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Mike BarryEye on the Island

By Mike Barry

Nassau’s Nominations

Thursday, 21 May 2009 15:41

Few events have more of a potential impact on Nassau County government than the major parties’ nominating conventions in odd-numbered years. Yet the faces rarely change in Mineola.

Looking at things from a Republican perspective, this should be a year in which the GOP could make inroads. The Suozzi administration spent much of late last year underestimating the economic downturn’s impact on the county’s finances, a pivotal miscalculation when almost 40 percent of all county government revenues are derived from sales taxes. County Executive Tom Suozzi then allocated most of his time in early 2009 to browbeating concessions out of a union his administration had just given, with the assistance of an arbitrator, an eight-year contract which calls for 3-plus percent annual pay hikes.


Countdown to Bethpage

Wednesday, 13 May 2009 11:52
Middle-aged men are rarely willing to wait in line. You won’t see them camping out overnight for concert tickets, standing on anything other than the supermarket’s express lane, or leading the charge at a break-of-dawn, post Thanksgiving Day retail store stampede.

This same demographic group, however, may make an exception when it comes to securing the limited number of tickets remaining for the 2009 U.S. Open, to be held June 15-21 at Bethpage State Park’s Black Course, Farmingdale. The practice rounds will be held on June 15-17, and then the four championship rounds will be played between Thursday, June 18 and Sunday, June 21.


Belmont’s a Bargain

Friday, 08 May 2009 00:00
Belmont Park has traditionally been one of the region’s most underappreciated sports venues but that may change during its spring/summer meet, which began last week and continues through Sunday, July 26.

Compared to major league baseball, Belmont is starting to look like a bargain. General grandstand admission is $2 per person, and children ages 12 and under are admitted for free. General parking is $2. To lure customers in May, Belmont has reduced to $1 from $2 its general admission and parking prices on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays for the balance of this month.


Fitzgerald's 'Button'

Written by Mike Barry Monday, 05 January 2009 12:54
Novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald was said to have had the world at his feet when he was 25-and at his throat by the time he turned 40-so it is only fitting that Fitzgerald would write about a man who ages backwards.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, a Fitzgerald (1896-1940) short story that the one-time Great Neck resident had published in a 1922 edition of Collier's magazine, is in the news because a major motion picture based on the tale was released on Christmas Day.


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Mike Barry, a corporate communications consultant, has worked in government and journalism. Email: