FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Odell Praises Bipartisan Efforts for Pudding St. Study


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001
April 5, 2013

Odell Praises Bipartisan Efforts for Pudding St. Study

Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell was quick to praise Sen. Terry Gipson, Putnam Valley Supervisor Robert Tendy, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Assemblyman Steve Katz and the State Department of Transportation for their successful joint effort in securing $1 million grant for an engineering and design study needed to build an overpass at the Pudding Street intersection on the Taconic State Parkway.

“This has been a problem for Putnam Valley residents for a very long time,” said Odell. “It certainly is time for the entrance and exit at Pudding Street to be updated to a much safer overpass design. I’m thrilled, as I’m sure all our Putnam Valley residents are, that so many elected officials including the Governor, Sen. Gipson, Assemblyman Katz, Supervisor Tendy and the State DOT were able to get this long overdue project moving forward once again.”

The dangerous intersection has been a concern for Putnam County Commissioner of Highways and Facilities Fred Pena as well.

“I’m confident that our partners at NYSDOT are reviewing the safety concerns at the Pudding Street Taconic Parkway intersection,” said Pena. “I, too, would like to thank Sen. Gipson for helping to secure the funding necessary to take the first steps toward a final solution to this important matter.”

Pena said he would make himself “readily available to meet with State DOT staff” to review the safety concerns and “assist in determining both short and long term solutions.”

Gipson, a member of the Senate Transportation Committee, promised Odell after he was elected last November that he would look into the long delayed overpass project. The construction of an overpass was first promised to Putnam Valley residents back in 2003.

“The Pudding Street Project is an example of how we can place our constituents’ interests first and set aside party politics to work together to get things done,” said Gipson. “I look forward to continuing to work with state and local officials of both parties to make sure this project is completed.”

The Pudding St. intersection is the last remaining grade-level crossing on the TSP in Putnam County and one that has remained a safety concern for residents whose children ride school buses that traverse the busy parkway up to 20 times per day during the school year.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Odell Welcomes Carmel Chief as EMS Deputy Commissioner


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001

April 1, 2013

Odell Welcomes Carmel Chief as EMS Deputy Commissioner

A lifelong Carmel resident with more than 30 years of experience in the field of fire and emergency services, an educational background in science and technology and a degree in Organizational Leadership from Marist College and who served in logistics at the Pier 92 command center after the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, was chosen today to be Deputy Commissioner, Bureau of Emergency Services of Putnam County.

Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell joined Adam B. Stiebeling, Commissioner of Emergency Service, at the Training & Operations Building on the Donald B. Smith Campus on Old Route 6 in Carmel this morning to welcome the New Deputy Commissioner. 

“It is with great pleasure that I announce the selection of Carmel Fire Department Chief Robert A. Lipton as Putnam’s new Deputy Commissioner, Bureau of Emergency Services,” said Stiebeling.

As a past fire chief himself, Stiebeling said he served with Lipton during the recovery response after the 9/11 attacks. “Over the past 12 years I have come to know Bob as a leader in the emergency services field.  I know he will bring organizational leadership to the mission of the Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services.”

During her tour of meetings with each of the fire department chiefs and assistant chiefs, Odell came to understand what they were hoping the new deputy commissioner would bring to the Bureau of Emergency Services position.

“I can’t think of a better more qualified person for the job. Bob will certainly be an asset to the Bureau and a great mentor for Adam,” Odell said. 

Lipton began his career in emergency services with the Carmel Volunteer Ambulance Corps in 1984. He is a past captain and life member of the CVAC as well as a certified EMT lab instructor and American Red Cross CPR instructor.

Lipton joined the CFD in 1992 and is a life member. He served as assistant chief officer from 2001-2003 and again from 2009-1010. He is presently their chief officer, a position he also held from 2004 to 2006.

While sat CFD, Lipton was instrumental in acquiring three new engines. Through various grants from IBM where Lipton is employed as a senior technician in development, he helped the CFD acquire computer equipment. Today, Lipton is responsible for all fire prevention and education programs including the CFD Open House, Wendy’s and McDonalds Safety Days and fire education programs at local schools.  

Lipton is a Carmel High School graduate. He received his Associate of Applied Science degree from Dutchess Community College before attending and graduating from Marist College. He is a certified CNC specialist and has attended courses in building and sprinkler construction and hazardous materials management. 

While at IBM, Lipton received their Presidential Volunteer Service Award from 2005 through 2011 when he was presented with the PVSA Lifetime Achievement. 

