The father of America’s interstate highway system, President Dwight Eisenhower, once wrote that its “impact on the American economy the jobs it would produce in manufacturing and construction…was beyond calculation.”
Decades later, those same words hold true as New York faces its own infrastructure and economic crisis. Investing in transportation projects can, and must be a part of the solution to both problems.
But while Eisenhower’s challenge was building a system to bring communities closer together; ours is fixing a system so they don’t drift apart.
As a resident of Farmingdale village, who happens to live near the old Chase bank on Conklin, I had been extremely concerned about a proposed village zoning change. This change would allow for restaurants in all areas currently zoned office/residential.
Why was I concerned? Not because I don’t want change, nor do I believe in NIMBY (not in my back yard), or do I necessarily believe drunks will terrorize children in the neighborhood. But it would clearly change the Village feel we work so hard to maintain. We plant trees and flowers, hang holiday decorations, even tried to beautify Main Street with brick and lampposts.
Have you had the pleasure recently of trying to apply for a job? Gone are the days of speaking to a real person and meeting face to face to interview. Today almost all applications are processed through websites.
Yesterday, I was following up on a job posting I found with a local bank here in Farmingdale. I visited the branch to ask about the position. I was told that the position was in that branch but couldn’t be told any more information than that. I was directed to their website to fill out all my information there. This process, which I experienced at other times demands the following: creating an ID and password, your name, address, date of birth and Social Security Number, and an evaluation test (takes more than one hour to complete).
Dear Village Residents,
After much thought and consideration I have decided not to seek re-election in March. It has been truly an honor and a privilege to serve the community I love. Between the toll on quality family time and the economic tsunami my business has been slammed with, the tough, but right, decision was obvious.
There are a number of serious issues my board and I will be dealing with before my departure. Consolidating water services to secure long-term water resources and lower rates is one important issue. Having full-time fire dispatchers at our firehouse when 46 other departments in Nassau County use 911 is another. Can we afford this obvious duplication of service while the unsustainable costs to provide vital services outstrip our taxpayer’s ability to pay? The first of many applications for new smart growth projects will be coming to the Board this winter. Don’t let naysayers like my good friend John Venditto in Oyster Bay claim “urbanization” to scare you. Tearing down old warehouses and blighted vacant buildings is not urbanization, its revitalization. The village will have more green space; a much more beautiful downtown and a new lease on life. As other downtowns die a slow death due to high taxes and rents, Farmingdale will be a model and a roadmap to change.
(Editor’s note: An organized rally by the families of LaSalle School has been scheduled from the Village Green to St. Kilian Church on Saturday, Jan. 7.)
Three weeks ago the Diocese of Rockville Center decided to close six grammar schools on Long Island. Lasalle Regional School in Farmingdale Village is one of them.
The school is obviously a central part of our community and closing it would force that community to be fragmented. To me, that’s not acceptable. Sports programs, art programs, music programs, dance programs, local Scout programs, local businesses, and of course, the dedicated staff will also be negatively impacted by the school closing. This too, is unacceptable.
I’m in second grade at St. John Baptist de LaSalle Regional School. It would be great if you could give me my school back. I’ve been there since pre-k and I want to graduate there. I’m afraid to lose my best friends. And I love all my teachers so much.
Because of my school I learned so much about God I decided to be a nun or a Catholic schoolteacher.
I’ve learned so much and I don’t want to leave.
(Editor’s note: The following is a copy of a letter from Senator Charles Fuschillo and the Long Island Senate Delegation to the LIPA Board of Trustees opposing LIPA’s rate increase proposal. The letter was read into public record at a LIPA public hearing on Tuesday, Dec. 6 regarding its rate increase proposal.)
December 6, 2011
Members of the Board of Trustees
Long Island Power Authority
333 Earle Ovington Boulevard
Uniondale, New York 11553
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:
We are writing to urge you to reject a proposal to increase LIPA rates as part of its proposed 2012 budget.
LIPA ratepayers already pay some of the highest utility costs in the country. On top of that, they pay some of the nation’s highest property taxes and are dealing with some of the worst economic conditions since the great depression. They cannot afford to keep paying more.
Families and small businesses have been making tough choices and doing more with less in this economy. New York State has done the same, closing a $10 billion budget deficit without raising taxes.
However, LIPA is planning a 5 percent spending increase on salaries and benefits over the 2011 approved budget. In addition, LIPA is also increasing spending on outside consultants, according to a November 10th Newsday story. LIPA should follow the example of their customers and work harder to find internal savings and efficiencies.
With over 94,000 Long Islanders unemployed, and every family feeling the effects of the current economy, now is not the time to raise their bills even higher. We strongly urge you to reject a rate increase because of the effect it will have on LIPA ratepayers.
Senator Charles J. Fuschillo,
Jr.Senator Dean Skelos
Senator Owen Johnson
Senator Kenneth Lavalle
Senator Kemp Hannon
Senator Carl Marcellino
Senator John Flanagan
Senator Jack Martins
Senator Lee Zeldin
Last week [This letter was received Dec. 20], the Nassau County Legislature unanimously approved a contract that is the basis for a public-private operating partnership between the county and Veolia Transportation to operate the new Nassau Inter-County Express, or NICE, bus system. But, of even greater significance is that Nassau took a key step toward forming a true county transit system.
Prior to voting, the legislature worked closely with the county executive to insert numerous amendments to the original contract that create more public involvement on proposed future adjustments to the system. The contract spells out how the county will for the first time assume control over its own bus system, including fares, service levels, service plans, and annual operating budget.
On Friday evening, December 2, this year’s Holiday Lighting of the Village of Farmingdale’s Tricentennial Tree took place on the Village Green. This blue spruce tree was planted following the community’s Tricentennial of Settlement observance in 1987, which commemorated the 300th anniversary of the arrival of the first settler Thomas Powell in 1687. The Farmingdale-Bethpage Historical Society has been one of the co-sponsors of the Tree Lighting event since the first was held in 1989. Incidentally, we will reach the community’s 325th anniversary of settlement next year, 2012.
This year’s event was the first in its 23-year history to be postponed due to unfavorable weather. The original date, November 29, was a very wet day. We appreciate the decision of Mayor George Starkie and the Village Board to move the program to Friday evening, which was a perfect night weather-wise, clear and seasonably cool.
The 23rd annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Farmingdale’s Village Green, on December 2 was truly a community endeavor. So many contributed their time and talents to ensure that this holiday tradition remains a part of the fabric that is Farmingdale.
First, a round of applause must be given to the Beautification Committee for their work decorating the Green so professionally in time for the event. The excellent Third Grade Chorus represented the Farmingdale Public Schools from the Northside School.
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