Vol. 15/Number 25
Colavita to face election challengers By ASHLEY HELMS STAFF REPORTER firstname.lastname@example.org
Bronxville High School Principal Terrance Barton congratulates Class of 2013 graduate Audry Grace Lemberger after handing off her diploma on June 15. For more, see page 8. Photo/Daniel Offner
Eastchester may see second senior housing project By ASHLEY HELMS STAFF REPORTER email@example.com
In addition to a large-scale senior housing project already proposed in town, which has drawn ire from some north-end residents, a second senior living facility may be built in an open lot on Jackson Avenue. Seminara & Sons Inc., a construction company that owns the land on Jackson Avenue, is slated to address the town’s Planning Board with the project in September. Neither of the two proposed senior living facilities count towards fulfilling the county’s affordable hous-
ing development requirements that Eastchester and other municipalities in Westchester are required to adhere to following the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s 2009 settlement with the county to construct 750 units over a seven-year timeframe. Jack Seminara, who owns the construction company proposing the second senior development, said that his building will boast about 100 units on two acres of land, but that he will not have to apply for variances from the Zoning Board of Appeals. DELV Development, the developer for the Summerfield Gardens
June 21, 2013
project, may require roughly 11 variances from the zoning code. This has caused some local residents to feel that they are attempting to change the law as opposed to just merely applying for variances. “I’m going to put a team together in September to go in front of the town boards and we’re looking forward to moving ahead,” Seminara said. “It’s my property and we don’t need variances; it’s an open piece of land that has been there for 14 months.” Seminara also said that he was one of the building developers that HOUSING continued on page 13
For the first time since he won office, incumbent Eastchester Town Supervisor Anthony Colavita, a Republican, will face a challenger at the polls in November, and possibly competition within his own party this election cycle. Town resident and retired Eastchester police officer Michael Denning has been nominated by the local Democratic Party to run for supervisor. And former Eastchester School Board member David Levy, a Republican, said he is mounting a primary challenge to Supervisor Colavita for the GOP line. Levy is in the process of collecting petition signatures and needs to collect 400 to 500 signatures in order to appear on a primary ballot. Levy spent 26 years as an ironworker and said he’d like to consolidate some town and village services. Denning, 43, was a police officer and active member of the Police Benevolent Association for 12 years. He said he decided to run because those close to him thought he would make a solid candidate and encouraged him to throw his hat into the Eastchester political ring. Changes to town government need to be made after the town has had the same supervisor for almost 10 years, Denning said. Currently, Denning has his real estate license and works for Pat Forgione Real Estate in Eastchester. "[Anthony] Colavita has been there for almost 10 years; there needs to be a different voice on the board and I thought I could be that voice," Denning said. After being approached continuously by residents who wanted to
know if he was running for office, Denning said he went to a meeting of the Democratic Party two weeks ago and asked for their endorsement. Colavita said that he is comfortable with being challenged and that everyone has a right to cultivate signatures in order to try to run for office. The supervisor said that he has known Denning for many years. Colavita said he hasn’t had a challenger in his nine-year term because residents can see that the town has moved in the right direction. “I’m proud of the accomplishments we affected, yet there is a lot more work to do,” the supervisor said. “The voters can decide who is most competent to run Eastchester.” Denning’s brother Phillip ran against Colavita for the supervisor’s seat in 2003, following the 10-year term of Jim Cavanaugh, a Republican. But he lost to Colavita in the election. In addition to being a police officer, Michael Denning has also helped the Eastchester Youth Council. He has lived in Eastchester for more than 20 years. The candidate said he wants more of a bipartisan representation on the different boards in town, including the planning and zoning boards as well as the Town Council. Although members of the planning and zoning boards are not politically endorsed and are appointed by the supervisor, the Town Council is comprised completely of Republicans. "[The boards] don't necessarily reflect a variety of political parties," Denning said. "There are no checks and balances." Making improvements to the CHALLENGERS continued on page 13
2 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 3
HUD report cards suggest additional affordable housing By CHRIS GRAMUGLIA STAFF REPORTER firstname.lastname@example.org
The Department of Housing and Urban Development has begun issuing “report cards” to Westchester communities involved in a controversial housing settlement that include benchmarks and goals for how much affordable housing each locale should be striving for. Through James Johnson, the federal monitor hired by HUD to oversee the county’s implementation of the affordbale housing settlement, the report cards were issued as a means of encouraging communities to move forward with building affordable housing at their own discretion through benchmark suggested numerical goals. According to the report cards that were recently released on the county's website, Bronxville has made no progress in satisfying the 100 affordable housing unit goal set by the federal government; Larchmont has made no attempt to promote affordable housing, but does allow for multi-family apartments; the Town of Harrison has constructed no affordable housing and does not provide incentives or mandates for affordable housing, and the Town of Mamaroneck has not adopted an affodable housing allocation put forth by the county's planning department that called for 125 affordable housing units. The two most significant allocations the federal government made via these report cards
were a suggested 975 affordable housing units in Mt. Pleasant, and 756 units in Harrison, both of which, by themselves, would exceed the countywide legal requirement of 750 units as outlined in the 2009 settlement. These figures came from a Rutgers University study that was not adopted by the county and was not part of the original settlement. The original housing settlement was reached under then-County Executive Andy Spano, a Democrat, and came about because HUD believed the county excluded residents from living in certain areas based on income and, consequently, their race. The original terms of the settlement mandated the county build 750 units of affordable housing within seven years and spread throughout 31 communities, $8.4 million be paid to the federal government and $2.5 million to the anti-discrimination center. Since taking office in 2010, Republican County Executive Rob Astorino has developed a contentious relationship with HUD because he believes HUD has asked the county to adopt additional provisions that were not part of the original settlement. The county executive has repeatedly said he will not give in to the federal government, and recently criticized their latest decision to place additional pressure on the communities that were considered part of the 2009 settlement in the form of “report cards.” Astorino’s major bone of contention is the idea that the county should build more than the already agreed-upon 750 units of affordable
County Executive Robert Astorino, center, discusses the federal monitor’s report cards, which were sent to 31 municipalities as a form of encouragement following the federal affordable housing settlement. Photo/Diana Costello
housing. “The report cards clearly document HUD’s overreaching and the vulnerability of local communities to Washington’s attempts to take control of or abolish local zoning,” Astorino said. “The county is ahead of schedule in complying with the settlement, but it won’t be bullied or threatened by HUD to do things that are not in the settlement.” Barry Caro, campaign manager for Democratic New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson, who is running against Astorino for county executive in November, said the claims made by the Astorino administration regarding the report cards have no basis in reality, and are merely a scare tactic used by Astorino to gain
