Lowdown on Village of Haverstraw Board Meeting 9/17

The Village of Haverstraw may soon be buying back ownership of the village’s streetlights, according the village trustees and Mayor Michael Kohut at Monday night’s board meeting.

The village has been fighting against planned rate hikes by Orange and Rockland Utilities, and as a way out of the hikes the utilities company is offering local municipalities the option to take ownership of the their streetlights. Which means instead of Orange and Rockland workers maintaining the lights, local municipalities would take that responsibility.

Kohut said the purchase of the streetlights would cost about $47,000 and would ultimately lead to a 50 percent savings over what the village is currently pays Orange and Rockland for maintenance. Kohut asked the board for a motion authorizing him to negotiate with O&R, sign an eventual agreement, and go out to bid for a company to maintain the future lights. The motion passed unanimously.

During the mayor’s report, Kohut said he had been approached by the management of the Haverstraw Farmers’ Market about the possibility of continuing the market indoors during the winter months. The board agreed to look further into the matter.

The trustees voted to allow the Haverstraw Brick Museum to temporarily block off a portion of the street between Maple Avenue and Broad Street to hold an antiques sale on September 28. The motion passed unanimously.

Kohut also gave the trustees an update on the progress with the village sign. The sign sits at the top of New Main Street and has on it smaller signs pointing to local village businesses.

The construction of it is nearly complete, but still needs lights and landscaping. Kohut asked the trustees for a motion to authorize $6,000 from contingency funds to pay for the landscaping. The electrical work will be done free of charge for the village. The motion passed unanimously.

The board then approved three applications of young men seeking to join the Haverstraw Fire Department.

During the old business portion of the meeting the board voted to grant a special permit for resident Hector Sotomayor regarding the building of a separate apartment in his residence on Broadway.

The status of the apartment is contingent on it only being occupied by family members, that it is inspected once a year, and that the apartment is returned to its original condition before the house is sold. The motion passed 4 to 1 with Mayor Kohut voting against it.

The next meeting of the village trustees will be Monday October 4 at 8 p.m. at the village hall.