Tuesday, May 23rd

Last updateTue, 23 May 2017 1pm

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Greenacres Resident Killed in Tragic Accident

Dr. Sheila Davis, a radiologist and mother of three, was killed in a freak accident Monday morning in the driveway of her home.  Police received a call at 1:26 on Monday afternoon from a passerby who reported that something looked amiss in the

driveway of 25 Greenacres Avenue. When they arrived to investigate they found a startling and disturbing scene. The victim was wedged between the open door of the Volvo and the frame of the car itself, apparently crushed.  Police think that Dr. Davis may have driven the car up the driveway to her own home, and inadvertently left it in “Drive” when she left the car.  They believe she may have tried to jump back into the car to put it into “Park” when the open door hit a tree. The pressure of the tree caused the door to shut, crushing Dr. Davis.

Police are uncertain of the actual time of the accident though it appeared to have occurred earlier that day. The accident is being investigated by the Westchester County Medical Examiner.

Dr. Davis worked as  a Diagnostic Staff Radiologist at  Westchester  Medical Center where a service will be held on Wednesday May 13th.  A community memorial service will be held for Sheila Davis at Hitchcock Presbyterian Church at 6 Greenacres Avenue on Thursday morning, May 14th at 10 am.  We send our condolences to her three sons, Andrew, Gordon, and Evan.

Police Report - Someone's Watching!

Somebody's Watching: An alert officer spotted  a car hitting a fire hydrant at the Freightway Garage on November 29th.  The driver left the scene without reporting the incident, even though the hydrant and his car were damaged.  The officer replayed the police surveillance video,  and noted the license plate number of the car. On December 4th, the officer found the car, with a dented bumper bearing fresh yellow paint, parked near the entrance of the garage. The officer then contacted the owner, Deng Min Zheng of Bayside, who works at Kirari Sushi on Garth Road. He was ticketed for leaving the scene of an accident and agreed to pay to repair the damage to the hydrant.

Tree falls on moving car:  Joel Lowe of Goshen, NY was driving south on the Post Road on the morning of December 3rd, when a tree from a Tompkins Road yard fell on his car. The tree damaged the windshield, and the hood of the car. Luckily, the driver was not injured and did not want to have the car towed. The Highway Department was called to remove the tree.

Car break-ins on Barry Road:
An Acura and a Honda, parked unlocked in the driveway of the Sacchi home on Barry Road were entered during the night of December 3rd. The consoles, glove compartments and contents were rummaged through but nothing was found to be missing.  That same evening, another car parked by the Widlitz family on Barry Road was also entered. Taken were a gas credit card, loose change and the GPS valued at $500.00.

Identity Theft:
A Saxon Woods Road man realized he was the victim of identity theft when he received a pair of sneakers from Shoes.com in a package delivered to his home. He realized that someone had used his Bank of America debit card to buy the sneakers as well as items from Gamehouse.com and Emusic.com.

Nasty missives: An Edgewood woman reported that she was receiving abusive text messages, emails and letters from her ex-husband. She wants these unwanted communications from her ex to cease and police agreed to contact him to ask him to stop.

Sleepy occupants: At 11:30 pm on December 1st police received a call about a man and a woman sleeping in their car in the parking lot at Hitchcock Church.  Police found a blue Chevrolet parked occupied by the two who said they had been talking and fell asleep. They agreed to leave the lot.

Keys down the drain:
The owner of a Land Rover accidentally dropped her car keys into the sewer on the corner of Chase Road and Boniface Circle on December 3rd. As her car was parked on top of the sewer grate, the Highway Department was unable to remove it to access her keys. The Land Rover dealership in New Rochelle agreed to send someone with a key to the car to move it and the Highway Department said they would try to find her keys after the car was moved.

Aggressive dog: A Birchall Road resident complained that his neighbor’s dog was acting aggressively when he was out walking his own dog on the street.  The neighbor reported that she accidentally dropped her keys while while walking her dog and the dog broke free and started to bother the neighbor. She apologized and both parties agreed to walk their dogs in opposite directions in the future.

Safe to drive? An Aspen Road woman called police to express concern over her elderly husband’s ability to drive. He had received conflicting reports from doctors on whether or not it was still safe for him to drive. In the meantime, Police phoned and found that the man had hired a driver.

Cash machine break-in? Just after midnight on 12/6, police received a report that two men were vandalizing the cash machine at the Bank of America on Wiilmot Road. When officers investigated they found that the two were actually repairing the machine.

Reindeer down:
Damaged Christmas Decorations:  Two metal, lit Christmas deer decorations on the front lawn of a home on Madison Road were knocked down and damaged on December 6th.  The homeowner requested surveillance by the police to prevent further damage.

Street signs down: Joanne Anderson of 277 Boulevard found two street signs in her yard on 12/6. She suspects that the street signs for Boulevard and White Roads, and Boulevard and Johnson Roads had been pulled out during the previous night.

