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COMING UP ON THE MAY 15 TOWN BOARD AGENDA
Click here for the agenda
As previously mentioned, the Town Board has been considering taking action on adopting a local law to regulate leaf blower use and to reduce waste created by the distribution primarily at grocery stores of single use plastic bags and paper grocery bags.   We have had excellent work performed by our Leaf Blower Task Force (LBTF) and Reusable Bag Task Force (RBTF), each of which has presented recommendations to the Town Board. Each Task Force extensively researched the issues, sought and obtained input from stakeholders and the community generally, including several public meetings.   The Task Forces and the Board also has been consulting closely with Town staff.
Leaf Blowers
The Board is moving ahead on developing a balanced local law from the good work of the LBTF, comments from the public and input from staff. We plan to schedule a public hearing for the June 19 meeting to allow ample time for further public input.
 
Reusable Bags
The RBTF recommends that the Town Board adopt a local law adapted from the reusable bag law in Suffolk County which set a one-year “ramp up” of large-scale distribution of reusable bags and encouragement of their use. There would be no ban on either single-use plastic bags or paper grocery bags, but rather a 10c fee charge for either type of bag should the customer arrive at the check-out counter without a reusable bag. The law would not apply to smaller stores, as their distribution of single-use plastic bags and disposable paper bags was not found to be significant.
Other recommendations of the RBTF:
  • Stores subject to the law pledge to participate in education efforts and make an investment in signage on their premises and in reusable bags to distribute to customers during the ramp-up period.
  • The Town Board should review the law within 12 months following effective date with respect to actual reduction of single-use plastic bags and paper grocery bags.
  • Stores subject to the law be required to cooperate in benchmarking plastic and paper bag usage over the implementation year, and that the measurements for success should be clear and quantifiable.
  • If single-use disposable bag use does not decrease in the stores subject to the law by 50% or more at the 12-month benchmarking period, then the Town Board should consider either one or more of the following additions to the law: an increase in the fee, an outright ban on single-use plastic bags, and potential expansion to delis, restaurants and smaller stores.
  • While smaller stores should be exempt, efforts to encourage reusable bag use (signage, reusable bag distribution, education) should be extended to these locations.
  • While this law exempts delis and restaurants, the RBTF recommends a pilot with 5-7 delis and restaurants that voluntarily decrease plastic/Styrofoam containers and plastic bags in these locations as part of an effort to decrease litter in Town. If the pilot is successful, the Town Board should consider adding delis and restaurants to the list of non-exempt stores or consider a plastic ban at the 12-month review.
We have held public meetings with retailers, individual meetings with grocery store representatives and a public meeting with the general public. We plan to set a public hearing for June 5 on the RBTF recommendations.
 
Part-Time Senior Outreach Position   The Senior Advisory Committee will present recommendations to the Town Board regarding creation of a part-time senior outreach position to assist the Town’s growing senior population.
 
Proposed Changes in the Parking Code
The Town Board will be considering proposed changes to the parking chapter of the Town Code to update the parking chapter for changes in technology, address non-residential weekday use of the commuter lots in “off hours” and to update/increase the fines/penalties for violations.
Updated Fee Schedule for Filming Permits
The Board will be considering a new fee schedule to correspond to the new Filming law. The fee schedule could not be adopted at the May 1 meeting since the new law is not effective until filed with the NYS Secretary of State. The schedule includes discounts for multiple days’ use and other incentives to encourage filming in Bedford, consistent with protecting the community from excessive noise, traffic, light and other disturbance from such activities.
SAVE MONEY AND THE ENVIRONMENT WITH THESE TWO EXCITING SUSTAINABLE WESTCHESTER INITIATIVES!
Nissan Leaf Discount Program
Electric vehicles save money and reduce fossil fuel usage and emissions.  Click the link below to see how you can save up to $12,500 on a 2018 all electric Nissan Leaf through the Sustainable Westchester bulk discount program. Sign Up for Discount
Community Solar
Now everyone can be a part of the transition to local, clean solar energy, even if you don’t have access to your roof because you are in an apartment or it’s too shady. Currently in con Ed Territory only. Click Here to sign up for Local solar – and save money on your Con Ed bill!
Sign up at WestchesterCommunitySolar.org
FOR THE COMMUNITY EVENTS CALENDAR click here
FOR THE TOWN CALENDAR click here

TO SIGN-UP FOR NIXLE ALERTS click here
 
PRIOR POSTS OF CONTINUED RELEVANCE
PHONE SCAMS – NYSEG
Customers are receiving automated calls from “NYSEG” telling them that their electricity will be shut off later that day.   The customer is instructed to call back to prevent this.  The callback numbers, which vary, answer with “NYSEG automated service line,” and prompt you to push 3.
These calls are not from NYSEG and are an attempt to scam residents and businesses.
Some precautions to take to avoid falling victim to a scam:
  • Always type NYSEG’s Web address when making an online payment at nyseg.com.  Do not rely on email links. While at nyseg.com, you can also check your account balance and any past-due amount status.
  • When making a payment by phone, always ensure that you are dialing NYSEG phone numbers: 1.800.572.1111 (customer service); 1.888.315.1755 (payment arrangements) or 1.800.600.2275 (self-service line). You can also check your account status by phone.
  • Do not make any payments over the phone to anyone who has contacted you or asked you to dial a different number.
  • Never provide your Social Security number, credit card number or bank information to anyone requesting it (over the phone or in person) unless you initiated the contact and feel confident that the transaction is legitimate.
  • NYSEG does not ask customers to purchase debit cards (like Green Dot cards) to make payments.
  • If you have fallen victim to a scam, immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission and your local police.
 
AWARD FOR ANTIOCH HOMES AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECT  
I am delighted to report that Antioch Homes Affordable Housing Project has been chosen to be honored with a Commendation for Outstanding Planning Achievement by the Westchester Municipal Planning Federation (WMPF) for its annual planning awards competition.   The award will be presented at next month’s WMPF annual awards dinner.
 
FOR THE SUPERVISOR’S APRIL MONTHLY REPORT Click here 

UPDATE ON ROUTE 117 WORK
The Town has been working closely with Con Edison, the Village of Mt. Kisco and the NYS Department of Transportation regarding the condition of Route 117 in Bedford Hills which had been dug up and very roughly patched following Con Edison gas line work.
As those following this newsletter may know, we learned a few weeks ago that the Village of Mt. Kisco plans to replace its water line, which also will require digging up Route 117.  Upon learning of this development, we urged the Village and Con Edison to coordinate and to discuss it with DOT.   We want to avoid the havoc that took place over Thanksgiving and into the holidays last November/December in connection with Con Edison’s work in which ingress/egress to the Shop Rite mall was blocked; daytime work was taking place at the height of retailers busiest season resulting in significant loss of business; and traffic into and out of Bedford Hills was tied up for upwards of an hour.
Here’s the status of requests we have made to the parties:
  1. DOT advises us that it has required Con Edison to perform the curb to curb restoration.
  2. Work to be done at night from 7:00 PM through 6:00 AM.  Minimizing the loudest work (i.e., saw cut and jackhammering).  Con Edison has stated: “We will ask our contractors to try their best to get the saw cut and jackhammering work done before 10 pm, but it is an inevitable part of this work.”
Timing: we don’t know yet, because the water line work schedule has not yet been set as the engineers design and staging the work have to complete DOT review and approval.   What we do know is that the previous schedule of Con Edison completing its restoration in the next couple of weeks is not at all possible.   Our objective now is to avoid disruption as much as possible.  As soon as we learn of the schedule, we will advise the community.
 
PREPARATIONS FOR 2018 PAVING
This is the time of year when residents ask me about our paving plans and how the Town Board determines it. Shortly after I came onto the Town Board in 2008, the Department of Public Works instituted a fair and equitable system for identifying the roads to be paved from year to year. It is based on the condition of the road, with the roads in the worst condition to be paved first before they deteriorate further and results in far more costly paving. Each Spring the DPW updates its assessment of the condition of all 97 miles of the paved Town roads (since roads deteriorate at different rates over the winter).   The condition assessment uses a rating system with 1 being the best condition and 5 being the worst.   As a result of higher appropriation levels, we have been able to pave all Town roads rated at 4 and 5 and now are working away at a lengthy list of roads rated at 3.5. In 2014, the paving budget was approximately $800,000. Each year thereafter, the Town Board gradually has increased the budget. The figure now stands at approximately $1.2 million for 2018. We anticipate that in the next month DPW Commissioner Kevin Winn will submit a recommended paving list to the Town Board for approval.
 
MOVING AHEAD WITH OUR COMMITMENT TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES
Consistent with the Town’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint by 2020, on October 3, 2017, the Town Board responded to the New York League of Conservation Voters/Sustainable Westchester challenge by being the only municipality in Westchester County to adopt Gold Tier Pledge under which we commit to purchase Zero Emissions Vehicles (ZEV’s) for at least 10% of our new light-duty municipal fleet purchases by the end of 202 and revisit this level annual to consider adopting a higher purchasing commitment. At its May 1, 2018 Town Board meeting the Town Board approved the purchase of the highly rated Chevy Bolt, which has an excellent driving range of 238 miles on a single charge.  The Town is able to purchase the vehicle under procurement through NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services in which the Town may participate.
KVIS TOWN FORUM
Let your voices be heard – Let us know what is on your mind
Katonah Village Library, May 17 at 7:30 PM. Click here for the flyer
REMINDERS – VACANCIES ON TOWN BOARDS
Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee – Resident of Katonah Memorial Park District
There is a vacancy on the Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee for a resident of the Katonah Park District.  Send your resume and a cover letter via e-mail to supervisor@bedfordny.gov and please copy Recreation and Parks Superintendent Bill Heidepriem atwheidepriem@bedfordny.gov and RPAC chairman, Brian McCabe atcoach10536@aol.com.  You also may mail your cover letter and resume to the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For information on the RPAC, please see http://www.bedfordny.gov/town-government/boards-commissions-committees/boards/recreation-parks-advisory/
Drug Abuse Prevention Council (DAPC)
The Town of Bedford is looking to fill two vacancies on the Drug Abuse Prevention Council. If you are interested in serving, please e-mail your resume with a cover letter to Supervisor Chris Burdick, supervisor@bedfordny.gov and also to DAPC Coordinator Kathryn Ferrara, kathryn.dapc@gmail.com  .  You also may mail it the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For more information on the DAPC, click here.
Traffic Safety Work Group
There is a vacancy on the Traffic Safety Working Group (TSWG)for a resident of Bedford Hills. Send your resume and a cover letter via e-mail to supervisor@bedfordny.gov  You also may mail your cover letter and resume to the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For information on the TSWG please click here.
FOR YOUR NEIGHBOR’S SAKE
Please consider your neighbor when you go to work with your lawn mower or weed whacker (or your lawn service uses them). We realize that your busy schedule makes it difficult to find time to get work done on your property. We all try to squeeze in time to do it. But please not too early and not too late…

IT’S THE LAW: IDLING
Please be reminded that Westchester County regulates the idling time of motor vehicles to not more than three minutes (with certain exceptions – click here for the law
Let’s all obey the law to avoid unnecessary pollution.
 
