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Vol. 15/Number 5

Larchmont, town eye Rye dissolution By JASON CHIREVAS STAFF REPORTER jason@hometwn.com

With the discussion of how best to dissolve the Town of Rye continuing–if plans for dissolution in fact move forward at all–the Town of Mamaroneck and its incorporated Village of Larchmont are keeping a close eye on the situation. Rye Town is made up of the villages of Port Chester and Rye Brook, as well as the Rye Neck section of the Village of Mamaroneck. Unlike the Town of Mamaroneck, there is no section of Rye Town that is not wholly incorporated into another municipality. In New York State, villages must exist inside of towns. Rye Town Supervisor Joe Carvin, a Republican, heads a steering committee examining the economic and governmental ramifications should the Town of Rye dissolve. The committee commissioned a grantfunded report by the Center for Governmental Research exploring alternatives for how best to handle the resulting municipalities after the dissolution. The resolution the study favors would see the villages of Port Chester and Rye Brook become coterminous town-villages while Rye Neck is annexed by the Village of Mamaroneck, which would become a coterminous town-village, seceding from the Town of Mamaroneck. A coterminous town-village is a municipality that enjoys the benefits of both designations. At present, Harrison, Mount Kisco and Scarsdale are the only coterminous town-villages in Westchester County. Another option, first introduced to the steering committee at a public hearing in the Village of Mamaroneck by Democratic Trustee Leon Potok, would have

the Town of Rye shrink to include just Rye Neck, which would then be called the Town of Rye Neck–a whole and separate town from the Village of Mamaroneck, of which it is now a part. Carvin said this would make the Town of Rye Neck a “paper town” unable to supply its own municipal services, which is the case as things stand now. Additionally, Carvin said, though the Town of Rye Neck solution is the one the steering committee is leaning toward, nothing is final and even if enacted, it is not ideal. Village of Mamaroneck Mayor Norman Rosenblum, a Republican, has publicly favored the CGR solution in which the village would annex Rye Neck and become a coterminous town-village. “The Village of Mamaroneck is independent now,” Rosenblum said at the Larchmont-Mamaroneck Local Summit breakfast on Jan. 22. “It has all the services now. It has the fire department, the DPW; it has all the services.” If the Village of Mamaroneck becomes a coterminous town-village, it would have a direct effect on the Village of Larchmont and the unincorporated Town of Mamaroneck. The decision to become a coterminous town-village would ultimately lay with voters in the applicable municipalities. Three previous coterminous votes for the Village of Mamaroneck have failed. Rosenblum said he thinks he knows why a vote after the proposed Rye Town dissolution will succeed. “The difference this time is there is an interest by the Village of Larchmont in possibly investigating becoming a coterminous townvillage,” Rosenblum said. “If the Village of Mamaroneck and Village RYE TOWN continued on page 14

February 1, 2013

The Carly Factor Carly Rose Sonenclar waves to fans from Molly Spillane’s pub after a Mamaroneck parade in her honor on Jan. 27. Sonenclar finished second on the 2012 season of “The X-Factor,” a reality competition show created by Simon Cowell. For more, see page 11. Photo/Bobby Begun

Larchmont Democrats nominate trustees, judge By ALEXANDRA BOGDANOVIC STAFF REPORTER alexandra@hometwn.com

Two village trustees were nominated for re-election, and a sitting village justice was nominated to seek another term at the Village of Larchmont Democratic Party caucus Jan. 29. It appears to be another race without Republican opposition in Larchmont, a village in which Democrats have controlled every seat and had no formal opposition for more than half a decade. Trustees Lorraine Walsh and John Komar will each seek their second term in the March 19 election. Village Justice Thea Beaver will seek her fifth term. Former Larchmont Mayor Josh Mandell began the proceedings by nominating Walsh, saying he’s known her since his own introduction to politics.

“Lorraine possesses a number of virtues including the ability to listen,” Mandell said. “She is handsdown the best listener I know, and listening is a big part of the job as a village trustee. She not only listens, she pays attention, asks key questions and makes insightful comments.” Democratic Party Chair Brigid Brennan, who seconded the nomination, said Walsh isn’t a “typical politician.” Instead, Walsh is a “quiet worker behind the scenes who gets the work done.” “I nominated her two years ago, and I was so delighted she won,” Brennan said. “I am delighted to nominate her again.” Walsh, who has lived in the village for 15 years, has served as cochair of the Town of Mamaroneck/ Village of Larchmont Coastal Zone Management Committee and as chair

Larchmont’s Democratic Party nominated village trustees Lorraine Walsh and John Komar, and Village Justice Thea Beaver to seek re-election this March. Contributed Photo.

of the Larchmont Democrats. She has also volunteered at the Sheldrake Environmental Center. CAUCUS continued on page 10


2 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013


February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 3

Town reassessment could ease tax appeals By JASON CHIREVAS STAFF REPORTER jason@hometwn.com

An ongoing reassessment in the Town of Mamaroneck could go a long way to reducing the number of property tax grievances residents file each year, but a slightly stronger economy may mean those numbers have already peaked. If residents feel their property has been over assessed, they can file a grievance with their local village or town. If the grievance is rejected, a property owner may file a Small Claims Assessment Review, or SCAR, with the county to appeal the local municipality’s decision. If the county grants the appeal, the property owner is issued a tax certiorari from the local municipality. Westchester County Clerk Timothy C. Idoni said the total number of SCARs filed with the county has dropped from 2011 to 2012. According to a statement from Idoni, there were a total of 9,068 SCARs filed with the county in 2012, down 1,528 from 2011 when there were 10,596 SCARs filed, which was an all-time high. Idoni said a granted SCAR is typically bad news for the local government involved. “It forces municipalities to identify equivalent reductions in spending or unpopular increases in revenue,” Idoni said. The local numbers were largely consistent with the county totals. In the Town of Mamaroneck, SCARs dropped from 448 to 228 between 2011 and 2012. In the Village of Larchmont, there were 32 SCARs in 2011, but only 9 in 2012. The Village of Mamaroneck, however, bucked the county trend. It saw a slight increase in SCARs year-to year, with 91 filed in 2011 and 92 in 2012. Although its SCAR numbers are already trending downward, the Town of Mamaroneck’s town-wide reassessment, which is currently underway, will likely serve to drive the number of grievances and appeals even lower. Town Administrator Stephen Altieri said the process would reassess properties at 100 percent of estimated market value. This will give the town a much more accurate

picture when assessing property taxes, which can lead to fewer over assessments and, in turn, fewer grievances and SCARs. The last town-wide assessment in Mamaroneck was done in 1968 and accessed properties at 45 percent of estimated market value. Altieri said that while the reassessment could have a reductive affect on the number of grievances and SCARs in the town in the long term, something else might account for the drop in SCARs the town has already seen. “Sometimes, as market values start to go back up, you will see that the SCARs come down because there’s not that much to appeal anymore,” Altieri said. “And often the value we have on the books is lower than what the market value is.” Altieri said that when property values increase those residents who still feel they’re over assessed consider other factors when determining whether or not to file a grievance or SCAR appeal. “For a property owner to incur the expense of a SCAR, they have to bring in an appraiser, they have to bring in a lawyer, and when you start to incorporate that into the equation, it becomes something people are less prone to do,” Altieri said. Village of Mamaroneck Manager Richard Slingerland said while a possible combination of increasing property values in some areas of the village offset by decreasing property values in other areas could explain the plateau in the village’s SCARs appeals from 2011 to 2012, it’s important to remember what the result of the town’s reassessment is likely to be. “Typically, when a revaluation is performed, the portion of the community will remain the same in their valuation, the portion that will go up, the portion that will go down; an easy rule of thumb is to say a third each,” Slingerland said. Idoni said when property owners suffer under the realities of declining incomes, underemployment and unemployment indicative of a slow economy, they look for ways to relieve some of that pressure, and a high property tax bill can be a prime candidate for an avenue to save money.

With Honors Gabrielle French, a sophomore from Mamaroneck, was named to the fall semester dean’s list at Bryant University. Danielle Levy of Larchmont has been named to the dean’s list at Quinnipiac University for the Fall 2012 semester.

