video tour cgicomm

Operations and services have been modified based upon the Coronavirus impact. Please visit this page for a status report on all services and get answers to your questions.

For guidance for businesses: Click here for information of Ossining direct resources or reach out to us directly.

Open Door Ossining, 165 Main St, Ossining, NY 10562
Tuesday, November 24 (Martes, 24 de Noviembre) from noon - 6 p.m.
Wednesday, November 25 (Miércoles, 25 de Noviembre) from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Call to schedule an appointment. Llame para hacer su cita. (914)-995-7425

The Town of Ossining is developing a Comprehensive Plan with sustainability elements, including a dedicated section on improving bikeability and walkability in the community. For more information please visit

2020 Reappraisal Project - relevant documents in directory, including FAQs, Income & Expense Letter and Worksheet

pdf Download Ossining Assessment Roll - 2020 FINAL (10.71 MB)

Waste and Recycling Collection Calendar for Sustainable Westchester

The Town of Ossining is, and Always Has Been, an Inclusive Community. View the Unity Resolution in English and in Spanish Here.


Assessor Fernando Gonzalez, IAO

Assessor: Fernando Gonzalez, IAO
Phone: (914) 762-8274
Fax: (914) 762-8634
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Assessor, Town of Ossining
16 Croton Avenue, 3rd Floor
Ossining, NY 10562

Hours: 9:00 am - 2:30 pm due to COVID restrictions, Monday through Friday.
Property Record Cards can be found on the MMRC Property Search webpage. 

folder Publications Archive for the Office of the Assessor

Pursuant to Governor’s Executive Order 202.22, hearings before the Board of Assessment Review will be held via teleconferencing only, beginning at 5pm and ending at 9pm on Tuesday, July 21, 2020.

Members of the public can view the meeting via computer or mobile app, click here...

Meeting Password: 461127

Members of the public can listen to the meeting by dialing in via phone:

Meeting ID: 857 2631 2237

(929) 205-6099

**Please note that by dialing in, your phone number will be visible to the host, participants, and attendees of the meeting.**

To make an appointment to be heard before the Board of Assessment Review, please contact the Town Assessor’s Office at (914) 762-8274.

pdf Download - Ossining Assessment Roll 2020 FINAL (10.71 MB)

pdf Download Income & Expense Form for Commercial Properties (94 KB)

pdf Download - Property Sales List April 2020 (98 KB)

pdf Neighborhood Delineation - Town of Ossining (1015 KB)

pdf Neighborhood Delineation Charts 2017 - Town of Ossining (84 KB)

pdf Frequently Asked Questions about Revaluation - June 2017 (97 KB)

Building Dept Property Info

GIS Tax Map & Property Information

pdf Revaluation Impact Notice Information (84 KB) - March 15th, 2016


The office of the assessor is charged with valuing all property in the Town of Ossining (the unincorporated area and the Villages of Ossining and Briarcliff Manor) for the purpose of apportioning property taxes. The total amount of taxes is determined by municipal and school budgets. Assessments only determine the share of that total that each property owner must pay.

Section 305 of the New York State Property Tax Law requires that all assessments within our town to be at a uniform (the same) percentage of value. Starting with the 2016 assessment roll, on completion of the current revaluation project, all property will henceforth be assessed at 100% of its current market value.

The total assessed value of town property on the 2014 final assessment roll was $309,371,829. Dividing this figure by the equalization rate of 5.95% applying to that roll, the total market value of this property becomes $5,199,526,538. The taxable value figures (for town purposes) were $259,625,739 and $4,363,457,798 respectively. The difference is the value of property wholly or partially exempt from property taxes – for our town about 16.08%. The assessment roll is used to levy county, town, school, village and special district (ambulance, solid waste, sewer, refuse, light, fire and water) taxes.

Most residential property - primarily single-family homes - is valued based on recent arm’s length sales. Income-producing property such as apartment houses and shopping centers is usually valued based on the income generated to the owner. Complex parcels for which there are very few sales – a utility generating plant for example – are valued based on the depreciated replacement cost: what it would cost to build the plant less the loss of value due to age and wear. Condominiums are a special case. Statute requires that they be assessed as income-producing property even though there are always many available arm’s length sales of these units. The result is that they are assessed and taxed at about one half of what would be the case if their assessments were based on market value

The assessor’s office also administers a multitude of real property exemptions mandated by state law – a total of 8,685 on the 2014 roll to be exact. Homeowners may receive the STAR, veterans and elderly exemptions to name a few. Certain properties such as those used for religious, educational or government purposes are wholly exempt from the real property tax. Exemptions will be discussed in more detail further on.

There are a number of statutory dates of which property owners should be aware. Whenever a statutory date falls on a weekend or holiday the next business day becomes the statutory date. These are dates that apply in the Town of Ossining (including both villages). Different dates may apply in towns and cities elsewhere in the state.

Taxable Status Date: May 1 – All exemption applications must be received on or before this date. The assessor values property as to its physical condition on this date.

Tentative Roll Date: June 1 - The assessor publishes the tentative roll on this date and makes it available for all property owners to examine. After this date, the assessor may not make any changes to the roll except as ordered by the Board of Assessment Review (BAR), a Small Claims Assessment Review (SCAR) hearing officer or a court order.

