Meeting Date : June 23, 2014
Download Minutes : Download File

Call to Order / Determination of Quorum

The meeting, held at the Historic Watts dePeyster Hall, was opened at 7:05 P.M. and a quorum was determined to be present for the conduct of business.

Planning Board Attendees:

  • Chair Mike Billeci
  • Ginger Grab
  • Donna Matthews
  • John Hallstein

Also Present:

  • Trustee Robin Bruno
  • Chris Murphy
  • John Molinaro
  • Jeff Leffeld
  • Trish Tieger


  • Celeste Jones, Robert Roff, Aaron Card, Kira Bruno, Sophie Bruno, Kristin Hall, Jeremy Hall, Mary Ann Barrows, Sue Marcotte, Jack Marcotte, Karen Cleaveland, Dave Cleaveland, Molly Saffer, Ilana Selber, Adam Skinner, Eileen Digan, Katie Culp

Old Business

Skate Ramp in Tivoli Memorial Park: Chair Billeci opened the public hearing at 7:05 pm. Trustee Robin Bruno gave the presentation on the skate ramp: She stated that skaters are making their own ramps on the basketball court and St. Sylvia’s parking lot. This ramp will give the boarders a place to skateboard safely. Children, youth and college students congregate in different parts of the Village. This ramp offers them a place to be a part of positive youth camaraderie. It gives them the opportunity to remain active in a sport but also satisfy the youthful need for fun in a safe manner on a ramp that’s built specifically for this sport. Chris Hoffman of the Board Room in Red Hook is in full support of the ramp and has expressed an interest in giving classes on safety and boarding and also bringing in trick groups for shows. This will strengthen the Village’s relationship with Bard College. They will prepare the site, transport the ramp to the site and install it at no cost. The Village will have a zero tolerance policy for inappropriate activity associated with the ramp. Signs that inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated will be posted and that such activity will result in removal of the structure. This ramp will draw visitors to the Village who will be able to participate in this sport safely.

Comments from the public:

Jack Marcotte, 45 North Road:

  • Skate boarding gets him out of the house
  • He will respect the neighbors in the Village
  • Closest skate park is in Red Hook and his parents can’t always drive him there

Aaron Card:

  • It’s a hassle for his parents to have to drive him to Red Hook’s skate park
  • Will help keep him out of trouble

Celeste Jones, 6 Memorial Drive:

  • Proposed site is directly behind her house
  • Kids are in the park now after hours
  • Who will enforce the zero tolerance policy?
  • Has had to call police in the past. By the time they come, the kids are gone
  • Placement of the ramp in the back corner of the park is a bad idea
  • Who will supervise them?
  • There will be noise right behind her house. She has a 10 and 8 year old and her husband gets up at 3:00 am.
  • There are liability issues, that’s why Bard took it down
  • Lack of controlled entry
  • There will be parties
  • Signs don’t provide enough control

Molly Saffern, Bard student:

  • Skateboarding is a good way to socialize
  • People will be working hard to learn to skate board
  • Kids are loud no matter what
  • Kids who have less to do will make worse kinds of trouble
  • Kids will be in the Village no matter what

Ilana Silbert, Bard student living on Montgomery Street:

  • Bard skateboarding community is a welcoming community
  • The park is meant for public use and access
  • Park is a place to bring community together and socialize
  • Doesn’t think that extra legal enforcement would be necessary
  • Bard students didn’t have a part in the discussion to remove the ramp from Bard
  • It doesn’t make more risk than a basketball court
  • There was politics involved in removing the ramp
  • Tables are used now as a skate ramp, the ramp is a piece of equipment

Jeremy Hall, 2 Lothrop Lane:

  • Absolutely against it
  • Noise will be bad
  • Skate parks are suppose to be built at least 400 feet from the nearest residence
  • This is within 150 feet of the nearest residence
  • Liability is the same, even if signs are put up
  • Skate ramps should be concrete, permanent structures
  • Graffiti will increase
  • Slapping sounds will be heard all day long
  • Location in the park is not good, tucked back in a corner near houses
  • Skating more teenage, male oriented
  • Ramp is very close to the baseball field

Katie Culp, 9 Lisa Lane:

  • Skateboarding is a sport that people teach each other
  • Kids need a place to connect with other kids
  • Good opportunity for kids in that age range to do something constructive

Karen Cleaveland, 72 Broadway:

  • There has been skate boarding in Tivoli for a long time
  • No police in town, kids can do whatever they want
  • There’s no perfect place for this ramp, it can’t go anywhere without disturbing someone.
  • It belongs at Bard. Bard doesn’t have houses.
  • Wrong to put residents in this kind of situation with that noise
  • All kinds of kids will be coming to Tivoli. May not respect Tivoli.
  • Parents need to drive their kids to places they need to go
  • Who on the Board would want this in their backyard or near their house?
  • Why is Bard giving it up when they have 24 hour security and money for insurance?

