Admittedly “very busy” up in Albany, New York State Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel is at least equally busy down the 16th Assembly District.
While she always seems to be working on overload on environmental issues and working to stop illegal guns, Schimel’s district office in Great Neck Plaza bustles with constituents and their concerns.
“A good percentage of our time is spent helping people...insurance issues, health care, even stop signs,” Schimel told Anton Community Newspapers during a recent interview.
Both in Albany and downstate, Schimel resident is working on a range of issues. Here are some addressed in the interview:
Judi Bosworth indicated in an interview with the New Hyde Park Illustrated News that the town is awaiting results of the financial and operational audit of the town’s Clinton G. Martin Park District.
Nassau County is conducting the audit. The investigation stems from 2011, when Comptroller George Maragos asked to analyze the park district’s records citing misappropriated funds alleged by district residents.
In February 2013, a State Supreme Court appellate decision ruled the county could do the audit. The town appealed, arguing the audit was unconstitutional, but was denied.
The New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District unveiled the first draft of the 2014-15 operating budget on Monday, March 10.
For the 2014-15 school year, the district has proposed a budget of $36,004,325; a 1.35 percent increase over the last year’s budget. This is the smallest increase percentage-wise in 10 years, according to district officials. This is also the sixth year in a row that the
district did not have to lay off any teachers.
The Herricks School District Board of Education has unanimously voted to provide school tax exemptions for local veterans of the United States military.
At a public meeting held on March 12, just three days shy of the deadline school districts had to either approve the exemption for the 2014-15 school year or defer to next year, Board President James Gounaris said that backing the bill was the right thing.
“The Herricks Board of Education approves a resolution to extend the new veterans exemptions to qualified Herricks homeowners, according to the statute,” he said. “We salute and offer our gratitude for their service to our country and with a deep sense of pride voted in favor of the tax accommodation.”
Problem Oriented Policing (POP) Officer Nick Mosesso of the Nassau County Police Department Third Precinct delivered an update on criminal activity in New Hyde Park on Tuesday, March 11.
Speaking at a village board meeting, Mosesso acts as a liaison to the community from POP.
“Honestly, there hasn’t been much,” Mosesso said. “We had a residential burglary early in the year, a business burglary, and damaged property of three automobiles.”
Other incidents he mentioned were criminal mischief at Mike’s Convenience Store, which he said someone saw on a surveillance video tape.
The Herricks School District Board of Education has temporarily tabled its participation in a recent bill signed by New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo that would provide school tax exemptions for veterans of the United States military living in the district.
Board President James Gounaris, at a meeting on March 6, said that while the door would remain open for future participation in the program, several potential issues with the bill that made him and his trustees reluctant to opt in at this time
“There is the issue that we continue to have with the Nassau County Assessor’s Office, and their inability to give us good data on who is legitimate and who is qualified for the program and who is not,” he said. “The board is in favor of offering the exemption, but the problem is, how do we qualify the exemption for all these people without affecting others who may or may not qualify? Veterans who may be mistakenly excluded may pay a higher rate when they may have been qualified to participate.”
It was a historical night in New Hyde Park as the New Hyde Park Museum recently held its official grand opening on the second floor of Village Hall in the William Gill Theatre. The doors opened at 6:30 p.m. to let the public view various pictures, memorabilia and items dating back to the late 1800s.
“It has been several years in the making to get this Museum up and running,” said New Hyde Park Historical Society and Museum President Carol Nowakowski, who has been a resident of the Village since 1962. “A lot of people worked very hard to get this going and I am very proud of this museum.”
New Hyde Park Village Mayor Robert Lofaro, Trustee Donald Barbieri and other local figures, including Nassau County Legislator Rich Nicolello and County Comptroller George Maragos were in attendance.
The Sewanhaka Central High School District’s ad hoc committee is still reviewing options for a second bond referendum, to be put up for a vote either in May during budget and school board elections or a special election in the fall. The district proposed a $99.5 million bond for various repairs to its five high schools in December, which failed by 293 votes.
Five options are before the ad hoc committee. The first is a vote on the original bond for a second time, with elimination of electronic signs and some capital work. The second and third options would decrease the bond issue, to $84,606,691 in one case or $87,029,591 in another. The fourth option would total $89,577,091. The fifth option is split into two: $73,567,876 in infrastructure repairs, improvements; and a separate $16,009,215 in athletic renovations and upgrades. The School Board will review the options in preparation for a special meeting on Tuesday, March 18.
It’s a family affair for the Winters of Port Washington when they make pilgrimages to Bobb Howard’s General Store in New Hyde Park. “There’s something in that store for everyone,” says Tracy Winters, who has been a customer of this retro candy and toy store for eight years. Tracy goes for the Astro Pops, husband Michael gets Marshmallow Twists and Tracy’s mother, Phyllis Heller of Bellmore, can’t resist the Goldenberg Peanut Chews. Jake, Tracy’s older son, isn’t a candy lover so he gravitates to the old-time toys and nostalgia posters.
Jamie Waller of Queens says it made him feel like a kid again when he saw the wall of candy with treats from the 1990s and 1950s sitting next to each other. “Anything you can possibly want is there,” he says. For Jamie, a big treat is Circus Peanuts, peanut-shaped marshmallows. “My dad used to love them when he was a kid,” he says.
One fortunate New Hyde Park resident was rescued from the freezing cold on Tuesday, Feb. 25 thanks to Dr. Julia Harmon, DVM, of the New Hyde Park Animal Hospital. That night, at approximately 8 p.m., Harmon was going to her car after work when she saw Spike, a wandering bulldog near Brooklyn Avenue, one block from the vet’s office on Jericho Turnpike.
Harmon immediately brought Spike, who was not wearing a collar and did not have a microchip implanted for identification, back to the vet’s office. The temperature outside was already at 31 degrees, but felt like 20 degrees with the windchill. Luckily Spike was
brought in from the cold early; temperatures dropped down to 25 degrees that night.
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