By Marianne A. Campolongo
Incumbent town Supervisor Rob Greenstein (R, IN, REF) is running with new town board candidates Eileen A. Gallagher (R, IN, REF) and Seth Chodosh (R, REF) on the “Team New Castle” ticket.
Greenstein said his proudest accomplishment since taking office in January 2014 is “how much I’ve been able to accomplish in such a short time.”
“We’ve saved over $3.3 million on our garbage contract, Worker’s Comp renewal saved half a million,” Greenstein said, enabling the town to “increase our paving budget by $600,000 from $400,000 to $1 million [and increase the] downtown beautification budget from $500 (I’d put in parenthesis–that’s not a typo) to $25,000. We’re providing the funding that should have been provided forever,” he said. According to figures from Greenstein, the garbage contract savings will be realized over seven years, the Workers Compensation Insurance savings with be realized in two years.
Greenstein is also proud of the Distracted Driving Campaign which has increased distracted driving tickets from 50 in the period October 1, 2013 through September 28, 2014, before the program began, to 681 tickets issued October 1, 2014 to September 28, 2015 for an estimated revenue of $68,100 versus $5,000 in the year before the program began, he said. To put that in perspective, total estimated revenue from fines was $184,490 for that same 12-month period, versus $94,300 in the previous 12 months.
He is also proud of progress made at Chappaqua Crossing. “We saved the Wallace Auditorium. It’s being donated to the town. As part of the approval process, the owner of Chappaqua Crossing has donated funds to develop a greenway path running parallel to the Saw Mill Parkway from downtown Chappaqua to the high school (the ‘ChapLine’).” He said he is also pleased that of the 120,000 square feet of retail space proposed for Chappaqua Crossing, roughly 40,000 square feet will be a Whole Foods and 40,000, Lifetime Fitness. “When I posted that there was going to be a Lifetime Fitness, I got 130 likes on Chappaqua Moms,” he said.
Under his leadership, Greenstein said, “We revamped the town website and started an eNewsletter that people love. You can sign up at www.mynewcastle.org. He is also proud of the new town welcome brochure. Greenstein also points out that they have simplified the email addresses for town government, making it easier for people to contact town officials, as well as the website set up to share up- to-date information about New Castle’s Downtown Revitalization project, www.downtownstrong.org.
Greenstein also stressed that he has been instrumental in the effort to finish up the Master Plan for the town “that languished forever.”
He likens the beginning of his term as town Supervisor to “walking into an empty house,” since, he said, there was so much to be done.
In addition to his position as Supervisor, Greenstein is an attorney in private practice. Gallagher, a freelance writer who has lived in town for 12 years, has been an active volunteer at her church, a parent manager of her son’s travel soccer team, and has served in various capacities in the PTA including Chair of Westorchard Elementary School PTA. She is active in CFRAH (Chappaqua for Responsible Affordable Housing) to advocate for safe, welcoming housing, chairing the New Castle Coyote Management Task Force, a Rotary Club member, volunteering in organizations in the larger area community.
Chodosh is an entrepreneur and adjunct professor at the Metropolitan College of NY who moved back to town in November 2014.
About the other members of his team, Greenstein says, “Eileen has been attending Town Board meetings for years. She’s been working with charities her whole life and as part of our campaigning we’ve been doing give-back projects–events where people come and donate stuff. She cares and she gets involved. Win or lose, with these projects we’ve done some good at least during the campaign. Seth and his wife grew up here and recently moved back with their young family. He brings a fresh set of eyes and a fresh perspective.”
“We’re trying to keep a positive campaign. I think most people are happy with what we’ve done,” he said. You can learn more at www.teamnewcastle2015.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/groups/TeamNewCastle2013/