County Legislators Invited to Review WESTHELP Bids

Former Westhelp property is up for development.

On Monday the Greenburgh Town Board will receive bids for the use of the WESTHELP facility. WESTHELP, located on Knollwood Road, used to provide transitional housing for the homeless population. The county of Westchester closed down the shelter last year.

The town has rights to the property for 20 years. We invited developers and property managers to submit proposals to the town for the use of the property. Members of the County Legislature previously expressed their desire that the town use the existing units for affordable housing.

A proposal that the town had been working on to lease the property to an organization that serves the developmentally disabled population (Ferncliff) was turned down by members of the County Legislature --even though the town would have received about $530,000 a year in rent from Ferncliff.  It is possible that the bids that are received by the town Monday could offer significantly less rent to the town.

I have invited Westchester County Legislators Mary Jane Shimsky, Alfreda Williams, Ken Jenkins and Michael Smith to a joint meeting with the Greenburgh Town Board on Tuesday at 9 AM at Greenburgh Town Hall. It is important that the town make a decision re: use of the property quickly and that a lease be signed in January so the town can generate needed revenue.

We want to know if the county will veto our efforts to generate maximum revenue from the property and also want to know which applications they would find acceptable. Every $40,000 the town receives in revenue will enable the town to reduce taxes by an additional 1% in the A budget (the budget village residents and residents of unincorporated Greenburgh pay).

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