TESTING IS CANCELLED FOR SATURDAY JULY 4
TESTING for ALL
Tuesday July 7
8:00 am – Noon, 1:00-4:00 pm
click for more information
Supervisor COVID-19 Update
Tuesday June 30
There is plenty of room for social distancing while meeting “long lost” friends. Children over the age of 2 are required to wear masks
while in the playground. Please be mindful of the rules! Click here to print the poster.
Please send us photos! We will continue to add as we receive more! We are excited to be in Phase 3 and welcome back our shops and businesses who miss you very much. Give your online shopping a rest, but remember your masks. We worked too hard to get to this point. Please remind your teenagers – we have reports of unmasked groups on Katonah Ave on Thursday afternoon.
Shopkeepers: send us photos to add to our gallery and we will continue to add them in- we love the ones where you are waving us in! Shoppers: send us your selfies with Shopkeepers (with their permission to post-we will add website info)!! Click thru the numbers 1-4 for more photos.
Chief Padilla Appointed to Westchester County Police Reform and Reinvention Task Force
Bedford Police Chief Melvin Padilla has been appointed by Westchester County Executive George Latimer to the Westchester County Police Reform and Reinvention Task Force. This working group, which consists of County and local police officers, elected officials, victims of violence, African-American clergy, among others, will review all policies and procedures that the County Police Academy use to train new recruits and current law enforcement officers.
Chief Padilla has been with the Bedford Police Department since 2002 and before coming to Bedford he worked for the NYPD. He became Chief of BPD in 2014. Chief Padilla is the first Hispanic to be appointed Chief of Police in Westchester County. He is quoted in the Record Review saying, “I am honored to have been selected to participate in a dialogue for such an important and potentially transforming discussion. As a Chief of Police with 20+ years of service who also happens to be a minority, I believe I can contribute a unique perspective from both inside and outside of the profession. I feel it is critical that current law enforcement professionals are involved in any transformative process, particularly when it pertains to police training, and I look forward to this opportunity.”
Reminder on Real Estate Payments
- You may defer without penalty tax payment up to July 15 if you certify a financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 crisis. See the attached certification form. Please e-mail certification to email@example.com or mail to Tax Receiver Amy Pectol, 321 Bedford Road, Bedford Hills, NY 10507. Please note “COVID-19” in the Subject field.
- If you cannot certify a financial hardship, you may pay taxes after April 30 at the reduced penalty rate of ½ of 1% if paid in May and 1% if paid between June 1 and July 15.
In this time of challenge and uncertainty, I am writing to let you know of an opportunity to take a positive environmental action from the comfort of your home. Bedford residents can now enjoy the benefits of Community Solar AND help green our electric grid, thanks to our partnership with Sustainable Westchester. I’m proud that the Town, in keeping with our strong history of environmental leadership, has become the first Westchester municipality to enroll its eligible accounts. Benefits of participating include:
- Savings of up to 10% on your utility bill.
- No solar installation on your property and no cost to join or cancel.
- Flexibility to use the Westchester Power program or any other energy supplier.
- Directly support our transition to renewable energy and Bedford’s sustainability goals.
The community solar farms are being constructed later this year and those who enroll will benefit from the opportunity for long term savings. You can sign up or learn more at www.SustainableWestchester.org/Solar.
How Community Solar Works
- Your share of the solar farm is allocated based on your annual electricity usage.
- You earn credits that are applied to your electricity bill.
- The solar farm bills you for those credits at a 10% discount, saving you money.
For example, your utility charges you $115 for electricity on your monthly bill and credits you $100 for your share of the electricity generated by the solar farm. You pay the $15 net amount due on the electricity bill. Then, the solar farm bills you for the $100 credit at a 10% discount ($90), saving you $10 on your electricity for the month.
Enrolling is easy and requires providing your utility information (account number and for NYSEG customers, your Point of Delivery (POD) number found on the 3rd page of your NYSEG bill), creating a billing profile to allow for autopayment for the discounted solar credits and e-signing an agreement. For more information, or to enroll, please visit www.SustainableWestchester.org/solar. If you have questions, or need help, please email CommunitySolar@SustainableWestchester.org or call Sustainable Westchester at 914-242-4725.
Bedford is recognized across New York State and beyond for our strong environmental leadership – we’re proud to continue to take action to help New York transition to a clean energy future.
Message from Bedford Hills Free Library
It’s been great seeing many of you since our Library pickup services began last month. In July, the ILS will be open among the 38 Westchester County libraries. The Library also offers many new titles from our collection; please ask a librarian for recommendations.
Our building remains closed to the public and our limited hours will continue until further notice. See hours below (go to “click here for more details”).
