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Resolution-Central Valley Pool
"Bond Resolution of the Town of Woodbury, New York, adopted February 5,
2009, authorizing the construction of various improvements to the Central
Valley Pool; stating the estimated maximum cost thereof is $1,400,000;
appropriating said amount therefore, including the expenditure of $500,000
general funds and/or parkland funds currently available or expected to become
available to pay a part of said appropriation; and authorizing the issuance of
$900,000 bonds of said Town to finance the balance of said appropriation,"
Storm Water Management
Civics and business at the Woodbury Town Board
January 24, 2008 - Photo News - Unsigned
Orange County Sales Tax
December 6, 2007 - Presentation by Ralph Caruso
NYS DOT Route 32
Black Friday traffic nightmare looms at Woodbury Common
Times Herald-Record November 21, 2006
Bending zoning rules in Woodbury might have
Friday, March 25, 2005
Orange County Sales Tax
Presentation by Ralph Caruso,
To the Orange County Legislature
December 6, 2007
biggest Sales Tax Revenue sources, Woodbury, Wallkill and the Town of Newburgh
are once again being short changed.
generates about 35% of all Sales Tax Revenue for Orange County, and gets
peanuts in return, while putting up with traffic congestion, increased air and
noise pollution, emergency services demands and police protection.
cities Port Jervis, Newburgh and Middletown have their special arrangement in
the agreement, and so does the Village of Highland Falls, which reads “except
as to the Village of Highland Falls as provided in the applicable paragraph of
section 1262 ( c )” of the NYS Tax Law, that refers to the use of, ratio of
valuation, rather then, population, for calculating tax sharing.
We have the
Village of Woodbury, and it too should be given the same benefit because the
present result is the combined sales tax share received by both the Village of
Highland Falls and the Town of Highlands is almost double the sales tax
received by the Town of Woodbury though it now has the Village of Woodbury
which receives zero in sales tax sharing, while also stating the population in
the Town and Village of Woodbury is about 40% greater then the population of
the Town of Highlands and the Village of Highland Falls combined.
argued that the Town of Highland has 93% tax exempt Federal and State
property, well the response to this is, the Town and Village of Woodbury has
53% tax exempt Federal and State property.
resident and no public official from the Village and Town of Woodbury spoke at
12-06-2007 in any attempt to get the legislature to give Woodbury a greater
share of the sales tax revenue.
legislature passed the tax sharing agreement with one minor administrative
change that did not add any more money to Woodbury’s appropriation.
on the Water Tower Issue
Woodbury Village Board October 10, 2007
As you know, the Village of Woodbury building inspector
recently discovered that the Village of Kiryas Joel had begun construction of
two water towers on a ˝ acre plot of land it owns in Woodbury that is adjacent
to Kiryas Joel. In response, the Village of Woodbury immediately issued a stop
work order directing that all work stop on the project to allow the customary
process of administrative review to proceed, and prepared the necessary legal
papers to be filed to follow through on this issue. Had the Village of Kiryas
Joel followed customary procedures, an administrative review by the Village of
Woodbury Boards would have occurred in the normal course of events for a
construction project of this sort on Woodbury property. This review would
necessarily involve a legally required balancing of the public interest test
weighing the public benefits to Kiryas Joel residents of the water towers for
fire safety and health issues against the legitimate local interests and adverse
impacts to the Village of Woodbury resulting from the project.
Findings by the Woodbury Village Board:
Since the time that the stop work order was issued, the
Woodbury Village Board has looked closely at the laws concerning municipal
projects of this sort. We considered all possible strategies for addressing the
issue and have had extensive discussions with Village residents. We have looked
at the possible outcomes for Woodbury for each option. Key conclusions of that
review are that:
1. Municipalities have considerable latitude under NY State
law to construct infrastructure improvements on land they own in other
municipalities when the benefits outweigh the impacts to the host municipality.
A prominent example in our area is the Orange County court facility in the
Village of Goshen, and the Orange County Jail and the E-911 facility in the Town
of Goshen. None of these projects went before the Town or Village Boards for
approvals. This legal landscape makes it unlikely that the Village of Woodbury
would be able to stop the water towers project through legal action.
