SEA CLIFF VILLAGE BOARD ANNUAL ORGANIZATION MEETING, 4.3.17
April 6, 2017 -- Residents filled the downstairs meeting room at Sea Cliff Village Hall on Monday, April 3 for the Sea Cliff Village Board’s annual organization meeting, at which newly elected Trustee Deborah McDermott along with incumbents Trustee Dina Epstein and Mayor Edward Lieberman were sworn into office. The Mayor also administered the oath of office to dozens of resident volunteers who had been appointed to various boards and commissions, and to salaried employees in the Sea Cliff Village Hall, proving that, as one former Trustee observed upon his retirement from the Board a few years ago, that it “takes a village to run a village.” (see below for appointments)
OTHER STORIES FROM 4.6.17 VILLAGE BOARD MEETING
MAYOR RECOGNIZES OUTGOING TRUSTEE JEFF VITALE
At the April 3 Annual Organization meeting, Mayor Ed Lieberman recognized out-going Trustee Jeffrey Vitale for his service to the Village. The Mayor had appointed Mr. Vitale to the office seat this past December to fill out the remainder of his own term as Trustee when he assumed the office of Mayor. "Although Jeff did not seek the position," the Mayor explained when he had asked him to accept the appointment, "he served in an efficient, professional and selfless manner."
"I know Jeff will continue to serve Sea Cliff," the Mayor said.
Standing at the podium emblazoned with the Sea Cliff Village seal turned toward the audience, and with the four trustees seated behind him at the judge's bench, Mayor Ed Lieberman, in his first address as the elected mayor of Sea Cliff, declared that "the state of our Village is strong and vibrant."
As evidence, he pointed to the Village government's "strong fiscal position," as well as the growth of "traditional and innovative commercial enterprises," "an influx of new young families," and a renewed appreciation of both the Village's "natural resouces" and its historic landmarks.
Emphasizing the importance of community pride and volunteerism, he referenced both the past and the future, citing Rousseau's Social Contract urging individuals in a community to work towards promoting the General Welfare, as well as North Shore 12th grader Zoe Malin's "The Heartbeat of Sea Cliff," an article that was recently published in the Viking View.
The Village's "excellence," the Mayor said, cannot be realized simply through the work of elected officials but required the efforts of volunteers who are "ready to sacrifice their time and efforts for the Village they love."
TRASH TALK AT THE SEA CLIFF VILLAGE BOARD MEETING
The Village Board voted voted at it April 3 meeting to accept a bid by Winter Brothers to continue as the Village's waste transfer service. The company operates out of the Glen Cove transfer facility where the Sea Cliff Department of Public Works brings the Village's trash after collection.
Prior to the vote, Village Administrator Bruce Kennedy, with supporting PowerPoint slides, explained that in January the Village had received two competing proposals for the five year contract to dispose of the Village's solid waste. Winter Brothers' bid on its face appeared significantly more expensive than that which another company, Westbury Paper Stock, offered.
However, Mr Kennedy explained that using the latter company would require that Village trucks be driven a far greater distance to Westbury than to Glen Cove -- adding significant costs, including fuel and labor.
The round trip to Westbury is 22 miles compared to 1 mile each way for the Glen Cove transfer station.
Using a formula and guidelines provided by FEMA, Mr. Kennedy said that he figured that the additional expense of traveling to and from Westbury would add $115,000 on top of what they were already charging.
He continued that he and a DPW worker had driven the route with a sanitation truck and that the round trip took 70 minutes during optimal driving conditions.
Taking the cost of the trip into consideration, he explained that overall the the Winter Brothers' offer was the better deal, by a relatively small amount, with their proposal being lower for the first three years of the contract, and Westbury's being slightly better during the last two years.
Additionally, he explained that the longer distance to Westbury increases the risk of mishaps and accidents creating liablity issues.
Village Attorney Brian Stolar said that there is a possibility that the Glen Cove facility will close before the end of the contract.
