Joint Meetings with Town of Mamaroneck Council
to Discuss Restructuring Ideas to Resume
By Mayor Lorraine Walsh
The Board of Trustees approved moving forward with the Flint Park Renovation Plan presented by the Flint Park Conservancy at our February 7th meeting. This approval comes after many months of review and conversation with the Board and the Village Parks and Trees Committee. The 3-phase plan is well-developed and eventually touches every aspect of Flint Park’s many assets and uses. Our thanks to the members of the Conservancy team, who have worked so hard to get the ball rolling. We are looking forward to partnering with them on this project. To learn more about the plan and to see how you can help, visit Flint Park Conservancy.
February also saw the first Village budget session on the 7th. At that session the Village Administrator presented the “first-pass” on revenue and expenditure estimates to the Board and the Finance Committee. The focus was on reviewing the year-to-date actuals and getting details about some of the main cost increases anticipated for the 2023 budget. We can expect that electricity, health insurance and fuel costs will increase next year by 25%, 10% and up to 70% respectively. The next budget session on Tuesday the 15th focused on departmental budgets for police, fire, DPW and the library. We are back to meeting in person, however there may be options for virtual viewing. All budget sessions are open to the public and location, time and viewing options can be found on the Village calendar.
We will also be resuming joint meetings with the Town of Mamaroneck Council to discuss restructuring ideas for the operation of the Joint Sanitation Commission. Since our first meeting in November, the Commission has been collecting data to help with this analysis. The meetings, open to the public for viewing, will be monthly and will alternate locations.
July 19th, 2022 is the 100th anniversary of the laying of Larchmont Village Hall’s cornerstone. The Board is working on plans to mark this auspicious day in Larchmont’s history, perhaps with some long-needed Village Hall sprucing up, culminating in a celebratory summer event. Stay tuned!
Proposed amendments to NYS Law – land use mandates
This is important news from Albany that I wanted to make you aware of, as it has a direct impact on Larchmont. As part of the Governor’s Executive Budget for FY2023, two amendments to NYS land use laws are proposed. One amends the NYS real property law and would require Larchmont to authorize the creation of 1 Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) per residential lot. The other, a Transit Oriented Development (TOD) mandate, amends NYS village law and would require Larchmont to permit development of at least 25 dwelling units per acre on any residentially-zoned land within ½ mile of a Metro-North train station. The stated goal of these amendments is to provide opportunities for increasing socio-economic diversity in communities by expanding the inventory of smaller and/or multi-family dwelling units and also to promote more environmentally sustainable, transit-oriented housing. While I believe these goals have merit, I do have serious concerns about this one-size-fits-all approach. The requirements for all cities, towns and villages are the same, with no consideration given to area, population size, existing housing stock, or development problems related to flooding, infrastructure, etc.
Both proposed amendments are worded in a way which, for all practical purposes, removes Larchmont’s locally determined land use process. Additionally, the normal application review and hearing is circumvented, neither amendment has requirements for the housing created to be affordable, and there is no recognition of, or funding for, infrastructure issues and investments that would be necessitated by increased and hastily-implemented development. The NYS senate and assembly will present alternate budgets in the coming weeks. I have expressed my concerns to Senator Mayer and Assemblyman Otis and asked that they consider these issues as they work with their colleagues on compromises to the existing proposals. Please let Senator Mayer and Assemblyman Otis know your opinions.