Williston Park hopes to boost community development funds

Janelle Clausen
Williston Park trustees discussed community development funds and other topics on Monday night. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

Williston Park trustees said they may push for more funding for community development projects at a board meeting Monday night, in hopes of building off of a successful project geared toward helping residents renovate their homes.

The Community Development Block Grant Program is a federally funded program administered through Nassau County intended to help urban communities and low-and-moderate-income individuals in particular, according to the Nassau County website.

Mayor Paul Ehrbar said the village’s options are limited due to the per capita income of residents, but that they are eligible for some funding for residential rehabilitation projects. The money would be available for individuals with limited incomes that need to repair their homes.

“Last year we ended up having $30,000, we spent it all, so I would like as part of this hearing to raise that up to 50[000],” Ehrbar said, later noting it has helped many people stay in the village and bring their houses up to date. “I don’t know if they’ll go for it, but at least [I will] make that recommendation to our board.”

Deputy Mayor Kevin Rynne said he thought it would be a “great idea” for anyone who fits the requirements.

“It’s a great opportunity and we should take full advantage of it,” Ehrbar said.

“I couldn’t agree more,” Trustee William Carr said. “I hope they give us the 50,000, so anyone in need has the opportunity and access to these improvements to their homes.”

The next hearing on the community development projects will take place on Monday, March 9 at village hall.

In other village business, trustees passed a law that would allow the village to breach the two percent tax cap.

Ehrbar said village officials are still working through the budget and the needs for the village, but that they were passing this law just in case they needed to increase the property tax levy by more than what the state allows.

“Hopefully we won’t have to do that, it’s still too early to know, but we want to get this inline in case we have to,” Ehrbar said.

In unrelated business, Ehrbar noted that there will be a community forum regarding bail reform legislation and how it will affect Nassau County on Tuesday, Feb. 25 at the American Legion Hall on Willis Avenue starting at 7 p.m.

Nassau County Legislature Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello (R-New Hyde Park, Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder and Lt. Brian Sullivan, the president of the Nassau County Correction Officers Benevolent Association, will be co-hosting the town hall.

Ehrbar also announced that the village will open bids on March 5 for the repaving of Hillside Avenue from the Queens line to the railroad tracks in East Williston. He said he hopes it will be done this year before “Williston Day” in September.

In unrelated business, Ehrbar noted that Nassau Grid will be hosting a public forum on March 9 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Hicksville Community Center. It will be able natural gas capacity and how the area will be supplied with natural gas going forward, he said.


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