Sunday, January 29, 2012


The ECC has been publishing unfair accusations about my role re: DROMORE Road lawsuit. They have made representations that are not true --on their website, in newspaper articles, in I was planning to say nothing. But- I think it is unfair for residents to be given inaccurate information. And--for Bob to conveniently forget to mention his role in the negotiations with the Troys. it was Bob Bernstein, not me, that had repeated secret meetings with Troy. And, it was Bob Bernstein who pushed for the development of the Dromore Road property--either as a village hall or 10 homes).
I find it upsetting that my views keep getting misrepresented on the Edgemont Community Council page.
On July 9, 2007 Richard Troy, a principal of S&R Development Estates, filed an affidavit with the Greenburgh Zoning Board of Appeals contesting a determination made by the Town’s Commissioner of Community Development that the 1 Dromore Road property is in a particular zone.
The affidavit deals with the demands made by Bob Bernstein and Michelle McNally earlier this year for a moratorium. The ostensible reason for the requested moratorium was to prevent an increase in the Edgemont school population. Another possibility:-to acquire property for a town hall for Bernstein’s plan for Edgemont’s secession from Greenburgh. Some paragraphs from the affidavit:

Paragraph 44

“Soon thereafter, S&R received a letter dated February 2, 2007from Robert Bernstein of the EEC contemplating S&R’s gifting of the Property directly to him. He sent us his draft of a Gift Agreement (Exhibit 19).”

Paragraph 46

At this meeting, the parties again agreed: (a) S&R would grant a conservation easement on a portion of the Property; (b) S&R would grant an option to the EEC to purchase the Property for a price equal to S&R’s investment in the Property inconsideration of: (i) the Town’s agreement to modify the language of the proposed moratorium so that the Property would be excepted from its application, and (ii) the agreement by the Town and EEC to support our development application of a ten-unit town home development instead of the contemplated 37-unit development if the EEC did not exercise its purchase option.”

Paragraph 47

“At the February 3rd meeting, Robert Bernstein said that he would have Edgemont purchase the property through a bond offering by an Edgemont Park District he would create....Bernstein indicated that initially he would want to lease the land to the GNC [Greenburgh Nature Center]; thereafter he would want to use the land as the possible site for an Edgemont Town Hall if and when Edgemont seceded from the Town of Greenburgh. He stated that Edgemont did not own any other land as the possible site for an EdgemontTown Hallin the future. Regarding the park district, Robert Bernstein explained that S&R would grant the conservation easement to the park district and after Edgemont raised the funds to purchase the balance of the land Edgemont would own the entire property and be able to create a new town hall for itself upon secession...”

I hope this clarifies the matter.

mini vacation camps in february for kids

Winter Mini Vacation Camps from westchesterfamily magazine
Published: 01/23/2012

If you are stressed because your child is home during the February rececess and you're working - the following info might be useful to you. Read the article in Westchester Family Magazine (Feb issue) Kudo's to the Greenburgh Nature Center. They always are thinking of ways to be responsive to Greenburgh families.


The following programs are offered for children during school winter break this February.

Vacation Camp. Make the school break exciting with a four-day camp program supervised by naturalists. Nature games, exploration, crafts, and animal study make each day fun. Morning snack included but lunch should be sent each day. 9:30am-1pm Feb. 20-23. For children in grades K-3. Non-members $210, Members $160. Enrollment limited, pre-registration required. Greenburgh Nature Center. 99 Dromore Road, Scarsdale. 723-3470.

Winter Mini-Camp. Games, crafts and outdoor activities are all part of the fun at Teatown’s mini-camp. Children can attend for the entire week or on individual days (fee prorated). Snacks are provided, but full-day campers should pack a lunch. 9am-noon for 4 and 5 year olds; 9am-3pm for children ages 6-12.Feb. 20-24. $185 for 4 and 5 year olds; $335 for children ages 6-12. Reservations required. Teatown Lake Reservation, 1600 Spring Valley Rd., Ossining. 762-2912.

