Back to School Guide 2015
- Category: Parenting
- Published on 24 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
Say it ain't so! Summer is quickly coming to a close – and with school starting before Labor Day this year, the race is on to buy a backpack, school supplies, fall clothes and sign up for classes, enrichment, religious school, afterschool sports and fun. If your child has a fall birthday, you may also be planning a party. Below are just a few of the wonderful places and programs with activities for kids and families within driving distance of Scarsdale. Consider these and use the comments section below to recommend your local favorites.
Alef Bet Preschool provides children with an educational and enriching Jewish experience in a newly renovated beautiful old building and natural playground which was the former site of the old Young Israel of New Rochelle. Alef Bet provides endless opportunities to give children a passion for learning and Judaism that will last a lifetime. The children enjoy Musical Munchkins, nature, gardening, Super Soccer Stars, the Nature of Things, performances at the Performance Arts Center, yoga, cooking and Shabbat celebrations in a warm and loving atmosphere. Also ask about our Chabad Hebrew school" once or twice weekly "a vibrant Jewish learning experience for children age pre-k through high school. No membership needed. Financial aid, early and late drop-off available. Visit us at alefbetschool.com (914) 712-8332.
Congregation Kol Ami: The Early Childhood Program at Kol Ami is dedicated to providing a comprehensive and developmentally appropriate curriculum teaching and modeling Jewish values. We believe that children learn best through experiential play and provide for these rich experiences within warm, accepting, and nurturing surroundings. All of our Head Teachers have Masters Degrees in Early Childhood or related educational fields. We offer a wide range of programs for children (from 2 months to 5 years old) and their families. Our A Step Ahead! program for Fall 5 year olds provides full day pre-K learning until 4 pm. For more information, contact: Nan Blank, Early Childhood Program Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her 914-949-4717 x107.
Mazel Tots® provides a warm and stimulating environment, which encourages children's curiosity and helps them to grow socially, emotionally, physically and intellectually. Our warm and nurturing staff will guide the children through a curriculum filled with a variety of child-centered and developmentally appropriate activities that are safe, fun and friendly. The children's spiritual growth will be enriched by the study of Jewish holidays, traditions and family values. We also offer a group of special activities such as sports and games, music, creative movement, sign language, nature, yoga, karate, science, art and more! We have two beautiful new playgrounds and gardens, plus a newly equipped indoor play space featuring ride-on toys, gym equipment, giant blocks, stepping stones and the like! Our Early Childhood Program serves children from 18 months until Kindergarten-bound! We also have afternoon Enrichment Programs and a Parenting Program! For more information please contact Jody Glassman, Early Childhood Program Director at 914-723-3001 or email@example.com. You can also visit our website at www.sstte.org.
Over the Moon Music and More: Did you know that all children are musical? Over the Moon Music and More offers Music Together®, the research-based, international music and movement program for children newborn to 5 years with an adult caregiver, in Chappaqua, Mount Kisco, Scarsdale, Tarrytown, and Tuckahoe. We also offer Uke U., a fun mommy-and-me ukulele program, for 3- to 6-year-olds. Coming this fall in our newly expanded Scarsdale space: birthday parties, mommy-and-me art classes, parenting groups, mini-camps, a children's play space, and a gift shop! For class and demo class schedules, please visit www.overthemoonmusicandmore.com or call 914-722-2025.
Fun, Sport and Parties:
Backyard Sports Prep Basketball is now accepting registrations for all 3rd-9th graders to participate in our Fall Basketball League. The program takes place at Purchase College on Sundays. For more information go to: www.byardsports.com or call Danny Bernstein at 914-304-4052.
Chelsea Piers Connecticut: Our 465,000 sq.-ft. cutting-edge sports complex provides world-class facilities, expert instruction and the most exciting sports curriculum available – all under one roof. Sports facilities include: two ice rinks, an Olympic-sized pool, a Splash Zone water park, 12 squash courts, 7 tennis courts, baseball/softball and gymnastics training centers, a Field House with a 100-yard indoor turf field for soccer, lacrosse and field hockey, Aacer Maplewood basketball and volleyball courts, a preschool and child care center, a pro shop, a cafe and a restaurant.