What's Happening with the Five Corners Coalition?

Bistro Citron
Here is a letter from Millicent Kaufman, Chairperson of the Heathcote Five Corners Coalition on the status of their talks with the Village on development at the Five Corners: The Heathcote Five Corners Coalition is a grassroots organization formed in response to the unprecedented proposals for development in the Five Corners area including: -the Heathcote Manor housing development on Weaver Street;
-the proposed 2-story retail building on the site of the current Citgo gas station including re-rerouting commercial traffic onto a portion of Secor Road and parking waivers and variances that would reduce the amount of parking the developers would have to provide; 
-the proposed sale of Village land and related construction of age-restricted housing at and adjacent to the Bistro Citron (formerly Heathcote Tavern) site; and
-the recent offer  by the Bistro Citron developers to purchase all or a portion of the Colonial Village side parking lot.

The Coalition’s membership has grown to approximately 190 households, all of which have made cash contributions. The Coalition has been working with neighborhood associations, community groups and individual residents of Scarsdale to monitor, and to provide a forum for analyzing and developing informed positions concerning, such development proposals.

The Coalition has been very active throughout the year in connection with the proposed sale of Village land to facilitate construction at the Bistro Citron (formerly Heathcote Tavern) site.

With the assistance of a land use attorney hired by the Coalition early this year, the Coalition vigorously advocated to the Land Use Committee and the Board of Trustees orally and in writing that the sale of Village land should not be segmented from the related construction project.  Segmentation is the division of the environmental review of an action so that various activities or stages are addressed as though they were independent, unrelated activities needing individual determinations of significance.  Except in special circumstances, considering only part, or a segment, of an overall action is contrary to the intent of the New York State law known as SEQRA.  If the land sale and the related construction were not segmented, full environmental impact and traffic studies would be required as a matter of law prior to the approval of the sale of the Village land.

The Bistro Citron developers responded by formally withdrawing their building plans; and at a June 23rd meeting of the Village Board of Trustees, a bare majority of Trustees voted in favor of a “negative declaration,” which means that a full environmental impact or traffic study does not have to precede approval of the Village land sale. The Trustees thereby indicated that they believed that the sale of the Village land was independent of, and unrelated to, the development project, notwithstanding the fact that the benefit to the Village for the sale of the Village land principally consists of certain project limitations and restrictions on the use of the developers’ land.  At the same June 23rd meeting, the Trustees voted to send the proposed land sale back to the Land Use Committee for further review.                                                                                                                                                     
The Coalition's Leadership Committee continues to believe that the sale of Village land adjacent to the Bistro Citron parking lot and the related construction project should not be segmented and full environmental impact and traffic studies should precede approval of both the land sale and the construction project.

However, in light of the rejection of these positions on June 23rd by a majority of the Trustees, the absence of any indication to the Coalition that a majority of the Board is willing to re-consider that vote, indications to the Coalition that the Village is determined to proceed with the land sale and facilitate the developers’ project, and the fact that the developers have certain legal rights to develop the properties they already own, the Coalition's Leadership Committee also has been working to try to limit the scope of the project and its impact on the neighborhood and to otherwise improve the terms of the proposed transaction in the event the Board decides to approve the transaction at a future Board meeting.

The Coalition has been attempting to gather information from the Village in order to determine what the Bistro Citron developers can do with and without the purchase of the Village land and to identify additional concessions that the Village can and should reasonably require from the developers in exchange for the Village land should a majority of Trustees decide to proceed with the sale. Representatives of the Coalition met with Mayor Stevens and two other Trustees in late July to discuss various questions and concerns outlined in a July 21st letter sent to the Trustees and posted on the Coalition's website (www.heathcotefivecorners.com). At that meeting, all participants agreed that the next step should be an interactive meeting of those participants with the Village staff. The interactive meeting occurred on November 6th. After considering the information provided at the November 6th meeting, the Trustees’ stated goals in pursuing the transaction, the benefits that will be conferred on the developers as a result of the sale of the Village land, and the developers' and the Village's rights and respective bargaining power, and conscious of the June 23rd Board votes, the Leadership Committee of the Coalition has provided the Trustees with a list of changes to the draft contract and the process by which the transaction should be considered, approved and implemented, which are necessary to provide sufficient protections and benefits to the community and which the Leadership Committee believes are achievable if vigorously pursued by the Village.  A copy of that list has been posted on the Coalition's website (www.heathcotefivecorners.com).  

