Food Scrap Recycling has officially come to the Town of Ossining! The last of the program materials arrived this week so we are finally ready to launch this weekend. Residential kits will be sold starting tomorrow, Saturday, February 8th at the Green Ossining booth at EagleFest. Stop by to say hi to Marcus DaSilva, our part-timer working on this program, as well as Suzie Ross and the other Green Ossining volunteers. They are passionate about saving the environment and will be happy to answer your questions, get you set up with a residential kit, or even sign you up to be a volunteer for the program. Can't make it to EagleFest? Starting on Monday, Marcus will be at the Cedar Lane Art Center three days a week (Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays) with kits available for sale. The collection point for all food scraps will also be at Cedar Lane Park, in the parking lot adjacent to the Art Center. Check out our dedicated webpage on this program to learn more and sign up for the mailing list. Check out this residential kit -- for just $20 (or $21 if paying by credit or debit card) this could all be yours! These kits have been vetted by the group in Scarsdale that launched Food Scrap collection in Westchester County. As long as you seal them, they are odor free. They said these kits have been working out really well for the other municipalities that have been using them. Also, the collection bins lock securely and are varmint proof. As a reminder, all residents from the Town of Ossining (including those that live in the Villages of Ossining or Briarcliff Manor) are eligible to participate in this voluntary program.
While you're picking up your composting kit, learn more from Green Ossining about the upcoming plastic bag ban in New York State , which goes into effect on March 1st, 2020. Start the habit now -- make sure you always have a reusable bag (or two!) with you when you go to the grocery store. Did you know that New Yorkers use over 23 billion plastic bags every year? That is simply unacceptable and devastating to the environment. Learn more about the plastic bag ban online or from our Green Ossining volunteers Saturday, and do your part to help our planet!
Even if you aren’t looking to purchase a compost kit this weekend, or aren't planning to chat with Green Ossining Volunteers about the plastic bag ban, EagleFest is an absolutely amazing event. This is Teatown’s 16th celebration of the bald eagles migration and stop on the Hudson River. The event is at Croton Point Park from 9am-4pm this Saturday, tickets are no longer available online but you can buy them at the event. There are birds of prey shows, films, food trucks, historic walks, viewings of wild birds like eagles, owls, and hawks through scopes, and lots for the whole family to do, and we are anticipating some great weather. So come one come all!
Earlier this week, I met with Superintendent of Recreation Bill Garrison, and Mike and Miriam Risko from Mike Risko Music to go over the preliminary schedule for the Summer Concert Series. Many excellent candidates replied, and Mike and Miriam put together a great mix for summer. I can't wait to share the schedule with you for the summer once it is all confirmed. We will hopefully have the schedule finalized in the coming weeks! The Chamber is also preparing to solicit food trucks and other vendors to participate in Food Truck Fridays this summer. Stay tuned for vendor applications, sponsorship opportunities, and more coming in the near future. It is always fun to daydream about summer Friday nights at the waterfront on dreary February days like today!
Town Clerk Sue Donnelly, Deputy Town Clerk Martha Quituisaca, Town Counsel Christie Tomm Addona, Budget Officer Victoria Cafarelli, and I got together this week to discuss the rollout of our new Dog Park and License legislation. As you might remember, we adopted a Local Law a few months back regarding administration, rules, and permitting for the dog parks at Cedar Lane and Ryder Parks. All residents (yes -- the canine ones!) with valid dog licenses will be given permits to utilize the dog parks at Cedar Lane and Ryder Park. We have also shifted the schedule for dog licenses that every license will be issued from June 1 - May 31 annually. Since this year is the first year, it will take some administrative creativity to get everyone on the same schedule ensure everyone who wants to utilize the dog parks gets their correct tags to do so. Keep an eye out for more information from the Clerk's office very soon.
