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parachuteSnow is on the ground - but in just a few short months school will be out and your kids will be headed to camp or a summer program -- the question is, which one? We reached out to a range of summer camps and programs for kids from 2 to 17, and here's information from some programs sure to be enjoyed by Scarsdale kids. Contact them by phone or email and be sure to mention

Camp Ramaquois: "A day camp as complete as sleep-away camp", situated on 44 magnificent acres in nearby Rockland County. From adventurous activities to creative arts to athletic activities, boys and girls, ages 3-15 experience a traditional day camp program filled with a variety of stimulating activities including instructional and general swim in nine heated pools and boating on a five-acre lake. Seven period programs planned for each age group ramaquoisinclude a splash park, aerial adventure park, climbing wall, flying squirrel with zip lines, tennis, basketball, volleyball, lacrosse, hockey, softball, soccer, recycling bin, ceramics, nature facility with petting zoo, dance, drama, yoga, special events and much more. Facilities include an air-conditioned indoor gym and group bunks with bathroom facilities. Hot lunch is served in an air-conditioned dining room by waiters and waitresses. Junior Camp for 3-6 year olds has a separate campus with age-appropriate activities and facilities. Ramaquois offers pre-teens and teens a regular camp program in combination with an optional Trail Blazers trip program. Day trips planned for 3rd–10th graders; overnight trips planned for 5th-10th graders; Leadership Program for 10th graders. Door to door air-conditioned mini-bus transportation is provided using professional CDL licensed school bus drivers and a bus counselor, who provides safety, as well as planned activities on the bus. Ramaquois is a magical camp where children experience a sense of adventure, meet new challenges, create wonderful memories and make lasting friendships.

Camp Ramaquois
30 Mountain Rd
Pomona, NY 10970

challengecampChallenge Camp: Open the door to a delightful and meaningful summer of fun and learning for your bright, curious child. Challenge Camp is an ACA accredited camp celebrating its 38th summer. Join them at their fully air conditioned facility in Hartsdale, NY. Challenge is dedicated to providing meaningful opportunities for children aged 4-15 to realize their intellectual and personal potential. They offer over 100 STEM and Arts based enrichment courses ranging from 3D printing, architecture, art, chess, coding, cooking, drones, littleBits, magic, Minecraft, robotics, theater, and more. Sports options include Swimming, Fencing and Tae Kwon Do. Challenge campers customize a program of selections based on their interests and follow their courses for an entire session, enabling their knowledge and interest to grow throughout the session. Bus transportation and early/extended day options available. Please join them for an Open House on Sunday March 25, from 2-4pm at their location.

Challenge Camp
Schechter Westchester
555 West Hartsdale Avenue
Hartsdale, NY 10530

Debate and Public Speaking Summer Camp: Your child can learn debate and public speaking this summer at Lumos - at our Berkeley College location in White Plains. It's a really fun program, with speaking games activities and games that kids love!

Public Speaking Confidence
Learn Debate Fundamentals
Analytical Writing and Research Skills
Learn about Current Events
6:1 Student-Teacher Ratio
Outdoor Free Time and Games

Open to students Grades 6-9. Email or call 617-901-4564. You can use the special promo code "SCARSDALE" for $300 off - register at:

The House of Sports is your one stop shopping for weekly sports camps this summer! From ages 3 years old through high school, the House of Sports offers programming for children of all ages and ability level. For our younger campers, we offer a multi-sport camp that incorporates both learning and playing a variety of sports each day. For children in 3rd grade and older, they also offer sport specific camps in lacrosse, basketball, soccer and baseball. All camps take place in a 100,000 square foot climate controlled facility in Ardsley, and all camps are staffed by professional coaches and instructors.