Have a news Tip?

Contact your local reporter Alexandra Bogdanovic alexandra@hometwn.com


4 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

C ommunity Briefs Volunteers needed at Sarah Neuman Center Sarah Neuman Center in Mamaroneck is seeking volunteers of all ages and invites you to share your talents and time. If you enjoy cooking, sewing, painting, knitting, arts and crafts reading and/or have an interesting hobby, then you can make a difference in the lives of seniors. For more information, contact Amy Lionheart, director of volunteer programs, to learn about volunteer opportunities at (914) 864-5140 or email alionheart@jewishhome.org. Indoor farmers market returns to Mamaroneck Renowned as “The King of Greens,” farmer Brian Gajeski of Gajeski Produce is preparing to earn his moniker this winter at the Mamaroneck Winter Farmers Market. The indoor market opened on Jan. 5 and will run every Saturday through May 18, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, located at 168 W. Boston Post Road in Mamaroneck. The Mamaroneck Winter Farmers Market will be held indoors during the cold winter days and move out to St. Thomas Church parking lot in the warmer days of spring.

Jean Bruce scholarship open Jean Bruce was committed to the power of education for women and wanted to do whatever she could to enable women to achieve their educational goals. Upon her death, she left a sizable bequest to the Larchmont Chapter (Chapter AJ) of the P.E.O. Sisterhood and, as a result of this bequest, Chapter AJ is proud to announce the creation of an annual $2,000 scholarship, which will be awarded in Bruce’s memory to a 2013 high school graduate who resides in the Larchmont/Mamaroneck community. P.E.O. is an organization where women celebrate the advancement of women, educate women through scholarships, grants, loans and stewardship of Cottey College and motivate women to achieve their highest aspirations. Applicants must: • Be 20 years of age or less on March 1, 2013 • Be a citizen or legal permanent resident of the U.S. or Canada • Plan to attend an accredited post-secondary educational institution in the U.S. or Canada in the fall of 2013, and • Have a minimum un-weighted GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale The scholarship selection committee will select that applicant deemed to have best demonstrated excellence in academics, leadership, extracurricular activities, community service and potential for future success. The application deadline is March 1. The selection will be done in an impartial manner. Applicants need not be a

P.E.O. member or related to one. Students related to a current member of the P.E.O. Chapter AJ Scholarship Selection Committee are not eligible. Please contact Christine King at (914) 8345812 if you are interested in submitting an application. Valentine origami hearts project for Sandy Hook Port Chester-Rye Brook Public Library One Haseco Ave., Port Chester (914) 939-6710 portchester-ryebrooklibrary.org Sign up to make Valentine origami hearts to send to the Sandy Hook community at the Port Chester-Rye Brook Public Library on Feb. 1 from 3:45p.m. – 4:30 p.m. in the Children’s Room. Enrollment is limited. Pre-registration is required by phone or in person. Upcoming Pet Rescue events Puppy/dog meet and greet Feb. 2 from 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. Petco 1275 Boston Post Road, Larchmont “Smooch the Pooch” Feb. 2 from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Larchmont Floral Designs 114 Chatsworth Ave., Larchmont For more information on the events, visit

NY-PetRescue.org, email petrescueny@aol. com or call (914) 834-6955. Free adoption information session Feb. 4 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m. Port Chester-Rye Brook Public Library One Haseco Ave., Port Chester (914) 939-6710 portchester-ryebrooklibrary.org This free event, hosted by Forever Families Through Adoption, Inc., is open to anyone interested in or involved with the adoption process, including professionals, community members, expectant parents, adoptive or prospective adoptive parents and adoptees. Come learn about the domestic and international adoption process and meet the staff of Forever Families Through Adoption. Forever Families Through Adoption, Inc. is authorized in New York and Connecticut. For more information about the organization, call (914) 939-1180, email adopt@ ForeverFamiliesThroughAdoption.org or visit foreverfamiliesthroughadoption.org. Deadline for our Community Briefs section is every Friday at 12 p.m. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

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February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 5

Rye Neck officials: Safety improvements could be costly By ALEXANDRA BOGDANOVIC STAFF REPORTER alexandra@hometwn.com

Rye Neck school officials said they’re doing what’s necessary to improve school security, but cautioned parents that the improvements could take a big chunk out of future budgets. Speaking during the Board of Education’s Jan. 23 meeting, board President Guy Pipolo said the board has been working closely with the administration to address school security. “It continues to be a priority,” said Pipolo. “We’re taking a thoughtful, purposeful approach, and adding new measures to make the district the toughest possible target.” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Peter Mustich also said security is a topic of discussion for administrators “every single week.” Existing security measures are being enforced, Mustich said, and buildings are secured. Parents and visitors must show photo identification when entering school buildings, the superintendent added. Additionally, he said the staff has been trained and will be retrained on security protocols. Plans are also in the works to enhance communications links, as well as install new panic buttons and strobe lights throughout the district, Mustich said. “These are large campuses with large numbers of students, but we can improve security,” Mustich said. “Some of the changes may be very costly, so we need to be careful moving forward.”

When asked to elaborate, Mustich said in a Jan. 28 phone interview that he has asked architects to come up with a proposal reflecting the cost of security enhancements, including upgrades to phone, camera and speaker systems throughout the district. Given the comprehensive nature of his request, Mustich said he probably wouldn’t have specific figures until mid-February. Personnel costs will also have to be taken into account as school officials calculate potential budget impacts, Mustich added. Meanwhile, school administrators are working with state and local police to assess existing security measures and improvements, according to Mustich. Village of Mamaroneck Police Det. Sandra DiRuzza confirmed that representatives from the agency met with members of the Rye Neck School District on several occasions in December and January 2012. City of Rye Police Commissioner William Connors said representatives of the Rye Police Department observed a recent emergency drill at Rye Neck High School, and that Rye police have participated in past drills in the Rye Neck School District. Connors also said that he and Detective John Wood attend the school district’s annual safety committee meeting at which security plans are reviewed and updated. Details of current and future school security plans will not be released, Mustich said.

Rye Neck High School

“People have asked me [for specifics],” Mustich said. “Those details will not be released. I do not think it is appropriate.” General updates on school security will still be provided, though. At a planning meeting held immediately prior to its regular session, the board took another step toward boosting school security. With a unanimous vote, the board backed the Lower Hudson Council of School Superintendents’ “Call for Action.” In the wake of the mass shooting at Sandy

Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. last month, the council demanded “immediate action” to prevent future tragedies. The council, which includes representatives from 78 school districts, proposed specific policy and legislative reforms including but not limited to: • Providing funding to schools and communities for adequate mental health, social and guidance services and resources for the purpose of prevention, support, and response. SECURITY continued on page 13


