RSSAuthor Archive for Rick Pezzullo

Memorial Service Saturday for Our Montessori School Co-Founder

Memorial Service Saturday for Our Montessori School Co-Founder

    A Memorial Service will be held Saturday for Werner Hengst of Somers, who died at home on Sunday, February 7, surrounded by his family, from complications of diabetes.  He was 79. Mr. Hengst was co-founder and administrator of Our Montessori School in Yorktown Heights, as well as a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, and […]

Trial of Pipeline Protestors Adjourned in Cortlandt Court

Trial of Pipeline Protestors Adjourned in Cortlandt Court

The trial of nine local residents and community activists who were arrested in the fall for blocking access to Spectra Energy’s pipeline construction yard in Montrose was adjourned last week over the scheduled testimony of a Cortlandt councilman. Town Justice Daniel McCarthy adjourned the case of the so-called “Montrose 9” to an unspecified date to […]

Business of the Week: AFC Urgent Care, Yorktown

Business of the Week: AFC Urgent Care, Yorktown

A Yorktown resident with 25 years’ experience in emergency medicine will lead a new state-of-the-art American Family Care Urgent Care facility that opened last Thursday in the BJ’s Wholesale Club shopping plaza on Route 202 in Yorktown. Dr. Rajesh Gupta said he started two years ago looking to set up his first business after he […]

Entergy Downplays Leak at Indian Pt. as Cuomo Initiates Probe

Entergy Downplays Leak at Indian Pt. as Cuomo Initiates Probe

  The owner of the Indian Point nuclear power plant downplayed radioactive-water that recently leaked into the groundwater at the Buchanan facility. In a statement issued Saturday, Entergy maintained elevated levels of tritium in three monitoring wells at Indian Point likely reached the ground during recent work activities onsite “did not affect any source or […]

Grease Fire Causes Shut Down of McDonald’s in Mohegan

Grease Fire Causes Shut Down of McDonald’s in Mohegan

The popular McDonald’s fast food restaurant in the Cortlandt Town Center in Mohegan Lake was expected to reopen Monday after a fire forced it to be closed for four days. Cortlandt Code Enforcement Officer Ken Hoch said Monday morning town officials gave the restaurant the go-ahead to start serving customers again, but McDonald’s still needed […]

Animal Rights Protestors Call for Closure of Mohegan Pet Store

Animal Rights Protestors Call for Closure of Mohegan Pet Store

Dozens of pet owners and animal rights activists joined together Saturday afternoon to call for the closing of a Mohegan Lake pet store whose owner is facing animal cruelty charges. Standing on a sidewalk in front of the American Breeders store, located next to Subway, which only advertises itself as “Puppies,” protestors peacefully demonstrated with […]

Grant Given to Claxton, Family Raises Eyebrows in Peekskill

Grant Given to Claxton, Family Raises Eyebrows in Peekskill

A not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping residents afford upkeep on their homes is taking the blame for a whirlwind of controversy centered around Peekskill Councilwoman Drew Claxton and her son receiving a state grant in 2007 for a residence they co-own on Fremont Street in the city. Alan Steiner, a member of the Board of […]

Courtesy of the Floor Change in Yorktown Sparks Backlash

Courtesy of the Floor Change in Yorktown Sparks Backlash

A call for civility during the courtesy of the floor portion of Yorktown Town Board meetings lasted less than five minutes last week. Supervisor Michael Grace was forced to abruptly end the meeting after a resident in the back of the room at Town Hall refused to stop shouting out while another resident, Paul Moskowitz, […]

New Jersey Man Found Guilty of Murdering Ossining Resident

New Jersey Man Found Guilty of Murdering Ossining Resident

A New Jersey man was found guilty Friday of robbing and murdering a 25-year-old Ossining man in August 2014 in an apartment complex during a planned drug transaction. Anthony Grecco could face a life prison sentence on May 25 after a jury determined following a nine-day trial that he stabbed Ryan Ennis to death and […]

YHS Grad to Appear on Popular Pro Wrestling Reality Show

YHS Grad to Appear on Popular Pro Wrestling Reality Show

  Maybe being a runner-up can be as glamorous as finishing first. Amanda Saccomanno, 24, a 2008 Yorktown High School graduate, is proving that as she prepares to make her debut on the E channel’s popular professional wrestling reality show Total Divas. “I’m really excited for you guys to see all of us,” Saccomanno said […]

