Chappaqua's HamletHub Sat, 23 Jan 2021 02:45:40 -0500 New Castle Historical Society Online Lecture on Feb. 10: African American Heritage Foodways in New York

New Castle Historical Society Online Lecture on Wednesday, February 10 @ 7 pm via Zoom

Online Lecture: African American Heritage Foodways in New York - Discovering a Different Root

For many people the idea of African American foodways equals ‘Soul Food’ or southern cooking. Before the great migration of the 19th century, the foodways of Blacks in New York were based on the culinary traditions of the Dutch and indigenous people as much as they were British or African. Differences in climate also meant different foods were grown or available for foraging. Black History Month presents us with an opportunity to look at New York’s colonial period and ponder a different root to our food lineage. Culinary historian, Lavada Nahon will share information about the colonial and early new nation periods, highlighting Dutch and indigenous foodways, the work of enslaved and free cooks, and their impact on our current food culture that you can enjoy at home. Free.

Registration is required,

]]> (New Castle Historical Society) Events Fri, 22 Jan 2021 12:58:32 -0500
Help Wanted: New Castle Recreation Commission

The Recreation Commission is currently accepting applications to fill a vacancy.

The purposes and objectives of the Commission are available HERE.

  1. To plan and provide opportunities for the residents of the Town for recreation, relaxation, and enjoyment through participation in a wide variety of programs of a recreational nature.
  2. To study the recreational and parks needs and resources of the Town.
  3. To achieve maximum return from moneys expended for such programs by encouraging broad use of such programs, by good management and prudent selection of such programs, and by establishing an appropriate division between tax-supported, partially tax-supported, and self-sustaining programs.
  4. To encourage recreational programs and activity, whether directly sponsored by the Commission or otherwise.
  5. To encourage broad community participation in its programs and coordinate its policies and activities with those of the Town Board.

Members of the Recreation Commission serve a term of seven years.

If interested please complete the Board Application form in the link HERE.

]]> (Town of New Castle) Neighbors Fri, 22 Jan 2021 12:56:46 -0500
Ronald McDonald House Appoints New Board Member

Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley announced the appointment of Raquel Raoul as a new board member effective this month. Raoul joins a board of directors made up of 14 members from throughout Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess and Connecticut.

Raoul, a resident of Poughkeepsie, serves as a Director of Nursing (DON) at Maria Ferari Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla. She holds a master’s degree in nursing and a bachelor’s degree in finance. Raquel brings nine years’ experience in pediatric and adult nursing specialties and leadership roles.

She also brings firsthand experience from the point of view of a family who has been a beneficiary of the service Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley provides. Having been a guest of the House in 2018 when her daughter was a patient in the hospital. Prior to her career in nursing Raquel held positions in the financial industry working with Morgan Stanley Dean Witter and other local banks. As a strong advocate for hands on learning, Raoul enjoys helping the community increase its overall health and well-being.

She has devoted time in the past to community outreach programs such as Faith and Flavor, Feed the Homeless programs, and more recently at the Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley (RMGHV). “Ronald McDonald House holds a very special place in my heart since we were guests a few years ago when my daughter was a patient at the hospital,” said Raoul. “I am truly looking forward to being an active board member and helping to continue the great work being done in this organization.”

Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley provides families with children facing medical challenges an atmosphere of comfort, hope and courage, keeping them close to the care and resources they need. The House has 12 bedrooms that are filled to capacity almost every night and provides meals, laundry and respite services for families during their stay. Located on the campus of Westchester Medical Center the House is just steps away from Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. Since opening in 2011, more than 2,000 families have called the House their home and has saved families over $5,000,000 in out-of-pocket lodging and meal costs. In May, the House will celebrate ten years of keeping families together and close to the medical care their child needs. For more information on RMHGHV visit or

]]> (pr2) Neighbors Tue, 19 Jan 2021 13:17:53 -0500
Cuomo Announces Eight Community Vaccination Kits Deployed to Churches & Cultural Center

Manhattan Site at Abyssinian Baptist Church Opened Sunday, January 17; All Other Sites Opened Monday, January 18

Furthers Governor's Directive to Distribute Vaccine in Communities Underserved by Traditional Health Care Institutions

More Photos of Abyssinian Baptist Church Site Here

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced eight community vaccination kits have been deployed to churches and cultural institutions in New York City, Long Island and Westchester. These sites bolster New York State's efforts to equitably distribute the COVID-19 vaccine to communities of color and low-income communities that are underserved by traditional healthcare institutions. The Manhattan site at Abyssinian Baptist Church opened yesterday and the remaining sites opened today, January 18. Reverend Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III of the Abyssinian Baptist Church was the first to be vaccinated at the site. The sites opened to all eligible New Yorkers. The state is planning similar pop-up vaccination sites in upstate communities.

