July 26, 2010
Penfield Arts Center Bicentennial Exhibit Open through Sep 24
The Penfield Bicentennial Committee and the Penfield Arts Center present a Penfield-themed art exhibit entitled "Artistic Impressions of Penfield: A Bicentennial Celebration." The exhibit runs through September 24, 2010 at the Penfield Arts Center's RepARTee Gallery, 2131 Five Mile Line Road in Penfield. The gallery's summer hours are Wed-Fri, 1-5 PM.
"Artistic Impressions of Penfield: A Bicentennial Celebration" is juried by Peter Giopulos, professor emeritus from the College of Fine and Applied Arts, Rochester Institute of Technology and a Penfield resident. Mr. Giopulos taught art, ceramics, design and art education courses and has held various administrative positions during his career in education. He has been a set designer, painter, potter and currently is working in digital imagery. Mr. Giopulos currently serves on the board of the Penfield Symphony Orchestra.
"The Penfield Arts Center, housed in a historically significant building in our Four Corners, is a creative hub for our community and beyond," said Supervisor Tony LaFountain. "I thank the entire Hutch family for supporting Penfield's Bicentennial by hosting an exhibit dedicated to the visual significance of our town."
July 26, 2010
Penfield Supervisor's Column Week of July 26
First things first - as promised in last week's column, I will give a brief snapshot on the budget process each week until the budget is adopted in October. I have met with all the department heads on their initial budget submissions for 2011. This first round roll up shows a slight increase in spending for 2011. The Comptroller and I will be further reviewing the submitted data, as well as the anticipated revenue for next year, to ensure a fiscally responsible budget with controlled spending for our residents, which keeps our tax rate one of the lowest in the county. While we cannot control or fix the dysfunctional state or federal governments, locally we can make the hard decisions to reduce the size of government and maintain necessary services for our residents.
After more than six months, the Harris Whalen lodge renovation has been completed through the great efforts of the Town's Parks and Facilities team. The existing structure was more than 35 years old and very outdated and inefficient. The renovation included making the facility more handicap friendly, improved energy efficiency, and created more than 300 square feet of additional usable space. The permeable pavers leading up to the front door and around the building are a new green material that takes the roof and downspout water and returns it to the groundwater, rather than running off to the storm sewers. All of the project materials were financed through incentive zoning funds from the Arbor Ridge development on Fellows Road. I would like to recognize all of the Parks and Facilities team for their efforts...thanks guys!
The Penfield Arts Center will be hosting a Penfield-themed exhibit entitled "Artistic Impressions of Penfield: A Bicentennial Celebration," which will run from July 28 - September 24 at the Penfield Arts Center's RepARTee Gallery, 2131 Five Mile Line Road. Please log on to www.penfield.org and click on Bicentennial 2010 for more information on this wonderful event. (The opening reception is Friday, July 30, 6:30-8:30 PM.)
Mark your calendars and save the date...Fall Drop-off 2010 will be held Thursday, October 14 through Saturday, October 16 at the Penfield Highway Garage, 1607 Jackson Road. The formal notice will be on the back page of the Pen-Rec Brochure, due out in mid-August. Also, the website will contain additional information and details as we get closer to the event.
Homearama, an annual event sponsored by the Rochester Home Builders' Association, is scheduled for August 14-22 in the WaterSong community in Penfield, located off Five Mile Line Road, north of Plank Road. Five homes are featured at this event, which will also include 60 vendors to provide information on energy efficiency, landscaping products, home improvement, financial services, décor, and more. New this year will be wine tastings each day featuring New York State wineries, demonstrations by area culinary professionals, and a variety of bands playing for charity. For additional details on this wonderful event, visit www.rochesterhomebuilders.com .
As noted above, the Pen-Rec Brochure will be in your mail boxes within the next several weeks. This brochure will highlight all of the fall and early winter programs offered by the Penfield Recreation Department and the Library. Please review all of the program offerings and keep the brochure close at hand for reference. The information will also be listed on the Town's website at www.penfield.org and click on Parks and Recreation.
There are still many wonderful special events to be held at the amphitheater, which will run through the third week of August. Consider stopping by to enjoy music or a movie, have a hot dog and drink, and just relax. I have attended several of the programs with my family and everyone has had a great time.
On behalf of your entire Town Board and Town staff, enjoy the nice weather and all the activities you have planned...until next week, be well and be safe!
