By Mary Marvin, Mayor, Village of Bronxville
Nov. 11, 2020: This column is an update of the Village Government’s activities, finances, and future plans as we enter the winter months still in the Covid pause.
County sales tax projections indicate that our first payment in November will be almost $349,000. This is up from last year‘s first payment of the same period of $305,000. It is attributable to the tax on Internet sales and the additional 1% county-wide tax increase, which went into effect late last summer. If we stay on this course, our sales tax revenue should come in above budget and will help offset shortfalls sure to come elsewhere.
Parking Permits and Meter Revenue
The good news is that our on-street revenues have been steadily increasing with September numbers very close to the same period last year despite the loss of some spaces for outdoor dining, and the October numbers look like they are coming in close to last year’s as well.
Lot revenues are down, reflecting the slower or lack of retail/service business along Kraft Avenue, with SoulCycle and the movie theater being the obvious triggers.
However, the Garden Avenue lot has continued to increase thanks in part to the medical offices abutting the lot.
Permit revenues are down due to the free extension of existing resident commuter sales. Merchant sales have returned to normal following their free three-month extension. We are also converting more spaces in the Kensington Garage and the Kraft Lot to 24 hour reserved resident spaces as this segment of parking need remains strong. Our organized waiting list has allowed us to offer parking to residents that we would otherwise not have available.
In light of the times, we are working up some models on an alternative commuter permit for those commuters that may not need a permit every day going forward but perhaps need a two or three-day weekly arrangement. Right now, our plan is to issue commuter renewals in January, and we will have an alternate permit plan as an option.
Building permits are on track to meet budget.
Tennis revenues are down, reflecting a late start to the season this year.
Parking ticket issuance is increasing, reflecting more enforcement since the summer months. Plea by mail is continuing, and we are now also accepting a limited number of in person parking ticket payments.
The Village Board is in the process of negotiating a new contract with our Teamsters union, which represents all of our public works employees who handle refuse, recycling, and many of the infrastructure improvements in the village. We are hopeful, in light of the great respectful and collegial relationship we have developed over the years, that we will come to an agreement that is fair to all parties.
The renovation of work facilities for our Department of Public Works employees is on time and on schedule. The ongoing construction is the reason for the current closure of Palumbo Place at the rear of Village Hall. We are reconfiguring buildings to house 2020 equipment as the buildings have not been refurbished or reconfigured since 1942. I thank all of our dedicated public works employees for being so patient as we make the needed changes.
We have recently completed the New York State mandated bidding process to complete the work on our public street at the intersection of Masterton Road and Midland Avenue. As a result of a successful, though glacial, mandated bidding process, the intersection will become an island similar to what is near the intersection of Kensington and Sagamore Roads. It will be a very permanent improvement that necessitated input from residents, the police department, professional engineers, State engineers, and the State Department of Transportation.
Following up on a recommendation from the recent Village Comprehensive Plan undertaken last year, the Trustees agreed to construct new angled parking on the Post Office side of Pondfield Road between Tanglewylde and Meadow Avenues. It has resulted in the net increase of five spaces, which in that area is actually a 50% increase.
The Board of Trustees’ so understand that as we encourage the uniqueness and quality of Bronxville as a walkable Village, we need to do a better job of making the Pondfield Road and Midland Avenue intersection more pedestrian-friendly. To that end, we worked with a consulting engineer just last week and are evaluating his recommendations.
Again, as a result of our Comprehensive Plan and the incredible work of our Zoning Board Chairman and now Village Trustee Bill Fredericks and now Zoning Board Chairman Stuart Mackintosh, we are updating our zoning code and implementing recommendations. As a result of the input received via the Comprehensive Plan survey, we will be reviewing many zoning and planning concerns in the coming months.
Village officials met last week with Con Ed representatives to discuss their failures with the power restoration effort during the August storm
Verizon Wireless 5G reached out to us for permission to build out 5G in the Village. The conversation was the first of what will be many. We have had side discussions with a consultant who specializes in assisting communities with crafting standards and agreements in advance of any approvals.
Pictured at top: Mary Marvin
Photos by A. Warner and N. Bower respectively
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