Board of Trustees

Village Board

The Village Board is made up of four Trustees and one Mayor for a total of a five member board.

Board of Trustees Agendas & Minutes:

Agendas are available prior to the meetings. Minutes are available following approval.

View Most Recent Agendas and Minutes


Board Meetings
2nd Monday of each month
Formal adoption of Policy and Monthly Reports & Budgets, Open to Public

7:00 pm at the Village Hall, Courtroom
Public Workshops
Third Thursday of each month
Informal discussion of Policy and Board Objectives,
Open to Public
7:00 pm at the Village Hall, Courtroom

All meetings are open to the public and held in accordance to NY State Open Meetings Law.

Special meetings are published in the Village’s official paper of record; The Daily Freeman.  

Citizens are encouraged to take an active role in their local government.

Important Annual Dates to Remember:

Calendar Year
starts January 1st
Fiscal Year
starts June 1st 
Organizational Year
starts the first Monday of April

Pursuant to Village Law § 3-302(1), the official year of a village begins at noon on the first Monday of the month following the village election. Since The Village of Red Hook conducts its elections in March, our official year begins on the first Monday in April.

Village Elections
take place the 3rd Tues in March (unless that falls on St. Patrick's day).

Office of the Mayor

Karen Smith 2020

Mayor Karen Smythe 


Phone: (845) 758-4715

Interim Office Term: ends March 31th, 2022

Membership & Terms: The office of Red Hook Village Mayor is held for a four-year term.  

Interim Term: Mayor Ed Blundell retired as mayor on May 21, 2021. Because that occurred more than 75 days before the next village election (held the 3rd Tues in March) the Board of Trustees were required to vote in a Mayor who would hold the position in the interim. A special election will be held March 15, 2022 for the remaining year of Mayor Blundell’s elected term. 

Village Law §3-312  sets forth the procedure for filling vacancies that occur in village offices. Vacancies in elective or appointive offices that are not caused by expiration of the term of office are filled by the Mayor except that the board of trustees fills any vacancy in the office of the Mayor. 

… If the vacancy occurs in an elective office more than 75 days prior to the third Tuesday of the month preceding the end of the current official year, then the Mayoral appointment to fill the vacancy is for the balance of that official year, and if an unexpired term remains, a special election for the remainder of the term must be held that year.

Mayor’s Role & Responsibilities

As an elected official, the Mayor has a number of statutory powers by virtue of NYS Village Law §4-400 . The Mayor typically presides at the meetings of the board of trustees and in all instances the Mayor’s vote is counted as one vote and is equal to the vote of any trustee. In cases of a tie, the Mayor is mandated by law to vote. The Mayor of a village has no veto power over legislative action of the board.

The Mayor is the chief executive officer of the Village, as such she is responsible for all day to day operations. She is responsible for enforcing all laws, rules and regulations to cause all violations thereof to be prosecuted. 

The Mayor has the power to declare local emergencies and to engage the resources of the village when necessary to mitigate the loss of life or property during hazardous or emergency situations.

Office of Village Trustees

Membership & Terms: The legislative body of a village, the board of trustees is composed of the Mayor and four village trustees. The Village of Red Hook Board of Trustees consists of four (4) village residents, 18 years or older, that are elected for four year terms. 

Brent Kovalchik

Brent Kovalchik, Deputy Mayor


Office Term: term ends in March, 2023


Charles Laing, Trustee


Office Term: term ends in March,2025


Melkorka Kjarval, Trustee


Office Term: term ends in March, 2025


Vacant Seat, Trustee

Email: -----

Office Term: term ends in March, 2023

Trustee Roles & Responsibilities

NYS Village Law §4-412 sets forth the general powers of the board.  

In addition to any other powers conferred upon villages, the Board of Trustees of a Village shall have management of Village property and finances, may take all measures and do all acts, by local law, not inconsistent with the provisions of the constitution, and not inconsistent with a general law except as authorized by the Municipal Home Rule Law, which shall be deemed expedient or desirable for the good government of the village, its management and business, the protection of its property, the safety, health, comfort, and general welfare of its inhabitants, the protection of their property, the preservation of peace and good order, the suppression of vice, the benefit of trade, and the preservation and protection of public works.

The Board of Trustees may create or abolish, by resolution, offices, boards, agencies and commissions and delegate to said offices, boards, agencies and commissions so much of its powers, duties and functions as it shall deem necessary for effectuating or administering the board of trustees duties and functions.

Members of the Board of Trustees do not have any authority to supervise or direct subordinate Village officers or employees. That is the role of the Mayor.

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