This year’s local Village election will take place next Wednesday, March 18, with voting hours from 6 AM to 9 PM at three locations. The upcoming election is one of unprecedented change starting right from the date. New York State Election Law states that the date will be the third Tuesday in March unless changed by the State. This year a change was made to Wednesday due to Tuesday being St. Patrick’s Day.
This is also the first year that the Village has opted to have the County Board of Elections (BOE) run the process. Like a majority of our neighboring municipalities, we made the decision for county control to take advantage of the monetary savings as well as the uniform standardization of procedures. However, the county protocol necessitated a reconfiguration of our polling places.
The following will be this year‘s polling locations:
· District 16 and 17 at Village Hall, 200 Pondfield Rd
· Districts 18, 19 and 20 at the Fire House on Palumbo Pl/Midland Ave
· District 20 and 22 at Christ Church on Kensington Road. (This was a late change from the NYP/ Lawrence Hospital site due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.)
Special parking areas will be designated in front of each location to facilitate ease of voting.
The County Board of Elections will be sending every voter a card to inform them of their polling location. The same information is on both the County Board of Election’s website as well as that of the Village. The Village will also send a reminder closer to the voting date via our E-Alert systems.
In this year‘s election, there are three seats open for Village Trustee, two designated for the normal two year term. The Democratic Party and the Bronxville Now party nominated Mary Behrens for one of the positions and the Republican Party and the Bronxville Citizens for Responsible Government party nominated incumbent trustee Mark Wood for a second two year term. Trustee Helen Knapp, who is currently filling the unexpired term of former Trustee Randolph Mayer who moved from the village, is running for the one year seat to complete his unexpired term.
Due to a clerical error, Helen Knapp’s name will appear on Line 3 (Village Trustee) rather than on Line 4 (Village Trustee Unexpired Term) where it should be. To vote for Helen Knapp, you will need to write in her name in the space at the bottom of Line 4.
By way of explanation, the Village currently has four Trustees and a Mayor, each with one vote on every issue. To increase or decrease the number of legislators requires a Village -wide permissive referendum.
The general powers of the Trustees by Village law include, “management of Village property and finances. The Trustees may take all measures even by enacting Village laws deemed expedient or desirable for the good governance of the Village, its management and business, the protection of its property and public works, the health, safety and comfort and general welfare of its inhabitants and the preservation and protection of peace and good order.”
The Trustees alone, by resolution, can abolish local offices, agencies and committees.
There is also a very spirited election this year for Village Justice. The Village has two justices elected for four year terms two years apart to create overlap and consistency. Incumbent Justice George Mayer is running on the Republican and Bronxville Citizens for Responsible Government party lines and Natasha Nordahl is running on the Democratic and Bronxville Now party lines.
In addition to adjudicating cases at weekly court sessions in Village Hall ranging from landlord-tenant disputes, burglary, shoplifting, possession of drugs and alcohol and traffic violations to give a sampling, the justices are also personally responsible for the funds collected by the court and must submit a monthly report to the Office of the State Comptroller accounting for all fines, fees and monies collected. In addition, judges must complete extensive training by the Office of Court Administration (OCA). One of the joyful benefits of the job is that our justices are allowed to solemnize any marriage within the State of New York.
I wish all good luck and look forward to working with colleagues old and new.