Social Distancing Disregarded in Greenburgh Parks: Supervisor Mulls Special Hours for Fragile Population

WPCNR THE FEINER REPORT. . By Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner. May 24, 2020:

I have received e mails and calls from residents in recent weeks advising that many people are not social distancing or wearing masks on bike paths, parks, trails. This is happening all over Westchester, NYS, the nation and world!  Most people do comply. But those who don’t risk infecting others or getting sick with COVID-19 themselves.  For those with medical issues — it could be extemely dangerous.

I spoke with the Parks Commissioner and Police Chief and suggested that we set up a time (probably early in the AM) at one park with extra police, park personnel present so that people who have compromised immune systems can enjoy the trail -knowing that we will be making a greater effort to enforce the social distancing/health and safety COVID-19 REQUIREMENTS 

My question: If we would set this up – would you be interested in participating?  There are many miles of bike paths, trails, parks around town. It’s impossible to have a police officer at every spot on a trail all day and many people are refusing to comply with the social distancing directives.

If you would be interested = would an 8 AM to 10 AM time period be helpful? Any thoughts or suggestions you have would be appreciated. Please e mail to pfeiner@greenburghny.com.  When I brought this up at the Greenburgh Town Board work session last week the suggestion was to try it once a week.  However, if there is greater interest and need the program could be expanded.

If this works it’s my hope that other governments will do the same – providing more options for those with compromised immune systems to enjoy nature

AN EXCERPT FROM A WOMAN WHO IS SEVERELY IMMUNE

COMPROMISED

As a very concerned citizen, I wanted to let you know that community members are not looking out for one another at all, and it is really upsetting. So many people including runners and bikers are not wearing masks or social distancing, especially on the weekends.

There are so many people on weekends that it is nearly impossible to social distance on some parts of the path, and so many people out there just don’t seem to care about others at all. Tons of adults and kids biking without masks–so many that I had to wait about 5 minutes standing off the path while one biker after another passed by.

People running without masks and not social distancing at all while they breathe heavily and run right by. I happen to be severely immune compromised. 

I just think it’s such a shame that this is the way people are treating one another. As the weather gets warmer, it’s only going to get worse, and action needs to be taken. I literally feel like I can’t go outside without feeling in harm’s way, and it’s a great health risk


ANOTHER EXCERPT FROM AN  E MAIL RECEIVED FROM A WOMAN WITH CANCER  ABOUT ANOTHER TRAIL IN TOWN–

Thank you for soliciting feedback on Greenburgh trail use. I I run into few people there at that time (more people on weekends) and many weekday users seem to be regulars. I often see two women walking closely together sans masks. The most unnerving is an unmasked woman seen several times over these months including yesterday morning with an unleashed dog. On the weekends there are frequently parents with young children walking the trails sans masks. 


I am recovering from a year of cancer treatment which just ended two weeks ago. I walk/jog with a bandana every day mostly to protect others since quarantine began. It seems there are still many in our community who don’t realize how our behavior correlates with the quarantine timeline. 
WESTCHESTER RE-OPENING  –LINK TO WHAT IS ALLOWED ON TUESDAY AND DURING OTHER PHASES

On Tuesday our area will start re-opening. This is a link to what is allowed and not allowed.Phase 1 allows in curbside, in store pickup and drop off, construction, wholesale and manufacturing.https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase

PAUL FEINER Greenburgh Town Supervisor

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NEW YORK BY THE NUMBERS

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo confirmed 1,772 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 359,926 confirmed cases in New York State. Of the 359,926 total individuals who tested positive for the virus, the geographic breakdown is as follows (MIDHUDSON REGION COUNTIES HIGHLIGHTED BOLDFACE:

