On Wednesday, April 27, 2011, there will be a Village-wide referendum on a bond issue in the sum of $3.75 million for funding to demolish St. Paul’s. Voting will take place at the Fieldhouse at St. Paul’s School, from noon until 9 p.m. Your vote, be it against funding for demolition, or for the funding, is very important.
Please make your voices heard.
[Editor’s Note: This letter was sent to the Board of Trustees of the Village of Garden City.]
Having grown up on Third Street, and having lived on Fourth Street and Cedar Place for nearly all of my adult life, one always notices the dramatic transformation of the neighborhood as you leave Hempstead and drive into Garden City. One goes from the fully developed Franklin Street in Hempstead to the beautiful greenery of Garden City. Now, it appears there is an initiative on the Planning Commission to change that.
I have great news for the almost 45,000 Hempstead Town veterans who fought to defend our nation’s freedom. The veterans booth at Hempstead Town Hall is serving more clients than ever!
After being closed in the summer of 2009 by the Governor and the New York State Division of Veterans’ Affairs, the veterans booth was reopened with the assistance of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Veterans, as well as their spouses and children, can continue to come to our counseling center every Wednesday and Thursday at Hempstead Town Hall to discuss veterans benefits and other veterans issues.
On Wednesday, April 27, there will be a village-wide referendum on a bond issue in the sum of $3.75 million for funding to demolish St. Paul’s. Voting will take place at the Fieldhouse at St. Paul’s School from noon until 9 p.m. Your vote, be it against funding for demolition or for the funding is very important.
Please make your voice heard.
I would like to ask you to do your part to support all businesses within Garden City, which includes Seventh Street, Franklin Avenue and New Hyde Park Road. I would also like to encourage all residents and professionals within Garden City to shop locally. Your patronage will be appreciated and is needed.
The warm weather is here and summer is right around the corner, but there’s still time to plan your child’s summer activities. Fresh off a successful 2010 season of instructional clinics, the Town of Hempstead Lacrosse Academy (TOHLA) is ready to face-off for its seventh anniversary season.
This is my last column. My term as mayor comes to an end on Monday, April 4. WOW!!! Two years flies by when you are having so much fun!!! Seriously, it has been my privilege to have served on the board of trustees for the past eight years and the last two as mayor. I congratulate and thank Don Brudie, our mayor-elect, new Estates Trustee John DeMaro and our re-elected Trustees Cavanaugh, Donnelly and Quinn along with incumbent Trustees Daughney, Episcopia and Watras. Trustees are elected to assist village staff in the efficient delivery of services that residents expect and at the same time manage the associated costs and expenses at an acceptable level. Considering the difficult economic time we live in, I think this board has accomplished that. At the same time, we have addressed a number of issues, some more difficult than others. We were directly involved in the village representation at the Town of Hempstead hearings on the Nassau Coliseum HUB site and the LIRR Third Track expansion proposal. We finalized changes to our village zoning law. We initiated a full comprehensive review of all the Village insurance policies for the first time in many years, which we expect to afford us better coverage and premium savings. With collaboration with the POAs, the Citizen Budget Review Advisory Committee is now an invaluable direct contributor to the review of the village budget review process. There was always a difference of opinion of whether we needed the fence along Stewart Avenue at St. Paul’s, but I must say that I have not had ONE negative comment since its installation two years ago. We have created a new committee of Trustees to review the organizational structure of village staff to capture people and monetary efficiencies where possible. After 18 years, we have taken the obsolete St. Paul’s Main Building and Ellis Hall through the last of the iterations for alternative uses. We have fully documented through the Final Environmental Impact Statement the process and cost of demolition. We have adopted a Findings Statement, which confirms there is no viable, acceptable, economical and financially feasible alternative use for this building in its existing configuration and have made the decision to demolish the Main Building and Ellis Hall and create additional recreational open space. It has been the sense of the board that the residents are unwilling to pay to preserve and then continue to pay to maintain this obsolete building, which, if preserved, would have no active use for the majority of residents. On April 27, the residents will be asked if they approve the bond resolution adopted by the board of trustees to issue bonds not to exceed $3,750,000 to finance the demolition of the Main Building and Ellis Hall and create additional open space.
I was saddened to read in the local news that our library budget is going to be cut due to a decrease in the village’s contribution. I know our Mayor and Trustees are working hard to prevent tax increases and can only guess how difficult their job is. But reducing library services is never a good idea and is an especially bad choice in hard times.
I understand from reading the library’s website that despite mandated increases in labor and state costs, the library had already proposed a reduced budget. The budget proposed by the library for the next fiscal year June 1, 2011 – May 31, 2012 is 6.7 percent less than five years ago.
Beginning on April 1, working under a special permit from the village, food establishments on Seventh Street, New Hyde Park Road and Franklin Avenue, will place tables and chairs outside their shops and restaurants for your convenience and enjoyment. When this program begins, please stop by to let the merchants know that you appreciate their efforts and enjoy the many fine tastes of Garden City.
Congratulations to the Community Agreement Party and thanks to the Garden City Residents Party supporters. At the March 15 Village Trustee election, the Garden City Residents Party more than doubled its votes from last year (to 860) but was not able to overcome the roughly 1,650 votes of the Community Agreement Party. The loss hurts, but all of the Garden City Residents Party supporters should be proud that we have raised awareness about real financial challenges that will only intensify in the years to come. We are on the right side of this financial trend.
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