Grievance Day: The third Tuesdayin June – all grievances (to be discussed below) must be received. A grievance filed after this date will not be considered by the BAR.

Valuation Date: July 1 – Property must be valued for the following year’s assessment roll as of this date. Not to be confused with taxable status date. If a property owner adds a deck on March 1, it will be valued by the assessor for the tentative roll. But the value will be its value on July 1 of the previous year.

Final Roll Date: September 15 - The final assessment roll, incorporating BAR changes, is published and available for inspection.

30 Days after the filing of the final roll: Generally the deadline for filing SCAR or Article 7 (a court proceeding usually used by commercial properties) applications. But, there are exceptions. You should inquire about the exact date because a late filing is usually a fatal defect.

Take note that in Ossining, current year tax bills are based on assessments appearing on the final roll (unless changed by SCAR or court order) of the preceding year.

Grievance Procedures

Every property owner has a right to contest his or her assessment. You may contact the assessor at any time, preferably by a letter setting forth the reasons why you feel that your assessment should be reduced. If you are dissatisfied with your assessment as it appears on the tentative assessment roll you may file for a hearing before the Board of Assessment Review on or before (but no later than) the third Tuesday in June. You may not seek further remedies if you do not first file with the BAR. You may or may not appear in person before the board as you see fit, but you must file a complaint form mandated by ORPTS.



Matters such as your ability to pay your taxes or the extent to which you use the facilities and services paid for by your taxes (“I have never had any children in the public schools.”) may seem important to you, but they are entirely irrelevant in the grievance process. The assessor may consider only the fair market value of your property. The burden of proof rests with the property owner and you must try to show that the assessor’s estimate of the value of your property is incorrect. A recent purchase price, recent sales of similar properties or an appraisal would all be appropriate evidence.

You will be notified of the decision of the BAR no later than September 15th. If you are not satisfied with that decision and are the owner of an owner-occupied one, two or three-family house, you may file for Small Claims Assessment Review (SCAR).   The standard of evidence is the same as that before the BAR and you do not need an attorney. Your grievance will be heard by a SCAR hearing officer and his or her decision is final. The filing form and instructions may be found at:

Owners of complex commercial or industrial properties must file for a court hearing under Article 7 of the New York State Real Property Tax Law, also known as a “certiorari”. Discussion of this procedure is beyond the scope of this document but you will definitely need an attorney familiar with Article 7 and you will probably need an appraisal which, for the type of property which uses this remedy, can be expensive. Homeowners may file for certiorari in lieu of SCAR, but very few do.


New York State law authorizes literally hundreds of real property tax exemptions.   Most are mandatory but some may be implemented at the option of the local taxing jurisdiction. A discussion of three of the most common exemptions for homeowners follows. If you feel that property that you own maybe eligible for an exemption contact the assessor’s office.

STAR – The School Tax Relief exemption (RPTL-425) is available to all home owners (including condominiums and co-ops) who actually reside on the property and whose incomes do not exceed $500,000 per year. The enhanced STAR exemption is available to homeowners if at least one of the owners (husband & wife or siblings) is 65 year of age or older. The income limit of all of the owners for this exemption is changed every year and appears on the application form. These exemptions apply only to school taxes.

ELDERLY - The elderly exemption (RPTL 467) is available at the 50% level to senior citizens whose income does not exceed $29,000. The percentage of exemption decreases by 5% increments as income increases and owners with income of $37,400 and more are ineligible for this exemption. These limits may change from time to time   As is the case with enhanced STAR, the income of all of the owners must be considered and at least one of the owners must be at least 65 years of age. The elderly exemption, however, applies to all property taxes: county, town village and school (but not to special districts).

VETERANS - There are three different veterans’ exemptions. If you have served on full-time active duty (but not active duty solely for reserve training) in the U.S. military since December 7th, 1941, you are almost certainly entitled to one or more of these exemptions. The assessor’s office will need to see a copy of your DD-214 discharge form in order to determine your eligibility.  

The eligible funds exemption (RPTL 458) applies primarily to WWII and Korean War veterans and the amount of exemption is determined by certain funds received from the government that were used to purchase a home. It is applicable to town and village taxes but no new eligible funds exemptions may be accepted for Westchester County taxes. It does not apply to school taxes. The Alternative Veterans’ Exemption (RPTL 458-a) has been adopted by Westchester County and both the Ossining and Briarcliff Manor School Districts but not by the town or either village. To be eligible for this exemption the veteran must have served during a “time of war” whose dates are defined by statute. Veterans who served on active duty but not during a time of war are eligible for the Cold War Veterans’ Exemption (RPTL-458-b). This exemption is awarded by the town, the Village of Ossining and Westchester County but not by the Village of Briarcliff Manor.

All exemption application forms and instructions listed by Real Property Tax Law (RPTL) number may be accessed at the following ORPTS web site:

Town GIS Site

The Town of Ossining GIS may be accessed at Parcels may be accessed by street address, owner name or tax map number. The site provides a map of the area of the selected parcel, a photograph of any buildings thereon and, in the case of most homes, an inventory listing key features of the building.

