Signs, Signs, Nowhere for Signs

BY DYLAN SKRILOFF
Lowdown on April 10 Stony Point Town Board meeting

Supervisor Geoff Finn, the Town Council of Stony Point and interested citizens have some countervailing opinions on the future of signage in the township.

For one, Supervisor Finn had envisioned a scrolling “LED” sign like those in many towns and in front of North Rockland High School, as a possible way to get town information out to drivers. Finn said the sign could be installed at no cost to the town, as other advertising would pay for it, if it was done through the appropriate channels.

However the public and board members said Finn’s idea would encourage distracted driving as well as set a bad precedent for flashing advertising signage across the bucolic corridors of the county’s northernmost principality. Soon after Finn’s idea was announced, SPACE president George Potanovic Jr., fellow activist Susan Filgueras and board member James McDonnell all shared nightmarish visions of a future Stony Point similar in electric advertising voltage to downtown Manhattan.

Potanovic Jr. and other also shared fears that drivers would be distracted by reading the scrolling electric signs.

Finn, who never suggested that storefronts be allowed to advertise on 9W with electric signs, was content to let his LED idea die after hearing the reaction from his colleagues and a handful citizens. However, the town will also be investigating whether it would like to ban political signs on public property, as well as crack down on other signs that are posted to telephone poles and in various locations around the town.

In what is largely a symbolic move, Finn proposed maximum $2,500 fines for illegal signs. The move is symbolic because studies must be done before any new ordinance is passed and officially debated.

Different people had different opinions on how strict enforcement of signage should be. June Jobson, wife of former Supervisor Douglas Jobson and mother of County Legislator Douglas Jobson Jr., said the overabundance of political signage is “disgusting.” Potanovic Jr. said he thought candidates had the right to get their signs out there.

The possibility of making regulations for uniform sign standards in the town was also discussed, and has been brought up repeatedly over the past two years as a possible regulation that could improve business.

In other news at the board meeting, the town is about $180,000 ahead of last year’s revenue on golf course use as they were this time last year. Of course, the weather is to credit for this.

The ambulance corps announced an average response time of only 5 minutes and 5 seconds on 78 calls successfully responded to. The results on an audit of the justice court are impending, the board announced.

The board announced fees for boat launches this year, $10 per launch for residents and $25 for non-residents. Residents are permitted to buy a season pass for $100. Hiring a guard to enforce the regulations was also proposed at the meeting. Whether the regulation will apply to kayaks and canoes will be discussed at a later meeting.

Finn announced newly negotiated contracts with the CSEA union workers. They will receive 2 percent raises the next two years and all new workers will, for the first time, contribute 10 percent to their health and pension plans.

A waiver must be filed for the town’s proposed deputy tax receiver, as she lives one house outside of Stony Point in Garnerville. One of the town’s grant-writers requested and received $40 per hour for work on successful grants where she is not the main grant-writer. On accounts she is the main writer, she receives a commission.

The Ancient Order of Hibernians Division #1 were honored. The members present were Gerry Walsh, James Clarke, Robert Fitzsimmons, Tim O’Neill and Councilman James McDonnell. The division dates back to 1880. The town congratulated the AOH on celebrating the recent 50th anniversary of the big Pearl River St. Patrick’s Day parade.