Sports Camp. An athletic way to spend the school break, children enjoy fun-filled days participating in a variety of team sports. Wednesday is set aside for aquatic activities. A movie provides a relaxing end to each day of camp. 9am-3pm (early drop-off and late pick-up available for additional $10 per day). Feb. 21 22, 23, and 24. For children ages 6-10. $70 per day, $220 for four days. JCC of mid-Westchester, 999 Wilmot Rd., Scarsdale. 472-3300.

Winter Farm Camp. A four-day farm experience that includes garden work, animal chores, nature hikes, farm crafts and games. Campers develop a love for the natural world during exciting days spent mostly outdoors. 9am-3pm Feb. 21-24. For children in grades 1-5. $288 members, $320 non-members. Reservations required. Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture. 630 Bedford Rd., Pocantico Hills.

Earlier today I sent out a memo about our fundraising meeting for the Greenburgh library tomorrow night at 8 PM at Town Hall. Please read the following article about a successful initiative in Hastings. Yankees manager Girardi participated in a fundraiser for the Harrison library. An article in today highlighted Irvington's successful spelling bee fundraiser for the Irvington library. Greenburgh-- we can do even better! Hope to see you tomorrow night.|topnews|text|Frontpage

help the library tomorrow

You are invited to attend an important community meeting tomorrow, Monday, January 30th at Greenburgh Town Hall at 8 PM. The purpose of the meeting: to strategize how we can raise some private dollars to help our Greenburgh library.

Other libraries around the nation have has significant successes with fundraising. Last week I met with the Irvington Library Board. The Irvington Library received over one million dollars from residents to help them build their building. Every year they hold a very successful spelling bee contest. Funds go the library. In neighboring Dobbs Ferry - a woman donated 2 million dollars to the Dobbs Ferry library a number of years ago. The Greenburgh Library, in my opinion, is very special because it serves a regional population (almost half of the patrons who use the Greenburgh library live out of Greenburgh). I'm sure that if we wage an aggressive campaign - we'll be able to attract private donors from around the county.

The Greenburgh library, like other libraries around the region, state and nation, has seen their budgets cut. The Library Board has the legal power to spend funds allocated to them anyway they like. They decided to keep the library open six days a week. However - they cut the materials budget. No new books, new new DVDs, no materials. Library patrons can have access to new books via the Westchester Library system (which the Greenburgh library is a member of). However-- there will be a waiting period.

I am writing to area book stores asking if they would be willing to donate surplus new books and materials to the Greenburgh library. Town Councilman Kevin Morgan came up with this excellent idea. Suggestions have been made to encourage residents to purchase books, donate them to the library. Donors would have their names acknowledged in the books they purchase for the library. We should name rooms at the library for donors. Put up plaques on the wall acknowledging our contributors. We have an existing Friends of the Library and Greenburgh Library Foundation --also trying to help the library with their needs. The Friends organize an annual book fair. And, the Foundation has an annual fundraiser at the library featuring foods from great area restaurants. The initiative being organized will be in addition to their efforts.

The goal of the meeting Monday---to come up with fundraising ideas. To assign responsibilities to volunteers. To think out of the box. Google succcessful library fundraising ideas. Come to the meeting with the best suggestions.

If you want to help out - please attend the meeting. If you can't attend but want to volunteer please advise. If you want to make a donation to the library please make a check payable to Friends of the Greenburgh Library and send to Genie Contrata at the library.

Friday, January 27, 2012


Tappan Bridge Park Alliance

Creating open space across the Hudson

Alliance calls for study of TZ demolition

Jan. 26, 2012

TARRYTOWN - The Tappan Bridge Park Alliance today criticized the draft environmental study for the new Tappan Zee Bridge, noting that it failed to consider an alternative that would include preserving the old bridge as a three-mile-long linear park. That alternative was requested by several public officials and members of the Tappan Bridge Park Alliance, including advocates for cyclists and pedestrians, during the hearings and public advocacy meetings for the scoping process last fall.

The Draft Environmental Impact Study calls for the old bridge’s demolition. Part of the old bridge would be demolished as the new bridge was built, and the remaining structure would be taken down by crane after the new span was erected. The demolition will follow the investment of an estimated $1.8 billion in public funds to repair the bridge over about 15 years. In addition, the DEIS doesn’t addressed the negative environmental impact that the demolition of the bridge will cause.

