WPCNR School Days Dispatch. By John F. Bailey. August 6, 2002: As window work continues at White Plains High School, Richard Lasselle, Assistant Superintendent for Business of the White Plains City School District reported today that the North House, C Building and C North wings of White Plains High School will be completed in time for the start of the new high school year in September.
Lasselle said that there remained a “punch list” of matters to be completed, including electrical work and some heating installation to be executed in the fall, but assured WPCNR that the windows in North Building, C-Building and “C-North” would be in by September 4, the Wednesday after Labor Day when school traditionally begins with all three North, C and C North wings functioning.
At this point, Lasselle said the project remains “on budget.”
WPCNR Daily Mirror. By John F. Bailey. August 6, 2002:The President of Concerned Citizens for Open Space, reacting to the Common Council vote approving the New York Presbyterian Hospital project early Tuesday morning, has told WPCNR the citizens’ open space and parks advocacy group was not contemplating bringing an Article 78 action to overturn the council approval.
CCOS LEADER CONCILIATORY IN AFTERMATH: Alan Teck, President of Concerned Citizens for Open Space, is shown speaking out at last night’s Common Council meeting. Teck, in a thoughtful and rational discourse citing eloquently pleaded for the Council to have a “death bed converson” and vote the hospital plan down. He finished his remarks saying, “It takes a Common Council to make a great city. It takes an UnCommon Council to make a City great.” Teck was just one of 38 speakers to address the Council in a 5-hour marathon finale to the New York Presbyterian Hospital biotech/proton accelerator saga.
Photo by WPCNR
Alan Teck, President of Concerned Citizens for Open Space which has long crusaded for a “Central Park for White Plains” on the hospital property told WPCNR this morning that the citizen’s group was not considering an Article 78 action to attempt to overturn the Council decision in the courts. A gracious man, speaking at a time that must have been very difficult for him, said he and the organization were “looking forward to the city negotiating with the hospital.”
Asked if he had any indication that New York Presbyterian Hospital, now that it had received its approval, was inclined to discuss providing some of its property for a park, Teck said, “not at all.”
Teck said he felt it was “interesting,” that Mayor Joseph Delfino ended his remarks with a reference to the fact that now perhaps White Plains could have a Central Park.
Asked for his comments on the historic Council vote ending twenty-seven years of Common Council wrangling with the hospital, Teck said,
“Over this long process, significant changes occurred from the original plan to the one that was ultimately approved, and those changes, in every case, benefited the city.”
WPCNR Daily Sun. By John F. Bailey. August 6, 2002.: The Common Council approved the New York Presbyterian Hospital biotech research and proton accelerator cancer treatment center project by a vote of 6 to 1 Tuesday morning, approving its location on the golf course meadow of the property, known as Site 8.
COUNCIL PRESIDENT CASTS DECIDING VOTE AT 2:23 AM. Common Council President Benjamin Boykin is seen announcing his intention to approve the controversial hospital project, the fifth and clinching vote. Boykin said “It is time for a new beginning with the hospital. I ask the hospital to immediately meet with us to address pressing community concerns. I look forward to working with the hospital to provide the residents of White Plains with public access to the beautiful property for passive as well as leisure and active recreational uses.” He also said, in explaining his vote for the project, “I am concerned that if we deny this application, the city may lose control of our special permit and zoning rights and the courts will determine the fate of this project. This would be the worse of all situations for the residents of White Plains.”
Photo by WPCNR
APPROVED ACCELERATOR/BIOTECH LAB SITE: Known as Site Eight, is the so-called “driving range meadow” is the site the Council has approved for the building of a 6-story doublewinged biotech research lab facility and proteon accelerator cancer treatment center. John Bailey points to the site in a photograph taken in May of this year.
Constance Hildesley, Vice President of Real Estate for the hospital would not comment after the historic vote, but instead passed out a prepared statement which said, in part,
“NYPH thanks the Mayor and the members of the Common Council who spent many hours in careful deliberation and ultimately voted approval for this important medical research and cancer treatment center this evening.”
Dean Bender, spokesman for the hospital and Paul Bergins, hospital attorney said it was too early to say what would happen next now that approval had been granted.