Since federal supply severely limits the ability to distribute vaccines, New Yorkers are encouraged to remain patient and are advised not to show up at vaccination sites without an appointment. New York's vast distribution network and large population of eligible individuals far exceed the vaccine supply coming from the federal government. This week, New York is only receiving 250,000 doses from the federal government for a universe of over 7 million people who are eligible.

"The State is working quickly to open vaccination sites across the state to get needles into the arms of eligible New Yorkers as quickly and fairly as possible, despite the low supply from the federal government," Governor Cuomo said. "We've said from day one of the vaccination effort that we will not allow communities of color and low-income neighborhoods in healthcare deserts to be left behind when it comes to the COVID vaccination effort. Churches and cultural institutions are critical partners in this effort, and these eight sites will help get the vaccine to more eligible New Yorkers faster even as we contend with the federal government's supply shortages."

The establishment of these eight sites was made possible through partnerships with both SOMOS and Northwell Health. The eight sites are located at the addresses below:

Opened January 17

  • Manhattan: Abyssinian Baptist Church, 132 W 138th St., New York, NY 10030

Opened January 18

  • Brooklyn: Christian Cultural Center, 12020 Flatlands Ave., Brooklyn, 11207
  • Bronx: Community Protestant Church 1659 E Gun Hill Rd, The Bronx, NY 10469
  • Queens: Queens Baptist Church, 93-23 217th St., Queens Village, NY 1142
  • Nassau County: Grace Cathedral International, 886 Jerusalem Ave., Uniondale NY, 11554. 
  • Suffolk County: Prayer Tabernacle COGIC, 3550 Great Neck Rd., Amityville, NY 11701
  • Staten Island: Mt. Sinai Center for Community Enrichment, 382 Jersey St., Staten Island, NY 10301
  • Westchester County: Calvary Baptist Church, 188 Orawaupum St., White Plains, NY 10606

SOMOS Community Chairman Dr. Ramon Tallaj said, "During the first wave of the pandemic, and through our years of work treating lower income communities of color - who historically fall through the cracks - my network has created a national model of quality, preventative healthcare on behalf of the most underserved communities of the United States—a model based on cultural competency, increased access, equity, and the ability of community-based medicine to successfully address the social determinants of health. Now, amidst a COVID 19 vaccine roll-out marked by mistrust, scarcity, and urgency, this national model has never been so critical to protecting our people - in New York and nationally in similar communities. With the support of city & state leadership like Governor Cuomo and faith leaders like Reverend Butts and community icons like Ruth Hassell Thompson - and a steady allocation of vaccine doses, my network alone can reach over 1 million high-need, at-risk New Yorkers in a month. These are New Yorkers who would never go to a hospital to be vaccinated. But they'll come to see their family doctors. And that's who we are. But we need the doses consistently in order to deliver on that promise. I cannot underscore this enough: doses in our hands means doses in New Yorker's arms. We're grateful for our ongoing collaboration with Governor Cuomo, who recognizes this urgency and the ability of our network to do what we do best: serve the underserved, treat our own neighborhoods, and vaccinate the members of our hardest-hit communities."

"The COVID-19 vaccinations Northwell is administering today at Grace Cathedral International in Uniondale and Prayer Tabernacle Church in Amityville are an important step in our outreach efforts to communities of color that were hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic," said Northwell Health President & CEO Michael Dowling. "As part of the Health Equity Task Forces that Governor Cuomo has established statewide, Northwell is taking the lead on Long Island, working with leaders of diverse communities on how best to inform and educate residents about the availability, efficacy and safety of the vaccines."