2. Kiryas Joel was required by County/State Health officials
to construct elevated water storage tanks to provide adequate pressure to the
fire sprinkler and hydrant systems in their community. This will promote public
safety in Kiryas Joel and also provide added protection to the firefighters of
Woodbury, who are often called upon to fight fires in the neighboring village of
Kiryas Joel, as they are in other neighboring municipalities. The DEC required
Kiryas Joel to build two tanks so that there would be a backup system when one
tank is down for repairs.
3. Kiryas Joel should have approached the Town of Woodbury
(prior to June 1, 2007) and/or the Village (from June 1, 2007 onwards) to
request administrative review of the proposed work in Woodbury. They did not.
4. Once the stop work order was issued, Kiryas Joel exercised
their right under the law to appeal to the Village of Woodbury Zoning Board of
Appeals ("ZBA") and obtain a "stay," which puts the order on hold until the ZBA
can review the project under the balancing of the public interests test at a
future meeting. This is the current state of affairs.
5. Even if the ZBA were to deny the water towers upon review,
the decision would certainly be appealed by Kiryas Joel to the courts that would
likely uphold Kiryas Joel's position under the required public interests
balancing test because the water towers on land adjacent to the Kiryas Joel
provide a clear health benefit to their community without a corresponding or
overriding detriment to the Village of Woodbury.
6. In addition to the failure by Kiryas Joel to follow
customary channels of administrative review, three serious potential concerns
have been raised by Woodbury residents and officials regarding the water tanks.
- Visual impacts
- Lack of on-site access by the Village of Woodbury Building Inspector
- Water supply impacts on Woodbury
Course of Action:
Representatives from the Village of Woodbury Board and
Village of Kiryas Joel Board met early this week to discuss the concerns of our
community, and assess the relative merits of the public interests balancing test
concerning the project. The meeting was constructive and resulted in a strategy
for moving forward on this issue that, in the unanimous view of the Village of
Woodbury Board, will provide maximum benefits to Woodbury on all areas of
concern while at the same time containing legal costs. This strategy is a
legally-enforceable "Inter-Municipal Agreement" between the Villages of Woodbury
and Kiryas Joel spelling out a set of actions Kiryas Joel must follow to address
each of the concerns that Woodbury has raised. The full agreement will be
available for review shortly. In brief, it provides for the following:
1. Kiryas Joel will not drill, purchase or accept any water
from either the
˝ acre site upon which the towers sit, or
from the adjoining larger parcel of land from which this ˝ acre was carved.
2. Kiryas Joel will provide the Village of Woodbury with the
visual impact analysis that was conducted by its engineering consultant.
3. Although the tanks are well-screened by trees, Woodbury will
choose the color that the tanks are painted so as to further mitigate any visual
4.The Village of Woodbury Building Inspector will be given full
access to the site.
Once this agreement is signed by all parties, the stop work
order will be lifted and Kiryas Joel will withdraw their ZBA appeal.
This course of action is in the best interests of the Village
of Woodbury, avoiding unnecessary legal costs and the inevitable outcome that
the water tanks remain but without any of the beneficial agreements noted above.
In addition, this process sets a precedent for constructive engagement between
the two municipalities whereby Woodbury's concerns are addressed in the first
instance, that hopefully will offer an alternative to legal action in the
Suit aims to stop
jumped gun on 451-home OK, opponents say
By Chris McKenna
Residents challenge Woodbury
Residents challenge Woodbury rezoning By Tony Houston
Highland Mills - To build or not to build, that is the question in the Town of
Zoning and land development, always a dominant issue there, has become white
hot — with three of the town residents suing over the matter.
The year 1988 is as good a time as any to begin this tale, although the last
two years are when the excitement takes place. Woodbury adopted its current
Master Plan in March 1988.
The Planning Board, appointed by the elected Town Board, has the authority to
approve or deny land development applications. In doing so, the Planning Board
referred to both the zoning laws passed by the Town Board and the Master Plan
written by the Planning Board itself.
An amendment to the Town Law of the State of New York changes the “Master
Plan” to a “Comprehensive Plan,” which is to be prepared and adopted by the
elected Town Board. This leaves the Planning Board with a narrower role of
interpreting the zoning laws and Comprehensive Plan — both written by others.