Somers Judge Appointed New Town Attorney in Yorktown

Somers Judge Appointed New Town Attorney in Yorktown

    For the first time in six years the Town of Yorktown will have a new town attorney after the Town Board appointed a longtime Somers Town Justice to the position last week. During a work session, which is not televised, the Town Board voted 4-1 on January 12 to have Michael McDermott replace […]

Somers Golden Retriever to be Grand Marshall for Cancer Society Bark for Life

Somers Golden Retriever to be Grand Marshall for Cancer Society Bark for Life

  A Golden Retriever from Somers will serve as the Grand Marshall for the American Cancer Society’s Westchester Bark for Life event on Sunday, April 10 at Lyndhurst in Tarrytown. Abbie is a Certified Therapy Dog and a cancer survivor. She was scheduled to attend the kick-off party for the canine cancer awareness and fundraising […]

Cortlandt WATCH Members Reflect on 30 Years of Activism

Cortlandt WATCH Members Reflect on 30 Years of Activism

By Rick Pezzullo They were ordinary citizens with ordinary concerns about potential changes to their neighborhoods. They quickly learned they weren’t alone. Cortlandt WATCH (We Are The Cortlandt Homeowners) was created in 1985 by residents Eunice Rosenberg, Charley Nagy, Bob Foley and Gerry Gilmartin as development was on the rise in town and zoning regulations […]

Ex-Police Chief, Seton CCD Teacher Jailed for Child Porn

Ex-Police Chief, Seton CCD Teacher Jailed for Child Porn

A former Mount Pleasant Police Chief and CCD teacher at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Shrub Oak was sentenced last week to 18 months in prison for possession of child pornography. Brian Fanelli, 56, of Mahopac, could have faced four years in jail after pleading guilty July 27 in federal court to the same […]

Catalina Starts Second Term in Peekskill with Optimistic Message

Catalina Starts Second Term in Peekskill with Optimistic Message

Optimism and a call for unity and cooperation kicked off the New Year during a swearing-in ceremony Friday at Peekskill City Hall. Mayor Frank Catalina was sworn-in for a second two-year term by Justice Lewis Lubell and briefly became choked up as he spoke about being reelected, his plans for the city and the support […]

New Year’s Day Polar Plunge in Peekskill to Benefit Students

New Year’s Day Polar Plunge in Peekskill to Benefit Students

The 4th Annual Polar Plunge, planned by the This Is Me Foundation and sponsored by The Quiet Man Public House, will take place at noon sharp on New Year’s Day at the Riverfront Green in Peekskill where local residents will enter the frigid Hudson River for a good cause. All proceeds from the plunge will […]

Peekskill, Yorktown to Celebrate New Year with Ball Drops

Peekskill, Yorktown to Celebrate New Year with Ball Drops

Tired of spending the final hours of each year watching Ryan Seacrest and Jenny McCarthy on the boob tube? Not interested in being sandwiched between intoxicated strangers for hours in Times Square and then stumbling around to get back home safely amidst endless crowds? The City of Peekskill and Town of Yorktown are offering alternatives […]

Governor Orders Probe of Safety Protocols at Indian Point

Governor Orders Probe of Safety Protocols at Indian Point

Governor Andrew Cuomo last week directed the state Public Service Commission to launch a full investigation into the operations and safety protocols at the Indian Point nuclear facility in Buchanan following the unexpected shutdown of Indian Point Unit 3 on December 14. In his December 16 letter to PSC Chairwoman Audrey Zibelman, Cuomo pointed out […]

Accused Yorktown Teacher Killed in Hiking Mishap

Accused Yorktown Teacher Killed in Hiking Mishap

A longtime band teacher at Crompond Elementary School in the Yorktown School District was killed Saturday in an apparent hiking accident in Ulster County. According to published reports, Jeffrey Whalen, 45, of Yorktown, who has been on administrative leave since being charged in October by the Westchester District Attorney’s Office with possessing an obscene sexual […]

11th Hour 2016 Peekskill Budget Raises Taxes 3.6%

11th Hour 2016 Peekskill Budget Raises Taxes 3.6%

The Democratic majority on the Peekskill Common Council approved a 2016 city budget on December 1 with a 3.6% tax increase, less than three hours before the state deadline. It took three tries for the council to pass the $37.2 million spending plan after it voted last Monday to exceed the state imposed tax levy […]

