now, Town offices, including the Town Clerk, all have regularly scheduled hours in order to serve you. Hand sanitizer will be at each door and masks are required to enter the building.

The Justice Court, our busiest unit, will resume “in person” operations this week. They have a backlog of cases to adjudicate so managing the crowds will be a concern. We will limit the number of people in the building at any one time and the flow of traffic will be unidirectional. Visitors to the court will enter through the front door, be admitted to the courtroom, go before the judge, and exit through the side door in the courtroom.

Visitors to the second floor, for the Building Department, Assessor, Recreation Department, Supervisor’s Office, or for any other purpose will be directed to enter through the back of the building, up the ramp. Visitors will be advised to call the person they are meeting to either set an appointment or to have someone open the door.

Town Board Meetings will continue to be held via WebEx until further notice. The Community Room, where we normally hold these meetings, is small with poor ventilation and  thus not suitable for any size crowd. I hope that in the fall we can begin hosting meetings in person. The Community Room is also a meeting space for our senior citizens so keeping them safe will be an important factor in deciding our public access policy.

All outgoing voice messaging must be updated to clarify that Town Hall is open and that staff are here on a regular schedule. Our webpage message will be updated and all signage should reflect these changes.

As the pandemic continues to unfold The Town Board, working under the direction of The Governor’s Office and Orange County officials, will update our  emergency response as necessary. These plans are all subject to change. 


We continue to move forward and strengthen our community. So, stay safe, work together, and continue to help those most in need.


Respectfully,  Ken English - Town Supervisor

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting July 27, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, July 27, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx.  Councilmember McMillen was absent.  

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English opened the meeting by giving an update on what has been happening in and around Powerhouse Park.  The situation began with an influx of hikers who came mostly to enjoy the trails in Harriman State Park and were parking all over the place—on the roads in the East Village and up and down Route 17, all of which are no parking areas.  The Town responded by putting up new No Parking signs everywhere and the police wrote many tickets.  The goal was to get the hikers to park in the commuter lot.  They had some success with that.  The next problem area was at the Lucky Skate Park, again with hikers parking there.  Eventually, the Highway Department installed a gate with a lock in that area,  which solved the problem. At the same time, police details were increased which meant bringing in extra part timers.  Now there is still a huge influx of non residents arriving who want to access Powerhouse Park with some staying there and others going through and up to “Bubbles” to swim and just “hang out,” barbequing and swimming.  They have left behind a huge mess with garbage everywhere.  The Supervisor and police officers have hiked up there and explained to the people they found t that the area was being shut down to non residents.  A group consisting of Highway Department workers, police officers and many local citizens cleaned up much of the garbage at both Powerhouse Park and Bubbles. Police details will be continued and the Board will be checking the Town Code to make sure that all of the “unwanted activity” there is clearly unlawful.  Movie Night was held on Friday, July 24th in Powerhouse Park.  It was very successful with over 60 people showing up to enjoy music and a movie. 
The Town continues work on clean-up at the Highway Department property.  The Board has put aside $250,000 to accomplish this.  So far they have rented a screener, a bulldozer, an excavator and a contamination condemnation meter.  The Highway Department has designated two men to work on the project which they estimate will take about 5 months. 
Regarding the Hamlet sewer plant, a WebEx meeting has been scheduled with the Hamlet Sewer District LDC Board on August 11.  They will be putting together a presentation of what is involved and what the costs might be with bringing the new plant on line. 
Agenda Items:

  • Town of Tuxedo State Land Assessment Study – A presentation was given Bill Beckman from the Town of Stony Point detailing the proposes to reassess the state lands in the Town of Tuxedo, which would increase the tax base.  To see a copy of this presentation plus an analysis of the State owned land click here and here
  • Cleaning and Refuse Collection bids – The bid from IWS for Refuse collection has gone up but ultimately the Board awarded them the contract.  The Town only received one bid for the cleaning contract and that bid was not filled out correctly. Town Clerk Donna Matthews informed the Board that she had received 2 inquiries from additional firms after the deadline for bids had passed. After some conversation with Town Attorney Howard Protter, the Board decided to reject the one incorrectly filled out bid and put the contract back out hoping that the other two firms would get bids in this time. 
  • Changes to Town Code, Chapter 19, Article II: Park Rules and        Regulations – The changes are to spell out prohibited activities and to set a fine for each offense. There will be a public hearing on this at the next regularly scheduled Town Board meeting on August 10. 
  • Changes of procedure for Court Prosecutor – Donald K. Sanford, Esq. was appointed as Town Prosecutor.  The Town will maintain a list of prospective prosecutors to be used in the event that Mr. Sanford cannot be present.
  • Resolution of revised Fair Housing – This is required for eligibility for Community Block grants and it was approved unanimously.
  • Award contract for Town Hall ADA improvements – The Town received a grant for this project.  They bid it months ago but all the bids came in too high.  Subsequently, they received more money from the County for the project.  They awarded the bid to WestStar Tech Services Corp. for $198,405. 

Items for Discussion:

  • Application for COVID-related FEMA funds – this discussion was postponed due to Lt. Norton being on vacation as the Board needs his input.
  • Parking lot on Post Office Property – is something the Board would like to consider as soon as part of their Community Funding Application (CFA) as soon as those grants open up again.
  • CFA grant matching funds – The Board won’t know what that amount is until they know the cost of the project.
  • Graphics for Quarry Field Billboard – Councilmember Reichgott has just discovered that the Town owns this sign.  Since the information on it is now a year old, he feels the Board should come up with ideas for what should go there.  Several ideas were brought up (graphics from the website, having the Economic Development Committee make suggestions, something that would point back to the Town website which can be continuously updated unlike the billboard) although no definitive plan was decided on.

 

Department Head Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department is finishing up with patching the roads and getting ready for line striping.  They are also working on the dirt pile at the Highway Garage. 
Town Clerk Donna Matthews reported that her office is running smoothly during the shut down for Covid 19. She further commented that her ex husband had passed away on Sunday and she wanted to commend the police department who were very helpful after her son found his father.  She also thanked all the residents who had come out to help clean up the mess at Powerhouse Park as well as the police for their work in patrolling Powerhouse Park and helping to enforce the rules there. 
Supervisor English added that the Town Court is scheduled to open on August 5 and everyone is working to make sure it goes smoothly.  The details are yet to be finalized.

Public Comments:
Deirdre Murphy thanked Councilmember May for all her work on the website. Sue Scher commented that she felt it had been a very good, thorough meeting.

 Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to discuss contracts and litigation with the Town Attorney. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting July 27, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Notice of Zoning Workshop July 29

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold Public Workshop to review Zoning changes on Wednesday July 29th at 7:00 pm. This workshops will be held virtually via WebEx. (Log onto Tuxedogov.org and click the WebEx icon at the top of the page. To dial in 408-418-9388 Access Code 796-956-205)

There will be No Public Participation

back to top

line

Special Town Board Meeting July 20, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, July 20, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx.  All members were present.

This was a special meeting called for two agenda items only.  The first item was the annual presentation from Town Auditor Andrew Arias of Cooper Arias.  To see the Powerpoint presentation given by Mr. Arias, click here.

The second agenda item was a public hearing on a CFA (Consolidated Funding Application) grant.         Deputy Supervisor Lindsay opened the hearing by stating that she had recently learned that the Consolidated Funding process has been delayed indefinitely because of Covid 19.  The hearing had already been scheduled so they decided to go ahead with it.  The Deputy Supervisor noted that she had received some good comments from members of the Town Center Committee arm of the Economic Development Committee.  Copies of the 2019 application were circulated. This year the Town had planned to add the preliminary drawings done by engineer Al Fusco pertaining to the vehicle and parking law changes recently addressed by the board. No action has been taken as of yet on this plan and Supervisor English stated that no action would be taken until the Board had heard from all the residents who would be directly affected by it.   To see a copy of the 2019 application, click here.
                                                      ¸

back to top

line

Notices for Special Town Board Meeting July 20, 2020

Click HERE to view the Financial Report Notice

Click HERE to view the Notice for the Public Hearing on the Consolidated FUnding Application (CFA)

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting July 13, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, July 13, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English stated that the Town remains under a consent order from the DEC at the old Perfect Cut property (mulch pile), which has been in place for about 10 years.  There is now the potential for fines for non-compliance.  The Town has put aside $250,000 and under the direction of new case monitor, Larry Ricci, has rented equipment to work on the site.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has dedicated 2 employees for the work. The Town has also rented a meter to test the dirt that they are screening.  The employees will be sifting through the entire dirt pile and sifting out all the various contaminants that have been discovered.  No contaminated soil will be allowed to leave the site. 
The new hamlet sewer plant needs to be brought on line.  The existing plant has reached the end of its lifespan.  Supervisor English reported that he would be meeting with representatives of Related on July 15 to discuss the process and that he hoped to hear an update on their plans for the Tuxedo Farms property at that time as well. 
RFPs have been issued for the garbage contract as well as for a professional cleaner to clean Town Halll, the Police Station, the Train Station, the Murphy Field restrooms and the Highway Department. 
Since this region is now in Phase 4 of the Coronavirus remediation, the Board has started to think about reopening Town Hall.  Noting that he had not received any complaints from the public, the Supervisor commented that he felt that the Town Hall personnel has responded well to constituents during the closure.
Councilmember McMillen stated that he has negotiated with Optimum a wireless upgrade for the entirety of Town Hall as well as an upgrade for the Community Room. 
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay has been keeping track of the deadline changes for the Census.  She stated that it was very important for everyone to be counted so that the Town would be eligible to receive all the possible money it could. The deadline is currently in mid-August. As a follow-up to the Economic Development webinar, “Moving Tuxedo Forward,” she said there were so many expressions of support from various leaders and she wanted to follow up on all of them so she will be calling another meeting soon.   She also announced that the Village of Tuxedo Park has voted to become a climate smart community.  She hopes that there are projects that the Town and Village will now be able to work on together. 
Councilmember May reported that she is still working on the new Town website. 

Agenda Items:  

  • Sign Applications-the Town has received some applications for real estate signs.  As such the Board is in the process of reviewing the zoning code in order to insure that the applications are in compliance.  While they are at it, they are also considering whether they might want to make any changes to the existing code. 
  • Resolution settling Tax Certioraril proceeding – this proceeding was brought by the estate of Alex Salm.

   
   
Other Business:
Town Auditor Andrew Arias will give his presentation on the 2019 Town audit and the year to date finances on Monday, June 20 at 7 pm via WebEx.  There will also be la public hearing about a CFA grant (State Economic Development grant as opposed to the CDBG grants which are federal) at that meeting.  Plans are to add some engineering drawings to the application which was being worked on last year. 

Items for Discussion:

  • Remediation of Welcome to Tuxedo Signs – Highway Superintendent Dollbaum and his department will take care the remediation of damage that was done to the sign coming into Tuxedo from the South by the construction crew working on the Sloatsburg road diet work.)
  • Movie Night at Powerhouse Park jointly organized by the town Recreation Department and the Parks & Outdoor Recreation Committee of the Economic Development Council will be held on July 22
  • Security at Powerhouse Park – There have been many non-residents picnicking and barbequing at Powerhouse Park.  Signs have been erected stating that the area is for residents only. More signs are coming!  The Board will ask the police to enforce this. 
  • The Board discussed their responses to a survey that Town Planner Bonnie Franson had given them so she can schedule any further workshops that might be needed.
  • A zoning workshop was scheduled for July 29.  There will be no public participation. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting July 13, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 21, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, June 22, 2020 at 7:00 pm via WebEx.  All members were present. 

Town Supervisor/Town Board
Supervisor English began his remarks by reporting that the Economic Development event or “Moving Tuxedo Forward” held on Saturday, June 20 at 10 am, had been very successful with close to 100 people logged on to attend.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay mentioned that she thought the comments made by the elected officials who were present were particularly helpful especially when it came to addressing the financial situation that the whole State faces right now.  She added that there were “a lot of things that could still be done,” and said she would circle back to her committee members to follow up on the suggestions that were made. 
Next, the Supervisor announced that he wanted to address the executive order which had closed Town Hall so the Board could formulate plans for opening the Hall and allowing people in to transact business.  He suggested that  Town Hall should be open with limited access to the employees with his main concerns being traffic flow and maintaining a healthy environment.  He further suggested putting a notice on the door outlining the process which will include only one person at a time to approach the window for service and markers on the floor to help people maintain a social distance.  Town Attorney Marissa Weiss advised the Board that they would need an Executive order outlining the process.  The attorneys will work with the Board on the details.  The original Executive Order has expired so they will need to extend it with some modifications. 
Councilmember Reichgott reported that the ADA improvements for the courtroom for which the bids were rejected at the last meeting, was being re-advertised in the coming week with some changes to the project.  Also, he announced that there was now more money available for the Community Block grants due to Covid and the Town has received additional money for the project. 
Councilmember May commented that she was still working on the new Town website and now has the first mock up of site.  There was some discussion about what things various people want to see on the site.  The big one seems to be the ability to accept payments online.  The Board will look into this. 
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay stated that since comments from the public are not allowed at the zoning workshops, people have been asking when they will be able to ask questions and get responses.  The answer is that there will be several more workshops as the Boards work on the Zoning Code and public hearings, where the public can be heard and ask questions.  These meetings will probably start in September. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none. 

Agenda Items:

  • Resolution to approve sign permit – Longstreet & Associates – Tuxedo Park Fine Homes is looking to put a sign on property located on Route 17 near Stevens Lane advertising commercial property for sale.  They are looking to have the sign up for a period of one year.  Upon checking the Board finds that the property in question is not zoned for commercial use.  There is some confusion between the different maps marking the zoning in Town.  Currently the property in question is zoned residential and it is marked to remain residential in the upcoming zoning amendments.  The Board took no action on this item pending clearing up the confusion on the zoning maps.  Building Inspector Maikisch was directed to let the applicant know.
  • Discussion – Outdoor Dining (Restaurants) – Since indoor dining starts on 6/23 and there are only 4 restaurants in town (neither Tuxedo Sushi nor Steve’s were interested in outdoor dining) the Board decided to let Building Inspector Maikisch make the determination on this. 

 

Department Head Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum said he had heard grants for sidewalks mentioned in the Economic Development Conference and would be interested in getting one.  He was given information from several Board members and it was decided that he would get together with Councilmember Reichgott and walk the sidewalks so they could decide what to apply for. 
The Superintendent said he and his crew had been out patching roads.  They have done Mombasha, Brammertown, Susan Court, Alma Court, Helmstown and are currently on Benjamin Meadow Road.  He plans to start chip sealing on July 6.  Soon, they will begin changing street signs in Laurel Ridge, Clinton Woods and the north end of Town. 

Public Comments:
Irene DeNaro wondered what had happened to the stop sign in Laurel Ridge.  The signs were missing for several days but are back now.  No one knew the answer to this.  New signs were ordered and installed. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from the attorney. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting June 21, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Tuxedo Moving Forward - A Town Development Summit

The Tuxedo Town Board will host a WebEx Webinar with Residents and Elected Officials on Saturday, June 20 from 10am-12pm.

Click here for more details.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 8, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, June 8, 2020 at 7:00 via WebEx.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor’s Report:
Supervisor English commented that the Board has been holding Zoning Workshops which he personally finds very helpful in bringing him up to speed on planning and zoning issues in the Town.  The workshops have been led by Town Planner Bonnie Franson.  There is no public participation in the workshops but public hearings will be happening  down the road and that’s where the public will be able to participate.  In the meantime, he feels that the Town Board and the members of the Planning and Zoning Board who have chosen to attend the meetings are all getting a good education about the Town’s Code. 

The Supervisor then remarked that he was having a hard time coping with “everything that’s going on in our country” right now.  He expressed his fervent hope that everyone will actually mean the words they say in the pledge of allegiance and make this country fair and equitable for everyone. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution for police officer promotion. - In the wake of Sgt. Decker’s retirement, police officer Michael Eichengreen was promoted to Sergeant and was sworn in.  A ceremony where the new Sergeant received his badge and bars and was congratulated by fellow officers was shown via WebEx.  The new sergeant’s wife, son and parents were present.
  2. Finalize plans for the “Moving Tuxedo Forward” event to be held on June 20th via WebEx – Members of the different sub-committees that comprise the Economic Development Committee will present descriptions of what they have been working on to a panel consisting of County Executive Steve Neuhaus, State Senator Jen Metzger and State Assemblyman Karl Brabenec.  Members of the public are welcome to log in and listen as well.
  3. Update on Website – Councilmember May reported on her ongoing work on the Town’s upcoming new website.  They are currently working on the design criteria and are looking for pictures to post as well as discussing a Town logo

Set schedule for future Zoning Workshops and plan for public. Hearing – The next workshop will be on June 17.  The Board thinks they might need 2 or 3 more workshops after that.  They hope to get
     to public hearings by September.


Public Comments:
 

The Board then held an informal discussion about the possibility of any protests or gatherings of people looking to express their feelings about what is going on in this country.  They have had some inquiries from a group of people who would like to gather and express their feelings.
 Sue Scher said she represents a small group of Tuxedo residents who want to to gather and share views about systemic racism.  They are not affiliated with any organized groups.  They want to be sure they are socially distanced.  They have heard that Chief Abbott and the police department are interested in working with them and they are pleased about that.  No date has been determined as yet for a gathering but they want to make sure they welcome people from all parts of Town. 
Supervisor English commented that the Town Board looked forward to hearing more from this group.  They are amenable to working with them and will try to remove any obstacles that might exist for their gathering.  The Board very much wants to support free speech and citizen involvement. 
Next, the Supervisor commented that the Board would like to set up a system where each section of the Town would have a dedicated time slot during which they could  come and discuss the issues that concern them with the Board.  He noted that there were “lingering concerns’ in the East Village about the Lucky Skate Park.  Over the past weekend, there has been vandalism there.  Donna Matthews observed that there have been problems with this park for a long time although they are getting worse because of Covid-19 and the fact that people are around and looking for things to do.  There is a lot of traffic going in and out of the park and cars are parking in the woods.  There are also A.T.V.s coming in and out. She reported that last weekend a lot of graffiti was painted in the park and, despite the fact that there is supposed to be no parking, people are parking there anyway.  The kids she saw in the park over the weekend did not live in Town.  At the moment, she feels the Park is not safe for use by younger kids.  Also, there is garbage everywhere.  There is also graffiti and lots of out of town cars parked at Powerhouse Park.  There seems to be a lot going on at both Parks and she doesn’t feel it’s just hikers.  Residents of the East Village are becoming more and more concerned about what’s happening in their neighborhood.    She wondered if the Town could put up signs stating that the Parks were for use by residents only.  The Board discussed with Highway Superintendent Dollbaum installing a gate that could be locked (leaving ample access for fire trucks). It was agreed that this could and would be done as soon as possible. Ultimately, Supervisor English stated that he wants the Board to get together with residents of the East Village to find out what their needs and desires are for a permanent solution.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay suggested they consider applying for a community block grant to pay for improvements to the parks. 

Department Head Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum commented that there was still mulch available for residents, although he finds that the demand for it has diminished.  His department is getting ready to do their annual road work.  They are also working on inventory mapping.  Councilmember May wondered about installing a doggie bag dispenser and receptacle for collecting the waste at Quarry Field.  The Superintendent said he would look into it. 
Police Chief Abbott reported that he was still having problems with parking along Route 17 because the roads in Harriman State Park remain closed.  He has also been working on the problem in the Lucky Park. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting June 8, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Notice of Town Zoning Workshops June 4 & 17

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 27, 2020

The Town Board met virtually via WebEx on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at 7pm.  Councilmember McMillan was absent.  

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English began the meeting by announcing that a Memorial Day video featuring the May 25 Memorial Day Celebration had been posted on the Town’s YouTube Channel.  He reported that it had been a good, if abbreviated, ceremony and thanked those who took part.  Next, he reported that he and Deputy Supervisor Lindsay had listened to Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus’ daily County report on Covid19 (available on Facebook) and repeated some of the latest numbers and information given there.  He emphasized that in order for businesses to reopen, they need to have a safety plan in place as well as a signed, one-page affirmation that they will follow the Governor’s orders about social distancing and masks.  Phase Two is expected to begin on June 9th.  
Councilmember May reported that the Town’s new internet consultant, Civics Plus, had sent out a survey about what people want to see in a new website which had received a large response.  It seems like most people want to see a community calendar and reporting on community events.  
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay announced that Moving Tuxedo Forward would take place virtually on June 20th.  During this event, members of the Economic Development Committee will be making reports on what they’ve been working on to Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus as well as State Senator Jen Metzger and State Assemblyman Karl Brabenec.  

Agenda Items:
1.    Discussion – Outdoor Dining – The Board concluded that in order for local restaurants to open for outdoor dining, they would need to have site plan approval from the Planning Board.  The earliest that this would be possible is June 9th.
2.    Waiver for 30 wait to Tuxedo Hospitality (Steve’s Pizza) to upgrade liquor license was unanimously approved.
3.    Resolution of adoption of Moratorium on Development Approval – this is already in place and the Board unanimously approved the extension for 6 months.  
4.    Resolution approving sign permit for Farmer’s Market was unanimously approved.
5.    Resolution to approve Zoning and Planning Board Members to attend training – Since members are required to do a certain number of hours of training on an annual basis, it was decided that they could attend the Town Board’s workshop meetings regarding the upcoming zoning code amendments and that the time spent at those workshops would could toward their training.  

Other Business:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that Engineering Consultant Al Fusco had informed her that all the bids on the proposed installation of the ADA improvements (ramps and automatic doors into the courtroom and upstairs Community Room plus an ADA compliant bathroom installed next to courtroom) were too expensive.  The Town had applied for, and won, a community block grant to pay for this work but the bids way exceeded the amount of the grant.  It was agreed that the Board would send the projects out for rebid but this time separated into the different projects rather than as one project.  

Department Head Reports
Police Chief Abbott reported that the Police Department was working on the hiker parking issues that have been ongoing in the East Village.  Town Clerk Matthews commented that parking by the Lucky (Skate Park) is bad and that the area needs No Parking signs.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department is patching roads and getting ready for roadwork, which will be done in July.  He also commented that the solar company he has been talking to about converting the highway garage to solar energy reached back out to him after seeing the recent upgrade in the Town’s Moody’s rating.  

Public Comments:
Jerry Mottola asked for an update on the Post Office land just south of the building (had been looked at for a possible municipal parking lot). He was told that this is still under consideration however the Town will need to find funding for converting the property to a parking lot. Perhaps this might happen in next year’s budget.  

The vouchers were approved and the Board adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from Town Attorney Howard Procter regarding a personal issue.
 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting May 27, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Covid-19 Update From Supervisor English - Posted 5/23/2020

Orange County is included in the Mid-Hudson region which is expected to re-open with Phase 1 on Tuesday, May 26, provided that we meet the criteria for Contact Tracers. If you or someone you know is interested in helping our region by becoming a Contact Tracer, the following notice contains links for the training process. The notice also includes re-opening guidance and guidelines for businesses.

On behalf of County Executive Steve Neuhaus:

Per Governor Cuomo, the Mid-Hudson Region will be opening on Tuesday, May 26th, contingent upon having the required number of regional contact tracers signed up and certified. To that end, the County Executives in the Region have agreed to be sure that each does what is needed to fully meet this metric. 

If you are willing to be a contact tracer or know someone else who will, please do the following no later than 5:00 pm Monday, May 25th:

  • Volunteers will need to take a free course and the exam from John Hopkins University (link is here). When filling out the online application, it initially shows a fee of $49. A discount is applied upon checkout making it no cost.

· Provide your name and e-mail address to Michael Ventre, Deputy Commissioner of Orange County Health Department (mventre@orangecountygov.com).

· Provide Deputy Commissioner Ventre with a copy of your certification upon completion of the course/test (scan and e-mail, or text or e-mail a photo of it).

· Please note: if you have already done the steps above, you do not need to resubmit the information.

For ore information on:

· Phase 1 of the re-opening, visit https://forward.ny.gov/

· The Empire State Development website has re-opening guidance and guidelines for businesses: https://esd.ny.gov/

  • Contact Tracing:
      • The role of a contact tracer will involve calling people throughout the County who may have contacted a COVID-19 positive individual and collecting and entering data with respect to their whereabouts and individuals they have encountered.
      • To be a contact tracer, New York State requires the completion of an online training and certification program. According to the State, this online course and exam takes five hours; however, most people seem to complete it in roughly an hour. 

 

back to top

line

Notice of Town Zoning Workshops May 20 & 28

Click here to view notice

back to top

line

Resident Survey - New Town Website - Posted 5/17/2020

The Town will be upgrading their website using CivisPles. Before finalizing the contract they would like resident input to see what things people would find useful on the site. Please take a minute and complete the small survey using the link below:

New Town Website Survey

 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 11, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, May 11, 2020 at 7:00 pm virtually via Web Ex.  All members were present.

Supervisor’s Update:
Supervisor English began his update by reporting the numbers from County Executive Steve Newhaus’ daily update to Orange County. In regard to reopening Town Hall, which he said would not happen until the Governor gave the go ahead, he reported that he had been working with various members of the Town Hall staff to put together a plan for safely reopening the building.  
Town Board Update:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that she has been involved in working on the plans for Memorial Day, which are still in the beginning phase.  So far, the Committee is leaning toward holding the traditional ceremonies in Southfields and at the Monument in Town.  Any other activities will be postponed until a later date.  
Councilperson May reported that the Town’s new Website consultant, Civics Plus, is in the process of finalizing the survey they will be circulating to help ascertain what features Town residents are looking for on the website.  She also reported on the Town’s thank you video to First Responders and essential; workers that she has been working on.  The video can be viewed on the Town’s You Tube Channel.  
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay announced that Moving Tuxedo Forward would take place on June 20.  At this events the various committee who have been working on the Economic Development will present what they’ve been doing to Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus, State Senator Jen Metzger and State Assemblyman Karl Brabenec.  This will be done either by video conference or in public if allowed by then.  The public is invited to attend either form of the presentations.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:
1-Resolution to grant Moratorium Waiver to Augusta Properties – This was passed unanimously.  There will be a public hearing on this project at the Planning Board meeting on May 12.
2-Resolution to schedule workshops for Zoning Code/Comprehensive Plan – The Supervisor stated that they are having a hard time finding dates, which work for Board members as well as Town Planner Bonnie Fresno.  They will continue to work on this scheduling via phone.
3-Resolution adopting Final Consolidation Plan – This was unanimously passed.

Department Head Updates:
Police Chief Abbott stated that his department was preparing for another large influx of hikers over the weekend.  They will again be ticketing people who park along Route 17.  There will, however, be free parking available in the lower commuter lot. (on weekends only). The police are also conscious of extra parking in the East Village and will be patrolling the area.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department has finished up tree trimming for the year and will be segueing into more roadwork.   

Vouchers were discussed and approved and the Town Board left to go into an Executive Session to receive advice from Counsel regarding a personnel issue.  When they came back approximately an hour and a half later, they announced two things:
1-the Democratic Primary is back on for June 23rd.  Since this is expected to be a low turnout event, the thinking at this point is to hold it for all districts in the Train Station. Details still need to be finalized with the Board of Elections..
2- the Board has voted unanimously to give Poiice Chief Arthur Abbot a raise in salary to $35,000.  This raise will be retroactive to January 1, 2020.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:30 pm.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting May 11, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Zoning Workshop May 4, 2020

Click here to listen to a recording of this meeting

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Zoning Workshop May 4, 2020

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 27, 2020

The Town Board met virtually via WebEx on Monday, April 27, 2020 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present. 

The meeting began with two public hearings:

Public Hearing # 1 – Continuation of Town Village Consolidation:
Town Attorney Marissa Weiss gave a short summary of the Town Village Consolidation plan along with a timeline of how it came to be.  The Plan is available on the Town website.  There were no comments from the public and the public hearing was adjourned.  Written comments sent to the Town Clerk will be accepted through April 30.  The Board will not be holding a second hearing on this matter.

Public Hearing # 2 – Moratorium on Development Approvals:
There were no comments and the public hearing was closed.  Written comments sent to the Town Clerk will be accepted through April 30.  Since the Town must wait to hear from the County before taking action, this will not be voted on until the next meeting. 

The minutes from the April 13 meeting were accepted.

Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor English reported that the Town’s Moody’s rating has gone up two levels.  The Town continues to work with the DEC in regard to the Highway Department site. The site has been secured and they are currently working on a testing procedure and a remediation plan. The reopening of Town Hall will depend upon a sanitation plan.  Shari Brooks is working on finding a contractor to do this work and, once it has been done, they can consider reopening the building.  Councilmembers May and McMillen reported that they have recommended that the Town sign a contract with Civic Plus for the Town’s website and they are very excited about the improvements that will be coming to the website.  Councilmember McMillen recapped the information from the Town’s recent press conference announcing the donation of face masks by Michael Bruno and Cathy Morris as well as from Tuxedo resident Michael Coleman.  These masks will be made available to the police and other first responders in Town as well as Town employees.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay announced that the Orange County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) has an emergency loan fund of $500,000 available for loans to small businesses that have 25 or fewer employees.  The maximum loan is $10,000 with no interest for 6 months, after which there is a 2% interest rate.  The loan will need to be repaid within 24 months.  Follow these links for more information:
https://www.ocnyida.com/press-release/
https://www.ocnyida.com/funding-corporation/small-business-loan/
She also stated that there would be a workshop meeting on Monday, May 4 at 7 pm to review the zoning code.  Also on Monday May 4, during the day, the Town will hold a pre-bid meeting with interested contractors who wish to work on the ADA projects at Town Hall that the Town has recently received funding for.  She closed with reminding residents to complete and submit census replies. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution regarding 2020 Assessment Roll and Real Property Grievance Process – this was done to comply with the Governor’s order that this be done remotely this year.  Roll will be published on Town website and appointments can be made with Town Assessor.  Grievances will be heard remotely.
  2. Acknowledgement of Sgt. Decker’s retirement – He retires after working for our police department for 15 years.  He will become a part time officer in the future. 
  3. Resolution accepting Towing Licenses – Applications were approved for Tuxedo Gulf, Harriman Auto, C.A.R.S., NJV Auto, Loyal Tire and Apple Auto Body.
  4. Resolution to enter contract with CivicPlus for the Town’s website – The 3 year contract is for $14,250 ($4750 annually)
  5. Revision of terms for members of the Board of Assessment Review – This was done to bring them into compliance with the State.  Henceforth, terms will begin on October 1st and end on September 30th. 
  6. Appointment of Directors to the Board  of the Tuxedo Farms Local Development Corp.­ – This is the LDC that runs the sewer plant.  Supervisor English and Deputy Supervisor Lindsay were appointed.
  7. Resolution for State Aid to Municipalities Grant – This just finalizes the paperwork for Town Hall repairs. (roof)

Public Comments:
There were no comments from the public.  Supervisor English mentioned that people had been concerned about Parks being open and parking on public roads. 

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Town of Tuxedo Press Conference 4/24/2020

The Town Board held a press conference on april 24, 2020 at 12pm for the purpose of fprmally recognizing a donation of face masks from Michael bruno and Town of Tuxedo Resident Michael Coleman.

Click here to to listen

back to top

line

Moody's Rating Upgraded for Town of Tuxedo!

Click here to view the press release

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing April 27, 2020

Click Here to View the notice

back to top

line

Town of Tuxedo Press Release, April 21, 2020

Town of Tuxedo resident Michael Coleman, has stepped up to assist the Tuxedo town board with 500 protective face masks for our Police Dept. Through his contact with the American Chinese Alliance and the Gratus-cubed INC/Hook & Reel Cajun Group, Mr. Coleman helped secure these much-needed supplies. The Tuxedo town board exhausted many channels in their attempts to secure these items which our police require to perform their roles as first responders and our inventory was approaching critical status until this generous donation was tendered.
The town board would also like to recognize Michael Bruno and Cathy Morris of the Tuxedo Hudson Company/Valley Rock Inn for their in-kind donation of 50 protective masks.
The Town of Tuxedo wishes to thank Mr. Coleman, Mr. Bruno and Ms. Morris for their outstanding efforts and applauds their collective actions to secure these necessary items, which are in short supply through normal government requests. Truly a remarkable citizen led initiative to help protect our police during this outbreak and beyond.
A virtual press conference will be held on Friday April 24th at 12 noon in order to formally thank the donors and accept delivery of these masks.
Press Conference WebEx link – http://bit.ly/townoftuxedo
Or Dial-IN at +1-408-418-9388 Access code: 796 956 205
The Tuxedo Town Board
Ken English – Supervisor Michele Lindsay – Deputy Supervisor David McMillen – Councilperson

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 13, 2020

The Town Board met virtually via WebEx on Monday, April 13, 2020 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Supervisor Update:
Supervisor English opened the meeting commenting that there is now a new tab on the Town website for Supervisor’s updates.  He added that he and the Board wanted to express their gratitude for the dedication of Town’s department heads and employees for keeping the Town operational. He stated that Town Hall would remain closed until further notice.  Additionally, he thanked employees and residents for organizing and running such efforts as Tuxedo Outreach, Love Thy Neighbor and Tuxedo Salutes Good Sam Heroes. 
The Supervisor then started off the announcement from Board members of the names of those residents who have died from Covid 19.  The Supervisor spoke of Don Blum from Laurel Ridge; Deputy Supervisor Lindsay spoke of Pam Cromey and Councilmember McMillen recognized Joan Berish and Barbara Fasola. 
Continuing on, the Supervisor noted that he had been contacted by Moody’s for an update on the Town’s finances.  He has set up a WebEx call with Moody’s for Wednesday, April 14.  Subjects to be covered during the call are the effects of the economy on the Town, an overview of capital projects, the current state of our finances and cyber security. The Town is in the midst of property tax income, which is the number one source of income for the Town.  Accordingly, the Board has agreed to add $2000 to Assessor Jim Davies budget so he can hire some clerical help through May 31. 
The Supervisor further noted that the Town is continuing to work with the DEC on the consent order on the Long Meadow Rd. property (the Highway Department).  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has leased a testing machine as requested by the DEC.  The Town will be testing the soil and working with some environmental consultants in order to identify the extent of remediation necessary. 
Finally, he noted that Shari Brooks has found a vendor to sanitize the police station and cars.  This same vendor will be consulted about Town Hall before it is reopened as well as the Highway Department Garage.
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that the April 18 Economic Development Day, which has been titled “Moving Tuxedo Forward,” has been postponed until Saturday June 20.  Confirmation for attendance has been received from Senator Metzger and Assemblyman Brabenec and she is still waiting to hear from County Executive Neuhaus.  Bill Fioranti head of County Economic Development and Amanda Dana head of County Tourism will also be in attendance.  At the meeting, presentations will be given by the committees from the Economic Development Committee. 
The Deputy Supervisor also noted that she has been working with Senator Metzger on the state aid to municipality grant ($100,000) which is for repairs to the roof at Town Hall. 
Councilmember May announced that she and Councilmember McMillen have chosen a company to create the Town’s new website and they will be meeting with them on Thursday, April 16.  Councilmember McMillen also brought up the fact that there is a newly installed construction sign, which is blocking the sight of cars exiting from Southside Place.  He, with the help of Police Chief Abbot will work on ameliorating this situation. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Remind the public of the April 27 Public Hearing on the Town Village Consolidation to be held via WebEx.  A date for a 2nd hearing, if deemed necessary, was set for May 7. 
  2. Adoption of Zoning Code changes: Local Law No. 2 of 2020: Supplemental Regulations to Accessory Parking and Loading -  this was approved unanimously.
  3. Authorization to put the Community Development Block Grant projects out for bid – The Town has been awarded $78,000 in a federal grant fund. This will be used for ADA improvements to Town Hall with projects to include a ramp and entrance to the court room on the ground floor as well as a handicapped bathroom next to the courtroom, improvements to the ramp and entrance to the community room.  Permission to go out to bid has been received from the County and the Board voted unanimously to put the projects out to bid with a bid opening date of 5/11.
  4. Resolution amending Board of Assessment Review Member terms was tabled.
  5. Resolution for Tuxedo Farms LDC (sewer) was tabled
  6. Set Dates for Zoning Code Workshops – This was set for Monday, May 4 at 7pm via WebEx
  7. Introduction of Local Law: Moratorium on Development Approvals – the moratorium expired and the Board failed to renew it so they are starting over.  There will be a public hearing on this law on April 27. 
  8. Accept resignation of part-time police officer Adam Bruce – this was accepted unanimously
  9. Resolution to accept the Stop DWI contract with Police Department – this is done annually.
  10. Resolution to remove DeMarino Trucking from the  Town of Tuxedo property on Longmeadow Rd. This has been mandated by the DEC.  Demarino will required to remove his equipment from the property by Aoril 18.  Councilmember Reichgott stated that he wanted to make it clear that this motion is not stating that DeMarino is NOT part of the problem at this site…this is just so the Town can comply with the DEC order.  The resolution was passed unanimously.

Department Heads Updates:
Town Clerk – Donna Matthews commented that she and Deputy Marisa Dollbaum have been answering phone calls and assuring people that the Town is doing everything they can to keep everyone safe.  There have been a couple of marriages and arrangements have been made for people to bring their information and hand it through the car window where it is received with a glove and processed so that marriage licenses can be issued. 
She also reported to Police Chief Abbot that people have been moving the orange cones currently blocking off the fisherman’s parking lot at the East Village bridge.  The Chief said he would look into it.  Finally,she reported that the junk shop next to the Red Apple has been open. (illegal at the moment) He said he would take care of that as well.
Police Chief Abbot reported that his department has been receiving a lot of medical calls from people who have the virus or suspect that they do.  The police have established a protocol with the ambulance corps where the ambulance medic enters a house first to handle the emergency. 
Public Comments:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay received an email complaining about a high wattage LED streetlight, which has been installed on Hospital Road and is shining right into several homes’ windows.  O&R has been asked to replace this bulb with the lowest possible wattage.  Since this has not happened, she will follow up with O&R.   She also reported that there are women in town who are sewing masks.  If anyone is interested, they should contact either Town Clerk Donna Matthews or Shari Brooks.
Councilmember McMillen thanked Michael Bruno for donating 25 masks to the Town (made by a tailor in Sloatsburg and for sale at Valley Rock) and 25 more will be coming from Cathy Morris. Some have been given to the police and others will be given to the Town Clerk to disperse as she sees fit.
Councilmember May stated that Hank Salzer had donated box of medical masks. They will be given to  Tuxedo Outreach for the volunteers.
Claudia Bakhtiary thanked the police department for the birthday drive-bys for local kids that they have been doing. 
Councilmember McMillen talked about the PSA that he and others have created called “Distance in the Streets.”  The video is on You Tube, and can also be viewed by clicking here.

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting April 13, 2020

This meeting will be held via Webex. Dial-In istructions are included on the agenda.

Click Here to View the agenda

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing April 27, 2020 - Final Town Consolidation Plan

Click Here to View the Notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting March 23, 2020

The Town Board met virtually on Monday, March 23, 2020 at 7:00 pm via  WebEx.  All members were present. 

Supervisor Ken English opened the meeting by thanking the Board and especially Deputy Supervisor Michele Lindsay for putting the meeting together as he has not been feeling well for the last couple of days. 

Town Board Updates:
Councilmember May reported that she has been working on collecting information for a possible Town website re-haul. She has identified three different possible companies and is collecting information from them.
Councilmember Reichgott remarked that with everybody home, there are a lot more people than usual out and walking on the roads to get exercise.  He has noticed that many of them are not obeying traffic laws and wants to make sure that everyone knows that the legal and safe way to walk on roads is on the left side facing traffic so that oncoming cars and trucks can see them. 

The minutes from February 24 were unanimously accepted with no corrections

Agenda Items:

  1. Town Village Consolidation Plan Public Hearing was rescheduled for Monday, April 27.  The Board hopes that the hearing can be held in public, but if it can’t, it will be held via WebEx. If people can’t participate via WebEx for any reason, they can always send written comments.  The updated timeline and Consolidation Plan can be found on the Town website.
  2. Resolution to appoint members to Zoning Board of Appeals – Russell Shaver was appointed for a term to expire on 12/31/24 passed 4-1 with Councilmember Reichgott abstaining because he didn’t attend the interview. Ned Kugel was appointed as an alternate to the Zoning Board with a term expiring 12/3/20.  Councilmember Reichgott abstained as he didn’t attend the interview.  Frank Peverly was appointed as Chairman of the ZBA. This last appointment will occur every year. 
  3. Resolution to appoint members to the Board of Assessment ReviewJames Pandice was appointed with a term to expire on 12/31/24.  Edward Brennan was appointed as the Board’s Chairman.  This last appointment will occur every year.  The Board asked Town Attorney Marissa Weiss to prepare a resolution to change the terms of all members of the Board of Assessment Review to expire on September 3 instead of December 31. 
  4. Resolution to grant relief from Building Moratorium ­was granted to Augusta Properties (owner of Orange Top diner, the office building next to it and the Mercantile Building.  This will allow them to go before the Planning Board and the ZBA.

Other Business:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that the Town has received word from the Orange County Planning Board that they have reviewed the proposed changes to the zoning code regarding parking and the business district and see no reason for an objection. 

Department Head Updates:
Councilmember McMillen stated that he has created new tabs on the Town website for both Outreach Tuxedo and Covid-19 where all necessary information and phone numbers can be found. 
Police Chief Abbot reported that the Department had recently received supplies of hand sanitizer, N95 masks and face shields and so they are equipped to answer calls.  The Tuxedo Police Officers are dispatched by the County, who has a new protocol.  Going forward, if someone calls 911 for help, they will be asked if they have been exposed to the virus.  If the Department responds, they will be waiting outside until the ambulance comes unless it’s an emergency (i.e. a heart attack) in which case they will come in and “do what they have to do.”  If someone is sick and the ambulance arrives, they will send one member in to do an assessment and then will come out and report to the others waiting outside.  The Chief also reported he was working with Shari Brooks on getting the station and the police cars cleaned up and sanitized.  So far, they have ascertained that this might take a while and be very expensive so they will see if FEMA or NYSOEM will be able to give the Town a reimbursement for this service.  In addition Chief Abbot said he had received a communication from the Village of Tuxedo Park police who wanted to know if they ran short of officers due to the Corona Virus, whether the Town would be willing to work in the Village? The answer is that this would be alright on a temporary basis but if it was going to be a long term arrangement, they would have to come up with a proposal for a memorandum of understanding. 
John Banyo reported that the Planning Board meeting for 3/24 would be available on WebEx.  Anyone who wants to attend should email Deborah Villanuevo at buildingclerk@tuxedogov.org

Public Comments:
Allison Taylor suggested that call in meetings should be continued post Covid 19
Lili Neuhauser thanked everyone involved in Outreach Tuxedo for all the good work done so far.  She also announced that on March 24 from 1-5pm there will be a food pickup for residents in the Suffern School District and residents of the Town of Tuxedo.  This will take place in the parking lot across the street from the Food Pantry.

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting March 23, 2020

The Town Board will be conducting their scheduled Town Board Meeting via WebEx as the Town Hall is closed for the time being.

 

All interested parties should dial in as follows:

1-650-215-5226

Access Code – 955-592-193

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Message for Town Supervisor - Posted 3/19/2020

Click here to read the message

back to top

line

Supervisor English Declares a Local State of Emergency - Posted 3/14/2020

Esteemed Town Board Members, Tuxedo residents, neighbors, and friends,

I, Kenneth English, Tuxedo Town Supervisor, am issuing, effective Monday morning, March 16th, an Executive order that is intended to put into effect the authority to limit access to Town Hall and other Tuxedo Town properties as I, and the Town Board deem necessary. It will also enable us to circumvent procurement policies so that we can contract with a cleaning company to begin sanitizing our properties, especially Town Hall, the Police station, Highway Department, especially the staff lounge areas and places where staff congregate, and other locations we identify.

Department Heads must consider reasonable changes to schedules that may help with the "social distancing" strategy being promoted by our health officials. All efforts to follow CDC sanitary guidelines should be put in place. Frequent and deep hand-washing and the use of hand sanitizer should be the new normal. ANYONE who shows any sign of illness should stay home  and consult their doctor. All Town public meetings are postponed until further notice including Justice Court sessions. Updates will be made available on the Town of Tuxedo official website as necessary. 

Of paramount importance is public safety and the well being of Town employees. I feel it is imperative that we all join together to follow public health guidelines to curtail all public interaction to try to stem the spread of this very contagious disease, and hopefully end this crisis as soon as possible.  We MUST act with urgency. All local businesses and houses of worship should seriously consider actions to keep people from congregating in close proximity. 

We are making every effort to hire a professional cleaning company that specializes in dealing with this type of emergency, a step that I consider essential to considering how we can plan to reopen.

There’s much more to say, to communicate and to consider. I am taking this action to begin setting a cooperative plan in place. Deputy Supervisor Michele Lindsay, and  Councilpersons Dave McMillen, Maria May, and Jay H. Reichgott and I will continue to work together with the very dedicated Town Team to do whatever we can to enhance what our county, state and federal leaders implement. I know that with the support and efforts of residents, we will prevail. A big THANKS to our first responders who always answer the call.

The best way to reach me is by email, at tuxedoenglish@gmail.com

I will make every effort to respond quickly. Town officials can reach me on my cell phone. Please help circulate this notice.

Ken English

Tuxedo Town Supervisor

 

TOWN OF TUXEDO, NY, ORANGE COUNTY

DECLARATION OF LOCAL STATE OF EMERGENCY

 

A State of Emergency is hereby declared in the Town of  Tuxedo, effective as of 6:00am on Monday, March 20th, 2020.

WHEREAS, on March 7, 2020, the Governor of the State of New York declared a State disaster emergency for the entire State of New York in response to the outbreak of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a national emergency in response to the outbreak of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, both travel-related cases and community contact transmission of COVID-19 have been document in Orange County, New York and are expected to continue; and

WHEREAS, the Town of Tuxedo is addressing the threat that COVID-19 poses to the health, welfare and safety of its residents and visitors;

NOW THEREFORE, I, Kenneth English, Supervisor of the Town of Tuxedo, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and Laws of the State of New York, hereby find, pursuant to Section 24 of Article 2-B of the Executive Law, that a disaster is impending in the Town of Tuxedo and I do hereby declare a disaster emergency for the entire Town of Tuxedo.

FURTHER, pursuant to the authority vested in me by Section 24(g) of Article 2-B of the Executive Law to temporarily suspend or modify any statute, local law, ordinance, order, rule, or regulation, or parts thereof, of any agency during a State disaster emergency, if compliance with such statute, local law, ordinance, order, rule, or regulation would prevent, hinder, or delay action necessary to cope with the disaster emergency or if necessary to assist or aid in coping with such disaster, I hereby temporarily suspend or modify the following:

  1. Town of Tuxedo’s Procurement Policies and any associated Local Laws to allow the undersigned or his designee to expand Town funds and resources in the best interest of the Town in connection with the current health disaster.

Said suspension(s) shall run from the date of this Order through Friday, March 20th, subject to extension by further order.  The suspension of the aforesaid policies and Local Laws shall be for the minimum deviation from the requirements of same consistent with the disaster action deemed necessary.

 

IN ADDITION, by virtue of the authority vested in me by Section 25(1) of Article 2-B of the Executive Law, which states that “[u]pon the threat or occurrence of a disaster, the chief executive of any political subdivision is hereby authorized and empowered to and shall use any and all facilities, equipment, supplies, personnel and other resources of his political subdivision in such manner as may be necessary or appropriate to cope with the disaster or any emergency resulting therefrom,” and in accordance with any applicable provisions in any of the collective bargaining agreements now in effect between the Town of Tuxedo and its representative employee organizations, I hereby direct all Town Department Heads to arrange, modify, or limit the work schedules of their respective departments in such a manner as may be necessary to minimize the risks to Town employees associated with the current COVID-19 outbreak, in accordance with recommendations issued by all relevant medical professionals and/or government agencies.

As Chief Executive of the Town of Tuxedo, I, Kenneth English, exercise the authority vested to me under Section 24 of the New York State Executive Law, to preserve the public safety and hereby render all required and available assistance vital to the security, well-being, and health of the citizens of the Town.  I hereby direct all departments and agencies of the Town of Montgomery to take whatever steps necessary to protect life and property, public infrastructure and provide such emergency assistance as deemed necessary.

 

SO ORDERED ON MARCH 16th, 2020

                                                                                               

                                                                                                Kenneth English

                                                                                                Town Supervisor

 

back to top

line

COVID-19 Tuxedo Town Board Letter To The Public

Click Here to view the letter

To All Tuxedo Residents, Neighbors, and Visitors.

The Town of Tuxedo is taking serious precautions in halting the spread of COVID-19.  Town Hall is open but please Do Not Enter the Town Hall Building unannounced.  If you call the office we will make appropriate arrangements. We are hopeful we can take care of your needs over the phone, by email or by regular mail.  If your business requires personal attention, Town Hall is open but we ask you to be considerate upon entering. If you’re sick, please stay home. This pertains to all Town Departments: Town Clerk, Court/Traffic Tickets, Planning, Zoning, Building, Assessor, and Town Supervisor. Documents can be left in the drop box to the right of the front door. Please check our website www.tuxedogov.org for informatin abWishing all a safe resolution to this grave emergency.

Tuxedo Town Hall Main Number: 845-351-4411

Court Office: ext. 3  ClaireS@tuxedogov.org

Town Clerk: ext. 4  Townclerk@tuxedogov.org

Building Dept:ext. 6 Buildingclerk@tuxedogov.org

Supervisor’s Office: ext.5 Townsupervisor@tuxedogov.org

Shari Brooks: ext. 5  SBrooks@tuxedogov.org

Assessor’s Office: ext.7  Assessor@tuxedogov.org

back to top

line

Agenda ForTown Board Meeting March 9, 2020

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting February 24, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, February 24, 2020 at 7:00 pm.  Deputy Supervisor Lindsay was absent. 

Supervisor Update:
Supervisor English reported that he had made a site visit to Quarry Field with Michael Johnson, subcontractor to Con Ed for the Village of Tuxedo Park’s upgrade project.  The subcontractor has requested that they be allowed to park certain vehicles at Quarry Field during the project.  After some discussion among department heads, it was decided that the Town Attorneys would be asked to look over the proposed lease agreement and if all was in order, permission would be granted. 

Town Board Update:
Councilperson May reported that she and Councilperson McMillan are looking at companies to redesign and rebuild the Town website.  They have 3 companies they are talking with. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution-Building Inspector’s vehicle.  – This vehicle has already been approved but the Board wants to purchase it rather than lease.  – passed unanimously.
  2. Resolution to approve the Deputy Town Clerk to attend training – She will be attending the 2020 Town Clerks Association conference and training in Albany – passed unanimously
  3. Budget modifications – were passed unanimously

Department Head Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum announced that there was mulch, topsoil and stones available for residents to take at Quarry Field. He also reported that he had heard from the DOT, who will be making a site visit to inspect the intersections along 17A to see what can be done to make those safer.  This is in response to several accidents that have occurred there.  The department is still tree trimming and will be doing so until the beginning of April.  They have finished in Maple Brook and are currently working on South Gate Rd.  He also mentioned that the sewer system is having a problem with jamming due to residents flushing disposable wipes and asked that people refrain from doing that. 
Lt. Norton of the Police Department stated that there would be a personnel issue coming up shortly and the police would like a sit down with the Town Board.  He was told they could meet in Executive Session after the regular meeting of the Board on March 9. 

Public Comments:
Henry Heffner from Tuxedo Farms reported that there has been a considerable amount of vandalism on their site.  People are coming on to the site with ATVs and/or quads, making their approach from the Tuxedo side through Mountain Lake.  There has been damage to the water tank and the pump station, where every window was broken and the locks have been broken on all the doors.  He mentioned that he had left a message for Lt. Norton and said he would like to meet with him.  The Lt. responded that the police don’t patrol private property suggesting that perhaps Related should hire a private security company.  Mr. Heffner reiterated that he would like to speak with the Lt. as he would be willing to hire officers when they were off duty.  They agreed to speak on Tuesday afternoon. 

Vouchers were signed and the Board moved into a workshop session where, Supervisor English stated the Board would be reviewing the Town Employee Practices and Compliance Manual. 

back to top

line

Special Town Board Meeting February 20, 2020

The Town Board held a Special Meeting on Thursday, February 20, 2020 at 6:00 pm.  All members were present. 

The first order of business was to go into an Executive Session to review personnel matters related to open positions on the Planning Board and Justice Court.  The Board came back into an open meeting at 8:33 pm at which time the following actions were taken:
  

  1. Resolution establishing a list of eligible special prosecutors.  Daniel Castricone and Donald K. Sanford were added to the list of prosecutors for the Town.
  2. Resolution adopting Local Law #1 of 2020 titled Planning Board Membership was approved by a vote of 5-0.
  3. Resolution to appoint Planning Board members to fill vacant seats as follows: 

William Friedlich appointed with a term ending 12/31/2020
Dierdre Murphy appointed with a term ending 12/31/2021 and
Donald Gould appointed with a term ending 12/31/2024
This was approved by a vote of 4-1 with Councilperson McMillen abstaining because he had not interviewed any of the appointees. 

back to top

line

Tuxedo Town Board Public Notice

The Tuxedo Town Board will hold an Open Meeting on Thursday, February 26th, 7:00 pm, in the Community Room at the Town Hall, 1 Temple Dr. and will then convene an executive session to review personnel matters. The executive session is not open for public participation.

back to top

line

Agenda ForTown Board Meeting February 24, 2020

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

Tuxedo Town Board Public Notice

The Tuxedo Town Board will hold an Open Meeting on Thursday, February 20th, 6:00 pm, in the Community Room at the Town Hall, 1 Temple Dr. and will then convene an executive session to review personnel matters related to open positions on the Planning Board and Justice Court. The executive session is not open for public participation. 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting February 10, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, February 10, 2020 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Continuation of Public Hearing to receive comments on Town’s proposed changes to vehicle and traffic law:
There were no further comments from the public.  Supervisor English remarked that the Board had taken “extensive notes” on the comments made at the last meeting and would be considering all of them.   They will also be meeting with a few of the residents from Library Rd. 
Jerry Mottola asked what is the present speed limit on Library Rd.  It is not posted an no one seemed to know the answer for certain. Deputy Supervisor Lindsay commented that since the Town will soon be a consolidated Town/Village, she believes they would be able to lower to the speed limit to 25.  She further said she had received emails stating that commuters are currently parking on Store Road and people are wondering what will be done about that.  She noted that the Town would be looking to put 3-hour time restraints on the parking in that area, which will be consistent with other areas in Town.
The public hearing will be kept open for another month so that everyone wishing to be heard has to opportunity to voice an opinion.

Supervisor English reported that he had received monthly reports from the dog control officer and building inspector. The Building Inspector has been receiving complaints about people leaving garbage cans out in the street.  He is not sure what can be done about this but believes something should be done.  Councilmember McMillen further commented that people seem to be abusing the bulk pickup regulations and adding in construction debris which is not allowed.  When it was suggested that the Board ask the Garbage company for guidance on this, they were told that the garbage company simply does not pick up construction debris and therefore, if it is left out for them, it is left in the street! Since there is currently nothing about this in the Town Code, the Town will have to draft something and officially add it, before they can enforce any sort of regulation.
Chief Abbot reported having received commendations from the Ramapo Police Department for officers Shiloh and Hall for their help after the train/truck accident at Dater’s Crossing.  They also received a commendation for Detective Stefan Christian for his help with a suicidal person. 

Supervisor Update:
Supervisor English reported that there had been several meetings about the sewer plant.  As a result, the Town has some new deadlines from the DEC that they have to meet.  The first is to present a schedule for fixing the present plant.  The second deadline is to present a schedule indicating when the Town will take the new sewer plant on line.  This is due by March 31.  The Supervisor commented that he would be holding a meeting with residents and businesses, who use the plant to discuss and explain the issues to them. 
Mr. Pollock of the DEC has agreed to meet with the Sypervisor to review the consent order which is in place for the highway department property.  The Supervisor feels that this property has been a liability to the Town and he would like to figure out how to resolve the remaining problems.   Councilmember May commented that she has started doing research on money that could be made available to help pay for the remaining remediation. 

Town Board Update:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay announced that there would be a meeting on February 12 at 6:30 pm of the Economic Development Committees and the Town Board.  The purpose of the meeting will be for the Committees to tell the Board what they have been working on and to have a discussion as to how all can work together to move their ideas into action. 

 Public Comments on Agenda Items:
John McNamara asked why the conversation regarding the new sewer plant was always described as being “complicated” as he has heard Highway Superintendent Dollbaum say it was only a question of connecting the pipe.  Supervisor English responded that figuring out the users’ fees was actually the complicated part.  Also, Related is not obligated to pay user’s fees until they have a certificate of occupancy on their project.  Also, Councilmember Reichgot interjected that the existing plant, even if they fixed it up, would not meet the current standards for a sewage treatment plant. 
Next, Mr. McNamara stated that up until now, the remediation of the mulch pile etc. at the highway department had cost the Town nothing.  He wanted to know what’s changed so that now it will cost the Town money? The Supervisor responded that all of the problems are still there.  Mary Graetzer interjected that, to be fair, the mulch pile and attendant debris has gone down a lot!  The Supervisor agreed but said there had been a “loose agreement” with the old site monitor (who has since retired) and now they need to make a new agreement with the new monitor. Councilmember McMillen added that since the old monitor left, the Town had hired someone to do an aerial survey to find out just how much still needs to be done.  Also, the Town was required to dig test holes on the site and they found some contamination down at the bottom of the holes.  Therefore, he feels its time to sit down and discuss a new method of remediation. 
John Ruel commented that he remembered being told as part of the Planning Board that to run the new sewer plant at less than capacity would be cost prohibitive.  He was told that this was the problem but that they have found a way to run it at less than full cost, although it is still expensive. The Board wants to know what it would cost to remediate the existing plant. This is what will be discussed with residents and businesses at the meeting referenced by the Supervisor earlier., Mr. Ruel then stated that Warwick Brook always used to be loaded with native brook trout, but now they are not present at all.  He wondered if any testing has been done on that subject.
Agenda  Items:

  1. Resolution to adopt the Town Board’s Consolidation Plan and to set the date for the Public Hearing. – The public hearing will be held during the Town Board meeting on March 23.  Plans are to hold this meeting at the school if it’s available.  A second meeting/public hearing (if necessary) is being scheduled for April 13.  The resolution was passed unanimously and will be available on the Town website eventually. 
  2. Budget modifications – a-Budget modifications for 2019 were unanimously passed.  b-$59,000 was approved for repairing the highway department roof.
  3. Resolution to grant Tuxedo Hudson Company relief from the building moratorium for their amended site plan.-The site plan is amended to include accessory parking at the “Junction site” which will give them the ability to use the entire first floor of their building.
  4. Resolution to approve Town Prosecutor’s rate of pay – The new Prosecutor will be paid $200 per session.  The old prosecutor was being paid $150 per session.

Public Comments:
Jerry Mottola wondered if the new sewer plant was opened any time soon, how many modules would be used.  He was told it would likely only be one module. 
Dale Mottola mentioned seeing a reference in the Times Herald Record to a program called Hope Not Handcuff Hudson Valley.  This is a program that trains police to deal with opioid and other drug problems, which she thought might be valuable.  

Vouchers were signed and the Town Board went into a workshop session to discuss policies such as credit card policy and insurance policy.  These policies have all been approved through the reorganization document. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda ForTown Board Meeting February 10, 2020

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

Tuxedo Town Board Fills Open Seat With Reichgott

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting January 27, 2020

The Town Board met on Monday, January 27, 2020 at 7:00 pm.   All members were present.

The meeting began with Supervisor English swearing in new Councilmember Jay Reichgott.  Mr. Reichgott has been appointed to serve out the remainder of Supervisor English’s council term, which will be up on 12/31/20. 

