Wednesday, May 05, 2010


BUDGET CUTTING QUESTION---Every time we pick up a newspaper we read about what other local, county and state governments are doing to reduce costs. I would appreciate feedback from taxpayers about the following…
Many large trees and branches fell after the recent storm. Landscapers and private contractors have been cutting down heavy trees and placing it at the curb. The town has picked up the trees, debris. It’s taking a long time to pick up all the tree logs, large branches. So much is out there –it’s a very expensive, labor intensive job.
QUESTION---To save money ---should the town require landscapers/contractors to remove the trees they cut down and PROHIBIT THEM FROM PLACING THE LOGS, DEBRIS AT THE CURB? If this would be done our streets would not be cluttered with logs/debris for long periods of time.
On another matter…I wrote to NYS Department of Transportation earlier this month and asked them to remove the tree logs on Dobbs Ferry Road/Sprain. It’s an eyesore. And, I received at least one report of tree logs almost falling onto the Sprain.
I’d welcome your thoughts. E mail me at
An article about town arborist Aaron Schmidt
This article appeared in the Tarrytown Patch, ( It highlights the good work of one of our employees, Arborist Aaron Schmidt who works in the planning department.
Angelica Schmidt, a Tarrytown toddler, was born last year on April 24, Arbor Day. In honor of their daughter, Greenburgh Town Arborist Aaron Schmidt and his wife Kristina planted a tree—a tree their daughter could grow with.
To celebrate Arbor Day this year, Kristina Schmidt and Ardsley's Arin Gornstein have planned, "A Tree Grows in Westchester"—a tree-planting event Sunday in Irvington's Great Hunger Memorial Park.
"The whole idea was to have an event where even the youngest of children could take part in a great community service activity," Schmidt said. "The children who come will each plant a tree to grow along side, so that they can come back year after year and see how tall it has become."
Replanting trees became a priority for Schmidt after March's devastating storms ravaged so much of Westchester. But, as a self-proclaimed super-motivated Westchester mom, Schmidt was not content planting just one tree this year.
"When I sent my mind to something, I don't give up until I have results," she said. "We really wanted to make a difference for the community and not plant just one tree but a whole bunch."
Capitalizing on her husband's resources and expertise, Schmidt was able to secure 20 trees to plant, including pink and white dogwood, river birch, pine and oak.
"I really pushed for the flowering trees," Schmidt said. "It will truly make this under-utilized park beautiful."
In 2009, Gornstein and Dobbs Ferry's Jennifer Newman Shotton founded the Rivertown Play Group, a coalition of community-oriented families with young children living in Tarrytown, Hastings, Irvington, Ardsley and Dobbs Ferry. The group now has more than 800 members, and plans regular events and "play-dates" for children aged zero to five and their families.
"We are expecting 45 families to join us on Sunday," Gornstein said. "The first 30 that signed-up will receive gift buckets donated by local sponsors, but more families are certainly welcome to come."
In addition to planting trees, kids will have the opportunity to have their faces painted by Tarrytown's Heather Huston of "Fantabulous Faces" and watch a magic show. Debbie Allen, also a Tarrytown resident, will be the event's official photographer.
"A Tree Grows in Westchester's" organizers expect more kids than there are trees, something neither woman views as a problem.
"Kids in The Rivertown Play Group are like family," Schmidt said. "We have so much local support; there are so many kids my daughter can play with in just Tarrytown alone."
Sunday's event will run from 3-5pm in Great Hunger Memorial Park, just off the Saw Mill River Parkway in Irvington.
For more information on "A Tree Grows in Westchester" or The Rivertown Play Group, visit
. Last year 40 members benefitted from this excellent system of getting fresh, organic produce into their fridges. Not only was the produce dreamy, good value and effulgent, but we also enjoyed making new friends. This year we're again going to plan a potluck towards the end of the season, plus pizza night: bring your favorite CSA veggie toppings to top your homemade pizza!

C.S.A. stands for Community Supported Agriculture. Membership in a CSA is a way of directly supporting regional family farms.

Sustainable Hastings CSA shares are from Stoneledge Farm, in Leeds, NY (about 100 miles north of here). In exchange for our upfront contribution to the farm, members of our CSA program receive a weekly allotment of amazingly delicious, varied, organic, ultra-fresh produce. Stoneledge Farm is certified organic by the North East Organic Farming Association of NY.

Membership in Sustainable Hastings' CSA (NON PROFIT ORGANIZATION)
You pay $485 for the season by check or credit/debit card directly to the farm. This breaks down to $20.21 per week.

