NOT “GOOD NEWS” FOR COMMUTER PARKING PERMIT HOLDERS 329 PARKING PERMIT HOLDERS, 263 SPACES, AT BEST
On or about February 15, 2018, The EIC and IBE sent the following emails to the entire Edgemont community and made the following announcements, on Next Door Edgemont, as well.
FROM THE EIC: “In October 2016, the EIC identified parking access at the Hartsdale Metro-North Train Station as a critical incorporation issue. We expressed then, and believe now, that Edgemont should not become a Village if we RISK losing our parking privileges at the commuter parking lots at Hartsdale.”
FROM THE IBE: “We know that parking at the Hartsdale Metro-North train station is a critical issue for many of us. Therefore we are thrilled to share that incorporation will NOT impact our parking rights.”
HOW COULD THE INFORMATION THE EIC PRESENTED TO THE COMMUNITY BE SO WRONG!
The following is information garnered as a result of a Freedom of Information Act request of the Hartsdale Public Parking District, brought by Keep Edgemont, to bring clarity to the “Parking Question”
- 329 individuals residing within the boundaries of the Greenville Fire District, the future geography of a New Edgemont Village, currently hold commuter parking permits at the Hartsdale Metro-North Train Station.
- Site D, across the RR Tracks, South lot, which falls in the geography of a future Edgemont Village, has 172 parking spots (36 are Municipal Parking Meters, regularly utilized for those who wish to go to NYC, for the day, but who do not have an HPPD Commuter Pass. These spaces are always occupied and would be forever lost to our community.)
- Site E has 121 parking spots. According to the EIC legal opinion and their numerous statements and social media posts, we agree that approximately 75% of site E, “The Pipeline,” falls within the geography of a future Edgemont Village, therefore yielding 75% of 121 spots, 92 total parking spots in Site E.
- The total parking spots in the geography of a potential Edgemont Village would then be 264. (non-inclusive of a number of additional handicapped spots which would be required)
- Based on the above, a minimum of 65 of our neighbors who rely on parking at the Hartsdale Train Station would lose their rights, as well as any future additional Edgemont Village residents.
- It could be even worse for us! The EIC theory for apportionment of HPPD assets as outlined in their statements and attorneys’ opinions have been publicly disagreed with by the HPPD, and many others find the argument not in consonance with the law and believe the facts which the opinion are based upon are questionable. Discussions with the State Controller, case law and the HPPD’s opposition letter, indicate this could well be a disputed issue, requiring litigation. If it is determined that the EIC opinion turns out to be incorrect, it is quite possible that Edgemont residents would have no rights to park at the Hartsdale Station.
THE REASON FOR THIS STUDY OF COMMUTER PARKING
Upon reviewing the Duane Morris report and the EIC publications, it appeared strange that the EIC utilized percentages, not actual numbers of parking spots in their report??? It also seemed strange that the exact percentage of spaces 38% and of Edgemont permit holders, also 38% were presented by the EIC as fact. Such a coincidence demanded further study be undertaken to ensure that our neighbors received accurate information.
THE METHODOLOGY OF THE STUDY
- We presented a Freedom of Information Act request to the Hartsdale Public Parking District, HPPD, asking for the total number of parking spaces in each of the 6 HPPD sites, broken down by site and confirming the number of commuter spaces and parking meters at each site. We also walked Sites D and E and counted each parking spot.
There are 172 parking spots in the Site D lot (Across the RR Tracks south) and 92 of 121 parking spots in Site E. (The Pipeline)
IF the EIC opinion and argument holds up to expected litigation, which many including the HPPD finds questionable, Edgemont Village could have some sort of control of 263 parking spaces within its geographical borders. A BIG IF.
- We then inquired of the HPPD if it was possible that any individuals residing in the zip code 10583, who live outside of the Town of Greenburgh could have been issued parking permits and were told that such residents were not eligible for consideration, as they were not residents of un-incorporated Greenburgh. (as supported by the HPPD Rules and Regulations and in their application)
- To ensure further accuracy, we identified, utilizing Greenburgh Property Tax records, all properties existing outside of the current Greenville Fire District with a 10583 zip code and developed a list of all of those addresses within 10583 which would be outside of a future Edgemont Village, ensuring those individuals were not counted in this study.
- We then identified, utilizing Greenburgh Property Tax records, all addresses existing in zip code 10530 which were on the tax rolls of the Greenville fire District and which would be part of a future Edgemont Village, for inclusion in the study.
- We asked the HPPD if they could provide the names of all individuals who were issued commuter passes, who met the criteria noted above and we provided a detailed list to the HPPD of which addresses to specifically include and which to exclude.
- The list of those commuter parking permit holders, provided by the Hartsdale Public Parking District included 329 names.
The issues here relate to both the credibility of the EIC and to our community’s legal rights to commuter park at the Hartsdale Metro-North Train Station. Most important, it considers the protection of current and future residents.
Would you buy a home in Edgemont if you knew you could not commuter park for work?
Would you be ok, going back to a “lottery system,” competing with members of other Villages, for parking permits, because a future Edgemont Village could not meet the HPPD’s requirement for Greenburgh residency?
The EIC publishes on its website, they received information from the HPPD, in 2017 and state, “Site D and Site E spaces within our boundaries are sufficient to cover Edgemont Demand.”
How could they be so inaccurate!
It is important to note, that subsequent to the EIC and IBE correspondence sent to Edgemont residents stating “Great News” the HPPD sent their own, quite different letter, to all Edgemont Consumer Parking Permit Holders, as summarized below:
1-We do not agree with The EIC legal opinion
2- We have an attorney retained for this matter
3- We will not debate or negotiate with the EIC
4- Nothing will even begin to be discussed or negotiated until after a successful incorporation vote and the election of a new Edgemont government.
This letter from the Hartsdale Public Parking District did not deter the EIC from sending out its “GREAT NEWS” emails and posts, declaring the issue of Commuter Parking, no longer an issue.
When the EIC began its campaign for incorporation two years ago, it clearly stated they had “set in stone” requirements which would need to be met or they would not go forward with incorporation. One was, the legal assurance that there would not be a diminution of privileges for commuter parkers at Hartsdale Station.
Quoted from the EIC: “In October 2016, the EIC identified parking access at the Hartsdale Metro-North train station as a critical incorporation issue. We expressed then, and believe now, that Edgemont should not become a village if we risk losing our parking privileges at the commuter parking lots at Hartsdale.”
ANOTHER PROMISE MADE BY THE EIC WHICH WILL NOT BE KEPT!