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March 29, 2018
Message from the Supervisor: Golf course moratorium extended

Last night the Penfield Town Board passed resolution 18T-089 to adopt a local law extending the moratorium and prohibition of public golf course redevelopment within the Town of Penfield. The moratorium is in effect through March 31, 2019. (The Town Board held a public hearing regarding the moratorium extension on March 21, 2018.)

The moratorium extension serves two key purposes. Most importantly, it will support the efforts of the Town’s 2020 Comprehensive Plan Update Committee as it works with staff and outside consultants to review and address residential, commercial, and recreational properties; the status and progress of the new Mixed Use District; infrastructure; multi-modal connectivity; sustainability; aging in place for elders; medical services; schools; rezoning opportunities; and new zoning districts.

The extension will also cover the gap in the March 30, 2018 moratorium expiration and the expected mid- to late-April closing date for the Town’s purchase of the former Shadow Pines property. 


March 26, 2018
Supervisor's guest columnist Chris Bilow, Director, Penfield Recreation, March 26, 2018

Guest columnist Chris Bilow, Director, Penfield Recreation

It is a pleasure and privilege to guest write for the supervisor’s column this week on behalf of the Recreation Department. 

The summer period is a busy time for all, and the Penfield Recreation Department is no different! We have many programs and events planned for this summer so be sure to check out the summer brochure which will be available in early April. A few of the new family events you should look for include, “How do they do that?” and “Dogs Day Out!” (I have provided a list of key dates and programs for a few of our spring and summer events at the end of this column.)

New this summer is our family-orientated Recreation Destination program. Pick up the booklet in the recreation office and visit or participate in all of the identified activities we have planned this spring and summer. This program is another offering made possible by the support of Wegmans, our wellness partner. 

Starting in April, the Recreation Department will begin the process of updating the Town’s Five-Year Recreation Master Plan. This document is a planning tool that will guide improvements for developing the recreation programs, parks, and recreation facilities for the next five years. The update will be guided by a steering committee comprised of community members, Town staff, and other key individuals. 

The committee will host several sessions at which Penfield residents will be able to share their thoughts and views on the direction of the department and help shape future recreation opportunities for our community. The Master Plan will focus on programs, facilities, and parks. I encourage all residents to participate in any and all opportunities throughout the update process. We are looking to make Penfield Recreation your recreation destination!

Mark your calendar with these key spring and summer program dates:

  • Good Neighbor Day: Saturday, May 19
  • Memorial Day Ceremony of Remembrance: Monday, May 28
  • Summer concert series at the Penfield Amphitheater and Kiwanis Stage: Begins June 1 (Food truck rodeo)
  • Independence Day Parade and Fireworks: Saturday, June 30
  • The “Passport to Play” and “Hit the Trail Passport” are always available at Penfield Recreation

For details on any of the above special events or any of the programs from Penfield Recreation please contact us at www.penfieldrec.org, recreation@penfield.org, or 340-8655.  We look forward to seeing you at an event this summer!


March 19, 2018
"Passport Night in Penfield" April 5

Penfield residents in need of a new or updated passport are invited to attend “Passport Night in Penfield” on Thursday, April 5, 5:30 to 7:30 PM at the Penfield Town Hall, 3100 Atlantic Avenue. This service comes to Penfield through a partnership of the Monroe County Clerk’s Office and the Town of Penfield. Please call Town Clerk Amy Steklof at 340-8627 to sign up in advance, however, registration is not required.

“I am again pleased to work with the Monroe County Clerk’s Office to help local residents conveniently apply for their passports right here in Penfield,” said Amy Steklof.  “We get a great turnout every time we host this service.” 

Residents may also apply for a Passport Card, which is limited to land and sea crossing between the US and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean. Some passport renewals may be eligible to renew by mail and save the $25 processing fee. County Clerk staff will review options with applicants on an individual basis.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Town of Penfield on providing this vital service to residents," said Monroe County Clerk Adam J. Bello.  "Passport Night allows residents to have helpful one-on-one interactions with Clerk staff to ensure all of their questions are answered and their passport needs are met."

