Putnam County has been declared eligible for individual assistance

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 13, 2012

MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive

845 808-1001

joining Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Richmond, Rockland, Suffolk, Queens and Westchester Counties.  This designation will allow residents to seek assistance from FEMA for losses that may have sustained during Hurricane Sandy.  The County is now working with local municipalities and New York State to secure Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) in Putnam County.

The role of a DRC is to allow residents to come in and speak face to face with FEMA representatives regarding numerous issues:

 

  • Review and clarification regarding any correspondence residents may have received from FEMA
  • Long term and short term housing assistance questions
  • SBA Program opportunities
  • Status of FEMA applications
  • General guidance questions

Residents needing assistance are encouraged to apply online at http://www.disasterassistance.gov/ but they can also apply in person at the DRC.

“While we are truly grateful that no lives were lost during this historic storm, we are seeing that many of our residents have sustained tremendous personal property damage.  Having this designation will allow individual homeowners to apply for the federal assistance dollars to begin their recovery.”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: PUTNAM COUNTY EXECUTIVE THANKS ‘TEAM PUTNAM’ FOR ABOVE AND BEYOND EFFORT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
Nov. 7, 2012

PUTNAM COUNTY EXECUTIVE THANKS  ‘TEAM PUTNAM’ FOR  ABOVE AND BEYOND EFFORT

“An extraordinary storm brought out the best in this county and I want to thank ‘Team Putnam,’ those tireless and dedicated members of the Command Staff under Deputy County Executive Bruce Walker, who worked above and beyond to guide us through Hurricane Sandy,” said County Executive, MaryEllen Odell. “Deputy County Executive, Bruce  J. Walker, Sgt. Frank Christian and Tom Velotti of the Sheriff’s Department, Health Department Commissioner Dr. Allan Beals and Marianne Burdick, Director of Emergency Management Tom Lannon, Acting Commissioner of Emergency Service Adam Stiebeling, Pat Sheehy, Director of the Office for the Aging, Adrienne Spadaccini,  Risk Manager, all our municipal leaders, and our American Red Cross volunteers, all of whom worked  long hours day and night to get us through the worst storm this county has ever seen.”  

In her wake, Hurricane Sandy left 90 percent of Putnam residents, businesses and government offices without power and more than 200 roads closed due to the downing of utility poles and trees. Tidal flooding occurred and left portions of downtown Cold Spring and Garrison under several feet of water. 

“Putnam’s Emergency Service personnel were called upon en masse and faced an enormous task,” said Odell.

However, each day saw progress being made and after a week of tireless efforts by so many, Odell announced on Monday, Nov. 5, that all Putnam County offices were open and would continue to operate during regular business hours.

By Tuesday, with the concentrated efforts of Board of Elections Commissioners Anthony Scannipiecco and Robert Bennett and their staff, all of Putnam’s polling places were open and functioning in time for Election Day voters.

“The road to recovery is well under way thanks to the extraordinary efforts of Putnam’s dedicated, selfless and capable employees,” said Odell.

Putnam Valley Highway Superintendent Larry Cobb was most appreciative of the combined efforts of numerous county and state departments during the aftermath of Sandy. In a statement released on Tuesday, Cobb thanked his town and the county highway departments as well as the County Executive’s office, the Emergency Management team, the Sheriff’s Department and the New York State Police, NYSEG crews and Lewis Tree Service for [their] “great co-operation and real time communication all throughout the storm.”  

Announcing that 70 percent of the damage created by Hurricane Sandy in his town has been removed or repaired, Cobb said he is now teaming up with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (F.E.M.A.) representatives to recoup funding for the clean-up.

Odell and her Emergency Management team also met with FEMA officials on Tuesday. “Putnam County brought FEMA in to work with our municipalities and villages as well as our residents in their clean-up or reconstruction,” she said.  

A preliminary damage assessment for public and individual assistance is expected to be conducted on Wednesday, Nov. 7. Two teams consisting of personnel from FEMA, the State and County offices of Emergency Management, and other officials will review damage to each town and village.