Mayor Delfino, Rita Malmud and Robert Greer, councilpersons voting for the proposal said they expected the hospital to begin a new dialogue with the city on possible use of land for a park for the city.
Thomas Whyatt, attorney for Concerned Citizens for Open Space said he had no idea what the organization would do next, or how much money an Article 78 challenge to the approval on the part of CCOS might cost. He also did not know what lawyers CCOS might use.
WPCNR Sunset Sentinel Courier. August 5, 2002: A letter mailed first class by New York Presbyterian Hospital requesting community support for their biotech/proton accelerator proposal has apparently been either mailed too late to have impact, or has arrived only today in local mailboxes. It requests citizens to attend tonight’s council meeting and support the proposal
The letter arrived this afternoon in the Haviland Manor neighborhood, a scant 5 hours before the Council is scheduled to take up the issue. Obviously too late for most citizens to contact the Common Council to have any impact, or attend the meeting.
When was it mailed?
The letter, signed by “The Administration and Staff of New York-Presbyterian Hospital” was dated July 30, 2002, and mailed with First Class postage indicia out of New Rochelle.
Apparently, the post office mistook the first class indicia for third class mail, for it has taken the better part of 4 to 5 days to be delivered to White Plains.
The text of the letter is as follows:
On August 5th, the Common Council of the City of White Plains will be voting on a proposal by New York-Presbyterian Hospital to add a Biomedical Research and state-of-the-art Cancer Treatment Center at our White Plains campus.
For the past 100 years we have been your neighbors, offering the highest quality healthcare services and community programs to White Plains, Westchester County and beyond. With the creation of this new biomedical facility, we are looking forward to enhancing and enriching the delivery of healthcare, community outreach and cancer treatment.
We are asking that you reach out to the Mayor and Common Council to express your support and help make this dream a reality.
Thank for making this effor on our behalf and we welcome your participation at the August 5th meeting.
WPCNR Sunset Sentinel Courier. August 5, 2002: City Clerk for the City of White Plains, Janice Minieri, advised WPCNR today that the investigative panel of attorneys appointed by Eliot Spitzer, New York’s Attorney General met with her, her custodians, and election inspectors Friday morning as part of their investigation of whether or not the Attorney General’s office should bring a quo warranto action on behalf of Larry Delgado, White Plains deposed Councilman, restoring Mr. Delgado to his seat on the Common Council.
Ms. Minieri said the inquiry conducted by the three attorneys was observed by Edward Dunphy, city Corporation Counsel and the two Deputy Commissioners from the Westchester County Board of Elections.
She reports that their questions centered on procedures undertaken by the custodians to set the voting machines up for the election on November 6, 2002, and whether or not there was anything unusual that election inspectors observed in the District 18 location that day. She reports that her inspectors said there was nothing unusual reported during that fateful election day.
WPCNR asked if they viewed the voting machine. Minieri said they did and observed “exactly what you saw (the jammed Delgado counter wheel) the day we opened the machine.”
What Happened to the Delgado “Counter” Still in Doubt Because Attorneys Do Not Ask for Breakdown.
WPCNR asked whether the attorneys asked her custodians to remove the back of the voting machine to see exactly what had happened to the jammed Delgado counter, what made it jam, and she reported they had not.
“No one took it apart,” she said. “They were mainly concerned with what the process is, and whether there was anything unusual taking place at the polling place.”
Minieri said she would continue to keep the machine in question in its present condition, “just in case it is needed. I’m glad I didn’t have it repaired.”
WPCNR Afternoon Tribune. By John F. Bailey.August 5, 2002.UPDATED 2:30 PM E.D.T.: Governor George Pataki appeared in Valhalla today, with County Executive Andrew Spano to announce that Fuji USA, the international film giant, is locating its new USA Headquarters at The Summit in Valhalla, and will be leaving its present Elmsford location in April 2003.
“FUJI TOOK A LOOK AND FOUND WESTCHESTER COUNTY TO BE IN THE FOREFRONT,” Governor George Pataki announced today in Valhalla. The Governor said that Fuji’s selection of the The Summit, Westchester corporate park over Stamford and other out-of-state locations, saved 400 Westchester jobs and will bring $18 Million into the county for the renovation of the new headquarters and an additional 250 jobs. The Governor praised County Executive Andy Spano, shown at left at this morning’s news conference, saying “It’s been a partnership. All of us are on the same wavelength, working together, making great things happen in the county.” Pataki announced the State and Westchester County are contributing $1.9 Million in aid towards the project.
