Meadowmount School of Music 2013 Concerts
6/28 TO 8/7 - On Campus
7:30pm. Admission is $10 for Adults, $5 for Students & Senior Citizens.
Chamber Music, 7/28
Featuring violinist JOSEPH SILVERSTEIN
7:30pm. Admission is $10 for Adults, $5 for Students & Senior Citizens.
Featuring violinist JAMES EHNES, cellist ROBERT DEMAINE, pianist ERIC LARSEN;
WORLD PREMIER OF KENNETH FRAZELLE'S TRIPLE CONCERTO
7:30pm, Admission $20 / Adults, $10 / Students & Senior Citizens
Essex Community Concert 7/23
Ballard Park Concert 8/1
Severance Farm (518) 962-8255 store and (518) 962-8217 farm. Fresh vegetables, herbs, cut flowers, bedding plants, fruit, maple and honey. Open June to October, Monday through Saturday, 9 am to 6 pm. Kevin and Robin Severance. Stand is at Adam's Hardware on Main Street in Westport.
Via Elizabeth Lee, Communications Committee, Future for Westport:
Dear Friends of Westport,
Since June of 2008 many projects have spun off either directly or indirectly as a result of the Future of Westport initiative that began with input from all of you, the people of Westport. As the Steering Committee resumes our effort to follow through with ideas, we thought it encouraging to see what has been accomplished. Below please find a list of some great successes. If we neglected to mention something, please accept our apologies and let us know.
The following activities have been initiated and/or completed in the last 18 months in Westport and Wadhams:
A weekly column about events in Westport has been published in the local paper.
A new business has opened on Main Street.
Lots of documents about the community have been gathered and made available in the public libraries. This information includes a number of reports and studies done over the past few decades as well as the most current demographic information available.
A Westport Central School reunion was held in Aug. 2009 and a database of school alumni has been created and is being updated.
A survey was conducted by the Office of the Aging and presented in a public meeting. The information provides the county with vital information for emergency response planning while at the same time provides our community with valuable data to guide our planning.
The Heritage House hosted a visitor's center staffed by approximately 50 volunteers.
Several community lunches have been hosted by the bakery in Wadhams. Proceeds have benefited various local agencies.
One new volunteer firefighter has completed the first level of rigorous training and is responding to calls.
A new logo has been designed and adopted to promote local commerce.
The Quadricentennial events involved many local residents as planners and participants.
A grant proposal was successfully developed, submitted and rewarded with $50,000 for arts activities.
Numerous improvements have been made to web sites serving as portals to the Town of Westport, the Westport Chamber of Commerce and the Westport Central School.
A sound system and computers have enhanced the Heritage House as a community facility.
Public presentations have been held to educate tax payers about property assessment.
A business owner has undertaken the development of a large scale project with the potential to bring 30-40 jobs to our town.
A grant has been received to create a school garden through a partnership between the school, interested community members and Cornell Cooperative Extension.
Over 50 people turned out to the first "Thursdays Inn," a social hour held at the Inn on the Library Lawn for the purpose of congenial and informal gathering.
The lakeshore habitat seems to be sustaining a healthy eagle population. Last week six eagles were sited by Larry Carroll at one time on the ice near the Westport Marina.
Numerous academic, athletic and music awards have been earned by students in school. Both the boys' and the girls' varsity basketball teams head into the Section 7 tournament with outstanding regular season records. The girls play next on Friday, February 26 at 7 p.m. in Westport. Boys play next on Saturday, February 27 at 7:00 p.m., also in Westport.
Thank you to all who have participated in these projects. Through scheduled meetings, public events, electronic communication and common neighborliness we are getting to know one another in new ways and improving the quality of our relationships as a community. The Steering Committee recognizes that this is only the beginning of what we hoped for and what we can do together. Several committees have not been active due to lack of participants and/or leadership. Please consider getting involved. Please contact any member of the Steering Committee or respond to this email if you would like more information.
Sincerely, George Maffey, Rick Rockefeller, George King, Nancy Page, Dan Connell, Dan McCormick, Elizabeth Lee and Shami McCormick.
This week, when I got the latest emails from former School-Board candidate Ulrich Hoffmann in which he once again expresses his reservations about paying taxes to support the local public school, I happened to look back over the history of emails from him. And I noticed something peculiar: He's using the email list compiled by the Future for Westport organization for his political mailings. He even sent out his literature campaigning for School Board to the list.