 “The Emergency Operations Center remains open and staffed to further assist residents still affected by Hurricane Sandy,” said Odell late Tuesday. “We are here and ready to assist the storm weary residents of Putnam County,” said Odell.

Officials expect that by Wednesday, the remaining 38 percent of Putnam residents still without power will have it restored.

Putnam County Officials Urge County Residents To Continue To Monitor The Arrival Of A Dangerous Storm With High Winds

Issued By: Putnam County Emergency Management

Headline: UPDATE: Putnam County Officials Urge County Residents To Continue To Monitor The Arrival Of A Dangerous Storm With High Winds

This morning, in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy, MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive, along with County Emergency Response Officials participated in a National Weather Service briefing. Following is an overview of the current and predicted conditions.

Hurricane Sandy continues its slow path towards our region and as it does, there have been several changes. Over the last 24 hours the center of the storm continues to gain strength and organization. As it slowly gains strength it would appear that it is going to make landfall slightly north of the original prediction, now central New Jersey.

For our area the two major concerns are high wind speeds and tidal surges along the Hudson River. While rain remains a factor, the National Weather Service believes we will not see the severe impacts from water as we did in Irene. The winds for our area will begin to pick up in intensity at approximately 4:00 AM Monday October 29, 2012 reaching its peak Monday at 8:00 PM. Winds, although diminishing, will stay with us through mid-day Thursday.

Total rainfall for this event is 2″ – 6″ with localized rain bands bringing in 1″ 2″ per hour.

Winds:
Sunday (10/28/12) 8:00 PM 14 MPH
Monday (10/29/12) 8:00 AM 28 MPH Gusts to 44 MPH
Monday (10/29/12) 8:00 PM 41 MPH Gusts to 62 MPH
Tuesday (10/30/12) 8:00 AM 32 MPH Gusts to 49 MPH
Tuesday (10/30/12) 8:00 PM 24 MPH Gusts to 36 MPH
Wednesday (10/31/12) 8:00 AM 11 MPH Gusts to 25 MPH
Wednesday (10/31/12) 8:00 PM 7 MPH

Putnam’s Hudson River communities need to prepare for a higher than normal tidal surge. Due to atmospheric conditions and an increasing East Fetch (sustaining winds and atmospheric pressure that do not allow normal drainage of previous high tides) it is predicted that the tidal surge will be 2’ – 4’ over the normal high tide with the National Weather Service predicting closer to the 4’ mark. In addition the longer storm duration will result in up to 3 higher than normal tidal cycles.

Temperatures will remain slightly above seasonal at the onset, but as the storm mixes with a cold front, temperatures will begin to descend into slightly lower than seasonal. By Wednesday we will see temperatures of 50 F during the day and 40 F overnight. There are no below freezing temperatures predicted.

We should be prepared for localized flooding conditions as the remaining leaf cover is removed from trees. This can create blockage for normal drainage paths such as small streams.

We advise all residents and visitors to Putnam County to prepare now.

 

Charge your cell phone and have a car charger available.

Have a battery powered radio and flashlights as well as extra batteries on hand.

Make sure you have enough medications (prescriptions and over the counter) on hand for all family members for at least one week.

Inspect your house and surrounding areas for loose items, secure anything that can move in high winds. Go to http://www.ready.gov for more storm preparation tips.

In addition, take time now to review your Personal Storm Emergency Plan and:

Have an Emergency GO Kit (everything you need if you have to leave your house)

Establish a Family Communication Plan (how will you communicate with your family during and after the event?)
Know your surroundings; is your property flood prone? Take protective action now!
If you have a generator, be sure it has been installed by a qualified electrician. You MUST have a transfer switch installed to prevent dangerous electricity from injuring utility crews as they repair damaged lines

For more information on storm preparation go to www.ready.gov

To track the storm or for up to date weather information go to www.weather.gov or www.nhc.noaa.gov (the National Weather Service’s Hurricane Center)

To report an outage or to review current outages for NYSEG go to http://www.nyseg.com/outages/default.html

To report an outage or to review current outages for Central Hudson go to http://stormcentral.cenhud.com/default.aspx

Stay informed before, during and after the event by signing up for NY-Alert at www.nyalert.gov. By being a NY-Alert subscriber you can receive weather advisories, road closure information and local updates from the County and your local municipality by phone, fax, email or text message, all at no charge!