July 19, 2010
Penfield Supervisor's Column Week of July 19
The Town hosted a tree dedication in memory of former Town Historian Maude Lancaster Frank. Maude served as the Town's Historian from 1978 until her death in 2004. The contributions she made to this community will be remembered for generations. Maude is credited with establishing Dayton's Corners Schoolhouse on the National Register of Historic Places, and for making the one-room school a teaching and learning museum for thousands of fourth-graders each year.
Additionally, Maude collected and preserved countless documents and artifacts for our Local History Room; published numerous articles and books; helped to preserve the small pioneer cemetery on Whalen Road; and conducted interpretive tours of local historic sites.
A group of 40 family members, friends, and interested residents gathered to hear comments by former Town Supervisor Anna Bundschuh and current Town Historian Kathy Kanauer celebrate her life and contributions to Penfield. I had the honor and great privilege of knowing and working with Maude for more then twenty-five years as an employee of the Town and as a Town Board member. As a community we are fortunate to have been able to share Maude. She and her husband Howard have made lasting contributions to the entire Penfield community...thank you Frank family!
Work continues on the Health Care Consortium. Penfield is one of 13 towns and villages that have come together to leverage our total number of insured employees and retirees as a group versus individually negotiating with the two major health care providers in the area. As you all are too well aware, health care costs have increased by double digits year-on-year for the last three to four years. Penfield has been very aggressive in looking for creative ways to hold costs down; however, as one lone entity, we have very little leverage with our 130 employees and retirees to make a major difference. Together, as an insured group of more than 4,500, we have more clout to make a difference. We are cautiously optimistic that our consortium will help reduce costs to all the communities involved which ultimately become savings to our residents. I will keep you posted as we continue with this process.
Several months ago I reported on a manhole sealing process that our Sewer Department was experimenting with as a way to reduce or eliminate water infiltration into the water treatment system. At that time I said I would update you as to how that process was progressing. I am delighted to report that through the efforts of our Sewer Department working with Monroe Community Pure Waters, we have calculated that we will be able to reduce approximately 12.5 million gallons of storm water/groundwater from entering the water treatment system.
What does this mean from a dollar and cents standpoint? At a treatment cost of $1.29/per thousand gallons, this yields an annual savings of $16,128. The cost to the Town to complete the sealing work was $1,344 in labor and $1,346 in materials for a total cost of $2,690. The return on investment is $13,438 for the first year and $16,128 savings for each year after...great job by Superintendent Mark DiFrancesco and his entire team (Tom Gomes and Paul Fuller).
I have met with most every department head on their individual budgets and the remaining few I will complete next week. I must say that I have been very impressed with their creative ways to manage or reduce spending. With the cost of materials rising, many more unfunded mandates being pushed down from the State and Federal governments (that will be a future column all to itself), and lower than expected revenue from mortgage tax and sales tax, our team has pulled together a very realistic snapshot of 2011. Over the next six to eight weeks I will be working with our Comptroller to package everything together and present a realistic and financially responsible budget to our Town Board by mid-September. Because this is such an important process that impacts every resident, I will have a short update in my column every week until the budget is passed!
As always, I seem to have more than enough items to report on; however, I am interested in hearing from you, our residents, as to what you might like me to discuss in this column. Please feel free to drop me a short note at email@example.com with any suggestions or call my direct line at 340-8631.
Have a great week...Tony.
July 12, 2010
Penfield Supervisor's Column Week of July 12
Those of you who enjoyed our Fourth of July activities at Harris Whalen may have seen a new addition to the park ─ our new green and yellow recycling totes. This program grew out of the interest of the Energy and Environmental Advisory Committee (E&EAC) after observing the successful Penfield Little League's recycling program in partnership with Penfield Boy Scouts.
Our new totes were donated by Waste Management as part of their ongoing effort to encourage and support recycling in the town and across the region. The totes will be placed in all of our Town Parks and the cans, plastic/glass bottles will be recycled and kept out of landfills.
This is one of many items the E&EAC is working on to promote responsible stewardship of the environment, reduce energy consumption, and provide public education and awareness. Those items include: developing wind/solar policy; reduction in the use of chemicals/fertilizers; proper CFL disposal; energy audit reviews; leaf disposal; and alternate work schedules. For more information on the committee's activities and other helpful energy saving tips, please log on to www.penfield.org and click on "Renew Penfield" at the quick link section.
Mark your calendars for Bicentennial Art Exhibit to be held July 28 - September 24 at the Penfield Arts Center's RepARTee Gallery located at 2131 Five Mile Line Road in the Historic Four Corners Business District. Themes to inspire artists include Penfield Moments, Historic Places, Sacred Spaces, Hangouts, Fun in Penfield, and Penfield in Action. Awards will recognize excellence and best of theme categories as determined by the juror. The opening reception and awards ceremony is Friday, July 30, 6:30 - 8:30 PM. More information and details are available at www.penfield.org click on bicentennial 2010.