Passport applicants must provide proof of U.S. citizenship in one of three forms: a certified copy of a birth certificate with a raised seal and their parents’ names; original naturalization papers, or an old U.S. passport issued in the person’s name. Children under 16 will still need to bring their raised seal birth certificate even if they have an old passport. Proof of identity is also required in the form of a valid NYS Driver License or non-Driver ID, a valid military ID, naturalization papers issued to the applicant as an adult, or an INS Alien Registration Card. People born in Monroe County may obtain a copy of their birth certificate by contacting the Bureau of Vital Statistics. Visit the department’s website at http://www.monroecounty.gov/clerk-records.php#band for details.

The fee for a new US Passport for an applicant 16 and older is $145 ($110 plus a $35 application fee). For an applicant under 16, the fee is $115 ($80 plus a $35 application fee). Passport cards—which may be used only for travel by land or sea between the US, Canada, and Mexico—are $30 for applicants aged 16 and older and $15 for applicants under 16. Passport card renewals are $30 and passport book renewals are $110. Passport photos are $7.00 for a set of two.

For application requirements, residents can visit the County Clerk’s website at http://www.monroecounty.gov/clerk-passports.php . Residents may download a passport application to complete in advance.  Forms are available on the US Department of State’s Travel website at http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html .

Passport processing typically takes 4-6 weeks. Please call the Monroe County Clerk’s Office at 585-753-1600 with specific questions regarding the passport application process. 

Please Note: Applicants between the ages of 16 to 18 must appear with a parent or legal guardian. Children under 16 must appear with both parents or legal guardians. One parent or guardian may appear, if and only if the parent or guardian that is not present completes and has notarized a DS-3053 Form, “Statement of Consent: Issuance of a Passport to a Minor Under Age 16” along with a copy of the absent parent or guardian’s driver license.


March 19, 2018
Supervisor's guest columnist, Eric Tait, Director, DPW, March 19, 2018

Supervisor’s guest columnist Eric Tait, Director, DPW

Part I: Winter Review

March has certainly come to Penfield like a lion. On March 2nd we experienced one of the heaviest and wettest snow events to hit Rochester in recent years. In total, the storm dumped a steady 16 inches of snow. All DPW crews were hands-on throughout the event. Like many residents, we were also presented with challenges including the extreme weight of the snow, a number of cars parked in the road or abandoned, some equipment breakdowns, and even plows getting stuck while clearing cul-de-sacs and circles.

Throughout the storm—and all winter long—the DPW has worked to keep all roads in the town open and passable with 18 trucks continuously deployed to plow and salt their routes. Other loaders and smaller trucks were used to clear parking lots, doorways, and assist with some of the smaller cul-de-sacs and circles. Our parks team cleared primary sidewalks, and the DPW clerks fielded hundreds of storm-related calls and relayed priorities to foremen.

In all, the DPW team has worked countless hours and spread nearly 9,500 tons of salt to keep all local, county, and state roads, sidewalks, and town facilities open and passable for emergency responders and residents this winter.

We all hope that Mother Nature is done with the wild weather. Let’s move on to spring news.

Part II: Spring Seasonal News

Once winter is truly gone, we will attend to spring chores like filling potholes, repairing lawn damage from town plows, and verifying, repairing or replacing mailboxes damaged by our plow blades (not snow). We will also repair sidewalk damage, trim trees, and clean storm water drainage ponds and sewer systems.

Need mulch? Our mulch pile is currently stocked in the parking area on Columbus Crossing near the town hall. We will continue to replenish the pile throughout the spring and summer. This is a free service for Penfield residents in partnership with Monroe County DES. After grinding all the winter debris we should have an impressive supply.

As a reminder, brush drop-off is open to residents year-round Monday through Friday, 7:30 AM–3:00 PM, except holidays.