CountyTotal PositiveNew Positive
Albany1,77014
Allegany440
Broome48517
Cattaraugus784
Cayuga763
Chautauqua729
Chemung1361
Chenango1180
Clinton951
Columbia3593
Cortland381
Delaware742
Dutchess3,79326
Erie5,552155
Essex360
Franklin201
Fulton1934
Genesee1912
Greene2172
Hamilton50
Herkimer1005
Jefferson720
Lewis190
Livingston1140
Madison3014
Monroe2,66160
Montgomery770
Nassau39,726118
Niagara92730
NYC197,266782
Oneida86436
Onondaga1,90476
Ontario1822
Orange10,19755
Orleans19621
Oswego993
Otsego681
Putnam1,20013
Rensselaer4633
Rockland12,93429
Saratoga4524
Schenectady6483
Schoharie490
Schuyler110
Seneca540
St. Lawrence1961
Steuben2400
Suffolk38,802130
Sullivan1,29710
Tioga1213
Tompkins1492
Ulster1,60611
Warren2493
Washington2251
Wayne1073
Westchester32,881114
Wyoming801
Yates373
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INTERVIEWS WITH WORLD WAR II AND KOREAN WAR VETERANS

WPCNR THE LETTER TICKER. From Greenburgh Town Supervisor, Paul Feiner. May 23, 2020:

Greenburgh veterans, most from World War II and the Korean conflict, have been interviewed for a town history project  that started about a decade ago and each of their half hour interviews can be seen non stop on Greenburgh cable TV local access TV stations this weekend.

About 150 veterans have been interviewed for this program.  Because each interview is about a half hour long and because there are more than 150 interviews the interviews will be broadcast non stop from this entire weekend till Tuesday morning.

The interviews will air on channels 75 and 76 on Optimum  and on channels 34 and 35 on Verizon FIOS. Copies of the interviews are also available for viewing at the Greenburgh Library. You can view individual interviews at

http://greenburghpublicaccess.com/veterans-living-history

 Some of the veterans who were interviewed for this living history initiative are no longer alive but their stories and bravery will be remembered for generations to come. We’ve been airing our living history interviews for about a decade and continue to interview more veterans every year.  It’s important for residents to recognize the contribution of local heroes and to recognize that our neighbors fought hard to keep us free. 

Residents who don’t want to stay up the entire Memorial Day weekend can watch individual tapes on the Greenburgh public access TV website

http://greenburghpublicaccess.com/veterans-living-history

Paul Feiner

Greenburgh Town Supervisor

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BULLETIN: Westchester and rest of MidHudson region can open Tuesday if Tracer Training is Completed over the weekend. Long Island has to get death rate down. GOVERNOR Says he will not close borders/quarantine out of state/foreign arrivals—but Federal Government can. 2 week Interval Between Phases is not set—depends on Stability of New Infections.

GOVERNOR CUOMO ON BREAKTHROUGH DEATHS DROP BELOW 100 –AND MIDHUDSON OPENING TUESDAY(Albany Feed)

WPCNR SATURDAY GOVERNOR ANDREW M. CUOMO BRIEFING

By John F. Bailey. May 23, 2020:

Westchester County is working to train over 800 more “Tracers” of persons (mostly Westchester County employees who have had contact with Coronavirus-infected people, via online training this Memorial Day Weekend, Governor Andrew Cuomo reported today.

If the persons complete the training in Westchester, all the counties in the MidHudson region can open for Phase 1 in Reopening Tuesday. If Long Island Nassau and Suffolk Counties control their death rates below the 8 deaths over 3 days average, the Long Island region could open Wednesday

The Governor also said the Jones Beach crowds at yesterday’s beach openings socially distanced very well.

The Governor announced good news that Deaths yesterday from the Covid-19 virus dropped to 84, below 100 for the first time which the Governor described as 100 being the key number told him by a doctor was the number that would indicate the disease was stabilized. Of the 84 deaths, 62 died in hospitals, 22 from nursing homes.

The Governor emphasized citizens who have been tested, should consider testing a second time. He said that 1/3 of persons found to have coronavirus had not shown symptoms. The Center for Disease Control has determined that persons with the coronavirus may not show symptoms so would have no reason to test. Take as many as you want the Governor suggested if you deal with the public in stores, in hospitals, health centers if you deal with the public.