Fall programs include a wide range of sports classes for children ages 4 months to 18 years, Chelsea Piers Athletic Club competitive teams and Adult Leagues in basketball, ice hockey, soccer and volleyball. Memberships are available for families, single adults and youth, and members now have access to a 65,000 sq.-ft. state-of-the-art fitness center and clubhouse. Chelsea Piers Connecticut also offers a wide range of birthday party options, including Splash Zone and Adventure Center (Trampoline & Rock Climbing) parties. Chelsea Piers is also a popular spot for sports-themed Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. Contact Chelsea Piers by phone at 203.989.1000, email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.chelseapiersct.com.
The Gaga Center is located at 365 Central Park Avenue in Scarsdale, New York. With high ceilings, lots of sunshine, three permanent pits and a kicking sound system, the energy is boundless. We offer weekly after school classes, programs for days off from school, Open Gaga on weekends, and birthday parties! We even have a fabulous private party room for all your happy celebrations. And the best part is, we'll take care of it all — from food to paper goods to party favors and everything in between. The Gaga Center, 365 Central Park Avenue Scarsdale, NY 10583, (914) 368 – 9889, www.gagacenter.com.
Here&Now Yoga+Body is Westchester's premier studio specializing in yoga, core fusion, and barre fitness classes. All classes are strengthening, mindful, creative and fun! Whether you are a beginner or an advanced practitioner, there is something for everyone. Here&Now also offers prenatal, parent/baby, family yoga, and a wide selection of kids yoga classes for ages 3 and up. Open seven days and offering more than 30 classes per week, we are conveniently located in the heart of Scarsdale on Garth Road. Please visit hereandnowyogabody.com for our schedule, teachers and other information.
Kinderkickers teaches soccer to children ages 3 to 6. It is instructional with an emphasis on individual soccer skills. The program is taught is such a way for children to develop a love for the game and have fun. The Fall program is on Saturdays beginning September 12th at St. Pius. Call today to enroll (914) 833-2024 or click here summitsoccer.net for more information.
Proform Tennis Academy offers tennis lessons to all ages, all levels and all types of players. Whether it's through a clinic or private lessons, we have something to suit your needs! Our junior program starts at the Developmental Stage with the USTA QuickStart. This program uses lighter balls, smaller racquets and smaller courts. All tailored to the age/size of the child. Once a player has progressed though the various levels of the QuickStart program they will move into the Competitive Stage where players learn to develop their skills by focusing on technique, strategy and movement. For more information please visit our website www.proformtennisacademy.com or contact our office 914.935.6688. Proform Tennis: 975 Anderson Hill Road Rye Brook NY 10573
Westchester Skating Academy is a year-round, twin-rink ice skating facility offering recreational, hockey, and figure skating for all ages and abilities. WSA programs include public skating, learn-to-skate classes, group events, birthday parties, summer/holiday camps and clinics, adult and youth hockey leagues and instruction, and much more. Visit us online for more information at www.skatewsa.com. Or contact us via email at: email@example.com, or (914) 347-8232 for more information.
The JCC Academic Center offers a series of classes, lectures and workshops designed to help students on their journey to college. The Center's fall schedule includes a myriad of programs including practice ACTs and SATs, special college admissions programs, College Interview Essentials, College Application Essay Writing. It also offers teens and tweens Organizational &Study Skills workshops, speed Reading, Babysitter certification and more. http://jccmw.org/teens/academic-center-college-prep/ 472-3300, x275, email: firstname.lastname@example.org Pre-registration is required for all Academic Center lectures and workshops. Mention Scarsdale10583.com receive 10% off any Fall 2015 JCC Academic Center class or workshop.
Nina Cannon -College Essay Tutor: Need help with the college application process? Let Nina Cannon assist with drafting, editing and perfecting your child's Common Application essay and supplemental essays and provide guidance on all aspect of the college application process. She is a college essay tutor, freelance copyeditor/proofreader, former corporate attorney, and mother of three children at MIT, Princeton, and Bucknell. Nina Cannon, 914-329-7012 / email@example.com, www.cannoncollegeessays.com.