For everyone’s protection, we quarantine books and DVDs for 72 hours and follow strict cleaning protocols and safety guidelines. Inside and out, the Library requires that staff and patrons wear masks and observe social distancing of at least six feet. Thank you.
In addition to storytimes for preschoolers available on our YouTube channel, we are delighted to announce an exciting line-up of virtual programs and activities for our Summer Reading Program. Click here for more details.
Highlights of June 25 Emergency Town Board Meeting
Free July/August Parking for Employees of Business Owners in Bedford Hills and Katonah; Sidewalk Sales; Gazebo Park Live Music
The Town Board met yesterday in an emergency meeting to take action on suggestions to immediately assist the business community. Thank you to the Katonah Chamber of Commerce and the Katonah Village Improvement Society for their leadership and proposals to the Town Board.
While the Town Board took action last night (described below), please note that the Town and members of the Board will continue to work with representatives of each of the business districts to continue to support efforts to assist them in recovering from the financial blow which the pandemic has struck.
It should also be noted that retailers and restaurants may immediately take advantage of the new streamlined process for issuance of licenses for use of Town property for such activities as outdoor dining, use of parking spaces, sidewalk and other town land. In most instances Town Board approval is not required and this can be done expeditiously with a one page application (we’ll help you with it) submitted to Town Clerk Boo Fumagalli.
Town Board Approvals at the meeting 6/25:
Recognizing that parking is the lifeblood of our neighborhood business districts, the Town Board adopted a policy for the period July 1 through August 31 for free parking in Town commuter lots for local employees of businesses. It applies to all commuter lots in Katonah and to Lots 4, 5, 7 and RR in Bedford Hills– subject to some limitations. This will free up street parking for customers. If you are a business interested, please contact Parking Bureau head Abraham Zambrano at firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-666-8283
Live Music at Gazebo Park
The Board approved use of the gazebo (Gazebo Park) in Katonah music events live or otherwise, arranged by the Katonah-Bedford Hills-Bedford Village Arts Council, from 10:00am to 9:00pm for the period July 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 subject to limitations on gatherings and any other restrictions under the Governor’s Executive Orders.
The Board also approved an application from Katonah Village Improvement Society for Katonah Sidewalks Sales / Katonah Day events for Friday, July 24, 2020 and Saturday, July 25, 2020 from 10:00am to 5:00pm on each day, with the closure of streets for the event to be determined. The Board also approved KVIS’s application that the Town co-sponsor the events so that the Town will bear any labor costs and waives insurance requirements.
Organizations may submit event applications and co-sponsorship requests to the town to have live music, food trucks, or other community-building activities for our own town and to bring people to town. The Town Board is open to the town supporting activities that are good for our town residents and that may also bring people in from other communities to shop, eat, and enjoy our town.
Organizations interested in learning more about what type of events or activities may be permitted during the covid restrictions, please contact email@example.com
To view the meeting, click here
Phase 3 for Mid-Hudson Region began June 23rd
Phase 3 permits limited indoor seating at restaurants, re-opening of food services, and personal care services, such as manicures, tattooing, tanning, etc. For more information, click here.
Gov. Cuomo increased the maximum number of people allowed in a gathering from 10 to 25 once a region enters Phase 3, as long as social distancing practices are maintained.
NYS has developed detailed guidelines for each industry and business, including that they must affirm that they have read and understand the obligation to operate in guidance including development of a written Safety Plan. READ MORE
Low to Moderate Risk Recreational Activities Permitted Beginning July 6
Beginning July 6, under the condition that a region has entered Phase 3 (the Mid-Hudson region has entered Phase 3), low to moderate recreation and sports activities will be permitted. This includes golf, rock climbing, cross country running, baseball, softball, field hockey, soccer, non-contact lacrosse, and swimming relays, among other sports. Sports such as football, ice hockey, basketball, and rugby are considered high-risk and therefore not included.
Practices and games will be allowed to resume for the approved activities, except for competitive tournaments requiring travel. Physical distancing and limited indoor occupancy must be maintained where appropriate and applicable. For the interim guidance and guidelines that must be followed by leagues, businesses, coaches, players, and spectators, please click here.
Looking Ahead to Phase 4
Phase 4 includes the re-opening of college campuses, low-risk outdoor arts and entertainment, low-risk indoor arts and entertainment, and media production industries.
The Governor plans to “phase into” Phase 4, meaning that certain businesses will not be able to open immediately as the last phase begins. Rather, there will be sub-phases within Phase 4 itself. The duration between each sub-phase has not been determined yet but could be up to a couple weeks or months.
Gyms, malls, and movie theaters, among other industries that have not been included within any of the phases, will not be allowed to re-open immediately during the initial stage of Phase 4. Data trends will be “continually studied” before a decision on when and how the re-opening of these industries should occur.
For a brief summary provided by the County about the industries re-opening and their regulations, please click here.
