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May 16, 2013
Spring is always a busy time and I apologize that I have not been able to send an email in a while but between home life, my regular job and my mayoral duties, I have not been able to sit down to write an email.  There are a lot of things I want to communicate, so I will get right to it…

Upcoming events

To prove my point about a busy time of the year, I want to highlight some of the upcoming events in Irvington:

Tonight at 7pm at the senior center, I will be hosing County Executive Rob Astorino for a stop on his county-wide town hall style “Ask Astorino” event.  Mr. Astorino will update residents on county taxes, his economic development efforts and the settlement with HUD.  He will also take plenty of questions from constituents.

This Sunday, May 19th at 4pm the Village of Irvington, the Irvington Fire Company and the Irvington PBA will host a celebration of all five Irvington High School Girls Championship teams at Scenic Hudson Park.  There will be a picnic, awards and (I promise) very few political speeches.  

Looking forward to next Tuesday, May 21st, we have the School District vote for two School Board Trustees as well as the budget vote.  All voting is in the auditorium of the Main Street School.  In order to pass the budget, something I strongly support, a 60% vote of the school district residents will be required since it will require an override of the 2% tax levy cap.  The last day to register to vote in the school election is TODAY, May 16th.   If you need to register, you can do so tonight in the lobby of the Main Street School from 4pm to 8pm.  If you are already registered to vote with the Westchester County Board of Elections, you do not have to register separately with the school.  

Memorial Day ceremonies will once again start at 10:45am on Monday, May 27th at the War Memorials on Main Street.   After the ceremonies on Main Street, the annual parade will bring us to Memorial Park for a keynote address from Irvington resident and Iraq war veteran Captain Brian Murphy.  

Looking ahead to June, there are many fun events scheduled for the weekend of June 8th – it is being called “Discover the Rivertowns Weekend.”  Information on all the activities throughout the Rivertowns, which start on Friday June 7th, can be found at One of the big events in Irvington is the “Pop-up Art Gallery” at the Main Street School.  There are still spots available, so if you are an artist or a crafter that would like to show everyone your talents, please visit a look for the “Call to Artists” to sign up.  

Continuum Project 

After an almost a two year process and many long nights for Planning Board members and residents, the Continuum assisted living proposal is nearing a decision from the Planning Board on accepting their Final Environment Impact Statement.  The final version is due on May 22nd and the Planning Board is expected to hold a worksession on May 29th and make its findings in the next month or two.  

Two years later, while I still support the general idea of assisted living as a use in Irvington, I remain very concerned with the impact Continuum’s plan will have on the Irvington Volunteer Ambulance Corps.  I raised this as my largest concern two years ago and, in my opinion, very little has been done by Continuum to address this critical issue.  I am also concerned about the overall scale of the project, a concern shared by many residents.  

I urge residents to share their thoughts on the project, positive or negative, with both the Board of Trustees and the Planning Board (the best way to contact us is via email).  At the start of the planning process, we promised a thorough, thoughtful and open process with as much public input as possible.  I would like to personally thank the Village staff, specifically the planning department and the Village Attorney and the Planning Board for the unbelievable job they have done so far.  I would also like to thank the residents that have been attending meetings, often until very late at night, for their attentiveness and, at least recently, their constructive, respective and thoughtful comments.  I hope that the thoroughness of the process has dispelled the baseless claims of a Village conspiracy, with me somehow in the middle, that were all too prevalent at the beginning of the process.

Affordable Housing Committee

The Affordable Housing Committee has been meeting for several months and is making great progress.  While still in its startup phase, they have already provided a potential development plan to the County.  Unfortunately it turned out the site was not suitable for the County but it shows how committed the Committee is to making a real impact on the amount of affordable housing in Irvington.  They have many tasks ahead including proposing improved affordable housing regulation to the Board, looking at sites, learning about what other communities have done and public outreach.  While they have a talented core of members, we could use more volunteers that share our goal to expand the availability of affordable housing in Irvington.  If you have an interest, please send an email to Village Administrator Schopfer () or me.

I look forward to seeing you around the Village. Please never hesitate to contact me with your thoughts, ideas and concerns.  
Brian C. Smith