NYSEG and RG&E Emergency Planners Preparing for Possible Effects of Hurricane Sandy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 26, 2012

NYSEG and RG&E Emergency Planners Preparing for

Possible Effects of Hurricane Sandy

>> NYSEG and RG&E urge customers to stay away from downed power lines – even lines that appear “dead” can be deadly. NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131 to report downed power lines or other hazardous situations; RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.1701.

>> Emergency generators can be dangerous. Carefully read, understand and follow manufacturer’s instructions when operating an emergency generator. Never run emergency generators indoors; operate them only outdoors in well-ventilated areas, away from windows and doors, and never in a garage.

>> NYSEG and RG&E remind customers to stay out of flooded basements because energized wiring or outlets below the water line may pose a hazard. Natural gas service in a flooded basement may also pose a danger. If a basement or home is in danger of flooding, customers should contact their utilities to turn off electricity and/or natural gas service.

>> For electricity emergencies and to report power interruptions, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131; RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.1701.

>> For natural gas emergencies and to report suspected natural gas odors, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1121; RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.1702.

Rochester, NYNYSEG and RG&E emergency planners are closely monitoring weather forecasts and preparing for the possible effects of Hurricane Sandy. Depending on the exact track of the storm, portions of the NYSEG and RG&E service areas could experience considerable wind and significant rainfall early next week. NYSEG and RG&E are concerned with the potential impact of falling limbs and trees on power lines and also with possible flooding that could affect both electricity and natural gas facilities.

NYSEG and RG&E front line and support personnel across the state are on heightened alert, the companies’ customer relations centers are prepared and materials are on hand to repair any damage to the companies’ energy delivery systems.

NYSEG and RG&E offer customers the following storm tips:

Before a storm strikes

–     Anyone who uses life-sustaining equipment that operates on electricity should contact their   utility right away (NYSEG: 1.800.572.1111; RG&E: 1.800.743.2110) right away. Customers   may be enrolled in a critical customer program or provided specific advice on how to prepare          for power interruptions.

–       Keep flashlights, a battery-powered radio or TV and fresh batteries handy.

–       Have at least one telephone that is not dependent on electricity. (Cordless phones won’t work during a power interruption.)

–       Keep a supply of non-perishable food and bottled water on hand.

–       Make sure cell phone batteries are fully charged.

During a power interruption

–       Contact neighbors to see if their power is off. A loss of power may be the result of a blown fuse or a tripped circuit breaker.

–       To report a power interruption, contact NYSEG at 1.800.572.1131; RG&E at 1.800.743.1701. Our telephone systems let callers report the problem, help our crews respond quickly and efficiently, and provide customers with power interruption updates. Because many people may be trying to reach us during a power interruption, phone lines may be busy. Anyone who has access to a working computer during a power interruption can also report the interruption online at nyseg.com or rge.com.

–       Listen to a battery-powered radio for weather and power restoration updates.

–       Turn off major appliances (electric water heaters, refrigerators and freezers) and sensitive electronic equipment (TVs, VCRs, DVD players, computers, audio equipment) to prevent overloading and possible damage when power is restored. Turning off this equipment may mean unplugging it, turning off a circuit breaker or removing a fuse for the circuit that provides power to this equipment. Leave one light switch “on” to know when power has been restored.

–       Don’t use a natural gas or propane range to heat your home.

–       Never use outdoor grills or stoves inside.

–       Keep refrigerators and freezers closed as much as possible. Most food will last 24 hours if you minimize the opening of refrigerator and freezer doors.

After your power is restored

–       If a basement or home was flooded, customers should have an electrician check the home and have a plumbing and heating contractor check natural gas appliances before contacting NYSEG or RG&E to have services turned on.

–       Turn on appliances and sensitive electronic equipment one at a time to avoid overloading circuits.

–       Replenish emergency supplies used during the storm.