Public Hearing Zoning Code Amendments in the Hamlet Business District:
The Supervisor opened the public hearing by explaining that the  amendments were being proposed because the present code links the amount of parking spaces available to a business to the amount of square feet in their space.  The Board feels that this severely limits what can be done with some spaces in Town especially in the former IGA building (now Tuxedo Hudson Realty)
The following two amendments have been proposed:

  1. Change parking stall size from 10‘ X 20’ to 9’ X 18’.
  2. Amend code for accessory parking and loading. Exemption for existing buildings with site constraints.  Add existing commercial properties in the Hamlet Business District.

Additionally, engineers have put together a conceptual drawing of a preliminary plan, which can be viewed here
Many people spoke expressing their concerns about the plan. To listen to the public hearing, click here.

As the plans are currently in the conceptual phase, there will likely be many changes made before the Board elects to move forward.  This was reiterated several times throughout the hearing.

Appointment of Town Historian:
Supervisor English reappointed George Langberg as Town Historian. 

Tuxedo Union Free District presentation on Capital Bond Project:
Superintendent Tim Bohlke introduced District architect Chris Ladanyl of Clark Patterson & Lee, who began his presentation by explaining that every five years New York State requires school districts to have an inspection of their buildings and draft a Buildings Condition Survey, which is essentially a list of work that needs to be done with priority levels.  Clark Patterson & Lee did this work and submitted their report to the School Board in 2018.  The original estimate for work was $7 million, but the School Board spent 2 years assessing the various recommendations and managed to reduce the cost of the project down to $4.2 million.  The project now contains items deemed essential for the health and safety of the school.  The Board has decided to take $1.2 million out of their reserve funds in an effort to reduce tax burden, which leaves $3 million to be raised by the bond.  The Bond will come before the tax payers in a vote on February 25. 
Improvements have been proposed for all three buildings in the district.  To see what has been proposed for each building, click on the following links:

George F. Baker High School, George Grant Mason Elementary School, John P. Mottola Gymnasium.

Additionally, the architects have put together some information detailing the estimated tax impact based on assessed property value.  Click here to view that information. In an effort to make this more relatable for taxpayers, the District has put together additional information detailing the estimated tax impact based on recent home sales in many of the different  District neighborhoods (The Woodlands, Hamilton Estates,  Maple Brook, The Hamlet, The Village of Tuxedo Park, etc)  Click here to view that information.
 
There will be further opportunities to see the school’s presentation and ask questions on Thursday February 6 at 6pm and Saturday, February 22 at 10am.  Both of these presentations will take place in the community room at the high school. 

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor English stated that he is in the early stages of putting together an event where State Senator Metzger, Assemblyman Brabebec and County Executive Neuhaus, will come to Tuxedo and meet with Board members and members of the public.  All three officials have agreed to this.  The proposed date is April 18.  The event would take place  in the multipurpose room at George Grant Mason Elementary School.
The Supervisor also announced that the Town has received the certificate of incorporation for the consolidated Town Village.  The next step in the process is for the Town Board to adopt a final plan for running the Town Village. The plan is scheduled to be adopted at the next Town Board meeting on February 10.  Once adopted, the plan will be published both in the newspaper for 4 weeks as well as on the Town website.  This will be followed by a required series of public hearings.
The DEC has told the Town that they need to get the new sewer plant (for the Hamlet sewer district) up and running.  This needs to happen in the near future so the Town will need to work together with Related and residents in the district to figure out how to make this happen. 
The Supervisor took a tour of the Highway Department and was impressed with what he saw. 
Tuxedo Police were dispatched to help with the traffic control after the train/tractor trailer accident at Dater’s Crossing in Sloatsburg. Supervisor English commended them for their participation.  He also commended Officer Stefan Christian who responded to a stabbing in Ramapo and was first on the scene. 
Lastly, the Supervisor reported that he had a meeting with Andrew Dance of Related Companies at which they discussed the sewer plant as well as Tuxedo’s interest in getting something going with the property. The Supervisor told Mr. Dance that closing the school was not something that he wanted to hear about and was told that they would come back with a plan representing  something they could do at the site.  

Town Board Update:
Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that the next meeting of the Economic Development Committee would be a meeting of the full committee on February 12 at 6:30.  At that time, they will receive reports from all the various subcommittees and then discuss how they will be working together and with the Town Board going forward. 
The Climate Smart Task Force will also be meeting on February 12.
Councilmember McMillen inquired where the Board stood with information about the DEC monitor at the Highway Department.  He was told that they are still waiting to hear from the DEC. 

Supervisor English next called for a moment of silence for retired Highway Superintendent Ed Pfizenmaier, who died last week.  

Next on the agenda was the annual Reorganization document which was approved as follows:

Annual Town Reorganization:

The following positions were appointed by the Supervisor:


Supervisor’s Clerk

Shari Brooks

Account Clerk

Brian Sullivan

Deputy Supervisor

Michele Lindsay

Marriage Officer

Donna Matthews

Summer Camp Director

Shari Brooks

The following positions were appointed by the Town Clerk:


Deputy Town Clerk

Marisa Dollbaum

Deputy Registrar

Marisa Dollbaum

 

The yearly salaries were approved for the following Town Officials:


Supervisor

Ken English

$ 36,856.00

Town Councilmember

Michele Lindsay

$   7,250.00

Town Councilmember

Maria May

$   7,250.00

Town Councilmember

David McMillen

$   7,250.00

Town Councilmember

Jay Reichgott

$   7,250.00

Town Justice

Shaun Brown

$ 26,808.00

Town Justice

Alyse Terhune

$ 26,808.00

Receiver of Taxes

Donna Matthews

$   3,000.00

Receiver of Taxes

Marisa Dollbaum

$   3,000.00

Town Clerk

Donna Matthews

$ 61,100.00

Superintendent of Highways

Rob Dollbaum

$ 93,784.00

Supervisory Court Clerk

Claire Squillini

$ 52,451.00

Justice Clerk

Patricia Marsh

$ 33,270.00

Justice Clerk

Barbara Ginley

        $19.67/hr

Supervisor’s Clerk/Recreation Coordinator/Permit Coordinator

Shari Brooks

$ 55,259.00

Account Clerk

Brian Sullivan

$35,000.00

Budget Officer

Ken English

No compensation

Assesor

Jim Davies

 $30,900.00

Board of Assessment Review Chairman

 

   $1,630.00

Board of Assessment Review Member

 

       $566.00

Deputy Town Clerk

Marisa Dollbaum

$  18,720.00

Dog Control Officer

Thomas Murphy

    $8,219.00

Clerk/Typist Highway Dept.

Michelle Reed

        $15.45/hr.

Fire Inspector/Building Inspector/Code Enforcement Officer/Flood Damage Ptreention Administrator

David Maikisch

$  62,103.00

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Charles Jones

12/31/24

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Jeffrey Dowding

12/31/i20

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Gardiner Hempel, jr.

12/31/22

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Edward J. Brennan, Jr

12l31l22

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Todd J. Darling

12/31/23

Board of Fire Commissioners Member

Peter Dedel

12/31/23

Zoning Board of Appeals, Chairman

 

$     1,710.00

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

 

$     1,237.00

Planning Board/Chairman

 

$     6,222.00

Planning Board/Member

 

$     2,824.00

Highway Dept. Employees

 

As per contract

Town Finance Consultant

Andrew Arias

$   24,000.00

Town Counsel

Jacobowitz and Gubits

$   50,000.00

Town Engineers

H2M

As per contract

Town Auditor

Andrew Arias

$   19.750.00

Planning Board Legal Consultant

Richard Golden

As per contract

Town Planner

Bonnie Franson

As per contract

ZBA Legal Counsel

 Richard Golden

As per contract

Engineering Consultant

 Fusco Engineering

As oer contract

 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

 

back to top

line

Agenda ForTown Board Meeting January 27, 2020

Click here to view the agenda.

Click here to view the Notice of Public Hearing

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting January 13, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, January 13, 2020 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present. 

The meeting started with the oaths of office being taken by Supervisor Ken English, Councilmember Michele Lindsay and Councilmember Maria May.  Immediately following Councilmember Lindsay’s oath, Supervisor English appointed her Deputy Supervisor.  Following the oaths, Town Clerk Matthews read a letter from Town Justices Brown and McCathern congratulating the new Board and expressing their desire to work with them.  The Supervisor then thanked everyone for the support, confidence and trust they have given him.  He said he is excited about the possibilities for the Town that the Board would be working to reimagine the vision for Tuxedo over the next several years. He is confident that they will be able to “dream big” and “imagine something greater” as they work to strengthen and protect the Town with “pride and excitement.” He ended by saying that he was looking forward to working together with everyone.  Councilmember Lindsay also thanked everyone for their support and mentioned how much she had enjoyed meeting so many people during the campaign.  She said she was very optimistic about the work ahead.  She feels that everyone can work together to move the Town forward, futher noting that it doesn’t matter what neighborhood someone lives in as we all “live in a beautiful town.”  She pledged to create a more cohesive community. She believes that a better community can be created by promoting economic growth, which is something she has been trying to do over the last few years.  She announced that the Supervisor would be introducing plans for traffic and parking which should make development easier and more attractive for potential businesses. She went on to say that one of the most important tasks for the year ahead would be to strengthen the comprehensive plan so that it captures everyone’s vision. Afterwards, the Board will update the zoning code to implement the vision.  She added that the Board is also hoping to work with The Related Companies to get Tuxedo Farms up and running.  Finally, she mentioned the importance of continuing to work on Climate Smart Certification.  Councilmember May remarked that she was humbled and honored to be a member of the Board and felt both anticipation and excitement for what lies ahead.  She observed that Tuxedo is a Town that no one wants to leave and that she wants to help make it a Town that entices new families to move in as well as a Town where seniors can afford to stay.  She pledged to work hard to see that Tuxedo is no longer a “Town of No” but a Town that no one wants to leave. Councilmember McMillen commented that he was in his sixth year on the Town Board.  When he first started the Town was hobbled by having a million dollar deficit.  The former Board worked hard to make necessary cuts and finally now the Town is back in decent financial shape.  The vision of the Board has always been what his fellow Board members mentioned tonight, but they have not been able to execute it without the financial stability that the Town now enjoys.  He added that he looks forward to better times on the Board where all can be positive instead of having to focus on tightening their belts. 
Supervisor English next introduced Engineer Al Fusco who was authorized in December to put together a traffic study for the Hamlet area with the goal of improving traffic flow as well as parking.  Mr. Fusco presented his proposed plan, which he noted, was just a beginning.  He feels it would be a good start as it can be done relatively quickly and inexpensively.  Basically, the plan calls for changing the direction of one-way traffic on Store Road so that the traffic would flow to the South instead of the North. (it currently flows north towards the library)  On street parking would be allowed on both sides of that road.  It would also be allowed on the lower side of Library Road (the side without houses).  Store Road would be milled and repaved with curbs installed.  Landscaping would be worked in in appropriate spots. It is recommended that the speed limit be lowered on both Library and Store roads to 20 mph.  The plan also proposes to make the exit from the old IGA property a right turn only. 
Councilmember Lindsay commented that having Route 17 as a main street was a detriment to the Town.  This plan would try to change that to make Store Road the “new Main Street” A public hearing on this subject will be held soon.  As part of this project, changes need to be made to the traffic and zoning codes.  These will be part of a new proposed law.  This will be reviewed by the town’s attorneys and presented at the public hearing as part of the traffic plan. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Joe Coleman from Assemblyman Brabenec’s office spoke and offered his congratulations to the new Board members further commenting that the Assemblyman wanted to work together with the new Board. 
Claudia Bakhtiary thanked Town Clerk Matthews for sending out the agendas in advance of the meetings. 
Sue Scher echoed her gratitude for the agenda and said she was also pleased to see the minutes of the last meeting.
John McNamara congratulated the newly elected Board members and wished them all good luck.  He also gave thanks to recent Supervisor Mike Rost for all the work he did to get the Town to where it is. 

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were discussed and approved:
   1-a Resolution to enter into contract with the Woodbury Field and Stream Shooting Range and the Tuxedo Police.  Police Chief Abbot explained that historically this agreement was had been voted on every 2 years but this new proposal is for 4 years, which he feels is a good thing. 
   2-Set date for public hearing – Amendments to Zoning Code and Vehicle and Traffic Law – The hearing will be held on January 27 at 7 pm.
  3-a Resolution to fund training for elected officials both in Albany and New York City;
  4 – Approval of Raffle Sale – Onyx and Breezy Foundation will be holding their annual fundraiser.

Department Heads Update:
Town Clerk Matthews announced that she had received a new timeline for the Town Consolidation process which is available on the Town website. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that he has mulch, compost and topsoil  available to town residents at the Quarry Field parking lot.  The Highway Department is working on their high trimming around Town with the help of a rented bucket truck. 
Several residents of Brammertown/Benjamin Meadow Road (Colin Grant, Mary Yrizzary and others) commented on the recent changes/improvements to those roads, which have resulted in traffic slowing down and travel made much safer for everyone.  

Public Comments:
Janet Galuska thanked everyone in Town for their help and effort in getting the resent Town consolidation through.
Mary Graetzer inquired if there were any plans to replace the recently installed road signs, which erroneously identify Mapplebrook Road. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum responded that 2 signs had been done wrong with misspellings, both Maplebrook (Mapplebrook) and Tobin Way (Toobin Way) and that he had requested they be redone but he got them back exactly the same way!  He just recently received the proper Maplebrook signs and is still waiting for Tobin Way. 

Other Business:
Councilmember McMillen asked Town Attorney Weiss if she had seen any response to the request for a permanent monitor at the highway department.  She replied that she had sent it out and would send a second request. 

Vouchers were signed with Councilmember McMillen commenting that in the past 4 years, the amount of vouchers had been reduced by a factor of 4.  He added that this was due to the good work of Mike Rost and the prior board.  The meeting was then adjourned into an executive session to discuss a personnel matter and to review the update to the Consolidation Plan with the attorney

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting January 13, 2019

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

 

 

Town of Tuxedo Recruiting to Appoint Member to Town Board

The Town of Tuxedo is seeking qualified applicants for consideration for appointment to the Town Board seat vacated through the election of Councilperson Ken English as Town Supervisor. Applicants must be 18 years of age, a Town or Village resident and a US citizen. If you are interested in serving the public to help set the direction of Tuxedo’s future, then consider turning your concerns into action.
The Town Board meets twice a month, on the second and fourth Monday. Board Member’s salary is $7,250. Let 2020 be your year to get involved. For more information send a message expressing your interest to TownBoardTuxedo@gmail.com by December 20.
Interviews will begin in early January.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting December 9, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, December 9, 2019.  Supervisor Rost was absent.

Deputy Supervisor McMillen opened the meeting with a moment of silence for Former Supervisor John McCarthy and long time Town resident Louis DeBrino both of whom passed away recently.

Public Hearing on proposed Woodlands Sewer rates:
There is no change in the rate and there were no comments so the hearing was closed. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to Approve the Woodlands Sewer Rate- was approved unanimously.
  2. Resolution reappointing Charles Jones as Fire Commissioner  - the term to run from 1/1/20 – 12/31/24 was approved unanimously.
  3. Resolution authorizing Jacobowitz & Gubits to prepare an amendment to zoning code changing parking stall size from 10’ X 20’ to 9 ‘ X 18’.   Was passed unanimously. A public hearing will be held.
  4. Resoluution authorizing Jacobowitz & Gubits to prepare an amendment to the zoning law to provide for on street parking in the Hamlet Business District specifically  on Library Rd., Hospital Rd., and Store Rd.  was passed unanimously. Also, a resolution to authorize the Town’s engineering consultant, Al Fusco to review the capacity of said roads to accommodate on street parking was passed.  Existing commercial buildings would be allowed to count on street parking toward their required spaces.  A $5000 cap was put on the engineering services. 

 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay reported having received, during a photo op at the Train Station, a check from County Executive Neuhaus in the amount of $4999 to be used for tourism.  It will be used for encouraging residents to engage with State Parks and outdoor recreation possibilities.  Specifically, Councilmember Lindsay said it would be used for a shuttle bus and a marketing plan.    She also announced that the NYNJ Trail Conference has installed new trail signs in the East Village.  She further noted that the issue of parking for hikers still needs to be addressed. 

Department Heads Update:
Lt. John Norton reported 2 recent rescues from the Parks.  He also announced that a contract has been signed with Orange County for radios with better connectivity and communications.  All communications will be transferred to the new system. 

Public Comments:
Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon urged the Town to use Engineer Sean Hoffman from H2M to review the proposed parking changes suggesting that he was the most qualified to do the work.  He also strongly recommended that if they were going to make changes to the parking in Town, these changes should be made for the whole Town and not for just 3 streets in the middle of Town as he feels this would be opening a can of worms. 
Janet Galuska asked for an update on the Town Consolidation.  Town Attorney Marissa Weiss responded saying that all is on schedule and that a more specific update will be prepared for the Town website. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting December 9, 2019

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

Notice of LDC Meeting December 2, 2019

*This meeting was postponed until 12/9/19 at 6pm due to inclement weather

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Special Town Board Meeting November 19, 2019

The Town Board met on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost and Councilmember Reardon were absent.

Deputy Supervisor McMillen stated that the Board was there to pass the budget and to over ride the tax cap for 2020.  The reason for the tax cap must be overridden is that the Tuxedo Farms sewer district has recently been brought onto the tax roll.  For the past 2 years, Tuxedo Farms has been billed $1.9 million dollars annually as payment for the debt service on the bonds issued to pay for the plant. Every year, Tuxedo Farms has paid this bill.  Now the repayment must be made by a tax bill.  Adding that payment to the tax roll will raise the Town’s tax cap from 1.91 % to 34.54%.  Related has stated that they will, as they have every year in the past, pay the bill in January so, other than raising the cap, there will be no affect to any resident’s tax bill.  Historically there has been a reward program, which rewarded residents with a rebate when the Town stayed under the tax cap, but that program has expired so the residents would not have received that rebate under any circumstances. Exceeding the Town’s tax cap will not affect any resident’s STAR rebate as that has to do with School District taxes and not the Town taxes. 

Public Hearing to receive comments on Local Law #5 of 2019 – Override the 2020 Tax Cap Limit: was held and followed by

Resolution-Local Law to Override the 2020 Tax Cap Limit was passed unanimously by the Board.

A Resolution to Adopt the Final Town Budget: was passed unanimously. 

Click here to view an explanation of the tax cap override

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing November 19, 2019

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Notice of Special Town Board Meeting November 19, 2019

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 12, 2019

The Town Board met on Tuesday, November 12, 2019 at 7:00 pm in the Courtroom.  Supervisor Rost and Deputy Supervisor McMillen were absent.  Councilmember Lindsay ran the meeting.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to Schedule Public Hearing on Woodlands Sewer Budget: This was scheduled for November 18 at 7:00 pm
  2. Resolution to Schedule Public Hearing on Hamlet Sewer District and Tuxedo Farms Sewer District: This was scheduled for November 18 at 7:00 pm
  3. Resolution to Adopt Town of Tuxedo Sexual Harassment Policy: All Board Members and employees attended a recent training session on this.  It was unanimously adopted. 
  4. Resolution to Adopt 2020 Budget: This was tabled until November 18 – The proposed budget is presently under the 2% tax cap.

Other Business:

  1. Discussion of Orange County Long Range Transportation Plan –   Councilmember Lindsay commented that this plan has been in circulation for a while now.  The comment period will end on November 16 and a link will be provided on the Town Website.  Some of the comments made by Board members were as follows:  Councilmember Lindsay wants to see more bus and train service in Tuxedo; would like to see a train to Stewart Airport added; the complete street program (funded by the County) Councilmember English  wants to see work on the one seat to Penn Station program.  Tuxedo has been listed as having one of the longest commutes; since it was mentioned that an average of 4 freight trains run through Tuxedo every day, he would like to know what kind of cargo is being hauled on those lines. He further wants to see discussion about bike paths and a connection to the bike paths in Monroe as well as better access to the Ramapo to increase tourism.   Councilmember Reardon mentioned that she knows it isn’t in Orange County but she is very concerned about how traffic will work around the Woodmont Hills development just outside of Sloatsburg.  Everyone in our Town and County will likely be bottlenecked because of this.   Councilmember Lindsay added that this plan highlights what will happen here until 2045 so they need to take a good long look at it.  Jerry Mottola asked if there was any chance to ask for the addition of Exit 15B off the Thruway.  Claudia Bahktiary wants to see consideration of a small bus line that could help to get potential employees into Town for our businesses.  
  1. Budget Update has been tabled until November 18.  Mary Graetzer asked if the Board could talk about what changes they had made to the budget in the interest of transparency.  She was told it would be presented at the next meeting. 
  2. Update and Approval for Preliminary Parking Plan for US Postal Service Lot – Jerry Mottola along with Tuxedo Postmistress Christine, Town Engineer Al Fusco and Councilmember Lindsay have been discussing plans for using the lot between the Post Office and the Liquor Store parking lot for municipal parking.  The Post office is interested in doing this project.  It is likely that the property would be leased to the Town.  Still to be negotiated is who would be responsible for what work and who would pay for the work as well as what the lease payments would be.  The next step is to develop a letter of intent to be signed by both the Post Office and the Town.  Town Attorney Protter will work on this. 
  3. Discussion of Comprehensive Plan Town Attorney Protter apprised the Board that the only thing left to be done for the Plan was  to complete the section about cell towers.  Councilmember Reardon commented that this has been going on for a “very long time,” and, at this point, she feels it is a deterrent for new businesses wanting to come to Town.  She would be in favor of adopting the plan in its current form and then adding the cell tower regulations as an amendment once they have been completed.  Councilmember Lindsay stated that she felt the Town needs another workshop to bring everyone up to date on what has already been accomplished and agreed upon.   Next, the Board will need to schedule a public hearing and then the plan will go to Orange County for their review. 
  4. Discussion Planning Board was tabled.

 

Department Head Update:

Highway Supervisor Dollbaum reported that his department is in the process of picking up leaves.  As long as the leaves are out there, they will continue picking them up until we get a serious snow or the leaves freeze to the ground.  He recommends that anyone who hasn’t already put their leaves out should do it soon.  They are also getting equipment ready for the winter season. 
Building Inspector Maikisch was present with Steve Germano who had appeared earlier that evening at the Planning Board for approval of a parking lot and accessory garage in the parcel just south of his restaurant, which he recently purchased.  He is looking for a waiver of the building moratorium.  This was granted.
Police Chief Abbott reminded everybody that as of November 1, there is no parking on Town roads when any snow or ice is present.  The Chief also gave a brief update on changes being made by the NY District Attorney for prosecution procedures. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember English reported that at the request of resident Colin Grant, a site visit to the intersection of Brammertown and Benjamin Meadow Rds had taken plance.  This is a site where a plethora of accidents has occurred.  It was determined that excessive speed is definitely a factor in this location.  The Town is working on a fix for this, most importantly installing a stop sign and warning signs to get people to slow down. 
Councilmember Lindsay announced that she has been informed that if Orange County gets the necessary money, the Town of Tuxedo will be awarded $78,000 from a block grant to work on ADA improvements to Town Hall.  Projects would include a ramp into the courtroom, an automatic door for the ramp into the Community Room from outside and an ADA compliant bathroom.
Councilmember English asked Town Attorney Protter for an update on the Town Consolidation process.  He replied he had sent such an update recently.  To view a copy of the update, click here.

Public Comments:
Marty Levanhar congratulated Councilmembers English and Lindsay as well as Maria May on their election victory. 
Mary Graetzer wanted to know if the proposed post office lot parking area would be for general municipal parking or for a specific purpose.  She was told that the PO would have a specific area of the lot for their employees but the remaining would be general municipal parking, as opposed to more commuter parking. 
Dale Mottola inquired as to how Councilmember English’s seat would be filled after he becomes Supervisor.  Town Attorney Protter responded that the seat would be filled by Board appointment.  The appointed term would last until the next election and then any time remaining would be voted on by the public. 
Irene Denaro also congratulated Councilmembers English, Lindsay and Maria May.  She went on to say that what she really wanted to discuss was the “disgusting postcards” that she had received in the mail.  These remarks were made while looking directly at Mary Graetzer, who spoke up and stated emphatically that she had nothing to do with the cards.  Ms. DeNaro then continued that she had seen Mrs. Graetzer at the Town Board meeting on October 28 with a folder containing one of the cards.  Town Clerk Donna Matthews quickly spoke up and stated that she had been the one to bring the card in as she had just received it in the mail.  Ms. DeNaro reiterated how disgusting and offensive she found the card.  Councilmember English stated that he was looking forward to moving past this although he appreciated Ms. DeNaro’s concern.  Everyone agreed it was nasty and that the community needs

to find a way to move on.  Councilmember Lindsay stated that the card, which had been directed at her, was libel and that is a criminal offense.  She noted that the Board of Elections is looking into the matter.
Town Clerk Matthews then asked if there were any veterans present and wished the one person who raised his had a Happy Veteran’s Day.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting November 12, 2019

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

2019 Election Results

Supervisor:
Ken English - 591
Mike Rost - 342

Town Council:
Michele Lindsay - 538
Maria May - 492
Chis Dollbaum - 420
John McNamara - 366

Town Clerk:
Donna Matthews - 629

Highway Superintendent:
Rob Dollbaum - 581

Library Budget - Passed

Congratulations to the winners!

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 28 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, October 28, 2019 at 7:00 pm.   Supervisor Rost and Councilmember Reardon were absent. 

Deputy Supervisor McMillen opened the meeting saying that they would hold a public hearing on the 2020 Town Budget however, he added the Board was still working on the budget. He said he didn’t want to comment on what the tax increase would be, however his goal was working toward keeping the increase at the state mandated cap or under.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English agreed.  He then asked Town Attorney Protter what date they were required to file the budget.  The answer was November 1. It was pointed out that the Preliminary Budget had been available to everyone on the Town website since September 30..   The Deputy Supervisor suggested that the Board needed to have another workshop on the subject.  The Board unanimously agreed that they would need to have Account Clerk Brian Sullivan present at the meeting to answer questions about the budget.  After much conversation, the Board decided to hold the required public hearing as scheduled and then to hold a workshop meeting on Wednesday, October 30 at 6:30 pm with publlc participation so that the public could ask any questions they might have about the budget.

Public Hearing to receive comments regarding the 2020 Preliminary Budget:
John McNamara stated that he wanted to express his support for the budget as posted to the website, further commenting that he appreciated the fact that the increase would be held to the cap imposed by the State. 
Maria May had a question about an increase under Parks in the preliminary budget.  It was explained that this is just an accounting procedure which is refining reallocations that have already taken place.  In this case, there is a corresponding decrease in the highway budget.
As there were no further questions from the public, the hearing was then closed.

Deputy Town Supervisor Update:
Deputy Supervisor McMillen announced that Jerry Mottola has been instrumental in arranging for the Post Office to consider letting the Town use their unused additional property for municipal parking.
Next, in regard to the Tuxedo Farms project,  the Deputy Supervisor and Building Inspector Dave Maikisch explained that there was a Third Party complaint that Related had been bringing in contaminated soil to spread on their East Terrace property.  Mr. Maikisch issued a stop work order.  Related has been cooperating with the Building Inspector. Town Engineer Sean Hoffman has said he feels that they should go a step further and retest the soil.  The Board has agreed to follow his recommendation and the retesting will take place. 

Agenda Items:

  1. A Resolution to grant Special permit for Our Lady of Guadalupe Torch Relay Run – This is an annual request and it was unanimously approved. This year’s run will take place on December 7.
  2. A Resolution to grant permission for a lease to buy agreement for 3 vehicles (2 for police department, 1 for building inspector) from the State bid was not passed because the Board didn’t have the complete lease agreement.  Ultimately, the Board passed a resolution authorizing the procurement  of 3 vehicles off of State bid for an amount not to exceed $130,600 over 3 years pursuant to a lease. 

Other Business:
Representatives from the Watchtower presented their request for relief from the building moratorium. They are looking to relocate their audiovisual department closer to International Headquarters which is on Long Meadow Rd (in the Town of Warwick) and have applied to Rockland County for approval to build.  They are looking for “support space” for the building project, which they are proposing to locate near their property at the old International Paper property.  They would like to put in 120 temporary modular units, which would house volunteers working on the project.  They were seeking the Board’s permission to apply to the Planning Board for approval.  Construction of the audiovisual department is scheduled to start in 2022 and finish in 2026.  They would like to start construction on the modular units as soon as possible.  Eventually, the motion to grant them permission to go to the Planning Board was made, seconded and approved. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay read a letter from State Senator Jen Metzger in which she said she had allocated $100,000 to the New York State and Municipal Facilities Capital program for the replacement of the Tuxedo Town Hall roof. 

Public Comments:
Irene Denaro remarked that she found it really pleasant to see Councilmembers English, Lindsay and McMillen working well together.
Mary Graetzer asked if the Town was still paying for the DEC monitor despite the fact that no one has been on site or available since August?  She was told yes, the Town is still paying the $15,000 fee.  When she asked what would happen if the Town simply stopping sending payments, she was told that they would be found out of compliance. 
Janel Galuska asked where the Town stood on the Consolidation process.  She was told that everything has been filed with the Department of State and the Town is just waiting for the final review.  Town Attorney Protter expects that the Town will hear something within the next 2-3 weeks.  He will write something to go on the website clarifying the process so residents will be up to date. 
Building Inspector Maikisch asked for clarification on what was happening with a dirt berm on the west side of Contractors Rd.  The berm has been there for about 20 years and there is some confusion as to who asked for it to be built and why.  The Board will continue to investigate this.
Jerry Mottola wondered what was happening with the State DOT coming to clear the brush around the speed limit signs at the South end of Town on Route 17.  He was told that calls have been made to the DOT but there has been no action so far.  The Town has been told that they cannot clear the brush themselves. 

Vouchers were signed and the Board adjourned into Executive Session to receive advice from the Town Attorney.

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting October 28 2019

Click here to view the agenda.

back to top

line

Notice of Public Hearing for The Preliminary 2020 Town Budget October 28, 2019

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 15, 2019

The Town Board met on Tuesday, October 15, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost was absent and Councilmember Reardon attended via phone.  

Deputy Supervisor McMillen started the meeting by asking for a moment of silence for Michael Marusich, Town resident and 3- year employee of the Highway Department who died recently.

Deputy Supervisor Update:
Explaining that he had been authorized by the Town Board to do so, Deputy Supervisor McMillen commented that he had given Michael Marusich an award of a key to the Town a couple of weeks ago.  He read into the record the letter, which accompanied the award.
The Deputy Supervisor next reported that the Town Board had met on Friday, October 11 at the Highway Department to do a walk through of the property encompassing the mulch pile and related things that are being cleaned up there.  He went on to remark that the DEC has not had a monitor on the site since August 2, when the last monitor retired, and they have not been responsive to calls or emails from the Town.   Since the Town is paying for a monitor (mandated in the consent order) the Deputy Supervisor has asked the Town Attorney to write them a letter requesting that they send someone and also to explain several aspects of their reports.  As a consequence of this, the Town has essentially ceased cleanup efforts at the site until they get a reply from the DEC. The Town Engineer has suggested that the Town should apply for a modification to the Consent Order as almost everything has been taken care of most with the exception of the “greater dirt pile.”    

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Jim Hays commented that he had read the contract between the Town and Perfect Cut and it said that if Perfect Cut violated any DEC regulations, they would be responsible to pay for remediation.  Thus, he wondered why they weren’t paying for the cleanup?  Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that Perfect Cut is paying but it is a slow process. Perfect Cut was ultimately found to be responsible for the cleanup by the courts, but they subsequently complained that they didn’t have access to the site.  So, the Town has been taking some of Perfect Cuts’ assets (a dump truck and a loader for example) and selling them and then putting the money back into the highway department fund.  While Perfect Cut is still in business, there are many liens (not just from Tuxedo) on the business so it is difficult to collect what is due to the Town. 
Betty Langberg wondered if there were still trucks going in and out of the Highway property and if so what they were doing?  She was told that Ben Veltidi has a contract with the Town to make mulch and remove it from the site.  Also, Erwin DeMarino has been working there making topsoil and removing it from the site.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen commented that Mr. DeMarino does not have a contract although he has permission to do the  work and that this concerns him.  Maria May wondered whether the Town would be liable should this topsoil be sold and subsequently determined contamined. The Deputy Supervisor responded that this was a good question and it is one of the things that  concerns him about the lack of a contract. 

Agenda Items:  

  • a Resolution to approve a sign permit for Tuxedo Little League was unanimously approved.
  • a Resolution to authorize the acceptance of the Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan Update for Orange County, NY – this was a necessary action in order to make the Town eligible for a grant which could help pay for a few projects to mitigate flooding in Town.  This was unanimously approved.
  • a Resolution for Police Arbitration –  Under the Walkill rule, the Town now has jurisdiction over police disciplinary grievances.  No details were given but the Stage 2 rejection was approved so this can now move forward to the next stage. This was unanimously approved.
  • a Petition to request relief from moratorium from the Watchtower was tabled because of a lack of information. 

Other Business:
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she was readying the application for the state aid for municipalities grant and was planning  to ask for money for a roof for Town Hall as well as surveillance cameras for the police department.  Although a new roof for the records building had been proposed, she wants to wait on that while they think about a long-term plan for the building and where the records will go.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen feels that the Town should just digitize their records.  Councilmember English also thinks the Town should apply for money to fund repairs to the back of the train station.
Town Clerk Matthews stated that the preliminary budget would be handed in on October 21.   The Public Hearing on the budget will take place on October 28 at the Town Board meeting and the vote on the budget will happen at the November 11 meeting.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay requested that the Town have a meeting on zoning changes, further commenting that the Board hadn’t had one for quite a while.  She is concerned about parking in Town, specifically with the need to change the size of required parking spaces from 10 feet by 20 feet to 9 feet by 18 feet.  Councilmember English would also like to add spaces for compact cars to the zoning code.  Additionally, he and Councilmember Lindsay would like to look into accessory parking, which would allow for parking on the streets on certain roads in Town. 
Councilmember English gave a shout out to Brian Sullivan for his hard work on the budget.
Councilmember Lindsay commented that she would like to find a way to acknowledge all the community members who are taking part in the Economic Development Workshop meetings.

Department Head Update:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his Department had been working on striping roads and fixing catch basins all over town.  He further reported that the beams had been set on the new East Village bridge just that day.   Soon, the department will be picking up leaves and preparing their vehicles for winter.
Lt. Norton noted that it was getting dark early and he hopes parents will help to get children off the streets. There will be a curfew of 9 pm on Halloween. 
Building Inspector Maikisch reported that there is a new boutique in Tuxedo Square, which sells clothes and jewelry. There is also a new Urgent Care facility opening in Duck Cedar Plaza. Further, there is a chocolate maker in the Augusta building and Bentleys has a new owner.

Public Comments:
Janet Galuska asked for an update on the Town Consolidation.  She was told that everything was on track and moving along as expected.  Councilmember English said he would like to see a formal update from the attorneys on this subject. 
A resident of Southfields wondered if there was actually a legitimate business going on in the building where Jasmine Imports used to be located, Building Inspector Maikisch responded that it was currently a storage facility. 
Jim Hays reported that he had had a conversation with the Mayor of Sloatsburg during which he inquired when Route 17 would be finished.  He was told that when the dispute between Rockland County and the construction company doing the sewer work had been resolved, the state would repave Route 17.  At that time, Sloatsburg will initiate their road diet where there will be 3 lanes instead of 4 for traffic.  Mr. Hays wondered if perhaps Tuxedo should consider doing the same thing.  He was told that the Board wants to wait and see how it works in Sloatsburg before deciding to do something similar in Tuxedo. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting October 15, 2019

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Notice of Special Town Board Meeting October 11, 2019

Click here to view the notice.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 23, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, September 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost was absent and Councilmember Reardon attended via phone.

Deputy Town Supervisor Update:
Deputy Supervisor McMillen read the following statement from Supervisor Rost:

Good evening Everyone, I wanted to let you know that I am at home recovering from my recent hospital stay, and I am pleased to report that I am very much on the mend.  My doctors have informed me that I can expect a full and speedy recovery.  I would like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation to Detective Christian and Officer Hall for their quick response and professionalism the evening of my accident, along with the Town Paramedic and the members of the Ambulance Corps.  I experienced, firsthand, the high level of emergency services that the Town of Tuxedo provides.  We are fortunate to have such a great group of highly trained, experienced and dedicated emergency first responders.

Throughout my recovery I have been kept apprised of various Town business items, and I continue to get caught up and work on various matters, which includes making significant progress on the upcoming Town Budget. 

One update that I can provide is that I spoke with Steve Germano today and his target date for the opening of his restaurant is October 2.  This long awaited new business will make for another terrific dining option for Tuxedo residents.

I would very much like to thank everyone for their well wishes, and I look forward to getting fully back to work and keeping the positive momentum going.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Claudia Bakhtiary commented that she had tracked down the Regional Transportation Council Survey and wondered if there was still time for the Town to respond.  Councilmember Lindsay responded that unfortunately it appeared to her as though the Town hasn’t been fully represented.  The Transportation Council is at the end of its process and the notes do not reflect any mention of a response from Tuxedo.  The Council has presented their 25-year plan for regional transportation.  Councilmember Lindsay suggested that the Town Board draft a response to the survey, which she felt might then carry a little weight.  She added that citizens throughout Orange County were welcome to respond to the survey and since the Town hadn’t been part of the planning in the report, it would be good to comment.  Ms. Bakhtiary mentioned that she had been talking to the owners of Dottie Audrey’s and they reported transportation issues with getting employees to work. Deputy Supervisor McMillen said that he thought any plans should focus on the entire business corridor.  Dale Mottola commented that she found it challenging that there is no public transportation to Westchester. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Consideration of Establishing an Economic Development CouncilCouncilmember Lindsay commented that she has been running a group for volunteers on the subject of Economic Development for a while now and they are wondering what they should call themselves and further what would be their interaction with the Town Board.  She reported that  35 people had showed up to the committee meeting and they want to formalize the committee.  She reached out to Bill Fioravanti, Director of Economic Development for Orange County and he said he would put her in touch with a committee in Newburgh.  Additionally, she said she would reach out to other Towns to see what they are doing.  She said she was looking for input from the Town Board and wondered how they would like to proceed.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that he thought she was on the right path.  Councilmember Lindsay then said she wanted to know how to establish a process for all the work that the volunteers are doing. Additionally she wondered how they could get their work recognized by the Town Board and how they might  interact with the Town Board in order to have an impact on decisions like zoning.  Town Attorney Howard Protter inquired as to what exactly the volunteers were  doing.  He wondered if they were preparing reports.  Councilmember Lindsay replied that they have formed subcommittees and they are getting to the point where they will be preparing reports.  Mr. Protter then added that he would give some thought to the question. Councilmember English interjected that he felt  that the work of the committee needed to be guided by actions that the Town Board was considering.  In his view,  the Town needs to determine what their priorities are and these will steer the comittees.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen added that he thought it should be predicated on the priorities set by the Comprehensive Plan.  Councilmembers English and Lindsay suggested that it could be a Citizens Action Committee.  Town Attorney Protter responded that he wasn’t sure what they meant by that term.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen replied that in some municipalities, Citizen Action Committees have some power, to which Town Attorney Protter quickly replied “not in New York!”  Instead, he suggested that the committees be invested with certain responsibilities instead of power. 
  2. 2-Regional Transportation Council Survey Response from Town BoardDeputy Supervisor McMillen suggested that they had already covered this subject during the public comments on agenda items.  Councilmember English disagreed.  He stated that as a Town Board they should have reviewed the survey and ascertained what items were being sought.   Since the deadline for responses isn’t until September 30, he recommended that they put together a consolidated Board response and send it in.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen agreed and said Councilmember English would be the Project Manager for the response.  It was determined that this would not have to be done in a public meeting. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she and Town Clerk Matthews would like to learn how to add tabs to the Town web page.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that he would get together with both of them and show them how to do this.
Councilmember English stated that he would like to focus on the Highway Department site, which he feels should be a coordinated effort by the entire Town Board.  He thought that he was supposed to be working on this with Deputy Supervisor McMillen and, while they’ve had some “ad hoc solutions” such as a proposal from the Watchtower, he personally has not seen anything from Watchtower so he doesn’t know what is being offered.  He thinks they need to issue an RFP to try to establish what the clean up costs would be for the entire site and then they would be able to determine the value of what is being offered by the Watchtower.  He further stated that the Town doesn’t have a contract with anyone to clean up the site and this troubles him.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen agreed and further commented that he knew nothing about a contact with Watchtower.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum said he “stumbled into” a meeting with Watchtower and subsequently they had come and looked at the site.  Town Attorney Protter interjected that the Town does in fact have a contract with Ben Veltidi to clean up the mulch site but not the dirt.  Councilmember English observed that there were substantial piles of contaminated dirt and logs that had been there for ages..  Deputy Supervisor McMillen remarked that the piles were actually decreasing in size..  He said he felt the Board needed to figure out what they were looking for and, in his view, that should be an estimate of what it would cost to remediate everything that is left on the property.  Councilmember English said he kept hearing about “ad hoc solutions” but he feels the Town Board should visit the site as a group and then move to find out what it would cost to just clean it up.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen said that it was the Supervisor’s role to reach out to groups like this and that this is what had happened here.  But, he added that the Town has had someone working on the dirt piles on the property for a couple of years without a contract and this troubles him because he feels there could be a  liability issue.  Councilmember English again complained that these arrangements should be made with the entire Town Board.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that  this wasn’t how things worked….the Supervisor meets with people who are offering services and then disseminates the information to the entire Board.  Councilmember English replied ‘but none of that has been channeled to the Board.” Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that the Watchtower people had come to have the meeting but Supervisor Rost was not there due to being in the hospital.  Instead, he happened to be at Town Hall so he spoke with the group and got their contact information. He went on to say that the Town does have an issue with DeMarino, who is cleaning up the dirt pile, but regardless he has saved the Town a lot of money.  However, he continued, the Town is not indemnified and this bothers him. Superintendent Dollbaum then stated that when he had first been elected, the Board put out a call for quotes on cleaning up the entire Highway Department site.  They had quotes ranging from a half a million dollars on up to 5 million.  The half a million quotes were from people who just wanted to take the wood away.  He went on to say that no one had bothered to get an estimate  for removing the rest of the dirt, which would involve removing up to 300,000 yards of contaminated fill.  Councilmember Lindsay expressed concern that the Board had been told that everything was going along great when, in fact, there was a huge piece of it left to be done.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen suggested that the problem was a lack of administration oversight. DeMarino is bringing soil to mix with what’s in the “pile” and then taking the resulting topsoil out at no cost to the Town.  Town Attorney Protter suggested the Town could put out an RFP to everybody including DeMarino and the Watchtower and then compare what is being offered at no cost to the Town.  Councilmember English said that they could look at it but expressed his dismay that he hadn’t been party to any of these arrangements.  He said he had heard most of the details through rumor.  He further reported having heard talk of staging areas, storing trucks, pole barns and concrete plants .  He doesn’t feel it is accurate to say that there will be no cost to the Town. Town Attorney Protter responded “the alternative is cash!” He suggested that an RFP would help the Board put a value on the work being done.  Councilmember Lindsay wondered if the Board should be thinking, long term, about what they want the Highway Department property to be.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum stated for the record that Supervisor Rost hadn’t been the one having conversations with the Watchtower, rather he was. Supervisor Rost sent Watchtower to take a look at the highway property as he was thinking about having them remediate the dirt pile in exchange for services and Superintendent Dollbaum was there when they showed up.  Councilmember English then asked if it was appropriate for the Supervisor to make such decisions all by himself?  Town Attorney Protter replied to that it was certainly appropriate for him to have started the process and had conversations with  Watchtower and further to ask them to look at the site. Councilmember English said it sounded to him as though this had been going on for a long time. 
Mary Graetzer spoke up and commented that this all sounded like electioneering from the dais to her and she was offended by that.  Councilmember English stated that he was offended by that comment.  
Moving on, Deputy Supervisor McMillen stated that he thought the Board should start by having the Town Engineer give them a report on what needed to be done at the site and from that they could create an RFP. Councilmember Reardon interjected that she thought there had been an email to the entire Board when the Watchtower went to a TAC meeting with the Planning Board detailing their proposal. 
Ultimately, it was decided to ask the Watchtower to put a proposal in writing to the entire Town Board.  Councilmember English also proposed that the Town Board together should tour the Highway Department site.  Councilmember Lindsay suggested that the Town Engineer should be present as well and the Board members agreed. 
Councilmember Lindsay suggested that since they had all received the latest audit report, they should invite the Town Auditor to come to a meeting and present his findings.  The Board members all agreed.

Department Head Updates:
Building Inspector Maikisch reported that Tuxedo Reserve has a permit for a project called East Terrace on their site.  Recently, he had received a detailed accusation that they are bringing in uncertified fill to the site.  He will be investigating this.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that the Board would discuss this in Executive Session with the attorney after the meeting. 
Town Clerk Matthews reported that she and Deputy Clerk Marisa Dollbaum were still working on records management.  Recently, Mrs. Dollbaum has started scanning documents and digitizing them so they can shred the actual paper. 
Public Comments:
Dale Mottola stated that about 10 years ago someone had put together a report on transportation in Southern Orange County and Tuxedo had been left out of that report as well.  She doesn’t think research will turn up much that is specific to Tuxedo. 
Jerry Mottola said he is in constant contact with the Postmaster in Tuxedo and they have been discussing parking as well as the need for fixing the sidewalk in front of the Post Office.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum responded that if his budget proposal went through, repairs to the sidewalks would be done next year.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen suggested that perhaps there could be LDC money available for this to which Councilmember Lindsay added that maybe they could do something nicer than just repair the sidewalk in that area since LDC money was supposed to be for Town Beautification.  Councilmember English stated that should the Town put together a proposal to the LDC he would want to make it clear that this was a Town Board proposal.
Claudia Bakhtiary suggested that they look at the reports made from the focus groups years ago (around 2003) for beautification of the downtown area. 
Irene Denaro said she hopes the Town can work on the “contaminated section” of the highway department site.   She also hopes the Town Board can work together and start communicating with one another.

Vouchers were signed and the Board adjourned into an Executive Session to seek advice from counsel. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 23, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 17, 2019

The Town Board met on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost and Councilmember Reardon were absent.

Councilmember Lindsay expressed her desire to change the minutes from the last meeting.  She was told to take her changes to the Town Clerk in her office and then they would be discussed and the minutes approved at the next Town Board meeting.

Deputy Supervisor Update:
Deputy Supevisor McMillen stated that the concert at Powerhouse Park  was a “good concert,” despite having low attendance due to lousy weather.  He further said that the event made some money this year and that the details and figures would be announced at the next meeting of the LCD. 

Councilmember English remarked that the Board members had all received various reports from Town departments in their packets and he felt these reports should be open and available to the public.  Therefore he proposed that the Board read into the record and discuss the Building inspector’s report and he proceeded to do so. 

The report had 7 items on it:

1.The building that the Town uses for the storage of records, Animal Control equipment and Recreation equipment was condemned back in April, 2017.  The Town should not be using it and a fence should be placed around it, as per State code, to prevent entry.  (Someone could get hurt in that building.)
Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that the plan for records management has always been to build a pole barn with proceeds from the sale of the American Legion building.  Since that plan was made, the Jehovah’s Witnesses have come forth with a PILOT proposition, which might assist the Town in remedying the situation sooner. 
Councilmember English replied that he felt that several questions needed to be answered and then the Board needed to meet on this subject and make a decision about what should happen with the building rather than the “one off negotiations” that he feels are going on inappropriately. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen said he had contact information for the people from the Jehovah’s Witnesses and could set up a meeting. 
Councilmember English responded that it was fine for one person to set up a meeting but if the entire Board wasn’t in on the meeting, he felt it was wrong. 
Councilmember Lindsay mentioned that she recalled that Highway Superintendent Dollbaum was going to replace the roof on the record storage building and wondered where that fit in with the “condemnation.”  Mr. Dollbaum responded that he did intend to replace the roof and also do some work cleaning up the inside of the building (he estimated 2-3 days work) and then the condemnation could be lifted and that building as well as the pole barn could be used for storing Town records. 
Councilmember English then remarked that he felt the Town Board should organize a  site visit to the building so they could be clear about its condition. 
2. The Renaissance Faire has opened and the Forest of Fear Building has been taken down. 
Building Inspector Maikisch further explained that the Renaissance Faire staff had self condemned the Forest of Fear building and taken it down.
3. DeMarino Trucking has been removing the pile of topsoil being stored in front of the new sewer plant facility.  It is not in accordance with the approved site plan.  The deadline has been extended.
Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that Mr. DeMarino had no place to put the topsoil so he decided to use it to erect a sound barrier between the train tracks and Contractor’s Row.  He’s been notified that he has to move it but seems to be doing so very slowly. 

4.  Howard Protter has been asked to review the Tuxedo Auto Body settlement to determine what can be done in order to have the owner submit a site plan.
Town Attorney Protter responded that he had done this and had provided an explanation to the Building Inspector, which has also been sent to the Town Board. 

5. Chester LeBaren Jr. is scheduled to come in front of the Planning Board to get approval for the fill that was placed on his property behind the American Legion Buildling.
Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that for years, the fire departments had access to the creek behind the building to fill up their tanker trucks but now Mr. LeBaren Jr. has blocked their access.  Mr. Protter further commented that he could no longer advise the Board on this matter because his firm represents the estate of Mr. LeBaren Sr..  It has been determined that this is not a Town Board issue but is between Mr. LeBaren and the fire company.

6. Mr. Bruno has been in front of the Planning Board for acceptance of a new site plan for the IGA Building.  Some changes still need to be made before an approval. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that the Town of Tuxedo code calls for parking spaces of 10’ X 20’ while most municipalities call for 9’ X 18’ spaces.  Councilmember Lindsay commented that she had been at the Planning Board meeting and had learned that Mr. Bruno wants to open the antique store in the IGA as soon as possible and they don’t feel there is enough time to wait for the Town to change their parking code.  They feel that between the old Tuxedo Junction site and the current IGA site, they can find enough parking.  Councilmember English stated he thought the Board needed to review parking specifications in Town. 

7. Steve’s Pizza has received correspondence from the county regarding the changes needed for the septic system that had been installed to be approved.

Building Inspector Maikisch further commented that Steve’s had in fact received their Certificate of Occupancy just that day and was now planning to open on or around October 1. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:
1. Consideration of LED Streetlights program and financing.
Councilmember Lindsay explained that O&R’s program for replacing the lights had a deadline of September 15.  The Town responded that they did want to participate.  This means the Town will get 2% of the streetlights converted to LED lights for free and then at the end of the program, if all Towns hadn’t participated, there would be an opportunity to get more.  Last year, the Town was able to get 50 converted.  There was no further action required on this.
2. Resolution to approve Planning Board Member Terms- This item was tabled.
3. Discussion – Highway Employment – to be discussed under Other Business.
4. Resolution approving St. Mary’s Sign – The church was seeking permission to put up signs advertising their annual ‘Soup For Scholarships fundraiser at the Train Station” which benefits scholarships for the PreSchool.  It was unanimously approved. 

Other Business:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum commented that he feels the Board needs to start thinking about hiring some new fulltime men at the Highway Department.  Currently, they have 6 fulltime employees in the department.  All are over the age of 52, one is out on disability and one is the mechanic.  That leaves 4 working on a daily basis.  One of these 4 has a bad knee and one has a bad hip.  They also have 3 seasonal employees. After 3-1/2 years, the seasonal guys are starting to question whether they will ever be made permanent and are talking about leaving.  According to the Highway Superintendent, ideally, the department would have 8-9 men.  Five years ago, they had 13 men and he admits that was probably too many employees.  He feels that if the Town doesn’t hire and start training young men soon, they could find themselves with a department where no one knew how to do the work or how any of the systems operate in the Town.  He added that when he retired from his job, the mechanic will leave with him.   He suggests that the Town consider making some of the seasonal employees permanent hires so they can be trained.  He further said he thought this was something that the whole Board should know.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember English stated that during the Irene Storm, the culvert on Benjamin Meadow Rd. had been damaged.  FEMA had funded the repairs but the work has not been done and time has run out.  FEMA has denied an extension, but the Town can appeal.  If won, that would give the Town until mid-January to do the work, but Highway Superintendent Dollbaum says that’s not enough time as this work needs to be done during the July-September time period as Benjamin Meadow Rd. is a school bus route and in order to do the work, the road needs to be closed.  Since FEMA does not pay until a job has been completed, the Town will need to have money in the budget to do the project.  They will also need to have a reasonable estimate of how long the project will  take.  The Board voted unanimously to authorize H2M to prepare the paperwork needed to apply for the extension.
Councilmember Lindsay announced she had several meetings scheduled for the Economic Development Council.  They are September 23 at 4:30, September 30 at 6:30, October 1 at 6:30 and October 3 at  6:30.  All meetings will take place in the Community Room at Town Hall and are open to the public.  She also said that the Climate Smart Task Force was moving forward looking at different projects to get certification for the Town.

Department Heads Update:

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that the Department has mulch, topsoil, compost and chip stone available for residents only at Quarry Field.  He also reported working on the following things:

  • Tree planting in the East Village has been completed
  • Sylvan Way has been chip sealed
  • Drain and culvert cleaning
  • The corner of Benjamin Meadow Rd. and Brammertown Rd. has new signs.

 

Police Chief Abbot stated he has submitted his budget.  Lt. Norton added that he will be issuing a Nixle alert shortly before the weekend of October 5-6 for high traffic as both the Renaissance Faire and Apple Fest will be going on in addition to Family Fun Day. The police will be closing Benjamin Meadow Rd. during this time.

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola asked if there was any update on the Town Village Consolidation. She was told that the State had requested “meets and bounds” description on the “new” municipality.
Representing the School District, Meg Vaught reported the District had reached out to both State Senator Metzger’s office and the DOT regarding the blinking school light and the traffic light. Superintendent Bohlke has suggested a joint meeting with presence from both school and Town with the Senator and DOT.  The Board agreed to this. 
John McNamara thanked Deputy Supervisor McMillen for his work on the concert at Powerhouse Park, which he said he had attended and found it to be a great event despite the weather.  He also thanked the Police Department for their presence at the event. 

There were no vouchers as this was a “special meeting.”  The Board entered into an executive session to discuss personnel. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 17, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 9, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting August 27, 2019

The Town Board met on Wednesday, August 29, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost was absent.

Deputy Supervisor McMillen opened the meeting by reading two statements. The first was an Official Town statement, which read:

“The Town Supervisor, Mike Rost, had a traffic accident last week when he lost control of his vehicle and we understand the circumstances of the accident are under investigation by the New York State police.  The Supervisor is recuperating and we all wish him a speedy recovery and a return to his official duties.  The Deputy Supervisor will be filling in for the Supervisor during his absence.” 

The second statement was from Supervisor Rost and it read:

“I would like to thank all who have supported both my son and me through this truly difficult time.  That is one of the things that makes Tuxedo such a special place to call home.  I am truly grateful and honored to serve this community.  During my short recovery, Deputy Supervisor McMillen will be handling Town business.  We have come a long way since 2014 with our strong fiscal recovery and the remediation of the mulch pile, just to name a few. We also have exciting things ready to happen with the opening of Steve's.  I am very much looking forward to getting back to work, in order to continue to build upon the Town's positive momentum and successes.”

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Continuation of Public Hearing – Planning Board Membership Terms:
Sue Scher commented that the resolution in its current form was much tighter and clearer. She wondered if the Board would be putting together an implementation plan.  The answer was yes,  the Board does intend to do this. 
Next, Deputy Supervisor McMillen made a motion that the hearing be closed and it was passed unanimously.  
Councilmember Lindsay wondered if the one person whose term expires at the end of this year should be one of the three who were originally supposed to expire this year.  After some clarification from Town Attorney Protter, Councilmember Reardon made a motion that the Board adopt the local law as proposed  with the provision that the Town Board get together in order to discuss and decide on which members would fill which terms.   There was some discussion about which terms should be filled by whom.  Town Attorney Protter stated that the intent of the law was for the slate to be wiped clean.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English disagreed with this insisting that one of the 3 members originally slated to have their term expire at the end of this year, should have their term expire at the end of this year.  Councilmember Reardon reiterated that her motion was that the law be adopted with the terms to be discussed and hammered out between the Board members later.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English wanted the terms to be included in the motion.  When Councilmember Lindsay reiterated that she agreed with the cadence of expiring terms but wanted to discuss individual terms, Councilmember Reardon withdrew her motion and Deputy Supervisor McMillen withdrew his second and the meeting moved on. 

Agenda Items:
1-Consideration of LED streetlight program and financing: 
Councilmember Lindsay explained that this proposal was one of two she’s been looking at for converting the Town’s streetlights to LED, which would help the Town to comply with the Climate Smart certification program.  One of the programs is proposed by O&R and the other by NYPA (New York State Power Authority).  O&R’s program will allow the Town to convert up to 2% of the  lights for free each year and, if other municipalities didn’t take advantage of the opportunity, there could be an opportunity to get more for free.  NYPA’s program would provide for converting all the lights at once with a financing program for the Town to pay them back over 7 years.  The final numbers were not available.  Frank Peverly further commented that in order to take advantage of NYPA’s program, the Town would have to first purchase the streetlights from O&R.  Currently the Town pays a fixed charge on a monthly basis to O&R for the streetlights.  However, if they decide to purchase the streetlights (required in order to enter into the agreement with NYPA) they would have to enter into a contract for maintenance of the lights.  NYPA’s estimated cost is inaccurate because they are calculating it based on the wrong number of streetlights.  Ultimately, it was decided that the Board didn’t have enough information to make a responsible decision. 
2- Consideration of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and Financing:
Councilmembers Lindsay and English and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum met with the contractor that NYPA uses for electric vehicle charging stations.  They identified two possible locations for the stations.  One is in the north end of the train station parking lot and the other is in the commuter parking lot.  Each charging station has 2 ports meaning that there would be room for 4 cars to charge.  A full charge takes approximately 4 hours.  If the Town decides not to charge the public for charging their vehicles, they would be eligible for an $8000 grant per charging station. 
3- Powerhouse Park Concert Budget:
Deputy Supervisor McMillen announced that the Town recently discovered that the LDC would not be able to provide money for the concert from the grant fund as they had hoped.  However, all costs of the concert have been covered by a private donation so that the event will not cost the Town anything.                                            Also, the LDC recently voted to create a 3rd fund, the Administrative Fund, which will be used only for money coming in to the Town.  Thus, any money earned from the concert will go into that fund.  There is currently $12,500 in the fund, which covers the costs of the entertainment lineup at the concert.  Additional donations to cover the cost of the sound system among other items are expected.  The only things the Town will have to pay for are the trashcans, picnic tables and porto-potties which are items that are typically provided with every event that is booked in Town (i.e. softball tournaments etc) as per an agreement already on file with the Recreation Department.  Councilmember Reardon then stated that she was 100% in favor of this concert and also other events that might be brought in because of the work that the LDC has done. She called on her fellow Board members to join her.  Deputy Superintendent McMillen quickly agreed.  Councilmember English commented that he thought that it was unfair for Councilmember Reardon to infer that her fellow Board members were unsupportive.  He further commented that he was not unsupportive, but nothing had ever been presented to him about the concert so he had questions.  Based on what happened last year when Town money was used for the event, and it was ultimately a financial loss to the Town, he was against it.  He also believes that Town Residents should have been able to attend for free as taxpayer money was used to finance the event.  He went on to say that if a producer was brought to produce the concert and that producer wanted to use Powerhouse Park, in his mind that would be a totally different thing than the Town producing concerts.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen further announced that he had spoken with County Executive Steve Neuhaus who has pledged his 110% support for the event.  The County will pay for radio spots, coverage in Hudson Valley Magazine and newspaper ads among other things.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen pledged that he would work with the concert producer to offer a reduced price for Town residents.  Councilmember Lindsay remarked that she had asked for this item to be on the agenda because she wanted to make sure there would not be a repeat of last year.  Since it appears that this is not the case, she of course supports it. 
4- Approval for Sign Permit/Masker Orchard:
Masker Orchard annual requests these signs in the fall to align with the apple picking season.  The resolution was approved unanimously.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay announced that there would be an  Economic Development meeting on September 4 from 6-8:30pm and that everyone was welcome to attend. 
Councilmember English said he had  received a clipping from the Photo News about digital speed signs and would like to see some installed for use in Town.
Councilmember Lindsay expressed her interest in installing a sidewalk from the traffic light at Contractor’s Row down to Steve’s because the Town wants people to cross at the light, but there currently there is no  path for them to walk on.  It was pointed out that this would be under the DOT’s jurisdiction and the Town would have to request that they install sidewalks. 

