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  • Mamaroneck Observer

Board Highlights – February 26, 2024

The Work Session began with a report on affordable housing by Village Planner Greg Cutler.  See Article HERE.


Flood Update

Village Mini-Grant Program:  Deputy Village Manager Dan Sarnoff explained the delay in establishing a Mini-Grant Program using ARPA Funds for Flood Mitigation Improvements.  He became aware of a similar New York State program through the Office of Home and Community Renewal because of the Community Resource Center’s involvement in the program.  Sarnoff thought the two programs could be linked with the Village providing assistance to flood victims who may not qualify for the State program which is proposing to use post-Ida monies originally earmarked for rent payments but remains unspent.  The State needs approval from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to redirect the funds.  Apparently, if approved, these grants will have income restrictions attached.


Trustee Yizar-Reid stated the Mini-Grant program, funding with American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds the Village has received, was for people who need to rebuild or repair their homes after floods if they were ineligible for NYS funding.  She stated there was some urgency to get the money to individuals who had spent their own money replacing a boiler, etc. from flood damage.  This mini-grant could reimburse homeowners for money they have already spent.  Yizar-Reid urged Sarnoff to figure this out as soon as possible because people need the money.


ACE Project and Other Mitigation:  Sarnoff also described a recent meeting with the Army Corps (ACE), the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), the State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC), Assemblyman Steve Otis, State Senator Shelley Mayer, County Legislator Catherine Parker, and staff from the County Executive’s office.  The ACE project is moving slowly and it’s time to look at other funding sources for projects in the Mamaroneck River watershed to get some flood mitigation work started. 


One such source is a new Federal effort, Swift Current, which will provide funding to the State for allocation.  This effort is designed to provide funding to mitigate buildings after a disaster focusing on property acquisition, structure elevations, mitigation reconstruction or other means to mitigate damage.  See HERE.


Guidelines for the program have not been released yet and applications are due in mid-April.  Sarnoff will participate with other communities in the watershed to determine the best way forward with this potential assistance and other projects.


Ethics Law Revision Public Hearing

Chair of the Board of Ethics (BOE), Daniel Karson, gave a brief overview of the proposed revisions to the ethics law.  He explained that the revised law provided clarity, definitions, and most importantly, clarified when it applies. 


Resident Stuart Tiekert brought up the fact that “age” was not included in the definition of prohibited classes.  The BOT agreed that it should be added. 


Another member of the BOE, Susan Berenzweig stated that the financial disclosure forms were due to the BOE by February 15th and about 20 volunteers/employees had not yet submitted them.  She also urged the BOT to adopt the revised code as soon as possible.  In addition, the BOE will ask the Village’s Human Resources Department to coordinate regular training for all employees and the various volunteer boards.


After public comments and discussion among the BOT, the public hearing was left open until the next BOT meeting.


BOT Adopts Budget Hearing Schedule

It’s budget season so, see HERE for the schedule of budget hearings.


Village Manager Search

The BOT has chosen a firm to conduct the search for a new Village Manager.  The contract was not yet ready to be approved, but Mayor Torres secured an 18 month guarantee from the selected firm.  This means if a new manager is hired and leaves for any reason in the first 18 months of employment, the search firm will conduct another search for no additional fee.


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