Local Links

Political boundaries in New York State are confusing. Forest Home is in the Town of Ithaca, which is part of Tompkins County. We are not in the City of Ithaca, which covers the downtown area, but we share many services with the city, including the Ithaca School District.  If you do not know who to contact, call the Town of Ithaca office (607) 273-1721.  The people there are friendly and helpful.

Policing is particularly confusing. Forest Home is served by the Tompkins County Sheriff.  In Forest Home you are more likely to see the Cornell Police managing traffic.  You may also see police vehicles from our neighbors in Cayuga Heights and the City of Ithaca. Several local agencies and institutions issue alerts for emergencies and unusual circumstances. See the separate Emergencies and Alerts page.

Some roads in Forest Home are maintained by the county.  Others are maintained by the town.  Here is a map.


Forest Home is surrounded by Cornell.

Gary Stewart heads Cornell’s Office for Community Relations.

Cornell’s Botanic Gardens maintains most of the surrounding open spaces, including Beebe Lake and the Arboretum.

The Cornell Police patrols land within Cornell Campus.  Since Forest Home is completely surrounded by Cornell property and roads, they handle traffic violations here.

Tompkins County

Our representative is Shawna Black (D, Tompkins County District 11); Black is currently Vice Chair of the county legislature, having served as Chair in 2022 and 2023.  A list of county legislators with photographs and committee assignments is available.

Note: Redistricting maps have been prepared for the County legislature, based on the population in the 2020 census and new New York State regulations for balancing the sizes of districts more tightly.  However, the new districts will not take effect for the Town of Ithaca until the 2025 elections.

The Tompkins County website has useful information for newcomers to the area.  The county’s GIS department provides a variety of maps, including property maps. The county maintains the two Forest Home bridges and also runs the recycling service, which includes curbside pickup every two weeks.  Additional items for recycling can be dropped off at the Recycling and Solid Waste Center at 160 Commercial Avenue, Ithaca

Forest Home is served by the Tompkins County Sheriff.

The county provides SIREN to sign up for emergency notifications.

Town of Ithaca

The Town Supervisor is Rod Howe, who is a Forest Home resident.

The Town of Ithaca website has a wide variety of useful information, including a guide for newcomers, lists of members of boards and committees, descriptions of the Town’s departments, and a meetings calendar. If you have a question or a problem to report and are not sure where to direct it, use the online contact form or contact the Town Clerk’s Office.  You can subscribe to the Town’s monthly newsletter.

The Town manages the Forest Home Walkway from the downstream bridge to Warren Road, and the Forest Home Park, with help from the FHIA through the adopt-a-park program. The Public Works Department, which includes the Highways Department, can be contacted by email.

The Town of Ithaca picks up brush twice a year in approximately mid-October and mid-April. For general information, go to https://townithacany.gov/brush-collection-drop-off/. For specific instructions for preparing brush and leaves for pickup, see https://lfweb.tompkins-co.org/WebLink/DocView.aspx?id=316976&dbid=9&repo=TownOfIthaca.

City of Ithaca

As of January 2024, the mayor is Robert Cantelmo. The city administration has a new structure, with a City Manager handling many operations. The new City Manager is Deb Mohlenhoff.

The City of Ithaca website has a wealth of information about activities in the region, including many that are relevant to Forest Home.

New York State Senate

Our State Senator since January 2023 is Lea Webb (D, 52nd Senate District). (The 52nd District includes Tompkins County, Cortland County and part of Broome County.)

New York State Assembly

Our Assembly Representative since 2021 is Dr. Anna R. Kelles (D, Assembly District 125, encompassing Tompkins County and part of Cortland County).

Note: The redistricting based on the 2020 census for NY State Assembly districts is not finalized.  As of December 2022, proposed changes to district 125 were minor and did not affect Forest Home.

U.S. Senate

Our Senators are Charles E. Schumer (D, serving since 1999, https://www.schumer.senate.gov/) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D, serving since 2009, https://www.gillibrand.senate.gov/).

U.S. House of Representatives

Our Congressman since 2023 is Marc Molinaro (R, New York’s 19th District).  Ithaca is at the western end of the 19th District, which stretches from Tompkins County east to the Massachusetts border.