“I look forward to a long association with Bob as we once again work together for the protection and safety of the residents of Putnam County,” said Stiebeling.

bob lipton


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Odell Urges Businesses to Attend April Funding Workshop, Planning & EDC Leaders Among Co-Sponsors


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001

Odell Urges Businesses to Attend April Funding Workshop 

Planning & EDC Leaders Among Co-Sponsors  

A free workshop offering applicant assistance to not-for-profit corporations, for-profit businesses as well as county and municipal agencies seeking grants available through New York’s Regional Economic Development Council will be held on Thursday, April 25, 2013 in the Weber Auditorium at Putnam Hospital Center, 670 Stoneleigh Avenue in Carmel, NY. The Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) Workshop will run from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

“The CFA is a modern and easy-to-use single, online application designed to offer economic development project applicants and other entities expedited access to a combined pool of grant funds and tax credits from dozens of existing programs,” said Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell.

Putnam’s Commissioner for Planning Anthony Ruggiero and Putnam’s Economic Development Corporation President Meghan Taylor are among the several hosts for the morning program. Ruggiero noted that Gov. Andrew Cuomo streamlined the grant application process by initiating the 10 Regional Economic Development Councils whose job is to identify priority projects based on each Council’s specific five-year plan. Each Regional Council’s membership is comprised of Elected Officials, local business members, academia, as well as community and not-for-profit organizations. 

“We’re trying to get a pushout – more information out about the workshop,” said Ruggiero. “If you haven’t done this before, there will be a number of people present to offer their assistance. Jonathan Drapkin, the president and CEO of Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress will come down and Aimee Vargas, Director, Mid-Hudson Region Empire State Development will be there.”

“By attending the CFA workshop, businesses will obtain a clear understanding of the application process,” said Taylor. “The workshop will provide information on specific funding opportunities and will provide the information necessary for individuals to apply successfully through the CFA process.”

Cold Spring-based Scenic Hudson received a grant last year which helped the organization in restoring the West Point Foundry Trail. Ruggiero wants to let more businesses and not-for-profits know that there is substantial regional funding available and assistance for those entities seeking a share of the monies earmarked for disbursement. 

Ruggiero stressed that the workshop is informational, not mandatory. He said each of the member counties in the Mid-Hudson Region will be hosting CFA workshops throughout the month of April. Other member counties include Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester. For information on the dates, visit: or

The funding opportunities to be discussed at the Putnam workshop include Business Assistance, Community Development and Energy & Environmental.  

Eligible applicants include for-profit businesses, local development corporations, business improvement districts, public benefit corporations including industrial development agencies, economic development corporations, research and academic institutions, technology parks, counties, regional planning councils, tourist attractions, and community facilities within the Mid-Hudson Region.

“The Putnam County EDC is here to help any organization looking to apply through the CFA and stands willing to assist,” said Taylor.

Others hosting the CFA Workshop include Putnam Hospital Center, Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress, Putnam County Chambers of Commerce, Empire State Development Mid-Hudson Region, and Putnam County Industrial Development Agency.

Attendees should RSVP to Roe Cialini at 845-878-3480 x 48100 or e-mail her at:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Service, Deputy Commissioner to be Announced


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001

March 27, 2013

Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Service, Deputy Commissioner to be Announced

You are cordially invited to join Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell and Commissioner of Emergency Services Adam B. Stiebeling at 1 p.m. on Monday, April 1, 2013 at the Training & Operations Center on the Donald B. Smith Campus, 112 Old Route 6, Carmel, NY as they announce the appointment of Putnam County’s new Deputy Commissioner of Emergency Services.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Putnam County Executive Joins Sen. Schumer in Closing “Skills Gap”


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001

March 28, 2013

Putnam County Executive Joins Sen. Schumer in Closing “Skills Gap”

County Executive MaryEllen Odell accompanied U.S. Senator Charles Schumer last Monday to a high-tech machine manufacturing site in Putnam to show support for his legislation to bolster manufacturing jobs across the Hudson Valley.

“The AMERICA Works Act is a commonsense system not only to restructure the way workforce training programs are financed but how they are created. This will most certainly help our constituents who are entering the workplace for the first time, re-entering because of lay-offs, or looking for that encore career. They will be able to learn the skills that are necessary for the jobs that are available,” said Odell.

“Creating job training programs that actually prepare people to quickly enter the local workforce will strengthen our economy,” said Schumer. 