Department Head Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum announced the availability of mulch, topsoil and compost for residents at Quarry Field.  In addition, the Department has l ¼ inch gravel, leftover from street sweeping, that will be available.   Starting the week of September 2 the Highway Department will be continuing the tree planting in the East Village between the road and the fence along the Thruway.  The Superintendent has been working with Deputy Supervisor McMillen on some safety issues in Town Hall and in the Court and Town Clerk’s office.  Finally, he reported that the stairway from the lower commuter parking lot is in disrepair and they may need to close it down in the future as it is a potential a safety hazard. 

Public Comments:
Janet Galuska mentioned that if the Town wanted to slow people down as they came into Town, it might be a good idea to make sure the 35 mph speed limit sign at the south end of Town was free from bushes and trees.  Currently, it is almost impossible to see it.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum responded that he had already called the DOT on this issue.  The Town is not allowed to clear in this location.  This led to a discussion about the missing blinking yellow light in front of the school.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum said he had asked the DOT about this as well and that he had also given new Superintendent of Schools, Tim Bohlke, the numbers for him to call.  It was suggested and agreed to that the Town would contact their State Senator and ask her to look into and expedite this if possible.
Mrs. Galuska also asked the Town to look into making Hospital Road one way the entire way around as she feels it is dangerous the way it is (one way going up, but both ways going down) . Finally she suggested that people exiting the Library parking lot should be required to go down to Library Road and then to the stop light to turn on to Route 17 as it is difficult to impossible to see past the Library’s hedges when turning out of their lot. 
Jerry Mottola commented that the Town of Tuxedo used to be known as the speed control Town but now he almost never sees police monitoring speeders especially through Town.  Sgt. Russell responded that they were there, but perhaps Mr. Mottola didn’t know where to look for them!  Deputy Supervisor McMillen added that the police were out more often now and midnight coverage has expanded to 4 or 5 nights a week. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

 

back to top

line

Notice of Economic Development Meeting September 4, 2019

There were will be an Econmic Development meeting on Wednesday, September 4 at 6:30pm in the Town Hall.

Click here to view the meeting notice.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting August 27, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting August 12, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, August 12, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  Supervisor Rost was absent and Councilmember Reardon attended via Skype.

Continuation of Public Hearing – Planning Board Membership Terms:
Deputy Supervisor McMillen set the stage for the public hearing by saying that the Board had been waiting for restated verbiage from the Town Attorneys.  
Councilmember Lindsay explained that the problem was that in 2014, 2 members were added to the Board and the terms were not changed which meant that 3 Board members had terms expiring in 2019.
Town Attorney Protter stated the legislation as proposed states that in 2019, 1 member’s term would expire; in 2020 2 members’ terms would expire; in 2021 1 member’s term would expire; in 2022 2 members’ terms would expire and in 2023 – 1 member’s term would expire.  He added that the law also provided for a one year probationary period for new members in order to make sure their training had been completed and their performance was satisfactory.
Councilmember Lindsay remarked that while she was aware of the discrepancy in the term lengths, she did not recall any discussion being held about a probationary period.  Town Attorney Protter responded that there had indeed been such discussion and that this is where he had taken the provisionfrom.  Councilmember English wondered if the new verbiage had been posted on the Town website?  He was told no because it hadn’t yet been agreed upon by the Board.
Councilmember Reardon stated that the Chairman of the Planning Board had sent to all Town Board members a proposal, following the 1,2,1,2,1 cadence for whose terms he thought should expire when.  In brief it said:
   In 2019, the 7th member to be appointed to the Board’s term would expire
   In 2020, the 6th member to be appointed to the Board’s term and Ray Ferri’s term would expire
   In 2021, Rich Rigoli’s term would expire
   In 2022, John Ruel’s term and Darren Maynard’s term would expire
   In 2023, Chairman Mike Reardon’s term would expire.
Councilmember English requested that if the Board had evidence of when someone had been appointed, that should be considered when figuring out the terms.  For example, he recalls that Mike Reardon had been appointed in 2017 and therefore his term should end in 2022 and not 2023.  Also, he doesn’t feel the two newest members should come off first.
Councilmember Reardon disagreed saying that she thought it would henceforth be healthy.  She assumes everyone thinks the two newest members will want to stay on the Board and thus would likely be reappointed so they would actually end up with the longest terms.  She further commented that if the Board members wanted the Chairman of the Planning Board to come to a meeting and explain the reason behind his proposal in person, they should request this.
Councilmember English remarked that he thinks the original appointment date has to be considered.  Councilmember Reardon and Deputy Supervisor McMillen both said that in order to get to the 1,2,1,2,1 cadence some adjustments in terms would need to be made.   Town Attorney Protter observed that in order to get into the proposed cadence, it would be necessary to start all over again with the terms. He doesn’t feel that the Board should spend any more time trying to figure out original appointment dates.  Instead he suggested that they should state new terms, agree on them and go with it from there.  After some more discussion along these lines, the Board decided to continue the Public Hearing to the next Town Board meeting at which time they would also hear from Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon. 
Councilmember English commented that in regard to the probationary period, he felt that the criteria of not taking training or not coming to meetings should apply to all Board members, not just new ones.  He added he doesn’t understand why the Board would want to recruit someone just to put them on probation. 
No one who was present remembers being in favor or a probationary period and the Town Attorney said one wasn’t necessary so they Board asked him to remove that provision from the latest revision of the law to be considered at the next meeting. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen began the update by stating his appreciation for the actions of Lieutenant Norton who was recently hugely responsible for rescuing a young woman from drowning at an unnamed location in Town.  After Councilmember English and several audience members asked for the exact location of this accident, the Lieutenant stated that he wasn’t going to tell anyone the location because the Town didn’t want anyone to know or to feel encouraged to try swimming there.  Councilmember English stated that he felt that the location should be marked somehow, perhaps with a white cross  such as are frequently erected after automobile accidents as a beacon of death to warn people that death could occur as the area is unsafe. 
Lieutenant Norton further commented that he had recently been made aware that the victim was having trouble paying for her medical bills.  He noted that he did not know if it would be appropriate, but wondered if the Town would be interested in contributing as he understands she is in debt approximately $50,000.  The family has started a go fund me page for help. 
Next, Deputy Supervisor McMillen wondered if any Board members wanted to have the Town pay for analysis of the water coming out of the spring on Orange Turnpike.  Apparently, PIPC, on whose property the spring runs, has recently put up a sign saying the water is unpotable.  Town Attorney Protter assured the Board that they have no liability for the water so the suggestion was ignored. 
The Deputy Supervisor also reported having spoken to Steve Germano, proprietor of Steve’s, who told him that he now has a tentative opening date of mid September.  He is working through his problems with Orange County and hopes to have a firm date for the opening soon.
Finally, Deputy Supervisor McMillan reported that the Town  has been receiving many comments and complaints through the website about the bears and it seems that people are all concerned about safety.  The Deputy Supervisor cautioned that the DEC, would not come and remove the bears, but they do have a website called Iseemammals.com where one can go and download an app to report bear sightings.  The DEC will use information from this to help set parameters in the state’s bear hunt.   The hunt will take place from 10/1-12/17.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Board Discussion – Reorganization/Consolidation-Town Attorney Howard Protter apprised the Board that the next step is to make a “plan.”  This will consist of the plan that was in the petition plus the tweeks added by the attorneys afterward.  The Board directed Mr. Protter to put these into one document after which they will approve it and then, after 4 weeks time, they can hold a public hearing on the plan.   Councilmember Lindsay asked how they would go about going through and deciding which powers held by Villages they wanted.  Town Attorney Protter responded that this would be unnecessary.  They will just go on as always and if something should come up, like a pipeline, they can just assume the same power that a village has.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen wanted to know if the official name of the Town (on documents and letterheads) would change to the Consolidated Town of Tuxedo?  The answer was yes. 
  2. Request waiver from Building Moratorium to continue external and internal work on the IGA Building – Tuxedo Hudson Co. -  Cathy Morris said the company’s plans were to continue to clean up  the building both inside and out.  Most of the interior work has been completed and at this time they are looking to finish the work on the back of the building and then to paint.  Currently, they have plans for an antique book store and have been talking with several other prospective tenants, some of which are restaurants. If they get their waiver, they can go to the Planning Board for site plan approval. Approval was unanimously granted.
  3. Resolution to reappoint Assessor.  Upon questioning from the Board members, it was explained by Town Attorney Howard Protter that all assessors in the State had their terms from September to September and thus our Assessor’s term is about to expire. Thus the Board voted to unanimously reappoint Jim Davies to the post. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Ken English said he wanted to recognize the recent graduates from Tuxedo of Orange County Firefighters training.  They are Eric Diaz, Nelson Pereira, Darren Reid, Robert Clarke and Madeline Stromberg.  Next, Councilmember English said he had some questions about the upcoming concert at Powerhouse Park, which he learned about through an email from Shari Brooks.  He asked for verification that it was a Town sponsored event.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that it was sponsored by the Town but paid for by the LCD.  The Deputy Supervidor has been working with Bill Fioravanti, Director of Economic Development for Orange County who steered them to the concert producer they are using this year.  He added that a billboard will be going up soon and that many great acts have been booked.  The LDC has agreed to fund the project.  Councilmember English wanted to know who the applicant was.  He was told the Town of Tuxedo.  Then, Councilmember English wanted to know why they hadn’t discussed it as a Town Board.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen replied “because it has nothing to do with the Town Board.” He further suggested that if Councilman English was talking about the application to the LDC he should speak to the Supervisor as his directive had been to “get it going.”  The LDC has already approved up to $35,000 in expenses.  Councilmember Lindsay wanted to know how much the music would cost.  She was told about $12,000.  Councilman English added “so Mike should be able to supply a budget for this?”  He was told yes.  Deputy Supervisor
McMillen further commented that there had been unanimous support from the members of the LDC including Andrew Dance.  All vouchers for the event will be sent to and handled by the LDC.  They are hoping that the event will turn a profit and thus beef up the LDC..  Councilmember English remarked that it was awkward for him to find out about the event in the way that he did. 
Mike Squillini commented that he thought the conversation going back and forth among the Board members was awkward and he didn’t like listening to it. e encouraged the members to hold such discussions privately.  He was told that the Board was complying with the Open Meetings law by holding these discussions in public.
Irene Denaro said that she felt all Town Board members should be voting on a concert and she wanted to know why that didn’t happen.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded “you’ll have to ask Mike Rost why that didn’t happen.” Ms. Denaro then wanted to know who was funding the concert.  She was told the LDC was funding it.  Next, she wanted to know where did the LDC money come from? The answer was The Related Companies who funded it as per their Special Permit for Town Economic Development.  Mrs. Denaro wanted to know how much the tickets would cost.  Deputy Supervisor replied that hadn’t been determined yet. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen added that the producer would be happy to come and talk to the entire Town Board.  Councilmember Lindsay responded that this would be a good idea. 
Chris Dollbaum asked about the LDC and how it was set up.  Town Attorney Protter replied that the LDC had been set up during the Special Permit process because there was concern that if the Related project contained commercial development,  the hamlet might suffer so Related gave money to an LDC.  The LDC has an independent Board, which is made up of 2 Town Board members, a Related representative, the Planning Board Chairman, the Zoning Board Chairman and an attorney.  They administer the funds two ways:  grants and loans. 

Councilmember Lindsay reported that the next Economic Development Workshop would be taking place on on September 4.  It is a public meeting and thus everybody is invited.  The meeting will be held at Town Hall in the Community Room and from 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm. 

Department Heads Update:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported on the trees being planted in the East Village.  In regard to the Sewer plant, he said they have almost completed all the items on the DEC checklist. They have almost completed all the items on the DEC checklist.  They still need to power wash and paint.  Councilmember Lindsay asked Town Attorney Protter if the Town was still negotiating on a partial opening of the sewer plant.  Mr. Protter replied that he would research that question and report back at the next meeting. 

Public Comments:
Andy Berish asked if the Town changes from a Town to a Village, would this make the Supervisor a Mayor.  He was told, no, it did not.
Jim Eirand commented that he lived on Patterson Hill and Superintendent Dollbaum and his crew just blacktopped their road.  He said “They did a great job and I and all the residents would like to thank them!”
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum mentioned that his crew has recently repaved around Town Hall.  Because they did the job themselves, they saved some money for the Town.  He went on to say that chip sealing on South Gate, Eagle Valley and the East Village is presently underway  He also reminded everyone that in order to hunt bears, one needs a big game license.  Finally, he reiterated his announcement that mulch, compost and top soil is available to residents in Quarry Field.
Meg Vaught, President of the Tuxedo School Board said she was there to formally introduce the Board to Tim Bohlke the new Superintendent of Schools/High School Principal. Mr. Bohlke said he was very excited to be in Tuxedo and he was looking forward to working with the Board.  He wants to shed some light on Tuxedo as he thinks the District has a fantastic faculty and school.  He added he was not required to live in Tuxedo, but he feels it’s his responsibility to do so and thus he is negotiating on a house and is going to move to town. He further said that the Town residents will start to see more evidence of the school in Town with signage.  They have a lot of advertising going out recruiting new students.  The new mantra is “We Are Tuxedo!”  Additionally, he said he would like to see a new traffic signal for the school and when one button is pushed, both that and the light at the fire station would turn red so people could cross the road to get to Steve’s safely.   Councilmember English commented that this was a concern for the Board as well.  He then made the point that most of the people in the audience were over 40 or 50 years of age and he wanted to see more young people involved in the community.  He felt that all should be working with the school to provoke their interest and make it happen. 
Rob Dollbaum then spoke saying that people who grew up in Tuxedo considered the site where the young woman almost drowned as a swimming hole that was a “rite of passage,” where they all learned to swim and dive.  Now, the Town seems to want to brand it as something different and he feels that that’s wrong.

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was approved. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting August 12, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting July 22, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, July 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended via phone and all others were present. 

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he had been spending his time working on the budget having met with both Town Bookkeeper Brian Sullivan and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum earlier in the day.  Next, he recognized all the effort and work put in by Town residents for the Town Village consolidation, acknowledging that this is how government is supposed to work—the residents wanted the consolidation, the Town supported it, and a lot of people went above and beyond the call of duty to make it happen.  Town resident Janet Galuska added that she would like to recognize the people in the Village of Tuxedo Park who worked with her to get signatures and also to bring out the vote in that section of Town.  Councilmember English commented that over 95% of the people who voted did so in favor of the consolidation and what he took from that was encouragement for a “united Tuxedo trying to protect what we have in Town.”  Supervisor Rost added that he also wanted to recognize Town Clerk Donna Matthews who put the whole vote together and found people to man the polls and run the election.  Moving on, the Supervisor then recognized the emergency responders in Town—the Police, especially Lt. Norton, the Fire Department and Ambulance Corps who recently rescued someone from the Ramapo River. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Continuation of Public Hearing – Planning Board terms:
There was some confusion about revisions made to the proposed law with some Councilmembers saying they hadn’t seen them.  Town Attorney Howard Protter noted that it would need to be revised again before the Board could voting so the public hearing was continued to the next Town Board meeting and the Board will await revisions from the attorneys. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution of Conditional Approval of Special Permit for Homeland Towers, LLC and T-Mobile and Northeast LLC – This proposal will approve a cell tower for the Renaissance Faire property. Robert Kodioso, representing the applicant, noted that they had revised their plans to show underground utilities. He also outlined the other work they had done in order to gain site plan review from the Planning Board.  Michael Musso, the Town’s cell tower consultant, mentioned that he had submitted a tech memo on the project.  It included information on the generator and info needed for the FAA.  He also noted that the applicant was offering space to the Town for emergency services antennae and said that while this Tower is being built for T Mobile, there is room on it for the other providers to have space.  Councilmember Lindsay inquired if it had been determined whether the tower would be made to look like a tree or just be a regular tower.  Mr. Kodioso responded that this decision had been made by the Planning Board, who chose to go with a regular mono pole that will be grey in color as they thought that this would be the least visible.  There followed a discussion about the process that will be gone through by the Planning Board to ensure that everything is done right and according to code.  The Board then voted unanimously in favor of approving the Special Permit for this project.

New Business:   
Town Clerk Donna Matthews stated that an application had been received for a sign permit for the Renaissance Faire.  This is for the same signage that the Faire puts up every year and it was approved unanimously. The Board also approved the police coverage agreement.

Department Head Update:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that the department had been busy milling the Town Hall parking lot in preparation of repaving it.  They will also be chip sealing on South Gate Rd and Eagle Valley, Ash Court and Summit in the near future.  These projects are the reason why residents have been seeing signs about upcoming construction in various spots around Town. Superintendent Dollbaum cautioned that they are generic signs so people who have been perplexed about “use alternate routes” dead end streets etc. should know that the signs had come worded that way.  He further advised that residents would still be able to get in and out of their residences.  In other news, the crew is almost done with their patching work.  Additionally, there is still mulch, dirt and compost available for residents at Quarry Field.  The Superintendent also reported that he had bee in touch with the DOT about trimming along Route 17 and around the speed limit signs. He also spoke to them about the flashing light and “slow school “ signs which were knocked out by an accident. Supervisor Rost asked if the school needed to call the DOT as well and Mr. Dollbaum responded that it certainly wouldn’t hurt. The Supervisor also inquired about getting a crosswalk put in there as he feels that kids will likely be crossing the street there once Steve’s is open. He was told that the DOT would probably put one in at the stoplight but not elsewhere.  While of the subject of Steve’s, Superintendent Dollbaum added that Mr. Germano, the owner, was still working with the County for approval for his septic system. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember English announced that the Board had received a memo from Town Attorney Marissa Weiss regarding the Town Village Consolidation in which she mentioned that the Town Board would need to meet within 30 days of the election to review the formation of the new Town Village.   This will take place at the next Town Board meeting, which is scheduled for August 12.   Councilmember Lindsay inquired about another public hearing on the subject saying she understood that there needed to be one more.  She was told that the Town did not need any further public hearings on this subject.
Councilmember McMillen reported that the Town was roughly 95% complete with work on the mulch pile, however, it is becoming increasingly difficult to close out the consent order.  After a discussion about what still needs to be done on the site, Supervisor Rost commented “at the end of the day, everyone needs to realize that the Town has cleaned up a lot of the mess up there at no expense to the Town.  This work could have cost us millions of dollars!”
Councilmember Lindsay said that this coming week is the final week before the Consolidated Funding Application is due.  She has been meeting with State Senator Jen Metzger and has also been in touch with Assemblyman Brabenec and County Executive Neuhaus to get supporting letters for the Town’s application, which will focus on improved parking in the hamlet area and a new roof for Town Hall as well as improved record management storage. The Town will also apply for a Complete Streets program, which would slow down traffic through Town. 

Public Comments:
Janet Galuska commented that people don’t seem to understand why the toilets in the train station are closed and they need to cross the street to use the facilities in Bentley’s.  She said she knew it was because the restrooms had been vandalized frequently and no one would agree to clean them, but she felt the Town should put up a small sign explaining why the rooms were closed.
John McNamera asked if the Consolidated Town Village might have any additional powers to combat the DEC and help get rid of the consent order.  He was told that regretfully, the answer was no. 
A resident of Southfields commented that the section of Route 17 around Old Orange Turnpike is particularly dangerous with people going too fast and  drivers frequently can’t see to make the turn.  Several other residents as well as Councilmember English spoke up about other sections of Route 17 which were dangerous because of reduced visibility with the State DOT not taking care of pruning alongside of the road.   Town Attorney Protter suggested that one way to get through to the State DOT would be to have a State Senator call and request that the work be done. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting July 22, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting July 8, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, July 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost stated that the only thing he’s been working on is the budget.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Public Hearing – Planning Board Membership terms:

Town Attorney Don Nichol explained that the current law states that the Planning Board will consist of 7 members, each having 7-year terms.  He understands that some Town Board members feel that 7-year terms are too long.  The problem with changing the terms to 5 years instead of 7 is that this would create a situation whereby in some years multiple terms would expire and this new law is meant to clear that up.  It is proposed that the terms will expire as follows, 1 member the first year, 2 members the second year, 1 member the third year, 2 members the fourth year and 1 member the fifth year.  The Board members are all in agreement on this concept.  Councilmember English stated that he was in disagreement with the section of the law which states that all new members of the Planning Board will have a probationary year their first year after which the Chairman of the Planning Board will decide whether they continue on the Board or are dismissed.  Councilmember English feels that the law should spell out what constitutes an acceptable first year and he also feels that the Town Board should have the say as to whether members continues or not.  Additionally, he believes that a new member should be made aware of any potential problems so that they have a chance to correct them.  Town Attorney Nichol replied that although that process was not spelled out in the law, it was understood that what the Councilmember was suggesting was what would happen.  Just because the Planning Board Chairman might state that they believe a member shouldn’t continue after the first year, this does not mean that the member would be automatically dismissed.  Also, the member would be given the opportunity to correct any issues before being dismissed.  Councilmember Lindsay commented that she was unhappy that the law didn’t state that the Town Board has to advertise when terms on the Planning Board are up.  Town Attorney Nichol responded that while this was Town policy, it is not required to be in the law nor does he feel it should be.   Councilmember Lindsay also suggested that the process for the probationary year should be written into the law.   Councilmember English further suggested that the law should be more specific in terms of what will be expected of a member.  It was pointed out to the Councilmembers that wording in the proposed legislation has been left  fairly vague on purpose.  Town Attorney Nichol stated that in all the years that he has been associated with the Town, he has never known any of these things to be a problem. Planning Board Chairman Mike Reardon commented that training for Planning Board members is mandated by New York State and the members of his Board are reminded of this quarterly, so if anyone did not get training, he would recommend that they be replaced.  This has never happened so far.  Councilmember English stated that he felt they needed to add recruitment for positions to the policy.     Supervisor Rost responded that there had been discussion among Board members and the majority agreed that the Board Chairmen of the lower Boards should be the ones to do the outreach and the interviewing since they are the experts of what is needed to serve successfully on the Boards.  Councilmember Lindsay countered that it was Town Policy that the Town Board should do the outreach and the interviewing.  The Supervisor suggested that they should change Town Policy.  He further stated that he understood that Councilmember Lindsay did not agree with this.  Councilmember Lindsay added that the proposed law states that  terms would take effect immediately and she felt it might make things less complicated if it could take effect on January 1.  The Town Attorney and the Board agreed with her.  The hearing was then opened up for public participation.
Sue Scher said she felt several things had been left out of the law.  To read her statement, click here
Irene Denaro commented that she thought Ms. Scher’s comments were “very good and on point.”  She wondered how the positions had been advertised and how anyone would know what the criteria for the job were.  She was told that the position had been advertised on the Town website for months.  

Town Attorney Nichol stated that the law would need to be redrafted and suggested that the Board leave the hearing open until that had been done.  Therefore the hearing was left open until August 12th. 

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • a Resolution to declare the Town of Tuxedo’s intent to be Lead Agency for the SEQR of the CFA Grant application for parking improvements and downtown study – This is a requirement of the Community Funding Application.
  • a Resolution authorizing relief from moratorium for the Southfields catering project – This business will be located In the old Southfields church on Lilac Lane.
  • a Resolution to approve Compensation for Poll Workers at the Referendum on July16
  • a Resolution accepting completed petitions for Library funding proposition to be included on the November 2019 ballot.

a Request for relief from Moratorium for D&A Companies in Southfields was tabled for further discussions with the applicant.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she had met with Senator Jen Metzger and talked with her about a State Aid Municipality grant.  The Senator asked the Town to send her a letter outlining specific needs for the Town. The list that will be sent is for:

  • A new roof for Town Hall
  • Surveillance equipment for the Police Department
  • A new roof for the Police Station

Councilmember Lindsay further related that she and Sue Scher had gone to the meeting in the Village of Woodbury concerning the proposed video casino on the former Nepera site. The Village found out about the proposal when they read about it in the newspaper, which made them very unhappy. 
One interesting thing they came away with is that all residents should be vigilant to make sure the old railroad bridge next to Nepera does not come down (there has been talk of taking it down by the applicant) because if it comes down, the Town of Tuxedo will then get all the huge trucks that want to avoid tolls on the thruway coming through Town! The project is a long way from approval. 

Department Head Update:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum said that his department had been patching roads and cutting back vegetation on the sides of the roads.  They are almost done patching and will shortly be moving on to chip sealing South Gate Road, Eagle Valley, East Village and possibly Sylvan Way if they have the resources to do that this year. 

Public Comments:
Janet Galuska thanked all the people who had helped her get the mailing for the consolidation out including Town Clerk Donna Matthews and Deputy Town Clerk Marissa Dollbaum.  She will also be handing out flyers on Saturday at the Post Office and Farmers’ Market. 
Marty Lavanhar commented that he had been reading that smaller and smaller communities had been paying higher and higher ransoms for cyber security and he wondered if Tuxedo was at particular risk.  Councilmember McMillen responded that Town IT servers are not located in Tuxedo but rather in New Windsor.  Tuxedo has a very good back up system and the risk is all with the Town’s IT consultants in New Windsor.  Also, he does a lot of things to check security on the side. 
Mike Reardon wondered if anyone was looking into the shape of Route 17 between Tuxedo and Sloatsburg.  Councilmember Lindsay replied that she had spoken with Senator Metzger about it and would continue following up with her.  Supervisor Rost added that he had spoken with the DOT who said that they were still trying to get Metra to finish the project but if they don’t, the DOT will take it over.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting July 8, 2019

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

Click here to view the Notice of Public hearing

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 24, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, June 24, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember English was absent.

Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost began his report by commenting that it was not only budget time for him, meaning that he has begun working on the 2020 budget, but it is also it is the halfway point of the present year so he has been  looking at the current  budgets to see where the Town stands.  The biggest thing he has noticed so far is that the Town’s B Fund (cash on hand) has gone up by about a million dollars! The B Fund is the Town outside the Village and this is where money was needed.  It seems to him that everyone from Department heads on down is improving with their budgetting every year.  Next year, the Board will be negotiating the Police Contract again.  The Supervisor reminded everyone that this year he wants to have all appointments for the reorganization set prior to the reorg meeting in January so he has asked Board heads to be ready to make suggestions for appointments by November so they have time to discuss and agree on the appointments. 
The Supervisor then called on Dorothy Ziegelbauer, member of the TUFSD Board, who was present in the audience to see if she had anything she wanted to share.  Mrs. Ziegelbauer responded that she was delighted to report that the Board had appointed a new Superintendent, Mr. Timothy Bohlke.  Mr. Bohlke, who will be starting the position on July 1, has had over 20 years of experience in multiple districts, and is excited to be engaged with community members so residents can expect to see him around Town and at municipal meetings. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish requested an explanation for the item about purchasing streetlights.  He wondered why the Town would want to do that.
Councilmember Lindsay responded that the Town had received a presentation from the New York Power Authority in which they said that there were savings to be had for the Town if they were to buy the streetlights and switch them over to LED bulbs.  This could be financed through the Power Authority.  She further commented that the Board was just looking into this, not voting on it at this meeting.  They will need to get the numbers on what O&R would charge for the lights and then the figures on how much could be saved by using LED lights and then they will be able to make a decision. 
Councilmember McMillen added that the resolution being put forth at this meeting was just to go forward with the research so they can make an eventual decision. 

Resolutions:
1-Resolution to approve a town-wide mailing to all registered voters advising of the July 16th referendum vote on the Town/Village consolidation.  Councilmember McMillen commented that he wanted to see a copy of what was going out before he could approve it.  It was explained to him that the Board was just voting on the mailing itself.  Councilmember English is supposed to be writing the postcard, which will be vetted by Town Attorney Weiss before it is sent out. Town Attorney Weiss is also working on a flyer that will be handed out at the post office in the time leading up to the vote.  It was also stated that there would be a legal notice in the newspaper about the vote. 
2-Resolution supporting the continued research and board interest in purchasing street lights from O&R- The resolution passed 3-1 with Supervisor Rost voting nay.
3-Resolution supporting the continued research and Board interest in Town wide, opt out option for residents to receive discounted utility rates with Good Energy or other service provider. – Councilmember McMillen and Supervisor Rost stated that they were against the opt-out piece of this proposal.  Councilmember Lindsay explained that the way this would work is if given the go-ahead, Good Energy would contact every resident at their expense and hold a public hearing, also at their expense, to explain the program and answer questions from residents.  The Supervisor and Councilmember McMillen were still uncomfortable with the fact that this would be an-opt out procedure.  Town Attorney Protter suggested that Councilmember Lindsay should ask Good Energy if they had a plan which allowed for an opt-in procedure instead of opt out.  Councilmember McMillen commented that residents already had the option to take their energy to another company and that he knows several people who do it, but the difference is that they had made the decision and then notified Orange and Rockland that henceforth they would be using another company.  He is uncomfortable with the Board or anyone else making that decision for the residents.  Ultimately, a motion was made for this resolution, but it was not seconded so the motion didn’t carry.  It was pointed out that this could be brought up to the Board again in the future if a plan with different options was found.
4-Introductory Local Law – Planning Board Members – Because the Planning Board has been changed from 5 to 7 members, there has been confusion as to the terms of the individual members.  This law will straighten that out and make it so that going forward the terms will be easier to keep track of.  The law also makes the first year of a new member’s term probationary so that they can prove that they are capable of doing the work and if they can’t do so, they can be removed.  Because there are 7 members, they will have 7-year terms.  In the beginning, there will be one member’s terms expiring every year up to 2028.  After the law is passed, the Town Board will decide which member gets which term.  The public hearing was wet for July 8 at 7:00 pm.                                                                                                                                                                                                                

Town Board Updates:
Councilmembers McMillen and Lindsay reported having taken a tour of the Tuxedo Farms site.  They commented that a lot of work is being done on the site with many utilities ready to go.  Both were impressed with what they saw and were happy with the way the project is being worked into the surrounding property.  They are ready for Phase One, but need a builder to come forward before going any further. 
Councilmember McMillen stated that he has been working with the people who produce the Chocolate Expo, among other things, and has brought them to an Economic Council meeting.  Tuxedo is in the running to host the Expo, which would bring 5,000 people to Powerhouse Park in October.  Museum Village is also being considered for the site.  Councilman McMillen is also working on another concert for that space in August. 
Councilmember Lindsay  reported that at the last meeting of the Economic Development Committee, they had narrowed future committees down to the top 4 suggestions which were: events, relationships with landlords, updating the 2003 Town Center Plan and Parking options.  She is also working on the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) for next year, which is due on July 26.  For these projects, the Town is required to put up a matching fund. Councilmember Lindsay estimates the matching fund requirement would be approximately $10,000.

Public Comments:         
Andy Berish wanted to know if the amusement park was still a possibility for the Tuxedo Farms property.  Supervisor Rost responded that the last time he had spoken to them, it was still in play as they are entertaining all the options that they get. 
Janet Galuska expressed her opinion that the postcard going out to inform people about the referendum vote should go to all residents and not just ones who are registered voters as when her committee went door to door with the petition, they found several people who hadn’t been registered at that point but who said they were going to register.  Mrs. Galuska also expressed her displeasure with Optimum and the fact that their prices keep rising and she feels older people can no longer afford them. 
Maria May expressed her opinion that the Good Energy proposal was a good one and said she was in favor of it. 
Andy Berish asked if the bridge being put up in the East Village was a temporary bridge.  He was told yes, it was to be temporary while the new bridge was being built and installed.  The project is being paid for by the County. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 10, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, June 10, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended via Skype.  All other members were present.

Supervisor’s Update:
Supervisor Rost reported having had a conversation with Steve Germano regarding his new restaurant, Steve’s.  Mr. Germano is hoping for a July 1 opening.  He is still working on obtaining his permit from the County Department of Health.
It is getting to be budget time.  Consequently, the Supervisor has asked Department Heads to submit their budgets to him between July 15 and August 1,   which will give him time to sit down with each of them.  It will also give the Town Board time to review the budget.   This year, a major repair is needed on the roof at Town Hall and there are repairs to be done at the Police Station as well.  
The Town has been receiving some pressure from the DEC to decommission the Hamlet sewer plant and open up the new one.  Consequently, Supervisor Rost has been working with Related to crunch the numbers and figure out what the opening costs will be for the district.  It will be a minimum of six months before the new plant can open.  Further, the Supervisor remarked that he knew the Village of Tuxedo Park has been having troubles with their sewer plant and so he has had a couple of discussions with them to see if they would be interested in tying in to the new plant.  He will continue with these talks as he thinks it would be beneficial for both municipalities. 
Councilmember Lindsay submitted information about training for the Highway Superintendent and Building Inspector.  She explained that the training was for new energy codes that are going to be enacted by the State. 
Councilmember English asked for an explanation of how the Hamlet sewer plant was going to work and further wondered what the process of turning over the Hamlet sewer district would entail. 
Supervisor Rost suggested that Councilmember English  come in to see him in his office where he  would be happy to explain it to him. 
Next the Supervisor reported that the cell tower which has been proposed for the Renaissance Faire property would be before the Planning Board on Tuesday night and the Town’s consultant would be present to answer questions.  Councilmember Lindsay wanted to know if the project would be presented to the Town Board as well and she was told that she should plan to attend the presentation at the Planning Board.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Speaking to the referendum on the proposed Incorporation and Consolidation of the Town of Tuxedo, Highway Superintendent Dollbaum asked for an explanation of how the voting process would work.
Town Attorney Weiss explained that there would be two votes. One will be for Town residents living outside of the Village of Tuxedo Park only and will ask voters to determine whether the new Village should be created.   The second vote which will ask if the new Village should be consolidated into the Town will be for all Town residents including those living in the Village of Tuxedo Park. The outcome of the vote will be decided by a simple majority of those who voted.  Both resolutions have to pass in order for anything to happen.  “So if 5 people show up, and 3 vote yes, then the resolution will pass?” Superintendent Dollbaum inquired.  He was told yes. 
Councilmember English commented that he found it very frightening that 3 people could change the configuration of the Town. 
He was told that no one expects that only 5 people will turn out. 
Councilmember English responded that this was why he and Councilmember Lindsay felt that public outreach was so important.
Supervisor Rost wondered how many more meetings they could be expected to hold.  There have already been 3 or 4 well-attended meetings and, in addition, a group of people went door to door throughout the Town explaining the process to everyone who was home to meet with them. 
Councilmember Lindsay replied that the effort had been tremendous and it was awesome that 550 people had signed the petition, but she doesn’t think that’s enough.  She would like to see a mailing be sent out to all registered voters in Town. 
Janet Galuska, who organized the group of people who went door to door, stated that she thinks everyone knows about this and she doesn’t see the need for the Town to spend $2000 for a postcard that most might not even read.  Her group has been standing in front of the post office regularly and will have a flyer to hand out for a couple of weeks before the vote. 
Councilmembers Lindsay and English do not agree that this is enough and still feel that the Town should invest in a mailing.
Councilmember McMillen commented that since the resolution had been proposed by the residents, he doesn’t feel that it is appropriate for the Town Board to send out a mailing which might make it look as though they are pushing the proposal.
Maria ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ Mae said she thought a lot of people didn’t know that the vote was happening on July 16 or that one had to be a registered voter in order to vote or  that absentee voting would not be allowed. 
Town Attorney Weiss stated that all of this information would be included when the vote is noticed in the newspaper as required by law  4 weeks in advance.  That being said, the ad will run in the legal notices section and several people expressed concern that it would not be seen there.. 
Supervisor Rost added that he was sure that the Times Herald Record would be calling for information as soon as it appeared in the legal notices.  The Board decided that all 3 Town polling places (Eagle Valley Firehouse, Town Hall and Sterling Forest Firehouse) would be used for the vote. 

Agenda Item:
1- The Resolution authorizing details for the July 16, 2019 Incorporation and
1 The Resolution authorizing details for the July 16, 2019 Incorporation and Consolidation Referendum discussed. Councilmember Lindsay commented that she recalled that quite a while ago, the Board had discussed forming Citizens Committees to be the ones responsible for deciding what the ultimate government of the consolidated municipality would be.  Supervisor Rost responded that while this might have been discussed, he had always said that the government would be the same after consolidation as it is now with no changes.  Town Attorney Weiss explained that if the resolution passed, the Town would have 6 months to decide on what would happen next.  Supervisor Rost commented that it was his understanding that they would “stand up the Village and then take it down,” leaving the government to be exactly as it is now.  Councilmember Lindsay then wondered what powers the Town Board would be taking on.  The Supervisor replied that there would be no new powers except in the case if a pipeline or power line wanted to come through Town, then they would have the power, as a Village, to say no. Councilmember English stated that the Board had never had a formal discussion on this subject.  Town Attorney Weiss countered that in fact, they had.  Councilmember English said that they had never formally compared the differences between the two kinds of municipalities.  Councilmember Lindsay wanted to know if this would mean that they could act as a Village when it was in their interest to do so such as if a pipeline was trying to come through Town.  The Supervisor suggested that they would take whichever rules were advantageous to the Town and apply them. Councilmember English again stated that they had never discussed this and the Supervisor replied that Town Attorney Howard Protter had stated, in public, multiple times that they could use the powers of the Town when it was to their advantage and use the powers of a Village when that was to their advantage.  Town Attorney Weiss commented that this had also been discussed within their law firm and their feeling was that since the new municipality would be within their rights to use the powers of a Town and a Village interchangeably, it would be foolish to pigeonhole those powers and make it impossible to use them as they needed.  She further commented that this question had been dealt with in the document they produced (FAQ document) to answer questions from residents. There was some further discussion on the subject of whether or not to send out a notification to residents following which the Board voted unanimously in favor of adopting the resolution.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember McMillen inquired as to when the next meeting of Councilmember Lindsay’s  Economic Development Committee would be.  He explained that he had been approached by several people who want to bring the Chocolate Exposition to Powerhouse Park in October.  This event would possibly bring as many as 9,000 people into Town.  Councilmember Lindsay replied that she was waiting to hear back from Bill Fioranti on the timing of the next meeting. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she had several things to discuss.  The first was the Community Choice Aggregation law, which sh was hoping they would pass. 
 Supervisor Rost commented that he was against this concept because he felt it was forcing a choice upon the residents when they might not want it.  Furthermore, it is an “opt out concept” which he felt was not favorable for the residents.  After further discussion, it was agreed to ask the attorneys to prepare a draft law on Community Choice Aggregation for the next Town Board meeting.   Next, Councilmember Lindsay suggested that the Board needed to request a quote from Orange and Rockland for the purchase of LED streetlights. 
The Supervisor said he was against doing this because the Town already has a program going with Orange & Rockland where they replace streetlights as they go out with LED bulbs.  He doesn’t see the need to change this agreement.  Councilmember Lindsay responded that the Town could install the lights all at once themselves  and thus it would be done much sooner than if they wait and do it by attrition.  The Supervisor replied “we have a roof to fix and other things that need to be done around Town.” 
Next, Councilmember Lindsay reported the draft for the Consolidated Funding Application  is due the end of July.  Supervisor Rost asked her what projects she was hoping to get grant money for and she responded that she had been to one seminar and was going to attend another at which several different agencies would be present. She hopes that she can come away from this next meeting with a list of projects that might be possible.  She added that these projects would need matching funds from the Town so she wanted to know if the Board would agree to put some money in the budget for this purpose.  Supervisor Rost replied that it would depend on what the proposed projects are. 
Councilmember English commented that he was hoping to “light the fire” under the zoning amendments again.  He inquired as to what needed to be done to get things moving.  The answer was that the Town is waiting for the final proposal from Town Planner Bonnie Franson.  Town Attorney Weiss added that the changes being made to the amendments had all been discussed so they would not need anything more than a vote from the Town Board once they had been submitted by  the Planner.  Councilmember English remarked that there had been “such a time lag,” that he would need to completely review the amendments. 
Councilmember Lindsay said she wanted to apply for a grant from Orange County Tourism as she has done for the last 3 years and was given permission to do so.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that No Parking signs have been installed on South Gate Road.  He also said the department would be starting cold mill paving on roads in Maplebrook as well as on Sylvan Way.  In August, these roads will be chip sealed. 

 

Public Comments:
Andy Berish announced that he has cancelled the July meeting of the Silver Dollars because voting machines will be set up for the referendum.
Norman Leckner suggested that instead of sending a postcard about the upcoming referendum vote, residents should be called. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from counsel. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting June 10, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting May 28, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 15, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, May 13, 2019 at 7:30 pm.  Councilmember Reardon was absent.

Supervisor Rost began the meeting by recognizing Pete Sovak and Chris Sonne both of whom died recently.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he had been working on the budget.  As such he has had conversations with both Highway Superintendent Dollbaum and Police Chief Abbott about the condition of their facilities and what if any work might need to be done within the next year. In other news, “the bears are back,” and the Town knows it, but people need to recognize that, for the most part, Tuxedo is in the woods and the bears are going to be around. If called, the DEC might remove the bears but they don’t take them very far and usually they are back within 24 hours. 

Department Heads Update:
Chief Abbott stated that he needs an agreement from the Board statingthat they want to participate in Orange County’s Stop DWI program. This is something that is done annually.  A resolution was made and passed unanimously.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his crew would be working on hanging flags and cleaning up the downtown area in anticipation of Memorial Day and the parade. As always, he also mentioned that there is mulch, topsoil and compost available for residents in the parking lot of Quarry Field and folks are welcome to help themselves. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Presentations:
Jesse Scott  from New York Power Authority (NYPA) gave a presentation about switching streetlights to LED and electrical vehicle charging stations.  To see a copy of his presentation, please click here.
Javiar Barios from Good Energy gave a presentation about community choice aggregation.  To see a copy of his presentation,  please click here.

Public hearings on new exemptions law and Senior exemption levels:
As discussed at the last meeting, these exemptions are no different from those that the Town has been giving historically but they are now being made official.  The only question pertained to whether or not  there was a written statement of the exemptions and the answer was yes, there is one on the Assessor’s wall.  It was agreed that this would be posted to the Town website.  The hearing was closed and the Board voted unanimously to formally adopt the exemptions.

Resolutions:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • a Resolution to grant Special Permit and Special Sign Permits for Memorial Day Community Picnic to the Tuxedo Park Library
  • a Resolution approving form of petition for the Proposition to increase Town Board Budgetary Allocation for the Tuxedo Park Library
  • a Resolution accepting the resignation of police officer Christopher Friedman
  • a Resolution requesting that  Orange County Board of Elections prepare for referendum Ballot and the use of the County’s voting machines for the Referendum scheduled for July 16, 2019
  • a Resolution approving Tuxedo Park Reality’s request for relief from the moratorium.  This will allow them to appear before the Planning Board
  • a Resolution to accept bids on Surplus Highway Vehicles
  • a Resolution appointing Victor Posta as Heavy Equipment Operator in the Highway Department
  • a Resolution to approve the Town Clerk’s attending the New York Association of Local Government Records Conference

New Business:
An organization has contacted the Town to inform them that they will be conducting a “Paintout” during which various people will set up easels around Town and, perhaps in the Village, to paint the scenery with the paintings then being sold at the Farmers Market.  No one seemed to know if the organization had contacted the Village for permission.  The Board said they definitely needed more information about this proposed event.  The Town Clerk volunteered to contact the woman to find out. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay announced that there would be a meeting of the Economic Development Committee on Thursday, May 16 from 4:00-5:30 pm.  This meeting will focus on what is called a SWOT analysis (looking at the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to economic development in Town) and  subcommittees will then be formed to deal with different areas such as coordinating with property owners, events, ecotourism, etc. 
There was a discussion about the possibility of opening a coffee/bagel place in or near the train station.  There is no definite proposition before them but the Board decided they should look into whether or not they are open to this idea. 
Councilmember English reported having spoken with John Watson about the presentation made at the last meeting outlining their proposed Tuxedo Sustainability Park. Councilmember English offered to walk the property with Mr. Watson and his associates and he was told that they had discovered the property was under a conservation easement and as a result they are no longer interested in it.

Vouchers were signed and the Board adjourned into Executive Session to receive advice from Counsel. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting May 13, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 22, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, April 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present with Councilmember Reardon attending via Skype.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he had been in touch with Tuxedo Farms representatives over the weekend.  Their infrastructure is mostly in place.  All of the work has been monitored by the Town’s engineers. They are entertaining bids from several developers.
Next, the Supervisor thanked Town Board members both past and present as well as Department Heads and Town employees for the work that’s been done to return the Town to fiscal stability.  The Town was recently able to make an additional payment of $26,000 on Highway equipment which will save the taxpayers $70,000 (they were able to secure a grant).  Just a couple of years ago, this would not have been possible. 
The Supervisor then commented that he had had an interesting conversation with his nephew on Easter.  The nephew mentioned that he had gone hiking in a location 3-1/2 hours away from Tuxedo.  The Supervisor asked his nephew why he had gone that far away when Tuxedo has so much great hiking and his nephew’s response was that while the hiking in Tuxedo was good, the trails he had traveled to were  in a great little town which offered several different pubs and other things to do as well.  The Supervisor suggested that this was a great example of why Tuxedo needs to remain focused on economic so that people will feel that same way about coming here.  He added that the Board had several great workshops with discussions about the zoning and he feels that they are on the way to making the Town more appealing to those who are interested in adding some of these attractions.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution settling a tax certiorari claim – was passed 3-1 with Councilmember McMillen voting no.
  2. Resolution to approve a Sign Permit for Tuxedo Farmer’s Market was passed unanimously.
  3. Resolution to enter into contract with the Woodbury Field & Stream Shooting Range – This is a long standing agreement so that the police can receive their training.  It was passed unanimously.
  4. Resolution of adoption of Building Department fee amendments was tabled.
  5. Resolution of adoption of Moratorium on Development approvals – this is pending the passage of upcoming zoning amendments.  It was passed unanimously.
  6. Resolution of adoption of supplemental regulations for private swimming pools - This will change the required fence height from 5 ft. to 4 ft. which is the state code regulation.  This was tabled.
  7. Resolution calling for Referendum on Elector-initiated Combined Incorporation and Consolidation petition – The law states that this needs to be set within 30 days of the public hearing on the petition which was held on April 1. .  The Referendum was set for Tuesday, July 16. 
  8. Resolution to introduce a local law and to schedule a public hearing for Real Property Tax Exemptions – This is for exemptions which the Town has been giving but they need to be made into a law.  The date was set for May 13.
  9. Resolution to introduce a local law and schedule a public hearing for Senior Citizen tax exemptions.  – This is also for exemptions, which the Town is already giving but it needs to be made a law.  This date was also set for May13.
  10. Resolution to set a public hearing for Homeland Towers. (cell towers on Ren.Faire property) This will be a joint hearing with the Town Planning Board and will be held on May 14.

Public Comments:
Dena Steele commented that she had seen 4 large bears (a mother and 3 large cubs) crossing the road just that morning.  She reminded people that this is the time of year to take in their bird feeders and to put their garbage out only at the very last minute before collection. 

Presentations:
1-Europa McGovern from Hudson Valley Regional Council gave a presentation on NYSERDA’s Clean Energy Communities program.  To see a copy of this presentation, please click here.
2-Michael Coleman, John Watson and Bradley Francis gave a presentation on their proposal for Tuxedo Sustainability Park.  To see a copy of their presentation, please click here.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember McMillen and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported on the Town’s order to get the Highway garage property into compliance with the DEC so that the consent order can be lifted by the end of the summer. 
Councilmember Lindsay commented that she had held another meeting of the Economic Development roundtable.  These meetings are now public and she urged everyone to attend future meetings, which are usually held on a Tuesday around 4 pm.  They don’t have a date for the next meeting yet but she will make sure it is announced on the Town website when they do.  After one more meeting, they will be forming committees of residents to work on promoting development. 
Councilmember English would like to formalize the Board’s use of the Tuxedo.gov email accounts and would like to make sure that Board members get into the habit of cc’ing all other Board members on emails in an attempt to foster open communications.

Councilmember Lindsay noted that she had sent a letter to Senator Carlucci and Assemblyman Brabenec about the condition of Route 17 between Tuxedo and Sloatsburg.  Someone from Senator’s Carlucci’s office responded to her  saying that the Sewer District and the contractor are presently involved in a law suit and consequently the work has not been completed.  Efforts are being made to force the contractor to fix up the road.  Dale Mottola mentioned that Route 17 north of Town from Arden Road to Harriman  is almost as bad as the section between Tuxedo and Sloatsburg. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department had been fixing potholes around Town.  They also still have mulch, compost and topsoil available to residents (get it at Quarry Field). Work is starting on the East Village Bridge with the temporary bridge due to be installed shortly.

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting April 22, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Zoning Workshop April 10, 2019

Click here to listen to this meeting

back to top

line

Town Zoning Workshop April 8, 2019

Click here to listen to this meeting

back to top

line

Notice of Town Zoning Workshops April 8, 10 & 15

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 1, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, April 1, 2019.  Councilmember English was absent.

Public Hearing – Sufficiency of Elector-Initiated Combined Incorporation and Consolidation Petition:
Supervisor Rost began by explaining that this public hearing was required by law and the questions/comments would be limited, also by law, to very specific points about the validity of the petition which were outlined and left as a handout on every seat in the Room.  He added that if people still had other questions about the petition or the Town/Village Consolidation process, they would hold a question and answer informational meeting on Monday, April 8 at 6:30.  There is a workshop on the zoning amendments already scheduled for 7 pm on that night.  He further suggested that if people had questions, they should submit them to the Town Clerk who would in turn forward them to the Town Attorney for a response.  Finally, he stated that the petition had been brought to the Board by the residents.  It is something the residents are asking the Town Board to do, but ultimately it will be decided at the ballot box by the residents of the Town, not by resolution of the Town Board.  There were two individuals who had signed up to speak at the hearing and both of them declined after hearing what the Supervisor had to say.  The hearing was then closed. 

Public Hearing – CDBG Grant (Orange County Community Development Program):
Councilmember Lindsay explained that Orange County Community Development is a federal grant program processed and administered by the County.  For the past several years, Tuxedo has applied for the CDBG grant in hopes of updating the ADA accessibility for Town Hall.  This is what they are applying for again.. 
There were no comments and the hearing was closed.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost reported the following:

  • Replacement of the East Village Bridge will begin on April 15.  Work will begin with the construction of a temporary bridge.
  • The annual meetings of both LDCs were held last week.  The Tuxedo Farms LDC is fully compliant at present and the Tuxedo LDC will be brought into compliancy as soon as the annual audit is ready for upload into the state system.  This took a lot of work but the Town was able to get it done. There will be oversight by the Town auditor as well as regulatory compliance by legal counsel, Harris Beach.
  • The Supervisor contacted the Village of Sloatsburg regarding the Woodmont Hills Development (adjacent to Auntie El’s.) Since so many of our residents commute south every day, he wanted to make sure that the developer has all of the necessary permits from NYS DOT for the additional access that is going in.    
  • Several people have been complaining about the state of Route 17 between Tuxedo and Sloatsburg due to the sewer project.  Jake Matthews has sent letters to many legislators and others and Councilmember Lindsay also drafted a letter to our legislators demanding that some action be taken to improve road conditions. 
  • Last week the Supervisor was in contact with Steve Germano who is currently building his restaurant, Steve’s, on the old Take A Break site.  This project has been pushed back for a July opening and Mr. Germano is eager to get it opened.   Both the Supervisor and Deputy Supervisor have been in touch with Tuxedo Hudson Company about their properties in Town.  They are still actively looking for businesses to rent space within the IGA building.  Now that the weather is improving, they will probably do some more work on the outside of the buildings.  They feel that the constraint there is the amount of parking that is available.  
  • The Supervisor also checked in with Tuxedo Farms.  They are still in conversations with several builders and they are also still talking with Draggonsgate. 
  • The Supervisor will be meeting with Orange County in regard to several possible projects they feel he can be helpful with.  He reiterated that he is always happy to meet with the County and do whatever he can to help so that he sends the message that Tuxedo IS open for Business!

Agenda Items:

  • Town Clerk to Attend NYS Town Clerk’s Association Conference from May 5, 2019 – May 8, 2019.  This was approved unanimously.
  • Resolution to approve sign permit for St. Mary’s Church – the sign is to advertise a fundraiser for the Preschool and was approved unanimously
  • Resolution settling a tax certiorari claim by ASB120 LLC was approved by a 3-1 vote with Councilmember McMillen voting no.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay added the following things to the Town Board schedule:

  • April 9 at 4 pm will be the second meeting of the Economic Development group.  They had a great meeting at the train station but have decided to make it a public meeting so that more than 2 people on the Town Board could be present and to hold this next meeting at Town Hall so that more people can attend.  The meeting will be led by Bill Fioravanti, Orange County Director of Development and Councilmember Lindsay. 
  • April 22 during the regular Town Board meeting, Europa McGovern will educate the Board on the steps necessary for Climate Smart Certitication. 
  • May 13 during the regular Town Board meeting, representatives of the community choice aggregation group that Councilmember Lindsay has been working with will make a presentation to the Board. 

Deputy Supervisor McMillen reported on the progress being made at the mulch plant/highway garage.  He commented that they have made great progress there and are close to getting the consent order lifted.  The work is at 87% completion according to the DEC.  All of this has been accomplished at no cost to the taxpayers!  Nancy Hays wanted to know who was paying for it.  She was told that, Ben Veltidi, is operating the plant and has a lease but doesn’t have to make any payments while the former mulch pile is being cleaned up. 

Department Heads:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that they were wrapping up the tree trimming around town while they still have the lift, which goes back in a week.  Next, he announced that mulch, topsoil and compost are available at Quarry Field (parking lot, off Warwick Brook Rd ) Residents can help themselves to these.  Pothole repair and patching will start soon.  In another 2 weeks, the crew will begin sweeping the streets in Town.  Street sign poles will all be replaced so that they will be compliant with breakaway regulations.
Police Chief Abbott reported that officers are still looking for the American Legion sign, which has gone missing.  If anyone has any information about it, they are asked to please contact the police.  One of the Town Officers arrested someone with an illegal handgun.  The person turned out to be a convicted felon.  Detective Christian, Police Officer Eichengreen and Lieutenant Norton all contributed to this arrest. 

New Business:
The Supervisor announced that the Board had met in Executive Session immediately preceding the meeting and agreed to appoint John Banyo and Chris Kasker to the Planning Board.  Terms for these two gentlemen have yet to be determined.  A motion was made and passed unanimously.  A public hearing will be scheduled to change town law as going forward, the first year on either the Planning Board or the Zoning Board of Appeals will be probationary.The hearing will be scheduled as soon as the attorneys have it drawn up. 

Public Comments:
Sue Scher wondered how traffic leaving the Woodmont Hills development in Sloatsburg heading North, would be able to access Route 17.  The Supervisor responded that he hadn’t been given any information on that. 
Gil Delart inquired as to where the meeting minutes from executive sessions were filed because he hasn’t been able to find any.  He finds the Town’s meeting notices insufficient as he had attended the meeting tonight not realizing that the public hearings would be comment only. 
Mike Sinansky asked for an update on the status of the Red Apple property.  He was told that this was private property, which is for sale.  When asked why the Town doesn’t knock it down, he was told the owner had put a fence around it and fixed the roof so it is in compliance while they are waiting for a buyer. 
Houston Stebbins asked for confirmation that there would be a Q&A session about the consolidation petition on Monday, April 8 at 6:30.  He was told yes. 
Nancy Hays said that she had heard from people who live near the Tuxedo Farms property that there has been work going on there and wondered what the Board knew about it.  She was told that Tuxedo Farms is still doing infrastructure work as they are required to do in order to be able to sell the property. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Public Hearing for the Combined Petition for

Incorporation & Consolidation - Posted 3/30/19

Click here to view the FAQ document

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting April 1, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Two Public Hearings at the Town Board Meeting on April 1

Click here and here to view the Notices

back to top

line

Notice of Town LDC Meetings March 25, 2019

Click here to view the Notices

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting March 11, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, March 11, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost began by reporting that the Board has been working on scheduling public workshops for the zoning amendments that they are working on.  More information will be forthcoming as they are scheduled. 
Next the Supervisor stated that the Board is in receipt of the petitions to form the consolidated Village.  He thanked Janet Galuska for all her hard work in gathering the signatures and then said that when the time comes for the next steps in the procedure, Town Attorney Protter will explain in detail what is happening. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution approving Special Sign Permit for Steve’s Wood Fired Pizza- This was approved unanimously.
  2. Hire Consultant for Cellular Tower – The purpose of the consultant is to help write the language, which will be going into updating the zoning law. After some discussion about how many hours would be needed, it was decided to ask for this information and to wait to name a specific consultant until the Board had that information. The motion was passed unanimously.
  3. Resolution to Approve Film Permit – Possible Productions wants to film on the Renaissance Faire property on March 18 and 19.  The motion was approved.
  4. Councilmember Lindsay reported the following:  Climate Smart Task Force March 6: Met with Europa McGovern, our contact from the Hudson Valley Regional Council /NYSERDA who will guide us through the certification process.

The Task force discussed the following action items for certification:

  1. Rooftop Solar the Highway Garage
  2. Electric Vehicle charging stations
  3. Community Choice Aggregation
  4. Benchmarking energy in municipal buildings.

          The next steps for the Town will be:

  1. Education for town boards and public.  Schedule presentation from Europa McGovern, Community presentation on Climate Change
  2. Community Choice presentation from Good Energy
  3. Schedule training for Energy Code Enforcement for Dave Maikisch and Rob Dollbaum
  4. Review United Solar Permit
  5. Review financing options for Highway solar roof
  6. Start grant writing for CSC actions.

Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay stated that the next meeting of the Economic Development Committee would take place on March 12 and would include people from the County as well as various stakeholders from the community.  The goal is to identify ideas for sustainable development that will revitalize Tuxedo.   
Councilmember Lindsay also mentioned that she had heard that the Supervisor was planning on holding a workshop meeting with just 2 members of each Board and said she doesn’t understand why they can’t have the workshops with all members of the Boards. 
Supervisor Rost responded that the purpose of this meeting was just to go over what would be happening in the public workshops and hearings on the upcoming zoning amendments to make sure that the presentation made at both meetings is organized and that they don’t forget anything. If they were to hold these meetings with all Board members, it would have to be open to the public. Therefore, he has proposed the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of each Board (Town, Planning and Zoning) get together to work on the presentation.  Town Attorney Protter confirmed that it was perfectly legal for such a meeting to take place. 
Councilmember McMillen stated that he would like to see Town revenues reported to Board members on a regular, monthly basis.  He was told that this information was available in the regular monthly report.

Departmental Updates:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department is still working on trimming trees around Town.  As long as there is no more snow, they will be moving on to working on signs and signposts afterwards.  He is also making plans for repainting the bus stop in order to remove graffiti.  He inquired as to when the heat at the bus stop should be turned off and was told that it could be turned off now..

