HEADLINES

Mid-Hudson Region Enters Phase 3: Food Service, Gatherings, Playgrounds, and More

Are you ready for a mani/pedi or a beer at your favorite bar? Before you make plans, please familiarize yourself with these guidelines. For additional details and guidelines, please look at the NY Forward Phase Three Industries Page: https://forward.ny.gov/phase-three-industries. For help determining whether or not your business is eligible to reopen, use the reopen lookup tool: https://www.businessexpress.ny.gov/app/nyforward.

Partial Guidelines for Industries Reopening in Phase 3

Phase 3: Food Services

  • Limit indoor capacity to no more than 50% of maximum occupancy, exclusive of employees.
  • Limit outdoor capacity to the number of tables that can be safely and appropriately arranged, as described below.
  • All indoor and outdoor tables with seating for customers must be separated by a minimum of 6 ft. in all directions. Wherever distancing is not feasible between tables, physical barriers must be installed between such tables. -Barriers must be at least 5 ft. in height and not block emergency and/or fire exits.
  • Patrons who are over the age of 2 and able to medically tolerate such covering must wear face coverings at all times, except while seated.
  • Individuals seated at the same table must be members of the same party (but may be from different households), with a maximum of 10 people per table. Seating in bar areas is only permitted if at least 6 ft. can be maintained between parties.
  • Ensure that all staff wear acceptable face coverings at all times and that they practice hand hygiene and use bare hand barriers consistent with state and local sanitary codes.
  • If employees wear gloves during non-food preparation activities, ensure that they replace gloves frequently, and encourage them to change gloves when switching tasks (e.g. serving customers to prerolling silverware).
  • If employees do not wear gloves, ensure that they frequently wash their hands with soap and water.

Phase 3: Personal Care (nail salons, tanning, tattoo and piercing facilities, spas and massage parlors, etc)

  • Limit the workforce and customer presence to no more than 50% of the maximum occupancy.
  • All customers and employees who are over age 2 and medically able to tolerate one must wear an acceptable face covering at all times.
  • Ensure 6 ft. distance between individuals at all times, unless safety or the core activity requires a shorter distance (e.g. performing a piercing/tattoo, providing a massage, performing a manicure/pedicure).
  • Ensure that customer seating allows customers to maintain a 6 ft. distance from all others except for the employee providing service (e.g. tattoo and piercing workstations, massage tables, or salon workstations must be 6 ft. apart from each other), unless a physical barrier is in place in accordance with OSHA guidelines.
  • Ensure that employees at appointment desks/cash registers maintain 6 ft. of distance from others, unless there is a physical barrier (e.g. plexiglass) between them.
  • Close waiting rooms.
  • Personal care services that require customers to remove face coverings (e.g. lip/nose piercings, face massage, facials, lip/nose waxing) are prohibited.
  • Tattoo and piercing facilities must ensure that:
  • Staff remove needles from sealed packages before every customer procedure.
  • Any stencils or razors must also be clean and unused, and discarded immediately after use.
  • Standard DOH, OSHA & CDC guidelines for health and safety are followed.
  • Salons offering services including nail specialty and waxing must ensure that:
  • Manicure and pedicure baths and bowls are appropriately disinfected between each use. -They must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected with EPA-approved solution.
  • Hand/foot drying tables are appropriately cleaned and disinfected after each customer.
  • All wax containers are replaced or cleaned and disinfected between each customer, and no double dipping of applicators.
  • Each new customer receives all new or cleaned and disinfected implements such as towels, finger bowls, spatulas.
  • OSHA recommendations for health and safety in salons as well as the hygiene and sanitation requirements of Article 27 of the General Business Law, 19 NYCRR 160.19, 160.20, 160.21, 160.22 and 160.24 are followed.
  • Facilities offering massage therapy and spa services must:
  • Provide accommodations for clean and disinfected face coverings during massage in prone position (e.g. cotton pillowcase draped in face cradle) or avoid such positions altogether. Employees may perform massages on customers in prone positions if the employee is equipped with both a face covering and face shield or eye protection. -Ensure that customers don face covering when switching from prone to side or supine position.
  • Ensure that all linens are changed between clients and laundered appropriately and that they are stored in appropriate containers between use.
  • Close saunas, steam rooms, or any other services that take place in enclosed spaces where it is inherently difficult to maintain social distancing and/or unsafe to wear an appropriate face covering.
  • Clean and disinfect all tanning beds and booths between each use.

Executive Order Re: the Sale of Alcoholic Beverages

The Governor has signed a new Executive Order: 
Read it here. We want to specifically point out the following provisions pertaining to businesses selling alcohol: 
 
Businesses engaging in the sale/service of alcoholic beverages must inspect, monitor, and otherwise supervise the area within 100 feet of the licensed premises to ensure that any consumption of food or beverage comports with the applicable open container ordinances, and the social distancing and face covering requirements set forth for such business or service; if unable to comply, the serving business must discontinue such sale/service of alcoholic beverages unless and until such Executive Orders, regulations, law, ordinances, department of Health guidance, and State Liquor Authority guidance can be fully observed.

What does this mean for customers?? It’s simple: if you are enjoying a drink with your meal, finish it on the premises. Thanks for doing your part!

Gatherings Up to 25 People Allowed in Phase 3

Now that the Mid-Hudson region has entered into Phase 3, gatherings of up to 25 people are allowed for any lawful purpose provided that social distancing protocols and cleaning and disinfection protocols required by the Department of Health are adhered to. Learn more here

Keep Wearing Your Masks!

