The Village of Roslyn held its Organization Night last Tuesday at the Bryant Library to swear in re-elected Board of Trustee members Marlene Freeman and Marshall Bernstein and Judge Nathan Stern, now serving in his fourth decade as Village Justice. Village attorneys also announced some good news for village taxpayers regarding Roslyn's lawsuit payments to Nassau County.
Several years ago, the Village of Roslyn lost a major lawsuit to Nassau County over sewer usage. Although the county originally wanted up to $11.5 million in settlement costs, village attorneys were able to whittle that number down to $7.5 million, which the village pays in quarterly installments each year.
The village also receives the opportunity to make assessments on county billing practices. This year's assessment found that the village was being slightly overcharged by the county. As a result, the county has agreed to pay the village over $56,000, a total that will be taken off the next sewer payment. Since the village pays up to $525,000 a year to the county, the billing deduction amounts to more than a 10 percent savings for village taxpayers. The assessment was performed by the independent agency of Dvirka and Bartilucci.
After the swearing-in ceremonies, Mayor Janet Galante gave a short speech, declaring that the BOT's "continuing goal [is to] enhance [the] natural environment in the community." In the past year, renovation work on the aging Roslyn Grist Mill and the Roslyn Clock Tower have been the BOT's important stated goals. A guest speaker, James McQuillin, had been invited to give a short talk on his Grist Mill memories, but Mr. McQuillin was unable to make it to the meeting. There was no mention of the new bid by Edwards Inc. to build a supermarket on the old Stop and Shop land off Skillman Street in the mayor's speech. In February, Edwards applied for a new site plan approval.
In other money news, the village has received a $20,000 New York State grant, courtesy of Assemblyman David Sidikman, to repair downtown parking lots. In addition, the village apparently is ready to terminate their current garbage contract with Grazio, Inc. of Middle Island and begin negotiations for a new contract from competing firms.
During the public comment session, Marshall Ward addressed the daytime traffic problem on Warner and Railroad Avenues. According to Mr. Ward, the noontime hour brings a rush of young people from Roslyn High School out into the street and into the stores. In addition, buses are traveling back and forth in the crowded area, creating, in Mr. Ward's words, "a Wild West type of [atmosphere]." Mr. Ward also brought up a tragic accident that occurred two years ago in Roslyn, when a 12-year-old boy was killed by a passing car at an intersection near the Long Island Expressway, suggesting that the current situation poses extreme dangers for young people from the high school.
Mayor Galante acknowledged that the problem has existed for a number of years, adding that there has been a "25-year plan" to deal with the situation. The village, she added, would be happy to take suggestions from local citizens.
On a brighter note, the meeting featured several surprises, most prominent being a bouquet of flowers for Village Clerk Kay Cunningham, who celebrated her 20th anniversary as a village employee during the past year and received a warm ovation from the audience while receiving her surprise gift.