Written by Michael Scro Friday, 22 August 2014 00:00
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.
East Williston had prevailed in the first round of lawsuits, which began in April 2011. They objected to a $3.83 per 1,000 gallon rate set by Williston Park, and the Nassau County Supreme Court found the rate was improperly set.
Following an appeal by Williston Park in the appellate division of the Second Department, the second lawsuit was brought about in August, 2012, contesting a $4.33 water rate. After the Nassau County
Supreme Court reviewed the case, it was transferred to the appellate division again.
Arguments took place in court on May 5, and according to a July 9 decision, East Williston was ruled against, establishing a 13 percent increase from $3.83 per 1,000 gallons of water to $4.33 per 1,000 gallons as within legal limits.
“This is an example of what we’ve been up against with water rate negotiations—the fact that we’re charged $300,000 on a bill that is $300,000 in a commercial environment,” said Tanner.
According to Tanner, the village is in the process of paying what they owe, however will not pay what the village considers “excessive.”
Williston Park Mayor Paul Ehrbar recently spoke to Newsday on the bill his village has issued, remarking that it is “in the ballpark” of what East Williston owes. He did not return calls for comment.
Village of East Williston trustee Robert Vella said the village is opposing the $300,000 in interest charges and penalties as they were not ordered by the court to pay that amount.
“We lost one of the actions in court, but we won the first,” Vella said. “We escrowed the money for the bill all along, but we refuse to pay the penalty based on legal grounds.”
Vella encouraged anyone in East Williston “who takes umbrage with what Williston Park is doing here, to go to their village board meetings, and say so—that’s what I did on everyone’s behalf.”
Saturday, 25 October 2014 00:00
Way before Home Depot or Ace Hardware came into existence, there were little mom-and-pop shops like Munder’s True Value on Hillside Avenue in Williston Park. The hardware store, which opened its doors in 1948, is somewhat of a suburban dinosaur having outlasted several other hardware stores in the area.
“My father, Charles, opened this store in 1948 after returning home from World War II,” said Bill Munder, who took over the store operation seven years ago. “His parents wanted to know his plans after he returned home from the marines and he decided to open this store on Hillside Avenue.”
Friday, 24 October 2014 00:00
The debate over New York State Common Core standards continues, with students from the Mineola School District showing a mild resistance to the exams.
According to the New York State Allies for Public Education, Mineola had some of the lowest numbers, with eight students opting out of the English Language Arts test. However, not a single Mineola student missed the math test. In East Williston, the opt out rates were 75 students in ELA and 60 in math.
Thursday, 23 October 2014 00:00
The New York Cosmos hosted the Mineola Athletic Association’s Soccer Club recently for its penultimate fall 2014 home game. More than 140 members of the MAA soccer club and their families came out on a chilly October evening to show their love of the game. Twenty-two Mineola boys and girls had the honor of escorting the New York Cosmos and Ottawa Fury players onto the field in the traditional “Walk of Champions.”
The Mineola spirit must have inspired the home team, as spectators enjoyed the exciting 2-1 Cosmos victory, with the game-winning goal coming in stoppage time.
Thursday, 23 October 2014 00:00
As a current member of the Mineola High School Varsity Soccer team, senior, Catherine Cunningham has been dominating the scoring for the Mustangs. She has 12 goals and two assists in the last seven games.
In her last week of play alone, she amassed six goals in just three games. As a captain for the last two years, Cunningham has been an All-Conference and All-Class player, leading her team to two victories so far this season.