Dear Friends and Supporters:
As a Harrison Town Board member, among my many accomplishments was securing a $2.5 million grant for Union Avenue pedestrian safety improvements. This outcome was a collaborative and cooperative effort by your elected representatives. It’s an interesting story.
Upon my joining the board in January 2018, one of the first constituent requests I received concerned conditions on Union Ave. Lack of sidewalks made walking that heavily-trafficked corridor dangerous.
The year before, Harrison had applied for a grant through the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) to install pedestrian safety features along Union Ave.’s full length but the application was denied.
In February 2018, I contacted County Legislators Catherine Parker and Nancy Barr to help us improve the town’s chances of success for resubmission of its grant application. The two legislators assembled a group of key officials from County government to assist in the effort.
Legislators Parker and Barr convened a meeting with the NYSDOT administrator of the grant program who had reviewed the town’s prior application. Among the participants were myself, our town engineer, our town’s grant consultant and the team from the County.
The NYSDOT official discussed with us the areas in which the town’s application had been weak. He suggested specific ways to better hone the application to increase its likelihood of success.
From my prior experience with grants, I knew that letters of support for the application from diverse community stakeholders often made a difference. So I solicited individual letters from Legislators Parker, Barr and Benjamin Boykin, State Senator Shelley Mayer, Assemblyman David Buchwald, the County’s Deputy Commissioner of Public Works and Transportation Joseph Nicollete Jr., Harrison Central School District’s Board of Education, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Louis N. Wool, and Rabbi Eytan Hammerman of the Jewish Community Center.
Through these efforts, I was confident that we had put the town in the best possible position to win the grant.
And this time, the team’s hard work paid off: In April 2019, the NYSDOT announced that Harrison had been awarded a $2.5 million grant for pedestrian accessibility enhancements along Union Ave., including sidewalks. More recently, the town retained a design consultant for the project, with an expected project completion date of 2023.
The entire process demonstrated the value of collaboration and cooperation with other government officials in meeting our community’s needs. I was proud to be a driving force behind it, bringing people together to get things done.
This is an example of the effort and effectiveness that I will bring to our town government as your next mayor.
More information on the Moving Harrison Forward team can be found at www.movingharrisonforward.com.
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Candidate for Mayor
Moving Harrison Forward
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