New York State Office of Real Property Tax Services

This site displays a wealth of information about almost every subject related to assessment and real property tax administration. It may be accessed at

Justice Court

Benjamin L.F. Leavitt, Justice
Michael L. Tawil, Justice
Mark Reisman, Justice

Court Clerks: Ann Carroll Malone, Maria Carbone

86 Spring Street
Ossining, NY 10562
phone (914) 762-8562
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Justice Court of the Town of Ossining has limited jurisdiction over Civil Actions and unlimited jurisdiction over Summary Proceedings (i.e. eviction of tenants and claims for rent incidental thereto) occurring within the Town, including its Unincorporated Area, the Village of Ossining, and that part of the Village of Briarcliff Manor (approximately 85% thereof) located within the Town of Ossining.

The Court has limited jurisdiction over felony criminal cases and unlimited jurisdiction of criminal and vehicle and traffic misdemeanors, violations, and infractions occurring within the Town of Ossining except for the Village of Briarcliff Manor.

pdf Request for Public Access to Ossining Town Court Records (253 KB)

Please visit the Traffic Violations Bureau for information on traffic and parking...

Court Hours and Schedules:

The office hours are Monday-Friday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm.
Please note new hours due to COVID:

The walk-up window hours have been expanded:
Monday          9:30am-11:30am
Tuesday         9am-1pm
Wednesday  9:30am-11:30am
Thursday      11am-2pm
Friday             11am-2pm

Office hours will be closed on Monday, August 31.  Please call the Town Court at (914) 762-8562 with any questions.  We apologize for the inconvenience.

Criminal Calendar: Tuesdays at 9:00 am.
Municipal Code Violations: Tuesdays at 2:00 pm.
Civil Cases and Summary Proceedings: Thursdays at 6:30 pm.
Vehicle and Traffic Calendar: Thursdays at 7:00 pm.
Small Claims Cases: the 1st & 3rd Monday of each month at 6:30 pm.
Parking Violations Calendar: 2nd Thursday of the month, and 1st & 3rd Monday of the month at 7:00 pm.


Civil Jurisdiction:

Civil Cases:
The Town Court has jurisdiction over actions and proceedings for the recovery of money or property, provided that:

  • the plaintiff lives or works in Ossining, and the defendant lives or works in Westchester County, or
  • the defendant lives or works in Ossining, regardless of plaintiff's residence, and
  • the amount sought to be recovered does not exceed $3,000, with the exception of landlord/tenant matters where the monetary jurisdiction is unlimited.

Frequently Asked Questions for Civil Cases:

Small Claims:
Small Claims are informal Court proceedings to recover money only for an amount not to exceed $3,000.00, provided that:

  • the action is filed in the jurisdiction where the defendant lives, works or, has a place of business, and
  • the plaintiff is an individual or sole proprietor over the age of 18 years.

pdf Download the Small Claims Application for Ossining Town Court (177 KB)

pdf Download the Small Claims Application - Spanish (95 KB)

For more detailed information on commencing a Small Claims proceeding, please consult the Small Claims Guide prepared by the New York State Unified Court System.

Frequently Asked Questions for Small Claims Actions:

Landlord/Tenant Proceedings:
The Town Court has jurisdiction over landlord/tenant proceedings for non-payment of rent, evictions, holdovers, and to compel repairs.  The monetary jurisdiction is unlimited.

Frequently Asked Questions for Landlord/Tenant Proceedings:


Criminal Jurisdiction:

Criminal Cases:
The Town Court has arraignment and preliminary jurisdiction over all felony criminal cases and full jurisdiction over all cases involving misdemeanors, violations and infractions. The Office of the Westchester County District Attorney prosecutes all criminal cases.

Frequently Asked Questions for Criminal Cases:

Criminal Justice System Handbook:

Family Offense Proceedings:
The Town Court has concurrent jurisdiction with Family Court over certain offenses committed between members of the same family or household (related by blood or marriage, former spouses or a common child) such as disorderly conduct, harassment, menacing, reckless endangerment and assault. The Office of the Westchester County District Attorney prosecutes family offenses.

Code Violations:
The Town Court has jurisdiction over various environmental/conservation violations, parking violations and violations of the Town General Code and the Village of Ossining General Code. The Deputy Town Attorney and the Deputy Village Attorney prosecute these cases.

Town of Ossining General Code:

Village of Ossining General Code:

Vehicle and Traffic Cases:
The Town Court has jurisdiction over vehicle and traffic cases charging the commission of a traffic infraction occurring in the unincorporated portion of the Town and in the Village of Ossining. Information regarding how to proceed with a traffic ticket may be found on the back of the ticket issued to the motorist. It is the obligation of the motorist to respond to the ticket. A guilty plea will result in a fine letter which will instruct the defendant on the procedure and amount of payment. A plea of not guilty will result in the scheduling of a trial. You will be notified of the trial date by mail. You must appear in Court on the date scheduled. Vehicle and traffic cases are prosecuted by the Deputy Town Attorney and the Deputy Village Attorney.

Frequently Asked Questions for Vehicle and Traffic Cases:


Wedding Ceremonies:

Town Justices are authorized to perform wedding ceremonies throughout New York State. While a standard civil ceremony can be performed, the couple may make changes to the ceremony to fit their wishes. If you are interested in having a Town Justice perform a wedding, please email the Justice Court at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the date and time you would like a ceremony performed.