Board Discussion:
Councilmember Reardon inquired as to where the Board stood with appointments to the Planning and Zoning Boards. 
She was told that there was one remaining interview for the Planning Board seat.
Councilmember McMillen lamented that the Board had said they were going to fix this problem with the process for appointments months ago but they were still at a standstill. 
Councilmember Lindsay remarked that she had sent an email outlining some of her ideas for remediation but no one had responded to her.  She is concerned that if they don’t do something along the lines she suggested in her email, they will have to pass a new law.
Councilmember Reardon noted that the Board had interviewed candidates for these positions months ago and further stated that she felt it was rude of them not to follow up with a decision..
Councilmember English said that the Board hadn’t even had a discussion after the interviews to talk about how they felt about candidates and decide what they wanted to do. 
Councilmember Lindsay protested that they hadn’t decided about the terms for the positions to which Councilmember Reardon retorted, “it’s not about the terms!  We need to decide if we’re going to interview this last guy and then decide.  The terms can be figured out later.” 
Councilmember McMillen agreed that this had been the plan. 
Councilmember Reardon then stated that she felt that the decision should be made by the Chairmen of the Planning and Zoning Boards.  She believes that those individuals should come to the Board recommending the people they want on their committee and, after a cursory look at the people, the Town Board should confirm or deny appointment. The main decision should come from the Board Chairmen in her view.  She further added that if the Town Board were to choose the people, it would call into question the independence of the Boards. 
Both Supervisor Rost and Councilmember McMillen stated their support for the idea that the Chairmen should present their choice candidates to the Town Board, who would then interview and appoint.  The Supervisor said that he had checked with other municipalities and this is how it is done in many other places.  
“So you want the lower boards to do the outreach to get people on their Boards? Because I’ve never seen that!” Councilmember English stated.
“That’s because they haven’t done it,” responded the Supervisor “but that’s what I want to see happen.”
Councilmember English replied, “but that’s not where we’re at now!” 
There followed some argument between the Board members about what they had and hadn’t done and finally Town Attorney Protter suggested that the conversation should be taken into an Executive session where they could decide who of the people they had already interviewed they should appoint to the Planning Board. 
The Supervisor said he didn’t want to make a decision without having a conversation with Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon who was not present.  After some squabbling about availability, it was decided they would hold an Executive Session before the next regular meeting, on April 1, to discuss and decide. 
Changing the subject, Supervisor Rost stated that there had been some discussion about the Town hiring an appraiser to assist the Assessor and that they had all agreed this was a good idea.  A motion was made to issue a RFP for the position and it was passed unanimously. 

Public Comments: Claudia Bakhtiary thanked the fire department and police department for their service during the winter months.
Irene Denera expressed her displeasure with how the Board was interacting with each other and said she would like to see them stop arguing with each other and, instead, work for the Town.
The Supervisor responded that he thought everyone up on the dais wasworking for the Town, but that he didn’t disagree about the rest of her statement. 
Councilmember McMillen observed that arguments can also be “pure,” and many times listening to other member’s arguments has influenced his decision.
Councilmember Reardon stated that she didn’t need to be psychoanalyzed not did she think anyone else on the Board did. She further stated that she felt that the disrespect shown by Ms. Denera was unnecessary at a meeting, when people have no idea how much time and effort each Town Board member is putting into the work that they do. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting March 11, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting February 25, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting February 11, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, February 11, 2019 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost began his update by reporting that Councilmember McMillen was still working with Highway Superintendent Dollbaum and the DEC to get the consent order (left over from the mulch pile!) lifted.  They are hopeful this will be accomplished by the end of October. The Supervisor is further working with Ben Veltidi and Jimmy Mottola to get some dirt removed from the Highway garage property.  This is a more cost effective solution than having the dirt removed in a dumpster by Waste Management!   Additionally, the Building Inspector gave Erwin Demarino orders to remove some dirt which is not on his property and which is located near the Ramapo river. 
The garbage contract will be up for renewal soon and Waste Management is looking for a $50,000 increase!  According to the Supervisor, a lot of that is due to fees from Orange County so he has been exploring the option of taking Town refuse down to Rockland County.  Should this be the direction the Town chooses to go, one of the big differences for residents would be that they would have to separate their recycling (glass/paper/cans).
The Building inspector has reported that Tuxedo Auto Body has removed 3 cars from their property in Southfields, which is a step in the right direction!
Finally, with bad weather predicted for the next few days, the Supervisor asked residents to please not park on the streets so that the Highway Department could do their job.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Solar Presentation – Highway – Superintendent Dollbaum reported that he’s been looking into installing solar at the Town Highway Garage.  He has been working with 4 different companies and feels that Tri State Solar would be the best fit for Tuxedo.  Accordingly, he had requested they be at the meeting to make a presentation to the Board. The proposal is for a least to own arrangement and the cost of the lease is about the same as what the Town is paying in electric charges on the site.    To see a copy of Tri-State’s presentation, click here
  2. Moratorium Relief Request from Homeland Towers – Homeland Towers (T Mobile) was represented by their attorney who stated that they had just submitted an application to the Planning Board to construct a wireless telecommunications tower near the Renaissance Faire property.  While the original construction would have T Mobile antennas, there would be room for other carriers (Verizon, AT&T, etc) to install antennas as well. Currently, there isn’t sufficient coverage for the amount of visitors generated by the Renaissance Faire.  They feel this is as safety/security issue as well as one of convenience.  He pointed out that federal law provides for this relief and said that if the Board granted it, it would not mean they were approving the project but just giving them permission to back in front of the Planning Board with an application.  The Town Attorney was asked if she had researched whether or not the federal law applies here.  She responded that she had and it does.   Councilmember Lindsay stated that she had only received this request at 4 pm the previous Friday and felt that the Board needed more time to look into it.  Councilmember McMillen remarked that he had been able to spend time with the material provided over the weekend and he had no problem voting on it.  Councilmember Reardon said she was ready to vote as well.  The original vote was 4-1 with Councilmember Lindsay abstaining.  After it was emphasized to her that this vote did not approve or deny the project, but merely gave it permission to apply to the Planning Board where all necessary additional research would be done, she reluctantly changed her vote to yes but said she wanted to make sure the Town had a Telecommunications consultant to review the application.
  3. Resolution to appoint Part Time Police Officer – Kevin Bonkowsky was unanimously appointed by the Board.
  4. Resignation of Part Time Police Officer Laura Distanislao -  The officer also works for the Sherriff’s Department and didn’t realize she needed their permission to work for the Town as well.  After being hired, she put in the request and it was denied. 

Town Board Update:
Councilmember English said that in the spirit of the Supervisor’s plea for the Board to work together (at the last meeting) he hoped the Board would give him more opportunities to work with them. 
Councilmember Lindsay announced that March 6 would be the first meeting of the Economic Development and Tourism Task Force.  They will be meeting with Orange County’s Director of Development and Tourism as well as various stakeholders around Town.  She is also working on setting up a meeting with the Regional Council Contact for Climate Smart Certification and the Task Force she has appointed to work on this with her. Additionally she is working on getting funding for electrical vehicle charging stations in Town.  

Department Head Update:
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that the Department is still working on trimming trees around Town.  He added another plea for people to not park on the street during snow storms.  Councilmember English thanked him for the timely response on fixing a bad pothole in his neighborhood.  
Mr. Dollbaum also reported he is still working on getting the new sewer plant online and said he is hoping to have that done in about 6 months. 
Police Chief Abbott reported that a resident had called asking them about a possible scam involving a phone call saying that her computer system had been infected.  The department investigated and determined it was a scam.  He urged other residents, particularly senior citizens, to call with any possible scams they weren’t sure of. 

Public Comments:

There were none.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting February 11, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting January 28, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, January 28, 2019 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended via Skype and all other members were present.

The meeting began with Town Clerk Donna Matthews swearing in new Town Justice Alyse McCathern.  Supervisor Rost welcomed her to the team, commenting that the Board had put clerks in place before her arrival in the hopes that it would make her transition easier.  She thanked him and responded that the clerks were great and that she feels honored to serve the Town.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost began by saying that he didn’t think that the Town Board had done a good job of getting things done in the last year.  Consequently, he stated that in 2019, he would like his meetings to be meetings of action.  He cautioned the rest of the Board members that if there was information they needed in between meetings, they should ask for it so that when they arrive at the meetings, they are ready to take action.   He added that if there were discussions that individual Board members felt were necessary, such as with zoning or the comprehensive plan, then they could schedule a workshop for that purpose but henceforth he would like for the Town Board meetings to be meetings of action.   He went on to say that when audience members look at the Board during meetings, he believes that they are seeing a Board very much divided. Thus, starting at the next meeting he would like for Councilmembers Lindsay and Reardon to switch seats so that the audience doesn’t see 2 people on the left with viewpoints that typically differ from the 2 people on the right. This year, he concluded, the Board will work together; they will get things done and they will make things happen in Tuxedo! 
This was met by a round of applause from the audience. 
The Supervisor added that henceforth the Supervisor’s Update will happen in the beginning of the meeting and the Board’s comments and Department Head comments will come toward the end of the meeting.  
Councilmember English responded that he appreciated the notion of the Board working together and taking action.   He went on to say that he hoped the Supervisor’s updates would include news of all the meetings that had happened, remarking that he had been waiting a long time to hear what is happening with Tuxedo Farms and perhaps the Renaissance Faire property as well as things that related to the prospective zoning laws.  He reiterated that it had been a while since the Board had heard anything of substance with regard to Tuxedo Farms and he feels that the Town needs to have an update on this subject. 
The Supervisor replied that there was no update because there had not been any meetings at all with principals or others in regard to Tuxedo Farms.  Councilmember English said that if Tuxedo Farms is not going to move forward, the Board needed to find out what the implications to the Town would be and  make sure that the Town was protected. 
Councilmember McMillen responded that the Town needed to have vision but they can’t force Related to tell them what their next move will be.  It’s a private enterprise with private property. 
Supervisor Rost added that the Board needs to hear what Related plans to do.  The property is up for sale.  They are still in conversation with Draggonsgate and are entertaining other offers.  Nothing is currently happening.  In the past, when something has happened, either Andrew Dance has called the Supervisor or Related has contacted the Town’s attorneys.  This has not happened as of late because there’s nothing going on.  If there was, he would say so.  The last he was told, in a conversation about 3 months ago, and which he reported at a Town Board meeting, was that there was a bidding war going on between Draggonsgate and another entity (and he does not know the identity of the other entity) and since then, it has been “radio silence.”
Councilmember English then said he knew that the Town had heard from the owners of the Renaissance Faire and he wanted to know what that was about.  The Supervisor responded that the Renaissance Faire had very recently requested a meeting but that he had declined to meet with them without legal representation.  Thus he and Town Attorney Howard Protter had a meeting scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 31.  When Councilman English then asked if they had any notion of what the meeting was about, he was told that it was about how the proposed zoning would affect their property. 
Councilmember Lindsay asked if the vision Councilmember McMillen had mentioned referred to the fact that the Comprehensive Plan was written with the understanding that Tuxedo Farms was going to happen? 
She was told yes, and that now that it looked as if the development wouldn’t happen, the Town needed to have a vision for that property. 
Councilmember Lindsay then wanted to know if the Board needed to revise or amend the Comprehensive Plan? 
Mr. Protter responded that they didn’t need to do anything because at this point as far as the Town knew, Tuxedo Farms was still a viable project.  Should Related sell the property and the subsequent owner want to do something with it that wasn’t spelled out in the Special Permit, then the Board would have to consider this. 
As far as the Renaissance Faire property is concerned, Mr. Protter said that the owners have indicated that they would like to zone a residential component and have been in front of the Planning Board to discuss that. 
Councilmember English wanted to know what density they were talking about but Mr. Protter didn’t have those figures.  Councilmember English then inquired as to which School District the residential component would be in? 
The Supervisor intervened at this point saying that at the end of the day, this has nothing to do with his Supervisor Update and he suggested that the meeting had been taken off track.  Councilmember English thanked him for taking the time to respond. 
Noting that the the new structure of the meetings as outlined by the Supervisor called for Board members comments to come at the end, Councilmember Lindsay wondered if any of those  comments required an action, where this would go? 
The Supervisor replied that if they needed a Board action, the Board should already know about it and it should be part of the agenda.  In 2019,” he reiterated, “we’re taking action!”
Continuation of Public Hearing – Police Disciplinary Law:
Supervisor Rost began by explaining that the reason the Town was updating the law was to save the Taxpayers some money.  Currently, if the Town were to take a disciplinary action with a police officer, it would have to go to an arbitrator and then perhaps a mediator.  Both of those people are very expensive.  Going forward, the Town is  proposing that if there should be a disciplinary action, the Supervisor would preside over it and decide if it needed to be brought to the Town Board in order for them to make the determination.  If this were the  case, The Supervisor would not vote with the Town Board.  This would mean that any such actions brought to the Board would have to be something so egregious that there would not be a 2-2 split in the vote. 
Councilmember English stated that he had some questions, starting with how would the complaints against officers be brought? He wondered if these would be just departmental charges and not criminal ones. 
He was told that the law would apply to all charges but that any criminal charges would be referred to the Orange County District Attorney’s office.  Most disciplinary charges are now handled by the Chief of Police and would continue to be handled this way. Charges would only come to the Town Board if they were something more serious or if the Chief didn’t want to handle them.  Basically, nothing will be changing if this law is passed except that instead of an action being referred to a mediator, charges will come to the Town Board, which will save the taxpayers the added expense of paying for the mediator and or arbitrator. 
Town Attorney Protter added that this is how things were done historically, and that passing the law would bring the procedure back to where it was years ago.  Councilmembers English and Lindsay continued to question whether or not the Supervisor should have the power to make this kind of determination with regard to disciplinary actions, further stating that the version of the proposed law that they had seen suggested that it would be the whole Board making the decision.  They both take issue with the process as proposed.
Supervisor Rost then called for a vote to close the public hearing.  The vote was 4-1 in favor of closing with Councilmember McMillen voting no.  He said he thought they should keep it open since Councilmembers English and Lindsay still have so many questions.
Supervisor Rost commented that it seemed to him as though the only thing being questioned was whether or not the Supervisor should be the person to decide to bring an action to the Town Board.
Councilmember Lindsay agreed.
Since this is the only difference in the current version of the proposed law, the Supervisor then asked whether there would be a vote to move things forward. 
Councilmember Lindsay wondered if they could vote at the next meeting after they had had a chance to think about it. She further stated that she would like them to have a discussion on this subject. The motion to pass the law as written with the Supervisor referring the cases was moved by Councilmember McMillen and seconded by Councilmember Reardon.  The vote was 3-2 with Councilmembers English and Lindsay abstaining. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Next, there was a swearing in for Marc Citrin as a new member of the Zoning Board of Appeals

Annual Reorganization Meeting:
The following appointments were made:

Supervisor’s Clerk

Shari Brooks

Supervisor’s Bookkeeper

Brian Sullivan

Deputy Supervisor

David McMillen

Deputy Registrar

Patricia Marsh

Deputy Town Clerk

Tracy Coviello

Marriage Officer

Donna Matthews

The yearly salaries were approved for the following Town Officials:

Supervisor

Michael Rost

$ 35,782.00

Town Council/Member

Kenneth English

$   7,039.00

Town Council/Member

Michele Lindsay

$   7,039.00

Town Council/Member

David McMillen

$   7,039.00

Town Council/Member

Valerie Reardon

$   7,039.00

Town Justice

Shaun Brown

$ 26,027.00

Town Justice

Alyse McCathern

$ 23,133.00

Tax Collector

Donna Matthews

$   6,000.00

Town Clerk

Donna Matthews

$ 58,350.00

Superintendent of Highways

Rob Dollbaum

$ 91,052.00

Supervisory Count Clerk

Claire Squillini

$ 50,923.34

Justice Clerk

Patricia Marsh

$ 32,303.18

Justice Clerk p/t

Barbara Ginley

$          19.10/hour     

Supervisor’s Clerk/Recreation Coordinator/Summer Camp Director/Payroll Coordinator/Permit Coordinator

Shari Brooks

$ 47,351.35

Town Bookkeeper p/t

Brian Sullivan

$  20,000.00

Account Clerk p/t

Brian Sullivan

$         20.60/hour       

Budget Officer

Michael Rost

No compensation

Assessor

Hugh Davies

$  30,000.00

Deputy Town Clerk p/t

Tracy Coviello

$          15.00/hour

Dog Control Officer

Thomas Murphy

$     7,979.92

Clerk Typist for Highway and Building Depts/Recording Secretary p/t          

Michele Reed

$          15.00/hour

Fire Inspector/Building Inspector/Code Enforcement Officer/Flood Damage Prevention Administrator

David Maikisch

$   60,294.26

Project Coordinator for Building Dept. Zoning Board, Planning Board/Recording Secretary for Zoning and Planning Boards

Deborah Villanueva

$   56,091.88

Board of Assessment Review/Chairman

Louis DeBrino
   (9/30/22)

$     1,552.21

Board of Assessment Review/Member

Edward Mattes
   (9/30/23)

$        554.14

Board of Assessment Review/Member

Edward Brennan
   (9/30/20)

$        554.14

Board of Assessment Review/Member

Marie Warniaha
   (5/8/22)

$        554.14

Board of Assessment Review/Member

Gary Phelps
   (5/8/22)

$        554.14

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Jeff Dowding
   (12/31/20 )

No compensation

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Gardiner Hempel, Jr.
   (12/31/22)

No compensation

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Edward J. Brennan, Jr.
   (12/31/22)

No compensation

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Todd J. Darling
   (12/31/23)

No compensation

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Charles Jones
   (12/31/19)

No compensation

Board of Fire Commissioners/Member

Peter Dedel
   (12/31/23)

No compensation

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board/Member

Maureen Rickard  
   (12/31/19)

No compensation

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board/Member

Joseph Rickard
   (12/31/19)

No compensation

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board/Member

Jean Ruffino
   (12/31/19)

No compensation

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board/Member

Leslie DeVore
   (12/31/19)

No compensation

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board/Member

Deborah Villanueva
   (12/31/19

No compensation

Zoning Board of Appeals/Chairman

Frank Peverly
   (12/31/20)

$       1,659.33

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

Andrew Rogers
   (12/31/21)

$       1,200.98

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

Marc Citrin
   (12/31/22)

$       1,200.98

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

George D. Langberg III
   (12/31/23)

$       1,200.98

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

Russell Shaver
   (12/31/19)

$       1,200.98

Zoning Board of Appeals/Member

Alternate - Open

 

Planning Board/Chairman

Michael Reardon
   (12/31/23)

$        6,039.92    

Planning Board/Member

Ray Ferri
   (12/31/20)

$        2,740.31

Planning Board/Member

Rich Rigoli
   (12/31/21)

$        2,740.31

Planning Board/Member

John Ruel
   (12/31/22)

$        2,740.31

Planning Board/Member

Darren Maynard
   (12/31/22)

$        2,740.31

Planning Board/Member
(open)

 

 

Planning Board/Member
(open)

 

 

Town Counsel*

Jacobowitz & Gubitz

$      50,000.00   +
$180/hour non retainer items

Town Engineers*

Holzmacher, McLendon & Murrell P.C.

As per contract

Town Auditor**

Andrew Arias

Not to exceed $19,500

Planning Board Legal Counsel

Richard Golden

As per contract

Zoning Board Legal Counsel

Richard Golden

As per contract

Town Planner*

Bonnie Franson

As per contract

Town Veteran’s Officer

Paul Mitchell

No compensation

Town Historian

George D. Langberg, Jr.

No compensation

*until and if such time arises that a successor may be appointed pursuant to a Request for Proposals advertised in 2019.
***retained to review the books and records of the Town for 2019 and to assist the bookkeeper in the preparation of the Town’s Annual Financial Report and in accounting and financial matters which arise during the fiscal year 2019. 

There was quite a bit of discussion of which terms should expire when on the Planning Board as this had somehow gotten confused in the Town records.  Ultimately, the Board voted to accept the Reorganization document minus the Planning Board terms, which they will add as soon as they figure out who they want to put in the open seats.

 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution approving towing permit.  The application for Harriman Auto to be added to the towing list was approved.  There was a discussion about changing the towing list to assign one company per day as opposed to rotating the company with each call.  The Board will speak to all the towing companies and then revisit this concept. 

Board Member/Department Head Comments:
Councilmember McMillen asked for a description of and a discussion about the recently announced series of workshops to be offered at the Tuxedo Park Library by Councilmembers English and Lindsay on the subject of local government. 
Councilmember English responded that this was an idea of his that he had come up with on his own time and it had nothing to do with Town Board business.    He further stated that it had been frequently mentioned at Town Board meetings that there was a small pool of individuals who were willing and able to get involved on Boards in Town.  He wants to educate the public about how this works so the pool of available candidates might be increased. Materials for the series will come from the Comptroller’s Office of New York State.   When Councilmember McMillen asked Councilmember English if he thought he would be able to answer all questions about how the government worked, Councilmember English replied that it was a “study circle.” Councilmember McMillen wanted to know why this event couldn’t take place in the Community Room of Town Hall so that all members of the Board could be a part of it.  The answer was “I came up with this myself, Dave.”
Councilmember Reardon said she found it amazing that Councilmember      English had not answered any questions sent to him by email and that she found it exclusionary, disrespectful and hypocritical. 
Town Attorney Protter commented that perhaps this discussion would be better continued in an executive session. 
Councilmember McMillen responded that there was nothing secret about this discussion but that the whole series at the Library had been a secret from the Town Board. 
Councilmember English then asked if he was to teach a course at a local Community College, would he have to come to the Board and ask permission first?
Councilmember McMillen responded that if he were using his Town title, then yes he would need permission. 
The response was “if a Congressman was speaking at a Community College, do you think he wouldn’t identify himself as a Congressman?”
Councilmember McMillen retorted “if he was giving original thoughts, then yes, but you are not giving any original thoughts here, you are just reading from Comptroller’s Office handouts.”
Councilmember English replied “you should come!” to which Councilmember McMillen replied “if I come, we’re all violating the Sunshine law because it becomes an illegal meeting!” He went on to point out that Councilmembers English and Lindsay had not been appointed by the Supervisor to give these talks.
Councilmember Lindsay responded that the talks were legal to which Councilmember McMillen replied “if it’s legal, it’s definitely unethical!” When Councilmember English took exception to this statement, Councilmember McMillen said he would rephrase it to say it was “noncourteous.”  Councilmember Reardon added “it was unprofessional.”
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that his department was working on tree trimming.  They started in the East Village and were headed to the Grove next after which they would be working on the monument and then up into the Nursery and finally into downtown.  They will be working mostly in the residential areas.
He made a plea to residents to stay off the streets when it was snowing and to move their cars off the streets as well.  It is hard for the plowers to work around cars on the streets.   Next, he commented that the new lights in the commuter lot had been in place for about a year and so far the Town has saved $923 in electrical charges!  He hopes that as they progress through the rest of Town switching out the bulbs, they will save even more money. 
Councilmember Lindsay remarked that switching the light bulbs as well as perhaps switching to solar energy at the Highway garage would give the Town points toward certification in the Climate Smart Certification Initiative passed at the last meeting.
She next reported that she had met with Nancy Teed and Jason Schrammel at the School and that with the assistance of the Stem faculty students are going to help the Town do the energy audit necessary for the Climate Smart Certification. 
She also reported that she, Supervisor Rost and Police Chief Abbott had met with representatives from the DOT regarding the proposed northbound turning lane into Duck Cedar Plaza.  The DOT maintains that northbound there is enough sight distance and they don’t think it’s a problem. They also said that according to the traffic study submit by the Tuxedo Police Department, the average speed at the site was 62 mph.  At that speed, they feel that reducing the speed limit would result in more accidents.  Consequently they are talking about enforcing the speed limit combined with putting in some of the speed tracking signs that let motorists know what the speed limit is and how fast they are actually going.  They will also research how much land is available on the right of way on the other side of the road to see if it would be possible to put in another lane. 
Councilmember McMillen asked if there were enough property, would the cost of putting the lane in go to the owner of the building? 
The answer was yes. 
Councilmember Lindsay reported additionally that she had learned there was an Orange County Transportation Council which is currently headed by Warwick Supervisor Mike Sweeton.  The money given by DOT to Orange County for transportation projects is in turn handed out by this Council so she feels the Town should get in touch with them and get put on the list for this project.  The Supervisor volunteered to get in touch with them. 
Councilmember Lindsay said she had met with Orange County Economic Development head, Bill Fioravanti, as well as Amanda Dana, Travel and Tourism Head in the County.  It was their recommendation that the Town put together a meeting with stakeholders in Town, i.e. the Chamber of Commerce and the Historical Society and they will come down and brainstorm what could be done here to attract economic development. 
Councilmember English referenced his report at the last meeting about meeting with officials from Sterling Forest State Park regarding the parking along South Gate Road and wondered what action items he should be pursuing from that.  He said an example would be signage.   There followed a discussion about what parking restrictions were being suggested.  They are considering restrictions on both South Gate Road and Buttonwood. 

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola stated that when the Duck Cedar Plaza was built, the owner at the time, Mr. Latini, was in close contact with the DOT so they should be conversant with what is going on at the site.  Councilmember Lindsay responded that there has been a complete turnover of people at the DOT even within the last year but thanked Mrs. Mottola and said she would pressure them to look into their files on the property.
Mike Reardon said he knew that this was not technically a Tuxedo problem since the property in question is in Ramapo, but he wondered how the Woodmont project (next to Auntie El’s) ever got permission for a second access, which was not part of the approved plans.  He feels this will create traffic tie ups that will affect everyone and will eventually mean that people will not want to move to this area.  )  He suggested that perhaps the DOT could shed some light on this subject. 

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting January 28, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting January 14, 2019

The Town Board met on Monday, January 14, 2019 at 6:30 pm.  Supervisor Rost was absent.

The meeting began with a workshop with Town Planner Bonnie Franson to discuss the proposed zoning amendments, which have evolved out of the recently passed Town Comprehensive Plan.  To listen to a recording of the workshop meeting, click here.

Before approving the minutes of the last meeting, Councilmember Lindsay requested that the Town Clerk add details about the vote to move the duties of the  Architectural Review Board over to the Planning Board.  It was agreed that the minute would be revised to reflect that Supervisor Rost and Councilmembers McMillen and Reardon voted aye while Councilmembers Lindsay and English voted no.  

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
In the absence of Supervisor Rost, there was no Supervisor Update.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen, who was running the meeting, asked the rest of the Board if anyone had anything to report.  Councilmember Lindsay spoke up and said that she had been asked to give an accounting of her job as Economic Development liaison and offered to do it at this time.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen agreed. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she had been working on the Town’s economic development with a “multi-pronged approach” for the last 3 years.  As such, she said she has been developing relationships with many different organizations and attending numerous  workshops.  She has also been working on a new Town Center study with Town Engineer Al Fusco.  She and Mr. Fusco submitted a grant application that would cover the cost of the study but unfortunately they did not get the grant.  Now, the Town Board must decide whether or not they want to lay out the money for the study.  Mr. Fusco will be submitting a proposal, detailing how much the study will cost.  Councilmember Lindsay stated that she is in favor of this study because it would be helpful with grant applications, which always ask if the Town has any current engineering studies, which the Town does not.  She also stated that Orange County has a new Economic Development Director, Bill Fioravanti. Councilmember Lindsay has given him a tour of the Town, pointing out properties that would be available for economic development and will be meeting with him next week. 
Councilmember English next gave a report on a meeting he and Councilmember Lindsay had with Sterling Forest Park Manager Michael McElroy in regard to the parking problem that has been created by the recently opened bike trails off of South Gate Road.  They also spoke to Mr. McElroy regarding the approach to trails in the East Village and the resulting amount of litter.  Councilmember English feels that if the Town, Park Service and Trail Conference all work together, the problems can be solved. 
To read his report, click here.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Public Hearing on Police Disciplinary Local Law – Deputy Supervisor McMillen explained that in the past, when police discipline was necessary, the Town was forced to spend a lot of money for attorneys and arbitrators as per the police union contract.  Under this new law, the Town would be able to follow the “Walkill Rule” which gives municipalities the right to discipline police officers outside of the collective bargaining framework.  John McNamara was the only questioner and he wanted to know if this would make the Town responsible for things they hadn’t been responsible for before.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that it would not that he was aware of, but because they weren’t sure, the public hearing  will remain open while they familiarize themselves with more details. 
  2. Approval of Garbage Collection permits – The permits for Interstate Waste Services and Sterling Carting were approved through 12/31/19 unanimously.
  3. Resolution authorizing Agreement for Snow and Ice Control on Old Forge Rd. in Warwick­ – This has been in effect for many years but Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has managed to negotiate the price to $6000 from $5000 starting this year.  It was approved unanimously.
  4. Resolution Climate Smart Community Pledge -  Deputy Supervisor McMillen inquired of Councilmember Lindsay (who has proposed this resolution) what benefits there were for the Town.  She replied that there were many, but first and foremost, it would make the Town eligible for grants.  The first thing that would be required of the Town would be to create a Task Force.  Residents Jim Hays, Jane Garofano and Terry Anne Gmelch have all agreed to serve on the Task Force.  Another requirement is to complete an energy audit of the Town.  Council member Lindsay has been speaking to the Superintendent of School about having students do this audit.  There is a list of things the Town must do in the pledge and various points are awarded for the completion of each one.  A Town must accrue 120 points and then they become eligible for grants.  After some discussion, the Board unanimously voted to adopt the process. 
  5. Resolution Declaring Vehicles as Surplus and Authorize Bid for Sale – The Town has recently acquired 3 new trucks and this is the equipment they will be replacing. It was passed unanimously.
  6. Resolution to Approve Sale of Raffle Tickets by the Onyx and Breezy Foundation in the Town of Tuxedo – This is something that is requested and approved annually.  It was once again approved unanimously.
  7. Resolution Authorizing Execution of Agreement with Warwick Humane Society for 219 Animal Shelter Services – This is an annual appointment and it was approved unanimously.

Other Business:
It was agreed that subject to the availability of Town Planner Bonnie Franson and the Town Attorney, the Board would hold a continuation of the zoning workshop on Thursday, January 24 at 7 pm. 

Public Comments:
There were no public comments.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting January 14, 2019

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Public Hearing On Police Department Disciplinary Proceedings 1/14/19

Click here to view the Notice

back to top

line

Town Zoning Workshop January 14, 2019

Click here to view the meeting Notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting December 17, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, December 17, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began the meeting by announcing that Steve Germano whose restaurant, Steve’s, is being built on the old Take A Break site, has managed to purchase the lot next door to Steve’s from Michael Bruno and is planning on building an old fashioned dairy barn on the site. They will be serving homemade ice cream. 
Next the Supervisor announced that Moody’s has given the Town a positive rating.  While this is great news, Moody’s is still concerned about the size of the Town’s cash balance, which they would like to be higher.  Supervisor Rost is confident that within the next year the Town will be able to raise their balance and thus take the rating back into the “A”s.  He thanked everyone in Town who had helped to make this happen, including Superintendent of Highways Dollbaum and Police Chief Art Abbot as well as former Councilmember Loncar who was present.  This was greeted with a round of applause from the audience. 
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she was getting a lot of inquiries about the status of the turning lane on Route 17 into the Duck Cedar Plaza. She reported that they have now been given a case number by the State DOT and been told that a safety engineer will come down to look at the site in order to determine what should be done.  When asked whether there was enough land available to add a lane, she responded that yes there was plenty of land available on the other side of the road. The road with a turning lane would need to be re-engineered and then restriped. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish wanted to know if the zoning changes referred to in Item #1 were for the “amusement park” that might go into the Tuxedo Farms site.  He was told no, that the changes had to do with the Town’s Master Plan.  Since Draggonsgate has not purchased the Tuxedo Farms property as yet, the Town does not have anything to do with them.  Upon urging by Mr. Berish, the Supervisor said that if Draggonsgate did purchase the property and propose any kind of project there, the Board would have something to say about it. 
Former Councilmember Cliff Loncar stated that PIPC had recently put in a lot of mountain bike trails on and around Eagle Mountain but there isn’t enough parking for the people who are using them so those people are parking wherever they can including up and down South Gate Rd., and on the road leading into Maplebrook.  This has become not only an inconvenience but a safety hazard for the people who live in Maplebrook.  Mr. Loncar wondered what, if anything, the Town could do about it? PIPC does have a parking lot for the trails but it is not well maintained and it needs to be bigger.  There is plenty of land available for the lot to be expanded.  It was decided that the Town would speak to PIPC about this and hopefully get them to agree to both clean up the current lot and add more space onto it.  Councilmember McMillen pointed out that this same problem exists in the East Village with the trailhead that is located there.  It was agreed that the Board would look into some temporary no parking signs for the areas around the trails. 
Mr. Loncar also wanted to know the status of the radio tower he thought was slated to be built in the Maplebrook area.  It was his recollection that the Town was going to try to get a cell tower built on top of the radio tower.  The Board thanked him for reminding them about this project and said they would look into it.

Continuation of Public Hearing on Transferring the Architectural Review Board duties to the Planning Board:
Lili Neuhauser first read a letter from JoAnn Hanson which supported maintaining the current structure of the Boards. To read Ms. Hanson’s letter, click here.  Next Mrs. Neuhauser read her own statement, which was also supportive of keeping things as they are.  To read Mrs. Neuhauser’s statement, click here. 
Dena Steele stated that she was also in favor of keeping the Boards separate.  She feels that keeping them this way would lead to greater efficiency and thus a better outcome for the Town.
Jim Hays commented that at the last meeting, it was stated by a Town Board member that Tuxedo Farms had been held up by the Town and by inefficiencies within their process for reviewing development.  Mr. Hays emphatically disagrees with this notion and he proceeded to enumerate a long list of actions and requests for changes made by Related, which resulted in delays for the project.  Mr. Hays reiterated that it was not the ARB or the Planning Board that had held up the project but rather it was the developer himself.  To read Mr. Hays’ statement, click here.
Jake Lindsay spoke next and was also in favor of keeping the Boards separate.  To read his statement, click here.
Finally, Councilmember Lindsay read into the record a letter from Paola Tocci.  To read the letter, click here.
The Board then voted 3-2 in favor of closing the Public Hearing with Councilmembers Lindsay and English voting no. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Set Date of Public Hearing on Zoning Amendments – this is for the changes to the zoning resulting from adopting the Master Plan.  This item was tabled and the Board decided to hold a workshop meeting with their consultants.  The workshop was tentatively scheduled for January 15 depending on the Town’s consultants being available and having reviewed the Planning Board’s report.
  2. Resolution approving Woodlands Sewer rates.   There is, once again, no change in these rates.  They were quickly and unanimously approved.
  3. Resolution approving towing permit – the permit for Tuxedo Gulf was approved unanimously.
  4. Resignation of Joe Tripoli – Mr. Tripoli was the operator of the sewer plant.  There followed a discussion on the progress of the new sewer plant and what it will take before this (what is this?  Bringing it online?) can happen. 
  5. Resignation of Town Justice Samuel Newman.  The Newmans are moving and Alyse Terhune was elected to this position.
  6. Resignation of Fire Commisioner Ralph Brooks.  He will be replaced by Peter Dedel.
  7. Approval of Fire Commisioner Todd Darling – Mr. Darling’s term was renewed for another 5 years.
  8. Set a Public Hearing on Police Discipline local law- This new law will set a new process for disciplining police officers.  It will no longer be a matter of collective bargaining but will rest with the Town Board instead.  The hearing was set for January 28.
  9. Resolution to Accept Sludge Removal Bid – TAM Enterprise was the lowest bid and was awarded the contract for 48 months (through December 31, 2022).

10-Resolution Authorizing Purchase of Three Trucks for the         Highway Department – one truck is for the Sewer Department and two are for the Highway Department.  

New Business:
Supervisor Rost stated that the Town Board was ready to vote on the motion to transfer the Architectural Board of Review duties to the Planning Board.
Councilmember McMillen remarked that he had talked to many people and read manly letters as well as interviewed applicants who had complaints about the ARB.  He also said that he feels that there is a high talent base already integrated into the Planning Board. The Planning Board is legally set for 7 members and with the Town Reorganization Meeting set for January 28, there should be plenty of time to interview people for the 2 positions that are not already filled.  Thus he is satisfied with the procedure and is ready to vote and so he made a motion for the provision.
Councilmember Lindsay wanted to know what specific complaints had been made.  Without going into detail, Councilmember McMillen replied that the main complaint has been that there is no set of standards that the ARB has been following and thus it differed for every application. 
Councilmember Lindsay then stated that every single person who had spoken at the public hearings had said they wanted to maintain the  ARB and keep the Boards separate. 
Councilmember Reardon responded that those remarks came from people who came only to the beginning of meetings and then left.
Councilmember Lindsay argued that the vote was not on the agenda so there was no reason for them to stay.  She then questioned whether or not the Board could vote if it wasn’t on the agenda.  She was told they could vote on it under New Business.  She was also reminded that the public hearing had been open at the last 3 meetings. 
Councilmember Reardon seconded the motion The Board then voted 3-2 in favor of transferring the duties of the ARB to the Planning Board (and effectively dissolving the ARB) with Councilmembers Lindsay and English voting no.
There followed a discussion about the process of advertising and setting up interviews.  It was suggested that they should reach out to the people who had been interviewed but not hired after the last Reorganization Meeting.  They will also advertise the available positions in the newspaper and post them on the Town website as well as put notices in the Post Office and Library. 

Next, vouchers were approved.

Public Comments:
Frank Peverly observed that since Alyse Terhune had been elected Town Justice, the Zoning Board would need a new attorney.  He added that currently they were scheduled to meet January 22 but he didn’t think there was anything to come before them.  Supervisor Rost thanked him and said they would take care of appointing someone new.
John McNamara commented that he had been coming to Town Board meetings for about 3 years.  He added that while he understood why Councilmembers Lindsay and English were disappointed with the vote to merge the Planning and Architectural Boards, he also understood that at the present time, there are no big projects in front of the Town’s boards and he believes it would be possible to recreate an ARB if a big project should arise that would need such oversight from the Town.  In the meantime, in order to make things easier and more convenient for smaller projects, he felt merging the Boards was the right thing to do. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum stated that residents’ leaves would still be picked up but that they need to be put in bags from this time forward.  Next, he announced that the fire training area on the Quarry Field property had been given an address and had a fence around it.  He added that the fire departments understood that this was only temporary until the Town decides what they want to do with the property. Additionally, he said he had requested bids for solar for the Town Highway Department.  They want to put in electric heat run off the solar panels.  He had 4 bids and felt two of them were worth considering.  Next, he reported that the Highway Department employees had ratified their contract by a vote of 4-2.  Lastly, the Highway Department has arranged for a bucket truck from January 15 through March 15 and will be working on trimming trees hanging over roads at that time. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting December 17, 2018

Click here to view the meeting agenda

back to top

line

Town Supervisor Update December 11, 2018

Hello Tuxedo!

   Wishing everyone a very safe and happy holiday.  It was nice to see the kids come home from school for Thanksgiving and looking forward to seeing them during the winter break. 

I want to provide a financial update now that we are finished with the 2019 budget, negotiating contracts and our review with Moody's credit rating agency.  The road has been long and hard but we are coming to the end of our financial crisis in Town.  Barring any natural disasters, 2019 will be the end of our fund balance restoration.  We will have established a balance across all funds and fully funded contingency funds so that we will be able to address any future situation and avoid another financial crisis.  We were expecting a 5yr restoration plan and we will achieve our goal in 4yrs! This did not happen by accident.  I would like to thank all who are involved in managing our expenses every single day.  

We achieved this success because we continually got better at budgeting.  We were better at budgeting because the tracking and monitoring processes we implemented produced better information used on reports, reports we did not have in the past.   Our internal controls have improved as well.  Contract labor negotiations played a pivotal role in our ability to recover as quickly as we did.  These new labor contracts will set us up for success in the future as we will be able to sustain the controlling of costs.  I had a meeting with Moody's last week and their final report will be published this week.  In my opinion, the call went well and our gains have been measurable and sustained.  I fully anticipate a positive rating increase that the Town of Tuxedo deserves.  Please see the chart below to see just how far we have come.  For the 2020 budget year, the Town, outside of Village, should see a reduction in their property taxes if all goes well.  

 

Again, wishing you and your families a very safe and happy holiday.

 

Sincerely,

Michael Rost

Supervisor Town of Tuxedo

 

back to topline

Town Board MeetiNg November 19, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, November 19, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended by Skype and all other members were present.

The meeting began with three public hearings.

Public Hearing to Receive Comments on transferring the Architectural Review Board duties to the Planning Board:
Dale Mottola, the Chair of the ARB was the first speaker.  She read a letter that the Board had written in response to a request from the Town Board for their comments in which they expressed their opinion that the ARB “should remain intact and continue its role as a separate entity.”  They do not feel that the approval process would become more efficient as a result of this change but they do feel that they could have “more collaboration with other boards in order to help move the Town forward.” 
Jerry Mottola first wanted to know if Councilmember Reardon would recuse herself from voting on this proposal.  It was explained to him that the purpose of the public hearing was to gather public input only and that no vote was scheduled for this meeting.  Mr. Mottola further stated that as an interested citizen he had attended many ARB and Planning Board meetings.  He believes that each Board serves their own, separate purpose and thinks that’s the way it should be kept.  
Sue Scher stated that she is against the proposal of eliminating the ARB as she feels that the Town needs to have as many eyes on new projects as possible.  She believes that an array of people representing a variety of opinions should be reviewing projects as many of the projects brought before the Town are not simple and do not warrant a “simple review.”  She also feels that the Planning Board should remain at 7 members and not be cut down to 5.  She thinks that thoroughness, especially when considering complex developments, is more important than efficiency for protecting the Town.  
Irene Denaro said she doesn’t think the Town should get rid of the ARB but if they “need to downsize,” they should instead integrate the two Boards so that they could work collaboratively. 
Jim Hays began by expressing his opinion that as the Town “stands at the threshold of the beginning” of the Tuxedo Farms development, which is a very complex development, this is not the time to reduce supervision by the Town.  The Town has a responsibility to its citizenry to see that the project is built out and built out correctly.  He feels that reducing the number of eyes and the number of people who are involved is a huge mistake.  He wondered why the Town would want to move forward in this way.
Lili Neuhauser commented that she agreed 100% with Dale Mottola and Sue Scher.  She further said that if the Town has qualified people who want to serve, they should let them do it.  She commented that the Village had separated their Planning Board and ARB and discovered that they worked much better that way. 
Councilmember McMillen remarked that it sounded to him like people thought they were trying to eliminate the ARB function in the Town.  In fact, he stated, they were just trying to streamline the process.  Town code states that it is “desirable that the Chairman and 2 members of the ARB should be registered architects in the State of New York and that has never been the case since it’s inception.”  The code also states that the Building Inspector, the Town Engineer and Town Planner should act as consultants to the ARB and he feels that this is where the Town’s professionalism lies.  In addition, he noted that several people on the Planning Board are engaged in architectural vocations. 
Councilmember Lindsay commented that Jim Hays had asked why we would want to eliminate the ARB and added that she certainly does not want to eliminate them.  She also pointed out that there were candidates with architectural experience who had applied for position on the Board in March and there is an open seat on the Board at the moment. 
Councilmember McMillen stated that he is interested in looking at a solution, different from the ARB, that “won’t cause applicants so much pain and anguish” that they don’t get their projects done. 
Councilmember Lindsay responded that she had attended ARB meetings and found that they treated applicants with respect and only asked for what was required. 
Councilmember McMillen reiterated that at this point the Board was only discussing the idea and that there were no immediate plans to vote on it. He further commented that he sensed s a lot of angst in the Town and really, they were just having a discussion.
Maria May stated that she has been a teacher in Suffern for many years and watched what has happened there because of “a weak board and lack of supervision.”  She doesn’t want to see that happen in Tuxedo.  She feels, therefore, that the Town needs more eyes watching things and more voices in the process. 
Supervisor Rost pointed out that the approvals for the Tuxedo Farms property had already been given.  Furthermore, 77% of the Town is owned by the State with only 23% of the Town available for development. 
Paul Scott wondered what would happen if someone came forward to build on the rest of the land?
Councilmember Lindsay commented that the Renaissance Faire property could be developed and there is also a parcel on Warwick Brook Rd as well as one on Sterling Mine Rd. that could be developed.  She was told that the Sterling Mine Rd. property is in the Town of Ramapo and the Renaissance Faire is in a travel and tourism zone. 
Councilmember McMillen and Jim Hays then had a disagreement about what had happened with the Related property.
Councilmember Lindsay commented that the Planning Board had made their recommendation for eliminating the ARB and consolidating the function into the Planning Board without realizing that the number of members of the Planning Board had been changed way before the casino application and that it had been increased because of the pending Tuxedo Farms application. She would like the Town Attorneys to inform the Planning Board of the correct information about this because she feels they are basing their discussions on misinformation. 
Kelly Spranger remarked that it seemed to her that there was an “inherent issue” between lots of different Boards.  She wondered if it wouldn’t possible to come together as a community and streamline the work done by all the different boards in both the Park and the Town so that there is just one community looking at potential growth?
Todd Tereshkow stated he is a current member of the ARB and, as such, supports the letter read by Chair Dale Mottola.  He further commented that while they could consolidate the ARB and Planning Boards that he felt they should not do it because if the Town were to get all the projects that Councilmember Lindsay had mentioned, the consolidated Board would be in a difficult position.  He believes that the ARB serves a useful purpose. 
John McNamara asked whether or not the ARB could be reinstated at a later date should the need arise?
Town Attorney Marissa ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Weiss replied that yes, it could and that it would require a public hearing and then a vote by the Town
Board.
Dale Mottola commented that she wanted to respond to the implication that the ARB had been responsible for delaying projects.  In fact, she stated, the only time that an applicant had not gotten a decision at the first meeting was when the Board was not given materials to review. 
Councilmember English said that if they were to go through with abolishing the ARB, he felt they would need to move the requirements, as stated in the Town Code, for that Board transferred to the Planning Board. (The Town Code calls for the Chairman of the ARB to be an architect and for 2 members of the Board to be architects as well.  Currently, none of the ARB are architects.) 
Also, he feels there needs to be a clearly stated process for adding new members to the Boards which have staggered terms so that at least one seat comes up each year.  The Town policy for recruitment must be managed on an annual basis. 
Mary Graetzer suggested that the Town consider going back to a system of appointing alternate members to the Boards. Alternates attended Board meetings but didn’t vote unless one of the members was unable to be there.  This way, when an opening came up, there was someone who was already versed in the business of the Board available.  This system worked well for years. 
Todd Tereshkow commented that he felt it would be very beneficial if the Town Board, the Planning Board and the ARB could have regular, perhaps quarterly meetings so that they all could be on the same page and understand what is happening in the Town. 

The Supervisor then stated that the public hearing would be continued at the Town Board’s next meeting on December 10. 
Public Hearing on the Moratorium on Development Approvals:
Town Attorney Weiss explained that the current moratorium had expired.  It was put into place because the Town was adopting a new Comprehensive Plan and they didn’t want to approve something that might not be legal after the plan was adopted.  Also, they didn’t want any applicants to be caught between the two different zoning codes…the current one and one which will be adopted by the Town as soon as the Planning Board gets through reviewing it and offering their comments.  This will be the last time that it will be extended as the Town is in the process of reviewing the legislation to update the Code so that it is in compliance with the Comprehensive Plan. 

There were no comments from the public and the hearing was closed.

Public Hearing on the Orange County Multi-Jurisdictional Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan:
This Plan includes properties within both the Village of Tuxedo Park and the Town of Tuxedo.  When considering the Emergency Plan for these properties, key infrastructures need to be identified so that emergency services will know what is important. Also, there might be easements that should be given so that in the case of an emergency, the County could enter and be of help. Currently, there are some omissions in the document such as the Town Highway garage.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has submitted a list of things that he feels should to be added to the plan.
Jerry Mottola commented that as a member of the former 911 numbering commission, he had spoken many times about problems with the numbering which he feels still exist today.  Also he feels no one has discussed the implication having a railroad coming through the Town
Superintendent Rost responded that the railroad had nothing to do with what has been requested by the County. 
Councilmember English added that the document mentioned flooding, severe storms, winter storms, hurricanes, earthquakes, wildfires, ice jams and landslides. 
Following up the enquiry by Martin Levenhar at the previous Town Board meeting, Councilmember English contacted the DEC to see what plans were in place for their monitoring of the Hazardous Waste Dump.  He learned that the monitoring would continue indefinitely because the waste remains on the site. 
Jim Hays suggested that someone should keep an eye on the DeMarino dirt pile because it looks to him as though they are extending it close to the Ramapo River and anything that clogged the Ramapo could cause disaster for the East Village.  
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum explained that the Army Corps of Engineers had constructed a wetlands in that area and that DeMarino had not done any extensions. 
Todd Tereshkow asked if the Town had an official Recovery Plan.  The answer is yes.
Maria May commented that there was continually bad flooding on Route 17 in Southfields near Valero and also further south on the highway.  
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum replied that since Route 17 is a State Road, this is a State not a Town issue.

The Public Hearing was then closed.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost stated that the latest report from Cooper Arias stated that the Town’s cash balance is $1.1 million.  He further stated that the Town is really digging itself out of the hole it was in and he feels that by next year, it will be in good shape.  As the bookkeeper has suggested budget modifications that were never implemented, the Supervisor asked for a resolution to pass them.  This resolution was duly resolved and passed unanimously. 
The Supervisor will be meeting with the DEC in New Paltz on December 5.  Since it doesn’t look like the new sewer plant is going to be opening anytime soon, they want to discuss the state of the present plant.  The Town will need to figure out what they will do about this soon!
The Town is waiting to hear from the Highway workers about ratifying their contract.  The workers are waiting to hear from their union. 
Councilmember English is trying to arrange a Town meeting with newly elected State Senator Jen Metzger.  The Supervisor suggested that she might come to the next regular meeting on December 10 and Councilmember English indicated that he would ask her.  
Councilmember Lindsay reported that in the last month she had met with the new Director of Economic Development for Orange County twice and had given him a tour of all possible development sites in Town.  She also met with Amanda Dana, Director of Tourism for County who is very enthusiastic about Tuxedo’s access to state land and using that as a positive economic tool. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Resolutions:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • a Resolution to adopt the 2019 Final Town Budget
  • a Resolution to grant a Special Permit for the  Our Lady of Guadalupe Torch Relay Run – this is an annual event.
  • a Resolution to adopt the extension of the Moratorium on Development Approvals
  • a Resolution for a sign permit for the Tuxedo Little League to announce sign up dates. 

 

Public Comments:
Russ Shaver asked about the funding for the Powerhouse Concert that was held in October and also wanted to know why it had been held on the same day as Family Fun Day. 
He was told that both issues had been discussed several times over the course of last couple of meetings.  The concert was funded by a grant from County Executive Neuhaus given to all Towns from sales tax income.  Mr. Shaver was assured that someone would discuss the timing with him after the meeting as it had already been discussed at meetings publicly many times.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum announced that the Highway Department would resume picking up leaves if and when the snow melts.  If leaves are out, they will be taken. If it snows, he asks residents to please get their cars off the road so they don’t have to get the Police to remove them.  Also, he still has mulch available for Town residents. 
Kelly Spranger proposed that the Town build a Community Center for residents as well as an indoor pool.  She has discussed this with people from the school as well as the Supervisor and she has ideas as to how it could happen with very little cost to the taxpayers.  She feels that such an amenity could be used to market the school as well as the Town. 
Todd Tereshkow commented that the storm the previous Thursday night had been a disaster.  He felt the Town should discuss how to prepare for these emergencies and specifically how they could get out front of them.  He was told that most of the roads that had been problematic were State roads and that the Town has been in communication with the DOT about the storms.
Dale Motolla wondered how many signatures were needed on the petition for Town consolidation.  She was told 500 signatures of Town residents were needed.
Currently, there is only one petition although there are two separate referendums needed. 
Representing the Fire Department Gardiner Hempel wanted to talk about the new electronic sign that they have recently installed. He is aware that someone has already complained about it.   He explained that when the sign was plugged in, what came up was the default imagery by the manufacturer and this was loud and gaudy and meant to give an example of some things that might be possible. (As he described it, it looked like someone had hit a homerun at Yankee Stadium!)  As soon as Mr. Hempel arrived back at the Firehouse it was changed and it will not appear that way again.  The Fire District has passed rules that will govern what will be put on the sign and he handed those to the Town Clerk.  Organizations around Town are invited to submit their messages, within the Departments guidelines, to be displayed
Theresa Ruscillo commented that she is someone who is very “pro School” and as such is very pleased with the BOE’s recent decision to keep the High School open.  It has come to her attention that there are employees of the Town as well as members of the various Boards who do not share her opinion and she wonders what the Town is going to do to mend those feelings as she thinks it is important that the Town move forward collectively to support the School.
Councilmember McMillen responded that he had never discussed the School at a Board meeting.  Mrs. Ruscillo said that there were many people that had discussed it and she was told that these people had been speaking as citizens and residents, which they have the right to do.
Mrs. Ruscillo replied that for now, the high school is staying and she encouraged the Board to recognize that we should all be working together as one community to move forward.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to topline

Agenda for Town Board MeetiNg November 19, 2018

Click here to view the meeting agenda

back to top

line

Three Public Hearings to Take Place November 19

Click here and here and here to view the notices

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 5

The Town Board met on Monday, November 5, 2018 at 7 pm.   Councilmember Reardon attended by Skype and all other members were present. 

Supervisor Rost began his report by announcing that he and the Board had just reviewed the negotiated Town Highway Department contract and that all were happy with it.  After not having received raises for the last 3 years, current employees will get a 3% raise.  Highway Department employees will also be moved off of the Town’s medical plan and are looking into their own plan.  The Town has agreed to contribute into a separate pension fund for current employees. 
The Supervisor added that he was excited about this year’s budget as 2019  should be the Town’s “break even year.” It had been forecast that it would take 5 years to get the Town out of the financial hole that they were in and they’ve done it in 4 years.  He thanked all Board members, present and former, as well as Department Heads for their help in accomplishing this.  There will be a fully funded contingency fund in each of the funds starting in 2019.  He also anticipates an increase in police coverage on the midnight shift.  Police Chief Abbott has done a great job of using the Town’s Part Time officers for all planned overtime, meaning that he has money left over to staff the midnight shift.  This news was met with a round of applause.
Next, the Supervisor reported that the DEC is “content” with the progress being made at the Highway Department.  The pile of stumps needs to be sorted but the Town is very close to having the consent order lifted. 

Public Hearing on Building Department fee changes:
Superintendent Rost commented that he wasn’t sure if the Town actually needed a new law or if they just needed to enforce the one that they already have. 
Town Attorney Protter replied that he had changed some of the language in the penalty section of the current law.  It now provides that if a resident should have obtained a permit but did not do so, they are subject to enforcement.  Thus the hearing was opened. 

There were NO public comments, and the hearing was closed. 

Public Hearing on the 2019 Preliminary Budget:
Andy Berish asked if the Silver Dollars (Seniors) had been included in the budget.  He was told that they had been.  He then wanted to know if they would be alotted the same amount as they had been given last year and was told that the amount had been slightly increased for this year. 
Speaking on behalf of the Tuxedo Historical Society Betty Langberg wondered if this meant that they, too, had been included in the budget and she was told that yes, they had been. 

There were no other comments on the budget and the public hearing was closed. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish asked for an explanation of the contract between the Town and the Silver Dollars.  Town Attorney Protter explained that it was a simple contract which stated that the Town was providing funds to the Silver Dollars and in return the Silver Dollars were providing social and entertainment programs to seniors in Town.  The contract doesn’t require the Silver Dollars to do anything more than what they are already doing, it just memorializes what is already taking place.   Supervisor Rost added that technically, the Town should have always had such a contract with both the Silver Dollars and the Historical Society. As they have just discovered this fact, the Town is moving to correct it. 
Mike Santoianni inquired as to whether  his request for relief from the building moratorium on behalf of the TPA would be considered at this meeting. 
Town Attorney Protter responded that Mr. Santoianni/the TPA were looking to build residential housing on property that is not zoned for this type of use.  He further explained that that it is not going to be allowed under the proposed new zoning ordinance either. This is why Towns have moratoriums.  He suggested that even if the TPA were able to make a case for allowing the residential housing, they would not be able to get through the process to obtain a building permit before the law would be changed.  The only way for them to

move forward would be to try to get the zoning ordinance changed.  He further stated that the standards for relief from the moratorium were very high and that the only way anyone can get relief is to demonstrate that they can’t get an economic return out of any of the uses that are otherwise permitted for the property in the zone.  He went on to say that just because the TPA had a proposed deal for a residential use is not satisfactory proof that they can’t use the property for any of the other uses permitted in the zone. 
Mr. Santoianni contended that they had commented and requested that this land be zoned differently when the Comprehensive Plan was being discussed and their request was ignored.  He added that he had  been trying to sell this property for research/office, the use for which is it legally zoned,  for 10 years and has not been successful. 
Supervisor Rost stated that the Town Board and the Zoning Board had been working with Mr. Santoianni with the last deal but it fell through for unknown reasons.  The Town wants to work with Mr. Santoianni. Following some further discussion,   it was explained to Mr. Santoianni that his next step would be to meet with the Planning Board and try to convince them that the parcel of land in question should be zoned for residential use.  Additionally, he could appear at the public hearing that the Town Board will hold before voting on the zoning, but unless the zoning is changed, he or his buyer won’t be able to build residential housing on the property and they won’t be able to get relief from the moratorium.
Betty Langberg wanted to know if the Architectural Review Board had identified any historic buildings that need special review.  Town Attorney Protter responded that he did not know.

Agenda Items:

  1. A Resolution appointing Laura Distanislao as a Part Time Police Officer was passed unanimously. As Ms. Distanislao was present, she was then sworn in by the Town Clerk.
  2. A Resolution to enter into a contract with the Silver Dollars was approved unanimously.
  3. A Resolution to enter into a contract with the Historial Society was approved unanimously.
  4. A Resolution to schedule a Public Hearing to change Town Law and move the Architectural Review to the Planning Board was discussed.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English would like to wait to wait until both the Planning Board and the Architectural Board have weighed in on this proposal before scheduling a hearing.  Supervisor Rost said he was not proposing that the Board take any action on the proposal at this time, only to set a Public Hearing so that the Board can hear what the public has to say about it.  Councilmember McMillen stated that he felt the proposal needed to be moved along as they have been discussing it for months and it feels like “an endless filibuster,” to him. He suggested they hold the hearing at the next Town Board meeting on November 19. The Supervisor added that they could keep the public hearing open until they had received comments  from the other boards if they wanted to.  Ultimately the motion to hold the public hearing on November 19 passed 3-2 with both Councilmember Lindsay and Councilmember English abstaining. 
  5. A Resolution to schedule a Public Hearing on extending the Building Moratorium for November 19th was passed unanimously.
  6. A Resolution appointing Andrew Markunis as Part Time Police Officer was passed unanimously.  Councilmember Lindsay asked for an explanation of what is currently happening with the midnight shift.  She was told that the Part Time officers were being used to cover all planned overtime.  Each officer is contractually limited to 1040 hours per year.  After the planned overtime is scheduled, the leftover hours are being used to cover the midnight shift.  Currently, since the year is drawing to a close, this means there is coverage for the midnight shift 5 nights a week.  This will probably change in the next year. 
  7. A Resolution to schedule a Public Comment period on the Hazard Mitigation Plan recently submitted by Orange County for November 19th was passed unanimously.  The proposed Plan will be available on the Town website. 
  8. A Resolution to extend the Planning Board’s period for comment on the proposed Zoning Amendments to December 18 was approved unanimously. 

Additionally, the Supervisor welcomed Village Trustees Maureen Coen and Paul Gluck.  He asked if they had anything specific that they wanted to discuss or comment upon, but they replied that they did not. 

Public Comments:
Jerry Mottolla inquired as to how long the ARB would have to respond to the proposed Zoning Amendments.
Town Attorney Protter explained that while the Planning Board’s response was set by Town law (they have a minimum of 45 days) the ARB’s response was not.  The Town Board was interested in their opinion, but if they do not have to respond if they don’t want to. 
Betty Langberg asked where the Town’s record storage is being moved to.  She was told that it hasn’t been decided as yet. 
Jim Hays wanted to know why there was such a long delay in appointing members to the Planning Board.  Supervisor Rost replied that since the Town Board was also considering reducing the number of Planning Board members from 7 to 5, it didn’t make sense to make appointments until they knew what the eventual number of members would be. Mr. Hays then stated that he felt that the possible reduction of members should be part of the public hearing scheduled for November 19.  The Supervisor responded that the reduction has not been proposed as yet but that the Board would be happy to hear people’s opinions on the subject. 
Martin Levanhar stated that when the Town had the hazardous waste dumb (across from Duck Cedar) the DEC had stated that they would be monitoring the site for 30 years.  He commented that this time period is almost up and wondered if there was a plan in place for what will happen next.  The Supervisor asked Town Attorney Protter to look into this matter.
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum announced that since it is “leaf season,” the Highway Department will be picking up leaves left curbside until the first snow or freeze.  After that, any leaves will have to be bagged.  He also commented that there has recently been flooding in both Laurel Ridge and Quarry Field and cautioned residents to be careful in those areas.  He added that, in his opinion, Laurel Ridge could use another exit.  Since they presently have only one exit (Sylvan Way) if something—like flooding—happens, no one can get in or out.   He suggested that the Town should look into an emergency exit via the abandoned gas line.  The area would need some grading before it could be used.  Finally he announced that mulch, top soil and compost is still available at Quarry Field for residents to come and take for their personal use.