The state has continued to build Community Vaccination Kits and work with public housing officials, churches, and community centers to support these efforts and deploy kits to the appropriate locations. Each kit includes step-by-step instructions for how to set up a site, and critical supplies and equipment such as:

  • Office Supplies
  • Workstation Equipment
  • Communications Equipment
  • Cleaning Supplies
  • Lighting Equipment
  • PPE
  • Crowd/Traffic Control Equipment
  • Vials
  • Syringes
  • Room Dividers
  • Privacy Curtains 

The opening of these sites furthers Governor Cuomo's goal of ensuring the fair and equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. In late 2020, the Governor announced the launch of New York's Vaccine Equity Task Force chaired by Secretary of State Rossana Rosado, Attorney General Letitia James, National Urban League President & CEO Marc Morial, and HealthfirstPresident & CEO Pat Wang. The Task Force is working to ensure vulnerable and underserved communities are not left behind by breaking down the barriers to vaccination and ensuring there is equitable distribution of the vaccine across the state.

]]> (Office of the Governor. ) Politics Tue, 19 Jan 2021 13:03:17 -0500
BroadwayWorld Names HamletHub Editor, Maggie Carey, "Performer of the Decade'

Longtime HamletHub Editor Margaret (Maggie) Carey has been announced as the recipient of's Performer of the decade for the Rockland/Westchester Region.

The 2020 BroadwayWorld Awards - which were back bigger than ever, celebrate the best in local theatre of the past decade!

Carey has been involved in community theater in the Brewster/Carmel New York area since moving to Putnam County in 1996. Prior to that, she was involved in hundreds of productions in the lower Westchester County Community since 1980.

Carey had been nominated for Performer of the Decade for her performance as John Adams in "1776", a gender blind presentation of the Tony Award-winning musical presented in 2017 by the Bedford Community Theater at the John Jay Homestead in Katonah, NY.

The production of 1776 earned "Best of" awards for Best Production of a Musical (Bedford Community Theater) and Vocalist of the Decade for Carey's castmate, Robert Beck, as well as for Director of a Musical of the Decade (Mitch Horn) along with Best Ensémble. 

The public submitted the nominees and voted for their favorites. You can check out the full results by clicking here!

Maggie Carey has been editor of Brewster and Somers HamletHubs since 2014 and Yorktown, Carmel and Somers HamletHubs since 2016. In 2018, Putnam County awarded Carey the “Excellence in Communication Award” for her dedication to the community. 

Community theatre productions, student productions, and college productions were all included! (Please check respective category rules.) Eligibility was for productions which opened between 2011 and September 30th, 2020. Voting ran through December 31.

The 2020 BroadwayWorld Regional Awards are presented by TodayTix.

Want to be notified when nominations open for 2021? Sign up here!

]]> (HamletHub ) Neighbors Sat, 16 Jan 2021 05:00:00 -0500
New Castle 2020 School Tax Bills are Due

2020 School taxes are due without penalty by Monday, February 1, 2021.  Tax Bills can be placed in the dropbox at Town Hall, 1st Floor. 

Payments can also be made using our online payment system: HERE

The Tax Office will be open Monday, February 1, 2021, from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm. Questions, please call the tax office at 238-4773

Due to public health and safety concerns, the New Castle Town Hall is open by appointment only 9am to 12pm until further notice. As a result, the School Tax payments can be made as follows:

  • On-Line - Electric check payments can be made through the Town’s secure website  This is a simple and free of charge process for remitting your taxes.  You provide your check routing number and the funds are transferred to the Town’s banking account.  The day you process the payment is the day the Town receives it.  Payments can be timely made up to 11:59 p.m. on February 1, 2021.  Go to and follow the instructions for on-line tax payments. 
  • Please note that if you are requesting payment of taxes through your bank’s on-line system, it can take up to 5-7 business days before the Town receives the check. These payments usually do not bear U.S. postmarks and, as a result, the day of receipt is the day of payment.  In order to avoid interest penalties, please leave sufficient time when processing a tax payment in this manner so that the check is received by the Town before the February 1st due date.
  • Drop Off - Tax payments may be dropped off to Town Hall in the Town Clerk mailbox located on the 1st floor lobby, 200 South Greeley Avenue (right outside the Police Department).  This drop box will be cleared daily between Monday and Friday.
  • By Mail - If you mail your payment, be sure the envelope bears a timely official U.S. postmark.  Postage meter (i.e., Pitney Bowes) and foreign postmarks are not acceptable.  Under Section 922 of the New York State Real Property Tax Law, when an envelope contains payment of local taxes with no U.S. postmark date, the payment of such taxes is deemed to have been made on the date the payment is received by the Town.  
  • Credit Card Payments. Credit card payments are also accepted through the Town’s secure website  Please note there is a third-party fee imposed on credit card payments of 3.5%. 

