Village Of Otisville

Fall/Winter 2010




Village Update

A blue mass is a celebration of faith to honor the dedicated law enforcement, fire and

rescue personnel who protect and serve our communities. In 1934, Thomas Dade, a Catholic

Priest from Baltimore, Maryland Archdiocese initiated the Catholic Police and Firemen's

Society while stationed at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Washington, D.C. About 1,100 police

and firemen dressed in blue uniforms marched into St. Patrick's Catholic Church for the

celebration of the First Blue Mass on September 29th, 1934.

Since that time the Blue Mass has become an annual tradition in many cities, particularly

in the Northeastern United States. Following the tragic attack on the World Trade Center

in 2001, the tradition of the Blue Mass spread throughout many additional communities. On

October 9, 2004, firefighters of the FDNY and police officers of the NYPD gathered together

to celebrate the 1st Annual Blue Mass at St. Peter's Church, not far from Ground Zero, and this

year on September 26, 2010 Monsignor Peter Tran Van Phat celebrated the 1st annual Blue

Mass at Holy Name Church in Otisville. Many thanks to Stu Carver for arranging this worthy

event to honor those who serve our community so selflessly.

Otisville Celebrates 1st Annual Blue Mass

Note of Thanks from the Hometown Helpers

The question has been raised as to why Hometown Helpers - a volunteer organization -

does fundraising. Even though both the Village and Town Boards have each passed resolutions

of support for the Hometown Helpers, the organization is not a Village or Town committee. It

is an independent organization of community volunteers and no municipal funding is provided.

While all of the Hometown Helpers are volunteers, there are still significant administrative

costs which must be met each year (training, background investigations, liability insurance,

etc). Since the Hometown Helpers do not receive any funding from the Village or Town, it is

only through your generous support that these expenses can be covered. The Hometown

Helpers wish to take this opportunity to extend heartfelt thanks to all of you who continue to

support their fundraising activities.

The next Hometown Helpers fundraiser will be a night of "Dining to Make a

Difference", to be held on November 11th at John's Harvest Inn in Middletown. For further

details look for the flyers posted at the Village and Town Halls, the Post Office and Walden

Federal Bank.

By now most people know that the audit conducted by the NYS Controllers Office has

been completed. The report is available for review in the Village Office or by going online to

the NYS website at The

report identifies numerous deficiencies in past recordkeeping practices and fiscal management.

The Board of Trustees worked with me to develop a detailed Corrective Action Plan, with input

from the Village Clerk and Village Accountant. This report has already been sent to the Controllers

Office, and we anticipate follow-up from them within 12 to 18 months. Be assured that

I, and the Board of Trustees, am committed to ensuring that the controls already put in place,

and those detailed in the Corrective Action Plan, continue to be enforced.

The audit also revealed that a significant amount of money is missing. This led to a

criminal investigation, and since the case is still pending, we are not able to discuss any of

those details. We can tell you that the Board and I are confident in the Corrective Action Plan

which was developed. We believe that the internal controls which have been developed will

allow us to provide sufficient oversight to prevent the events of past years from happening


I know that people had many questions regarding the audit and hope that it is now clear

why it could not be discussed in detail. I would like to thank the Village residents and Village

employees for their support over the past three and a half years. Village Clerk/ Treasurer

Janine Beck and her deputy Dawn Wyman are always working to provide you the best services

possible with the direction of the Village Board. Frank Valentino and his DPW crew work

hard on our Village roads, water system, garbage pickup, snow plowing, sanding, holiday

decorations and the maintenance of the equipment, in order to keep our Village as safe and

clean as possible. The building officials, planning and zoning boards are working diligently on

whatever items come their way, trying to provide the best services possible to our residents.

And we can't forget the Village's Fire Department and the countless hours these volunteer

firefighters provide to our community. It is a pleasure to work with such a diverse and talented

group of people.

Lastly, I want to thank the members of the Parks Committee, park volunteers, and residents

who have come forth to offer support for park enhancements. Just one example is that

each of the following individuals has each donated a picnic table for the park pavilion. When

the donation was made in memory/honor of a loved one, a plaque will be placed on the picnic

table with the honoree's name - which is listed here in parenthesis. Picnic table donations were

received from: Kevin Belsten of True Value Hardware, Nicholas Sheil (Nicholas Sheil Sr.), Ed

and Harve Collins (Marion and Al Collins), Kate and Logan Heifurth (Ginny "Gigi" Easkold),

John Holley (Lt. Gen. James E. Holley), Peter O'Neubauer (Anne J. Neubauer), Veronica

Watkins (Kathryn L. Coppola), Hugh and Hazel Budd (Jo-Ann Budd Barile), Diane Loeven

(Sgt. William J. Loeven). Many thanks to each of these individuals and to the countless others

who have donated time and money to help with Veterans Memorial Park.

