On Tuesday night, the Town Board passed the 2019 Town of Ossining Budget, a tax-cap compliant budget which includes a tax rate decrease across many of our funds due to our controlled spending and an increase in the Town-wide assessment roll. We believe the Town of Ossining continues to give our residents an incredibly fair deal on the services we provide, and that is due in large part to our hard-working department heads and employees. I am looking forward to another great year of building on the progress we have achieved in the Town over the past few years, and I know we will make you proud. To that end, please plan to join us on Thursday, January 17th to share your feedback on proposals for possible additional savings that could be achieved if we were to make some changes.  We continue to look under every rock to help offer more streamlined services.  Let us know if you think some of these proposals would help, or not.  We plan to have two community feedback sessions at the café in the Ossining Library lower level, 12PM-1:30PM and 7:30PM-9PM to continue to solicit your opinions on Project Forward! Please save the date, we hope you and your neighbors will join us.



Earlier in the day on Tuesday, I took the opportunity to join the Greater Ossining Chamber of Commerce at the Elks Lodge where Andrew Ferris, Chief of Staff to County Executive George Latimer, presented the recently adopted County Budget.  This was a hold the line budget in many ways in which the County was trying to tie up loose ends with some major contracts, finally settling them, and prioritizing service delivery which most directly affects those in need of what the County provides. They are hopeful that with a pragmatic approach they will be back in good shape with an improved bond rating in the not too distant future. Also, the event was catered by the Tasty Table and it was delicious.


On Thursday morning, I had the pleasure of checking out Ossining's newest restaurant, the Tasty Table, in is home. Have you been yet? It's located at the corner of Campwoods Road and Stone Avenue in the space that was formerly the beloved Wobble Cafe, but I have a feeling that Tasty Table will also be a long-standing neighborhood fave. I got the mushroom frittata, which was excellent, but I also got to steal bites from my tablemates who ordered the pumpkin pancakes, the avocado toast, the bacon egg & cheese, and the yogurt and granola bowl, and everything was exceptional. I look forward to many more delicious meals there with friends and family. If you haven't been yet, take a drive over this weekend! There are still seats available for Sunday's Gingerbread House Decorating Party, a long-time tradition. $40 per gingerbread house gets you the walls, the ceiling, and everything you need to get your house looking HGTV ready. You can also have dinner while construction is taking place!


Today I participated in a workshop on bringing solar to local communities. We had worked with the model code developed by NYSERDA to establish a solar code for the town and we just closed the public hearing which we had held open for months to gather public input. I am pleased to say we have prioritized making sustainable energy production a priority.  Hopefully we can all move to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50% in 2030, which is the goal Governor Cuomo established for New York State.  Stay tuned for additional resolutions allowing us to collect Payment In Lieu of Taxes on these land uses.



As the Christmas holiday gets closer, there are even more opportunities to shop locally for the loved ones in your life. Last night, Ossining Matters kicked off their Family Holiday Shopping Stroll in Downtown Ossining, and the fun continues through this weekend. Head to the Ossining Matters website to purchase your OM Holiday Helper Pass and get 10% off of your purchases at Adega Wines, Hot Societe, Melita's, Vaza Salon and Ossining's newest toy shop Penny & Ting. Get your last minute shopping done right here in town while giving back to a local cause-- that OM card will more than pay for itself!


The merchants listed above, along with many of our other Ossining shops, are still accepting Ossining Bucks through January 2nd, so there is still time to cash in! Pick up your Bucks at the Ossining Public Library (53 Croton Avenue), the Ossining Recreation Center (95 Broadway) or the Ossining Village Manager's Office at 16 Croton Avenue. You can use one in each transaction in participating locations (see the list here) and get $5 off your purchase.



While you are out shopping, please don't forget to pick up some extras, if you're able. We still have the Ossining Boat & Canoe Club Holiday Drive box here at 16 Croton for another few days, and boxes can also be found at First Village Coffee, Mike Risko Music, Bob's Army Navy, Penny & Ting, Shine Salon, Value Drugs, Congregational Sons of Israel, Shattemuc Yacht Club and the Moonbeam Cafe. All of these boxes need to be filled with new, unwrapped toys and will be distributed to children right here in Ossining for Christmas. We are also continuing to accept coats and layering pieces as part of the Ossining Union Free School District Action Team collection, so please give as generously as your means will allow.


What are you up to tonight? At 6PM, the Ossining Elks will be holding a hoop shoot competition at the St. Ann's Gym at 16 Elizabeth Street. All basketball enthusiasts between the ages of 8 and 13 are welcome to come show off their best free throw!


Also tonight, join Bob Fetonti and the Briarcliff Manor Scarborough Historical Society (BMSHS) at 7PM for "The Many Lives of the Briarcliff Train Station" at the Briarcliff Manor Public Library. Come learn about the rich history of the spot and learn the long list of "travelers of note" who have stopped there. Learn more by contacting Donna Pesce at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



I know where I will be tomorrow morning-- the Ossining Down to Earth Farmer's Market is still in full swing down at Market Square. When you load up on your produce for the week ahead, consider some of the prepared food (jams, jellies, and more) as a host or hostess gift if you are traveling this holiday season. If you are shopping for any fellow Ossining foodies, consider picking up a copy of the 2019 Ossining Farmer's Market Calendar, produced in cooperation with the Ossining Arts Council-- they have t-shirts and tote bags too, which would make great stocking stuffers.



Also tomorrow is Breakfast with Santa at the Ossining Community Center! Right now, both seatings are waitlist only, but you never know! Head here to put your name on standby.