YSBA Urges Residents to Support Local Businesses During Holidays

YSBA Urges Residents to Support Local Businesses During Holidays

With another Black Friday come and gone and the holiday shopping season front and center, the Yorktown Small Business Association is urging residents to frequent local merchants. On Saturday, outside Campagna’s Restaurant in Shrub Oak, the YSBA kicked off its “Put your ALL into Shopping Small Program,” which offers incentives for shoppers to spend money […]

Peekskill Council Irked by Police Protection for Pipeline

Peekskill Council Irked by Police Protection for Pipeline

Peekskill Common Council members were unhappy to learn that city cops were hired by Spectra Entergy to provide police protection during the construction of an expanded gas pipeline in the area. What particularly bothered some members was the fact the Council opposed the controversial project, which only runs for about a quarter-mile in Peekskill. “The […]

Indian Point Safety to Remain Top Priority for Entergy

Indian Point Safety to Remain Top Priority for Entergy

The owners of the Indian Point nuclear power plants in Buchanan have vowed to ensure the safety of the facility if an additional 20-year license is approved. During an appearance before a three-judge panel of the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Atomic Safety and Licensing Board in Tarrytown two weeks ago, Entergy officials maintained their legally […]

Village of Ossining Considers Zoning Change for New Businesses

Village of Ossining Considers Zoning Change for New Businesses

The Village of Ossining is considering an amendment to its Zoning Code to attract new tenants to its business districts. Various boards in the village met recently to discuss expanding the definition of “artisanal” to allow such businesses as craft brewing and distilling, small batch confectionary-making, frozen dessert-making (gelato, ice cream) and others. Currently, artisan […]

Cortlandt Receives Approval to Buy Con Edison Property

Cortlandt Receives Approval to Buy Con Edison Property

The Town of Cortlandt received official word last week that its $2.75 million bid to purchase a 99-acre former quarry on Broadway and 11th Street in Verplanck from Con Edison had been approved. More than a year after Cortlandt officials decided to “stop the buzz” to prevent an unwanted high voltage converter station from coming […]

Alleged Incident at Yorktown Sober Home Alarms Neighbors

Alleged Incident at Yorktown Sober Home Alarms Neighbors

Yorktown Police Chief Daniel McMahon said Friday an investigation into an alleged case of sexual abuse at a sober home on Underhill Avenue has been closed and no charges are being brought. A small group of neighbors of the Constellations Recovery facility at 482 Underhill Avenue requested to meet with the Yorktown Town Board to […]

Peekskill Council Sets Hearing on Exceeding Tax Cap

Peekskill Council Sets Hearing on Exceeding Tax Cap

The Peekskill Common Council has scheduled a public hearing for November 23 to consider possibly exceeding the state imposed tax levy cap in the 2016 budget. The tentative $37.2 million budget released by Acting Peekskill City Manager Richard Leins calls for a 5.9% tax hike, an increase of $126 for the average single-family homeowner in […]

Appellate Division Affirms Ruling Against Cortlandt ZBA Denial of Specialty Contractor’s Yard

Appellate Division Affirms Ruling Against Cortlandt ZBA Denial of Specialty Contractor’s Yard

The Appellate Division, Second Department recently affirmed a 2013 ruling by a state Supreme Court justice who tossed out an April 2012 decision by the Cortlandt Zoning Board of Appeals that blocked a business owner from pursuing site plan approval for a specialty contractor’s yard on Highland Avenue where a hotel was once proposed. James […]

New Mayor, Two Trustees Elected in Village of Croton

New Mayor, Two Trustees Elected in Village of Croton

  Croton Mayor Leo Wiegman and trustees Andrew Levitt and Maria Slippen were ousted from office last week by a so-called Croton United slate led by former Mayor Greg Schmidt. Schmidt, who served four years in the mayoral seat before losing to Wiegman six years ago, got his revenge on Election Day, receiving 1,200 votes […]

Grace Lands Third Term as Supervisor; Town Board Race a Nail Biter

Grace Lands Third Term as Supervisor; Town Board Race a Nail Biter

    Yorktown Supervisor Michael Grace landed a third two-year term Tuesday with a close victory over Councilman Vishnu Patel. With all districts reporting, Grace, a Republican, received 3,858 votes (53%) to 3,455 (47%) for Patel, who has two years remaining on his four-year Town Board term. Two years ago, Grace toppled former Councilman Nick […]