As the Holidays approach I would like to wish everyone a happy, safe, and healthy season.

Just as a reminder, I'm in the Village Office every Wednesday night from 6 to 8 to answer

any questions or concerns that may arise. Do not hesitate to stop by. If you are unable to do so

at these times, you can call to make an appointment with me. I'm available on most week


Brian W. Wona

From the Mayor's Desk

Have You Been to Veterans Memorial Park Lately?

As the weather is beginning to get colder, we can tell that autumn is starting to roll in.

It's a great time to take a stroll in Veterans Memorial Park on Main Street and see the leaves

changing colors. Or you can rest at the new tables under the pavilion and just enjoy the

scenery. The colors are magnificent!

Helping Hands

As the holidays are fast approaching, we think of how thankful we are for what we have

and tend to think more of others. Whether it is in another country, within our family or even

right in our own backyard.

It's easy to feel disconnected, as many of us juggle work, school, kids, and activity after

activity. But some simple things can bring a family and community closer.

One of the most satisfying, fun, and productive ways to unite is volunteering for community

service projects. Volunteerism also sets a good example for your kids and helps the


There are many reasons to get involved: The satisfaction and pride that come from helping

others; Organizations and agencies that use volunteers are providing important services at

low or no cost to those who need them; Volunteerism is a great way for families to have fun and

feel closer.

Our own community's volunteers are very active and sometimes stretched too thin.

Helping could include:

Parks Commission: help with a variety of activities at the park - planned celebrations activities

or the Children's Christmas Party

Meals for Homebound Seniors Program: you would have to contact the town to see how to assist

with this important program

Hometown Helpers: right now they are looking for someone who can spend an hour or so a

week reading to woman who's gone blind. Your time could also include friendly visits or reassuring

phone calls, grocery shopping & other errands, local transportation to doctors, etc, inhome

respite for caregivers, light household and yard chores, minor home repairs, paperwork .

But many people say they don't have the time to volunteer after fulfilling work and family

commitments. If that's the case, try rethinking some of your free time as a family. You could

select just one or two projects a year and make them a family tradition. Many of our children

are involved in various group activities. Try suggesting to your child's scout troop, youth

groups, sports team, etc. to volunteer in one of our local programs.

So during this season of giving, try to think of ways to truly celebrate your holiday.

Please contact our town and village offices to find ways to help. When a community is doing

well as a whole, its individuals are better off, too.

From The Building Inspector:

Fall is upon us and winter doesn't seem far behind so let's go over a few reminders

about fire safety. October 31st is the official day for changing smoke detector batteries. Please

make sure you change them all on or before that day. All homes, whether privately owned or a

rental, now require smoke and CO detectors by State law. Newer homes are hard wired but

older homes are allowed battery style units.

As we enter the heating season it is time to do a check your boiler/furnace to make sure

flues are clean, dampers are in working order, and the burners are firing cleanly. Most people

can't do this themselves, so if you're one of them, be sure to schedule an annual service call.

You must also have a working smoke detector present on the basement level.

New chimneys, gas or LP stoves, solid fuel burning devices such as fireplaces, wood,

coal and pellet stoves ALL require a permit and inspection from the Village Fire Inspector. You

may obtain an application from him at Village Hall. All outdoor and remote boilers/furnaces

are prohibited by law within the Village limits.

Most of you know that Village law requires that you remove snow from sidewalks

within 25 hours of the ending of the snowfall. As a common courtesy to your firefighters, and

for your own safety and home protection, please be sure that any fire hydrants on your property

are also cleared of snow.

Last, but not least, always remember that holiday decorations are extremely flammable.

Make sure that candles are kept far away from any paper decorations at all times and never ever

leave a candle unattended even for a few minutes.

May everyone have a safe and happy holiday season.

Pete Ackerson & Rick Zgrodek

A Note from the Zoning Review Committee

A comprehensive review process, which has been ongoing for nearly ten years, involved

examining all of the Village's component local laws related to zoning. A draft of the new and

revised Comprehensive Zoning Law is now available for review at the Village Hall during

regular office hours. This law incorporates into a single document the revised Comprehensive

Plan, Zoning Regulations and Subdivision Guidelines, as well as several other local laws related

to zoning which have been adopted by our Village Boards over the years.

A public hearing on the proposed Comprehensive Zoning Law was conducted on October

28th. In order to give all interested residents an opportunity to provide comment, the hearing

was continued for at least two additional sessions, November 4th and November 18th, 7 p.m.

at the Village Hall. The regularly scheduled Village Board meeting will be held immediately

following the public hearings.

Should you have comments/concerns about the proposed law, but are unable to attend

either of the scheduled public hearings, you may provide written input to the Village Clerk at and it will be read at the hearing. Another alternative

would be to phone the Village Hall (386-5172) and a member of the Zoning Review Committee

will get back to you.







