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Goals of Clarkstown's Master Plan Continue to Be Implemented

A special board will take recommendations from committees and report back to the town board.

Goals of Clarkstown's Master Plan Continue to Be Implemented

Even though the comprehensive plan for the Town of Clarkstown was adopted, that doesn't mean the work has stopped.

The plan was OK'd Nov. 24, but the following month the Special Board for Implementation of the Goals and Objectives of the Comprehensive Plan was created.

"Part of the commitment of the town board was that they didn't want it (the comprehensive plan) to end up as a document on the shelf," said Clarkstown Planner Joe Simoes.

A comprehensive plan, which municipalities update periodically, is a document that provides policy direction for land-use decisions.

At a recent meeting, Simoes updated the Town Board as to what the special board was attempting to accomplish.

"It took a lot of work to create the plan," he said, "and what you see here is the meat and potatoes of the plan."

Simoes said seven committees were set up to report back to the special board on the following subjects:

  • Transportation
  • Economic Development
  • Housing
  • Community Character/Design
  • Environmental
  • Recreation & Parks
  • Historic & Cultural Resources

In addition, three committees were formed to help the other committees:

  • Cost Benefit Analysis
  • Legislation
  • Mapping

"The first task every committee had was working with their goals and objectives," Simoes said.

The transportation committee, he said, convened a group of individuals who would be directly involved with projects, such as the Department of Transportation, the Thruway Authority and Metro-North Railroad.

Transportation would also help develop zoning that encourages and protects the safety of pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

A database on businesses was created by the economic development committee, Simoes said. It will also apply zoning changes to create and expand commercial development in appropriate areas.

The community character and design committee was charged with implementing new programs and continuing those already in place that beautify the town, he said. Included in their goals were creating business improvement districts, getting children involved in recycling and establishing design standards for commercial construction.

The helper committees, Simoes said, were just as important to the process.

The cost benefit analysis committee is developing a standard of weighing the fiscal impacts of the other committees' proposals, while the legislation committee drafts the laws necessary to enact the new rules.

"Last but not least is the mapping committee," Simoes said. It will provide maps and research to the other committees, and has worked on the draft ridgeline protection map.

Town  Supervisor Alexander Gromack said the goal of the comprehensive plan was to create a document that included the views of the entire town.

"The citizens of Clarkstown had input and helped make it a better product," he said.

Councilwoman Stephanie Hausner said the plan was what local government is all about.

"The implementation part will only make our community stronger," she said.

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