Written by Katherine M. Trager Friday, 14 September 2012 00:00
“Since the last time we met, we went through a fairly arduous process with the rating agency Standard & Poor’s, and we announced about a week-and-a-half ago that the village’s credit rating has been updated from AA- to AA,” said Cavallaro.
“It’s the third upgrade that we’ve received in about three-and-a-half years, and it’s the highest bond rating that the village has ever achieved,” he continued.
Cavallaro explained that the higher rating came about as a result of the village’s refinancing of some of its outstanding bonds, which will result in significant savings of taxpayer dollars.
“The village has about $5 million worth of bonds, and $2 million of those bonds are able to be refinanced at this time.
“We’re going to be refinancing at a lower interest rate, which is going to save the taxpayers in the village $100,000 over the remaining life of the bonds,” said Cavallaro.
“We said to the ratings agency that our finances have been strong and are stronger now than they were when we got the last rating increase, and they agreed.
“I think that it’s third-party affirmation of the things that we’ve done over the last several years and beyond to make sure that we’re running our village like a business in the right way; we try to run an extremely conservative fiscal ship,” said the mayor.
The mayor also outlined the village’s upcoming road drainage assessment plan, which was prompted by recent concerns from residents.
The project will target areas in the community that have experienced flooding issues due to an upsurge in severe thunderstorms.
“There has definitely been an increase over the last few years of really intense torrential storms, and we’ve had flooding in areas that have never flooded before,” the mayor noted.
“It’s brought to mind the need to really assess drainage in those areas where we’ve seen these types of incidents. We are going to be conducting a review over the next several weeks to come up with some remediation to alleviate those flooding issues,” he continued, adding that village officials had already met with engineers to discuss the project.
Cavallaro acknowledged the Village of Westbury Public Safety Commission for its traffic safety efforts, which recently resulted in enhanced recognition from the American Automobile Association.
“For several years now, we’ve been recognized by AAA as a ‘silver star’ safety community, and just this week, we’ve received notification that for this year, we’ve finally gotten a gold star rating.
“I’m sure that a platinum rating is somewhere in the village’s future,” said the mayor.
Additionally, Cavallaro and Senior Building Inspector William Mello discussed the latest developments on the Post Avenue theater project.
Cavallaro mentioned theater developer Cyrus Hakakian’s idea for the opening night of the theater.
“He’s doing research now to find out what the very first movie was that was ever played at the theater, and he wants to charge whatever was charged on that first night,” said Cavallaro.
Mello added that site work involving curbs, sidewalks, lighting and paving would start the following week, and that the outside of the theater is almost done.
“The interior is a little slower in happening, because he’s picking out some unique finishes and they’re taking some time to get ordered,” said Mello.
“Most of the outside should be done by the end of this month; the scaffolds will be down and it’ll basically be a finished product on the outside.
“As far as getting the theater open, it’ll probably be sometime before the first of next year,” Mello concluded.
Saturday, 18 May 2013 00:00
For most of the ’80s, ZZ Top was an inescapable presence thanks to a plethora of videos, often times containing underdog storylines revolving around gorgeous gals, a 1933 Ford hotrod and the hirsute threesome serving as a Greek chorus of cool to the aggrieved protagonist. But amidst all the bells and whistles, the most impressive feat pulled off by this Texas power trio was using 1983’s Eliminator to adapt its bluesy hard rock boogie sound and modernize it with synthesizers and drum machines sans any kind of artistic compromising.
Friday, 17 May 2013 00:00
John Romandetti saved six people, but he shies away from the title hero.
“I don’t think of myself as a hero,” Romandetti says. “It’s nothing anyone else wouldn’t have done.”
During Hurricane Sandy, Romandetti risked his own life to go out to Howard Beach and get his girlfriend’s family out of their flooding homes. The Bethpage Air Show recently recognized his bravery, naming him the grand prize winner of the Hurricane Sandy Community Heroes contest. Romandetti, along with nine other winners, will receive VIP tickets to the Bethpage Air Show, plus the reception, and GEICO Skytypers Planeside Meet and Greet. As the grand prize winner, Romandetti also gets the chance to fly with the GEICO Skytypers during next week’s airshow.
Friday, 17 May 2013 00:00
Westbury Okinawan Karate recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary of coming to the Westbury Recreation Center. Since then, the dojo has trained 250 students, ages six and up, in the art of karate with the style of traditional Okinawan ShorinRyu Shidokan.
Founded by sensei John Power, the classes seek to instill the confidence and strength needed to obtain success in everyday life.
“A lot of kids are lacking confidence,” said Power. “We let them practice leadership in the class and this contributes to their confidence.
Friday, 10 May 2013 00:00
Members of the Carle Place Sparc/Interact club recently donated their time and talents at the Alley Pond Environmental Center in Queens. Working together with students from Mineola High School and Holy Cross High School in Queens, the SPARC members planted over 1,000 indigenous trees to help replenish one section of the 600-acre forest park. The group’s efforts were part of the NYC Plant a Million Trees Project in honor of Arbor Day, celebrated on Friday April 26th. The Carle Place planters were: Sarah Megiel, Kelsey Feit, Julia Powell, Sabrina Feit, Monique Slater, Matt Carr, Katie Megiel, Rob Ibos, and Lauren Powell. They are led by faculty advisor Kieran Morris.