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MealonWheelsFor 40 years Scarsdale Meals on Wheels has been delivering meals to residents in the Scarsdale area. They serve meals to anyone regardless of age or income. Their clients may be homebound due to injury or illness. Others are recently released from the hospital or rehab. Still others simply cannot provide adequate meals for themselves or would prefer not to cook their own meals. Whatever the reason, Scarsdale Meals on Wheels has been there to help these Scarsdale area residents remain independent in their homes.

Each year, they deliver more than 6,500 meals. These nutritious meals meet the dietary standards of the Westchester County Department of Health. While most of their clients pay a low fee for each meal, subsidies are sometimes available for those in need.

The key to their success is our volunteers. Most come from the local community - young moms to retirees and everyone in between. These volunteers contribute about 2 hours a week to assist their neighbors. The daily visit from Meals on Wheels is not only pleasant and sociable for the client and the volunteer, but is also an excellent “early warning system” if a client should need help. Meals on Wheels volunteers can be alert to any change in a client’s condition and can notify the appropriate contact person if needed.

In addition to meals, they remember clients on their birthdays with plants and deliver cheer at the end of the year with a holiday plant. Occasionally, local businesses provide baskets or treats for the clients around Thanksgiving or New Year’s. This is a nice gesture for those not sharing the holidays with family or friends. All of this is greatly appreciated.

Scarsdale Meals on Wheels requires the financial support of the community and the commitment of the volunteers who offer their time to make deliveries. They are grateful for this continuing support and always welcome new faces and additional helping hands. The program is truly a community effort - neighbors helping neighbors. Meals on Wheels is honored to be part of the Scarsdale community and hopes to continue serving the area for many years to come.

For information, to make a contribution, to join as a volunteer or to make a referral, please call 914-723-4342 or visit their website here

GreenhouseJournalist Linda Greenhouse’s visit to Scarsdale could not have been more timely. An expert on the U.S. Supreme Court, she addressed the Scarsdale League of Women Voters just weeks after the contentious battle over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and was able to put that highly unusual nomination process into historical context.

Her appearance drew a large audience for the League’s annual Food for Thought Luncheon, just a week before the midterm elections which has spurred community engagement. In the audience was Scarsdale Mayor Dan Hochvert, Village Trustees Carl Finger, Justin Arest, Lena Crandall, Carl Finger and Jane Veron, Library Director Beth Bermel, State Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, Justice Arlene Katz, School Board members, former School Board members, and representatives from a wide swath of Scarsdale.

Discussing the environment that lead to the stormy nomination process, Greenhouse said, “There is deep anger on both sides of the street. Justice Kennedy was the swing justice…. The court was up for grabs and a right leaning judge would cement the conservative majority. Explaining why the Kavanaugh fight occurred now, Greenhouse conjectured, “When a regime can’t get what it wants out of the political process, it turns to the courts.”

She explained that the court has become politicized. While there used to be a whole swing group in the middle to which the lawyers could appeal, but now, according to Greenhouse, “the idealogy of the justices matches the idealogy of the president who nominated them,” and therefore, the “troubling nature of today’s court gave this nomination more weight than usual.” She continued, “Everyone agrees the process is broken.”

Discussing possible remedies, which Greenhouse predicted could only occur if Democrats control Congress, she reviewed a few ideas.

Among them were:

The Senate Judiciary Committee could decide in advance how to handle a late breaking accusation of misbehavior and establish some rules of the road to prevent the chaos that ensued during the Kavanaugh hearings.

There should be no presumption of nomination before the candidate goes before the committee and the Senate, i.e. the burden should be on the president and the nominee to make the case as to why they should be placed on the court.

Another remedy could be term limits for justices in lieu of life tenure. Greenhouse reported that the “average length of service has been 25 years and the average age of retirement has been 83 years of age.” She said this encourages presidents to appoint young nominees who will live for a long time.

If the old days, she said that judicial nominations were given to governors, cabinet members and those who had already been in public service for many years and was a capstone not a lifelong career. The random nature of lifetime appointments has caused some presidents to have the power to appoint several justices and others to appoint none. She suggested that term limits of 18 years would stagger the appointments and give more presidents the chance to select justices.

She noted that lifetime appointments for justices does not occur anywhere else in the world.

