Declaring that by 2013, the county’s finances will be “back on track,” a confident Edward P. Mangano announced $23 million in new budget cuts in anticipation of the 2011 fiscal year.
The announcement was made at a press conference in Mineola last Thursday. The county executive was joined by Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos and Majority Leader Peter J. Schmitt, as all three stood under a banner worded with an anti-big government quotation from Republican Party icon Ronald Reagan. The county executive touted the achievements of his first year, including the elimination of a home energy tax and achieving a small budget surplus. Most of all, he claimed that the new round of budget reductions would help keep the county budget balanced throughout the 2011 fiscal year even in the face of funding mandates from Albany.
Less than 24 hours after the public town hall meeting in Hempstead ended on Tuesday, Dec. 7, the three volunteers who have been banned from entering the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter in Wantagh since late October, filed a lawsuit against the Town of Hempstead, Kate Murray, Bruce Hallbert, Jill Schuster, Patricia Horan, Vincent Napoli, Joanne Miranda, Russel Davis, and Ashley Sheridan.
In the lawsuit dated Wednesday, Dec. 8 Diane Madden of East Meadow, Lucille DeFina of Merrick, and Frances Lucivero-Pelletier of Levittown allege that they were banned from the shelter after making claims of animal abuse and neglect. They are seeking an unspecified compensation and to be restored to their volunteer duties at the shelter.
Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced recently that Robert Feder was sentenced to 16 years in prison by a Nassau County judge after pleading guilty to killing a Nassau County Deputy Attorney in a Westbury car crash last May while under the influence of cocaine.
According to police, Feder, 51, of Huntington Station, pleaded guilty to Aggravated Vehicular Homicide, Attempted Murder in the Second Degree, and Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs on Oct. 29.
The students and staff at Jonas E. Salk Middle School congratulate Ryan Clifford on a remarkable high school cross-country season. He’s only the second eighth grader in the history of MacArthur High School to fully participate on a varsity cross-country team. Clifford proved himself consistently throughout the whole season. Clifford’s best time for a 5k this year was 18:38 and he also set the school record for the boys’ freshman 1.5-mile run.
On Monday, Dec. 6 the Levittown community gathered at Veterans Memorial Park at Shelter Lane and Hempstead Turnpike, in front of the Levittown Public Library for its annual tree lighting celebration, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce.
Hundreds of kids, young and old, anxiously waited for Santa’s arrival while listening to the holiday songs performed by several community youth groups including the St. Bernard’s Children’s Choir, the PAL Twirlers, and Island Trees student orchestra.
The Island Trees BOE approved the extension of insurance coverage to volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers at its most recent meeting held at the Stephen Karopczyc School in Levittown.
According to the provisions of the New York State Health Insurance Program or NYSHIP, eligibility would be extended only to active volunteers and the total cost of participation in the program by volunteers and their families would be the responsibility of the volunteer.
Current annual costs for coverage under the program are $7,495.08 for an individual and $16,290.60 for a family.
Heard of Four Loko? Popular drinks such as Four Loko and Joose contain as much as 2-3 coffee cups worth of caffeine and twice the amount of alcohol as a bottle of beer per container – a potent, dangerous mix that can be extremely hazardous for teens and adults alike
In July, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer called on the FDA to investigate the safety of these drinks. In his letter to the State Liquor Authority Nov. 10, Schumer noted that the FDA has never approved or determined that caffeine in alcoholic beverages like Four Loko is “generally recognized as safe,” which therefore allows the New York State Liquor Authority to implement a state ban on their sale. While the FDA continues its review, Schumer said the state must act now and immediately to ban these drinks in New York, and on Nov. 10 he called on the New York State Liquor Authority to immediately ban caffeinated alcoholic beverages, including the drink Four Loko, from being sold in New York State.
On Wednesday, Nov. 17, a special public session was called by the Levittown Board of Education to appoint the newest members of the 2011-2012 Citizens Advisory Committee for Budgets. After a brief moment of silence for the troops fighting abroad, six new members were appointed to the already formed committee. The committee is made of the following 21 district residents:
William Bogdanowich, Dan Bornstein, Eddie Callaghan, Thomas Carman, Fred Carroll, Jason Feiner, Fred Gray, Sharon Katz, Thomas Kohlman, Michael Nersesian, Jane Rosi, Aileen Shapiro, Kenneth Siegel, Richard Snizek, Patricia Stillwaggon, Tracey Thomas, Roxanne Toomey, Kathleen Vaughan Ware, Nicholas Voulgaris, Frank Ward, and Maria Xenios.
Committee members will focus on a thorough review of the current (2010-2011) budget, a study of the multi-year budget process and its implications, and an analysis of the 2011-2012 budget proposals as they are developed.
On Friday, Nov. 12 the Applied Science Foundation for Homeland Security held a commissioning ceremony for its Morrelly Homeland Security Center in Bethpage. It is the first and only privately owned homeland security center in the nation that serves emergency first responders (fire, police, transportation, etc.) and other security services. The building also supports companies on the leading edge of homeland security technology development and academia resources.
“There have been enough examples over the past 12 to 18 months so that everybody very well understands that national security, homeland security, emergency preparedness and response, and law enforcement at all levels are linked together,” said Chairman of the Applied Science Foundation for Homeland Security Paul Schneider. He is the immediate former deputy secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.
School taxes and questions about the district’s kindergarten classes took center stage at the most recent meeting of the Levittown Board of Education held in the Levittown Memorial Education Center on Wednesday, Nov. 3.
Following the board’s recognition of a vibrant art display by students from Northside Elementary School, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Herman Sirois reported on the results of a 15-year Internal Benchmark Analysis regarding the district’s taxes.
Prefacing his report by noting that NYS school taxes are among the highest in the nation, Sirois told the audience of 40 that school districts are usually more fiscally conservative than any government agency.
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