Education at the JCC of Mid-Westchester: Feeding the Minds and Bodies. Pre-school learners all benefit from the full service nursery schools, fitness and sports facilities and professional teaching staff throughout the JCC .... A year round indoor pool, fitness programs, arts programs and Special needs programs. All under one roof! Early drop off late pick up available. The JCC's Summer Art Center (SAC), a one of a kind program that provides a non-competitive, nurturing and flexible environment for all children with a passion for the Arts, continues throughout the year! Classes are all taught by professional artists and teachers and offers high quality instruction in Fine Arts, Dance, Theatre and Music. The Dance School provides extensive programs for pre-schoolers, teens, and adults. The Academic Center offers everything you need to prepare your kids for college entrance. One of the best things about having more than 250 programs for the whole family is that we can offer discounts to our members and patrons. For example, Nursery school families get significant discounts on the fitness packages, camps, and even pre-registration priority for programs that sell out like gymnastics. Contact the JCC for more information or to schedule a tour: 914-472-3300, www.jccmw.org.
Mathnasium makes math make sense! Their goal is to significantly increase your child's math skills, understanding of math concepts, and overall school performance, while building confidence and forging a positive attitude toward the subject. Using sophisticated techniques to determine what a student does and does not know, they tailor-make a personalized and prescriptive learning program. Each student follows their program with the help of specially trained Mathnasium math tutors, who provide instruction and lots of warm encouragement. At Mathnasium, the mission is simple - to teach children math the way that makes sense to them. Mathnasium offers instruction for K-12th grade, 1-on-1 instruction, unlimited monthly attendance, homework help, Regents/ACT/SAT prep, and optional communication with you child's school teacher. "I want to thank you for all you have done for Emily with her math and, most importantly, her self confidence. Her experience at Mathnasium Scarsdale has been like-changing. Many thanks for all you do!"
Mathnasium is open for assessments and instruction Monday - Thursday form 3:00-7:00pm and Saturdays for 10:00-1:00pm. Special High School only hours are on Tuesday and Thursday for 7:00-8:30pm.
Mathnasium of Scarsdale - 747 White Plains Road/914-725-MATH (6284)
Mathnasium of Larchmont/Mamaroneck - 1009 W. Boston Post Road, 914-725-MATH (6284)
Opening this fall: Scarsdale Park Mall - 450 Central Park Avenue, (By Central Park Dance and Gymboree Play & Music)
Scarsdale Synagogue Temples Tremont and Emanu-El Religious School welcomes you to join our exciting, innovative, and joyous community. Our program is designed for Pre-K to 12 and each grade has its unique educational focus (i.e. Holidays, Bible, Jewish Ethics and Social Action) and will enjoy exploring that theme through movement, visual art, music and more. Through these themes, we strive to instill a love of Jewish learning and sense of Jewish self among our students and families. Using 21st century technology to teach the relevance of the texts and traditions of Judaism, we make Religious School engaging, meaningful, and fun. Our school strongly reflects Scarsdale Synagogue's warm and welcoming approach to creating a Covenant Community of Shared Lives and Real Relationships. In addition, we offer an inclusive program, serving students in grades 4th-6th who benefit from small class sizes and specialized resources, and accommodating a range of learning and social challenges such as language-based learning disabilities and ADHD. We invite members of the wider Westchester Jewish community, of all ages, to stop by and learn more about our commitment to lifelong Jewish learning. For more information, please contact Rabbi Ilyse Glickman, Director of Congregational Learning, at 914.725.5175 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit their website here. w
Spectacular Summers: Are you starting to think about sleepaway camp for your child for Summer 2016? Ellen Wylie of Spectacular Summers would be happy to help you. Based in the Scarsdale/Edgemont area, Ellen knows the camps and teen programs well and will share her personal knowledge and expertise with you. Ellen extensively visits camps and teen programs every summer. During the rest of the year, she speaks and meets with directors and obtains feedback from families she has placed. As a result, Ellen has the up-to-date knowledge and information to make the right recommendations for each child. Ellen gets to know the individual child and provides each family with a few (and not too many) well-thought out suggestions. The service she provides is free of charge to parents. Ellen is highly respected by camp directors and parents alike. To find that spectacular summer program for 2016, call Ellen Wylie at (914) 722-2644 or email email@example.com. Visit her website here.
Trees Falling on Garth Road
- Category: Shout it Out
- Published on 26 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
We received the following email from Jay of Lulu's Cake Boutique on Garth Road, who was concerned about the condition of trees on Garth Road. In turn, we emailed the Department of Public Works and when then did not respond we asked the Village Manager's Office: See their answer below:
(Received on August 13 from Jay:) Do you know a huge tree fell down on Garth Rd last night and almost hit someone while they were driving? I've told the village about the trees that are ready to fall down and hurt someone and they have done nothing about it. I was hoping you could write about and maybe they will act up before God forbid something terrible happens. It's a serious problem that can be avoided.