As there is nothing in the constitution that specifies the number of justices, an administration could expand the number and “pack the court,” as done by FDR.

She also suggested that the court could be stripped of their discretion over hot button issues like abortion or affirmative action, leaving these for Congress to decide.

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Asking for questions from the audience, Greenhouse was asked if she thought that Chief Justice Roberts would move more to the center to balance a very conservative court. She said, “That is the money question!” He is the median justice – the middle has moved far to the right.” About Roberts she said, “On the one hand he is a student of history – it is the Roberts court. On the other hand he has got his agenda. For one, he wants to be out of the business of counting by race. He is against affirmative action and against the voting rights act. He has things he wants to accomplish but needs to protect the perceived integrity of the court. He is very alone and he has no natural allies. There is not a lot of kumbaya there.”

votecheckIn every election cycle, rain or shine, voting in Scarsdale is important and potentially impactful for our community. This year, participation in the midterm election on November 6 is already on our radar, as it should be. It’s also by tradition that the administrative Procedure Committee is encouraging Scarsdale voters to make sure to participate in the Non-Partisan system’s village election on the second Tuesday in November at Village Hall – it falls this year on Tuesday, November 13. That’s when the residents who appear on the ballot for each elementary school district are seeking your vote to join the 17 current members of the Citizen’s Nominating Committee. Together they will conduct a due diligence process to nominate candidates for the offices of mayor and three village trustees, who will then appear on the Non-Partisan slate in the annual March (2019) spring election.*

The Procedure Committee congratulates all candidates for their civic commitment and public-minded spirit by standing for election in Scarsdale’s Non-Partisan process, and by their willingness to serve as volunteers on the CNC and in village office.

Please consult the CNC election brochure, which is now available (in a preliminary digital mockup) on the Procedure Committee website here, for more information about the November 13 election. The brochure contains biographies of all CNC candidates running for 13 seats on the CNC, an explanation of the proposed amendments to the Non-Partisan Resolution which will also appear on the ballot (the system’s governing document), and information on the Non-Partisan system. The final print version of the election brochure will be mailed to all households in Scarsdale, so look for it in your mailbox the week before CNC election day on November 13.

According to Procedure Committee Chair Madelaine Eppenstein: “The mail-in ballot will soon be available on the website, which will permit voters to cast their ballot by mail for their neighborhood CNC candidates and for the proposed amendments. Mail in ballots must be received at the Scarsdale village center Post Office by or before 5 pm on November 13. The entire ballot will be available at Village Hall on November 13 if you vote in person, when the lobby polling place will be open from 7-10 AM and 2-9 PM. In the event of a tie, a run-off election will be held on Tuesday, November 20, 2018.”

Please exercise your vote, on both November 6th in the midterm election and on November 13th in the CNC election.

The members of the 2018 Procedure Committee are: Charles Baltman; Sarah Bell; David Dembitzer; Eric Cheng; Madelaine Eppenstein; Timothy Foley; Jeff Goodwin; Mayra Kirkendall-Rodríguez; Eli Mattioli; David Peck; Pam Rubin; Gregory Soldatenko; Nancy Steinberg; Michelle Sterling; and Bruce Wells.

* Under New York State Law, candidates outside the village non-partisan election system may also run for village office by obtaining the prescribed number of signatures on a nominating petition.

november 13 2018Turning a concept into something tangible, and useful, isn’t always easily or quickly achieved. This year’s Procedure Committee, the administrator of Scarsdale’s non-partisan village election system, has accomplished just that: turning discussion items years in the making into proposed amendments for approval by Scarsdale voters. The amendments will appear on the ballot of the Citizens Nominating Committee annual election at Village Hall on Tuesday, November 13, when voters also elect their neighborhood representatives to serve on the CNC. The polls are open from 7-10 AM and 2-9 PM.

The fundamental purpose of the main amendments proposed by the PC is to give to the elected members of the CNC primary authority for the selection of CNC and PC leadership. For example, Amendment #1 authorizes the 30 CNC voting members, who represent each of the five Village neighborhoods (according to elementary school), to choose CNC leadership for the following year from among the outgoing class of voting members. The amendment eliminates the responsibility of the Town and Village Civic Club and Scarsdale Neighborhood Association Presidents to fill the non-voting leadership positions on the CNC.

