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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

Vastra boutique finds a niche

in hand-embroidered dresses

Who says a bride has to wear white on her wedding day? For South Asian brides, no color is off limits including brilliant reds, blues and golds. For the past 17 years, Vastra in Hicksville has been helping brides from New York and across the country find the perfect dress for their special day.

There’s no lack of Indian sari boutiques in Hicksville but according to Marketing Director Prachi Jain, what sets Vastra apart from the others is its emphasis on one of a kind, hand-embroidered Indian dresses.

Many would consider it rude to play with your food. That is unless, you’re participating in the Long Island Potato Festival. The event, which was held in Cutchogue, NY, included a mashed potato sculpting contest which was dominated by Hicksville’s Sarah Tsang, who won first place in the youth division.

Contestants were allowed to use any tools and materials to help bring their creation to life. Sculptures were left on display throughout the day and voted on by festival goers.


Sports

Somehow LSA, the Levittown Swimming Association, has always been a part of our Hicksville summers. My family’s introduction to the organization in 1975 began when our two older daughters tried out for the Parkway Swim Team, one of the nine teams that competed through July and most of August.

It was no small task for the younger girl, swimming her first full lap in the deep end of the pool to qualify at age six, but both girls made the team and donned the coveted gray tee shirts as the trees cast their shadows over the pool water at the end of practice.

I’m convinced that the soul and the center of Hicksville is Cantiague Park. And why not? Every weekend it’s a beehive of activity ranging from tennis matches, hand ball games, basketball and baseball games, swimming, hockey and of course ‘the beautiful game’ called soccer. Cantiague has two professional soccer fields that are perfectly manicured and begging to be played on. And they were. This weekend was the finals of the East Meadow Soccer Tournament which is one of the largest youth soccer tournaments in the nation, sponsored by the US Soccer Federation. There were 18 boys and girls teams in the finals and a large staff of referees.

Two of the refs were Steven Orozco and Randy Vogt who told me how soccer had been growing and has now become the second most popular participation sport in America with 25 million of us watching this year’s World Cup.  I also met and interviewed Joe Codispoti who along with Tim Bradbury is the head coach of Rockville Centre United, a U16 boys club.  This U16 team has a group of standout players led by  Jack Graziano, AJ Codispoti and Pat Basile who have been playing together for six years.


Calendar

Close Encounters with Benevolent ETs and Ascended Masters

August 29

Adventures in Genealogy

September 4

Greek Festival

September 5-7



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com