New trees will be blooming all over Williston Park next spring, but roadwork remains to be done until then. And although the village has been recognized for pedestrian and traffic safety by AAA, Mayor Paul Ehrbar urged residents to be cautious when driving through the village and wants everyone to observe parking restrictions.
Ehrbar reported at Monday night’s village board meeting that 80 new trees have been planted in the village at a cost of $16,000.
The ongoing road improvement project has been suspended for the winter season, with ramps installed around partially exposed manhole covers on streets that had been prepared for resurfacing. A delay in receiving $1 million in state funds for the latest phase of the road improvement project was the reason the work was not yet completed, according to Ehrbar.
“We’ll resume the work in the spring and hopefully we’ll get the project finished,” the mayor said.
Ehrbar revealed that the Automobile Association of America has awarded Williston Park with a Pedestrian Safety Citation, based on installation of crosswalk countdown signs in the central shopping district and the absence of any pedestrian fatalities over the past year. The AAA also recognized the village with a bronze award for traffic safety based on a record of general improvements in that area.
But Deputy Mayor Teresa Thomann issued a cautionary note about residents drinking before driving home from the many eateries that have proliferated along Hillside Avenue.
“HIllside Avenue is becoming like a restaurant row and with that comes drinking and driving,” she said.
Ehrbar also urged people to drive safely through the village, emphasizing that there are a significant number of elderly residents and children who populate the central section of Williston Park.
The mayor also warned that village parking inspectors have been told to be particularly vigilant. He said store owners have asked the village to do so to enable shoppers to have easy access to their locations.
“Look at the signs. Pay attention,” Ehrbar said. “We are working to make the roads safer and enforce the regulations.”
Village building inspector Kerry Collins issued another ticket advisory, reminding residents to move their cars off the street if there are any imminent predictions of snow to avoid a $100 summons for impeding snow removal.
“Park them off the street if it snows. We will issue summonses,” he said.
On a warmer note, Trustee Barbara Alagna reported that the newly formed Welcoming Committee plans to hold its first meeting with new residents sometime next month. The committee is preparing information about the village that it considers useful to new residents.
On a quiet note, resident Ralph Massaro suggested that the board revise its noise code, which currently permits a level of 70 decibels in the village. He suggested that the board consult Environmental Protection Agency guidelines to revise that aspect of the village code.
“It’s not appropriate in my judgment,” Massaro said.