# # #

About NYSEG, RG&E and Iberdrola USA: NYSEG and RG&E are subsidiaries of Iberdrola USA. NYSEG serves 878,000 electricity customers and 261,000 natural gas customers across more than 40% of upstate New York. RG&E serves 367,000 electricity customers and 303,000 natural gas customers in a nine-county region centered on the City of Rochester. Iberdrola USA, a subsidiary of global energy leader Iberdrola, S.A., is an energy services and delivery company with more than 2.4 million customers in upstate New York and New England. We are a team of dedicated individuals working as one to deliver value to our customers, employees and shareholders. By providing outstanding customer service and exceptional reliability, while holding safety and the environment in high regard, we aspire to be a world-class energy company. For more information, visit www.nyseg.com, www.rge.com and www.iberdrolausa.com.

Follow Us on Twitter: @NYSEandG, @RGandE, @IberdrolaUSA

Media Contacts:   Clayton Ellis cmellis@nyseg.com 607.762.7336

Dan Hucko   Daniel_Hucko@rge.com   585.724.8825

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Property Tax Cap Not Enough and Puts Strain on County Budgets

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 17, 2012

MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive

845 808-1001

PROPERTY TAX CAP NOT ENOUGH  AND PUTS STRAIN ON COUNTY BUDGETS

MOODY’S  Assigns  Aa2 Rating to Putnam County Bond Issue

County Executive MaryEllen Odell announced today that Moody’s Investors Service assigned Aa2 rating to the $ 6.4 million Public Improvement Bond Issue to be sold November 1, 2012.   Odell stated, “Putnam County’s strong credit rating, developed through sound fiscal management, will save taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest costs over the life of the bond issue.”   Odell further noted that the proposed 2013 Budget which holds the line on spending, reduces the County’s appropriation of fund balance, and includes a true 2% property tax increase that is lower than the New York State Tax Cap, was cited as a contributing factor to the County’s favorable bond rating.

In closing, Odell stated, “Our administration understands the struggles that our real property taxpayers are going through in this economy, and we will continue to recommend and implement cost saving measures to ease this burden.  However, Putnam and all other Counties throughout New York State need meaningful mandate relief from Albany in order to achieve substantial relief for property taxpayers.”

For specific information regarding this bond issue, please contact William J. Carlin, Jr. Commissioner of Finance at 845-808-1075 EXT 49321.

For Immediate Release: Putnam County Initiates Mentoring Day for Those with Disabilities

October 16, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MaryEllen Odell

Putnam County Executive

(845) 808-1001

Putnam County Initiates Mentoring Day for Those with Disabilities

Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell, in collaboration with CAREERS for People with Disabilities, Inc., and the Putnam County Coordinating Council for People with Disabilities, has added another history making milestone to an already historic year for the county by declaring Wednesday, Oct. 17 as Disability Mentoring Day in Putnam County. On this day, 26 disabled individuals will have the opportunity to spend part of a work day observing County employees on their jobs.

“I can’t think of anything recently that has given me more pleasure than working with these dedicated organizations to initiate a program such as this in our county,” said Odell.

A resolution was introduced at the State of the County Address which promoted job “opportunities for students and job seekers with disabilities.”  As part of Resolution 95, which passed unanimously,, a Mentoring Day program within the county was endorsed.

“This Administration is committed to working with those with disabilities to assist them in experiencing what it could be like if they were given the opportunity to work within county government or a similar workplace environment,” said Odell. 

Held each October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America’s workers with disabilities. This year’s theme is “A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?”

Having Putnam County workplace doors opened to the disabled as a teaching tool has long been a goal for CAREERS Executive Director Tina Cornish-Lauria.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for people with disabilities to explore various jobs in the community and learn how they can acquire the skills necessary to perform those jobs. We appreciate the County working with us to make this day possible for so many,” she said.

Domestic Violence Awareness Event: October 17th, 1:00pm on the steps of the Historical Putnam County Courthouse

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
845-808-1001

As part of her administration’s ongoing support in recognizing October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell and approximately 100 county employees will be gathering on the steps of the Historical Putnam County Courthouse on Wednesday, October 17 at 1 p.m. Each will be wearing a purple T-shirt, the color symbolic with bringing domestic violence to the forefront of public attention.