As we progress in the phased re-opening plan, I wanted to remind everyone that the Executive Orders requiring New Yorkers to wear masks are still in effect. You must wear a face mask or face covering in public when social distancing (staying at least 6 feet apart) is not possible. This includes on public transport, in stores and on crowded sidewalks. Children over 2 years of age should wear a face mask in public, too. The best way to prevent COVID-19 is to continue social distancing (staying at least 6 feet away from others), even when wearing a face covering.

Need a refresher on masks? Check out this resource from New York State Department of Health here

Playgrounds

Last week New York State gave everyone a (happy) surprise when they amended Executive Order 202.6 (https://esd.ny.gov/guidance-executive-order-2026) to allow public playgrounds to reopen, per the discretion of local governments. Westchester County is developing operational procedures, which the Town of New Castle will use to create a local re-opening plan, including cleaning procedures and social distancing measures. New Castle Parks staff are out now doing final prep (e.g., weeding, mulching, etc. We hope to be able to open our playgrounds by Wednesday, July 1st. Thank you (and your kids!) for your patience.

We are excited to share that the new Town Hall Playground and Basketball Court will be among the facilities opening in July 2020. Kudos to the Town Hall team for their hard work to bring this project in on-time and on-budget!

Town Ball Fields Re-Open on July 6th for Outdoor Activities and Youth Sports

According to NYS guidance released last Thursday, the following low risk outdoor activities are currently allowed: Individual running; Batting cages; Hunting/ Shooting/ Archery Golf/Mini-golf; Non-motorized boating; tennis; Rock climbing; Individual swimming; Individual crew; Cross country running; Toss/bowl games (e.g. horseshoes, bocce, bean bag toss); Flying disc games (e.g. disc golf, frisbee); Ropes courses.

Our Town ball fields will be opened on July 6th to accommodate the following “moderate risk” activities, including some youth sports. These include the following: Baseball/ Softball; Racket games (e.g. badminton, racquetball); Water polo; Gymnastics; Field hockey; Swimming relays; Crew (2+ rowers); Rafting; Paintball; Soccer; Non-contact lacrosse.

Learn more about the NYS guidance on Sports and Recreation here

Pools

The Town of New Castle does not operate a municipal pool, but we are working with local pool clubs and homeowners associations to help plan for reopening in accordance with the State guidelines here. Local pool operators: please reach out to the Town for assistance expediting your seasonal permit or any other issues.
 
Westchester County is reopening two of its pools this weekend: Saxon Woods and Sprain Ridge. They plan reopen pools at Wilson Woods and Tibbets Brook Park on the following weekend. Learn more here

Trains

To accommodate increased ridership, Metro North is adding 12 new trains to the 3 lines which traverse Westchester County. Learn more 

here

Train Station Parking Lot Paving Project

Kudos to the DPW for a job well done on the re-paving of the Train Station circular lots and the spaces immediately adjacent to the train tracks! If you haven’t had a chance to check out the beautiful new pavement, you are in for a treat the next time you are at the station!

There is additional paving planned for this year. The Town is soon to commence a major project to re-construct the bridge over Tertia Brook, which separates the front and back parking lots. This work to occur in August. Upon completion, DPW will perform drainage work and repave this area by mid– October, depending on the weather.

Downtown Chappaqua Rezoning Project
 The Town Board extended the Moratorium imposed by Local Law 13 of 2018 for the Chappaqua Business Hamlet for another 6 months. Under the moratorium no new building permits will be issued for development projects in the hamlet while the business district is being analyzed as a part of the rezoning project. This is the third extension, and likely our last, as we await the results of the Draft Generic Environmental Impact Study and consider adopting new zoning legislation this fall.

Update on Council on Race and Equity

As a community, and as individuals, we have much work to do to understand the ways in which systemic racism has permeated our Town. We need to create a shared vision for the future of our community – one that prioritizes racial justice and equity. We need to develop and carry out a plan to achieve this vision.  It isn’t going to be easy. This is hard work.

On Tuesday, June 16th, the Town Board officially authorized the establishment of the New Castle Council on Race and Equity (CRE), and we appointed Zabeen Mirza and Nichelle Maynard-Elliott to serve as the co-chairs of the Council.

  *   Zabeen is an Outreach Ambassador at the Upper Westchester Muslim Society, a New Castle Resident, and a Chappaqua Mom. In her professional career, Zabeen is a 15-year Negotiator, with expertise in government and public sector dealmaking and strategic alliance management.

  *   Nichelle is graduate of Horace Greeley High School who returned to New Castle to raise her children. She serves as parent advisor to the HGHS Black Student Union and provides guidance and support to the BSU alongside guidance counselor, Mrs. Tinuke Colpa.  She is a co-founder of the recently formed HGHS Black Alumni Network and is working with black and brown parents to establish a POC parent organization.   Nichelle has 20+ years of financial and legal experience in M&A, business development and strategic partnerships. She currently serves as an independent director of a publicly traded company.

We are grateful for their leadership and excited to support them as they launch the CRE. We would also like to say thanks to Ali Rosenberg and Stacey Saiontz, co-chairs for the New Castle Holocaust and Human Rights Committee, who are providing support to help launch the CRE.

To date, the Town has received over 90 applications from community members to serve on the Council. Zabeen and Nichelle have been hard at work, creating an organizational structure with several workgroups and a variety of roles. All volunteers will be included! 

The CRE plans to host public listening sessions via Zoom to gather feedback and generate ideas from the community. Please save the date for the evenings of July 6th and 7th.

We are excited and encouraged by the level of interest in the Council. We have much work to do, and we are grateful to you for joining us in making this a community priority.

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