House of Sports
1 Elm Street
Ardsley, NY

Squire Advantage and Squire Sports Camps
at Maria Regina High School in Hartsdale is squirecamps18celebrating its 45th year and is the proud recipient of the first ever Westchester Country Inspector Choice Award! An OPEN HOUSE and CARNIVAL is scheduled for Saturday March 10 from 1-4pm. There will be door prizes, bouncy houses, carnival games and food! Instructors and coaches will showcase their courses and tours will be given. Courses are taught in air-conditioned classrooms by certified teachers. Hot lunch is included and transportation is available. Squire Advantage Primary (grades K-3) and Advantage Choice (grades 4-9) is created for campers who wish to custom design their own schedule by choosing courses in the fields of swimming, computers, sports, fine arts, science, cooking, music and more. There are more than 50 different activities to choose from! Squire Sports Camps are divided into two different sports programs. Squire All Sports Academy (ages 6-15) allows for instructing and playing of many different types of sports throughout the day. Sports include tennis, basketball, soccer, baseball, football, etc. Squire Tennis Academy (ages 6-15) is a fun and challenging tennis experience designed for beginners to experienced players. Squire Camps programs run from June 25th until August 10th, 2018.

Squire Camps
Maria Regina High School
Hartsdale, NY

dance.jpg Steffi Nossen School of Dance weekly dance camps and intensives for pre-school – teen dancers. Register by May 18th and receive a 10% discount! June 5-July 21.

Weekly Story Book Camps June 11– July 21 for ages 3-5; a morning of movement, music and art with a new story each week.
Moving Wheels & Heels Adaptive Adult Intensive - June 18 – 23; Dancers age 16+ learn technique and repertory, improve range of motion, explore and express creativity, and enjoy a collaborative artistic experience. Live music, wheel chairs welcome.
Moving Wheels & Heels Adaptive Youth Camp – June 25– 28 incorporates dance, movement, and related arts activities in a warm, supportive and creative environment.
Dance Camp – two week camp, July 9 – 20 for grades 1-5. Take classes in Modern, Ballet, Jazz, Hip-Hop, and Musical Theater. Also dance history and composition, and choreograph your own dances. No experience necessary
Musical Theater Kids - July 23-August 3 for Grades 2 – 6. Budding performers interested in acting, singing & dancing train with some of the best professional teachers in the Musical Theater field, exploring the performing arts within a safe, nurturing and artistically challenging environment, and getting daily acting, voice, and dance classes taught through games, exercises and technique classes and culminating in a showcase.
Musical Theater Intensive-July 23 – August 3 for Grades 6 & up. Back for a 2nd season! Actor/singers who need more intensive dance training and dancers wanting to explore acting and singing work with professional voice, acting and dance teachers to enhance vocal and acting skills while honing proper dance technique. Beginner – advanced performers. Students work with professional voice, acting and dance teachers. Culminates in showcase!
Summer Dance Intensive –August 6 – 17 for beginner and intermediate pre-teen dancers .Rapidly improve dance skills and technique, explore new da styles, learn from professional dancers and choreographers. Daily Modern, Ballet, Jazz, Musical Theater. Also Body Conditioning, dance history. Create your own dance compositions. Final showing on the last Friday. Early drop off and extended day options. Register by May 18 for a 10% discount.

Steffi Nossen School of Dance
216 Central Ave.
White Plains, NY 10606

Westchester Skating Academy: Weekly camps for all ages and abilities. Mini Camp, designed for preschool through eight-year-olds, includes two daily skating lessons, plus nature, science, magic, soccer, and crafts from June 11- 29 and August 13-31. Figure Skating Camp with Olympic coaches runs for 11 weeks beginning June 18 – August 31. Hockey Camp runs for nine weeks beginning July 2 to August 31 and offers excellent player development.

Westchester Skating Academy
91 Fairview Park Drive
Elmsford, NY 10523
(914) 347-8232

Farther Afield

Independent Lake Camp is a sleep-away summer camp in the beautiful Pocono Mountains of PA dedicated to a diverse community, committed creativity, the best facilities, and powerful, individualized programming. Our coed summer camp offers boys and girls ages 6-17 multiple session options (2,3,4,5,7,9 week).independentlakecamp ILC provides the facilities, equipment and talented, hand-selected personnel from all over the world to ensure fantastic activities that are rich with integrity. And unlike the more traditional camps, ILC proindependlake2vides these campers with a whole universe of activities that helps campers have the confidence to dive into something completely new. We are a circus camp, sports camp, dance camp, performing arts camp, skateboard camp, arts camp, extreme sports camp, rock and electronic music camp, computer / role playing games camp and equestrian camp all rolled in to one summer experience! Independent Lake Camp celebrates 27 years of respect, creativity, understanding, challenging and nurturing campers.