Tax Office personnel will be working and available to assist by email or phone.  The health and safety of the general public and our employees is the Town’s number one priority.  We apologize for any inconvenience this causes and thank you for your cooperation during these challenging times.   

Please note that the Tax Office holds post-dated checks.  You may send your tax bill in today and date it for February 1 and the Tax Office will hold the check until February 1 for deposit.  The Tax Office accepts United States Post Office postmarks as proof of timely mailing.  If you are mailing your payment please make certain you see the Post Office affix a postmark to your tax payment.  If you have any questions please call the tax office at 238-4773.  

For your convenience, your tax payment history as well as this current Town and County Tax Bill is available on our website:

]]> (Town of New Castle) Politics Wed, 13 Jan 2021 12:17:40 -0500
Remembering Joseph Benke, Grafflin School Crossing Guard

Remembering Joseph Benke

It is with a heavy heart that I share the news that Joseph Benke, our Grafflin School Crossing Guard, passed away recently from COVID-19. Joe was sent home from the hospital after a successful minor surgery and subsequently tested positive for COVID.

Joe was highly regarded by his colleagues in the New Castle Police Department, and he was beloved by the Grafflin community. I have many fond memories of Joe from the mornings when I would walk my kids to school. He was a kind man who loved chatting with the kids and making them smile.

I extend my deepest sympathies to his family.

]]> (Ivy Pool, Town Supervisor) Neighbors Wed, 13 Jan 2021 12:15:59 -0500
Ronald McDonald House Launches COVID Relief Plan

Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley recently launched a COVID Relief Plan to enable the organization to continue providing critical services to families experiencing medical crisis during this global pandemic. Through this plan the House, a registered 501c3 non-profit organization, can provide immediate needs such as food and shelter to families with children receiving medical treatment at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla and other local pediatric medical facilities.

For almost a decade, Ronald McDonald House which is just steps away from the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center has provided a home away from home for more than 2,000 families with hospitalized children in critical condition, saving them over $5 million dollars in lodging and meal costs.

Even during a pandemic, children still get very sick or injured requiring medical care and families need support for that care may be far from home. Early on in the COVID-19 pandemic, when the House was forced to close its doors, the organization continued to help the families in need by providing accommodations offsite at local hotels and Airbnb homes to keep families close to their child and his/her medical care. The House also provides daily meals, snacks and personal care products for all the families and has continued to do so during this pandemic.

In July Ronald McDonald House re-opened to continue their mission of keeping families close, but with a number of limitations to assure the safety of everyone. 

Ongoing COVID restrictions have led to a restricted number of volunteers permitted onsite, so all of the necessary things volunteers do for families – donating, preparing and serving meals – have stopped. The immediate needs that will be supported by the COVID Relief Plan will include continued support through ongoing programs, such as the: Meals that Heal program – to give families one less thing to worry about during their stay at the Ronald McDonald House; and providing personal protective equipment for staff and families.

In addition, there are new initiatives necessary to provide support during the changing times, including remote education resources (e.g., access to technology and broadband) for young students and their parents staying at the house and mental health support for staff and families. “The stress and uncertainty that we all experienced this year remind us of what families with critically ill children face every day,” said Anthony Trimarchi, RMHGHV Board Member. “The COVID Relief Plan will enable us to continue to support these families as we fully re-open our House in the upcoming months.” 

