Posted by: Dawn Powell | May 12, 2018

Planning and Zoning

With all the politicization of the Planning Board and growing lack of independence, wouldn’t it have been useful to post the opening asking for volunteers?  The Town Board will be appointing someone on Wednesday.

They will also have a public hearing for zoning changes.  I am still hearing comments about the last catastrophic zoning changes not being passed legally, so I am wondering how they are proceeding.


Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 27, 2018

Oregon Corners

post from Patty Villanova –

I urge everyone who is concerned about what our town board is doing these days, to watch the March 28 meeting regarding the upgrades to Peekskill Hollow Rd. and Oregon Corners.
Putnam County is going to destroy Oregon Corners and any of the businesses that are down there by construction of a 4 lane highway on the bridges and that section of PHR. The new building at the former site of Super George’s is basically losing all its parking due to the new roadway.
NO ONE on the Board is standing up for us against the County! Sam O and some others are pretending that they are against the project but it turns out, that is not true. WATCH THE VIDEO.
We need to stop this project. If the County has money they want to spend on Put Valley, maybe they could use it for something we really need like water/ septic or other things for Lake Peekskill.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 24, 2018

Sounds pretty noisy to me.  All the angst was completely avoidable.  Really sad to destroy all the positive energy this project was generating.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 20, 2018


I am always confused when the electorate opposes public discussion or public votes or opposition on ballots.  Democracy is inconvenient and a bit cumbersome, but it is the best system we have so far.

Some officials oppose public discussion, preferring to deliver autocratic edicts on facebook.  Others just hide from the public.  They should get out of public office.  We should get them out of public office.

We are long overdue for a public Lake Peekskill district meeting.  SamO has been far more lax about than any of his predecessors for the last 20 years.  There is a major project and major tax expense for the district, and a meeting is not moot.

There was a general understanding about the project, and it was changed without notice, without the courtesy to meet with the community.

Accusing people who want a public process, of obstruction, or not liking a certain individual, or of being selfish, is merely bullying.  It is our community, and everyone has the right to say what they want for whatever reasons they have.  The fact is that the lack of public process, and the “my way or the highway’ approach have created a problem that would not have occurred with public information.

Lake Peekskill needs a district meeting.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 14, 2018

$30 charge for Lake Peekskill rfp and proposals?

NYS Committee on Open Government – FOIL requests

FOIL – Freedom of Information Law

How much can I be charged for public records?
It depends. If you request paper copies, an agency may charge up to twenty-five cents per photocopy up to 9”x14”. If the paper copies requested are larger than 9’x14’, the agency can charge the actual cost of making the copies. See FOIL §87(1)(b)(iii).

If you request records to be transmitted electronically, and the agency maintains the records electronically, there may be no basis for charging a fee. See FOIL §87(1)(b) and (c).
If you request a large volume of electronic records, the agency can charge the actual cost of reproducing the records. When it takes an agency more than 2 hours to prepare, extract or generate electronic data, the agency could charge for the employee’s time. See FOIL §87(1)(b) and (c).
If you request that paper records be scanned and forwarded to you electronically, please see the following advisory opinions: 18568, 18620.





Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 6, 2018

Compressor Placement in LP

The bid selected for the aeration project on Lake Peekskill specifies Carreras Beach for the compressor, but that is not the intention.  Is it of importance where the compressor will be?  Is it of any importance that the bid said it?

Lots of boats, and activity around them, at Carreras.

The plan now is North Beach.  Does it matter that the car goes in and out on the basketball court, and that the beach is never closed?


Posted by: Dawn Powell | April 1, 2018

March Town Board – PHR

Peekskill Hollow Road presentation by MEO and Putnam County Highway.  4 foot shoulders.  4 lane bridge.  Loss of parking.  Watch it.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | March 28, 2018

Public hearing – 3/14/18 Public Officers

There was an interesting public hearing between storms.

Public Officers Law in NYS law seems none too clear about what public officers are, and therefore their residency in the town, but apparently the Association of Towns had a memo about a past Attorney General opinion requiring residency or town law to override that requirement.

