February is designated as African American History Month. In the Town of Hempstead we are proud to acknowledge that designation and also to pay tribute to the many African American men and women who make a difference in our township.
On Tuesday, Feb. 8, the Town of Hempstead will host our annual African American History Celebration. Sheena Wright, President and CEO of Abyssinian Development Corporation, will be our guest speaker for this very special event, which this year will be themed “The Start of a New Decade: Believe • Build • Empower.”
A few hours before the town board meeting on Jan. 11 Hope For Hempstead Shelter (HHS) was notified that public comment would not be allowed due to weather. A short while after HHS arrived, the town released a statement saying that public comment would not be permitted due to a security risk.
Residents of the town came to speak publicly on behalf of animals that can’t speak for themselves and for taxpayer rights.
The Town of Hempstead will be hosting its eighth Annual India Republic Day commemoration on Tuesday, Jan. 25.
Held in collaboration with the Indian American Forum, Hempstead Town is proud to commemorate a historic occasion that marks India’s enduring commitment to democracy and freedom, the same values that Americans hold so dear. Indian Americans are a vital part of the fabric of our nation, greatly enriching us with their gifts of art, culture, cuisine, intellect, values and abiding warmth.
India shares a common history of colonial rule with the United States of America. Drawing upon common values and traditions, both nations are dedicated to government that is elected by the people.
(Editor’s Note: This letter from County Executive Edward Mangano is in response to the Dec. 23 letter “Setting the Record Straight” from Dr. Ranier W. Melucci, President of the Nassau County Council of School Superintendents and Superintendent of Schools in the Merrick School District.)
Merrick Superintendent Dr. Ranier W. Melucci recently wrote about my invitation for all Nassau County school districts to join the Long Island Purchasing Council (LIPC). Unfortunately for taxpayers, school districts chose to spend our money obtaining an incorrect and bias legal opinion that tells residents his school district is not permitted to save taxpayer dollars. The Superintendent and his attorney’s couldn’t be more wrong!
Taxes throughout Long Island are too high and spending is out of control. Although I removed $485 million in County tax burden over the next four years by eliminating the home energy tax and 16.5 percent in planned property tax hikes, residents will still face high taxes since the County bill is only 17 percent of their total tax burden. Because schools make up 60 percent or more of a homeowners tax burden, schools must begin to rein in spending and work with local governments to save tax dollars. For 2011, I right-sized County government by cutting $148 million in spending, consolidating departments, streamlining functions, achieving energy efficiencies, forming a purchasing consortium, and by reducing the workforce to the lowest level since 1950.
On Tuesday, Jan. 4, I was sworn in as your New York State Senator. It was quite a journey getting here. While Election Day was Nov. 2 this race was close enough that it took more than four weeks of careful hand-counting, overseen by our courts, to arrive at my election win. Now, I am thrilled and honored to finally begin the work of the Seventh Senate District.
For your patience, I thank you. I know that for many of you following the process via the media, it seemed a bit wearisome. But we can take comfort in knowing that our election system works. The Nassau Board of Elections was committed to delivering an accurate ballot count and was manned by numerous volunteers who selflessly conducted a hand-count under the watchful eyes of both Republican and Democratic representatives.
Happy New Year. I don’t usually share my thoughts in the papers, but I believe it is time that you have a chance to hear from me. 2010 was a very interesting year; I learned a lot. I met so many wonderful people in this district. I gained friends for life and I lost some who I thought were friends. One thing we all could say, we love our communities.
I want to thank all who supported me during my campaign and after the election. You will always hold a special place in my heart. My commitment and concern to all of you who shared with me your problems and concerns for your families, children’s future and community; I am still your voice. I hold my head high and proud as I continue to work for you as I have always done.
I would like to thank our residents, businesses and the employees of Nassau County for their patience and cooperation during last week’s blizzard. With the storm dumping over 16 inches of snow in our community, County employees mobilized early the morning after Christmas Day to deal with its cleanup. Crews were instructed to plow lanes adequate for travel in both directions. First priorities for snow removal included major thorough fares and access to emergency services. In all, over 100 County employees were involved in clearing roadways and dropping over 2,880 pounds of salt on our roadways. When those County roadways were cleared, snow plowing operations were sent to assist towns and villages who requested such help with residential streets.
Recently, I voted with majority of my colleagues in the House of Representatives to block the 25 percent cut in Medicare payments to doctors. The Medicare and Medicaid Extenders Act, which passed by a vote of 409-2, will ensure that seniors and military families will be able to continue seeing their doctors through 2011. The bill passed unanimously in the Senate this week as well, and will now be sent to the President to be signed into law.
The Medicare and Medicaid Extenders Act will provide extensions of key expiring health care provisions. This yearlong solution gives doctors the certainty they need and gives patients the stability and peace of mind that they deserve, especially during these difficult economic times.
While winter can be a wonderful time of year, the cold weather and icy conditions can present challenges and treacherous hazards. Planning for the problems that winter weather poses can help ensure the safety of your family and all Hempstead Town residents this season.
Winterizing your car and equipping it with all-season tires, snow tires or chains are easy precautions you can take to stave off trouble on roads. However, it is best to limit your travel during inclement weather. To avoid unnecessary travel, consider stocking several days’ worth of food in your home so you do not have to grocery shop during icy or snowy conditions.
Recently, Nassau County superintendents of schools received literature from County Executive Ed Mangano regarding his 2011 “No Property Tax Increase Budget.” As part of this proposed budget, Nassau County Legislators voted, strictly along party lines, to shift the financial expense of paying county assessment errors from Nassau County to the local school districts. We certainly agree that the assessment system is broken, however, shifting the responsibility to the school districts will not help fix it.
Mr. Mangano’s assertion that this change in practice is not going to cost the school districts any money until 2013-2014 is inaccurate. Superintendents and their Boards of Education must begin now, wherever possible, to set aside money in their reserves in anticipation of paying out refunds in 2013-2014. For the past four months, we have repeatedly asked the County Executive for each district’s cost so that we can appropriately plan for this new liability, yet we have received no response. School districts cannot wait until the 2013-2014 school year to first worry about where they are getting the money to refund taxpayers for Nassau County assessment errors.
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