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Greenburgh Introduces Law That Strengthens Massage Parlor Regulations

Greenburgh resident David DePietto, left, voices his concerns Tuesday to the Town Council about the proliferation of new massage parlors in the Edgemont section of town. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
From left, Greenburgh Councilmen Keith Morgan and Francis Sheehan, Town Attorney Tim Lewis (back turned) Supervisor Paul Feiner and Town Clerk Judith Beville. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
Greenburgh police have made prostitution arrests at this spa located at 390 Central Park Ave. in the past. It was advertising massages on Sunday. Photo Credit: File

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- A proposal was introduced Tuesday to require massage parlors to apply for licenses and special use permits in the Town of Greenburgh, subjecting them to closer oversight by police.

The proposal is being made as new massage parlors opened up during the past week along Central Avenue in the Edgemont section of town.

During a special meeting of the Greenburgh town board on Tuesday, resident David DePietto told town council members, "We don't have time. We are not going to be patient. I think your actions should speak as loud as your words. We're going to hold you to it."

Greenburgh Supervisor Paul Feiner said, "We have a lot of young women who are being sexually abused. I feel there is an urgency."

Feiner said the new legislation "provides the police with the tools to close down facilities that are operating illegally."

Council members Francis Sheehan, Ken Jones and Kevin Morgan, who is a former police officer, all expressed support for the proposed law.

The proposal will go the the Greenburgh Planning Board, which can hold a public hearing on it, according to Town Attorney Timothy Lewis.

Town Clerk Judith Beville, who will be responsible for licensing facilities under the proposed law, said, "I applaud the efforts of the Edgemont Community Council,'' which drafted the legislation . "I fully support any effort to help improve the quality of life in this town and in Edgemont."

Massage parlors with newly advertised specials are located at 455 Central Ave. -- across the street from Greenburgh Nature Center -- and at 114 S. Central Ave. Both ads featured photos of young scantily clad Asian women.

Ads on Sunday also promoted massage parlors at 390, 698 and 791 Central Park Ave. as well as at 100 N. Central Ave., all within the Town of Greenburgh.

After the meeting, Greenburgh Police Chief Chris McNerney said, "There are existing laws that we can use to crack down on massage establishments. They have their own challenges. That’s why I recommended the Town look into enacting a local law several months ago."

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