December 2023


Message to Our Membership

Dear Members,

I’m not a great poet but I’m going to try for December,

This year has been one that we will all remember.

From Octoberfest to the Mini Focus to a membership meeting with our mayor and school super,

That’s just the beginning and we did it all with great humor.

We also welcomed Congresswoman McBath and the first Forum members who are young students,

And Tim’s County Fiscal Affairs Report was nothing if not prudent!

The New Year is coming and we’re happy to say,

That you have been the best members, bringing so much energy to each day.

This New Year promises many Forum events that will be great,

And it is for this reason that we just can’t wait.

But for now we wish you happy holidays filled with love and light and laughter,

And may each day bring joy your way – both this holiday season and the year that follows after.


Wishing our fantastic Board and all of our wonderful members a New Year and holiday season filled with good health, abundant happiness and peace.


Sarah Bell, President

Save These Dates


Save the Date-Village Board Public Meetings

Update: December 4 at 6:00-7:00 PM: Work Session held, Land Use Regulation Discussion with Chairs of the Land Use Boards. See video, when available on Village website, of this and all past and future Village Board meetings HERE.

December 5 at 6:00-7:30 PM: Work Session, Stormwater Improvements

December 12 at 8:00 PM: PUBLIC MEETING re Temporary Moratorium on Certain Land Use Applications


Scarsdale Youth Advisory Council (SFYAC)

Seeking members!

The Forum has created the SFYAC to empower the youth of the Village of Scarsdale to actively participate in community dialogue, to express personal views, and to become involved in addressing the civic issues, choices and solutions that directly impact them. Opportunities for students may include meetings with Village, County, State, and Federal government officials; and will include conversations concerning Village and Scarsdale School District (the “District”) issues; and opportunities to provide feedback concerning Village and District issues. SFYAC members must be Scarsdale residents who are under the age of 18. To join, please submit a short letter explaining interest to

County Fiscal Affairs

Update: The County Fiscal Affairs Committee released its Report analyzing the 2024 County budget and its implications for our property taxes. The public hearing by the Westchester County Board of Legislators was set for Wednesday, December 6th. If you are interested in being part of our Committee, please contact Chair Tim Foley at

Downtown Revitalization

Update: The Downtown Revitalization Committee is advancing on several fronts. The Freightway working group, led by Seth Ross, met on November 30 to discuss an action plan for collecting data from multiple sources, including parking, schools, and the impacts of multi-unit apartments in other communities. The Business Improvement District working group, led by Rob Mawson, met with representatives of Scarsdale Improvement Corporation and is planning to prepare an updated report on the topic. We are continuing to study ways to improve Boniface Circle and Chase Park. For further information or to participate in these projects and any others of interest. Contact Chair Susan Douglass,


The Education Committee is working on a draft report regarding the Scarsdale School District's initiative, "Profile of a SHS Graduate." The Committee plans to involve stakeholders in the report's development, including current and former students, current and former teachers, parents and empty nesters.The Committee also plans to focus on Curriculum as another major topic of interest for further study. Contact Chairs Barry Meiselman,; Art Rublin,; Christine Weston,

Municipal Services

Municipal Services is continuing work on a study of the range of traffic issues on the Post Road that includes the yet to be signaled crosswalk at Edgewood Road (until a signal is installed by New York State); recommendations for improvements to existing signals to help protect pedestrians and prevent logjams along Village Center corridors; and speeding and enforcement, all consistent with recommendations made in the most recent Municipal Services Report on Village-wide traffic safety and implementation of complete streets, Zero Vision, and safe routes to schools policy and design. We look forward to community input. Other follow-up includes collaboration with the Sustainability group and input from the Conservation Advisory Council regarding the status of Scarsdale's participation in New York State's Climate Smart Communities program; further restriction of gas leaf blowers and fall leaf collection; and degradation of the Village tree canopy despite Code amendments meant to preserve it. Education of the public on the dangers of widespread pesticide use on private property is another issue of continuing focus together with the Sustainability Committee, in view of the recently amended Village Code's broad pesticide ban on public property. We hope you have an interest in being part of our team. Please contact Chair Madelaine Eppenstein,

Parks and Recreation

The Parks and Recreation Committee continues to evaluate current conditions and usage of our parks, fields, paths, green spaces and recreational facilities. Forum member and wider community input is welcome. Issues include the Pool Complex project; girls’ athletics participation; pickle ball courts; and a Village initiated field study. Contact Parks Chair Erin Rudensky, and/or Recreation Chair Omer Wiczyk,

Scarsdale Fiscal Affairs

The Committee prepared a comprehensive Report commenting on the prior Village budget before it was passed, and recommended how the Board should prioritize competing financial needs and wants and how to pay for them. For more information Contact