The Tappan Bridge Park Alliance envisions a three-mile long park for pedestrians and cyclists that would connect Westchester and Rockland counties and would generate economic and community development to the region by providing a world-class destination and a much needed open space in the congested lower Hudson Valley.

The Tappan Bridge Park Alliance this week launched a petition drive on the Care 2 petition site, at . Please visit the Alliance website at and support the petition to Governor Cuomo to include in the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) a feasibility study of transforming the bridge into a linear park.

Paul Feiner & Milagros Lecuona

Co-Chairs Tappan Bridge Park Alliance

David McKay Wilson

Executive Director, Bike Walk Alliance of Westchester & Putnam

Advocacy Director, Westchester Cycle Club

Thursday, January 26, 2012

antenna NEXTg update

I want to keep you informed of all NextG related matters. Have received the following from the commissioner. Our hearing is on Feb 7 at 7:30 PM at Town Hall. Your comments at the hearing are appreciated and welcome. PAUL

From: Thomas Madden
Sent: Thursday, January 26, 2012 4:21 PM
To: Town Board; Timothy Lewis; Judith A. Beville
Cc: John Lucido; Victor Carosi
Subject: Next G affidavit

Supervisor Feiner and Members of the Town Board

The Town has just received the Next G affidavit. I have posted the document on the Town website and can be found at this link:

Next G Abtahi Greenburgh Affirmation 01262012 WITH EXHIBITSr

If you have any questions, please give me a call.

Thomas Madden, AICP


Department of Community Development

and Conservation

Town of Greenburgh

177 Hillside Ave.
Greenburgh, NY 10607

Phone (914) 993-1505

Fax (914) 993-1518




Look for the latest information on the Town of Greenburgh's Comprehensive Plan update at

P Please consider the environment before printing this email.

flood mitigation initiatives

Jonathan Raser (]) has been retained by the town to help the town come up with flood mitigation initiatives for both private property owners (businesses and homeowners) and for town projects (gym at the Theodore Young Community Center was flooded).
At last nights Town Board meeting Mr. Raser identified grant opportunities in the wake of recent storms (Irene and Lee). The focus: acquiring and demolishing substantially damaged properties in the special flood hazard area (100 year floodplain). There are also grant opportunities available for those who want to elevate their homes (similar to what we did with some homes on Babbitt Court a number of years ago). There may be future grant opportunities available for additional flood relief initiatives.

If you are interested in being considered for this grant and if you have experienced flooding please complete the following form and return. If you send me a copy, it would be appreciated. The form should be completed promptly since the federal government has a late February deadline.

Our Town Board meeting is archived on the town website: Look up Town Board archives (on left side of the page-Jan 25 meeting). This was the first topic of the meeting.

Town of Greenburgh
Department of Public Works
177 Hillside Avenue Phone: (914) 993-1644
Greenburgh, NY 10607 Fax: (914) 993-1544
Town of Greenburgh
Floodprone Property Acquisition and Elevation Projects
Homeowner Interest Sign-up Sheet and Voluntary Notice
Please complete this form if you are interested in exploring further your options for reducing
your flood losses. Signing this does not commit you to any action.
Property Address: _______________________________________________________
Owner(s) Mailing Address: ________________________________________________
Owner(s) Name(s): ______________________________________________________
Contact Phone Number: __________________________________________________
Email Address: __________________________________________________________
I am interested in the following (check one): ________ Acquisition
________ Structural Elevation
The local government is required by FEMA to inform you that your participation in this project for open-space acquisition is voluntary. Neither the State nor the Local Government will use its eminent domain authority to acquire the property for open-space purposes if you choose not to participate, or if negotiations fail.
______________________ ______________
Owners Signature Date
______________________ ______________
Owners Signature Date
______________________ ______________
Owners Signature Date



I would like to urge Governor Cuomo and members of the New York State Legislature to do what New Jersey did just over a year ago and approve arbitration reform legislation. This reform would help local governments halt property taxes.