support in the election. “You can talk about any kind of numbers you want, but the only number that HUD has the ability to force Westchester to build is 750,” Caro said. “The clear facts here don't back Astorino up. To get re-elected, he needs people to get mad at the federal government, and, if the federal government is not going to do things to get people mad, he is going to make things up.” In total, the federal government has suggested the county build 5,847 units via the report cards, according to Ned McCormack, communications director for Astorino, although the suggested units are not a legal obligation put HUD continued on page 9
4 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
Community Briefs Bronxville Library events Musical performance by Lou Del Bianco Tuesday, July 2 at 7 p.m. A wonderful evening for the whole family spent on the library lawn. In case of inclement weather, event will be held indoors. For more information, call 914-337-7680 x34 or email email@example.com Tuckahoe Library events Babytime Join Miss Ellen for stories, songs and rhymes especially for babies. Open to ages birth to two years Thursdays at 11 a.m. June 27 July 11, 18 and 25 August 1 and 8 Registration is required. 914-961-2121 www.tuckahoelibrary.org Preschool storytime Join Miss Ellen for stories and songs for 2 to 6 year olds. Fridays at 11 a.m. June 28 July 5, 12, 19 and 26 August 2 and 9 Registration is required
914-961-2121 www.tuckahoelibrary.org Children’s book club We pick the type of book, you pick the actual book. Bring your favorite book and share it with the group. Maybe you will find a new favorite. Tuesday, July 9 Tuesday, August 13 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Open to ages 5 to 10 years. Refreshments will be served. Registration is required. 914-961-2121 www.tuckahoelibrary.org Events at the Lutheran Church Prayer services Held regularly on the last Saturday of the month. Beginning at 6:30 p.m. following the regular Saturday service, these brief moments for meditation and prayer offer personal prayers at the altar and the ancient tradition of anointing with oil. Future prayer service will be held on June 29, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. Greenburgh Nature Center events Walk among live butterflies Join us for our annual butterfly exhibit. The exhibit is held in a hoop house structure, adjacent to our greenhouse, so that visitors and butterflies can feel as if they are outdoors. When you enter the exhibit, in addition to colorful and fragrant flowering plants, you’ll be greeted by New York native butterflies. Flying freely among the greenery, you’ll be sure to see Monarchs, Painted Ladies and Swallowtails fluttering from blossom to blossom in search of nourishing nectar, or
you may catch sight of them resting in a shady spot to cool off or see them sipping water from a puddle. While enjoying the beauty of these delicate creatures, you’ll have an opportunity to learn about the life cycle of a butterfly‑from egg, to caterpillar, to chrysalis, to butterfly–and about the unique relationship between specific plants and butterflies. The exhibit is appropriate for all ages and free with Museum admission. New Rochelle Humane Society events Dog Wash Fundraiser Sunday, July 21, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Bring your four-legged friend to the New Rochelle Humane Society for the 13th annual Dog Wash‑a fun-filled day of pet pampering, nail clipping, microchipping, good food and vendors. Rain date: Sunday, July 28, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Summer reading and writing program For parents concerned their children will lose academic ground over the summer, The Center for Literacy Enrichment-Pace University has a solution–The Summer Reading & Writing Program. From pre-schoolers to middle schoolers, the program provides children with an opportunity to not only maintain their reading, writing and comprehensive skills, but also to make gains academically in fun and informative ways. The program, which runs from July 1 to 31, offers full-day and half-day sessions. Certified teachers provide small-group instruction complemented by theme-based indoor and outdoor activities, including science experiments, crafts and games in a non-competitive setting. The Summer Reading & Writing Program is held on the campus of Pace University Law School, 78 North Broadway, White Plains. Early bird registration, prior to June 14, qualifies for a 5 percent discount on tuition. For more information, or to register your child, contact Center Director Sister St. John Delany, PhD at 914-4224135. Puppy/Dog Meet & Greet Saturday, June 29 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Ward Acres Broadfield Road New Rochelle www.NY-PetRescue.org firstname.lastname@example.org 914-834-6955 Women of jazz Saturday, June 29 at 8 p.m. The White Plains Performing Arts Center presents Women of Jazz on Saturday, June 29 at 8 p.m. in the theatre on the third level of City Center in downtown White Plains. The program on June 29 features the music of Dinah Washington, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday in an evening of smooth tunes from some of the most distinctive young jazz singers performing in NYC today. Join Kat Gang, Terese Genecco and LaTanya Hall as they wrap their spine-tingling vocals around classics such as “That ‘Ol Black Magic,” “What a Difference a Day Makes,” “Mr. Wonderful” and “Strange Fruit,” accompanied by the Barry Levitt Trio. We’re chilling the martinis and turning up the sizzle. Tickets are $35 for adults; $25 for students in high school and younger. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the WPPAC website at www.wppac.com, call the box office at 914 328-1600 or visit the
box office during business hours at the third level of City Center. Bronxville Pops concert series The Bronxville Pops Concert Band will present their 39th annual free concert series on Wednesday evenings at 8 p.m., July 10, 17, 24 and 31 on the Great Lawn in front of the Bronxville High School, Pondfield Road and Midland Avenue in Bronxville. Bring a blanket, bring some wine and cheese, and enjoy a beautiful evening of live music under the stars. Donations kindly accepted. PO Box 284, Bronxville 10708 For info: 914-325-1819 Classical music performance at Katonah’s Caramoor On Sunday, July 21 at 4:30 p.m. in the Venetian Theater, The Emerson String Quartet will make its American debut performance with its new cellist, Paul Watkins. Watkins, a much-lauded cellist as well as music director of the English Chamber Orchestra, replaces David Finckel. The distinguished soloist, award-winning conductor, and dedicated chamber musician joins the quartet’s Eugene Drucker, Philip Setzer and Lawrence Dutton for their 37th season. Watkins officially joined the group May 11, 2013, and will perform with his new colleagues extensively throughout North America, Europe, and Asia after the Caramoor debut. Tickets: $15, $20, $30, $40. Children under 18 are half price. To order tickets, call the box office at 914232-1252 or visit www.caramoor.org. Summer art classes at Greenburgh Nature Center Enjoy a five-class series of art instruction. Learn, explore and create in the beautiful outdoor setting of the nature center. Students work independently and in groups, learning to use a variety of basic supplies, as well as simple sketching, painting and more. Each class focuses on a new technique, ranging from landscapes to portraits, cartoons to still-lifes. Instructor Jake Hurwitz is a fun, outgoing and experienced art teacher who relates well with young students. Session Dates: Saturdays, July 13 to Aug. 10 Sundays, July 14 to Aug. 11 Class Times: Group 1, ages 7 to 10: Saturdays 10 a.m. to noon Group 2, ages 7 to 10: Sundays 10 a.m. to noon Group 3, ages 11 to 14 plus: Saturdays 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Classes run for two hours and are held outdoors, weather permitting. In case of inclement weather, class held indoors. Pre-registration and pre-payment required online. See website to register and pay. Classes start promptly, so please arrive on time. Dress appropriately for outdoor activity. Session Fee, which covers five classes and all supplies: Members $150 Non-members $175 Deadline for our Community Briefs section is 12 p.m. every Friday. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listings. Please send all items to email@example.com.
