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An Opinion By Robert McMillan: February 19, 2010

Written by Robert McMillan Friday, 19 February 2010 00:00
The Future for Healthcare Reform

For over one year, the president, his staff, and the Congress have had a focus on healthcare and the uninsured – not the escalating unemployment statistics. Why? I have not been able to understand the president’s priorities. And beyond understanding priorities, the public was dazed and confused by the healthcare efforts.

First of all, even members of Congress did not read the entire bill. What could be expected with a bill covering more than 2,000 pages. In addition, the details shifted as the legislation worked its way through the House and Senate. The three issues involving the most controversy were abortion, spending, and the public government-run plan.


Letter: Thank You Mayor Odierna

Written by Joseph Fazio, of Williston Park. Friday, 19 February 2010 00:00

I am a relative newcomer to the area, having moved into the Village of Williston Park with my wife to start a family in 2006.

At that time, Lud Odierna had just begun his term as mayor. At the behest of my father-in-law Klaus Konzack, a longtime acquaintance of Lud, I called him to introduce myself.

I was extremely surprised by the extremely gracious reception I received from the mayor. It set the course for the wonderful experience my family had had living in the area.

Lud immediately invited me to meet with him at village hall. He took the time to tell me of all the seasonal events and attractions the village has to offer and to introduce me to all the village officials that were present.

Further, he introduced me to the local chapter of Kiwanis, of which I became an active member and director.

When I mentioned that I was interested in moving my law practice he was very supportive and was instrumental in assisting me in establishing an office in the village. Lud and his family are now valued friends of my family. Many of Lud’s friends to whom we have been introduced are now mutual friends of ours.

Having worked in close proximity to Lud on a daily basis over the past two years, I have been privy to Lud’s selfless devotion to the often thankless task observing as our mayor. I’ve witnessed him spending the better part of his days focusing on the quality of life in the village and addressing the wishes and concerns of the residents. He has done so in precedence of his own business interests.

Therefore, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to mayor Odierna for all he has done for my family as well as for the village. I am hopeful that Lud will serve another term as mayor and ask that all residents support him and the Representative Party candidates in this regard.

Joseph Fazio, of Williston Park.


Letter: Eileen Ferretti Supports Susan Redding

Written by Eileen Ferretti Friday, 12 February 2010 00:00

Susan M. Redding is running for the position of trustee for the Village of Williston Park. This letter of endorsement comes easily having known Susan for over 30 years. She is extremely proud to be a longtime resident of Williston Park for 44 years. Susan is well aware and cares about the concerns of her neighbors, especially during these difficult economic times. She is organized, a good listener, and most importantly wants to serve and make a difference for her community. Susan M. Redding will be an asset for the Williston Park community. Please remember to vote on March 16, 2010 at the American Legion for Susan M. Redding.



Letter: Harry Fleischer Supports Susan Redding

Written by Harry Fleischer Friday, 12 February 2010 00:00

I am writing in support of Susan M. Redding in her run for Trustee of the Village of Williston Park. Susan and I have been friends since 1976 when her husband, Jim joined the Williston Park Fire Department. Susan has been involved with the community as a member of Mercy League of Williston’s and Roslyn, the Herrick’s PTA, and Boy Scout Troop 200 (where her two boys attained the highest rank of Eagle).

Prior to Susan announcing her candidacy for trustee of the Village of Williston Park, she held an executive committee position with the Williston Park Civic Association. Susan is an advocate for the residents of Williston Park. I am sure that Susan M. Redding would make an outstanding trustee. Susan’s dedication, character and financial business background along with her hard work will be an asset for the residents of the Village of Williston Park. Susan has a great understanding of today’s issues and concerns of our community and is always open to new ideas. She is very familiar with the workings of the village.

Together we share a common admiration for this village. I have lived in the village since 1950 and I feel a young, fresh outlook like Susan’s will be a great benefit to the residents of the village of Williston Park.

Please remember to vote Tuesday, March 16, 2010 at the American Legion Hall and support Susan M. Redding as I will be.



Letter: Balancing State Budget on Backs of Liquor Stores Will Ruin Them

Written by Ed Wassmer,Proprietor Friday, 05 February 2010 00:00

(Editors Note: This letter was sent to Governor Paterson and to the Manhasset Press for publication.)

I received from you today an undated letter touting your budget proposal to increase the number of stores selling wine by over 800 percent. I must admit that I had to smile at your gallows humor when you stated that your proposal will help me become more competitive. Governor, the short answer is that your proposal to pit my business, that of selling wine and spirits solely, against Costco, Wal-Mart, Stop & Shop, and hundreds of other big box chain stores that are permitted to sell tens of thousands of goods besides just wine and spirits, will not make me more competitive. What it will do is cause the demise of this industry, putting thousands out of work and, it will cause great harm to the citizens of New York. I object to your proposal on four different fronts - as an employer, as a parent, as a citizen and, as a consumer.

