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Bronxville Government and History

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Events this Week in Bronxville: May 1 to May 8, 2019 PDF Print Email

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By Staff


May 1, 2019: Below are events that will take place in and around Bronxville from Wednesday, May 1, to Wednesday, May 8, 2019. For the Village of Bronxville calendar, click here. For events at the Bronxville Public Library, click here. For the Bronxville school district calendar, click here.

Thursday, May 2, 7:00 pm, Discussion of Women's Soccer at Bronxville Library. Bronxville’s Gemma Clarke, the author of a new book, Soccerwomen: The Icons, Rebels, Stars, and Trailblazers Who Transformed the Beautiful Game, will be in conversation with Andrea Montalbano, the author of Soccer Sisters and also a soccer star in high school and co-captain of the women’s soccer team at Harvard. For more information, go to www.bronxvillelibrary.org email CLOAKING , or 914-337-7680, ext. 34.

Friday, May 3, 6:00 pm, Counseling Center Annual Benefit Honoring Roseanne Welshimer. Guests will have the chance to enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while participating in a raffle as well as in silent and live auctions. To purchase tickets, contact Sue Perry at 914-793-3388, ext. 101, or click here

Sunday, May 5, 4:00 pm, Village Historian Ray Geselbracht to Speak about Bronxville and WWI at Bronxville Library. Village historian Raymond Geselbracht will give a public lection titled “Bronxville’s World War I—Service at Home and Abroad During the Great War, 1914-1918” using photographs and documents from the Bronxville History Center. For more information, go to www.bronxvillelibrary.org email CLOAKING , or 914-337-7680, ext. 34.  

Photo by A. Warner

Editor's note:  As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes notices about meetings of village government, the Bronxville Board of Education, and the board of trustees of the Bronxville Public Library. MyhometownBronxville does not independently research other events but will, at its discretion, consider including a notice of an event that will occur in Bronxville if information about the event is received by MyhometownBronxville (Sarah Thornton Clifford at sethorntoncliff@aol.com) by noon on the Sunday before the subsequent Wednesday publication. These notices must not be advertisements; please send any requests for advertisements to Sarah Thornton Clifford at   CLOAKING .

 
From the Mayor: Focusing on Our Visible Environs PDF Print Email

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By Mary C. Marvin, Mayor, Village of Bronxville

May 1, 2019:  After a winter of concentrating on the new underground infrastructure, the trustees and I are now focusing on our visible environs. How particularly beautiful they are thanks to the collaborations with our Bronxville Beautification Committee and the Boulder Ledge Garden Club.

Con Edison also came through with the new boxwoods on Midland Avenue and, based on residents’ requests for increased visibility, we bricked the turning areas with sourced yellow bricks that didn’t quite work on the yellow brick road project--again one funded by another wonderful village partner, the Bronxville Historical Conservancy.

As I write, our public-private partners are all assisting us in landscaping the Kennedy monument, refurbishing Bicentennial Park, and upgrading planters throughout the business district.

The village’s Green Committee also continues to partner with government to effectuate needed focus on energy savings, sustainability, and responsible stewardship of village resources.

Coming up on June 8 is the annual spring take-back day, when the committee schedules the county document shredder, takes electronics and computers and disposes them in the eco-correct way, and offers ancillary other recycling product opportunities.

The Green Committee’s impetus galvanized the village to purchase new trash and recycling receptacles for downtown and install a charging station in the new village-owned Parkway Road parking lot.

On the committee’s front burner now is researching the logistics of instituting a composting program already under way in our neighboring communities of Scarsdale and Larchmont.

We have also partnered with Sustainable Westchester to make a version of our sanitation and recycling schedule available online (coming this spring) and will also be making a new village parking map available online that will identify all our lots and meter times.

So much of what we are doing is now available for review on our much-improved new website, so ably refurbished by village resident Nicki Piercy Coddington. Recognizing that times have changed and so many residents are not in the village during village staff hours, almost every village need, permit, and payment can now be accomplished at any hour. We so hope it makes civic life a little easier and we welcome your feedback.

The major infrastructure redesign of our public works garage, which has not been upgraded significantly since 1942, continues on schedule with preliminary design, final design, and bid assistance all expected to be completed by late August. 

This phase will allow for the relocation of the salt storage shed so we can demolish the existing structure next to the firehouse and install a new parking lot. This will allow for the relocation of the DPW fleet and PD and DPW employee parking in advance of Phase II – construction of the storage and maintenance facility.

