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Scarsdale Citizens' Non-Partisan Party Presents Candidates for Village Trustee

SCNPLogoThe SCNP presents the qualifications of its candidates for three Village Trustee positions to be voted on in the Village General Election

The Scarsdale Citizens' Non-Partisan Party (SCNP) presents the qualifications of Justin Arest, Lena Crandall and Jane E. Veron, the SCNP's 2018 candidates for three Village Trustee positions. The Village General Election will be held on Tuesday, March 20, 2018.

The SCNP continues a proud Scarsdale tradition, dating back more than 100 years, supporting candidates who have been endorsed by the Citizens Nominating Committee (CNC). The CNC is comprised of a cross section of volunteers representing each of Scarsdale's elementary school districts. This year's slate is comprised of exceptional candidates whose character, experience, spirit of cooperation, dedication to listening and willingness to keep an open mind on the issues facing our Village distinguish them as well qualified to serve as Village Trustees.

As the campaign moves forward, each of our candidates looks forward to hearing from residents about their views and concerns on any and all Village issues, and sharing what they have learned about our unique community through their combined 40 years of active volunteer service. Our candidates hope to earn your vote in the General Village Election on March 20th.

Justin Arestarest

Justin Arest grew up in New Rochelle and met his wife, Allison, a Scarsdale native, nearly 20 years ago in the Golden Horseshoe. When they moved here five years ago, Justin quickly got involved as a volunteer and has proven to be a dedicated and thoughtful community participant on whom many have come to rely for his analytical skills and thoughtful participation.

Justin was appointed to the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) in 2014, and his involvement has grown to impact a variety of residents' interests. In addition to the ZBA, he is currently serving on the Ad Hoc Committee on Communications, Freightway Steering Committee, Library Building Committee and Capital Campaign Committee. Justin has also taken a leadership role in the Scarsdale Forum as a member of the Executive Committee, Board of Directors, and Chair of its Fiscal Affairs Scarsdale Committee.

Justin's serious undertakings in town exemplify how younger community members can become deeply involved in civic affairs if they are able and willing to make the effort. Justin's participation has given him a broad understanding of town issues but he also brings a fresh perspective that rounds out the SCNP slate.

Justin is an attorney and manages Arest Associates, LLC, a real estate investment company. He has a BS in Finance and International Business from the Stern School of Business at New York University and a JD from the George Washington University Law School. Justin and Allison have two children, ages 6 and 3.

LenaCrandallCNCLena Crandall

Lena Crandall has been serving our community for over 16 years, starting as a member of the PTA and quickly expanding her participation to include other Village volunteer organizations, where she often assumed leadership roles.

As an active member of the Fox Meadow PTA, Lena led an effort in 2005 to design a new playground which is still in use today. She also researched and fostered the restoration of the Fox Meadow School Nature Park and Outdoor Classroom, a two-and-a-half acre protected wetland located on Brite Avenue.

Lena served as Secretary, President and Co-President of Friends of Scarsdale Parks (FOSP) from May 2007-2012. While concurrently serving on the Conservation Advisory Council (CAC), Lena was the lead author of a report on the South Fox Meadow Brook Stormwater mitigation project. Her work with FOSP and the CAC resulted in the preservation of the woodland between Harcourt Road and Scout Field, among other conservation initiatives.

From 2013-2017, Lena served as Director of Grounds at the Scarsdale Woman's Club. In that capacity, she secured the donation of tree care from a commercial tree care firm to protect the specimens on the Drake Road property. She also established a permanent volunteer grounds committee.

Lena joined the Scarsdale Forum in 2004, served as a Director-at-Large in 2008, as Vice President in 2015-2016 and as President in 2016-2017. She was elected in 2014 to represent Fox Meadow for a three-year term on the Citizens Nominating Committee (CNC) and then served as its Chairperson in 2016-2017.

Lena and her husband Jeffrey moved to Scarsdale in 1991. She practiced law until 1995 and then retired to focus on raising two sons, James and Nicky, now ages 23 and 19. She has a B.A. from Brown University and was awarded a Service to the School Award upon graduation from Hofstra Law School in 1987.

Jane E. Veronjaneveron

Jane Veron, completing her first term as a Scarsdale Village Trustee, embraces all aspects of her role. As a Trustee, she is actively engaged as chair, member, or liaison on a multitude of committees and councils including the Library Board, Personnel, Municipal Services, Land Use, Chamber of Commerce, Scarsdale Seniors, Youth Advisory, Drugs and Alcohol Task Force, Scarsdale Edgemont Family Counseling Service, Cable Commission, Parks & Recreation and Conservation. In addition, she initiated and leads the Ad Hoc Committee on Communications.