Donations to the Ronald McDonald House COVID Relief Plan can be made at

]]> (pr2) Charities Wed, 13 Jan 2021 12:13:10 -0500
New York's COVID Vaccine Distribution Program

New York State is distributing the COVID-19 vaccine in phases based on need and risk. New Yorkers in Phase 1a and Phase 1b currently are eligible for the vaccines. Eligible groups include doctors, nurses and health care workers, and now people age 65 and over, first responders, teachers, public transit workers, grocery store workers and public safety workers. All vaccinations are by appointment only.

Am I Eligible? Visit the Am I Eligible Tool and complete a simple set of questions to determine if you are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine here. If you are eligible, the Am I Eligible tool will return a list of providers near you that you can contact to schedule an appointment. You may also schedule an appointment is through the COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline, which is open 7AM - 10PM, 7 days a week, for scheduling vaccination appointments for eligible New Yorkers: 1-833-NYS-4-VAX (1-833-697-4829).

Please note, Governor Cuomo has said that unless the federal government increases New York’s supply, it will take 14 weeks (through April 16th) to vaccinate Phase 1a and 1b. At this time, vaccines are not available to the general public. NYSDOH has indicated that they expect vaccines for patients beyond Phase 1B to become available in spring or early summer 2021.
This process is going to take a long time. Everyone, including those who have received the vaccine, must continue to wear a mask, social distance, and avoid gatherings with people outside of your household.
Need More Information? Need Help? Call the New York State Vaccination Hotline: 1-833-697-4829 (833-NYS 4 VAX).  

Sign Up for COVID and Vaccine Updates from NYS

New York State will distribute the COVID-19 vaccine in phases based on need and risk. The State is managing the vaccine program and authorizes the vaccination sites. Please sign up to receive updates every weeknight from the State.

]]> (Town of New Castle) Life Wed, 13 Jan 2021 12:11:30 -0500
Welcome Council Member Dr. Lori G. Morton

I would like to extend my most heartfelt welcome to Council Member Dr. Lori G. Morton who has officially started her term on the New Castle Town Board.  Lori was elected to serve the remaining one year on the Council Member seat I held starting in 2018. Lori was sworn in on New Year’s Day by Town Clerk Christina Papes.

A ceremonial inauguration event will be held on January 14th at 7PM via Zoom. Click here to register.

Following her election in November, Lori began attending all meetings, pitching in to COVID updates and providing valuable feedback on the budget, the Form Based Code, and other ongoing projects. Thank you, Lori!

]]> (Ivy Pool, Town Supervisor) Politics Wed, 06 Jan 2021 12:34:38 -0500
New York State Updates Vaccine Eligibility Critera for Phase 1A

vaccine distribution

New York State has updated eligibility criteria for Phase 1A.

Eligible New Yorkers in Phase 1A are:

  • High-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff)
  • Residents and staff at nursing homes and other congregate care facilities
  • Federally Qualified Health Center employees
  • EMS workers
  • Coroners, medical examiners and certain funeral workers
  • Staff and residents at OPWDD, OMH and OASAS facilities
  • Urgent Care providers
  • Individuals administering COVID-19 vaccines, including local health department staff

Beginning January 4, 2021: 

  • All Outpatient/Ambulatory front-line, high-risk health care workers of any age who provide direct in-person patient care
  • All staff who are in direct contact with patients (i.e., intake staff)
  • All front-line, high-risk public health workers who have direct contact with patients, including those conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • This includes, but is not limited to,
  • Doctors who work in private medical practices and their staff 
  • Doctors who work in hospital-affiliated medical practices and their staff
  • Doctors who work in public health clinics and their staff
  • Registered Nurses
  • Specialty medical practices of all types
  • Dentists and Orthodontists and their staff
  • Psychiatrists and Psychologists and their staff
  • Physical Therapists and their staff
  • Optometrists and their staff
  • Pharmacists and Pharmacy Aides

Beginning January 11, 2021:

  • Home care workers
  • Hospice workers
  • Staff of nursing homes/skilled nursing facilities who did not receive COVID vaccination through the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program

Eligibility criteria is available here:

How to Determine Eligibility for Vaccine

Not sure if you are eligible to receive the vaccine? Try the NYS eligibility tool:

If you are eligible, the tool will return a list of providers near you that you can contact to schedule an appointment.

Please note, it has not been announced when future phases of the vaccine distribution plan will proceed.  

