August 31, 2015
Supervisor’s column: Week of 8/31
I would like to thank Recreation Director Chris Bilow and Receiver of Taxes Margaret (Peggy) Revelle for being recent guest columnists. Their messages were very timely, and who better to share that information but the experts themselves? Thanks Chris and Peggy!
Now I will continue my Farm Market/Garden Center series by highlighting Wilbert’s Tree Farm located at 1321 Salt Road. This family-owned and operated tree farm was originally planted by Art Wilbert more than 50 years ago for screening and environmental reasons. However, the appeal of the trees in the community soon expanded their purpose to include celebrating Christmas. Wilbert’s has been selling Christmas trees for more than 40 years on the original farm, which has been in the family for more than 100 years.
Today the farm is greater than 100 acres with approximately 180,000 trees. Bring the family to see Santa’s sleigh and flying reindeer, the live nativity scene, and more. Cut-your-own and precut trees of all sizes are available starting just before Thanksgiving. My wife reminds me that it is never too early to start thinking about Christmas and putting up trees! For more information about Wilbert’s Tree Farm and the products and services they provide, go to www.wilbertstreefarm.com...and remember to shop locally, it does make a difference for the entire community!
It’s that time of the year, so mark your calendars for the 39th annual used book sale hosted by the Friends of the Penfield Public Library running September 15 to 19 at the Penfield Community Center. More than 85,000 items will be for sale including books, videos, DVDs, CDs, vinyl records, games, puzzles, and software. Items are conveniently sorted by category. The sale begins with a members-only pre-sale on Tuesday, September 15, 2:00 to 9:00 p.m. Supporters may join at the door, however because of crowds, the Friends recommend joining or renewing in advance of the sale at the Penfield Library. A one-year membership is only $5.00.
The general public is invited to attend the sale September 16-19. Hours and daily specials are as follows: Wednesday 9/16 and Thursday 9/17, 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.; Friday 9/18, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (half-price day); Saturday, 9/19, 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. ($3 bag, specials remain half price).
Shoppers should bring their own bags, and food and drink are not allowed. Because of narrow aisles, please do not bring baby strollers or shopping carts. Proceeds from the book sale go to support programing for all ages at the Penfield Library. Please come join the FPPL for this exciting event.
The next guided hike of the Penfield Trails Committee is Saturday, September 12 from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. at Channing Philbrick Park. This hike has a special Penfield heritage theme. Town historian Kathy Kanauer and Penfield Trails Committee members will share accounts of the life and accomplishments of town founder Daniel Penfield. Meet at the pavilion and look for the hike signs. While hikes are free, participants are asked to register by calling 340-8655 (option 6).
Be on the lookout for the Fall 2015 Pen-Rec brochure. You can’t miss the bright orange color! This brochure is filled with great information for residents of all ages. Program registration begins September 8 unless otherwise noted. Register early, our programs fill up quickly due to their popularity!
Until next week…be well and be safe.
August 25, 2015
NEW DATE: Public Hearing on Town Code is September 30
The Town of Penfield will hold a public hearing in the town hall auditorium on Wednesday, September 30 at 7:00 p.m. to share information and receive public comments on proposed updates to the Town Code. No action will be taken.
Town Engineer and Planning Department Director Mark Valentine will highlight proposed changes to the Town Code and introduce General Code as a new, easy-to-use single resource for up-to-date municipal code information. The Penfield Town Board will then receive public comments on changes to the Town Code.
A draft document is available for public review in advance of the Public Hearing at www.penfield.org (see Quick Links) and also in print from the Planning Department. Those interested in the proposed changes are encouraged to review the Draft Town Code prior to the meeting.
Proposed updates to Town Code include revised parking standards, adjusted shed regulations that are proportionate to lot size, and construction requirements that are consistent with New York State Building Code. Other content has been updated to for relevance and contemporary materials.
“The proposed updates will modernize our Town Code,” said Supervisor Tony LaFountain. “General Code organizes our information into useful categories all in one document. Residents, staff, law enforcement, and other professionals will benefit from easy access to the Town’s must current, accurate information.”
A public comment period on changes to the Town Code will be open through October 23. The Town Board is scheduled to discuss comments on October 28. Public comments are also welcome in advance of the Public Hearing and may be submitted in writing to the Planning Department, email@example.com . Adoption will be scheduled for a future Penfield Town Board legislative session.
The meeting will be broadcast on Penfield TV and www.penfieldtv.org. Please contact the Planning Department at 340.8640 for further information.
August 25, 2015
Town of Penfield Department of Public Works Update for the week of August 24, 2015.
The following is a list of Town, County or State projects that may affect your commute.
- New York State DOT project to resurface Route 441 (from Panorama Road to Dublin Road) continues until September 15.