Please make note of the following events and activities:

DPW will host its annual Spring Drop-off at the 1607 Jackson Road Facility on Friday, May 18, 7:30 AM–5:00 PM and Saturday, May 19, 9:00 AM–3:00 PM. This service is for Penfield residents only. We will accept general household refuse; furniture; metals; appliances; lawn mowers with fluids drained; vehicle batteries; concrete, brush, and tree limbs; and tires (four per resident limit). We cannot accept propane tanks; household electronics including computers and accessories, printers, copiers; TVs; grass clippings and leaves; motorized vehicles; and hazardous materials.

Highway crews will conduct their annual oil and stone treatment program on approximately 12.5 miles of town roads and micro pave a number of cul-de-sacs and circles. Both processes extend road surface life. Details will be posted at www.penfield.org and letters will be mailed out to all residents living on streets scheduled to be treated.

Highway crews will also be undertaking the second half of the paving project in the White Village/Parkview neighborhood to repave areas of roads that were damaged and disrupted during the installation of sanitary sewers.

DPW will continue to work on drainage tasks including the completion of the Panorama Trail drainage project. Several additional projects are also scheduled for the summer season.

We are continuing to work on a few projects to support the Town’s goals of becoming more energy efficient. Although we are not doing the installation, DPW has been busy preparing a site on the DPW complex for a new solar array to be installed by Tesla (formerly Solar City). The agreement with Tesla is a power purchase agreement (PPA). With this PPA, Tesla pays the entire cost of equipment and materials up front and no Penfield taxpayer money is being spent on the project. Over time, the new system will provide approximately 70 to 75 percent of the electrical usage of our town facilities. We will also continue to convert the Town’s street lights to LED and upgrade the lighting and playground at Greenwood Park.

If you are a parent or grandparent, please join us for our popular heavy equipment show for children at the Penfield Public Library on July 19. Watch the library website for details. Children and adults love to see and climb around the impressive DPW heavy equipment. Bring your camera!

If you need to dispose of household hazardous waste please note the Monroe County Department of Environmental Service (DES) has moved our traditional spring collection to the fall, on Saturday, September 15, 7:45 AM–1:00 PM. The Town of Penfield will be hosting this year’s event at our DPW complex at 1607 Jackson Road. Schedule your required appointment and learn more at http://www.monroecounty.gov/hhw.

We have a wonderful group of dedicated people working at the Penfield DPW. Public safety and the safety of our employees is our highest priority, guiding our decision-making every day.

When you are out driving in your car—whether in a snowstorm or on a beautiful summer day—please pay attention to the posted signage and our flag people, and follow their directions. Please remember to always give heavy equipment and plows the room they need to perform their jobs. We want to ensure that at the end of each day, our valued employees return to their families in the in the same healthy condition in which they reported to work.   

Thank you and enjoy your spring and summer!


March 12, 2018
Supervisor's guest columnist, Jim Costello, Director of Business Development, March 12, 2018

Guest columnist Jim Costello, Director of Business Development

As you have traveled around the town of Penfield in recent months you will have noticed a lot of construction and business activity throughout the community—that’s because Penfield continues to be a popular place to build a new business or residence. 

Empire Boulevard, in particular, continues to experience a renaissance that began three years ago. Waters’ Edge (formerly South Point Cove Apartments), located on the north side of Empire Boulevard in the LaSalle’s Landing zoning district, is near completion with 331 living units among nine buildings. All of the buildings have received Certificates of Occupancy and are nearly fully occupied. The owner, Spoleta Construction, is in the process of finalizing outside work including the creation of a public pedestrian trail that leads to Abraham Lincoln Park.

The K2 Brewing Company, located at 1221 Empire Boulevard, opened in December 2017. The business is the site of the former All That Jazz Antique Shop. The brewery serves a variety of beers, vodkas, soft drinks and food by Midnight BBQ. Please visit this new exciting business and introduce yourself to owners Brad and Kyle Kennedy.

The Planning Board recently approved a 6,000 square foot retail building at 1930 Empire Boulevard. The building will replace the former Beale Street restaurant and will be leased to two tenants (Verizon and a second tenant to be determined). This building will now be considered a part of Baytowne Plaza and will provide access to the plaza through its parking lot.