Filing Fees:

[Filing fees are set forth in Uniform Justice Court Act §1911]

Civil Cases:
Filing of first paper         $20
Demand for Jury Trial     $10
Notice of Appeal             $5

Small Claims:
[Uniform Justice Court Act §1803(a)]
Claims of $1,000 or less           $10
Claims of more than $1,000      $15

The amount of the fine is generally left to the discretion of the Judge with certain parameters set by statute or ordinance.

The Town Court does not accept personal checks. Payments for filing fees are to be made by cash, money order, certified or bank check, or attorney's check. All payments are made payable to: "Town of Ossining Justice Court."

Payments are accepted at the walk-up window Monday through Friday, from 9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Motorists can pay their tickets by cash (exact change required), money order, or credit card. Credit card payments will incur an additional 2.99% surcharge.


Going to Court?
Find the Help You Need to Represent Yourself in NY Courts

The Court Help website can help you when you don’t have a lawyer

  • Find court forms and DIY Forms
  • Locate court addresses and Help Centers
  • Learn about foreclosures, custody, divorce, name changes, cases for money, child support, criminal cases, appeals, going to court, and more


Resources and Online Help

Town of Ossining General Code:

Village of Ossining General Code:

Glossary of Common Legal Terms:

pdf Download the Small Claims Application for Ossining Town Court (177 KB)

pdf Download the Small Claims Application - Spanish (95 KB)

Small Claims proceeding, please consult the Small Claims Guide prepared by the New York State Unified Court System.

Small Claims Actions:

Landlord/Tenant Proceedings:

Landlords Looking to Commence Actions:

Criminal Cases:

Criminal Justice System Handbook:

Vehicle and Traffic Cases:


Receiver of Taxes

Receiver of Taxes Holly Perlowitz

Holly Perlowitz, Receiver of Taxes

16 Croton Avenue
Ossining, NY 10562
phone: (914) 762-8790
fax (914) 762-0635

Click here to look up the amount due on the Town's website.

Tax Payments can be made online here, by mail, or at 16 Croton Avenue, First Floor Lobby, Ossining, New York, 9am to 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Due to COVID-19, Town offices on the third floor, including the Office of the Receiver of Taxes are not open to visitors at this time.  Please note Town staff remain available via phone at (914) 762-8790 from 9:00 am - 2:30 pm due to COVID restrictions, Monday through Friday.

Call (914) 762-8790 if you are a new homeowner and/or need a copy of your bill.

Would you like to receive e-mail reminders for important tax deadlines?
Tax Reminders & Alerts -- Signup Here!
Sign up for e-mail reminders for your Town/County and School tax bills and receive notices of important deadlines so you won't miss a tax bill!
Pay Your Taxes Online!
Pay Your Ossining Municipal & School Taxes Online at

The Office of Receiver of Taxes collects yearly school, town, and county taxes and enforces the collection of delinquent taxes. Residents may contact the office to inquire about tax rates as well as taxes owed and paid.

Request For Mailing of Duplicate Tax Bills or Statements of Unpaid Taxes to a Third Party

Dates to Remember:
January 31: Second half school taxes due without penalty
April 30: Town and county taxes (one installment) are due without penalty
September 30: First half school taxes due without penalty
Office Hours: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday

Paying by Mail:

  • If mailing a tax payment a few days prior to the due date, make certain that you witness a timely official United States postmark being affixed to the envelope. Postage meter (i.e. Pitney Bowes) and foreign postmarks are not acceptable. An envelope, containing payment of local taxes, without an U.S. Postmark date is deemed paid on the date received. (NYS Real Property Tax Law, section 924a) 
  • Effective Jan 1, 2003, new legislation now allows us to accept FedEx, UPS, DHL, and Airborne as timely deliveries if postmarked by the last day of the collection period. (NYS Real Property Tax Law, section 925)
  • Please include your telephone number on your check in case the Tax office needs to reach you. 

Delinquent Taxes:

  • Properties with taxes remaining unpaid after 21 months of the tax levy will go into In Rem Foreclosure. 
  • Current taxes must be paid prior to any earlier taxes owed on all Properties that are in the delinquent stage and are in the process of enforcement. (NYS Real Property Tax Law, section 1112) 

New Homeowners:

  • If you are a new homeowner or have changed banks or lending institutions make sure that your tax bills are paid in a timely manner either by yourself or your lending institution. 
  • If you are submitting tax payments directly to the Town and have not received a tax bill at least one month prior to the payment due date, you should contact the Tax office. 
  • If you buy property after the September payment date for the first half school tax, but prior to the January 31 payment date for the second half, you must contact the Tax Office to determine the tax amount due. Second half payments received after January 31 are subject to a 10% penalty. 
  • The failure to receive a Tax Bill shall in no way affect the validity of the taxes or interest prescribed by law with respect thereto. (NYS Real Property Law, section 922)


Town Of Ossining - Town and County Tax Rates:

The Town/County bill represents Town General and Westchester County taxes for residents of the Town of Ossining. Tax bills for residents of the Unincorporated Area, who do not pay taxes to either Village, also include a Town Unincorporated tax and special district taxes for water, sewer, refuse, lighting, and fire protection.

folder Document archive of Town Tax Rates and Levie for Fiscal Years from 2005 to present.