Employees purchased the shirts, which were designed by Brian Austin who works in the county’s IT department.

All proceeds from the sale will be donated to the Women’s Resource Center.

MaryEllen Odell applauds Carmel Revitalization Sidewalk Project in Carmel

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
845-808-1001

County Executive Maryellen Odell stated “I would like to take this opportunity to applaud all involved in the construction and management of the new Carmel Revitalization sidewalk project in the town of Carmel.   Odell further expressed, “I appreciate the patience of the traveling public and local business while the hard work of completing this project was accomplished.”

Highway and Facilities Commissioner, Fred Pena, found working together with partners from the Town of Carmel, the NYSDOT and our general contractor were vital to completing the project within the budget provided and in a timely fashion.  Commissioner Pena stated, “The challenges of a tight work zone through the Route 6/52 intersection and numerous utility interferences presented several challenges, but we managed through them efficiently and effectively to deliver this important infrastructure improvement.”

Construction crews were also at times frustrated as they faced unexpected impediments caused by existing utilities along the thoroughfare.

“Despite our struggles with existing utilities and heavy traffic flow through the area, we are very proud of the finished product we were able to deliver to the residents of Putnam County,” said Fred Todd, vice-president of Brennan Construction Company.

On Tuesday, October 16 at noon, County Executive MaryEllen Odell will host a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the completion of the Carmel Sidewalk Project. The ribbon-cutting is scheduled to take place in front of Reed Memorial Library, 1733 Route 6 in the Hamlet of Carmel.

Joining the County Executive will be Legislator Carl Albano whose District 5 incorporates the portion of Carmel where the sidewalks were built.

“I am pleased with the outcome of the Carmel Sidewalk Project” Albano said. “The new and replaced sidewalks are a major improvement to one of the fastest growing areas in Putnam County.”

Expected to be present for the ribbon-cutting are Carmel Town Supervisor Ken Schmitt, Putnam County Highway Commissioner Fred Pena, Leg. Albano, Frank DelCampo from CMRRI, and Jim Brennan of Brennan Construction Company.

Unveiling of an exhibit of the 1962 Sesquicentennial Time Capsule

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MaryEllen Odell

Putnam County Executive

845-808-1001

On Monday Sept 17th Putnam County Executive, MaryEllen Odell will be holding a press conference at 34 Gleneida Avenue, Putnam County Clerk Office.  MaryEllen will be announcing the unveiling of an exhibit of the 1962 Sesquicentennial Time Capsule and its contents for the rest of this Bicentennial year.

On November 11, 1962, the time capsule was entombed in front of Putnam County’s Historic Court House for the 150th anniversary of Putnam’s separation from Dutchess County.  On June 12th of this year, Putnam’s 200th birthday, the capsule was opened at the Historic Court House and the contents brought to the office of the County Historian to be inventoried, preserved and ultimately brought to 34 Gleneida Avenue for display to the public. The display frames and cases that house the artifacts have been covered with a layer of clear ultraviolet film to protect them from ambient light.

County Officials First in Line for Flu Shots

The Department of Health was very busy as the 2012 influenza clinic season kicked off. Executive MaryEllen Odell received her flu shot from Allen Beals, MD, Commissioner of Health, and Legislators Carl L. Albano, District 5, and Vincent Tamagna, District 1, received theirs from public health nurse Jeanette Baldanza, RN, immunization coordinator.

Commissioner Beals encourages everyone six months of age and older to get a flu vaccine. “There is nothing trivial about contracting the flu,” said Dr. Beals. “Besides being sick in bed for a number of days at minimum, the flu can be severe or even deadly, particularly for those with chronic medical conditions or those who are elderly or very young.”

Putnam residents flocked to the Carmel Fire Department later in the day, Monday, September 10, for the first public flu clinic, open to all Putnam County residents, 18 years of age and older. The next clinics are scheduled for Wednesday, October 10, from 2 pm to 6:30 pm at the Garrison Fire Department, 1616 Route 9, and again at the Carmel Fire Department on Monday, October 15, 2 pm to 6:30 pm, Route 52 and Vink Drive.