Mary Cariola has recently constructed a new residence at 1146 State Road.  It proposes to relocate its residents from 2575 Browncroft Blvd. to its new site in March. The new nine-unit residence is situated on seven acres at the intersection of State and Jackson Roads and will provide a more tranquil setting for its residents. The former residence is subject to a purchase contract, however no new use for the site has been discussed with the Town to date.

Ellison Heights apartments, located between Penfield Road and Old Penfield Road, is near completion. The site consists of 180 units and a clubhouse and swimming pool for tenant use. The first of five buildings has been completed and the remaining four are quick to follow: 28 units are expected to be available for lease by the end of April, 28 more in the second building in May, another 28 in the third building in June, 36 more in the fourth building in July, and the final 60 units will open in the fifth building in November.

In the Penfield Road area, Dr. Matthew Smith is relocating his Panorama Oral Surgery office from 625 Panorama Trail to 1739 Penfield Road and is constructing a new 2,050 square foot office adjacent to the entrance to Channing H. Philbrick Park. The new office should be completed by early summer.

Dr. Greg Merkley is also relocating his dental practice from 2086 Five Mile Line Road. He has received approval to construct a new 5,000 square foot office across the street at the intersection of Five Mile Line Road and Liberty Street. Work is expected to start soon and the relocation completed by the fall of this year.

Penfield Storage, located at 1677 Penfield Road (next to Charlie Brown’s restaurant) is proposing to add 15,000 square feet of additional storage to the site. The existing building adjacent to Charlie Brown’s will be demolished to make way for an additional 4,000 square foot climate controlled storage facility.  

Heritage Christian Services is purchasing the property at 2730 Atlantic Avenue (the north east corner of the intersection of Scribner Road) for the purpose of constructing a 12,000 square foot day care center. The property is adjacent to the Bay Trail/Scribner Road School campus; the Planning Board discussed a Sketch Plan Review at its February 8, 2018 meeting.

On the east side of Penfield, the Oak and Apple Cidery has been recently constructed at 1600 Dublin Road and is anticipated to open in August. The cidery will press hard and sweet cider with on-site sales and distribution to area stores.

In 2015, the Amish family donated a 19-acre parcel of land, located at 1451 Fairport Nine Mile Point Road, to the Town of Penfield. The Town will use the land to create a new pocket park that will include a stream and trails. DPW crews are now constructing a small gravel parking lot at the trail head and a new paved access drive located in the NYSDOT right-of-way. Work on the project is weather dependent and is expected to carry on into the spring.

Wickham Farms is in the process of relocating its agri-business from its current location at 1821 Fairport Nine Mile Point Road to 1315 Sweets Corner Road. They are selling their property at 1821 Fairport Nine Mile Point Road to Home Leasing and Episcopal Senior Communities, Inc. who propose to develop a mixed use community with independent living, memory care, and small scaled businesses. This is the first mixed use proposal in the recently created Mixed Use District along Fairport Nine Mile Point Road.  The Planning Board discussed the mixed use proposal on March 8, 2018 and anticipates hearing Wickham Farms relocation as early as April 12, 2018.

Mascot Homes, builders of the recently constructed Sparrow Point on Baird Road, is proposing the development of a 17-lot, single-family home subdivision at 1698 Creek Street, approximately 300 feet north of Bunker Hill Drive. The price point is anticipated to be in the $400,000 and above range. The Planning Board also heard this application on March 8, 2018.

Finally, in August of this year, the Town of Penfield is honored to again host the Rochester Homebuilders Associations’ Homearama at the Water Song subdivision on Five Mile Line Road. More details to follow in the coming months.

It should be a busy construction season in Penfield this summer. Please contact the Planning Department at 340-8640 or planning@penfield.org if you have any questions regarding the projects mentioned above or any other project that is of interest to you.