Summer Office/Camp Address:
Independent Lake Camp

70 Clark Rd
Thompson, PA 18465
1-800-399-2267 (CAMP)

summerfuelSummerfuel offers personalized adventures for students seeking a summer experience like no other. Our extensive range of programs encourages independence and friendship, striking the perfect balance between learning, exploration, and fun. We're proud of our reputation for providing a high level of attention and care, for being pioneers in our field, and for finding exciting new ways to make each student's summer unforgettable. Students who join our challenging Pre-College and Business programs, or our authentic Cultural Exploration and Art Now programs, develop essential skills that put them ahead of the game. All of our programs are designed to broaden academic and personal horizons, and we work thoughtfully to create opportunities for a truly diverse student population. We have been offering the best, most comprehensive student adventures since 1984, and we still know what students want from their summers today.


wellesleyWellesley Pre-College Programs for High-School Girls:
As one of the most prominent college's for women, Wellesley's Pre-College Immersive Program and Pre-College Exploratory Workshops are every bit as challenging as they are exciting. By living and studying as members of the Wellesley College community, high-school girls will gain valuable insights on college life while making lasting friendships with a diverse, passionate group of students from around the world.

Wellesley College
Wellesley, MA

For the Younger Set

BethElBeth El Day Camp has been the summer place to be for young children since 1951. Widely recognized as the best-in-class day camp in Westchester, Beth El remains the most fun, most trusted choice for young campers and their parents, year after year. Join us Monday June 25 through Thursday August 16, 2018. We are open Wednesday July 4. Children from ages 2-8 love the sports, swimming in the pool, music, arts & crafts, singing, dancing, nature, storytelling, yoga, karate, and much more! Proudly accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA), we are also known for its nurturing environment, cutting-edge programming, and commitment to safety. We have the county's finest, best-trained professional staff, and a very favorable child/staff ratio. Whether this is your child's first camp experience or not, at Beth El everything begins with love and ends in fun. Don't wait too long to sign up – spots fill up quickly. For an appointment or questions Contact Julie Rockowitz, Director at (914) 235-2700, ext. 256 or

Beth El Day Camp
1324 North Avenue
New Rochelle, NY 10804
(914) 235-2700 ext. 256

inchwormInchworm at the Scarsdale Congregational Church Nursery School summer program has been running in the community for over 30 years. Inchworm is a four-day per week, morning-only program open to children who will be entering Three's classes, Four's classes, or Kindergarten for the 2018/2019 school year. Inchworm staff are all experienced preschool teachers. Each day at Inchworm includes indoor play, arts and crafts, stories, games and snack. There is also a special activity every day, such as a visit from our Nature Specialist, music, or a gym/fitness class - outdoor playground and sprinkler play too! Each week at Inchworm features a different theme, and daily activities and crafts are geared toward that week's theme. Inchworm runs M-Th each week from 9:15 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Summer 2018 program dates are June 25th to August 2nd, and tuition is $210.00 per week (3 week minimum required); Registration will open to the public on February 26th. For more information and to download our application, please visit our website at or call 914-723-2440.

Inchworm Summer Program
Scarsdale Congregational Church
One Heathcote Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583
(914) 723-2440

Summer Scene at The Little School combines the fun of summer littleschoolwith early childhood learning in a structured, nurturing environment under the guidance of acclaimed teachers. Children enjoy adventure filled days that incorporate active athletic play, swimming at the Scarsdale Pool, art projects, music, play centers and plenty of time outdoors. Each week features a different Theme Adventure or Special Event, creating added excitement and learning opportunities. Theme Adventures give the children a chance to expand their talents and interests, build self-confidence and create lasting friendships. Samples of our themes include Freedom Rocks, Ocean Odyssey, In the Garden, Superhero Week (Scarsdale Fire and Police visit), Down on the Farm (animals visit KBLS), Strummin and Drummin (music event) and Jolly Roger Pirate Adventure (storyteller visits). The program is open to children 3 and 4 years of age. We also have a 3-day morning class for incoming 2 year-old children. The 6-week program runs Monday-Friday June 26th – August 3rd. The Full Day program is 9am - 3pm, with a 9am – 1pm, half-day option for 3 year olds. Extended hours before and after camp are available from 7am - 6:30pm. Lunch and a healthy snack are provided each day.