- New York State DOT project to resurface Route 250 (from Route 441 to Perinton Town Line) continues until September 15.
- Milling and paving of Wood Creek Drive and Edgewood Drive will begin August, 26 and continues until September 1, weather permitting.
- Milling and paving the entrance of the Four Corners South side Parking Lot and patching pot holes starts August, 26 and continues until September 2, weather permitting.
- Starting August 27, until finish the Storm Water Maintenance crew will be cleaning the drainage ditch along Valley Stream Road and Valley View Drive.
Remember to slow down, stay alert, avoid distraction and be patient when driving through work zones.
August 24, 2015
Supervisor’s column: Week of 8/24, Guest Columnist Receiver of Taxes Margaret Revelle
We receive many questions in the Penfield Tax Receiver Office regarding dates, procedures, and payment options for property taxes. I appreciate this opportunity to share information in advance of “tax season” to make the payment process as smooth as possible for Penfield residents.
The Penfield Tax Receiver Office handles the billing and collection of property taxes for 13,300 parcels of land. In addition to collecting Penfield Town/County taxes, we are responsible for the collection of school taxes for Penfield CSD, Webster CSD, and a small portion of Pittsford CSD. We also collect school taxes for Penfield CSD residents who live in the towns of Walworth and Macedon.
Let’s begin with dates and mailings. All school tax bills are mailed on August 31. If you do not receive your bill by September 8 please contact us directly so we can promptly mail or email a bill to you. Will you be out of town for an extended period? Tax bills can be mailed to an alternate address. Please do not rely on mail forwarding. If you do not receive your bill due to a change of address or a postal issue you are still responsible for a timely payment.
We receive many questions regarding payment options. School taxes may be paid in full or in installments. Full payments are due by October 1. After that date, interest payments begin to accrue. Payments received October 2-31 must include an additional two percent (2%) interest or the payment will be returned for the correct amount due, which may further delay your payment.
Payments may also be made in three installments. The first is due September 15. Our office will accept a first installment with one percent (1%) interest September 16-21. After September 21 only full payments may be paid in our office. All remaining installments may only be paid to the Monroe County Treasury. A detailed calendar with interest information is available on our webpage.
Regardless of payment option, all taxes paid after October 31 are payable to the Monroe County Treasury with additional interest.
Now let’s address how to pay and getting receipts. All checks are payable to “Margaret Revelle Receiver of Taxes.” If you have a mortgage payment and your taxes are in escrow, you will receive a receipt from the Tax Office within 30 days of the paid date.
You have two options for making your payment in person. The first is at our office at the town hall. Please bring your entire bill so we can stamp the top portion and return it as your receipt. You may also make full tax payments in person at M&T Bank’s Penfield Branches only—2201 Penfield Road, 625 Panorama Trail, and 1838 Empire Boulevard.
After business hours, you may place your payment in a secure payment drop box located at the east entrance of the town hall. Envelopes are provided, and payments are removed twice daily. If your payment does not balance we will return it with a letter of explanation. We will mail you a receipt within 48 hours of your payment.
When paying by mail, please provide the entire bill and check the box to request a receipt. It is important that you return the entire bill, including stubs, to get your receipt. If you have access to a computer you can print your bill or receipt at www.monroecounty.gov/etc/rp/ or go to www.monroecounty.gov and choose view/pay taxes online.
You may also pay online by credit card through Monroe County at http://www.monroecounty.gov/apps/propertyapp.php . This option is available as of September 1 and comes with a 3 percent (3%) fee from the processing bank.
Are you a new homeowner? If so, you are responsible for your tax bill. Contact our office to tell us of your status. A transfer of title can take up to 10 weeks and your bill may be forwarded to the former owner, causing you a delay.
If you purchased a home from someone with exemptions you may receive a “charge back” on your bill because you received the benefit of the prior owner’s exemption at your closing. To correct this, the difference is charged back to you on a future tax bill. If this has happened and you need a letter for your mortgage company to correct your escrow payment please contact me.
Resource details: The Tax Receiver Office is located on the first floor of the Penfield Town Hall, 3100 Atlantic Avenue, 14526. Counter hours are Monday to Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Our phone is 585.340.8625, email is firstname.lastname@example.org . The Tax Receiver webpage (www.penfield.org, choose Departments, then Tax Receiver) provides many more details on school and town/county tax bills, schedules, and payment options.
The Monroe County Treasury is located at 39 West Main St. Rm. B-2, Rochester, New York 14614. The phone is 585.753.1200.
I hope this information is helpful as you prepare for your upcoming school tax bill. Please contact me directly with your questions or concerns.