PAVING OUR STATE ROADS: STILL TRYING TO GET ACTION
 
I-684
            It’s been a long haul trying to persuade New York State to pave the concrete portion of I-684 that runs through Bedford (the same original surface from the late 1960s).   You may remember that in early 2014 shortly after coming into office, I started working with Assembly David Buchwald and then State Senator George Latimer to urge the re-paving of the portion of I-684 which runs through Bedford.  We also worked with Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney, a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, to press for funds from Washington, since 80% to 90% of the funds to repair our State’s highways comes from the federal government.   Thanks principally to the efforts of Assemblyman Buchwald a portion of the Bedford section was paved (the southerly portion up to Harris Road).   But the portion from Harris Road through a bit north of Exit 6 is in terrible condition. One of our residents who is an engineer and works on major road projects described it in an e-mail earlier this week: “Spring has arrived!! Please take the time to drive northbound and southbound on I-684, including the exit ramps. The pavement deterioration has become very severe in some areas due to the harsh winters. You may see large chucks of concrete in the shoulders that have broken free from the mainline pavement. Perhaps the board can urge the NYSDOT Highway Department to have maintenance crews fill the pot holes in the Katonah corridor as a priority.”
ROUTE 22
            Here, too, conditions on the road have deteriorated.   I’m especially concerned about the portion between the Bedford Cross and the intersection with Pea Pond Road. Several residents have contacted me about it.
I’ll be meeting with the Regional Director of the DOT on Monday and members of his staff to press for work to get done. I’d like to ask your help so that the powers that be know that it’s not just me asking for action.  You can send e-mails and make calls – and many thanks to those who already have done so (yes you may get a “form” response, but they all keep track of it and it really makes a difference that you take the time):
DOT Albany office: 518-457-6195
DOT Region 8 Acting Regional Director Lance MacMillan: 845-431-5750
If you send an e-mail, please consider copying me and our legislators:
State Assemblyman Buchwald: buchwaldd@assembly.state.ny.us, 914-244-4450
And thank you!
POTHOLE REPAIR SEASON HAS OPENED
As to potholes you find in our Town roads, please call our Pothole Hotline at 666-7669 or feel free to contact me at 666-6530 or Supervisor@bedfordny.gov.
For potholes on state roads in our Town, such as Routes 22, 117, 121, 137 and 172 we would suggest that you call NYS’s pothole line at 1-800-POTHOLE.
 
METRO-NORTH: UPPER HARLEM SUBSTITUTE BUS SERVICE, SATURDAYS & SUNDAYS, APRIL 28-29, MAY 5-6 & MAY 19-20, INCLUDES SOUTHEAST, BREWSTER, CROTON FALLS, PURDY’S, GOLDENS BRIDGE, AND WASSAIC
For Saturdays and Sundays, April 28-29, May 5-6 and May 19-20 substitute bus service will be in effect between Southeast, Brewster, Croton Falls, Purdy’s and Goldens Bridge due to ongoing repairs to multiple downed power poles and lines in the area that occurred as a result of the March nor’easters.
All buses will depart approximately 20 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departure times in order to connect with train service at Goldens Bridge. Regular train service will resume each day with the 7:10 PM train to Southeast and the 9:08 PM train from Southeast.
Harlem Line train service continues to operate between Grand Central Terminal and Goldens Bridge and between Southeast and Wassaic.
Substitute bus service is being provided between Southeast and Goldens Bridge as follows:
Wassaic Branch Customers: Trains will depart 10 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departure times at all stations between Wassaic and Patterson in order to connect with bus service at Southeast. Additional bus service/ times will be provided at Southeast and Goldens Bridge. For full schedule details, please see http://web.mta.info/mnr/pdf/Wassaic Bus May_2018.pdf
Southeast, Brewster, Croton Falls and Purdy’s Customers: All buses will depart about 20 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departures in order to connect with train service at Goldens Bridge. Regular train service will resume with the 7:10 PM train to Southeast and the 9:08 train from Southeast. For a full schedule, please see: http://web.mta.info/mnr/pdf/Upper
Please refer to our interactive schedules at http://as0.mta.info/mnr/schedules/sched_form.cfm
or download Train Time for train/bus times.
Customers can also use the Hudson Line, where tickets will be cross-honored.
Please listen for station announcements and check back to this website for updates. Thank you for your patience while we perform this critical repair work.
NEW YORK STATE ACTION OF STATE AND LOCAL TAX (SALT) DEDUCTIONS
Many have asked us about what action is being taken in response to the December federal tax law revisions which caps SALT tax deductions for federal income tax purposes to $10,000.
The following is brief description of the new law that can be provided to the public regarding the New York budget bill that provides offsets for Federal SALT tax deductions: The New York State Legislature has adopted new state law provisions designed to offset the impact of the recently enacted federal tax limitation on state and local taxes (SALT) to $10,000. Specifically, the legislation creates a vehicle for taxpayers to contribute to certain charitable funds that, in turn, would be applied for local tax purposes. The concept is that, as a charitable contribution, the amount paid by taxpayers who itemize their tax returns could be claimed as a charitable deduction on federal taxes. Under the new law, a New York State tax credit would also be provided on a percentage of each contribution. Under the new law, each taxing jurisdiction, including school districts, villages, towns, cities and counties, is responsible for establishing and managing such charitable funds. The funds collected would then be used by each taxing jurisdiction and applied to the taxing jurisdiction’s annual tax levy. The law also provides a mechanism for the taxpayer to receive a tax credit based upon the amount contributed to a school district’s or other municipal corporation’s charitable fund. The exact procedures for making payments into the charitable funds and receiving a credit against taxes owed are still being formulated.
New York State, by being the first state to enact a “workaround” to ameliorate the limitation on the federal SALT deductions, has positioned itself to be the legal test case for whether such an arrangement will pass legal muster. The Town and other government agencies, school districts and municipalities throughout New York State are in the process of reviewing the proposed bill provisions to determine what action should be taken and whether to implement the provisions of this new law. Similarly, tax experts are in the process of reviewing whether or not these new charitable funds will be treated as legitimate charitable contributions that are deductible for filers who itemize their federal tax returns. New York’s Governor and Legislature appear to believe the provisions are sound. However, a final answer has yet to be obtained and we recommend that you consult with your personal tax consultant before taking any action.
We will keep you advised as the situation develops.
           
FOR THE APRIL 6, 2018 KATONAH-BEDFORD HILLS SEWER DESIGN STATUS REPORT click here

PLEASE JOIN US FOR BEDFORD TOWN-WIDE CLEAN-UP DAYS 2018 AT THE CRUSHER ROAD HIGHWAY FACILITY OFF ROUTE 22, JUST NORTH OF ROUTE 172, IN BEDFORD VILLAGE

Town residents can bring household debris and metal waste to the Crusher Road Yard during the following periods:
Thursday, May 3, 2018 7:30 AM-3:00 PM            Friday, May 4, 2018 7:30 AM-3:00 PM        
Saturday, May 5, 2018 7:30 AM-4:30 PM
Residents can also take brush and tree debris to the Beaver Dam Highway facility on Beaver Dam road off Harris Road during the same days and hours listed above. THERE IS NO CHARGE FOR THIS!
The Highway Department will not accept any of the following items: tires, batteries, refrigerators, freezers, pressure treated lumber, air conditioners, propane tanks, paint, varnish, chemicals, medical waste, or other toxic materials. No E-Waste – televisions, computers (desktops, monitors, and notebooks), computer mice and keyboards, printers, scanners, fax machines, cell phones, VCRs – ***E-WASTE CAN BE BROUGHT TO THE RECYCLING CENTER ON TUESDAYS, THURSDAYS AND SATURDAYS BETWEEN 8AM AND 3PM – E-WASTE CONTAINING CRT’S MUST FIRST GO TO THE TOWN CLERK’S OFFICE AND COMPLETE A CRT RECYCLING APPLICATION AND PAY THE APPROPRIATE FEE BEFORE GOING TO THE RECYCLING CENTER***
Proof of Bedford residency is required, and fees are as follows:
*           $25 per carload
*           $60 per pickup truck load
*           $115 for small dump trucks (<6 yd)
*           $230 and up for large dump trucks (>6 yd)
Bedford Village Chowder & Marching Club will hold their Tag Sale on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5 at the Crusher Road Highway Facility.
In addition to the normal clean-up activities, the Town will provide a mobile paper shredder to safely recycle unwanted personal papers and documents. The Mobile Shredder will be available on May 5 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM at the Crusher Road Highway Yard. This free public service is intended for residents to shred their personal documents. Papers from businesses or commercial enterprises will not be accepted. Residents may bring a maximum of two file boxes. To speed up shredding and reduce waiting time, residents must remove all metal clips, fasteners, binders, folders and hard covers and place the papers loosely in a box. Hard covers – cardboard or plastic covers on items such as ledger books, marble composition books and hard-cover books – are not acceptable. Residents may rip away pages from these hard cover books for shredding and throw the covers in their household trash.
Please call the DPW Highway Division at 666-7669 with any questions.

CABLEVISION/OPTIMUM OUTAGE BILL CREDIT
If you lost Cablevision/Optimum service during the recent storms, you may qualify for a credit on your bill. Cablevision has records by address on power outages.  We have been advised that if your outage was for fewer than four hours you would not qualify for a credit.  If you the outage was for a longer period of time, you do qualify.  You will need to contact them.  We suggest that you also provide your service outage period according to your records (be specific with dates and times, to the extent you can).   Call them at 718-860-3513 or via Chat at https://www.optimum.net/support/outage/
VERIZON CUSTOMERS, DID YOU RECEIVE A CREDIT FOLLOWING SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS
 We have contacted our Verizon representative inquiring about a credit for their customers impacted by service interruptions during the March storms.  She advises us that if you reported the service interruption to Verizon, you will receive a credit automatically on your bill.  We advise that you check your bill.   If you did not receive a credit, please call Verizon customer service at 1-800-Verizon to request it.  Also, for customers who did not report the outage, it may not be too late, contact customer service letting them know when you lost service and when it was restored.
CUB SCOUTS PACK 170 OF BEDFORD/POUNDRIDGERECOGNIZES NATIONAL POLICE MEMORIAL WEEK AND HONORS THE MEMORY OF SERGEANT THOMAS WADE, BEDFORD, NY POLICE DEPARTMENT
On Saturday May 5, 2018 at 3 p.m. Cub Scout Pack 170, and Bedford Boy Scouts will recognize National Police Memorial week by honoring the memory ofBedford P.D. Sgt. Thomas Wade who made the ultimate sacrifice on May 9, 1925.The public is invited to join with us, law enforcement officers, and the family of Sgt. Wade for a ceremony at Bedford, NY Police station 321 Bedford Rd. Bedford Hills, NY 10507.
The ceremony will feature the presentation of colors, lowering of US flag in Sgt. Wade’s memory, presentation of thank you cards to Police Officers by Scouts, police equipment, and Police K-9 demonstration. For further information please contact William McCormack at wfmccormack@optonline.net
 
NEW BEDFORD VETERANS MEMORIAL
I am pleased to report that the Town Board approved construction of a new Veterans Memorial in Katonah, which will honor the spirit, sacrifice, and commitment of the men and women from Bedford and around America who served in our military. The Memorial will be located on the Katonah Green, directly across from the Katonah Village Library, and will be funded entirely through private contributions. Information regarding the Memorial can be found at http://www.bedfordny.gov/veterans-advisory-committee/.
FURTHER UPDATE ON POST STORM ACTION
We recognize that residents are coping with a great deal of clean-up of storm debris, so we are opening the Town’s Beaver Dam Compost Facility for a few Saturdays over the next couple of months: The facility is normally open for residents in non-commercial vehicles to dispose of recyclable wood waste (logs and branches up to 6″ diameter, brush, and leaves) Monday to Friday from 7:30 AM to 3:00 PM, excluding town holidays. Due to the recent storms, the Town will open the compost facility from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM on Saturday April 14, April 21, April 28, and June 2. In addition, the compost facility will be open on Saturday May 5 from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM as part of the Town’s clean up days.
The Town Supervisors in the Brewster Division of NYSEG which encompasses northern Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess counties met earlier this week with senior NYSEG management.   The discussion primarily focused on NYSEG’s program to reduce the incidence of outages including reliability targets, identification of major contributing causes, vegetation management, maintenance programs, planned work, resiliency plans, capital improvements and future initiatives. We will continue to press NYSEG for improving its performance.
 
