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Manorhaven Village First on Peninsula to Adopt Architectural Guidelines for Business District

State Funds Encourage Business Development

The Manorhaven Downtown Business District Guidelines were adopted during the July 27 meeting of the village trustees. The guidelines are intended to provide architectural guidance in the building of new structures, the renovation of existing structures and improved streetscapes along Manorhaven Boulevard and the areas of Shore Road that are part of Manorhaven Village.

The plan and $200,000 have been made available under the New York State Main Street Program administered by the state Office of Community Renewal. New York Main Street Program provides financial resources and technical assistance to communities in order to strengthen the economic vitality of the state’s traditional Main Streets and neighborhoods. The program provides funds from the New York State Housing Trust Fund Corporation (HTFC) to local governments, business improvement districts, and other not-for-profit organizations that are committed to revitalizing historic downtowns, mixed-use neighborhood commercial districts, and village centers.

In Port Washington, it was the Business Improvement District that in 2005 applied on behalf of Manorhaven Village to receive a grant under the program. In order to qualify for the grant the Village had to have an average income level below 80 percent of the other communities on the peninsula. The $200,000 awarded to the village was intended to be a catalyst for small business development; attracting new business, reinvestment in existing business and encouraging mixed use properties within the business district. Under the program individual business owners must apply to the BID and if their application is approved they are eligible for up to $10,000 from the state, $5,000 from the village and the business owner would then contribute the remainder of the money to make a total of $20,000 for the project.

Roy Smithheimer, executive director of the BID, says that as of today none of the $200,000 in available funds have been spent. “Economic times are difficult and it is hard for business owners to justify any additional expenditure. However the funds remain available and as the economy turns around business owners will be able to tap into the fund.”

In other business, the trustees adopted a resolution to engage Chester’s Heavy Duty Towing and Recovery and Sunset Towing Services to perform the towing of vehicles from the village streets, when the vehicles are determined to be a hazard to the health safety and good order of the village. Vehicles will also be towed when there are three or more unpaid village summonses outstanding for the vehicle. Penalties are steep for residents whose vehicles are towed under the scofflaw provisions of the village code. In order to retrieve the vehicle the owner will be required to pay all summonses plus penalties, up to $300 for redemption of the vehicle and up to $75 per day in storage.

The next meeting of the Village Trustees will be on August 25 at the Village Hall on Manorhaven Boulevard.