U. S. Senator Kay R. Hagan (D-NC) introduced the AMERICA Works Act on March 25. Under this Act, industries such as manufacturing, construction and aerospace, will work together to create necessary skill standards for employees. Once industries have agreed upon a set of skill standards, curriculums will be formulated and developed into specific skill training programs. Graduates of these training programs will be issued industry-recognized credentials. 

Odell and Schumer met with Larry Fryer, owner and president of Fryer Machine Systems, a family owned and operated company which opened in Patterson in 1982. Today Fryer manufactures more than 50 models of machine tools and specializes in CNC (computer numerical control) engineering used worldwide and in the aerospace and automotive industries. Fryer Machine Systems currently operates in the company’s 47,000 sq. ft. facility.

“We are very excited about Senator Schumer’s American Works Act,” said Fryer. “Fryer Machine is one of the fastest growing manufacturers in Putnam County and we have experienced first hand the limitations on growth due to the lack of trained workers.  We see this type of manufacturing job training initiative as key to hiring the staff needed to allow us to expand.”

Immediate Release: Odell, Sen. Schumer Tour Patterson Manufacturing Site

Immediate Release                            

MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001
March 26, 2013

Odell, Sen. Schumer Tour Patterson Manufacturing Site

Fryer Machine Systems owner Larry Fryer, left, met with County Executive MaryEllen Odell and U.S. Senator Charles Schumer on Monday, March 25 at his Patterson manufacturing plant. MaryEllen and Sen. Schumer were discussing legislation that would train Putnam workers for skilled manufacturing positions with companies that presently have job openings but face a “skills gap.”  The AMERICA Works Act would restructure the way workforce training programs are financed and provide industry recognized credentials to program graduates.  


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Odell to Proclaim Putnam as First Purple Heart County in NY


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001
March 20, 2013

Odell to Proclaim Putnam as First Purple Heart County in NY

A request sent to Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell by William “Willy” Nazario, the Legislative Officer – Dept. of NY of the Military Order of the Purple Heart Chapter 21 and Denis Castelli, the organization’s Judge Advocate, and seeking that she proclaim Putnam as a Purple Heart County was met with an immediate and positive response.

“Absolutely!” said Odell. “Of course I will do this. We have any number of veterans residing within our borders who have received this distinguished medal, the military award ‘sought by none but respected by all.’ I absolutely will ask the Legislature to accept a proclamation designating Putnam as New York’s first Purple Heart County. It will be my pleasure to this for our many wonderful veterans and their families.”

Odell will present the proclamation to Legislature Chairman Richard T. Othmer, Jr. for a full vote at the April 3 meeting. The Legislature will meet at 6:30 p.m. in the Historic Putnam County Courthouse on Gleneida Avenue in Carmel.

The Purple Heart is the oldest military decoration in present use. It was initially created by Gen. George Washington in 1782 as the Badge of Military Merit. It is awarded to any member of the Unites States Armed Services wounded or killed in combat with a declared enemy of the United States.

Putnam’s Director of Veterans Affairs Karl Rohde is also pleased about Putnam becoming the first county in New York to be designated a Purple Heart County.

“In keeping with the tradition of Putnam being the best county in the United States regarding veterans, we’re very proud to be the first Purple Heart County,” he said.

Castelli, a veteran and Purple Heart recipient, resides in Putnam and serves as the County Historian, a position he relishes.

“Many states, counties and towns across our great nation are honoring our veterans with this simple act of patriotism,” Castelli said.

When asked how many Purple Heart recipients resided in Putnam now, Castelli was unable to supply that information.

“There is no answer to this question and no manner to find out,” Castelli said. “The only repository for this information is the Department of Defense and they are not talking.”

Castelli provided a list of interesting but little known facts concerning Putnam’s earliest veterans. Foremost, is Gen. Israel Putnam. While a resident of neighboring Connecticut, it was this American Revolutionary War hero for whom Putnam County was named.

According to Castelli’s list, Putnam had four fighting generals during the Civil War (and there were two ironclad ships that bore the name of the USS Mahopac at that time. In addition, two Putnam residents died with Gen. George Custer at Little Big Horn; the Borden Milk Factory in Brewster produced and distributed condensed milk to Union troops during the Civil War substantially reducing incidents of dysentery; and Gen. Daniel A. Butterfield, who received a Congressional medal of Honor for his service during the Civil War, is credited with composing the bugle call “Taps.” Other Putnam Congressional Medal of Honor recipients include Abraham K. Arnold, Samuel N. Benjamin, William J. Brewer and John McCloy who was awarded two such medals.