Mr. Kennedy said he did not think the target date of 2020 was feasible and that the contract with Winter Brothers specifically states that if the the location of their facility changes, they would have to absorb the additional costs incurred by the village.
Mr. Stolar said that under state bidding regulations Westbury Paper and Stock had the right to challenge the Board's decision and that if they were to do so, they would be entitled to a hearing.
APPOINTMENTS MADE AT APRIL 6 ANNUAL MEETING
Marianne Lennon Village Clerk
Bruce Kennedy Village Administrator, Director of Public Works, and Village Assessor
Michael Mandarino Superintendent of Building Department
Brian Stolar Village Attorney
Patricia Guy Deputy Village Clerk, Deputy Court Clerk
Kathy Mackney Court Clerk
Kristine Janusas Deputy Court Clerk
Paula Guidone Deputy Village Treasurer
Karen Schenck Tax Clerk
Nancy Eder Building Department Coordinator
Lynn Ryan Secretary to the Zoning Board
Shane Dommin Building Inspector
Carl Rumatoski Fire Prevention Officer, Plumbing Inspector and Dog Control Officer
Sara Reres Museum Director
Erinn McDonnell Grant & Contracts Coordinator, Community Development and Sec. 8 Administrator
Karen Montagnese Senior Outreach Worker
Ted Kolakowski Parking Violations Officer, Dog Control Officer
Tillman Brown Parking Violations Officer, Dog Control Officer
Ann Kopple Beach Manager
Nina Ring Assistant Beach Manager
Susan Katz Richman Acting Vilage Justice (1 year)
Charles Parisi Acting Village Justice (1 year)
Ray Rogers Architectural Review Board (3 years)
James Mozer Architectural Review Board Chair (1 year)
Bruce Treiber Planning Board Chairperson/Landmark Preservation(1 year)
Ed Camiolo Planning Board (5 years)
Laurie Martone Planning Board Alternate (1 year)
Cormac Brady Planning Board (2 years)
Noel Griffen Zoning Board of Appeals, Chair (1 year)
Nicholas Pinto Zoning Board of Appeals (5 years)
Jason Wolner Zoning Board of Appeals (2 years)
Joyce Segall Zoning Board of Appeals Alternate (1 year)
Tom Powell Delegate – Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee (1 year)
Ted Koyczynski Village Historian/Landmark Preservation (1 year)
Members – Veteran’s Committee ( 1 year)
Scott Whitting, Chairperson
Members – Service Award Commission (1 year)
Members – Community Development Advisory Board (1 year)
Members – Newsletter Committee (1 year)
Landmarks Preservation Commission
Leslie Guerci Chairperson (1 year)
Leslie Guerci (3 years)
Paul Anderson (3 years)
Member – Youth Board (1 year)
Ken Krumenacker, Chair
John Robilotti– Alternate
Janette Heurtley – Alternate
Members – Senior Action committee
Alice O’Donnell - Chair
Members—Village Bulletin Staff
Karen Montagnese – Managing Editor
Members—Board of Assessment Review
Phil Como, Chair
Members- Examining Board of Plumbers
George Coyle – 2 years
Richard Scott – 3 years
Members – Library Board
Roseanne Gertler - Chairperson - 1 year
Members – Museum Board – 3 years
Members – Enviromental Conservation Committee (1 Year)
John Stalzer, Chairperson
Lisa Spina, Alternate
Lisa Cashman, Alternate
Members – SC Beach Event Coordinating Committee (1 year)
Justin DiPietro – Chair
Members – Sailing Club – (1 year)
3.28 VILLAGE BUDGET WORK SESSION
VILLAGE POISED TO PURCHASE ALTAMONT AVENUE PROPERTY
At a public work session on March 28, the Sea Cliff Village Board discussed the Village's proposed purchase of a property just west of the Department of Public Works yard on Altamont Avenue.
Appraised at $355,000, Village Administrator Bruce Kennedy stated that the property would provide more space for DPW operations and equipment.
