Dana Levenberg, Town Supervisor
phone (914) 762-6001
fax (914) 762-0833
16 Croton Avenue
Ossining, NY 10562
The Supervisor's 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.
- Last Updated: 10 January 2020 10 January 2020
This week we have been getting back to our normal schedule for the new year. On Wednesday, I attended the State of the State Address in Albany with Assemblywoman Sandy Galef and some her staff as well as County Legislator Catherine Borgia. I enjoyed learning more about the Governor's priorities for 2020 and look forward to seeing how on a local level we can benefit from new State programs.
We made a lot of progress this week planning for the launch of our Food Scrap Recycling Program, funded by a grant from the New York State DEC. The last of the collection bins are ordered and we have been collaborating with Teatown to plan our education campaign associated with the program. But the biggest news of all is that we will be appointing our part-time Food Scrap Recycling Coordinator, Marcus DaSilva, at next Tuesday's board meeting. We met Marcus, and upon learning about his passion for the environment and all things outdoors, we knew he would be an excellent fit to help us coordinate this grant-funded program. Marcus will be starting at the end of January, leading up to our soft launch of the program in February. Very soon you will be able to compost all of your food scraps -- like the peels from these yummy Mandarin oranges! Stay tuned for more details about how and where to purchase kits to begin composting, and get ready to visit Marcus at Cedar Lane Park in just a few weeks.
On Wednesday, we received an update from the Village of Ossining Water Department regarding an issue some residents have been experiencing with the taste and odor quality of their tap water in recent weeks. The Village of Ossining Water Department also supplies water to the Unincorporated Town of Ossining. We shared this message in a separate e-blast yesterday morning, but I wanted to share this once again to ensure all see this message. I have also received word directly from the County Executive's office that the County Department of Health has tested the water and deems it safe to drink. Thank you to Water Superintendent Andy Tiess and Village Manager Karen D'Attore who have been working hard to develop solutions to this situation.
"In response to taste and odor issues, Ossining is now operating the Indian Brook Reservoir at 100% for our water supply. We will use this time period to design and implement a Powder Activated Carbon System to address this and similar issues in the future. In the interim, we will continue to use 100% Indian Brook as our water source while we continuously monitor reservoir levels. System demand is low this time of year, so it will take several days for the Croton Reservoir water already in the system to flush itself out. During this time, you may continue to detect taste and odor issues. However, within the next week or two, we anticipate significant improvements.
Recently we have been experiencing taste and odor issues with our water, described by residents as a musty taste and smell. It was determined by New York City that taste and odor issues stemmed from a specific organic compound 2-Methylisoborneol (MIB), produced by algae, detected in the Croton Reservoir, where Ossining draws most of its water from.
While Ossining and Westchester County continuously monitor water quality, we have been conducting additional tests under the guidance of Kirk Nowak, Ph.D., the leading expert in the country on taste and odor issues associated with potable water, to gain additional information and develop more effective strategies to address this issue. Today, we received results from Engineering Performance Solutions, an outside laboratory that specializes in testing algae that can cause taste and odor issues. It was found that the Croton water source had a result of 105.0 (ng/L) MIB, and Indian Brook had a result of <1.0 (ng/L) MIB. We immediately called the Westchester County Department of Health to get authorization to move to 100% Indian Brook as our source.
This condition has never been experienced during the 33 years of the water treatment plant operation. Further, this is not an Ossining-only issue. The taste and odor has affected all municipalities that draw from the Croton Reservoir. Despite the taste and odor, the water has been and remains safe to drink.
We appreciate your patience and apologize for any inconvenience. As we embark on the construction of a new water treatment facility, we will be working closely with experts to incorporate technologies needed to prevent this and similar issues in the future.
Please contact the Indian Brook Water Filtration Plant with any questions at 914-941-0128."
Yesterday, we went to the SPCA of Westchester to deliver the money raised by the Forest O'Fears team from their event last October. We were thrilled that this hardworking team, led by Fern Quezada, was able to raise over $7,000 to help support the animals at the SPCA. Huge thanks to Shannon Laukhuf and Lisa Bonnano from the SPCA of Westchester for being such excellent partners and for all they do to support our community and our community pets! We were also joined by some new four-legged friends, Daphne (up front with Lisa) and Minnie (with Maddi right behind them). Daphne is still up for adoption, but Minnie has found her forever home -- otherwise we would have brought her back to live on the 3rd floor at 16 Croton with us! Check out the many animals up for adoption and learn more about their incredible mission at the SPCA of Westchester website.
