Saugerties mayor looks forward to 2017

Mayor William Murphy (photo by Dion Ogust)

Mayor William Murphy is looking for 2017 to be an even better year than 2016. A top goal for him is to move a plan to convert the village hall to solar power forward.

For the last several months Murphy has been talking to a solar company interested in putting solar panels on the roof of village hall, and converting the whole building, which includes the fire department’s uptown station, to use solar energy at no cost to village taxpayers.

Murphy said the company has expressed interest in doing the free conversion in order to create a marketing tool for itself. “It’s in keeping with our philosophy of going green and reducing our carbon footprint, while saving taxpayers money,” Murphy explained.


Last year, the village contracted to replace all the outside doors and windows at village-owned buildings with new energy-efficient ones, and to replace outdated boilers with energy-efficient ones. Going solar at the village hall would continue that direction.

“We’re also going to move forward with our two New York State Community Rising projects at Tina Chorvas Park and the Saugerties Beach as well,” Murphy said.

At Tina Chorvas, the village will be using some of the $3 million it received as part of the state program to replace bulkheads damaged during the Lee, Irene, and Sandy storms several years ago. The new bulkhead will help prevent the Esopus Creek from eroding the park.

The Community Rising Program made $3 million available to impacted communities. The funding has to be used to help repair damages from the three storms and to mitigate damage from future storms.

At the Saugerties Beach, work replacing the damaged boat launch has been completed. This coming spring tons of sand will be trucked into to replace what was washed away during the storms. A berm will be built and a stormwater system installed to keep stormwater from running off Hill Street and into the beach park.

Mayor Murphy also wants to see the village continue to be a welcoming community for events like the Sawyer Motors Car Show, the Saugerties Chamber of Commerce’s Holiday in the Village, and this past weekend’s New Year’s Eve celebration. About a thousand residents and friends came out to see in the new year.

“It was great,” Murphy said of the New Year’s Eve celebration. “At about 11:40 the streets were pretty empty, but as midnight neared there were [lots of] people in the streets,” Murphy said.

They were all in the village’s bars and restaurants, “and then they came out, watched the ball drop, had some fun, and then at about 12:40 the streets were clear again,” Murphy reported. “Everyone had a great time and made it home safe.”

“We want to continue to build on the success of last year, and make 2017 even better for our residents,” Murphy said.