Frequently Asked Questions

About the process

A comprehensive plan is an official, long range planning document that provides policy guidance for future growth, development, land use, infrastructure, and services. According to New York State’s zoning enabling statutes, zoning laws must be adopted in accordance with a “well considered plan” or a “comprehensive plan.” “The comprehensive plan results from an extensive public planning process that establishes the official land use policy of a community and presents goals and a vision for the future that guides official decision making. The comprehensive plan invariably includes a thorough analysis of current data showing land development trends and issues, community resources, and public needs for transportation, recreation, and housing. Zoning is merely one method—albeit an important one—for implementing the goals of the plan. Having a comprehensive or well-considered plan ensures that forethought and planning precede zoning and zoning amendments” (Zoning and the Comprehensive Plan, James A. Coon Local Government Technical Series, Revised 2015).

An LWRP, or Waterfront Plan, is a planning document prepared by a community to address issues that affect the community’s waterfront and harbor area. The Waterfront Plan also lays out the program established to implement the plan. The plan should reflect community consensus about appropriate development in the waterfront area and unique cultural and natural characteristics. The Waterfront Plan also establishes a partnership between local government, community-based organizations, and New York State. Once the Waterfront Plan is approved, actions by State and Federal agencies are required to be consistent with the policies laid out in the plan. Perhaps most importantly, a Waterfront Plan increases a community’s changes to obtain public and private funding for projects, because the plan represents a unified vision.

The benefits of adopting a comprehensive plan and waterfront plan are to:

  • Identify community resources, long range community needs, and commonly held goals.
  • Develop community consensus.
  • Provide a blueprint for future government actions.

Sleepy Hollow’s Comprehensive Plan dates to 1980 and the Waterfront Plan was last updated in 1997. Although some conditions and land use planning goals may still be the same, this is also a good time to make sure that these two plans are based on current local and regional trends, are responsive to changing economic and demographic data, and are inclusive of emerging planning goals, such as incorporating principles of sustainability and preparing for the impacts of climate change.

In December 2016 the Village of Sleepy Hollow was awarded a $59,929 grant by the New York State Department of State for the new Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan. The grant was funded under Title 11 of the Environmental Protection Fund.

The grant program under which we are funded had a 50% match, requiring that the Village contribute at least as much to the project as the grant amount. A portion of the Village’s $59,929 share will be in-kind contributions – or donated volunteer work. By assigning a dollar value to the many hours of work our residents will volunteer to the project, Sleepy Hollow will essentially “work off” almost $16,000 of our share of the cost so that only $44,071 of it has to come from our tax dollars.

The grant money will be used to pay the consulting firm whose professional expertise in planning, urban design, environmental analysis, transportation, economic development and recreation is necessary to guide the project. The consultants will review Sleepy Hollow’s history and existing plans; guide our community to develop a vision for the village; inventory Sleepy Hollow’s assets, resources, issues and opportunities; develop a strategic plan with policies to guide our actions towards realizing the vision we have agreed on; record projects and actions that must be taken to implement our plan.


Participating in the process

Members of the community are encouraged to participate in the planning process. In fact, public input is absolutely critical to creating plans that are reflective of the Village’s goals. The steering committee, Village staff, and consultants need to hear from the public to ensure that the Comprehensive Plan and Waterfront Plan support your vision for Sleepy Hollow’s future. The process will include public workshops, focus group meetings, meetings with the Steering Committee, and a public survey.

You can also stay up to date on the process by visiting the website and leaving a comment.

Any stakeholder with an interest in the future of Sleepy Hollow is welcome to take part in the planning process. In particular, local residents, business owners, property owners, workers, and representatives of community organizations should play a big role in providing input during the process.

The process is also guided by a steering committee made up of local stakeholders. The Village Board and Planning Board will be briefed throughout the process to stay updated and provide feedback. Village staff play a key role as well.

The Village has hired a consultant team, led by BFJ Planning, to facilitate public outreach and produce key deliverables along the way. In addition to BFJ, the consultant team includes VHB, Urbanomics, and Paco Technologies.

David Avrin

Alex Chambers

Rachelle Gebler

Laura Rey Iannarelli

Stewart Lee

René León

Alex McFarland

Lisa Santo

Glen Taylor

Luis Tenezaca

Anne White