Our Populist Rage
I read the March issue and found the survey, “Our Populist Rage,” in your Talk of The County section most lacking. It stated that 67 percent of respondents did not vote for Astorino and 60 percent did not vote for DiFiore. These figures beg the question: “Did they vote at all?”—since both of these individuals won their elections by similar differentials. Astorino has spun the results to say he had a mandate. How can there be a mandate when only one-third of the voters participated at the polls? Therefore, why not an article to answer the question: “Why the voter apathy?”
In “Our Populist Rage,” 44.7 percent of the survey respondents chose “parks and tourism” as the county service or department they would cut to lower taxes. The tourism industry plays a major role in economic development and job creation in Westchester County, and apparently there is confusion about how Westchester Tourism is funded.
Westchester Tourism is funded solely by the county hotel occupancy tax, receiving 15 percent of the annual amount raised. Westchester Tourism does not receive or impact county property taxes in any way and, in fact, as a result of its efforts, overnight stays generate even more sales tax and other revenues through food and beverage purchases, retail sales, and admission fees. The total economic impact of tourism on Westchester for 2008 was $1.419 billion; the total hotel occupancy tax revenue for 2008 was $5.372 million, and 85 percent of that amount went directly to the county.
Westchester Tourism’s driving force is to increase overnight hotel room stays at lodging facilities, which will in turn increase hotel occupancy tax revenues for the county and Westchester Tourism.
Director, Westchester County Office of Tourism
Save a Bundle
Loved the March feature “Read This and Save-a-Bundle.” Here’s a tip my fellow smart shoppers will appreciate: open on Thursdays from noon to 4 pm is The Thrift Shoppe Boutique, 1131 North St, White Plains (at the driveway entrance of St. Gregory the Enlightener Armenian Church). The shop is sponsored and run by volunteers of the St. Gregory Women’s Guild, donations are tax-deductible, and proceeds go to benefit the church and its missions. Shop ’til you drop—and have fun!
Pertaining to the discount chains in your “Read This and Save a Bundle” article, it was surprising to find my favorite discount chain not mentioned. Daffy’s in White Plains is a gem of a store. It can’t be beat for designer clothes, handbags, lingerie, shoes, menswear, and children’s clothes.
Thank you for citing the White Plains Juneteenth Parade (“African-American Account,” February) but note that it does not celebrate the end of slavery in the United States—only in Texas. President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in September 1862. He named 10 states in which it was to take effect January 1, 1863. This freed slaves only in the Confederate States. African Americans traditionally celebrate New Year’s Eve as watch night. Unfortunately, the Governor of Texas refused to recognize this, and Union soldiers had to be sent to free Texan slaves. This occurred on June 19, 1865. The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in December 1865, abolished slavery in the United States.
Lynne Perry-Bottinger, MD FACC
OOPS: The Lauren Moffatt trench coat pictured in “Read This and Save a Bundle” is sold at Juleigh’s Resale Couture in Pound Ridge, not at Elegance II in Chappaqua.
In “Winners & Losers,” Jerry Pinkney’s name was misspelled.
In the special promotional section, “Focus on Yonkers,” the name of the Yonkers-based business theONswitch was syntactically incorrect. And the correct web address for the Yonkers BID is Yonkersdowntown.com.
An ad in our February issue improperly identified Dr. Paul J. Guerrino as a periodontist. Dr. Guerrino practices periodontics as well as implantology.
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