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 5
Eastchester Fire District bill slated for Senate vote By ASHLEY HELMS STAFF REPORTER firstname.lastname@example.org
A bill to change the Eastchester Fire Board of Commissioners election date to coincide with the general election in November has passed the Assembly and must now pass the Senate. This is the farthest an election change bill has progressed since it petered out in the Assembly last year. The bill was sponsored by Assemblywoman Amy Paulin and Sen. George Latimer, both Democrats who represent the town. Paulin said the Assembly has already voted to pass the bill and doesn’t have control of it anymore. Last month, Paulin and Latimer hosted a public forum in Eastchester so residents could voice their opinion on the proposed date to change to the election. According to Paulin, the community was overwhelmingly in support of changing the date from early December. Some residents said they were used to voting in November and going to certain polling places, along with feeling inconvenienced by a December election date due to the holiday season. However, Fire Board of Commissioners members are not politically endorsed candidates. New York State law requires fire districts to hold elections on the second Tuesday in December.
“The vast majority wanted it changed to franchise more voters, that was the essence of it,” Paulin said. Latimer said the bill must be put on a list to be voted on during this legislative session, which ends June 20 after press time. If it isn’t, the bill must be voted on in the Senate by the end of this year during future legislative sessions, which begin again in September. If the bill isn’t passed by the end of the year, the Assembly will have to pass it again. Latimer said that, judging by the reactions at the public forum, most people are in support of the date change. “My sense is that it’s absolutely a question of popular will,” Latimer said. “The consensus feeling is that they want it changed.” But not all town residents were as passionate about the election change as the public forum attendees were. A longtime Eastchester resident, who wanted to remain anonymous, said that the Eastchester Fire Department has a good response time, but that a lot of the people involved in the fire district only care about getting their hands on taxpayer money. These problems started years ago, he said, because the wrong commissioners were elected to the board. “I don’t know about the legitimacy of the date change, but my guess is that there are ulterior motives for [their own] personal FIRE continued on page 12
A bill to change the Eastchester Fire Board of Commissioners election date from early December to coincide with the general election in November has passed the state Assembly and is now up for consideration in the Senate. File photo
6 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
County executive launches 'Democrats for Astorino' By CHRIS GRAMUGLIA STAFF REPORTER email@example.com
On June 13 in the Grace Baptist Church in Mount Vernon, Republican County Executive Rob Astorino announced the launch of “Democrats for Astorino,” a committee of Westchester Democrats who have come together to support the county executive in his upcoming November re-election. Joined by former state Assemblyman Ronald Tocci of New Rochelle, and Westchester Jewish community leaders Martine Fleishman, and Nancy Zaro, Astorino welcomed the support of Democrats who believe his accomplishments during the past four years have transcended party lines and have earned him their support. Astorino will face New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson, a Democrat, who recently received the endorsement from the Westchester Independence Party, in the general election. Astorino was first elected into office in 2009 when he pulled off an historic upset unseating incumbent County Executive Andy Spano. Democratic Astorino supporters said they chose to back the county executive in this election because of his ability to increase social service spending while reducing the tax levy each year since he took office. “I am a lifelong Democrat and a committed community leader and I'm backing Rob Astorino because he has been accessible and
supportive of our community,” said Dr. W. Franklin Richardson, senior pastor at Grace Baptist Church, a congregation of more than 4000 members. “Rob's concern and commitment to economic development and economic empowerment of people in our community is the main reason why I'm supporting him for re-election.” Former Assemblyman Tocci echoed Richardson's comments, saying Astorino's “sincere concern for overburdened taxpayers” is a major reason he is now in support of the county executive. Tocci, however, has been immersed in long-standing fued with Bramson. Tocci has also been outspoken, as a representative of a veterans group in New Rochelle, against Bramson’s administration. In 2002, Tocci lost the Democratic primary in the 91st assembly district to Bramson. Tocci, however, went on to defeat Bramson in the general election as a Republican. Democratic supporter Nancy Zaro said her support for Astorino came from his diligence in standing up to the federal government in regards to a 2009 anti-discrimination housing settlement that mandated the county build 750 units of affordable housing. Astorino has made it clear that he thinks the federal government is attempting to dismantle the county's current zoning and he refuses to let that happen, nor will he do anything else the Department of Housing and Urban Development asks if it falls outside of the
County Executive Rob Astorino, a Republican, recently gained the support of several Westchester Democrats, who joined him in the formation of a “Democrats for Astorino” coalition. Pictured with the county executive are Nancy Zaro, left, Dr. W. Franklin Richardson, and former state Assemblyman Ron Tocci, right. Contributed photo
parameters of the settlement. "I'm proud to help lead Democrats for Astorino because Rob is a champion for Westchester, and he is defending our towns against Washington overreach,” Zaro said. Astorino said gaining support from
Democrats in Westchester is indicative of one of the first goals he set for himself after being elected as county executive. “I said I would represent Democrats, Republicans, and independents alike in ASTORINO continued on page 14
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June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 7
8 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
Bronxville High School celebrates graduating Class of 2013 By DANIEL OFFNER STAFF REPORTER email@example.com
Following tradition, Bronxville High School’s graduating Class of 2013 donned the traditional attire—all white tuxedos and dresses—for its 91st annual commencement ceremony held in front of the school on Pondfield Road on June 15. Hundreds of friends and family members sat in anticipation, as the graduating class of more than 100 students walked the stage. “It’s exciting,” said Bronxville parent John Ennis, who was eagerly awaiting the opportunity to see his daughter, Tepi receive her diploma. “The school does a magnificent job,” said Ennis, 55. “Having [Tepi] attend the Bronxville School has been a great experience.” In addition to marking the success of more than 100 graduates, this year’s event also marked the last class to receive their diploma from High School Principal Terrance Barton. For Barton, who will retire at the end of the 2012-13 school year, this year’s commencement ceremony was an emotional affair. “As students, I am proud of each and every one of you,” Barton said. “And, please remember always try to make good decisions.”
Following Barton’s opening remarks, two students were called up to the microphone to deliver their speeches to graduating classmates. Elena Licursi said throughout her high school tenure, a common theme of being stranded on a desert island united her classmates, bringing together a unique group of students through their creativity and compassion for life. “I’d like to take a moment to think about the people on our island,” Licursi said. “The Class of 2013 is a special class, with special people.” Class President Peter DeJoy said that, through the efforts of the school’s faculty and staff, the group grew in self-knowledge and laid the foundation of their individual identities. “The good news is we made it,” DeJoy said to his fellow classmates, “the better news is statistically, we will also make it through the next four years of college.” Instead of keeping with the tradition of hav-
During the 91st annual commencement ceremony, Class President Peter DeJoy delivers his speech in front of parents, classmates and school administrators.