The bipartisan legislation that was approved by Democratic lawmakers and the Republican Governor of New Jersey recognizes the fact that local officials need to have some control of setting salaries of all their employees - especially if the state has a property tax cap law on the books. Currently, in New York State, if local elected officials and the unions representing police/firefighters can't agree on a contract, an arbitration panel is granted the power to impose a salary hike that local officials have to live with. These arbitration awards (large salary increases) are much higher than increases other employees (who are not subject to arbitration) receive. The bipartisan arbitration agreement signed into law by the NJ Governor matches the 2 percent annual cap on property tax hikes in that state. Among the highlights of the New Jersey law:

· Provides a cap of 2 percent on arbitration awards that will be applied to all salary items, such as the cost of across the board and cost of living increases, step increment payments and longevity pay.

· Mandates no exceptions for additional non-salary economic terms moving forward. The agreement creates a prohibition on allowing non-salary economic issues to be arbitrated above the cap, unless already included in an existing contract. All salary items are subject to a maximum 2 percent cap.

· Eliminates accruing labor costs by creating a fast track arbitration process. The agreement transforms the system by putting in place concrete deadlines to help eliminate delays in the arbitration process, from contract negotiation to the receipt of the actual award. Traditionally, once a contract expires, labor costs continue to mount until a new contract is reached. Enforcing deadlines and speeding up the process will ensure timely implementation of new contracts and the cap on interest arbitration awards. There will be a concrete deadline of 45 days from the filing of a request for interest arbitration to the date of award, without any extensions. All appeals must be decided within 30 days, if arbitrators do not comply with the 45 day deadline, they will be penalized financially.

· Caps arbitrator pay. The agreement will cap arbitrator compensation at $1,000 per day and $7,500 per case. Capping arbitrator pay will further incentivize speedy resolution of arbitration cases.

· Randomizes the selection of arbitrators.

I urge New York State to follow the example of New Jersey and to adopt arbitration reforms. It will make it easier for local governments to keep taxes down and to comply with the new tax cap legislation.


Paul J. Feiner

Greenburgh Town Supervisor

Monday, January 23, 2012

NEXTg hearing postponed-to Feb 7 (no hearing this wed on application)

The public hearing re: NextG Network's applicatin to place antenna's around town will not be held this Wednesday evening. The hearing will be rescheduled for Tuesday, February 7th at 7:30 PM at Greenburgh Town Hall. The February meeting will be held on Tuesday evening, not Wednesday evening.
The following memo was sent to me by Town Attorney Tim Lewis and concerns the application.

From: Timothy Lewis
Sent: Monday, January 23, 2012 6:48 PM
To: Paul Feiner
Subject: NxtG

The public hearing related to NextG Network’s application for Special Permits from the Town Board to provide cell phone, WiFi and other services to areas where gaps in service currently exist is being adjourned from Wednesday, January 25th to February 7th, 2012 to provide additional time for the Town’s consultants, HDR Engineering, to examine the technical feasibility of NextG relocating its DAS Antenna Systems, using Radio Frequency (RF) technology, to nonresidential areas. NextG has previously appeared at numerous Antenna Review Board (“ARB”) meetings and participated in several site visits, during a review process that commenced in 2009, and believes that the issue of whether coverage could be provided to customers by locating facilities outside of residential districts has been definitively demonstrated to the ARB in compliance with Section 285-37 of the Town Code. Nevertheless, NextG has agreed to provide additional documentation to the Town Board and its consultants to continue its review of the application and to investigate the possibility of relocating three (3) of the proposed systems to alternative locations along the Central Avenue Mixed-Use District.

Significantly, the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996 prohibits state and local governments from regulating the placement of wireless service equipment based on concerns about the environmental effects of RF emissions and there are several federal cases that substantiate this. Any attempts to deny Special Permits to NextG using health concerns or Radio frequency emissions as a basis could be the source of costly and indefensible litigation.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

snow update...snow angels...cost of books explanation

Please note DPW crews have been out working to salt and now plow roads since about 4:30 this morning. All is proceeding smoothly at this time with no reported incidents or problems. We expect plowing to continue until the storm ends probably early this afternoon.
Residents should be reminded that we do push snow to the curb as our priority is to clear the roadway of snow. And that they should be mindful of our operations as it may result in snow being redeposited into a driveway.
As always we ask residents to stay off roads and not to block or park on the roads during the storm.
Victor Carosi, Commissioner of Public Works

Sometimes....senior citizens/disabled residents contact me asking for help with snow removal. If you are willing to volunteer your time helping a family in need please e mail me at Please advise what neighborhoods you could help out in. If you don't want to volunteer but will assist only if you get paid, that info is also useful since some residents are willing to pay for the service. Our snow angel program is over 20 years old!

