Story by Katie Bisaro
A public hearing was held on Mon., Jan. 6 to consider altering the terms of office of the Village of Warwick Mayor and Trustees so that the biennial elections will eventually be held in odd-numbered years, a temporary alteration in order to align the Board election years with the election years for Village Justice.
Currently Village Board seats are up for election every two years in even-numbered years – the Mayor and two Trustee positions in one election, the other two Trustee positions two years later – all for four-year terms. The Village Justice is elected in odd-numbered years. Municipalities are not allowed to move the election years for justice, only the board elections, thus creating the need to alter the terms to ultimately move the board elections to the odd-numbered years.
In order to synchronize the elections to the odd-numbered years, the terms must be temporarily changed to an odd-numbered term of office until all are aligned with the Village Justice election. After that, the Board terms will revert back to four-year terms of office.
The brief hearing had no commentary from the public nor any from the Mayor or Board of Trustees. During the regular Board of Trustees meeting that followed the hearing, a resolution was adopted enacting a local law allowing for the alteration of the terms of office to ultimately move the elections to the odd-numbered years.
The upcoming election in March will be unaffected by the law, two Trustee positions will be open for four-year terms. The changes will begin to take place with the 2022 election for the Mayor and two Trustees who will be elected for five-year terms. In 2027 and in elections thereafter, those terms will revert back to four years. In the 2024 election, two Trustees will be elected for five-year terms, reverting back to four-year terms in 2029 and thereafter.
Village Election: Wed., Mar. 19
The General Village Election for two Trustees of the Village Board will take place on Wed., Mar. 18 from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. The polling place will be at the Goodwill Hook & Ladder Co. located at 25 Church St. Ext. in the Village of Warwick.
Christmas Tree, Storm Brush Pick-up
Christmas tree pick-up in the Village of Warwick began on Mon., Jan. 13. Trees must be placed at the curb prior to this date. Residents may also drop trees off at the Town of Warwick Chip Site on Public Works Dr. off Kings Hwy. until Fri., Jan. 31.
Trustee Barry Cheney reported that the pick-up of downed limbs and brush from the recent ice storm is ongoing and should be completed within the next two weeks.
Sludge Conveyor System Needs To Be Replaced
Trustee Cheney also reported that a driver from TAM Enterprises, the company that removes sludge from the wastewater treatment plant in a roll-off container, had a mishap which damaged the sludge conveyor including the supports.
TAM Enterprises has taken responsibility for the incident and the damage incurred and is currently hauling liquid sludge away as necessary. Work has begun to repair the conveyor which should take around two weeks to complete.
Board Discusses Recreation Program Registration Fees
The Board of Trustees held a discussion on a proposal from Ron Introini, Village Recreation Director, to raise fees for the summer recreation program from $20 to $40 per participant. The price hike was proposed, in part, to help defray the cost of the new online payment software being implemented by the Village.
The consensus of the board was that the proposed price increase was too steep, that a smaller, incremental increase was more appropriate. Trustee Cheney suggested reaching out to other local recreation programs, in particular Pine Island, to see what they are charging. Once the Board has more information it will revisit the matter at a later date.
Pay Increase for Election Inspectors
Currently election inspectors and election machine operators for Village of Warwick are paid at a rate of $11 per hour. Village election workers work from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. At the Village’s current rate, it has been difficult to man the polls as it is not considered enough money. The Orange County Board of Elections has recommended that election workers be paid $15 per hour.
While the Trustees were not inclined to raise the rate all the way to $15/hour, it was suggested that an increase to $13 was fair and more feasible in light of the increase in minimum wage to $11.80/hour.
Local Residency Card Program
There will be a Public Hearing on Tues., Jan. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall, 77 Main St. in Warwick, to consider textual amendments to the Village Code that established the Local Residency Card Program.
As the proposed amendments are pending, the Village Board voted to postpone the implementation of the residency card program until such time as the proposed changes are acted upon.
The Board also voted to amend the Village of Warwick Schedule of Fees to add the Local Residency Card Application Fee in the amount of $10.
Part-time Village Clerk
The Village of Warwick will be advertising for the position of a part-time village clerk to work between the hours of 8:30 and 11:30 a.m. at a rate of $14 per hour.
2020 Garden Tour
The Warwick Valley Gardeners will hold their annual Garden Tour event on Sat., July 11 on the Railroad Green in the Village. The rain date will be Sun., July 12. Pre-ticket sales will take place on Fri., July 10, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., on the Railroad Green.
Warwick Farmers Market Returns in May
The Warwick Farmers Market will start up again in the South St. Parking Lot in the Village of Warwick on Sun., May 10. The market will take place every Sunday until Nov. 22, except Applefest Sunday in October.
The next meeting will take place on Tues., Jan. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall, 77 Main St. in Warwick.