Social gatherings of up to 50 people will be permitted and houses of worship will be allowed to hold indoor services of up to 33% of the building’s capacity.
The Mid-Hudson Region is expected to enter into Phase 4 on July 7. For official interim guidance and guidelines that must be followed by those businesses re-opening in Phase 4, please click here.
Available in Multiple Sizes!
Free child and toddler size face masks are now available. Sewn and donated by Michelle Petschek of Katonah. Michelle is close to her goal of making 1000 masks for the Mask Maker’s Guild. Thank you Michelle!
Free adult sized masks are also available. Sewn by volunteers in coordination with the Community Center of Northern Westchester. Thank you CCNW and volunteers!
Reminder about disposal of old masks:
We receive many complaints about people discarding masks and other items on the street and sidewalk. Please be considerate of your neighbors and community and properly dispose of trash.
Governor Cuomo’s June 25th Executive Order 205 states that anyone traveling to New York after recently being in a state with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 10,000 residents over a seven-day rolling average or a state with positivity rate of higher than 10% over a seven-day rolling average must quarantine for 14 days when he/she enters New York. These measures were enacted in coordination with Connecticut and New Jersey.
Current restricted states include but are not limited to Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. For more information and a complete and up-to-date list of restricted states, please click here.
Current Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Regulations
On June 1st, state-run DMV offices in the counties of Albany, Onondaga, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, and the five boroughs of New York City began to process registrations and other transactions by mail. On June 4th, transactions began to be accepted through secure drop boxes located at each office. In person services, such as, restoring a revoked or suspended license, applying for a conditional/restricted license, commercial driver license permit test or driver license change/update, obtaining a NY non-driver ID, as well as changing your name on a photo document are open for appointments only. Driving tests can be made by appointment whilst following the proper COVID-19 protocols but learner’s permit testing is still not accessible.
Road Work Update: 6/26
From NYS DOT:
684 – The current schedule is that paving will be completed by the middle of August and the entire project will be completed by the middle of September.
Guard Hill Road Bridge – Concrete deck and approaches have been placed for Guard Hill Rd Bridge, currently working on miscellaneous curb and asphalt. Last items of work—bridge rail and guide rail approaches—to happen after 4th of July holiday. Anticipate Bridge reopening sometime in mid-July.
Broad Brook Rd Bridge – Preparatory work will begin after 4th of July Holiday, with operations with one lane closed with flaggers during daytime work hours. Bridge will have full 2 way traffic flows during non-work hours. Schedule for full closure tentatively set for Aug 10th…Reopening /completion of Bridge work to occur in mid-November.
Katonah Classic Stage Film Festival
The Katonah Classic Stage (KCS) is launching a film festival in Katonah! The theme of the festival is DIY short films inspired by classic theater, though by no means do all submissions have to follow this theme. KCS will be accepting short film submissions from all ages through August 25th.
The film festival screening event will take place August 28th. For more information, please click here.
Drive-In Movie Night Success!
I would like to thank Chris Soi and his whole team for helping make the drive-in movie night such a great success! Everyone had fun watching The Lion King. What a beautiful night it was for a drive-in movie! My thanks to Chris for providing us with these photos (click on the images to enlarge them).
Moving Ahead on Sewers
One of the silver linings in the pandemic crisis, is the sewer project. The $60 million project encompasses the business districts of Katonah and Bedford Hills, Katonah Elementary School, Bedford Park Apartments and St. Mary’s school and parish house. The keystone of the project is taking ownership for $1.00 of the wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) of the NYS Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS), valued at $35 to $40 million, including $8 million of improvements which NYS will perform. The WWTP serves the correctional facilities in Bedford Hills and has excess capacity. Transfer of ownership is anticipated in July. DOCCS will become a customer of the sewer district, providing financial stability and predictability for DOCCS’s wastewater requirements, while providing a substantial financial ballast for the sewer district, with DOCCS as its largest customer. READ MORE
The Census Is Hiring
The Census Bureau is hiring now and encourages everyone interested to apply as soon as possible to be part of this important effort.
To learn more, you can watch the Westchester County Association’s Census recruitment video, which includes information about the positions available in Westchester, including how to apply. The job pays $23 an hour, the hours are flexible, and 1,900 additional workers are needed between now and December! Supervisory positions are also available.
The 2020 Census:
Counting = Funding
People who are not counted now remain uncounted for 10 years. If someone lives in a community and uses the community’s services, they need to be counted so they can be supported.
The COVID-19 Drive-Through Testing Facility
Next Test Date:
Tuesday July 7 | 8:00 am -12 Noon and then 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
We are continuing the facility in place into July.
