Why I'm running for re-election as Greenburgh Town Supervisor.
I would be honored to have your support for re-election as Greenburgh Town Supervisor. I have enjoyed a long career as a proud Democrat, supporting the values and goals of my party, but often without the support of the local Democratic Party organization prior to the primaries, a reality which has always been quite disappointing. I believe our Town has prospered and burgeoned during my years as Town Supervisor and hope that registered Democrats and all voters will support my candidacy while I attempt to complete major/criticalprojects and better operational systems within the Town which will improve the quality of life for our constituents for decades to come. I realize that I will not hold this position forever, subsequently there is work which I feel compelled to complete prior to turning the reins over to a new individual. The following is a list of goals which I hope to meet during the remainder of this term and the following term, if elected.
The Town of Greenburgh and Unincorporated Town budget has not reflected an increase in the property tax rate in 4 years.
The approved 2023 budget includes a 6% tax rate reduction for residents of unincorporated Greenburgh and the villages. Our tax base continues to increase! During the next three years I will work with other layers of governments looking for opportunities to increase sharing of services, reducing the costs of government and making the administration of government more efficient.
Pedestrian Safety is and will always be of paramount concern to our Town.
The Town of Greenburgh recently received a 5 million dollar grant from NYS to build a sidewalk on West Hartsdale Ave and to make additional traffic safety improvements on E Hartsdale Ave. The Town has also received a one million dollar grant from Congressman MondaireJones for a sidewalk on Dobbs Ferry Road: We have also received a grant from NYS to build a sidewalk on Hillside Ave, which will enable residents and students to walk from South Road to RT119 and the Bailey School: Within the next few years there will be additional sidewalks built on Juniper Hill, N Washington Ave and on Taxter Road. Pedestrian safety will continue to be a priority. These will be the most significant pedestrian safety initiatives in Town history, as we have made an annual commitment to sidewalks during the past decade, and it's paying off. Also plan to focus attention on crosswalk issues. Our town is becoming safer for pedestrians with miles of additional new sidewalks. I am heartened that the reputation of Greenburgh is such that Government on all levels sees our Town as worthy of investment and respects our ability to utilize funds effectively and efficiently. However, these safety projects are the most comprehensive in Town history and will require substantial oversight to bring to fruition. I plan to devote maximum effort to ensure these projects complete in the most qualitative and expeditious manner possible.
Flood control has been a decades long issue for many residential neighborhoods throughout our County, and Greenburgh contains several of these sites.
As weather patterns become more extreme, our residents risk increases concomitantly, and solutions are extremely complicated. In 2021 the Town began to appropriate significant dollars for flood control initiatives. In 2022 we took important action steps that will reduced flooding in Edgemont and Fairview. The Town’s DPW team spent significant time widening the channel along Central Ave which had impacted the Greenville Fire District. This work has been effective in mitigating the issue. At the same time, DPW has become more focused on removing obstructions in brooks, rivers and drainage infrastructure around Town, further mitigating the issues. A final answer to these flooding issues will occur only when the Town engages Federal, State and Local governmentaround the issues. This is a daunting political process which I am currently efforting.
In 2022 I organized a lobbying effort to persuade the NYS Legislature to increase Senior Citizen tax benefits for those who earn less than $58,000, annually.
I was elated that he NYS Legislature approved the initiative and for the first time in more than a decade, more seniors are eligible for these benefits. There still remains work to be done to ensure the protection of an ever-increasing SeniorCitizen population in our Town. I have spent my career in pursuit of such support for our elderly and will continue to do so.
The ability to hold tax rates at their current levels is for the most part based upon the revenue brought into our budget by development.
A number of years ago the town rezoned property allowing Regeneron to expand. This year our efforts paid off asRegeneron broke ground on a 1.8-billion-dolla rexpansion project at their Greenburgh headquarters. As a result, there will be millions of dollars in additional permanent property tax revenue andsubstantial one-time building fees, accruing to theTown. BJs came to Crossroads Shopping Center recently; ShopRite will open up on Saw Mill River Road in January; New restaurants are opening on E Hartsdale Ave: A Crum cookies is opening at Dalewood and a Golfzon facility is opening on Central Ave. Before the end of my next term (if re-elected) I anticipate the construction of over a hundred single-family homes at the former Elmwood Country Club and also anticipate that two new assisted living facility (Brightview and Shelbourne) will be constructed. Our tax base continues to expand, as the outside world recognized how extraordinary a Town we are. I have worked hard,meeting with potential developers and need to continue aggressively reaching out.
In 2022 we created two new pollinator gardens in town (AF Veteran Park and HartsBrook Preserve). These are worthwhile initiatives which I will continue to pursue.
I hope to oversee the implementation of a new community garden for seniors to enjoy at the Theodore Young Community Center and will also push for more electric charging stations to be built around town. We were the first town in the region to install solar panels on the roof of a municipal building and have been encouraging residents toinstall solar panels in their homes.
Diversity is a keystone for providing an environment of trust!
We hired the first African American Police Chief in Town history this year. Over the years we have tried to hire and promote officers from different backgrounds. I would like the Town to provide training for potential candidates for civil service positions at key locations around the town, to encourage individuals from different backgrounds to take the civil service exams, and to pass. Maria Portilla is our Hispanic Liaison and has office hours at Town Hall every Tuesday -helping immigrants.
Shortly after I was elected. the Town became the first community in NYS to require 10% of multifamily housing units to be affordable.
I would like to see the percentage increased to 12% (similar to Yonkers) and would like to see a similar requirement for single family housing complexes of over a certain number of units.
Earlier this year we created a new App --FIX IT GREENBURGH.
Residents can take photos of potholes, wires that are falling, trees in danger, broken lights. The App uses GPS and identifies the location - enabling the town to expedite the repairs. We will look for other ways to take advantage of technology to make government more efficient.
We have worked hard to involve students in government. Have a very successful internship program, have honored students at Town Board meetings, have appointed students to advisory boards. We need to do more - to encourage young adults in their 20s, 30s and 40s to get involved. We should appoint our future leaders to Boards, Commissions--helping to prepare them for elective offices.
I encourage any resident who has any questions to call me me at 914-478-1219. If it's non political you can also call me on my government cell phone number: 914-438-1343. Whether you support me or not - I'm always happy to listen to your concerns and am willing to help resolve government related problems that you or your family members have.