6 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

NFL plays political football

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With the Super Bowl just days away, a Washington nonprofit accountability group has released a report that shows the NFL and the players association have been LUNGARIELLO beefing up their political defense through lobbying and AT LARGE the formation of a political action committee. The report is compelling, though perhaps not surprisMark Lungariello ing, evidence that league officials, and to a lesser extent the players association, are strengthening their presence in the capitol amid government scrutiny of head trauma and league drug testing policies. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, or CREW for short, usually focuses on the many misdeeds of members of the House and Senate. Their annual “Most Corrupt” rankings of members of congress is quickly becoming a D.C. must-read and is parts terrifying and hilarious in the slapstick comedy tradition. This report is less salacious or infuriating than CREW’s regular findings, but is telling in what it says about the growing lobby industry and a trend in the past decade of congressional attention to pro sports monopolies in the United States. With politicians’ attention to pro sports leagues come easy headlines, and with the sparking of the PAC era, the result of that attention is the creation of a cycle in which the monopolies and federal government are engaging in an elaborate dance, which like everything else, comes back to elected officials’ campaign coffers. The surge comes as the NFL faces some off-the-field issues, the report notes. The treatment of retired players, and a history of misdiagnoses and treatment of concussions continue to be sticky issues for the league. Damaged retired players and illnesses caused by repeated head trauma have been a talking point in the national media for several years. Multiple lawsuits have been filed over treatment of head injuries in the league. Congress held two hearings on head trauma, in 2009 and 2010, and the threat of government regulation looms with each controversy. The rampant use of performance enhancing drugs in professional sports continues to be a topic, with accusations of cheating surfacing this week against Major League Baseball players and against Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, who is playing in this Sunday’s Super Bowl. This just weeks after bicyclist Lance Armstrong’s admission that he doped to get an edge while training. The federal government was quite involved in baseball’s PED policies, or lack thereof, several years ago. At stake for the NFL, CREW notes, is the antitrust exemption. At least two members of Congress have raised the possibility of revoking the NFL’s exemption, which allows it to negotiate broadcast deals. The NFL has an estimated $9 billion in annual revenue. Its spending in Washington is only a fraction of its financial might, but the recent spike in its political investment shows a change in philosophy. The NFL spent $1.14 million on federal lobbying in 2012, more than five times what it spent a decade ago, according to the report. The report showed NFL lobby spending hit its peak in 2011, when problematic labor negotiations resulted in a four-month lockout of the players. The NFL formed a PAC, Gridiron-PAC, which donated more than $650,000 to federal parties, candidates and PACs during the 2010 cycle and gave nearly $850,000 during the 2012 cycle, the report stated. (A Sports Illustrated analysis a year ago had that number upwards of $870,000.) The Gridiron-PAC started making donations during the 2010 election cycle, “as labor negotiations grew tense and Congress began expressing interest in the head injuries issue,” the report said. Recipients of the PAC’s funding targeted House leaders and ranking committee members who were looking closely at the NFL’s issues. Rep. Fred Upton, a Republican from Michigan, received $30,000 over two election cycles. Upton had co-authored a letter to the league and the union questioning whether a test for human growth hormone would be in place prior to the start of the 2012 season, the report said. Other benefactors of the PAC donations included members of the House Judiciary Committee at the time of the hearings on NFL head trauma. According to a Sports Illustrated column by Melissa Segura, most of the spending from 2012 went to members of the House Energy and Commerce and the House Judiciary, at $230,000 and $175,000, respectively. The two committees would be the groups that would most directly be involved in NFL issues. The donations, Segura said, were also telling in who was left off the donation list. “Representative Linda Sanchez, a Democrat from California, who called the league’s concussion efforts a ‘charade,’ did not receive funds,” Segura stated. “Neither did Representative Maxine Waters, a California Democrat and wife of former NFL linebacker Sid Williams, who suggested Congress strip the league’s antitrust status because of its handling of concussions.” This Sunday, as we dip buffalo wings in blue cheese, and watch multimillion dollar commercials, extravagant half time shows (and maybe even watch football), we can also know that politics is pumping like blood through the whole proceedings. Probably even the chicken wing industry. Reach Mark Lungariello at mark@hometwn.com.


February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 7

Village of Mamaroneck considers new dog regulations By JASON CHIREVAS STAFF REPORTER jason@hometwn.com

Although New York State law prohibits the banning of dogs based on breed, the Village of Mamaroneck is considering a slate of regulations designed to keep residents safe from dangerous dogs of any type. In September 2012, a pit bull escaped its yard on Florence Street and attacked an elderly woman and her dog. The attack left the woman’s dog dead and cost her the tip of one of her fingers. In response, Mayor Norman Rosenblum, a Republican, added a public hearing about a possible adjustment to the village’s law governing “dangerous dogs” to the Board of Trustees’ Oct. 9, 2012 agenda. When local dog lovers thought the village might be considering banning pit bulls outright, residents turned out in force at the Oct. 9, 2012 meeting and made it plain they would not stand for any thought of breed specific language in the municipality’s dog laws. Rosenblum assured the crowd breed specific language was against state law, and therefore could not be part of the village’s discussion. What could have been a night of anger and acrimony instead became a series of testimonials from people to their dogs in general, and pit bulls specifically. But the evening also planted several seeds in the mayor’s mind that may soon sprout in the village code.

At the trustees’ Jan. 22 work session, the mayor offered the board a list of dog regulations he’d like to see instituted. Among them were that all dogs must be registered, licensed, microchipped, have current shots, and be spayed or neutered if over the age of 7 months. The mayor’s proposals would also require dog owners to carry a minimum of $50,000 in liability insurance, and all dogs sold in the village–either privately or in stores–would have to be spayed or neutered. “The conclusions were that dangerous dogs come about, mainly, not because of genetics…but socialization,” Rosenblum said. “Plus, when you neuter or spay a dog, that actually results in most of the aggressive nature of the dog is taken away.” Trustee Andres Bermudez Hallstrom, a Democrat, wondered if there are still any stores in the village that sell dogs. The mayor said he did not believe there are, but it would still be a good idea to have the new requirements on the books. “[Pet stores] come and they go, and they’re just puppy mills,” the mayor said. “They don’t do what they’re supposed to do, and they sell these dogs that turn out to be abused.” One issue the public raised at the Oct. 9, 2012, trustees’ meeting was breeding. Dr. Lauren M. Stein, a veterinarian and lifelong Westchester resident, was among those who suggested a spay and neuter clinic might be offered in the village for those owners who

found the financial burden of such a procedure too much to bear. Although Rosenblum agreed with the idea in concept, the reality might prove too problematic for the village. “I don’t think we want to be in the veterinary business,” said Village Attorney Charles Goldberger, who said Mamaroneck could be exposed to a degree of liability if a dog causes injury during a free clinic on village property. The spay and neuter requirement might face another roadblock. “What about show dogs?” Village Manager Richard Slingerland said. “Or dogs for breeding?”

None of Rosenblum’s suggestions were on the board’s official agenda. The mayor referred his proposals to Goldberger, who will check them against state law and consult with dog trainer Jamie Ianello, who spearheaded the public outcry ahead of the Oct. 9, 2012, public hearing. Still, the mayor thinks his ideas could benefit all village dogs and the people who love them, in the long run. “It would make safer conditions for all dog owners, residents and visitors that are all over the village,” he said.

Pet Rescue Lauren is a beautiful Shepherd mix with an award-winning smile. She is about 2 years old and around 45 pounds. She has a big heart, a pleasant disposition and just loves playing with her toys. Lauren is a typical Shepherd and a smart girl-she knows basic commands and is very trainable. Lauren would do best in a home with older children since she can still be a little strong on the leash and during play. She will be a loyal companion-if you give her your heart, she will surely give you hers back. Lauren is spayed, vaccinated, dewormed, heartworm tested and micro-chipped. Her adoption donation is $250. To learn more, please contact Larchmont Pet Rescue at (914) 834-6955 or on the web at www.NY-PetRescue.org.


8 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

Monroe pastry squad hoping for ‘sweet’ victory

Monroe College By ALEXANDRA BOGDANOVIC STAFF REPORTER alexandra@hometwn.com

Watch out “Cake Boss” and “Top Chef – Just Desserts” contestants. Three Monroe College students are gunning for glory. Next month, Katrina Vasquez, Shamel Donigan and Maria Wu will compete in the U.S. Pastry Competition during the International Restaurant and Foodservice

show at the Jacob Javitz Center. While contestants have vied for the title “U.S. Pastry Chef of the Year” for the last decade, this is the first year there is a school division in which participants will compete for the title “Junior Pastry Chef of the Year.” With so much at stake, Chef Tracy Zimmerman, culinary chairperson at Monroe, said the school’s most well-rounded pastry chefs were selected for the competition.

Wu, who was also a member of the confectionary team that won the gold medal at the Salon of Culinary Arts in November, excels at doing “sugar showpieces,” Zimmerman said. “She is already working part time in the field at a New York hotel. She is a straight A student and she’s a natural,” Zimmerman said. “She is focused and gifted. She is outstanding.” Donigan, who has already completed his associate’s and bachelor’s degrees, is now in the master’s program. He’s also a teaching assistant at Monroe. “He’s a good all-around pastry chef. He works hard, and that’s kind of what it takes to succeed. You need to be willing to put in 12 to 14-hour days,” Zimmerman said. Vasquez, another member of the gold-medal winning confectionary team, is also “quite talented,” according to Zimmerman. The young pastry chef has done sugar showpieces and decorative work, but her real strength is making the bite-sized desserts known as petit fours. “She is focused, hard working and talented. She’s got what it takes,” Zimmerman said. The theme of this year’s U.S. Pastry Competition is “women,” and the students will be required to produce a sugar and chocolate centerpiece, petite fours, and a plated dessert integrating the theme. Vasquez said she’s excited and nervous

about participating in her first national competition. “I’ve been getting coached by my professors, and I am as ready as I am going to be,” she said. “I am nervous too, but that’s a good thing.” Donigan is just excited. “This isn’t a reality show, this is for real. This competition will be good for all three of us,” said Donigan, 24. On Jan. 26, Donigan helped coach Monroe’s culinary team to a second place finish in the American Culinary Federation’s New York State championships. Team captain Katherine Taveras, Gabriela Grande, Yocary Luna, Carmen Albino, Rossella Cangiolosi, Laura Sanchez and Angelina Hernandez fell short of victory by only three-tenths of a point. A team from the Culinary Institute of America claimed the title. “This is an exceptional group of young female chefs, and they have a very bright future ahead of them,” said Monroe Dean Frank Cosantino. “We think this could very well be the most accomplished team Monroe has fielded in the four years we have been competing at the state level and it is, by far, the most fun group to coach that we’ve ever had because of their passion and culinary ability.” Monroe teams have captured 33 medals at culinary and pastry competitions so far this year. Of those, they have won 11 gold medals.


February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 9

Playland sits in limbo as county executive race kicks off By CHRISTIAN FALCONE ASSOCIATE EDITOR chris@hometwn.com

If all goes according to plan for the group, Sustainable Playland, Inc. will maintain the rights to redevelop the Rye amusement park as it sees fit, but several obstacles could conceivably stand in its way. With a contentious county executive race which is pitting the county’s legislative branch majority against incumbent County Executive Robert P. Astorino, a Republican, looming is the possibility of a court battle, or at minimum a party lines disagreement, over the future of the county-owned Playland. The county seemed unified when a plan to “reinvent” Playland was first undertaken by the Republican administration in 2010. Soon after taking office that year, Astorino made resolving concerns over the financial state of the amusement park one of his top priorities, and subsequently set forth on a course to rethink how the park is used. Astorino sent out a request for proposals and received 12 differing visions for the park. The administration announced in October 2012 that the victor in the Playland sweepstakes was the Rye-based nonprofit group Sustainable Playland, or SPI. The administration held a press conference to celebrate the agreement and sign a letter of intent with the group’s founder. Sustainable Playland’s vision for the historic amusement park would provide the county with $4 million up front, as well as a minimum payment of $1.2 million annually. The group has also pledged to pump $34 million in capital investments into the park and plans to transform it into a year-round destination point. However, soon after announcing that Sustainable Playland would be taking over the park, the county’s two governing branches began to travel down different tracks. It was revealed that the founders of the nonprofit group were in debt and owned back taxes to Rye City and even Westchester County. The Rye couple, Dhruv Narain and Sandhya Subbarao, quickly resigned from the nonprofit, citing intense media scrutiny over their near tax default. Then the Democratic-led Board of Legislators said nothing would be finalized until it did its own vetting of the proposals criticizing the administration for operating in secrecy regarding the proposal process. County Legislator Judy Myers, a Democrat, said once an administration appointed bipartisan Playland feasibility committee, on which she and two other legislators sat on, provided a feasibility report to the county executive, everything from then on related to the park became cloaked in ambiguity and mystery. “It’s unfortunate because we are now playing catch-up,” said Myers. “We’re still in the fact-finding due diligence phase.” This marks the first time the legislators are reviewing the financial facts and figures of each proposal. Since November 2012, the legislators have held several meetings focus-

ing on the each proposal, and heard presentations from four of the groups behind the proposals. SPI was back before the legislators’ government operations committee this week for the second time to answer additional questions on the group’s proposal. Although Myers wouldn’t offer any timeline, she said the board is moving toward a point where at least a majority of the legislators can come to a consensus. The county’s administration and Board of Legislators continue to operate on parallel, yet different, tracks. And there is no telling if the two sides will ever reach common ground. Ned McCormack, communications director for the county executive’s office, said the county’s and nonprofit’s lawyers are working to finalize an asset management agreement, and the hope is it will be done in February. The agreement, which would give the nonprofit the authority to operate the park for 10 years, also gives the county an out clause in which Westchester could opt out of the contract for cause within six months. “We’re moving forward on the plan, we think it makes sense for the county, and we’re using the tools that are in the charter to get this done,” McCormack said. The legislators argue that since Playland is an important and historical county property, the legislative branch should be involved in the process. But there remains a dispute over whether the board has a say legally over longterm lease agreements of county parkland. It remains a possibility that this issue-as has been the case with a litany of policy disagreements-could bring the two sides into court. Legislator Myers, whose district includes Rye and Playland, continues to publicly support the SPI plan, which she did during her re-election back in 2010. “Ideally, I’d like to see us all end up behind SPI,” she said. But her legislator colleagues may think otherwise, and their decisions could be based on a forthcoming public hearing in mid-February that the Board of Legislators is planning. It is clear that SPI is backed by Rye residents but it will be interesting to see if the sentiment is the same from constituents of other, less affluent areas of the county. Right now, the top priority for the county is having the park fully operational come May, which is no easy task considering the destruction Playland bore from Hurricane Sandy in October 2012. Since the storm, the boardwalk has been closed to the public due to safety reasons. The Ice Casino’s roof structure requires major repairs before the facility can be reopened. Also, high winds blew off two doors on the indoor skating rink causing flooding and damage to the basement and boilers. This week, the county just approved over $12.5 million in bonding to repair both structures. The boardwalk is expected to be repaired by May, and the rink by September. County officials hope that FEMA reimbursement will come now that a Sandy aid bill has been approved by the federal government.

Playland sustained $12 million in damages from Hurricane Sandy. County officials expect the park to be repaired and operational by late May, but any decisions over the long-term fate of the park, and who would operate it, may run well into campaign season. File photo


10 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

County mulls requiring generators for gas stations By ASHLEY HELMS STAFF REPORTER ashley@hometwn.com

Gas stations in Westchester County could soon be required to have a power generator if a proposed bill makes its way through the Westchester County Board of Legislators. Following Hurricane Sandy, open gas stations in Westchester were sparse–and those businesses that were able to remain functional had lines of cars waiting for fuel that stretched on for miles, causing traffic jams and even resulting in physical confrontations. Board of Legislators Chairman Ken Jenkins, a Democrat, proposed legislation called the “gas station emergency preparation act” at Nov. 7, 2012 meeting of the Board of Legislators. The legislation would require any gas station with five or more non-diesel fuel pumps to keep a generator on the premises to use in case of a state of emergency. Having generators on site would help assist in easing any potential crisis in the event of an emergency, Jenkins said, because one of the reasons for long lines at the pump following Hurricane Sandy was power outages at the stations. “Residents will have more options to fill tanks for their home generators and vehicles,” Jenkins said. For days following the hurricane, the county faced a gas crisis. Gas station attendants at the Mobil Station on the Hutchinson River Parkway said that at the height of the shortage, customers waited for as long as three

hours just to be asked to leave around 2:30 a.m. so the station could get a delivery. Prices shot up to around $4.85 per gallon for regular gas while the state average was around $3.46, according to AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report. Similar legislation was introduced in Florida after a 2005 hurricane that knocked out power to hundreds of stations. Though Florida eventually passed the law, it only required gas stations along evacuation routes to be able to switch to generator power, but not actually own generators. Carla Obalde, operations manager for the Service Station Dealers and Automotive Services of Greater New York, responded to the legislators in a letter on Jan. 18. The group, according to Obalde, which represents nearly 500 stations across Westchester County, opposes the legislation. The new requirement would put an unreasonable financial burden on station owners, she said. Obalde also said that stations owner would need to follow certain requirements in order for the generators to be properly positioned at the stations, which would necessitate the hiring of a general contractor. Cement pads would need to be set under the generators and guardrails would have to be installed around them to protect the generators from cars in each gas station. They would also need fencing around the parameter of the generator and become waterproofed since they will be stored outside. “It would cost

Customers at a Mobil gas station in Rye stand and wait with gas cans for their chance to get fuel on Nov. 2, 2012. File photo

thousands of dollars to not only purchase a generator, but install it as well,” Obalde said. Obalde said that Jenkins’ statement about lines being to power outages is not entirely true because there was also a lack of product at the stations. She said that the legislators shouldn’t be concerned about motorists’ safety because of gas station power outages, but because the generators themselves can pose a potential danger. “However, if they have generators on the premises their safety will be put

at risk since these generators are flammable and pose a security risk,” Obalde said. County Legislator Sheila Marcotte, a Republican, said that the problem wasn’t just that gas stations didn’t have power, but that many refineries were down and truck were unable to transport gas to Westchester stations. “It could put an undue burden on the businesses owners,” Marcotte said of the legislation. The legislation is now in front of the legislation committee.

CAUCUS from page 1

A former high school science teacher in New York City and Rye Neck, Walsh now owns a small landscape design company. “When I ran for village trustee two years ago, I was a babe in the woods,” Walsh said as she accepted the nomination. “I was involved in the periphery [of village government]. I wanted to help, I wanted to make a difference and find out how things work.” During her first term, she said, she learned all about municipal response to emergencies, the intricacies of inter-municipal agreements, and the importance of making careful decisions. “As a trustee you are always weighing what’s best for the community as a whole and what’s best for the budget,” she said. Komar also said he went through a steep learning curve during his first term. In his second term, he said he wants to “take the training wheels off and get things done.” Key priorities will be the Palmer Avenue streetscape and revamping Larchmont’s water system, he added. “I want to serve the community. This is a wonderful community,” Komar said. “This is about giving back.” Komar, who has lived in Larchmont for nine years, has volunteered with the Larchmont Fire Department, served on the Village Board of Assessment Review, and the Village Business District Improvement Committee. He’s also a member of the Larchmont Yacht Club and a parishioner at

St. Augustine’s Church. Komar is the chief credit officer for Country Bank in New York City and has more than 31 years of experience in accounting and finance. For the past 25 years, he specialized in real estate financing and banking. “John’s strong belief in community service and his experience in the financial industry is an asset to the Village of Larchmont,” the Democratic Party said in a press release about the nominations. Like Komar, Beaver said she truly loves her community. She said she also enjoys being a village justice. “The court is my baby. We handle everything from parking violations to felonies. We try to be efficient and fair,” she said. Beaver has been a village justice since 1997. She is also a partner at Rosenstrach & Beaver, LLP, where she represents individual and corporate clients in “various aspects of general practice.” As a New York State attorney for children since 1991, she has represented children in cases involving abuse, neglect, juvenile delinquency, custody and visitation. “I would like to thank my colleagues for doing this again,” said Larchmont Mayor Anne McAndrews. “We don’t always agree and we’re not just rubber-stamping each other’s opinions. I am lucky to have these two on the board. Thea is a tremendous justice.”


February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 11

Mamaroneck honors “X-Factor” finalist with parade By CHARLES McGRAW CONTRIBUTOR

The Village of Mamaroneck honored hometown hero and “X Factor” runner-up Carly Rose Sonenclar with a parade on Jan. 27. Carly, 13, finished second on the recently ended season of the reality music competition show created by Simon Cowell. Carly advanced to the final round of the show on Dec. 21, 2012, but lost to 37-year-old country singer Tate Stevens. The parade, which was led by members of the Village of Mamaroneck Police Department, ran down Mamaroneck Avenue and featured Carly riding in a black convertible alongside village Mayor Norman Rosenblum. Carly waved to hundreds of her

The Westchester Civil Air Patrol leads the parade for X-Factor’s Carly Rose Sonenclar down Mamaroneck Avenue on Jan. 27. Photos/Bobby Begun

fans, who are known as “Carly’s Angels,” as they lined the streets of Mamaroneck before the black convertible stopped just past Molly Spillane’s on Mamaroneck Avenue. At the end of the parade route, Carly stood atop a stage where the mayor and Carly spoke to the crowd. Carly was joined on stage by her parents, Bob and Terri, and by her friends from “The X Factor:” Mr. Melee, Da Queen and Sir Jewlz from the rap group Lyric 145. Mayor Rosenblum addressed the large crowd by reading a proclamation sent to him by Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino declaring Jan. 27, 2013, “Carly Rose Sonenclar,” day in Westchester County. Rosenblum then gave Carly “the official key to the Village of Mamaroneck.” Carly then thanked attendees. “I am really bad at speeches, but I want to thank the entire Village of Mamaroneck, Mayor Rosenblum and all my fans, including ‘Carly’s Angels,’” Carly said. “I also want to thank anybody who ever made a poster and wore T-shirts in support of me, every one of my teachers, all my friends at Rye Neck and everybody who is here today.” After the parade, Carly attended a private party, while members of Lyric 145 took pictures with fans and signed autographs. Mr. Melee feels that Carly’s music career is just getting started and that her full potential has not yet been reached. “I think she can be iconic, she definitely is starting at this very young age where she is still able to grow and mature,” said Mr. Melee. “Since she is so big right now at such a young age when she gets older it can only get better and if she keeps on the right path she could be iconic.” Carly’s father, Bob Sonenclar, was delighted by all of the support his daughter has received

With Mayor Norman Rosenblum looking on, Carly Rose Sonenclar addresses her fans gathered along Mamaroneck Avenue after a parade in her honor on Jan. 27

Carly Rose Sonenclar stops to sign an autograph for a fan on her way to Molly Spillane’s for a private party after the Jan. 27 parade in her honor.

from the Village of Mamaroneck. “I couldn’t be more thrilled, everyone is so wonderful in the Town of Mamaroneck, and really, it feels like not the end of her accomplishments because I think that things are

just beginning, but this really puts a stamp on what she did,” said Bob Sonenclar. “She did such an incredible job and the town recognizes that, and I couldn’t be more proud to be from Mamaroneck.”


12 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

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LEGAL NOTICES Notice of Formation of Denlea & Carton LLP. Certificate of Registration filed with SSNY on 12/17/12. Principal Office address: Denlea & Carton LLP, 1 North Broadway, White Plains, NY 10601. County in which principal office is located: Westchester County. The SSNY is designated as agent of the registered LLP upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: Denlea & Carton LLP, 1 North Broadway, White Plains, NY 10601. Purpose: the practice of law. Notice of formation of Michelle Elise LLC Arts. Of Org. filed with the Sect’y of State of NY (SSNY) on October 1, 2012. Office location: Westchester. The street address is: 8 Devon Road, Larchmont, NY 10538. SSNY has been designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process served to: Michelle Bogan, 8 Devon Road, Larchmont, NY 10538. Purpose: any lawful act. Notice of Formation of Moirae Advisors LLC. Arts of org. filed with SSNY on 3/30/12. Office in Westchester County. SSNY designated agent upon whom process may be served and shall mail process to: United States Corporation Agents, Inc., 7014 13th Ave, Suite 202, Brooklyn, NY 11228. Purpose: Any lawful act or activity. PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that Public Hearings/Meetings will be held by the Village of Mamaroneck’s Planning Board at 7:00 pm on Wednesday, February 13, 2013 and Harbor and Coastal Zone Management Commission at 7:30 pm on Wednesday, February 20, 2013. The Public Meetings will be held in the Court Room, 169 Mount Pleasant Avenue, Mamaroneck, New York, regarding the Application of BENNETT W. GOLUB AND CYNTHIA GOLUB which proposes a modification to the approved applications for the FILLING OF A CAVITY AND CONSTRUCTION OF A SEAWALL at the property commonly known as 710 Taylors Lane, Mamaroneck, NY. PLEASE TAKE FURTHER NOTICE that interested parties may review the respective Applications, including Drawings, in the Building Department’s Office at 169 Mt. Pleasant Avenue - 3rd Floor and/or the Clerk Treasurer’s Office at Village Hall (123 Mamaroneck Avenue).

L etters Town zoning concerns persist To the Editor, Thank you for your article on the proposed Town of Mamaroneck zoning change [“Zoning change could spark affordable housing in town,” Jan. 25]. That article is probably the first notice that many town residents had about any of this, since formal notices have not been sent to affected town residents. What the article did not mention, however, includes: 1. That required rear yard setbacks are to be decreased, so that, for example, the owner of a one-family home on Lester Place could have a 4.5 story (plus variances) building built within 20 feet of his or her boundary line, and the morning sun become a distant memory; 2. That there is no place for the new residents to park, at least not along Myrtle, Madison and Fifth, where much of the proposed construction could be located, and no place for the required off-street parking to be located, at least not along Myrtle and Madison; 3. That portions of that area already flood in a heavy rain, and further development may make that worse; and 4. That the construction of the proposed buildings along Myrtle and parts of Madison would totally block light, air and views for many of the residents of the apartment building at 2 Washington Square, but no one from our town government has told/warned them about any of this, or affirmatively asked for their input. The new construction could decrease the value of their apartments, thus decreasing our town’s tax base. I realize that our town has little undeveloped land and few options, but I also believe that it has an obligation to tell its residents about major changes that could adversely affect them, and that there are better, less detrimental options than those that our town is now proposing. Ralph M. Engel, Larchmont

U.S. government and its people To the editor: The politicians in Washington D.C. do not want to understand that our government is of the people, by the people and for the people. The people have spoken many times but the politicians are not listening. We, the people, demand that our government listen and provide for: -Social Security, which is paid for by the employee and employer contributions via a payroll tax. -Medicare, which is partially paid for by employee via payroll tax and the monthly Part B charge to all enrolled. -Planned Parenthood/family, if for no other reason but to contain our population growth. -Nondiscrimination for skin color, country of origin, religion, sexual orientation. -A good education. Return our educational system to where it was 50 years ago, the best in the world. Further, if the government had stopped illegal immigrations years ago, we would not have the problems we have today. The illegal immigrants want to speak their own native tongue and not learn English, our common language. They want to keep their culture and not accept the American Way, which was created by the legal immigrants since we became the United States in 1776 (remember we are a country of immigrants). They want all of the government support they can get. In addition, and consistent with the second amendment to the Constitution, the right to bear arms. A necessary right for the people of a new country to make sure their government was the right one for them. But the right has been abused and, as a result, 1 million and counting people have been killed by guns. In conclusion, the government must work for the people and not politicians, and the people must support the government and not their radical elements. May God bless America. Carmine Masucci, Eastchester


February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 13

Business Briefs Harrison’s Al Dente Restaurant opens renovated dining room Anthony Delfino, of Al Dente Restaurant, announced the grand opening of a newly renovated dining room this month. Al Dente had previously renovated its bar area in May 2012 as part of an updating of the facilities. An updated menu and weekly specials are available. Al Dente is located at 61 Halstead Ave. For more information, call (914) 835-2535. Rhonda Hamilton joins Board of New Rochelle Council on the Arts Artist Rhonda Hamilton, owner of Just Funki Handcrafted Wearable Art, has joined the Board of Directors of the New Rochelle Council on the Arts for 2012-2013. The NRCA also elected its officers President Judith Weber, vice presidents Theresa Kump Leghorn and Linda TarrantReid, Secretary Angela Derecas Taylor and Treasurer Billie Tucker. In addition, the Board of Directors also recently voted to add two new members to its Advisory Board: art director and President of the New Rochelle Art Association Jesse Sanchez and entrepreneur Eric Woodlin, President of Incoming Tide Entertainment LLC. The New Rochelle Council on the Arts was created by the New Rochelle City Council in 1975 to stimulate and encourage the study and presentation of the performing and fine arts. For 38 years NRCA has worked to fulfill that mission by sponsoring art exhibitions, theatrical productions, dance recitals, film screenings, lectures, and concert series as well as signature events like ArtsFest and the Sound Shore Shakespeare Festival. For more information, visit newrochellearts.org. Domenic Zagaroli offering tax assessment grievance service If you are a homeowner in the Town of Mamaroneck (including the villages of Larchmont and Mamaroneck), you are well aware of the reassessment project this is currently taking place. The new assessments are being mailed out sometime in late February/early March and it is possible that this reassessment will increase some property owners’ tax burden. If you are not sure how this will impact you, call me for a free consultation to review your assessment with no obligation. Domenic Zagaroli will

represent the homeowner at no charge if the assessment on your property is not lowered. If Zagaroli is successful in a reduction, he will charge a low competitive fee that is contingent on the assessment reduction. In addition, Zagaroli can now also analyze your assessment if you live in the villages and represent the homeowner there as well; the deadline for these grievances is Feb. 19, which is quickly approaching. What makes Zagaroli’s service unique is that he will personally visit the property and document any supporting evidence that is applicable to the grievance, all at no charge. Zagaroli’s qualifications for representation include having 35 years of appraisal and assessment experience, primarily in the Sound Shore communities. He is a longtime Mamaroneck resident and has served as a consultant to various assessment jurisdictions and currently is an adjunct professor of real estate at Westchester Community College. Zagaroli can be reached seven days a week at (914) 309-3001, or by email at domzagaroli@aol.com.

Westchester County creating stunning rooms. The company takes great pride in creating elegant spaces at rates that are reasonable. A notable example of accomplishing this was when Maver Designs worked with a graduate student. The client needed to affordably organize a 65-foot square bedroom into a space where she could keep what was necessary to study, yet maintain it as a comfortable living space. By repurposing the furniture and wares clients already have in their homes, Maver Designs manages to be both economical and green. The new website includes pictures of projects just recently completed–including a hallway, a living room/dining room space with an Indian theme, and a child’s bedroom that had to multitask as a guest bedroom. For more information, visit Maver Designs at maverdesigns.com or call (914) 312-3191.

FitzPatrick Design, Inc. expands custom design services

Badger Day Camp 2013 season approaching Campers aged 3-12 come from all over Westchester, Fairfield and New York City to spend their summers at Badger Day Camp. All summer long, Badger pride abounds from the baseball field to the pool deck and friendships form that last a lifetime.

The Badger campus is set on 10 acres in Larchmont. The grassy fields provide the perfect grounds for soccer, baseball, and field sports. At the heart of the Badger campus is an Olympic size swimming pool. U.S.A. Swim coaches and professional swimmers lead the pool staff. Campers are taught the fundamentals of the four strokes–freestyle, butterfly, backstroke and breaststroke. Door-to-door transportation is provided and each morning, your child will be greeted by one of the bus counselors and will be accompanied home as well. Also included daily is a hot lunch as well as a sandwich alternative. All of the facilities are nut-free and allergy friendly. As an added convenience, the laundry service includes washing and drying campers bathing suits and clean towels for every swim period. The 2013 camp season runs from June 26 through Aug. 16. The enrollment requires a four-week minimum, however, weeks of attendance do not need to be consecutive.

Maver Designs presents new, updated website Maver Designs, an independent Interior Design firm based in Mamaroneck, is proud to present their new and updated all-inclusive website. Dorothee Maver established this residential interior design business in 2006, upon graduating from the New York School of Interior Design in New York City, and has worked throughout

The husband and wife team of Edward and Christine FitzPatrick of Larchmont known as FitzPatrick Design, Inc. announced that they are expanding their custom design services to include “X” and “C” mullion grids for glass doors. “In addition to these,” says Christine FitzPatrick, “we offer an expanded product

line including a wider range of door styles, door grids and wood species.” FitzPatrick Design offers a full range of services for a complete kitchen renovation, from design to expert installation. Edward FitzPatrick has 16 years of experience with kitchens from small apartment installations to large estate kitchens. Along with installation expertise, FitzPatrick has extensive knowledge in framing, plumbing and electrical systems. This “inner-working” knowledge allows him to avoid potential mistakes or pitfalls in the design process. Christine, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and a private cooking instructor, is at home in any kitchen and is able to provide insight into what makes a kitchen design work by taking into account the “flow” and appliance placement. Her expertise in cabinetry and computer design makes it possible to propose and alter a plan to suit a client’s taste.

Local orthodontist receives national award Dr. Peter D. Maro, Jr., owner of Blue Wave Orthodontics located in Rye, was selected as one of the nation’s top practices by Orthodontic Products Magazine. Maro is very involved in local charities and sporting organizations. He coaches a local hockey team and his office is designed so patients can have a great experience while achieving the perfect smile. His offices have an arcade, cable TV’s at every chair and laptops for patient use in the waiting room. For more information, visit Bluewaveorthodontics.com. The next Business Briefs section will run on March 1. Please send any submission for our March issue to biz@hometwn.com by Friday, Feb. 22. Each submission can include one picture and must be between 175-225 words. If you have any questions, email Deputy Editor Jason Chirevas at news@hometwn.com.

SECURITY from page 5

• The restoration of funding for youth and school resource officers for stronger schoolcommunity partnerships. • Enforcement of parts of the Brady Bill prohibiting individuals convicted of violent crimes or those with mental health issues from purchasing or owning guns. • Reinstituting the ban and the sale, import, transfer and ownership of assault weapons. • Ending the gun show loophole that enables 40 percent of gun purchases to be made

without a background check. • Punishing irresponsible gun dealers. In its Call for Action, the council encouraged parents to lobby lawmakers to “move swiftly and unequivocally to address these life-threatening concerns.” “We beseech all members of the public to join mayors from across the United States and sign their petition, demandaplan.org, to demand immediate action on this legislation,” the council said in a joint statement.


14 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

People, coyotes can co-exist, advocate says By ALEXANDRA BOGDANOVIC STAFF REPORTER alexandra@hometwn.com

It’s been a while since Frank Vincenti’s last trip to New Rochelle. Back in 1999, he did a presentation about coyotes for residents near Ward Acres. Just a few days ago, he did a similar presentation for an audience at the New Rochelle Humane Society. “Frank had called us about a month prior and asked if we’d be willing to host his presentation,” said New Rochelle Humane Society Manager Dana Rocco. “We do get a fair number of calls about coyotes, so we thought it would be a good educational piece.” On Jan. 20, Vincenti, founder of the Long Island-based Wild Dog Foundation, shared his passion for Eastern coyotes with shelter volunteers and interested residents. He began by saying that all it takes to peacefully co-exist with the animals is education and common sense. “If you understand dogs, you can understand coyotes,” he said. “They are wild animals, but you can reinforce proper behavior in coyotes.” One effective method to deter coyotes from interacting with people is called “hazing,” Vincenti explained. It can be done by making loud noises, or in some cases firing paintball guns or beanbags at the animals, he said. Vincenti said he simply chases them away. “Coyotes don’t want anything to do with us,” he said. “There are no man-eating coyotes.” Most cases in which coyotes bite people happen because of “food habituation,” or when the animals are rabid, Vincenti said. Even so, he said understands why highly publicized incidents frightened and upset many Rye residents. Back in the summer of 2010, two coyotes attacked a then 6-year-old girl while she was playing outside. According to an account in The Sound and Town Report, she was running along the side of her house when the coyotes jumped on her and knocked her to the ground. She was bitten on the shoulder and thigh, and sustained scratches to her head, back and neck. In another case, just a few days later, coyotes attacked another young girl in Rye. In that case a 3-year-old girl was playing with a 6-year-old neighbor when the coyote, which

had been concealed behind a rock, jumped on the younger girl and knocked her to the ground. The coyote bit the little girl on the left side of her neck and torso before fleeing when adults alerted to the incident intervened. The victims were taken to the hospital in both cases. The severity of the attacks prompted officials to halt humane trapping in favor of more aggressive action. At a press conference documented in The Sound and Town Report, Rye Police Commissioner William Connors said authorities would act on the presumption that all coyotes spotted in the community at that time were dangerous. Specifically, he said police and trappers would “shoot to kill,” and that any coyotes that were trapped would be euthanized. State wildlife officials advised at the time that relocation was not a viable alternative given the animals’ behavior and the severity of the attacks. Vincenti also said trapping and relocating or otherwise eradicating coyotes in such circumstances doesn’t necessarily solve the problem. Instead, it creates a vacuum where other coyotes move into a vacated territory. “Negative reinforcement–not killing them–teaches coyotes how to avoid people,” Vincenti stressed. People can protect their pets from coyotes by vaccinating dogs and cats against rabies and other common diseases that can be transmitted from wild to companion animals, Vincenti said. Cats should be kept indoors whenever possible. “Coyotes do view cats as competitors and they will occasionally eat them, although cats generally make up less than 1 percent of a coyote’s diet,” Vincenti said. “They are not all cat killers.” The New York State Department of Conservation also recommends that people do not allow pets to run free. Furthermore, the agency urges people not to feed pets outside and not to feed coyotes at all. “If you see a coyote, be aggressive in your behavior–make loud noises, wave your arms or throw sticks or stones,” the agency recommends. “Teach children to appreciate coyotes from a distance.”

RYE TOWN from page 1

Former Village of Larchmont Mayor Josh Mandell and Mamaroneck Town Supervisor Nancy Seligson, seen here, are keeping a close eye on the potential dissolution of Rye Town. One possibility following the dissolution would see the Village of Mamaroneck become a coterminous town-village, which would have a direct effect on Larchmont and the Town of Mamaroneck. File photos

of Larchmont so choose to become a coterminous town-village, you have approximately 65 to 70 percent of the vote.” Village of Larchmont Mayor Anne McAndrews, a Democrat, said though the idea of Larchmont becoming a coterminous town-village is interesting, using the word “interested” when discussing the idea of making it a reality is too strong a choice. “We’ve always been part of the Town of Mamaroneck,” McAndrews said. McAndrews has formed a three-person committee, including former Larchmont Mayor Josh Mandell, to examine the possibility of a coterminous town-village of Larchmont should the Village of Mamaroneck move on a plan to do the same. Mandell told The Sound and Town Report that while the committee is examining the potential effects of any scenario arising from a Rye Town dissolution, there is one area that will be key to whatever might happen. “I feel we should try to help find a home for the Rye Neck community,” Mandell said. “Whether through annexation of Rye Neck into the Town of Mamaroneck, or by allowing the Village of Mamaroneck to secede and join Rye Neck in a new town.” Mandell said the committee is prepared to study any change in structure that resolves the Rye Neck question. McAndrews expressed a different priority in looking at the issue as a whole. “It not so much the layers of government,” she said. “It’s the similarity of government and the services that are given.” A streamlining of services throughout the Town of Mamaroneck and its incorporated villages was also on Democratic Town Supervisor Nancy Seligson’s mind. She told

The Sound and Town Report that consolidating services is something the three municipalities can do without coterminous villages. At the Summit breakfast, Seligson suggested the coterminous solution for the Village of Mamaroneck might be a hasty one. “I have read the [CGR] study in detail,” Seligson said. “It is a study for the dissolution of the Town of Rye. It does not study the change in the Town of Mamaroneck.” Seligson said the dissolution of Rye Town makes sense because it does not provide many services, but that doesn’t mean the same can be said for the Town of Mamaroneck. “I would be in favor of further study, and what the opportunities would be, and how the changes would occur if the Village of Mamaroneck wants to go coterminous,” she said. Seligson said the CGR study actually creates more municipalities than it consolidates because each resulting coterminous community would be both a town and a village. That is an idea former Village of Mamaroneck Trustee John Hofstetter, a Democrat, introduced to the discussion at the village’s public hearing on the matter. The solution he favored, following a Rye Town dissolution, would see the Town of Mamaroneck annexing Rye Neck, and the Village of Mamaroneck dissolving altogether, which would create a much larger unincorporated Town of Mamaroneck, leaving Larchmont to determine its own fate, should it so choose. “The way you actually save money, the way you actually make it attractive to the residents in the Town of Mamaroneck, you would get rid of the villages,” Hofstetter told Sound and Town. “That, to me, is an area that needs to be further studied and has not been looked at.”

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SPORTS

February 1, 2013 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • 15

Rooting for Ray Rice It probably shouldn’t come as a shock to find out that most New Rochelleans–especially those who laced up their cleats for the state championship winning football team–have a strong rooting interest in Sunday’s Super Bowl matchup. There could be a few reasons for these gridiron heroes to be cheering on a game between two out-of-market squads, after all. Sunday’s game will pit San Francisco, which boasts the league’s staunchest defense, against the Ravens–an organization that has its own rich tradition on defense and is led by Ray Lewis, who is arguably the best linebacker of his generation. That sounds like a matchup made in heaven for the Huguenots, who turned in one of the finest defensive seasons in school history this past fall. But in reality, there’s one reason above all others why the Huguenots players will be tuning in to Sunday’s big game: to cheer on the Ravens running back, former New Ro star Ray Rice. Rice, 26, who led the Huguenots to a state championship in 2003–the school’s last title before the 2012 team captured the crown–has long been a gridiron legend in the area. From his high school exploits to his emergence as a Division I standout at Rutgers University, Rice has been considered by many sports fans to be the pride of Section I football (despite his Huguenots teammate Courtney Greene’s own illustrious football career). Understandably, however, it was aspiring New Rochelle football players that felt the most ownership over the Ravens’ running back. “Growing up, we always wanted to be like him,” said New Rochelle’s star quarterback Khalil Edney. “Even before he made the NFL, back when he was in college, we always looked up to him.” Edney, himself an avowed Eagles fan, said that his fellow football teammates will be cheering on the AFC’s Ravens, but that has less to do with Rice’s status as one of the NFL’s best running backs and more to do with his commitment to giving back to the New Rochelle community. Before the Huguenots’ trip to Syracuse this past fall, Rice gifted travel bags–T-shirts and headphones to each Huguenots player. Additionally, reports also say that the Ravens star

Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice signs an autograph for a young fan at his annual Ray Rice Day at New Rochelle High School on June 9, 2012. On Super Bowl Sunday, many Westchester residents will be rooting for Rice and the Ravens to prevail. Photo/Mike Smith

watched the championship game live and was quick to call head coach Lou DiRienzo with words of congratulations soon after the win. “He’s a good guy,” said Edney. “And he’s always come back to work out with us in the offseason, which is really cool.” Edney went on to say that several of his Huguenots teammates will be getting together on Sunday to watch New Ro’s brightest start shine on sports’ biggest stage–and many of them won’t even have to switch alliegences for the afternoon–even in the middle of Giants and Jets territory. “To be honest, some of the guys are just plain Ravens fans,” said Edney. “And that says as much about them as it does about Ray.”

Sound and Town Mamaroneck Sports Roundup Girls Basketball 1/26 Rye d. Mamaroneck 49-34 On Saturday, Mamaroneck traveled to Rye to take on a surging Garnets team and was turned away at the gate as Rye pulled away to post an impressive 15-point win over the Tigers. Mamaroneck’s Aliza Kantor and Maggie Sullivan combined for 24 points on the afternoon, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Garnets, led by Alanna Morque’s 19 points. 1/29 Mount Vernon d. Mamaroneck 48-43 Despite another solid game from Maggie Sullivan, whose 10 points led the Tigers. Mamaroneck fell again on Wednesday, this time to a tough Mount Vernon squad. The Knights’ Lubirdia Gordon proved tough to stop, as she erupted for 20 points on the afternoon.

Boys Basketball 1/29 Mount Vernon d. Mamaroneck 53-33 The Tigers did not fare well against perennial Class AA power Mount Vernon on Tuesday, falling by a 20-point margin to the Knights . Despite a tough defensive effort that held Mount Vernon’s high scorer Josh Doughty to just 15 points, the Tigers, led by Ryan Cadden’s 10 points, simply couldn’t click on the offensive end.

Ice Hockey 1/26 Mamaroneck d. Ithaca 5-2 An impressive performance by Trey Herlitz-Ferguson helped guide the Tigers to another win on Saturday as they took down visiting Ithaca by a three-goal margin. Herlitz-Ferguson accounted for 4 goals on the evening, while Brian Schiff added the other in the win. Brian Carducci, getting his first start in net for the Tigers, fared well, making 26 saves in his debut. Mamaroneck will take on Suffern in a much-anticipated rematch on Feb. 1 at the Sport-o-Rama Ice Rink.

Mamaroneck’s Aliza Kantor tries to keep the ball in bounds against Rye on Jan. 26. Kantor scored 12 points in what turned out to be a losing effort. Photo/Bobby Begun


16 • THE SOUND AND TOWN REPORT • February 1, 2013

SPORTS

Local hopefuls hit cages for pro tryout By MIKE SMITH ASSOCIATE SPORTS EDITOR sports@hometwn.com

As the hitter climbed through the netting in the cage, Jay Acton, longtime scout and current general manager for the Taos Blizzard, peered up from his clipboard to size up the newcomer. The prospect dug his feet in the right-handed batter’s box, adjusted his sleeves and readied himself for the delivery from the 70-mph pitching machine. The lever arm flung forward, sending the ball hurtling toward the plate, and the coiled batter whirred into motion, his body twisting like a corkscrew from the force of his mighty swing. He never came close to connecting with the offering. After two more attempts–neither meeting with much more success– Acton looked back down at the clipboard with a sigh, hoping that the next batter to step in the cage might possess a bit more potential. On Jan. 25, over a dozen hopefuls showed up at the Elmsfordbased Frozen Ropes Baseball Training Center for an open tryout with the Taos Blizzard of the Pecos League, hoping to come away with a minor-league contract. With a mix of current and former collegiate players, as well as optimistic ballplayers in their midto-late 20s, each player knew that Luis Gonzalez swings the bat in a 2012 game for Concordia. Gonzalez was on hand for the Jan. 25 tryout at Frozen Ropes. Contributed photo they had just a short time to of a major league scout. impress the Blizzard GM Gonzalez, who fared well in his and distinguish themselves short time in the cage, said that for from the pack. him, playing professional baseball Current Concordia College was not only a lifelong dream, but senior Luis Gonzalez, 21, also his way of showing thanks to his may have been one of the parents for their support throughout more accomplished playthe years. ers at the tryout (Gonzalez “My parents gave so much for me hit .295 with 2 HRs for the to be able to play baseball,” he said. Division II Clippers last “They were immigrants, but they year), but admitted that he worked so hard so that they could felt some butterflies before pay for me to play baseball, so I stepping into the cages with would like to be able to give back a potential shot at playing to them and I don’t want to have any pro ball on the line. regrets.” “It’s definitely nerveWhile it remains to be seen wracking,” he said. “You whether Gonzalez’s showing in the only have such a short time cage will lead to a call from the to show what you can do, so Blizzard this summer, the rightyou need to make it count.” handed slugger has vowed to take Independent ball clubs– this experience, as well as his expeminor league teams with no riences with scouts in the summer affiliation to major league league ,to heart as he prepares for teams–often use open tryhis last season with Concordia. outs as a pipeline to poten“All these leagues, you have tial players in other parts of scouts all around you; it pushes the country (the Blizzard are Angel Gonzalez, 24, from the Dominican you to get better,” he said. “In the located in New Mexico). Republic, gets ready to throw for scouts at Frozen Ropes Baseball Training Center on end, it’s all about the numbers. And for some, getting a shot the Jan. 25. Gonzalez, a southpaw, has a You have to put up the numbers Edwin Leon, 24, throws off the mound on Jan. 25. Leon pitched at Adlai at playing independent ball mid-to-high 80s fastball and is looking to Stevenson High School in the Bronx, and is now looking to break into the to get noticed.” can lead to catching the eye catch on with a pro team. professional ranks. Photos/Bobby Begun


Sound and Town Report 2-1-13