Yesterday I emailed him to ask about this and he confirmed that yes, he was using that list. His position seems to be that any email address that has ever arrived in his inbox, even as a cc on an email sent by a third party, is fair game for his bulk sendings.
The email list of the Future for Westport was compiled in a spirit of openness and forward-looking collaboration. The Future for Westport is almost not an organization at all, but more a social network initiated for the betterment of the community.
So it is understandable that emails sent out to those of us who had volunteered to serve on its many committees were sent out as cc's rather than concealed by the sender. But there are some basic principles of privacy practice that, in hindsight, probably should have been observed. They are called "Fair Information Practice Principles." The US Federal Trade Commission summarizes the matter thusly:
Over the past quarter century, government agencies in the United States, Canada, and Europe have studied the manner in which entities collect and use personal information -- their "information practices" -- and the safeguards required to assure those practices are fair and provide adequate privacy protection.(27) The result has been a series of reports, guidelines, and model codes that represent widely-accepted principles concerning fair information practices.(28) Common to all of these documents [hereinafter referred to as "fair information practice codes"] are five core principles of privacy protection: (1) Notice/Awareness; (2) Choice/Consent; (3) Access/Participation; (4) Integrity/Security; and (5) Enforcement/Redress.
Regarding the first point, Notice/Awareness, the FTC remarks:
The most fundamental principle is notice. Consumers should be given notice of an entity's information practices before any personal information is collected from them. Without notice, a consumer cannot make an informed decision as to whether and to what extent to disclose personal information.(29)
Never mind that "Notice" was not given that our email addresses might be provided to the entire group (which in effect means the entire town and then some), I don't think that in those enthusiastic moments when we were all rushing to write our names on the big yellow sheets of paper to sign up for committees anyone had given much thought to exactly how the personal information collected was going to be used. And since it hadn't been thought through, no notice was possible.
The FTC's second item is "Choice":
The second widely-accepted core principle of fair information practice is consumer choice or consent.(42) At its simplest, choice means giving consumers options as to how any personal information collected from them may be used. Specifically, choice relates to secondary uses of information -- i.e., uses beyond those necessary to complete the contemplated transaction. Such secondary uses can be internal, such as placing the consumer on the collecting company's mailing list in order to market additional products or promotions, or external, such as the transfer of information to third parties.
(43) Choice can also involve more than a binary yes/no option. Entities can, and do, allow consumers to tailor the nature of the information they reveal and the uses to which it will be put.(44) Thus, for example, consumers can be provided separate choices as to whether they wish to be on a company's general internal mailing list or a marketing list sold to third parties. In order to be effective, any choice regime should provide a simple and easily-accessible way for consumers to exercise their choice.
Mr. Hoffmann takes the position that because he will remove people from his email list if they ask him to, he is ethically in the clear. I don't think so. Since those on this email list were given neither Notice nor Choice regarding possible uses of their information by the collecting organization, his argument that he has the right to use these email addresses unless asked to stop by the recipients is dubious.
Regarding item 4, Integrity/Security, the FTC explains:
Security involves both managerial and technical measures to protect against loss and the unauthorized access, destruction, use, or disclosure of the data.(49) Managerial measures include internal organizational measures that limit access to data and ensure that those individuals with access do not utilize the data for unauthorized purposes.
In the current case, insuring that information collected is used only for its intended purpose involves not just sending it out to two hundred people.
In any event, I hope that this is for us collectively a teachable moment in which we can improve the way we deal with electronic communications. I would suggest that all of the local organizations consider drafting and publishing privacy policies that are in the spirit of these FTC guidelines.
Taylor Tree Care is planting trees near the water treatment plant. They are going to plant cedars near the fence and just at the moment, they are planting pines in the grassy area. The tree man told me, when I asked, that while those pine trees can get to be 100 ft tall when left alone, the Town's plan is to keep them sheared to a reasonable height so as to avoid blocking the lake views of nearby neighbors.
I am trying to confirm with the Town government that a written plan exists to maintain the pines at a reasonable height, and so far, my impression is that they do not have a written plan for regular tree work on the pines currently being planted. That is a problem.
I have written a note to the Town Council asking for clarification of their intentions and possible replacement of the pines with a species with a more modest growth habit.
UPDATE 10/13/09: I asked about longterm the plans for the white pines at the Town Board Meeting this evening. The intent of planting the white pines is that they are fast-growing and will offer visual screening until the white cedars come in well. According to town supervisor Dan Connell, the longterm plan for the pines is to take them out in favor of the cedars when they get too big rather than trim them. This sounds reasonable.