Mayor's Message-May 19, 2020

Dear Ardsley Community,

I hope that you are all enjoying the beautiful weather we have been having.  I have been taking long walks around the Village.  You may see me out and about.  I’m the person wearing the blue hat and mask.  And you should be wearing a mask too.  Wherever you cannot be six feet apart from someone you must cover your mouth and nose.  This one small act is necessary to help prevent the spread of the virus.

As I was walking around the Village this past weekend, I noticed that most people were practicing good social distancing.  But I want to remind you that group sports are not allowed.  No soccer, no baseball, no basketball.  We covered the basketball hoops, but someone uncovered them.  I do not really want to have to take down the hoops because we will be using them again, but just not now.  Also, gardeners have always been considered essential services to do maintenance work and now they allowed to do plantings too. 

Finally, I noticed discarded gloves and masks on the sidewalks.  This is just disgusting.  Please dispose of you gloves and masks properly. 

Memorial Day Parade - The Memorial Day Parade has been cancelled.  The Ardsley American Legion Post #458 will honor and remember the armed service members who have died for our country with a small wreath laying ceremony.  We hope to record the ceremony and post on our website. 

June 9 School Board and Budget Vote - Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order detailing new procedures for school board elections and budget vote.  This year’s School Board elections and budget votes will take place June 9. The School Board elections and budget votes will be conducted entirely by mail and all qualified voters will be sent an absentee ballot with postage-paid return envelopes. The School District will be sending out the ballots and they are only for the School Board elections and budget vote.

June 23 Primary Elections -Governor Cuomo also issued an Executive Order mandating that the NYS Board of Elections mail to every voter eligible to vote in a primary or special election, an absentee ballot application form with a postage paid return option for such application.  This shall be in addition to any other means of requesting an absentee ballot available, and any voter shall continue to be able to request such a ballot via phone or internet or electronically. Any ballot which was requested or received for any previously re-scheduled election, or for the primary election to be held on June 23, 2020 shall continue to be valid and shall be counted by the Board of Elections if returned to them.  This follows an earlier Executive Order allowing all New Yorkers to vote absentee in the June 23rd primary election.  In-person polling will still be an option.

Sewer Fund -The Village has passed a law establishing a separate sewer fund in order to maintain our aging sewers.  By establishing a separate fund, we are able to charge all users of the sewer system, regardless of tax exemption status, for the necessary repairs and on-going maintenance of the system.   Also, by establishing a separate fund we were able to remove some of the expenses allocated for sewers from our general fund which, along with other changes to our budget this year, helped us reduce our tax rate from last year.

The sewer fees will be charged based on water usage. The rate is $1.89 per CCF of water consumption.  A CCF represents one-hundred cubic feet of water. (The first "C" comes from the Roman word for hundred, “centum.”) A CCF is equal to 748 gallons of water.  So, if you use 5,000 gallons of water your monthly bill will be approximately $12.64.  The less water you use the less you pay.  But everyone who uses the sewers will be paying.  The fee structure incentivizes responsible water use and encourages conservation.  We have contracted with a third-party billing company called Minol USA. Bills will be issued on a quarterly basis. The billing period will begin in June and the first bills will be sent out in October. 

New York Forward -The State has issued the NY Forward guide to re-opening.  https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/NYForwardReopeningGuide.pdf

The Governor has set out a four phased approach to re-opening.  The four core factors to determine if a region can re-open: new infections, health care capacity, diagnostic testing capacity and contact tracing capacity. Westchester County has not yet satisfied these four factors to re-open.  When we do, things will re-open in four phases.  Phase 1 includes construction, manufacturing and select retail (with curbside pickup).  Details about phase 1 can be found here: https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase

Phase 2 includes professional services, finance and insurance, retail, administrative support and real estate/rental leasing; Phase 3 includes restaurants, food services and hotels; and Phase 4 includes arts, entertainment, recreation and education. 

Businesses will be required to implement new safety precautions including strict cleaning and sanitation standards, restricting nonessential travel, adapting the workplace to allow for social distancing, and requiring masks to be worn if employees are in frequent contact with the public. Safety Plan template can be found here:

https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/NYS_BusinessReopeningSafetyPlanTemplate.pdf

New York’s diagnostic testing criteria have been expanded and testing now is available to:

  • Any individual who has COVID-19 symptoms
  • Any individual who has had contact with a person known to be positive with COVID-19
  • Any individual who is subject to a precautionary or mandatory quarantine
  • Any individual who is employed as a health care worker, nursing home worker or first responder
  • Any essential worker who directly interacts with the public while working
  • Any individual who would return to the workplace in Phase 1 of the state's reopening plan

If eligible, please get tested. To find a site please see: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing

Covid-19 and Children – The State is currently investigating 110 reported cases in New York where children – predominantly school-aged – are experiencing these symptoms possibly due to COVID-19. The illness has taken the lives of three children, including a 5-year old in New York City, a 7-year old in Westchester County and a teenager in Suffolk County.  You should seek immediate care if a child has: prolonged fever (more than five days); severe abdominal pain, diarrhea or vomiting; bloodshot eyes and skin rash.  Other symptoms may include: change in skin color – becoming pale, patchy and/or blue; difficulty feeding (infants) or is too sick to drink fluids, trouble breathing or is breathing very quickly; racing heart or chest pain and lethargy, irritability or confusion.

Contact Tracing -New York State is now searching for volunteers to fill three types of jobs: Contact Tracers, Team Supervisors and Community Support Specialists. NY plans to hire a team of 6,400 to 17,000 staff statewide, depending on the projected number of COVID-19 cases, to support the NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) and Local Health Departments (LHDs) to perform contact tracing in communities across NYS.  For more information on how to apply please see: https://health.westchestergov.com/2019-novel-coronavirus

2020 Census -The time to be counted is now. https://2020census.gov/en.html

Stay Safe.  Wear a mask. 

Nancy Kaboolian

Mayor

Village of Ardsley

Nkaboolian@ardsleyvillage.com

 

 

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