Old Reform Temple to Become a Yeshiva
The United Talmudical Academy of Monsey, a Satmar organization, purchased the former Temple Beth El property on Viola Road in Ramapo, New York. The temple used to be the centerpiece of Reform Judaism in Rockland County. Last year the Temple Beth El congregation merged with Beth Torah in Upper Nyack, creating the Reform Temple of Rockland. The property at 415 Viola Road was put up for auction in June, and more than 100 potential buyers expressed interest in the property that contains a 32,000-square-foot building on a 5.6-acre lot. The winning $9.196 million bid will likely transform the property into a girls’ school according to Joshua Olshin, managing partner for AuctionAdvisors, the auction administrator.
TZ Bridge Progress
The new Tappan Zee Bridge continues to be a work in progress as crews work to assemble the main span and install the stay cables. Since mid-July over a dozen of the 192 cables for the bridge, measuring 190 feet to 623 feet have been installed. These cables allow girder and road deck installation to occur. The new bridge will have a “cable-stayed” structure where the bridge will be held up by the tension created from attaching the cables to the towers and girders. It’s similar to a suspension bridge however a cable-stayed bridge only has one set of cables supporting the road. The northbound span is expected to open by the end of summer 2017 and the bridge should be entirely completed by 2018.
Cuomo Announces New Transformational Transportation Plan
On October 5, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a transformational plan to bring New York’s crossings into the 21st century. According to a press release this plan will implement automatic tolling at MTA bridges and tunnels to reduce traffic, add security personnel to high-profile crossings, add new tunnel barriers to control major floods and add energy efficient LED lighting. Under this plan New York will recreate tunnel plazas and focus on public art. Funding for the improvements is part of the MTA’s $27 billion capital plan. “…This transformational project will revolutionize transportation in New York and ensure that our state is built to lead for generations to come,” he said.
NYC Commuters Can Now Use Apple Pay and Masterpass
Apple Pay and Masterpass digital wallet technologies have been added to the MTA’s eTix mobile ticketing app. The app lets customers purchase one way, round trip, 10 day, weekly, CityTickets and monthly passes for the New Jersey Transit, Metro-North Railroad and Long Island Rail Road. “We believe that the addition of these secure payment options will help us to do an even better job of meeting the needs of our customers, and we look forward to further building the user-base for the app in the weeks and months head,” MTA Chairman and CEO Thomas F. Prendergast said.
Rockland and Westchester Prepare for Hurricane Matthew
Rockland and Westchester are keeping a close eye out on Hurricane Matthew, the category 3 hurricane that is set to hit Florida on Thursday Oct 6 after going through the Caribbean. Many Florida residents evacuated the area. The storm is forecasted to reach a category 4 by midday Thursday. The National Hurricane Center doesn’t believe Hurricane Matthew will touch land, but the storm will get very close to the coast. Meteorologists believe the hurricane would hit the Lower Hudson Valley by this weekend at the very earliest, but it’s still too soon to tell. Rockland and Westchester officials are tracking the storm and County Executive Ed Day said the county is receiving constant updates from the National Weather Service. “We don’t know what Hurricane Matthew will bring us,” Day said. “But we do know that whatever it is, Rockland is prepared.”
New York City Football Club buys 17 Acres at RPC
ORANGEBURG – The New York City Football Club has bought 17 acres on the old Rockland Psychiatric Center property to build a new training facility. The Major League Soccer team plans to build a 25,000-square-foot complex off Old Orangeburg Road. The plans include a soccer field, offices, a gym and parking.
Approval for building on the site, which has been vacant for more than a decade, was given in July by the Orangeburg Planning Board but NYCFC still requires permits, according to the club. NYCFC will pay the town for road and infrastructure improvements. Work could begin this fall with the team moving in for the start of the 2018 MLS season, the club said.
“That area has zoning for recreation which obviously includes for-profit commercial enterprises as well as nonprofit sports leagues and it is our intention to build a beautiful waterfront park as well,” said Orangetown Supervisor Andy Stewart.
Taxes Going Up Again in Ramapo
Ramapo Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence has proposed a tax-cap exceeding $102 million budget for 2017 that contains a 5 to 7 percent tax-rate increase, $8 million to town retirees, and additional funding for 15 new police officers.
The tax-rate hike will depend on whether a house is in the unincorporated portion of the Ramapo or one of its villages, which receive various services from the town.
St. Lawrence is expecting a drop of approximately $700,000 in revenue if the Ramapo Central School District collects its own taxes. Right now, municipalities decide who collects school taxes, but a new state law would put the power to collect their taxes in school districts’ hands. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has not signed the bill yet. The county is recouping money
A second loss for Ramapo is the county collection of community college “charge-backs,” which are partial tuition payments on behalf of local community college students who attend out-of-county schools. St. Lawrence said the cost would reach $800,000 next year.
Town Board budget workshops will be held Oct. 19 at 8p.m. and 26.A public hearing on the budget will be held at Town Hall at 8 p.m. Nov. 10.
Clinton Global Initiative to lay off 74 at New York office
The Clinton Foundation will lay off 74 employees at its Clinton Global Initiative office in New York City at the end of the year, according to a notice filed with the state. The notice, required under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act), said the 74 employees at the initiative’s offices on the 42nd floor at 1271 Avenue of the Americas will be laid off on Dec. 31.
The notice cites the foundation’s plan to discontinue the initiative, which was started by former President Bill Clinton in 2005 to convene “global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.”
Media outlets previously reported that “dozens” of workers at the Clinton Global Initiative had been told they would be laid off at the end of the year, but the WARN Act filing to the state Department of Labor is the first official notice of the number and timing of the layoffs.