Town Of Ossining - School Tax Rates:

The Towns in Westchester County are fiscal agents for the collection of school taxes. Budgets are prepared and adopted by public referendum, and are not the function of the Town Government. Veteran's Exemptions do not apply to school taxes.

School Taxes (first installment) are due September 30 without penalty.
Second Installment school taxes may be paid any time until January 31 without penalty.

folder Document archive of School Tax Levies for Fiscal Years from 2006-07 to present.

All inquiries concerning budget matters or expenditures should be directed to:

Ossining Board of Education
400 Executive Blvd
Ossining, NY 10562
(914) 941-7700
Briarcliff Manor Board of Education
Ingham Road
Briarcliff, NY 10510
(914) 941-8880


Schedule of Penalties:
School Tax Payments:
Month First Half Second Half
September none none
October 2% none
November 5% none
December - January 7% none
February - March 10% 10%
April 12% 12%
May 1 - Date of Foreclosure* 1% per month on unpaid delinquent tax
(12% per annum)
Town Tax Payments:
Month Penalty
May 2%
June - July 5%
August - September 7%
October - December 10%
January - April 12%
May 1 - Date of Foreclosure* 1% per month on unpaid delinquent tax
(12% per annum)

*The Date of Foreclusure is usually 21 months after the tax levy (September 1 for school taxes and April 1 for town/county taxes).


Helpful Information:

Request For Mailing of Duplicate Tax Bills or Statements of Unpaid Taxes to a Third Party

Click here for latest Consolidated Rate Sheets here...

A handy tool for Realtors and Appraisors. With this chart, you can verify the total taxes on a property with one multiplication using the consolidated rate which includes Town, County, School, and appropriate village tax rates. Send an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with "Consolidated Rates" in the subject to request automatic updates.

Method of Computing tax bills: Total taxes to be raised divided by Assessed Valuation = Rate per $1,000.  Your bill is determined by your assessed value multiplied by the tax rate divided by 1000.

The amount paid in Town General Taxes is the smallest portion of this bill. The Ossining Ambulance Special District provides emergency medical lifesaving services to the residents of the Village of Ossining and the Unincorporated Town.

Your Town General Taxes pay for the following expenditures:
Parks Maintenance, Recreation, Senior Programs, Veterans Services, Assessment, Tax Collection, Data Processing, Financial, Supervisor, Town Board, Town Justice, Town Clerk, Town Attorney, Elections, Historian, and other Town-wide services.

Check the Assessor's Office for further information on how to file a complaint on your assessment, also available at the NY State Department of Taxation and Finance web site.

County Taxes include the County General tax, Solid Waste and Sewer. Questions concerning the County Tax portion of your bill should be directed to the County of Westchester at (914) 995-2850.

TO AVOID PENALTIES: If you mail your payment at the end of the month the tax is due, be sure there is a timely official United States postmark on the envelope or use a designated delivery service such as FedEx, UPS or Airborne. Postage meter (i.e. Pitney Bowes) and foreign postmarks are not acceptable. A Certificates of Mailing is not proof of timely payment (NY State Comptroller’s Office). When an envelope containing payment of local taxes contains no U. S. postmark or designated delivery service posting date, payment of such taxes is deemed to have been made on the date the payment is received and penalty must be paid (Real Property Tax Law §922). New York State Law provides that the Tax Receiver cannot waive penalties on real estate taxes paid after the due date for any reason. (Real Property Tax Law §920.)

Grievance Day: Third Tuesday in June each year.
Some Veteran's Exemptions apply to school taxes.
Call the Assessor's Office at (914)762-8274 to see if your Veteran's Exemption qualifies for a School Tax exemption.

Town/County Taxes are due April 30, 2017.

Budget Office

Victoria Cafarelli, Budget Director
phone (914) 762-6001
fax (914) 762-0833
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
16 Croton Avenue
Ossining, NY 10562

The Budget Office is located on the third floor of the Town offices. Office hours are Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 2:30 pm due to COVID restrictions.


  pdf Download 2021 Tentative Budget (2.44 MB)  


A Message to the Community Regarding the Supervisor’s

Tentative 2021 Budget

Dana Levenberg, Town Supervisor

October 29, 2020


I am sure I speak for the entire community when I say that 2020 has been an incredibly challenging year for us all.  As I write this message, we are nearing eight months since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Westchester County.  Since early March, Westchester County has seen a total of over 32,000 cases of COVID-19, with nearly 1,500 of those from the Town of Ossining, inclusive of both the Villages of Ossining and Briarcliff Manor.  This pandemic has brought extreme economic challenges to our community, our county, our state, and our country, affecting our family, friends and neighbors with job losses or furloughs, difficulty paying rent or mortgages and putting food on the table, all while having to grapple with an uncertain future.  Before I continue with my message on the 2021 budget, I want to express my sincerest condolences for those who lost loved ones, as well as my hope that you, your family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues are now managing to stay healthy and are doing well under these extraordinarily difficult circumstances. 


