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Letter: Setting The Record Straight On Recent Legal Action

I am puzzled by the brief article published last week that described my lawsuit against the village (“Supreme Court Judge Allows Demolition Work To Go Forward,” The Roslyn News, April 26). What was published was misleading, suggesting that the case was “dismissed” and construction was “allowed” by a judge.

The fact is that a judge granted two orders to temporarily halt work in order to allow a legal inquiry into village’s actions that I outlined in a sworn affidavit. The subsequent dismissal was strictly pro forma, because I chose not to proceed, for non-legal reasons I will describe.

No judge ever ruled on the merits of the case, aside from making that prima facie judgment that the case was indeed worth hearing. The article implied otherwise, especially by quoting village legal papers that called the action “frivolous.”

My own very-public personal lapse doomed the case, as I admitted in a press release that became part of the legal record. I became fearful for my personal safety. As a result, instead of serving the papers as directed by the court, I decided to let the matter drop, and I told the court that.

My affidavit made two arguments: In the first place meetings of the Architectural Review Board (ARB) were conducted improperly without public notice, and then the board refused to rectify its error by conducting a new hearing on a highly controversial application for demolition, rebuilding, and tree removal in Norgate.

Second, I argued that the ARB had made unjustifiable decisions when it approved the application, based on facts and village laws. Those issues were hardly frivolous.

As a result of the ARB’s action and my dropping the case, a wonderful old home was just demolished, two large healthy trees were cut down, and the neighborhood now faces months of unnecessary, disruptive construction culminating in a house that clashes with the surrounding homes.

I had a genuine fear, based on angry, hostile conduct I had witnessed in a recent meeting, and I also received intense pressure from people who had previously supported these issues to drop the case. That is the truth, which deserves to be reported.

I am deeply sorry that I did not stand stronger because of the losses involved, and the lost opportunity to confront the disgrace that has been ARB action all over East Hills, with the apparent support, at least until now, of village leadership.

The village has announced it will hold a public hearing on the state of building rules and the ARB, hopefully to be scheduled soon and the date announced on its homepage. I hope residents can profit from this clearer story when they participate in that hearing as well as in ARB and other proceedings.

Richard Brummel

(Ed. Note: The article was not intended to be misleading and the author may have more of a quarrel with the ARB than how the article was written.)

News

Howard Kroplick was just settling in to his new position as North Hempstead’s town historian in April of 2012 when a phone call from a resident who found an old headstone led him into a comprehensive study of all 28 cemeteries within

the town’s boundaries.

 

Kroplick, an East Hills resident for 29 years, serves in the unpaid role as an advisor to the North Hempstead board, out of his longtime love of history. His exhaustive study of the area’s cemeteries has helped him complete a history of

North Hempstead that will be published in January, which will coincide with the 400-year anniversary of the discovery of Long Island, by Dutch explorer Adriaen Block. It was Block, according to Kroplick, who first identified Long Island as an actual island, not a peninsula as many believed back then. The 128-page book from Arcadia Publishing is the first ever written about North Hempstead.

For the time being, much of the Roslyn area is without representation on the Town of North Hempstead council. Recently, Thomas K. Dwyer, who has represented Roslyn on that body since 2002, announced that he would step down from the board while he is in negotiations with a Manhattan-based consulting firm.

 

Dwyer, who is the chief operating officer of Syosset-based American Land Services, would not identify the firm he is talking to, but he said that the new job would represent a conflict of interest with his work on the town board.


Sports

SUNY College at Old Westbury recently named Dr. Anthony DeLuca of Levittown as the College’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR), beginning at the start of the 2014-15 academic year.  

DeLuca, now entering his third year at Old Westbury, also holds the position as director Old Westbury’s Honors College.

 

“We are thrilled that Dr. DeLuca will serve as Old Westbury’s Faculty Athletics Representative,” said director of athletics Lenore Walsh.  “He is a champion for intercollegiate athletics and has been involved with our program since his arrival at Old Westbury.  I am looking forward to the opportunity to work closely with Dr. DeLuca in support of our students’ academic and athletic pursuits at Old Westbury.”

Albertson resident and Kellenberg sophomore Gabby Schreib qualified for the Millrose Games in New York City. Schreib qualified as a member of the Sprint Medley Relay along with Danielle Correia, Bridget McNierney, and Jazmine Fray. 

The Kellenberg relay’s close second place finish in January’s Millrose Trials has moved them closer to defending the title they won in the same relay at last year’s Millrose Games. Schreib and her teammates time is currently second in the United States for girls track and field performances.



Calendar

Pete Hamill Lecture - December 5

Chazak Celebration - December 7

More Mussar Programs - January 8


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