A few weeks ago I posted a suggestion that people purchase books for the library--helping the library with its budget problems. The Library Director had pointed out that it costs about $25 for a book. Some people wondered why books are so expensive. This is Genie Contrata's explanation.
I hope to see you at our meeting a week from Monday night at 8 PM. We are going to plan an aggressive effort to help the library with its fundraising initiatives.

Paul Feiner
As you state many books on are under $25. The Library buys from vendors approved by NYS and receives on average a 40% discount, however the Library buys books designed for libraries with library binding to withstand heavy use. These book are more expensive then what a consumer would buy from Amazon, but they also withstand use by dozens of individuals. In addition the Library buys books that are shelf ready for the Library, meaning they have a plastic book cover, property stamps, security strips, call number labels, location labels, etc. We call this processing and it adds to the cost of each title, about $1 per book. For the staff here to perform the same work would cost $6 to $7 per item for the salaries alone, not including the cost of supplies.

My statement of a book costing an average of $25 was not specific enough. I apologize for not explaining things in detail. Besides books the Library purchases CD Audio books, which can cost over $100 for unabridged versions, and the full-season of a TV series on DVD also can cost us over $50. And each of these items comes with processing which adds to the cost.

Sometimes items cost less than $25 sometimes they cost, the $25 was used as an average.


Eugenie Contrata
Library Director

Monday, January 09, 2012


Dear Greenburgh Citizen,
Will you help the Library? Among the casualties of the bad economy and tax cap was the library budget. The Town Board made significant cuts to the Library’s budget. The Library’s budget was cut by $570,000. In order to keep the Library open six days per week the Library Trustees decided to ELIMINATE the materials budget. That means there are no new books, DVDs, audio books, or music CDs, being purchased for the Greenburgh Public Library.
Please help the Library purchase the in demand books. If you make out a check for $25 to the Friends of the Greenburgh Library they can purchase a new popular book. If you advise the library of the book you would like them to purchase with your $25 donation – they will try to accommodate your request.
If you have the time to volunteer to help the library with their fundraising campaign please advise. We can use your help! We can turn the budget crisis into a positive by organizing an aggressive fundraising campaign to raise private dollars for the library. I plan to devote substantial time during the coming year to help the library organize a major fundraising initiative. We have a beautiful library and want it to be the best!
Books for Children’s
• The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle – 2 copies
• Growing Vegetable Soup – Lois Ehlert – 2 copies
• If I Ran the Circus – Dr. Seuss
• I’m Fast – Kate McMillan
• Fancy Nancy and the Loose Tooth – Jane O’Connor
• Jefferson’s Sons – Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
• Bad Kitty For President – Nick Bruel
• Showoff – Gordon Korman
• The Mighty Miss Malone – Christopher Paul Curtis
• A Boy Called Dickens – Deborah Hopkinson
• Titanic Sinks! Experience the Titanic’s Doomed Voyage In This Unique Presentation Of
• Fact And Fiction – Barry Denenberg

Books for Adults
• Locked On Tom Clancy
• Death comes to Pemberley PD James
• Explosive Eighteen Janet Evanovich
• The Drop Michael Connelly
• End of Wasp Season Denise Mina
• Mr. Fox Helen Oyeyemi
• On Canaan’s Side Barry Sebastiean
• Raylan Elmore Leonard
• Vulture Peak John Burdett
• Believing the Lie Elizabeth George
• The Rope Navada Barr
• Breakdown Sara Paretsky
• Victims Johnathan Kellerman
• All I did was Shoot My Man Walter Mosley
• New New Rules Bill Maher
• Pauline Kael: a life in the dark Brian Kellow
• A Thousand Lives Julia Scheeres
• Man within my head Pico Iyar
• All In:: the education of General David Petraeus Paula Broadwell
Check can be made out to the Friends of the Greenburgh Library and mailed to the Friends at 300 Tarrytown Road, Elmsford, NY 10523.
Please help!