He showed some more “Wear a Mask” spots submitted to the state Wear A Mask PSA contest.

He sad, “those masks can save your life or another person’s life.”

Asked in the “Q. & A.” session if 2 weeks was still the time between Reopening Phase 1  and 2, the government said it was firm, because the 14 days is the time when symptoms would be appearing if persons contracted the disease. The Governor said if the numbers were “stabilized” after two weeks, you might be cleared to go to Phase 2 in the entire region. The Governor said 2 weeks was not “set.”

When asked if he would consider how to stop a second wave, banning travelers from other states and other countries coming into New York, the Governor said “I do not think it is a  good policy.”

Governor is asked about banning travelers from other states to prevent a second wave.

The Governor said the state does not have the authority to quarantine persons coming in from the airports, but the federal government can.  (See WPCNR statement obtained from the Center for Disease, below.)

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Letter from the Burns

WPCNR THE LETTER TICKER. May 23, 2020:

Musings from JBFC Programming Director Brian Ackerman

Well, I’ve sat down to write something many times over the last two epic months. Something about film, about life, about the Burns. Something to the extended family of JBFC members that have made this 19-year cinematic journey so gratifying—certainly to me, and I know for many others, too. But as soon as I’d write something, three days later it would be irrelevant, obsolete, like the world on its axis had shifted yet again, and erased everything of meaning. We’re all still bobbing at sea, hoping it’s not too deep. And the only thing I realize I can say with enduring clarity is this: I miss everybody.

We have zoom meetings at the “office.” We’re trying to figure out, of course, how we will open, when, and who will show up when we do. Obviously we will let you know FIRST once we have any certainty, but at the moment it’s a bit of an equation with twenty variables where only one is known: we will, indeed, re-open!

Beyond that, as a programmer I have more time, but productivity is in short supply, like flour. Time stretches out. Weekdays blend into weekends. Someone I know has a Covid problem, or thinks they do—time is spent wrangling ever-elusive solutions. I sleep badly. I wake up too early. I read the news, and then try to expunge it by reading more—a very bad stratagem. I wonder what we’re running out of, that will require a high-wire dash through the supermarket, where everything of course has been brought to us by people who are working every day, hour after hour, in perilous conditions that I don’t share. In other words: I’m pretty much like a lot of people—privileged and, so far, pretty lucky. I constantly remind myself of that. So many others are less fortunate.

In that way I am ridiculously lucky to watch movies, too —some for the Burns, some just for pleasure. I will say sheepishly that one of the best things I’ve seen in a long time is not something that would have shown up on any big screen, but rather the HBO adaptation of Elena Ferrente’s My Brilliant Friend. If you haven’t seen it, it’s simply epic. Epic in its sweep of personal histories intersecting; epic in its illustration of why, as a species, we just can’t get it together. It so beautifully expresses how we’re all operating from such deep wounds, such ancient traumas, that everything we do in the present is a fractured reflection of our past, as we cast about blindly to repair or avert some inaccessible, oblique pain that nonetheless drives everything we do. And yet all that brokenness is what makes the story—and all of us—so beautiful. It’s essential watching.

We’re also showing two documentaries this week on our virtual screens that are really terrific: The Painter And The Thief, and Capital in the Twenty-First Century. The first is about an artist in Norway and the man who steals her painting. That happens in the first few minutes, so I’m not revealing much, and I won’t say more because the film benefits—like almost all movies—from a blank canvas of expectancy. But I was talking to JBFC Senior Programmer Andrew Jupin, and we both agreed that for Americans in this particular moment, it’s a bit like watching two movies. One is the film that the filmmaker made for us—the mysterious tale that unfolds from this theft—and the other is the one where you can’t help but notice the casual array of incredible social services that Norwegians simply regard as part of the air they breathe. From where we stand, in the world’s richest country, you can only crush your face against the store-front window longingly. It seems impossible that things actually work elsewhere.