On December 29th, Governor Cuomo signed Executive Order 202.86 which requires certification of eligibility and includes stiff fines for any vaccine provider who wrongfully distributes the vaccine: “Any licensed healthcare provider who administers the vaccine to an individual who has not certified to being a member of a priority group or where such provider otherwise has knowledge that the individual is not a member of the priority group may be subject to civil penalties of up to one million dollars ($1,000,000) per dose administered and/or the revocation of any state-issued license.”

Vaccine Availability

COVID-19 vaccine distribution is directed by the New York State Department of Health. It is happening in phases based on need and risk and is currently in Phase 1a of the distribution plan. 

According to this State’s directive, at this time, Northern Westchester Hospital is currently approved by law to only vaccinate physicians and staff working at the Hospital.  

According to Executive Director Derek Anderson, “We are proud to report, that as of this writing, we have vaccinated over 1,000 team members. As we receive permission from the State to vaccinate larger portions of the population, we will inform you and the community.” 

Please note, EMS Providers may schedule appointments for vaccination at any of the available locations. Each location has a specific link to register for an appointment. To determine eligibility and find a vaccination location please visit:

]]> (Town of New Castle) Politics Wed, 06 Jan 2021 12:32:53 -0500
New Castle COVID Cases Decrease, Westchester County Cases Rise

As of 1/5, the number of active cases in Westchester County is 9,808. Before the holiday break, on 12/21, there were 8,026 active cases. By comparison, one month ago, on December 4th, there were 7,100 active cases Countywide, and two months ago on November 3rd there were 1,666 active cases.

Despite the overall rise, the number of active cases in New Castle has fallen from 105 active cases on 12/21 to 68 cases on 1/4. Still, this is a high number of active cases compared to historical data. On 12/4 we had 58 active cases in New Castle, and on 11/3 there were 20 active cases.

The positivity rate in Westchester is 7.17% (1/5). The number of tests given was 10,826, and the number of positive cases was 776.
The number of hospitalizations in Westchester County was 455 on Saturday 1/2. One week ago, on 12/26, there were 392 people hospitalized, and two weeks ago, on 12/19, there were 353 people hospitalized. In the past two weeks there was an increase of over 100 people.
The year-to-date number of fatalities in Westchester is 1,828. In the period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day we lost 165 people. From May 20 to Oct 3, when we “flattened the curve” we lost 165 people in 5 months. 
All data related to the COVID pandemic is publicly available. Here are the sources of information:

Dr. Fauci warned us that January would be the toughest month, and this seems to be true. Please continue to wear a mask, regularly washing your hands, and carefully maintain social distancing. Personal and social interactions are the cause of the spread – public meetings and events have been suspended. Do NOT host or attend large private gatherings. If you have travelled out of state, please quarantine as required. See

]]> (Town of New Castle) Neighbors Wed, 06 Jan 2021 12:30:46 -0500
New Castle Unity Garden

We have officially begun to build the Unity Garden, which is housed at Wagon Road Camp.  

Special thanks to the Canziani family for being friends of the CRE and committing to give this project a home.

As we prepare to grow food for people who are food insecure, our hope is that this garden will be a place where students and community members can come together and share and reflect upon their experiences, realizing that we are more alike than we are different.

Food access and security remain a major issue as we work towards building bridges to true racial equity, and the CRE remains committed to ensuring it for all.

]]> (Town of New Castle) Places Thu, 31 Dec 2020 07:42:27 -0500
Moynihan Train Hall Project Will be Complete December 31, 2020

Project Will Be Completed On-Time and On-Budget Despite COVID-19 Pandemic

Named After the Late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, New Train Hall in the James A. Farley Post Office Building will Provide World-Class Commuting Options while Honoring the Design of the Original Penn Station

New 255,000 square foot Train Hall Features 92-Foot High Skylight, Expands Penn Station's Concourse Space by 50%

Project Represents One of New York's Most Ambitious Transportation and Infrastructure Upgrade in Decades