There was some discussion about scheduling another workshop for the public on the subject of the proposed Annexation and Consolidation.  It was decided that Town Attorney Protter would propose some possible dates after which the public will be alerted. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to discuss a personnel matter. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting November 5

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Notice - Public Hearing on Town Budget November 5

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Notice - Budget Workshop October 18

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line Notice - Continuation of Public Hearing

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 9, 2018

The Town Board met on Tuesday, October 9, 2019 at 7pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended via Skype.

Supervisor Rost asked Town Attorney Howard Protter to explain the fee schedule being proposed for “as built” permits as put forward in the law under consideration.  Mr. Protter responded detailing the fees as follows: for residential permits for work done ahead of receiving a permit – normal fee plus $1000.  For commercial permits for work done ahead of receiving a permit – normal fee plus $2000.   For a Certificate of Occupancy on work done without a permit, $500.  For inspecting a septic field, the fee will be $500 extra and for Fire inspections, $1000 extra. 
Several Board members spoke up and stated that at the last meeting (at which Mr. Protter was not present) Building Inspector Maikisch had expressed his preference for even higher fees than these, as he felt that the charges needed to be punitive in order to have any effect.  There would be an amnesty period during which residents would have the opportunity to pay the regular fees to bring their properties into compliance.  The feeling was that if the fees were not high enough, people might opt to just pay the extra fee and avoid getting a permit.  Councilmember McMillen commented “residents need to understand that one of the main reasons for the permitting process is for their protection and safety as well as making sure that the process was the same for all residents and thus ‘fair’.”  
It was agreed that the public hearing would need to be continued while a new fee schedule was drawn up but that if there was anybody present who wished to speak about this issue that evening, they would be heard.

Continuation of Public Hearing for Building Department Fee Changes:
Some residents had specific questions about their properties and whether or not a permit was required.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen reiterated that this was a public hearing about changing the fees in the building department and suggested that individual questions would need to be answered by someone in the building department especially since the Building Inspector was not present.
Kristy Apostolides stated that she doesn’t feel the amnesty period (currently in affect until March, 2019) was long enough.  She feels it should go for an entire year.  She was told that the Board would take another look at the amnesty period and discuss it.  Ms. Apostolides also felt that the Town should look at what other Towns do about this.  She was told that this had already been done and Tuxedo’s fees are currently way below everyone else’s. 
Jerry Mottola asked which properties would be grandfathered under the new law.  He bought his house from his parents and has permits for everything he has done to it but doesn’t know what happened before he bought it.  He was told that this would be handled by the building department.  Mr. Mottola also asked about people in the East Village who had damage to their houses during the 2011 flooding of the Ramapo River.  He was told that these people probably needed building permits for the repair work that had been done, but that the Town was not trying to hurt people.  Moreover, the goal is to bring everyone into compliance with the Building Codes. 
It was agreed that the public hearing would be continued until the next Town Board meeting on October 22.  There followed a discussion about how the Town would notify residents of the continued hearing.  It was decided that they would send out a post card to residents informing them and simultaneously asking them to visit the Town website to sign up for an electronic mailing list so that communication in the future could be handled via email. 
 
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began his report by mentioning that Building Inspector Maikisch has been very busy in Southfields.  Tuxedo Auto Body has filed a permit for a building to house all the cars that are currently stored on their lot.  This would bring them into compliance with Town Code.  The owner of the lot, which historically housed another auto body shop (now gone) has been cleaning up the mess left behind by that business.  There is more work to be done but they will be looking for a new tenant soon.  Some of the busses, which were being stored behind the American Legion building, have been removed and the Building Inspector is putting pressure on the owner of the parking lot to get rid of the rest of them. 
Next, the Supervisor gave Recreation Head Shari Brooks a shout out for her efforts with Family Fun Day, which was quite successful despite the rainy weather.  He also thanked Kim and Dave McMillen and Councilmember Michele Lindsay for their work on the Powerhouse Park concert.  While attendance for that event was disappointing due to the weather, those who were there feel encouraged by all the comments they got from people who attended about how wonderful the venue was.  The money invested in the event, which came from the additional $20,000 which County Executive Neuhaus had given to all municipalities will carry over to future events that are already being worked on.  When the contribution was first announced, the County Executive asked that the money be put into “travel/tourism” and/or economic development.  The concert series satisfies this..  Several audience members spoke up with suggestions for future concerts.  Dale Mottola wanted to make sure that a concert would not be scheduled on the same date as Family Fun Day again and was told that it would not.   Kristy Apostolides suggested that a committee be put together to work on these events and she was told that this would be happening. 
Finally, the Supervisor stated that he was continuing to work on the budget  and he has scheduled a Board workshop with Brian Sullivan to go over it.  The workshop will take place on Thursday, October 18 at 7pm and will be open to the public.

Public Comments:
Pat Barone said that the Billboard sign used to advertise the concert at the corner of Warwick Brook Rd. had too much information on it and was thus difficult if not impossible to read as one drove by.  She was told that it had been supplied by the concert producer and that the Town would take her comments into consideration for the next event. 
Town Attorney Howard Protter said that the Planning Board had indicated that they need more time to look at the zoning law, which has been referred to them.  By law, they have a 45 day review period.  The Board voted to keep the period at 45 days. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line Agenda For Town Board Meeting October 9, 2018

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 24, 2018 

The Town Board met on Monday, September 24, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost opened the meeting by reporting that there has been a lot of work going on at Steve’s restaurant (old Take A Break) and owner Steve Germano is optimistic that he will be ready to open in December.  Those who have travelled north of Town will have noticed that a billboard advertising the October 6 concert at Powerhouse Park has been installed at the corner of Warwick Brook Road.  The Supervisor thanked Dave & Kim McMillen and Michele Lindsay for all their hard work on this event.  Radio ads will be also be running leading up to the event as well as newspaper ads and coverage.  Councilmember English wanted to know what the budget was for the event.  He was told that since they had not known  that the they would be hosting an event of this nature, it had not been budgeted for.  The money will come out of the A fund and go into the Recreation Fund and proceeds from the event will go back into those funds.  The Town hopes to break even.  This particular concert is being looked as a “dry-run” for next year when they hope to hold a series of 8 concerts similar to this one.  Andy Berish asked about parking.  The plan is to first fill the lower lot next to Powerhouse Park.  Overflow will go into the school lots and there will be a shuttle bus taking people back and forth.  If the school lots become filled, cars will go into a new lot being constructed on Quarry Field.   Mike Yeager of Hickory Hollow Nursery has also donated his lot.  The Town has hired the same parking and security staff used by the Renaissance Faire and they will direct people as to where to park.  Supervisor Rost reiterated that the main reason the Town is having the concert is to bring people to into Tuxedo so they can see what the Town has to offer and to drum up support for our businesses. 
Supervisor Rost asked Building Inspector Dave Maikisch to give his thoughts on the proposed amendments to the Building Fees, which are the subject of the public hearing being held.  Mr. Maikisch explained that for years now, people have been finishing basements and adding on decks and additions to their houses without getting applying for permits.  Then when these people try to sell their houses, the title company checks and discovers that a permit was never issued and subsequently requests that this be rectified.   As the law stands now, all people have to do is apply for a permit, after the fact, and pay the same $100 fee that they would have paid to begin with.  Meanwhile, the Town is losing out on years of additional taxes and there is no guarantee that any of this work has been done safely or to code.  Therefore he has asked the Board to significantly increase the fees on “as built permits” issued after the fact and sometimes years later.  As drafted, the law raises the fee for these permits to $1000, but in discussion, the Board didn’t feel that this was enough of an increase to act as a deterrent.   Councilmember English inquired as to whether they could fine the contractors who were doing the work without a permit, but all the other Board members agreed that the responsibility for the permit lies with the homeowner.  The Board has the ability to change the amount of the fee during the public hearing process.  Discussion centered around raising the fee to $5000 if a permit was issued after the fact. 
Councilmember Lindsay reported having received a call from former Board member, Cliff Loncar complaining about the number of cars parked in a new parking lot on Butternut Road to service Sterling Forest State Park’s new hiking/biking trail.  It was agreed that she would speak to the NY/NJ Trail Conference about expanding the parking lot. 

Public Hearing on Local Law increasing the fees on “as built” permits: 
It was agreed that this law had not been distributed to the public but as the hearing had been advertised, Supervisor Rost said that the Board would hear anyone who wanted to talk on the subject and then continue the hearing until the next Town Board meeting on October 9
Jerry Mottola commented that he had bought his parents house, after which he noted that they had had a lot of work done on it, including an electrical upgrade.  He wondered if there was anyway to check to see if they had applied for a permit.  He was told to check with the Building Department, as they would have records of permits issued.
There was a brief discussion among Board members about when the increases would go in effect.  Mr. Maikisch felt March 1 would be fair and proper.  There was some feeling that residents might have to notify the Town before that.  Ultimately, it was agreed that the notification timeline would be announced at the continuation of the public hearing next month.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Councilmember English asked what Tax Certiorari entails.  Supervisor Rost explained that this item is to authorize Jacobowitz and Gubits to defend the town for 3 such proceedings in which 3 parties are challenging their tax assessments.

Agenda Items:

  1. Tax Certiorari – There are 3 cases in which tax assessments are being challenged.  The Board of Assessment Review has recommended that the Town defend all of them.  It was unanimously decided to do so

New Business:

  1. Budget modifications were proposed by auditor Andrew Arias in June and never passed.  They were approved unanimously.
  2. Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has requested a piece of equipment to clean snow off the sidewalks in Town.  The approximate cost for it is $40,000 plus an additional $12,000  for a sickle bar attachment.  Superintendent Rost recommended that the Town apply to the Hamlet Revitalization LDC for this amount and it was unanimously decided to do so.

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola asked about the updated petition for Town consolidation.  It was explained that the petition has indeed been updated and a requested FAQ on the subject has been written.  This will be posted to the Town website as soon as Town Clerk Donna Matthews is back in the office. 
Andy Berish thanked Highway Superintendent Dollbaum for installing mirrors on Nursery Road and Augusta Place, which he said has greatly improved safety on those roads. 
Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned

 

back to top                                                                     
                                              

line

Notice of Hearing September 24, 2018

PUBLIC NOTICE is hereby given that there has been introduced before the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo, New York, on September 12, 2018, a local law entitled, “Building Department Fee Amendments,” which local law would amend the “Standard Schedule of Fees of the Town of Tuxedo” established pursuant to Chapter 37, Sections 15 & 16 of the Town Code to add new fees for those who fail to obtain building permits prior to initiating construction.
A complete copy of the Introductory Local Law is available for inspection at the Clerk's Office.       NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to Section 20 of the Municipal Home Rule Law, the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo, New York, will hold a public hearing on the aforesaid Local Law at the Town of Tuxedo Town Hall, New York, on September 24, 2018, at 7:00 P.M., at which time all persons interested therein shall be heard.
            The Town of Tuxedo will make every effort to assure that the hearing is accessible to persons with disabilities.  Anyone requiring special assistance and/or reasonable accommodations should contact the Town Clerk.

Dated:  September 13, 2018
                                                           

BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD OF THE TOWN OF TUXEDO
                              DONNA MATTHEWS, TOWN CLERK

   back to top                                                                     
                                              

line

Town Board Meeting September 12, 2018

The Town Board met on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm, with Councilmember Reardon attending via Skype. 

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost stated that he had spent almost all of his time over the past several weeks working on the budget.  He mentioned that he had seen two patrol cars out on Route 17 on his way to work (at 4:30 am) and was happy to see that there is some midnight coverage happening.  He explained that the Police Department has now hired 6 part-time officers, which is all they are allowed by their collective bargaining agreement with the PBA.  The part-time officers are being used to cover planned overtime (i.e. vacations) and with any leftover hours, Chief Abbott is staffing midnight shifts. 
Both Family Fun Day and the concert in Powerhouse Park are coming up on October 6.  The Supervisor praised Highway Superintendent Dollbaum for the work done on all the parks in Town saying that they “look beautiful.” 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen was called upon to give an update about the concert in Powerhouse Park.  Noting that he had covered that fairly extensively at the last meeting, the Deputy Supervisor chose to talk about why the Town had chosen to host the concerts.  The theme of these concerts really is “Tuxedo is open for business.”  The Board wants to bring people into Town to see what there is to offer.  The concert will be promoted, with the help of Orange County via radio and newspaper as well as  a billboard, which is being built and will be installed at the corner of Warwick Brook Rd. and Route 17. Councilmember Lindsay has lined up some food trucks to provide food and drink including barbeque, the empanada people from the Farmers Market, a sandwich and burger person and others. In addition to the lineup announced at the last meeting will be Kate Yeager, an artist with Sony Records who is also the daughter of Mike Yeager, owner of Hickory Hollow nursery.  Tickets are $25 and are available online at www.tuxedopowerhousepark.com or Ticketmaster.   They will also be available on the day of the concert for either cash or credit card.  Deputy Supervisor McMillen also announced that Michael Bruno is a partner to the Town in the endeavor.  He will be catering the Green Room (for performers) as well as providing lodging for some of the performers. 
School Superintendent Nancy Teed interjected that the School Board had met in a special session right before the Town Board meeting and had voted unanimously to give the Town overflow parking at no cost.  She recognized that this was a good opportunity for the school to be seen by people who might not have seen it before.
Councilperson Lindsay reported on the Shared Services initiative she has been working on with Trustee Maureen Coen of the Village of Tuxedo Park.  They have settled on 4 proposals for the two municipalities to share: storage of road salt, the tax assessor, record management & storage and the courtroom.  The Village already signed off on these projects and the Town was due to vote on them that night.  A favorable vote does not mean that the projects will necessarily happen and neither municipality is bound.  Since the Town already has facilities for all of the proposed projects as well as a tax assessor, the savings would seem to be all in the Village’s favor.  Accordingly, the Village has agreed to share equally in any of the savings that they are awarded by the County. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Jim Hays wondered why changes to the ARB were being referred to the Planning Board and not to the ARB itself?
Supervisor Rost explained that by law they had to be referred to the Planning Board for comments. 
Mr. Hays then asked whether there was a plan to ask the ARB for their comments and he was assured that this would happen. 
He then wondered if the Planning Board was at full strength nd he was told that it was not.  He then wondered if the Board wouldn’t rather have them at full strength before this was sent to them for their opinion as he understood that there were several bright people who had applied for the positions.  He said he thought it would be good to have the new, bright members in place to give their opinions. 
Supervisor Rost thanked him for his comment and said the Board would take it into consideration. 
Mr. Hays’ second question had to do with the Bond Reduction for Tuxedo Farms.  He wondered what bonds would still be in place if the requested reduction was approved. 
Town Attorney Howard Protter explained that the bond in question was a bond covering completion of certain filling and grading operations at the site. It was for $265,000. The bond amount was established by the Town Engineer and approved by both the Planning Board and Town Board.   A majority of that work has now been completed.  The Town Engineer has inspected the site and determined that there is approximately $32,000 worth of work left to be done.  Thus, Related is looking for a reduction of approximately $232,000.  There are no other completion bonds in existence for this project.  This is because there is no requirement for bonds until the applicant files a plan and a map for the project. 
Mr. Hays then wanted to know what would happen if Related walked away from the propert, and specifically who would be responsible for cleaning up the property if that were to happen.  Mr. Protter responded that if they were to walk away, they would still own the property so they would be responsible.  Mr. Hays then commented that if Related walked away, the Town would be left with a mess.  An audience member called out that if the developer hadn’t been told no over and over again, this might not have happened.  Mr. Hays responded “oh come on!  You know they changed their plan over and over again.”  Mr. Protter than remarked that this conversation was inappropriate and asked them to move on. 
Counclmember English wanted to know if a bond was not required unless a plan was submitted, why would any applicant want to post a bond.  He was told this was because a developer could not start selling lots until a plan and map has been submitted. 
School Superintendent Nancy Teed thanked the Town and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum for the work that was done on the school bus parking lot. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to appoint Patricia Marsh as Court Clerk for Judge Newman. - Councilmember English asked if there was a term for this appointment.  He was told no. He then stated that he was pretty sure we would have a new Judge after the November election and he wondered if that new Judge would have any say in whether or not they wanted this clerk.  He was told they absolutely would, however the purpose of this was to get Ms. Marsh trained so that the new Judge (Judge Newman is not running for re-election) could hit the ground running.  The appointment was passed unanimously.
  2. Schedule a Public Hearing for Building Department Fee changes. -  Councilmembers Lindsay and English requested that the Town Attorney give a clear explanation as to what this was for.  They also requested that this be done for all public hearings going forward so that people would know what the public hearings were all about.   Town Attorney Protter explained that this change was to try to discourage the numerous “as built permits” which are applied for.  These come about when people do building projects without getting any kind of permit but then when they go to sell their house, they need a permit so they apply for one although the work has already been done.  According to the Building Inspector, this happens a lot.  To discourage this and to make sure people who are building are following Town codes both for their sake and for the Town, it is proposed that if one applies for an “as built” permit after the fact, the fee will be the same $100 as it would have originally been plus a $1000 penalty charge.  In case of a commercial property it would be $100 plus a $2000 penalty.  The hearing was set for 7:oo pm on September 24. 
  3. Refer Fence law changes to the Planning Board – Councilmember Lindsay again requested that an explanation be included.  She was told that they were trying to bring the Town law in sync with the State law and that the first step was to refer it to the Planning Board.  It unanimously agreed to do so.
  4. Refer the proposed changes to the zoning law to the Planning Board. – These are changes that have come out of the Comprehensive Plan.  As part of the process, it has to be referred to the Planning Board for comments.  It was unanimously agreed to do so.
  5. Refer the proposed changes for the ARB Board to the Planning Board. – Supervisor Rost explained that since they were considering moving the ARB work to the Planning Board, before they could  make a formal proposal, have a discussion or a public hearing, it needed to be referred to the Planning Board.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English wanted the resolution amended to refer the changes to the ARB as well.  They were told by Town Attorney Protter that this could not be done because the resolution makes reference to a certain portion of the Town Code.  However, he added they could add another resolution referring it to the ARB. Councilmember Lindsay then reiterated that she thought this should be taken up only after new members had been appointed to the Boards so that all those people could weigh in.  She was told that the Boards had enough people to make a quorum so this would not be necessary but that her opinion had been noted.  The vote on this was 4-1 with Councilmember Lindsay voting no.  Supervisor Rost then added a resolution referring the changes to the ARB and that was passed unanimously.
  6. Resolution to appoint Patricia Marsh as Deputy Registrar was passed unanimously.
  7. Resolution to approve sign permit- The permit is for an 8’ X 4’ sign advertising the bank doing the financing on Tuxedo Manor apartments’ addition.  All members seemed to think the proposed sign was too big but no one seemed to know whether it was permissible under the Town sign law.  Ultimately It was determined that the sign was too big according to Town regulations.  The bank has requested that the sign to be  up for 2 weeks.  It was agreed that they would approve the sign if it were made to a size that would conform with Town regulations.  The vote was 4-1 with Councilmember McMillen voting no.  He suggested that the Board needed to take a look at the entire Sign regulations.
  8. Local Law extending Zoning Moratorium -  This was done because the moratorium has expired and it was passed unanimously.
  9. Sign permit – Tuxedo Recreation – This is a sign advertising Family Fun Day.  It conforms to the Town’s regulations and it was passed unanimously. 

10-Tuxedo Farms – Bond Reduction – Councilmember Lindsay that residents should have to look at the entrance to the development in the state that it is currently in for “who knows how long.”  She noted that as a condition of the recently granted filling and grading permit, the developer was told that they had to come up with a landscaping plan to be approved by the Town Planner.  However, all they had done was to put in some grass seed.  Councilmember Lindsay suggested that the Town Board to write a letter to the Planning Board asking them to request that the applicant to put something in that would do more to mitigate the look of the entrance since it is located right at the entrance to the Town and the thing most people see first when driving in from the south.  It was pointed out that the Town Planner had accepted the plan to just plant grass.  It was then suggested that a letter could ask the Planning Board to take another look at the entrance and see if what had been done really did mitigate the visual impact of the entrance on the Town.  Supervisor Rost pointed out that if they were to ask this of the Planning Board, then they should ask that all other properties near the entrance of Town be cleaned up as well.  There followed a lengthy discussion about what the Town Board could and could not do about the situation.  Councilmember Lindsay put forth a motion asking that the letter be sent to the Planning Board.  The motion was seconded by Councilmember English.  Councilmembers Lindsay and English both voted aye.  The Supervisor voted no, Councilmember McMillen abstained and Councilmember Reardon’s Skype connection had disconnected. 

Other Business:
It was proposed that the Board send an email to the County about the proposed shared services with the Village, taking the proposal to the next level.  This was unanimously agreed to.  There is no commitment at this time to move forward with any of the work. 

Public Comments:
School Superintendent Nancy Teed reported that at a meeting of the Board of Education held earlier in the evening, the Board had elected to sign an agreement with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office to supply a School Resource Officer (SRO) to the School.  This is being done for the safety of the students.  She went on to say that the School had been working for several months with both the Town and the Village to put a local officer in the school for this purpose but the details could not be worked out so they had signed for one year with the County.  However, she wanted to share the sentiments of her Board, which were that they would all prefer to see a local officer in this capacity and they hope that any differences can be worked out prior to the renewal of this agreement so that they can go local with the next contract.  Councilmember McMillen stated that he wished the Town Board had known this was going to be proposed way before they did so that when they negotiated the Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Town PBA (which is what sets how many part-timers the Town is allowed to hire) they could have negotiated that contract accordingly.  As it is, that contract only allows for 6 part-time officers, which is not enough to staff planned overtime, the midnight shift and an SRO officer.  He wanted to make it clear to Town residents that, contrary to rumors that he has heard around Town, the Board does care about student safety and security in the school.  Tuxedo Park Trustee Maureen Coen read a statement from the Village stating that they were definitely in favor of the security for the students and stood willing to supply an officer if everything else could be worked out. 
Andy Berish expressed some concern with the fact that the Silver Dollars have a meeting scheduled for November 5, which is the day before Election Day and he wondered if they would have a problem with an election set up.  He was told that it should not be a problem.
Councilmember Lindsay asked about the agenda for the LDC meeting scheduled for the following evening. Supervisor Rost told her it was a meeting of the sewer LDC. She had thought it was the Hamlet Revitalization LDC.  When she asked again about the agenda, she was told it was the annual meeting where they would set the dates for future meetings. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

   back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting September 12, 2018

Click here to view the agenda for this meeting

back to top

line

Notice of Meeting September 5

*****This meeting is an informational session for those residents who are interested in circulating petitions for consolidation*****

From the Town Clerk:

A presentation was given several months ago regarding an action that would give the Town the same authority as a Village and City.  We considered this action to strengthen our position in fighting the Pilgrim Pipeline.  Residents are eager to pass petitions to get the process started but they requested to meet with the Town's attorney so they can ask questions before collecting signatures.  Our attorney, Howard Protter will available at Town Hall 7pm on Wednesday September 5th to address any concerns you may have regarding this proposal.  Attached is the presentation that was given and it is also on our website. 

Click here to view the presentation

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting, August 27, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, August 27, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present with Councilmember Reardon attending via video conference. 

The Board held an Executive Session at 6 pm in order to receive advice from Town Attorney Howard Protter.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began by stating that all department heads had turned in their proposed budgets for the next year and he is now reviewing them and putting together the Town’s budget. 
In other, more exciting news, the Supervisor is working with Deputy Supervisor McMillen on putting together a concert for October 6.  October 6 is also Family Fun Day, but the concert will be held later in the day at Powerhouse Park.  He also announced that Steve Germano has started construction on Steve’s, a new restaurant serving pizza at the old Take A Break location.  Steve hopes to open by the end of November. 
Reporting on the August 21 LDC meeting, the Supervisor stated that Michael Bruno had been awarded $350,000 to renovate the IGA building; and Steve Germano was awarded $80,000 to help with his construction.
Commenting on the October 6 concert, Deputy Supervisor McMillen said he had long wanted to do something at Powerhouse Park and had begun by talking with concert producer David Kramer who has put together a line up for the event which includes Commander Cody, Reverend Jefferson (the remnants of Jefferson Airplane) Pat Jones (who plays with Pete Seeger’s Band, the Lost River Boys and is also a well known Jimi Hendrix tribute artist) and Englishtown Project, a Grateful Dead tribute band.  Since planning for the event got a late start, it was difficult to line-up any big names but they are hoping they will be able to put together a stronger line-up in the Spring.  As details get worked out, they will be announced on the website for the concert series which is
http://tuxedopowerhousepark.com.  The hope is that the concerts will bring more people into Town and familiarize them with our area.  Orange County is behind the idea and will help with promoting it. 
Dale Mottola wanted to know how they planned to coordinate the concert with Family Fun Day. 
It was explained to her that the concert would not start until later in the day when the Family Fun Day events were almost over.  Also, the general feeling is that the concert will likely appeal be to a different group of people than those who attend Family Fun Day.  The Town is supporting both events.  
Nan Klein had a lot of questions about the LDC meeting.  She wanted to know whether or not there was money in the Loan Fund and if not, why that was the case.  If there are funds in there, she wanted to know why couldn’t the applicant, Rowena Scherer, get any of it.
Supervisor Rost responded that the Town was working on all of this with their attorneys. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that under the terms of the Special Permit, Related was supposed to give half of the money that was promised (or $1million to the Grant Fund and $2million to the Loan Fund) when the Permit was originally signed.  However while Related did put $1 million into the Grant Fund, they had not put anything into the Loan Fund.  The applicant who was denied was looking for a loan, not a grant. 
Ms. Klein continued “so under the conditions of the Permit they were supposed to put this money in to the Loan Fund but they didn’t and they still have the Permit?  Are there any penalties listed in the Permit for this or has the Town come up with a penalty?” 
Supervisor Rost reiterated that the Board was discussing all of this with their attorney.
The Supervisor then asked for and received direction from Town Attorney Howard Protter with regard to changing some Town Laws.  First, he noted that the Town law for fences around swimming pools is a height of 6 feet while State requirement is 5 feet.  The Town would like to change their law to agree with the State. 
Secondly, the fine for As Built permits (work that is done by residents without getting a permit) is presently $250 and the Building Inspector has suggested that this should be raised to at least $1000.) Proposals for these two laws will be prepared for the next Town Board meeting. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she had noticed that the next Town Board meeting was scheduled for Rosh Hashanah and wondered if they could change it from September 10 to September 12.  It was agreed to do so.  She also wondered about the meeting scheduled for Columbus Day, (October 8) which will be rescheduled for October 9. 
From the audience, Norman Leckner wanted to know why the requirement for fences around swimming pools would be lowered. 
The Supervisor replied that they were proposing to lower it to the State requirement in an effort to help quell the perception that it is difficult to build or do business in Tuxedo.  Currently, the 6-foot requirement is higher than any of the others in the surrounding area.
Councilmember Lindsay next reported on Shared Services explaining that New York State has a new program whereby if two municipalities get together and share services, the savings that are realized are eligible for reimbursement by the State.  She emphasized that the savings were only eligible for reimbursement and there is no guarantee that reimbursement would happen.  Accordingly, she recently met with Trustee Maureen Coen from the Village of Tuxedo Park and they have come up with several proposals. One proposal pertains to records management at the Highway Garage and another to sharing salt storage at that location.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum commented that at the moment, there was no room to store the Village’s salt at the Highway.  He further commented that presently the Village owed the Town about 80 tons of salt that they borrowed last year and have not returned as of yet.  He cautioned that he has serious reservations about sharing salt storage with the Village at the moment. 
Councilmember Lindsay also mentioned that she was looking into a Dial a Bus program.  Accordingly, she has been in touch with Silver Dollars President Andy Berish asking him to see how manly of his members would use this service.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum stated that the Town did have that service (in cooperation with Monroe) back when he was on the Town Board but it had been given up because not many people were using it and it wasn’t profitable or affordable for anyone to continue it.  Presently Warwick has the service and is looking for someone to share the cost because it is underused there as well. 
Other recommendations for shared services are having one tax assessor for both the Village and the Town as well as allowing the Village to use the Town court facilities. 
Councilmember Reardon had some questions about the tax assessing. Apparently, the Town Tax Assessor already assesses Village properties but the Village does not necessarily adopt the Town tax roll.  It was agreed that more research needed to be done on this suggestion.  As far as the courtroom is concerned, the Supervisor stated that he had already told the Village they could use the Town Courtroom.  The final suggested shared service involves acquiring an ATV vehicle for “rescues in the forest.”  Councilmember Lindsay said she questioned who would be on the Rescue Squad and how would they would receive training.  She was told that the Fire Department already has an ATV, which is used for this purpose.  The vehicle was acquired via a grant written by the Police Department and is shared with them.
Finally, Councilmember Lindsay proposed two resolutions as a result of recent conversations with the State DOT.  The first one empowered the Supervisor to send a letter to the DOT requesting a turning lane into the Duck Cedar Plaza on Route 17 north bound.  This was passed unanimously. 
The second resolution requests a speed reduction on Route 17 in an area to be determined between the Hamlet and the intersection with Route 17A. 
This was also passed unanimously. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish wanted to know if the item about the bond reduction for Tuxedo Farms had anything to do with that property potentially  going from residential to an amusement park.  He was told it did not.  He then wanted to know what was happening with the amusement park.  Supervisor Rost responded that nothing was going on with that at the moment.  There is an entertainment company who has expressed interest in possibly buying the property but there are also  other builders who are interested in building there.  He then asked Town Attorney, Howard Protter to explain the bond reduction.  Mr. Protter explained that when Tuxedo Farms got permission to put build their roads, there was a requirement by the Planning Board that they post a bond for soil stabilization.  They have done the majority of the work.  The Planning Board had their engineer inspect the site and put together an estimate of how much the cost of any remaining work would be.  The original bond was $265,000 and the engineer estimates that they would only need $32,000 to finish the work so they are proposing to reduce the bond accordingly. 
Nan Klein inquired as to whether or not this was a performance bond.  She was told that it was.  She then said it was her understanding that a performance bond was to cover all the infrastructure in a project.  She was told that this was correct but it Related hadn’t filed a plan for any further infrastructure.  Ms. Klein then wondered if the Town was only holding $32,000 for the whole project?  Mr. Protter responded that this was only for soil stabilization.  Ms. Klein then wondered about the possibility of Related planting some trees along Route 17 while they were deciding what to do.  Mr. Protter replied that there is no obligation for them to do that.  Ms. Klein wondered if the Board could ask them to do it anyway.  Mr. Protter said that this would be up to the Planning Board.  Councilmember Lindsay then interjected that at the Planning Board meeting, improving the entrance to the development was made an obligation of the latest clearing and grading permit.  Ms. Klein then suggested that the Board had the power to refuse to return the bond money and it was explained to her that they do not as Related has fulfilled the requirements of the soil stabilization. 

Referencing the police report, the Supervisor asked Sgt. Doug Russell what was happening with the midnight shifts.  He was told that this was being worked on.  The part-timers are in the process of getting certified and will be put on duty as that happens.  When the Supervisor asked how many part-timers the department has, he was told a total of 6, which is what they are limited to under the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Town and the PBA. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Michele Reed to propose construction of a Veteran’s Tribute Wall to be located in Town Hall – Town Resident Michele Reed would like to take a wall either in the Community Room or at the top of the stairs and install a heading and a painted frame in which they will hang pictures of all residents past and present who have served in the military.  She would request an 8X10 framed photo from the families of these men.  They would be hung on the wall under a statement like ‘our Heroes” or something similar.  She’s seen it done in other places and thinks it would make a great addition to our Town as well as being a great tribute to the men.  She would like the idea or plan to be announced on or around Veteran’s Day.  The Board told her that they were very receptive to the idea and asked her roughly how many people would be represented on the wall.  She responded that she did not know.  When asked, she said she had not been in touch with Paul Mitchell who has been so active with the Veterans in Town.  The Board said that they would need more information, such as numbers, so they would know how much space was needed before deciding on a location.  Councilmember Reardon volunteered to work with anyone who volunteered to help with this project. 
  2. Resolution Approving Sign permit for Rhinebeck Bank.  This Bank is doing the financing on the new construction at the Tuxedo Manor Apartments and has asked permission to put up a 8ft X 4 ft. sign advertising their part in the project.  The Board members all expressed concern over the proposed size of the sign.  They also wanted to know exactly would be written on the sign as well as how long the Bank wants to display it.  They tabled their vote on this resolution pending the answers to these questions.
  3. Resolution Approving Sign Permit – Masker Orchards – Deputy Supervisor McMillen pointed out that this business applies for these signs every year using the same application form.  A year or so ago, when Apple Fest and the Renaissance Faire unfortunately overlapped, there were problems for cars getting through the Faire site and Maskers moved the signs creating an alternate route up Benjamin Meadow Road and through Braemertown.  This causes havoc for those roads.  This year the permit actually says that they want signs for the alternate routes.  The Board ultimately approved the permits without the alternate route signs.  They will also add language statng that any violation (putting up the alternate route signs anyway) will result in a revocation  of the permit and all signs will be taken down. 
  4. Tuxedo Farms – Bond Reduction – Councilmember Lindsay asked Town Attorney Protter to explain exactly what the bond covered.  Specifically, she wanted to know if it covered all of the spine roads for the project or just a small portion of them.  She was told it was only for a small portion of the roads.  She then wanted to know if, as is her understanding, all the spine roads for the project have been roughed out why there wasn’t a performance bond for all of them.  Mr. Protter told her that there was no obligation to do that until they file a new plan.  The only reason to file a bond is to guarantee improvements will be made to the roads.  If instead a builder goes ahead and builds the roads and puts in the improvements before filing a plan, there is no need for a bond.  Without filing a plan, they can’t do anything with the property.  Councilmember Lindsay then stated that when she had attended the last Planning Board meeting, it was made a condition of the clearing and grading permit that Related submit a landscaping plan.  As far as she knows, all that happened was that they submitted a narrative stating that they would seed the area with grass seed. She doesn’t think much of that and would like to see it rectified so that the Town doesn’t have to live with the “awful eyesore” of the current entrance, and in order to ensure that something nicely landscaped is done there as per the condition to the clearing and grading permit.  Mr Protter replied that she could ask the Planning Board for that, but this was a separate issue from the bond reduction.  Councilmember Reardon suggested that the Board send a formal letter to the Planning Board asking for an explanation of the condition Councilmember Lindsay had described and asking them to figure out a way to get it done.  Councilmember Lindsay wanted to withhold the bond money until the landscaping was complete but Mr. Protter did not feel this could be done as the landscaping is a separate issue. Councilmember Reardon reminded everyone that the Town would still be holding $32,000 of Related’s money and suggested perhaps they could tell them that if they didn’t submit the landscaping plan, they would have a difficult time getting that money back.  Thus the resolution was tabled until the next meeting while the letter goes to the Planning Board.
  5. Resolution to approve Inter-Municipal Agreement between the Town, the Village of Tuxedo Park and the Tuxedo School District consenting to the use of Village Police Officers in the Schools. -  There was a discussion with regard to this agreement between the Town and the Village as it relates to the School District hiring an SRO Officer for the upcoming school year.  Chief Abbot was not present, but Sgt. Doug Russell represented the department in his absence. chool Board member Nancy Bourke was present in the audience and contributed to further conversation.  To listen to this discussion, click here.   At the end of the discussion, the Board decided to table this resolution while details were worked out between the various parties involved. 

Councilmember Lindsay then made a statement about what had happened at the LDC meeting a week ago.  She had done some research with the actual Special Permit document.  To hear her statement as well as the ensuing discussion with other Board members and Town Attorney Howard Protter, click here. 

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola wondered what was happening with the Town incorporation into a Village which was presented a number of months ago.  Supervisor Rost remarked he was glad she had brought the subject up as the Board wants to schedule a meeting with Town Attorney Howard Protter where the public can come and ask any questions they might have.  Mrs. Mottla then asked what progress had been made with this idea.  She was told that a petition had been drawn up and people were volunteering to walk it around town for signatures.  The general consensus is that people need more information.  Accordingly, Town Attorney Protter will meet with the public on Wednesday, September 5 at 7:00 pm to give an explanation of the concept and answer any questions from the public. 
Next, Mrs. Mottola wanted to know if there has been any discussion about bringing the new sewer plant on line.  She is concerned about how long the current plant can keep operating.  Councilmember Lindsay commented that there is a separate LDC in place, which has been empowered to issue $30 million in bonds for the construction of the plant.  She feels it would be interesting to hear where all that money has been spent.  She and Mrs. Mottola both wanted to know what the plans are in the event that Tuxedo Farms doesn’t get built.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum opined that eventually the DEC would be the ones to decide this. 
Town Attorney Protter stated that there is money in place to pay for this.  He added that the problem is that without additional hookups from Tuxedo Farms, there would not be enough flow and if the Town switched just the Hamlet over to the new plant, it would be a very inefficient system.  At the moment, the Ramapo is not being polluted and the present plant is in compliance although it is admittedly old and needs to be replaced.  The “Catch 22” is that it doesn’t make sense to operate the new plant for a small group of people who don’t generate enough flow.  If the DEC fines the Town, they can and will switch to the new plant.  If this should happen, the cost of running the new plant would be shared by Related and the sewer district.  Councilmember Lindsay commented that given the reluctance of Related to honor other agreements, she feels it would be important to have a meeting with them to make sure the Town is protected.  Everyone agreed. 
Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum reported that his department has been working on putting millings down on all the unpaved parking lots in Town.  They have also done work on Quarry Field.  He further stated that there has been a lot of illegal dumping around Town. 
Councilmember English wanted to know if they could put millings down in the secondary parking areas at the juncture of Routes 17 and 17a but he was told that this is PIPC property and the Town could not do this.  Councilmember Lindsay volunteered to call PIPC Head Jim Hall and discuss the condition of the area with him. It was also noted that communter busses had been stopping at illegal parts of the ramps going up to Route 17A which the police and others think is very dangerous. 
Marie May, a 20-year teacher spoke in favor of having an SRO officer in the school and said it would be important to have someone that knows the kids and who the kids know.  Supervisor Rost agreed and said that he feels that the Town police do a good job of spending time with/getting to know the kids in Town.

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting, August 27, 2018

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

August 2, 2018

Dear Tuxedo Town Supervisor and Council Members:

I have been made aware that trespassing tickets have been issued to Town residents who traditionally have entered the Village without incident. The Village Officers are simply following our security protocols. We plan to post clear instructions at the gates for Village residents and guests entering the Park without automobiles. Non-residents, if hosted by a Village resident, are given access to the Park regardless of where they live. If entering the Park, please do not go under or around a closed gate. Instead, use the intercom to state your name and whose guest you are. Thank you for your cooperation and I am sorry if you were inconvenienced.

Sincerely,

David McFadden, Mayor

Village of Tuxedo Park

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting, July 23, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, July 23, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began his report by stating that there had been a lot of buzz around Town about the possibility of Tuxedo Farms being sold to Draggonsgate and added that any discussions about the project would be premature because Draggonsgate does not own the property.  He said what he could tell people was that if they were able to purchase the property, Draggonsgate would use the entire property for the project.  Their plan would be to hire roughly 2000 employees, most of whom would be actors and actresses.  They would have 6 different theme “theatres” i.e. Roman Days, Stonehenge, Vikings etc. which would be educational as well as entertainment.  They want to have 2 indoor movie sets for virtual reality and interactive activities such as video games.  They anticipate investing about $500 million into the project which they anticipate would bring about 3 million visitors a year.  The indoor facilities would be open year round but the outdoor facilities would be closed during the winter. The company is comprised of former entertainment industry executives, Broadway directors and actors and people from the video game industry.  Draggonsgate plans to build 10 parks globally and have recently purchased property in Atlanta where they are intending to build.  The Supervisor pledged that as he heard more, he would keep everyone informed. 
He also reported that Steve’s, formerly Take A Break has begun construction and Steve can’t wait to get up and running. 
It is getting to be budget time again and accordingly the Supervisor has asked all Department Heads to turn in their preliminary budgets no later than August 20.
Finally, Supervisor Rost reported that he had a phone call with Mayor McFadden and Trustee Coen over some issues happening in the Village.  Traditionally Town residents have been able to go into the Village to walk, jog or walk around the lake, but recently there have been 5 citations issued for trespassing to town’s people who have historically enjoyed these activities. Mayor McFadden stated that they were trying to tighten up on their security but after the phone call, he said he would be discussing the issue with his Board
and hopefully they would come up with some solution that would allow people to continue these activities. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she and Trustee Coen would be meeting on Thursday to discuss shared services between the Town and the Village.  She and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum were working on the application to get funding from the State for shared services. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Jim Hays commented that in regard to Draggonsgate, theirs is a very different kind of project than what the Special Permit issued to Related currently allows.  He wondered if the purchase were to move forward whether they would have to write and have approved a new Special Permit in order to would cover their proposed activity? 
Supervisor Rost responded that this was premature as they did not have an application yet. 
Mr. Hays replied that he felt this was something that should be looked into before the purchase was completed. 
The Supervisor replied that the attorneys would take care of it. 
Mr. Hays then stated that with either the possibility of Draggonsgate or the build out of Tuxedo Farms, there was a lot of work to be done by the Planning Board so he doesn’t understand why the Town Board is looking to reduce the number of Planning Board members as well as eliminate the Architectural Review Board.
In response, Supervisor Rost stated that the resolution on the agenda for this meeting was just to forward these suggestions to the Planning Board to get their input. Should they decide to move forward with any of it, there will be a public hearing. 
Jerry Mottola wondered why, if they were looking for input from the Plannng Board, they were not also asking for input from t he ARB?
The response was that this is a good idea. 
John McNamara commended the Board for the appointment of 3 part time police officers. 
Jake Matthews noted that there are a lot of historical buildings in Town. He urged the Boards to keep this in mind and, not to make the process of starting businesses slower or more difficult for people but rather to do it in a way that would be in keeping with the nature of what already exists. 
Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • A Resolution to promote Officer to Sergeant-Detective David Decker was promoted to Sergeant and took his oath of office.
  • A Resolution to appoint three part time Police Officers.  Adam Bruce, Brendan Eirand and Christopher Friedman were appointed.  Only Mr. Bruce was present and the Town Clerk administered his oath of office.
  • A Resolution to refer the proposed local law to change the Town Zoning Law by consolidating the functions of the ARB into the Planning Board to the Town Planning Board for review and recommendations.  Councilmember Lindsay stated that she felt that the Town Board should explore all possibilities for streamlining the process of applications before moving to this step.  Supervisor Rost reiterated that all they were doing was to askthe Planning Board to review the suggestion.  They are not taking a next step.  Councilmember Lindsay then asserted that there was a lot missing from the proposed local law and she feels that the Town Board needs to get it into shape before passing it on to the Planning Board for review.  The Supervisor responded that with this step, the Planning Board attorney would now be looking at the proposed legislation and before they decided how or whether to rewrite the it, he would like  to hear his advice.  Councilmember Lindsay next asked whether the legislation would move directly to a public hearing after the Planning Board had reviewed it.  The Supervisor replied “we just need to hear what they will come back with.  We can’t know what we want to do next until we hear that.”  Attorney Michelle Babcock (substituting for Town Attorney Howard Protter who was sick) stated that the process for a new law involves the Town Board sending the proposed law to the Planning Board for review and recommendation.  The Planning Board would have up to 45 days to issue their report.  After the 45 days, the Town Board could schedule a public hearing on the law.  Councilmember Lindsay then restated her opinion that the Board should work out the law completely before moving to this step. 
  • a Resolution to refer the proposed Revisions to the Town Zoning Law to the Planning Board for their review and recommendations  after the Town Board has met with Counsel and is satisfied with the document – these revisions to the Zoning Law are to encompass any changes made in the recently adopted Comprehensive Plan into the Law. 
  • a Resolution to grant special sign permit to the Renaissance Faire for directional signs.  This is the same permit that is issued annually.
  • a Resolution authorizing execution of agreement for police coverage to the Renaissance Faire for the 2018 season.  This is the same agreement that the Town always has with the Ren Faire.  Councilmember English abstained because he hadn’t read the agreement.
  • a Resolution of acceptance of completed petitions which will allow a Library Funding Proposition to be included on the November, 2018 Ballot.
  • a Resolution to acknowledge receipt of the liquor license application and waive the 30 day waiting period for Tuxedo Hospitality Group dba Steve’s.
  • a Resolution to apply for the same CFA (consolidated funding application) grant applied for last year.

There was a discussion regarding updating the Town Sign Law.  Councilmember McMillen started by recognizing that the Town Sign Law needs updating. All were in agreement that local residents and businesses should not be charged for putting signs up but that they would need to follow certain guidelines.  There seem to be no time limits on sign permits as the School put up both a banner and lawn signs for the Stem Academy and never took them down and the Farmer’s Market puts signs up every year but doesn’t have any permit at all.  The recommendation of Councilmember English was that the Board review what was already in the Town Code and start from there.  It was agreed this would be done and that the Board would then have a discussion about what they think needs to be updated. 

Other Business:
The Village of Tuxedo Park Court will be holding a jury trial (People of the State of New York vs. Eric Yacknowitz) in the Town Courtroom on August 10, 2018 at 9:00 am and August 17, 2018 at 9:00 am if needed.
 

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola cautioned the Board that when reviewing the sign law in the code, they should be aware that there was a difference between permanent signs and temporary signs.  She also wanted to know if there was any news about the turning lane into the Duck Cedar Plaza.
Councilmember Lindsay replied that they don’t have any definitive new information yet but she has been in touch with someone at the DOT and they are working on it.
Nan Klein wanted to know if the Tuxedo Farms project was dead?  She said her only source of information so far had been the article in the Times Herald Record, which did not state that the project was dead.  She realizes that at any time someone can approach a property owner and offer them money for their land.  Secondly, she wanted to know who exactly had met with Draggonsgate and who had authorized the meeting? Thirdly, she said she was disturbed by the Supervisor’s comment that ”the attorneys will take care of” any possible zoning problems with the property.  She went on to explain that the only way that Draggonsgate would buy Related’s property was if they already knew that Tuxedo would be willing to drastically change the zoning.  “You don’t wait until they sell it and then have a lawyer look at it….that’s not the way it works!” she stated.  She further commented that the first thing the Board should do is research who the possible applicant (Draggonsgate) is.  She added that she had tried to research them and found that the principals of the company have experience but the company itself does not. In her opinion, it’s nothing more than a shell company….not that it’s a scam, but they have no experience.  She is not even sure the Town should want to do the deal as there are obvious environmental concerns that would have to be looked at and she feels that now would be the appropriate time to be looking at it.  She feels that the Town should not wait until the property has been sold to do their due diligence on the zoning and on the potential applicant, summing up her thoughts with “that’s not the way you do business!”  She also said “the Town doesn’t have to help Related sell the property.  It’s not up to Tuxedo to bail them out.”
Nick Balistreri commented that he would like to add that it has taken about 30 years of “rocketing negotiations” to get the project this far and he felt that this Board had downgraded the negotiations and cheapened the project.  If for any reason this property gets sold, he would like to see a reverter clause inserted into the negotiations stating that if someone else buys the property they would have to renegotiate the use.  He fears that there might be a straw buyer who comes in and as they might only be open for a few months or years, they will not make sufficient income to buy and run the property and thus they could then decide the sell it. 
Ellen Gluck observed that she thought it would make sense to have the configuration of the two Boards (Planning and ARB) when looking at this project as  it appears to be getting larger and larger and this proposal has, for her, as much concern as did the casino. 
Councilmember English asked for details about how the Supervisor had heard about the project and how the meeting had come to pass.
Supervisor Rost responded that the procedure was no different than any business that wants to come to Town.  He had been contacted by Andrew Dance  and met with the real estate broker..  Then he set up a meeting with people in the County because Draggonsgate would need their help in terms of incentives and tax cuts and things that are “above the Town.”
Councilmember Lindsay asked who exactly was at the meeting and the Supervisor replied that he was not going to name all 20 people Councilmember English inquired who had represented the Town?  
Supervisor Rost responded that he was there, Rick Golden, Larry Wolinsky and Mike Reardon as Planning Board Chair. 
Councilmember English then commented that he felt uncomfortable because a lot of people were approaching him for information and all he knew was what he had read in the newspaper. 
An audience member asked if this was a done deal and Tuxedo Farms was dead? 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she was the first she was hearing that the Farms Project could be dead.  She added that the Board needed to be proactive.
Councilmember McMillen wondered what they had to be proactive about? If Draggonsgate or anyone else should buy the property and then come to the Board for help and permissions, that would be the time to dig into whatever problems there might be. 
Supervisor Rost interjected that he didn’t think Draggonsgate would close the deal without coming to the Board first. 
Nick Balistreri repeated his opinion that the Town needs a reverter clause for the property.
Jim Hays stated that in his view it was not the Town’s fault that the Tuxedo Farms project had been delayed and it was also not the Planning Board’s fault.  However, he felt it probably wasn’t appropriate for the Board to sit back and wait for an applicant to come to them.  Instead, he feels they should be asking themselves what they might need to do i.e. what would happen to the special permit?
The Supervisor stated that they needed to wait to see if Draggonsgate was serious about the project.
Nan Klein wondered why they needed to wait until they determined that Draggonsgate was  serious?  She feels they ought to be investigating all these things right now so they could know if they wanted to get serious with them.  She then proceeded to state that she’d never heard of anything being done like this in her life.  The proper procedure, she feels, is for the Board to get every single piece of information on these people so that they could know everything about them.  Then, if they come to the Town, they will be in a position to know if they want to get involved with them or not.
Joe Hekl stated that he had been up on the Tuxedo Farms property recently and wondered if anyone in the Town knew that they had laid asphalt in the Commons area? He is puzzled as to why they would do that if they aren’t interested in building?
It was explained to him that Related still owned the property and had a perfect right to do that.  It could be considered an improvement to the property and might make it worth more. 
Nancy Hays asked if there was a Building Inspector looking at the property so that everyone would know about the asphalt.
She was told they are allowed to put tar down.  The Supervisor added that they are putting infrastructure in and there are engineers who up there on a regular basis looking at it. 
Councilmember Reardon then explained that the issues are not all Related’s.  Related just does the infrastructure and they are hearing from the potential builders that none of them want to come to come to Tuxedo.  When asked why not she said it was because of the price-point that the houses would have to sell for and also because of the state of the school.  She finds it ironic that many of the people in the audience were people who had been fighting Related for 30 or more years and now they were blaming Related for pulling out and not building. 
Jake Matthews encouraged Town Board members to go out and speak to builders who are building in other areas and ask them if they would want or be willing to build in Tuxedo.  On an entirely different note, he then commented that he has very poor cell reception in Town and he wondered why this was so?  He encouraged the Board to figure a way to get better reception in Town.  Finally, he commented  that his car was being ruined by the sewer project in Sloatsburg.  He has contacted officials in Sloatsburg as well as at the sewer authority.  He also feels it causes damage to the reputation of the Town for people to have to drive through that mess. Tuxedo is being negatively impacted by the state of the road.  He encouraged the Board to fight tooth and nail to see that the project gets brought to fruition as soon as possible. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum thanked resident Mary Hanson who rebuilt and reinstalled the Welcome to Tuxedo sign in the north end of Town.  Next, he reported that chip sealing had been done  and the department had installed a new walkway around Quarry Field which was larger and should be able to be plowed in winter making that walkway accessible to residents year round. 
 Councilmember McMillen thanked the Superintendent for installing mirrors on Augusta Place and in the Nursery making that a safer place to drive in and out of. 
Councilmember English requested that the Board organize an update meeting so that everyone, Board members included, would know what was happening with Tuxedo Farms.  He further said that he wasn’t sure he wanted to hear this information from Andrew Dance; he would rather hear from Town Attorneys and from Board members.  In his opinion the meeting should be well publicized so that everyone in Town could come and hear what is happening.  He feels that because so many people in Town only got their information from a newspaper article, the Board owes it to people to hold a big meeting and explain it to everyone at the same time.
Councilmember Lindsay commented that she agreed. She feels the Board needs to get more proactive because things with Tuxedo Farms are now at a critical juncture.
Councilmember McMillen agreed.  He feels they need to break the project in different scenarios of “what if” and then try to answer those questions.  He wasn’t sure, however, that the what ifs would lead to a positive communication so he feels that this can’t be done quickly. 
Nan Klein stated “it’s always better to tell the truth and tell people everything you know,” adding that people should not have to learn things from the newspaper.  She added that if the Board were forthcoming with the information, they would build trust with the people of the Town.

Minutes were approved, vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting, July 23, 2018

Click here to view the agenda

back to top

line

Town of Tuxedo Supervisor Update

There is quite a bit of social media activity over the re-birth of Take-A-Break. First, I want to thank the Eberlings for the memories they created over the years and their commitment to the Town of Tuxedo. They will be proud of what is to come. Steve Germano has purchased the property and fully intends to restore it to it's former glory. Steve wants to preserve the architecture and history of the Town of Tuxedo. I met Steve 4yrs ago when he wanted to purchase the Red Apple Rest but was unsuccessful. I sking forward to the grand opening of Steve's!
Michael Rosttayed in touch with Steve over the past 4yrs and was finally able to convince him that Tuxedo is the place he wants to move his business to. Steve's first experience with Tuxedo came when he rode his motorcycle through our beautiful parks and he became enamored with the area. Now when Steve comes to Tuxedo he drives his car as he fears for his life on 17 in Sloatsburg but that is an issue for a different day! Steve runs a successful business pastapizzastore.com and he intends to use Steve's as his working showcase for customers while providing a much needed service to the community. Steve's will be serving pizza, pasta, panini's, ice cream and gourmet coffee. Steve is already looking at another business in the corridor and will soon be calling Tuxedo home as he will be relocating to Tuxedo.
Looking forward to the grand opening of Steve's!
-Michael Rost

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting, June 25, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, June 25, 2018 at 7:00 pm .  Supervisor Rost was absent as was Town Attorney Howard Protter.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she had a conversation with Town Engineer Al Fusco and would be filling out the Consolidated Funding Application for a grant of $75,000 to help with the engineering plans for a downtown revitalization project.  The Town  applied for the same grant last year, but didn’t get it.  The Consolidated Funding Application, much like the Common App for College applications, goes to anyone who is offering grants.  Councilmember Lindsay and Mr. Fusco will work on strengthening the application.  The other thing that they want to apply for is an electric vehicle charging station for the Town.  Councilmember Lindsay commented that she would be doing further investigation into what other towns were doing about fees for charging.
Councilmember Reardon suggested approaching Tesla to see if they would be interested in subsidizing a charging station and offered to approach them.
Councilmember Lindsay also mentioned having seen something from the Orange County Planning Department urging every municipality, including Tuxedo, to get involved in shared services.  She will be talking to the Village in order to determine what which services are already being shared so that they can “get points” for those and also to investigate any further opportunities for sharing services.
Deputy Supervisor McMillen asked if other Board members had anything they’d like to say. 
Councilmember English responded that he would like the Board to move forward with compiling and reviewing a list of all present members of Boards in Town and when their terms expire.
All Board members agreed that it would be difficult to appoint new members to a Board if they didn’t have this information.  Councilmember English added that he was looking to clean up the Town’s Reorganization document.  Until this has been done, he doesn’t feel they can move forward with new appointments.  He asked Town Clerk Donna Matthews to go through the Town records and compile a list of when all the current Board members were appointed. 
Coucnilman English then  requested if there was going to be extra worktime involved for this or any other Board related project that they try to schedule it for the two Mondays a month on which their meetings are being held. He has committed to giving these two days a month to the Town and if meetings are called for other days without notice he didn’t think it could be considered a fair roll call of the Board. 
Next, Councilmember English requested that the Board be given an update from Tuxedo Farms. 
The other Board members agreed that they would like this as well.  Councilmember Reardon commented that she wasn’t sure Andrew Dance would agree to come because he felt he was always beat up on whenever he did appear.  
Councilmember Lindsay remarked that Mr. Dance had gotten everything he wanted with the waivers last December but even those had not been finalized because he hadn’t sent them the information they need from Related’s attorney.  Additionally, she said that if the marketing plan for the project was changing, that would affect the financial projections which are a part of the SEQRA process.  Councilmember English added that he had questions about the LDC which funded the sewage plant which s something that most people don’t even know exists. 
Councilmember Lindsay said she had additional questions about the Indiana bat and whether it was on the endangered species list and if it would impact the property. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that he would get back on the phone with Town Attorney Protter in an attempt to get some of the answers to these questions. 
Councilmember English stated that several residents who live near him had asked about the road construction for which they see signs in their neighborhood.  The signs state that the construction could go on for a while so he wondered if a total repave would be happening. 
Highway Superintendent Dollbaum was not present but the other Board members assured Councilmember English that a total repave was not on the schedule. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen said he would call Highway Superintendent Dollbaum and find out or, he suggested, perhaps Councilmember English could do that as well. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen brought up the subject of the hikers who arrive on the train and bus from Manhattan and how they are littering as they walk through and around the East Village to reach the trails in Harriman Park.  This is a separate issue from the trashing of the bathrooms in the train station.  Ultimately, it was decided that the Town would put up signs leading from the train station requesting people not to litter.  They will also look into putting in a repository for trash in a convenient place so that hikers have an acceptable place to get rid of their trash.  Town Clerk Matthews also stated that many times the hikers are walking to the trail along East Village Road and they spread out as though the road were a path. When a car comes around the corner near the Lucky, they often don’t see the group of hikers until they are almost on top of them.  She is afraid there might be an accident there. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen  also mentioned that in the kiosk which was erected near the train station, the content is in bad shape.  Much of it has faded and there are bugs inside the doors as well.  He wondered who was responsible for updating the content.  Councilmember Lindsay stated that it was the Chamber of Commerce who was supposed to be in charge of the content for the kiosk. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen also commented that the kiosk in the parking lot at the bus stop on Route 17A has some physical damage done to it.  He added that if we’re going to have these kiosks in our Town, he thinks we’d want them to look good.
 Councilmember English volunteered to contact Supervisor’s Clerk Shari Brooks to see if she has a key to the kiosk. 
Councilmember Lindsay mentioned that she has a key. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish stated that he would like the Board to reconsider their intention to do away with the Architectural Review Board.  In his opinion, with projects from Tuxedo Farms and Michael Bruno, he feels its better to have more oversight. 
He was told that this was exactly the conversation the Board was attempting to have with the public by holding a public hearing.  The Board had no intention of voting on anything at this meeting; they just wanted to set a date for a public hearing. 

Agenda Items:

  • Discussion regarding Sign Permits with Code Enforcer Building Inspector Maikisch said he tried to keep up with the signs and that he regularly removed ones from events that had already happened.  The signs don’t usually provide contact information.  He doesn’t always know whether people have gotten permits.  It was agreed that going forward, the Town Clerk will notify the Building Inspector when a sign permit has been issued by the Town. 

Mr. Maikisch also requested that the Town look into changing Town Law to agree with State Law about fences around swimming pools.  Currently, the State Law requires a 4-foot fence around a pool while the Town Law requires a 5-foot fence. 

  • Resolution to approve Towing License for NJV Auto – this was approved unanimously.
  • Discussion to Schedule Public Hearing to Change Town Law and Eliminate the Architectural Review BoardCouncilmember Lindsay objected to having a hearing because she feels that there were many problems with the draft copy of the proposed law covering this subject.  Given that the Town Attorney (who drew up the law) was not present at the meeting, the Board ultimately decided to table this discussion until such time as they had a full Board present and the Town Attorney could be there with them. 
  • Resolution to approve Banner for St. Mary’s – the banner will advertise a country music concert being held at the church on July 7th.  Unanimous approval was given. 

