Written by Margaret Whitely Friday, 15 January 2010 00:00
What started as a rather lackluster meeting suddenly broke into pandemonium, at the last New Hyde Park Village Board meeting, when residents literally started yelling about the lack of police protection given to residents by the 3rd Precinct police officers.
One resident said that the police officers should be reported to their “superiors” for not doing their job of patrolling the streets marked “no through trucking” for trucks travel down those streets, all the time, in spite of the signs.
Mayor Daniel Petruccio, deputy Mayor Robert Lofaro and trustees Lawrence Montreuil and Donald Barbieri all urged the residents, over and over again, to call 911 when the trucks go down the street and they said they had.
They said that when they did call 911, the officer at the desk made light of their request to have an officer assigned to that location, even if it was for a short time, to monitor the situation. Further, one officer said that they did not have time to sit on a street and monitor truck traffic.
The dialogue then escalated as one of the residents countered, “Well, the police have enough time to sit around at the New Hyde Park Fire Department parking lot or the parking lots of Petco and Staples on Jericho Turnpike.
The area most mentioned throughout the discourse was on South 5th Street and on South 4th Street in the Village of New Hyde Park.
One resident said that the situation had been going on for 10 years and the residents are just “sick of it” especially since the trucks that do go down the streets go at a very fast pace. He added, “I guess nothing will be done until someone is killed!”
The Illustrated News called newly appointed 3rd Precinct Inspector Kevin Canavan to apprise him of the meeting.
He said, after looking into the situation, “You can be assured that the
residents will be seeing an increase in the number of police, both marked and unmarked units, in that area, to take care of this problem.”
One resident, who lives near the corner of Ingraham Lane and Jericho Turnpike, said there is a problem that has been going on for years and its just getting worse and worse. He said, “There are kids hanging out on that corner, breaking glass and causing a disturbance. There are drunks coming out of the bar and the pool hall is there and they come out of there and hang out on the corner. I don’t want to get into what they do, but they just cause a disturbance. You must know about it because the people are calling the police constantly. I have lived here for 34 years and it’s always been a problem. But, I have actually come here with an idea to solve this problem.
“We used to have a bar called Mushrooms and they had the same problem. All they did was put up ‘no loitering signs’ at that location and once they did that it opened it up for the police to ticket them and that cost money or they could arrest them. Once you do that, it will solve the problem. The kids wait there and they are buying cigarettes in there and they are waiting for an elderly person to buy them beer.
“Plus, they are throwing their cigarettes all over and if you go there any morning, it looks like a pig-sty.”
The mayor wanted to know if it was happening on the property of the service station on the corner and the resident said, “It’s at the service station and they hang out down that whole block to Washington. The poor guy that lives on that corner-they make him crazy. Now, for some reason they had a boat this last weekend and the kids were hanging out in a big boat. The police are called and they don’t come and the glass is still broken. They have a sign that says one way. They come out of the gas station and they fly down that block, the wrong way, for two blocks and they fly around the corner. Now, somebody is going to get killed.”
Mayor Petruccio said that the best solution is to call 911. He said the police have told the village officials, time and time again, if you have a problem, please call 911. It’s the way to get the best action on any problem.
Trustee Lawrence Montreuil suggested that the village meet with the owners of the gas station and he said that perhaps they could close up a curb cut on that side street and that would, perhaps, eliminate, using the wrong way street.
It was also suggested that POP (Problem Oriented Police) Officer Nick Mosesso come to meet with the village officials as well as the owner of the deli and the owner of the gas station.
A resident of Albert Street thanked the board for putting up signs that say No Standing between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. He said, “A couple of weeks ago a police car came by and ticketed these offenders. However, these signs are only on one side of the street and we would like to see them on both sides.
“We have a similar problem, but not quite as serious as these folks although we do have a lot of kids ‘hanging out’ and maybe with the colder weather that will abate somewhat, hopefully it will. The other problem we have is cars using it as a 500-foot speedway. If someone is walking across the street, they cannot stop.”
It was also mentioned that there was a two-foot hole between 12th and 5th and the head of DPW, James McCloat, was present and said he would look into it right away.
Deputy Mayor Lofaro said that the first snowfall was on a Sunday and it was ideal because not that many people were traveling in the village. He praised the Department of Public Works for the great job they did in clearing the streets, but also reminded residents to please not throw the snow from their driveways or walks back into the street, because then the plow has to come again to clean the streets.
He also mentioned that the village received complaints that at the LIRR grade crossing the snow accumulated between the tracks and he said that it was the responsibility of the LIRR to clear those tracks.
Regarding the renovation of village hall, it will mainly be centered on the renovation of the William Gill Theatre.
Trustee Barbieri said he didn’t have too much to report on the
Jericho Turnpike Project and that he would be going to Hauppauge soon to discuss the situation with the Department of Transportation.
He also reported that the tree lighting ceremonies had to be moved inside including the Memorial Band, the chorus and the actual throwing of the switch to light up the trees on the front lawn of village hall.
Trustee Montreuil reported on various projects of the Architectual Review Board; one on Washington and Jericho and one on Jericho Turnpike. He also said that the ARB had given permission for the eyeglass store on Jericho and New Hyde Park to put a sign pole with their logo.
He also reported on various other ARB requests for homes in the area. He reported that summons were given out for an expired permit and for property maintenance.
Mayor Petruccio announced that Sean Murphy will replace the position of DPW foreman previously held by retiring Mark Farina.
The meeting ended and the next meeting will be held on Jan. 19 at 8 p.m. at New Hyde Park Village Hall, corner of New Hyde Park Road and Jericho Turnpike.