Like the Master Plan, a Comprehensive Plan includes goals and objectives and
the principles and practices to achieve them; finer details are left to the
zoning laws. The Woodbury Town Board set out to write a Comprehensive Plan in
That November, representatives of Rockland County developer Bill Brodsky of
Carteret Group, Inc., asked the Town Board to amend the zoning law. The
amendments, passed a year later on Nov. 3, 2005, as Local Laws 4 through 8,
allowed for Brodsky’s Woodbury Suburban Project (WP3) located between
Dunderberg and Nininger Roads and for increased development throughout the
It took 30 years, from 1973 to 2003, for Woodbury’s population to double from
5,000 to 10,000. Local Laws 4 through 8 would have the effect of an immediate
pursuit of the 20,000 mark.
The allowed housing units on the 400-acre WP3 project would increase from 147
or 175 to 451, 460 or 652 — depending upon who is doing the counting. Among
the other effects of the new local laws would be to allow 281 units on
two-acre lots in the Legacy Ridge project, up from 164 units on three-acre
Enough already, said John Seyferth, Karin Ungerer and Don Siebold, who on last
Dec. 4 filed an Article 78 lawsuit against the Town Board, Planning Board and
These Woodbury residents are asking a state Supreme Court judge to “annul,
vacate, and in all aspects void” the Town Board’s enactment of zoning
amendments contained in Local Laws 4 through 8 and the Town Board’s statement
of findings pursuant to the State Environmental Quality Review Act for the WP3
Siebold is an appointed member of the Town of Woodbury’s Zoning Board of
Appeals and, like his fellow petitioners, Siebold lives in the vicinity of the
WP3 project. “My only concern is to preserve the character of the Town by
controlled growth and not over-development, and being able to afford to live
in Woodbury,” said Siebold. “The Town never mitigated the traffic.”
The Woodbury Town Board passed Local Laws 4 through 8 while it was working not
only on a Comprehensive Plan, but on an Open Space Plan as well.
Released during this time was a draft of the Southeastern Orange County
Traffic and Land Use Study, which recommended that the Town of Woodbury
“reduce permitted intensity of residential development on land located along
the north side of Dunderberg Road/Nininger Road,” just the opposite of the new
Included in the Article 78 legal papers is a Nov. 17, 2005, letter from Orange
County Planning Commissioner David Church, Orange County Commissioner of
Planning, in which “the petitions to rezone the subject properties (Local Laws
6, 7 and 8)” were disapproved. Local Laws 4 and 5 were mentioned in the
letter, but were neither approved nor disapproved.
“That was not an oversight,” said Church. “We often remain silent on some of
the issues brought to us.”
The letter of disapproval was not received by the Woodbury Town Board prior to
its passing Local Laws 4 through 8. A supermajority of four votes of the
five-member Town Board is needed to override a recommendation of such a
Church’s letter referred to “significant public and private speculation”
surrounding the potential sale and annexation of the 400-acre WP3 properties
to the Village of Kiryas Joel if the new Woodbury local laws were not enacted.
Church favored the analysis of alternative “as a means of comparing and
contrasting significant adverse and beneficial environmental impacts with that
of the preferred 451-unit alternative.”
The town made no such analysis, although it would have improved its case for
amending the zoning laws.
The petitioners list three courses of action. The first is that the Town Board
acted too soon, despite the four yes votes, by not allowing 30 days to pass
after its October 21 submittal to the county. The second is that Local Laws 4
through 8 do not conform to the Town’s 1988 Master Plan. The Master Plan
remains in effect until superseded by a Comprehensive Plan that has yet to be
passed by the Town Board. The third cause of action would be that the Town
Board failed to comply with the procedural and substantive requirements of
Five days after the passage of Local Laws 4 through 8, a new supervisor and a
new councilman were elected to the Woodbury Town Board. The new board was
seated in January of this year.
If Local Laws 4 through 8 are voided by the court, a re-vote could be quite
Town Supervisor John Burke defeated incumbent Sheila Conroy, who cast one of
the four “yes” votes. He said this week that he didn’t know how far the
lawsuit had gotten in the legal process.
“I’ve heard nothing about it since the December filing of the suit,” said
When asked about a possible re-vote if the petitioners won in court, Burke
said “that is speculation — we’ll cross that bridge if and when we get there.
The Town Board will sit down and decide where to go once the court rules.”
Town Board critic taking the helm as new supervisor
By Chris McKenna
Woodbury - His new seat might get hot in the days ahead. But the small, bare
office John Burke now occupies in a corner of Woodbury Town Hall felt cold
yesterday morning as he settled into his new job, clad in sweater and jeans.