Which brings me, naturally, to the second film we’re showing—Capital in the Twenty-First Century—based on economist Thomas Piketty’s bestselling book, which asks: how did we get here? And really more importantly: where can we go from here? Those are obviously big questions, and the film is a smart tour through the last four hundred years of economic history, occasionally driving down some illuminating side roads that are less familiar. I’ve invited filmmaker Astra Taylor—who did not make this film—to join us for a conversation on Thursday, May 28 at 7:30. I find her thrillingly brilliant and unconventional—a writer, an activist, a musician, and a documentary filmmaker. She makes documentaries about philosophers for chrissakes—nobody does that. You can increasingly find her provocative writings across the journalistic spectrum. She’s also thought really deeply about issues of economics and politics, and co-founded something called The Debt Collective around the immensely unspoken issue of debt, which, as millions fall suddenly into penury, may rise to meet its moment. The biblical scale of the floodwaters we’re experiencing seems like an awfully good time to open that discussion and see if we can go to some places that are perhaps less traveled. She was here last year and is just a fabulous speaker and presence, and I hope you will join us.

I’ll end on a last appeal for a film that Andrew put into rotation on our virtual screens last week: the hugely entertaining Rififi, that dazzling 1955 French thriller that is the father of all modern heist films. I was lucky enough to see it for the first time on the big screen here at the Burns 15 years ago, and have watched it twice since; its artfully staged burglary scene and wild, rhapsodic finish still thrill the heart. 

That’s it for the moment. I hope you’re all enjoying nature in this gloriously beautiful time of year, and remaining safe. There is, even through all of this, much to be thankful for. And someday, we’ll meet again at the movies.

Best,

Brian Ackerman

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NEW YORK TALENT PRESENTS: “WEAR A MASK”

WEAR A MASK–An entry in the New York State Wear A Mask Public Service Spot Contest. 92,000 votes have been cast in 3 Days. This Spot “NEW YORK TOUGH” was telecast on the Governor’s Daily Coronavirus Briefing Friday.
“Wear a Mask. Do your part. Save a Life. It May be your own.”
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ZOOM HEARING ON WHITE PLAINS SCHOOL BUDGET

WPCNR SCHOOL DAYS. From White Plains City School District. May 23, 2020:

The White Plains Board of Education will conduct a public hearing on the 2020-2021 School District Budget at a Special Meeting on Wednesday, May 27, 2020, at 7 P.M   The meeting will be videoconferenced as per the Governor’s Executive Order 202.4, COVID-19.  Zoom Link:

https://zoom.us/j/95032893523?pwd=VEpBbThRWTBCRnJEZEJkK0Z1TjFIdz09

Teacher appointments to tenure will also be on the agenda that evening.

The public vote on the budget and the election of Board Members will take place on Tuesday, June 9, 2020, by absentee ballot only.  Ballots will be sent to all qualified voters who are registered to vote.  Ballots must be returned to the District Clerk by 5 P.M. on June 9th.

            Two Board seats will be up for election, each for a three-year term of office, beginning July 1,

2020.  Incumbents Rosemarie Eller and Randy Stein are running unopposed.   In addition to the budget, the ballot includes a proposition on the use of funds from the Capital Reserves.

Information on the election and budget is available on the district’s website:

www.whiteplainspublicschools.org  or call 422-2000.