Photo by WPCNR
“WHEN IT COMES TO ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, THERE ARE NO PARTY LINES,” County Executive Andy Spano said today, echoing Governor Pataki’s praise for the Westchester County IDA in putting together a state-county package of $1.9MM that helped to keep Fujifilm in Westchester County. Spano praised Fuji Film for being a good corporate citizen in the county, singling out their lead sponsorship that brought the New York Philharmonic to Westchester County, as an example of the company’s involvement.
HAPPY TO STAY IN WESTCHESTER, FUJI FILM EMPLOYEES, observe the Governor’s news conference. Stamford, New Jersey and locations outside the New York Tri-State area were considered in Fuji’s three-year search for a new USA Headquarters location. The Summit was announced as their choice today. The company will be closing its Elmsford location.
Largest Lease Deal in Westchester in Two Years. Moving from Elmsford to Valhalla Venue
Fuji Photo Film U.S.A. said in a news release that the company is leasing 164,000 square feet, part of the second and all of the third and fourth floors at 200 Summit Lake Drive in Valhalla. This expands by 64% its current headquarters in the Taxter Corporate Park, which the company will vacate and move into the new Summit heaquarters in April, 2003. Current space at the Taxter facility comprises just 106,000 square feet.
WPCNR Getaway Gazette. From Westchester County Department of Communications. August 2, 2003: The county warned residents about a new parasite in Long Island Sound that is causing “Swimmer’s Itch” in persons bathing in the Sound along County and Connecticut beaches. Residents are urged to shower as quickly as possible after swimming in the Sound.
In a news release this morning the county reported widespread complaints about swimmers experiencing irritating “Swimmer’s Itch” after trips to Long Island Sound beaches.
The County Department of Health attributes this to a parasite found in the intestines of water birds which infests Long Island Sound snails. The snails, found on the beaches then pass the parasite along to swimmers.
The county does not report any ill effects on swimmers other than itching after swimming in the waters.
WPCNR Morning Sun.August 2, 2002: Former member of the White Plains Planning Board, Mack Carter, has been appointed by the Housing Authority to succeed Anthony Tascione as Executive Director, it was announced by the Housing Authority Thursday.
WPCNR MILKMAN’S MATINEE NEWS. From Westchester County Department of Communications. August 2, 2002:
Gas prices have been creeping up in Westchester County.
County Executive Andy Spano announced the new average price for regular gas, as of July 30, is $1.615 per gallon, a slight increase from the previous average of $1.584.
The prices were found in the latest survey done by the county’s Department of Consumer Protection. The complete survey can be found at www.westchestergov.com.
Of the 400 gas stations surveyed, a station in New Rochelle had the lowest price at $1.479. Stations in Katonah and Port Chester had the highest at $1.799.
So far this year, gas prices have been wavering, with the lowest prices from December to February, an increase in March, and then another decrease in April.
Spano said, “Despite the fact that prices are increasing, motorists who want to save money should shop around. The survey showed a 30-cent difference between the lowest- and highest-price stations.”
WPCNR Morning Sun. August 1, 2002:City Hall announced yesterday that a Public Forum will be established before Common Council meetings for citizens to bring matters to the attention of the Council and the Mayor. The first such forum will be held Monday evening at 7 PM, prior to the start of the regular monthly Council meeting at 7:30 PM. Call the Mayor’s Office at 422-1411 if you wish to sign up to speak at Monday evening’s council meeting.
According to the Mayor’s Office, citizens will be limited to 3 minutes’ time to address the council, and to secure the right to speak, any person wishing to do so much sign up in advance by telephoning the Mayor’s office, which can be reached at 422-1411. At three minutes each, a total of 10 persons a meeting may address the Common Council in such a forum.
The establishment of the Public Forum, makes good on a campaign promise of vanquished Mayoral candidate Robert Greer, and Councilman Glen Hockley.
The Public Forum portion of the Council meeting, however, will not be televised on Government Access Channel 72.