Hope you are well,
From Josh Ringel, Assistant to the Scarsdale Village Manager:
I apologize that no one had responded to your earlier email regarding a tree falling on Garth Road... I followed up as to your request and received the following information from DPW:
- The request received was that a large branch had fallen near the hair salon (near the 711) on Garth Road. The surrounding trees in question were looked at by a member of the Village of Scarsdale Highway/DPW department on 8/14.
- In the interest of immediate public safety, DPW did prune trees along the West Side of Garth Road.
- However, all the trees on the West Side of Garth Road (from Popham Rd to the Eastchester Line) belong to Westchester County and are the responsibility of the County.
- The Village has alerted the County Parks, Rec & Conservation department that the trees need to be inspected by their arborist ASAP.
Please let me know if you have any further questions regarding this matter.
Planning Board Upholds Recommendation on Gravel Surfaces
- Category: Village Voices
- Published on 26 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
An appeal to the gravel surfaces moratorium from homeowner's on Cushman Road will not change the Scarsdale Planning Board's recommendation to pass new village code regarding the use of gravel surfaces to meet lot coverage requirements.
The Planning Board has issued their report to the Scarsdale Board of Trustees about an appeal to the newly imposed moratorium on gravel surfaces from the owners of a home under construction at 45 Cushman Road. The BOT asked the Planning Board to consider how the homeowner's case could affect a proposed new law to make the moratorium permanent, and its consistency with Scarsdale's Comprehensive Plan.
The owner's of 45 Cushman were in the process of building a new home on the 1.5 acre lot when the gravel moratorium was imposed in February, 2015. Though they had approval for the house, they had not yet filed plans to build a pool, sports court, terraces and a circular driveway. Once the moratorium was imposed, the size of the circular driveway put the project above the maximum lot coverage requirements, limiting them to the use of a single ribbon driveway rather than a circular gravel drive.
In their recommendation to the Board of Trustees dated August 25, the Planning Board said that due to the unique circumstances, timing and nature of the project, the homeowners should file for a variance for the driveway with the Board of Appeals. However, the Planning Board found that the project does exceed recommended lot coverage and therefore would not change their recommendation to change village zoning code to make the moratorium into permanent law.
The Board found that use of circular gravel driveways is "in keeping with the neighborhood's character," but that "the additional lot coverage and increased residential density is inconsistent with the goals regarding the preservation of open space."
Here is the complete text of their recommendation:
To: Mayor Mark and the Village Board of Trustees From: Dan Hochvert, Chair, and Planning Board Members Date: 8/25/2015
Re: Report regarding the appeal, filed by 45 Cushman LLC for relief from the moratorium involving gravel surfaces
In accordance with Local Laws # 2 and # 7 of 2015, the Planning Board, at its August 12, 2015 meeting, considered the appeal from 45 Cushman LLC for relief from the moratorium on certain projects involving gravel surfaces in order to construct a circular gravel driveway and made the report, attached.
In sum, the Planning Board found the appeal was inconsistent with the Planning Board's recommended amendment to the zoning code. The Board also found there were unique circumstances with the timing and nature of the application; however the Board agreed a better avenue for the applicant would be to file for a variance from the Board of Appeals should the zoning code be amended.
The Planning Board also reviewed the appeal in the context of the Village Comprehensive Plan and found that the proposed circular gravel driveway would be in keeping with the character of the neighborhood, consistent with the Comprehensive Plan's goal to preserve the existing neighborhood character; however the excess residential development and coverage would be inconsistent with the Comprehensive Plan's goal to preserve open space.
Village of Scarsdale
CASE #14 OF 2015
1. Report to the Village Board regarding the appeal, filed by 45 Cushman Road LLC, for relief from the moratorium on certain applications involving gravel surfaces in order to construct a gravel driveway at 45 Cushman Road; Sec. 16, Blk. 1, Lot 4
The Planning Board, at its regular meeting of August 12, 2015, discussed the appeal, filed by 45 Cushman Road LLC, for relief from the moratorium on certain applications involving gravel surfaces in order to construct a gravel driveway at 45 Cushman Road, and upon motion and duly made and seconded, adopted the following unanimously:
The Village Board adopted a moratorium on certain applications to the land use boards and the buildings and engineering departments that involve gravel surfaces on February 10, 2015 and recently extended it until October 30, 2015. The moratorium was adopted to allow the Village time to study the issue of lot coverage and the treatment of gravel surfaces for zoning purposes. The Planning Board, with the assistance of Frederick P. Clark Associates, completed the study in June 2015 and made a recommendation to the Village Board to amend the Village zoning code to include gravel surfaces as lot coverage. A Public Hearing on the proposed amendment is scheduled for September 21, 2015.
