Wednesday, August 23, 2017


Is believability for a politician necessary to govern successfully? We think it should be. That’s why we were a bit dismayed when our local daily paper had an article about “Tackling The Flood.” It went on to discuss the efforts of three communities, Scarsdale, Eastchester and New Rochelle, and how they’ve begun to execute a plan to alleviate flooding along the Hutchinson River in their respective communities. Each signed an agreement, entitled the Hutchinson River Flood Mitigation Project, to try to do something about flooding in their communities. Will they accomplish their goal? We’re not sure, but we believe they will try. Welcome to hurricane season.

The same issue has been brought up at countless meetings for the town of Greenburgh, by different people as well as different organizations. Sadly, with all of the talk about flooding in Greenburgh, nothing has ever been done nor changed to improve the situation during 24-years of the Feiner administration. Taxpayers, both commercial and residential, continue to get flooded. The continued flooding actively forces people to seek higher ground, ultimately with the driest solution being to move out of our town. After all, if Mr. Feiner continues to do nothing but provide lip service what other recourse is there?

Several years ago Mr. Feiner asked to create a task force to address flooding. A task force was formed. Greenburgh Commissioner Victor Carosi and the White Plains Public Works Commissioner were named co-chairs for this committee. County Legislator Alfreda Williams, is also on this commission. There may be several other people on this task force that are also of no consequence and contribute nothing to the flooding problem still being experienced by residents and businesses. Why have they not done anything after having an initial meeting, offering no subsequent plan for relief for these beleaguered taxpayers? And, now it’s hurricane season again with no solutions.

It’s easier to talk about flooding than it is to do something about it, such as coming up with a plan of attack similar to what we see with this Hutchinson River flood mitigation project. The dormant task force has not met in over two years since they were founded. We’re sure if they had they would have said there is no money or there are too many boundaries to try work with to clean the river spaces out, or to dredge them, or to somehow open them up to get a better flow of water. It’s easier to talk about it, to listen to us complain about it, than it is to fix it. After all, these elected officials and subsequent appointed officials know they will be reelected, typically without any opposition, and will reappoint their favorites once again. Losing a couple of hundred collective votes is nothing for Mr Feiner when he receives 7,000 votes running unopposed!

Whenever there is media focus either on a politician visiting the scene of a flood, or the media interviewing the flooded residents, the politicians all say that something must be done and then they point fingers at other politicians either uninvolved, not from the area, or are totally inappropriate for the problem at hand. Previously, Mr. Feiner has passed the buck to County legislators, State legislators or FEMA and the federal government. In fact he told one resident from Old Kensico Road that he would reach out to FEMA on their behalf to see about purchasing their flooded property. He knew that was a lie because the municipality must first perform a number of steps before FEMA will even entertain involvement. It made for great TV sound bytes but little else. Finally, after receiving no help for assistance of any kind from Mr. Feiner, specifically the Town, the County, State, or Federal government, especially FEMA, those same residents sold their house at a loss and moved to another area!

Mr. Feiner went to great lengths to appear on News 12 to bemoan the lack of action by other politicians for his valued constituents. These so-called valued constituents quickly realized that they were mere pawns in Mr. Feiner’s attempt to gain more publicity for himself. While he was successful in beating the drum getting publicity for himself, he threw a small portion of his constituency, literally, down the river along with many of their prized, ruined or irreplaceable possessions. Now that hurricane season is upon us the proverbial barn door has already been closed as the flooding begins once again. With all the development that has taken place in the region there are only two outlets for rainwater to go. The first on the west side of Greenburgh is the Saw Mill River. The second is on the east side of Greenburgh and that is the Bronx River. After the flooding caused by hurricane and tropical storm Irene, the Village of Elmsford mounted a campaign to clean out the Saw Mill River after a resident videotaped the debris blocking the waters flow causing some of the flooding in the area. Mr Feiner jumped on that bandwagon and received all kinds of publicity, but actually did nothing while the flooding continues.

During all the hype that Mr. Feiner and others utilized for their advantage, they ignored the Bronx River corridor and the residents that live near it. They too were severely flooded during Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Sandy. At no point beyond the TV cameras did Mr. Feiner or other politicians offer to do anything to remediate the problems in the Bronx River corridor and the flow of water, especially during even minor storms. Mr. Feiner remains dry and aloof in his gated community in Boulder Ridge. Other politicians also remain dry during storms and bad weather. The role of government is to protect its people – all of its people! That hasn’t happened for those that live along the two corridors that parallel the only two rivers out of the Town and County. Both the Bronx River and the Saw Mill River need attention and residents need relief!

Every community that has the river passing through it needs to take ownership and responsibility for keeping the river clear. 
Individuals must participate as well. One simple thing individuals can do is simply don’t litter – it clogs our storm drains and ultimately our rivers. By collectively doing this it will help to allow the flow of water to better reach the sound shore waterways and other outlets and not back up into our neighborhoods, homes, and businesses.  By investing in our infrastructure and maintaining all of our wetland areas, we will be helping everyone enjoy a better quality of living in our towns and villages. This needs to happen sooner rather than later so we can have A Better Greenburgh.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Sprain Brook Repairs To Kick Off Back To School

Preliminary work on the Sprain Brook Parkway in preparation for the traffic shift and the bridge work will begin as of August. This is according to Paul Tirums of the NYS DOT. The work will be performed at night on the Sprain Brook Parkway to repair the section of the Sprain Brook bridge that failed last year. Emergency repairs had been made to keep the Sprain Brook parkway open as well as Payne Street below it. The DOT repairs will utilize temporary lane closures during the repair period.

On August 21, a traffic shift will begin on the Sprain onto the northbound bridge reducing the number of lanes in each direction from three to two according to Mr Tirums. The traffic shift and lane reduction is anticipated to last 90 days and could be completed by November 20th. During the lane shift, significant traffic delays are anticipated and motorists are advised to seek alternate routes, avoid travel at peak hours when possible, and consider alternate transit options. Additional, temporary lane closures on the Parkway at this location are expected to occur before the full lane reduction is planned to go into effect.

Drivers are asked to use caution when traveling through the work zone area and pay particular attention to all traffic control devices, including signs and flaggers.

Payne Street between Bryant Avenue and South Montgomery Avenue will be closed for about 180 days. Due to these closures, we believe there could be residual traffic delays on Routes 9A,119, Knollwood and Grasslands Road.

Spring 2018 may include the completion of some items of work both along Payne Street and the Sprain Brook Parkway and is likely to include final asphalt paving, concrete sidewalks, street lighting, northbound bridge deck overlay, topsoil and seeding and any other miscellaneous items of work that could not be completed in 2017.