League of Women Voters of Scarsdale
December 2019
BULLETIN

The League of Women Voters of Scarsdale (LWVS) is a volunteer,  nonpartisan political organization that promotes political responsibility through informed and active participation of citizens in government.  The League is nonpartisan in that it does not support or oppose any candidate for public office; it is political in that it takes positions on selected governmental issues after serious member study and consensus.  
In This Issue
CALENDAR 


December 2019
  • 12/4, Wednesday:
    • 10:00 a.m. Briefing at the United Nations on Climate Change (LWVNYS Education Foundation, in association with United Nations Department of Public Information)
  • 12/9, Monday:
    • 9:00 a.m. Board Meeting
    • 10:30 a.m. Village Election Information and Consensus Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor
  • 12/16, Monday:
    • 9:00 a.m. SBNC Resolution Amendments Information and Consensus Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor
January 2020
  • 1/13, Monday:
    • 9:00 a.m. Board Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor
  • 1/14, Tuesday:
    • 7:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.  School Board Nominating Committee Election, Scarsdale Middle School
  • 1/21, Tuesday:
    • 9:30 a.m. - 11 a.m.  Book Discussion, Private Home.
  • 1/25, Saturday:
    • 5:00 p.m. LWVS Winter Fundraiser, Private Home
  • 1/27, Monday:
    • 9:00 a.m. School Board Nominating Committee Information and Consensus Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor
February 2020
  • 2/10 Mon:
    • 9:00 a.m. Board Meeting
    • 10:30 a.m. Local, County, and National League Program and Consensus Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor

Remember to vote!

voting_people.jpg

School Board Nominating Committee Election
Tuesday, January 14, 2020
Scarsdale Middle School
7 a.m. - 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. - 9 p.m.


MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT


I hope that you all had a healthy and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday!

The League of Women Voters of Scarsdale has had a very busy fall.  In early November, we hosted an exciting and informative Fall Food for Thought Luncheon.  Our featured speaker, Professor Ryan Goodman, spoke with much detail and insight on the impeachment process.  We also worked collaboratively with the Social Studies department of Scarsdale Middle School on a Mock Election, the day before Election Day.

As we move into December, the League moves into Consensus Season.  Our Village Election Portfolio chair is busy preparing for the Village Election Information Session and Consensus meeting on December 9 .  Please join us to learn about our local political process and to ask questions.  Madelaine Eppenstein, Treasurer of the Procedure Committee, will be present at the information session to present detailed process information regarding the CNC Election.

We have also added a new Information and Consensus meeting on Monday, December 16 on the Proposed Amendments to the SBNC Resolution.  Jordan Copeland, chair of the Joint Committee, will join us to discuss the proposed amendments and to answer our questions.

Please join us for these important Information and Consensus meetings!

As we added the new SBNC Resolution meeting, we have postponed our Immigration book discussion to January 21, 2020.  We are reading two books with contrasting viewpoints on Immigration. The books are relatively short and convey fascinating and persuasive details of the immigrant experience and process in the United States.  For further details, please look at the Book Discussion page of the Bulletin.

Upcoming Events:
  • Wednesday, December 4: League Briefing at the United Nations, Climate Change, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, December 5: LWVW Holiday Luncheon, Featuring our State Assemblymember, Amy Paulin, 12 p.m., Scarsdale Congregational Church.
  • Monday, December 9: Village Election Information Session and Consensus Meeting, 10:30 a.m., Village Hall, Third Floor Meeting Room. *Information Session is open to the public.
  • Monday, December 16: Proposed Amendments to the SBNC Resolution, Information and Consensus Meeting, 9 a.m., Village Hall, Third Floor Meeting Room. *Information Session is open to the public.
  • Tuesday, January 21: 2020, LWVS Book Discussion, 9:30 a.m. - 11 a.m.; Private Home.
  • Saturday, January 25: Winter Fundraiser, 5 - 7 p.m., Home of Diane and Marc Greenwald.
  • Monday, January 27: School Election System Information Session and Consensus Meeting, 9 a.m., Village Hall, Third Floor Meeting Room. *Information Session is open to the public.
I wish you a happy and safe holiday season!  


Best wishes,
Leah Dembitzer

Voter Service


New York State Voting Reforms

New York State recently passed a series of new voting reforms that makes it easier for residents of New York State to vote.  Adding to these reforms, Governor Cuomo and the NYS Legislature recently enacted a new law that allows voters to elect or change their political party enrollment in a more timely manner.  Enrollment in a political party allows a voter to participate in that party's primary elections. Voters in New York State may now choose to enroll in a political party, or change their political party enrollment, at any time up until February 14 and the change will be effective immediately.   Previously, voters could make this change up until October 11 and the enrollment change went into effect the following year.  