I have not yet read the Attorney General opinion, and it seems that Jackie was reading from the Association of Towns opinion, not the law as she stated.  I didn’t hear anyone say anything from the AG opinion, and I did not find a text of the proposed Town law.

In state law, there are a lot of mentions of local laws that have been changed to clarify this whole issue.

I can’t think of a reason why a Code Enforcement Officer would need to be from the Town.  They need important expertise. I can think of reasons why they shouldn’t be.  A different structure for code enforcement would benefit everyone, so that citizens would always have reasonable redress, but CEOs would also be protected from politics.

The only public comment was from Tom Carano, a member of the Planning Board.  There was subcontext to his comment and some of the Board member comments. Politics has plagued the issues.

The Board needs to include Court Clerks in the new law.  While I would prefer a shared court or a different subdivision for courts (an idea floated for years at the state level), for the time being, it would serve the residents to include Town Justice in this law.

And while we are at it, how about bringing Highway in house? And why is Town Clerk an elected position?  That one would be a state issue.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | March 8, 2018

RFPs – Office of the Comptroller


edited 3/31/18 –

These are clearly not equivalent proposals.  I don’t understand why they were presented to the public as such, or why it is that SamO has not addressed this concern at all.

“* Sound Reduction – Lake Savers has virtually eliminated the issue of noisy compressors disturbing the tranquility of living on a natural lake.  This enables us to use larger compressors that are more energy efficient and require significantly lower investments in electrical hook-ups.”

edited 3/30/18 –

The RFP is posted on  It looks like enclosure and soundproofing were not included in the rfp.  I thought this was of real importance to the community.

The proposals will be posted.  The scan of these documents cost me $30.  I think it should have already been in the public domain.

edited 3/22/18am –

Pointed out by Jackie Annabi at the 3/14 meeting, there is no performance guarantee in the Clean-Flo proposal for Lake Peekskill.  There was one in the Lake Savers proposal.  With everything going on, I have not FOIL’ed the RFP and proposals, but someone should.  The contract has  been authorized, and SamO will do what he will do regardless of anything, but we should know what has been done here.

pm – the bids are on the town website on agenda documents for that meeting for the time being.  I didn’t see a lease bid.  Also missing from the proposal that SamO was hawking is the housing for the electrical structures.   ??????? Remember the discussion about sound proofing?


original post –

I was taken aback by the Town Supervisor’s lack of transparency in the request for proposals (RFPs) for the Lake Peekskill district aeration project. I asked some questions, sent to the local government division of the NYS Comptroller’s office.

My questions:

I would like to know if RFPs have to be kept secret until they are awarded, as stated by the Supervisor. Also, is it proper to announce the awarding of an RFP on Facebook? And, can it be awarded by the Supervisor, without a Town Board meeting? The awarding of the bid was not on the published agenda for the board meeting.


Response from the Comptroller’s Office:

With regards to Procurement, local governments are required to advertise for competitive bids when procurements exceed certain dollar thresholds. Many municipalities advertise a Request for Proposals in their newspaper of record as well as by other means. Some RFPs are advertised for “sealed bids” which mean that the bids are submitted and not opened until after the bid deadline has passed, or on a date that the municipality determines they should be opened. Additionally, if a sealed bid RFP is utilized, the bids should not be disclosed until after the bid due date has passed.

The municipality should follow its procedure when awarding bids, including acceptance and notification of the public. However, when awarding competitive bids, contracts are generally awarded to the “lowest responsible bidder”, unless there is a documented and quantifiable reason to award to another bidder.

Here is a link to our Local Government Management Guide: Seeking Competition in Procurement.


Seeking Competition – Office of the New York State Comptroller
LOCAL GOVERNMENT MANAGEMENT GUIDE Division of Local Government and School Accountability Office of the New York State Comptroller Seeking Competition in Procurement


If you have any further questions, please feel free to call our regional office at (845)567-0858.

Posted by: Dawn Powell | March 1, 2018

LaBerge is going to talk to the Town Board about a Master Plan for Oregon Corners, but the public will not be able to ask questions or comment.

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