Jane has also held civic leadership positions as Chair of the Scarsdale Planning Board, President of the League of Women Voters of Scarsdale, Chair of SNAP, President of the Fox Meadow Neighborhood Association, and serves on the Board of the Scarsdale Foundation. In recognition of her sustained and significant impact on the community, she received the Mayor's Award for Exceptional Leadership in 2017.

Jane is CEO and co-Founder of The Acceleration Project (TAP), a nonprofit that provides high-caliber consulting services at an accessible price to small businesses, entrepreneurs, and municipalities. She is also CEO of TAP Growth Advisors, a business consulting and placement firm. Prior to TAP, Jane spent her career in strategy and marketing, working at Bain & Company, American Express, and as an independent consultant. She also has experience in private equity and venture capital as an investor and board member.

Jane earned a BA magna cum laude from Yale University and an MBA with honors from Harvard Business School. She has lived in Scarsdale for 20 years with her husband Andrew and three daughters, two of whom graduated from Scarsdale High School and one attends Scarsdale Middle School.

The General Village Election will take place Tuesday, March 20, 2018. All Election Districts will be voting at the Scarsdale Library, 54 Olmsted Road. Hours of the election are 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and Noon to 9:00 p.m.

Submitted by Jon Mark, Campaign Committee Co-Chair
Email: jmark58@aol.com
Phone: 914-472-4053

Have something to say? Please include your REAL name and street address and we will be happy to post your comment.

Freightway Study Presentation On Tuesday

FreightwayAerialViewThe Village of Scarsdale Freightway Steering Committee has completed the visioning study to guide potential redevelopment of the Freightway Site, an underutilized area adjacent to the Scarsdale Metro North Railroad Station. The Committee will present its findings to the Land Use Committee of the Board of Trustees on Tuesday, February 13th at 6:00 PM in the Village Hall.
The study provides a community-based vision for the Freightway Site to ensure that future redevelopment enhances the Village Center while meeting local needs. The study adequately considers potential impacts and/or constraints, such as revenue generation, parking, traffic, infrastructure, school enrollment, community facilities and services and potential demographic changes.

The community based vision was achieved through a broad and meaningful public engagement process which was guided by the Freightway Steering Committee, supported by technical planning and market professionals. The process included three public workshops, walking tours, in person and online surveys and focus groups to assist with garnering information from key stakeholders.

The Freightway Steering Committee's Vision states: "Any future development at the Freightway Site should be a signature project that positively contributes to the vibrancy of the Village Center while maintaining its current function as a commuter parking lot." The Vision is supported by seven guiding principles for the future development of an attractive, economically viable project on the site as follows:

Principle 1 - Improve Parking and Circulation
Principle 2 - Ensure that public benefits are achieved by any development
Principle 3 - Ensure contextual development (scale, bulk, height)
Principle 4 - Encourage mixed-use development supportive of the Village Center
Principle 5 - Connect and integrate the Freightway Site with the Village Center
Principle 6 - Include environmentally sustainable development
Principle 7 - Plan for the long term future within a reasonably practicable time horizon

Interested residents, property owners, merchants and other stakeholders are encouraged to attend the meeting to learn more about the study.

The site is a 2.38 acre Village owned property currently used for commuter and merchant parking with approximately 700 spaces in an aging five-story parking garage and two surface parking lots.

For more information, meeting notices and updates, click here. Comments can be sent to freightwaystudy@scarsdale.com.

Local Expert Explains the Risks of Lead Dust for Young Children

leadRepresenting tenants of a Bronx apartment owned by the NYC Housing Authority (NYCHA), Greenacres resident and attorney Thomas Giuffra just won a $57 million lawsuit. The suit charged NYCHA with failing to test for the presence of lead paint and maintaining the apartment in a dangerous condition. NYCHA denied the presence of lead in the apartment despite violations being issued by the Department of Health and being ordered to abate the lead.

The child, who grew up in the apartment, had high levels of lead in her blood which her attorney argued caused permanent brain damage. The injured child was diagnosed with a lead level of 45 mcg/dl at a routine checkup. The CDC considers any lead level above 5 mcg/dl to be lead poisoning, but states no safe lead level in children has been identified.  Due to sustaining lead poisoning, the child developed significant permanent cognitive injuries which has impacted her ability to learn and required extensive special education and other services in City Public Schools.

Lead in young children is accepted by science to cause brain damage and being responsible for developmental and cognitive issues. In addition to harming the central nervous system, the long-term effects of lead poisoning include renal damage, cardiovascular disease and damage to the reproductive and immune systems. Lead has a long-term impact because the body recognizes lead as calcium and stores it in the bones. 