In the same vein, our new building department head, Paul Taft, has initiated the village’s First Annual Safety Day on Saturday, May 11, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm behind village hall. Participants include the Bronxville Police Department, the Eastchester Fire Department, EVAC, Con Edison, the NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, and NewYork-Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital. The goal is to make residents of all ages aware of building safety and the reasons for certain codes and requirements.

Now that our village operating budget has been established, we are looking to prioritize capital programs that should be addressed in the coming fiscal years.

The trustees have compiled a “to-do” list, which includes dozens of items including body cameras for our police, street and curb restorations, renovation of the small part of the railroad underpass that is village-owned, HVAC repairs to the library, teardrop lighting on the west side near the train station, and upgrades to Sagamore Park and the tennis courts.

Since our comprehensive plan is under way with village survey participation in numbers the consultant has never witnessed before, we have decided to wait until the public information is tabulated to ensure the trustees are aligned with the wants and needs of the citizenry.

I close with a wonderful story that defines why Bronxville is so much more than the sum of its parts – be they beautiful parks, a field of tulips, or new equipment. It is the special people who choose to make the village home.

Last week, our mailman in the co-op area where I live near the hospital, John Lorentoni, had his last day on the job. Residents in the Stoneleigh complex organized a farewell that attracted dozens of residents. (I teased John that more folks came out to wish him well than voted for mayor!!) The spirit of small-town community, warmth, and appreciation was palpable. I know that everyone, including myself, walked away feeling that all was right with the world, at least for a brief moment in time on a Thursday afternoon.

Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.

 
Houlihan Lawrence Launches Lifestyle Website PDF Print Email

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By Dean Bender, Thompson & Bender, for Houlihan Lawrence

May 1, 2019:  Houlihan Lawrence today announced the new NorthOf.NYC, a website and curated guide to living in the communities it serves across Westchester, Connecticut, and the Hudson Valley.  

“Some people are surprised that a real estate company would create a website that isn’t all about selling houses, but our agents have relationships with clients that exist well before they consider purchasing a home,” said Anne Marie Gianutsos, chief marketing officer of Houlihan Lawrence. “North of NYC helps clients discover the lifestyles possible in our area and delivers a new platform for our agents to share their local knowledge outside of real estate transactions.”

The website features an interactive map experience that lets users explore hundreds of curated shops, restaurants, attractions, and more. The website also covers a range of topics from real estate how-tos and market insights to local events and a new content feature, “Journeys,” which assembles map locations as themed itineraries—from a beach day to a brewery tour.

“We know what makes our communities tick,” said Russ Pruner, an associate real estate broker in the firm’s Riverside office, who created a Greenwich “journey” for the website. “Northof.NYC provides invaluable local advice to people considering a move and even to our neighbors living here.”

“Northof.NYC is a great new place for agents to share local insights and build their brand,” said Mary Kmetz, an agent in the Rye office on the Joan O’Meara team. “We love to provide our clients with a roundup of local events, and now we have greater distribution for our content with the launch of this website.”

For potential buyers who are just discovering the area north of the city, the website can be browsed by local lifestyles that then connect back to actual cities and towns: Villager, Locavore, Trailblazer, Waterfronter, Locavore, and Cosmopolitan. The website was designed and built by King & Partners.

The website is just one element of the brokerage’s North of NYC lifestyle brand, which includes lifestyle gear, Spotify playlists, and seasonal travel guide North of NYC Journeys. The site’s first iteration launched three years ago, when the firm set out to dispel tired suburban stereotypes and spotlight the individuality of each community.

“Clients love to get the local scoop from our agents,” remarked Gianutsos. “This is just our latest way to empower agents to make new connections and grow their business with Houlihan Lawrence.”

Photo courtesy Thompson & Bender

Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.

 
Bronxville Police Blotter: April 8 to April 26, 2019 PDF Print Email

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By Bronxville Police Department


May 1, 2019: The following entries are from the Bronxville police blotter.  

April 8, 2019, 11:07 am, Police Headquarters: A pedestrian found a wallet on the sidewalk and turned it over to police. The owner was contacted and it was returned. 

April 8, 2019, 7:09 pm, Pondfield Road: A resident reported that she found a purse in front of Lange’s Deli and turned it over to police. Attempts to contact the owner were unsuccessful; the purse is being held for safe keeping.

April 9, 2019, 2:35 pm, Kraft Avenue: A walker with a set of keys attached to it was found unattended. The owner was contacted and the property was returned. 

April 13, 2019, 5:17 pm, Pondfield Road: Two males attempted to convince a bartender to give them a debit card that did not belong to them. The savvy cashier questioned the men, who claimed to have just made a transaction and left a card behind. The males left the area before police arrived.

