Forum Focus
November 2020


Message to Our Membership
Dear Members,

Here’s some timely information, traditionally provided in this space.

Vote in the General Election: One of the fundamental goals of the Forum’s work and programing is to help our neighbors become more empowered to contribute to civic life. As a nonprofit, while the Forum takes no stance on any candidacy or party, we do encourage full participation in our democracy. If you are a registered voter, please exercise your constitutional right and civic obligation to vote.
 
Voting hours have been extended due to long lines. Registered voters in Scarsdale may cast their ballot early at the closest polling place, Eastchester Public Library, 11 Oakridge Place:
Thursday, Oct. 29 (noon - 9pm)
Friday, Oct. 30 (8am - 5pm)
Saturday, Oct. 31 (noon until 6pm)
Sunday, Nov. 1 (noon until 6pm)

During the early voting period, registered voters may cast their ballots at ANY of the 17 designated early voting locations. But on Election Day, Tuesday, November 3, voters MUST use their assigned polling locations for in person voting. To look up your Election Day polling location visit the Westchester County Board of Elections website. Polls will be open on November 3 from 6:00 am to 9:00 pm. The website has instructions for Election Day drop off of completed absentee ballots at all locations.
 
CNC election: Although administered by the nonpartisan Procedure Committee and not through the Westchester County Board of Elections, all qualified Scarsdale voters are eligible to participate in the Citizens Nominating Committee election, which is by Mail-In Ballot only this year. The deadline is on Tuesday, November 10. One need not be a supporter of the nonpartisan system to participate. Learn more in the CNC Election Brochure on the Procedure Committee website here.

Veteran's Day is November 11, the federal holiday when we honor those who served in the past and service members now on active duty.

With best wishes for Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 26, and for your health and safety,
Madelaine Eppenstein
meppenstein@eppenstein.com
November Programs
SAVE THE DATE:

*The next Board Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, November 5 for all officers, and all other directors and directors-at-large

*The next Membership Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, November 19 featuring the highly anticipated State of Our Schools presentation by Dr. Thomas Hagerman, Superintendent, and Pamela Fuehrer, Board of Education President, followed by participant Q&A. Register here.
 
All Forum meetings and events will take place over Zoom beginning at 8:00 pm until further notice, a virtual format that keeps us well connected with each other on the issues of importance to our community. Information on how to register or log in will be made available.
THE STATE OF OUR SCHOOLS:
A Conversation with Superintendent of Schools Dr. Thomas Hagerman and Board of Education President Pamela Fuehrer

Save the Date: The Scarsdale Forum presents Superintendent Dr. Thomas Hagerman and Board of Education President Pamela Fuehrer on the State of Our Schools, followed by Q&A on Thursday, November 19 at 8pm via Zoom.

All members of the public are welcome. Registration required here.
Committee Updates
County Fiscal Affairs

The County Fiscal Affairs Committee has the challenging task of studying the annual county operating and capital budgets, and issuing its review and recommendations in a short time frame. The Committee is planning to meet in November. Please contact Chair Richard Pinto, rpinto10583@gmail.com.
Downtown Revitalization
The Downtown Revitalization Committee met in October to discuss pending projects, including the revitalization of the Boniface Circle park and the general parking situation in the downtown area. The Committee is planning to meet in November to discuss a proposed Request for Proposal to be sent to landscape design firms to re-imagine the park at Boniface Circle, proposals to enhance parking for consumers, new retail opportunities, and pedestrian, bicycling and vehicular safety in the downtown. Please contact Chair Susan Douglass, susanudouglass@gmail.com.

Education

The Education Committee Chair presented the Committee's recently released reportA Proposal for the Formation of a School Community Communications Committee, at the October 19th Board of Education meeting. The Education Committee looks forward to collaborating with learning community stakeholders on this important work. Please contact Chair Barry Meiselman, barwest2@aol.com.

Fiscal Affairs

Fiscal Affairs Scarsdale members attended a Board of Trustees Work Session on October 27, 2020.  Trustees and staff presented a review of the current fiscal year budget, including revised revenue projections that have improved somewhat but are still $2.4 million less than budgeted. There was also a discussion of fund balance and reserves. The Trustees and staff have begun planning the 2021-22 budget. They are anticipating continued substantial shortfalls in parking permit revenue and are looking at cutting expenses and possible service cuts to avoid increasing taxes. Trustee Crandall invited the Forum to provide its input before the draft budget is released in January 2021. The Committee plans to meet in November to consider submitting a report earlier in the budget process. For more information please contact Chair Anne Hintermeister, ahintermeister@gmail.com.west2@aol.com

Membership

The Membership Committee invites members of the community to join the Forum and participate in our committees and events. Please contact Chair Gabrielle Wise, greiffel@me.com.

Municipal Services

The Municipal Services Committee has followed up on its traffic safety report recommendations to the Village Board, including that Scarsdale enact a lower, 25 mph speed limit on certain linear segments of roads under existing New York State law, and that the Village continue working with state legislators on area speed limit enabling amendments. Please send feedback to Chair Madelaine Eppensteinmeppenstein@eppenstein.com.

Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee is asking our members to suggest the names of nominees to fill Scarsdale Forum officer and director-at-large positions. Any input should be submitted no later than Tuesday, December 1, so that the committee has ample time to recommend candidates at the February 11, 2021 Membership Meeting. Please forward suggestions to Chair Tim Foley, tim@commanderfoley.comor one of the other committee members: Laura Liu, Jon Mark, Richard Pinto, and Karen Smith.

Sustainability, Fiscal Affairs Scarsdale, and Municipal Services

The Sustainability, Fiscal Affairs Scarsdale, and Municipal Services Committees are revisiting Village fall leaf collection. Switching from vacuuming loose piles of leaves to collection of bagged leaves was recommended in a 2014 Scarsdale Forum Sustainability report. The public safety, environmental, and budgetary reasons for making the change in Scarsdale are even more compelling now. The review will examine the success of leaf-bagging in neighboring communities that have adopted it, public safety and environmental issues, and the expense. Please contact FAS Chair Anne Hintermeister, ahintermeister@gmail.com.
Community Events
NOVEMBER 3, 2020 General Election
Instructions above, or contact Westchester County Board of Elections website.

Citizens Nominating Committee Election By Mail-In Ballot only this year. Mail to the Procedure Committee, P.O. Box 284, Scarsdale NY 10583, to ensure postal delivery at the Scarsdale Chase Road U.S. Post Office before 5 PM on Tuesday November 10.
Scarsdale Forum Inc.

Scarsdale Forum Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization dedicated to community education through discussion and analysis of issues relevant to Scarsdale residents. Since 1904, it has contributed meaningfully to village affairs through written reports, public speaker events and committee discussions. Membership is available to all Scarsdale and Mamaroneck Strip residents, regardless of citizenship status. 

Forum Focus generally is distributed to Scarsdale Forum members in the first week of each month. Story ideas should be sent to communications@scarsdaleforum.com one week prior to be included in the coming issue.

Media Contact
Madelaine Eppenstein
meppenstein@eppenstein.com