Another cool event this weekend? Bring your fur family for a photo shoot with Santa at the Mike Risko Music School. Our good friend Greg Perry will take a photo of your pet (and kids, too) with Santa before it's time for hot cocoa (not for pets) and crunchy treats (not for kiddos). If you're able, please bring along a donation of cat or dog food which will be dropped off to SPCA of Westchester. Make it a morning to remember-- how many pets get to meet The Big Red Man himself? They may even forgive you for making them wear that itchy sweater.




You can also check out the Pop-Up Shop at Melita's Home (125 Main Street) tomorrow between 10AM and 5PM-- she always has great items for gifts (and probably a few things for you too!)


Tomorrow night (Saturday, December 15th), come down to the Steamer Firehouse at 117 Main Street for an evening with Ellis Paul, beginning at 8PM. Tickets are available here-- don't miss this opportunity to hear some brilliant musical storytelling right here at home.


If you're up for trying something new, check out the Fable Farms Market on Saturdays and Sundays (10AM-3PM) through the end of this month. The farm, located at 1311 Kitchawan Road (Route 134) is not only pristine and beautiful, but also has a wide range of produce, eggs, meat, and dairy for sale, most of which is raised and grown right on the farm here in Ossining. They also sell other locally produced foods, candles, soaps and gift baskets in case you still need to do some shopping for the locavores in your life. If you decide to head over, please park in front of the "windmill field" and don't forget your recyclable bags! They also offer shares in their CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program year-round, which will get you regular access to fresh, seasonal produce grown right here in Ossining. Learn more here.




Here are a couple of helpful tips and information reprinted from the Village of Briarcliff Manor’s Manager’s report which may also be of interest, in case you do not receive Phil Zegarelli’s eblast:


“Santa’s Express.  The Briarcliff Manor Fire Department will be escorting Santa throughout the Village this Sunday, 16 December, beginning at 9:00 AM.  If you hear the sirens in your neighborhood come outside and wave to Santa and all his Fire Department elves.

Weather Alert.  Like last weekend, we may have a wintry mix of snow and rain with the possibility of “black ice conditions”.  Remember your local off-street parking rules that are in effect.

Ice Skating Rink. The Briarcliff Manor Ice Rink is being prepped for the Winter season. Current cold temperatures (especially if we do not get snow) could be a great start to our season. Because the last few years had poor weather for outdoor ice skating, permits from the past two seasons will be honored for 2018-19.  BUT if you’ve never purchased one, please contact the Recreation Office for details at 941-6560.  Seasonal passes are still just $5 for Village of Briarcliff Manor residents and $10 for Briarcliff school district residents.  Once we have ice, you can even rent the rink for a private skating party if you’d like!


From the Briarcliff Manor Village Clerk.  Please do not wait for the last moment … like New Year’s Eve day! We are still accepting applications for the 2019 Scarborough Station Parking. All single and double permits received to date have been approved and mailed back to applicants.

From the Briarcliff Manor Fire Department (BMFD).   The Fire Chief would like to remind you of a few simple Safety Tips to follow if placing a live tree indoors during the Holidays.  As you deck the halls this holiday season, be fire safety smart.  A small fire that spreads to a Christmas Tree/Hanukkah Bush can spread very quickly. 

  • Picking the tree - Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
  • Placing the tree - Before placing the tree in the stand, cut 2” from the base of the trunk.
  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights. 
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
  • Be sure to add water to the tree stand daily.
  • Lighting the tree - Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory.  Lights will be labeled for indoor or outdoor use.
  • DO NOT use any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections. Read manufacturer’s instructions for number of light strands to connect.
  • NEVER use lit candles to decorate the tree.
  • Always turn off tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Discarding the tree - Get rid of the tree soon after the holiday or when it is dry.  Dried-out trees are a fire danger.
  • Pack away outdoor electrical lights after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer.

You can follow on Facebook www.facebook.com/briarcliffmanorfd and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/briarcliffmanorfiredept.


From the Village of Briarcliff Manor Police Department. PBA Holiday Drives.  The VBMPD PBA has teamed up with the Fire Department to collect coats and toys through the current holiday drive.  Their Annual Coat Drive is looking for new or gently used winter coats to be dropped off at the Briarcliff Manor Police Headquarters, 1111 Pleasantville Road, at any time through  today.  Also today ... there’s the PBA Annual Toy Drive: drop off new unwrapped toys at the Police Headquarters. All toys will be delivered to the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at the Westchester Medical Center on the 16th of December.

From Recreation and Parks. 

  • The Recreation Department’s Winter Program Brochure is now available on the Village website at www.briarcliffmanor.org. Winter program registration is underway so take a look and see if there’s a program you’d like to try in the New Year! Resolution season is coming!
  • Platform Tennis season has begun, so remember to get your permits and enjoy this wonderful cool/cold weather sport!

From the Village Treasurer/Finance.  Your second half Village of Briarcliff Manor tax bill has a 1 December 2018 due date but payable by Monday, 31 December 2018.  The second half “bill” was mailed in May when you received the original.  Additional bills will not be sent.  If you have any questions, you can go on line or call the Village Hall at 914-941-4800.”



I hope everyone enjoys their weekend-- the high for tomorrow is predicted to be almost 50 degrees. After the Climate Change seminar I went to on Wednesday, it’s easier to understand why this could happen when just yesterday we were watching the snow falling hard and fast! Please do be careful out there. Take it slow and take it in if we do get that wintry mix. Have a peaceful weekend. Please also remember that, as the holidays grow closer, some of our offices may be closed intermittently due to vacations-- if you have important business to conduct, I recommend calling the office before you head over just to ensure someone will be there to help you when you arrive.



Town Board Contacts

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

Council Members: Karen D'Attore, Elizabeth Feldman, Jackie Shaw, Northern Wilcher Jr.