Update: Partnering with Mt. Kisco Mayor Gina Picinich, we opened the drive through facility a month ago and then expanded it to include Lewisboro, through Supervisor Peter Parsons, and Pound Ridge, through Supervisor Kevin Hansan. Approximately 1,000 people have utilized the facility. There were fewer than 4% of those tests whose results were positive. Those that were tested positive for the most part were asymptomatic – so with no symptoms, they didn’t know they were infected leading to quarantine and needed treatment. One of the metrics which the Mid-Hudson Region needs to keep in place is continued testing capacity.
We thank our partners of Mt. Kisco, Lewisboro and Pound Ridge for helping us provide police and other coverage to continue the facility in operation. We also thank Dr. Steven Murphy of Murphy Medical Associates for his work in operating the facility.
Please consider providing and delivering lunch to the volunteers at the testing facility. Unfortunately, they had to close the facility for 45 minutes on Saturday to pick up lunch. If you are so inclined, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or e-mail me at email@example.com. And thank you in advance.
The facility is located at Commuter Lot 4 at the Bedford Hills train station and is open to residents of Bedford, Lewisboro, Mt. Kisco and Pound Ridge as well as their first responders and employees. A nasal swab is taken for a diagnostic (PCR) test for the presence of active COVID-19. It does not test for the presence of antibodies if you presently do not have an active COVID-19 but had it previously. The antibody test will detect antibodies if you previously had the virus, but it does not test for an active virus. That’s why you might consider both tests.
All towns are sharing in the services, such as police coverage, which are needed for the operation of the facilities. Operations resume Tuesday, July 7th, FOR ALL from 8:00 AM until Noon and then again from 1:00 PM until 4:00 PM.
If you wish to use the facility, try to register at https://coronatestct.com/ (physician referral is not necessary). You will need to provide certain information including insurance, but you will be able to utilize the facility if you do not have insurance. If you have trouble registering, please contact Murphy Medical Associates as follows:
Isabel Gomez at firstname.lastname@example.org 203 442 1072 (call or text)
Sarah McMahon at email@example.com 203 614 9820 (call or text)
Spanish: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
If you still have trouble registering, just go to the test site when it is open.
No cost, no pay
No one will be turned away
If you went through the drive-through facility more than three business days ago and have not received your results, please e-mail Ahmad Altajar, MD firstname.lastname@example.org
With regard to data from the testing site at the Bedford Hills Train Station,
Why should you consider getting tested?
The main reasons for anyone to get the diagnostic test are (1) to find out whether you may be an asymptomatic carrier of the virus and identify individuals who are infected who then need to quarantine; (2) to provide for contact tracing for those identified as being infected; and (3) to provide data to scientists and medical professionals to further their research, helping them learn more about the virus and assist in making determinations about when the current restrictions can be reduced or lifted. Even if you are not sick, it is still a good idea to get tested for the above reasons. Of course, it is your personal choice and (with a few very limited exceptions) there is no requirement to be tested.
We are grateful to Governor Andrew Cuomo and County Executive George Latimer for increasing testing capacity, especially for antibody testing. Hospitals, medical practices, urgent care facilities and other health care facilities, including Open Door in Mt. Kisco and other Westchester locations, also are increasing testing capacity. Click here to learn more about testing locations and options or view Westchester_County_COVID-19_Testing_Locations.
Can you help?
We know that for us to come out of this pandemic crisis, we need a great deal of testing (and critically, followed by after care and tracing). We ask your help. Dr. Murphy is currently operating the Bedford Hills drive-through facility with three staff members and a logistics member.
We ask for volunteers. Click the green link below to view the list of our volunteer positions, the requirements per NYS and roles they perform.
Antibody Testing through Northern Westchester Hospital
Our thanks to our partner Northern Westchester Hospital who just began antibody testing for first responders in Bedford, Lewisboro, Mt. Kisco, Lewisboro, New Castle, North Castle, North Salem, Pleasantville, Pound Ridge, Somers and Yorktown Heights.
To learn more information or to watch a webinar on antibody testing please click here
COVID-19 Information and Resources
To reduce repetition, we transfer guidelines, protocols, fact sheets and so forth from previous days’ updates in the Resource Guide.
This guide is chock full of information on NYS rules; resources for seniors, grocery store hours and other individual needs; health and wellness; small business resources; State/Federal Policies; employment information and related; FAQs and much more.
Photo Credit: Shelley Pauls
Excited that it’s farmers market season again?! Below are a few you can choose from:
John Jay Homestead – Saturdays 10 am – 2 pm
Must register for a 30 min. time slot, one person per family allowed to attend, social distancing must be observed and masks must be worn. For further information on rules and registration, please click here.
Muscoot Farm – Sundays 9:30 am – 2:30 pm
One person per family allowed to attend, social distancing must be observed and masks must be worn. For further information and rules please click here.
