Sea Cliff Village board cites strategy plan, Grievance Day protocol


The Sea Cliff Village Board met on Monday for its monthly conference meeting. Trustees reviewed two points of discussion brought up at the last public comment meeting on Jan. 8. At that meeting, Trustee Deborah McDermott recommended the board adopt a strategic plan for the village, and explained what such a plan would entail and why Sea Cliff would benefit from one. She added that the public document would be built collaboratively among the board, its subcommittees and the residents.

“This document would address what our goals and visions are for Sea Cliff, build consensus around them . . . and how we plan to make an impact,” she said.

Deputy Mayor Kevin McGilloway recommended the board formulate an overarching framework outlining the goals and values of the village. “The statement, made by our participation and a handful of others, would address what we’re trying to get done at a higher level,” he said. “Once that’s in place we can engage the community.”

Mayor Edward Lieberman said each trustee should solicit input from his or her respective boards and committees to determine a general approach for the plan. McDermott said that the feedback from them would create a formal frame that would provide a strategy for residents to consider.

Trustee Dina Epstein suggested the board then distribute a questionnaire to residents that would detail the strategy and encourage public input advising that what they share be “more objective than subjective.”

“It’s important for residents to get their values out there, and to see the diversity of opinions,” McDermott said.

At the last public comment meeting, a motion was passed to set the village’s Grievance Day for Tuesday, Feb. 20, between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m., at which time complaints regarding the proposed 2018-2019 Assessment Role would be received. Village Administrator Bruce Kennedy said residents would be able to file requests to make corrections to their property assessments.

“There are ongoing discussions for the need for reassessment, but the county is facing a bigger issue,” said Kennedy, adding that a meeting he attended with County Executive Laura Curran last Thursday outlined the assessment situation and how it affects the county, townships, and villages.

“The county is looking for a gradual correction from the Office of Real Property Tax Services, and if granted, it would work very well in favor of Sea Cliff,” he said.

McGilloway acknowledged that the disparity on property values within the village has widened, and questioned if the village would piggyback on the county in terms of reassessment.

“It is in the best interest of all entities to have one tax roll that we all agreed upon, and correct this role collectively,” Kennedy said. “[The county] does not have the capacity to do a full county-wide reassessment now. It is looking for a step-in model that ORPS has to accept. If all the taxing entities worked together, it suits all our purposes.”

The Assessment Role will be on file in the village clerk’s office until Feb. 20.