With only a week to go before the Village of Garden City holds a bond referendum vote to approve funds to demolish St. Paul’s main building and Ellis Hall, there could be one last ray of hope to save the village landmark from the wrecking ball.
There’s a new mayor in town and his name is Donald Brudie. The 44th mayor of the Village of Garden City was officially sworn into office by Supreme Court Justice Stephen Bucaria on Monday, April 4 during the village’s organizational night. Subsequently, Village Justice Allen Mathers administered the oath of office to Trustees Dennis Donnelly, Laurence Quinn and Andrew Cavanaugh, as well as newly-elected Trustee John DeMaro.
Friends, family, and residents packed Village Hall to witness the swearing-in ceremonies and the night was prefaced by an invocation read by Rev. Joseph Schlafer of St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church.
In the last school budget work session of the year, Garden City Superintendent of Schools Dr. Robert Feirsen gave an overview of his final recommendations to his proposed 2011-12 school budget on April 6. Among the refinements presented to the Board of Education was the restoration of the class size guideline to 25 students at the elementary level and the lowering of the tax levy to 2.58 percent.
The proposed overall budget total remains the same at $101,117,058, with a budget-to-budget increase of $3,128,568 or 3.19 percent. Feirsen announced that the projected tax levy increase (with STAR) has been amended to 2.58 percent down from 2.71 percent. “That reflects $117,000 or so of additional state aid that we received since we last met with the board. So we applied all of that money to lowering the tax levy,” Feirsen said.
Superintendent of Garden City Schools Dr. Robert Feirsen wrapped up the final school budget presentations during the last board of education meeting in March. During the budget discussion, Feirsen proposed the restoration of the Junior Varsity Golf Team at the high school and said he will heed the board’s suggestion to reconsider his recommendation to increase class size at the elementary school level.
As in all the previous work sessions, Dr. Feirsen explained that every Long Island school district presents their budgets a little bit differently. He maintained that questions and comments from the board and community are an important and valuable part of the democratic process and said nothing is set in stone. “We do in this district a very thorough analysis… Nothing here is a fait accompli,” he explained. “We start working on the budget at pretty much the beginning of the school year,” Feirsen said.
Among the superintendent’s newest amendments was eliminating his previous recommendation to the board to drop a head coach for the JV Golf Team after questions and concerns arose from the community. “As I say this is an open process and we’re open to that process. When the facts change, we change our minds. The facts have changed,” he said.
With a fashionably late entrance, Garden City resident and television icon Susan Lucci appeared every bit as glamorous as her soap opera character during the opening night of her new book tour at Book Revue in Huntington last week.
In the age of Reality TV shows dominating the airwaves, La Lucci proves that good old-fashioned soap opera fans are still alive and well, with legions of admirers lining the book store’s aisles to meet the star.
The queen of daytime rapped candidly about her newly penned memoir, All My Life. The book offers an eye-opening glimpse into the star’s personal life and chronicles her childhood growing up on Long Island, her rise to fame as Erica Kane and her personal and professional highs and lows.
It was after midnight before the Garden City Board of Education officially swore in Tom Pinou as the new interim board of education trustee. Due to health concerns, Laura Brown vacated the trustee seat this past February. Pinou, the outgoing president of the Western Property Owners’ Association, was chosen by the board among many other qualified candidates, and will sit on the dais at the next board meeting on April 6.
After eight years of serving on the Garden City Village Board of Trustees, Mayor Robert J. Rothschild, a 28-year resident, held the gavel in his hand for the very last time as he presided over his final board meeting in recent weeks. Next month, Mayor-Elect Donald Brudie will take the reins along with four other Community Agreement candidates who prevailed in the village election held on March 15.
The death knell has officially sounded for the main building of St. Paul’s School and Ellis Hall after the Garden City Board of Trustees voted 5 to 3 to approve the demolition of the structure last week. During the last board meeting of his tenure, Mayor Robert Rothschild, along with Trustees Dennis Donnelly, Nicholas Episcopia, Laurence Quinn and Brian Daughney, voted to approve demolition and Mayor-elect Donald Brudie and Trustees John Watras and Andrew Cavanaugh voted against the proposition.
Prior to the vote, Trustee Andrew Cavanaugh reminded the board that once the item was passed it could not be undone. “I would like this board to recognize that these findings lead to a path which is irretrievable and irreversible, that demolition, if effected, cannot be undone. That is what we are voting on now. There is no going back. There is no alternative that we are voting on. We are voting on an irretrievable and irreversible action as described in these findings,” Cavanaugh stated.
As if the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter didn’t need any more bad press, a video was anonymously posted on Sunday, March 13 on YouTube. The 17-year-old footage depicts then-kennel foreman Pat Horan watching shelter workers slip a catch-pole around the neck of a kitten and lift it into the air, as they allegedly prepare it to be euthanized.
One worker is seen making obscene and lewd gestures, even mocking the killing of the animal, while Horan is seen laughing and giving the middle finger to the person filming the video. As the kitten squirms wildly, someone off-camera cheers, “Kill the kitty; kill the kitty.”
According to Town officials, Pat Horan was a kennel foreman at the time the video was allegedly taken. The video labeled Horan as kennel supervisor.
At its final budget meeting for the 2011-2012 fiscal year held on Tuesday, March 8, the Garden City Board of Trustees moved to approve several proposals, which have been laid out during its recent series of public work sessions. The budget set forth will yield a village tax increase of less than 2 percent – down from last year’s 2.2 percent increase.
Starting from a zero assumption, the village’s current budget stands at $53,739,000, Trustee Andrew J. Cavanaugh said. The board dissected that number by area, including the library, Police Department and Fire Services, and voted on respective proposals to make adjustments to that zero-based budget.
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