Rye’s Down to Earth Farmer’s Market – Parking Lot on Theodore Fremd Ave – Sundays 8:30 am – 2 pm
One person per family allowed to attend, social distancing must be observed and masks must be worn. For further information and rules please click here.
Summer Plans for Pools and Day Camp in Hamlet Parks
Update June 25
Recreation Department staff continue to work to coordinate and offer additional programming in all of our parks over the course of the summer. Specifically for Bedford Village Memorial Park we anticipate offering youth baseball mini-camps through ProSwing of Mt. Kisco for children 7-12 years of age. Details are still being finalized so stay tuned. In addition, youth sports organizations such as Bedford Pound Ridge Baseball Association and Bedford Youth Soccer Club have begun to discuss summer offerings that will likely take place at BVMP. Please continue to follow the Supervisor’s Updates, as well as “liking” our department Facebook Page for program and event announcements.
All 3 Hamlet Playgrounds opened at noon on Friday, June 26.
We are happy to announce that the playgrounds in the hamlet parks opened on Friday, June 26 at noon. Parks staff cleaned and prepped the playgrounds for the reopening, but we ask all users to continue to follow the social distancing protocols and the requirement of wearing masks when unable to maintain that distance. Hand hygiene is also very important, so we encourage all playground visitors to sanitize their hands before and after utilizing the playground equipment.
Thank you and please continue to enjoy our parks and recreational facilities safely by complying with all COVID-19 guidance.
June 24, 2020
Click here for a PDF of the document pictured above.
Our Three Town Pools to open on July 3
Click here for information on the pool session reservation process once you have purchased a season pool pass.
Superintendent of Recreation and Parks Chris Soi and his staff are working tirelessly to determine how we can maximize the use of the pools without overwhelming them, maintain safety protocols, and apportion resources as fairly and as equitably as possible.
We recognize that what we are offering is less than optimal. We all have a shared responsibility to ensure that there is not a resurgence of the pandemic. If there are any questions regarding our programs, pools and parks operations please call us at 914-666-7004 or e-mail us at email@example.com. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
Support the Playhouse! Make it your your first stop before a drive in movie!
click green link:
Curbside Concessions on Friday nights
Once you click on the link above, click “see menu” and begin to order!
Drive-In Movie: Field of Dreams
Field of Dreams will be playing Saturday night (June 27th) at 9:00 pm at the Ridgefield High School parking lot. Availability is on a first-come first-serve basis, with the parking lot opening at 8:00 pm. Admission is free. This drive-in movie series is sponsored by the Ridgefield Playhouse in coordination with Craig’s Fine Jewelry of Ridgefield. For more details and regulations that must be followed, please click on the image above.
Thank you to the Katonah Chamber of Commerce for providing a banner thanking essential workers, and to NYSEG for installing the banner.
Pictured with Supervisor Chris Burdick (center) are Katonah Chamber of Commerce Members Left:Andrew Baren and Chamber Chair Rud Niles
Their efforts in recognizing those that selflessly contributed during the pandemic are greatly appreciated.
A Community Arts Council is in the works
LOOKING TO CONNECT WITH THE ARTS?
Uplifting news for all of us
The Bedford Town Supervisor and Bedford Town Board are extremely excited to support the birth of the Katonah-Bedford Village-Bedford Hills Arts Council .
Under the direction of Mindy Yanish, founder of the Katonah Art Stroll, the council will serve as a hub for all the arts in all three Bedford hamlets.
This announcement also serves as a call to artists of every discipline who would like to participate in the development and re-envisioning of our community through the arts.
The mission is to bring public art, events, performance, exhibits and community participation for all.
For questions, and submission of ideas please contact Mindy Yanish at firstname.lastname@example.org
We are excited to share music with you this summer with our Summer 20/2.0 plan which includes four live, public, open-air concerts on Friends Field as well as seven live-streamed performances from the beautiful Music Room. Learn more about the events and our plans for this summer.
Contact Free Pickup at the Hamlet Libraries Beginning June 15
The hamlet libraries are open Monday, June 15 for contact free pickup.
Click for more: Bedford Libraries Contact Free Pickup
Metro-North Railroad Adds Rush Hour Harlem Line Trains
As of today, there will be 12 additional trains on the Hudson, Harlem and New Haven Lines. In addition, the north end entrances of Grand Central Terminal will be open.
For commuters travelling to/from District Two, the Harlem Line will now have two additional inbound and two additional outbound trains. Details of the trains added are available here and the full amended schedule is online at https://new.mta.info/.
A reminder that face coverings are required for all riders.
Composting has never been so easy!