The Little School
307 Mamaroneck Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583
(914) 472-5409

SummerStars2Scarsdale Synagogue's Summer Stars Summer Program is the perfect summer experience for young children. This warm and nurturing seven-week summer program is for children 18 months to 5 years old. The children are engaged in activities such as sports, music, art, story time, daily water play and much, much more. There are special theme days each week such as Circus Day, Hawaiian Day or Carnival Day. At Summer Stars, friendships are formed and children grow socially, emotionally and intellectually as they engage in fun, stimulating summer activities. There is a three-day option forSummerStars1 toddlers ages 18 to 30 months. Two year olds may choose a three-day option or attend five mornings a week. Three to 5 year olds may choose a half-day, 9am -12 noon option or a full day option from 9am - 2pm. Your child will sparkle and shine at Summer Stars!

Scarsdale Synagogue Summer Stars
2 Ogden Road
Scarsdale, NY

wrtkidsWestchester Reform Temple's "Summer Play Place Camp" offers young children a unique 7 week summer experience. The professional certified staff provides arts and crafts, water-play, stories, games, sports and snack within a nurturing and loving environment. The 3's and 4's program is enhanced by specialists in music, movement and nature and special theme days. There are separation classes and classes with a loved one to stay as options for children who will be entering a 2's program in September. The little ones also enjoy crafts, water-play and music. Your children will learn, laugh and flourish.

Summer Play Place Camp
255 Mamaroneck Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583

The Scarsdale Recreation Summer Day Camp offers fourscarsdalepool camps for children from Kindergarten through eighth grade, including recreational and educational programs and daily swimming at the Scarsdale Pool. The camp accommodates about 900 children in grades K-8. Camp Sagamore is for children entering kindergarten, Camp Lenape for first graders, Camp Wapetuck for second graders and Camp Pathunke is for kids in third through eighth grades. The season runs from July 2-Friday, Aug. 3 (no camp July 4) from 9am - 3:30pm. Transportation is provided from each elementary school, Scarsdale High School, George Field, Kids' BASE and the Scarsdale Pool. There are also combination camps for third-eighth graders who can choose soccer or sports camp in the morning and regular day camp in the afternoon. The Village offers two sessions of Teen Travel Camp for sixth through ninth graders, who go on a different trip each day.

Scarsdale Recreation Camp
Phone: (914) 722-1160

Need help finding the right summer program for your child? Let Ellen Wylie of Spectacular Summers provide her personal recommendations:

Spectacular Summers: Do you know what your child or teen campis doing this summer? Or are you just starting to think about sleep away camp for 2019? In either case, Ellen Wylie of Spectacular Summers would be happy to help you. Ellen has been placing children and teens at summer programs for nearly two decades herself and knows the camps and teen programs well. Ellen spends the better portion of every summer visiting, re-visiting and personally observing camps in action. During the rest of the year, she speaks to and meets with directors frequently and obtains feedback from families she has placed. As a result, Ellen has the up-to-date knowledge, information and experience to make the right recommendations for each child. She would be happy to share her personal knowledge and expertise with you. Ellen will gain a thorough understanding of your child and what you are looking for and then provide you with a few well-thought out suggestions. A mother of three children, all of whom have spent many summers away at camp, Ellen knows what it feels like to send your child to sleep away camp for the first time or on a teen travel program to another country. The service is free of charge to parents. Ellen is highly respected by camp directors and parents alike and regarded by directors as one of the best in the industry.