Receiver of Taxes
Town of Penfield
August 20, 2015
NYS RT 441 (Penfield Road) Construction Update
New York State Department of Transportation and Villager Construction set the schedule for the remaining work on the 441 corridor weather permitting.
- Curb Adjustments Route 441 Starts at 7AM with lane closure for concrete work until finish (8/17 to 8/21).
- Paving finish top on Route 441 Starting at 7PM each night until finish (8/17 to 8/21).
- Paving Route 250 to Route 441 Starting at 7PM each Night until finish (8/17 to 8/21).
- Loop installations Route 441 Start 7PM until finish (8/17 to 8/21).
- Curb and Sidewalk work starts 7AM until finish (8/17 to 8/21).
- Lane Closures should cease with-in a week to week and a half.
- Work along the 441 corridor will be completed by 9/15 weather permitting.
August 17, 2015
Supervisor’s column: Week of 8/17, Guest Columnist Recreation Director Chris Bilow
The opportunity to guest write the Supervisor’s Column typically comes around only once a year, so when I was asked if I wanted to fill in this week I jumped at the chance. There are a number of items I want to mention, and I will begin with a quick update on this summer’s activities.
Summer is the busiest time of year for the Recreation department and staff. This year was no different! Our team works very hard to provide quality programs for Penfield residents, and the turnout for the events we hosted this summer shows that residents appreciate the quality of the Town’s special events.
The annual Independence Day celebration was a huge success. Estimated attendance at the parade, park, and fireworks show was close to 15,000 people! I am always amazed to see the turnout at this fantastic community event. I truly believe Penfield hosts the best Independence Day Celebration in the county. There is a lot of planning and coordinating by staff to make this event a success year after year, I appreciate all they do to make this a great Penfield tradition.
The Summer Amphitheater Series is another success story for the Recreation Department. We started the annual series with the Food Truck Rodeo with more than 1,000 people on hand to kick off the summer. The music series ran ten shows over four weeks with attendance of more than 3,500 people! The ZBTB (Zac Brown Tribute Band) alone drew around 500 people for a great concert.
Summer is also a busy time for youth activities including day camp, sport camps, and swimming lessons. This season about 1,700 youth participated in a summer camp or a sport camp program, and roughly 500 children took swimming lessons. All of these programs are coordinated by a motivated and enthusiastic group of summer staff. The dedication and commitment they have to providing a quality experience for all of the participants is appreciated by our team and the many families who return each year. We are proud of the fact that many of our camp staff are former campers!
As you can see the season was very busy indeed, and I did not even mention all we did! But now get your calendars out and let’s move on to all the great events we have coming up this fall.
I am pleased to highlight a new event, the “Tour de Farm” on August 22. This bike event includes riding options of three different challenge levels (family, leisurely, and cycling express) with routes that will showcase seven of our local Penfield farms. The event kicks off and returns to our host site, Woody Acres. Registration is still open and I hope to see you there!
In September and October we have the final amphitheater event of the season, “Tastin’ the Blues” on September 19; the Penfield Challenge 5k is September 27 at the Penfield Community Center; the annual Penfield Community Bike Drop with Penfield Rotary is October 3, our annual Community Halloween event is October 23 at the Penfield Community Center; and the Penfield Players will be performing “Private Lives” starting October 30 at the Penfield Community Center.
Visit www.penfieldrec.org for all details and registrations. I hope to see you at some or all of the exciting events we have planned this fall!
Director, Penfield Recreation
August 10, 2015
Supervisor’s column: Week of 8/10
It is hard to believe that the 2015 Penfield Recreation six-week “Summer Day Camp” program has gone by so quickly. This year more than 1,000 of your children and grandchildren participated in educational programs, crafts, sports, games, and more. Thank you for entrusting their safety to our staff and program leaders, I know they have as much fun as the kids do during the camp.
At the end of each season Steve Orsini, who coordinates the camp on behalf of the Town, prepares a “thank-you breakfast” for the staff, many of whom were once campers themselves. This is also a time that we hand out awards to staff members who have been selected by the leaders and their peers for making a difference in the kids’ lives each and every day they are enjoying the camp experience.
It is my honor at the start of the summer program in June to welcome the staff, then in August at this breakfast I get to thank them for their efforts this season. As I looked out over the group of about 45 high school and college staff members I could not help thinking about how great these young adults are and the lasting impact they will have on our youngest residents, your children.
The Penfield Day Camp is second to none in Monroe County, and that is because of our excellent staff. On behalf of the entire Town Board I want to recognize and thank all of the staff for their hard work making a difference in our campers’ lives this summer. I hope to see many of you back next year…great job!
