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Redistricting: Cut Hicksville In Two?

GOP proposal would separate Hicksville

into different legislative districts

Hicksville might be torn in two. The hamlet will be divided between two legislative districts under a redistricting proposal from the Republican appointees to Nassau County’s Temporary Districting Advisory Committee. And with the GOP holding a majority of the county legislature, this proposal could become law.

“When you’re dividing communities, there’s less of a voice,” said Bonnie Garone, a commission member appointed by Democrats.

The issue of redistricting county legislative districts has been a controversial political issue going back to the 2011 elections, when Democrats went to court to stop Republicans from adopting lines drawn by the GOP.

Under the plan, Hicksville, currently represented by Rose Walker, would be split with its northern part going into a district that runs west to east that would also include Garden City and Bethpage. The southern part of Hicksville would be in a district with North Massapequa and Plainedge, as well as parts of Old Bethpage and Farmingdale.

“At this point the commission has completed their job, and I will be reviewing all the testimony from the commission as well as following the legal obligations expressed in our charter,” said Walker. “A map will be voted on by March 5.”

Democrats have strongly criticized the plan as a political maneuver. Under the GOP plan, three incumbent Democratic legislators, Minority Leader Kevan Abrahams, Joseph Scannell and David Denenberg, would be placed into one district.

“This, to me, is such an obvious power grab by the party in power that it’s disturbing,” said Legislator Judy Jacobs, who is the former presiding officer.

However, Francis Moroney, chairperson of the commission, defended the map. Moroney charged that when Democrats controlled the legislature in 2003, public hearings were not held and that this time, Republicans made the process “as open as it ever was.” He further stated that new lines needed to be drawn to reflect the changes that have taken place in Nassau County during the past two decades.

“[The commission] produced a map that meets all the legal standards,” he commented.

The commission could not come to an agreement, so now the Legislature will decide on new district lines, something that must be done by March 5. Currently, Republicans control the legislature by a razor thin margin of 10-9.

Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves said that the process is not finalized. In a statement she said, “We will do our due diligence to explore all factors involved with redistricting to meet the charter mandated deadline of March 5.”

News

A group of like-minded local residents banded together and saved more than 200 area trees from the chopping block — for now.

A state judge ordered Nassau County and the Department of Public Works to stop cutting down trees along South Oyster Bay Road, granting a temporary restraining order to a group of residents spearheading an effort to save the trees.

State Supreme Court Judge Antonio Brandveen scheduled a hearing on Thursday, Oct. 16 for the county to address complaints from residents, in particular a group called Operation STOMP (Save Trees Over More Pavement) founded by Hicksville native Tanya Lukasik.The Public Works department had planned to removed more than 200 30-foot trees in communities ranging from Plainview, Bethpage, Hicksville and Syosset.

For the past 16 years, Lucia Simon has walked from her home in Hicksville to her job at the Hicksville Public Library. She enjoys her job as a librarian and says that the staff has become like family to her. But for the past three years, Simon and 56 fellow co-workers have been frustrated at what she says is the library’s board refusal to negotiate a fair contract.  

“We have had no contract in three years. They refuse to bargain with us. Every time they come back to us it’s not fair,” says Simon.

However, the board of trustees disagree, saying that it has made a “fair offer.”


Sports

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School

Hicksville native progressing through Mets system

The Mets minor league system is enjoying a rare period of prosperity. For years, it was barren due to trading off high-ceiling players for major leaguers, or neglecting the draft in favor of the free agent market. Since General Manager Sandy Alderson took over, the organization has reversed course and put a much greater emphasis on player development. During his second-to-last season, however, former GM Omar Minaya took a chance and drafted a local catcher, Cam Maron, out of Hicksville High School in the 34th round.


Calendar

Spooktacular Halloween

October 17

Fall Festival

October 18

Veterans Casework Seminar

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