What are the implications of this verdict for the proposed renovation of Greenacres Elementary School?

We asked Giuffra and here are his thoughts on the matter:

He said, "The case against NYCHA was a classic example of what happens when authorities minimize or deny the presence of lead and perform inadequate inspections. In the case of Greenacres, the district performed 509 XRF lead tests, a completely insufficient number based on the size of the school. For example, in my case, the Department of Health tested over 150 XRF sites for two small NYCHA apartments. To truly understand the full scope of the lead issue, there should have been thousands of test sites done on a building the size of Greenacres, including all rooms in the school (particularly ceilings and windows). Also no paint chip sampling was done at the school which provides additional useful information."

Giuffra continued, "As somebody who has handled lead cases for over twenty years, I viewed the sparse testing as a transparent attempt to reassure parents and the community by using a completely inadequate sampling. The fact that they found lead by using such a limited survey is clear proof that there likely is lead paint throughout the school... and if known would require abatement under New York law. Assurances that the building can be fully abated over the summer are very misleading, because the full scope of the problem remains unknown. Rather than reassuring the community, the finding of lead should cause greater concerns."

He said, "My view is as it has always been .... if they renovate, the kids should not be in the school during construction. I personally believe that the district should have included trailers on the field to protect the children or made allowances to relocate. The current plan leaves kids in unsafe conditions, demonstrates a complete ignorance of the potential hazards of lead and the risk of permanent injury to the children of Greenacres. The primary pathway for lead intoxication is breathing dust contaminated with lead. To think that children will not be exposed to construction dust during a major renovation of this type, despite safeguards, shows a lack of familiarity with construction sites in the real world. Lead, like asbestos, becomes harmful when it is disturbed either through peeling or demolition. Unlike asbestos which harms older people, lead attacks the developing brains of young children and they never get the chance for a normal life."

Giuffra continued, "To those who argue that work was recently done at the high school with kids in the school, here is the difference; the students in grades K-4 are at an age when school age children are most vulnerable to harm from lead. High school aged children are at a much reduced risk of injury because they are at a far more advanced stage of brain development. To attempt to equate two wholly different situations demonstrates nothing more than a lack of knowledge about lead poisoning."

He concluded with a warning, "My opinion is that the current renovation plan is like driving while wearing a blindfold; you don't know what lies ahead and hope that it all works out. It is a fact that lead paint was used in the United States until 1978, particularly in schools and municipal buildings, as it was an excellent and durable paint. I would not be surprised that if the old pre-1978 bid documents were reviewed, the specifications called for lead paint to be used. The school board and community has no idea of the full scope of the problem and plunging forward in this manner without knowing what is on the walls, ceilings, windows and trim throughout the building is just reckless. My recent verdict should alert parents, teachers, administrators and residents to the very real danger that this project poses to children. Lead is the number one environmental hazard to children. Ultimately, it is the children who pay the price for lead poisoning, and that is a tragedy."

"Younger children get poisoning from eating paint chips primarily, they also get it from breathing it. This is because younger children have pica (a fancy name for putting things in their mouth and eating it). They eat lead paint chips because they taste sweet. In contrast, older children develop lead intoxication from breathing lead contaminated dust which goes into their lungs and their bloodstream."

About environmental laws he said, "As far as regulations being such a great protection, why is it that Scarsdale is home to so many lawyers who earn a very comfortable living because laws are broken every second of the day. If laws and regulations were not broken, I would not have won my case or the other verdicts I have had in lead cases. Though the district claims that all interior work can be done in the summer, they don't know the scope of the lead problem based on the small survey sample. Very likely the entire school would need some form of abatement."

Giuffra added, "I do not care if they renovate or replace. I only care if kids are in the school when they do the former. I can't understand why the people who support the renovation don't fight for trailers or relocation to guarantee the safety of the children with the same passion. If they had trailers they would be able to work 12 months of the year and not be governed by the school calendar. What is more cost effective long term?"

School Board President Bill Natbony Urges Respect for Differing Opinions

respectThis note was sent out in an email to the community by William Natbony, President of the Scarsdale School Board on the eve of the bond referendum on 2-8-17.

Dear Members of the Scarsdale Community:
It is hoped that you have been the beneficiary of our efforts to reach out to our community with accurate and detailed information about the proposed school bond. As tomorrow's vote approaches, I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that some of the strengths and hallmarks of Scarsdale and its community are respect for differing opinions and respectful, open discussion without personal attacks. We are all part of the same community, and after the vote we look forward to receiving your continued participation and input as we work together for the betterment of our great school system. The most important way to express your view on the bond is by exercising your right to vote tomorrow.

