Here are just some of the reasons why Thanksgiving 2015 is a time to say thanks! Since last Thanksgiving here are some new initiatives that we should be thankful for.
* Town budget complies with tax cap ---lowest tax hike in years.
* Town maintained, in 2015, our Aaa bond rating from Standard & Poor's and Moody's. Taxpayers to save about $300,000 in borrowing costs because we have the highest bond rating possible (only 1% of communities in the nation have a Aaa rating).
* Town Board approves contract to replace town street lights with LED energy efficient lights in 2015.
* Town Board approves using non taxpayer dollars (escrow funds) so that DeSanti Park can be turned into a beautiful new Veteran's Memorial park in 2016.
* Town and civic groups working more closely. We approved legislation endorsed by the Edgemont Community Council to license massage establishments---giving police the tools to shut down illegal massage facilities that had been used for prostitution and other improper activities. We are working closely with three different Edgemont civic associations on a plan to build sidewalks near Edgemont schools (this school district does not have busing).
* Quick replacement for supermarkets going out of business: Best Markets replaced Mrs. Greens, Acme replaced A & P on Knollwood Road. We still need to encourage a new supermarket to replace the Scarsdale & Hastings A & P.
* Visits by United States Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and New York State Lt. Governor Kathy Hocul to E Hartsdale Ave.
* Comprehensive Plan Committees hard work finalizing Comprehensive Plan draft which will be voted on in 2016 by the Town Board.
* Town built or is close to building 1.6 miles of new sidewalks around Greenburgh. New sidewalk in front of Greenburgh Health Center to be constructed beginning next week. Sidewalk built on Benedict Ave this fall.
* Enactment of legislation to reduce Con Ed bills by a few hundred dollars a year. Working with a number of other communities in Westchester on this pilot project that was approved by the NYS Public Service Commission.
* We almost have an agreement to sell the old Frank's nursery as an assisted living facility on Dobbs Ferry Road.
* Town Board formed a Human Rights Advisory Committee in 2015.
* Nassau County anti corruption panel cites Greenburgh's strong Ethics laws as a model for the county to enact.
* The Town Board authorized the Greenburgh Nature Center to build butterfly arbor at the Nature Center- using private dollars.
* To slow down traffic and avoid accidents, new stop sign on South and North Roads.
* Purchase of digital sign board. Police department use the board to inform residents of number of speeding tickets issued on different streets around town. Hopefully, the digital board will motivate people to be more careful motorists.
* Greenburgh-school partnership --a new playground at the Lee Jackson school.
* Initiation of a new architects/engineering mentoring program, teaching students skills that could lead to students becoming architects and engineers. Program started in 2015 at Woodlands High School.
* Revitalization of Central Ave--approving zone change to allow car dealerships on Central Ave.
* Student interns worked with the Greenburgh Nature Center promoting organic recycling this past summer.
* Student internship project: sponsored two self defense seminars for students entering college. This training is designed to help students defend themselves if assaulted.
* Gigi's playhouse opens in Ardsley --helping families who have family members with Down Syndrome
* Initiating program --barber in training program. Training people who are out of work how to be barbers. Program is now located in Tarrytown.
* 10 year olds are reporters--new radio station sponsored by Xposure. 10 year old students enrolled in the after school program learn how to become journalists. They interview officials, community members weekly!
* Using Ridge Hill settlement funds to make safety improvements in downtown Ardsley.
* Regeneron purchases land at Eastview. They continue to expand.
* Police start using body camera's.
* Greenburgh police successful in locating two missing Greenburgh children who ran away from home.
* Department heads being very responsive to constituent concerns--answering e mails from residents who have concerns during day, nights, weekends --some even respond to e mail questions at midnight!
* A hard working Town Board (Francis Sheehan, Ken Jones, Kevin Morgan, Diana Juettner, Town Clerk Judith Beville) that was responsible for these accomplishments.
* Dedicated citizens who serve on boards, commissions and who are active in neighborhood civic groups. Greenburgh benefits from your partnership and involvement and constructive comments.
The above are just a few of the many exciting new initiatives that have been taken since last Thanksgiving to be thankful for.