SIGN UP available through JUNE 30th and Save more than 50% on curbside food scrap pick up for a year. The discount is limited to the first 75 residents who sign up. There are only a few spots left for the discount! Fill out an application here
DEC Issues Guidance to Homeowners to Avoid Problems with Bears
With recent bear sightings in the Northern Westchester area, we share this reminder from Simon Skolnick, the Town of Bedford’s Chair of the Bedford Conservation Board:
To reduce the chance of negative black bear encounters around your home, DEC recommends these simple precautions:
- Never feed bears! It is illegal, dangerous and detrimental to bears.
- If you believe bears are being fed in your area, or suspect a nuisance bear situation, report it to DEC immediately.
- Take down bird feeders after April 1. Birds do not need supplemental food in the spring and summer, when natural foods are most abundant (even if you believe your birdfeeder to be inaccessible to bears, the birds will drop seed on the ground, which attracts bears to your yard).
- Clean off barbeque grills before night fall (don’t forget the grease trap), and if possible, store grills inside when not in use.
- Store garbage in a secure building or location, secure can lids with ropes/bungees/chains, never over-fill cans, and dispose of garbage as frequently as possible.
- If you live in an area where bears may occur, put garbage containers out by the curb just before the scheduled pick-up – never the night before.
- If you live in a densely populated bear area, consider using a certified bear-resistant garbage container.
- Clean garbage cans frequently with ammonia products.
- Do not burn garbage: it is illegal and can attract bears.
- Do not add meat scraps, bones or melon rinds to your compost pile.
- Feed pets indoors and store pet food indoors. If pets must be fed outside, immediately remove all uneaten food and dishes.
It is important to appreciate and respect black bears as wild animals, from a distance.
UPDATED JUNE 22
The Soap Project Still Needs Our Help!
This community continues to show the enormity of its generosity, and compassion, for our neighbors in Taconic Correctional Facility and Bedford Hills Correctional Facility who are in need of soap during this continuing pandemic. After these many months, when many could be facing donor fatigue, people continue to donate soap for women who so desperately need it. We need to continue to support our neighbors in this way because they need it, and because we need it. When we heal others, we heal ourselves.
As we have seen recently, our young people have become energized in a way that is reminiscent of our own youths, when we marched on Washington for equal rights for women, when Civil Rights leaders marched in Selma, AL.
I was recently contacted by Riley Bazaar with the Subject line of her email reading “I would love to help!”. Riley is a rising Senior at John Jay, she is VP of Bridges to Community, she is an equestrian show jumping athlete, and she holds down a job at G. Willikers in Katonah.
Riley has organized a soap drive in her community, putting boxes around at various drop off spots for her neighbors. Riley will then gather the soap and deliver it to us to get to the women in prison.
But one thing that Riley said to me in her email rings true for so many people in this community. She said, “Thank you for the opportunity to give back”. Many people have said just that to me during this continuing soap drive. Please continue to donate soap as you can, for it truly is an opportunity to give something relatively small that has an enormous impact on both the recipient and the donor.
With gratitude to this community,
Sharon Griest Ballen
Chair, Prison Relations Advisory Committee to the Town of Bedford
BACKGROUND: The women who live in our two prisons are Bedford residents. In an attempt to keep them safe, they have lost all rights to visits from family and all volunteer programs which sustain them, such as Puppies Behind Bars and Hour Children. They are scared, they are helpless, and they are at the mercy of others. “Each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.” – Bryan Stevenson. We all need grace. We all need mercy.
Soap is even more essential for this group of women who live in tight quarters and as a result, are more vulnerable. The women in prison are issued lye-based soap by the State, which causes their hands to chafe when used for the necessary frequent washing required to help to prevent COVID-19. The Prison Relations Advisory Committee has organized a soap drive to provide non-alcohol, individually-sealed bars of soap to our neighbors. Thanks to the generosity of this community, we have been able to provide non-lye-based soap during the pandemic when frequent hand-washing is essential.
To donate soap, you can also safely leave it on the porch of The Church House of the Katonah Presbyterian Church at 31 Bedford Road, or mail it to that address. Thank you to our wonderfully generous community. If you have questions, please contact Sharon Griest Ballen, Chair, Prison Relations Advisory Committee at email@example.com
Spring/Summer Cleaning Options
Please note: The Town is offering this information as a service to our community.
Kindly phone Winter Brothers or City Carting with your questions.
Bulk item disposal
With the normal tag sales and dump days postponed until the fall, please note that there are two local facilities where you may dispose of bulk items for a fee based on weight:
- Winters Brothers 225 Railroad Ave Bedford Hills 914-666-0000 $0.08 per pound, 7 to 2:30 Monday to Friday 7 to 11:30 Saturday
- City Carting 241 NY-100, Somers, NY 10589 914-277-4211 20-100 $25, 100-300 $40, 300-500 $53 7-4 weekdays, 7-12 Saturday
Yard Waste: Leaf and yard waste composting facility on Beaver Dam Road where residents may drop off wood waste and leaves and pick up mulch and compost (Mon-Fri 7:30am-3pm)
Scrap metal, e-Waste, Food waste: textiles, and books – drop off at the Bedford Recycling Center at 343 Railroad Ave., Bedford Hills (Tues, Thurs, Sat 8am-3pm)
Hazardous Materials, visit the website of the County Hazardous Materials Recovery Facility in Valhalla for more information
1. Bedford Positive Cases
As of June 29, there have been a total of 253 cases. Here is the latest map.