JOINT LETTER OF WESTCHESTER COUNTY LEGISLATOR KITLEY S. COVILL AND TOWN SUPERVISORS OF BEDFORD, LEWISBORO, NORTH SALEM, POUND RIDGE AND SOMERS TO NYSEG
click here for the letter
 
ACTION TAKEN AT THE APRIL 3 TOWN BOARD MEETING
Horse Properties – As scheduled, the Town Board held a public hearing on a proposed amendment to the Zoning Code to allow for a half bath in accessory structures, including barns and stables, the purpose of which is to enable property owners to engage daytime grooms..   The proposed Zoning Code amendment expressly prohibits sleeping facilities and kitchens.   As I mentioned at the outset of the hearing the proposal comes after nearly two years of discussions with horse property owners and others supporting the horse community.   Earlier this year, the Town Board had referred to the Planning Board their petition requesting revisions in the Zoning Code to relax restrictions affecting the horse community. A number of residents spoke on the need to ensure that Bedford is “horse friendly” and we do not continue to lose horse owners.   Following the public hearing the Town Board unanimously adopted the amendments.
Congratulations to Amy Carelli At the recommendation of Police Chief Melvin Padilla, the Town Board approved the appointment of Amy N. Carelli to Police Officer effective on or about April 26, 2018. We are pleased to have Ms. Carelli join the force.
Moving ahead on Electric Vehicles In the first installment of fulfilling the Town’s New York League of Conservation Voters/Sustainable Westchester Gold Pledge on purchase of electric passenger vehicles for its municipal fleet, the Town Board authorized going out to bid for the purchase of a Chevy Bolt, an all-electric vehicle that has received excellent reviews for its range of over 230 miles and durability.
Bedford Village Parking   As I mentioned in this space last week, the Town has been in discussions with the Bedford Presbyterian Church regarding acquiring the Church’s vacant land off of Court Road for the purposes of constructing a municipal parking lot.   Last year environmental evaluation of the site showed no issues. We held a public meeting earlier this year at which comments we received showed positive support. We then commissioned an appraisal of the property which was just concluded this week and shows a fair market value of $150,000.   Following discussions with representatives of the Church, I postponed Town Board consideration of approving an offer, so as to allow time for the Church to obtain its own appraisal – a step which is customary and the right action.
FOR THE SUPERVISOR’S MARCH MONTHLY REPORT click here
ENERGIZE BEDFORD CAMPAIGN UPDATE
Bedford 2020 and Energize Bedford’s limited time campaign in partnership with the Town of Bedford drove an increase in energy efficient homes in Bedford. From September 1, 2017- January 15, 2018, we collected more than 70 leads, helped set up 27 assessments and 11 jobs were completed in the 5 month time frame. Although the limited time discount is over, leads are still coming through and homeowners who entered the program during the campaign are working toward completing their projects.
EXTENDED HOURS FOR BEAVER DAM COMPOST FACILITY
The Town of Bedford Beaver Dam Compost Facility is normally open for residents in non-commercial vehicles to dispose of recyclable wood waste (logs and branches up to 6″ diameter, brush, and leaves) Monday to Friday from 7:30 to 3:00, excluding town holidays. Due to the recent storms, the Town will open the compost facility from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM on Saturday April 14, April 21, April 28, and June 2. In addition, the compost facility will be open on Saturday May 5 from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM as part of the Town’s clean up days.
STOP THE BLEED
Paramedics are trained and prepared to operate with law enforcement in active shooter situations. This additional stop the bleed program is intended to provide a level of basic quick action from the public before help arrives. We have certified trainers in this program and want to start offering it up to various public institutions such as schools. Click here for the booklet.
FOR THE SUPERVISOR’S MOST RECENT SHOW
on the Zoning Code Amendment, Reducing Plastic Waste, and Recent Storm Response
click here

NO PROPOSALS SUBMITTED FOR SOLAR INSTALLATIONS FOR MUNICIPAL FACILITIES 
  You may recall that last July the Town issued a Request for Proposals for solar panels and other systems for Town facilities. We received no proposals, which we learned was due to the fact that New York State had not settled with the electric industry on incentives and utility obligations regarding solar power provided back to the grid. So, as I mentioned a few weeks ago, the Town went ahead to re-issue an RFP. In late 2017, New York State published guidelines that define the future value of distributed energy resources (a/k/a, the VDER value stack). As of early 2018, solar developers can now use this value stack to estimate future project income from the local utilities, based on specific project locations. We understand that New York’s resolving these future values of solar electricity means that solar developers will be more attracted to investing in potential solar projects such as those in our RFP
The NYS Public Service Commission issued an “implementation order” in September on the “value of distributed energy resources,” following which was substantial work in sorting out valuations with electric utility distributors in the State, such as NYSEG and Con Edison. We understand that there now is a “level playing field” and basis on which solar developers would take an interest in our RFP.
However, the VDER provides greater incentives to solar developers in Con Edison service area where rates are higher.   Our Town facilities, however, are located in NYSEG service area.   One of the solar developers with whom we had worked closely took the time to explain why it was financially not possible to submit a proposal – due to the difference in VDER between the two service areas. Please click here for the letter.  I have recently met with a commercial property owner in Bedford Hills and a solar developer about the possibility of rooftop solar panels for “community solar”. Stay tuned.
SEPTIC SYSTEM REPAIR AND REPLACEMENT PROGRAM
NOW THAT THE SPRING HAS ARRIVED – PLEASE CONSIDER ATTENDING TO YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM: septic pump out – if you haven’t done it within the last five years, the law requires you do so.  And, if you have a problem with your system, please check out the Town’s Septic System Repair and Replacement program to deal with failing septic systems. The program allows Bedford property owners in the Croton Watershed (about 85% of the Town’s land area) for a 50% reimbursement of repair/replacement costs.  If you have a failing septic system, contact the Planning Department at 666-4434 for further information or visit our website.

MOUNT KISCO WATER MAIN REPLACEMENT
Mount Kisco is preparing to replace the 90-year old water main on New York State Route 117 from Preston Way in Mount Kisco to Green Lane in Bedford Hills and continuing to the end of Green Lane.
The construction work is planned for the fall of 2018 and will take place during the night (hours have not yet been determined). The project’s engineering will consider everything that is feasible in the design to minimize disturbance to the public and the property owners.   Currently, the project is in the preliminary design phase, which includes survey and soil boring work along the road right-of-way.   Soil boring work will take place in April during the working day between 9 am and 3 pm and is not expected to result in any lane closures.
We met today with Mount Kisco’s engineers to emphasize the need for full coordination among Mount Kisco, Con Edison (with regard to restoration work on the southbound lane of Route 117 – SEE POST IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THIS ONE), NYS Department of Transportation, Westchester County Health Department and Bedford in both the design and the execution of the project.   We made it clear that the Mount Kisco project must avoid the significant disruptions which the Con Edison gas line project caused last fall.   It is also critical that restoration be complete.
We will keep you informed on the status both of the Mount Kisco project and Con Edison’s gas line project.
 .
UPDATED SHREDDER SCHEDULE INCLUDING NEW DATE OF MONDAY OCTOBER 22
The Town is pleased to provide once again this year mobile paper shredder events:
  • at the Town Recycling Center at 343 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM on September 15, and November 17;
  • at 1 Crusher Road, Bedford Village (Crusher Road highway yard), Bedford Village from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on May 5;
  • at the Town Office at 425 Cherry Street on Monday October 22 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM
A Mobile Shredding Truck will securely destroy documents. The company’s customer service professionals never physically touch your documents so the entire process is “touch-free”. The company can shred paper, paper clips, rubber bands, staples and even the black clips. They cannot shred 3-ring binders, or anything that is non paper (CDs, tapes, DVDs, hard drives, etc.)
 
INTERNSHIP IN MEDIA RELATIONS, PUBLIC RELATIONS, AND COMMUNICATION PLANNING
In consultation with the Bedford Veterans Advisory Committee, develop and implement a professional-grade communications plan that identifies local veteran-related events, programs, issues, and concerns and effectively promotes this material via appropriate print, broadcast, and electronic media.
The successful candidate should have a skill-set sufficient to demonstrate an ability to write effective press releases along with appropriate research, planning and organizational skills to develop and implement a plan that ensures general public awareness.
The plan should encompass an audience that includes: *     Print media* Broadcast media* Social media networks (Facebook, Instagram, etc.)* Local elected officials *Social service agencies * Veterans service organizations
Junior or senior level undergraduate, or graduate level. Hours to be determined, along with attendance at monthly Veterans Advisory Committee meetings. Unpaid. Supervision: Chair, Bedford Veterans Advisory Committee. Contact: Mark Sindeband, 914-260-4188,aegisresources@optonline.net
FOR THE 2017 ANNUAL REPORT click here
WESTCHESTER POWER – HOW’S IT BEEN DOING HERE IN BEDFORD?
There’s been some discussion on Katonah Parents Facebook and questions I regularly receive regarding the Westchester Power (also known as Community Choice Aggregation or CCA).   By way of background, the Town Board unanimously adopted Bedford’s participation in this program sponsored by Sustainable Westchester and placed us among those Westchester municipalities choosing the “Green Option”.   At the time, we insisted that the rates must be less than the previous twelve month cost for each utility, provide fixed prices (rather than a “bait and switch” of a great rate at the outset only to pop up later) and an opt out provision at any time without charge or penalty, a common complaint at the time against many energy service companies (ESCOs). Westchester Power residential and small business electric customers in Bedford have a rate of 8.00 cents per kilowatt hour in Con Edison’s service area and 7.42 cents per kilowatt hour in NYSEG’s service area.   These are fixed rates, rather than rates which vary month by month (which is the way NYSEG and Con Edison bills).   I’ve received e-mails and calls from NYSEG and Con Edison customers who saw a spike in rates this winter. Just yesterday I received a call from a resident in Con Edison service area who is signed up with an ESCO at over 11 cents per kilowatt hour and was dismayed at her large utility bills.
So how’s Westchester Power been doing here in Bedford? I turned to Dan Welsh, Director of Westchester Power, for an analysis and he provided the following:
“Here is my estimate of the savings for Bedford residents and small businesses through the end of January. We are including the avoided sales tax now when we talk about this as you know, and that’s a significant piece. February saw a low price for Con Ed which would bring this down, but now March is looking that it’s bounced back and so I would look to the end of March for the next update.”