From: [] On Behalf Of Eugenie Contrata
Sent: Monday, January 09, 2012 4:23 PM
To: Paul Feiner
Subject: List of Books


Attached is a short list of the popular books the Library needs right now. Any donation would be appreciated, but it costs on average $25 to purchase a new book.


Have you read today!

Eugenie Contrata
Library Director
Greenburgh Public Library
300 Tarrytown Road
Elmsford NY 10523

Friday, January 06, 2012

Edgemont Community Council comes up with constructive suggestions dealing with NextG application

The Edgemont
Community Council, Inc.
Founded in 1947 to determine community opinion on civic matters and coordinate community action thereon and to
plan and promote the general welfare of the community embraced within Union Free School District #6.
Post Office Box 1161 Scarsdale, New York 10583
* * *
January 5, 2012 – Public Forum on Cell-Phone Antennas in Residential Neighborhoods
Welcome. I'm Geoff Loftus, and I'm the president of the Edgemont Community Council. Before
we get started, I'd like to thank David and Holly Younger who were so instrumental in making
this meeting happen, and all the people in Edgemont who helped make tonight's meeting happen
by reaching out to me, to other ECC directors, and to Supervisor Paul Feiner. You made it clear
you felt strongly about this, and I thank you for all your help.
The main portion of this meeting will be a presentation on the legal issues surrounding NextG's
application to install antennas in residential areas, followed by a Question & Answer period.
However, we have some news that developed late this afternoon that may be very good news:
As of Dec. 16, 2011, Crown Castle announced that it had reached agreement to acquire NextG.
Crown Castle holds an exclusive license to operate wireless facilities on State property including
right-of-way on roads such as Central Avenue, Dobbs Ferry Road and Saw Mill River Road.
Crown Castle's purchase of NextG would remove any impediment to NextG's use of the right-ofway,
and that was the primary reason for NextG's request for a special permit.
Michelle McNally, a former ECC president and member of the Antenna Board of Review, has
written to Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner as an individual, urging him to refer NextG's
application back to the Review Board, and late this afternoon, Mr. Feiner said he intends to do so.
The long and the short of this is: Since NextG, as a part of Crown Castle, should now be able to
provide service without installing residential-area antennas, it is highly unlikely it will granted a
special permit to do so. At least, that’s what we think will be the case, but we haven’t heard from
NextG yet on this new development, so we can’t say for sure that will be the case. But we think it

Thursday, January 05, 2012


Annu Jacob, Chief Court Clerk for the Village Court in Spring Valley, will be appointed Greenburgh Court Administrator at the Greenburgh Town Board meeting next Wednesday evening. The Greenburgh police department completed its background check of Ms. Jacob today. Ms. Jacob has been responsible for the management and administration of the village court. As Chief Court Clerk she implemented procedures that improved department efficiencies. She supervised and lead the department personnel including clerks and court officers. She maintained and published monthly court schedules, assisted Judges in monitoring defendants, prepared the budget for the busy Justice Court, created JCAP Grant applications and worked with the local police department.

Ms. Hill was strongly recommended for the position by the three new town Judges – Delores Brathwaite, Arlene Gordon-Oliver and Walter Rivera. The Supervising Judge of Local Courts for the 9th Judicial District, Charles Apotheker, also recommended her for this position.

Her salary will be $90,000 a year until December 1st when it will increase to $95,000. She replaces Regina Hill.

I am looking forward to having the opportunity to work with Annu Jacob and our new Judges. The Judges, in office for less than one week, have already agreed to add an additional night court sessions to tackle the backlog of vehicle & traffic law cases. Our team will work hard to make the Greenburgh Court the best local court in the 9th Judicial district.

Paul Feiner

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

do you want to serve on a board/commission?

Would you like to serve on a policy making or advisory board/commission? If the answer is yes- please send the Town Board a note advising of your interests. There currently is a vacancy on the Board of Ethics. The Town Board must appoint a resident who is NOT a registered Democrat or Republican. We have registered Dem's and Republicans on the Ethics Board and need an independent (you could be a member of a 3rd party--conservative, working families, Independence,etc..).