P.S. For all who enjoy a hearty breakfast that benefits the community…The next Flapjack Saturday Community Fundraiser sponsored by the First Baptist Church of Penfield (FBP) will be held on Saturday, March 17, from 8:00 to 10:00 AM at 1862 Penfield Road. FBP invites you for delicious pancakes, pure maple syrup, scrambled eggs, sausage and more…all for just $5.00 per person. March proceeds will go directly to Penfield Area Churches for Habitat for Humanity: a coalition of churches from Penfield, Webster, and East Rochester working with Flower City Habitat for Humanity to eliminate housing poverty in our area by financing and constructing homes for low income homeowners in Rochester. So bring the whole family, meet up with friends, or make new ones. Fellowship Hall is handicapped accessible and the breakfast is outstanding! For more information and details, please go to www.fbpenfield.org.


March 8, 2018
Change in Spectrum Cable Services and Penfield TV

The Town of Penfield received notification from Spectrum Cable on March 5, 2018 of upcoming changes to cable video services in Penfield. Of note, analog signal transmission is being replaced by a full digitally encrypted delivery signal.

This means customers using existing digital equipment (set-top boxes, digital adaptors or CableCard devices) to view their television programming will continue to view video programming without interruption. However, customers without Charter Spectrum-issued digital equipment must install a Charter Spectrum set-top box or CableCard device on each television to continue receiving video content.

Charter Spectrum is providing free equipment offers to customers, depending on customer status and current equipment, for a specified period of time (up to one year at no charge). Upon expiration of the free equipment offer, applicable standard rates will apply at $6.99 for each box. 

Cable TV subscribers should all so be aware that after 33 years of continuous service, Charter Spectrum has chosen to move the Town's Public, Education, and Government Access channels (PEG channels, PCTV) to the following new channel locations:

  • Public Access—former cable channel 15—is now cable channel 1301
  • Educational Access—former cable channel 4—is now cable channel 1302
  • Government Access—former cable channel 12—is now cable channel 1303  

All PEG channels will be searchable within the Charter Spectrum Program Guide, which is now available to customers via their set-top boxes, digital adaptors or CableCard devices.

Charter Spectrum is communicating channel changes through direct mail to customers and an informational website at www.spectrum.com/digitalnow

Charter Spectrum customers in need of assistance should call 1-844-278-3906.

The Town of Penfield remains committed to its goal of open and accessible community and government. Community programming and government meetings will continue to be seen on the new cable channel lineups and also online for on-demand and live viewing at www.penfield.org and Penfield TV's website, www.penfieldTV.org.

Roku users may install the Penfield TV app to watch 24x7 live streams and videos on demand. To install the Penfield TV app you need a Roku device or a Smart TV with the Roku App installed. In the Roku "main menu" select the "channel store," select "special interests," scroll down until you find "Penfield TV" and select “install.” (Users may also perform a "search" under the "channel store" for the keyword "Penfield.")

In addition to Roku, the Town continues to actively explore other resources and “Over the Top” (OTT) delivery services for live and on-demand video content.

For more information or assistance on how to view Town of Penfield video programming please call Penfield Community TV at 585-340-8661, email at pctv@penfield.org, or go to www.penfieldTV.org.


March 5, 2018
Supervisor's column March 5, 2018

Shadow Pines vote update…On behalf of the Town Board, I would like to thank everyone who came out to vote on the two propositions involving the acquisition of the Shadow Pines property. Voting is the primary way for citizens to participate in government, and by voting in this special election Penfield residents made their voices heard and registered their opinion on how they think the town should proceed on this matter.

With close to 80 percent support, voters in the Town of Penfield approved both propositions to finance the Town’s purchase of the former Shadow Pines Golf Club. Proposition No. 1 represents a Bond Resolution for financing for the purchase of 206 golf course acres for $3,390,000. Proposition No. 2 represents a Bond Resolution for financing for the purchase of six acres and the Clark House buildings for $260,000. The vote results (including absentee ballots) for Proposition No. 1 were 5,680 for and 1,309 against; and for Proposition No. 2, 5,651 for and 1,238 against.  

