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Harrison Mayor Discusses Verizon FIOS Negotiations

Mayor Ron Belmont at a Harrison Town/Village meeting last fall.
Mayor Ron Belmont at a Harrison Town/Village meeting last fall. Photo Credit: Jon Craig

HARRISON, N.Y. --  One of the first issues I dealt with, after being elected to my first term, was to revive negotiations with Verizon regarding their FiOS service.

Where and when the service was offered was at the sole discretion of Verizon. For quite some time, we were informed Verizon was not expanding its footprint and, therefore, would not be negotiating with our municipality.

In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, discussions stalled as the utility company repaired its badly damaged infrastructure.

I continued to be in regular contact with Verizon representatives, urging them to enter into a franchise agreement with Harrison. Over the course of the last several years, I remained committed to bringing competition to Harrison and was very happy when, in June 2014, our negotiations were successful. The utility company and the Town entered into an agreement which was then filed with NYS Public Service commission for their mandated review.

The agreement was reviewed and approved in December 2014 and residents are now free to contact Verizon for their FiOs service. I appreciate the patience Harrison residents demonstrated, as I persevered, and I am glad there is now a choice for our consumers.

Recently, Town personnel and I attended a conference on the 2015 economic forecast for Westchester County. The event was hosted by the Westchester County Association and featured County Executive Rob Astorino along with a panel of economic and real estate experts. It was a highly informative event, giving local municipalities an opportunity to hear about and discuss economic trends in the year to come.

Please be aware of the following sanitation notice: Christmas trees may be placed curbside in plastic bags for pick-up until Jan. 31. Decorated holiday wreaths or roping must be placed in trash bags and also will be collected by the sanitation department.

As reported in the last column, Monday, Jan. 19 is Martin Luther King Jr. Day and a sanitation schedule change is in effect.

Garbage and recycling normally collected on Monday, will be collected on Tuesday. Garbage and recycling normally collected on Tuesday,  will be collected on Wednesday. There will be no bulk trash pickup on Wednesday.

The normal collection schedule for household trash and recycling will resume on Thursday.

In closing, I would like to thank the highway department for doing a wonderful job clearing our streets of leaf piles and brush. The highway crews have cleared the majority of our municipal roadways in record time and I would like to commend them for their hard work. They are in the final phase and our roads should be completely cleared before long.

Now that winter is upon us, I would like to remind residents that, as a snowstorm approaches, please remember to put cars into driveways to help with street plowing efforts. In addition, when clearing driveways and walkways, please refrain from shoveling snow into the streets.

The next “Lunch with the Mayor” is on Friday, Jan. 23. I will be at Goldberg’s Rock’n Bagel Cafe, located at 379 Halstead Ave. in downtown Harrison.

I will be there from 12:30 p.m to 1:30 p.m. and look forward to meeting with residents and talking about issues facing our community.

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