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From The Desk Of Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton: March 1, 2013

As Spring Approaches

Spring is a time of renewal. It will be welcome this year after an historic blizzard, which followed a power outage that had most of sitting in freezing houses for weeks.

From my seat in the Legislature, there is renewal that needs to happen and I am concerned that the county executive’s administration here in Nassau is – once again – not taking the needs of our area seriously.

Restoring Welwyn - Tree Replanting

I don’t need to rehash the travesty that occurred under our county executive’s watch, under his staff’s orders. Glen Covers know the treasure that we have in our Nassau County preserve. And they know the truth about what happened. Since the devastation that went on there, with Nassau possibly misusing much-needed FEMA money in the aftermath of Long Island’s worst disaster, I have called for the company involved to repay Glen Covers by replanting trees and doing other restoration work at Welwyn.

The county executive and his majority in the Legislature have no interest in holding the company accountable. Could it be because of campaign contributions from that company?

At any rate, the administration first testified to me at a hearing that they weren’t allowed to replant trees with FEMA money. Then, amazingly, after I fought them, they realized they had a million dollars to replant trees with FEMA money. Now, after this same company / campaign contributor mowed down trees on Searingtown and Shelter Rock Road, there is something more like $3.5 million for replanting trees.

Imagine a scenario in which the county executive is using federal storm relief aid from FEMA to pay his campaign contributor to cut down trees that don’t need to come down, and then replanting the trees with more federal storm relief aid? One would find such a scenario hard to believe, but worth an investigation.

That said, I do want trees replanted at Welwyn. I don’t think that your county or your federal tax dollars should pay for it.  

Bayville Bridge

I have been meeting with Bayville and Mill Neck area residents and business owners for many months now. The county executive’s administration, and his majority in the Legislature, allowed West Shore Road to collapse as I repeatedly – month after month - asked them to begin repairs.

At this point, one major concern for that greater area, a concern that comes directly from business owners, is when they will fix the drawbridge. I am told it will be expensive but have not received solid information about getting this important project done. Spring is around the corner. If the bridge isn’t up and running, I am told that businesses will fail. Bayville has lost at least one business that I know of since Nassau let the road collapse. And I have met with several others who fear they will go out of business because there is now no traffic on their end of Bayille.

Crescent Beach

I haven’t forgotten. However, I do fear that they hope I did. My office put in several requests early last year to review adding the 75 homes in the Crescent Beach area to the Nassau County sewer system so that our harbor is not polluted by one or two bad septic systems, which no one has been able to trace for several years now. The Nassau County health department told me that the real solution to the issue is adding that community to the sewer system. How many more summers will they let begin and then end again with that beach remaining closed? I am submitting another request.

News

There is a new psychic medium on the North Shore of Long Island to compete with the original “Long Island Medium,” Theresa Caputo. Her name is Mary Drew and she has been working for more than a decade doing private readings. Recently, Drew has expanded her horizons and has been conducting readings at restaurants, public events and fundraisers.

“I discovered my ability to speak and to hear the deceased voices when I was 10 years old,” said Drew, who grew up in Brookville and now resides in Glen Cove. “The first deceased person I had an encounter with was my grandmother and it was a very profound experience, to say the least.”

The Oyster Bay Charitable Fund and the Oyster Bay Rotary Club hosted the annual Oyster Festival “Kick-Off” press conference on Friday, Aug. 15 at the flagpole in Theodore Roosevelt Park.

In attendance were NY State Senator Carl Marcelino and Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, both Honorary Oyster Festival Chairmen; Oyster Bay Town Clerk James Altadonna Jr.; Oyster Bay Town Councilman Chris J. Coshignano; Oyster Bay Town Councilwoman Michelle Johnson; Oyster Bay Town Councilman Joseph Pinto; Oyster Bay Rotary President Judy Wasilchuk; Verizon Title Sponsor Representative, Director of Government Affairs Patrick Lespinasse; Executive Director, h2empower, African Studies Specialist Helen Boxwill; Oyster Festival Sports Representative James Werner; Long Island Rough Riders Representative Sarah Culmo and Emcee Harlan Friedman.

The 31st annual Oyster Festival will take place on Saturday, Oct. 18 and Sunday, Oct. 19, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free.


Sports

Picture-perfect weather was on board for the Mill Neck Family of Organizations’ Third Annual Sail the Sound for Deafness Regatta on Thursday, Aug. 7. The event, featuring an evening race of yachts, followed by a cocktail party, was held to benefit the organization that serves individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have other special needs.

In this year’s race, fifteen sailors took to the waters of Oyster Bay Harbor; three aboard their own boats, others on several boats provided by Oakcliff Sailing Center. The WaterFront Center’s oyster sloop, Christeen and two vessels from Oyster Bay Marine Center, brought a total of 45 spectators out to watch the race.

Kevin Mercier, 39, of Oyster Bay, led a large contingent of local runners in the Lynne, Gartner, Dunne & Covello Sands Point Sprint 5 Kilometer Run, held on the grounds of Nassau County’s Sands Point Preserve on Saturday morning, Aug. 9. Mercier was the 18th finisher overall and third in the 35-39 age group with a time of  21 minutes, 7 seconds.

Other local runners winning awards at the Sands Point Preserve were Nicholas Cuddy of Oyster Bay, who earned first place honors in the Clydesdale Weight Division with a time of 25:53, Joanne Gallo of Oyster Bay, who  took home the first place award in the women’s 65-69 age group with a time of 28:11, and Anja Hermann of Oyster Bay, third place woman in the 20-24 age group, who finished in 28:47.


Calendar

Movie at the Library

Thursday, August 28

Sagamore Hill Walk

Saturday, August 30

Hooks and Needles

Tuesday, September 2



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