45 Cushman Road, in the A-1 (1 acre) single family zoning district, is shown in the Assessor's records as 1.5 acres and was improved with a house built in 1906. The Committee for Historic Preservation found that the house had no historic significance in May 2013. The building permit for the new house was issued in June 2014 and is currently under construction. The property is located in a Sensitive Drainage Area pursuant to Chapter 254 of the Village Code.
The Board of Appeals approved special use permits for the construction of a swimming pool and sports court at the June 10, 2015 meeting. The approved plans conformed to the lot coverage requirements and show a "ribbon" driveway; namely two parallel strips running from the street to the garage.
The appeal, dated July 29, 2015, states the development plan for the property always included the house, terraces, a swimming pool, pool cabana, sports court and a circular gravel driveway. The applicant was planning to file for the special use permits for the swimming pool and sports court in February 2015 when the moratorium was adopted. The project included a gravel circular driveway which, if it were counted as lot coverage, would have exceeded the maximum permitted lot coverage.
Local Law #2 of 2105, and Local Law # 7 of 2015, which extended the moratorium on certain applications with gravel surfaces, include an appeal provision and requires the Planning Board to report on "the effect that the prospective variance or modification would have on any proposed zoning amendment and/or the Village's Comprehensive Plan." The law gives the Planning Board 30 days to make its recommendation.
Potential effect on the proposed zoning amendment
The Planning Board discussed the application's effect on their recommendation to amend the zoning code to include gravel surfaces as lot coverage. The Board found that the appeal to construct a gravel driveway that would exceed the maximum permitted lot coverage is inconsistent with the Planning Board's recommended amendment to the Village Code. The Planning Board would not alter its recommendation as a result of this appeal.
The Planning Board also recognized that the application is unique given the temporal or timing issues described by the applicant, as well as the forethought and planning that had gone into the site's development. Based on those unique circumstances, the Board felt a more appropriate avenue for the applicant to pursue would be a variance request to the Board of Appeals, should the Village Board amend the zoning code. This is consistent with the Planning Board's recommendation that variance requests could be a likely consequence of any zoning code amendment.
Consistency with the 1994 Comprehensive Plan
The Planning Board also considered the appeal and its impact or consistency with the 1994 Comprehensive Plan. The Board found proposed circular driveway is in keeping with the neighborhood's character where some neighboring properties have gravel circular driveways, swimming pools and tennis and/or sports courts. This is consistent with one of the goals of the Comprehensive Plan, namely to preserve the villages' existing architectural character. However, the additional lot coverage and increased residential density is inconsistent with the goals regarding the preservation of open space on single family residential parcels.
It should be noted in reviewing the 1994 Comprehensive Plan, the issue of lot coverage was one of the concerns raised during the public participation process at that time. The village tightened the lot coverage regulations in 1991; however there was still a concern that "new construction and additions are creating homes too large in proportion to their lots and surrounding context". The Comprehensive Plan specifically recommended further analysis of lot coverage and pervious and impervious surfaces.
Property Reassessment for 2016 Begins in Scarsdale
- Category: Events
- Published on 21 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
(This notice was posted by the Village of Scarsdale)
PRESS RELEASE – THE 2016 PROPERTY REASSESSMENT COMMENCEMENT
In accordance with a January 27, 2015 resolution of the Scarsdale Board of Trustees, please be advised that the 2016 reassessment has recently commenced. This effort is intended to update property values on a parcel specific basis.
The 2016 reassessment will consist primarily of a statistical analysis of all sales that will support the development of market models for estimating the value of all properties. Valuation processes and procedures are in the early stages and will result in new assessments that will be implemented on the June 1, 2016 tentative assessment roll for all property valued as of the July 1, 2015 valuation date.
