Village officials address registration difficulties for its summer park program

Warwick. Although successful on many accounts, the program was hampered by software glitches and language barriers.

| 07 Sep 2023 | 01:40

    Warwick Village Recreation Director Ron Introini addressed the frustration shared by Warwick families over difficulties in signing up for the village’s summer park program, during the Warwick Village Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

    As previously reported by the Board of Trustees, the software company responsible for operating the recreation program’s registration website had a glitch that only allowed one person to check out at a time.

    Though people were able to register, and the park program was filled, Introini said more than 100 children were on the wait list.

    “It was a mess trying to sign up,” said Trustee Thomas McKnight.

    According to McKnight, the software company claimed it has resolved the problem.

    In addition to fixing software glitches, the board discussed other challenges for the park program, such as the lack of flexibility in being able to sign up for individual weeks or days and the inaccessibility of the registration process for those for whom English is not their first language.

    On the issue of translating the registration page, Introini said the software company is looking into it.

    Introini reported on some of the successes of the program, including the increased number of counselors, which enabled the park program to welcome more children. He said this was due in part to the village’s decision to lower the minimum age of counselors from 16 to 15 years old.

    Community choice aggregation

    In addition to discussing challenges with the summer rec program registration, the trustees listened to a presentation from Joule Power, a company that helps smaller towns, villages and other municipalities seek out more competitive energy pricing through community choice aggregation (CCA) and access cleaner options not always available outside of larger population centers.

    Residents of Warwick receive their energy from Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., which determines where that energy is sourced from. During his presentation, Glenn Weinberg, vice president of Sales and Market Development for Joule Power said that through a CCA program, communities can choose their own energy sources at a better rate. O&R would still operate as the utility and handle billing and other service needs, Weinberg said.

    “These programs provide stability in addition to renewable content that’s not available outside of the utility,” said Weinberg. “We provide a fixed, stabilized price that allows households to save three to four hundred dollars on energy bills.”

    New York State regulation allows for the establishment of CCAs through local laws. Weinberg said that any local regulation adopted would be non-binding and added that his company can assist with establishing the law as well as any efforts to educate the community.