Sincerely,

William J. Natbony
President
Scarsdale Board of Education

A-School Students Go To Work!

The internship logoA key component of the Scarsdale Alternative School curriculum is the January Internship Program that gives SAS students the opportunity to spend the month learning in a different way than they normally do. Founded in 1973, the SAS Internship Program suspends class time for the month to allow students to pick an internship of their choice. Students commute to local businesses in Scarsdale, Westchester and New York City or even go abroad. These internships allow students to focus on other interests that they wouldn't be able to learn from within the school curriculum. Students are expected to spend the same 35 hours they normally spend in school at an internship assignment. However, if students are taking classes in the high school, they still have to attend those classes, making their internship hours a little harder to manage.

The mastermind behind the program is teacher and A-School internship Coordinator Jeanne Cooper. A huge advocate for the program, Jeanne remarks that the major advantage to students partaking in these internships is that they learn to move through the world more independently, gaining the new experience of taking public transportation or learning to be on time. Jeanne notes that she loves going to visit her students at their internships. She says, "I love to see my students working in a different way and in a different environment than they do at school. It shows other sides of my students I've never seen before."088 However, she acknowledges that the program is tough for students who cannot miss classes taken at the high school which are not suspended for the month of January. Since the students are still responsible for attending those high school classes, it can be challenging for them to make the most of the internship program.

Wanting to get in touch with your NYS Assemblywoman?
Ross Forman '19 is spending the month working for New York State Assemblywoman Amy Paulin as a legislative researcher. He has enjoyed his time researching bills and prospective bills that may be introduced into the Assembly. Ross says, "I find it really interesting to learn about government at a local level because people in the office really respond to constituents' questions and concerns. I was surprised to see how many phone calls constituents make to the office regarding an issue that they want the Assemblywoman to advocate for."

Curious who is helping out in your child's classroom?
Alex Wilson '19 is working as a class aide for her former second-grade teacher, Mrs. Farella, at our local Greenacres Elementary School. She mentions how her favorite part of the job is getting to know the students. Alex says, "It feels so weird to watch the class that I took nine years ago from a staff member's perspective- it's like experiencing it with a new set of eyes."

Knot StandardIn need of a new suit?
Matthew Kuo '18 is interning for Knot Standard, a custom menswear and suit company in NYC. Kuo has been working on prototyping a dress shirt subscription service and researching ways to revamp the showroom. He's getting the opportunity to visit other companies' showrooms to figure out how to best design Knot Standard's
.

Looking for the perfect dress as prom season approaches?
Emma Kornberg '18 is working for Geraldina's Couture, a dressmaking company in Hartsdale. Emma shares her experience of going to a wedding expedition, helping the company run a fashion show, and helping customers make appointments. Emma notes, "It feels great to know that the company trusts me to help with big projects. I even had the opportunity to create a flower by burning the edges of fabric and sewing them together, which was then sewed on to a dress for a flower girl!" 

Planned Parenthood

Learning to lobby?
Hannah Lewis '18 is interning for Planned Parenthood's administrative office in Hawthorne. She has had the opportunity to call congress, senators, and NYS assembly members to update them on the latest news about Planned Parenthood. Hannah notes, "I love working for an organization that shares my beliefs even if I'm simply doing small tasks."

Auburn JewelryIn need of some new jewelry to keep up with today's trends?
Kimmy Markowitz '19 is working for Auburn Jewelry, a handmade jewelry company. Kimmy keeps the website updated and tries to find other similar business that would want to collaborate and do giveaways. Kimmy notes, "My favorite thing is seeing how the backend of a business works and how the company tries to get more publicity."

Looking for some new personal care products?
Jordan Kraut '18 is interning for the St. Ives Global Team at Unilever, a consumer goods company that is known for their personal care products and cleaning agents. Her task is to help the team with social media and competitive analysis. Jordan says, "So far working for Unilever has been a pretty cool experience! I love how they treat me like an adult and give me my own laptop and email for the month. I really feel a part of the team!"

Are your company's products struggling? Saint Ives Products
Zach Friedman '18 is working for Creative Engineering, a product development firm in Bronxville. Zach spends his time trying to find solutions for struggling products and working with 3D printers and laser cutters. Zach notes, "I love working with only six young, hip designers in a small environment because I feel more useful."

The program enlightens A-School students but also helps staff businesses that need extra hands. Some of the business owners look forward to January when bright, energetic, savvy students join their staffs. One business owner said, "I love my A-School intern. I wish she could be here all year."

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