As an employer, I want to state unequivocally that your proposal will destroy my business, and with it over 22 jobs, all paying well over minimum wage, plus over $60,000 paid annually in licensing fees and for local school and general taxes. Your proposal focuses only on licensing fees from new licensees, not the revenue loss from closing thousands of stores and throwing thousands of employees into the ranks of the unemployed. Your own Law Review Commission advised you specifically against making this very mistake just last month, precisely because the economic consequences deserve detailed study and consideration, which has not occurred. Your proposal is going to cost the State money, because the loss of businesses and jobs will far outweigh the licensing revenue you hope to obtain. But, there are other problems with your proposal - bigger societal problems - than just decimating an industry that has served this State so well for over 76 years.


Letter: Darmstadt Supports Odierna, Rynne and Redding

Written by William Darmstadt Friday, 05 February 2010 00:00

I am very happy that Kevin Rynne has announced that he is running for the office of trustee in the Village of Williston Park. He is running as a member of the Representative party, along with Mayor Ludwig Odierna, who is seeking reelection and Susan Redding who is running for the other open trustee position.

Kevin Rynne is an extremely diligent worker and a trusted friend. He has been very active with the children of our village. He’s spent eight years with the Boy Scouts, 11 years coaching CYO soccer and he has been involved for 14 years with the Williston Park Little League. He took over as president of the Williston Park Little League when they were on the verge of dissolving. Under his leadership, the Little League survived and is thriving today. He is currently the treasurer of the Little League, which thanks to all his hard work, is financially sound. Kevin has also made himself available as a mentor to new board members.

The children of this village have always been his first priority. His hard work ethic and management skills would be a huge asset to the village board. He, along with the rest of the Representative Party, has a vision of improving the village while keeping taxes as low as possible. Let’s keep the good work of the Representative Party going forward.

I urge you to vote for Kevin Rynne, Mayor Ludwig Odierna and Susan Redding on March 16. Let’s continue with “progress, not politics.”



Letter: In Support of Susan Redding

Written by Danny O’Hara Friday, 29 January 2010 00:00


I am writing today to encourage the residents of Williston Park to vote for Susan Redding as Williston Park trustee. Susan and I have been friends since attending Herrick’s High School together. We have great memories of growing up in a community where everyone knows one another. My family has been here since 1960. Susan and I share a love for this community. I know that Susan has what it takes to be a Trustee, character, determination, hard worker, dedication, great listener and above all professionalism. Susan shares in so many of your ideas, issues and concerns. She is a true advocate for the Williston Park residents. She wants to see that Williston Park stays that small tight community it is while moving forward with progress. Susan possesses a fresh young outlook that will enhance the Village of Williston Park. Susan will be a great asset for our community. Please give your support as I am to Susan Redding from the Representative Party and vote for her on March 16 for the position of Trustee for the Village of Williston Park.



Letter: Norman Jardine Supports Mayor Lud Odierna

Written by Norman Jardine Friday, 29 January 2010 00:00

I wish to write a letter of recommendation for Mayor Lud Odierna of Williston Park. I have known Lud for more than 30 years and I can always count on him. Lud is an absolute man of his word and has the highest integrity of any person I know. As a mayor he has only one interest and that is to provide support to the community. You can count on Lud to represent the community and the voters of this community with skilled professionalism. He is always out representing the village for community events. He uses his excellent speaking skills to motivate and inspire Williston Park residents. I specifically remember his moving addresses on Veterans and Memorial Days. In addition, he shares his good will with appropriate comments during the holiday and New Year season. Each time, the remarks include his signature humor and deep love of country. His office, both as the village mayor and at his place of business, are both always open to residents to help resolve their problems. He has shown a personal interest in the swimming pool, snow removal and street cleaning activities of the village. You can always count on Lud.



Eye on the Island: January 22, 2010

Written by Mike Barry Friday, 22 January 2010 00:00
MTA Chief’s Challenge

Baseball Hall of Famer Casey Stengel said the key to managing is keeping the players who hate you away from the ones who are undecided.

Jay Walder, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) chairman and CEO since October 2009, can relate to Stengel’s sentiment. Walder’s pledge to reassess the MTA’s cost structure and improve its services cannot be winning applause among the Transport Workers Union (TWU) of America’s leadership team. The TWU’s illegal strike shut down the city’s subway system in December 2005, yet the TWU’s MTA employees have little to complain about these days. Thanks to a friendly arbitrator, the TWU’s MTA employees are in the midst of a three-year contract, which will raise their salaries 11 percent, even as MTA ridership drops amid the most severe economic downturn in decades.

The TWU and the arbitrator who loves them (TWU employee health benefit contributions were reduced in the current contract, too) won a battle, not the war.


An Opinion: January 22, 2010

Written by Robert McMillan Friday, 22 January 2010 00:00
Frustration Over Today’s Issues

Over the last two and one half years, I have often said to myself, “Thank God I have this column to write.”

Now, you might ask where am I coming from with that kind of thought? Well, it is simple. As an issue developed, we would thrash it out in a positive way on my TV show – Face-Off. Starting n May of 1993 I co-hosted the show with Larry Levy for fourteen years. Larry was a columnist and political editor for Newsday. Larry is now at Hofstra University where he heads the National Center for Suburban Studies.


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