In this week’s Farm Market/Garden Center series, I would like to highlight Wilbert’s U-Pick Blueberries and Raspberries located at 1515 Salt Road. And let’s not forget their self-serve sweet corn! A visit to Wilbert’s is a great outing with children and grandchildren. Our daughters and granddaughters find it a wonderful spot to load the refrigerator with healthy snacks. Visit Wilbert’s Facebook page to read the latest reviews—and remember to shop locally, it does make a difference for the entire community!
At the last Town Board meeting we presented a certificate of recognition to Bill Gray’s, located on the corner of Penfield Road and Panorama Trail, for celebrating 35 years in Penfield. During this time, Bill Gray’s has been active in the community by sponsoring sports teams, working with the Boy Scouts on Christmas tree sales, and so much more. The next time you stop in for lunch or dinner, please give a shout out to their manager Kim and her entire team to say congratulations and thank them for their service and support to our community.
Last week the Town Board had the opportunity to review the first roll of the 2016 budget. As mandated costs continue to rise (health care, retirement, insurances, and social security) and revenues continue to be reduced from county, state and federal governments, the challenge to maintain a flat budget becomes more difficult. We are in the process of reviewing every proposed increase with a fine tooth comb to make sure there is a good business plan to support proposals. Additionally, we are looking for further reductions that make sense while balancing overall services. Government spending is a topic near and dear to everyone, and your Town Board takes spending very seriously. Managing costs, expanding partnerships where possible, looking for new or expanded revenue sources, and increasing productivity are all items that will help us present the best budget to our residents.
Until next week, enjoy the nice weather. Be well and be safe!
August 3, 2015
Supervisor’s column: Week of 8/3
In this week’s Farm Market/Garden Center series, I would like to highlight Sunscape Farms. Sunscape is a 50-plus acre farm located on Creek Street that grows a wide range of fruits and vegetables as well as seasonal cut flowers. The farm is a sole proprietorship owned and managed by Nathan Savage. Years ago when kids his age were focusing on video games and action figures, Nate was cultivating his passion for growing things, which soon became his career. In 1999 Nate began growing produce to sell at markets and established Sunscape Farms in 2004. Sustainability and environmental responsibility is their focus by using little if any pesticides, and most of the fungicides they use are certified for organic growing. For more information about Sunscape Farms and the products and services they provide, please go to www.sunscapefarms.com...and remember to shop locally, it does make a difference for the entire community!
Recently the Penfield Recreation Department and its wellness partner, Wegmans, completed the installation of a QR F.I.T. Trail system along the paved trail in Rothfuss Park on Five Mile Line Road. The QR F.I.T. Trail is a series of signposts featuring QR codes that link to workout instructions and more than 150 instructional videos for core, upper and lower body, and flexibility workouts. The system works directly with users’ smartphones and QR code reader. Users scan a QR for a workout, choose their intensity level, view a video, and then perform the exercise. Exercise videos change monthly, so frequent visitors will not get bored with the same routine, and user data is not collected. Penfield is the first town in the area to install this innovative outdoor fitness system. The QR F.I.T. Trail system follows the Town of Penfield’s successful “Passport to Wellness” partnership with Wegmans that originated in Penfield and has since been replicated in many states. Learn more about QR F.I.T. Trail at www.qrfittrail.com.
I am proud to say that for more than 25 years the Town and Penfield Little League (PLL) have developed a relationship that is second to none in Monroe County, and one might say a benchmark for the region. Recently I was indulging in a cheeseburger (one of the best you can find in Penfield from Rosey’s) after work, watching a few innings of quality baseball and speaking with PLL president Greg Kamp who was updating me on the 2015 season to date. Here are a few highlights as of our conversation: The Boys Junior Team is off to the New York State Championships*, the Intermediate Team won the New York State Championship and is now in Mid-Atlantic Regionals, the Girls Senior Team won districts and made it to States, Boys 9-10 made to sectionals, and Girls 10-11 made it to States. Wow, this is one of the best years PLL has ever seen!
The rest of the story is the fact that PLL is hosting Boys Districts, Junior Districts and Sectionals, 10-11 Sectionals, Girls 10-11 States, and Boys 9-10 States. On behalf of the entire community of Penfield, I would like to recognize all of the boys and girls who participate in the PLL program for baseball and softball, as well as their coaches, Greg Kamp, and the PLL Board of Directors for all their volunteer efforts to make this program the envy of many communities and organizations.
As for construction, roadwork on Route 441 will continue for the next few weeks. Please drive according to conditions, watch out for construction workers and vehicles, and drive safely!
*Update: Over the weekend, the Penfield Little League Junior (under-14) baseball team defeated the Massapequa Coast Little League team 12-2 in Dix Hills, Suffolk County, to win the New York State title and advance to the Eastern Regional for the second year in a row.