April 14, 2019, 10:04 pm, Meadow Avenue: Unauthorized barricades were removed from Meadow Avenue at the intersection of Garden Avenue.

April 14, 2019:  1:49 pm, Midland Avenue: A 27-year-old woman of Yonkers was charged with the misdemeanor of suspended registration after a license plate reader alarm indicated to the officer that her registration was suspended for an insurance lapse. The woman was processed on scene and released pending her next court appearance. 

April 17, 2019, 11:14 am, Midland Gardens: A homeowner reported that an unknown number of items were missing from the storage unit in her building. The incident is being investigated. 

April 20, 2019, 8:53 pm, Garden Avenue: A large group of youths was reported causing a disturbance in the area. The group was dispersed by police. No crime was committed. 

April 26, 2019, 2:41 pm, Westchester County Jail: A 59-year-old woman was taken into custody by Bronxville detectives after she posted bail at Westchester County Jail on an unrelated charge. The woman who had an outstanding warrant from the Bronxville Justice Court was transported to Bronxville Police headquarters and charged with bail jumping. She was unable to post $2,500 bail at arraignment and was transported back to Westchester County Jail pending her next court appearance. 

 
From the Mayor: Village Budget Approved; Includes Spending for Increased Police Presence and Aging Infrastructure PDF Print Email

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By Mary C. Marvin, Mayor, Village of Bronxville


Apr. 24, 2019:  After an extensive process ably led by our village treasurer, Lori Voss, and our village administrator, James Palmer, with consultation from all department heads, the trustees and I approved a budget for fiscal year 2019-2020. The entire budget is available for review on the village website, www.villageofbronxville.com.

Net-net, on a taxable assessed value of $3,169,683,425, the new tax rate per $1,000 will be 3.2831, a tax rate increase of 0.1105 over the 2018-2019 number.

The tax levy in the newly approved budget is $10,406,300, representing an increase of $385,628, translating into a levy of 3.85% (due to the way the New York State 2% tax cap is calculated, we actually stayed under the cap, negating the need for the tax cap override legislation we passed as a precautionary measure early in April).

It is extremely hard to find savings, as the major source of expense – staffing – is at a modern-day all-time low. As example, when I first got involved in village government, the police department and the public works department both had staffs of twenty-seven. They are now down to twenty. Given our numbers, the men and women who work for the village do yeoman service.

Despite tight staffing, the costs associated with government employment continue to rise totally beyond local control. The perennial cost drivers – health care and pension contribution – show no signs of a downward trend. In fact, health costs have increased by double digits consistently over the past few years. We receive no advance warning as to the potential variations, making budgeting a challenge.

In addition to these fixed costs, we have added some funding, albeit small, on the quality-of-life side. As illustration, given the changing nature of policing, much of the allotted overtime budget went to address the mail fraud syndicate, which played havoc for many village residents, rather than adding a walking patrol or augmenting speeding and crossing-the-double-yellow-line enforcement.

If one request came in loud and clear this year, it was residents’ desire to have police presence increased throughout the village. The additional funding will aid in this endeavor.

Our debt service is also relatively high due to the board’s decision to take advantage of the current interest rates, capitalizing on our Triple A bond rating, and tackle our aging infrastructure before emergencies arise and, with them, property damage and expensive repairs.

On the revenue side, we see little growth potential, save raising fees on existing services. We are now essentially built out with the completion of Villa BXV and the NewYork-Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital expansion project, so building permit fees will return to the normal residential improvement numbers, and big one-shot infusions are no longer in the equation.

In what is clearly a double-edged sword for the village and our loyal merchants, additional revenue could come from the bill raising Westchester sales tax by 1%. Passed by both the New York State House and Senate and just awaiting the governor’s signature, it could add to our almost $1 million local sales tax apportionment.

It is thanks to residents making the choice to shop locally vs. online purchasing that this number is so advantageous for the village. Without this level of loyalty, taxes would have to be raised in the neighborhood of 12%.

Our savings and/or revenue opportunities are getting harder and harder to find. We are upping our efforts for federal and state grant monies that are tied to resident income levels and we are doubling our efforts to find ways to share services such as joint purchasing of supplies, road-paving materials, and equipment that is not needed on a daily basis with our neighboring communities.

We also have to at least have a serious discussion about contribution by our nonprofits to essential village services. At present, the resident living in our smallest apartment contributes more to police services, road maintenance, and street lighting than any of our major institutions.

By its nature, the budget is a fluid document and if needs arise during the year, we do have healthy reserves to tap into if need be.

 
Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.



 
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