MAY 13 MAY 20









Mark Your Calendars:

Fall Leaf Pickup - November 22nd. Leaves must be bagged.

January 10, 2011 - Christmas tree pick up.

Holiday Happenings

Soon enough the holidays will be once again upon us. Please bring your friends and

family to come celebrate the beginning of the holidays with a festive gathering at Veterans Memorial

Park at 5 p.m. on Sunday, December 12th. Following the tree lighting, there will be

some entertainment and light refreshments at the firehouse. We look forward to seeing you


Notes from the DPW Supervisor

Water Test Results

From January 1st through August 1st the Department of Health tested samples of the Village water

on 14 different occasions at various locations throughout the Village. Test results indicated

that each sample taken was free of the microbiological contaminants Coliform and E.coli and

that the Chlorine residuals were all within the acceptable limits, ranging from 0.3 to 2.5 mg/l.

[Acceptable test results must note negative results for the presence of Coliform or E.coli and a

chlorine residual of less than 4.0 mg/l.]

Garbage Can Reminders

We have recently received several complaints about garbage being set out in plastic bags, rather

than in a container, as required by local law. As a courtesy to the residents, the DPW workers

have been picking up these bags. This can not continue because, unfortunately, doing so might

give people the impression that it is an acceptable practice. It is not. Both household garbage

and recyclables must be set out in a garbage can container of not over 35 gallons, made of galvanized,

aluminum or plastic.

Lids are also required to be kept on the cans at all times to discourage animals from getting into

the garbage and to prevent the can from taking on extra weight in the event of rain. Water

weighs more than eight pounds per gallon, so even a mild rain can significantly increase the

weight of cans that are left uncovered. Not only does this present difficulty for the workers lifting

the cans, it actually costs the taxpayers money. When garbage is delivered to the transfer

station, the tipping fees are calculated on the weight of the truck, and we certainly don't need to

be paying extra for the rainwater collected in uncovered cans! Thank you once again for your


Reminder About Water Meter Readings

Our Water Meter Reader, Rob Bennett, was out reading meters in October

and will be doing so again in February. Please remember that you must have your meter read

by the Water Meter Reader at least once and year to avoid any additional penalties. Two estimates

bills in a row will also result in a penalty, so even if your meter was read within the past

12 months, it's important that you call in your reading if Rob leaves a card on your door.


Village Elections will be held on Tuesday, March 15, 2011 from

noon to 9p.m. at the Village Hall. Any registered voter residing in the

Village of Otisville is eligible to vote in this election. If you are new to our area and have not

yet registered as a Village resident, you will need to do so. Anyone who would like to check

their registration status, can do so by contacting the Orange County Board of Elections at (845)


Registration forms are available at the Village Hall and can also be downloaded directly

from the Orange County Board of Elections website. Simply go to , then

click on County Departments, Board of Elections.

The new electronic voting machines will be used in the Village election. If you have any questions

about the machines, you can find a great deal of information about them on that same

Board of Elections website.

Village Website

If you haven't done so lately, be sure take a minute to visit the new Village

website at You'll immediately notice all of the enhancements

which have already been made, and the Village Clerk is still hard at

work with further site development. You can now get most Village forms directly from the

website, obtain contact information for all Village departments, read the minutes from Village

meetings, and link to numerous other areas of interest. Good work Janine!

No Overnight Parking

Please remember: Parking on Village streets is prohibited between 10 pm and 6 am during

the winter months, specifically October 1st to April 1st. This parking restriction helps ensure

that the DPW is able to clear the streets in the event of an unexpected storm.

Schedule Changes:

As the winter months are approaching, from time to time it may become necessary to

reschedule certain Village functions such as meetings, recycling, garbage pick-up, and office

hours. Please make sure to check the radio or internet for closing or rescheduling information:

WPDH 101.5 fm or

WRRV 92.7 fm/96.9 fm or

WKXP/WZAD 94.3 fm/97.3 fm or

WCZX 97.7 fm or

1340/1390 am or

Brian Wona, Mayor


Diane Loeven

JoAnn Ketcham

Tammy Cauchard

Richard Cash

Village Hall

66 Highland Ave.

Otisville, New York 10963

Hours: 8:30 - 2:30, Monday-Friday;

1st Saturday , 9-12

We are on the web!

Village Update

Village of Otisville

66 Highland Ave.

Otisville, New York 10963

Saturday Hours

To assist those who cannot get to the Village Hall during the week, we are

ordinarily opened on the first Saturday of each month. The Office and Recycling

Bins will be opened from 9 a.m. to noon on the following Saturdays: November 5th,

December 3rd, January 8th, and February 6th.

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