Burke, who beat former Supervisor Sheila Conroy in an election two months
ago, started work Sunday and will be sworn in tonight, taking his place on a
Town Board he's more accustomed to questioning from the audience,
particularly during this past rancorous year.
Only two days after picking up his keys to Town Hall, the retired high
school principal faced his first local-government challenge: a storm that
dumped 8 or more inches of wet snow on Woodbury's roads and required
mobilization of the plows.
Maybe that was an omen.
More difficult plowing lies ahead, including working with three board
members who support a 451-home development proposal that Burke and others
spent the last year fighting - a controversy that lingers on, thanks to a
Once a board critic, Burke will now feel its pain: by day, fielding calls
from irate residents and managing a $15 million budget and more than 100
employees; by night, catching flak at board meetings.
It won't be all headaches: Burke said the town's department heads have
welcomed him and given him tours since his election victory.
But as the only Democrat on a five-member board, he might find himself on
the losing end of votes, especially those involving land-use decisions.
"I plan on maintaining my positions, knowing full well that five people
vote," Burke said yesterday. "I've not given up my right to make an
individual vote on things I feel very strongly about."
Maybe the thorniest issue of all on the horizon is a potential land war with
neighboring Kiryas Joel.
Burke said he's willing to meet with Kiryas Joel leaders but sounds no more
willing than his predecessor to consider a compromise that would allow the
Hasidic community's high-density housing to spread into Woodbury's rural
That goes for any annexation of Woodbury land into Kiryas Joel: "If the
solution is for part of Woodbury to be no longer be part of Woodbury, I'm
Friday, March 25, 2005
zoning rules in Woodbury might have benefits
By Chris McKenna
Woodbury – The controversy du jour in a town full of them is known as "the
zoning changes," in the shorthand of some of the people arguing about them.
It refers to requests by two developers to loosen the town's zoning rules to
increase the number of homes they can build in two gated communities they
want to erect on opposite sides of town.
Among the purported benefits offered in return are large tracts of dedicated
open space and improvements to the town's water and sewer systems.
Since the requests surfaced in November, the Town Board, which must decide
on them, has held hearings to field initial concerns and begun overseeing
environmental reviews for each project that could take months, if not years,
Officially, the board has no position on the projects, which would total 731
homes. Supervisor Sheila Conroy assures residents the reviews will be
thorough and open to the public and must answer any major concerns, such as
"This is going to take time, and it guarantees input from the public," she
said at the end of the board meeting last Thursday. "Let's go through the
process and see what it says."
But critics have been flaying the board.
In their view, the board has already signaled its support and is rushing
toward a foregone conclusion. They've called for more public hearings, a
referendum, a delay while the town revises its master plan – anything to
stop the process trudging forward.
"It smacks of back-room politics," said Aimee Fitzgerald, who lives in
Central Valley near one of the projects involved – 450-home Woodbury
Suburban. "And the public was never consulted about whether it wanted
high-density changes in their master plan."
The Woodbury Suburban developer asked for a zoning break to allow 450 homes,
instead of the 175 allowed under current zoning. The developer behind the
Legacy Ridge project in northern Woodbury wants to build 281 homes instead
Conroy said in an interview yesterday that the board had no legal obligation
to consider the requests but saw enough potential benefits – such as
senior-citizen units in the Woodbury Suburban project and open space in both
– to go forward.
"We said we were willing to look at these projects because there were some
things we liked about them," she said.
She pointed out that, on a personal level, she lives near one of the
proposed communities – Legacy Ridge – and would prefer to keep the
unblemished view she's had for 26 years.
And she emphasized that the projects could shrink as the developers go
through the environmental reviews and adjust to various limitations.
Critics, meanwhile, are unmoved by the perceived benefits, especially open
"Land you can't build on," Fitzgerald said with disgust. "You put it behind
a gate and call it a gift to the people of Woodbury."
Woodbury Junction / Woodbury
Woodbury Junction Ignorance - Orange County, NY
Woodbury New Homes Community & Real Estate
Developer of pricey Brigadoon development in Woodbury
fined for illegal sewage discharges -
Fence makes for good reptile
Residents speak out on
Suit aims to stop developer
Woodbury development OK'd