Governor Cuomo First Announced Project in His 2016 State of the State Address

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the Moynihan Train Hall, which the Governor first announced in his 2016 State of the State, will complete construction on December 31, 2020, with train operations beginning January 1, 2021. The 255,000-square-foot, $1.6 billion project transformed the more than 100-year-old James A. Farley Post Office Building into a modern, world-class facility that dramatically upgrades and redesigns America's busiest transit hub, increasing the existing Penn Station rail complex's concourse space by 50 percent. Thanks to Governor Cuomo's leadership, the train hall will open on time and on budget, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

"New Yorkers have known for decades that Penn Station needed to be reimagined — and after years of work, the Moynihan Train Hall will open on time and on budget at the end of 2020," Governor Cuomo said. "This monumental accomplishment is a shot of hope as we come out of one of darkest periods in our history and sends a clear message to the world that while we suffered greatly as a result of this once-in-a-century health crisis, the pandemic did not stop us from dreaming big and building for the future. The new Moynihan Train Hall is the embodiment of New York Tough."

Improving Penn Station, the linchpin of the transportation network in New York and across the northeast, has long been considered one of the state's and the nation's most critical infrastructure priorities. The idea for a train hall in the James A. Farley Post Office Building first emerged decades ago — but was mired in bureaucratic delays and faced repeated federal inaction. Thanks to persistent leadership from Governor Cuomo, major construction on the project began in 2017 and proceeded on-time and on-budget.

Named for the late United States Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a Navy veteran who represented New York State in the Senate for 24 years and championed the project, Moynihan Train Hall will house both Amtrak and Long Island Rail Road ticketing and waiting areas. All LIRR and Amtrak trains will be served by the seventeen tracks accessible from the train hall.

Despite the challenges of 2020, the project will be completed on time and on budget, thanks to the implementation of significant health safety protocols and innovative work schedules that kept workers safe. The $1.6 billion project represents a public-private partnership between Empire State Development, Vornado Realty Trust, Related Companies, Skanska, the MTA/LIRR, Amtrak, and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and was delivered via a design-build partnership.

The new facility integrates clear, consistent state-of-the art way-finding through dozens of LED and LCD displays for train information and messaging. The upgraded commuter experience also features designated customer service locations for each railroad service operator and a dedicated lounge for nursing mothers. A free public Wi-Fi network utilizing Wi-Fi 6 allows passengers throughout the entire train hall to seamlessly join conferences and meetings, view high-resolution movies, transfer large files and connect remotely.

]]> (Office of the Governor. ) Places Mon, 28 Dec 2020 08:30:54 -0500
New Castle COVID Cases Nearly Double, Current Active Cases is 105

COVID Update

The number of active cases in Westchester County, as of 12/22, is 8,026 cases, which is lower than the peak number of active cases, which was 8,771 on 12/15. For the first time in 9 weeks the County has seen a slight reduction in the number of active cases. By comparison, one month ago, on 11/20, there were 4,344 active cases Countywide, and two months ago, on 10/20, there were 1,049 active cases.

The number of active cases in New Castle has shot up, almost doubling since 12/11, while some neighboring municipalities have seen their active cases decrease. We currently have 105 active cases. One month ago, on 11/20, we had 51 active cases in New Castle. Two months ago, on 10/21, we had only 9 active cases.

Councilmember-elect Dr. Lori Morton has produced some charts (see image #1 and #2) that show the trend in terms of active cases locally.

The positivity rate in Westchester is 6.02% (12/21). The number of tests given was 8,910, and the number of positive cases was 536.
The number of hospitalizations in Westchester County was 353 on Saturday, which is down slightly from the peak of 372 on 12/16.
The year-to-date number of fatalities in Westchester is 1,611, including 44 people who passed away in the past week. These numbers continue to rise: From 12/6-12, 33 fatalities, and from 11/29-12/5, there were 15 fatalities.
It's good to see the numbers start to level off but remember that they have leveled off at a very high number of active cases. We must stay vigilant and not let our guard down! Continuing to wear a mask, regularly washing our hands, and carefully maintaining social distancing has helped keep the pandemic relatively in check here in New Castle. Please do NOT host or attend large gatherings during this holiday season. It's up to all of us, collectively and as individuals to do the right thing to reduce the spread of the virus!

All data related to the COVID pandemic is publicly available. Here are the sources of information:

]]> (Town of New Castle) Life Wed, 23 Dec 2020 11:29:02 -0500