TONIGHT DAN WELSH THE WESTCHESTER POWER MAN TALKS THE NEW GREEN ENERGY RATE ON PEOPLE TO BE HEARD 8 PM ON VERIZON FIOS CH. 45 AND ALTICE CH. 76

TIMELY GREEN POWER UPDATE FROM

DAN WELSH 

PROGRAM DIRECTOR WESTCHESTER POWER

ON

THE NEW LOWER ALL GREEN ENERGY RATE

GUARANTEED  FOR 2 YEARS

HE’LL TELL YOU ALL ABOUT THIS LETTER

TO LOCK IN YOUR GREEN ENERGY RATE NOW

TONIGHT AT 8

ON 

PEOPLE TO BE HEARD

WESTCHESTER’S MOST RELEVANT INTERVIEW PROGRAM

JOHN BAILEY TALKS WITH DAN ON

GROWING POWER PURCHASE CONSORTIUMS ACROSS THE STATE

THE SAVINGS THE 24 MEMBER CITIES AND TOWNS (INCLUDING WHITE PLAINS) HAVE SAVED THEIR RESIDENTS

THE NEW RATES

THE NEW COMPETITION TO COURT CONSORTIUM BUYS BY SUPPLIERS

THE POWER OF POOLED PURCHASING

AND MORE

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45 Government Officials Demand AMTRAK COOPERATION ON WESTCHESTER RAIL ACCESS TO PENN STATION

WPCNR ALL ABOARD. From the Westchester County Department of Communications. November 14, 2018:

In a letter to Amtrak Chairman Anthony R. Coscia, Westchester County Executive George Latimer, joined by 45 leaders in a bi-partisan fashion including Westchester’s House of Representatives delegation and the entire Board of Legislators, requested Amtrak’s cooperation in moving the Penn Station Access project forward.  This would provide a critical rail connection for Westchester to the west side of Manhattan and the East Bronx.

Latimer said: “This project would significantly revitalize our region through its creation of a one-seat ride into Penn Station from Westchester for the first time ever. Not only would this save significant time and money for hard-working commuters, it would also alleviate congestion issues at Grand Central Terminal while providing flexibility to the thousands who commute from the Bronx to Westchester each day.”

This project is long overdue. The existing rail lines already exist and the MTA has even agreed to pick up some of the costs of rebuilding certain portions of the line infrastructure to get this project to the finish line. Amtrak has decided to requested additional fees on top of this commitment, fees it does not collect from other commuter lines.

Currently, MTA Capital Construction (MTACC) has a plan to build four new Metro-North Railroad (MNR) stations in the East Bronx that would also service Westchester commuters by connecting the New Haven Line to Penn Station directly. To move forward with this vital project, Amtrak must sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which is an agreement that aligns work schedules and scope and allows MTACC reasonable access to Amtrak-owned tracks and right-of-way. MTACC was prepared to bring the contract for preliminary design to its Board in May, but this action has been delayed due to the lack of a negotiated MOU.

The letter, signed by federal, state and local officials, goes on to say “Our continued economic development relies on stronger public transportation options and we encourage Amtrak to be a partner in these ongoing efforts. We are calling on Amtrak to come to an agreement on the MOU and allow work to move forward on the Penn Station Access project. Our offices stand ready to assist in any way possible to ensure MTACC and Amtrak can quickly reach a mutually beneficial agreement.”

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Bronx Borough President: Amazon Must Give Back for All It’s Getting

Bronx Borough President Reuben Diaz on left shown with Westchester County Executive George Latimer on Mr. Latimer’s visit to the Bronx earlier this year. WPCNR PHOTO ARCHIVE

WPCNR TALK OF THE BIG TOWN. From Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.. November 14, 2018:

 

“My office led the effort to bring Amazon to The Bronx. While Amazon will not make our borough their home, we are encouraged that they will come to New York City nonetheless and congratulate our neighbors in Queens.
“Given the level of subsidies the company is receiving, Amazon must do more as part of this agreement to define benefits for its future employees and the community-at-large. As I have always said, companies that receive heavy taxpayer subsidies must do better by their workforce. This was the driving idea behind our push for a ‘living wage’ law in New York City—if you want charity, you must be charitable. Those values are more important today than ever before.
“The company must accept a strong local hiring agreement, and should also respect the rights of their workers to organize and accept a labor peace agreement for their forthcoming Long Island City headquarters. While the proposed benefits for the residents of the Queensbridge Houses are commendable, we should work with Amazon to find additional pathways and opportunities for NYCHA residents from all over the city to work and train with the company. Amazon should also develop a formal agreement with the City of New York to provide direct commitments for employment to CUNY graduates.
“The dedicated infrastructure funding stream agreed to by the city, state and Amazon demonstrates how important it is to develop transportation solutions for our region. We should not only focus on improving existing service, but expanding new services as well.
“As this process continues I look forward to working with my colleagues, Amazon and other stakeholders to review the components of this agreement and develop programs and incentives that benefit residents of all five boroughs,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
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100 Years Ago the War to End All Wars Ended.

