Key to our mission, our campaigns are programs designed to reduce carbon emissions in Croton-on-Hudson. Want to get involved in a campaign or have ideas to share? Contact us!
Bus bond proposition #2 passed by a vote of 1,207 to 549 (68% in favor) despite Croton100's strong opposition. We note that the general budget passed by 1,517 to 261 (85% in favor) so we particularly thank the 17% of voters who voted FOR the general budget but AGAINST bus bond proposition #2 and said NO to a fossil fuel bus.
By this vote, residents have given the School permission to purchase one smaller fossil fuel bus despite the urgency of the climate crisis.
While we are disappointed with this result, we are encouraged by the possibility that the School can obtain two electric buses in this cycle, and we offer our partnership to the School District to achieve this goal. We have conveyed the purchase possibilities below to School officials and Croton100's willingness to participate and assist.
A few points to note:
In conclusion, we urge the School to purchase two electric buses in this cycle within the financial envelope of bus bond proposition #2 and we repeat our assertion that anything else would be both environmentally and fiscally irresponsible.
VOTE NO on Bus Bond - Proposition #2 on May 17, 2022 Ballot
We urge you to oppose the Bus Bond - Proposition #2 on the May 17 ballot because it does not commit to use any of the $447,800 for the purchase of electric vehicles. It is fiscally and environmentally irresponsible (click here for detailed information and reasoning). And, like last year’s flawed ballot, it asks voters to support funding for fossil fuel buses as the only way to hold out hope for a possible electric bus purchase. For reasons we have thoroughly documented on our website, we have no confidence in the School District’s decision-making and management of transportation electrification activities (see 2021 Fiscal Fiasco here for more details).
Scientists and policy makers have made clear: we must make immediate and drastic reductions in carbon emissions because we are now in the era of Code Red for Humanity. We face dire consequences for our inaction. Our School District must heed the call by not using tax dollars to buy more fossil fuel vehicles. The District’s plan to replace one fossil fuel bus with one electric bus over the next five years in its 45 bus fleet falls short of the carbon reduction pace needed to stabilize climate systems. Safe transportation of our youth also requires us to protect them from the harm caused by particulate emissions from fossil fuel buses.
Additionally, New York State has created more funding that will favor rapid adoption of electric school buses. State mandates restricting the purchase of fossil fuel school buses in the near future and requiring fully electric student transportation by 2035 are legal forces that buttress the need to forego the purchase of fossil fuel school buses now. If Bus Bond - Proposition #2 is defeated, the School can take advantage of recently announced NYSERDA funding that expands electric bus opportunities, it can use competitive bidding, and it can partner with Croton100 and other stakeholders to accelerate the adoption of electric buses. If the School were to take these actions and others that have been suggested by Croton100, a new Transportation Proposition could be presented to voters that Croton100 could support.
Just say NO.
Below are supporting documents detailing our position:
The School has made a statement that suitable electric minibuses are not available on the market. This is false. Thanks to Mothers Out Front and Jai Thakor of Motiv, below are 5 suitable electric minibuses.
Below, you will find campaign material including letters to the editor, submissions to the School and relevant articles in the press:
Croton100 is thrilled that we are closer to the purchase of a first electric school bus! Our sincere thanks to community residents, our partner Mothers Out Front, all public stakeholders and the School administration. In the May 18 ballot, electric buses were passed by an overwhelming majority. Proposition 1 for the purchase of two fossil fuel vehicles was also passed by a smaller majority. Here are the results of the transportation propositions:
Transportation Proposition 1: 621 in favor, 394 opposed
Transportation Proposition 2: 738 in favor, 272 opposed
Transportation Proposition 3: 745 in favor, 259 opposed
Transportation Proposition 4: 738 in favor, 263 opposed
The School has committed to buy three electric buses (and no fossil fuel buses) provided it obtains funding from NYSERDA. There are many steps before we will see E-bus wheels on the ground: placing purchase orders, obtaining vouchers from NYSERDA, obtaining timely delivery from the bus manufacturer and installation of chargers (hopefully a sensible level 2 smart charging system). At least one bus grant will require an exception from NYSERDA.