New York's presidential primary will take place on April 28, 2020, and the congressional and state primary will take place on June 23, 2020. If you would like to vote in any of the party's primaries, you must be enrolled in that political party and you have until February 14, 2020 to enroll or change your designation.

Currently, there is no separate form to be filled out to change a voter's political party enrollment. Rather, a voter must use the current voter registration form to do so. The registration form has a section where the voter may choose to enroll in a political party. To find out if you are registered to a political party, visit https://voterlookup.elections.ny.gov. Voter registration forms, including online forms, can be found on the New York State Board of Elections website at https://www.elections.ny.gov/VotingRegister.html . The website also has other important information about voter registration.

There will also be copies of the voter registration forms at the Library Loft and the rack in the lobby of Village Hall.

If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact the LWVS Voter Service Representatives at LWVSVoterService@gmail.com.

Upcoming Events


LWVS General Membership and Consensus Meeting on the Village Election System

Monday, December 9
10:30 a.m.
Village Hall, 3rd Floor Meeting Room

Please join the LWVS on Monday, December 9, 2019, at 10:30 a.m. for a general membership information session with Madelaine Eppenstein, on behalf of the Scarsdale Procedure Committee, regarding this year's Citizens Nominating Committee (CNC) election. All members of the public are welcome to attend the information session.   Follow this link to the Information Session Agenda.

The Procedure Committee is the body that solicits candidates for CNC, proposes amendments to the Resolution, and runs the CNC election and referendum on the amendments, if any. The CNC is the body that vets applicants and nominates the proposed slate for the Village Board of Trustees, including Mayor. The Non-Partisan Resolution is the document that governs the Village's non-partisan election system.

A consensus discussion will immediately follow the information session for purposes of making recommendations to the Procedure Committee. Only League members may be present for the consensus discussion. For more information, please contact Diane Baylor, LWVS Village Election System Chair, at LWVS.ves@gmail.com.

NEWLY ADDED EVENT!

Upcoming Information Session and Consensus Meeting
on the 
Proposed Amendments to the SBNC Resolution

Monday, December 16, 2019, 9:00 a.m.
Village Hall, 3rd Floor Meeting Room

LWVS will hold a general membership information session regarding the proposed amendments to the School Board Nominating Committee Resolution. Jordan Copeland, current chair of the Joint Committee, will be present to answer questions. All members of the public are welcome to attend.

The School Board Nominating Committee Resolution is the document that governs the School District's non-partisan election system. The SBNC Joint Committee is the body that reviews and proposes amendments to the SBNC Resolution. The SBNC Administrative Committee is the body that solicits candidates for SBNC and runs the SBNC election and referendum on the amendments, if any. The SBNC is the body that vets applicants and nominates the proposed slate for the Scarsdale Board of Education. 

A consensus discussion will immediately follow the information session for purposes of making recommendations to the Joint Committee. Only League members may be present for the consensus discussion.

The SBNC Election will take place at the Scarsdale Middle School Auditorium Lobby on  Tuesday, January 14, 2020 from  7 - 10 a.m. and 2 - 9 p.m. 

For more information, please contact Amber Yusuf, LWVS School Election System Chair, at LWVS.ses@gmail.com .

SBNC Election

Tuesday, January 14, 2020
7 - 10 a.m. and 2 - 9 p.m.
Scarsdale Middle School Auditorium Lobby

The election of SBNC members and the vote on Resolution amendments will take place on Tuesday, January 14, 2020. Residents may vote in person in the auditorium lobby at the Scarsdale Middle School on that date from 7:00 am to 10:00 am and from 2:00 pm to 9:00pm, or by mail-in ballot received by 4:00 pm on election day. 

In the event of a snow day or run-off election, the election will be held on the earlier of (i) Wednesday, January 15th, 2019, or (ii) the next day school is in session. Any snow date or run-off election would be held in the SMS Auditorium Lobby at the above mentioned times. See    https://scarsdalesbnc.com   for more  information.

Book Discussion

All are welcome!  Please join us, and bring a friend!

NEW DATE: Tuesday, January 21, 2020
(Changed from Monday, December 16)
9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Location: Private home within Scarsdale

Follow this link to RSVP .  We will notify you by email of the location.

This year we have 2 books selected with contrasting perspectives to look at the issue of immigration. We promise they won't put you to sleep at night! 

What accounts for the current influx of immigrants? 
What number of new immigrants can our economy support? 
What is our responsibility to those seeking a better life in the US? 

We look forward to having some lively discussion on the subject.