Kristin Hall, 2 Lothrop Lane:

  • Kids will skate to get to the park, it won’t get them off the streets
  • They will skate to go get pizza
  • Huge liability, not safe
  • Kids don’t wear helmets now when they ride their bikes
  • Police are not responsive to noise complaints
  • Posting signs won’t stop lawsuits
  • This ramp was built by students, not professionals
  • Who is going to monitor for safety issues
  • One kid can ruin it for everyone

Michael Ipsen – Bard student who helped build the ramp:

  • The ramp is surfaced with skate lay which is designed for skate ramps
  • This ramp is up to par with professional skate ramps in terms of materials

Sue Marcotte, 45 North Road:

  • Her son wears a helmet and pads
  • He is very respectful
  • It would be a great things for the kids to have

Eileen Digan, 12 Memorial Drive:

  • Lots of noise and garbage in the park
  • Driving child to Red Hook is inconvenient
  • Concerned with liability as a taxpayer
  • If park closes at 10:00 pm how do we keep kids out of there, park doesn’t really close
  • How do we keep the noise down?
  • How do we keep it looking nice?
  • Concerned with noise between 10:00 pm and 8:00 am
  • Calling the police is not effective
  • Who gets the call at 1:00 am when there’s noise in the park?
  • Will the skate ramp be lighted?
  • Is there a plan on how to close it?
  • Did the Board of Trustees consider any other area?
  • Need a specific plan
  • Kids play basketball at night now

Adam Skinner, head of skate club:

  • Skate boarders don’t skate at night
  • Vandalism will happen anyway, skate boarders won’t be doing it

Mary Ann Barrows, 9 Memorial Drive:

  • Concerns with the placement, too close to the kiddie park
  • Not a good spot, on the periphery of the park, kids have to walk through the park
  • It should have more room around it
  • Noise will be a concern even in the day, too close to houses

Mike O’Keefe:

  • Better to have kids skate on ramp than get hit by a car
  • The ramp is built well
  • Placement under the pavilion would keep the noise down
  • Skate competitions could counter the cost of additional insurance

When asked why this particular spot in the park was chosen for the skate ramp, Trustee Bruno responded that a site near the bus stop was considered, but it was too close to the road. Another spot near the pump house was too low and would flood. The open space is used by community groups, summer rec program and people having parties.

Dave Cleaveland, 72 Broadway:

  • Will there be more lighting over there?
  • There’s no money now in Tivoli’s budget
  • Insurance will be additional money
  • Tivoli DPW will maintain this, that will cost money
  • Can’t close it because there’s no enforcement to close it
  • Can’t enforce the noise ordinance now

Sophie Bruno:

  • Will be a great way for her and her friends to have fun in a safe way
  • Kids will be focused on using the ramp and not drawing on it

Kira Bruno:

  • Thinks it’s a good idea. It will give us something to do.

John Hallstein asked about the spot east of the bus stop. Trustee Bruno stated this was the original site they considered but the concern was about a board kicking out into the road.

Ginger Grab moved to close the public hearing at 8:15 pm. John Hallstein seconded. All in favor. Motion carried.

Chair Billeci advised the public that no decision would be made tonight.

New Business

Site Plan Review – 53 Broadway (Hotel Tivoli): Chair Billeci stated that the Board is interested in the signage, change to the columns and the railing. A presentation was made to the Board by Jeff Leffeld of Band NY regarding the lighting that will be used on the sign and how it will be controlled so that it is in accordance with the lighting statute. A rendering was provided to the Board showing the “Hotel Tivoli” sign which will be stainless steel letters. The lighting can be controlled in terms of trespass, how much light is allowed to hit the letters, dimming and color. Chair Billeci stated that the Board will need more information about the neon sign to be put in the window. There are concerns with putting neon in a historic building.

Mr. Molinaro stated that the present columns are being replaced by 7 1⁄4 x 7 1⁄4 square posts. The old bases are rotted. The current footings are sufficient. They will be painted.

Mr. Molinaro told the Board that the railings being put up are well-built iron railings that used to be on Mr. Marden’s property. The footprint hasn’t changed. They may be painted later.

Chair Billeci stated that this will have to be submitted to the County. He told Mr. Molinaro that the Board will need more information about the neon sign.

Site Plan Review – 48 Broadway: Applicant Trish Tieger wants to convert an office into an apartment on the second floor. She will be adding a kitchen sink and a bathroom. The only concern the Board had was the parking. Chair Billeci stated that the parking requirements are the same for an apartment as for an office so there is not an issue with this application. Ginger Grab moved to approve the application for a second apartment on the second floor. John Hallstein seconded. All in favor. Motion carried.

The Board reviewed the minutes from the May 27, 2014 Planning Board Meeting. Donna Matthews moved to approve the minutes as presented. Ginger Grab seconded. All in favor. Motion carried.


John Hallstein moved to close the meeting at 8:48 PM. Donna Matthews seconded. All in favor. Motion carried.

Respectfully submitted,

Claire Roff, Planning Board Clerk