Croton100 will continue to work with the School to ensure that the will of the voters to avoid fossil fuel purchases is honored.
Below, you will find our education and advocacy journey to get to this point. We believe that other School Districts and communities can learn and profit from the archiving of our efforts below.
The May 18 School ballot contains four Transportation Bond Propositions: 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Support the greening of our School budget:
Vote NO to Diesel on Proposition 1, seeking authorization to buy 2 diesel mini-buses, also oppose the $65,000 electric charger in this proposition because it is an unnecessarily high expense for a charger that is not a good solution for school bus charging.
Vote YES to Electric on Proposition 2, seeking authorization to buy a 66-passenger electric bus.
Vote YES to Electric on Proposition 3, seeking authorization to buy an electric mini-bus.
Vote YES to Electric on Proposition 4, seeking authorization to buy a second electric mini-bus.
If we buy the three electric buses on this ballot, we can qualify for $448,955 in subsidies and State Transportation aid.
Croton100 is partnering with Mothers Out Front to advocate for the defeat of transportation proposition 1 and approval of propositions 2, 3 and 4. We are dismayed that the School has structured this ballot to be extremely confusing in several ways and rigged the ballot against electrification of the school’s transportation fleet because it requires voter approval of two diesel buses in transportation proposition 1 for any votes in support of propositions 2, 3, and 4 approving electric bus funds to have effect.
The school says that if Proposition 1 passes, it "will purchase" at least one or more fossil fuel buses in at least 80% of the vote outcome scenarios. Because fossil fuel buses are not cost effective, they emit perilous global warming gases and toxic particulate pollution, vote NO on Proposition 1.
Transportation propositions 1a, 1b and 1c above are all one proposition on which voters will vote yes or no. Two of the three electric buses get grant funding. Approved bonds get 36% state aid.
For questions about voting eligibility, registration and absentee ballots, please contact the Westchester County Board of Elections.
You can read our voter education materials to understand this ballot and learn more about why you should Vote NO on Transportation Proposition 1 and Vote YES on 2, 3 and 4.
Blog posts over the past year explaining the urgency of electrifying Croton’s school transportation fleet and the ways to achieve it:
The school is asking for approval of 2 fossil fuel and 3 electric buses as shown in the table.
From small changes to big upgrades, discover how your neighbors in Croton-on-Hudson are making choices to reduce their carbon footprint and save money as we march toward 100% renewables.
Croton100 Supports the Proposed 1.8 MWdc Community Solar Farm by the Hudson National Golf Course. Here’s why:
Croton100 Submits Letter in Favor of Croton Golf Course Solar Farm
Croton100 has submitted a letter in support of the proposed 1.8 MWdc community solar array that would cover 7.3 acres on the Hudson National Golf Course property. Croton100’s analysis found that the carbon benefits of the solar generation outweigh by 20:1 the loss of carbon absorption by trees that would be removed. Other adverse environmental impacts would be either minimal or mitigable (November 2021).
Croton’s very own solar farm that benefits Croton residents in many ways has been fully subscribed. This is a Community Solar Project initiated by the Village of Croton Sustainability Committee. Croton’s Department of Public Works (DPW) rooftop has been leased to Ecogy Energy to own and operate a 301 kW dc system, that is estimated to produce 344,000 kWh of solar electricity. That is enough to power 40 to 50 local households. Under this Community Solar program, residents (including renters who have their own utility account!) enrolled for free to have solar credits included in their Con Ed utility bill, that will provide a 10% discount.
The solar panel installation work was conducted by our local green business Croton Energy Group. Notably, Leo Wiegman was a founding partner in Croton Energy Group and he is Croton100’s President. Croton Energy Group helped to fuel this virtuous cycle by donating its portion of customer acquisition commissions from this Community Solar project to Croton100. This extraordinary public-private collaboration benefits Croton taxpayers, utility customers who enroll, Croton100, and supports a local green business. You can learn more about this project in our blogs here and here.