Public Comments:
Andy Berish wondered if there was anything the Town Board could or would do about the bear problem. 
He was told all the usual advice about dealing with bears and Deputy Supervisor McMillen added that none of the usual suggestions would work if everyone in the neighborhood isn’t taking the same precautions.  He further advised that one could always call the police and that they would help, but this could result in shooting the bear. 
Jerry Mottola said that he had been told that he had to separate his garbage, but he noticed the contractors collecting both the garbage and recycling are just throwing it all in the same truck. 
Deputy Supervisor McMillen responded that the contractor had recently acquired a new sorter which was capable of separating out the recycling from the trash and he felt they were probably using that now. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting, june 25, 2018

Click here to view theagenda

back to top

line

Notice Of Town Board Executive Session June 19, 2018

Click here to view the notice

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 11, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, June 11, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began by congratulating George F. Baker High School whose Varsity Baseball team won their division and went to the sectionals. 
The Supervisor expressed his concern about the proliferation of signs around Town. (i.e. The Greek Festival and the Honey Festival). 
Councilmember Lindsay pointed out that there is a $25 per sign fee that the Town has missed out on with these signs.  Also, she said, it doesn’t seem fair for the people who pay their permit fees.  
It was suggested that there might be a contact number on the signs and if not a number, then a website where one could find a number and contact the individuals who had put them up. 
It was ascertained that the Building Inspector was responsible for code enforcement.  He should be removing the signs and contacting the appropriate, responsible organizations.  Town Attorney Howard Protter read from the Town Code that the fine for putting up a sign without a permit was $250 per day!  It was decided that Building Inspector Maikisch would be asked to contact the people who had put signs up and to tell them they needed a permit or they would be liable for the fine. ($250 per sign per day.) 
Supervisor Rost announced that as per their contract, the Police Department needs to appoint a Sergeant (a replacement position) and it was decided that the Police Chief would interview the candidates and make the decision who to appoint and the Board would approve. 
Next, the Supervisor reported that the Building Inspector had asked for the Board to take a look at “As Built Permits.”  These are permits given when people go ahead and do work on their homes without going through the process of getting a permit.  Then, when they go to sell their home, they don’t have a Certificate of Occupancy for the improvements so they apply for and get an “As Built Permit.”  The cost for those is currently $100.  Meanwhile, the Town has missed out on the building permit fees and a possible raised assessment resulting in higher taxes.  After a discussion, it was decided that the Board would declare a period of amnesty during which people who had done work and not gotten a permit could apply for the permit at the present price of $100.  Starting in January 2019, there will be a fine of $2500 for these permits.  Town Attorney Protter will research what the laws are in other towns in Orange County for this situation and the Building Inspector will be asked to come to a meeting to give the Board more background information. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution Approving Grant – Electric Refueling Station was tabled as the grant isn’t due until the end of July.
  2. Resolution to Prohibit Electronic Device use during Executive Sessions – This was proposed because some members of the Board recorded interviews which were conducted during an Executive Session.  It came to light that although it was advertised that the interviews would occur during an Executive Session, the Board never formally entered into one.  Councilmember McMillen read from the Open Meetings Law which states that “matters leading to the appointment, employment, promotion, demotion, discipline, suspension or removal of an employee,” are in fact eligible to be held in an Executive Session.  The Board members who were present said that the recording was not done with any malicious intent.  Also, the interviewees were told they were being recorded.  After further discussion, the board voted in favor of this resolution having been assured by the Town Attorney that there were free to declare an exception to it if they all felt it was important to do so.   Councilmember Lindsay added that they should have discussions regarding councilmembers texting during a meeting.  It was decided that there was really no way to police this as people used their phones to take notes and to do research during a meeting.  All the members stated their preference for not having texting occur during meetings

Other Business:
Councilmember McMillen commented that he had been thinking about communication with the Town at large.  He doesn’t believe that the existing email lists contain nearly enough emails to be comprehensive.  He proposed adding a form to the Town website where citizens can input their email address and opt in to receiving communications from the Town.  The alternative would appear to be sending announcements and information via “snail mail,” but that is very expensive.  Councilperson Lindsay suggested getting a notice put into tax bills but was told that the County sends those out.  She then suggested that perhaps a notice could be put in the water bill, but those are sent out by the Village and they only go to the residents in the Hamlet.  Ultimately, the Board decided that they would try to collect emails via the website.  They will ask TPFYI to publicize this and perhaps put an announcement in the Photo News as well. 
Councilmember Lindsay initiated a discussion with regard to training for Councilmembers.  It was pointed out that Town Attorney Protter can supply this kind of training.   He was asked to supply a menu of what kinds of training he could provide so that the Board could decide if they wanted to have some training in the future. 
On the subject of training, Councilmember Reardon commented that they had all gotten an email recently stating that all seated members of the Planning Board have now completed or exceeded their required training. 

Vouchers were then approved and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting June 11, 2018

Click here to view this agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 29, 2018

The Town Board met on Tuesday, May 29, 2018 at 7 pm.  Councilmember Reardon was absent.

Supervisor Rost opened the meeting by stating that the Town Memorial Day celebration had been a great one and thanking some of the people who had been responsible:  Councilmember Dave McMillen for his heartfelt speech, Shari Brooks and Bonny Takeuchi for organizing the parade, everyone at the Library for the picnic and Rob Dollbaum for making sure the Town was in pristine shape. He commented that this celebration was small town life at its best.

The first item on the agenda was a continuation of the Public Hearing to discuss reducing the Planning Board from 7 members to 5 members.  The Supervisor called on Town Attorney Howard Protter to bring everyone up to date on this issue.   Mr. Protter explained that the Department of State is where local laws get filed once they have been adopted.  Normally, filing laws with them is the last part of the process and the laws are invalid until they have been filed there.  In June of 2014, the Department of State’s records show that a local law was adopted increasing the Planning Board members from 5 to 7, however the Town Clerk’s office doesn’t have a record of the law being adopted and there is no record of a public hearing having been held.
Supervisor Rost interrupted to say that he thought the law had been adopted in 2012, not 2014. 
Mr. Protter responded that on the face of the local law, it says 2012, but in the body of the state form, it says it was adopted on June 20, 2014. 
Councilmember McMillen interjected that the law had been executed by the Town Board on April 14, 2014 and added that it also appeared in the Town’s ecode. 
Mr. Protter replied, “well, that’s a whole other thing,” and then added that his office had no record of that local law and they have done all of the Town’s local laws since 1996.  The local law’s form has the signature of Don Nichols (Town Attorney at the time) but Jacobowitz and Gubits has no record of it and they didn’t prepare it.  Therefore, before there are any further proceedings about this law, Mr. Protter recommends that the Town attempt to clear up this confusion. 

Councilmember English requested that when clearing up the confusion, it be stated clearly when everyone’s terms were up.  It was agreed this would be done.
Town Attorney Protter interjected that according to Town Code in 2000l, there were 7 members on the Board.  In 2006, membership was changed to 5 members because the Board was having a hard time getting a quorum for a meeting.  Then, in 2014, when the Town was dealing with the proposed casino, they went back to 7 members (but may or may not have filed this/changed it correctly/legally). Mr. Protter further stated that he would research this latest information and report back to the Board at the next meeting.
Councilmember Lindsay pointed out that several Planning Board members terms had expired without their being reappointed. 
It was also reiterated that the State’s copy of the law has a coversheet dated 2012 and language adopted in 2014.  Also, Jacobowitz and Gubits has no record of preparing the law.  
Supervisor Rost then made a motion to table the public hearing until the Board got more information and it was passed unanimously.

Next, Town Auditor Andrew Arias gave a review of the 2017 Financial Audit Report.  Having discovered a deficit of over $1million when this administration took over, they have been steadily climbing out of this position and are on track to have the deficit erased within another 2 to 3 years!  To see a copy of Mr. Arias’ presentation, click here.
Supervisor Rost commented that there had been a lot of tough choices and decisions made since he took office, but these are finally beginning to pay off.  He thanked Mr. Arias for his help in making this happen.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that the Building Inspector has been busy in Southfields trying to get Tuxedo Auto Body into compliance.  (Currently they have been selling vehicles and they are not licensed to do that.)
Clean-up work continues at the Highway Garage property.  Ben Veltidi has hired someone to come in a grind up the stumps.  The DEC met with the Building Inspector, Town Engineer and Highway Superintendent.  They want an updated site plan for the property.  They also want to know how the Town plans to use the property once it is back in compliance.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that they are almost in compliance. 
Councilmember Lindsay reported that the County paid a site visit to the Town Hall  for the purpose of looking at the projects the Town would like to do should they get money from the Community Block grant that they have applied for.  She further commented that there was another deadline approaching for a different grant, which would help the town install an electric auto charging station. 
Councilmember McMillen stated that he wanted to make something transparent. The Town has always tried to be open to hikers in the community, but he finds that they are taking advantage of this hospitality by causing damage to the train station and its facilities.  He went on to say that the Town has no choice but to close the bathrooms in the station on the weekends.  Over the past weekend (Memorial Day) there was an unbelievable amount of damage. 
Several members of the audience asked for details of the damage and they were told that the toilets get plugged up so people were relieving themselves on the floor. People also relieve themselves on newspaper and flush that down the toilets. Water in the sinks is left running and it is flooding the floors and the sinks are a mess.  It was suggested that the Town install the kind of faucets that turn themselves off after a few minutes and the Board agreed that this was a good idea.  It was also suggested that signs be put up announcing that cameras have been installed (and they have been) which would allow the Town to identify the people using the facilities.  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum confirmed that the hikers had been a problem for a while.  He further explained that Tuxedo’s station is the only one in the area with facilities so they tend to get all the abuse.  The Town can’t find anyone who is willing to clean up this disgusting mess any longer. Someone in the audience suggested that the Town contact the New York New Jersey Trail Conference for help.  From the audience, Sue Scher spoke up and said she was on a policy committee at the Trail Conference and had a meeting scheduled for this coming Saturday.  She said she would bring up the subject.  Marty Levanhar suggested that the Towb should contact other towns along the train line and find out how they deal with the problem.  He was told that Tuxedo is unique in what they offer.  Neither Sloatsburg nor Harriman, for example, has anything other than a platform when you get off the train there whereas Tuxedo has a nice building with restrooms and heat and air conditioning and a tv to watch!  Highway Superintendent Dollbaum further commented that it was a real problem.  He continued that Tuxedo wants to attract the hikers but he doesn’t see the benefit that they bring to the community.  They get off the train, make a disgusting mess in the train station, go off and hike for the day leaving their garbage behind and then leave.  They aren’t sticking around and doing anything in Town.  Superintendent Rost added that part of the problem was that the Junction had been closed.  The hikers used to go and trash those bathrooms instead when it was still open. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Pat Barone asked if the Ren Faire had petitioned the Town for zoning changes. The answer was that they have not.
With regard to the Planning Board, Lili Neuhauser commented that if theTown has candidates that are uniquely qualified, she thinks it’s hugely important to have the Board consist of 7 members.  Several audience members called out that they agreed with her. 
It was pointed out that it would be most useful if these statements could be made at an official public hearing on the subject. 
Mrs. Neuhauser remarked that she would come back at the appropriate time to do so.  
Supervisor Rost responded that the reasoning behind moving to a 5 member board was to help with the decision making process.  He added that the Town Board was considering moving the ARB function to the Planning Board. 
Mrs. Neuhauser interposed that the Village went through the same thing and ended up  separating the Boards and that now things run a lot smoother.
The Supervisor replied “if you’re a business owner and you’re coming into Town, you come in and you have to go in front of the Planning Board.   Then you have to go in front of the ARB.  If the ARB doesn’t like something, then you have to go back in front of the Planning Board.  And no decisions have been made.” 
And someone from the audience added “and those meetings are 30 days apart so look at the time it takes to get a project approved.” The Supervisor further commented, “the people who owned the Duck Cedar sold it because they said it was too difficult to do business in the Town of Tuxedo.”
An audience member commented that he didn’t know any municipality that made things easy for the applicant. 
The Supervisor responded, “we’re not trying to make it easy.  We still want applicants to go through the review process, but it doesn’t have to be as difficult and time consuming as it is.”
 Another audience member wanted to know how dropping the membership from 7 to 5 would make that process easier.
 The Supervisor remarked “We’re already at 5.  We added two to make it 7 when the casino was looking to come to town.  That project isn’t here any more so we don’t need any more than 5.”  Then he turned the question around and wondered why the audience thought they needed 7? 
Sue Scher replied “I think we need to be protected.”
Lili Neuhauser commented that she thought the Town needed to encourage volunteers.  If they have two who are qualified, then why not appoint them and alleviate the need for alternates.
It was pointed out that by serving as alternates, the volunteers would be receiving “on the job training” for a year and would be up to date on any and all projects before the board. 
Jake Lindsay observed that reality is that amendments have been passed to the plans for Tuxedo Farms and as a result the Planning Board is supposed to be working with the applicant to get rid of on street parking. Also, there will be townhomes that need to be relocated. And then, he continued, there will be the Ren Faire and Warwick Brook Road.  He stated that in his opinion, these are significant projects and the Town currently has a Planning Board that is “locked into one mentality.,” He feels that it needs to “open up a little bit more.”
Supervisor Rost responded that he felt these comments needed to be saved for the public hearing, which will be coming up. 
Pat Barone wondered if the Town’s zoning law was going to be looked at, would this be done at Board meetings?
Town Attorney Howard Protter replied yes.  He further explained that this was something that came out of the recently approved Town Comprehensive Plan which had been in the works for many years and had had several public hearings and been worked on in public.  Now the Board has passed the plan and it has been passed to the consultants, specifically the Town Planner and the attorneys, who are working on changes to the Town’s zoning code to make those changes to the code have been done, the attorneys will draft a local law encompassing the changes and when that is introduced there will be additional  public hearings.  When asked for a time frame on this, Mr. Protter replied that there had been a legal issue holding things up which needed to be researched.  This has been done and he is satisfied with the results.  The results have been shared with both Town Planner Bonnie Franson and Planning Board Attorney Rick Golden.  Once they have signed off on it, it will come to the Board.  It could be as soon as two weeks. 
Ned Kugel commented that in Airmont, there was a member of the Architectural Review Board who was an ad hoc member of the Planning Board and if  something came up that needed review, he was there to do it which eliminated the delay period between board meetings. 
 Supervisor Rost replied that this type of approach was what he was hoping could be worked out in Tuxedo. 
Marty Levanhar pointed out that Planning Board membership was a contentious issue.  He also noted that it was going to be summer soon and some people would likely not be around to attend meetings and get involved.  He wondered if the Board was a rush to pass these changes or if they could wait to move on it in the Fall when everyone was back.
The Supervisor responded that he didn’t think the Board had ever tried to “sneak anything through” since he had been in office and he didn’t plan to start now. 
Councilmember McMillen added that it had already been decided that this would be voted on in the Fall.
Changing the subject, Councilmember English wondered what was happening with the hiring of a deputy Town Clerk?  He added that he and Councllmember Lindsay had been asked to work on a job description for this position. 
Supervisor Rost commented that this was still in the works but he didn’t feel it was proper to have this particular discussion in public because it involves employees who are currently working for the Town. 

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were approved:

  • A Resolution to approve St. Mary’s in Tuxedo to display the following signs on Route 17: June 9th-Sponsored bike ride in the Park; June 16th – Community Yard Sale in St. Mary’s parking lot;July 7th – Country Rock Concert on St. Mary’s lawn;Registration for St. Mary’s Pre School
  • A Resolution approving a Film Permit to Lunar Mining LLC.  – Filming to take place at the Tuxedo Motel in Southfields.  The permit covers a scene where a car comes off Route 17 and drives up to the motel.  The permit runs from 5/31 to 6/2 with filming actually taking place on 6/1

Vouchers were approved and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 14, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, May 14, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

 Public Hearing – to Discuss Reducing the Planning Board from 7 Members to 5:
Supervisor Rost opened the hearing by explaining that historically the Planning Board had consisted of 5 members, but that number was increased to 7 when it looked like the casino was going to be built.  Being that the casino project did not move forward, the Supervisor, feels that the Planning Board would be able to operate more efficiently with 5 members and 2 alternates as opposed to 7 full time members. 
Councilmember Lindsay stated that she had a “procedural question.” Referencing the official notice for the public hearing, she noted that said that the hearing was being held “by order of the Town Board, however she had not been consulted.  The Board had neither discussed this issue in public nor voted in favor of a public hearing.  She further stated that she had called the Committee on Open Government in Albany and spoken with the Executive Director who concurred that using the language  “by order of the Town Board,” implied that the Board had taken an action.  She reiterated that the Board had not taken any action in public.  
Supervisor Rost responded that the purpose of the hearing was for the Board to hear what residents had to say about the idea of reducing the Board from seven members back down to five.
Councilmember Lindsay then suggested that three members of the Board had made the decision to hold the hearing, but she had not had any part of that decision. 
Councilmember Reardon responded that Councilmember Lindsay had no way of knowing whether any of the other Board members had been discussing the hearing privately.
Councilmember Lindsay then wanted to know who had decided to hold the public hearing?
Supervisor Rost replied that it had been his decision. 
Town Attorney Howard Protter agreed that no formal action had been taken to call the public hearing.  He subsequently proposed that the Board take comments from the members of the public who had come to speak.  He further commented that this would not be a substitute for the hearing that would be required if the Board intended to vote on a local law reducing the number of members of the Planning Board. Additionally, he said the Board would need to pass a formal resolution to hold a public hearing on this subject.  After listening to comments, he advised that they should not close the hearing but hold it open until the next Town Board meeting. At that point, they would be ready to vote on a local law if that is what they decide to do.
Councilmember Lindsay responded that a couple of meetings ago the Board had held a hearing for the community block grants and although it was properly noticed, because it had not been discussed publicly, when people showed up, they were frustrated because they felt they had not been given enough information in order to form an opinion.  When that happened, she said, she had promised people that in the interest of transparency, something like this would not happen again and she felt it had just happened again. 
Councilmember Reardon suggested that they allow the residents who had come prepared to make statements to speak.
Councilmember Lindsay replied that she had never suggested that the people shouldn’t be allowed to speak but she felt the Board had not had a chance to discuss the proposal. 
Councilperson Reardon countered that the documents with the proposed public hearing had been in the hands of the Board members for a number of days and she felt that Councilmember Lindsay had ample time to have brought this up with the Board instead of waiting until the meeting and “airing dirty laundry in public.”  Councilmember Lindsay replied that they needed to have transparency.  “Your version of transparency is that every time there’s a mistake, everybody needs to know about it,” she countered. She expressed concern  that what was getting out into the public was Councilmember Lindsay’s version of what was happening which was that the Board was not following the rules or giving people the ability to speak.  This is not correct and what is happening is not fair. 
From the audience,  Nancy Hays  asked the Supevisior to put an end to the “haranguing” that  was going on between Councilmembers Lindsay and Reardon.
Supervisor Rost responded by, addressing Councilmember Lindsay and stating “I sent this information out a week ago.  If you had an issue with it, I wish you would have spoken up then.”
Councilmember Mcmillen stated that he had come to the meeting with an open mind and very much wanted to hear what the public had to say before making up his mind.  He felt that the Board had discussed this concept before. 
“Not in public,” countered Councilmember Lindsay
Councilmember English then remarked that he wanted to hear everyone’s opinions and he hoped they would want to hear his thoughts as well. 
Several audience members spoke up and said they didn’t understand why this concept was being proposed in the first place.  The Supervisor reiterated the history of the planning Board and his reason for proposing the reduction.
Councilmember Mcmillen commented that he was one of the people who had voted to expand the planning Board to seven, however being familiar with the work load presently before the them he believes that they do not need seven members.  He added that they Board had recently agreed to add two alternates who will be compensated but will only vote when one of the regular board members is not able to be present.  In his view, this is enough.  Under the proposed plan, there will be seven people  present at meetings, participating in discussions and formulating opinions. But when votes are taken, there will only be 5.  He believes the present Board is strong and he considers this to be efficiency in government and feels it makes sense. 
Councilmember Lindsay suggested that since there is currently a strong applicant pool, the Board should choose two and add them to the Planning Board properly rather than to make them alternates..  When asked why, she replied giving the history of how many members had been on the board recently and how they got there.  She asserted that the previous board had felt that seven people were needed in order to mange the Tuxedo Farms project.  She wondered why had that changed?
Councilmember Mcmillen responded that he had done some research and the Town of Newburgh’s Planning Board only has 5 members and they have a lot more business before them than Tuxedo does.  The Town of New Windsor also has a five-member planning board.  He  reiterated that he  doesn’t see any need for more than five members.
Again Councilmember Lindsay suggested that since there were so many qualified people applying for the Board, the Town should take advantage of their expertise. 
Councilmember Reardon replied that having two additional members could sometimes add expense for applicants when it came to reproducing their materials and also could make it more difficult for projects to get through the Board.  She feels that putting new people on as alternates and letting them have some time to acquaint themselves with the Board and its processes would be a good thing.  That way, since terms on the Board are staggered, when a term is up and there is a need for a new member, there will be two people who have been alternates and are familiar with the business of the board and the projects before them.  She also feels that having seven members of a board allows for some complacency among board members who might feel it wasn’t as necessary for them to attend every meeting as there were plenty of other people to do it.  Additionally, she has reviewed the minutes of the last several Planning Board meetings and reports that there “isn’t a lot going on in Town” so she doesn’t feel that they need seven members. 
Councilmember English asked what would be the role of the Architectural Review Board moving forward.  He wondered if that was a group that would continue to work with the Planning Board? 
Supervisor Rost replied that they could either leave the Architectural Review Board as it was or they could move that review into the Planning Board but that this would be a separate discussion.
Councilmember English commented that if the Board members were thinking of getting rid of the ARB, then that should be part of this discussion.  He added that he was concerned about the expertise and the amount of eyes that would look at projects.  He then read from the Planning Board’s website, stating that “the mission of the Planning Board is to maintain, and when possible, improve the quality of life in our community, governing issues such as growth, transportation, environmental protection, agriculture, historical preservation and forest conservation.  The Planning Board is largely responsible for setting land use throughout the Town.”  He remarked that this required a lot of expertise and thus he felt Michele’s desire to consider the applicants who have recently applied is something they need to consider.  He recalled that when Town Attorney Protter was reading about the ARB, he mentioned that there should be two architects on the Board and that hopefully the Chairman would be one.  Councilmember English searched the Town Code but couldn’t find anything along those lines about the Planning Board.  While he was glad to hear that most of Tuxedo Farms’ approval were already on paper, he feels that things are changing and there are still sites, including the Ren. Faire property that could have potential development. He believes that increased expertise is important and also the idea of what the ARB will do or be is a connected notion.
Councilmember Lindsay suggested that the Board should hold the interviews that they already had scheduled for the following night and if they found applicants who had enough expertise to go right on the Board, they should let them go right on the Board rather than to make them alternates.  She feels that they should keep the possibility of two alternates for a time in the future where they might not have seven qualified people. 
Councilmember Mcmillen stated that it was his understanding that the alternate seat was the pathway to a permanent appointment and that’s where future board members would “go to school.”  Speaking as someone who has served on the Planning Board, he said that he had found there to be a steep learning curve regardless of level of expertise. 
Councilmember Lindsay then stated that she would like to know what was happening with Tuxedo Farms.  She recognized that there had recently been a Planning Board meeting but she had been unable to go.  She has requested the minutes but hasn’t gotten them and so she doesn’t know what’s happening there.  She knows they asked for another extension and a clearing and grading permit but doesn’t know if they got it or not.  She feels that these are things they need to consider when discussing what to do about the Planning Board and the Architectural Review Board.   
Councilmember English further commented that upon reflection, he was worried about the concept of alternates moving up to permanent seats.  This notion seems very vague to him in terms of what that mechanism actually is.  Also, he feels that the terms for each board seat in Town should be clearly delineated on the Town’s website and it should also be clear when the appointments would be made and when people should apply for any vacancies that would be coming up.  He also suggested that there should a clear mechanism to advertise for open positions.  He feels it should be made clear for any termed position that if people wanted to continue once their term was up, they would have to re-interview for the seats just like Councilmembers have to rerun for their seats every four years. 
Councilmember Mcmillen agreed commenting that these thoughts had been discussed by the Board in the past.
Councilmember English wondered whether these discussions had been casual or official? He added that the Board talked casually about a lot of things.
Councilmember Mcmillen replied “so it has to be either casually or official?” and Councilmember English said yes. 
Councilman Mcmillen suggested that they were getting away from what they needed to discuss.  He asked the Supervisor if he had anything to add.
Supervisor Rost responded that he would like to hear what the public had to say.
Councilmember Lindsay interjected that she didn’t understand about the alternates because she thought that they had agreed that when a term was up, they would interview and the next thing she knew, two members of the Planning Board had been re-appointed with no interviews held. 
Councilmember Mcmillan replied that Councilmembers Lindsay and English seemed to be the only ones who hadn’t interviewed those people.  He personally had interviewed them and felt they should be re-appointed.  
Councilmember Lindsay expressed confusion about how the pathway from alternate to Board member would work.  If someone was an appointed alternate and then the board member whose term was expiring also wanted to continue, what would happen?
Supervisor Rost commented that he would place a lot of importance on comments from the Board Chairman as he thought their opinion should be considered.
Councilmember Lindsay then reiterated that she felt it was very important to take into consideration what could be happening with the Architectural Review Board when deciding how many members to have on the Planning Board.

The hearing was then opened for public comment.

Mark Paige asked for clarification of how many members were currently allowed and how many are actually on the Board. 
He was told that the law  allows for seven members, but there are currently only five sitting members.
When he asked why, it was explained that one member had resigned and one had not been reappointed. 
Next Mr. Paige wanted to know if the proposed alternate members could vote. 
The answer was they only vote if a member was not present. 
Jim Hays said he had serious concerns about fully compensating the alternates but not tasking them with the responsibility to show up at the meetings and to vote.  He added that if there was a problem with attendance, it would be easy to add a rule which states that if a member misses X number of meetings, then he/she was off the Board.  Additionally, he suggested that although Tuxedo Farms is not presently under construction in the near future it might be. There have been changes made to the Special Permit which give more authority to the Planning Board for decisions than they originally had.  Additionally, he said that while he had not attended every Planning Board meeting, he had been to a few and it was his experience that many of the current members were very quiet.  There was nothing near the “healthy discussion” that he had just witnessed from the Town Board.  Thus he considers seven members on the Board to be a good thing and he is also concerned about the potential elimination of the Architectural Review Board.  Both Boards are meant to be checks on development in Town.  In his opinion, there have already been changes made to the development that cheapen it and that is something that he feels should not continue.  
Suzanne Williams said she wanted it put on the record that she agrees with every single thing that Jim Hays said.
Nan Klein stated that she doesn’t see any benefit to the Town by adding alternates to the Planning Board.  In her opinion, if the people who are appointed had the proper credentials to begin with, there wouldn’t be a need for a training period…they could just jump right in. 
Ed Brennan remarked that he liked the idea of alternates and thought they should be made a permanent addition to the Board. 
Andy Berish said that with everything that is going on in Tuxedo such as Tuxedo Farms and Michael Bruno’s projects, he felt it was important to have more brains on the board than to limit the amount of members. 
Nancy Hays commented that she had attended a lot of Planning Board meetings and, aside from Chairman Mike Reardon, no one ever had anything to say – a fact she finds shocking. She wondered if the Planning Board has term limits and if so, when the present members’ terms are up. 
Councilmember Mcmillen responded that when the Board was working on reorganization this year, they were made aware that the Planning Board had five year terms, with the terms of the members being staggered.  There did not seem to be a procedure in place for advertising open positions.  He feels that there needs to be discussions among the Board covering these procedures, which should include interviewing the present members.  At the end of the process, it might be that the code will be changed.
Claudia Bakhtiary said that there had been discussions about the make up of the Planning Board because she had been present to hear them, but it seemed to her that there are still a lot of questions that need to be answered on the subject.  She felt that perhaps the Board should wait to make any changes until the questions have been answered.
Supervisor Rost replied that there was no plan to take action on the proposed change tonight, he simply wanted to hear how the public felt about it. 
Dan Castricone stated that historically the Planning Board had consisted of five members and when Tuxedo Reserve heated up and the casino was proposing to build in Town, it was expanded to seven members.   He commented that there are approximately 3000 people in Town and there exists the Town Board, the Planning Board, the Architectural Review Board, the Zoning Board of Appeals, the Ambulance Corps, the Little League, the Fire Department and more—all of which need people to serve and there is not an unlimited pool of talent to pick from!  He remembers that when he was on the Town Board, they had a very hard time finding people to fill all the positions.  He added that if they put the right people on the Board, then he thinks five is better than seven. 
Kimberly Breiland wondered how long the two vacant seats had been open?
Supervisor Rost responded that this was a public hearing and not a time for questions.  He thanked everyone for their comments and said the hearing would remain open until the Board’s next meeting in two weeks. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish wondered why the Town was selling the American Legion Hall and what would happen to the Veterans who used the building.
He was told that the new owner had agreed to continue to allow the veterans as well as the Board of Fire Commissioners to use the building.  It was revealed that Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum is the new owner.

Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he has been working on the Highway workers contract and is making good progress with it.
The new owner of the Take A Break property is just waiting for one more approval from the ARB before moving forward with renovations.  Dale Mottola, ARB Chair commented that they had granted the approval  and  the applicant had been notified that today.  The Supervisor replied that this was good because now Mr. Germano will be able to close on the property.
The Town is continuing to work with Michael Bruno on his plans for his property in Town. 
The Supervisor attended the opening event for Liz Manko’s yoga studio and reported it was a great event with good attendance. 
Progress continues to be made at the Highway Garage with the dirt that is stored there and soon work will begin on the stumps. 
Councilmember Mcmillen announced that the Town is now fully subscribed to Nixle for emergency alerts.  Details can be found on the Town Website.  If you want to subscribe, simply text the work Tuxedo to 888777.

 

Agenda Items:
The following items were approved unanimously:

  • a Resolution to grant Special Use and Special Sign Permits for the Memorial Day Community Picnic at the Library
  • a Resolution approving form of Petition for the Proposition to Increase the Town Board Budgetary Allocation for the Tuxedo Park Library
  • a Resolution authorizing the sale of the American Legion Hall
  • a Resolution  to convey Fishing Easement certified by the Town Clerk of the Town of Tuxedo – this is a follow up on the previously approved easement agreement for the new bridge over the Ramapo going into the East Village

New Business:
Greg Sovak from the Gulf Station appeared regarding the ice cream truck parked at the station.  He said he had approached “someone in Town Hall” a year ago about what permits would be needed to sell ice cream there.  He was told none were needed and then received a letter from the Town saying his business wasn’t allowed.  Meanwhile, he has thousands of dollars invested in ice cream and he would like to be able to stay open while they sort out what to do about the problem. 
Town Attorney Howard Protter said that the Town Board didn’t have the authority to make that decision; it will have to go before the Planning Board.  After quite a bit of discussion, the Town Board granted them a waiver from the building moratorium and Mr. Sovak will appear at the next Planning Board meeting in order to sort out the situation.

Public Comments:
Mike Reardon said he had come to a lot of Town Board meetings recently and it seemed to him that he always heard a lot of negative talk from people about Tuxedo Farms.  He added that personally, he thinks the Farms is going to be a great project. He thinks it’s time that people started paying attention to what is happening to the south of Town. The Town of Ramapo has just approved a housing development (Ramapo Woodmont Hills) with 16 three-story buildings containing 384 housing units on the property just south of Auntie El’s (and encompassing Auntie El’s which has sold their property to them).  At the same time, the Village of Sloatsburg has applied for a “road diet” which will narrow the roads coming in and going out of Town.  Before long, Mr. Reardon believes, we will a not be able to get in or out of Town at certain times of days.  There’s not much to be done about the development which has been given all their approvals. They have already started clearing the land.  But, he urged the Town Board and everyone else to do whatever they can to fight the road diet. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into Executive Session for advice from Counsel.

 

back to top

line

Town Of Tuxedo - Notice Of Public Hearing

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that, pursuant to section 272-a of the Town Law of the State of New York, the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a Public Hearing at Town Hall, 1 Temple Road, Tuxedo, New York, on May 14, 2018, at 7 p.m. for the following purpose:  to solicit public comments on the proposed reduction of the Planning Board Members from a seven (7) person Board to a five (5) person board.
         All interested persons will have an opportunity to be heard at this hearing

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 23, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, April 23, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon attended via phone and Councilmember Mcmillen was absent. 

Public Hearing on Community Block Grant Application:
It is a requirement of the application process for an Orange County Community Block grant that the Town hold a public hearing to allow for public input.  These grants, distributed by the County, have Federal money and are available for projects that benefit senior citizens, low income residents or disabled residents.  Engineer Al Fusco has been working on the application.  According to Councilmember Lindsay, it has been decided that the Town will apply for projects having to do with ADA accessibility. Of first importance is fixing the back door and ramp which lead to the Community Room on the Second Floor of Town Hall.  This room is used routinely by the Silver Dollars and elections are held here as well.  Additionally, making an ADA accessible bathroom on the second floor of Town Hall as well as improving the ADA entrance to the Court are two projects which are also being considered
Claudia Bakhtiary commented that because no agenda had been circulated for this meeting, she didn’t see how the Board could expect anyone could be there to comment on the application.
Councilmember Lindsay stated that it had been mentioned at the last Town Board meeting, but she agreed there could have been more public notice.  She was told that the Town Clerk was away at a training class and that’s why the agenda had not been sent out.  The hearing was the only item on the agenda and the deadline for filing the grant is Friday April 27, so unfortunately it couldn’t wait until the next meeting. 
Councilmember English wondered if during the grant application process  people from the County would actually come and visit the site of the project.  The answer was yes. 
The public hearing was closed and the Board unanimously passed a resolution to apply for the grant. 

Public Comments:
Claudia Bakhtiary wondered if there was any news about the road in front of Dottie Audrey’s.
She was told that the State Department Of Transportation had required a traffic study to be done.  Police Chief Abbott did the study and the results were sent to  the DOT. It has been determined that there is enough room to put in a turning lane at that location.  All that will be required is restriping of the road. Now the Town is  waiting for the work to be done.

Since neither Councilmembers Lindsay nor English had reviewed the vouchers, those were tabled until the next meeting and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting April 9, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, April 9, 2018. All Members were present.

Supervisor Rost opened the meeting at 7:20 after Executive Session. He opened the
Public Hearing concerning Abolishing Elected Position of Tax Collector/Receiver of Taxes and transferring the duties to the Town Clerk.  Andy Berish questioned the purpose of the change. Supervisor Rost explained that the previous collector, Greg Stevens, had retired and Brian Sullivan filled the role for the current tax year. Other towns do not have elected tax collectors and Tuxedo plans to increase staffing in the Town Clerk office and possibly reduce costs.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost asked Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum to give an update on the preparations for the Ramapo River Bridge Replacement project.
Councilmember Lindsay asked Chief Abbott if the traffic study was completed. The Chief said yes and now the Town can ask the Department of Transportation to look at safety options for Route 17 near Duck Cedar Plaza. The Board needs to schedule a Public Hearing for April 23 before submitting an application for a Community Development Block grant on April 27 for renovating the ADA ramp and access to the upstairs door at Town Hall. Councilmember McMillan gave an update on the emergency alert system that will soon be operational with the help of the police department. Alerts will be sent by phone, text or email. Updates to the website are nearly complete.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Ed Brennan asked the purpose of Item #11 to waive training requirements for Planning, Zoning and Architectural Review Boards. He wondered why the Board would not want the Boards to go for training. Supervisor Rost and Councilmember Reardon explained that the appointed Board Chairs and Town Board were remiss in enforcing the required training. Current Planning and Zoning Board members must complete training within 60 days. Going forward the appointed Boards will need to fulfill the requirement of training each year.
Bahar Eretec said she wanted to get involved with serving on Boards and asked how the public knows when there is an opening. Supervisor Rost explained that each year the term of one person on each board expires. Councilman McMillan said the info can be found on the Home page of the Town’s website.

Agenda Items:
The Following resolutions were approved unanimously:

  • Resolution to approve a film permit
  • Resolution for a special permit for Chai Lifeline for fundraising cycling event
  • Resolution permitting Orange County to access rights to the Town Highway Right-of-Way and for ownership of the East Village Bridge over the Ramapo River
  • Resolution for real property acquisitions for the East Village Road for the bridge replacement project
  • Resolution appointing Rick Golden Esq as the Planning Board Attorney
  • Resolution appointing Michele Lindsay as Economic Development Coordinator
  • Resolution to change Town Law to eliminate the Receiver of Taxes position and incorporating it with the duties of the Town Clerk’s Office.
  • Resolution to waive training requirements for the Planning, Zoning and Architectural Review Boards with the provision that training is completed within 60 days.

The following resolutions were passed by Supervisor Rost, Councilmembers McMillan and Reardon with Councilmembers Lindsay and English abstaining:

  • Resolution to appoint Darrin Maynard to the Planning Board
  • Resolution to appoint Tom Darling to Zoning Board of Appeals

Councilmember Lindsay expressed appreciation for the service of all appointed Board members. She objected to the vote because the Town Board had agreed to follow Town policy which deals with Board appointments. That policy requires the Town to advertise the vacant positions. As a result of the ad several applications have been received. The Board is in the process of setting up interviews with incumbent members and new applicants. She suggested that the vote was “putting the cart before the horse” and believes the Board should postpone the vote until after interviews have been held. Councilmember English expressed his respect and appreciation for the service of appointed Board members. He emphasized that the Town Board had agreed to clarify which positions were vacant and follow the Town’s policy in filling those positions and had also agreed to fix the problems that have been uncovered. The Town Board still does not know which positions are vacant on each Board. Both Councilmembers Lindsay and English reiterated their commitment to following Town policy over the objections of the Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon.

back to top

line

Town of Tuxedo Supervisor Update

Hello Tuxedo Residents,

As we close out the 1st quarter of 2018 I would like to take this opportunity to recap 2017 and give you an idea of what we have to look forward to for the remainder of the year.

The year-end audit is not yet complete for 2017 but it appears as if we have an additional $700,000 in our fund balance.  This will be the second straight year we were able to put $700,000 against our deficit fund balance.  We are working  hard on the B fund as it continues to have a negative balance.  In two years, the Town board and department heads have cut costs and spending, allowing the Town to now have a positive $1.5M combined fund balance.  Thank you Chief Abbott and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum for controlling cost while still providing a valuable service.

I also would like to recognize the efforts of all of our board members over the past 4 years.  The Town Board has had nine new members on its five member board, the planning board has had four new members on its five member board, and the architectural review board has had three new members on its five member board.  These individuals give their time and talent to support our current and future plans.  We thank you for your commitment and engagement.

Driving south on Rt 17 into Town, I am excited to see the growth and development. The Duck Cedar Plaza is full of cars and Dottie Audrey’s is receiving recognition throughout  the Hudson Valley.  When you enter the Hamlet, Dan Castricone has opened a business and there is an application before the Planning Board for an ice cream parlor in the same building.  Michael Bruno is working on the former IGA to open a market, tavern and antique store.  Take a Break is going to reopen as a wood fired pizza , pasta, panini and gourmet coffee shop.  The Hamlet LDC has received and approved several grant applications to assist businesses with their growth and development.  We are all looking forward to welcoming and supporting these ventures.

Great things are happening in the Town of Tuxedo!

Mike Rost

Tuxedo Town Supervisor

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting April 9, 2018

Click here to view a copy of this agenda

back to top

 

line

Town Board Meeting March 26, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, March 26, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember English was absent.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost opened the meeting by reporting that he and Councilmember Lindsay had attended a meeting in Sloatsburg about their proposed road diet.  This project is scheduled for 2019 and, when completed, will double average commute time through the corridor.  Currently, roughly 2,400 cars travel through Sloatsburg twice a day on a daily basis but once Tuxedo Farms is built, this number will increase.  The road diet is meant to “calm” or slow down the traffic going through downtown Sloatsburg.  The plan calls for the road to be reduced to 3 lanes (one northbound, one southbound and one turning) both South of Sloatsburg and between Sloatsburg and Tuxedo. 
Additionally, the Supervisor announced that after 3 years, the Town has finally signed an agreement with the Police Department (PBA). Next up will be the Highway Workers contract. 
The County is getting ready to begin work on the East Village bridge.  They have secured all the necessary easements and right of ways and will next meet with the Town to go over exactly what will be done. 
Work has been completed on the Comprehensive Plan.  The Supervisor is striving to have the plan posted on the Town website soon and is hoping that it can be voted on and approved at the next meeting (April 9).
Additionally, the Supervisor announced that after 3 years, the Town has finally signed an agreement with the Police Department (PBA). Next up will be the Highway Workers contract. 
The County is getting ready to begin work on the East Village bridge.  They have secured all the necessary easements and right of ways and will next meet with the Town to go over exactly what will be done. 
Councilmember Mcmillen reported that he has been working on an emergency notification system called Nixle with Police Chief Abbott and Lieutenant Norton.  This will be a system which residents can subscribe to that will send out information during emergency situations among many other features.  He has also been working on upgrading the phone system in Town Hall and is building a new website for the Town! 
Councilmember Reardon has developed a form, which will be uploaded to the website, for any residents who want to apply for Board positions in Town. 
Councilmember Lindsay reported that she had contacted the Photo News about advertising the available positions and discovered that they have an opportunity for press releases. She recommended that the Town follow this procedure rather than to bury the notice in the advertisements in the back of the paper.

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were approved unanimously:

  • A Resolution to refund late penalty charges to Tuxedo  Farms on Sewer Levy – This was due to a “hiccup” in sending the tax bills out
  • A Resolution to grant a waiver from the Moratorium  Local Law for Tuxedo Dairy, Inc.  at 14 Store Rd.
  • A Resolution authorizing the Supervisor to enter into a contract with the PBA.
  • A Resolution to hire a part time police officer.   (John Bronkowski, currently works for the Village and used to be a Town dispatcher).

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola requested and received permission to put up road signs for a Bingo Night at the Sons of Italy on May 3. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting March 26, 2018

Click here to view a copy of this agenda

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting March 12, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, March 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present. 

Supervisor Rost began the meeting by explaining that since Councilmember Lindsay had been asking for quite some time to have Board discussions in public, the Board was going to open the meeting with a workshop during which the Board would discuss various topics but there would be no public participation. 
The Supervisor started this off by asking Town Attorney Howard Protter for the status of the Highway Garage.  Specifically he wanted to know if that property was still under a consent order from the DEC. 

He was told that the consent order is still in effect but it seems as if everything is “fine” with the property.  Mr. Protter said he would check with the DEC to see what the next steps should be. 

Next was a discussion of what to do about the Building Inspector/Code Enforcement Officer’s vehicle, which needs to be replaced, and whether they should they lease a new vehicle or pay Mr. Maikisch mileage for using his own vehicle.

The Board agreed they would ask Mr. Maikisch to give them an estimate of his mileage on a weekly or monthly basis and then they would make a determination based on that information. 

Next came a lengthy discussion of the Town’s Reorganization and positions that still need to be filled.  It appears that most if not all members of the Architectural Review Board (ARB) have terms that have expired and thus they will need to either be reappointed or replaced.  There are also several openings on the
Planning Board and Zoning Board.  New Councilmember Ken English wanted a job description for these Boards.

Town Attorney Protter read from the Town Code regarding the ARB in which it states several requirements for that Board including training that needs to be completed on an annual basis. 
Councilmember Reardon pointed out that “succession planning” will be important when populating these Boards.  She feels it would not be good to have a Board made entirely up of new members so that no one is familiar with projects that are being worked on and any plans for the future that might have been discussed. 

The other Board members agreed this was important. 

Councilmember Reardon also stated she feels its important for the Board Chairs to be involved in the process of choosing Board members as they are the ones who know what actually goes on in the Board meetings and they also know what is needed in their members. 

Councilmember English felt this might be a problem if the Chair had an expired term, but Councilmember Reardon stated she felt the Chair’s opinion was important regardless of whether they were expired or choosing to retire. 

Eventually, the Board concurred with this and it was resolved to make the Chairs part of the interview process.  It was decided that the Board would put together job descriptions for the various Boards within the next day or two.

 Councilmembers Mcmillen and Reardon agreed to work together on this.  Discussion was also had on term expirations and following up on Board members taking an oath of office. 

Councilmember English stated his strong conviction that the terms should be prominently stated on the Town website so that anyone in Town who wanted to serve on a Board could easily see what positions might be coming available.

 Supervisor Rost stated that going forward the Reorganization document would be made part of the November budgeting process so that there would be ample time for the Board to be ready to make any appointments in January.
It was decided that someone on the Board would take on the role of compliance and keep track of the various Board members and whether they have done their required annual training. 

Councilmember Reardon volunteered to take this on. 

There followed a discussion regarding whether there should be 5 or 7 members of the Planning Board. Historically, there were 5 members and this is what is specified in the Town Code.  The Board changed it to 7 members when the casino was in the application process and they knew Tuxedo Farms was coming as well.

Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon who was present spoke up and said he felt it should go back to 5 members. 

Councilmember Mcmillen spoke on liking the idea of 7 members. 

Town Attorney Protter pointed out that, to his knowledge, it had never been changed in the Town Code to reflect the 7 members.  He agreed to check on this. 

The Board then discussed advertising for new members. 

Councilmember English feels strongly that the Town should do more advertising.  He advocates that the advertising be done in the Photo News because, he believed, everyone in Town received that publication for free.

It was pointed out to him that this is not true. 

He then stated that he felt advertising needed to be done because when he looked at the make up of the existing Boards, it was clear to him that they are not made up of a diversified group.  In particular, he wants to see more variety in gender, where the people live and political party.
 
The next discussion was about the American Legion Hall.  The Town put the building up for sale and was negotiating with Chester LeBaron who owned the parking lot to the building.  Unfortunately, Mr. LeBaron passed away so now the Town needs to decide what to do.  The Board decided that the building would not be a good solution to store Town records.  The woman from the State Archives, who helped the Town Clerk go through the records downstairs in her office, has offered to come back and help go through the rest of the records.  The Board would like to begin digitizing records in the future rather than archiving paper files.  In the meantime, the use of the American Legion building is currently minimal (the American Legion uses it for meetings and the Board of Fire Commissioners meets there as well) and the fuel bills are running alarmingly high.  The Town will try to find out if Mr. LeBaron’s family wants to sell the parking lot before they can put it up for sale.  Since Jacobowitz & Gubits (Town Attorneys) is also handling Mr. LeBaron’s estate, it will be relatively easy to find this out. 

The Supervisor next stated that Town Planner Bonnie Franson has been working along with Town Attorney Howard Protter on final adjustments to the Comprehensive Plan as well as the Special Permit for Tuxedo Farms and they are hoping to have both items ready for discussion and action at the next Town Board meeting. 

Councilmember English wanted to know what happened to remarks made at public hearings.  He made some comments at the public hearing for the Comprehensive Plan, which he does not see reflected in the Plan.  Since the Plan hasn’t been approved yet, he wonders if there is still time to incorporate those changes. 

Town Attorney Protter explained that it might be that the Town had already considered those comments and decided not to incorporate them in the Plan.  If this is not the case, there will be time for Councilmember English to propose adding them to the plan. 

Councilmember Reardon stated that she felt the Comprehensive Plan had been under consideration for a very long time and it worried her that it might be postponed again.  She offered that if Councilmember English needed to be brought up to speed on where they were and what their rationalizations were, she would be more than happy to spend time explaining it to him. 

He responded that there was a short list of things he was concerned about. 

Mrs. Reardon replied that she thought one of those was Thruway Exit 15B and he agreed. 

Mrs. Reardon then explained that the State would be making the decision about the exit and that the Town Board would not have a say in it.  The reason the Town incorporated the exit into the Plan was in an attempt to be “a good corporate citizen,” and help Town businesses who were looking to that exit as a vehicle which might drive some business traffic their way. 

Mr. English responded that he looked at 15B as something that was proposed to make the development of the Renaissance Faire property attractive as a “mega development.”  Since the casino didn’t happen, he and his neighbors in the north section of Town don’t want to see that property open up to another “mega development.”  Also, he feels that what makes Greenwood Lake and Warwick unique and attractive is the fact that there isn’t a major road bringing traffic there. 

Eventually he was told that he should spend some time with Town Planner Bonnie Franson and go over the plan so he would be able to understand how and why it had gotten to where it is now and then would be ready to responsibly vote on the Plan. 

Councilmember English then inquired as to what the next step would be for the Village Town overlay.

He was told that the next step needed to come from Town residents.  Councilmember English felt that the process has not been communicated well enough.  He is looking for a presentation, perhaps at the High School, so that all residents in Town have an opportunity to be brought up to speed and to ask questions. 
Ultimately it was agreed that Councilmember English would spearhead this issue.  It was suggested that he should reach out to Don Nichol for information and also advice on what needs to/can be done next. 

Councilmember Reardon then stated that she wanted it on the record that Superintendent Dollbaum and his crew had done an amazing job during the recent snowstorm. 

Everyone agreed on this and the audience gave them a round of applause.

Councilmember Mcmlllen added that the Police Department had also done a great job especially dealing with cars, which were off the highway.  And the audience gave them a round of applause as well. 

Town Clerk Donna Matthews commented that there is a problem on Augusta Place because there are cars parked on both sides of the road and because of this the residents shovel snow into the middle of the street.  The result of this is that the road is impassable.  If an ambulance or Fire truck were needed, they would not be able to get through. 

It was decided that the police will henceforth enforce the no parking during snow events rule (which is already in effect ) and have cars towed if people don’t move them.  Trash cans being left out are also a problem and will be dealt with similarly. 

Finally, there was a discussion over whether or not the Town Board has the authority to appoint consultants for their Boards. It was pointed out that Town law says that they don’t and the Comptrollers Office has recommended that the Planning Board especially should be independent and make the appointments for their consultants themselves. 

Councilmember English said he was confused over this although he believes that although the Planning Board has the authority to appoint their own consultants the Town Board has the authority of funding them so if they don’t agree with an appointment, they have the option of not funding it.  He added that he would want the Planning Board to be comfortable with their decision. 

Councilmember Reardon then asked if Councilmember English would be comfortable with the Planning Board choosing the Town Board’s attorneys and then answered her own question with of course not.

It was finally decided that this discussion would be continued in an executive session.
 
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Councilmember Lindsay reported having gone to the Association of Towns meeting where Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus informed them that he was going to appoint a Commissioner of Tourism.  There is unexpected additional sales tax that Towns will be receiving (for Tuxedo, it’s about $24,000) and he is encouraging Towns to use that money for economic development. 

Councilmember Mcmillen reported having found a texting system that could be used to for emergency notices to Town residents.  The system is free and he is working on setting it up. Information will be available on the Town website. 

Public Comments:
John MacNamara commented that he was concerned about continuity with compliance for Board members with training.  If a Chairman is newly appointed, he might not know what is required and what has already been done. 

Councilmember Reardon responded that she does this sort of thing for a living and will take this role on for all Boards in the future. 

Agenda Items:
A Resolution was passed to approve the sale of 4 Town vehicles (a SUV, a Backhoe and 2 dump trucks)

Councilmember English asked for help in understanding the vouchers he was asked to sign. 

Councilmember Mcmillen commented that one thing Councilmember English should understand that the vouchers used to total about $400,000 per meeting and now, under Supervisor Rost’s leadership and guidance, they usually total about $200,000!

Vouchers were then signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting Febaruary 26, 2018

The Town Board met on Monday, February 26, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present with Councilmember Michele Lindsay attending via video conference.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began his report by saying that there is “a lot going on in Town.”  Specifically he mentioned that Michael Bruno has been busy doing work on the former IGA and is scheduled to appear at an LDC (Local Development Corp.) meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 27.  Mr. Bruno is looking to put in a market with a bar and some commercial space.  The Supervisor mentioned that there had been a lot of rumors about Mr. Bruno going around Town including that he had taken grant money and wasn’t spending any of it in Tuxedo.  The Supervisor stated that this rumor is untrue.  He has spoken with Mr. Bruno and finds that he is totally committed to Tuxedo.  Also, Steve Germano has purchased the former Take a Break and is currently going through the process to have a BBQ restaurant approved for the site.  He has appeared before the ARB and is also slated to appear at the LDC meeting on Tuesday.  ARB Chair Dale Mottola was present and reported that Mr. Germano’s is planning to keep the same footprint as Take a Break, however he intends to get rid of the walk up windows that are presently there and install double doors in their place.  Entrance will be through those doors where one will encounter an ordering counter and the kitchen space.  The current eating space will continue to be used for dining.  Finally, the Supervisor mentioned that there has been “great buzz” everywhere in the County about Dottie Audrey’s.  So, he concluded, there are exciting things happening in our Town. 

Additionally, the Supervisor reported that he will be in Albany on March 6 & 7 to work on the police contract.   

Police Chief Abbott announced that Officer Hall had arrested a 30-yearold Tuxedo resident for burglary as the resident entered a business, took checks and forged them.  Officer Hall identified the resident and arrested him.  The Chief also reported receiving a letter praising Officer Shiloh, which, among other things, mentioned how helpful and polite he had been. 

Councilmember Mcmillen thanked the Tuxedo Volunteer Ambulance Corps for organizing and running the recent Community Meeting on citizen emergency preparedness.  While at the meeting, a woman stood up and asked where she should go should there be a malfunction at the Indian Point nuclear plant. He subsequently realized that there aren’t any directions for that contingency on the Town website nor are they posted anywhere in Town Hall.  This led him to wonder if the Town’s emergency plan needed to be reviewed and he has pledged to make sure this will happen. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish asked for an explanation of Item #8 (Resolution authorizing the Town to enter into amendment to the existing cooperation agreement.) Town Attorney Howard Protter explained that this was the agreement, signed annually, which allows the Town to participate in urban grant applications should there be any that the Town wants to apply for.   Mr. Berish also wanted an explanation of Item #1 (petition of relief from moratorium local law by Tuxedo Park Associates).  Mr. Protter explained that the TPA had come before the Town Board asking for relief from the moratorium and it became clear to him and the Board that, based on what it being proposed, they don’t need a waiver.  Rather they just need to be declared exempt from the moratorium and so that is what they are requesting. 

Donna Anderson, who lives on Warwick Brook Road, commented that no one who lives there is aware of what is being proposed by the TPA for their property which fronts on the road and she and her neighbors would like a description. 

She was told that the determination that evening would only give the applicant permission to take their project to the Planning Board and that when that happens, she and her neighbors will have the opportunity to come and hear a detailed description of what is being proposed as well as an opportunity to give their opinions on the project. 

Agenda Items:

The following items were approved:

  • a Petition of Relief from Moratorium Local Law for Tuxedo Park Associates and Site Work Services
  • a Resolution authorizing execution of agreement with Warwick Humane Society for 2018 Animal Shelter Services – the terms will be the same as last year.
  • a Resolution approving Refuse Collection Licenses (Interstate Waste Services, Marangi Disposal and Sterling Carting)
  • a Resolution approving Towing Licenses (Tuxedo Gulf, Harriman Auto and Harriman Auto Transmissions
  • a Resolution  approving the Town Clerk to attend Town Clerk training in Albany 4/22-4/26.
  • a Resolution approving the Town Clerk to attend the NYALGRO (Records Management) Training 6/3-6/5.
  • a Resolution consenting to the sale of Raffle Tickets by the Onyx and Breezy Foundation (an animal rescue operation).  This is an annual request
  • a Resolution authorizing the Town of Tuxedo enter into amendment to the existing  Cooperation Agreement (as described above to allow Town to apply for urban grants)
  • a Resolution approving participation in Orange County 2018 STOP-DWI Enforcement Grant

New Business:
Supervisor Rost stated that the Board was continuing work on their Reorganization document.  As such he announced the following appointments:

  • Gardiner Hempel was appointed to the Board of Fire Commissioners
  • H2M and Al Fusco were appointed as Town Engineers
  • Cooper Arias was appointed as Town Bookkeeper and Brian Sullivan was appointed as Account Clerk
  • Dave Mcmillen was appointed Deputy Supervisor

Public Comments:

Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum commented that he anticipated that there would be more potholes than usual this year..  He asked that residents speak up if they see potholes and asked that they call 351-2594 to report them.  The Department has been doing tree trimming around Town and will be moving into the lower Commuter Lot to work on the trees there.  They recently replaced all the bulbs in that lot with LED lights which has made a huge difference.  Superintendent Dollbaum is hopeful that this will result in a reduction in the electricity bill.   He also reported that O&R has cut the trees in the East Village in preparation for the new bridge that is supposed to be installed some time this year. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from counsel. 

 

back to top

line

Hamlet Revitalization Board to Meet February 27 at 6pm

The Hamlet Revitalization Board is having a public meeting on February 27, 2018 at the Town Hall at 6pm. Both Michael Bruno's grant application and Steve Germano's (Take A Break) will be reviewed.

The Hamlet Revitalization Local Development Corporation (LDC) is encouraging business owners in the Hamlet to apply for grant and loan funds. Any questions can be sent to Supervisor Mike Rost. Michele Lindsay, answer questions, email is LindsayForTuxedo@gmail.com.

*AS OF 11AM ON 11/27, THIS MEETING HAS BEEN CANCELLED. IT WILL BE RESCHEDULED - DATE TBD*

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting Febaruary 26, 2018

Click here to view a copy of this agenda

back to top

line

Town Board To Hold Special Meeting February 22, 2018 - 2pm

Notice of Special Meeting

The Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will conduct a special meeting at 2:00 pm on February 22, 2018. The purpose of the meeting will be to enter into and conduct an executive session for purposes of discussing potential employment agreements with Town Consultants and for such other business as may be required.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting January 22

The Town Board met on Monday, January 22, 2018 at 7 pm.  All members were present. 

The meeting began with the Town Clerk administering the oath of office to new Town Councilman, Ken English.  This was followed by the swearing in of Supervisor Mike Rost and Councilman Dave McMillen.  

Reorganization Meeting:
Supervisor Rost asked Town Attorney Howard Protter if they could put off voting on the reorganization items as the Board has not finished making appointments.  Mr. Protter advised that this could be done. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish asked for and received a definition of the term sludge.

Agenda Items:

  • Sludge Removal Award- The bid was award to Capolla who currently holds the contract. 
  • Shared Services Agreement – This came from the State and applies to the Department Of Transportation (DOT).  The Agreement says that the Town and the County will assist each other if necessary in case of emergency.   The Town agreed to sign this for 2 years. 
  • Petition of Relief from Moritorium Local Law – Mike Santoianni representing the TPA, stated that the property in question was the 40 acres owned by the TPA which front on Warwick Brook Rd.  The zoning for this property is listed as RO (Research/Office) but it is not slated to stay as RO under the new Master Plan.  The TPA has a proposal that they took to the TAC Committee of the Planning Board.  Basically, they want to build 5-6 buildings of 10-12,000 square feet each.  Said buildings would be leased out to companies who provide services (contractors are an example). The TAC Committee, as well as the Town Engineer, Planning Board Chairman and Planning Board Attorney, loved the proposal but told the TPA that they needed to come to the Town Board for permission.   Town Attorney Protter said that because the land is still zoned RO and this is not an appropriate use for RO zoned land, the Board should not rule on it.  Mr. Santoianni expressed frustration because the planning Board Attorney specifically advised him to pursue a waiver from the Town Board.  It was agreed that Mr. Santoianni and Mr. Protter would get together after the meeting so that Mr. Protter could explain what the correct procedure should be. 
  • Resolution to extend the moratorium for another 6 months was passed unanimously
  • Appoint Tax Receiver – Brian Sullivan was appointed for the remainder of 2018.  The vote was 4-1 in favor with Councilmember McMillen abstaining.
  • Resolution to approve Highway Garage lease with Ben Veltidi for 3 years was passed unanimously.
  • Town Clerk to request additional Staffilng from the Board – Clerk Donna Matthews is requesting a part time deputy.  She was told that the Board needs to see a list of the functions carried out by the Clerks office with an approximate number of hours needed for each one.  It was agreed she would provide such a list in time for the Board to vote on this at the next meeting. 
  • Resolution for Town Clerk to put Town Vehicles out to surplus – there is an already replaced backhoe and the Building Inspector’s old Ford Explorer.  It was passed unanimously. 
  • Resolution authorizing the execution of agreement with Warwick Humane Society for 2018 animal shelter services was tabled.
  • Resolution to make budget modifications as submitted by Town Auditor Cooper Arias was passed unanimously.