Except those properties that are, or have recently been under construction, a full on-site data collection of each property will NOT occur, which means that data collectors will not be asking to enter residents' premises. The reassessment consulting firm of J.F. Ryan Associates, Inc., an experienced and respected industry leader, will work in conjunction with the Assessor to perform the valuation analyses used to value and reassess ALL Scarsdale properties.
Building on the foundation of the 2014 Village-wide reassessment and in order to maintain assessments as close to 100% as possible, periodic reassessments, which are considered to be an industry "best practice," will be performed at intervals determined in the future based on changing market conditions.
Attached is a list of important information regarding the 2016 reassessment. As the project progresses, additional information will be available through local newspaper articles and on-line news media, village webpage postings and a public information meeting (s). Additional questions should be directed to the Town/Village Assessor's Office @ #722-1133. Thank you.
Nanette J. Albanese, SRA, IAO
Scarsdale Town/Village Assessor
NYS Certified General Real Estate Appraiser
John F. Ryan, CAE
J.F. Ryan Associates, Inc.
Important things to know about the 2016 reassessment:
• J.F. Ryan Associates, Inc. will complete the 2016 reassessment in conjunction with the Assessor, utilizing the property characteristics collected during the 2014 reassessment, as continually updated;
• A full on-site data collection of each property will NOT occur, as this major effort was completed as part of the 2014 reassessment; however, the data collection of all new construction, renovations of existing homes and the correction of existing inventory is on-going;
• The sales used to value all properties for the June 1, 2016 tentative assessment roll will include valid transactions that transpired over the prior 2 year period, July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2015; if necessary the sales base will be expanded to include valid sales occurring before and after this period;
• Recent sales prices of properties, while typically very strong indicators of value, WILL NOT automatically become the 2016 assessment;
• Properties will be valued using market models that consider all valid sales occurring during the sales base period;
• To ensure the greatest degree of accuracy and equity of the final valuation estimates, appraisers from J.F. Ryan Associates, Inc. will perform curb-side valuation reviews of all properties. The Assessor and her staff will participate in these reviews;
• Once the 2016 assessments have been calculated and finalized, on or about June 1, 2016, all taxpayers will be mailed a notice of the 2016 tentative assessment;
• ALL valuations resulting from the 2016 reassessment are subject to the normal appeal process by the submission of a completed grievance application form to the Board of Assessment Review filed during the statutory grievance period, June 1, 2016 – June 21, 2016 (Grievance Day);
• However, there will be no informal review process in conjunction with the 2016 reassessment. An informal valuation review process prior to setting a tentative assessment roll is typically only undertaken when many years have passed since the last full-scale reassessment.
HBO Series Hits Close to Home
- Category: Neighborhood News
- Published on 27 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
Thirty years have passed since Yonkers was ordered to build affordable housing in white, middle class neighborhoods, but the argument over integrated housing still rages on today. Westchester County is struggling to comply with the Fair and Affordable Housing Settlement, which orders the county to build 750 AFFH units in the county's least integrated communities by 2016.
Proponents and opponents are making the same arguments now as they did decades ago. That's what I realized watching the new HBO series, Show Me a Hero, which chronicles the Yonkers altercation in the late 1980's, when the city was ordered to insert public housing east of the Saw Mill River Parkway. At the time, white families, including many Italian-Americans, lived on that side of town, while public housing across the parkway included 81 percent minority residents. The new series is based on a 1999 book by former New York Times reporter and Westchester resident Lisa Belkin.
The conflict then bears many similarities to Westchester today, as the county scours the map for locations to build affordable units in densely populated, affluent communities. To make matters worse, zoning laws here often preclude the construction of multi-family dwellings, and developers would rather reap profits from a ten-bedroom mansion than a multi-family unit.
The protagonist of the HBO series is 28 year-old Mayor Nick Wasicsko. In 1987, Wasicsko unseated a long-sitting incumbent to become the nation's youngest mayor of a major city. Though he campaigned on overturning the housing order, Wasiscko soon saw that Yonkers had no choice. Facing citywide bankruptcy, Wasicsko beat back the opposition, and saw affordable housing built across Yonkers' east side.
Here in Westchester, Rob Astorino became County Executive in 2009, ending Andy Spano's 12-year reign. Astorino vowed to fight the $51 million settlement, which requires the county to build 750 units of affordable housing in 31 eligible communities by 2016. In these neigborhoods, African-Americans account for less than 3 percent, and Latino residents less than 7 percent, of the population. The settlement was reached after the county was charged with the misuse of millions of dollars of community development block grants, which were earmarked for the construction of affordable housing.