Tell Me How it Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions
Valeria Luiselli

This book is based on Luiselli's experiences working as an interpreter for the federal immigration court in New York City in which she interviewed Central American children seeking refuge status in the U.S. Structured around the forty questions Luiselli translates and asks these children, Tell Me How It Ends humanizes these young migrants and highlights the contradiction between the idea of America as a fiction for immigrants and the reality of racism and fear - both here and back home. Luiselli, a writer from Mexico, also reflects on her own experiences with the U.S. immigration system in applying for a green card and permanent residency.


Melting Pot or Civil War? 
A Son of Immigrants Makes the Case Against Open Borders
Reihan Salam

Reihan Salam, the son of Bangladeshi immigrants, argues that permissive immigration policies ultimately result in a less fair and unjust society. Unlike the economy during the great migrations of the past, today's economy cannot absorb uneducated and low-skilled immigrants who will ultimately resent their inability to rise to the ranks of the middle class. In this deeply researched but also deeply personal book, Salam shows why uncontrolled immigration is bad for everyone, including people like his family. Our current system has intensified the isolation of our native poor, and risks ghettoizing the children of poor immigrants. It ignores the challenges posed by the declining demand for less-skilled labor, even as it exacerbates ethnic inequality and deepens our political divides.


Visit the  LWVS Book Group webpage  for more information.

*The new bookstore in Scarsdale Village, Bronx River Books, is offering League
Book Group participants a 10% discount on both book selections.*

SAVE THE DATE

The League of Women Voters of Scarsdale

Annual Winter Fundraiser

Saturday, January 25, 2020
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Enjoy a fun and festive evening with good food and League friends.

At the home of Diane and Marc Greenwald:
2 Oak Lane, Scarsdale, NY 10583

 
Students Inside Albany

Applications due Monday, February 3

For the ninth consecutive year, the LWVS will select two high school students to send to the annual Students Inside Albany Conference held on May 17-20, 2020. Any Sophomore, Junior or Senior student who attends Scarsdale High School or resides in the school district is eligible to apply.

Students Inside Albany is a four-day conference designed to immerse students in the process by which public policy is proposed, revised and enacted in New York State. This conference deepens their understanding of their individual responsibility in our representative democracy and provides them with tools for meeting that responsibility.

Scarsdale students who attended this conference in the past were unanimous in their enthusiasm about the program. The conference allows them to interact with students from all over the state, learn about New York State government and the process by which citizens can participate in policy-making areas, as well as tour the capitol and meet state legislators. 

The cost of the conference, including hotel and meals, will be co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters New York State Education Foundation, Inc. and our Scarsdale League.

Applications will be available by Monday, December 16 th on the LWVS website and are due back on Monday, February 3 rd

For more information about the program, please see Youth Programs at the LWVS website. If you have questions, or if you know someone who would like to apply, please contact LWVSyouthprograms@gmail.com.

Recent LWVS Events


Fostering Future Voters at Scarsdale Middle School

  

This fall, the League went back to Scarsdale Middle School for the second year in a row to support the Social Studies Department's mock election.  The goal of this yearly voting exercise is to create a culture of civic engagement by fostering awareness about the election process and the importance of remaining informed about candidates and issues. The hope is that when these young students turn 18, they will be ready and excited to cast their first official votes.   

During their Social Studies class periods, the middle school students came to the Great Hall, which was configured to resemble an actual voting precinct. The students voted on a ballot based on the street address of the middle school.  While the positions up for election in our district were not the most momentous or exciting (as most of the races were uncontested), the act of voting should always be treated as an important event. 

League members supported the event by manning "polling stations" to check students in by their middle school house, assist with technical voting ballot issues, and ensure everyone who voted walked away with an "I Voted Today" sticker.  As part of an effort to create an informed electorate, the League drafted information sheets describing the candidates, the offices up for election, and the political parties. These information sheets were provided to the students' teachers for dissemination before the vote.  The information was also available at the polling tables for reference.  

The League will be back this Winter/Early Spring for a school-wide primary vote.  The students will select their political party and vote in the primary for the candidate of their choosing.  It will be a great way to introduce the importance of primary voting to the students. Sixth and seventh grade students who will return in 2020 will be able to consider how their votes the prior year impacted the ballot they will vote on in Fall 2020 - civic education in action!   If you are interested in volunteering, please email LWVSyouthprograms@gmail.com


Fall Food For Thought Luncheon

 

On Friday, November 8, Professor Ryan Goodman of NYU School of Law, spoke to a packed house at the annual LWVS Food for Thought Luncheon.   Goodman's talk focused on the impeachment inquiry and process. Goodman offered a timeline and a detailed analysis of what he expects to happen throughout the process and gave various scenarios as well as potential outcomes.  