For 24 weeks, beginning June 9th and ending November 17th, Stoneledge delivers to Grace Espiscopal church (78 Main Street, Hastings) every Wednesday. Members come between 11a.m.-1p.m. or 4-7p.m. that same day to pick up shares. Each member assembles his or her own share: you choose the head of lettuce, the 2 pounds of potatoes, the bunch of carrots, etc. Shares are not pre-bagged. Members are asked to contribute 5 hours of help during the 5 month season (wo/manning the "vegetable stand").

Each weekly delivery consists of 6 to 10 items (see examples below) - approximately 8 to 12 pounds of organic produce per week. You can also split a share with a friend or neighbor, each taking half a share (for more info on this, email us).

Stoneledge Farm donates one share for every 10 members of the CSA. Last year we donated over 1,000 pounds of food to the Grace Food Partnership - supplying fresh food to residents in Hastings and Yonkers who typically only receive canned & boxed donations. Members who are unable to pick up a share or two during the season can choose to contribute to this donation (or choose any other beneficiary - friend or neighbor, etc. - to come pick up their share).

Stoneledge Farm CSA members have the opportunity to visit the farm and help in the harvest twice during the season - a great way to connect with where our food comes from.

If you have any questions please email: or call elisa zazzera @ 212-247-5988 (home/office number; rings in hastings.)

Elisa Zazzera
Sustainable Hastings

sample weekly delivery
Spring Vegetable
Garlic Scapes - 6
Bok Choi - 1 head
Perpetual Spinach - 1 bunch
Chives - 1 bunch
Red Sails, Red Leaf Lettuce - 1 head
Escarole - 1 head
Greek Oregano - 1 bunch
Sugar Snap Peas - 1 pound

Early Summer Vegetable
Zucchini Summer Squash - 2 pounds
Cucumbers - 1 Raider Slicing and 2 Boothby Blonde Heirloom
Bright Lights Swiss Chard - 1 bunch
Raddichio - 1
Early Jersey Wakefield Cabbage - 1 head
Orient Express Eggplant - 2
Cilantro - 1 bunch
Lilac Islander Peppers - 1
Buttercrunch Lettuce - 1 head
Scallions - 1 bunch

Summer Vegetable
Red Ace Beets - 1.5 pounds
Bolero Carrots - 1 pound
Leeks - 1 bunch
Thyme - 1 bunch
Hungry Round Heirloom Peppers - 3
Lacinato Kale - 1 bunch
Broccoli - 2 heads

Autumn Vegetable
Keuka Gold Potatoes - 2 pounds
Bolero Carrots - 1 pound
Red Ace Beets - 1.5 pounds
Brussels Sprouts - 3 stalks
Winterbor Kale - 1 bunch
Celeriac - 2 roots
Garlic - 2 bulbs
Romanesco Cauliflower - 1 head
Italian Flat Leaf Parsley - 1 bunch


YOU ARE DUMB said...

QUESTION---To save money ---should the town require landscapers/contractors to remove the trees they cut down and PROHIBIT THEM FROM PLACING THE LOGS, DEBRIS AT THE CURB?
1)You didn't hire new people to do the clean up.
2) You're not going to fire existing staff after the clean up.
3) You're not paying OT.
4) Not all homeowners have landscapers or contractors.
5) You are an IDIOT!
ps. Nice of you to suggest this after all but Hartsdale is cleaned up. STICK IT TO HARTSDALE AGAIN!

Chris Moriarty said...

Wow, he was just asking a question.

Anonymous said...


Fed Up With Feiner said...

It just shows our frustration...rather than ask us what we think he should do, why doesn't he just do what he's paid to do and that is to make the hard decisions. The reason the roads are riddled with pot holes 3 months since our last snow storm and still full of logs, branches and debris from the noreaster is because Feiner didn't want to make the hard decision to keep DPW going on overtime. If he would stop using our tax dollars for frivolous law suits he could put those dollars towards DPW overtime when it's needed. Feiner needs to stop shifting the decision making to the taxpayers and start doing it himself. This guy is not an idiot - if he has us telling him what to do he also has us scapegoats when the decisions prove to be wrong.

YOU ARE DUMB said...

Well, Chris. Has he explained just how his newest, bright idea is going to save money? No, he hasn't. That's because it won't. It MAY save on some OT short term (if OT has been approved) but it won't save a dime long term unless cuts are made to the department.

He's making it seem like he's just floating the idea out there, uses the buzz words "save money" but in reality, he does what he wants to do and in no way is it good for us.

Fed Up is right. He's wasting our money on BS and the only thing that gets cut is our services. Go look at the budget and report back.