2. Extension of Deadline for Applications for Tax Assessment Exemptions READ MORE
3. Exit 6 Closures: I-684 Paving Work will require some closure of Exit 6 entrance and exit ramps between 6/14-6/18 and again between 6/21-6/25 after 7 PM. Detour signs will be in place.
4. Status of Parks Parking is now allowed. Please note that to comply with the Governor’s Executive Orders and the phased “reopen”, restrictions will continue to apply regarding social distancing, certain facilities off limits, and other measures.
5. Food Support Please know that the Community Center is there for you should you need food assistance. All are welcome and everyone is treated with dignity and respect. Contact the Community Center at 914 232 6572 Ext.110 www.communitycenter.org
Current Westchester Data
(as of June 29, 2020)
Westchester Cases: 34,838
Westchester Tests: 266,962
Go to covid19tracker to read the latest data. Updated daily.
- New York State has, through Executive Order 202.38 and 202.39, extended the period for public meetings and hearings to be held digitally. Digital public meetings will be permitted until July 6, while digital public hearings will be permitted until July 7; an Executive Order further extending this period will be necessary to allow meetings or hearings to be held digitally beyond July 6 and 7 (respectively).
- County Executive Latimer announced a new financial assistance program for businesses with fewer than 50 employees. Qualifying businesses may receive grants of up to $10,000 for PPE or other internal modifications which would protect customers from COVID. Other benefits include no-interest loans of up to $25 million.
- Westchester County is reopening two of its pools this weekend (6/27): Saxon Woods and Sprain Ridge. The County will reopen pools at Wilson Woods and Tibbets Brook Park on the following weekend.
- Westchester County’s beaches will return to normal weekday use beginning the last week of June.
- Westchester County has prepared a Food Insecurity plan to address the sharp rise in food insecurity brought on by COVID. The plan has two primary components, listed below:
- County Executive Latimer announced the Police Reform and Reinvention Task Force – a new initiative to review procedures and policies at the County’s police academy. More information is available here
- Croton Point Park and Playland beach will reopen on June 26; Playland beach will adopt its typical summer schedule of remaining open from Tuesday to Sunday.
- Metro North Riders – Railroad Information. Click “read more” to find up-to-date information on using rail service. Read More
NYS data as of June 29
a. New York State Cases: 393,454
b. Total tested: 3,914,938
c. New Positives 524
- Special education services and instruction may be provided in-person this summer; the Department of Health released interim guidancefor these services.
- Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state’s “NY Forward Reopening” Plan, along with the state’s regional monitoring dashboard.
- New York State has doubled testing capacity to reach 40,000 diagnostic tests per day, and has more than 700 testing sites. We encourage eligible New Yorkers to find a nearby testing site and get tested. Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.
- New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.
- Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.
- Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.
Update from Washington
Guide for Stimulus Payments U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer’s office provided an excellent guide for individuals for getting Economic Impact Payments under the federal relief package.
IRS Information—From Sen. Schumer’s Office
- The IRS has updated its FAQ guidance to include responses on the following:
- If you have received notice saying the payment was issued, but you have not received the payment (Q55), and
- How to request a “payment trace” on your direct payment (Q56)
- The IRS issued a reminder that the direct payments belong to the recipients of those payments, not nursing homes and other care facilities providing care to those individuals, and also that the payments do not count as a resource for purposes of determining eligibility for Medicaid and other federal programs for 12 months from receipt. If you are hearing from any folks who have experienced issues with this, please let me know.
- Senator Schumer signed onto a letter led by Sen. Cortez Masto calling on Treasury and IRS to take action to ensure that survivors of domestic violence can access their direct payments. This includes setting up a dedicated phone line for survivors to call and report a change in address, creating a process with an online PIN to verify a victim’s identity, providing a method for survivors to report theft of their payment, among other specific actions.
BA Announces New PPP EZ Forgiveness Application
Revised Full Forgiveness Applications Also Available
Last week, the U.S. Small Business Administration posted a revised, user-friendly Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness application implementing the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020. In addition to revising the full forgiveness application, the SBA also published a new “EZ” version of the forgiveness application applying to borrowers who:
- Are self-employed and have no employees; OR
- Did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%, and did not reduce the number or hours of their employees; OR
- Experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19 and did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%
Details regarding the applicability of these provisions are available in the instructions to the new EZ application form. Both applications give borrowers the option of using the original 8-week covered period (if their loan was made before June 5, 2020) or an extended 24-week covered period. These changes will result in a more efficient process and make it easier for businesses to realize full forgiveness of their PPP loan.
