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Strauss Gives State Of The Village Address

Chronicles the fiscal and community highlights of Mineola

Mineola Mayor Scott Strauss presented the State of the Village address on Tuesday, Sept. 18 at Village Hall. He detailed current issues in Mineola as well as highlighting future projects beginning to take shape.

Mineola Chamber of Commerce President Bill Greene gave the opening speech, with founding member Lou Sanders introducing Strauss. He was elected trustee to the Mineola Village Board in 2010 and was elected mayor in March 2011. Strauss has lived in Mineola since 1964. He’s a graduate of the Mineola High School Class of 1981.

Strauss served for 20 years in the New York City Police Department. He retired as a detective in 2004. During his career, Strauss received numerous awards, including the NYPD’s Medal for Valor and the Medal of Honor, the NYPD’s highest award.

“It’s an honor to introduce Mayor Scott Strauss,” Sanders said. “The mayor and the village board are always finding ways to reduce the tax burden on the residents…as you know by now, he was a hero on 9/11.”

Strauss is a 29-year member of the volunteer fire department. He served as assistant chief, chief of department and as lieutenant and captain.

He was recognized twice as Company No. 2 “Firefighter of the Year” and received the Town of Hempstead’s “Firefighter of the Year” award in 2010.  Before becoming a member of the fire department, Strauss was a junior firefighter.

“We have a great relationship with the village and I want to thank them for the great camaraderie and work-like ethics that we have together and being able to do a lot of great things,” Greene stated.

Strauss is an assistant Scoutmaster with Troop 45 of the Boy Scouts of America. He himself earned the rank of Eagle Scout, scouting’s highest award.

“The last 18 months as your mayor have gone by tremendously fast,” Strauss said. “To that point, I’m sure most of us can’t believe we’re already past the middle of September with the year 2013 rapidly approaching.”

The village recently refinanced about $1.1 million in serial bonds. Prior to the refinance, the average rate of interest on the obligations was 4.66 percent. That rate has been reduced to 2.46 percent. Mineola will save $1.3 million over the next 12 years.

“Last year, Mineola had its bond rating raised by Moody’s investors,” Strauss stated. “This year, it was reaffirmed. We have refinanced loans of prior administrations…this comes at a time when federal, state and county governments continue to face significant financial issues.”

Strauss noted that the village is on solid financial ground, but still faces health care costs increases and pension fund requirements in the coming fiscal year, as well as an unsettled employee contract.

“This administration will continue to make the tough, yet sound, financial decisions that are necessary to maintain the quality of life we have come not only to enjoy here in Mineola, but what we have come to expect from our local government.”

The mayor highlighted one of many ongoing projects in the village, including the development of a diabetes research center at Winthrop-University Hospital, the Winston Manor Residential Complex and the Bruce Terrace Flood Remediation Project. The .893-acre $60 million Winthrop facility was approved by Mineola in 2011. The Mineola American exclusively reported on Aug. 29 that the construction phase of the flood project would get underway, with an expected completion in Spring 2013.

“I ask you to consider this…what does it say about the state of our village in a time when other communities are struggling to revive their downtowns that organizations are investing hundreds of millions of dollars right here in Mineola,” said Strauss.

News

Village of East Williston Mayor David Tanner last week stood fast against paying an “excessive” water bill from neighboring village and supplier Williston Park, following a loss in a second round of legal battles.

 

Tanner said Williston Park sent East Williston a bill for $600,000 last week based on water rate increases East Williston refused to pay while pursuing two lawsuits that contested the rate hikes.

 

Williston Park is seeking $300,000 in interest and penalties following a recent state Appellate Court decision upholding the second of two water rate increases imposed on East Williston. Tanner said East

Williston will only pay approximately $250,000 of the $300,000  Williston Park seeking to recover in unpaid fees based on the two increases.

A lawsuit brought by O’Carroll’s Recovery Room Bar and Grill owner Jeremiah O’Carroll against the Village of Mineola was settled recently. However, Mineola prevailed in its decision on a December 2013 application from O’Carroll to open a second business. He challenged the board of trustees’ denial of his request to open a health food store/shake shop next door to his business.

 

“We settled it by him accepting the original decision,” village attorney John Spellman said. “The restaurant is going to be all one [space]. The agreement said he has to have a permanent opening between the two buildings and a permanent opening between the front space and back space. It’s all the circulation of one business.”


Sports

Mineola runners PJ Diskin, Kaitlin Phelps, and Yuri Karasz were award winners in the Lynn, Gartner, Dunne & Covello Sands Point Sprint 5 Kilometer Run, held on the grounds of Nassau County’s Sands Point Preserve on Saturday morning, Aug. 9.

The Mineola 9U Hurricanes recently completed its summer baseball season as the NJBL 9U Central Division Champions, finishing 10-2-1 on the year and secured a second place spot entering the playoffs.

The Hurricanes beat the North Shore Spartans for the fourth time this season in a playoff win in walk-off fashion as they came from behind to win 4-3 earning the Hurricanes a berth into the championship series. 


Calendar

Leisure Club Opportunity - August 20

International Night - August 21

Check Your Medications - August 22


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com