Should you have questions, please contact Dan at dan@westchesterpower.org or 914-242-4725


IT’S TAX SCAM SEASON. HERE’S HOW YOU CAN PROTECT YOURSELF
From the Office of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
  • Never give out personal information to people who call you unsolicited. That includes your Social Security number, bank account information, or credit card information.
  • If you do owe money, you will receive a legitimate notice in the mail that tells you who you owe money to and why. If you haven’t gotten a legitimate piece of mail like that, the collection call is bogus.
  • Last but not least, remember that no legitimate government organization will ever threaten arrest or deportation if you fail to pay a debt.
If someone is threatening you or you are targeted for a scam, please contact my office immediately. We are here to help: 1-800-771-7755.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDINGTAX SCAMS
The IRS, the AARP, NYS Attorney General and many others are issuing warnings about scams particularly directed at the elderly.   Please don’t fall prey.  See https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-scams-consumer-alerts
CON EDISON AND NYSEG STORM OUTAGE RELATED REIMBURSEMENTS FOR FOOD AND PRESCRIPTION MEDICINE SPOILAGE
Each utility is providing on a limited basis reimbursement for food and prescription medicine spoilage.
Con Edison
Con Edison’s March 15, 2018 notice is as follows:
Customers Impacted by Nor’easters Riley and Quinn
We regret that we were unable to provide reliable restoration times for many customers during these storms. Con Edison may reimburse customers for food and prescription medicine spoilage if they lost power for at least three consecutive days or more during the two nor’easters that slammed the region recently.
Customers may receive reimbursement for up to $225, or up to $515 with receipts.
Business owners are eligible for food spoilage reimbursements up to $10,200 with receipts.
Link to the claim forms: https://www.coned.com/en/services-and-outages/claim-form
 
NYSEG – appears to be limited to food spoilage
 NYSEG did not issue a specific notice regarding claims for storm outage food or prescription medicine spoilage, but there appears to be an avenue for reimbursement for food spoilage. Click on http://www.nyseg.com/youraccount/claimform.html?stop_mobi=yes  
 
MOBILE PAPER SHREDDER AT RECYCLING CENTER
The Town is pleased to provide once again this year mobile paper shredder events at the Town Recycling Center at 343 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM on March 17, September 15, and November 17; and at 1 Crusher Road, Bedford Village (Crusher Road highway yard), Bedford Village from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on May 5. A Mobile Shredding Truck will securely destroy documents. The company’s customer service professionals never physically touch your documents so the entire process is “touch-free”. The company can shred paper, paper clips, rubber bands, staples and even the black clips. They cannot shred 3-ring binders, or anything that is non paper (CDs, tapes, DVDs, hard drives, etc.).
WESTMORELAND SANCTUARY NATURE CENTER & WILDLIFE PRESERVE RECIPIENT OF $20,000 CON EDISON GRANT
Westmoreland Sanctuary has recently received a $20,000 Grant from Con Edison allowing local school children to use STEM education based principles toward environmental studies.  Click here for the press release
LOOKING FOR AN EMERGENCY VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY BUT FIRE FIGHTING OR MEDICAL TECH NOT YOUR THING?
EMERGENCY COMMUNICATIONS MIGHT BE FOR YOU!! 
Click here for the flyer
 KATONAH FIRE DEPARTMENT UNDER-18 RECRUITMENT PROGRAM
Are you interested in a terrific community service opportunity? Would you like to receive state-of-the art lifesaving and firefighting training?
Katonah Fire Department eagerly welcomes applications from 16-year-olds for its Under 18 Program. Interested candidates can fulfill their John Jay High School Community Service obligation, as well as service hours required for other organizations, such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. Membership in the department as a firefighter is a great way to have your college application stand out as well!
Any person who is between the ages of 16 and 18, who is physically fit, morally and mentally sound, and who, having met with the membership committee and satisfactorily passed the committee’s investigation (as established in the Katonah Fire Department, Inc. Constitution and By-Laws), may be selected for membership status.
The goal of this program is to carefully instill, enforce, and monitor the practices that lead to well trained, respectful, hardworking members once they reach their 18th birthdays and/or the conclusion of their first year of membership.
In addition, it creates a culture in which these members both realize their age- and experience-related limitations, but also feel as though they are learning and being prepared for taking on the duties of full-fledged, non-probationary members of the Katonah Fire Department.
An oversight committee and a training coordinator act as a resource to these members – in all aspects of KFD membership: firefighting, training, rules and regulations, etc. – and set example for the types of behaviors expected from our entire membership.
Applicants who join receive all training and equipment at no expense to them. They also become eligible for various scholarship opportunities. If you’re interested in finding out more, please sent an e-mail to chief2211@katonahfd.org
TOWN’S WEBSITE 
is now available in Spanish. We have added a plug-in allowing for the website’s automatic translation to Spanish.  Please note that this does not apply to linked PDF documents. http://www.bedfordny.gov/
 
REVISION FOR JULY AND AUGUST 2018 TOWN BOARD MEETING SCHEDULE
Summer months are away months and many of our residents are unable to attend two meetings in July and two in August. The Town Board approved the following changes to these summer month meetings. We have cancelled the July 3 meeting and retained the July 17 meeting which was previously scheduled. We cancelled the August 7 and August 21 meetings and have replaced them with a single meeting to be held on August 14.
MOTORISTS
I wish to augment the below information (e-news 8/25) with the following request for motorists:
Sharing the road with bicyclists. When parked on the street, check for bicyclists approaching from behind you before opening your car door. Always exercise due care to avoid colliding with any person walking or bicycling. Always be vigilant when pedestrians are present, especially those with visual or physical impairments. Bicyclists are fully entitled to use the road and have the right to “take the lane” by positioning themselves at or near the center of the lane when needed to avoid hazards or if the lane is too narrow  to safely travel side by side with motorists.
Pass bicycles only when necessary and safe: pass to the left of the bicycle at a safe distance until safely clear. When in doubt, wait until you can pass at a safe speed. Before making a right turn, let bicyclists clear the intersection. When turning left or entering a roadway, yield to oncoming bicyclists as you would to any vehicle.

Bedford Town news | Bedford Real Estate

May 2018
NEW POSTS
 
Note to readers: I wrote my monthly report a few days later than usual in order to cover Town Board action and other developments over this week.   As such, this weekly newsletter will not cover the May 1 Town Board actions as they are incorporated into the monthly report. Click here for the monthly report
Also, as noted in the monthly report, this Spring the Town Board, together with staff and advisory committees and task forces, has been working its way through a heavy agenda, with several being complex and controversial.  
 
AWARD FOR ANTIOCH HOMES AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECT  
I am delighted to report that Antioch Homes Affordable Housing Project has been chosen to be honored with a Commendation for Outstanding Planning Achievement by the Westchester Municipal Planning Federation (WMPF) for its annual planning awards competition.   The award will be presented at next month’s WMPF annual awards dinner.
 
COMING UP ON THE MAY 15 TOWN BOARD AGENDA
Proposed Changes in the Parking Code
The Town Board will be considering proposed changes to the parking chapter of the Town Code will cover the following items, in an effort to update the parking chapter for changes in technology, address non-residential weekday use of the commuter lots in “off hours” and to update/increase the fines/penalties for violations:
  • Incorporate updates of parking technology being implemented at the commuter lots as well as a more detailed description of the location of the commuter lots in order to clarify where commuter parking permits are required.
  • Changes will also incorporate a clearer definition of a Town Resident.
  • A provision that will change the hours that a permit is required at the commuter lots. Currently, free parking is allowed for the general public at all the commuter lots from 5:00 pm to 5:00 am daily. Weekends and holidays parking is free all day. The proposed amendment would continue to allow town residents to park in the commuter lots from 6:00 pm to 5:00 am without paying for parking but a resident parking decal must be displayed in their vehicle. Non-residents however, will be required to pay for parking at the commuter lots from Monday 5:00 to Friday 12:00 midnight. Weekends and holidays would be free parking.
  • Also proposed is the number of holidays allowing free parking at the commuter lots. The following holidays are allowed currently: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Lincoln’s Birthday, Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, July Fourth, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Election Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas. The proposed changes would remove Lincoln’s and Washington’s Birthday and replace with President’s Day and would remove Columbus Day completely.
  • Another proposed change is the prohibition of parking vehicles of over 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight or more than 20 feet in length on any public street, or town right-of-way in a residential district or in any Town owned, operated and maintained public parking areas or lots except for the temporary parking of those vehicle making local deliveries or picking up goods, wares or merchandise.
  • Recommendation are also being made for the Town Board to consider amending penalties for violations of the chapter such as parking in crosswalks, blocking driveways and no parking at any time, among others.
 
This is not yet scheduled for a public hearing, but may be scheduled for a public hearing June 5 Town Board meeting.
 
Updated Fee Schedule for Filming Permits
The Board will be considering a new fee schedule to correspond to the new Filming law. The fee schedule could not be adopted at the May 1 meeting since the new law is not effective until filed with the NYS Secretary of State. The schedule includes discounts for multiple days’ use and other incentives to encourage filming in Bedford, consistent with protecting the community from excessive noise, traffic, light and other disturbance from such activities.
UPDATE ON ROUTE 117 WORK
The Town has been working closely with Con Edison, the Village of Mt. Kisco and the NYS Department of Transportation regarding the condition of Route 117 in Bedford Hills which had been dug up and very roughly patched following Con Edison gas line work.
As those following this newsletter may know, we learned a few weeks ago that the Village of Mt. Kisco plans to replace its water line, which also will require digging up Route 117.  Upon learning of this development, we urged the Village and Con Edison to coordinate and to discuss it with DOT.   We want to avoid the havoc that took place over Thanksgiving and into the holidays last November/December in connection with Con Edison’s work in which ingress/egress to the Shop Rite mall was blocked; daytime work was taking place at the height of retailers busiest season resulting in significant loss of business; and traffic into and out of Bedford Hills was tied up for upwards of an hour.
Here’s the status of requests we have made to the parties:
  1. DOT advises us that it has required Con Edison to perform the curb to curb restoration.
  2. Work to be done at night from 7:00 PM through 6:00 AM.  Minimizing the loudest work (i.e., saw cut and jackhammering).  Con Edison has stated: “We will ask our contractors to try their best to get the saw cut and jackhammering work done before 10 pm, but it is an inevitable part of this work.”
Timing: we don’t know yet, because the water line work schedule has not yet been set as the engineers design and staging the work have to complete DOT review and approval.   What we do know is that the previous schedule of Con Edison completing its restoration in the next couple of weeks is not at all possible.   Our objective now is to avoid disruption as much as possible.  As soon as we learn of the schedule, we will advise the community.
 
PREPARATIONS FOR 2018 PAVING
This is the time of year when residents ask me about our paving plans and how the Town Board determines it. Shortly after I came onto the Town Board in 2008, the Department of Public Works instituted a fair and equitable system for identifying the roads to be paved from year to year. It is based on the condition of the road, with the roads in the worst condition to be paved first before they deteriorate further and results in far more costly paving. Each Spring the DPW updates its assessment of the condition of all 97 miles of the paved Town roads (since roads deteriorate at different rates over the winter).   The condition assessment uses a rating system with 1 being the best condition and 5 being the worst.   As a result of higher appropriation levels, we have been able to pave all Town roads rated at 4 and 5 and now are working away at a lengthy list of roads rated at 3.5. In 2014, the paving budget was approximately $800,000. Each year thereafter, the Town Board gradually has increased the budget. The figure now stands at approximately $1.2 million for 2018. We anticipate that in the next month DPW Commissioner Kevin Winn will submit a recommended paving list to the Town Board for approval.
 
MOVING AHEAD WITH OUR COMMITMENT TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES
Consistent with the Town’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint by 2020, on October 3, 2017, the Town Board responded to the New York League of Conservation Voters/Sustainable Westchester challenge by being the only municipality in Westchester County to adopt Gold Tier Pledge under which we commit to purchase Zero Emissions Vehicles (ZEV’s) for at least 10% of our new light-duty municipal fleet purchases by the end of 202 and revisit this level annual to consider adopting a higher purchasing commitment. At its May 1, 2018 Town Board meeting the Town Board approved the purchase of the highly rated Chevy Bolt, which has an excellent driving range of 238 miles on a single charge.  The Town is able to purchase the vehicle under procurement through NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services in which the Town may participate.
 
