Friday, 08 February 2013 00:00
The North Shore Board of Education does not wish to lend credibility to any anonymous paid advertisements by responding to such ads; however, “An Open Letter to the North Shore Community” dated Jan. 25, is wrong on the facts. To begin, the issue raised in the ad was directly answered by the board more than a year ago, and posted on the board website. Here again are the facts.
On June 16, 2011, at a meeting held in the offices of the Town of North Hempstead, LIPA and National Grid informed the district and the town that they decided to decommission Glenwood Landing Power Plant by 2013. That was the first meeting held between LIPA, National Grid, the board, district administration and the Town of North Hempstead on this subject. That same day, LIPA issued a news release announcing that it would seek approval from its Board of Trustees to remove the Glenwood Landing Power Plant from the current Power Supply Agreement between LIPA and National Grid. One week later, on June 23, 2011, the LIPA Board of Trustees approved the ramp down of the Glenwood Landing Power Plant.
Contrary to statements in the anonymous ad, no prior meetings between the then Board President, Igor Webb, the Superintendent and LIPA were held with respect to LIPA’s decision to ramp down the Glenwood Landing Plant. Moreover, the June 16 meeting was not a meeting called by LIPA to discuss the decommissioning of the Glenwood Landing Plant; it was a meeting held to inform the board, and the town, of a decision that had already been made.
But the central point—one the board has made repeatedly - is that even if the board had been informed of or was made aware of a proposed closure at a much earlier date, there is no action the board could have taken to minimize the impact of the plant closing to the school district . . . because there is no such available legal mechanism under state law that would have allowed the district to financially prepare for the decision made by LIPA at its June 2011 meeting.
The school board does not control energy policy, environmental policy, building and zoning regulations, or tax policy. However, because LIPA is a New York State Public Authority, the best way to avert the worst consequences of the closing of the plant is to work to obtain help from Albany - the board has worked with and continues to work with its legislative representatives in an effort to address the ramp down’s impact on the school district. Since learning of LIPA’s decision, the board of education, with the support of other local municipalities, has steadfastly pursued a legislative solution.
To get legislative relief and find a solution to our problem is a tough assignment and LIPA’s specifics are ever-changing and their future is questionable. We can only hope to succeed if we are united as community, and work together.
Carolyn Mazzu Genovesi, Esq.
Board of Education, President
North Shore Schools