"It is especially cramped and crowded" on that side of the yard, he said.
The house on the property would be demolished. The Village also owns the property to the west of the house.
Trustee-elect Deb McDermott asked if other uses for the property had been considered.
Trustee Kevin McGilloway said that the board has discussed other possibilities, including increasing the amount of green space, a dog run and other recreational uses.
"We want to get public input," he added, and said that the board would have a meeting where residents could offer their thoughts on the purchase.
The issue, with an opportunity for comment, will be on the agenda when the Village Board meets next on Monday, April 17th.
NEW TRUSTEE ASKS FOR COMPARISON TO OTHER MUNICIPALITIES
At the March 28 Sea Cliff Village Board work conference, the Board, with Trustee-elect Deb McDermott invited to participate, discussed a suggestion made by Ms. McDermott that they create a document that provides a formal comparison of the highest paid Village Government positions in Sea Cliff, with those in comparable villages.
The issue came up as the Board discussed the appointments it would be making the following week at its annual organization meeting.
Ms. McDermott who had just been elected on March 21, said that she did not think it was appropriate for her, as a new trustee, to vote on salaried appointees without first seeing employment contracts, job responsibilities, and reviews, as well as how the compensation of Sea Cliff employees compared to other municipalities.
She requested that the board look at villages of similar population size and budgets and do a comparison of the positions and compensation packages for the ten or so highest paid employees. She said "it's a good way to measure where we are."
"The purpose of this is not to fire people or to change their salaries - it is to do due diligence," Ms. McDermott explained. "We should do it because it's the right thing to do. The people we represent want to know that we are paying them the right amount of money."
Trustee Kevin McGilloway said at the March 28th meeting that while he believed the board delegated to the employees' supervisors the responsibility to evaluate their performance, Ms. McDermott's request to compare this village to others was a "legitimate" one.
Ms. McDermott said she had already done some research, and that six or eight including Flower Hill, East Williston, and Roslyn were somewhat similar in size and budget, and those might be appropriate ones to look at.
Trustee Robyn Maynard stated that the board considered compensation in comparable municipalites when it hires someone new.
Mayor Ed Lieberman added that the board has done it "piecemeal" as it has come up. "In essence, I think we have done that," he said.
"So you have that documentation," stated Ms. McDermott. "It's just a matter of you sharing that analysis."
"The compromise might be," said Trustee McGilloway, "to pick a half a dozen or so similarly sized municipalities and we pick the top ten or fifteen earners, and compare. I think that type of analysis we can do."
"It's all public record," said Trustee Maynard, "anyone can go on line and see it."
Mayor Lieberman said that the Village has compared salaries on an "ad hoc, case by case basis."
"We've been saying that we've done this analysis on a case by case basis - and we have," Trustee McGilloway said. "Her point is - if we've done the analysis, let's put it in a table and formalize it. If we can't do it, then we can't say we've already done it."
"Is there more benefit or more downside to formalize what we do on a case by case basis and present it so there is some level of transparency?" he asked.
Mr. Kennedy said that in such an analysis it is important to look at the value of each employee - that what one person does in one village might be what three people do in another.
Trustee McGilloway agreed, and said that if there is an "outlier" then it is important to explain why the person is making what she or he is earning.
Questions were raised as to whether this was an issue to be discussed in executive session.
Trustee McDermott replied that the issue was not about the performance of an individual employee but about the board's process.
"The process is being done at a board meeting," said Mayor Lieberman. "If people were here right now they would see the process," he said.
"But they're not," said Trustee McGilloway. "Many people who voted, rightly or wrongly, believe there is a lack of transparency."
Trustees Epstein and Maynard expressed their belief that the discussion should take place in executive session.
After a bit more back and forth, Trustee McGilloway suggested that the issue be revisited when Village Counsel Brian Stolar was present.
Trustee McDermott abstained when the vote to appoint the salaried positions was held at the Organization meeting held on April 3.
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