The League and community members who attended were deeply engrossed in his presentation and had an opportunity to ask questions. A good and informative time was had by all!



LWV of Westchester


League of Women Voters of Westchester

The LWVW annual review and consensus meeting of the proposed 2020 Westchester County budget was held on Thursday, November 21 at 3:00 p.m. at the White Plains Public Library on Martine Avenue. 

The County Executive is responsible for issuing both operating and capital budgets that determine our county tax obligation.  The Board of Legislators has the responsibility to accept and/or make adjustments before enacting final approval by the end of the calendar year 2019. Westchester County budget director Larry Soule presented an overview of the proposal and responded to LWVW and attendee questions. The meeting culminated in a consensus statement agreed to by LWV attendees. The Westchester LWV consensus statement will be read at the Westchester County Board of Legislators Public Hearing on December 4th. To view slides from Larry Soule's presentation, go to "LWVW Studies County's Proposed Budget" on the LWVW.org homepage.

The LWVW will be hosting a holiday lunch on Thursday, December 5, 2019 at the Scarsdale Congregational Church, One Heathcote Road.  Special guest speaker Assemblywoman Amy Paulin will address the attendees. The luncheon is open to the public. The fee for the noon luncheon is $35.00.  Reservations and check payment, payable to LWVW Inc, should be mailed to LWVW, 520 White Plains Road, Suite 5095, Tarrytown 10591. Reservations and payment via PayPal may be made online by going to LWVW.org.

Membership Announcements


Membership Renewal Reminder

If you have already renewed, thank you!  If you have not, please take the time to do so now.  The League thrives with your support!

To join, you may do either of the following:
  • Use the membership envelope mailed to you this fall.
  • Go to http://www.lwvs.org/Join.html and either renew online, or print out a membership form to pay by check.
If you have any questions, please contact Erika Rublin, LWVS Membership Chair, at LWVSmembership@gmail.com. Thank you!

Stay Connected!

New this year, our LWVS Bulletin will be published monthly and sent via eblast, posted on our website ( www.LWVS.org), Facebook page ( www.facebook.com/LWVScarsdale/), and Twitter feed ( twitter.com/LWVScarsdale). In an effort to be more environmentally friendly, only the Fall and Spring editions will still be printed and mailed to members.

To ensure that you receive our news directly, please provide your preferred email and physical mailing address when you renew your membership or join for the first time. Contact us at LWVSMembership@gmail.com with any questions about your membership status or to change/update your contact information.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT

The League is grateful for the support of all of its donors. Please note that the annual updated listing of our many generous supporters for 2019-2020 will appear in the 2020 Spring Bulletin.
LWVS CALENDAR


LWVS 2019-2020 Calendar

December 2019
12/4 Wed 10:00 a.m.
Briefing at the United Nations on Climate Change
LWNYS Education Foundation, in association with
     United Nations Department of Public Information
12/9 Mon 9:00 a.m.
10:30 a.m.
Board Meeting
Village Election Information and Consensus Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
12/16 Mon 9:00 a.m.
SBNC Resolution Amendments Information and Consensus Meeting, Village Hall, 3rd Floor

January 2020
1/13
Mon
9:00 a.m.
Board Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
1/14 Tues
7-10 a.m. and 2-9 p.m.
School Board Nominating Committee Election
Scarsdale Middle School
1/21 Tues
9:30 a.m.
Book Discussion
Private home in Scarsdale
1/25 Sat 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. LWVS Annual Winter Fundraiser
2 Oak Lane
1/27 Mon
9:00 a.m.
SBNC Election Information and Consensus Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor

February 2020
2/10 Mon
9:00 a.m.
10:30 a.m.
Board Meeting
Local, County, and National League Program 
     Consensus Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor

March 2020
3/9 Mon 9:00 a.m. Board Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
3/17 Tues 9:00 a.m.
School Budget Information and Consensus Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
3/18 Wed
Village Election
Village Hall
3/23 Mon 9:00 a.m.
Board Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
3/30 Mon 9:00 a.m.
Village Budget Information and Consensus Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor

April 2020
4/20 Mon 9:00 a.m. Board Meeting
Village Hall, 3rd Floor
4/30 Thurs
TBD
Book/Film Discussion

May 2020
5/8 Fri
10:45 a.m.
11:45 a.m.
Annual Membership Meeting
Spring Luncheon/Speaker
Scarsdale Golf Club
5/19 Tues
7:00 a.m. to
9:00 p.m.
School Budget Vote and
     Board of Education Election
Scarsdale Middle School

June 2020
6/15 Mon 9:00 a.m.
Joint Board Meeting
Private Home


Items in bold are election events.
Items in red are open to all members and the public.
THANK YOU


The Scarsdale League organization moves forward through the energy and dedication of a number of volunteers.  I would like to extend thanks to the League volunteers who have been hard at work this fall. 

