New York State Fiscal Stress Test Results
New York State Comptroller DiNapoli recently released the results of his latest fiscal stress monitoring assessments. The results categorized villages into four categories, “significant stress”, “moderate stress”, “susceptible to stress” and no designation. The assessments were made as of May 31, 2013 using a series of financial ratio calculations. Garden City scored 50 percent on the rating scale; a rating that put us in the “susceptible to stress” category. Had we scored 45 percent or below, we would not have received any stress designation.
Mention the term Common Core and not surprisingly, you’ll generally wind up with a visceral reaction. On Tuesday, Feb. 4, the Garden City Board of Education opened a work session up to the public with Common Core being the topic discussed. Dr. Teresa Prendergast, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, wound up moderating and delivering a thoroughly comprehensive Common Core presentation with handouts and slide, during which time she dispelled myths and rumors about this highly controversial state-mandated program. One of the primary points she made was the fact that much of what Common Core is teaching has been getting covered by the district’s current curriculum. By all accounts, administrators and teachers are doing a yeoman’s job in trying to work with state mandates and making sure that Garden City’s students are comprehending the material and putting their best foot forward.
Snow Storms—Help Us Help You
With another snow storm behind us, I would like to take this opportunity to thank village residents and merchants for their cooperation by shoveling walks within 24 hours following the snow fall. Looking ahead, the following suggestions are offered in an effort to reduce inconvenience to residents and to assist the village in serving your needs.
• If possible, wait until the village plows the street to clear the snow from your driveway entrance. If you can’t wait, shovel to the right onto your curbside, since most snow plows push to the right. Do not shovel snow back into the cleared street. This will reduce the accumulation of snow which will be pushed back into your driveway. This is a chronic problem. Plow operators have been reminded to reduce the speed of their vehicles in order to lessen the amount of snow that is pushed back into driveways. Please be aware that the Department of Public Works cannot shovel out driveway entrances nor can it plow any private property.
Recently, the Garden City Community Church and Freeport’s First Presbyterian Church joined forces to stage a pair of Will Sing for Food concerts whose proceeds were used to help fund the Long Island Council of Churches’ food pantries. The final take for both shows was close to $5,600, a noble yet small amount when you consider that according to Share Our Strength, a national organization working to end childhood hunger in America, 1 out of 5, or 16 million children, struggle with hunger. It’s a fact that’s easy to lose sight of now that Thanksgiving and the holidays are fading in our collective rear view mirror. If there is a silver lining to be cognizant of it is the fact that with not only these recent shows held by local clergy, but with many food drives, more and more younger people are getting involved in trying to help the less fortunate. It’s this kind of activism from the younger set that fuels the hope that those aforementioned numbers someday start to take on a downward trend.
—Dave Gil de Rubio
Yield For Pedestrian In Crosswalk
Residents are again reminded of the “Yield for Pedestrian in Crosswalk” signs at the three mid-block crosswalks on Seventh Street between Franklin and Hilton Avenues.
State vehicle and traffic law states that motorists must yield to pedestrians who are crossing a roadway within the striped crosswalks. A motorist seeing a pedestrian entering the crosswalk must stop and permit the pedestrian to cross the street. Cars approaching the stopped vehicle from the rear are not permitted to pass.
According to the Center for Disease Control, childhood obesity has more than tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years. And with so much youth caught up in the sedentary vise grip of social media, television and video games, this should come as no surprise. To that end, there are students making an effort to keep fit in a way that reflects the metaphysical principle that the body is your temple and as such, should be kept pure and clean for the soul to reside in. Last month, Garden City High School seniors Robert Wotzcak and Drusilla Falco were awarded the New York State AHPERD Nassau Zone Outstanding Physical Education students for the 2013-14 school year at a county-wide dinner. It is an award the high school physical education department selects a male and female student for based on an array of factors including school wide participation, leadership, stellar character and performance in physical education classes. If more teens followed this kind of example, those childhood obesity numbers would take a significant hit.
—Dave Gil de Rubio
Budget Work Sessions
I would like to advise you that the board of trustees will be conducting work sessions to review the proposed 2014-15 operating/capital budgets on:
Saturday, Feb. 8, 8:30 a.m. (Budget Overview/Tour Of Facilities)
Thursday, Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m. (Budget Study/Work Session 1)
Tranquility is a difficult commodity to come by nowadays thanks a rat race lifestyle most of us endure that involves struggling to balance long work hours and a family life while jostling for a place in society’s pecking order. Throw in a commute and mass transit and the notion of finding peace of mind becomes akin to crossing paths with Bigfoot. Which makes the Garden City Bird Sanctuary the sasquatch of suburban green space. Ever since Rob Alvey kicked off its transformation from mere storm water basin to an environmental oasis back in 1996, it’s become a refuge for not only an array of bird species, but people lucky enough to discover and enjoy its therapeutic benefits. Once you walk through the gate and start to traverse the nearly three-quarters of a mile’s worth of walking trails and paths that wend through the sanctuary’s nine acres of property, the clatter and noise of everyday life is muted by the lush foliage that envelops this green space. It’s a place where you can breathe deep and lose yourself to the equivalent of organic white noise.
—Dave Gil de Rubio
Snow Storms—Help Us Help You
With the blizzard behind us, I would like to take this opportunity to thank village residents and merchants for their cooperation by shoveling walks within 24 hours following the snowfall. Looking ahead, the following suggestions are offered in an effort to reduce inconvenience to residents and to assist the village in serving your needs.
When members of Carolyn McCarthy’s family were among the victims of Colin Ferguson’s murderous rampage on the LIRR back in 1993, little did the former nurse know that she would be wind up spending the next two decades in Congress as a fierce gun control advocate. And while her opponents would lazily refer to her as a one-issue congresswoman, McCarthy was in fact a moderate who was involved with legislation pertaining to finance, health and education. Despite those facts, she became a lightning rod for the NRA and the far right, all the while never wavering from a call for more stringent and evenly applied gun vending and ownership regulations in the face of tragedies like Virginia Tech, Columbine, the Aurora Century movie theater and the Goleta postal facility shootings. But it would be the December 2012 school shooting at Sandy Hook in Connecticut that prompted the nine-term congresswoman to not seek re-election. But given how others had been inspired by McCarthy’s efforts to fight on behalf of gun control, she’s been quoted as saying the movement is in good hands. Currently battling lung cancer, Carolyn McCarthy is leaving behind an impressive political legacy and should be thanked for her service. We at the Garden City Life wish her a speedy recovery.
— Dave Gil de Rubio
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