Graduate Victoria Anthony Corbo receives her diploma from Bronxville Board of Education President David Brashear. Photos/Daniel Offner
Bronxville High School’s graduating Class of 2013 await their turn at the podium to receive their diplomas Bronxville High School Principal Terrance Barton gives his welcoming remarks to parents attending the 2013 graduation ceremony
Student-Faculty Legislature President Elena Licursi gives her commencement speech to the graduating class of 2013
ing a prominent commencement speaker, parent and teacher Giselle Licursi asked students and parents, “isn’t it time for something new?” With two children in the graduating class, Licursi provided a burst of energy to the traditional commencement ceremony. In her
speech, Licursi compared life to a dance floor, telling the class to keep their moves small and close. “Be confident and strive to stay connected,” Licursi said. “Class of 2013, this dance is yours…congratulations.”
Empire City Summer Concert winners Audrey Markantonis Mrs. A. Majdak Neil Wasserman Patty George David Reinhold
Selected winners get a chance to see Travis Tritt at Empire City Casino on June 23. Every week, five pairs of tickets will be awarded by random drawing. To be eligible, send your email address to firstname.lastname@example.org with “summer concert” in the subject line.
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 9
Bronxville High School Class of 2013 Cyrus Tahmouress Adamiyatt Alexandra Lee Adrian Helen Paige Alev Brian Trevor Anderson Alina Teresa Atayan Amanda Estelle Austi Nicholas Charles Bardin Clara Christenson Barth Caroline Elizabeth Blatt Evin Blatt Ethan Robert Wolf Blauner Kyle Robert Bloomer Carter Douglas Bond Brooke Elizabeth Bonfiglio Hanna Buendia Allison Elayne Cane Edward Dwyer Carpenter Carty Nicholas George Caruso Isabel Sofia Cervantes Duncan Ross Colquhoun Victoria Anthony Corbo Caitlin Joan Daly Christopher O. Davis Jack Herbert Deasy Jane Blaise DeJoseph Peter Quinn DeJoy Niko Michael Doukas Michael Brennan Dresdale Minah Ebrahim Tepi Karl Ennis Olivia Mae Estes Jacqueline Charlotte Faselt James Arthur Faville Kevin Lawrence Driscoll Flanagan Willow May Florek Louis Michael Florio Brian Codd Forst Joshua Michael Geiling Samuel Joseph Glucksman Ilhan Gokhan Attila Wilfredo Granados James Caldwell Grass Hillary Adelaide Hamann Thomas Michael Harrison Sarah Cole Heintz Anderson Longworth Hershey MaryKate Heubel Alexa Lee Hijazi Nicholas Jackson Hsieh Michael Andrew Imperiale Andrew Carver Jackson Rosalie Elizabeth James Julia Mae Jiampietro
Julia Cook Keating Danielle Alisa Kelly Asil Khan Juliana Kim Kevin J. King Warren William Kraemer Emily Carolan Law Audrey Grace Lemberger Elena Giselle Licursi Paul Richard Licursi Jocelyn Lugo Clare Amanda Macmillan-Bell Mark William Manley Luke Fitton Marrone Jill Tully McDermott Abby Anderson McFadyen Nell McGlynn McFadyen Claire Marie McGonigle Nicholas Albert Meluso Michael Alexander Moore Aidan Harding Moran Samantha Morrison Jonathan Paul Moustakas Peter Dylan Murray Meredith Marie Natsch Liam Thomas O’Rielly Julia Sophia Ornaf Helen Rose Parzick Alexandra R. Pass Eric Conrad Pass Robert Paul Petrasovits Joshua Kanianthra Philips Amelia Hopkins Phillips Nicholas George Proios Andrew Reichel Meredith Pearce Rizzo Nicholas Oliver Robert Alisandra Rodriguez David James Rotchford Caroline Alexandra Sorensen Aaron Michael Srebnik Cornelia Cabot Stack Molly Anne Staunton Henry Marcel Szor William Burwell Tarry IV Matthew Dalton Tormey Erin Tubridy Grace Ann Vetromile John Fraser Vetromile Brewster Jay Warble Aurora Garber Weiden Naomi Rose Weirens Bailey Rose Wood
HUD from page 3
forth by HUD and are not binding. Department of Housing and Urban Development Deputy Secretary Maurice A. Jones said that HUD would not stop encouraging the county to build affordable housing units even after the 750 unit requirement had been met. “We would never say only do 750 units and stop,” he said. McCormack said a number of the communities that have received the report are displeased, because there has been no indication of how these housing projects will be financed.
“Reaction from local municipalities has been confusion, anger and disbelief,” he said. “Nowhere are the costs of these allocations discussed, or their impact on local services or the environment.” While McCormack calls the provisions of the report cards obligatory, no legal consequences can arise if a given community chooses not to follow through on the benchmarks set by HUD. The report cards were designed by the Pratt Center for Planning, and were issued to each of the 31 eligible communities on March 21.
What’s Your Beef? What’s bothering you today?
Collected on Mamaroneck Avenue in Mamaroneck “At Stepinac High school in White Plains, there needs to be a slower speed limit, especially with the elementary school around the corner.”
“That I have to go to work and can’t get lunch with my husband.” Shana Ginipro, 36, Astoria
Bernice Spina, 75, Mamaronek
“I’ve been smoking and trying to quit, but it has been a real pain.” Ron Andresen, 66, California
-Photos and reporting by J.C. Sites
“I wish I could find a part-time job to keep busy.” Robert Plenty, 79, White Plains
10 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
Save the Sound nitrogen appeal moving forward By CHRIS GRAMUGLIA STAFF REPORTER email@example.com
its oxygen due to nitrogen pollution that it has caused serious detriments to the organisms living in the water. Save the Sound, an organization formed in “A large pocket of the Long Island Sound... 1972 devoted to protecting coastlines along had, [from nitrogen overload], been transthe Long Island Sound, recently found that an formed into a dead zone,” Andersen said. appeal it filed against the Great Neck Water Andersen also wrote that, at one point, the Pollution Control District and the Department portion of the sound between Hempstead of Environmental Conservation would re- Harbor and Mamaroneck had no oxygen at main on the table after a judge denied mo- all, due to nitrogen dumping as well as poltions made by both organizations to have it lution dismissed. The Great Neck treatment plant dumps The appeal was filed to stop the Great Neck its nitrogen directly into this portion of the Water Pollution Control District from dis- sound, according to Schmalz specifically becharging an excessive amount of nitrogen into tween Nassau and Westchester counties. the sound. The appeal filed by Save the Sound is prediAccording to Leah Schmalz, director of leg- cated on the idea that the new, higher limit set islative and legal affairs for Save the Sound, by the DEC violates the state's Clean Water the DEC signed a consent order with the Act prohibition against backsliding which Great Neck Water Pollution Control District states that the DEC may not issue permits that in May 2012 that would allow the treatment make rules regarding nitrogen dumping less plant operators to dump a larger amount of stringent than they already are. nitrogen into the sound than before. Save the Sound also contends that the DEC Currently, federal law limits the amount of and the Great Neck Water Pollution Control nitrogen that can be discharged into the sound District entered into the agreement without a at 238 pounds per day, but, after the consent public hearing, which is required in cases like order was signed, the treatment plant began this one. dumping around 500 pounds per day, with a “Part of our appeal is based on the fact daily limit of 653 pounds. that the DEC did not go through the proper “We’re very pleased that our appeal will go channels involving publicizing a public hearforward,” said Schmalz. “The DEC's decision ing,” said Laura McMillan, interim director to let Great Neck discharge more nitrogen of communications for Save the Sound. She violates the Clean Water Act and hurts the said, in addition to drawing attention to the sound’s health.” Schmalz said that an increase lack of transparency involving the consent in the amount of nitrogen in the sound reduces order, Save the Sound also contends that nithe amount of oxygen in the water, making trogen is still one of the biggest concerns for the