According to the League of Women Voters of Scarsdale: “The selection of chairs by the CNC from among those who have just completed their service on the CNC, comparable to the process set forth in the School Board Nominating Committee Resolution for selecting the leadership of the SBNC, promotes greater continuity and smoother transfer of procedural and historical knowledge, ensures that the CNC leadership possesses recent CNC experience, preserves the appearance of impartiality, integrity, and neutrality in the process, and makes certain that the incoming leadership will bear the indicia of approval of their CNC peers.”

Amendment #7 confirms that the Non-Partisan Resolution, the system’s governing document, is administered by the PC, not by the venerable Town and Village Civic Club, which is, after all, a completely separate organization. Similarly, Amendment #5 pertaining to the PC mirrors the changes in CNC leadership. The role of the TVCC and SNAP in automatically providing appointees to the PC is discontinued in favor of a more active role of the PC chair and vice chair and ratification of leadership by PC members. Providing the opportunity to recruit PC appointees from a broader pool of neighborhood and volunteer community organizations is another big step towards PC self-governance and has the potential to involve more of the community in the non-partisan process and civic life in the Village in general.

Aside from amendments, 13 of the 16 residents who appear on the non-partisan ballot are seeking your vote to join the 17 current members of the CNC. Together they will conduct a due diligence process to nominate candidates for the offices of mayor and three village trustees who will appear on the Non-Partisan slate in the annual March (2019) spring election. All candidates standing for election in this non-partisan process, and hoping to serve on the CNC and in village offices, are to be congratulated for their civic commitment and public-minded spirit.

The CNC Election Brochure is now available on the PC’s website. The brochure contains biographies of all CNC candidates running for seats on the CNC, a summary of all proposed amendments, and information on the Non-Partisan system. The election brochure will also be mailed to all households in Scarsdale, so look for it in your mailbox next week after the midterm election on November 6 and before CNC election day on November 13. Please vote in both elections – your vote counts!

The CNC Mail-In Ballot is also available on the PC’s website, which will permit voters to cast their ballot by mail for their neighborhood CNC candidates and for the proposed amendments. Mail in ballots must be received at the Scarsdale village center Post Office by or before 5 PM on November 13. The entire ballot will be available for review at Village Hall on November 13 if you vote in person, when the lobby polling place is open from 7-10 AM and 2-9 PM. Again, please exercise your vote on both November 6th in the midterm election and on November 13th in the CNC election.

WilsonandSonsWilson and Son team jumps with excitement over a great putt. One hundred and fifty golfers came out to celebrate the 15th annual Scarsdale Police Benevolent Association Charity Golf Classic last Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Fenway Golf Club. Proceeds from the event support the Scarsdale PBA and two charities with local ties – the Paulie Strong Foundation and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund. Last year, the PBA donated approximately $50,000, combined, to the chosen charities, and this year’s event is expected to generate a similar amount of support.

According to Sergeant Ronnie Arefieg, of the Scarsdale PBA, “We are honored to have the involvement of so many people who have been loyal to the event over the years.” The first Scarsdale PBA Charity Golf Classic was held in 2003 with approximately 60 golfers. Following the game, participants went out to dinner together at a restaurant in White Plains. Fifteen years later, the event has grown into one of Westchester’s most anticipated and best-loved fundraisers. Complementing the day’s golf game was a lavish buffet of food, special-interest stations such as a cigar roller, a gala evening dinner, music, raffles and a silent auction.

GolfOuting2The event’s success is dependent on and demonstrates the close, supportive relationship between the Scarsdale PBA and the community.

“The greatest pleasure in this event is bringing so many people from different professions into one venue for the same cause, to assist the Scarsdale PBA in all its endeavors and to support two important charities. It’s a beautiful thing to see,” Arefieg said. “The Scarsdale PBA is so dearly grateful to the Scarsdale community and all of our supporters outside the community, for their loyalty, generosity and kindness.”

ArfiegandBezosJames Arefieg and Mark Bezos

See more photos here:
DAsGolfOutingWestchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino Jr., DA Investigator Ydania Rodriguez, DA Investigator , Steve Sassone and Senior District Attorney Hazem Ennabi enjoying the dinner gala at Fenway Golf Club.

golfoutingDScarsdale Residents Robert Tucker, esq. Scott Eichel and Sgt. Ronnie Arefieg of the Scarsdale Police.

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