WPCNR STARS AND STRIPES. By John F. Bailey. November 11, 2018:

It is the 11th day of the 11th month, and it is 1918. Armistice Day  100 years after the day when World War I “The Great War to end all Wars” officially ended.

Sadly, the way “The Great War” ended and subsequent reparations penalties on Germany, was the beginning of a century of war:  the Spanish Civil War,  World War II, the Holocaust, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the 6-Day War,  the first Iraq War, the Afghanistan War that never ends, and of course the war on immigrants and refugees.

I wrote the piece that follows in 2013 that delivers some of the feelings of about this ironic day.

WPCNR STARS AND STRIPES. By John F. Bailey. November 12, 2013:

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I attended the Veterans Day Ceremony in White Plains Rural Cemetery Monday.  I met Ross Marsico,(above) the 90 year old  veteran of World War II who fought with the Third Army in France, Belgium and Germany. He was wounded by shrapnel, spent 45 days in a hospital THEN returned to active duty.

Mr. Marsico returned to the USA and spent 30 years as an active policeman in Harrison. He was honored as the 2013 Veteran’s Day Honoree

Mr. Marsico is a native of White Plains, just turned 90 yesterday, is an outstanding person to have the honor to meet. When he was asked questions how he felt about being  honored, he said he just represented all the other veterans and every day people who had served, that it was not about him. Then he teared up.

041

Veterans day makes you tear up.

Chaplain Bob Donnelly of American Legion Post 135 in the invocation observed that the gathering was there to honor persons who had written a “blank check to the United States of America, good for everything including their life in service to their country.”

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Adele Zucker(above , Past President of Jewish War Veterans Ladies Auxiliary, said  Veterans day was to honor the veterans who came back and have contributed so much to their hometowns in addition to their military service. 

Chaplain Bob Donnelly noted that when he returned from the Vietnam war he was spat upon by a woman in an airport and called a baby killer, and observed today’s veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan  conflicts are much more respected.

046

Then came brief  inspiration remarks by the Mayor, Tom Roach, who proclaimed Monday Veteran’s Day in White Plains  and U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sergeant Jason Freeland(below)

047

Sergeant Freeland, in his most recent tour, was responsible for training Afghan army and police recruits. He is now head of recruiting for the Marines in White Plains. He mentioned how honored he was to be among the veterans attending, and how it was their and those like them who service that make it possible for him and today’s servicemen and women to perform and live up to the veterans’ example. This  truth was echoed again how you serve matters and it is an inspiration to those who come after you.

048

Mayor Roach with Commandant Jack Collins of American Legion Post 135  places the Mayor’s Veteran’s Day Board Wreath at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument.

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The Home Defense Wreathis placed by members of the White Plains Police and Fire Department

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Dennis Jones, left, places the White Plains Historical Society Wreath. Joan Steere , Regent of the Daughters of the American Revolution placed the final commemorative wreath.

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The White Plains Middle School Band played Anchors Aweigh, The Caissons Go Rolling Along, The Marines Hymn, Semper Fidelis (Coast Guard), and Off We Go Into the Wild Blue Yonder (Air Force).

Crisp. Inspiring, evoking the rich traditions and pride and sacrifice of the American armed forces.

As the gathering left, the tent was folded, and the crowd drifted away, until another Memorial Day another Veterans Day.

I remained and watched the tombstones of the Revolutionary War Dead…names no longer readable on the stones, they still spoke as one.

Cemeteries like the White Plains Rural Cemetery inspire by the testimony of the simple stones, the tiny flags denoting veterans and the stones too of every day people of long ago who lived well. As I read their stones I wonder what their lives were like their thoughts, their actions in that long ago time.

Cemeteries are not places of regret, but, instead inspiration to ignite in us, with their  memories, to continue to work on our own lives and live up to the examples of persons like the veterans still with us and those who have departed.060

Rifle Salute to the Departed Veterans by American Legion Post #135, was followed by Taps, played by Bob Freis

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The veterans are getting older.