FOR THE MOST RECENT SUPERVISOR’S SHOW
Town Board Initiatives and the Town’s Partnership with Bedford 2020, Click here
 
KVIS TOWN FORUM
Let your voices be heard – Let us know what is on your mind
Katonah Village Library, May 17 at 7:30 PM. Click here for the flyer
REMINDERS – VACANCIES ON TOWN BOARDS
Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee – Resident of Katonah Memorial Park District
There is a vacancy on the Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee for a resident of the Katonah Park District.  Send your resume and a cover letter via e-mail to supervisor@bedfordny.gov and please copy Recreation and Parks Superintendent Bill Heidepriem atwheidepriem@bedfordny.gov and RPAC chairman, Brian McCabe atcoach10536@aol.com.  You also may mail your cover letter and resume to the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For information on the RPAC, please see http://www.bedfordny.gov/town-government/boards-commissions-committees/boards/recreation-parks-advisory/
Drug Abuse Prevention Council (DAPC)
The Town of Bedford is looking to fill two vacancies on the Drug Abuse Prevention Council. If you are interested in serving, please e-mail your resume with a cover letter to Supervisor Chris Burdick, supervisor@bedfordny.gov and also to DAPC Coordinator Kathryn Ferrara,kathryn.dapc@gmail.com  .  You also may mail it the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For more information on the DAPC, click here.
Traffic Safety Work Group
There is a vacancy on the Traffic Safety Working Group (TSWG)for a resident of Bedford Hills. Send your resume and a cover letter via e-mail to supervisor@bedfordny.gov  You also may mail your cover letter and resume to the attention of Supervisor, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, New York 10507.  For information on the TSWG please click here.
FOR YOUR NEIGHBOR’S SAKE
Please consider your neighbor when you go to work with your lawn mower or weed whacker (or your lawn service uses them). We realize that your busy schedule makes it difficult to find time to get work done on your property. We all try to squeeze in time to do it. But please not too early and not too late…

IT’S THE LAW: IDLING
Please be reminded that Westchester County regulates the idling time of motor vehicles to not more than three minutes (with certain exceptions – click here for the law
Let’s all obey the law to avoid unnecessary pollution.
 
FOR THE COMMUNITY EVENTS CALENDAR click here 
FOR THE TOWN CALENDAR click here

TO SIGN-UP FOR NIXLE ALERTS click here
PRIOR POSTS OF CONTINUED RELEVANCE

 PAVING OUR STATE ROADS: STILL TRYING TO GET ACTION
 
I-684
            It’s been a long haul trying to persuade New York State to pave the concrete portion of I-684 that runs through Bedford (the same original surface from the late 1960s).   You may remember that in early 2014 shortly after coming into office, I started working with Assembly David Buchwald and then State Senator George Latimer to urge the re-paving of the portion of I-684 which runs through Bedford.  We also worked with Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney, a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, to press for funds from Washington, since 80% to 90% of the funds to repair our State’s highways comes from the federal government.   Thanks principally to the efforts of Assemblyman Buchwald a portion of the Bedford section was paved (the southerly portion up to Harris Road).   But the portion from Harris Road through a bit north of Exit 6 is in terrible condition. One of our residents who is an engineer and works on major road projects described it in an e-mail earlier this week: “Spring has arrived!! Please take the time to drive northbound and southbound on I-684, including the exit ramps. The pavement deterioration has become very severe in some areas due to the harsh winters. You may see large chucks of concrete in the shoulders that have broken free from the mainline pavement. Perhaps the board can urge the NYSDOT Highway Department to have maintenance crews fill the pot holes in the Katonah corridor as a priority.”
ROUTE 22
            Here, too, conditions on the road have deteriorated.   I’m especially concerned about the portion between the Bedford Cross and the intersection with Pea Pond Road. Several residents have contacted me about it.
I’ll be meeting with the Regional Director of the DOT on Monday and members of his staff to press for work to get done. I’d like to ask your help so that the powers that be know that it’s not just me asking for action.  You can send e-mails and make calls – and many thanks to those who already have done so (yes you may get a “form” response, but they all keep track of it and it really makes a difference that you take the time):
DOT Albany office: 518-457-6195
DOT Region 8 Acting Regional Director Lance MacMillan: 845-431-5750
If you send an e-mail, please consider copying me and our legislators:
State Assemblyman Buchwald: buchwaldd@assembly.state.ny.us, 914-244-4450
And thank you!
POTHOLE REPAIR SEASON HAS OPENED
As to potholes you find in our Town roads, please call our Pothole Hotline at 666-7669 or feel free to contact me at 666-6530 or Supervisor@bedfordny.gov.
For potholes on state roads in our Town, such as Routes 22, 117, 121, 137 and 172 we would suggest that you call NYS’s pothole line at 1-800-POTHOLE.
 
METRO-NORTH: UPPER HARLEM SUBSTITUTE BUS SERVICE, SATURDAYS & SUNDAYS, APRIL 28-29, MAY 5-6 & MAY 19-20, INCLUDES SOUTHEAST, BREWSTER, CROTON FALLS, PURDY’S, GOLDENS BRIDGE, AND WASSAIC
For Saturdays and Sundays, April 28-29, May 5-6 and May 19-20 substitute bus service will be in effect between Southeast, Brewster, Croton Falls, Purdy’s and Goldens Bridge due to ongoing repairs to multiple downed power poles and lines in the area that occurred as a result of the March nor’easters.
All buses will depart approximately 20 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departure times in order to connect with train service at Goldens Bridge. Regular train service will resume each day with the 7:10 PM train to Southeast and the 9:08 PM train from Southeast.
Harlem Line train service continues to operate between Grand Central Terminal and Goldens Bridge and between Southeast and Wassaic.
Substitute bus service is being provided between Southeast and Goldens Bridge as follows:
Wassaic Branch Customers: Trains will depart 10 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departure times at all stations between Wassaic and Patterson in order to connect with bus service at Southeast. Additional bus service/ times will be provided at Southeast and Goldens Bridge. For full schedule details, please seehttp://web.mta.info/mnr/pdf/Wassaic Bus May_2018.pdf
Southeast, Brewster, Croton Falls and Purdy’s Customers: All buses will depart about 20 minutes ahead of the regularly scheduled southbound train departures in order to connect with train service at Goldens Bridge. Regular train service will resume with the 7:10 PM train to Southeast and the 9:08 train from Southeast. For a full schedule, please see:http://web.mta.info/mnr/pdf/Upper
Please refer to our interactive schedules at http://as0.mta.info/mnr/schedules/sched_form.cfm
or download Train Time for train/bus times.
Customers can also use the Hudson Line, where tickets will be cross-honored.
Please listen for station announcements and check back to this website for updates. Thank you for your patience while we perform this critical repair work.
NEW YORK STATE ACTION OF STATE AND LOCAL TAX (SALT) DEDUCTIONS
Many have asked us about what action is being taken in response to the December federal tax law revisions which caps SALT tax deductions for federal income tax purposes to $10,000.
The following is brief description of the new law that can be provided to the public regarding the New York budget bill that provides offsets for Federal SALT tax deductions: The New York State Legislature has adopted new state law provisions designed to offset the impact of the recently enacted federal tax limitation on state and local taxes (SALT) to $10,000. Specifically, the legislation creates a vehicle for taxpayers to contribute to certain charitable funds that, in turn, would be applied for local tax purposes. The concept is that, as a charitable contribution, the amount paid by taxpayers who itemize their tax returns could be claimed as a charitable deduction on federal taxes. Under the new law, a New York State tax credit would also be provided on a percentage of each contribution. Under the new law, each taxing jurisdiction, including school districts, villages, towns, cities and counties, is responsible for establishing and managing such charitable funds. The funds collected would then be used by each taxing jurisdiction and applied to the taxing jurisdiction’s annual tax levy. The law also provides a mechanism for the taxpayer to receive a tax credit based upon the amount contributed to a school district’s or other municipal corporation’s charitable fund. The exact procedures for making payments into the charitable funds and receiving a credit against taxes owed are still being formulated.
New York State, by being the first state to enact a “workaround” to ameliorate the limitation on the federal SALT deductions, has positioned itself to be the legal test case for whether such an arrangement will pass legal muster. The Town and other government agencies, school districts and municipalities throughout New York State are in the process of reviewing the proposed bill provisions to determine what action should be taken and whether to implement the provisions of this new law. Similarly, tax experts are in the process of reviewing whether or not these new charitable funds will be treated as legitimate charitable contributions that are deductible for filers who itemize their federal tax returns. New York’s Governor and Legislature appear to believe the provisions are sound. However, a final answer has yet to be obtained and we recommend that you consult with your personal tax consultant before taking any action.
We will keep you advised as the situation develops.
           
FOR THE APRIL 6, 2018 KATONAH-BEDFORD HILLS SEWER DESIGN STATUS REPORT click here

PLEASE JOIN US FOR BEDFORD TOWN-WIDE CLEAN-UP DAYS 2018 AT THE CRUSHER ROAD HIGHWAY FACILITY OFF ROUTE 22, JUST NORTH OF ROUTE 172, IN BEDFORD VILLAGE

Town residents can bring household debris and metal waste to the Crusher Road Yard during the following periods:
Thursday, May 3, 2018 7:30 AM-3:00 PM            Friday, May 4, 2018 7:30 AM-3:00 PM        
Saturday, May 5, 2018 7:30 AM-4:30 PM
Residents can also take brush and tree debris to the Beaver Dam Highway facility on Beaver Dam road off Harris Road during the same days and hours listed above. THERE IS NO CHARGE FOR THIS!
The Highway Department will not accept any of the following items: tires, batteries, refrigerators, freezers, pressure treated lumber, air conditioners, propane tanks, paint, varnish, chemicals, medical waste, or other toxic materials. No E-Waste – televisions, computers (desktops, monitors, and notebooks), computer mice and keyboards, printers, scanners, fax machines, cell phones, VCRs – ***E-WASTE CAN BE BROUGHT TO THE RECYCLING CENTER ON TUESDAYS, THURSDAYS AND SATURDAYS BETWEEN 8AM AND 3PM – E-WASTE CONTAINING CRT’S MUST FIRST GO TO THE TOWN CLERK’S OFFICE AND COMPLETE A CRT RECYCLING APPLICATION AND PAY THE APPROPRIATE FEE BEFORE GOING TO THE RECYCLING CENTER***
Proof of Bedford residency is required, and fees are as follows:
*           $25 per carload
*           $60 per pickup truck load
*           $115 for small dump trucks (<6 yd)
*           $230 and up for large dump trucks (>6 yd)
Bedford Village Chowder & Marching Club will hold their Tag Sale on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5 at the Crusher Road Highway Facility.
In addition to the normal clean-up activities, the Town will provide a mobile paper shredder to safely recycle unwanted personal papers and documents. The Mobile Shredder will be available on May 5 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM at the Crusher Road Highway Yard. This free public service is intended for residents to shred their personal documents. Papers from businesses or commercial enterprises will not be accepted. Residents may bring a maximum of two file boxes. To speed up shredding and reduce waiting time, residents must remove all metal clips, fasteners, binders, folders and hard covers and place the papers loosely in a box. Hard covers – cardboard or plastic covers on items such as ledger books, marble composition books and hard-cover books – are not acceptable. Residents may rip away pages from these hard cover books for shredding and throw the covers in their household trash.
Please call the DPW Highway Division at 666-7669 with any questions.

