GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Both opponents and backers of a proposed domed sports complex will get the chance to speak out on public access TV several days before the issue goes to a referendum Nov. 6, the Greenburgh Town Council decided.
The two sides will be given air time on Greenburgh Access Television (GATV) to discuss the 15-year lease with Game On 365 to build the sports facility at 715 Dobbs Ferry Road, said Town Supervisor Paul Feiner.
The video will feature two 10-minute segments and air on a loop on GATV on Nov. 2 — four days before the election. GATV is available on Channel 76 for Cablevision customers and on Channel 35 for Verizon customers.
"This is democracy at its best — giving people an opportunity to hear from both sides," Feiner said.
Feiner said he contacted Simon Cohen, president of Burst the Bubble, a local organization that brought a lawsuit against Feiner and the town challenging the lease, to give it an opportunity to speak. At Wednesday's town meeting, he invited other groups actively opposing the lease — like Worthington and Dobbs Ferry Roads Civic Association and the Elm Street Sports group — to participate, he said.
However, critics argue that the vote won't matter because the lease has already been unanimously approved by the town board.
"Paul has already signed the contract. Anything he does from this point on is disingenuous," said Tom Bock, who is joining Burst the Bubble and Elm Street Sports group in their lawsuit. "He knows that not many people are going to watch it and it's not going to have an impact on the vote."
But Feiner said Thursday that if the public votes against the lease, "it's dead."
"It's a referendum. If the public's going to say they don't want it, then they don't want it," he said.
Feiner also released the referendum question:
Shall Town Board resolution TB-1, unanimously approved by the Greenburgh Town Board on August 13, 2012, authorizing the town to enter into a lease with Game On 365, LLC for the construction of a sports bubble and accessories to operate a private multi-purpose, year round sports facility with access for children, adults and seniors; working closely with both town Departments of Parks & Recreation and Community Resources at the Theodore D. Young Community Center, when needed as space and schedules allow; to be located at 715 Dobbs Ferry Road, Town of Greenburgh; generating over a fifteen year period, a minimum of five million dollars in property taxes and revenue; providing for a one-time payment of up to one hundred twenty five thousand dollars for an environmental study and cleanup, be approved?