Sunday, Apr 14th

Trustee Gans Discusses Fields, Land Use and Stormwater In Advance of his Run for a Second Term

JeremyGansThe Citizens Nominating Committee has announced their candidates for Village Trustee for election on March 19, 2024. The general election will take place Tuesday, March 19, at the Scarsdale Public Library, 54 Olmsted Road in the Scott Room. Voting hours will be from 6:00 am to 9:00 pm. Trustee Jeremy Gans was selected to run for a second two year term. Below we asked him about his views on issues that were encountered during his first term, and why he is looking forward to serving for an additional two years.

Introduce yourself to those who may not know you. What do you like about living in Scarsdale? How were your first two years as trustee and why did you decide to run again?

I moved to Scarsdale in 2007 and I live in Quaker Ridge with my wife Lisa and my three sons. Jason is a sophomore at Cornell University, Aaron is a sophomore at Scarsdale High School and Evan is in 7th grade at Scarsdale Middle School.

Scarsdale has been a great place to raise our family. The schools have been excellent, and we love living in a place with such a strong sense of community.

I have truly enjoyed my first term on the Board. I am proud of what we have accomplished so far, and I look forward to continuing to work to improve Scarsdale with my colleagues on the Board.

Tell us what developments/accomplishments from your first term you are most proud of?

I am very happy that the Village Board has decided to examine the status of our fields and recreation facilities. Sports and recreation are important to me, and I think the status of our facilities does not always meet the expectations of our residents. I am glad that we are prioritizing improving these facilities.

Our Parks and Recreation staff is excellent and preparing our fields and maintaining our facilities. But at some point, capital expenditures are necessary to significantly improve things. The Board is taking a deep look at those needs and hopefully our community will notice improvements in the near future.

In your view, what are some of the major issues and decisions facing the Village Board this year?

This year should be exciting for the Village Board. We anticipate making significant progress on renovating the Pool Complex. I look forward to engaging with staff, the Board and the entire community as the project moves forward.

Following our consultant’s review of our current land use code and policies, we will have important decisions to make in that area. We will seek to balance the rights of homeowners to improve their properties while minimizing the impact on the environment and their neighbors. We all want to preserve what has made Scarsdale such a special place for generations, while allowing the type of modernization that will allow Scarsdale to continue to be among the most desirable places to move for families.

In your first term Scarsdale lost its Village Manager. Did the absence of a Village Manager prevent the Board from moving forward on any initiatives? When do you think a new one will be installed and how do you envision his/her role?

Acting Village Manager Alex Marshall has been doing an outstanding job since the moment she was appointed in September. The Village Board and Staff have operated very well during her tenure, and we thank her for serving the Village so well. We hope to fill the Village Manager position with a permanent replacement soon.

Stormwater management and flooding have been on the agenda of many meetings. Please discuss what the Village government can do and what else can be done to safeguard residents’ homes and public property.

During my term, the Village Board has approved several code changes to better address stormwater management issues. We implemented new provisions regarding stormwater runoff in adjoining property buffer areas; we revised our lot coverage provisions; and we took steps to remove illegal connections to our sanitary sewer system.

Staff is looking at ways to improve stormwater management on a near-daily basis. They are aware of problem areas throughout the Village and are always looking to improve the situation for our residents.

This year the Board was faced with challenges to our land use code and preservation code from residents, realtors and developers. We currently have a six-month building moratorium in place that you did not vote to implement. Share your views on these issues and what you expect the Village Board to do as an outcome of this pause.

We are primarily looking at three areas:

1. Aesthetics. We have heard concerns from residents about the size and bulk of homes, the design of homes, and the perceived proliferation of homes that appear out of character for their lots or for their neighborhoods. It can be nearly impossible to codify what are, in many cases, matters of taste. But we are examining whether things like building height, setbacks and floor area ratio can be revised to mitigate some of the aesthetic concerns that residents have.

2. Historic Preservation: Preserving historic homes is important to the community and to the Board. We are looking at whether our current Code strikes the right balance between preserving truly special and historic homes, while allowing necessary updates of our housing stock. We also want to make sure that we close any loopholes that exist, that could allow homeowners or developers to skirt the intent of our historic preservation laws.

3. Stormwater management: This is a complex topic, with homeowners, the Village, Westchester County, and the State all playing a role. With respect to residential properties, we will be analyzing our lot coverage and building coverage code provisions to determine whether any changes should be made. We will also look at requiring verification of regular maintenance of stormwater management systems by property owners.

I’m glad that we are having these important discussions. Regarding my vote, I simply did not agree that we needed to impose a moratorium at the same time we were looking at these issues.

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