The Croton Village Sustainability Committee is planning more such projects. We'll keep you posted of future opportunities to enroll in Croton based community solar projects. In the meantime, consider enrolling in other community solar projects that are open to all New York State Residents that are administered by Sustainable Westchester's Community Solar Programs.
Our Plan - Periodic online carbon tracker audit sessions for groups of up to 20 residents. We’ll initially draw from Friends of Croton100 groups then branch out to the community. Each online session will be led by a trained Carbon Tracker volunteer. Our goal is for each household to complete their carbon tracker and plan on immediate carbon reduction tactics.
Volunteer Opportunities - Need volunteers to organize groups of participants.
Our Plan - Achieve carbon reductions from the comfort of home that require minimal effort and/or expense (some are free).
Volunteer Opportunities - Need volunteers to spread the word about specific initiatives through individual contacts, social media, letters to the editor, and more.
Our Plan - Croton100’s Electric Vehicle (EV) Campaign includes a focus on a challenging campaign to persuade the Croton School District to transition its 44-vehicle fleet student transportation fleet to electric vehicles, as well as a campaign to convince residents to invest in EVs.
After 18 months of advocacy, the School District is finally on the path to acquiring one or more electric school buses.
We encourage you to learn about Croton100's Electric School Bus Campaign. We also have more information about electric school buses in our Resources Tab. We have also written extensively about this campaign over many months on our blog.
Volunteer Opportunities - Croton100's Electric Vehicle Campaign is multi-faceted. We welcome volunteers who would like to help with the electric school bus issue and develop other electric vehicle campaigns. We periodically host EV shows. Please click here to connect with us.
Our Plan - Drive carbon reductions in public spaces and services, including Houses of worship; Municipal operations in Village of Croton and Town of Cortlandt; Schools; Metro North yard; CVS, ShopRite; Banks, restaurants, shops.
Volunteer Opportunities - Need individuals to work with us on each sector
Our Plan - Bring the Town of Cortlandt into the Westchester Power Program (Community Choice Aggregation) with 100% renewable energy electric supply option in 2020 for all its residents, including those who live in the 10520 zip code.
Volunteer Opportunities - Need help to lobby for the Cortlandt town council for the change and recruit Cortlandt residents who support clean energy. Note - this program is in place for the Village of Croton-on-Hudson - this effort is to extend it to the town of Cortlandt.
Our Plan - Use data from NYSERDA and other sources to locate and analyze carbon reduction activities, such as solar panel installations, community solar enrollment, electric vehicle registrations in 10520 to include in Croton100 Carbon Tracker.
Our Plan - Convert large power users in Croton-on-Hudson to Green Electricity and produce a continuing reliable revenue stream to Croton100.
Volunteer Opportunities -
Our Plan - The idea is to get groups of people involved, e.g., book groups (these are the “rows” of the matrix), in a campaign such as solar or EVs or heat pumps or diet modification (these are the “columns” of the matrix) and then interest the group in all the campaigns to get a multiplicative factor of carbon reduction.
Volunteer Opportunities - We need help to build collateral around individual campaigns such as EVs, Solarize, Community Solar, Heat Pumps and Airline Offsets, and to develop campaigns in conjunction with Sustainable Westchester.
Our Plan - Recruit and educate residents to plant vegetable gardens (modeled after WWII Victory Gardens).
Volunteer Opportunities - Need individuals to lead educational efforts, seed and plant sharing, gardening tips, and more.
Our Plan - Encourage experimenting with more plant-based meals through various activities such as online classes and discussions, recipe postings, and ultimately working with our wonderful community to offer more plant-based options at our local food establishments.
Volunteer Opportunities - Education and outreach about increasing vegetarian and vegan cooking and eating.
Our Plan - Develop clusters of yards/properties to establish pollinator friendly plantings to provide essential habitat for pollinators.
Volunteer Opportunities - Need individuals to enlist groups of neighbors and educate them about sustainable and earth friendly landscaping.
Our Plan - Educate and facilitate home composting wherever possible, and advocate for village compost collection program.
Volunteer Opportunities - Need individuals to educate neighbors and demonstrate successful composting of both food scraps and leaves.