NCVOA November 2017 General Membership Meeting
Learn How to Save Money for Your Village
As a village official, you are constantly being challenged with providing essential services for your residents in the most cost-effective manner. With the current tax cap restrictions, villages need to be creative in finding ways to reduce expenses and increase revenues.
That is why you will not want to miss the November General Membership meeting, which will feature a panel discussion by representatives of Flushing Bank, TD Bank, Empire National Bank and NYCLASS. They will explain alternative investments and how to reduce bank fees and increase returns on deposits.
The meeting is Tuesday, November 14, 2017 at Westbury Manor, Westbury. The cocktail reception begins at 6:30 pm, followed by the dinner/program at 7:30 pm.
Aside from our Mayors and Trustees, we would also invite the Village Tresurers to attend this importsnt seminar.
Please mark your calendars to attend what promises to be a very informative program.
NCVOA Sponsored Debate
With Election Day just a week away, all eyes are on the county executive race. Republican candidate Jack Martins, former Mayor of the Village of Mineola and New York State Senator, and Democratic candidate Laura Curran, Nassau County Legislator, are vying to be the next county executive. They have appeared together in several public debates to articulate their positions on critical issues facing the county as well as their visions for Nassau County’s future.
On Tuesday, October 17th the NCVOA sponsored a Nassau County Executive candidate debate. The event, held at the Hillwood Commons Lecture Hall at CW Post University, was moderated by Judge Gail Prudenti, former chief administrative judge of the Courts of New York State and current dean of Hofstra University’s law school. The NCVOA has been sponsoring county executive candidate debates for the past several elections as it provides a platform for candidates to respond to questions and issues directly impacting villages and their residents.
The candidates were asked questions pertaining to the county police department operations, sales tax sharing, IDA and local input, ethics, unfunded state mandates, affordable housing, inter-municipal cooperation, and the county’s future. For the most part, Senator Martins and Legislator Curran agreed on many of the issues. Each pledged to support the effort to have the state law changed to allow villages to share the sales tax equally with the towns and cities. Both were committed to ethics reforms.
There were some differences in their approaches to solving some of the county’s current issues. Regarding Nassau County’s finances, Legislator Curran said millions of dollars are spent annually on outside contractors. She would reduce the amount spent on outside contracts and bring the work in-house. She also would eliminate no-show positions. Senator Martins stated he would reduce the amount of overtime, which is 10% of the total budget. He also would grow the tax base by attracting new businesses.
When asked about the county’s assessment system, Legislator Curran said she would first fix the current system. Senator Martins stated that all but two counties in New York State have town-based assessments. He would transfer the assessment responsibilities to the towns.
For closing remarks, Judge Prudenti asked each candidate to articulate why he/she should be elected. Legislator Curran stated she would fix the culture of corruption. Senator Martins said his experience as a mayor and state senator makes him a more qualified candidate.
There is no doubt the exchange between the candidates allowed those in the audience to better understand their positions and visions. It was disappointing that attendance was much lower than expected. Of the 64 NCVOA villages, only 16 were represented. I understand there were some scheduling conflicts; however, each village must be committed to the NCVOA’s efforts if we are to be successful in influencing decision makers at the local and state levels.
I would like to thank C.W. Post University for providing the NCVOA with an excellent venue for the debate. I also would like to thank Judge Prudenti for volunteering to serve as moderator and NCVOA Co-Executive Directors Ralph Kreitzman and Warren Tackenberg for coordinating the logistics.
Tidal Flood Gates Update
Last week marked the fifth anniversary of super storm Sandy. The Village of Freeport was among the South Shore communities heavily damaged by the intense flooding. The effects of this catastrophic storm linger today as many families have yet to return to their homes.
Since Sandy, I have been a staunch advocate for installing tidal surge barrier gates at two locations in Jones Inlet. The retractable gates, which are activated only during severe weather, have been operating for years in other states and countries. They have proven to be extremely effective in preventing tidal surges.
I recently traveled to New Bedford, Massachusetts to meet with the Army Corps of Engineers at the New Bedford surge barrier gates. We reviewed the operational costs, required maintenance, and the gates’ performance. These particular barrier gates were installed approximately 45 years ago and have not yet failed.
I am cautiously optimistic the Army Corps of Engineers will strongly consider installing these gates to protect Nassau County.
November General Membership Meeting
The November General Membership Meeting will be held Tuesday, November 14, 2017. The program will feature local banking executives who will provide guidance to our villages on ways to enhance revenue or reduce banking expenses.
Please make every effort to have a representative attend from your village. I look forward to seeing you November 14, 2017.
Robert. T. Kennedy,