We are also hoping to appoint someone to the Antenna Review Board--the Board that reviews applications for cell towers or antenna systems. This issue is in the news now because of the application of NextG to place antenna systems in residential neighborhoods.

We have Boards/commissions that make policy for the library and review programs at our parks. We have vacancies on a board that deals with environmental matters (conservation advisory).

Democracy depends on an active community. Please get involved. E mail if you're interested in serving. Tell us what you're interested in working on. Send us your bio. Thank you for being a partner in our government.

Monday, January 02, 2012

Westchester county portion of total tax bill going up in Greenburgh...down elsewhere

Last month the Westchester County Executive and Board of Legislators approved a county budget that was supposed to FREEZE the county portion of the tax bill. Because there has not been a county-wide reassessment in over a half a century, some communities will see the county portion of their taxes go up. Others will see their taxes go down. According to Edye McCarthy, assessor for the town, the county portion of the property taxes will go up 3.12%. Eastchester taxes are going up 9.44%. Bedford residents taxes are going up 9.30%. Mt Pleasant taxes will go up 4.61%. Pelham taxes (I believe they did a reassessment) are going up 5.55%. Rye taxes going up 5.42% And--Yorktown tax hike will be 1.34%. The above figures are the county taxes---taxes local municipalities have no control over.
The cities are doing better. Mt Vernon residents will see their county tax bills go down by 4.81%. White Plains residents will get a 7.83% tax reduction off of their county tax bills. And--Yonkers residents will see the county portion of their tax bill go down by 3.64%.
Every year the rates change. Some localities get luckier than others. A few years ago the county portion of the tax bill in Yonkers went up by close to 20%. Other towns/villages experienced a very small tax hike. I remember the outcry.
This highlights why many prefer county-wide reassessment. if every community reassessed at the same time there would be no inequity between communities. This year some of the communities that have reassessed are experiencing larger county tax hikes than those that have not. Question: If Greenburgh conducts a reassessment and other communities do not--will that have any impact on the county tax bills we all pay? Could it help or hurt? I have asked the Assessor for an opinion.


Just to keep you abreast of the county tax rate changes.

According to the county tax commission as you can see, the County general fund tax rate will be increasing by 3.12% from last year. The municipalities changes in tax rates range from a decrease of 7.83% White Plains to an increase of 9.44% in Eastchester. These variations in the rates occur due to the changes in municipalities assessment rolls (primarily due to the lack of revaluations) even given the fact that the County Levy had a 0% change between 2011 and 2012.

2011 $101.06

2012 $104.21 3.12%

Sunday, January 01, 2012

swearing in ceremony at ny school for the deaf


28 years ago (when I was first elected to the Westchester County Board of Legislators) I started a tradition. Every time I was elected/re-elected I held my swearing in ceremony at the NY School for the Deaf. It's inspiring to interact with the students at the NY School for the Deaf and to discuss local government with children who are overcoming physical challenges. I begin a new term of office as Town Supervisor in 2012 and the tradition continues!

Greenburgh has a new Councilman (Ken Jones), two new Judges (Delores Brathwaite and Walter Rivera) and a new Receiver of Taxes (Anne Povella). Town Clerk Judith Beville was re-elected to her job. Kevin Morgan was re-elected to the Town Council. Arlene Gordon-Oliver was re-elected as Town Judge.

We're holding a few swearing in ceremonies at area schools --beginning with the NY School for the Deaf on Tuesday. On Wednesday there will be a swearing in ceremony at the Concord Road School in Ardsley and on Thursday we will hold our ceremony at the Greenville School in Edgemont. Our elected officials have been invited to participate in these ceremonies.

Among the goals: to provide students with an opportunity to observe government in action and to learn about their town government. This years ceremony at the NY School for the Deaf is even more special --last year the school (which does so much for the deaf population) was in danger of closing -- due to NYS budget problems. An effective lobbying effort persuaded the state to save the school.


12:30 PM NEW YORK SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF (auditorium)-----this is a very moving ceremony before deaf students. I have been holding the ceremony here for over 24 years!

Wednesday, January 4th

Concord Road School, Ardsley 9 AM

Thursday January 5th

10 AM Greenville School

Paul Feiner