An Anton Newspapers investigation into a national story that impacts our local schools
Have you ever wondered what’s in that hamburger patty they are serving up in your child’s school? You may be surprised to learn that it might not be pure beef, but meat with filler known as “pink slime.”
Consumer food activists and high-profile chefs have been campaigning against the use of this product often found in fast food, and McDonalds, Taco Bell and Burger King have now all discontinued using pink slime. However, this year the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has plans to purchase millions of pounds of the “Lean Finely Textured Beef” (aka pink slime) for the National School Lunch Program. This cost-cutting measure once used for prisoners is now being used for school lunches around the country.
Tragedy struck the Massapequa area last Monday when Ellen Meany, a local mother of three children, succumbed to injuries sustained in a vehicular accident, one that took place on Thursday, March 8.
On Tuesday, Nassau County police reported Ms. Meany’s passing, saying that she was pronounced dead on Monday, March 12 at 6:45 p.m.
Watching Cupcake Wars on the Food Network recently, Merrick resident and co-owner of a Massapequa Park bakery Andrew Mincher and his fiancé, Nicole Hendershot, realized that Andrew would be a great contender for the show.
“I love to bake, and I love to create new things,” said Andrew. So together with his cake decorator Damilynn Lacaruba, Andrew and Nicole created a creative cupcake video and submitted it to the show’s producers for consideration.
Valley Stream resident Milagros Vincente clutched her daughter as the Nassau County Legislature voted 10-9 to realign four of its eight police precincts on Monday, March 5. She echoed sentiments of dozens of residents, business owners and police in attendance that opposed the plan from its inception.
The plan will alter the First, Fifth, Sixth and Eighth Precincts. The county has been trying to erase a $310 million deficit in 2012 and touted this plan as a step in the direction of eliminating it. In 2011, the deficit totaled $145 million.
Nassau County police officials are praising the courage of a female officer who was first victimized, but then helped in the arrest of a crime that took place last November in North Massapequa.
On Wednesday, Feb. 29, officers with The Homicide Squad arrested Louie Blanton of Amityville and charged him with Assault on a police officer, Assault in the second degree, Unlawfully Fleeing a Police Officer in a Motor Vehicle in the second degree, Reckless Endangerment in the second degree, Reckless Driving and Leaving the Scene of a Serious Physical Injury Incident Without Reporting. He was arraigned at First District Court in Hempstead on Thursday, March 1.
At the January meeting of the Village of Massapequa Park Board of Trustees, there was a mutual exchange of thanks among the BOT and village residents.
The BOT honored Frank Flood, the retiring Commissioner of the Massapequa Water District for his decades of public service. Frank and a group of his neighbors from Spruce Street honored in turn the BOT for its repaving efforts on that street. The citation for Frank read: “Frank Flood was recognized for his dedicated service as Commissioner of the Massapequa Water District; and is honored for his years of service since 1995 when he was first elected to the Board of Commissioners of the Massapequa Water District.”
The Nassau County Legislature’s Republican majority had hoped for such a vote, one that would close the First and Fifth and Sixth and Eighth precincts. However, according to a spokeswoman for Presiding Officer Peter J. Schmitt (R-Massapequa), County Executive Edward P. Mangano asked the legislature to delay the vote for at least a week, while his office remains in negotiations over unspecified issues with the Police Benevolent Association (PBA).
Last Friday, well over 100 local residents gathered at Tackapausha Museum in Seaford to rally for the reopening of that facility, one that has been closed since late December 2011.
The rally introduced a newly formed group, Friends of Tackapausha Preserve, which identified its purpose of not only seeing the museum re-opened, but also working as volunteers in partnership with Nassau County officials to provide programming and educational education for museum and preserve visitors.
Also on hand were Bob Dwyer and Eileen Krieb, two Deputy Commissioners with the county’s Department of Parks. Ms. Krieb said the county hopes to have the museum and the pond reopened for the public at around Earth Day in April.
On the eve of a vote that could shut down four police precincts in Nassau County and convert them to community policing centers, officers with the Police Benevolent Association (PBA) once again presented their case against the proposal.
In a meeting with editors of Anton Community Newspapers, PBA President James Carver and his associates claimed that the proposed closures would result in less services at the community centers than what existed at precinct stationhouses. They also disputed claims made by Acting Police Commissioner Thomas Dale that crime has decreased in Nassau County and in general, they made the case that precinct stationhouses are essential to combating crime and performing needed services.
Since the inception of the Nassau County Legislature in 1996, Peter Schmitt has had a few titles. In addition to Legislator representing the 12th Legislative District, he has been Deputy Presiding Officer, Minority Leader and, since Republicans gained back control of the Legislature in the 2009 elections, Majority Leader and Presiding Officer.
“The future of the county, Massapequa and its well-being is of the utmost importance of me,” said Schmitt during an interview with Anton Community Newspapers, adding that this is especially true because his daughter also lives in Massapequa as will his future grandchild.
As the leader of Nassau Republicans, Schmitt is often the lawmaker who most publicly spars with Democrats over policy-making decisions.
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