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Montesano Announces Grants For Local Libraries

Over $200,000 provided for

needed repairs and improvements

Assemblyman Michael Montesano recently announced  that the Hicksville Free Library, Bayville Free Library, and Bethpage Public Library will be receiving Public Library Construction Grants. The Bethpage and Hicksville libraries are getting $100,000 each to repair its out-of-date lighting system and major building renovations respectively.

“Our libraries provide access to vital information for the public, as well as play host to programs offering culturally enriching opportunities,” said Montesano. “These construction grants will greatly assist in providing the crucial infrastructure repairs our libraries need to continue admirably serving our communities’ needs.”

New York’s public libraries are in urgent need of renovation and upgrading. A recent survey showed a documented need for public library construction and renovation projects totaling more than $2.2 billion. More than 40 percent of the over 1,000 public library buildings in communities across New York are over 60 years old and another 30 percent are more than three decades old.  Due to this, many of the state’s local public libraries are unable to accommodate users with disabilities, are energy inefficient, cannot provide Internet and computer and other electronic technologies to users because of outdated and inadequate electrical wiring and do not have sufficient space to house the library’s expanding collection, address the need for adequate meeting room, or provide for public access computers.

“We greatly appreciate Assemblyman Montesano’s assistance in securing funds from the Public Library Construction Grant. Here at the Hicksville Library, we are committed to continually improving the facilities to better serve our community,” said Roseann Acosta, public relations and programming representative for the Hicksville Public Library. “The renovations and relocation of staff to the new administration building has provided us with much needed space in the main building where we have begun the process of making vital improvements to library services.”

The Public Library Construction Grant Program is a $14 million capital-fund appropriation in the 2012 state budget for the construction and renovation of public libraries and library systems across New York State to address these issues.

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

Board of Education Meeting

October 22

Oktoberfest

October 25-26

Pancake Breakfast

October 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
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