James Dwyer of American Legion Post 135 was scheduled  to read Flanders Field. He could not  due to illness according to Commander Jack Collins. This is the touching poem penned in World War I, Mr. Dywer would have read. He could not, so I will publish it for him.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders field

078

 

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AMERICAN AUTUMN IN COLD SPRING NY

WPCNR VIDEO ROVER. NOVEMBER 11, 2018:

The glory of fall in the northeast is just about ended as these panoramas of Cold Spring, NY, Westchester’s favorite autumn day trip attest.

At Peekskill, an oil barge wends its way down the big Hudson, a harbinger of the winter to come.

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Labor LEADERS DISCUSS POST ELECTION ISSUES ON PEOPLE TO HEARD NOW ON THE INTERNET

JOHN BAILEY INTERVIEWS

WESTCHESTER LABOR LEADERS

TOM CAREY,

PRESIDENT

WESTCHESTER PUTNAM COUNTIES CENTRAL LABOR BODY

LENORE FRIEDLAENDER

VICE PRESIDENT

SERVICE EMPLOYEES UNION INTERNATIONAL 32BJ

ANYTIME ON INTERNET AT

www.wpcommunitymedia.org 

ON PEOPLE TO BE HEARD

DISCUSS

LABOR’S RESPONSE TO NATIONAL PUSHBACK AGAINST UNIONS

LOCAL WESTCHESTER HOSPITAL DIFFERENT CHARGES ON MEDICAL PROCEDURES

LARGE VARIATION IN FEES FOR SAME MEDICAL PROCEDURES OPERATIONS BEHIND STAGGERING MEDICAL COSTS. SHOULD THE CONSUMER “SHOP AROUND”

LABOR STRATEGY FOR KEEPING MEMBERSHIP TO STRESS ADVANTAGES OF BELONGING TO THE UNION.

PLANS FOR DEALING WITH THE SUPREME COURT ARBITRATION RULING IN HANDLING EMPLOYER-INDIVIDUAL SUITS.

EFFORTS TO PROTECT MEMBER IMMIGRANTS FROM  EFFECTS OF WASHINGTON POLICIES

APPRENTICESHIPS TO BOLSTER THE TRADE WORKERS’ SHORTAGE

TONIGHT AT 7 ON PEOPLE TO BE HEARD

AND VIEWABLE ANYTIME ON

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Boykin: New County Budget Uses “New and non-recurring revenues to balance budget,” Hearings Set

WPCNR COUNTY CLARION-LEDGER. From Chairman of the Board of Legislators Benjamin Boykin. November 10, 2018:

In a letter to constituents, Chairman of the Board of Legislators commented on the County Executive George Latimer’s proposed 2019 county budget and its 2% tax increase:

County Executive George Latimer released Westchester County’s proposed 2019 operating budget to the Board of Legislators on Friday.

The Board of Legislators will begin its budget deliberations on Tuesday, November 13, kicking off a series of committee meetings and public hearings.

This year’s process will be unlike any other in recent memory.  With new leadership at the Board and a new County Executive, the process begins in a spirit of cooperation and transparency that has not been the case for many years. It also will be undertaken with an increased sense of fiscal responsibility as we work together to improve our county’s finances.

The administration’s operating budget proposal is $1.94 billion.  Unlike budgets of the last two years, the proposal does not require any use of the county’s savings account (fund balance).  It includes an increase of 2% in the county property tax.  The county property tax, on average, represents about 15% of the property tax bill of county residents.  The proposed 2019 operating budget is balanced by using new and non-recurring revenues, which allows the county to maintain a stable fund balance, critical to our credit ratings.

Information on the budget is available now on the Board of Legislators website, www.westchesterlegislators.com.  Visit the FY2019 Budget Dashboard on our site, where you can see the budget meeting schedule and view the proposed operatingcapital and special districts budgets.

The dates and location of the public hearings on the 2019 budget are listed below:

  • Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 7 p.m. – Yonkers Riverfront Library, 1 Larkin Center, Yonkers
  • Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at 7 p.m. – Ossining High School, 29 South Highland Avenue, Ossining
  • Wednesday, December 5, 2018 at 7 p.m.  – Board of Legislators Chambers, 148 Martine Avenue, 8th Floor, White Plains

If you would like to speak at any of these meeting, please note that sign-up begins at 6:15 p.m.

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WHITE PLAINS WEEK the FRIDAY NOV 9 PROGRAM ON WHITEPLAINSWEEK.COM AND YOUTUBE AND WWW.WPCOMMUNITYMEDIA.ORG NOW

WHITE PLAINS WEEK NOW!

