Anton Community Newspapers  •  132 East 2nd Street  •  Mineola, NY 11501  •  Phone: 516-747-8282  •  FAX: 516-742-5867
Attention: open in a new window. PDFPrintE-mail

Letter: Acquire Cross Street School

Lewis Carroll wrote, “The time has come,” the Walrus said, “to talk of many things, of shoes and ships and sealing wax of cabbages and kings.” I believe that is a great lead into a letter to the editor. The tough winter of 2010-11 is slowly, ever so slowly passing and there are signs that the economy might be turning around. Major league pitchers and catchers are reporting to Spring Training and our Little League is completing registration for 2011. Soon swarms of young ball players, including some grandsons and daughters of mine will start playing as proud families and friends stand by as avid fans. So, I feel we should now talk and plan for other things, especially the future of our ballplayers and the entire Village of Williston Park. Last year I proposed that the Village buy the Cross Street School from the Mineola School District. It could be done by straight purchase or condemnation. It would be expensive, but it would enrich the value of our homes and guarantee future ball players permanent places to play. The acquisition can be done with some innovative planning and a bond issue. The long-term cost per household would be negligible, especially with the sale of the existing village hall to supplement the deal. Acquisition will guarantee the future use of the building and the ball fields. I listed things I thought the property could be used for – a new Village Hall, large library, senior, youth and general meeting rooms, auxiliary fire equipment garage area and especially the playing fields. If you want a good example on how well such an acquisition works, visit the Mineola Village Hall. That was a school and now serves Mineola very well for many uses. My proposal stirred some hearts and minds; some opposed, but more in favor. At the time I naively believed we had a pledge from the school superintendent that we could always use the ball fields. But now I see that the district has forgotten that pledge and plans to rent the building to a private school. That may be a sound economic move for the school district. But, it is questionable that once that lease is signed whether the new, private tenant will allow the village to use the fields. In our litigious society, we could not fault a new tenant for limiting the use of the ball fields to avoid even the remote chance of being included in a lawsuit involving the fields. Also, the lease of a property is usually a precursor to its sale. I believe it is time we stopped talking and started acting. If you believe this idea is sound, I ask you to become part of an action committee to acquire the property for the village. If you would like to talk about this idea and join in this effort, call me at 294-9842 (H) or my office (516-746-7371) or my cell, 516-946-1195 or by email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Alan J. Reardon

Former Judge of Village of Williston Park