Spectacular Summers
Phone: (914) 722-2644;
(888) 774-CAMP (2267);

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ribboncuttingThis past Wednesday morning, the Scarsdale School District celebrated the completion of the high school's much-anticipated Learning Commons with a ribbon cutting ceremony and reception.

Scarsdale High School Principal Ken Bonamo welcomed district staff, members of the board of education, teachers, students and residents by saying, "I must tell you, that the day we opened and the days that followed were among my best days as serving as principal because (of) the reactions of students to the space, which were incredibly positive, and, also, opening of a new space of this magnitude doesn't happen every day in the life of a school."

Bonamo reported that his students have taken to the space just as he his colleagues had hoped, and eagerly are taking advantage of the new mixed seating, breakout rooms and food choices. Teachers also are benefiting from the new amenities and i-Lab technology in their instructional and administrative work. As a result, the commons quickly is becoming a new social hub that is expected to strengthen the sense of community in the school. Bonamo said, "(It's) impact on the school, overall, has been transformative. "

Scarsdale Schools Superintendent Thomas Hagerman then commented, "This a verycommons 3m exciting day... a long, long time in the making. In fact, we've been working on this for the entire four years that I've been in the district. But the conception came even earlier." He discussed how the space reflected Scarsdale's strategic vision for education, which " rooted in the district's long-standing instructional focus on the whole child, a love of learning, a classical education taught in a progressive tradition... and global connections. More recently, it has evolved to include several forms of active and collaborative learning..." Hagerman continued, "The Learning Commons was conceived and designed as a place to realize and further build upon these aspirations."

The superintendent also noted that the commons provided students with "a place that functions differently than their traditional classrooms" and offered a respite from their often busy, daily academic routines through a comfortable setting. He concluded his remarks by thanking past and current board of education members, 2014 bond steering committee and SHS building committee members, SHS staff members and teachers, as well as the district PTAs for supporting the bond and related projects.

Assistant Superintendent for Business and Facilities Stuart Mattey followed Hagerman at the podium and said, "This is the result of almost five years of work... I think that we can all say, as we look around us, that it was certainly worth it." He thanked all stakeholders involved in shaping the project, notably his predecessor Linda Purvis, who spent many hours on shepherding the process through voter approval of the bond and final design work.

commons 2mSHS PTA President Beth Zadek spoke next and provided some student comments about the space: "It's amazing; "It feels like I'm hanging out on a college campus;" and, "It's so nice to be able to eat and study and hang out with your friends." In congratulating the district for a job well done, Zadek stated, "When the enthusiasm that students feel is channeled through the parents, and the level of excitement isn't lost by the time it reaches all of us, then you know that the high school's done a good job."

Steven Mounkhall, who teaches English at SHS, was involved in developing ideas on how the space would impact instruction. When addressing the group, he explained how, in just a short time, it has changed student and teacher work. "Since this space has opened, the library is becoming a library again... A Civ Ed group has planned a pizza trivia night for the space; a math teacher reports giving extra help here because his room was being used for a class; a history teacher reports bringing her AT international relations class here for a discussion; ...a physics teacher reports using the space to do some grading; ...a STEAM entrepreneurship class used this space when the students presented their final projects." After discussing the long hours of effort and commitment needed to create the commons, He concluded by saying, "Last week, a student of mine said, 'I feel lucky that I was here when this happened,' and all the work seemed more than worthwhile."

Ezra Levine, student government president, and Amanda Glik, government vice president, represented the student body, and thanked the district administration and staff for their efforts to improve school facilities for students. "We feel so lucky to be part of a school and community that continues to make changes to make this school better for its students... (The new space) is a true testament to your hard work and dedication to the school and the kids who attend SHS."

Scarsdale Board of Education President Bill Natbony closed the festivities by thanking allcommons 1m involved in bringing the project to fruition as well as those who are embracing the new space now. In addition, he stated, "(This is) a great new space that was made possible by the hard work of many people and the financial support of our community... Investing in our schools is an important tradition in Scarsdale. And, this kind of special place, admired by all who have been using it, is a shining example of the benefits one receives from such investment."