CABLEVISION/OPTIMUM OUTAGE BILL CREDIT
If you lost Cablevision/Optimum service during the recent storms, you may qualify for a credit on your bill. Cablevision has records by address on power outages.  We have been advised that if your outage was for fewer than four hours you would not qualify for a credit.  If you the outage was for a longer period of time, you do qualify.  You will need to contact them.  We suggest that you also provide your service outage period according to your records (be specific with dates and times, to the extent you can).   Call them at 718-860-3513 or via Chat at https://www.optimum.net/support/outage/
VERIZON CUSTOMERS, DID YOU RECEIVE A CREDIT FOLLOWING SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS
 We have contacted our Verizon representative inquiring about a credit for their customers impacted by service interruptions during the March storms.  She advises us that if you reported the service interruption to Verizon, you will receive a credit automatically on your bill.  We advise that you check your bill.   If you did not receive a credit, please call Verizon customer service at 1-800-Verizon to request it.  Also, for customers who did not report the outage, it may not be too late, contact customer service letting them know when you lost service and when it was restored.
CUB SCOUTS PACK 170 OF BEDFORD/POUNDRIDGERECOGNIZES NATIONAL POLICE MEMORIAL WEEK AND HONORS THE MEMORY OF SERGEANT THOMAS WADE, BEDFORD, NY POLICE DEPARTMENT
On Saturday May 5, 2018 at 3 p.m. Cub Scout Pack 170, and Bedford Boy Scouts will recognize National Police Memorial week by honoring the memory ofBedford P.D. Sgt. Thomas Wade who made the ultimate sacrifice on May 9, 1925.The public is invited to join with us, law enforcement officers, and the family of Sgt. Wade for a ceremony at Bedford, NY Police station 321 Bedford Rd. Bedford Hills, NY 10507.
The ceremony will feature the presentation of colors, lowering of US flag in Sgt. Wade’s memory, presentation of thank you cards to Police Officers by Scouts, police equipment, and Police K-9 demonstration. For further information please contact William McCormack at wfmccormack@optonline.net
 
NEW BEDFORD VETERANS MEMORIAL
I am pleased to report that the Town Board approved construction of a new Veterans Memorial in Katonah, which will honor the spirit, sacrifice, and commitment of the men and women from Bedford and around America who served in our military. The Memorial will be located on the Katonah Green, directly across from the Katonah Village Library, and will be funded entirely through private contributions. Information regarding the Memorial can be found at http://www.bedfordny.gov/veterans-advisory-committee/.
FURTHER UPDATE ON POST STORM ACTION
We recognize that residents are coping with a great deal of clean-up of storm debris, so we are opening the Town’s Beaver Dam Compost Facility for a few Saturdays over the next couple of months: The facility is normally open for residents in non-commercial vehicles to dispose of recyclable wood waste (logs and branches up to 6″ diameter, brush, and leaves) Monday to Friday from 7:30 AM to 3:00 PM, excluding town holidays. Due to the recent storms, the Town will open the compost facility from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM on Saturday April 14, April 21, April 28, and June 2. In addition, the compost facility will be open on Saturday May 5 from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM as part of the Town’s clean up days.
The Town Supervisors in the Brewster Division of NYSEG which encompasses northern Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess counties met earlier this week with senior NYSEG management.   The discussion primarily focused on NYSEG’s program to reduce the incidence of outages including reliability targets, identification of major contributing causes, vegetation management, maintenance programs, planned work, resiliency plans, capital improvements and future initiatives. We will continue to press NYSEG for improving its performance.
 
JOINT LETTER OF WESTCHESTER COUNTY LEGISLATOR KITLEY S. COVILL AND TOWN SUPERVISORS OF BEDFORD, LEWISBORO, NORTH SALEM, POUND RIDGE AND SOMERS TO NYSEG
click here for the letter
 
ACTION TAKEN AT THE APRIL 3 TOWN BOARD MEETING
Horse Properties – As scheduled, the Town Board held a public hearing on a proposed amendment to the Zoning Code to allow for a half bath in accessory structures, including barns and stables, the purpose of which is to enable property owners to engage daytime grooms..   The proposed Zoning Code amendment expressly prohibits sleeping facilities and kitchens.   As I mentioned at the outset of the hearing the proposal comes after nearly two years of discussions with horse property owners and others supporting the horse community.   Earlier this year, the Town Board had referred to the Planning Board their petition requesting revisions in the Zoning Code to relax restrictions affecting the horse community. A number of residents spoke on the need to ensure that Bedford is “horse friendly” and we do not continue to lose horse owners.   Following the public hearing the Town Board unanimously adopted the amendments.
Congratulations to Amy Carelli At the recommendation of Police Chief Melvin Padilla, the Town Board approved the appointment of Amy N. Carelli to Police Officer effective on or about April 26, 2018. We are pleased to have Ms. Carelli join the force.
Moving ahead on Electric Vehicles In the first installment of fulfilling the Town’s New York League of Conservation Voters/Sustainable Westchester Gold Pledge on purchase of electric passenger vehicles for its municipal fleet, the Town Board authorized going out to bid for the purchase of a Chevy Bolt, an all-electric vehicle that has received excellent reviews for its range of over 230 miles and durability.
Bedford Village Parking   As I mentioned in this space last week, the Town has been in discussions with the Bedford Presbyterian Church regarding acquiring the Church’s vacant land off of Court Road for the purposes of constructing a municipal parking lot.   Last year environmental evaluation of the site showed no issues. We held a public meeting earlier this year at which comments we received showed positive support. We then commissioned an appraisal of the property which was just concluded this week and shows a fair market value of $150,000.   Following discussions with representatives of the Church, I postponed Town Board consideration of approving an offer, so as to allow time for the Church to obtain its own appraisal – a step which is customary and the right action.
FOR THE SUPERVISOR’S MARCH MONTHLY REPORT click here
ENERGIZE BEDFORD CAMPAIGN UPDATE
Bedford 2020 and Energize Bedford’s limited time campaign in partnership with the Town of Bedford drove an increase in energy efficient homes in Bedford. From September 1, 2017- January 15, 2018, we collected more than 70 leads, helped set up 27 assessments and 11 jobs were completed in the 5 month time frame. Although the limited time discount is over, leads are still coming through and homeowners who entered the program during the campaign are working toward completing their projects.
EXTENDED HOURS FOR BEAVER DAM COMPOST FACILITY
The Town of Bedford Beaver Dam Compost Facility is normally open for residents in non-commercial vehicles to dispose of recyclable wood waste (logs and branches up to 6″ diameter, brush, and leaves) Monday to Friday from 7:30 to 3:00, excluding town holidays. Due to the recent storms, the Town will open the compost facility from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM on Saturday April 14, April 21, April 28, and June 2. In addition, the compost facility will be open on Saturday May 5 from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM as part of the Town’s clean up days.
STOP THE BLEED
Paramedics are trained and prepared to operate with law enforcement in active shooter situations. This additional stop the bleed program is intended to provide a level of basic quick action from the public before help arrives. We have certified trainers in this program and want to start offering it up to various public institutions such as schools. Click here for the booklet.
FOR THE SUPERVISOR’S MOST RECENT SHOW
on the Zoning Code Amendment, Reducing Plastic Waste, and Recent Storm Response
click here

NO PROPOSALS SUBMITTED FOR SOLAR INSTALLATIONS FOR MUNICIPAL FACILITIES 
  You may recall that last July the Town issued a Request for Proposals for solar panels and other systems for Town facilities. We received no proposals, which we learned was due to the fact that New York State had not settled with the electric industry on incentives and utility obligations regarding solar power provided back to the grid. So, as I mentioned a few weeks ago, the Town went ahead to re-issue an RFP. In late 2017, New York State published guidelines that define the future value of distributed energy resources (a/k/a, the VDER value stack). As of early 2018, solar developers can now use this value stack to estimate future project income from the local utilities, based on specific project locations. We understand that New York’s resolving these future values of solar electricity means that solar developers will be more attracted to investing in potential solar projects such as those in our RFP
The NYS Public Service Commission issued an “implementation order” in September on the “value of distributed energy resources,” following which was substantial work in sorting out valuations with electric utility distributors in the State, such as NYSEG and Con Edison. We understand that there now is a “level playing field” and basis on which solar developers would take an interest in our RFP.
However, the VDER provides greater incentives to solar developers in Con Edison service area where rates are higher.   Our Town facilities, however, are located in NYSEG service area.   One of the solar developers with whom we had worked closely took the time to explain why it was financially not possible to submit a proposal – due to the difference in VDER between the two service areas. Please click here for the letter.  I have recently met with a commercial property owner in Bedford Hills and a solar developer about the possibility of rooftop solar panels for “community solar”. Stay tuned.
SEPTIC SYSTEM REPAIR AND REPLACEMENT PROGRAM
NOW THAT THE SPRING HAS ARRIVED – PLEASE CONSIDER ATTENDING TO YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM: septic pump out – if you haven’t done it within the last five years, the law requires you do so.  And, if you have a problem with your system, please check out the Town’s Septic System Repair and Replacement program to deal with failing septic systems. The program allows Bedford property owners in the Croton Watershed (about 85% of the Town’s land area) for a 50% reimbursement of repair/replacement costs.  If you have a failing septic system, contact the Planning Department at 666-4434 for further information or visit our website.

MOUNT KISCO WATER MAIN REPLACEMENT
Mount Kisco is preparing to replace the 90-year old water main on New York State Route 117 from Preston Way in Mount Kisco to Green Lane in Bedford Hills and continuing to the end of Green Lane.
The construction work is planned for the fall of 2018 and will take place during the night (hours have not yet been determined). The project’s engineering will consider everything that is feasible in the design to minimize disturbance to the public and the property owners.   Currently, the project is in the preliminary design phase, which includes survey and soil boring work along the road right-of-way.   Soil boring work will take place in April during the working day between 9 am and 3 pm and is not expected to result in any lane closures.
We met today with Mount Kisco’s engineers to emphasize the need for full coordination among Mount Kisco, Con Edison (with regard to restoration work on the southbound lane of Route 117 – SEE POST IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THIS ONE), NYS Department of Transportation, Westchester County Health Department and Bedford in both the design and the execution of the project.   We made it clear that the Mount Kisco project must avoid the significant disruptions which the Con Edison gas line project caused last fall.   It is also critical that restoration be complete.
We will keep you informed on the status both of the Mount Kisco project and Con Edison’s gas line project.
 .
UPDATED SHREDDER SCHEDULE INCLUDING NEW DATE OF MONDAY OCTOBER 22
The Town is pleased to provide once again this year mobile paper shredder events:
  • at the Town Recycling Center at 343 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM on September 15, and November 17;
  • at 1 Crusher Road, Bedford Village (Crusher Road highway yard), Bedford Village from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on May 5;
  • at the Town Office at 425 Cherry Street on Monday October 22 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM
A Mobile Shredding Truck will securely destroy documents. The company’s customer service professionals never physically touch your documents so the entire process is “touch-free”. The company can shred paper, paper clips, rubber bands, staples and even the black clips. They cannot shred 3-ring binders, or anything that is non paper (CDs, tapes, DVDs, hard drives, etc.)
 
INTERNSHIP IN MEDIA RELATIONS, PUBLIC RELATIONS, AND COMMUNICATION PLANNING
In consultation with the Bedford Veterans Advisory Committee, develop and implement a professional-grade communications plan that identifies local veteran-related events, programs, issues, and concerns and effectively promotes this material via appropriate print, broadcast, and electronic media.
The successful candidate should have a skill-set sufficient to demonstrate an ability to write effective press releases along with appropriate research, planning and organizational skills to develop and implement a plan that ensures general public awareness.
The plan should encompass an audience that includes: *     Print media* Broadcast media* Social media networks (Facebook, Instagram, etc.)* Local elected officials *Social service agencies * Veterans service organizations
Junior or senior level undergraduate, or graduate level. Hours to be determined, along with attendance at monthly Veterans Advisory Committee meetings. Unpaid. Supervision: Chair, Bedford Veterans Advisory Committee. Contact: Mark Sindeband, 914-260-4188,aegisresources@optonline.net
FOR THE 2017 ANNUAL REPORT click here
WESTCHESTER POWER – HOW’S IT BEEN DOING HERE IN BEDFORD?
There’s been some discussion on Katonah Parents Facebook and questions I regularly receive regarding the Westchester Power (also known as Community Choice Aggregation or CCA).   By way of background, the Town Board unanimously adopted Bedford’s participation in this program sponsored by Sustainable Westchester and placed us among those Westchester municipalities choosing the “Green Option”.   At the time, we insisted that the rates must be less than the previous twelve month cost for each utility, provide fixed prices (rather than a “bait and switch” of a great rate at the outset only to pop up later) and an opt out provision at any time without charge or penalty, a common complaint at the time against many energy service companies (ESCOs). Westchester Power residential and small business electric customers in Bedford have a rate of 8.00 cents per kilowatt hour in Con Edison’s service area and 7.42 cents per kilowatt hour in NYSEG’s service area.   These are fixed rates, rather than rates which vary month by month (which is the way NYSEG and Con Edison bills).   I’ve received e-mails and calls from NYSEG and Con Edison customers who saw a spike in rates this winter. Just yesterday I received a call from a resident in Con Edison service area who is signed up with an ESCO at over 11 cents per kilowatt hour and was dismayed at her large utility bills.
So how’s Westchester Power been doing here in Bedford? I turned to Dan Welsh, Director of Westchester Power, for an analysis and he provided the following:
“Here is my estimate of the savings for Bedford residents and small businesses through the end of January. We are including the avoided sales tax now when we talk about this as you know, and that’s a significant piece. February saw a low price for Con Ed which would bring this down, but now March is looking that it’s bounced back and so I would look to the end of March for the next update.”

