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July 25th, 2012

This Week in Orange County 7-25-12

Orange County Executive Edward Diana
GOSHEN - This week we say goodbye to a good friend of Orange County - it is with a heavy heart that we recognize the passing of Ben Winstanley, a former County Legislator and Greenwood Lake Mayor. Ben was a true public servant beginning with his enlistment in the U.S. Navy. He went on to serve as a Greenwood Lake Village Trustee and Greenwood Lake Mayor, and was elected to the Orange County Legislature in 1993 where he served for 16 years. It was my privilege and pleasure to work alongside Ben for many years as both a fellow County Legislator and as County Executive.

Ben was dedicated to Orange County residents of all ages. He and his wife Gen spent a decade running the Greenwood Lake Youth Commission and Ben was instrumental in creating the beautiful monument in the Orange County Veterans Cemetery. As a Legislator, Ben served for many years as Chairman of both the Legislature’s Ways and Means committee and the Health and Mental Health committee.

On behalf of the people of Orange County, I send our deepest condolences to the Winstanley family. We will miss Ben’s warmth, humor, and generous commitment of his time and talent to the people of Orange County. It is thanks to people like Ben and the legacy he leaves that makes Orange County one of the finest places to live, work, and raise a family.

Following his service in the Legislature, Ben was named to the Orange County Community Development Advisory Board. In that capacity he worked to support the department’s efforts to ensure the availability of safe, affordable housing for residents of Orange County. Their mission is to obtain and utilize federal, state, and local funds to carry out physical improvements to infrastructure and public facilities, rehabilitate existing housing, and facilitate the new construction of affordable housing, particularly for low and moderate-income people.

To learn more about the Office of Community Development, visit their pages on the County website at There you will find information about their many programs. Homeowners who meet eligibility requirements can apply for interest free loans for home repairs or improvements to enhance accessibility. There’s a program for farmworker housing rehabilitation, as well as a program to assist in the development of affordable rental housing in Orange County. The Office also offers training programs throughout the year. To find out more, call the knowledgeable Community Development staff at 615-3820 or email questions to

Until next week, I wish you good health and happiness.

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