Laura Halligan, a new contributor to, is a local writer, editor and marketing consultant. She is principal of Pinch Hit Prose and provides communications services to entrepreneurs, small businesses and nonprofits.

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countycourthouseThe long awaited decision by the court on the Article 78 proceeding filed in January 2017 by the Scarsdale Committee for Fair Assessments is in: Judge Bruce Tolbert of the Supreme Court of the State of New York denied the Article 78 in its entirety and granted the motion to dismiss.

The Article 78 asked the court to annul, void and rescind the 2016 tax assessment roll for Scarsdale and roll back valuations to 2015 assessments. If the Village failed to roll back the assessments, they asked that the petitioners who would pay more taxes on the 2016 roll than the 2015 roll be refunded the difference.

In April 2017 another group of Scarsdale residents filed a motion to intervene to "correct the false record put forth by the Committee and make clear that "all other taxpayers in the Town/Village of Scarsdale" do not agree that the Committee represents their interests." In fact, the motion says that the intervenors "Object to the Village wasting its time and money defending the Article 78" and also "Object to the prospect of Scarsdale's tax assessment procedure being dictated by a judicial monitor rather than proceeding under the established municipal and state regulatory procedures and administrative remedies that govern residential property tax assessments."

Kevin Reed, one of the attorneys who filed the motion to intervene said, "Our clients filed their motion to intervene in the Article 78 proceeding to make clear to the Court that the self-appointed Scarsdale Committee for Fair Assessments does not represent all Scarsdale taxpayers. If the motion is granted, our clients will advocate to the Court that that the Article 78 proceeding is without merit, that a rollback of the 2016 assessment would cause the Village more harm than good, and that grievances with the results of the 2016 assessment should be pursued on an individual basis through the administrative and judicial mechanisms provided by New York State law."

In the decision dated 1/5/2018, the court rejected the Committee's Article 78 petition on every front. Most importantly, the court dismissed the Committee's central argument—that the Ryan Revaluation was fundamentally flawed and unfair—holding that the challenge to the Ryan Revaluation was "false[]" and based only on a "vague argument" that amounted to an "idea that 'we liked the first one better.'" The decision says, "There is a lack of substance and empirical data by what is presented by the movant in this matter. Clearly, there is a need of sound theory and objective data which is necessary to overcome the presumption regarding the validity of the challenged assessment."

The court found that the committee lacked standing to plead as they are not "a person or a corporation who is a taxpayer." The decision says, "this formed committee, the Scarsdale Committee for Fair Assessments, is not a property owner in its own right, nor is it an incorporated entity."

The court also noted that a full-scale roll-back to the Tyler Revaluation would cause "chaos" and "disrupt[ion]" to the Village. The Committee's Equal Protection claim was rejected for the simple reason that "all of the residents of Scarsdale were treated the same" as they were all subject to the same, valid revaluation.

At a more basic level, the court questioned why the Committee chose to proceed through an Article 78 proceeding rather than individual grievances, as many individual Scarsdale residents do every year. This point was reinforced by the intervenors who volunteered to participate in the action on the side of the Village. The court noted that some of the intervenors "saw a raise in their real estate taxes with the 2016 assessment," and "some have sought Article 7 relief as well." The court observed that this stood in contrast to the Committee, whose members could have sought individual relief but instead chose to seek a full-scale roll-back, which was "clearly against any public policy agenda of any municipality including Scarsdale."

Commenting on the dismissal, Scarsdale Village Attorney Wayne Essanason said, "The decision speaks for itself."

You can read the entire decision here

The Committee has 30 days to choose to appeal this decision.

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Greenacres Parking JamLast June, when questioned about why the architect's site plan for an expansion of Greenacres School included fewer rather than more parking spaces around the school, Superintendent Thomas Hagerman said that these issues would be left to the Building Committee to resolve. Residents were already concerned about cars parked on both sides of narrow streets and difficulty dropping off and picking up students at a school without a proper entrance and the new plans appeared to exacerbate the traffic problems.