Castelli also pointed out that the Parrott Rifle, a cannon, was designed by Captain Robert Parker Parrott, an 1824 West Point graduate and Cold Spring resident, at his West Point Foundry in Cold Spring, NY.

butterfield    purple heart

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Odell Scores for Health Dept.


TO: All media
FROM: MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive
RE: Carmel Rotary Basketball Shoot-Out
DATE: March 18, 2013

Odell Scores for Health Dept.

Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell attended The Community Basketball Shoot-Out sponsored by the Carmel Rotary and Carmel High School’s Interact Club on Saturday, March 16. The annual fundraising event was held in the CHS gym. Participants have two minutes in which to shoot as many baskets as they can to raise money for a specified organization. Odell, who scored 16 baskets, was shooting on behalf of the County Health Dept.

Since 2008, the Carmel Rotary and the CHS Interact Club have raised more than $66,000 with 60 various organizations benefiting from the proceeds.


IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Letter to the Editor

MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001
March 11, 2013

RE: Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor:

As much fun as Tim Maher, the official Grand Marshall of the Sunday’s Northern Westchester/Putnam County St. Patrick’s Day Parade, was having, he couldn’t have had any better time than I did riding shotgun for the second year in a row as part of Putnam’s Emergency Response Team. Our magnificent vehicles are a testament to the promise made by our first responders to keep Putnam residents safe.

Looking at the ERT vehicles as they lined up in formation before the parade, I must admit I felt very proud that Putnam County has equipment and people such as these, ready to act in case of an emergency. Sitting inside the green, armored tank-like transport, I also must admit I felt extraordinarily safe, a reaction mirrored on the faces of those watching and waving along the parade route as they cheered loudly and energetically for our ERT members and their heavy duty trucks. I was deeply moved by the parade goers’ expression of gratitude toward their wonderful first responders.

It was a pleasure to have been allowed to participate in the parade with Putnam’s ERT unit, the highly trained and specially-armed squad of professionals from the Sheriff’s Office, Carmel and Kent Police Departments and our Office of Emergency Management.  

So thanks, not only for the ride, but also – and this is on behalf of everyone in Putnam County – to each member of our fabulous Emergency Response Team for all that you continue to do to keep Putnam safe.  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Putnam Housing Corp. to Host Free Foreclosure Prevention Outreach

MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001
March 11, 2013

Putnam Housing Corp. to Host Free Foreclosure Prevention Outreach

County Executive Odell Will Attend the March 23 Event

A local not-for-profit will host Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Outreach teams offering free assistance to homeowners who are presently in default on their mortgage or are facing foreclosure. The event, which will be held on Saturday, March 23 at the Mahopac Public Library, 668 Route 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., is sponsored by the Putnam County Housing Corporation (PCHC).

PCHC, a certified HUD Certified Housing Counseling Agency, was established in 1982 to assist residents with their housing needs. Their Housing Counseling Program offers the services of professionals who assist at risk homeowners by advising them of economic and legal options available to help prevent a foreclosure.  

County Executive MaryEllen Odell strongly supports the work of PCHC as they strive to keep Putnam families in their own homes.

“The work of the Putnam County Housing Corporation is so very vital,” said Odell. “Many homeowners have found themselves in this terrible situation through no fault of their own. It is imperative we do everything we can for them to ensure they remain in their homes.”

PCHC Co-Executive Director Connie Fagan said her agency recently received funding from New York State’s Attorney General Home Ownership Protection Program as well as from the State of New York Mortgage Agency and the federal government’s Emergency Homeowner Loan Protection program.

“The funding allows us to continue and enhance our partnerships with Legal Services of the Hudson Valley and Putnam County,” said Fagan. “LSHV will now be meeting with Putnam homeowners in our offices to provide free legal advice pertaining to foreclosure.”

PCHC’s offices are located at 11 Seminary Hill Road in Carmel. Previously, Putnam’s at-risk homeowners had to travel to out of county to meet with mortgage representatives.

The Putnam County Real Property Tax Office is also helping to advertise the March 23 event by distributing flyers to residents facing default advising them of the free local counseling services offered by PCHC.

In addition, Putnam’s Supreme Court has recognized PCHC Housing Counselors as an effective and essential resource particularly in representing homeowners in bi-monthly Mandatory Settlement Conferences.

For more information on this program, please call PCHC at (845) 225-8493.