This month the Hubble Telescope, named after the 20th century’s greatest astronomer, Edwin Hubble, has resumed, for the final time, its routine operation as a searchlight into eternity. Sometime after 2014, the space telescope will de-orbit and eventually burn up in the earth’s atmosphere.
In 1984, I belonged to an astronomy club where we budding astronomers would gather at Jones Beach, away from the city lights, to peer deep into the heavens. That summer, Mars was making its closest approach to the earth and we were hoping to get a good glimpse of it.
I was reading recently how Academy Award-winning actor Richard Dreyfuss is now devoting himself to promoting the education of “civics” in our schools in order to give our children real-world knowledge and, hopefully, wisdom about how to run our government. I never realized that Mr. Dreyfuss and I had so much in common and I enthusiastically join his call to bring back civic education.
In a major step toward rebuilding New York’s crippled economy and rescuing the state’s energy consumers, the state Senate recently passed the landmark Green Jobs/Green NY Act of 2009, Senator Craig Johnson announced.
This legislation (S.5888) will create 14,000 family-sustaining jobs with the goal of retrofitting 1 million homes, businesses and not-for-profits on Long Island and across New York State during the next five years. It will also reduce carbon emissions caused by outmoded construction and save New York State residents upward of $1 billion annually in energy savings.
The events of September 11, 2001 were an attack on the fundamental freedoms of our country. Countless lives were affected by the cowardly actions of terrorists and it is an event that we, as a nation, will never forget. Time and time again, our country has grown stronger from the trials and adversity it has faced. The will of the American people never ceases to inspire me and it is with that in mind that I was proud to introduce and have President Obama sign into law the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act.
Ranked Among Most Effective in Passing Legislation
Senator Craig M. Johnson, (D-Nassau), has been ranked as one of the senators with the highest number of bills that passed the chamber during this last legislative session, according to an analysis released by the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG).
According to NYPIRG’s report, 24 bills sponsored by Johnson passed the Senate during the 2009 legislative session; that is the third highest ranking for the 62-member chamber.
As we approach Labor Day weekend, I want to remind residents to not drink and drive.
I recently attended the kick-off to District Attorney Kathleen Rice’s “Over the Limit, Under Arrest” program that will run through this holiday weekend. This is part of the national STOP-DWI mobilization effort that is held with the cooperation of 11,000 law enforcement agencies across the country.
Like most municipalities across the country, we have had to tighten our belts in the face of the lingering economic decline. Nonetheless, we remain committed to providing fun activities, events and amusement such as our fireworks extravaganza and summer-long presentation of free concerts.
New York State Senator Craig M. Johnson, (D-Nassau), the chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Investigations and Government Operations, recently released a report detailing a pattern of flawed judgment and a lack of accountability that led to the taxpayer-funded purchase of an unusable ferry boat by a state subsidiary.
Taxpayers took a nearly $900,000 loss on the 59-year-old vessel, which the Governors Island Preservation and Education Corporation (GIPEC) purchased despite a report from a contractor that “raised serious concerns” about the boat’s condition. Less than 18 months after the July 2007 purchase, GIPEC sold the ferry, the M/V Islander, on eBay for $23,600.
It was the mother of all traffic jams. Cars were packed together, bumper to bumper, transfiguring the New York State Thruway into the biggest parking lot in the world. Literally nothing was moving. This crushing deadlock did not unnerve the thousands of baby boomers, bristling with excitement, who jauntily abandoned their cars and made their pilgrimage on foot to a mud splattered dairy farm in upstate New York to embrace a nirvana of peace, love and music.
Forty summers later the romance of the Woodstock Festival remains, for its memoirists, the crowning moment of the counter-cultural 1960s. The Dionysian energy of the new psychedelic rock music was the match that lit the so-called Aquarian rebellion and the subsequent explosion unleashed several social revolutions whose reverberations can still be felt today.
Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy announced the release of $4.3 million of federal funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to upgrade approximately 900 traffic signals on Long Island by replacing existing incandescent lights with more energy efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) bulbs to reduce energy use and improve the environment. The project includes installing approximately 250 pedestrian countdown crossing signals at key intersections to improve pedestrian safety.
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