ecosystem's plant and animal life suffer. the body of water today. Tom Andersen, former consultant for Save “The goal of eliminating annual summer the Sound and author of “This Fine Piece of dead zones is our top priority for the western Water,” which catalogs nearly a decade of sound right now,” she said. “Nitrogen is the pollution in the sound, said that a large por- most negatively influential thing that is going tion of Long Island Sound has lost so much of on in that region.” Mamaroneck Town Supervisor and co-chair of Save the Sound Nancy Seligson, a Democrat, told The Town Report that there is a long history to nitrogen pollution in the sound and the appeal came from the results of the Long Island Sound Study. The study was formed in 1985 to restore the sound and has advocated for a reduction in nitrogen from all sewage treatment plants surrounding the body of water. “Basically the Long Island Sound Study called for 58.5 percent reduction in nitrogen from all sewage treatment plants in the Sound,” Seligson said. “Save the Sound learned, upon investigation, that Great Neck has not been complying with that upgrade beSave the Sound appealed an agreement between the cause of the [DEC] consent order” Department of Environmental Conservation and the Great Both the Mamaroneck and New Neck Water Pollution Control District that allowed for the Rochelle sewage treatment plants release of nitrogen into Long Island Sound. According have been required to comply with to Save the Sound, excess nitrogen has been shown to damage ecosystems in Long Island and Westchester. the 58.5 percent reduction with the Mamaroneck Harbor is just one part of the sound that has deadline for such compliance set felt the effects of nitrogen dumping. File photo for the year 2016.
The county’s sewage treatment plant in the Village of Mamaroneck was one among many facilities in Westchester that was given a 2016 deadline to reduce its nitrogen output by 58.5 percent. An appeal filed by Save the Sound with the Department of Environmental Conservation is predicated on the claim that the Great Neck Water Pollution Control District is not complying with this upgrade. Photo/Chris Gramuglia
Tuckahoe high salutes its best and brightest
Tuckahoe High School’s Class of 2013 valedictorian, Casey Stevko, and salutatorian, Christopher Ushay. Contributed photos
As another school year comes to a close, Tuckahoe High School bids a fond farewell to a class of 93 seniors. Two standout seniors are the class valedictorian and salutatorian. Class valedictorian Casey Stevko has distinguished herself across all arenas at Tuckahoe. From the classroom to the community to athletics, Casey truly is without parallel. As a student, she has exceled in the most rigorous program of study we have to offer, achieving a perfect score of 100 on four different Regents exams and maintaining a 100.83 GPA among all courses taken at the AP or Honors level. With respect to her accomplishments, this year Casey received seven different senior awards, which are given to the senior with the highest academic average in each subject area. As an all-section athlete and last year’s softball Player of the Year, Casey also received one of the prestigious Con Ed Scholarships this year
as recognition of her superb accomplishments as a student-athlete Christopher Ushay has exceeded all expectations with respect to his academic and extra-curricular accomplishments throughout his high school career and this year we are happy to report that he is our Salutatorian for the class of 2013. Christopher defines what it means to be a model student as he has excelled across a myriad of platforms in and out of the classroom. With respect to academia, Christopher has distinguished himself by maintaining a 99.52 GPA while taking all courses at the AP and Honors level and attaining a surplus of extra credits evidencing his desire to take advantage of all that is available to him. Christopher has scored a 100 on five different Regents exams and this year was awarded four different senior awards. (Submitted)
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 11
Native Goods: Doing it right in Port Chester Two twenty-somethings in Port Chester are turning the concept of a retail store upside down and inside out. And they may just be on to something. Walk by Native Goods, adjacent to the Capital Theater on Westchester Avenue, and you might think its just another men’s fashion retail store catering to a young, urban population. But you would be dead wrong. These two young men, who grew up in Port Chester, are doing things that very few retail storeowners are doing; they are listening to their customers. In fact, their customers actually drive their business. With the use of social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, website, blog) Native Goods customers are directly dictating what they buy and when they buy it. “Because we are very close in age to our customers; I’m young, only 21, we can relate to them and them to us. They use Instagram and Twitter to tell us what they want to see in our store. We listen,” co-owner Luis Mendoza said. Native Goods is a mecca in Westchester for the sneaker culture, a trend started decades ago by rappers and basketball players that led to a California event called the Dunkxchange in 2005 that gave “sneakerheads” the opportunity to buy, sell and trade sneakers and apparel. According to the website dunkxchange.com, there are now more than 200 Dunkxchange events all over the United States. And it’s not only about the sneakers–there’s a trifecta of fun stuff that goes right along with it; music, art and fashion. On June 9, Mendoza and fellow Native Goods co-owner Jormar Costillo put on an event they called “The Connect Show” at St. Peters Church across from their store. The purpose of the event was to raise funds for a skate park they want to build in Port Chester’s Rec Park. “We got the idea to build a skate park from our customers. We thought that if Port Chester
The co-owners of Native Goods recently held a skate-off event called “The Connect Show” to raise money for a skate park the duo is hoping to build in Port Chester.
could build a dog park, they could build a skate park, too,” Mendoza said. Mendoza and Costillo applied for a grant from the Tony Hawk Skate Park Foundation and the Rob Dyrdeck Foundation, named after the aforemetioned skate kings, but haven’t heard back yet. In the meantime, they are raising their own funds and working with the local government to see what Westchester can be done. “We wanted to build wanderer it in Columbus Park unLisa Jardine derneath [Interstate] 95, just like the FDR skate park in Philadelphia, but we were told that the [Village] of Port Chester doesn’t own that park,” Mendoza said. Though the pair’s park plans are yet to be resolved, their Connect Show was a huge success, with more than 500 people in attendance. “Father Albert at St. Peters was a huge supporter. Before I even got to fully explain what we wanted to do at the church he said ‘yes.’ He feels the Port Chester community is not always supportive of their youth and he wanted to help in anyway he could,” Mendoza said. And if the drove of teenagers leaving the churchyard carrying cardboard sneaker boxes was any indication, there was heavy buying and selling inside. Mac Killian, a 14-year-old student at Rye Middle School, attended the event. “I’m friends with the owners and I like to buy clothes from Native Goods,” Killian said. “This event was great because I was able to meet new people in the community who are interested in sneakers, clothes and music.” Costillo and Mendoza welcome anyone with an interest or curiosity in the sneaker culture to stop by. On any given weekday afternoon, there could be up to 30 kids just hanging out, the same on weekends. Their typical customer is a male between the ages of 15 and 20 but sometimes girls come in, too. “These kids are so smart and so clued-in to social networking–we learn so much from them. We want them to feel at home here,”
The store also carries gear to satisfy the skateboarding culture. Photos/Lisa Jardine
Native Goods Co. co-owners Jormar Costillo, left, and Luis Mendoza.
An impressive collection of sneakers can be found at the Native Goods menswear boutique located in Port Chester near the Capital Theater.
Mendoza said. “Port Chester has a significant Hispanic population, but we draw kids from all of the surrounding communities. It doesn’t matter what color your skin is, we come together for the love of the culture. Why hate on
each other?” Mendoza said. Why indeed?
Lisa Jardine is a freelance writer who has frequently contributed to CNN.com among other publications. She is currently a student in the MFA creative writing program at Manhattanville College. She is always on the lookout for a 166 Westchester Ave. Port Chester great story, an amazing restaurant, Facebook: nativegoodsco an unusual day trip or a must-see culInstagram: nativegoods tural event (in Westchester County). Twitter: @nativegoods To contact Lisa you can email her at Website: lyfestylegoods.com firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her As of July 1, Native Goods will be relocaton twitter @westchesterwand. ing to 145 Irving Ave., Port Chester
The Connect Show seemed to leave its mark, according to Native Goods co-owners Jormar Costillo and Luis Mendoza.
12 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
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FIRE from page 5
financial gain,” he said. For many years, the Eastchester Fire Board of Commissioners was embroiled in controversy regarding the board’s operations and financial oversight. Meetings were often heated, and in early 2012 it was discovered that the district had been overpaying two department retirees over a several-year period. A fire lieutenant, who also wanted to remain anonymous, said that if the district changes the election date, personal politics will come into play more than they have before. “Because they’re removing it from its own election and putting it with the general election, it will be over politicized and become all about money,” he said. “The election will never be legitimate.” The fire district’s $16 million budget exceeds both the Bronxville and Tuckahoe village budgets. Bronxville’s 2013 budget stands at $14.3 million while Tuckahoe’s budget for the same year came out to roughly $11 million. Some residents and fire commissioners say moving the date would save about $30,000 because it costs the district about $40,000 to hold a separate election. If the election date is changed, Paulin said that it will still cost money, but lawmakers have crafted the bill in order for it to cost the least amount. The fire district must coordinate with the Board of Elections in order to have the fire board election at the same polling locations as the general election, according to Paulin. “There are some stipulations; to have the election at all open places and have it be full length so everyone gets the opportunity to vote,” Paulin said. “[The fire district] has to do these things or it will revert back to the same day.” The intent is to get more voters to the polls, and some feel that changing the date would make it easier to do so. Voter turnout for the fire board elections is generally quite low; just 1,174 votes were cast last year in an election that includes Eastchester, Tuckahoe and Bronxville. If passed by both state legislative houses this session and made into law, the date change would effect this year’s election. -With reporting by COREY BAUMER
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 13
A municipality’s burden BRONXVILLE TODAY Mayor Mary Marvin
The state legislature will end the current session in just a few weeks and another year will pass without relief from the crippling unfunded mandates that the bi-partisan, statewide Mayors and Municipal Officials Association asked our elected officials to address. Even a bill that required the state, rather than the local governments, to pay the costs for any future unfunded mandates contained in legislation that is passed in Albany, died in committee. As a result, the MTA tax levied on the village remains as well as Wick’s Law, which requires that individual contracts be bid for every trade when a school or municipality undertakes a construction project. The continuation of this law will again adversely impact the village as the school embarks on the auditorium renovation project. It is estimated that Wick’s Law provisions increase the cost of municipal projects by 10 to 30 percent versus the same work done in the private sector. Pension reform simply did not happen. A plan was promulgated allowing financially strapped municipalities to pay a smaller amount of their pension obligation in the next few years, with balloon payments coming five years out. This will stave off some local bankruptcies in the short term and, five years hence, when the full impact of the delayed obligations come home to roost, many elected state officeholders who favored this option will have moved on or retired. This is the ultimate in “kicking the can down the road” and the “not on my watch” mind set. The New York State requirement for binding arbitration for uniformed municipal employees was also not addressed. Under the current system, when a municipality and a union reach a stalemate, binding arbitration is triggered and strangers are dispatched to a community to make the financial decisions relating to a new labor agreement, leaving the local elected officials and the property taxpayers out of the equation. Communities are also penalized if they have a fund balance due to prudent planning. The lesson seems to be, if you do not save for a rainy day or emergency, you are rewarded with a lower arbitration award.
The village is also a proponent of legislation that would allow municipal notification of public meetings online versus weekly newspapers. The information would reach residents in a more timely manner and at cost savings for the taxpayers. The bill is aggressively opposed by the print media. Though major changes to the burdens imposed on New York State property taxpayers are not being addressed in Albany, our local legislators, Sen. George Latimer and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, have been very responsive to issues unique to their district. As example, our legislators championed a bill that would move the Eastchester Fire District election from its December date with limited polling hours and locations to coincide with the regular November elections. Since the Eastchester Fire District budget of approximately $16 million now surpasses both the municipal budgets of Tuckahoe and Bronxville, offering the taxpayers more hours to cast their votes and more polling places seems only fair. The bill passed in the Assembly and is awaiting a Senate vote. Another bill with great financial impact to the village is also winding its way through the legislature courtesy of Latimer and Paulin. The village, along with 10 other municipalities, banded together to champion a bill that would allocate the cost of water hydrant maintenance to all users of water and not just property taxpayers as is the current structure. Last year, Bronxville Village taxpayers spent $105,614 to maintain the hydrants throughout the village. With the passage of this bill, there will be a more equitable allocation of the maintenance costs. These local bills, though quite necessary, are only small potatoes compared to the unfunded burdens that are passed to local governments via Albany. From my vantage point, it is both disheartening and unsustainable. We have elected officials unwilling to address a pension plan in many cases because, as career politicians, they have a vested interest. We have strayed so far from the Founding Fathers’ model of giving a few years of service to one’s government and then returning to private sector careers. It may take the populace electing representatives who have non-political expertise‑who do not fear defeat or aspire to even higher office‑to get us back on the right path. Property taxpayers simply must view themselves as the most important special interest group and make their voices heard.
CHALLENGERS from page 1
town storm drain systems by cleaning them regularly, fixing pedestrian sidewalks and increasing relations between the town government and town employees are issues that Denning said he would tackle immediately, if elected. "Town employees are not all that happy lately for a variety of issues," Denning said. "I feel it's time for a change." Going forward, Denning said he plans to campaign door-to-door to gain signatures from
5 percent of the town’s registered Democrats by July 11 in order for his name to appear on the November ballot. In the coming months, a debate will be held to showcase the stances Colavita and Denning take on various issues. "I'm going up against a very strong and organized party and an incumbent who is a legacy; it's not going to be an easy battle," Denning said. The town supervisor is elected to serve two– year terms.
HOUSING from page 1
Eastchester could see another senior housing project on Jackson Avenue, pictured, in addition to the Summerfield Gardens project in the town’s north end. The housing project is being put forth by an Eastchester-based construction company, Seminara & Sons Inc. Photo/Ashley Helms
worked closely with the town when it was drafting zoning code laws in 2009. If the Planning Board met over the summer, Seminara said he would be ready to present his senior housing project, but has to wait until the fall when the planning and zoning boards meet again. Seminara & Sons has already prepared the necessary site and parking plans along with a business proposal. Kim Denise, an Eastchester resident, said
that she wasn’t aware of the project on Jackson Avenue, but is supportive of it. “I think seniors need the care; they are here in town and they need care,” Denise said. Another town resident Pat Roth said she is also supportive of an additional senior housing facility. “Seniors are a big part of our community and it’s nice for them to be able to stay in the community,” she said.
Pet Rescue Gambler is an adorable 7-month-old male Shepherd mix, about 35lbs. He is a sweet boy with such soulful eyes. Gambler is very playful and loves romping around with other dogs. He is also very people-friendly. New things are still a little scary, but he is making lots of progress. Gambler is very well-behaved. He is learning his commands and enjoys outings. Gambler is neutered, vaccinated, dewormed, heartwormtested and micro-chipped. The adoption donation for Gambler is $250. To learn more, please contact Larchmont Pet Rescue at 914-834-6955 or on the web at www.NY-PetRescue.org. (Submitted)
14 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
Sheldrake parties on the pond Sheldrake Environmental Center honored local residents Richard Cherry, CEO and president of the Community Environmental Center, and Matthew Karp and Wendy Weinstein Karp, owners of Plates restaurant, for their outstanding commitments to the community and environment at its annual gala on June 6. The center’s fundraising gala, “Party on the Pond–Putting Sheldrake on the Map” was held for the first time ever on the shoreline of the Larchmont Reservoir–James G. Johnson, Jr. Conservancy. The Sheldrake Environmental Center is located at 685 Weaver Street in Larchmont adjacent to the reservoir and pro-
Even heavy rainfall couldn’t stop attendees from coming out, through mud and puddles, to show support for the Sheldrake Environmental Center’s “Party on the Pond” in Larchmont on June 6. Photo/Corey Baumer
vides educational programs, community events and organizes volunteers to help maintain the property. According to Sheldrake Environmental Center Executive Director Holly Moskow, the gala is a unique opportunity for members of the Larchmont, Mamaroneck, New Rochelle, Scarsdale and surrounding communities to come together to honor local residents who have contributed to the environment and community life and to explore and enjoy the conservancy property in its evening splendor. Honoree Richard Cherry said, “I am very pleased to be recognized by the Sheldrake Environmental Center, which is doing such important work so well. At CEC, we are trying to save our fragile earth one building at a time. At Sheldrake, they are doing it one mind at a time.” Sheldrake Environmental Center’s Party on the Pond was proudly supported by sponsors Wine GEMS, PLATES Restaurant & Catering, Houlihan Lawrence, Pollena Forsman, Encon Solar, Purity Vodka and Flowers by Stephanie as well as media sponsors, Hometown Media Group, The WAG and Westchester County Business Journal. Proceeds raised from the gala will support Sheldrake Environmental Center’s ongoing operations and help Sheldrake maintain and map trails, provide scholarships for children to attend summer nature camp and support the development of new community programs. (Submitted)
ASTORINO from page 6
this county," Astorino said. “It is especially gratifying...to see and hear from so many Democrats and independents who are supporting my candidacy four years later.” It’s not foreign for political candidates to be cross-endorsed by those of opposing parties but the likelihood that such a committee will provide any political weight during the campaign seems remote. State Sen. George Latimer, a Democrat, said that, while the formation of the committee will help Astorino, it will not be a decisive factor and support from other parties in elections is not atypical. “In general, there are going to be Democrats who support Rob and Republicans who support Noam,” Latimer said. “I had Republicans who announced for me in my last campaign. It is usually not a decisive factor. In this case,
it seems like individuals are making individual judgments.” Nonetheless, representatives from Bramson's campaign ridiculed the formation of “Democrats for Astorino”‑saying they don't see it as a threat‑and Astorino would have been better off using his time in other endeavors. “If this is all our opponents can muster for ‘Democrats for Astorino,’ that's a pretty clear sign that Democrats are united behind Noam Bramson,” Barry Caro, campaign spokesperson for Bramson said. “Ron Tocci won his last election as the Republican and Conservative Party candidate, and is the furthest thing from a ‘major’ Democratic leader. Perhaps Rob Astorino's time today might have been better spent working on an economic development strategy so that major employers...don't cut hundreds of jobs in our community,” he said.
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Sports The beat goes on In many respects, the end of any scholastic year is bittersweet. While graduations are celebrations of the academic achievements of our local high school students, they are tinged with melancholy—a reminder that a distinct part of the lives of the young men and women clad in caps and gowns is at an end and that new challenges lie ahead. But it also serves as a reminder that the cycle will continue. Our departing seniors will leave to go into the world while new classes rise up to take their place—both in the halls of our high schools and on our athletic fields. Local seniors certainly left their mark on the Section I landscape, as they seem to do every year. There was no shortage of great moments this year, indelible sporting moments that will forever live on in the minds of those seniors who will move on to bigger things. Of course there was ‘the shot’—Khalil Edney’s game-winning buzzer-beater to give New Rochelle its first section title since 2006 and made Edney and the Huguenots national heroes on ESPN. Moments such as that one, and Edney hoisting the state football title back in November will be long remembered. But
while those are undeniable in their greatness, there have been a handful of other moments, other stories that are just as meaningful, though not as broad in scope. Stories like New Rochelle baseball, led by senior hurler John Valente, earning its first victory over rival Mamaroneck in six years; a game that Huguenot coach Pete Annunziata admitted meant so much to his ace. Other streaks fell this live mike year, including Rye’s eightgame winning streak over Mike Smith Harrison in ‘The Game.’ Watching senior quarterback Vinnie Nicita and his teammates celebrate the end of a drought was certainly a moment I will remember for a long time. I will also remember talking to lineman Joe Bellantoni after Tuckahoe punched its ticket to states. In 2010, when the Tigers won a state title, Bellantoni was an undersized lineman, a sophomore scrapper who—despite his starting role—was like the team’s younger brother. I remember when his father died, just prior to that state title game, and how Bellantoni still went out and played, knowing that the rest of the Tuckahoe community was behind him. In 2012, Bellantoni was the undeniable leader and anchor of that Tiger line, someone
Khalil Edney goes up for a shot against Mount Vernon in the Section I title game on March 3. In the final seconds of that game, Edney hit a buzzerbeater game-winning shot that gained national attention and was the best sports moment of the 2012-13 season. Photo/Bobby Begun
June 21, 2013 • The TOWN REPORT • 15
whose tireless work and time in the trenches made him a teammate to look up to in times of need. These moments, these players, will be missed. But the great thing about high school sports is there is always someone waiting in the wings, someone ready to step up, take the big shot and write their own history. Rye golfer Alexis Hios—who placed second in the state this year—might very well bring Rye another piece of hardware for their trophy case in her senior year. Young football stars, like Mamaroneck’s Marquez JacksonAllen and Rye Neck’s Jakob Calvini, will have another chance‑two in Jackson-Allen’s case‑to find glory on the gridiron. Tuckahoe’s Cassie McGrath, Mamaroneck’s Kimi Chiapparelli, and Rye Neck’s Diana King are all-stars already, but will only get better as the years go on. So farewell seniors. Your time here will not be forgotten, by you, your teammates or your friends and family. But one word of advice before you go— don’t be strangers. Come back when you can, cheer on your old teammates, the kids you mentored, the JV players who looked up to you as role models. Although your time might be done, there’s no saying what magic the future might hold for our up-and-coming stars.
Westchester second at CYO Archdiocesan Championships Approximately 250 middle school runners from 45 Catholic parishes throughout Westchester, Manhattan, Staten Island and the Bronx gathered last month to compete in the CYO Archdiocesan Track Championships at Iona Preparatory School in New Rochelle. Participants competed in the 800-meter, 200-meter, and 100-meter events, as well as the 4x100 relay, long jump, and shot put. Westchester County’s team placed second overall in both the boys and girls categories behind Staten Island, who finished first. The top three athletes in each age category for their event qualified for the National AAU Club Championships, which will take place at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando in July. The 2001 Westchester girls placed first overall for their age level. First-place finishers in this category included Sarah Flynn from Saints John & Paul of Larchmont in the 800-meter run, with a time of 2:34; Shannon Yeung from IHM of Scarsdale in the 100-meter dash with a time of 16.5; and Lily Flynn from Saints John & Paul in the long jump with a mark of 12.08. The 2001 Westchester girls 4x100 relay team, featuring Lily and Sarah Flynn, Angela Torricella from St. Teresa’s of Briarcliff Manor and Alanna Alvarez from St. Joseph’s of Bronxville, won their event in a time of 1:03. Other top girl finishers from Westchester who qualified for the AAU championships
were Christina Altomare from St. Teresa’s, who finished first in the 1999 age group in the 200-meter dash with a time of 29.2 and first in the long jump with a distance of 15-01, Kerry Sheridan from Annunciation of Crestwood, who placed second in the 2001 age group in the 400-meter dash with a time of 1:22, and Julia Gayanelo from IHM, who placed second in the 1999 age group in the 100-meter dash with a time of 16.4. The 1999 Westchester boys placed first overall for their age level. Prince Forson from Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Elmsford won the 100-meter dash with a time of 13.2, Rodney Samson from Iona Grammar in New Rochelle took first in the 200-meter dash with a time of 26.5, Luke Molinelli from St. Teresa’s Parish aced the long jump with a mark of 16-09 and Ming Davis from Holy Family of New Rochelle placed first in the shot put with a throw of 32-09. AAU qualifiers from Westchester in other age categories included: John Ryan Freeman from Iona Grammar in the 2000 age group, who placed first in the 400-meter dash with a time of 1:05, Kelly Hughes from St. Joseph’s, who finished first in the 2001 age group in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:48 and Marlon Ellis from Iona Grammar who placed second in the 2000 age group in John Ryan Freeman from Iona Grammar runs the 400-meter dash on May 19 at the CYO the 100-meter dash with a time of 15.4. Archdiocesan Track Championships. Freeman won the 2000 age category with a time of 1:05. (Submitted) Contributed photo
16 • The TOWN REPORT • June 21, 2013
PCRA turns 10, shines at national meet By Mike Smith SPORTS EDITOR firstname.lastname@example.org
On June 9, the Pelham Community Rowing Association finished up another go-around at the U.S. Youth Nationals in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Over the past decade, the New Rochelle-based organization has become one of the more prominent—and successful— teams in the nation, and this year was no different as the PCRA finished third, thanks to some terrific performances. The PCRA, celebrated its 10th anniversary at its home on Glen Island on June 1, christening three new boats and celebrating 10 years of rowing excellence. The celebration continued a week later as the club, which has sent boats to nationals for the past five years, had another terrific weekend. The PCRA has turned heads on the national scene, especially given their 2011 performance in which they unseated the six-time defending champions and broke a regatta record in the process. Though they weren’t able to quite repeat last year’s success, they did not come away empty-handed. In one of the more surprising finishes of the regatta, the girls quad—featuring Harrison’s Liliane Lindsay and Mamaroneck’s Ellie Sawyer, as well as Pelham native Lauren Veith and Riverdale Country School junior Julia Sesler—took third place in the Class A final, eeking out a medal with a late race burst and a finishing just .01 of a second ahead of the fourth-place boat. According to Lindsay, who was making her third trip to nationals, the finish far exceeded
From left: Liliane Lindsay, Lauren Veith, Julia Sesler and Ellie Sawyer pose with PCRA coach Guy Monseair after taking third at nationals on June 9.
PCRA co-founder Angelo Rubbo–along with his wife Rosemary–christen “The Rubbo” on June 1. at Glen Island. For a decade, the PCRA has been one of the premier rowing clubs in Westchester County. Contributed photos
the team’s expectations heading into the season. “Even though we have been to nationals in the past, this year, it was pretty much a whole different boat,” said the Harrison senior. “Three girls from the quad graduated last year, so, coming in, we didn’t know what to expect from ourselves. When we did start thinking of nationals, we didn’t know how we would do.”
With the graduation of her more experienced crewmembers, Lindsay said that she took it upon herself to become more of a leader as the season wore on. “I went from being the youngest girl in the boat to being one of the more experienced ones,” she said. “With two of the girls being newer, they looked to me and Ellie for support and advice.”
From left: County Executive Rob Astorino, Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, County Legislator Jim Maisano and Republican candidate for county legislator John Verni join PCRA co-founders Bill O’Connor, Brian Clark, and Angelo Rubbo at the PCRA’s 10th anniversary celebration on June 1.
With a terrific performance at nationals behind her, however, Lindsay has no plans to rest. On June 22, she headed up to New London, Conn. to take spend the summer training at the United States Coast Guard Academy with 34 other elite high school rowers. Over the course of the summer, Lindsay and her fellow rowers will be under the tutelage of some of the top instructors in the United States as they
train and compete for a spot to represent the U.S. Youth National Team at the Junior World Rowing Championships, which will be held in Lithuania this August. “This is going to be a new level of challenge,” said Lindsay. “It’s going to be a high level of competition, and a lot of girls there are going to be incredibly fast. It’s going to be great to row and train with girls at that level.”