Public Comments:
Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum stated that the department was renting a bucket truck and would be taking down the Christmas lights in Town as well as changing light bulbs in the lower parking lot.  They will also be marking trees that are hanging over or too close to power lines for O&R who will send their contractor to remove them. 
Dale Mottola requested a sign permit to advertise the upcoming venison buffet at the Sons of Italy lodge.  It was approved.
Andy Berish commended the Highway Department for the excellent job they did on snow removal. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting January 22 - 7pm

Click here to view a copy of this agenda

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Vouchers Only Meeting January 8 - 7pm

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

1. Review and approval of vouchers

2. Any other business that may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted

Adjournment

back to top

line

2018 Property Tax Information

The 2018 Tax bills are expected to be available by December 27, 2017
Tax payments should be mailed to Tuxedo Town Hall, One Temple Drive, Tuxedo, NY  10987 attention Tuxedo Tax Collector.
In person payments can be made during the month of January.
Monday and Tuesdays 9:00am -3:00pm 
 Wednesday Night’s 4:30 – 6:30. 

*early payment schedule will be released once the tax warrant has been issued.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting December 11, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, December 11, 2017 at 7;00 pm.  All members were present.

Public Hearing to Solicit Comments on the Proposed Sewer Rates at the Woodlands:
The rates will be unchanged for next year.  There were no comments and the hearing was closed.

Recognition of Councilmember Loncar:
Supervisor Rost announced that as this could be Councilman Loncar’s last meeting, he wanted to thank him for the service he has given the Town on the Board over the course of the last 8 years.  A plaque was presented to him.

Public Hearing on Tuxedo Farms Special Permit Amendments:
Jim Hays stated that he had 2 concerns with regard to the proposed amendments:  First, he understands that the Board conducted a workshop meeting with their architect and he thought he heard that a summary of that meeting would be provided to the public.  Despite having searched on the Town website for such a summary, he has been unable to find it.  His second concern has to do with the on street parking that has been proposed for the development.  If there is parking on both sides of the street, he wondered what would happen if there was a snow storm and a fire…would fire trucks be able to get through?  Lastly, he repeated his request for the Board members to state their reasons for voting whichever way they did as they voted.

Jake Lindsay also spoke about the parking.  He expressed his confusion with the elimination of the previously approved garages for the project.  He believes that this will have a negative impact on the project.  Having recently spent some time researching similar developments in the area, he has found that most offer off street parking.  He added that he had been told that the reason for the change was the difficulty of the topography but stated that he felt that should be Tuxedo Farms’ problem, not the Town of Tuxedo’s problem.  Further, he stated that he understood they were considering offering parallel parking along the lower loop road, which he fears is a terrible mistake given Tuxedo’s winters.  He asked that they please not allow parallel parking.  

David du Pont stated that at the last public hearing there were two unresolved issues raised that he would like to know about.  The first was the language pertaining to the authority of the Architectural Review Board versus the Planning Board. The second had to do with the proposed vinyl siding.  Mr. du Pont said he that had sent an email to each Board member proposing that they give approval for the vinyl siding in the first phase of the project and, if they were happy with the outcome of that, they could subsequently approve it for more of the project.  He asked for updates on both subjects.
He was informed that th current hearing was for public comments only and not questions.

JoAnn Hanson stated that she believes that the Tuxedo Farms development is critical to the community as it will eventually double the size of the Town.  She said she looked forward to the day when Related would actually bring in some production builders and get started on building the project.  However, she feels there are questions that need to be answered before that can happen.  In the past Related has had to make changes to their plan as they faced the topography of the site. Will the newly proposed changes be built on the same footprint as the plans they are replacing?  At this point, she feels the Boards should see plans of exactly what is being proposed – how the units will be laid out and physically what will be done.  She made a plea to the Board to leave a Board of Architectural Review, which she considers critical, in place and to know exactly what Related is planning to do.  If they would do these two things, she feels the Town will be able to look forward to this development.

Supervisor Rost then recognized County Legislator Barry Cheney who was sitting in the audience and asked if he had any comments.  Mr. Cheney answered that he felt this was a local issue but that it would be good to see the project move into the construction phase. The Supervisor then read into the record a letter from County Legislator Karl Brabenec, which stated his full support of the project and his hope that the Board would approve the necessary waivers needed to get it moving. 

Next, followed some comments and questions from the Board members:

Councilmember Loncar asked for some clarification regarding architectural details that were addressed in the technical memo.  Clarification was provided. 

Councilmember Lindsay had some questions about the requirements for shutters. 

Councilmember McMillen wanted to know about parking and more specifically whether or not they could change to angled parking on the non-spine roads. 
It was established that the majority of the units will be serviced by a parking lot rather than on street parking.  Andrew Dance further stated that Related would be happy to explore angled parking for the units that need on street parking. 

Councilmember Lindsay then inquired about language which eluded to eliminating all references to the Architectural Review Board as well as the Community Architect.
It was explained to her that these were just questions of language and the references were being eliminated to avoid confusing redundancies. 
Councilmember Lindsay also had some questions about the bedroom mix. 

She was told that the total unit number has not changed but that some condominiums have been changed into townhomes. 

With respect to the vinyl siding, the memo from the Town Planners and Engineers suggested that it be allowed for the first building and then before subsequent buildings were built, it would have to be approved by the Architectural Review Board. 

Andrew Dance responded that this was not acceptable to him at all.  He continued that he had “poured tens of millions of dollars into the Town and after all that, he didn’t feel they were being served by an acceptable school district,” so he was not interested in this proposal at all.  Additionally, he said that the Special permit went to great lengths to detail what is and what is not acceptable and he did not want to go before the Board again to beg.

Councilmember Lindsay then brought up a provision whereby if the multifamily or townhouse units had not commenced construction within 3 years, then a market study evaluating the market conditions for this type of housing would be required.

Mr. Dance’s response to that was “Nope.  Strike it.  That is not acceptable at all.”  He then added “Can I put the same condition on the School District?” He went on to say that he would not accept anything with these proposed conditions and then added “if you want to put a condition in here that says a reasonable education will be provided to the kids of this Town, then I will absolutely accept it.”  He further commented that he had not had a chance to review the memo because he had been very busy working on the project.   Ultimately, the Board decided to strike both of the conditions that Mr. Dance objected to. 

Councilmember Lindsay asked if the Board would still be receiving written comments from the public. 

It was explained to her that this was already the second continuation of the public hearing and that, at this point, it seemed as if the Board had probably already heard from anyone who really wanted to be heard. 

Town Planner Bonnie Franson interjected that she was recommending that they add some comments about the possibility of angled parking as opposed to parallel parking. 

Supervisor Rost asked the Town Attorney and Town Planner if they would put together a clean copy of the proposed amendments so they could post it to the Town website and everyone would be able to have access to it.  The Town Attorney agreed that this would be done. 

The Board then voted on four proposals before them. 

The first proposal was the SEQRA determination.  It was unanimously agreed that the proposed changes to the project would not result in any negative environmental impacts and therefore the proposals were given a Negative Declaration.

The second proposal had to do with changes to the bedroom mix.  The Board voted 4-1 in favor of approving the amendment, with Councilwoman Lindsay voting against.

The third proposal had to do with parking. There was some discussion about removing “conditions” a and c. (a copy of the resolutions has not been made public, so TPFYI can not report on what these conditions are). It was also agreed that they would add a condition asking the developer to explore angled parking. The Board then voted 4-1 in favor of the amendment, with councilwoman Lindsay voting against due to what she called “ lack of clarity with the zoning law.’

The fourth proposal dealt with changes to the design guidelines and Smart Code waivers. After agreeing that “Item x” would be striken from the proposal, this was passed unanimously with Councilperson Lindsay stating that she was “very happy with the progress made by the Board” on this subject.

Informal Informational Hearing on the Proposal for Consolidated Town of Tuxedo:
Town Attorney Don Nichol began the presentation by providing some background about how and why the Town was looking to form a consolidated Town. He explained that when the Pilgrim Pipeline was proposed, the Town discovered that Villages and Cities in New York State have certain powers relating to this kind of project that Towns do not have. The proposal is to form a new Village, separate from the Village of Tuxedo Park comprised of all of the rest of the property within the Town to be called the Village of Tuxedo. If this can be done, not only would the residents of that Village have the same protections that other Villages and cities have against pipeline projects but also no other villages could ever be formed within the boundaries of the Town. He commented that just north of Tuxedo in Woodbury, they had formed a Village for some of the same reasons, but they ended up with two separate governments, which costs the residents/taxpayers a lot of money.  After doing some research, Mr. Nichols discovered that the State had passed legislation allowing for the consolidation of governments so that the Town could become the Consolidated Town of Tuxedo with all the same powers of protections as a Village but without a separate government. To do this, a newly incorporated Village, consisting of all Town property outside Tuxedo Park would be formed and simultaneously consolidated with the existing Town of Tuxedo to become the Consolidated Town of Tuxedo.  To view a copy of Mr. Nichols’ presentation, click here.

Mr. Nichols then took questions from the audience:

Dale Mottola wanted to know if it would be required for a percentage of the 10% of residents who were requesting the consolidation to come from the Village of Tuxedo Park or if it was 10% town-wide.  She was told it was 10% town-wide.

Dan Castricone wondered if one could annex from a Village? Town Attorney Nichols responded that yes one could annex from a Village so this would not offer that kind of protection but it would prevent new governments being created from within. 

Jen Creamer wondered how the Town was planning to this information to its residents, aside from putting the petition on its website.  She pointed out that not all residents have access to the internet. 

Mr. Nichols replied that the Town Board wanted everyone to know about this and he felt they would get the information out.

Mrs. Creamer responded that she felt a fact sheet clearly outlining the procedures and what the hoped for end result would be could be helpful.

Bonny Takeuchi pointed out that in order to avoid confusion, the Town should refer to the Village outside of Tuxedo Park. 

Claudia Bakhtiary expressed some confusion about how a Village could be more powerful than a Town and stated that she thought a fact sheet, published on the Town webside would be really helpful. 

Ken English asked for clarification on the two separation petitions, one requiring 10% of the voting population and the other requiring 20% of the voters.  He was told that 20% of the people in the new Village outside the Park would have to request the new Village and then 10% of the total proposed Consolidated Town  (which would include the Village of Tuxedo Park) would have to request the consolidation. 

Helen Neuman wanted to know how the Board would disseminate the information aside from putting it on the website. 
She was told that emails could be sent out and that also it was possible that a newsletter could be circulated from Town Hall.

Nate Wolinsky suggested that the Town should have a team of people ,who were educated on the subject,  go out and get the necessary signatures on the required petitions and that this is how the information would get out. 

Jerry Mottola inquired as to whether or not theTown Attorney was suggesting that if the Town were to consolidate in this way that Tuxedo Farms would not be able to separate and form their own Village or Town.
 Mr. Nichols replied that as of right now if there were 500 people in that area, who decided that they wanted to petition to form their own Village, they could, but with this proposal there would not be that opportunity. 

Ken English wondered how the Town would determine an area and what boundaries they would use. 
Mr. Nichols replied that they would probably use the master lots for their boundaries.  

Bonny Takeuchi inquired as to what “the negatives” were and wondered what, if anything, they had forgotten to ask? 

Mr Nichols responded that when he was asked by the Town Board to look into this proposal, they told him to try to eliminate any potential negatives and he felt they had done that.  That said, any time a layer of government is added or things are changed in this way, there are some expenses associated with the process. For example an election or two and dissemination of information could cost money. 

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost thanked Denise Tavani and Shari Brooks for spearheading the effort to get Holiday lights put up in Town.  The Highway Department workers were tied up with leaves but thanks to these two ladies, the Town managed to get it done anyway. 
He also announced that the Police Department would be receiving three laptops to be installed in patrol cars from the County.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Diane Petrosky commented that she was aware that the request for State intervention with the turn into Duck Cedar Plaza had been discussed at the last meeting, but she had been out of town and unable to attend the meeting., As she lives right off of Route 17 she has an opinion and would like the opportunity to express it,  She added that she knew it took time to get the State to do anything, but in the meantime she felt certain things could be done such as putting signs up to slow people down and/or cautioning them that people might be wanting to turn into the Plaza. 

Supervisor Rost assured her that these things were already in the works and that the Police Department would be doing a traffic study as well as putting officers on patrol out there to slow people down.

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were approved unanimously:

  • A Resolution for the Town to enter into a intermunicipal agreement with the County to accept 3 laptops for the Police Department.
  • a Resolution to request that the DOT do a safety and speed study for Route 17
  • a Resolution to renew Edward Brennan’s term as Fire Commissioner.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned

 

 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting December 11

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Public Hearing to Solicit Comments on the Proposed Sewer Rates at the Woodlands
Public Hearing on Tuxedo Farms special Permit Amendments
Informal Informational  Hearing on the Proposal for  Consolidated Town of Tuxedo

 

Minutes
Monthly Reports
Supervisor Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Agenda Items:

1. Resolution Approving the Sale of the American Legion Hall

2. Resolution to Request that the DOT to do a safety and speed study for Route 17

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

 

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers

Adjournment

 

back to top

line

Public Hearing on Tuxedo Farms Waivers December 11 7pm

On Monday, December 11 as part of the regularly scheduled Town Board meeting there will be a public hearing on Related Companies requested amendments to the Special Permit for the Tuxedo Farms development.  Among other things, the amendments include a proposed change in approved building materials to allow for Vinyl siding, the elimination of shared driveways and garages in phase one of the project to be replaced by two large parking lots and on-street parking, and a change in the previously approved housing mix to allow for more one bedroom apartments and fewer two-bedroom units initially, with more 3 and 4 bedroom Townhouses to be added at the of phase one.  The overall proposed bedroom count has not changed.

Detailed documentation can be found on the Town Website or by clicking here.

 

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 27, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, November 27, 2017 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor Update:
Supervisor Rost began his report by announcing that on December 5, he would be back in Albany along with Town Consultant Michael Richardson to meet with PERB (NYS Public Employees Relations Board) regarding the police contract.  Although he originally thought this could be accomplished in one meeting, they will need to go back in March. 
Additionally, he reported the following:

  • The Board is still reviewing the Public Comments on the Comprehensive Plan and Town Consultants are working on the next steps.  As these are made aware to them, they will pass them on to the public. 
  • With only one month left in the year, the Board is asking their Department Heads to tighten their belts and only spend money on necessary expenses. 
  • Looking ahead to 2018 and further, the Supervisor will start conducting meetings using Roberts Rules of Order.
  • The agenda item on Town/Village consolidation is meant to add a level of protection to the Town.  For example with the Pilgrim Pipeline, the Town does not have the same level of protection as Villages or Cities.  This step would correct that.  There will be an information session on this subject at the next Town Board meeting on December 12. 
  • Following up on the last meeting where a resident expressed concern over  recent vandalism around Town, he reported that Detective Christian had been working on this case for some time and within the last week, there had been an arrest and confession in the case.  

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
John McNamara asked for an update on Michael Bruno and his request for action “by a certain date.”  He was told that Mr. Bruno has an application being submitted to the LDC.  Councilmember Reardon added “The ball’s in his court.”
Helen Neuman asked if the details of the settlement agreement between the Town and Xicom could be revealed.  She was told that this is a confidential agreement. 
Mrs. Neuman argued that she was aware of this but she had thought that the Town was going to ask for permission to reveal the contents of the settlement to the residents of Clinton Woods. 

Town Attorney Protter responded that as per the law, in order to get around the confidentiality, all parties have to agree and not all parties will agree. 

Mrs. Neuman expressed her frustration with this saying that the residents believe that they have a right to know what is happening in their neighborhood and that they would not be as upset as they are if they had known what was happening when it was happening rather than after it was a “fait accompli.”

Councilmember Reardon added that the confidentiality was not up to the Board members and that it is not the obligation of the Board members to educate all residents on the terms of law suits. 

Mrs. Neuman replied “If this was your neighborhood, you might feel differently,” and Mrs. Reardon responded that as a Board member, the entire Town was her neighborhood. 

Police Chief Art Abbott thanked the Supervisor for giving credit to Detective Christian for his part in solving the vandalism case.   He further thanked him for allowing the overtime necessary to bring the case to conclusion.  The department worked closely with the Ramapo Police Department as well as the Village of Suffern Police to solve the case.  When it was all done, Suffern closed out 4-5 cases and Ramapo closed out 7 cases!

Councilmember Lindsay commented that a lot of people had been asking about the turning lane going into Duck Cedar Plaza.  She has been in touch with the Department Of Transportation about it and has learned that the property owner must be the one to request this.  She will be in touch with the owner to see if they can get this in the works. 

Agenda Items:
The following agenda items were acted upon:

  • A Resolution amending the minutes of the meeting held on September 11, 2017 was changed to include the entire finance agreement.
  • A Resolution to enter into a lease agreement with Ben Veltidi was tabled as they are still waiting on information.
  • A Notice of RFP (request for proposals) for sewer sludge removal was approved unanimously
  • A Resolution to allow Town Clerk to solicit RFPs for Planning Board Attorney, Town Attorney, Town Planner, ZBA Attorney and Town Engineer was approved 4-1 with Councilmember Loncar voting no.
  • A Notice of  Informal Public Informational Hearing Proposal for a Consolidated Town of Tuxedo  was passed unanimously.  The hearing will be held on December 11th at the Board’s Regular Meeting.

Public Comments:
Jim Hays wondered when the meeting with the Town’s architectural consultant and different Town boards with regard to the proposed waivers to the Tuxedo Farms project would be be held. 

He was informed that it would be held sometime this week (they are still waiting to hear from some of the participants) and that it would not be a public meeting. 
Mr. Hays asked why not. 

He was told that there would not be a full quorum for the meeting and therefore it would not be public.  

Mr. Hays strongly objected to this.  He said there were rumors around that several of the Board members would vote in favor of granting the waivers to Related. He added that many many years ago, the Town Board spent a long time hammering out the special permit under which the project could be built and to grant these waivers now was, in his opinion, a violation of the confidence that the Town put in that Board as well as in the present Board.  Additionally, he said that there were many ways that Tuxedo Farms could save some money for the builders/developers.  For one, they could lower the price of the land and Mr. Hays wondered if that had even been discussed. “Why should the Town of Tuxedo bear the burden when…..what is Related doing?”

Councilmember Lindsay asked how the information gleaned at the upcoming meeting would be disseminated to the public. 

The Supervisor told her that just as he had set out in an email to the Board, they were waiting to hear back from the Architect and Town Planner before scheduling the meeting.  Once the meeting had happened and they had all gotten their information, they would decide how to get it out to the public. 

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum announced that there is compost, top-soil and mulch available for residents only (not landscapers or contractors) at the Quarry Field property.  Additionally, he inquired as to why the lease with Ben Veltidi had not been executed. 


The Supervisor replied that they were waiting to hear back from Mr. Veltidi. 
Superintendent Dollbaum then asked what the status was with the leases for Wayne Mullaney and Derrick Fisher.

Supervisor Rost responded that he was waiting for information from Superintendent Dollbaum and Supervisor’s Clerk Shari Brooks including information from Orange and Rockland Utilities. 

Superintendent Dollbaum replied, “Not from me.  Let’s make that clear….not from me.” 

Supervisor Rost then stated that Mrs. Brooks has “all the information on the metering on the way that you wanted to do it and what it will cost.” 

Superintendent Dollbaum countered “not what I wanted to do.  It has nothing to do with me and you made that clear.”

The Supervisor replied, “then I’m done with it. If their leases expire, and they go, then they go.  I’m not going to argue with you over O&R and meters as we’ve been talking about it for 6 months now.” Councilman McMillen commented that he thought this was supposed to be done by October and now it was almost December. 

Superintendent Dollbaum asked “by who?”

Councilman  McMillen replied “I thought it was you.”   Superintendent Dollbaum responded, “you gave it to Shari and I wash my hands of the whole site.” 

Jim Hays commented that he had one more request which was that when the Board does vote on the Tuxedo Farms waivers, that each one state why they have voted the way they have. 

Vouchers were then signed and the meeting adjourned into an Executive Session for advice from Counsel. 

 

 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting November 27, 2017

Minutes
Monthly Reports
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution Amending the minutes of  the meeting held on September 11, 2017. 
  1. Resolution to enter into a lease agreement with Ben Veltidi.
  1. Notice of RFP – Sewer Sludge Removal
  1. Resolution to Allow Town Clerk to solicit RFP’s for Planning Board Attorney, Town Board Attorney and Town Planner

 

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers

Adjournment

 

back to top

line

Special Town Board Meeting November 20, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, November 20, 2017.  Councilmember Loncar was absent and Councilmember Reardon participated via speakerphone. 

Agenda Items:

  1. Resolution to Adopt Final Town Budget – This was passed unanimously.
  2. Resolution to Schedule a Public Hearing on Tuxedo Farms Special Permit Amendment. – Supervisor Rost proposed holding this meeting on December 11 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Lindsay expressed concern, commenting that she felt that the Town Board had not had enough time to do their due diligence on the proposed changes.  She urged the Board to hold a workshop meeting with all of their Boards and consultants before conducting a public hearing. 

The Supervisor responded that they could schedule such a meeting for next week once they had checked the availability of the various Board members and consultants. 
Mrs. Lindsay then suggested holding the public hearing at a later date.
The Supervisor responded he didn’t understand why she didn’t want to hear what the public had to say on December 11. 

She replied that she didn’t know what they would be giving the people to comment on. 
The Supervisor said there was A LOT of information available and he wasn’t sure what else she thought she was going to hear. 

Councilmember Lindsay responded that she thought the Boards needed to meet as a group in order to properly “”hammer out” what had been said.

Supervisor Rost replied that he knew that they were still waiting on information from the consultants, but they would need to give notice of a public meeting within a certain time frame (10 days) if they wanted to hold it.  This is why he is proposing to hold the meeting on December 11.  If they find, after the workshop that they are not ready, they can cancel the meeting and reschedule it.  He further stated since he had been a member of the Board, he felt that they had never rushed through a vote and he wasn’t going to start now.  If they feel that they need more information then they’ll get more information. 

  1. Schedule Public Hearing on Woodlands Sewer rates – This was scheduled for Monday, November 27 at 7:00 immediately followed by the regular Town Board meeting.

Public Comments:
There were none. 

 

back to top

line

Agenda For Special Town Board Meeting November 20, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

 Agenda Items:

  1. 2018 Budget Vote
  1. Schedule Public Hearing for Tuxedo Farm Special Permit Amendment

 

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

 

Town Board Meeting November 14, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, November 13, 2017 at 6:30 pm.  All members were present. 

Continuation of Public Hearing on Tuxedo Farms, Proposed Changes:

Andrew Dance of Related spoke first and said that it has been a long journey with the application and that at this point, they would like to bring it to some sort of conclusion.  The process began with a marketing study for the first four neighborhoods approximately two years ago.  Mr. Dance stressed that Related believes that they will make the most amount of money from the project by sticking to the business plan of selling the property to builders who, in turn, would build out the project under the Permit, which was approved by the Town.  At the time of the marketing study, the builders had two main concerns with the project:  1-uncertainty about the health of the High School and 2-they were uncomfortable with the material requirements in the design guidelines.  Mr. Dance stated that he had spent time speaking with School Board members and also, more recently, members of the community about the school.  Now Related is looking to bring about some conclusion to all the talking. 


Councilmember Reardon observed that it had been a long time since the plans were laid out and asked Mr. Dance if he could speak about “consensus” and the type of people who would be in the proposed one-bedroom apartments.  
Mr. Dance responded that the proliferation of multifamily housing in suburbia is being driven by Millenials who seem to want to spend less money on housing and maintenance than their predecessors did. 


Councilmember Lindsay commented that she had attended several urban planning sessions and conferences where it was shown that there is interest in downtown areas where people could walk to downtown as well as to public transportation.  This seems to be the way things are going in the Metropolitan area so she doesn’t understand market studies that suggest that Millenials would be interested in units where they have to have a car to get to the train station or anywhere else they want to go.  She wondered if Mr. Dance could show the Board these market studies. 

Mr. Dance responded that the neighborhood in question is the one closest to the Hamlet area and that it is considered walkable to Downtown. 

Councilmember McMillen asked if there were any restrictions as to how many cars per unit would be allowed. 

The answer was yes, these types of restrictions can be imposed. Councilmember Reardon next wanted to know once the units were built, who would manage and own them? 

Mr. Dance replied that they would be managed by the owner, whoever that may be.  He then added that a lot of builders sell their properties to insurance companies, who professionally manage them.

Mrs. Reardon then asked if they would be able to restrict the number of people allowed to reside in each 1-bedroom unit contractually with renters.

The answer was yes. It was further suggested that the Fire Code would be the best way to impose these restrictions. 

Town Planner Bonnie Franson interjected that the Fire Code was not as restrictive as people thought. 

Town Attorney Nichols added that the owner could impose restrictions on how many people would be allowed occupy a unit. 

There followed a discussion of how many cars renters would be allowed and where they would be parked.  Mr. Dance suggested that a majority of the cars would be parked in the parking lots with some of the cars on the street. It was mentioned that parking might turn into a problem with the addition of snow. Mr. Dance responded that looking at the history of the amount of snowfall over the last few years, they felt this would not be a big problem.

Mr. Dance then presented some renderings of the proposed buildings commenting that the buildings located on the upper parking lot would be bigger with 12 units per building and the ones on the lower lot smaller with 8 units per building.  All buildings will have 3 stories from the parking lot and 4 stories from the street.  There will be no elevators.  The material used in the bottom level of the buildings will be stone and the upper levels are to be done in wide planked vinyl siding.   The very top will be hardy board with asphalt/shingles for the roof.  The style presented was called “Adirondack style.”
Mr. Dance next commented that while he personally had not grown up in a house with vinyl siding, when he talked to people who lived in them, he had found that they loved them because they don’t need to be repainted and have low-no maintenance. 

In conversation with the Town Attorney, Supervisor Rost stated that he wanted to close the public hearing and then call a meeting in a few days to vote on the matter. 

Councilmember Lindsay objected to this suggesting that many people hadn’t known they would be able to comment on this that evening as it had not appeared on the meeting agenda.  It was pointed out that it did appear on the revised agenda, issued earlier that day,  and that also that 3 weeks ago at the last regular meeting, when the public hearing was continued, it had been announced that there would be further comments at the November 13 meeting. 

The Town Attorney commented that there were a lot of people present at the meeting.  He recommended that they open the meeting to public comments and if it appeared that all comments were made and heard, they could then close the hearing.  If it seemed that everyone had not been heard, they could extend it David du Pont wanted to know if the change to allow vinyl siding was the fifth change being requested to the application.

Supervisor Rost responded that this was the time for public comment, not questions and answers. 

Mr. du Pont reiterated that he just wanted to know if this was, in fact, the fifth change to the application. 

Andrew Dance stated that Related does not have an application before any of the Town Boards rather they have a Special Permit.  Under this permit, the Planning Board is allowed to grant waivers on site-specific conditions.  To date, there have been 4 waivers to the applications for site plan approvals for the first neighborhoods.  The changes currently being proposed, however, constitute an amendment to the Special Permit which is an entirely different process.  

Mr. du Pont then stated that he understood that Town Planner Franson was in the process of putting together a list of all the changes that the Planning Board has granted to the project since the Special Permit was issued in 2004.  He observed that he thought it would be important for the Board to see this list before voting as many of the Board members had not been on the Board long enough to be aware of all the changes that have been made to the application. 

Mr. du Pont then spoke on the subject of the “high school health,” commenting that although the enrollment of the high school was now at an all time low, he felt it was important to know that once a high school is closed in the state of New York, it is extremely difficult to reopen it.  This information was based on conversations he had with a member of the New York State Board of Education, who stated that he didn’t know of a single school outside of an urban area, which had ever been reopened.  Mr. du Pont feels this is important for everyone to keep in mind because if we don’t have a high school when the Tuxedo Farms project is finished, we will be in a lot of trouble. 

Ann Marie Voss expressed disappointment in Mr. Dance’s stance on the school.  She said she had been putting up with many inconveniences from the construction including bulldozers at 10 pm because she had been told it was being done “for the school.”  Now she hears Mr. Dance saying builders don’t want to come because of the school. 

Richard Bartlett stated that he had attended the last meeting when the public hearing was opened at which Mr. Dance was not present.  It had been his understanding that the meeting had ended with a promise that there would be a workshop with the Town Board, Planning Board and Architectural Review Board and wondered what had happened with that.

Mr. Dance responded that he had not been able to attend the last meeting.  He personally had cancelled the proposed workshop meeting because those meetings cost Related a lot of money (for consultants, etc. to be present) and such a workshop with those exact same boards had already occurred last Spring. 

Mr. Bartlett also said that it was his recollection that Henry Heffner, who had been present at the meeting, had apologized for and disowned the mock up built to display the vinyl material. 

Mr. Heffner responded that he had explained that the mock up was presented so that people could look at the materials and not necessarily the craftsmanship of the building.  He reiterated that if he had known that, he would have used a builder to construct the mock up rather than their general contractor.  In hindsight, since the issue is about the materials, he feels they should have just presented the materials and not a mock up.

Mr. Bartlett additionally stated that it had been his understanding that the Board was going to decide whether or not vinyl would be acceptable at all and, if they decided that it was, what specifically the requirements would be of the vinyl.

Councilmember McMillen remarked that this was his recollection as well.

Andrew Dance commented that there was a specified list of architectural grade vinyl types within the material guidelines.  The mock up was constructed of one of those specified vinyls. 

Mr. Bartlett replied that when he went to look at the mock up, it wasn’t the construction that he objected to, it was the fact that he found the vinyl exceedingly flimsy. 

Mr. Dance replied that vinyl is flimsy….that’s how it works. 

Town Planner Franson interjected, suggesting that what people might want to see is what the thickness of the vinyl would be. 

She was told that the sample on the mock up was the thickness of what is being proposed. 

Councilmember McMillen said that he needed to see a finished product using this material and he requested a list of completed sites, built with this material that he could drive to and see.

Andrew Dance responded by expressing his frustration because such a list has been provided to the Board and, to his knowledge, none of the Board had bothered to take a look at any of them. 

Both Mike Reardon and Michele Lindsay responded saying that they had visited at least one of the samples on the list. 

Mr. Barlett next expressed his confusion because he said he had heard Mr. Dance saying that Related had been having a hard time attracting builders for the project, but at the same time, they had decided to go ahead and construct the infrastructure.  He feels that  the community is saying that they are afraid that the requested material will lower the quality of the project and, at the same time, it sounds like Related is saying they don’t have a builder at the existing quality but they also don’t seem to have one at the lower quality either!  It seems to him as though if the Town Board were to say yes to this, it would only be because it would provide for some forward movement on the project.  He also recollected that at the last meeting someone had suggested that they would  present “all of the ways that the project has been dumbed down.”

Mr. Dance took “incredible offense” to the last statement explaining that this project has always been something that relied on design guidelines and established standards and that this has not changed.  He suggested that the fact that the “production builders” are not using wood or hardy board in this region is simply a reality.  Things change over time.  He went on to say that many waivers had been necessary with the first application for Northridge, due to engineering problems with the site and that the project had been changed from single-family dwellings to the apartment buildings.  The number of waivers issued is an engineering discussion only.  It has nothing to do with “dumbing the project down,” which he considers very insulting considering the amount of time and money Related has already invested. 

Mr. Bartlett remarked that he was struggling with the fact that waivers might be granted without knowing whether or not this would produce a project.  As someone who does transactions for a living, he is used to knowing “if I do x, y will happen,” but it seems as though what Mr. Dance is saying is that he needs to be given the additional latitude of vinyl siding but then he is hoping that a builder will say yes to that because they haven’t said yes to anything else. He has offered no guarantee that this will produce a builder.

Supervisor Rost interjected that he was not hearing the same thing as Mr. Bartlett.  Speaking only for himself, he suggested that what he was hearing Mr. Dance say was that he needed this change in order to get some houses built. 

Mr. Dance then stated that he was not having any trouble attracting builders.  He then reiterated that  builders today are not using wood and they are not using hardy board.  He suggested that if anyone were to take a look at projects currently being constructed in this area, homes that be sold at $450k to $1.2 m, they are being built with the materials that have been proposed. This is how people are building today in this area. 

Bonny Takeuchi began by saying she has a son who is remodeling a house in Cornwall and that he has been trying to find someone to put hardy board on the house and it has been impossible to find anyone to do so. 
As far as parking is concerned, she would prefer off street parking and wonders if not having reserved parking would make it harder to sell the units.  Concerning the building material, she wonders if the reduced cost material will deter people from wanting to build with higher priced materials in the same development, further noting that she was referencing the single-family homes that are slated to be built later in the project.    She then stated that she had vinyl siding on her home and has had it for 30 years.  There are no cracks; she washes it and it looks pristine.  The bedroom mix is the topic of most concern to her as she feels there is a need for housing with 2 or 3 bedrooms within walking distance of the Town and the school.  She heard the developer say that they had done research but has not seen any evidence of such research.  She urged the Board to do their due diligence on this matter and confirm what Mr. Dance has been saying.    Expressing her frustration, she said that she had seen20 years of development and planning and months of blasting yet not one structure has been built.  There are promises of LDC funds to be spent revitalizing the Hamlet and yet no agreements with Mr. Bruno have been enacted and nothing else in addition to what he has proposed has been acted on.  There is no support for the development for our High School.  In fact, it seems to be just the opposite.  As Suffern and Monroe School Districts face crises of their own, Tuxedo residents are asked to sign on with one of them in spite of the fact that to do so would mean giving up local control over education, a decision that would irreversible. She has heard talk about the formation of a committee to look into the economic viability of the high school but she hasn’t heard the names of any hamlet residents on that committee, which she feels is wrong.  She wonders what will the residents get if these concessions are made to the developer? Commenting that she was speaking on behalf of the Hamlet residents, she then stated “We are tired of living in the land that time forgot.  We want new neighbors, new students and new businesses.” She finished by asking the Town Board to bargain on the behalf of the residents to bring about the growth that they need. 

JoAnn Hanson commented that she felt it was important that the approvals in question should be for the first phase of the development only or timed to show that making the proposed concessions would actually lead to the development.  She finds that while Millenials might be looking for one-bedroom residences, if one does the research they will see that with time, these same people are shifting over and looking for larger units of 3 and 4 bedrooms.  She thinks that this shift is the more important part of this proposal and sometimes she feels that the discussion of vinyl is just a distraction from this more important discussion.  She believes that she understands the dilemma that the Board is faced with because the project has not moved forward, but she also feels that the fiduciary duty they have for everyone is to make the approval limited and to make the market prove that if these changes are granted, something will actually happen.  She asked them not to change the whole project when they have not seen any proof to date that things will actually get built. 

Ken English remarked that Councilmember Reardon had asked about who was expected to live in the Northridge section of the project, but he had not heard anything said about how the changes would affect the rest of the project and particularly the single family homes which he feels will bring the most promise to our community and will bring homes that will have a ratable that would be tax beneficial to the Town as well as a resurgence in the enrollment at the school.  He wondered if the market analysis still showed a demand for the private homes that are supposed to be built?

Andrew Dance expressed his frustration at this and wondered if he could just turn back the clocks to 2008 and because all of this had been studied ad nauseam.   Additionally, he suggested that the reason they had gotten to this point was because of the single family homes.  There are over 900 proposed units of single family homes that will produce school children.  

John MacNamara commented he was a proud owner of a townhouse in The Woodlands.  He said he had used the word proud because he feels that The Woodlands is a nice community and, what he saw tonight of the proposed Tuxedo Farms looks even nicer.  He further suggested that he didn’t think it was the responsibility of Related to build anything else in Town, but if they built what they have been given permission for and people buy the units and move to Tuxedo, there will be money for other things and businesses will be able to open.  He urged the Board not to get stuck on “minutia” which might could make the planning process drag on for another 20 years before anything actually gets built.  He called on the Board to work with what they have and to make sure that the development happens.
Mike Santoianni commented that he felt the Board should not get involved in how many people comprise a family unit and restricting how many people can live in an apartment.  Instead, he proposed that the Town consider incentivizing the developer by offering them more units.  Instead of cheapening the product or taking a chance on more one bedroom units which would yield more transient residents, why not offer the developer more units so that he can make more money off the land? 

Andrew Dance next stated he wanted to clarify that the proposal was for 180 units.  Of those, 72 are 2 bedroom apartments.    Of the 108 remaining, 30% are “one and a den” apartments.  They will range from 750 square, feet to 1000 square feet, and will rent for $2,225 to $3000 per month.  They are luxury apartments. 

Supervisor Rost then made a resolution closing the public hearing, further stating that the Board would accept written comments for 3 more days.  Such comments should be sent to the Town Clerk.  The resolution passed 4-1 with Councilmember Lindsay voting against.

 

Public Hearing on 2018 Preliminary Budget:
Supervisor Rost stated that the proposed budget has an increase of 2.21%.  This year’s tax cap is 2.69.

There were no public comments on the budget so the hearing was closed. 

Continuation of Public Hearing on the Proposed Comprehensive Plan:
Town Planner Bonnie Franson began her remarks by stating that anyone who wanted to review the plan could find it online on the Town website (search for September 2017 Updated Comprehensive Plan).  Highlights include

  • Adding sustainability trends and also includes objectives to be climate smart and a clean energy community.  It’s important to put this language in the plan because having it in an adopted plan makes the Town eligible for various grants. 
  • Acknowledging that there probably will not be significant sewering of Southfields. 
  • A reference to continuing to promote the “River Trail” along the Ramapo
  • Recommendations to pay attention to the Tuxedo Hamlet, making it pedestrian and business friendly following the Town Center study which is an appendix to the Plan.
  • A discussion about slowing traffic through Town.  Among other ways that are discussed is a road diet.  This discussion was put into the plan years ago and during the time it was added, an additional place for traffic to go was expected (the Thruway interchange), 
  • A consideration of impacts on the Town’s water sources
  • Updated demographics for the Town
  • Plans for Quarry Field
  • Changes to the Tuxedo Union Free School District
  • Discussion of possibly adding additional commuter parking at the 17A interchange
  • New language about the Tourism Business area and specifically with the Renaissance Faire property and what could potentially occur there.

Supervisor Rost inquired what could be done to get the Quarry Field property removed from the flood plain and there was a brief discussion of this.  It was followed by a short discussion on recreation fees from developers.

John MacNamera asked if the plan allowed for a large commercial project, for example a Lowe’s store, to come into Town.  He was told that this would be a zoning question and that there are sections in Town, which are zoned to accommodate this. 

Damon Patrick, an attorney representing Faire Partners (the Renaissance Faire ) stated that he had submitted a letter explaining why they felt that the Tourism Business zone was not viable or feasible for their property.  In brief, there is a restrictive covenant on the deed for their property, which doesn’t allow for this kind of zone. 

Town Attorney Nichol responded that he had read Mr. Patrick’s letter on this subject and that the Town was not going to restrict the Renaissance Faire property, but if their private covenant restricts them, that would be something for them to deal with privately.  The Town will make sure that there are methods by which anyone who has problems using their property will be able to get relief. 

Since there were no other public comments, Supervisor Rost made a motion to close the public hearing and it was passed unanimously.

John MacNamara commented with his congratulations to those members who had run for office and been reelected and also offered his thanks to retiring Councilmember Loncar for his years of service.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost stated that the Town was getting close to having a lease agreement with the companies who are leasing space at the Highway Department.  He also announced that Highway Superintendent Dollbaum has built containers for mulch and soil at Quarry Field and these things will be available to Town residents again.  He also reported that the Town is still working with the Police over what they believed was a contract and what may not be a contract.  To this end, they have spent some time up in Albany and are due back there in March. 

Councilmember Lindsay stated that she is in receipt of several letters to the Board and the LDC Board in support of Michael Bruno and his plans for the buildings he owns in Town.

Councilmember Reardon replied that Mrs. Lindsay should ask him to submit an application.  The Town still hasn’t received one and there is a process to be followed.  As soon as an application is received, the Town would love to work with Mr. Bruno.
Supervisor Rost interjected that he had met with Kathy from Mr. Bruno’s office last Friday and that she was putting together an application for the LDC. 

Councilmember Lindsay reported that there were other entities, who were interested in the LDC funds besides Mr. Bruno.  The Supervisor responded that the Town attorneys had made some revisions to the application and as soon as that is ready, it will be uploaded to the Town website so as to be available for all. The application has already been made available to Michael Bruno. 

Councilmember Lindsay also announced that on Wednesday, Al Fusco would be coming to meet with some people on the committee for Hamlet revitalization.  Supervisor Rost corrected Mrs. Lindsay stating there a committee for Hamlet Revitalization had not been assembled, but the Chamber of Commerce had been working on this. 

Councilmember Reardon wondered on what authority they had been doing so.

It was explained that representatives of the local businesses were putting together a“plan” which would outline those things they felt were needed in order for businesses to be more successful in Town.  Councilmember Lindsay is also recommending that the Town have engineering plans drawn up as these are requested whenever grants are applied for.. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • A Resolution accepting the resignation of Greg Stevens as Receiver of Taxes effective December 1, 2017
  • A Resolution appointing Barbara Ginley as part time Court Clerk at $18/hour
  • A Resolution appointing Ralph Brooks to clean the Town owned buildings (Town Hall, Train Station, Police Station, Highway office and break room) weekly to be paid by voucher once a month in the amount of $1400 per month until such time as a reasonable bid is accepted for this job.  There was a great deal of discussion about this and none of the Board members was happy about this.  However, the Supervisor stated that there was an RFP out on this job and no one wanted the job.  This appointment is just an interim one until a permanent bid can be accepted. 

Public Comments:
Town Clerk Donna Matthews reported that she had been contacted by an organization called Stars for the Troops.  They collect old US flags that have been retired and cut the stars from them in order to redistribute to veterans.  As such they send Mrs. Matthews a supply of the stars to be distributed in Tuxedo.  Mrs. Matthews presented the first one to Councilmember David McMillen.  She stated that if anyone would give her the names of additional veterans in Town, she would send them a star. 

Joanna Sloan said she was a new resident of Tuxedo having only been here for 4 years.  She and her husband live on Schoolhouse Lane. “You know me very well, Mike, you have not returned my phone calls,” she stated.

The Supervisor replied that he had returned her calls and upon verifying her number, showed her his phone to prove it. 

She retorted that he had returned her husband’s phone calls, but not hers.  She then continued on to say that her husband’s truck had been broken into 4 times although there have been 5 attempts.  Pointing to the 3 police officers who were present, she said “these nice people have been there numerous times.”  She then demanded of the Supervisor and Board “what are you going to do to protect the Town? There was a drug overdose on our street! I understand that you have vetoed down what these people want, but what are you going to do to protect the Town? Do you know what these people do all day long?  They try to protect us and you are taking that away.  So I just want to know what you are going to do?”  She wondered if the Board was planning to turn down the proposed Police contract again in March?

The Supervisor replied that the contract had already been ratified.  

Mrs. Sloan then wanted to know if they would turn down the new contract.

“What new contract?” responded the Supervisor. 
At this point Officer Shiloh, PBA President began to explain their side of things with regard to the contract and the Board cut him off stating that this meeting was not time or place to be discussing the details of the police contract. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting November 16, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Agenda Items:
1. Resolution to Adopt 2018 Town Budget
2. Vote on Tuxedo Farms Proposed Changes

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.
Adjournment

back to top

line

Town of Tuxedo Election Results

Voters in Tuxedo hit the polls on Tuesday, re-electing Supervisor Mike Rost, who’s candidacy was unchallenged, as well as two council members, Ken English and Dave McMillan.

Here are the preliminary results:

Mike Rost - 492
Ken English - 513
Dave McMillen - 413
Rich Rigoli - 393

back to top

line

Public Hearing on Town of Tuxedo Comprehensive Plan November 13

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING CONTINUATION
ON THE PROPOSED COMPREHENSIVE PLAN

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that, pursuant to Section 272-a of the Town Law of the State of New York, the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a continuation of the Public Hearing at Town Hall, One Temple Drive, Tuxedo, New York, on Monday November 13, 2017 at 6:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as possible for the purpose of soliciting public comments on the Proposed Comprehensive Plan Update. Copies of the proposed Comprehensive Plan update  are available for inspection at Town Hall, on the Town of Tuxedo website at www.tuxedogov.org, at the Tuxedo Park Library, 227 Route 17, Tuxedo, New York and at the Village of Tuxedo Park, Village Hall, 80 Lorillard Rd., Tuxedo Park, NY.

All interested persons will have an opportunity to be heard at this hearing.

BY ORDER OF THE TOWN BOARD
TOWN OF TUXEDO

DONNA MATTHEWS, TOWN CLERK

back to top

line

Public Hearing on 2018 Preliminary Budget November 13

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING
2018 PRELIMINARY TOWN BUDGET

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a public hearing on the 2018 Preliminary Town Budget at the Tuxedo Town Hall, One Temple Drive, Tuxedo, NY on Monday November 13, 2017at 6:30 p.m., or as soon thereafter as possible.  A Copy of the 2018 Preliminary Budget has been filed with the Town Clerk’s Office and is available for inspection by any interested person Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and can also be viewed online at www.tuxedogov.org
            NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that the proposed salaries for the elected officials of the Town, are as follows:
            Town Councilmembers                             $ 6,702.00 Each
            Town Justice Brown                                $ 24,799.00
            Town Justice Newman                              $ 23,927.00
            Supervisor                                              $ 33.728.00
            Tax Collector                                          $ 11,476.00Town Clerk                                            $ 55,500.00
Superintendent of Highways                      $ 85,000.00

MICHAEL D. ROST
TOWN SUPERVISOR

CHIEF FISCAL OFFICER

back to top

line

Town Elections 2017 - Meet The Candidates

Tuesday, November 7 is Election Day in the Town of Tuxedo.  This year, Supervisor Mike Rost is running unopposed for re-election while three candidates are vying for two open seats on the Town Board.  In an effort to help residents get a better idea of who the Town Board candidates are, why they have chosen to run and which issues they believe to be of upmost importance to the community, TPFYI presented them each with the same three questions..  Below please find their un-ededited answers in the order they were received.

Name: David McMillen

Briefly, why are you running for public office, and what credentials do you have for this role?

I have enjoyed serving on the Tuxedo Town Council for the past 4 years.  I value community service and the opportunity to address the issues that face our town.  I take very seriously the responsibility of being a public servant.  I will continue to apply common sense principles in the decision making process, and I will work diligently and cooperatively with my fellow board members to find common ground that serves the best interests of the Town and its residents. I want to continue my work to make Tuxedo a first rate affordable place to live, work and raise a family,

I spent 2 years on the town Planning Board and now almost 4 on the Town Board.  It is important to note that there is a rather steep learning curve for understanding municipal law and processes when first coming into office and it takes quite a long time before a brand new council member is able to feel comfortable with the role.  As a result of my experience on the board, I am a top level contributor and would like to take that seasoning into one more term.

What are the major town issues that you feel require your attention?

Of course the main issue that has plagued the town at large is the Tuxedo Farms project.  Although the project has received negative attention since its inception, it can become a valuable growth asset to the town if we continue to hold the developer to the conditions set forth in the special permit.

Secondly, we must continue to keep a steady eye on the Town's financial condition.  In my first year of office, I faced the unfortunate reality of the findings from the 2014 NYS Comptroller's report that resulted from a top down audit that was requested by Supervisor Mike Rost as he came into office.  The Town's financial risk rating was the highest in the state at the time.  We were left with only one option in order to get to financial solvency or we faced a state monitor coming in and running the Town.  It was indeed unfortunate that we were forced to make cuts to services and although I was deeply against any cuts, the math kept proving to me that the only other option at the time was to raise taxes over 30% in order to maintain the cash outlay required to keep all services intact at that level. Our action plan sustained our ability to keep taxes at the NY caps in 3 of the 4 years I have served which includes the upcoming budget for 2018.  We are in the process of rebuilding the overnight police coverage which to me has always been of paramount importance.  We have successfully converted to the Orange County 911 system and have integrated the police department into it seamlessly.  Most importantly, we received notification from the NY Comptroller's office that Tuxedo has now fallen completely off the "towns in severe fiscal stress" list and we now have a score that reflects fiscal responsibility.  I want to keep it that way.

Specifically, what differentiates you from other candidates seeking the same Town Council position?

I work from my home office in Tuxedo and have the unique ability to be available 24x7 for all business needs of the town as well as taxpayer concerns.  Experience of almost 6 years of town service. Dedication to  problem solving using high level analytical techniques.  Always coming to the table with a proposed solution for a problem I identify. Ability to work as a collaborative team member rather than hold my own opinions in higher regard or worry about political affiliations. I work for all Tuxedo residents, not for special interests. I am passionate about Tuxedo and its resident's needs and I reflect that in my work ethic which at times may seem louder and stronger than most, but you can't afford to be weak in this role.  Challenges appear daily and I believe I am better suited than most to step up when it comes to protecting Tuxedo and its residents.

Name: Kenneth English

Briefly, why are you running for public office,

  1. I’ve been involved in community organizing in Northern Tuxedo for more than ten years, most recently as President of the Northern Tuxedo Residents Association. I appreciate community service and I think I have talents that can benefit the Board.
  2. I’d like to add my years of managerial experience to the established Town Board. I believe in making decisions through examining varied viewpoints, thoughtful discussion and listening, building consensus, supporting a decision and executing.
  3. Provide geographic diversity in representation. I would be the only Town Board member from Northern Tuxedo
  4. I’d hope to inspire a united Tuxedo and help to bring the various neighborhoods together.
  5. Encourage residents to be involved in the town in any way they can contribute.

and what credentials do you have for this role?
Professional Experience:

  1. The New York Public Library - Twenty years as Director of Adult Education. I manage a budget of over $6,000,000, lead a team of 120 employees, and establish a vision for programming that serves more than 12,000 students annually. I write grant proposals and work with a development team to secure funding for program growth.

Tuxedo Community Involvement:

  1. Acting President of The Northern Tuxedo Residents Association
  2. Volunteer with NY/NJ Trail Conference for ten years
  3. Attend many Town Board meetings and liaise for NTRA

What are the major town issues that you feel require your attention?

  1. Ensuring Tuxedo Farms lives up to the promises that were negotiated over many decades
  2. Attracting appropriate development that compliments and benefits from the incredible park lands and family oriented community.
  3. Monitoring the town’s fiscal position
  4. Inspiring thoughtful discussion and citizen involvement in town government. We could develop strategies for nurturing the next generation of leadership

Specifically, what differentiates you from other candidates seeking the same Town Council position?
I don’t know Richard Rigoli but respect his tenure on the Planning Board.


I know David McMillan from his work on the Town Board, from attending meetings and hearing him speak on issues. I find him to be a thoughtful contributor to discussion who brings passion to the job. If elected, I’d be proud to work with him.

Name: Rich Rigoli

Briefly, why are you running for public office, and what credentials do you have for this role?
Four years ago, I ran for a seat on the Town Board because I believed it was time for a change in Town government.  Under Supervisor Rost, the change has been occurring, but I feel there is more work to be done and I want to be a part of it.  I feel I am uniquely qualified because I have experience on both the Town’s Architectural Review Board as well as the Planning Board.

What are the major town issues that you feel require your attention?
Some of the major issues facing the Town are first and foremost Tuxedo Farms.  Our Town needs growth and I feel we need to do everything we can to bring this project to fruition while holding the developer to the conditions in the Special Permit that he agreed to.  Also, I think the Town needs to take a hard look at the businesses located right on the Ramapo River. It is so important that we make sure they are following all the procedures to make sure it is not harming our river which is a supply of drinking water for so many people.  I also feel the Board needs to keep a keen eye on what’s happening North of Town with the creation of the Town of Palm Tree.  Since a portion of our Town is in the Monroe Woodbury School District, we need to keep abreast of what’s happening up there and help make sure it doesn’t have a negative impact on the school district. 

Specifically, what differentiates you from other candidates seeking the same Town Council position?

I am different from the other candidates because I offer experience on both the ARB and Planning Board.  This is so important as the Town Board charts the future for our Town.  

Polls will be open on November 7 from 6am-9pm.

Orange County voters who will be out of the County on Election Day may request an Absentee Ballot Application by contacting our office at 845-360-6500 or 1-800-879-POLL, by email at elections@orangecountygov.com 
The last day to postmark application for a ballot is: Tuesday, October 31, 2017.  Voters may also obtain a ballot in person at the Board of Elections office at 75 Webster Ave, Goshen between the hours of 9:00AM to 5:00PM, Monday thru Friday until November 6, 2017.  The Board of Elections will have extended hours for Absentee Balloting on the following dates and times: Thursday, November 2 from 9am-8pm & Saturday, November 4 from 9am-12pm.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 23, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, October 23, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmembers Loncar and Reardon were absent.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost said he had been very busy with the budget.  He reported that Michael Bruno had approached the Town Board, as well as the LDC, requesting funds in order to get busy on some projects in Town.  According to the Supervisor, Mr. Bruno is looking to tear down the Junction building in order to build a parking lot.  He wants to put a market in the IGA building which would have a wood fired oven, rotisserie chicken, pizza, coffee during the day and a tavern at night.  He has indicated that he is ready to get going and if he doesn’t get the permits that he needs when he needs them, he is prepared to build these things in Sloatsburg.  He has given the Town a 10-day time period to produce the permissions which would include an indication that he will be able to get $1.4 million from the LDC. ($350,000 for the Junction site, $350,000 for the outside of the IGA building and then another $700,000 for the IGA) He would also like to convert some of the space in the building into retail sites, which he would put up for rent.  While he has told the Board what he wants to do, he has not formally submitted plans to the Planning Board as yet. 
Supervisor Rost also reported that although the Police had stated that they accepted the proposed contract, there have been some changes with their leadership in the PBA (Will Hall has stepped down as President and has been replaced by Officer Shiloh) and they have subsequently stated that they want changes in the contract.  There have been meetings scheduled up in Albany with all parties present to decide if the Police have the right to change their minds after they had indicated that they accepted the contract. 

Councilmember Lindsay reported that the NYS Department Of Transportation was looking into finding a solution for the left hand lane turn into the Duck Cedar Plaza.  While they haven’t come up with a solution as yet, they are meeting and trying to find one.

They have partially trimmed the hedges along Route 17 from Van Zandt road going north, but she feels (and everyone agreed) that there is still a sight limitation for anyone trying to turn North out of Van Zandt Rd.  Since the State owns the right of way along Route 17, this will be their problem/decision to make.  The Town is still concerned about this as they consider it an issue of safety.  Accordingly, Highway Superintendent Dollbaum will draft a letter to the property owner to see if he would agree to lower the hedge. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
John MacNamara noted that the Supervisor kept referencing digging out of a financial hole and wondered when he expected that the Town would be whole again. 

Supervisor Rost replied that the financial strategy has been a “Five Year Plan.” They made a lot of strides last year and feel they are pretty much on target to hit their goal.

Mr. MacNamara also stated that he recalled Michael Bruno was considering putting in a hostel on the second floor of the IGA building as well as outdoor dining.  He wondered if that was what he was trying to get through now or if he had changed his plan. 
He was told that for now, the plan had been scaled back.  

Andy Berish asked for an explanation of the resolution granting a moratorium waiver.  He was told that this was for the Tuxedo Manor Apartments who had been given permission to build additional units back in 2006.  The units were not built at that time, but recently the applicant has come back before the Boards requesting permission to build the units. 

John MacNamara wondered about the building on the corner of Long Meadow Road and Sloatsburg Rd.  Specifically, he wanted to know what the building would be used for.  He was told it had been approved for offices only.  The property is zoned R/O but nothing other than offices has been submitted. 

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed unanimously:

  • a Resolution to schedule a public hearing on the budget for November 13, 2017 at 7 pm.
  • a Resolution to schedule a public hearing on the Comprehensive Plan for November 13, 2017 at 7 pm.
  • a Resolution declaring vehicles as surplus and authorizing a bid for sale – these are two trucks the Highway Department has recently replaced.
  • a Resolution granting a Moratorium Waiver – this is for the Tuxedo Manor Apartments who are looking to build more apartments behind the ones that already exist.
  • a Resolution to grant a Special Permit for Our Lady of Guadalupe Torch Relay Race – this is an annual occurance.

Public Comments:
Claudia Bakhtiary wondered if granting Tuxedo Manor Apartments permission to build another 32 1 bedroom units might not be creating a glut on the market for that kind of housing. 

Supervisor Rost responded that he thought the projects at Tuxedo Manor and Tuxedo Farms were two entirely different situations which would attract different renters. 

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum reported that the mulch and topsoil bins have been completed and moved to Quarry Field. 

He also stated there is a town-wide problem with the train station which is locked and he wonders if it will remain locked.  In the ensuing discussion, it was stated that the bathrooms would remain locked with access provided only to people who rent the station.  People have been regularly “trashing” the bathrooms and doing so in such a way that no one is willing to clean them any longer.   It’s a vandalism issue as the toilet paper is also being stolen on a regular basis.  Councilmember McMillen suggested installing cameras on the premises. 

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum also stated that the consent order from the DEC on the Highway property has been lifted for the most part.  If the Department can get some of the dirt out, the DEC would no longer have to be there.  Everyone agreed that the Town is very close to having the site cleaned up. 

Police Officer Shiloh added his opinion that if the DOT would install a turning lane at the Duck Cedar Plaza, that would solve the problems they have been experiencing there.  The Police Department is in favor of adding the turning lane.  He also added his approval of locking the train station bathrooms. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into Executive Session to discuss a Labor Contract. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting October 23, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Agenda Items:
1. Budget Workshop to discuss 2018 Budget
2. Resolution for sign permit, Tuxedo Wellness.
3. Resolution to schedule Budget Public Hearing for November 13, 2017
4. Resolution to Schedule Comprehensive Plan Public Hearing

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers - Modifications
Vouchers

Executive Session Regarding Labor Contract

Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting October 10, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, October 10, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

After welcoming everyone, Supervisor Rost stated that he knew that most of the audience was there to hear about the Xicom settlement so he was going to amend the order of the agenda and take that item first.  He began by introducing Monica Snitily who has been one of the principle negotiators on the case over the last several years.  He then asked her to provide a brief history and a current update.  Ms. Snitily began by explaining that the settlement in question had settled three active cases all brought by SRS (owner of the Xicom property) against the Town and “various individuals related to the Town.”  SRS initially filed a case against the Town in 2007 and it went through all the different phases of litigation, including appeals after which it was decided that SRS would have to comply with all zoning regulations.  SRS then brought two State court actions and one Federal court action.  The State actions have taken a back seat to the Federal action and the Federal action has been pending since 2010.  She went on to explain that a typical case has various phases: 1-the pleading 2-answers to the pleading or move to dismiss 3-discovery 4-another motion to dismiss and 5-trial.  This particular case had nine actions and was sixty-five pages long.   Ms. Snitily filed a motion to dismiss and the Judge dismissed five of the nine complaints leaving four.  Based on those four complaints, SRS was claiming well over $4 million in damages.  Considering the current state of the case (and the fact that the case is still facing discovery which would entail many hours of legal work as well as the likelihood of the case going to trial all of which could well take an additional five to-eight years) a settlement was recommended.  The terms of the settlement are confidential.  Neither party has admitted to any wrong doing.  It has been determined that the property will have to go before all the pertinent Town Boards to get permissions before any building is allowed.  Because Town Building Inspector David Maikisch has been sued individually in this matter, it has also been determined that he cannot serve as the Building Inspector for the property.  The Town will be able to appoint another Building Inspector for this particular property.

Clinton Woods resident Sue Scher inquired as to what SRS was ultimately looking to do with the property.  She was told that the Town does not know. They believe that SRS will sell the property and then we will see what a new owner proposes to do. 