The Sustainability Committee supports initiatives for an environmentally sustainable and healthy environment and climate that provide quality of life for Village residents. Related to Committee Reports in 2018 and 2019, we supported the recent Village Code amendment covering "Pesticide Use on Village Property." The new local law bans chemical pesticides, fungicides, fertilizers, etc. on Village properties and allows only organic landscape practices. Recognizing the absolute inter-dependency between the health of our environment and our own health, the Committee continues to support a number of potential green initiatives including, but not limited to, those geared toward recycling, green energy, storm preparedness, and NY State's Climate Smart Community initiative. Another Report focuses on the promotion of mulch mowing, the elimination of street leaf pile vacuuming, and a total ban on the use of gas blowers. The Sustainability Committee also invites old and new members to join local efforts in vine cutting. Vines are an important cause of Scarsdale's diminishing tree canopy. Cynthia Roberts, of Friends of the Scarsdale Parks, will be helping to train and organize volunteers. Please contact Committee chair Darlene LeFrancois Haber, M.D., if you are interested in helping our community save its trees or participate in other Sustainability projects.

Zoning and Planning

The Zoning and Planning Committee's focus is the long term growth and development of our Village to improve quality of life and sustainability by providing thoughtful analysis and recommendations for existing and proposed codes. Priority topics include: further research on the potential for establishing a Business Improvement District in the Village center in collaboration with the Downtown Revitalization group; elevation of structures in flood prone areas; requirements for new buildings to utilize heat pumps; installation of Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations downtown and at other locations; and Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). The Committee has a supporting role working closely with other Forum committees including Municipal Services, Downtown Revitalization, and Sustainability. Contact Chair Jill Spielberg,

Community Events, News & Resources

Both the Program Committee and the Hospitality/ Special Events Committee invite new members to help organize speaking and social events for the Forum and the Scarsdale community. Contact Program co-chairs Eli Mattioli and BK Munguia and Hospitality/Special Events co-chairs Kristen Zakierski and BK Munguia:;;

SCARSDALE FORUM invites you to join us as we tackle the subjects described in more detail in the Committee Update section. Members may consider joining any one, several or all of the Scarsdale Forum committees listed on the website. No prior experience with the subject matter is required. The Scarsdale Forum offers programs, activities, and events to support community quality of life, social engagement, and dialogue with village government.

VILLAGE BOARD MEETINGS and WORK SESSIONS: Village Board meetings are regularly open to the public at Village Hall or via Zoom webinar at, or call in using 1-929-436-2866 and entering the Meeting ID 931 8370 3358. The Zoom login uses the same ID. Sign up for updates here. Check the Village Board calendar here.


Board of Education meetings are regularly open to the public at the Scarsdale High School or via Zoom webinar. Information relating to BOE Meetings, Calendars, Documents, Policies, Events, Strategic Goals, Board Members, and more can be accessed here.

Scarsdale Forum Inc.

Scarsdale Forum Inc. is the 501(c)(3) charitable organization dedicated to community education through discussion and analysis of issues relevant to Scarsdale residents. Since 1904, Scarsdale Forum has contributed meaningfully to village affairs through written reports, prominent speaker programs, social gatherings and other public events. Membership is available to all Scarsdale and Mamaroneck Strip residents, regardless of citizenship status.  The Forum Focus newsletter is distributed to Scarsdale Forum members generally during the first week of each month. Pertinent information should be sent to one week prior to publication to be included in the coming issue.        

Annual Membership RENEWAL Start Date: was May 1, 2023

All memberships run from May 1st of each year and end on April 30th of the following year. Your annual $50 individual membership fee is tax-deductible.

You may pay in two ways:

  • Online by credit card or PayPal by "joining" or "renewing"
  • Payment may also be made by check payable to Scarsdale Forum, Inc. mailed to Scarsdale Forum, P.O. Box 86, Scarsdale, New York 10583.

You are also invited to make a tax-deductible gift to the Scarsdale Forum. Please contact the Forum’s Treasurer, Matt Martin, at (917) 697-2747 or by email at if you have any questions.

Renewing or lapsed members may sign up and pay here:

Residents who wish to join should go here:

Your support of the activities of the Forum is greatly appreciated!

2023-2024 Officers

Sarah Bell, President

Omer Wiczyk, First Vice President

Jeanne-Marie Castiello, Vice President

Matthew Martin, Treasurer

Christine Weston - Secretary

2023-2024 Committee Chairs

Communications - Madelaine Eppenstein & David Fenigstein

County Fiscal Affairs - Tim Foley

Downtown Revitalization - Susan Douglass

Education - Barry Meiselman & Art Rublin & Christine Weston

Hospitality & Special Events - BK Munguia & Kristen Zakierski

Membership - Jeanne-Marie Castiello

Municipal Services - Madelaine Eppenstein

Program and Speaker Series - Eli Mattioli & BK Munguia

Parks - Erin Rudensky

Policy - Jonathan Mark

Recreation - Omer Wiczyk

Sustainability - Darlene LeFrancois Haber

Zoning and Planning - Jill Spielberg


​2024 Sylvia T. Dundon, Elaine Weir, Rob Mawson

2025 Purnima Srivastava, Peri Zelig, Han Zhou

2026 Alexandra Vargo, Seth Ross, Dan Kovel