Legal and financial matters will proceed with an estimated closing in April 2018. Residents should note that the property will not officially be owned by the Town until the closing, and therefore it is still considered private property and cannot be used by the public.

Once the sale is complete, the Town will assess and maintain the structures and land immediately surrounding the Clark House. The golf course acreage will not be mowed and maintained; however, it will be made safe. 

The Town is acquiring the property with a designation of “general municipal” use, which allows the greatest flexibility for overall community and public uses. A final plan has not been decided. Initially, passive recreation (hiking, cross country skiing, open space) will be considered to be allowed on certain portions of the property until a final master plan is approved and reviewed with residents. Potential future land uses may include a combination of open space, passive and active recreational uses along with general municipal uses such as a community center, library, lodge, or other public facilities. 

The Town Board will form a committee of residents later in 2018 to explore and make recommendations for future land uses. Residents who wish to serve on that committee should express their interest in writing, including supporting details of their experience and expertise, and send to me at supervisor@penfield.org or by mail to Supervisor LaFountain, 3100 Atlantic Avenue, Penfield, NY 14526. Defining future land use and the zoning of the property will also be a key responsibility of the 2020 Comprehensive Plan Committee.

For the most accurate information on this property as well as the history and background information on The Shadows please go to the project page at http://www.penfield.org/index.php?pr=Golf_The_Shadows

Friday’s snow storm presented challenges to our plow crews due to the extreme weight of the snow, a number of cars parked or abandoned in the road, some equipment breakdowns, and even plows getting stuck while clearing cul-de-sacs and working around obstacles and abandoned vehicles. All these factors made clearing snow take twice the time of a “typical” snow event. I would like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding. I would also like to recognize our DPW team members, many of whom spent 14 continuous hours in the driver’s seat plowing. Any and all damaged lawns and mail boxes will be repaired when conditions permit. 

Over the weekend I had the honor of attending the Eagle Scout Court of Honor for Ben Szulgit from Troop 9. Ben began his scouting career at age seven; he has earned all of the necessary 21 merit badges and held a variety of leadership positions over the years to help qualify for his Eagle Award. Ben’s Eagle project involved designing, constructing, and installing bluebird houses at Sherwood Park located in East Penfield. As the old saying goes, the proof is in the pudding! Ben’s troop has witnessed that bluebirds have, in fact, returned to the park! Each bird house was successfully inhabited by these beautiful birds in a very short period of time. 

Ben will be attending Penn State this fall to study Chemical Engineering. On behalf of the entire Town of Penfield, I would like to congratulate and thank Ben for attaining the rank of Eagle. Ben, you have made your family, friends, troop and community proud…good luck this fall in school and in everything you do!

Until next week, be well and be safe!

Tony

supervisor@penfield.org 


March 2, 2018
Message from the Supervisor: Snow plow operations

Today’s storm has presented challenges to our plow crews due to the extreme weight of the snow, a number of cars parked in the road or abandoned, some equipment breakdowns, and even plows getting stuck while clearing cul-de-sacs and working around obstacles including abandoned vehicles. Effective snow removal – especially during an extreme event like this one – requires the cooperation of residents and motorists. 

To that end, our DPW would like to remind everyone of the following: 

  • If you have an emergency that requires an ambulance, fire equipment or police assistance, please call 911. They will notify the town DPW office of the emergency response and we will dispatch equipment to plow and support emergency services.
  • New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law and New York State Highway Law prohibit depositing any snow upon the highway or its shoulders. Please help keep our roadways safe for all residents in our community by plowing, blowing or shoveling snow only onto your own property. If you contract with a snow plowing service please ask them to ensure you are in compliance with the law. Monroe County Sheriff Deputies will issue tickets if this occurs. 
  • Snow plow rules are in effect in the Town of Penfield from November 15 through April 1. This means no parking is allowed on all roads and highways between 2:00 AM and 7:00 AM to allow highway crews to safely and effectively maintain roads. Please try to keep vehicles off the roadways at all times during snow emergencies.  
  • Please be patient as plow crews are coming. Main roads are plowed before subdivisions. 




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