Unlike Yonkers Mayor Wasiscsko, Astorino has continued to spar with federal authorities over the terms of the settlement. As of July 2015, the county argues that it has met its benchmark to have funding in place for 450 units, but the U.S. Attorney says that Westchester has not met the mark, as 28 units planned for Chappaqua Station have not received local approval. The federal government has called for Astorino to order local agencies to grant variances, but his office argues that he lacks the authority to do so. The county has already forfeited millions in Community Development Block Grants that were denied and now faces fines of $60,000 per month in penalties for every month that housing benchmarks are not attained.
In the HBO series, residents object to "social engineering," and argue that the construction of public housing will cause overcrowding and stress in the public schools, a decline in real estate values and white flight. Opponents claim that economically diverse residents won't mix and will tear at the fabric of the community.
On the other hand, as Chuck Lesnick, former city council president, told Gina Bellafante of the New York Times, "for those who value diversity, Yonkers is a better place to live than many surrounding districts." And as a recent piece by Malcolm Gladwell argues, when disadvantaged children get a "fresh start" in a new place, their chances of upward mobility are many times greater.
It is a thorny issue, still hotly contested all these years later. The right balance is difficult to strike – but the longer we wait to compromise, the more funds are lost; monies that could be used to build new homes that would provide local residents with better lives.
Masked Man Escaped with $8,000 from CVS
- Category: The Goods
- Published on 21 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
More details have been shared about the robbery that occurred outside the CVS store at 807 White Plains Post Road in Scarsdale on Saturday August 15. It turns out that the suspect never entered the store, but left with $8,000 in cash. And though the robber claimed to have a gun, the manager never saw one.
According to a report from the Eastchester Police, the store manager was approached by the suspect outside the store when the manager stepped out to do his daily inspection of the exterior of the building at 8:45 am on Saturday. The manager heard someone call for help from the side of the building, opened a gate and saw the suspect who he described as 6 feet tall, wearing a white baseball cap, a mask that looked like an old man, a long sleeve black shirt, black latex gloves, black pants and black shiny boots.
The suspect was holding a white piece of paper and a white cloth bag and his left hand was placed inside the waist band of his pants. The suspect greeted the manager, saying "Hi Harry," and the manager explained that his name was not Harry. The suspect then handed the manager a note that said, "Get the money from the store. I have a gun." He then demanded that the manager hand over his drivers license and he did so. The suspect then told the manager not to call the police, because he said he knew where he lived.
The manager went inside, grabbed a bag of cash that contained about $4,000 and then went to the safe, opened it and took out another $4,000. He went outside to hand the suspect the money. The suspect then said, "You called the cops," and when the manager denied it, the suspect sprayed the manager's face with pepper spray. The manager grabbed the suspect's hand, forcing him to drop the bottle of spray. The manager was in pain from the spray, shut his eyes and did not see the man leave.
After police arrived, they cleared the store of customers, searched the area and found the note and the pepper spray. The police reviewed video footage from other stores in the area and brought in a K-9 team to investigate. A witness came forward and said that at around 9 am he had seen a 6 foot tall male dressed in black running westbound on Parkway Circle and north onto Maple Street.
Please Don't Pick Produce from the Garden at SHS
- Category: Bulletin Board
- Published on 31 August 2015
- Written by Joanne Wallenstein
Scarsdale10583 received this note from SHS teacher Maggie Favretti who manages the sustainable garden at Scarsdale High School:
Please help the SHS Sustainable Garden Project achieve its mission. Please do NOT help yourself to the food!!
Here are the reasons why:
1. You might be destroying a long-term student experiment (for example, the kids have cultivated the apple trees for FOUR YEARS while waiting for them to produce apples, and they deserve to taste them, don't you think?!) Last year, their first small crop was entirely stolen.
2. You might be destroying a teacher's lesson. Much of the produce in the garden plays a role in outdoor classroom lessons, and if it disappears....
3. You are definitely taking food away from a hungry child. We give our food to local soup kitchens and food pantries, about 1500-2000 pounds per year.
If you would like to support our Sustainable Garden Project, by volunteering or donating funds, please contact Maggie Favretti, 721-2567.
Thank you for your help!