Finally, today is a bittersweet day in the Town of Ossining. Today is our Budget Director, Maddi Zachacz's last day working for the Town. Maddi has worked for the Town of Ossining for nearly 10 years as our Budget Director, Personnel Director, Aide to the Supervisor, and all around superhero to her colleagues. We are truly going to miss her, and her dedication, creativity, passion, and the intelligence she brings to her job each and every day. Maddi is going to be moving on to the Village of Ossining as Assistant Village Manager, and we know she will be amazing at this new responsibility. And best of all -- she is not going far and the Ossining community will continue to benefit from her hard work. At Tuesday's Board Meeting, we presented Maddi with a proclamation recognizing her continued service to the Ossining community. Today is Maddi Zachacz Day in the Town of Ossining -- a truly deserving honor!
The sweet part of this bittersweet day is that on Monday, my current Confidential Secretary, Victoria Cafarelli, will be stepping up into the role of Budget Director. Victoria has been working in the Supervisor's Office since December of 2015 -- right before I took office as Supervisor -- and has been learning so much in her current role. Maddi has been teaching Victoria all her tricks, so we won't skip a beat. So if you see Maddi or Victoria around town this weekend, be sure to wish them both well.
The Town Highway Department would like to remind everyone that leaf pick-up season is over for the winter. Please do not leave unbagged leaves to the curb for pick-up. Instead, all leaves must be bagged and put to the curb on your assigned brush pick-up day.
Also, Dale Cemetery Superintendent Pete Connolly would like to remind everyone to please pick up any seasonal decorations from Dale Cemetery or Sparta Cemetery by Monday, January 27th. Otherwise, the decorations will be removed and disposed of by our Cemetery Staff. If you have any questions, please call the Cemetery office at (914) 941-1155.
The Ossining School District's Saturday Explore and Learn series kicks off again for the winter session tomorrow, Saturday, January 11th. Register now for the many offerings for your entire family.
Mark your calendar for Repair Cafe dates in 2020 -- the first is this Saturday!
Get ready for Eagle Fest with a free film screening of "Bird of Prey" at the Ossining Public Library on Saturday, January 11th at 2pm, sponsored by Teatown Lake Reservation. This film by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology focuses on the Great Philippine Eagle and the efforts to save this species from extinction. I have heard great things about the beautiful cinematography -- you won't want to miss this!
A book discussion group focusing on African-American authors meets at the Ossining Public Library on the 3rd Saturday of each month. This month's book is Americanah by Chimandanda Ngozi Adiche, and the next meeting is January 18th at 3pm. Next month's book is The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead -- get your copy reserved now at OPL!
Plan on joining the Briarcliff-Ossining Ministerial Society for a service remembering the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Sunday, January 19th at 7:30pm at Star of Bethlehem Church. This annual service will feature the theme of Renewal and Reconciliation with speaker Reverend Dr. William Shaw. Reverend Shaw has experienced the power of renewal and reconciliation advocating for peace and acceptance through sectarian conflicts in Northern Ireland. This is sure to be an inspiring evening honoring the life and legacy of Dr. King.
Another way to honor Dr. King is to attend the Cooperative Scholarship Fund Celebration and Tribute to Dr. King, to be held on Saturday, January 18th at 3pm at the Ossining High School Theater. Donations will support the Cooperative Scholarship Fund, which goes directly to OHS students heading to college.
Assemblywoman Sandy Galef has her annual Town Meetings lined up for January and February, starting on January 25th at the Desmond Fish Library in Garrison at 10am and the Field Library in Peekskill at 1pm. Assemblywoman Galef will also be more local to us at the Briarcliff Manor Library on Thursday, February 6th at 7pm.
Save the date, Saturday, February 15th, for Gullotta House's 3rd annual Escape from Sing Sing Plunge! Register now, or become a sponsor -- the proceeds fund the Gullotta House's many deserving causes.
- Last Updated: 08 January 2020 08 January 2020
Happy New Year!
First of all, I would like to thank the community members, Town and Village staff members, current and former elected officials, and our families and friends that joined us, all of the newly elected or re-elected officials, for the annual Town and Village of Ossining Inauguration for 2020. It was a great way to start the new year, as we reflected upon our goals for the community.
