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Obamacare Navigator

The deadline for the Affordable Health Care Act is looming, and Long Islanders may be scratching their heads about what type of health insurance will suit them best.  A new website, LongIslandObamacare.com, was launched last week that seeks to clear up any misinformation and get the facts straight.

Site founder Jason Samel of Jaymar Insurance Agency, who was recently installed as the vice president of the Glen Cove Chamber of Commerce, says, “There is a lot of information out there about Obamacare, and it all has slants from different media sources. Frankly, it’s inaccurate, and the misinformation is confusing the public.”

As a result, his company launched www.longislandobamacare.com, a site that people can go to as a resource for information on the health care plan. Additionally, those interested can request a free seminar, and Samel and his team will present the information to small groups. He says they received their first request within 24 hours of launching the site.

“They told me their staff is confused and arguing about it, and they want to be better educated,” Samel says of the small business in Island Park who made the request.

Glen Cove resident Amy Peters is an example of someone who felt that confusion at the end of last year.

“In December, I was told my plan was no longer being offered...and the new plan was more expensive. I started poking around myself, and even when the glitches in the site were fixed, it was still very confusing to navigate. On top of that, I felt hard pressed for time...I contacted Jason and he walked me through it over the phone.”

Peters says she wound up with a comparable plan to what she had previously, and with no subsidies and a smaller premium, she’s saving about $400 per month. The only drawback, she says, is the smaller network.

“So far, I’m happy with the result,” Peters says. “The process of going through it with Jason was very enlightening and very helpful.”

When asked why he chose to start the site and offer free seminars, Samel said he considers himself a social activist who believes in attempting to educate society as a whole. Doing this, he says, will give him “the satisfaction of educating people in a time when people are “sadly uneducated.”

Ever since the law came out, Samel says he has been “entrenched" in learning about it. "We were always on tippy toes wondering what was going to change next," he says. He endured two separate licensing classes, but he says classes were not enough to learn the ins and out of the law. He’s spent many months building relationships with contacts at NY State and at other insurance companies to become aware of any new changes.

The deadline for signing up for health insurance is March 31.

“We’ve been making sure we’re on top of every last detail,” he says. “We just want to clear things up, get people’s heads straight.”

“A lot of people, I think, are railing against the Affordable Care Act, probably because they don’t understand it,” says Peters. “I’d recommend anyone who is having trouble navigating or unhappy with their results contact Jason, or a state navigator, because it is very confusing.”

For more information, visit the website or call 631-875-2993.

News

Matt Bentz, of Forest Hills, was the winner of the Oyster Festival Raffle that took place as the event ended at 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 19. He had a choice between winning a 2015 Chrysler 200 three-year lease or $15,000 in cash. He chose the cash. He is the “Perfect Oyster Festival Raffle winner.”

Bentz is a computer systems administrator with Spa Creek Software, a company that writes software for other software developers, and has been to the festival numerous times over the years; in fact, next year he is hoping to sail here on his 24 ft. sailboat. He got it “reasonably” from a friend who was buying up.

Richie Cannata may be best known for his song credits but his name will become a part of history this week. Cannata, a 28-year resident and business owner of Glen Cove, will be inducted into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame on Thursday, Oct. 23 at The Paramount in Huntington.

As a member of the Billy Joel Band, the saxophone player was propelled to fame in 1975 when he joined the band and played on songs including “New York State of Mind” and “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant.”


Sports

The autumn varsity sports season is well on its way in Oyster Bay. Many young athletes have distinguished themselves. Several fine young athletes excelled right out of the gate and were chosen by the Oyster Bay Hight School coaches as Athletes of the Month for October 2014.

Cross Country Coach Kevin Cotter has athletes who consistently qualify for the states. Picking one to honor is a difficult task. Within this impressive group of talented athletes, one stands out: junior Alex Tosi, who recently broke the 17 minute barrier for a 5K course at Bethpage State park with a time of 16:52. This feat has not been accomplished since 2008.

5- and 6-year-old Peanuts

The Little Generals (Peanuts) stepped out into the cold Sunday morning ready to give the home crowd a show as they battled the Bellmore Braves, and that’s just what they did as the Generals beat the Braves 14-7. The teams battled to a first half tie as the Generals’ touchdown came on a 26-yard run by Kody Gehnrich, thanks to great blocks by John (Jack) Grace and Jack Symanski.

In the second half, where the Generals are usually at their best, the defense shut out the Braves as Rodney Hill, Jr. and Brandon Babel stepped in on the defense line to create a great push to allow Francesco Allocca to make eight tackles. The offense got a big boost with Allocca being allowed to play RB after playing QB the past two games, and boy did he respond behind great lead blocking from Luca Granito. Allocca carried the ball nine times for 60 yards and a TD coming on the last play of the game.


Calendar

Boys & Girls Club Gala

Thursday, October 23

Halloween Party

Saturday, October 25

Property Tax Exemptions Workshop

Tuesday, October 28



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