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East Williston Moves To Evict Raccoons

Location has become pest-infested, a bane to village residents

East Williston Mayor David Tanner announced that engineering plans to either demolish or refurbish the vacated property on Sumter Street are complete, and the board will put a bid together for contractors.

The mayor revealed the plan at its meeting Jan. 14.

Trustee Robert Vella expects a decision to be made by the end of March. In addition, a “ball park” estimate of $30,000 was given for the work. 

“We are confident that we’ll get back everything we’ve put into this…any cost laid out will act as a lean on the property,” Tanner said. According to Trustee Bonnie Parente, a large portion of that $30,000 is tax liens that are already attached to the property.

The property, owned by John Muzio, has become a problem for residents in the village due to an infestation of raccoons.  The village had voted to set traps for the raccoons at their meeting last month.

“We’re in a position where we need to evaluate both options, and decide which is more feasible for the village,” Tanner said.

East Williston hired an engineering firm to draw plans for the property, in order to get “biddable numbers” according to Tanner.  Bids will advertise beginning Jan. 30, and will be received two weeks later.

The Nassau County Supreme Court has decreed the village must have an evaluation to decide which course of action best suits the community and its residents, according to Village Attorney Jeffrey Blinkoff.

“The court has granted us the power to enter the premises and assess the stability and safety of the structure….the village is empowered to take such steps as it deems required to render the structure stable (including maintenance and repairs) or directing this it must be demolished or vacated,” Blinkoff said, reading a portion of the decision.

Residents attending the meeting, who have been following the progress of this process, questioned the delay in decision-making.  One resident asked Tanner about repercussions if the village were to demolish the property tomorrow.

“If we did that, we would have not complied by the court’s decision, and this would expose the village to liability…and the owner of the property could ask us to rebuild it,” Tanner explained.

In Other Developments

Mud Still In The Water

Tanner said the village is still actively looking for alternative water carriers due to an on-going legal battle with their current carrier, Williston Park, on water rates.

“We’ve attempted to negotiate with them on several occasions, and they refuse to compromise,” Tanner said. “A day doesn’t go by where I don’t think about it in some way.”

The village filed a second lawsuit against Williston Park last month in Nassau County Supreme Court. The village is fighting the decision to raise East Williston’s water rate to $4.33 per 1,000 gallons, a 13 percent increase, from $3.83 per 1,000 gallons.

Sanitation Contract To Be Rebid

Tanner announced that East Williston has decided to rebid its sanitation contract. It has the option to either stay with DeJana Industries or go with another company.  Bids went out last week.  Tanner also said that an emphasis would be placed on recycling in the village.

“Over the years, it’s been a sticking point with whomever we have as a carter, to put in extra effort with recycling bins,” he said.  “We will come up with more explicit ways, maybe education programs, to encourage people to recycle more.”

Emergency Action Plans Discussed

Trustee Vella said he is currently examining emergency action plans from several local villages, in an effort to formulate a plan for East Williston in the event of an emergency such as Hurricane Sandy. “Should there be another disaster of those proportions, we’ll have a more definitive course of action,” Vella said.

The process is expected to take a few months to formulate, according to village officials.

Tax Roll Available February 1

The village clerk’s office announced that the 2013-14 tax roll will be available as of Feb.  The village will send out cards in the mail.

“They will be available for [resident] perusal to see where their assessments are coming in,” Tanner added.  They will also be at the library.

Generator Almost Finished

Trustee Chris Siciliano announced that a generator is now installed at Village Hall, and nearly 95 percent of the lighting in East Williston is fixed due to damages from Hurricane Sandy.

“Within the next few weeks, everything should be done with that,” Siciliano said, who also announced that all stumps collected have been grounded, leaving sidewalks that have to be replaced left to complete.


News

In a typical Long Island community packed with houses and backyards, there are a couple of acres of open land of community gardens where people are growing basil and dahlias and roses and cabbages—people like Terry Dunckey of Westbury and Peg Woerner of Great Neck, tending their small plots and helping to promote sustainable and organic practices.

East Meadow Farm, off Merrick Avenue, is owned by Nassau County and operated by Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Nassau County. Previously it was a family-owned farm that was purchased by the county through the Environment Bond Act Program, a $150 million program that called for, among several mandates, the preservation of 400 acres of open space. In 2009, CCE of Nassau was awarded the lease to the land and in January 2012 took possession of the property. East Meadow Farm is a place where we can get the best advice on how to make our gardens grow without harming the earth. Part of the CCE’s original proposal was the establishment of a farmer’s market and, now, the market is open two days a week, a place to purchase organic vegetables and flowers during the growing season.

Drivers—get ready to slow down. Nassau County is currently in the process of installing school zone speed cameras in an effort to enhance safety by encouraging drivers to travel with caution, as well as support law enforcement efforts to crack down on violators and prevent accidents caused by speeding.

Nassau County officials say they’re still investigating locations in the Mineola School District, while leaning towards installing cameras near the North Side or Willets Road schools in the East Williston School District. Cameras could begin operation in September.


Sports

Nobody wants to make excuses, but sometimes when the injury bug hits, it’s impossible to overcome. Mineola Mustangs football head coach Dan Guido, entering his 28th season at helm, knows the injuries were the cause for their first-round defeat at the hands of the West Hempstead Rams last November.

“There was too many injuries on the offensive line last season,” said Guido. “It was supposed to be our strength and it ended up being a weak link by the end of the season.”

Even with those injuries, the Mustangs went 4-4 during the regular season.

The BU15 Mineola Revolution were crowned champions of the Roar at the Shore Tournament 2014 in West Islip on Aug. 10. After dropping the opener 2-0 against North Valley Stream, Mineola bounced back to beat Freeport Premiere 2-1.

The Revolution’s offense exploded in the third game as they beat West Islip 7-0. Mineola’s final game pitted them against Quickstrike FC, which entered the contest without a loss and within a point of winning the tournament.


Calendar

Zoning Meeting

Thursday, Aug. 28

Mineola Village Meeting

Wednesday, Sept. 3

School Board Meeting

Thursday, Sept. 4



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