 Thank you to Elissa Ruback , for organizing the SMS Mock Election.  Thank you to Diane Baylor , for her meticulous preparation for the Village Election system Information and Consensus meeting on December 9.  Thank you to Amber Yusuf , for jumping into the work of analyzing the proposed amendments to the SBNC Resolution and for planning an Information Session and her first Consensus Meeting, which we look forward to on December 16.  Thank you to Ronny Hersch and Beatrice Sevcik  for all of their work on Voter Service.  

Thank you to Joan Bowen for her work publicizing our fall events on social media and thank you as well to Joan Bowen and Erika Rublin for organizing the early stages of Students Inside Albany.  Thank you to Erika Rublin  for organizing our fall membership renewal and new member outreach.   Thank you to Dana Matsushita for her rigorous, detailed work editing the LWVS Bulletin.  Thank you to Amy Cooper for staying on top of event publicity and eblast communications.  Thank you to Cindy Dunne , our Programming Chair, for liaising with our Food for Thought Luncheon speaker, Professor Ryan Goodman. 

Thank you to Alissa Baum for her work on Advocacy, learning about 2020 Census information and education, for the purpose of informing the League and our community.  Thank you to Anne Lyons for coordinating the luncheon details of our Food for Thought Luncheon and for her work on the LWVS winter finance drive.  Thank you to Renée Baylor for being our liaison to the LWVW.  Thank you to Kitt Rosenthal for bringing coffee to all of our Board meetings.  Thank you to League Treasurer, Debbie Miller , for organizing the League financials and for her sage advice.  Extending heartfelt thanks as well to League Recording Secretary, Joanie Frankle , for capturing our meetings with her minutes!  

Thank you to the entire League Board for your careful thought, attention to detail and well-balanced counsel -- you are the finest group of volunteers around!

Wishing everyone a healthy, happy and safe holiday season.

All my best,
Leah Dembitzer
THEY REPRESENT YOU

Village of Scarsdale

As of July 2019



BOARD OF TRUSTEES

BOARD OF EDUCATION

Marc Samwick, Mayor
   Term ends April 2021
Jane Veron, Deputy Mayor
   2nd term ends April 2020
Justin Arest
   1st term ends April 2020
Lena Crandall
   1st term ends April 2020
Jonathan Lewis
   1st term ends April 2021
Seth Ross
   2nd term ends April 2021
Rochelle Waldman
   1st term ends April 2021

Scott Silberfein, President
   2nd term ends June 2020
Pamela Fuehrer, Vice President
   2nd term ends June 2021
Karen Ceske
   1st term ends June 2022
Carl Finger
   1st term ends June 2022
Christopher Morin
   2nd term ends June 2020
Ronald Schulhof
   1st term ends June 2022
Alison Tepper Singer
   1st term ends June 2021


League of Women Voters of Scarsdale
2019-20


Officers

President: Leah Dembitzer

First Vice President: Elissa Ruback

Second Vice President: Anne Lyons

Recording Secretary: Joan Frankle 
Corresponding Secretary: Amy Cooper

Treasurer: Debbie Miller



Committee Chairs

Advocacy: Alissa Baum* and Elissa Ruback*

Audit: Jacqueline Irwin

Budgets
LWVS Budget: Nancy Michaels

School Budget: Elissa Ruback*

Village Budget: Leah Dembitzer*

Communications
Bulletin Editor: Dana Matsushita*

Eblast/Publicity: Amy Cooper*

Social Media: Joan Bowen*

Website: Diane Baylor*

Development
Finance Drive: Anne Lyons*

Winter Fundraiser: Diane Greenwald

Elections
School Election: Amber Yusuf*

Village Election: Diane Baylor*
Environment/Sustainability: Deb Pekarek

Hospitality: Kitt Rosenthal* 

Luncheons: Anne Lyons* 

LWVW Liaison: Renée Baylor* 

Membership: Erika Rublin* 

Membership Statistician: Diane Baylor*

Nominating Chair: Pam Rubin

Planning & Zoning: Deb Pekarek

Program/Education: Cindy Dunne*

Voter Service: Ronny Hersch* and 
Beatrice Sevcik*

Youth Engagement: Elissa Ruback*
Students Inside Albany: Joan Bowen* and Erika Rublin*


* Board members