Should you have questions, please contact Dan at dan@westchesterpower.org or 914-242-4725


IT’S TAX SCAM SEASON. HERE’S HOW YOU CAN PROTECT YOURSELF
From the Office of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
  • Never give out personal information to people who call you unsolicited. That includes your Social Security number, bank account information, or credit card information.
  • If you do owe money, you will receive a legitimate notice in the mail that tells you who you owe money to and why. If you haven’t gotten a legitimate piece of mail like that, the collection call is bogus.
  • Last but not least, remember that no legitimate government organization will ever threaten arrest or deportation if you fail to pay a debt.
If someone is threatening you or you are targeted for a scam, please contact my office immediately. We are here to help: 1-800-771-7755.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDINGTAX SCAMS
The IRS, the AARP, NYS Attorney General and many others are issuing warnings about scams particularly directed at the elderly.   Please don’t fall prey.  See https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-scams-consumer-alerts
CON EDISON AND NYSEG STORM OUTAGE RELATED REIMBURSEMENTS FOR FOOD AND PRESCRIPTION MEDICINE SPOILAGE
Each utility is providing on a limited basis reimbursement for food and prescription medicine spoilage.
Con Edison
Con Edison’s March 15, 2018 notice is as follows:
Customers Impacted by Nor’easters Riley and Quinn
We regret that we were unable to provide reliable restoration times for many customers during these storms. Con Edison may reimburse customers for food and prescription medicine spoilage if they lost power for at least three consecutive days or more during the two nor’easters that slammed the region recently.
Customers may receive reimbursement for up to $225, or up to $515 with receipts.
Business owners are eligible for food spoilage reimbursements up to $10,200 with receipts.
Link to the claim forms: https://www.coned.com/en/services-and-outages/claim-form
 
NYSEG – appears to be limited to food spoilage
 NYSEG did not issue a specific notice regarding claims for storm outage food or prescription medicine spoilage, but there appears to be an avenue for reimbursement for food spoilage. Click on http://www.nyseg.com/youraccount/claimform.html?stop_mobi=yes  
 
MOBILE PAPER SHREDDER AT RECYCLING CENTER
The Town is pleased to provide once again this year mobile paper shredder events at the Town Recycling Center at 343 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM on March 17, September 15, and November 17; and at 1 Crusher Road, Bedford Village (Crusher Road highway yard), Bedford Village from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on May 5. A Mobile Shredding Truck will securely destroy documents. The company’s customer service professionals never physically touch your documents so the entire process is “touch-free”. The company can shred paper, paper clips, rubber bands, staples and even the black clips. They cannot shred 3-ring binders, or anything that is non paper (CDs, tapes, DVDs, hard drives, etc.).
WESTMORELAND SANCTUARY NATURE CENTER & WILDLIFE PRESERVE RECIPIENT OF $20,000 CON EDISON GRANT
Westmoreland Sanctuary has recently received a $20,000 Grant from Con Edison allowing local school children to use STEM education based principles toward environmental studies.  Click here for the press release
LOOKING FOR AN EMERGENCY VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY BUT FIRE FIGHTING OR MEDICAL TECH NOT YOUR THING?
EMERGENCY COMMUNICATIONS MIGHT BE FOR YOU!! 
Click here for the flyer
 KATONAH FIRE DEPARTMENT UNDER-18 RECRUITMENT PROGRAM
Are you interested in a terrific community service opportunity? Would you like to receive state-of-the art lifesaving and firefighting training?
Katonah Fire Department eagerly welcomes applications from 16-year-olds for its Under 18 Program. Interested candidates can fulfill their John Jay High School Community Service obligation, as well as service hours required for other organizations, such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. Membership in the department as a firefighter is a great way to have your college application stand out as well!
Any person who is between the ages of 16 and 18, who is physically fit, morally and mentally sound, and who, having met with the membership committee and satisfactorily passed the committee’s investigation (as established in the Katonah Fire Department, Inc. Constitution and By-Laws), may be selected for membership status.
The goal of this program is to carefully instill, enforce, and monitor the practices that lead to well trained, respectful, hardworking members once they reach their 18th birthdays and/or the conclusion of their first year of membership.
In addition, it creates a culture in which these members both realize their age- and experience-related limitations, but also feel as though they are learning and being prepared for taking on the duties of full-fledged, non-probationary members of the Katonah Fire Department.
An oversight committee and a training coordinator act as a resource to these members – in all aspects of KFD membership: firefighting, training, rules and regulations, etc. – and set example for the types of behaviors expected from our entire membership.
Applicants who join receive all training and equipment at no expense to them. They also become eligible for various scholarship opportunities. If you’re interested in finding out more, please sent an e-mail to chief2211@katonahfd.org
TOWN’S WEBSITE 
is now available in Spanish. We have added a plug-in allowing for the website’s automatic translation to Spanish.  Please note that this does not apply to linked PDF documents. http://www.bedfordny.gov/
 
REVISION FOR JULY AND AUGUST 2018 TOWN BOARD MEETING SCHEDULE
Summer months are away months and many of our residents are unable to attend two meetings in July and two in August. The Town Board approved the following changes to these summer month meetings. We have cancelled the July 3 meeting and retained the July 17 meeting which was previously scheduled. We cancelled the August 7 and August 21 meetings and have replaced them with a single meeting to be held on August 14.
MOTORISTS
I wish to augment the below information (e-news 8/25) with the following request for motorists:
Sharing the road with bicyclists. When parked on the street, check for bicyclists approaching from behind you before opening your car door. Always exercise due care to avoid colliding with any person walking or bicycling. Always be vigilant when pedestrians are present, especially those with visual or physical impairments. Bicyclists are fully entitled to use the road and have the right to “take the lane” by positioning themselves at or near the center of the lane when needed to avoid hazards or if the lane is too narrow  to safely travel side by side with motorists.
Pass bicycles only when necessary and safe: pass to the left of the bicycle at a safe distance until safely clear. When in doubt, wait until you can pass at a safe speed. Before making a right turn, let bicyclists clear the intersection. When turning left or entering a roadway, yield to oncoming bicyclists as you would to any vehicle.
RULES OF THE ROAD FOR CYCLISTS; SAFETY TIPS FOR WALKERS; TIPS FOR CROSSING THE STREET
 Some of you may have heard of the tragic death earlier this month of a cyclist in Stony Point.  Another was killed yesterday.  We also are concerned about the safety of walkers and pedestrians.  While we implore drivers to observe speed limits and other rules of the road, we also wish to share with you rules and tips for cyclists and pedestrians some of which a Bedford resident compiled and sent to me.
CYCLISTS 
New York State law mandates the following related to cyclists:
  1. Travel WITH traffic (i.e. on the same side of the road) and obey all vehicle laws (stop at stop lights, etc.)
  2. Are not allowed on sidewalks
  3. Helmets (protective head gear) are required
  4. No headphones, ear buds, or other noise cancelling devices are allowed in more than 1 ear.
  5.  Horn/bell audible for 100 feet
  6. Lighting required a half hour before dusk until a half hour after dawn.
  7. Cyclists are required to use appropriate hand signals.

    SAFETY TIPS FOR WALKERS

  1. Always walk on the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk always walk facing traffic.
  2. Dress to be seen. Brightly colored clothing makes it easier for drivers to see you during the daytime. At night, wear special reflective material on your shoes, cap or jacket to reflect the headlights of cars coming towards you.

     TIPS FOR CROSSING THE STREET

  1.  Cross only at corners or marked crosswalks.
  2.  Stop at the curb, or the edge of the road.
  3.  Stop and look left, then right, then left again, before you step into the street.
  4.  If you see a car, wait until it goes by. Then look left, right and left again until no cars are coming.
  5.  Keep looking for cars while you are crossing, and remember, Walk. Don’t run.
  6.  If a car is parked where you are crossing, make sure there is no driver in the car. Then go to the edge of the car and look left-right-left until no cars are coming.
REMINDER
For information on parking at the Town of Bedford Offices During Police Department Construction click here 

Products Are Getting Pricier. Raise Your Estimates Now | Bedford Real Estate

Hurricanes and fires are putting pressures on supply, and thus prices

Here in Washington, D.C., a client of one of my favorite remodelers recently asked the remodeler to travel 1,000 miles to south Florida to rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Irma. In Louisiana, lumberyard owners told me two weeks after Hurricane Harvey struck that they expected to see trucks show up at their stores soon, driven by people who hoped to buy all the drywall they could and tote it back to Houston for sale.

Winds of change, indeed. Those disasters, in addition to the wildfires on the West Coast, are likely to rattle your remodeling business even if you’re not located near the damage zones. Expectations run wild that prices for both products and labor will rise. Drywall, framing lumber, sheet goods, and asphalt shingles will see some of the biggest increases.

Odds are good that you are behind the eight ball already if you haven’t been updating the core data you use to build your estimates. We recently received the numbers for the cost half of our 2018 Cost vs. Value report. They show that, from mid-2016 to mid-2017, the amount a client should be expected to pay for 20 common professional remodeling projects had risen no less than 2.7% and as much as 6.5%. Note that the materials and people costs that went into this data were collected before the hurricanes arrived.

You should already have been raising your prices to meet the pre-hurricane cost increases. Now, for projects that won’t start until November, December, or early next year, expect that you’ll need to shell out even more money for materials and workers by the time those jobs begin.

But wait, there’s more: Texas and Florida could end up needing so much material that vendors and dealers will limit the amount they’ll sell to any one customer there. Those allocations usually are based on relationships that stem from how much you’ve bought from that vendor in recent years and how quickly you’ve paid your bill.

Graybeards who suffered through the 1970s’ double-digit inflation rates may remember how to operate in an era of constant price increases, even if it has been decades since they last used those skills. For the rest, prepare for an escalator ride that could be uncomfortably fast.

by Craig Webb

read more…

http://www.remodeling.hw.net/products/products-are-getting-pricier-raise-your-estimates-now_o?utm_source=newsletter&utm_content=Opinion&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=REM_102017%20(1)&he=bd1fdc24fd8e2adb3989dffba484790dcdb46483

Mortgage rates average 3.88% | Bedford Real Estate

Freddie Mac (OTCQBFMCC) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing the 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropping to a new 2017 low.

News Facts

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.88 percent with an average 0.5 point for the week ending June 29, 2017, down from last week when it averaged 3.90 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.48 percent.
  • 15-year FRM this week averaged 3.17 percent with an average 0.5 point, the same as last week. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.78 percent.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 3.17 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 3.14 percent. A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.70 percent.

Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage. Visit the following link for the Definitions. Borrowers may still pay closing costs which are not included in the survey.

Quote
Attributed to Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac.
“The 30-year mortgage rate fell 2 basis points to 3.88 percent this week. However, the majority of our survey was conducted prior to Tuesday’s sell-off in the bond market which drove Treasury yields higher. Mortgage rates may increase in next week’s survey if Treasury yields continue to rise.”

Why homeownership is near 50-year low | Bedford Real Estate

The job market continues to show improvement, and interest rates remain historically low, yet the homeownership rate in the U.S. remains near a 50-year low.

The National Association of Realtors released a new white paper titled, “Hurdles to Homeownership: Understanding the Barriers” which lays out five reasons for the low homeownership rate. NAR released its paper in recognition of National Homeownership month at the Sustainable Homeownership Conference at the University of California, Berkeley.

