The Board of Trustees of the Manhasset Public Library read with interest the letter to the editor from Amanda Barker, labor relations specialist of the United Public Service Employees Union, which has recently affiliated with the Manhasset Public Library Staff Association (April 26).
While the board disagrees with several of the statements made in the letter, we prefer to address those differences at the bargaining table rather than in the media. We look forward to resuming discussions with the negotiating team for the staff so that we can restart efforts to reach a fair settlement that respects both the employees and the taxpayers. These negotiations have been prolonged and, at times, difficult. We welcome the participation of the UPSEU as a chance for a fresh perspective and opportunity to make real progress toward a new agreement.
All three statements are easily refutable and simply untrue. The Research Foundation is not led by government officials. Most importantly it is an organization that over the past year has demonstrated, and has been recognized for, its pledge to accountability and transparency.
For the first time ever, the Manhasset Proponents of School Accountability (MPSA) and the Port Washington Educational Assembly (PWEA) are supporting the proposed school budgets in our communities, as both budgets are meeting the new tax cap limits. While both of our groups favored a budget with no tax increase in these difficult times, in the interest of unifying our communities, we agreed to support any budget that met the new tax limit even though the budget increases ($1.5 million in Manhasset and $2.7 million in Port Washington) are, for the most part, increases in employee salaries and benefits.
Larry Day passed away on April 4. Why am I writing about Larry Day? Because Larry and his lifelong friend, Charlie Knuth, taught me about the value of friendship. So often we hear about women’s friendships. But let me tell you about this “guy’s friendship.“ I’ve worked at the Manhasset Public Library for 15 years and over that time I observed them and marveled at their relationship.
Until Larry could no longer engage in his daily ritual, he could be seen with his best friend, Charlie, taking their daily “good health” walk down Plandome Road, chatting up a storm. So, what did they talk about — two grown men in their 70s and 80s? Life...they shared their joy and their grief. Charlie, reflecting on his days as patent director at Pfizer, and Larry about the good ol’ days at Pepsi. But, more importantly, they chatted about their families — their grown children, grandkids, and their beloved wives, Nancy Knuth and Elizabeth Day. And when Larry got sick, Charlie faithfully visited him up to the last.
I had just turned 50, training to run a half marathon, and had passed my physical in May 2011 with flying colors. Then in August 2011 this all drastically changed. After completing a seven-mile run, I headed to the grocery store. While shopping, I was hit with a sudden pain in my legs, with extreme pain in my knees and numbness in my feet. It seemed to pass, however, over the next week I began having many strange and disturbing things happen to my body. I lost total feeling in my feet, had extreme pain in my knees; making it hard to walk up and down stairs, pins and needles up and down my legs, ear pain, muscle spasms that could be seen pulsating on the outside of my skin, jaw pain, teeth pain, skin rashes – and this was only the beginning. As time continued, so did my symptoms, causing pain that I have never, ever experienced before and could not accurately explain to any one person.
(Editor’s Note: This cautionary tale was written to help others caught in a similar situation. Author Liu said, “I am taking to heart the advice you mentioned in your recent editorial ‘Change Begins with You.’ Instead of waiting for someone else to do it, I’ll start the change.”)
Last year, with our youngest in college, my husband and I decided to start renovating our house. We’ve been living in the same house for almost 20 years now. Things were getting worn out. One of the first things we did was to replace our old central a/c unit, which was making a lot of noise and using a lot of Freon. We replaced it with a more energy efficient, quieter model. We were elated when our monthly utility bill went down and we were going green.
The front page article regarding the Manhasset Library budget and negotiations (“Library Budget Represents A 2 Percent Tax Increase” - April 12, 2012) requires some clarification and response.
At a recent board meeting, certain information was shared with the public that warrants correction. To date, the library is short-staffed. The Adult Reference Department, which had six full-time librarians two years ago, currently has only three - not four, as was indicated at the meeting. The Children’s Department also has only three librarians, not four. The current staff is doing its utmost to continue to provide the same level of service that the Manhasset community is used to - even as the library is open additional hours and has become more active, and more utilized, than ever.
(Editors note: This letter was sent to Honorable Edward Mangano, county executive, Nassau County and to the Manhasset Press for publication.)
The Town of North Hempstead is ready to proceed with a repavement of Plandome Road from Northern Blvd. (Rte 25A) to the town’s border at Webster Ave. This town project is part of the Phase 1 of the Plandome Rd Vision Project, funded through a NYS Safe Routes to Schools grant covering the Plandome Rd roadway between Memorial Place and Park Ave. The NYS-DOT approval process has taken far longer than anticipated over several years and is currently scheduled to break ground in summer 2012. Because the entire length of Plandome Road has continued to become deteriorated, the town supervisor has agreed to concurrently fund the town’s repavement of the remaining Town of North Hempstead sections of Plandome Rd. not covered by the Safe Routes to Schools grant project. However, this will leave one small section of Plandome Rd., through the Incorporated Village of Plandome Heights, unpaved. TNH Supervisor Jon Kaiman has publicly agreed that if the county will authorize the appropriate intermunicipal agreement to fund this Nassau County owned section of Plandome Rd., then the entire length of Plandome Rd. can be repaved by the same work crew at the same time, thereby achieving the most cost effective roadwork concurrently, and provide a continuous concurrent repavement. Failure to take action now will leave this 0.3 mile of Plandome Roadway through the Village of Plandome Heights in its current poor condition.
Really? Is this what our elected officials are spending their time and taxpayer money doing? How much money will be spent installing signage and holding ceremonies?
While William Cullen Bryant is certainly a noteworthy and famous resident of New York State and Roslyn, if he was still alive I am sure he would not be honored to have this architecturally bland excuse for a bridge named for him.
Recently, the City of New York did an extensive study on the implementation of ferry services for the metropolitan area. Many of the proposed routes pass by Hempstead Harbor. It has occurred to several government agencies, Long Island would benefit from a ferry service to New York City.
In my town, approximately 42,000 daily passengers take the Port Washington Railroad line (LIRR), and over 100,000 cars pass by driving into New York on the Long Island Expressway. Both the LIE and the LIRR are considered amongst the worst commuter routes in the country, costing hundreds of thousands of lost hours sitting in traffic or delays every year. This year New York will spend $7 billion dollars on roadwork and $3.1 billion dollars on the Long Island Rail Road maintenance. Although these repairs are needed, none of this money will bring long-term, sustainable jobs nor will it help in getting people to where they want to go any faster. In fact, count on long delays this spring, summer and fall.
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