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A Look Back At 2012’s Top Stories

(Part I)

6. The End Of One Era And The Start Of Another – When Commissioner Ernie J. Cipullo filed his retirement papers with the village, he capped off a distinguished 51-year career serving Garden City after reporting for his first day of duty on April 20, 1961. During this time, Cipullo not only received 27 departmental citations as a police officer, but served in a number of high-ranking positions as president and vice-president on numerous professional organizations including the Garden City P.B.A. and the Nassau Police Conference.  His successor is Kenneth Jackson, who the old commissioner personally hired back in 1985 and served as a mentor to since then. The recently-minted commissioner is no slouch himself, having racked up numerous awards and accolades including the New York American Legion Law and Order Award (twice). A smoother transition to one of the community’s more crucial areas couldn’t have been pulled off better.

7. Hannon Wins Lucky 13th Term – Incumbent Kemp Hannon (R-Garden City) defeated opponent Ryan Cronin (D) in the race for the 6th Senate District, capturing 52.37 percent of the electorate. In turning back fellow village resident Cronin, a litigator with experience representing victims of financial fraud and a former executive director of the Nassau County Democratic Committee, Hannon will be serving his 13th term overall in the New York State Senate. At a time when health care is one of the more controversial topics being batted around on the national level, Hannon’s return to his post as chairman of New York’s Health Committee assures a level of continuity on the state level when it comes to such a hot-button topic. In addition to Medicaid/Medicare reform, addressing jobs and taxes will be central to Hannon’s subsequent term.

8. Garden City Hotel Owners Check Out – Morris Moinian’s Manhattan-based Fortuna Realty Group purchased the Garden City Hotel from the Nelkin Family, who originally acquired it in 1979, before having it renovated and reopened in 1983 by the late Myron Nelkin. Originally erected in 1874 by Village of Garden City founder Alexander Turney Stewart, the building had gone through four separate incarnations in that time. Donald Trump was rumored to be looking to offer a serious bid for the 272-room hotel that lies on 8.6 acres before Fortuna swooped in to seal the deal. Part of the subsequent transformation was the termination of the hotel’s staff, with more than 90 percent of employees getting rehired according to a statement released by the hotel management.

9. Trojans Capture Fifth Overall Long Island Championship – The athletic program in the Garden City Public School system has always been a source of pride, thanks to the regularity with which its teams win. The Trojans football team continued that trend when they trumped the rival Wantagh Warriors for the Nassau Conference-II County Championship on Sunday, Nov. 25 by a score of 21-17. Coach Tom Flatley’s squad didn’t miss a beat, advancing to play the Riverhead Blue Waves for the 2012 Long Island Championship on Saturday, Dec. 1 at Stony Brook University. The outcome was Garden City coming out on the winning end of a 29-16 score and the capture of Garden City High School’s fifth overall Long Island Championship.

10. Crime Fighting In The Village — Aside from the usual array of misdemeanors the Garden City Police Department had to deal with were two more disturbing cases that the village’s finest had to contend with. What started out as a reported burglary at a Chelsea Road residence on Nov. 8 turned into a multi-jurisdictional task force apprehending Artie Jackson, an alleged felon charged with being behind a spate of home invasion heists. Once Garden City Police Commissioner Kenneth Jackson, (no relation), Hempstead Police Chief Michael McGowan and Nassau County Chief of Department Steven Skrynecki met, their task force eventually caught up with Jackson during a Nov. 11 East Garden City home invasion call. Following a car and foot chase, authorities had their man. On Tuesday, Nov. 13, Jackson was arraigned and charged with double-digit counts ranging from first and second degree assault to second degree strangulation and first degree rape.

On Wednesday, Dec. 12, Garden City resident Edward Orenchuk III was arrested and charged with multiple felonies for possessing images of child pornography and making those images available to others via the Internet.

According to DA investigators, the 23-year-old man was arrested that morning and charged with three counts of promoting a sexual performance by a child as a sexually motivated felony, and three counts of possessing a sexual performance by a child.

Most disturbing was the fact that Orenchuk was a part-time page at the Garden City Public Library and an assistant scoutmaster with Boy Scout Troop #243 in Garden City. Both the library and the Theodore Roosevelt Council of Boy Scouts quickly issued statements condemning Orenchuk’s actions while banning him from the former and revoking his membership in the latter.

News

Budget adjustments, staff reductions recommended

The Garden City Board of Education will prepare to adopt next year’s school budget in a couple of weeks. Before they do, they’ll have to go over a few changes.

At the board’s public work session held at the high school on Wednesday, April 9, school superintendent Dr. Robert Feirsen recommended a few adjustments, part of the annual balancing act that is the school budget.

The Garden City Board of Trustees approved a $55,791,023 operating budget at its April 7 meeting by a 7-0 vote (Trustee Theresa Trouvé was absent).

The spending plan requires a tax rate increase of 3.73 percent or an increase in tax of $224 to the average assessed single family home.


Sports

Commitment at Kellenberg

Garden City residents continue to excel while participating in the athletic program over at Uniondale’s Kellenberg Memorial High School.

Each season, coaches of Kellenberg sports pick one player from their squad who has demonstrated remarkable commitment to the team through their hard work at practice and in competition.

The Village of Garden City has a long history of residents who've excelled both on the academic and athletic side of the ledger at Kellenberg. This time around, seniors Kelly O’Donnell (varsity cheerleading), Stacy Madelmayer (varsity girls basketball) and Bryan Salecker (swimming and diving team) have all been awarded the Commitment Award for their outstanding efforts, devotion, hard work and commitment to their respective teams.

Lady Panthers

start season 7-0

The number two ranked Adelphi Panthers Women’s Lacrosse team has gotten off to a fast start to their 2014 season and show no signs of slowing down. Head Coach Rob Grella, entering his third season at the helm, has led his team to an impressive 7-0 record to kick off their campaign. Six of the Panther’s first seven games have been won in commanding fashion in which they have outscored the opposition by a staggering margin of 122-14.

Last season, the Panthers continued their tradition of playing hard and fighting off tough challenges. They would finish the 2013 season with an impressive 11-1 record within the Northeast Ten Conference and overall at 18-3, making it to their fourth consecutive trip to the NE-10 Conference Championship where they eventually lost to Le Moyne.

Calendar

Dinner & A Movie: In Transition 2.0

Thursday, April 17

School Budget Meeting

Wednesday, April 23

Judi Mark One-woman Show At Library

Thursday, April 24



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