Save the time and date, Sunday July 18 at 5:00 PM, for the Penfield Little League (PLL) Championship "Sundae." That is correct, "Sundae"! Sundaes are free to all PLL participants, players, and family alike. The festivities continue on the field with the awards presentation to the first place teams, all-star teams, and the coaches' choice recipients. It is hard to believe that another PLL season is over; however, I am promised by President Steve Pellow and the members of the Board of Directors that there is still a lot of great baseball to be played during the summer months with several tournaments scheduled.
In celebration of Penfield's Bicentennial, the Penfield Rangers Soccer Club is hosting a "Soccer Fun Day" at Rothfuss Park on Sunday, July 18 from 11AM - 4PM. This event will include live music, refreshments, coaching clinics for younger players, scrimmages of all age groups, and a special session with Rochester Rhinos Players. In addition there will be an inflatable obstacle course, games, and face painting. This event is a wonderful opportunity for families to become familiar with Penfield's travel soccer program and to participate in some hands-on soccer skill training.
Congratulations to all the boys and girls that played baseball and soccer during the 2010 season, you are all superstars and all-stars in Penfield.
There are still plenty of wonderful music programs and movies that will be held at the Penfield Amphitheater, on the Kiwanis Stage at the Veterans' Memorial Park including:
-July 17 The Rochester Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra at 7:00 PM
-July 19 The Penfield POPS Band at 7:00 PM
-July 20 The Rod Blumenau Swingtet at 7:00 PM
-July 22 Bart and Kevin "Kids Fest" at 7:00 PM
-July 23 the movie Astro Boy at dusk
-July 24 Chet Catallow & The Cats at 7:00 PM
-July 27 Gap Mangione's New Blues Band at 7:00 PM
-July 31 Jon Seiger and the All-Stars at 7:00 PM
Stay cool and enjoy the summer!
July 6, 2010
Penfield Supervisor's Column week of July 5
The Elderwood Assisted Living at Penfield, located on Route 250 north of Route 441, recently held its ribbon cutting ceremony. This 90-unit facility is a blend of independence and care, as well as private life and social life. With various sized units to select from, amenities include a conservatory, computer room and library, a movie theater, courtyard, chapel, beauty and barber shop, gift shop, and much more.
This is another example of the variety of housing offered in the Penfield community to allow our residents to remain in this wonderful community...to the entire Elderwood family and staff, welcome to Penfield.
All of the Town of Penfield department heads have turned in their budgets for 2011. Over the next 45 days the Comptroller and I will be meeting with them to review additions, deletions, and other proposed changes. It is my intention to present a realistic and fiscally responsible budget to the Town Board for its adoption in the fall.
The rest of the budget calendar is as follows; once we have completed our meetings with department heads, I will prepare the "tentative budget" proposal for 2011 and submit it to the Town Board by mid-September; a public hearing will be held the first week of October, with the final budget being adopted by the Board before the end of October, consistent with past practices of more than 38 years.
Exciting news...I was notified last week by the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) that they will be installing a three-color signal light at the intersection of Atlantic Avenue and Jackson Road. This signal light comes after years of ongoing efforts to improve the safety of the intersection including construction, signage, and education.
I commend past town officials and our town staff for their focus on improving this intersection over the years. The Town Board looks forward to working with NYSDOT on this very important and necessary project. Design is underway and it is hoped that construction can start as early as this fall.
The weather was perfect, the parade the largest that I can recall over the past 25 years, the food and music wonderful, and the fireworks spectacular! Yes, it was another very successful Fourth of July celebration in Penfield. I would like to recognize and thank everyone from our Parks, Recreation, and Facilities Departments who made this two-day event as special as it was for our residents, friends, and visitors...great job team!
I close with a story that many of you have seen reported over the last week on many of the news outlets ─ that is the story of Don Alhart's induction into the New York State Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame on June 28. I had the honor to first meet Don early in 1981 as I was chairing the Zoning Board of Appeals when he and several of his neighbors attended a meeting. Don's reputation preceded him as a bright, articulate, and hardworking professional.
Over the years all of us have seen him become a very well known and dominant figure in the broadcasting business in this region. Penfield is fortunate to have Don call this community home. On behalf of all the residents of this great town...Mr. Don Alhart, thank you for everything you have done to affect all of our lives and congratulations on this very well deserved and prestigious award.