- Click here to view the EZ Forgiveness Application.
- Click here to view the Full Forgiveness Application.
To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.
Thank you, Marc Black
for sharing “When Corona’s Done”,
a song/video with a hopeful notion for us all. Click here to view
Thank you to Chip Rachlin for sending us a portrait of Billie.
Our pets (dogs cats, birds,, turtles, fish, rabbits, etc.) are emotional anchors, helping us through our most anxious times.
We continue to invite you to send us a photo of your pet to be included in a gallery of Silver Linings.
Chip, thank Billie for inspiring this idea! As they come in we add to the gallery.
with Bedford2020 & Healthy Yards
Join us Thursdays at 5:00 pm this spring for community workshops about healthy yards and sustainable food! We will be partnering with organizations around the region to bring you fun and interactive things you can do at home right now.
Come be inspired about a new topic each week!
High School Graduations
Gov. Cuomo has announced that outdoor, socially-distanced graduations of up to 150 people will be permissible beginning June 26th, subject to any outbreaks or significant changes in the number of cases.
Now more than ever we need to shop local. In our community many stores and restaurants are still open and could use your support!
Send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like an organization/fundraiser to be highlighted in “Support Your Community”.
Boys and Girls Club of Northern Westchester They are serving as an emergency childcare site for Northern Westchester Hospital personnel
Feeding Westchester as little as $25 can provide 100 meals
And our local print newspapers, hit by plummeting advertising purchases, have asked for support. You can help the Record Review givebutter.com/recordreview (tax deductible) and the Katonah-Lewisboro Times
Lexington Center for Recovery Now Offering Remote Treatment Options
For assistance, call 914-666-6740 during the daytime and 1-833-515-4673 on the off-hours. Ask to speak to Doreen Lockwood, Program Director. We are available 24/7. Lexington Center for Recovery accepts most insurances and offers services to all those in need regardless of ability to pay.
Assistance for Victims of Domestic Violence READ MORE
The Deadline for April 30 taxes has passed.
You can apply for an extension until July 15, 2020
Questions About Your Lender’s Notice Regarding Your Tax Escrow?
We understand that lenders and their loan servicing agents are reviewing escrow accounts and sending out notices of adjustments. Understandably this leads to questions regarding property tax bills. Bedford’s Tax Receiver Amy Pectol is happy to field any questions which you may have. Please e-mail her at email@example.com or call her 914-666-4475.
The Bedford Bike Ride
Saturday June 20th was the perfect day for a bike ride! Big thanks to the Bedford Police and Highway Department for making the road safe for cyclists on the 4.5 mile loop, from Reservoir Road to Maple Ave., and to the neighbors on Maple Ave. for sharing their beautiful road for our Celebrating Summer bike ride.
Safe Use of our Local Roads
It’s great to see cyclists, walkers and joggers getting out and enjoying the spring weather. READ MORE
Go Take a Hike!
Our thanks to Kristan Winters, Communications Director at the Mianus River Gorge for reminding us to Explore the Gorge this summer. Photo courtesy of Mianus River Gorge Wildlife Tech Program. Click here for more information on visiting the Gorge.
Looking for Scenic Places to Go Walking?
Check out our list of nearby parks and preserves! From the Mianus River Gorge in Bedford to the Bronx River Parkway Reservation in Scarsdale, you can find it here. This guide provides you with information related park/preserve availability, and any other information, such as museum, bathroom or playground closings. I thank Chris Marcogliese for his hard work developing this guide!
Photo Credit: Aaron Burden
Going fishing for the first time? Are you an experienced fisherman who is looking for an app that provides you with up-to-date information related to fishing and outdoor activities? Or, are you simply looking for new lakes or ponds in the area to catch a few more fish? Check out our comprehensive fishing resource guide here! My thanks goes to Chris Marcogliese for putting it together!
Photo Credit: Greysen Johnson
Virtual Rides and Exploration
Photo Credit: Chris Slupski
Wishing you could ride a rollercoaster?
Want to tour a museum?
Art Gallery? The World?
Check out these websites:
Playland Playhouse–Fun rollercoasters for everyone!
Scheduling of Town Meetings
Until Further notice, all meetings are virtual meetings. Please check the calendar on the Town of Bedford website
Town Meetings Re-Broadcast:
Weekly Program Guide for All Channels
BCSD-TV is channel 18 on Optimum and 1982 on Verizon FiOS
SO STAY WELL, STAY HOME IF YOU CAN – WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS TOGETHER!