Heralded as the salt of the earth, honored as David victorious over Goliath, and lauded as an honest working man, proud to have been a janitor who put himself through law school, Edward P. Mangano was sworn in as Nassau County Executive on New Year’s Day to a crowd of supporters and a stage full of dignitaries who called for this very different county leader to embody the start of a new era for Nassau.
Mangano chose his alma mater, Bethpage High School, for his inauguration ceremony and the auditorium was filled past capacity into overflow areas, despite the harsh winter weather.
This past November, in an environment of persisting economic turmoil, voters voiced their frustration over taxes and job worries across the entire United States, resulting in many surprising political upsets. Amidst this emotional wave of regime changes, Mangano’s Tax Revolt platform roused disgruntled taxpayers and allowed him to narrowly oust two-term executive Thomas R. Suozzi.
“It’s been one heck of a year,” said U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman, as he spoke at his annual holiday party just days before the Senate passed the health-care bill. Addressing a gathering of friends and family, and a whole host of local elected officials, Congressman Ackerman called for universal health care, even if the system was not perfect. His goal was to see at least a start in the right direction.
The congressman noted that last year at this time was a time of “great expectations” and a “tremendous opportunity.” For the Democrats, Congressman said, that had been a time of excitement and hope for the presidency, for the House, and for the Senate. “There was the opportunity to get all of our agenda through, but it hasn’t happened yet … and there is some tremendous disappointment,” he said.
On January 7, the building committee of the Great Neck Library Board will meet to make a final determination and recommendation of an option for renovation and expansion to the full board. They may now choose among four modified plans as the architects have reduced the total square footage from plan C by 1200 square feet creating plan D for consideration.
Overall cost estimates for all proposed plans have come down by 13.5 percent due to the falling construction costs that have occurred as a result of a depressed economy.
A bond for 20 years for $23 million would cost a home assessed at $1 million, an additional $86 a year in taxes.
The highly controversial county home energy tax was repealed by the Nassau County Legislature last Monday, Dec. 22. The bill passed 13 to 5 at the legislature’s meeting. Great Neck’s Legislator Judi Bosworth was one of the five Democratic legislators who voted against rescinding the tax. Legislator Bosworth was joined in her vote by Presiding Officer Diane Yatauro of Glen Cove, Kevan Abrahams of Hempstead, Judy Jacobs of Woodbury, and Roger Corbin of Westbury.
Those voting for the repeal included five Democratic legislators (Jeff Toback of Oceanside and David Mejias of Farmingdale, who both lost their re-election bids this November), along with re-elected legislators Joseph Scannell, Wayne Wink and Dave Denenberg, and eight Republican legislators. Legislator Edward Mangano, the county executive-elect who currently represents several South Shore and mid-Island communities, was not present for the vote.
Five talented young Great Neck women sang for some 140 attendees who gathered to knit hats for oncology patients at the sixth annual “Knit for Nancy,” a fundraiser held on Sunday, Nov. 15, at the Fairview Country Club in Greenwich, Connecticut. Jessica Drucker and Lauren Schulman, eighth-graders at Great Neck South Middle, Hannah Siegel, a ninth-grader at South High, and Samantha Drucker and Lindsay Charles, eleventh-graders also both at South, entertained and inspired with incredibly moving performances for supporters of the Nancy Klauber Forest Foundation, which benefits cancer patients at New York-Presbyterian Hospital.
In addition to providing hand-knit hats to patients undergoing chemotherapy, the NKF Foundation funds “Nancy’s Friends,” an award-winning volunteer program providing companionship, comfort, and advocates for oncology patients during their hospital stay. The foundation was formed in 2003 to honor Nancy Klauber Forest, a young wife and mother who died from non-Hodgkins lymphoma several months shy of her 40th birthday and who, despite her own serious illness, was concerned for the many patients who did not have the same strong support network of family and friends.
At the Dec. 14 public action meeting, the Great Neck Public Schools Board of Education proposed a new policy, a Policy for Asset Accounting and Inventory. This policy is a means of controlling inventory and protecting school district property by maintaining records for all fixed assets, including replacement costs and insurance coverage.
Board of Education Vice President Fran Langsner, chair of the board’s policy committee, said that this policy is not mandated by New York State law, but it is recommended. She explained that, basically, this policy outlines how to handle financial assets.
The Policy on Asset Accounting and Inventory is proposed to read as follows:
The right to assemble is still alive and well in the Village of Great Neck, but now, the village will require more information in order for a group to hold an assembly, demonstration or parade on public streets. In the past, any group holding such an event was required to apply for a permit, one week in advance, spelling out the time, place and duration of the proposed assemblage with an estimate of the number of people to be involved.
The new ordinance requires that a responsible person be named as the contact person for the event and that that person be reachable via cell phone before, during and for one hour after such an event. If there is a parade, the route must be delineated. If there will be amplified speech, music or other sounds, the village requires that an applicant conform to village noise regulations. Other information such as pertinent history of prior events by the applicant and estimates of counter- demonstrators, if applicable, would also be required. Applicants must apply for a permit 30 days before the event unless the applicant can show “good cause” for not complying.
Governor David A. Paterson signed into law last week pension reform legislation in North Hempstead Town Hall that is expected to provide more than $35 billion in long-term savings to New York taxpayers over the next 30 years. It will, he said, save $8.5 billion on Long Island and will provide much needed long-term property tax relief.
In introducing Governor Paterson, North Hempstead Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman said in difficult times leadership is needed to make hard decisions, can do things that actually make a difference.
Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi announced on Tuesday, Dec. 1 that he will not challenge the election between him and Republican opponent Ed Mangano, ensuring that Mangano will become the next Nassau County Executive next month.
“One of the first images I remember upon coming to America in 1977, was a Botero painting. Being able to present his work has been a once in a lifetime experience and a labor of love,” said David Benrimon when explaining his devotion to world-renowned Fernando Botero’s works of art.
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