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WHITE PLAINS WEEK MAY 22 PROGRAM ON REOPENING AT WWW. WPCOMMUNITYMEDIA.ORG

JOHN BAILEY AND THE NEWS–ON OPENING UP NEW YORK
COUNTY EXECUTIVES ON WHY THEY SHOULD OPEN NOW
GEORGE LATIMER ON PLAYLAND OPENING
WHY NEW YORK CITY ISN’T MEETING THE STATE STANDARDS FOR OPENING: MASSIVE INFECTIONS IN POOR COMMUNITIES: MORE TESTING, COMMUNITY OUTREACH TO COME
SEE THE 5 FINALISTS IN THE WEAR A MASK PSA CONTEST–ALL 5

THE SPREAD OF PMSIS — THE COVID CONNECTED CONDITION AFFECTING CHILDREN AT RATE OF 10 NEW CASES A DAY

COVID-19 TESTING AT JFK AND NEWARK–SHOULD EVERY AIR TRAVELER GET A COVID TEST BEFORE LEAVING THE AIRPORTS? WHY AREN’T THEY? OR ARE THEY? SWAB THEM NOW!

LIFE SAVING TV

ON

www.wpcommunitymedia.org

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NEW YORK TALENT PRESENTS “WEAR A MASK”

WEAR A MASK–An entry in the New York State Wear A Mask Public Service Spot Contest. 92,000 votes have been cast in 3 Days. This Spot “NEW YORK TOUGH” was telecast on the Governor’s Daily Coronavirus Briefing Friday.
“Wear a Mask. Do your part. Save a Life. It May be your own.”

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MIDHUDSON (INCLUDING WESTCHESTER COUNTY) AND LONG ISLAND REGIONS COULD REOPEN IN A WEEK, GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES. CDC NOW SAYS INFECTIONS FROM COVID-19 NOW SPREAD MAINLY BY AIRBORNE DROPLETS, NOT INFECTED SURFACES—IMPERATIVE MASKS BE WORN, GOVERNOR SAYS. GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES $100 MILLION IN NEW AID FOR SMALL BUSINESSES 20 EMPLOYEES OR LESS. NUMBERS STEADILY SLOWLY CONTINUE TO DROP.

GOVERNOR CUOMO STEPS UP FOR SMALL BUSINESS AS FEDERAL HELP RUNS OUT

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WPCNR FRIDAY GOVERNOR ANDREW M. CUOMO CORONA VIRUS BRIEFING. By John F. Bailey May 22, 2020:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today that Westchester County and the rest of the counties in the MidHudson Region and the Long Island region of Nassau and Suffolk regions could reopen for a Phase One opening by the end of next week, if their hiring of tracers meets requirements and their death and hospital bed metrics are met. He gave the MidHudson counties

The governor acted to provide $100 Million in aid to Small Businesses in New York with 20 or less employees through New York Forward, because the federal government program “has run out of money.”

Governor Cuomo announced he is making the New York Contract  Tracing Curriculum (developed by former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s foundation) available at no cost  to all states through the National Governors Association for creating contact tracing programs.

Governor Cuomo shared the new intelligence on COVID-19 that the Center for Disease Control just announced that COVID-19 now has been found to be spread by air droplets.

The Governor announced that it is mandatory to wear a mask in public in New York State or whether you are within 6 feet of another person. “You do not have the right to infect another person” (by not wearing a mask).

An additional arrangement has been made to add 750 pharmacies who have agreed to perform 7,000 Covid-19 tests a week

The governor announced that in three days, 92,000 persons have voted for their favorite PSA spots created by over 600 New Yorkers.. He also showed 5 spots that were not chosen as finalists, but are very effective, and here they are.

In the Q.& A., it was announced that $10 BILLION has been paid out the door in unemployment checks. The Governor defended the state metric board as fair across the board and defended the splitting of number of deaths into two categories, Covid-19 Deaths and “Probable” Covid Debts.

On the matter of opening beaches, Governor Cuomo said he opened the state owned parks so that citizens from New York City had a place to go, because Westchester, Nassau and Suffolk closed their county-owned beaches to persons who were not county residents.

NOTE: PLAYLAND IN WESTCHESTER COUNTY The beach will be open from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. with no admittance after 6 p.m. Parking is $5 per car with the park pass and $10 per car without. Admission to the beach is $4 for adults, $3 for children ages 5 to 11 and free for children under age 5 and under.

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