What would it mean for the Village of Ossining if we established green building guidelines? What approaches have been taken in other communities?
Please join us for a special work session on Wednesday, 1/28/15 at The Ossining Public Library. All are invited to provide comments, questions and feedback. Representatives from Yonkers and Hastings-on-Hudson will present insights into their programs. More details will be shared on the Facebook event page.
I am very pleased to be introducing this approach which allows those of us in Village government to learn from each other, our fellow Ossining community members, and invited outside experts, very early in the process of potentially making a significant policy change. It represents a shift in the culture of Village government. I am very pleased by the willingness of the Village professionals to help make this happen. I am optimistic that community members will participate in the process as well.
At my New Year’s Day inauguration, I spoke of several priorities I have for this year, and many are happening already. In our effort to improve communication and engagement with residents, at our first Board of Trustees meeting of the year, we agreed to reverse the policy of the previous administration, and keep the cameras rolling throughout public comments. Residents are welcome to join us for legislative sessions on the first and third Wednesdays of every month at the Courthouse, 86-88 Spring St. It is our hope that by keeping the cameras on, we are providing an open public forum that allows for greater in-person communication, and improved awareness for all viewers of meetings on television and online (via villageofossining.org or YouTube).
I have also followed through on my campaign promise to hold weekly office hours. Community members are invited to stop by my office on the first floor of Village Hall, 16 Croton Ave, on Tuesdays 10am-12noon. No appointment necessary.
Many residents can’t make it to public meetings or office hours, but are able to share an idea or concern online. The Board of Trustees agreed at our 1/14/15 work session to establish a new avenue for online communication by engaging a company called MindMixer. MindMixer has been very successful in community outreach in municipalities throughout the country. Stay tuned for the launch of this new platform that will seek community input on tangible local issues.
Also at that 1/14/15 work session, we renewed our commitment to passing a Complete Streets Policy. I had originally introduced this initiative at a work session in October of 2013, and am very pleased to now have the opportunity to move it forward. At last week’s meeting, we clarified the process for codifying that policy, as well as how to implement it so that we will be effective as we strive to create safer roadways for all users.
The special 1/28/15 Green Building Community Discussion will have a different format than a typical work session. After some brief housekeeping items, the agenda will focus on green building guidelines. We will hear presentations from both Yonkers and Hastings-on-Hudson, then Ossining Village officials, department heads, and members of the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals, Historic Preservation Commission, and Environmental Advisory Council, will have an opportunity to ask questions. Ultimately, the discussion will include feedback and questions from community members.
I hope you will join us.