When the Greenacres Building Committee met in the fall of 2017, they were aware that the streets were already jammed, and with the addition of a cafeteria at the school, more personnel would be working at the school and require parking. Therefore, the committee asked the Village to consider two areas for additional parking; either along Huntington Avenue, or by expanding the existing parking along Montrose Road from one to two rows of parking, with a turn around lane in between to add another 10-15 spots.

We recently learned that Village Managers met and reviewed the proposals and found that parking along Huntington Road would be dangerous and could bar the passage of emergency vehicles if needed. However, they did find that cutting another row of parking into the field on Montrose Road was a viable option and recommended that the school include this off-street parking into their plans for the 2018 bond. The estimated cost was between $500,000 and $600,000.

Shortly thereafter, the district disbanded the Building Committee and the parking discussion never saw the light of day again.

At the November 20, 2017 meeting of the Board of Education (2h 14m) when asked about additional parking, Assistant Superintendent Stuart Mattey said, "Parking would be as is." Dr. Hagerman replied, "Parking came up as a question and we got another schematic." And Mattey answered, "That's something we recommend to come off the table and defer for further study. It is not part of this project." A board member asked, "Is that $600,000 (for parking) out of the bond?" Hagerman said, "Kevin(the architect)  is looking at one more (plan)." And Mattey responded, "We looked at it and it wasn't possible."

And at the League of Women Voters Public Forum (1h 13m) on the bond proposal on January 10, 2018 the issue of parking was raised again:

Dr. Hagerman said, "We have difficulties at every school ..... We understand that parking in a neighborhood is a significant issue. ... We did look at a couple of items relative to Greenacres because of its priority in the bond and the parking options that were provided were not sufficient either from the Village's standpoint or from our standpoint for what would work. It is something that we understand is a critical issue."

The question remains as to why the additional parking on Montrose Road was not "possible." The Village found it to be workable, minimally invasive and supported it as it would take cars off the local streets.

However the proposal was never reviewed in public or discussed at a meeting of the Board of Education.

Perhaps the administration didn't want to spend the money .... or maybe they feared that neighbors on Montrose Road would object to the parking lot, as they had objected to a new school? Whatever the reason, this solution was shelved before it could be properly vetted.

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amypaulinAssemblywoman Amy Paulin (D-88) will soon introduce a package of bills aimed at helping mitigate the harm that the new federal tax laws will cause for many New Yorkers.

The provision to cap the amount of the state and local tax deduction at $10,000 disproportionately affects residents in areas of the state with high property taxes, like Westchester– which has the highest property taxes in the nation. These residents will now face an increase in federal and possibly state income taxes on top of those steep property tax bills. According to ATTOM data solutions, 73 percent of Westchester homeowners pay more than $10,000 in property taxes.

The first bill, which Paulin announced two weeks ago, would allow New York residents to itemize their New York State tax return even if they do not itemize their federal returns. The categories of itemized deductions used at the federal level are also used for the New York State personal income tax.

According to a July 2017 report from The Office of the State Comptroller, without legislation to change the State tax law, eliminating deductions at the federal level would eliminate them at the state level and potentially increase taxpayers' state income-tax burden. This legislation would ensure that taxpayers will still be able to itemize on their New York return, preventing them from facing a higher New York tax bill.

The second bill, would establish a two-pronged approach. The first portion of Paulin's new legislation would establish a dollar-for dollar state income tax credit for charitable donations made to foundations that support state-funded institutions, such as the State University of New York.

The second portion of Paulin's legislation would allow a taxpayer to receive a credit on their property or school taxes for donations made to local foundations working alongside school districts and municipalities. Some examples of these types of foundations that already exist are The Pelham Education Fund or the Scarsdale Schools Education Foundation.

Since charitable gifts remain deductible on federal taxes, taxpayers would be able to receive a federal deduction to help offset the loss of the state and local tax deduction.

"We must do everything we can to lessen the damage that the new federal tax law will cause for so many New Yorkers," Paulin said. "I have fielded dozens of calls from constituents about the new tax law and many people are considering moving, because the cost to stay here will be too high. We cannot allow that to happen.

This legislation would enable taxpayers to make up for some of the losses they will experience under the disastrous federal tax law, while maintaining the revenue that the State and local school districts receive."

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