Greenburgh Supervisor Paul J. Feiner has asked Bedford officials to join his campaign to end the use of arbitration panels in settling contract disputes with local police departments.
In a letter, Feiner said pay raises imposed by “unelected arbitrators” have exceeded inflation rates, imposing “excessive salary hikes on local governments around the state.” Eliminating the panels would make it easier, he said, to implement a state-imposed cap on property taxes.
“I would appreciate your contacting your state representatives in Albany and requesting that they push for the repeal of arbitration panels.” Feiner wrote in a letter to Supervisor Lee V.A. Roberts, who is on vacation and did not attend Tuesday’s meeting. With Deputy Supervisor Peter Chryssos also absent, the town board was reduced to three members and tabled the letter.
The state’s Taylor Law, which governs municipal collective bargaining, provides for arbitration when either a local government or its workers union declares that contract negotiations are at an “impasse.” A three-member panel—one named by the union, one by the government and a chair acceptable to both sides—then arbitrates.
Feiner said the Taylor Law, a product of the 1960s, was “outdated and should be repealed.”
“New York State should provide local officials with the ability to control all salaries under our jurisdiction,” he told the Bedford board members. “The buck should stop with elected officials who approve budgets, not with unelected arbitrators.”
Stars return to Bedford for movie shoot
No stranger to celebrity, Bedford will host Hollywood notables this month when a sci-fi family comedy movie, Robot and Frank, shoots scenes at 77 Heron Lake Road. The cast includes Frank Langella (Frank), Liev Schreiber (the robot’s voice), Susan Sarandon, James Marsden, Jeremy Strong and Liv Tyler. Shooting is scheduled for the weekend of July 23-24.
Farm stand needs a sign
For three years, Gwen Brant says, she’s put up her Daisy Hill Farm sign each morning in season, announcing fresh produce for sale at her West Patent Road farm. She’s taken it down each evening and has not had a problem. But now, she told the town board Tuesday, Bedford has ordered that the sign must stay down when it comes down. She appealed for permission to keep her sign up, a matter the planning board will now consider.