The Town of Ossining’s budget has not been immune to similar financial strain.  In an effort to protect our employees and the general public, we have incurred many unplanned expenses including purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) for our staff, outfitting offices with plexiglass and air purifiers, bringing on new staff members to perform health screenings at our public facing offices, utilizing parks staff on overtime to disinfect playgrounds and other park amenities, providing necessary technology to staff to facilitate work from home when appropriate, and much more.  We have also experienced significant revenue shortfalls in several areas of our budget.  We have sought grant funding whenever possible, but unfortunately, as a municipality of our size, we do not qualify for the limited funding streams coming out of the federal government.  The Town is seeking FEMA reimbursement for many of these expenses, but as of September 15, 2020, new guidelines were issued by FEMA making many of our expenses past that date ineligible for reimbursement.  The inaction by our federal government has been incredibly frustrating for municipalities of our size, and has made the financial landscape of the Town difficult to predict as we go into 2021. 


Earlier this year when it became clear we would not be operating business as usual, I asked all our departments to halt any non-essential spending that had not yet been encumbered. As we launched this 2021 budget process in late August, I asked all department heads to think long and hard about their requested expenditures going forward into the new year, and to look for savings wherever possible, no matter how small.  Most of the line items in our budget are contractual, including companies or contractors that provide services to the Town, and I am grateful to the many contractors who requested little or no increase in rates going into 2021 as part of their COVID response.  In several departments, there were also opportunities for savings due to personnel turnover and scaled back operations as a result of pandemic restrictions.  I am so appreciative to the department heads for their careful review of their 2021 budget requests in light of the uncertainty we are facing this year. I am also grateful to the Town Board, other elected officials, and the Department Heads and non-union personnel who agreed to take a salary freeze, knowing that by doing so, we would be able to help the overall picture for our taxpayers.


The 2021 budget will be the Town’s tenth out of ten tax cap-compliant budgets in the era of the New York State Tax Cap.  This year’s tax levy was capped at a 1.0156% increase, down from last year’s 2%.  The great news is that, thanks to our careful budgeting and significant growth in our tax base, we are not only staying under the cap for the levy but anticipate a tax rate decrease across all but one fund included in the Town’s budget. 


For those of you not familiar with the Town’s budget, the Town serves as the “umbrella government” for the Village of Ossining and the majority of the Village of Briarcliff Manor, and also serves as the direct government for the 5,500 residents of the Unincorporated Town.  Our budget is relatively small compared to other local municipalities, but complex—the Town oversees multiple funds, the largest being the General Fund (everyone who lives in Ossining pays Town General taxes, and this is the fund out of which most of our municipal services are paid), the Unincorporated Fund (police, building, planning, zoning, and animal control services), and the Highway Fund (road maintenance and snow removal). In addition, we have several smaller Special Districts, which apportion expenses and debt from capital improvements to our sewers and street lighting, as well as contracts for service for refuse and recycling, fire protection and emergency response.


One of our biggest cost drivers, as in most organizations, is our staff. The Town of Ossining employs roughly 60 employees, more than half of whom belong to one of two collective bargaining units. During my tenure as supervisor thus far, I have negotiated one contract with each of these unions, respectively, and I can confidently say that they, too, understand the constraints we are under when it comes to our annual budget allowances. The leadership teams for both unions continue to work with us to get more agile when it comes to matching talent with the Town’s needs, and for that, we are incredibly grateful.  During the COVID-19 pandemic, they have also been willing to work with us as we navigated work from home arrangements and staggered shifts for some Town employees.  I understand that this is somewhat rare in the municipal environment, so we are tremendously lucky to work with such progressive thought leaders.  I believe they also see that we make an active effort to invest in the safety, well-being and health of our employees, which then helps them live safer, happier and healthier lives on and off the job. Over the past few years, we have worked closely with a variety of trainers (some private, some through an intermunicipal agreement with Westchester County), often at a reduced cost, to provide new and innovative trainings for worksite and driving safety, as well as soft skills like customer service and cultural competency. Most of these trainings we were able to continue in 2020 utilizing virtual platforms and significantly reduced in-person class sizes.  These types of trainings improve our municipal culture and, by extension, how our employees interact with one another and with our diverse community members. Creating a more positive work culture for staff has become a hallmark of my tenure, and it bears out in the numbers—our Workers Compensation costs are dropping, which is a direct result of employees being more mentally present on the job.  To some extent, virtual offerings have been more accessible to our employees and easier to seamlessly incorporate into the workday.  We will continue to explore ways to expand these virtual offerings to provide training to our employees that is cost effective and more efficient, with or without the pandemic as the driving force.