The proposed Bistro Citron project involves material and irreversible changes to the second largest commercial district in Scarsdale.  The Coalition has requested that the Village Board of Trustees approach the development of the Bistro Citron property as it did the Christie Place development.  Before the Village Board approved the Christie Place project, it had the benefit of significant community input, the developer was required to present multiple renderings of the project concept, which were then changed as a result of public comment and Trustee input, and there were extensive contract negotiations with the developer.  Unlike the Christie Place process, the developers of the Bistro Citron project have not provided any renderings of the proposed development and apparently have not engaged in meaningful substantive contract negotiations with the Village. The developers have demanded that the Village sell the Village land without submitting project renderings, traffic mitigation plans, or specific commitments about the structure’s density, height, parking and setbacks and the Village has not insisted on restrictions on the use of the Bistro Citron (formerly Heathcote Tavern) building and the lot on which it sits.

The Coalition continues to follow-up with the Village with respect to questions that remain unanswered and the Board's and the developers' responses to the Coalition's list of improvements to the draft contract and the approval process.

Christmas Tree Lighting

Though snow and slush caused the cancellation of the official tree-lighting festivites in Scarsdale Village on Saturday evening December 5th, trustees, a representative from the Scarsdale Volunteer Firemen and Mayor Carolyn Stevens and her family were on hand to celebrate.  The tree at Boniface Circle was lit and officially opens the holiday shopping season in downtown Scarsdale.

Mayor Stevens shared her remarks with Scarsdale10583 and here they are for you!

Mayor Carolyn Stevens:

I want to thank the Chamber of Commerce for sponsoring this tree lighting and their hard work in organizing it.  I also want to thank Lange’s for supplying the hot chocolate and refreshments.
When I was asked by the Chamber President if I would light the tree, I told him that I would be thrilled to do it.  Having grown up in New York City I loved the Rockefeller Christmas Tree - and as a kid wished I could be the one to the light that tree--- well this isn’t Rockefeller Center; it is better - for it is the tree for the Village that I call home and I am honored to be here.

But being asked to perform this task made me stop to think --- what is it about the lit tree that is so special.  It is what the tree has come to symbolize that truly warms our hearts. While the story of Christmas is a Christian one - its lesson is universal.  It is the story of the birth of a baby who would grow up to spread the message of hope and generosity and love for one’s fellow man.  It is that message that we celebrate, one that transcends one holiday or religion.
In that spirit - and-because even though it’s easy to focus on receiving at this time of year, it’s often in the simple act of giving that we find the greatest happiness; I ask each of you to think about what you can give this year ----and please keep in mind that some of our local charities that need your help.
On behalf of the Village Board and Village Staff, I want to wish you a season of joy, peace and love

.Trustees Lindsay, Hochvert and Volunteer Fireman Michael Keating

 

 

 


Feld vs. Gillibrand?

Just two weeks ago I blogged here that Liz Feld was one of the winners coming out of the Rob Astorino defeat of Andy Spano in Westchester: 

But I thought this would lead Feld to a rematch against 25 year incumbent Suzi Oppenheimer.  In 2010 there will be no Obama coat-tails – that coupled with the growing abhorrence of the NYS Senate by most New Yorkers, I thought that Feld stood a much better chance of taking down Oppenheimer in 2010 than in 2008. But with her statement that she's considering a run for the US Senate against Kirstin Gillibrand, Feld is apparently feeling her oats -- and perhaps believes that the Astorino win in Westchester can carry her to DC.   If Rudy (Hamlet) Giuliani ultimately decides to run for Gillibrand’s seat (having opted not to run for Gov), Feld could drop back and mount a re-run against Oppenheimer.

Although Gillibrand’s poll numbers are low, no one should ever count her out of anything -- she's smart, savvy and resilient. There's not a huge difference between Feld and Gillibrand ideologically -- and while Republicans are likely to make inroads in House and Senate races in 2010 -- Gillbrand will be tough to beat -- particularly when you paint whatever Republican runs in New York with the broad brush of the national GOP -- which is now being lead by wackos like Palin, Bachmann, Limbaugh, Hannity, and Beck.

As for the rumor that former Tennessee Congressman Harold Ford may mount a primary bid for Gillibrand's seat -- I find that absurd. Any primary opposition to Gillibrand will likely come from her left flank -- and Ford -- who just barely lost a US Senate race in Tennessee in 2006 -- is more in sync with her than not ideologically (right now Ford heads the centrist Democratic Leadership Council). Obama and Schumer will ensure that Ford doesn't make the run. But I think the speculation about it is not serious anyway.

There are reports that Bill Thompson may consider a primary challenge to Gillibrand and he may actually pose a more substantial threat to her. Thompson came surprisingly close to defeating Mayor Bloomberg -- but that vote, frankly was less of a vote for Thompson than a vote against Bloomberg's abrogation of term limits. But if Thompson were to challenge Gillibrand in a primary -- he'd have strength where Gillibrand is weak -- especially in NYC. Yet Thompson may opt instead to primary Tom DiNapoli for State Comptroller - and Thompson would likely easily defeat DiNapoli, who was appointed to his job by the State Legislature and has a very weak political base.

Stay tuned.

David A. Singer is a former political consultant/campaign professional and political junkie currently toiling as a lawyer in Westchester and managing real estate and media investments.

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