Westchester County Executive George Latimer shared this today: With flu season at or near its peak, the County Health Department will offer residents more free flu vaccines in February. You can call 995-5800 to schedule a flu vaccine at a County Clinic for residents age 3 and up, as follows:
- Tuesdays, Feb. 11, 18 and 25, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., 134 Court St., White Plains
- Fridays, Feb. 7 and 21 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., 134 Court St., White Plains
- Friday, Feb. 14 and 28, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., 20 S. Broadway, Yonkers.
Westchester flu clinics are open to all, especially those without insurance or whose insurance doesn’t cover vaccines. The New York State Department of Health has reported a surge in the number of laboratory-confirmed influenza cases and hospitalizations reported statewide. In the week ending January 25, 15,012 lab-confirmed cases of flu and 2,015 flu-related hospitalizations were reported statewide -- so it is especially important to take any steps you can to prevent getting to flu this season. Flu activity usually peaks between December and February, but can last into May. One flu vaccine now provides protection all season long and can prevent illness or reduce the severity of flu symptoms. The vaccine becomes fully effective after about two weeks. Thank you to Westchester County for offering this service County-wide, hopefully we can stop the flu in its tracks!
Starting in February and ending April 15th, IFCA Housing Network will be providing free income tax preparation services at their offices on Spring Street and at Ossining High School. This program is for New York State residents, who work in New York State, have incomes less than $56,000 per year, and who are eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit. You can start making appointments now by calling (914) 941-5252 for sessions at IFCA's headquarters at 138 Spring Street and appointments are available Monday (12pm-3pm), Tuesday (10am-3pm), Wednesday (1pm-5pm), Thursday (10am-3pm), Friday (1:30pm-3:30pm), and Saturday (12:30pm-3:30pm). There will also be walk-in hours on Mondays from February 3rd through April 6th at Ossining High School (Room 202) from 4pm through 8pm. Please note the walk-in hours at OHS will not be held on February 17th, April 6th, and April 13th. This program is sponsored by Wells Fargo Foundation.
There is also tax preparation help available at the Ossining Public Library. Here are the details:
The Winter Cycle of the Ossining School District's Saturday Explore and Learn ends this Saturday. Check out the many fun offerings they have for the whole family, while there's still time! Stay tuned for details about the Spring Cycle soon.
The Ossining Public Library has an amazing line-up of adult programming for African American Heritage Month. Check out this weekend's Meditation Aromatherapy Sound Session with Beverly "Aminata" Spencer in the 2nd Floor Conference Room. What a relaxing and meaningful way to start the weekend!
There are some awesome cultural arts events lined up in Ossining this weekend -- check out one (or all!) of them!
Our very own Receiver of Taxes, Honorable Holly Perlowitz and Town Clerk, Honorable Susanne Donnelly are the guests of honor at the Greater Ossining Chamber of Commerce's February 11th Business B4 Business Breakfast at The Tasty Table. Come, meet your local elected officials, and learn all about the services provided by their offices to the entire Town of Ossining.
The US Census 2020 is gearing up this month and they are hiring! Learn more about potential job opportunities at a job fair here in Ossining hosted by Ossining's Census Committee, Ossining Counts, coming up on February 12th at the Community Center from 1pm to 6pm in the Museum Lobby. They recently increased the salary and I believe it’s around $23 an hour.
Gullotta House's 3rd annual Escape from Sing Sing Plunge is coming up next weekend! Register now, or become a sponsor -- the proceeds fund the Gullotta House's many deserving causes. And yes, I am still planning to take the plunge!
With the Legislative Session under way in Albany, the Ossining Schools are gearing up their advocacy efforts once again to increase the share of Foundation Aid to the "Harmed Suburban Five" School Districts -- Ossining, Glen Cove City School District, Port Chester-Rye Union Free School District, Riverhead Central School District, and Westbury School District. Save the date, March 26th, for a planned rally in Albany to advocate for fair funding with our State legislators. Learn more at the Ossining School's website about other ways you can get involved in the meantime.