“The decline and stagnation in the homeownership rate is a trend that’s pointing in the wrong direction, and must be reversed given the many benefits of homeownership to individuals, communities and the nation’s economy,” NAR President William Brown said. “Those who are financially capable and willing to assume the responsibilities of owning a home should have the opportunity to pursue that dream.”

The research, commissioned by NAR, was prepared by Rosen Consulting Group, and jointly released by the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics at the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business.

“Low mortgage rates and a healthy job market for college-educated adults should have translated to more home sales and upward movement in the homeownership rate in recent years,” NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said. “Sadly, this has not been the case.”

“Obtaining a mortgage has been tough for those with good credit, savings for a down payment are instead going towards steeper rents and student loans, and first-time buyers are finding that listings in their price range are severely inadequate,” Yun said.

Here are what NAR says are the five main barriers to homeownership:

Post-foreclosure stress disorder:

There are long-lasting psychological changes in financial decision-making, including housing tenure choice, for the 9 million homeowners who experienced foreclosure, the 8.7 million people who lost their jobs and the young adults who witnessed the hardships of their family and friends, NAR explained.

Mortgage availability:

Credit standards did not normalize after the Great Recession, NAR’s study showed. Borrowers with good-to-excellent credit scores are not getting approved at the rate they were in 2003, prior to the period of excessively lax lending standards.

The growing burden of student loan debt:

Young households are repaying an increasing level of student loan debt that makes it extremely difficult to save for a down payment, qualify for a mortgage and afford a mortgage payment, especially in areas with high rents and home prices. NAR found in a survey released last year, student loan debt is delaying purchases from Millennials and over half expect to be delayed by at least five years.

Single-family housing affordability:

Lack of inventory, higher rents and home prices, difficulty saving for a down payment and investors weighing on supply levels by scooping up single-family homes have all lead to many markets experiencing decaying affordability conditions, the study showed. Unless these challenges subside, RCG forecasts that affordability will fall by an average of nearly nine percentage points across all 75 major markets between 2016 and 2019, with approximately 5 million fewer households able to afford the local median-priced home by 2019.

Single-family housing supply shortages:

Fewer property lots at higher prices, difficulty finding skilled labor and higher construction costs are among the reasons cited by RCG for why housing starts are not ramping up to meet the growing demand for new supply.

read more…

https://www.housingwire.com/articles/40385-nar-here-are-5-reasons-for-low-homeownership-rate?eid=311691494&bid=1783075

Home prices jumped the most in these 10 housing markets | Bedford Real Estate

Home prices increased in March to a new peak, according to the latest Home Prices Index from Black Knight Financial Services.

Home prices rose to a median $272,000 in March, the report showed. This represents a new peak in home prices, and a rise of 2.3% from the start of the year.

And the Case-Shiller index, put out by CoreLogic and S&P Dow Jones Indices, showed home prices increased 5.8% annually in March, a pace which experts say is good news for sellers, but not so great for home buyers.

But some metropolitan areas saw home prices moving faster than others, as the fastest metro saw an increase that was double that of the national average. Month-over-month, home prices increased 1.3% nationally.

Here are the top ten housing metros with the highest increase in home prices in March, and the percent increase from the previous month. Using data from Trulia, HousingWire analyzed the median home price in each metro.

10. Bloomington, Illinois – Home prices up 2%

Median home price: $157,000

IllinoisFlagPhoto.jpg

9. Boulder, Colorado – Home prices up 2%

Median home price: $625,000

8. Sacramento, California – Home prices up 2%

Median home price: $280,000

California

7. Spokane, Washington – Home prices up 2%

Median home price: $180,325

6. Kankakee, Illinois – Home prices up 2.2%

Median home price: $86,000

5. San Francisco, California – Home prices up 2.2%

Median home price: $1,205,000

san francisco houses

4. Walla Walla, Washington – Home prices up 2.2%

Median home price: $218,750

3. Bellingham, Washington – Home prices up 2.3%

Median home price: $335,709

2. Seattle, Washington – Home prices up 2.4%

Median home price: $625,000

Side shot

1. San Jose, California – Home prices up 2.6%

Median home price: $835,000

San Jose

 

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https://www.housingwire.com/articles/40278-home-prices-jumped-the-most-in-these-10-housing-markets?eid=311691494&bid=1771046

Decline for Single-Family Built-for-Rent Construction | Bedford Real Estate

The number of single-family homes built-for-rent fell slightly at the start of 2017, falling to 6,000 for the quarter. Over the last four quarters, total production of this type of housing was 33,000 homes.

According to data from the Census Bureau’s Quarterly Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design and NAHB analysis, the market share of single-family homes built-for-rent, as measured on a one-year moving average, stood at 4.1% of total starts as of the first quarter of 2017.

Given the small size of the market segment, the quarter-to-quarter movements are not typically statistically significant. The current market share remains higher than the historical average of 2.8% but is down from the 5.8% reading registered at the start of 2013. This class of single-family construction excludes homes that are sold to another party for rental purposes. It only includes homes built and held for rental purposes.

With the onset of the Great Recession and the ongoing declines in the homeownership rate, the share of built-for-rent homes rose. Despite the current elevated market concentration, the total number of single-family starts built-for-rent remains low in terms of the total building market.

Of course, the built-for-rent share of single-family homes is considerably smaller than the single-family home portion of the rental housing stock, which is 35% according to the 2015 American Community Survey. As homes age, they are more likely to be rented. Thus, the primary source of single-family rental homes is not construction but the existing housing stock. In fact, from 2005 to 2015, 56% of the gains in the rental housing stock were due to single-family homes.

 

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http://eyeonhousing.org/2017/05/decline-for-single-family-built-for-rent-construction/

March Sales: New Listings Were Off to the Races | Bedford Real Estate

March buyers blew the roof off housing markets as they heeded warnings about the limited supplies of home for sale and found houses in record time.  National monthly market reports on March transactions chronicled surge of sales as the spring season kicked off and tens of thousands of new listings turned over in a matter of days.

“We expected a seasonal uptick in sales this time of year and March certainly met and somewhat exceeded that expectation,” said RE/MAX CEO Dave Liniger as the months supply in RE/MAX’s latest National Housing Report fell below 3 months in March for the first time in history.

“Calendars might say spring is only a week old but we’re already in the thick of the most frenzied home buyer season on record,” concurred realtor.com’s Javier Vivas. Redfin reported its fastest March on record for home sales since it began tracking this data in 2010.

Every report told the same story.  The plunge in days on market was breathtaking as buyers gobbled up new listings as fast as they hit MLSs. In NAR’s existing home sales report, days on market fell from 45 days in February to 34 days in March, on realtor.com from 90 to 68,, on RE/MAX from 71 to 64, on Redfin from 60 top 49.

Prices Outpace Incomes’

The three year inventory drought coupled with the spring surge in demand pushed prices even ither than

109.1 million full-time wage and salary workers were $830 in

the first quarter of 2016 (not seasonally adjusted), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.

This was 2.7 percent higher than a year earlier

 

 

March Market Reports at a Glance

Source

Monthly Sales Trend

Annual Sales Trend

Monthly Price Trend

Annual Price Trend

Median Sale Price

Median Days on Market

Comments

NAR

  4.4%

5.9%

-2.18%

6.8%

$236,400

34

There was enough of a monthly increase in listings in March for sales to muster a strong gain. Sales will go up as long as inventory does.
Realtor.com

NA

NA

4%

8%

$260,000

68

The typical spring upswing in sales has come about a month earlier than usual.
Redfin

 

42.7%

 

8.9%

 

4.6%

 

7.5%

 

$273,000

 

49

Spring 2017 shapes up to be the fastest and most competitive housing market in recent years,
RE/MAX

-0.2%

6.6%

7.1%

11%

$225,000

64

Prices hit a new high due steady demand and record low inventory.
Zillow

N/A

N/A

0.4%*

6.8%*

$196,500*

N/A

Five percent fewer homes on the market now than a year ago

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*These data are not sales but valuations for all homes based on Zillow’s AVM.

 

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http://www.realestateeconomywatch.com/2017/05/march-sales-new-listings-were-off-to-the-races/

U.S. pending home sales surge to ten-month high | Bedford Real Estate

Contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes jumped to a 10-month high in February, pointing to robust demand for housing ahead of the busy spring selling season.

The report on Wednesday from the National Association of Realtors suggested higher home prices and mortgage rates were having little impact on the housing market for now, underscoring the economy’s resilience despite an apparent slowdown in growth in the first quarter.

The NAR said its Pending Home Sales Index, based on contracts signed last month, surged 5.5 percent to 112.3. That was the highest reading since April and the second best showing since May 2006.

“This bodes well for home sales this spring,” said Misa Batcheller, an economic analyst at Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Contract signing last month was likely boosted by unseasonably warm temperatures. The gains reversed January’s 2.8 percent drop. Pending home contracts become sales after a month or two, and last month’s surge implied a pickup in home resales after they tumbled 3.7 percent in February.

Economists had forecast pending home sales rising 2.4 percent last month. Pending home sales increased 2.6 percent from a year ago.

U.S. financial markets were little moved by the data as investors assessed comments from Federal Reserve officials on further interest rate increases this year. Chicago Fed President Charles Evans, one of the U.S. central bank’s most consistent supporters of low interest rates, said he supported additional monetary policy tightening this year.

The Fed raised its benchmark overnight interest rate by a quarter percentage point earlier this month and has forecast two more rate hikes this year. The dollar was trading higher against a basket of currencies while U.S. stocks were mixed. U.S. government bond prices rose.

TIGHT INVENTORIES

Demand for housing is being driven by a strong labor market, which is generating wage increases, as it nears full employment. Sales activity, however, remains constrained by tight inventories, which are driving up home prices.

“The good news is that warm winter weather has led to a surge in construction that will hopefully result in a bloom of new homes for sale this spring,” said Joseph Kirchner, senior economist at realtor.com.

A report on Tuesday showed home prices increased 5.7 percent in January on a year-on-year basis. The NAR expects sales of previously owned homes to increase 2.3 percent this year to around 5.57 million units.

Existing homes sales increased 3.8 percent last year. Housing market strength suggests an apparent sharp slowdown in economic growth early in the first quarter is likely temporary.

The Atlanta Fed is forecasting gross domestic product increasing at a 1.0 percent annualized pace in the first quarter. The economy grew at a 1.9 percent rate in the final three months of 2016.

Given labor market strength, economists expect only a modest impact from higher mortgage rates. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate is currently at 4.23 percent, below a more than 2-1/2-year high of 4.32 percent hit in December.

In a separate report on Wednesday, the Mortgage Bankers Association said applications for home purchase loans rose 1.2 percent last week from the prior week. It was the fourth increase in the past five weeks.

 

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http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-economy-idUSKBN1701XS

Builder Confidence Holds Firm | Bedford Real Estate

Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes remained on firm ground in January, down two points to a level of 67 from a downwardly revised December reading of 69 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI).

The solid reading is consistent with building expectations heading into the new year. NAHB expects 10 percent growth in single-family construction in 2017, adding to the gains of 2016. However, ongoing industry concerns include rising mortgage interest rates as well as a lack of lots and access to labor.

The HMI rose sharply in December as the election results raised hopes among builders that a new Congress and administration will help create a better business climate for small businesses, particularly with respect to improving regulatory costs, which increased more than 29% over the last five years.

Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 30 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor.

All three HMI components retreated in January. The component gauging current sales conditions fell three points to 72, the index charting sales expectations in the next six months registered a two-point decline to 76 and the component measuring buyer traffic edged one-point lower to 51.

Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast rose two points to 52 and the Midwest posted a three-point gain to 64. The South and West each held steady at 67 and 79, respectively.

 

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http://eyeonhousing.org/2017/01/builder-confidence-holds-firm-in-january-2/