As I was sworn in for my third term as Town Supervisor, (by my son, Caleb, who is a Notary Public -- thanks Caleb!), I shared some of my priorities for 2020. One of my primary goals in 2020 for Ossining is to ensure that we get an accurate count as part of the 2020 Federal Census. An accurate count will ensure we receive our fair share of funding on the County, State, and Federal level. With literally millions of dollars on the line, it is so important that we all do our part to complete the census questionnaires ourselves, and encourage our friends, family members, and neighbors to do the same. Here in the Town of Ossining, we have partnered with the Village of Ossining to form the Ossining Counts committee, with the sole focus of ensuring an accurate count during this census. The Village of Briarcliff Manor has also formed a "Full Count for Briarcliff" committee, and we look forward to working with our partners in Briarcliff on these efforts as well. We know in 2010 Ossining was not counted accurately, and we simply cannot afford to allow that to happen again. The census also employs many people throughout the process -- visit the 2020 Census Jobs page to learn more and apply.
We are kicking this initiative off in January with several important events, starting with our first work session of the year next Tuesday, January 7th. Norma Drummond, Commissioner of the Westchester County Planning Department, will be visiting us to deliver a presentation on the census and all Westchester County has planned to ensure we are all counted accurately.
- Last Updated: 23 December 2019 23 December 2019
First off -- mark your calendars for the 2020 Town and Village of Ossining Inauguration of Elected Officials. The Town has many officials being sworn into office for the New Year, including myself and my Board colleagues Greg Meyer and Liz Feldman plus Justices Reisman and Leavitt, Town Clerk Sue Donnelly and Town Highway Superintendent Pete Connolly. I look forward to being sworn in for my third term in office and sharing our priorities for 2020. Please join us!
It has been quite a busy week as we all prepare to celebrate the holidays with our family and friends. Before I get into the week at a glance, I want to share a few events I participated in this past weekend.
- Last Updated: 16 December 2019 16 December 2019
Before I get into what a busy week it has been in the Town of Ossining, I wanted to share with you a picture from an event I attended last Friday. I had the honor to meet Evelyn Partalis, the one Ossining resident that was inducted into the Westchester County Senior Hall of Fame as part of their class of 2019. Evelyn had an inspiring career as a teacher, and has gone on in her retirement to share her love of education and volunteerism with fellow teachers and the community as a whole. Evelyn is quite a remarkable lady, and I am so proud she calls home. Congratulations Evelyn!
This was a bittersweet week in the Town, as we started saying goodbye to our Town/Village Clerk, Honorable Mary Ann Roberts. Mary Ann has decided to retire this year after 20 years in her current role as Clerk, and 10 years of service to the Village of Ossining as Trustee and Mayor before that.
Mary Ann has lived in Ossining since she was a young girl, and has dedicated most of her adult life to serving her neighbors and making Ossining a better place to call home. Mary Ann and her late husband Fred, raised their children Kim and Sarah here, and both worked so hard in their professional and volunteer roles to serve their community.
As Clerk, Mary Ann touched the lives of so many in Ossining, literally from birth to death, marriage, and everything in between including dog licenses, FOIL requests, Town and Village Board Meetings, hunting and fishing licenses, parking permits, all sorts of other licenses, and much, much more. The Clerk’s office is often the face of Town and Village government and Mary Ann has done an excellent job at serving her neighbors.
At our Regular Meeting on Tuesday night, we presented Mary Ann with a proclamation, recognizing her decades of service to our community.
- Last Updated: 09 December 2019 09 December 2019
We are sending this out a bit early today, since the Town and Village will be holding our annual Holiday Lunch today between 1PM and 4PM. Our offices will be closed during this time, and we look forward to seeing you bright and early on Monday morning!
This past Tuesday, the Town Board skipped a meeting in order to hold our Annual Volunteer Celebration, which we held at the Cedar Lane Arts Center this year. Every year, we invite the folks who serve on our land use boards, Board of Assessment Review, Board of Ethics, Recreation Advisory Board, Green Ossining, the Environmental Advisory Committee, and the Mid Hudson Ambulance District Board to be recognized for all of their hard work with some kind words, some chit chat, and of course, some snacks. This year, we tried something a bit different and had our friend Mini Dhingra of Samosa Shack to whip up some veggie based treats for our guests, most of which were also gluten free and sourced with produce from Fable Farm! If you haven't tried Mini's food yet, you can find her at many of our local farmer's markets-- while her samosas are exceptional, her chutneys will convert even the pickiest eaters to Indian-inspired cuisine zealots. Chutney > Everything.
We also took the opportunity to honor the Town's Employee of the Year for 2019-- Mark Gallagher of the Town Parks Department has been with us for just under 2 years, but his positive attitude and willingness to assist on any and all projects has made him a fantastic addition to our team. If you see Mark out and about, please wish him congratulations!