A big project that we began in 2019 and completed in 2020 was a Town Wide Reappraisal.  Most residents will remember that the Town undertook a similar process in 2015, but this time, it looked a little different.  Before the last go-round, the Town had not done a comprehensive revaluation in more than 40 years. Based on the updated values of their homes and properties, many folks were paying too much in their property taxes and just as many were paying too little. By performing internal inspections on as many Town properties as possible, the Assessor’s Office, along with a team from Tyler Technologies, was able to eliminate our equalization rate and bring all 10,200 parcels to 100% of full market value. Each year since, our Assessor has used ratio analysis to increase or decrease neighborhood values by examining sales and market trends and by doing so, we have kept the roll at 100%, as certified by New York State Office of Real Property Taxes annually. However, at the recommendation of the State, every five years it is time to do a full reappraisal, verifying the accuracy of the property inventory with physical inspections as necessary and applying a new model based on recent market sales.  We appreciate the participation of property owners who returned their data mailers and verified their property inventory.  Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this process was slightly delayed, causing the Town Board to extend the date by which the Assessor could file the tentative roll for 2020 (which will be used to levy 2021 taxes).  We understand this process can be a nuisance, especially at a time when all of us are feeling extraordinarily overwhelmed by forces out of our control.  But it remains as important as ever to keep up with property values so we can ensure each property has a correct value attributed to it, and is thereby taxed accurately.  As a result of this continued effort to keep our tax roll at 100% of full market value since 2015, we have seen a decrease in grievances, small claims cases, and tax certioraris.  Reducing the frequency of these costly processes to contest one’s assessment helps the Town’s bottom line, as well as that of the School Districts and the Villages, and ensures equity in our tax roll. It also helps protect those who may not have the resources to challenge their assessment, as these avenues are often only available to commercial property owners or those who can afford to hire outside representation.  I would like to thank our Assessor, Fernando Gonzalez, and his team for shepherding us through this process, answering constituent phone calls at all hours of the day and night, and often from home. 


As Supervisor, I have committed to regularly seeking grant funding wherever possible to offset costs to local taxpayers.  Since 2016, we have brought in more than $1 million in grant funds, and although New York State has unfortunately not opened up any new opportunities for grant funding in 2020, we have seen many of the projects for which we received funding in the past come to fruition this year.  In February of 2020, we kicked off our now very popular Food Scraps Recycling Program, in partnership with Teatown and Green Ossining, with nearly $100,000 in grant funding from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.  We are expecting more good news heading into 2021 with this program, as Westchester County has introduced an inter-municipal agreement to allow for reduced carting costs for food scraps, similar to the price structure of solid waste.  It has been so exciting to see this program get off the ground, and grow so successfully just in the first year.  This spring, with funding from NYSERDA’s Clean Energy Communities Program, we completed the bike lane striping on North State Road, the first phase implementation of the Millwood-Ossining Go! Plan.  After much planning and coordination, we installed a new dock at the Cedar Lane Park pond, with $85,000 in State and Municipal Facilities funding from Senator David Carlucci.  With some funding left over in this project, we plan on continuing improvements to the walkway around the Cedar Lane Park pond, further enhancing this favorite walking route for families in the neighborhood.  With funding from the New York State Archives and in partnership with the Village of Ossining, we installed new shelving for a records storage space at the John-Paul Rodrigues Operations Center.  Heading into 2021, we anticipate using $120,000 in Multi-Modal funding from Assemblywoman Sandy Galef to support the repaving of Morningside Drive.  We did receive word this year that in addition to the $75,000 already awarded to our Senior Nutrition Program for the purchase of an all-electric bus from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program, administered by the Westchester County Department of Planning, we have also been awarded $130,000 in funding to support the renovation of the Senior Nutrition Program kitchen.  We hope to get this project underway in early 2021. 


In 2020, the Westchester County Department of Planning also administered funding from the CARES Act, which went directly to local food pantries, loans and grants for small businesses, and rental assistance.  Although this funding did not go directly to municipalities, we know this assistance went a long way to help our residents and small businesses struggling as a result of the pandemic.   Partnering with the Village of Ossining, local faith based groups and not for profits, and with the help of staff from our Senior Nutrition program, we were able to bring those dollars back into our community with local food distributions to help people during the worst months of the pandemic to date. 


One of the most significant projects we launched in 2020 with grant funding from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Climate Smart Communities program was our Comprehensive Plan with Sustainability Elements.  In January, we kicked off this process by soliciting applications from the community and appointing our nine member Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee.  Then, with our Committee on board, we issued a Request for Proposals to select a planning consultant to spearhead this effort.  We received several applicants, with the Committee recommending to the Town Board we appoint WXY Studios as our selected consultant.  I believe that the Committee and the Town Board made an excellent choice for this project when selecting WXY Studios, with their diverse project team, innovative approach to planning, and adept ability to develop well-designed visualizations.  We are also thrilled to have the expertise of Pace University’s Land Use Law Center on board to guide our public engagement efforts.  Pace has worked with many municipalities across the Hudson Valley on comprehensive plans and I know their thoughtful take on engaging local communities will serve us well, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.  For months now, Pace has been strategizing ways to engage the Town, knowing we cannot rely on our usual tools for doing so.  That being said, Pace has already been working with other communities in the area during these past few months, and has actually seen increased levels of engagement now that people can tune into a public meeting from the comfort of their living rooms, from their phone, or wherever they might be, at any time.  We hope to capitalize on the changing landscape of community engagement to reach those who otherwise would not be interested in or able to attend an evening meeting in person on a weekday, while also looking for opportunities to hold some of the in-person meetings people have come to expect, going into early 2021.  We are still very early along in the Comprehensive Plan process, but I know with our trifecta team of an engaged steering committee, innovative planning consultant, and dedicated community engagement leaders, we are looking ahead to a productive and exciting process in the coming months. 