JOHN BAILEY  PETER KATZ JIM BENEROFE

ON

wpweek for 11-9 has been posted   the youtube link is
the whiteplainsweek.com link is
AND
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THE LOCAL ELECTIONS

THE NATIONAL ELECTIONS

THE TRUMP ACOSTA BATTLE OF THE PRESS ROOM-4 MINUTES THEY DIDN’T SHOW YOU ON THE NETWORKS–SHOCKING! SAD! RUDE! 

LIVE! WHITE PLAINS WEEK GOES THROUGH THE NEWRAMP METERS ON I-287

THE NEW $100 BIKE VIOLATION FINES

THE NEW LOW GREEN ENERGY ELECTRIC RATES GUARANTEED FOR TWO YEARS NOT TO INCREASE!

WINBROOK PREPARES TO START ITS 2ND BUILDING REPLACEMENT

THE 440 HAMILTON AVENUE PILOT AGREEMENT

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County Executive Proposes Raising Taxes 2% in 1.9 Billion Budget Presented Today

WPCNR COUNTY CLARION-LEDGER. From the Westchester County Department of Communications. November 9, 2018 (Editor’s supplemental information in bold italics Updated November 10):

County Executive George Latimer released his first County Operating Budget for 2019.

The budget continues funding for vital services for County residents, while remaining within the State property tax cap and utilizing none of the County’s unrestricted general fund balance.

Latimer said: “I am proud to present this budget to Westchester taxpayers and the Board of Legislators – my partner in responsible government. This year, my Administration held more true public input sessions on this budget, and other County matters, than any Executive had before. These sessions resulted in this budget. It is time to move Westchester forward together and plan not just for the now – but for the future.”

In this budget, funds are allocated to keep all essential services for County residents, to pay all County employees the 2019 State minimum wage of $12 per hour, increase support for our daycare and not for profit service providers and implement the raising of the age of criminal responsibility from 16 to 18 years old.

This is done with a modest 2% increase to the property tax levy – well below the 5.7% tax cap Westchester is afforded, according to an independent audit.

(Editor’s Note: a 2% property tax increase on this year’s $2,400 County Tax on a $650,000 home in White Plains would increase the White Plains resident owning such a home $50. A home assessed at more than $650,000 would pay more depending on your assessment.)

The 2019 budget, projects the true cost of running County Government for the year. Previous budgets, like the 2017 Westchester County Operating Budget had run a $32 million general fund operating deficit

(Editor’s note: a $35 Million deficit budget was passed by the Democratic majority legislature last December under County Executive Robert Astorino. Astorino’s  plan to cover that deficit through leasing the Westchester County Airport have been put on hold by the present County Executive.)

For 2018, the projected general fund shortfall now stands at $39 million.  This budget hole of $71 million (2017 and 2018)  is roughly a 50% reduction in the County’s rainy day fund. As noted by each of the three major rating agencies and the Office of the State Comptroller, continued reliance on these funds is not sustainable.

The 2019 budget includes a host of strong financial decisions aimed at restoring order to Westchester’s fiscal house, including:

·         A County hiring freeze;

·         Renegotiated Contracts;

o   $4M annual savings on Liberty Lines contract

o   New RFP for Corrections healthcare

o   Improved risk assessment

·         Shared Services implementation;

·         Innovate reoccurring revenues like the NuEnergen “Demand Response” program;

·         Collective Bargaining stability;

o   First time ever, CSEA contribution to healthcare

·         County Space Assessment/Consolidation; and

·         Streamlining Capital Program implementation.

This budget includes core beliefs of the Latimer Administration, including:

·         Westchester County Property taxes kept at or below the State tax cap;

·         Basic Westchester County services and facilities maintained for all County residents;

·         Establish a multi-year game plan to ensure long term financial solvency for the County; and

·         Open and transparent communication with all.

(Editor’s Note: The official news release in the budget does not mention the good news of the county sales tax windfall the first 9 months of 2018 and what will be done with this windfall in the 2019 budget.

Westchester County sales tax dollars increased ½% in September with the important fourth quarter holiday sales period starting. Through the first 9 months of 2018, Westchester County has earned  $408,569,137.

If the county matches its 2017 pace the next three months it will take in an additional $136 Million in the three months, earning an all-time County Sales Tax “Handle” of $544 Million. Last year, the county earned $525.5 Million in sales taxes. 

If the county resumes its 6% growth rate it has enjoyed through August the next three months that $544 Million could grow to $550 Million, giving the county enough surplus over last year ( when the county earned $525 Million) to cover the $15 Million hole in the budget from the county decision not to lease the Westchester county airport, and devote $10 Million more towards union settlements recently agreed by the County. (The deficit county auditors announced last spring placed the 2018 shortfall at $37 Million.)