Town Judge and Clinton Woods resident Sandy Newman asked a lot of questions about the case and a pending motion to dismiss.  He was told that the case was no longer pending because of the settlement. 

Town Judge and Clinton Woods resident Sandy Newman asked a lot of questions about the case and a pending motion to dismiss.  He was told that the case was no longer pending because of the settlement. 

Several other residents had questions about what would and would not be allowed on the property. They were told that any applications for this property would need to go in front of all the appropriate Boards for approval.  Nothing has been changed.  Whatever existed before is what exists now.  Several different residents stated that the owner is telling people, via a website, that he has 35 parking spaces and has been approved for certain businesses.  It was reiterated by Supervisor Rost that the number of parking spaces is consistent with what it has always been and that no new permissions have been granted. If the owner wants to make changes, he will have to seek approvals from the various Boards in Town.  

Judge Newman then expressed his extreme disapproval of the confidentiality of the settlement stating that he feels it is inappropriate for a public body such as a Town and will only lead to the applicant suing again if he should be turned down by any of the Boards.  The Judge also stated that he would like to know what the owner plans to do with the property. 

It was explained that no one knows what the owner is planning to do, but as of right now, he can only do what was approved 6 months ago for the property.

Judge Newman reiterated that he felt keeping the details of the settlement confidential was wrong. 

Various other Clinton Woods residents expressed their dismay that the owner of the property has allegedly told people that he had approvals for a business that would have thirty five cars.  The residents feel that this is too big a business for the site and potentially dangerous for the rest of the development. 

It was again explained that no new approvals had been granted and that the owner retained the same permitted uses that he’ has always had.  The Supervisor also stated that the Town cannot prevent the property owner from saying things which may or may not be true.  

For a third time, Judge Newman expressed his disapproval of the settlement, further commenting that the owner is under the impression that he has thirty five parking spaces and therefore in the future, if an applicant comes before any of the Town Boards with a similar request and is told that thirty five spaces is too many, they will sue. 

Supervisor Rost responded that Judge Newman might be right.  He further commented that no one on the Board wanted this mess, but ultimately, without a settlement, further litigation could have proved extremely costly for the Town and they didn’t want this.  The Board is simply doing the best the can to clean up the mess in the most responsible manner.  When they started negotiating the settlement, SRS initially asked for $2.7 million dollars.  The Board and their attorneys have successfully negotiated this down to $250,000.   With out a settlement, there would have been no end in sight for this matter.  It was not the Town Board who requested the confidentiality.  This was requested by and granted to SRS.  Judge Newman suggested that the Town should go back to the Judge on the case and ask if they could disclose the settlement to residents. 

Ultimately, it was agreed that Ms. Snitily would ask, however she cautioned this this was something that would have to be  signed by all the parties of the agreement and she feels strongly that the owner will not agree as he was the one who demanded it in the first place. 

The Supervisor then thanked the residents for their comments and their interest reiterating that the Board was not happy about the settlement or the confidentiality of it.  The Clinton Woods residents then left the meeting.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost announced that there had been a very successful Family Fun Day the previous Saturday and thanked Recreation Head Shari Brooks for all she had done to make it happen.  Additionally, the Supervisor stated that the Tentative Budget has been submitted and he would like to schedule a workshop for October 23 at 6:30 pm.  The regular Town Board meeting will follow. Finally, the Supervisor reported that while he was at Family Fun Day he had spent some time with Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus, who agreed to broker a meeting between the Town and the State DOT to see if they could get the State to install a turning lane on Route 17 in front of Dottie Audrey’s.

 Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • a Resolution to obtain two trucks for the Highway Department under a lease/purchase agreement.  A large portion of the cost will be covered by a grant.
  • a Resolution to hire a part time Police Officer – Clifford Weeks will start work immediately
  • a Resolution accepting the Tentative Budget
  • a Resolution to schedule the Budget Workshop for October 23rd at 6:30 pm

Someone asked if the Workshop about Tuxedo Farms and their most recent requests would be rescheduled. 

It was explained that all of the consultants and Boards needed to work out and agree on what they were being asked to approve before the Workshop was rescheduled.  This is still being worked out. Specifically, they need to agree on whether or not the Town Board should or could weigh in on the change in parking. 

Public Comments:
Dale Mottola requested permission for the Sons of Italy to put up road signs advertising the pasta dinner they will be holding on October 22.  This was granted.

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum inquired as to where the Town was with the sidewalk in front of the Shore Building. 

Councilmember Lindsay advised that the State DOT was going to clear the hedges to the property line but they were no longer going to build the sidewalk because in order to do so they would have to trespass onto Mr. Shore’s property to do the work.  She further commented that she would like to somehow find a way for people to walk to the Bank without having to walk in a road. 

Jerry Mottola suggested that the Town should bring a police officer down into the Hamlet to issue speeding tickets in an effort to slow down traffic travelling through Town.
 Lieutenant Norton responded that they are planning to do this.  They are currently doing a study of the situation.

Mary MacFarland wondered if there was anything the police could do to stop Renaissance Faire traffic from blocking Clinton Woods and other roads and driveways.
Lieutenant Norton responded that they would need to look at the traffic flow for the Faire in general and work with the Renaissance people to make improve it, which would hopefully ease the situation.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

From The Town Supervisor

Hello Tuxedo,

I want to share some good news with you from the State Comptroller’s office.  They released their “Fiscal Stress” report for every municipality in the State and I am pleased to inform you that our Town of Tuxedo is not on the list.  We still have some work in front of us but we went from being the only Town in the State last year to make the “seriously stressed” list at 78% fiscally stressed, to a rating of “no designation” and 37% fiscally stressed.

We have been through a lot. I inherited a fiscal situation that I was determined to correct. The board and I have had to make some tough decisions, trying to balance necessary expense cuts with maintaining services needed. It's been difficult, but our focus and (sometimes unpopular) fiscal decisions have begun to pay off for our town.  I have attached the link so you can view the complete report.    http://wwe1.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/fiscalmonitoring/fsms.cfm

Michael Rost
Tuxedo Town Supervisor
845-351-2265
supervisor@tuxedogov.org

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Minutes
Monthly Reports
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update

Public Comments on Agenda Items
1. Resolution to Purchase of 2 Trucks for the Highway Department.
2. Resolution to Hire Part Time Police Officer.
3. Schedule Budget Workshop for October 23, 2017.

Any other business that may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

line

Tuxedo Farms Town Boards Workshop Meeting October 10, 2017

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a workshop meeting to include the Town Board, The Planning Board, and the Architecture Review Board to review the proposed modifications to the Tuxedo Farms special permit at 7:15 p.m. on Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at the Tuxedo Town Hall, Community Room, One Temple Drive, Tuxedo, New York.

Immediately following the regular monthly meeting will take place.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting/Tuxedo Farms Workshop & Public Hearing September 25, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, September 25, 2017 at 7 pm. All members were present.

The meeting was preceded by a workshop meeting for Board members with Town Planner Bonnie Franson as well as Joe Biglino and David Exroth from Alfandre Architecture.  The subject of the workshop was the recent request by the Related Companies to add vinyl siding to the allowed materials for their Tuxedo Farms project as well as their request to reconfigure Phase One of the project.   Ms. Franson gave an overview of the changes that have been proposed.  These include changes to the allowed materials, the mix of housing and a complete reconfiguration of the parking.  Ultimately, the question at hand is whether the Town will be getting the quality of development they thought they were going to get if they approve these changes.  Ms. Franson explained that in the original proposals, the development contained a large area, which was zoned for research office.  This has now disappeared from the proposal altogether.   The LIO (Light Industry and Office) and RO (Research/Office) zoning areas have also been reduced in size.  So, as currently proposed there is a significant reduction in the amount of non residential space than there was in in the original plan.  Because the Town agreed to give up this non-residential space and it’s resulting tax revenue, the developer promised “high end” housing which would generate the desired tax revenue.   The Special  Permit allows for 10 different styles of housing.  Ms. Franson cautioned that the Board should consider whether or not they think they will actually get those 10 different styles and in turn the level of diversity they have been promised if they approve the change in materials.   According to Ms. Franson, Related has stated that the First Phase of the development needs to be done in “production housing” (i.e. by builders) in order for it to work and the builders want to use vinyl.  The Architectural Review Board met with the architectural consultants a week ago in a workshop meeting, the result of which is that the ARB is recommending that the Town Board not allow for the use of vinyl. 

Councilperson Reardon expressed her concern that the ARB had made this recommendation and did not perhaps know exactly which vinyl material was being proposed.  In her mind, there are many different kinds of vinyl, and certainly there are more grades of vinyl available now than there were 20-30 years ago.  In her view some of them are very nice while others would not work so well in the proposed development. 

Ms. Franson reported a conversation she had with Mr. Dance in which he stated that the problem is with the laborers.  Within the production housing companies, there are many labors who know how to install vinyl siding, but not as many who know how to install the alternative fiber cement (also known as Hardie Board which is a brand name). 

Architectural Consultant David Exroth commented that he didn’t think there was much difference in cost between vinyl siding or fiber cement, but if he were looking at constructing a building, he would not use vinyl because he didn’t think it would last as long as the fiber cement.

Jay Myrow, attorney for Related, responded that in a phone call with Andrew Dance that afternoon, Mr. Dance had indicated that all of the production builders they are talking to have said they only want to work with vinyl.  If Related can’t sell to production builders, then both the developer and the Town have a problem.  He further pleaded for the Board to have some flexibility, commenting that he felt that it was in everybody’s best interest (the Town, the developers, the builders and the buyers) that this project is built with high quality materials that were attractive to everyone. 

Ms. Franson then summarized the architectural changes that have been proposed, which are a change to the roof pitches in certain models and the ability to use vinyl siding.  It was reiterated by the developer that they would not let two identical houses be built right next to each other and that they were going for a variety of the styles approved in the Special Permit. 

Councilperson Reardon, who lives in the Hamilton Estates development, commented that when her neigborhood was being built, there were no rules about what materials could be used and yet they have a variety of styles and materials there. 
Ms. Franson responded that Hamilton Estates had been built before the Town had an ARB.  

Ms. Franson then reiterated that this was a time for the Town Board to ensure that the Town of Tuxedo would be getting the kind and quality of development that they thought they would and should be getting when they issued the Special Permit.

Commenting that he felt the Board needed to start with the materials, Councilperson McMillen stated that he felt there had been a failure with the mock up.

Councilperson Reardon added that she felt the Board needed to execute a careful review page by page review of what has been proposed, making sure to  get a complete explanation of anything that they have questions about.  She feels that there can be no room left for anyone to have any misconception about what will be built.   Ms. Franson suggested that the Town Board would need to communicate their feelings to the ARB. 

Henry Hefner of Related commented that in a phone conversation held that afternoon with Andrew Dance, the architects, the attorneys as well as the Town Planner, among others, it had been stated unequivocally that the developer understood that “specifications and guidelines” for the use of the vinyl would need to be developed.  He also remarked that the mock up had not been meant  to show “craftsmanship,” but rather how the material looked.  It was put together by a general contractor and not by a homebuilder. 

There followed a 5 minute recess and then the meeting recommenced with the public hearing on the subject. 

The following people spoke during the hearing:

David du Pont – spoke about the expectations that he and others had for the project when it was originally proposed and passed.  He implored the Board to stick to what was originally agreed upon.  To read a copy of his remarks, click here.

Andy Berish inquired as to why the developer was looking to change the housing mix to incorporate so many more one-bedroom apartments?

Chiu Yin Hempel -  spoke about the materials she had seen on the mock ups and said she agreed with the consulting architect as well as the ARB that these materials should not be approved.  To read a copy of her remarks, click here.

JoAnn Hanson spoke of her concern that the quality of the proposed development is being diminished and said she felt Related needed to submit market studies to back up their claims.  To read a copy of her remarks, click here.

George McCathern, a member of the Architectural Review Board, said he had been serving on the ARB since it was first set up to review the Tuxedo Farms project some 20 years ago.  Commenting he still has all the original guidelines, he stated that over the years, this project “keeps being watered down.”   He does not feel vinyl siding is acceptable for the project no matter what grade is used.  Among other things, it is not possible to create decorative molding with vinyl siding but it is possible with fiber cement or Hardie Board. Without features such as this, there would be no way to set a $500,000+ house apart from those built with the lowest possible materials. 

Ken English commented that he finds it odd that the production builders are stating that without the accommodations in materials, they would not be interested in building, and Mr. English finds is strange that the developer would “go ahead and dig that hole up without having known that.”  He noted that the development was supposed to have 896 single-family homes and wondered what the developer would be telling those home buyers about the school district? 

Richard Bartlett said that he had gone to look at the mock up.  He noted that earlier in the evening he had heard representatives of the developer state that the mock-up was not about the building, rather it was about the materials.  He feels that’s the problem as the materials are not good.  He further stated that he had been following this project since the beginning and had been at the meeting with original Architect, Robert Stern.  He remembers well what the Town was promised.  He believes that the economic differences that would result from using vinyl would be ultimately be assumed by the builders as there is no proposed change to the cost of the units once built….and that this is Tuxedo’s problem… The problem the Town currently faces is in getting the tax base that they were promised back when the project was approved.  He also cautioned that the “tone” of the first phase will set the tone of the entire project. He doesn’t feel there that the Town should allow the first phase to be built using cheaper materials because there’s no way they would get high end homes in the next phases if they were to allow for cheaper construction now.  If the Town Board is feeling exhausted because they have been at this for so long, they should keep in mind that this is the moment that really counts and they need to stick with it because the developer will be gone and the people of Tuxedo will be left with what has been built. 

Mike Santoianni urged the Town not to accept cheaper materials.  He said the Board should be looking to talk to builders themselves rather than accepting whatever Mr. Dance says they will and will not do.  As a Real Estate professional, he sees that there is a demand for 2 family homes no matter what Mr. Dance is saying.  He further suggested that both the Town and the School District were now experiencing negative impacts because the developer has not built for all these years.  The developer is blaming that impact on the School District, who is possibly feeling it most of all, when in fact they are responsible.  He feels they are blaming the victim. Additionally, Mr. Santoianni noticed that the day after the developer managed to negotiate that the proposed Pilgrim Pipeline would go around their property instead of through it, something they didn’t disclose to anyone, they started blasting their hole.  Clearly, that initial delay wasn’t because of the school district. 

EJ Matthews suggested that he felt the vinyl siding being proposed could be a fire hazard.  He recently heard about a building, which burned down in something like 10 minutes because the “cheap vinyl siding” was engulfed so quickly. 

Supervisor Rost thanked everyone for their commentsstating that the public hearing would be kept open at least until the next Town Board meeting. 

Councilman McMillen commented that he had just learned this was the 5th time Related had requested that the Special Permit be opened and revised.  This disturbs him and he asked Ms. Franson if she would put together a memo enumerating the revisions to the permit.  She agreed to do so. 

George McCathern noted that Related had been in front of the ARB to discuss the townhouses and said they were asking for permission to use vinyl on those as well.  He feels there are issues that the ARB and Planning Board need to discuss together.

Councilmember Reardon proposed that a workshop be held with  members of the Town Board, Planning Board and ARB together so that they could all hear the same things at the same time.  Everyone agreed this was a good idea and the meeting was set for Tuesday, October 11 at  7pm.

Jim Hays stated that he’d been following the development since 2000 and he’s noticed that Related has asked for many changes over the years, most recently a widening of the main road going into the project.  He feels that Related should decide specifically what it is they want and then stick to that. 

Planning Board Chair Mike Reardon commented that the Planning Board had recommended widening the road and Volunteer Fireman David du Pont echoed that the emergency services in Town had asked for that as well. 

Mike Santoianni suggested that the Town Board should be negotiating with potential builders and not the developer.

Nate Wolinsky commented that he thought Andrew Dance and Related were “brilliant.”  He said he’d been watching the progress for about 20 years as well and found them to be brilliant and so he feels that the Town needs the Boards to work together so that they can  be as smart as they are.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost announced that Councilperson Lindsay had recently applied for a grant for improvements to Town Hall and she was successful in getting $50,000 for this. 
Additionally, he stated that he was still working on the budget and was happy to report that it  would once again come in under the cap.  Further, the police have finally agreed to ratify their contract. 

Deputy Supervisor Lindsay stated that she would be applying for a Restore New York grant with a letter of intent due by October 13. The grant would be for restoring vacant, abandoned and condemned properties and for which they could receive up to $1 million.   

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from Counsel. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 25, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Board Workshop With Alfandre Architecture and the Town Board to prepare for the Public Hearing Public Comments will not be allowed at this time

PUBLIC HEARING – TUXEDO FARMS

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that, pursuant to section 272-a of the Town Law of the State of New York, the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a public hearing at Town Hall, 1 Temple Road, Tuxedo, New York, on September 25, 2017, at 7 p.m. for the following purpose: to consider the application of Tuxedo Farms for modifications to the Tuxedo Farms special permit

All interested persons will have an opportunity to be heard at this hearing

REGULAR BI-MONTHLY MEETING

Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Any other business that may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board to Hold Workshop Meeting with Architects Prior to Public Hearing Monday, September 25

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold, a public workshop involving the Town Board, and Alfandre Architecture to prepare for the Public Hearing with Tuxedo Farms.  Community Room, One Temple Drive, Tuxedo, New York, on Monday, September 25 at 6:00 p.m

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting September 11, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, September 11, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  Councilmember Reardon was absent.

Tuxedo Farms Presentation:
Noting that he understood that a majority of people in the crowded meeting room had come to hear about Tuxedo Farms, Supervisor Rost introduced Andrew Dance of Related Companies., He also recognized Town Planner Bonnie Franson and Architect Joe Biglino of Alfandre Architecture, who are consultants to the Board and who were present in order to provide an overview to the Board in an effort to ensure that everyone would be prepared for the public hearing on September 25.

Mr. Dance explained that originally Northridge (phase one of the development) had been planned as a community of 2 and 3 bedroom units with a handful of 1-bedroom units in the mix, all of which would be available to for purchase.  The present builders however are looking for 1 and 2 bedroom units, which would be rentals.  Specifically, they are asking for is 180 units in total, comprised of 72 2 bedroom units and 108 1 bedroom units..  Within the 1-bedroom units, there would be some variation (i.e. some would be bigger than others).  Since this plan is different than what was approved as part of the Special Permit back in 2010, it requires Town Board approval.  The developer is also seeking a change in the previously approved building materials, most notably the inclusion of Vinyl siding.  A presentation on these changes took place at a Town Board meeting several months prior.  There will be a public hearing on all of the changes in two weeks on September 25. When Related appeared before the Town Planning Board, they were asked to fill out a Full Environmental Assessment Form as well as to write a Technical Memo outlining proposed changes. 

Click here to see a copy of both the EAF and Technical Memo. 

Mr. Dance pointed out that by changing the housing from condominiums to rental properties, their planners have advised them that they would be effectively adding school children to the plan as rental properties typically generate more children.  They anticipate that there will be an increase of 36.8 school children.  At the same time the valuation of the project, due to the proposed change in housing styles, will increase by $923,000. The overall bedroom count for Northridge remains the same as the 2015 approval—there are still 604 bedrooms and 293 multifamily units, just as there were before.

There is a slight decrease in the amount of sewage generated as well as in the amount of water needed. 

Town Planner Bonnie Franson explained that these changes had come about during the Planning Board review of the Northridge subdivision. She further clarified that the proposed changes were to the Special Permit, the bulk of which was adopted in 2010 with a few changes done in 2015.  The applicant is asking to be able to use vinyl siding, which was not included in the design guidelines within the Special Permit.  They are also asking to change the mix of bedrooms as outlined by Mr. Dance.  The attorneys for the Town have determined that these changes must be approved by the Town Board.  The project is still subject to SEQRA regulations. 

Some of the 1-bedroom rental units will feature dens.  These rooms vary in size and have no bathrooms and no closets so they are not extra bedrooms.  Related anticipates that they will be  used as home offices or exercise rooms among other things. 

Councilperson Michele Lindsay noted that units with 2 or more bedrooms have been shifted to the Townhouses in the Commons area.  She feels that this is probably where schoolchildren will be situated.  She inquired as to when Related plans to have those units ready for occupation. 

Andrew Dance responded that those sites were “shovel ready,” but the timeline as to when they would built would depend on the school district.  The home builders are not comfortable with the district as it exists today.   Most of the projected schoolchildren will come in Phase Two of the project. 

David du Pont requested that the Town ask Related to relocate the mock up of materials, which they recently erected at the request of the Town Board, so that it would be more accessible for people to look at. 

An audience member inquired about the market studies that had been done on the project.  Town Planner Franson responded that as far as she knew, there had not been any new market studies done.  The analysis had been done using the figures from the 2010 market studies.  The Town asked Related to use those figures so that they would be comparing “apples to apples.”

Architectural Consultant Joe Biglino submitted a memo to the Board with his comments on the application.  Click here to see a copy of this memo.  He expressed some frustration as well as some confusion with regard to the redlined proposal that he had been studying, commenting that he he was uncertain as to what was part of the original proposal and what was new.  It was agreed that Ms. Franson would meet with him and clear this up.

Councilperson Lindsay asked if Mr. Dance had price points for the houses with the new materials.  He responded that the “Village homes and below” would be below a million dollars.

Supervisor Rost asked for confirmation that not every house/structure was going to be built with vinyl and that home owners would be provided with a choice of materials. 
The answer was that of course there would be choices and that the development would be designed to feature a variety of styles.  The homes will basically be custom built according to the buyers choices.. 

Town Planner Franson commented that within the specifications outlined in the amendment they should specify what type/grade of vinyl would be allowed, noting that what is being shown on the mock up is different than the first samples the Town saw. 

Councilperson Loncar asked if there all the houses/structures would be constructed with the vinyl siding or if they had a predetermined ratio of the different materials.  Mr. Dance reiterated that the intent was for a variety of styles.  It was also pointed out that some of the styles options do not lend themselves to being built with vinyl siding. 

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he was still working on the budget with various department heads. Additionally, he and Highway Superintendent Dollbaum met with the DEC about the Highway Department site.  By and large, the Town is making good progress with the site although there is still work to be done on the stumps.  In the near future there will be a meeting of the Town LDC  (Local Development Corp) for the purpose of reorganizing that entity and also to work on the application forms, for hamlet revitalization projects.

Finally, the Supervisor noted that it had been a big weekend in Sloatsburg for Michael Bruno with the grand opening of his property.  Commenting that he had been there on Sunday and that he thought it looked nice, he added that he hoped Mr. Bruno would get busy in Tuxedo soon, something the Board is looking forward to.

Councilperson Lindsay reminded everyone that September 15 is the deadline to sign up to have someone from Solarize Orange to come and evaluate their property.  Anyone who is interested in this should call her.  Additionally she reported having met with the State DOT about the upcoming highway project.  The focus of the meeting was on   sidewalks and improved ramps and pedestrian crosswalks that are being planned.  The plan includes a sidewalk that will run  to the end of the Chase Bank property as well as one from the Ambulance Building down to the Orange Top. 

Mary Graetzer asked Councilperson Lindsay whether she had made any progress in securing a representative of the DOT to come talk to residents of Tuxedo about the upcoming road diet, which is planned for Sloatsburg.  Mrs. Lindsay responded that Sloatsburg was planning to have one final meeting on this subject.  Councilperson Loncar interjected that he wanted to see a meeting between the DOT and Tuxedo, not necessarily run by Sloatsburg.  He asked Councilperson Lindsay to please give him her contact’s number so he could call and try to set up a meeting.  Several people from the audience spoke on this subject and the majority of them were all cerned that if Sloatsburg carries through with this plan, it will end up being a nightmare here in Tuxedo. 

Claudia Bakhtiary wondered what if anything could be done about the spot on Route 17 north where cars turn into the Duck Cedar plaza, commenting that she thought this was a potentially dangerous spot. 

She was told it was very difficult to get the DOT to agree to install signs or reduce speeds.  Since Route 17 is a State Highway, the Town Board has no jurisdiction over it.

Jim Hays asked how the units in Northridge, which are now proposed as all rental units, will be sold off?  He was told that  builders would buy the buildings and then rent the units out.  Mr. Hays then wondered who would impose the variety with the buildings? 
The answer was the Planning Board, together with the Architectural Review Board. 

Ellen Gluck wondered where the developer was getting his information about what potential buyers want?  JoAnn Hanson asked if a marketing study had been done?  She was told that a study had been done in 2010.  Ms. Hanson then commented that she felt they couldn’t have it both ways…the developer has stated that they need to have cheaper materials in order to make their sales and yet the price points will remain the same. 

Diana Petrosky congratulated the Board saying that she thought the Highway Department looked a whole lot better. 

Chiu Yin Hempel commented that she thought the driveway leading to the developers’ material mock ups was easy to miss and wondered if Related would put out a sign to help people to find it?

Brynna Pomp said she had made two trips to Sloatsburg over the past weekend and feels that what Michael Bruno is doing there is “remarkable.” She wanted to know if the Town was doing everything they could be doing to help him to go forward with plans here in Tuxedo. 

She was told that at present there is no proposal from Mr. Bruno in front of the Town.  In fact, the Town is looking forward to working with him.  Councilperson Lindsay further stated that the Orange County IDC (Industrial Development Corp) would like to offer Mr. Bruno a sales tax reduction and property tax abatement for the first few years of operation and the Town has been very supportive of both of these ideas.  In addition, the Board has granted Mr. Bruno his two requested waivers (a property line change and a waiver from the current moratorium).
 Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • a Resolution to adopt an updated Employee Compensation and Benefits Manual
  • a Resolution to adopt an updated Employee practices Compliance
  • a Bond Resolution to cover the settlement of a claim against the Town
  • a Resolution to increase the Court Clerk’s salary and title – Claire Squillini is moving up into Libby Smith’s position after her retirement.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to discuss an employee matter.

back to top

line

Public Hearing on Changes to Phase One of The Tuxedo Farms Project To Be Held September 25, 2017

Notice is hereby given that the Town Board of the Town of Tuxedo will hold a Public Hearing to consider the application of Tuxedo Farms for modifications to the Tuxedo Farms special permit on Monday September 25, 2017 at the Tuxedo Town Hall, Community Room at 7:00 p.m.

The Town will make every effort to assure that the hearing is accessible to persons with disabilities. Anyone requiring special assistance and/or reasonable accommodations should contact the Town Clerk.

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Meeting September 11, 2017

EXECUTIVE SESSION- 6:30pm to seek advice from council

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

TUXEDO FARMS - Presentation by Related Companies of Special Use Permit Amendment Application- Changes in Bedroom Count by Unit Type
                            
Agenda Items:

1. Resolution to Adopt Updated Employee Compensation and Benefits Manual
2. Resolution to Adopt Updated Employee Practices Compliance
3. Bond Resolution
4. Resolution to Increase Court Clerk Salary and Title

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers

Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting August 28, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, August 28, 2017 at 7 pm.  Councilperson Mcmillen was absent.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost remarked that “like everyone else,” he had been on vacation.

Nevertheless, he has been working on closing out the 2017 budget as well as getting started on the 2018 budget with Brian Sullivan and all the Department Heads. 

Tuxedo Farms has prepared some mock ups of the proposed buildings for Phase One of their project.  The Supervisor is in the process of negotiating where these mock ups will be available for the Board members to inspect. 

Deputy Supervisor Lindsay reported that a representative of Solarize Orange had been present at the August 19 Farmer’s Market.  Solarize Orange is a State and Federal Subsidy program being promoted by the Orange County Department of Planning.   

There were about 12 people who signed up to have them come look at their roofs and/or property.  September 15 is the deadline so if anyone else is interested, they should contact Councilperson Lindsay. 

Finally, Supervisor Rost announced that there would be electronic recycling on September 9th with items being collected at Town Hall.

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Andy Berish asked why the Board was looking to sell the American Legion hall?
Supervisor Rost explained that originally, Chester LeBaron had owned the building and donated it to the veterans., When they could no longer afford upkeep on the building, they sold it to the Town for $1.  Mr. LeBaron also donated a building to veterans in Goshen, NY. As time goes by, he finds that there are more and more veterans in this area and he runs a bus to take them to Washington DC.  Now, he would like to regionalize his activities and include Tuxedo’s veterans.  Accordingly, he has offered to pay the Town $50,000 for the building.  The Supervisor feels this is a great solution because it guarantees that the veterans in Tuxedo will be taken care of.  Also, Mr. LeBaron has said that all the people who presently use the building can continue to do so.  Paul Mitchell, currently Commander of Tuxedo’s American Legion, was present and commented that their group would still like to be involved with the building.  Following a somewhat lengthy discussion, it was agreed that they would ask Town Attorney Howard Protter to work with Mr. LeBaron on a contract, which was also something that the American Legion was happy with. 

Agenda Items:
The following resolutions were discussed/approved:

  • A Resolution to approve sale of the American Legion Hall – see discussion above.    
  • A Resolution to approve Film Permit – a Film called The Irishman is going to be shooting at the Orange Top from September 15-22.  They have requested police presence and help in traffic control (one lane to be closed on September 20th approximately from 12 pm – 7pm). 
  • A Resolution to approve sign permits for Masker Orchards – These would be the same as in previous years and would be up from August 29 – November 17, 2017.
  • A Resolution accepting completed petitions for Library Funding Proposition to be included on the November 2017 ballot – They are asking for an increase of $15,537.

Other Business:

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum  spoke about the work to be done by Sterling Electric so as to make the outbuildings on Highway Department property independent of the Towns electric bill. 

Wayne Mullaney and Derrick Fisher, current tenants on the property were present for the discussion and stated that they would pay for 50% of the installation and 100% of the usage going forward.  In return, they would like assurance that they will be allowed to continue using their spaces.  Supervisor Rost agreed, assuring them that they would.

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum also reminded everyone that there is mulch and topsoil available for Tuxedo residents at the old Highway garage on Warwick Brook Road. 

Gardiner Hempel stated that the Fire Department would like permission to install a programmable electronic sign in front of Company 1’s Firehouse on Route 17.  Here, they would like to promote their recruitment and fund raising efforts.  Mr. Hempel added that this would be a budget item in the Departments 2018 budgetand everyone agreed that there would be enough time to set up the rules and regulations for sign usage. 

Public Comments:
Town Clerk Donna Matthews thanked the Board for all their understanding and patience during her time of “double bereavement,” commenting she really appreciated it.  She also thanked the Board for having allowed her to have summer help.  She further stated that because of the assistance, she felt significant progress had been made in the organization of her office.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting August 28, 2017

6::30 PM - EXECUTIVE SESSION to seek advice from Counsel regarding litigation

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Agenda Items:
1. Resolution to Approve Sale of The American Legion Hall.
2. Resolution to Approve film Permit.
3. Resolution Approving Sign Permit for Masker Orchards.
4. Resolution Accepting Completed Petitions for Library Funding Proposition to be included on the November, 2017 Ballot

Any other Business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Wayne Mullaney of Painting & Sandblasting and Derrick Fisher of Engines Plus

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Vouchers Only Meeting August 14, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

1. Review and approval of vouchers

2. Any other business that may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted

Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting July 24, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, July 24, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost began his remarks stating that it had been a rough week in Town as Town Clerk Donna Matthews lost her mother, Town Planner Bonnie Franson lost her father and his family had laid his brother to rest on Friday. 

Next, he reported that negotiations with the police are ongoing.  Chief Abbott met with the PBA president and the Supervisor is in receipt of  an informal offer which he has not yet had a chance to open.  Once he has reviewed it, he will forward it on to Board members.  He will be in Albany on Tuesday, July 25 to defend the Town against the improper practice charge filed by the PBA.  (This has to do with the Town no longer using their own dispatchers).  

Councilperson Loncar asked the Supervisor to update the Board on Related’s latest proposal for Tuxedo Farms. 

The Supevisor asked Town Attorney Howard Protter to explain.  Mr. Protter stated that it was his understanding that there has been a change in bedrooms and parking which may or may not require them to come before the Town Board for a change to the Special Permit. 

Speaking for Tuxedo Farms, Henry Hefner stated that changes to Northridge apartments were as follows:  they have eliminated garages and will offer instead street parking or space in a communal parking lot (there will be two available lots, one in the circle at the center of the neighborhood as well as a grass lot for overflow parking.) Bedroom counts have also changed and Andrew Dance will address that as he is presently looking into whether or not it can be approved.  Studies done on water and sewer indicate that the systems can easily handle the additional bedrooms.   Related feels that eliminating the garages for the Townhouse units will make it possible for everyone to have a view. 

Councilperson Reardon asked what the rationale for the reconfiguration was? 

Mr. ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Hefner responded that they felt it was a better looking neighborhood and more conducive to neighbors getting to know one another.  Also, a lot of views have been opened up. 

Councilperson Reardon expressed surprise that garages were being removed.  She thought people would want garages but Mr. Hefner responded that “the market” was saying no. 

Councilperson Lindsay inquired as to whether townhouses would be for sale and she was told no, they will all be rental units.  She and others expressed some surprise that the Northridge neighborhood was planned to be all rental units.  Mr. Hefner then stated that he was also present to request that a public hearing be set with the Town Board over the proposed change to the Special Permit, which would allow for the change in building materials requested by the developer.  He added that they are not happy with the mockups that had been constructed and have started over on these.  They anticipate that they may be finished and ready for viewing within a week.  Therefore, they are requesting a public hearing for the August 14 Town Board meeting.

Town Attorney Protter expressed concern that this timing didn’t allow for adequate time to view the finished mockup. 

Councilperson Reardon added that August is traditionally a very heavy vacation month and people in the Town have expressed a desire to see the mockups for the proposed changes. She does not feel it would be fair to schedule a public hearing before the September meeting.  The Supervisor and other Board members agreed with this and the hearing was set for the September 11 meeting. 

Councilperson Lindsay inquired as to the reasoning for reducing the number of bedrooms in the units from 2 to 1.  Mr. Hefner replied that it was his understanding that this is what the market will bear.  Mrs. Lindsay responded that this would influence the number of schoolchildren that the Town was hoping to get.  There followed some discussion among Board members as to whether or not the Town should have a say in how many school children the project should be trying to attract.  It was suggested that the Board and public might want to have a chance to look at the market study done by Related.        

Mrs. Lindsay next reported that the SAM grant application had been submitted on July 14.  The Town is asking for $100,000 to be used for future Town Hall updates and repairs. 

The Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) is due Friday July 28.  She is currently working on letters of support for that.  The CFA funds would be used for a feasibility study and engineering drawings for future Town updates.  The Town is asking for $100,000.  10% of whatever they get will have to come from the Town budget. 

Additionally, Councilperson Lindsay announced that on August 19, the Town would be hosting a Solarize Orange meeting for the Orange County at the Train Station.  

Finally, she reported that the Tuxedo Club wants to meet with representatives of the Town to discuss the remediation of algae in Alexander Pond. 

Councilperson Lindsay then asked Town Attorney Protter whether or not the Town could apply to become an interested  party in the proposed project at the Woodbury Train Station, siting concerns over possible traffic impacts on Tuxedo.

Councilperson Loncar stated that he felt a much bigger problem was the proposed “road diet” that Sloatsburg has just approved.  Pretty much everyone agreed that this would end up being a nightmare for Tuxedo.  It was decided that the Board would ask the DOT to come down and address the community about the impact of this project. 

Agenda Items:

  • Sale of the American Legion Building.  Councilperson Loncar strongly objected to the fact that the building was never put on the MLS and he thinks they are planning to sell it for too little money.  It was explained that selling it to Chester Lebaron guaranteed that the existing uses would continue.  It was decided to  list the building on MLS for a couple of months and see what happens.
  • A Resolution granting additional compensation for the Tax Assessor.  Since a substantial amount of work was not completed by the prior Assessor and since the work was time sensitive with a deadline, it was agreed to pay Jim Davies, the current part time Assessor an additional $1500. 
  • Resolution in support of Consolidated Funding Application.  This was passed unanimously.

Under New Business, The Renaissance Festival was granted the same sign permits that they ask for and are given every year.

John MacNamara wondered if there was any way of getting the State to revisit the plan for Exit 15B as a result of the Sloatsburg road diet and the expected increase in traffic.  He was told that the Town’s understanding is that the exit is a dead deal.  That said, the Board reiterated their desire to get the DOT to come discuss the impacts of the road diet with us. 

Representing the residents of Patterson Hill, Nick Balistreri, said he had written a letter asking for the Highway Department to do pothole repair and, where necessary, resurfacing on that road.  He maintains that the Town passed a resolution at their February, 2017 meeting naming Patterson Hill among others as a public highway.  Therefore, he’d like to know when maintenance was going to start on this road.  He gave a list of the “historic maintenance” they’d like to see happen including repairing potholes, blacktopping, regrading and installing guard rails. 

Town Attorney Protter explained that there is a difference between maintenance and improvements.  In his opinion, blacktopping, grading and installing guard rails where none exist are improvements and not maintenance.  Snowplowing and salting and removing garbage are maintenance.  Improvements get billed back to property owners along the road. 

Highway Superintendent Dollbaum explained there has been a lot of rain this year, which has resulted in bad potholes everywhere.  He is presently in the middle of doing pothole repairs up in Laurel Ridge where there are many more people and roads than just Patterson Hill.  When he is done there, he will get up to Patterson Hill. 

Jimmy Eirand, another Patterson Hill resident, reiterated that all they were looking for was some “historic maintenance” as they were afraid the road was in danger of washing out. 

There was a lot of discussion back and forth about what constitutes maintenance vs. improvements and what Patterson Hill is entitled to.  Finally, it was agreed and the Board authorized the Highway Superintendent to go take a look at Patterson Hill and report back as to what he thought needed to be done there. 

Mr. Eirand then stated that he’d had some problems due to the sewer line blasting.  Supervisor Rost said he would look into it and report it to Tuxedo Farms.

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda for Town Board Vouchers Only Meeting July 10, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance

Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

1. Review and approval of vouchers

Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 30, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, June 26, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  Councilperson Loncar was absent. 

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost reported having had a conversation with Andrew Dance of Related Companies, in which Mr. Dance said that the mockups of the proposed building materials that were being prepared off-site, had been damaged in transit and now needed to be repaired before being reshipped.  Consequently, it will be another two weeks before those are ready to be viewed. 

Work continues on the Comprehensive Plan.  Councilperson Lindsay is presently working with Town Planner Bonnie Franson on some of the verbiage. 

The Supervisor and Councilperson Reardon continue to negotiate with the Police as they are attempting to come up with a contract that is fair for both the department and the taxpayers.

Finally, the Supervisor noted that last year the Town had managed to save $980,000 and as of May they are $960,000 ahead of the budget.  He recognized that this demonstrates hard work and sacrifices made by all Town employees and he thanked everyone for that. 

Councilperson Lindsay reported that the amendment to the State Transportation Law, which would make it possible for Towns to ban pipelines, passed the State Assembly and was sent to the State Senate.  Unfortunately, the Senate didn’t get around to voting on it before the close of the Session and so it will now have to wait for the new Session to start in January and will need to go back to the Assembly at that time. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
There were none.

Agenda Items: 
The following resolutions were passed:  

  • A Resolution to appoint Michele Lindsay as Deputy Supervisor – Since the current Deputy Supervisor, Dave Mcmillen, has been promoted at IBM and thus has less time available, Supervisor Rost has decided to rotate the position of Deputy.  The first appointee is Michele Lindsay.
  • A Resolution to appoint Michele Lindsay to the LDC – the Deputy Supervisor has always served on the LDC
  • A Resolution to Adopt  Moratorium on Development Approvals – Public hearings were held on this law which is being enacted so that the Town can update their Comprehensive Plan.  The moratorium will be in effect for 6 months.

Wayne Mullaney of Painting & Sandblasting and Derrick Fisher of Engines Plus, both of whom have been renting space at the Highway Department property and whose leases the Board voted to terminate appeared before the Board in an attempt to get them to change their minds.  They said that they had heard that one problem had been that their electric bill was higher than the rent they were paying.

Superintendent of Highways Dollbaum confirmed that this was so and said the preliminary estimate for separating the electric on the rental properties from the actual highway garage was $21,000 and they had been told it would have to be installed underground.  Mr. Mullaney and Mr. Fisher stated that they could do a lot of this work themselves and that they both have many friends who are electricians who could do the work for them at a lower cost.  They also proposed that they could share a meter.  The Town’s estimate was for 5 meters.  The Board responded that as long as they were all licensed electricians, they would have no objection to that.  There were a few other things that need to be done to the property as per the Building Inspector (who was not present) but the Board agreed they could try to ameliorate the problems and then possibly stay in their spaces.  Supervisor Rost said they would address it at the next Board meeting when the regular Town Attorney would be present.

Public Comments:
Highway Superintendent Rob Dollbaum announced that he has mulch and topsoil, available to Town residents (but not contractors or landscapers) at the old Highway Department around back where the school busses park.  Residents will have to load it themselves as there is not anyone there to help. 

Ted L’Estrange spoke briefly on behalf of the Falun Gong practitioners of the Hudson Valley.  He distributed packets to all Board members.  This group is being persecuted and killed for their organs by the Chinese government.  They are arrested and tortured in prison, black jails and labor camps for refusing to renounce their faith.  There have been over 1M transplants since 2000.  It is genocide. Further information can be found at www.falundagfa.org or www.faluninfo.net.   Mr. L’Estrange asked the Board to consider passing a resolution against these practices.  The Supervisor said he would discuss it with the Town Attorney (who was not present).  

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned. 

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting June 26, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Minutes
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Agenda Items:
1.Resolution to Appoint Michele Lindsay as Deputy Supervisor
2.Resolution to Appoint Michele Lindsay to the LDC
3. Resolution to Adopt Moratorium on Development Approvals

Any other business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Wayne Mullaney of Painting & Sandblasting and Derrick Fisher of Engines Plus

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting June 12, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, June 12, 2017 at 7 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost opened the meeting and reported that he and Councilperson Lindsay had hosted a lunch with the employees of Town Hall plus Highway Superintendent Dollbaum and Lieutenant Norton.  According to the Supervisor, it was a chance to thank the employees for all that they do each and every day for the Town of Tuxedo.  It was also an opportunity to answer any questions they might have about things going on around Town.  The Board members discovered that there was a lot of misinformation being passed around and thought it was useful to be able to counter that. The Supervisor also mentioned that he is considering having such a meeting quarterly. 

Next he reported that Michael Bruno’s corridor project is moving along and the Board hopes he will put an application before the Planning Board soon. 

The Supervisor then thanked Lieutenant Norton for all his support over the past 7 months (during which he acted as Acting Chief) commenting that he would continue to be instrumental in the police force and important to the success of the department moving forward. One thing that became abundantly clear during the interview process, was that Lieutenant Norton loves being an officer and he is very good at it.  The Supervisor feels that this is a very exciting time for Lieutenant Norton, soon to be Chief Abbott and the entire police department of the Town of Tuxedo.  This statement was met by applause from the audience. Supervisor Rost then welcomed Art Abbott and his extended family, who were present, to the Town and followed that with a resolution appointing him to the position of Chief as a non union employee with a starting salary of $30,000.  This was unanimously passed by the Board.  Chief Abbott then spoke and thanked the Supervisor and Board for their confidence further commenting that he was looking forward to working together with the Board and the entire Police Department.  He particularly thanked Lieutenant Norton for having reached out to him to offer his support.  He and the Lieutenant have known each other for years as he has been on the force with the Town of Woodbury for 29 years and they have moved up through the ranks together.  He also said he was honored and humbled to have been given this appointment and he looked forward to joining the Tuxedo community and protecting and serving it. 

Public Hearing on extending the Moratorium on Building approvals:
Town Attorney Howard Protter explained that the Town has been working on the Comprehensive Plan and has put a moratorium in place until that plan is adopted.  The terms for the extended moratorium are the same as those for the current moratorium with one exception—an addition to Section 3A8.  The new exception is for bulk land transfers to open space preservation so that if someone has a large piece of property—in excess of 45 acres—and they want to transfer it to an open space entity so that it will be preserved for the future, the Planning Board can review such an application
and that transaction can be processed during the moratorium.

Mary Graetzer asked how long the extension would be.  The answer was that it was proposed to be for 6 months with the opportunity, if needed, for it be extended for 2 successful 3 month terms. 

Andy Berish wondered if the moratorium would affect Michael Bruno’s Tuxedo projects.  He added that he understood that Mr. Bruno was going around Town saying that the Town Board was not allowing him to do what he wants to do. 

Supervisor Rost responded that the Board is hoping that Mr. Bruno will submit plans for his project but as of this time, he has not done so.  He further explained that Mr. Bruno has been in front of the Planning Board, but he has not submitted plans. 

Councilperson Reardon added that she suspects people are looking at the progress in Sloatsburg and concluding that the Town is putting up some kind of roadblock, but that isn’t true.  She wanted it on the record that the Town is doing everything they can to accommodate Mr. Bruno and the ball is now in his court.  When he comes with an application, all Boards are ready for him.

Comprehensive Plan comments:
Councilperson Lindsay explained that Town Planner Bonnie Franson is adding language to the Comprehensive Plan because of new initiatives that have been introduced by New York State.   They are reforming the energy vision, call the New York State REV Energy.  The State has a goal of 50% of all energy supplied by renewable energy by 2030.  Language will be added to the plan to allow the Town to consider Good Energy and the smart certifications of their action plan.  The language changes may also help with future grant applications for the Town.  The plan also allows the Town to look into a “road diet” and streetscape improvements. 

Councilperson Loncar expressed his opposition to both the road diet and the clean energy plan.  It was explained to him that the Town wasn’t signing up for either one, just making it possible to do so down the road if they wanted to.

Resolutions:
The following resolutions were passed:

  • A Resolution to hire summer help for the Town Clerk at $12/hour.  The position will expire on Labor Day. 
  • A Resolution appointing Anthony Abbott as Police Chief with a starting salary of $30,000/year.
  • A Resolution for the renewal of the Liquor License at the Orange Top.

 Public Comments:
The only comment came from a member of the audience who wanted to know if there was anything new on the Pilgrim Pipeline.
Councilperson Lindsay responded that there really isn’t anything new at this time and that the legislation to make it possible for Towns to ban pipelines is still in Albany. 

Vouchers were signed and the meeting was adjourned.

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting June 12, 2017

Executive session at 6:00 pm to seek advice from council.

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Minutes
Monthly Reports
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Public Hearing Moratorium on Development Approvals
Continuation of Public Hearing regarding the Comprehensive Plan

Agenda Items:
1. Resolution to Appoint Police Chief
2. Resolution to hire summer help for Town Clerk.
3. Resolution to renew Liquor License
Any other business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers
Adjournment

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 22, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, May 22, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost reported that he and Coucilmember Reardon had inspected the Highway Department property earlier in the day and found that it looked great.  He also mentioned that the Highway crew has been busy all over downtown mulching and washing down sidewalks in preparation for the Memorial Day parade. 

Superintendent of Highways Dollbaum stated that his Department was going to start working on Warwick Brook Rd. on Tuesday, May 30.  They may have to shut it down for a day or two while they are working. 

Councilmember Lindsay reminded everyone that the Orange County Arts Council will be holding their Studio Art Tour on the weekend of June 3rd and 4th.  They will be at 4 locations in Town.  She also stated that the consolidated funding application was due at the end of July and she is hoping to have drawings done in time for that.  She was told that this was an issue for the Tuxedo Farms LDC and not the Town Board.                                                          

Agenda Items:
Presentation by Andrew Arias to review 2016 financial audit report.

Mr. Arias commented that although the Town’s financial picture is beginning to look better, they still have a way to go.  He estimated that if all things remain equal, they should be able to eliminate their deficit by 2020. He emphasized that it would be important for the Board to monitor their budget throughout the year to ensure that there were no unpleasant surprises at the end of the year. 

To see a copy of Mr. Arias’ presentation, click here.

Public Comments:
Andy Berish wondered if the Town had been “involved” with Metro North’s blocking the bridge to the East Village (at the Lucky).  He was told that the Railroad had decreed it was unsafe for people to walk over the tracks.  The Town is working with Metro North to find a new crossing.  Presently, they are looking to reopen an old tunnel that used to exist years ago.  The reopening will be at Metro North’s expense.

Dale Mottola commented that the Spartan Race would be taking place at the same time as the Arts Council’s Open House and she wondered about police coverage for both events.

Acting Police Chief Norton said that the Spartan Race has always run very smoothly and believes this will be the case again this year.  He agreed that a conversation should be had about the Arts Council’s event.

The meeting was adjourned into an Executive Session to receive advice from Counsel.  

back to top

line

Agenda For Town Board Meeting May 22, 2017

Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance
Town Supervisor/Town Board Update
Public Comments on Agenda Items

Executive session at 6:00 pm to seek advice from counsel.

Agenda Items:
1. Presentation by Andrew Arias to review 2016 financial audit report.
2. Resolution Authorizing Bid for Garbage Collection Services

Any other business as may come before the Board after this Agenda is posted.

Public Comments
Budget Transfers
Vouchers

Executive session to seek for advice from counsel.

back to top

line

Town Board Meeting May 8, 2017

The Town Board met on Monday, May 8, 2017 at 7:00 pm.  All members were present.

Town Supervisor/Town Board Update:
Supervisor Rost made the following announcements:

  • The Town is close to executing an agreement with Ben Veltidi and Irwin DeMarino for work at the Highway Garage.
  • The Town’s Annual Update document was accepted by the State Comptroller with no revisions.  He hopes to have Town Auditor Andrew Arias at the next Town Board meeting to do a presentation.

He further noted that he has noticed an increase in residents lining up to talk to the Tax Assessor.  He understands that no one wants the value of their home to go down and thus everyone looks at the taxes.  In looking at everything he and the Board have done to lower expenses along with Highway Superintendent Dollbaum’s work on reducing expenses for his Department and Acting Chief Norton’s work on keeping expenses down in the Police Department, he requested that residents who are “complaining” about their taxes take a good look at their bill and determine exactly where their problem might be.  Is it with the Fire Department or the Library? Those entities also appear on tax bills.  The Library was on the agenda for this meeting looking for another increase in spending.   Additionally, the Supervisor feels that people need to recognize that the School is also an independent part of taxes.  Lastly, the Supervisor reported that Opening Day for the Tuxedo Little League was scheduled for the upcoming weekend.

Councilmember Lindsay stated that the CFA (Consolidated Funding Application – for New York State) is due in July.  The Town needs engineering drawings and she is looking for money to pay for those through the LDC/Hamlet revitalization fund. 

She also reported having attended Sloatsburg’s Community Meeting at the end of April. This was a meeting at which  the DOT presented options for Route 17.  The people were overwhelmingly in favor of a “road diet,” which would make Route 17 into 3 lanes, one in each direction and a middle lane for turning.  Mrs. Lindsday said she had been told that if Sloatsburg could do a road diet, then Tuxedo would also be eligible to do it.

Mary Graetzer spoke up from the audience and stated that she had driven through Sloatsburg just the day before when the stoplight near the Village Hall/Characters was working and there was a huge back up of traffic.  She predicted that if Sloatsburg made over Route 17 with a road diet, there would be huge traffic jams every morning and evening at rush hour. 

Michael Bruno countered this statement, saying that there have been studies done on road diets and that they have found that some people who don’t actually have to be on the road will take another route so there shouldn’t be a traffic jam. 

Councilmember Lindsay said that the DOT would come down and present all the studies on this and then the Town can decide. 

Public Comments on Agenda Items:
Councilperson Reardon stated that every year the Library comes before the Board to ask permission to be put on the ballot for an increase in funds.  She asked Town Attorney Protter to explain why the Library has to do that when other entities in Town don’t have to do it. 

Mr. Protter explained that the Library is the only entity who does not have their own Tax District so if they want an increase, this is how they need to do it.  They have a line item in the Town Budget, which is traditionally the same every year until they ask, by referendum, to increase it. 

Agenda Items:
Presentation by Mike Miele on behalf of Tuxedo Hudson Company:
Mr. Miele, engineer for Tuxedo Hudson Company, stated that their project for the former IGA building has been before both the ZBA and the Planning Board. The final layout for the project, a proposed Market/Restaurant/Lodging Facility, would encroach about 14 inches over the property line.  Since Tuxedo Hudson owns both sides of Store Road, they are proposing to realign Store Road by 14 inches and then transition back to where the original property lines are which would bring the building into the allowed setback.  They are also proposing 7 parking places on Store Road. 

Tuxedo Farms Referral Resolution:
Representing Tuxedo Farms, Andrew Dance explained that their architects, Torti Gallas, had made a presentation to the Board, along with the Planning Board and Architectural Review Board, for certain proposed changes to the Design Guidelines for Tuxedo Farms.  (click here to read our coverage of that presentation).  Since that time, they have cleaned up some language in their proposal as requested by the Town and  also provided a technical memo, which was also requested.  They would now like to have the application referred to the Planning Board, the Architectural Review Board and the Orange County Planning Department so that they can move forward with their process.  The aforementioned Boards/Department would then issue a memo with ideas about the proposal after which, hopefully, the Town Board would set a date for a public hearing on the proposed amendment. 

Mr. Dance further stated that he had been approached by Supervisor Rost with regard to a rumor that Related had sold a large portion of the project’s property to an outside group and he said that was untrue and that Related hasn’t sold any of the property to anyone.  As a “project update,” Mr. Dance reported that work continues on the Quail Road entrance.  They have been doing blasting in small intervals so as not to inconvenience anyone.  Additionally, he stated that two weeks prior, during the midnight to 5 am period, they excavated under Route 17 and the railroad tracks to install the hookup between the project and the sewer treatment plant.  That should be ready to go within approximately 6 weeks.  Progress is also being made on the Southern Entrance to project.     Meanwhile, Related is dealing with prospective home builders.  Mr. Dance stated that he knew there was some discussion in Town about schools.  He believes that there are some residents  who are “like minded” about the schools and, for the moment, Related is just watching the situation.  He added that they are “supportive of anyone who wants to have a discussion about the schools.”  He further commented that he had reached out to the Superintendent of the Suffern High School and encourages anyone in Town to visit the school to check it out and see for themselves what it is like.  Suffern seems eager to have Tuxedo students and economically, Mr. Dance believes it would be better for the Town and certainly for Tuxedo Farms homeowners.  It is Related’s objective to have the core infrastructure for the project “buttoned up” over the course of the Summer so that it can be shovel ready for homebuilders in the Fall. Mary Graetzer commented that it was her understanding after the Workshop meeting that the Town Board would be receiving some samples of the materials that Related is now proposing to use on their project.  She wondered if that had happened. 

Mr. Dance responded that it had not happened, but that it could be arranged if the Town Board so requested. 

Supervisor Rost interjected that it had also been suggested at the Workshop that Related give the Board the names of some projects located nearby which used the proposed materials so that they could go and look at them.  And, according to Councilperson Reardon, that did happen. 

Councilmember Reardon went on to say that she feels it is important for Mr. Dance and potential builders to come and talk to Town residents.  In her view, this needs to take place in a large space as she feels it’s important for people to come and understand what the problems are, “whether real or perceived,” with the school and how that is affecting the project.  “Once and for all,” she said “ we need to give the people the ability to have discussions and make decisions.  This is a critical issue for the Town and I don’t want to step on the school but I think at some point, we have to come together as a Town and have discussions about it that are led by the people who are in charge of the project.”   Mr. Dance agreed although he said he thought the homebuilders should be left out of the meeting.  Referencing the casino project, Mrs. Reardon said that in that situation the residents had been able to come together and listen to differing information and then make up their minds about what they thought would be good for the Town.  She feels the same kind of thing needs to happen with the school.  She then volunteered to organize such a meeting, further commenting that she would research a location and then set a date.  She stressed that she would, of course, include the school in these plans.  She wants to be “fair to all sides,” and feels that if the Town could have such a meeting, at the end of the day, no one would be able to say they didn’t know about the problem.   She stated that she wasn’t giving her personal opinion on this subject although she has one and it is strong.  She feels that when people see a school in their back yard, whether there are 10 students or 100, they think it’s a good thing.  They think it’s good for a resale of their house and their property and she feels that these people just don’t understand. 

Councilmember Lindsay  stated that she would also like to see someone who can talk about the fact that New Jersey is running out of places for building and how this area is the logical next place for population and building to come.  Additionally, she stated that if there were building sites that were shovel ready in the Fall, it seems to her that this would be a win/win for builders. 

Mrs. Lindsay also expressed some skepticism about the request to lessen the amount of meetings with the Architectural Review Board.  Mr. Dance responded that they didn’t want to take away any of the protections for the Town, but they were trying to get the process to the point where it was less subjective and more a case of “checking off boxes.” 

It was pointed out to Councilmember Lindsay by the Supervisor, as well as Town Attorney Protter, that the action being considered at this meeting was just to send the applicant to the Planning Board and the Architectural Review Board as well as the Orange County Planning Department as a first step in the process leading to a public hearing where all questions could be asked and answered. 

Councilmember Lindsay next wanted to know what the status of the Town LDC was as she was hoping to apply for a grant and needs engineering drawings, which she is hoping to get the LDC to fund.

Supervisor Rost responded that at the moment, he is working on the LDC.  Gary Phelps will be coming off that Board and Deputy Supervisor Dave McMillen will be taking his place.  Consultants are lined up.  Thus, Mrs. Lindsay will be able to apply for her funding shortly. 

Finally Mrs. Lindsay wanted to know as far as the SEQR Short Form was concerned if the requested change of materials would impact the financials, which set the housing prices that had been submitted for the project? 

She was told that no one has an answer to that question.  She then requested that this question be added to the short form.  It was agreed that it would be. 

The Board then unanimously supported the resolution to send the request to the Planning Board, ARB and OC Planning Department.

Introduction of Local Law regarding Police Discipline: 
This item was tabled.

Resolution to appoint Gary Phelps to the Board of Assessment Review replacing Carol Matthews:
Councilmember Lindsay commented that she thought the process for appointing people to Boards needed to be more open and above board.  She requested resumes for the people being proposed and never received them. 

Supervisor Rost responded “you didn’t get any bios?” and she replied that she had not.  All the other Board members said that they had received the bios thus she abstained from voting.

Resolution to appoint Maria Warniaha to the Board of Assessment Review replacing Fred Jones.
The vote was 4-1 with Councilmember Lindsay abstaining.

Councilmember Reardon stated for the record that both Mr. Phelps and Mrs. Warniaha had taken the training offered by the County for this position and had been certified by the County.

Councilmember Mcmillen commented that there was still one more position available on this Board, which they were holding open for a resident of the Village.  He asked when the next training was being offered by the County.  The answer was May 15.  Councilman Mcmellen then wondered if they could hope to make the next appointment at the next Town Board Meeting.  He was told yes.

Councilmember Lindsay suggested that, in the future, when Board openings became available they be posted to the Town website.  The Board agreed this was a good idea.

Resolution to extend the Building Moratorium by introduction of new Building Moratorium Local Law:
There will be a public hearing on this law on May 22, 2017 at 7 pm.

Resolution to Grant Special Use and Special Sign Permits for the Memorial Day Community Picnic to the Tuxedo Park Library.
This was unanimously approved.

Resolution approving Form of Petition for the Proposition to Increase Town Board Budgetary Allocation for the Tuxedo Park Library.
This was unanimously passed.

Other Business:
A Resolution to appoint Deputy Supervisor Dave Mcmillen to the Town LDC replacing former Deputy Supervisor Gary Phelps:
This was unanimously passed.

Appointment of Gregory Hart as a part time officer to the Tuxedo Police Department.
This was unanimously approved and Mr. Hart, who was present, was introduced to all and welcomed to the Department.

Electrical Upgrade to Nursery Road:
By way of introduction, Councilmember Mcmillen explained that Orange & Rockland had requested relocating some power lines running from the Keep to Nursery Road.  In return, Orange and Rockland has agreed to beautify the buffer zone between the Village and Nursery Road as well as supply a complete electrical upgrade to the residents of Nursery Road.  Frank Peverly gave a brief explanation of what this would entail. Electricity for Nursery Road will be basically the same but with higher voltage.  Some of the wires will be “cleaned up” at the same time.    Any cost for this will be borne by the Village.  There will be a Public Hearing for Nursery Road residents only on June 12, 2017 at 7 p