Although we were disappointed that we had to cancel many annual events this year, including Green Ossining’s Earth Day and the Forest O’ Fears Haunting at Cedar Lane Park, as well as our annual Independence Day celebration, I am so happy that we were able to adapt some of these events to fit into our new COVID-19 reality.  Our Summer Concert Series went virtual, with the help of Mike and Miriam Risko of Mike Risko Music as our hosts, via Facebook Live.  We also made a concerted effort (pun intended) to feature local businesses during the Facebook Live concerts by grabbing takeout to enjoy dinner and a show in the comfort of our homes.  We also participated in Organ Donor Enrollment Day with our first ever Zoom-a-thon, featuring doctors, first responders, families and friends of organ donors and transplant recipients, and elected officials, all sharing the importance of signing up to become an organ donor to give hope to the thousands of people in New York State awaiting a lifesaving transplant. 


Finally, one of the initiatives of which I am most proud, is the Community Equity Task Force.  This task force formed in 2019 in response to several unfortunate incidents where racial slurs and hateful symbols appeared around Ossining, including in our schools and parks.  The need for this initiative was reinvigorated in 2020, as we were inspired by the call to action around the country following the senseless murder of George Floyd.  Here in Ossining, we know our diversity is one of our strengths and we aim to be an inclusive and equitable community for all.  However, we also know we often fall short of these laudable goals.  The Community Equity Task Force is comprised of community members, leaders in municipal government, our library, and schools, faith leaders, students, young people, and more.  Throughout 2020 we have gathered virtually to discuss how we can do better to achieve equity for all in Ossining through our personal and professional lives.  I look forward to continuing this initiative into 2021, and ask anyone who is interested in participating to please reach out to me. 


We have even more, in addition to those initiatives mentioned above, on our collective plate for 2021:


  • Our Parks continue to be a focus—after many years of neglect due to budgetary shortfalls, we have picked up where my predecessor left off and made our open spaces a priority. In 2021, we are focusing on our courts and fields for capital improvements. We plan on borrowing funds at the current low rates to complete these projects, and by focusing on hiring local contractors, hopefully spurring growth in the local economy in the process. We also had a number of excellent, socially distanced volunteer efforts to help with some of our trickier park settings, to reduce garbage as well as invasive species spread, which we hope to further capitalize on in 2021.


  • The restoration of McCarthy Drive was postponed in 2020 and should get off the ground this spring after nearly a year of surveying and engineering work, kick-started by our attorney’s discovery that the Town did have legal obligations to the road’s repair and maintenance. This is going to be a massive undertaking, one of the largest projects the Town has undertaken in many years, and will include a new and improved water line, paid for by the Village of Ossining’s water fund, as well as the widening of the road, and much improved drainage to bring it into conformance with municipal road standards.


  • We have heard your feedback about how navigating the Town website can be a challenge, so we will be moving forward to complete a website redesign this year. Coupled with our efforts to make more and more of our services available online, this will be a welcome accomplishment in 2021. We are also exploring additional online services in 2021, including online building permit applications and enhanced emergency communication.


The Supervisor’s Tentative 2021 Budget is available in the Town Clerk’s Office at 16 Croton Avenue, the Ossining Public Library, and online at  There will be a short presentation on the proposed budget at the Town Board Work Session on Tuesday, November 17, which is scheduled to take place at 7:30pm via Zoom.  Here is the Zoom access information for the November 17 Work Session:



Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 817 6509 5772

Passcode: 397944

                        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Find your local number:


The Ossining Town Board will also be discussing the Supervisor’s Tentative Budget with our department heads during the month of November on the following days and times, via Zoom:




Zoom Access

Wed., 11/4



Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 880 1204 5184

Passcode: 015725

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Find your local number:

Fri., 11/6



Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 880 5129 4822

Passcode: 372774

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Find your local number:






Senior Nutrition Program

12:30pm – 1:30pm

(Lunch Break)







Tues., 11/10


Justice Court

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 882 3783 8181

Passcode: 301969

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Find your local number:


The Town Board will also hold a Public Hearing at 7:30pm on Tuesday, November 24 via Zoom.  Members of the public can join us on the evening of November 24 to view this Public Hearing and make comments by using the Zoom access below:


Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 819 5564 6790

Passcode: 714943

                        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Find your local number:


We urge members of the public to review the budget and either make comments at the Public Hearing, contact my office at (914) 762-6001, or email the Town Board at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..




pdf Town of Ossining - Fund Balance Policy (54 KB) (Passed by Town Board June 2, 2010)

folder Audits & Financial Statements - Archive

folder Archive - Voucher Detail Reports - Approved vouchers by the Town Board.



Town of Ossining Fund Balance Policy

The Town of Ossining (the “Town”) has an important responsibility to its citizens to carefully account for public funds, to manage municipal finances wisely and to plan the adequate funding of services desired by the public, including the provision and maintenance of public facilities.

An important indicator of the financial stability of the Town is its un-reserved fund balance that represents the un-assigned and unencumbered balance of the Town’s revenues held in the Town’s numerous funds.

Download the Fund Balance Policy for full details...


folder Download Town Budgets from the Archives...

folder Download Audits and Financial Statements from the Archives...


Town Board Contacts

Town Supervisor: Dana Levenberg - phone (914) 762-6001 - fax (914) 762-0833

Council Members: Elizabeth Feldman, Gregory G. Meyer, Jackie Shaw, Northern Wilcher Jr.