The county itself is highly confident it will reach that $37 Million benchmark. In the county midyear economic forecast in July, the county predicted a $555 Million sales tax revenue, even while downplaying the strong 6% growth rate publicly, not even mentioning it.

The County Executive now faces the pleasant prospect of the sustained county sales tax growth (if it just matches last year in October, November and December) of having the deficit now down to $10 Million or wiped out entirely depending on free-spending  confident shoppers flooding the malls and the bars if the county decides to keep the sales tax “windfall” for a rainy day to make their books look better ( by devoting the “windfall” the fund balance) to the auditing agencies which lowered the county bond rating. It is not spelled out in the official press release on the budget where the windfall in the sales tax revenue is going in the new budget whether to fund balance or to take care of the 2018 budget, (with the tax increase taking care of the deficit).

Moody’s,  one of the bond rating agencies lowered the county bond rating to “negative,” October 18 saying “continued deterioration of (its) financial position resulting from large one time expenses over the past two years.”

There is also the possibility that instead of a 2% tax increase they could lower the tax increase altogether and assume the robust sales tax will continue which would take care of that pesky other $37 million deficit. If you have $30 million you did not expect to have now, and could reach another $5 Million at least, where’s the deficit?)

The budget also includes the following decisions from the County Executive:

·         Realistic Projections of County Finances to Bond Rating Agencies and State Oversight Agencies

o   Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings

o   New York State Comptroller’s Office

§  Comptroller Audit

§  Comptroller Fiscal Stress Report

·         Honest Assessment of Actual Tax Impacts to Homeowners

o   Short vs. Long Term Costs

o   County Taxes vis-à-vis Local and School Taxes

·         Honest Understanding of Mandated Services and Discretionary Services

Latimer continued: “This budget strikes a balance between providing the services all of the residents of Westchester expect and deserve, and keeping property taxes at a level they can afford.  The modest increase included in the budget is within the State property tax cap, and acknowledges the hardship the Federal Government has imposed on the people of Westchester through the loss of the State and Local Tax (SALT) Deduction in the American Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. “

Following today’s submission, the Board of Legislators will now review the budget – including meetings with County departments in the Board’s Committee on Budget & Appropriations. Following this review, the Board will submit any additions or deletions to the budget, vote to move the budget out of committee for a final review and end with a vote by the full Board. The final budget will then be sent to County Executive Latimer for his signature or veto.

Latimer added: “I look forward to working with all of the members of the Board of Legislators to deliver a transparent and responsible 2019 Budget for the people of Westchester County. Now is the time to focus on the future, on moving forward – together.”

County Executive George Latimer, who took office in January 2018 as the ninth County Executive. Using inclusion and openness as a foreground, Latimer is fighting to make Westchester a destination for all people to live, work and enjoy. Learn more about Westchester County by visiting www.westchestergov.com

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Governor Andrew Cuomo Wins Third Term in a Walk –60% of the Vote. Democrats Sweep Westchester Delegations. Win New York State Senate Majority.

WPCNR ELECTION 2018. November 6, 2018:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo defeated Marc Molinaro, the Dutchess County Executive on election day winning 60% of the vote to win a third term as governor. Mr. Molinaro received 36% of the vote.

Democratic candidates took over the majority of the State Senate which will give the governor potentially a green light for progressive reforms previously blocked by Republicans.

His coattails were long, wresting two longtime local Republicans from the State Senate: Democrat Peter Harckham the former Westchester County Legislator in one of only two close races defeated Terence Murphy the Republican  by a 56% to 44% margin in the 40th Senate District and Democrat David Carlucci defeated former County Executive Scott Vanderhoef in the 38th Senate District.

The lone Republican to win in Westchester in a contested race was Representative Kevin Byrne in the 94th Assembly District

Locally, Andrea Stewart-Cousins the Democrat Senator from the 35th Senate district, running unopposed and Shelley Mayer also unopposed in the 37th Senate District (County Executive George Latimer’s former seat in the State Senate) were elected.

Democratic Assemblyman David Buchwald defeated John Nucolovich, the Republican to win a third term as White Plains Assemblyman in the 93rd District. Buchwald polled 70% of the vote.

Nita Lowey easily won reelection in the 17th U.S. Congressional district, as did Eliot Engel in the 16th, Sean Maloney in the 18th.

Amy Paulin, unopposed was returned to the  NY Assembly 88th District; Gary Pretlow without opposition to the 89th District, Nader Sayegh was elected to the 90th Assembly District; Steve Otis, unopposed, to the 91st, and Tom Abinanti  unopposed to the 92nd District; Sandy Galef facing no opposition, to the 95th Assembly District.

 

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