Williston Times 2024_05_17

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Bond would cover settlement of 17 remaining Child Victims Act suits

The Herricks Board of Education approved payment of up to $35 million in bonds to settle 17 child sex abuse claims against the district at a meeting Thursday night.

The district has paid more than $1 million thus far to settle four of the 21 total sex abuse claims against the district.

One case against the district is still on trial, Assistant Superintendent for Business Lisa Rutkoske said. Herricks won one case in March when the district was found not negligible in the first Child Victims Act case against a Long Island school district to go to trial.

With the pending $35 million settlement of the 17 remaining claims, all cases against the district except one will be closed, Rutkoske said.

claimed they were abused between 1973 and 1991 by then-school psychologist Vincent Festa. In the cases that went to trial, plaintiffs alleged that the district ignored initial reports of abuse in the 1980s, thus permitting the abuse to ensue.

In the case that Herricks won, attorney Jeffrey Herman, who represented anonymous plaintiff J.G., said knowledge of Festa’s alleged abuse was so rampant that he was widely referred to in school as “Festa the Molester.” During the trial, the district conceded that Festa did sexually abuse the plaintiff, but denied that school officials permitted his actions.

Festa was arrested in 1993 after he was accused of sexually abusing six teenage boys in his Ronkonkoma neighborhood.

The Wheatley School students compete in a barrel race at the final pep rally of the school

Schechter School adds planters for protection Herricks OKs up to $35M for abuse claims

The 2019 Child Victims Act extended the statute of limitations for survivors of child sex abuse. The temporary law, which was in effect through 2021, allowed survivors more time to press criminal charges against offenders and more time to file a claim for money damages.

Prior to the act, child sex abuse survivors had between one and five years to bring a civil lawsuit against their abuser, with that one- to five-year period starting once the victim turned 18.

The 21 lawsuits against Herricks were filed by former students who

He was sentenced to five years of probation and required to register as a sex offender. He was later charged with a registered sex offender violation after failing to register his email addresses and service providers. He died in 2011 at 82.

The Herricks board adopted a 20242025 budget in April of $141,710,364 with a tax levy increase of 2.38%, which is within the state tax cap. Sinanis said the average tax levy increase over the past seven years was 1.78%.

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The Schechter School of Long Island has added large planters around the perimeter of the building as a preventative safety measure in case

a driver decides to smash their car into the building, Associate Head of School Ofra Hiltzik said. She said the planters are not a reaction to the current political climate. The empty planters were funded

by a grant that the school applied for through its security company, Global Operations Security Services Inc., in response to the firm’s recommendation, she said.

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Vol. 73, No. 20 Friday, May 17, 2024 Serving Williston Park, East Williston, Mineola, Albertson and Searingtown WINNERS ANNOUNCED JULY 5, 2024! https://theisland360.com/bonscontest/ LAST WEEK TO VOTE! VOTING ENDS MAY 24 BEST OF 2024 COUNTY NASSAU WWW.THEISLAND360.COM/CONTEST2024 10TH ANNUAL PAGE 9 ISRAEL-PALESTINIAN LESSON DRAWS OUTRAGE PAGES 23-26 LIVING 50+ PAGE 6 DEMS CLAIM SECRET MILITIA MEETINGS

EWSD candidates give district different grades

Hirsch, Fallarino and Sivaraman vie for two seats

State aid rises, EWSD levy drops

$36K to be used to reduce taxes

The East Williston School District received a $36,000 bump in state aid under the recently approved state budget compared to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s initial proposal, Deputy Superintendent Diane Castonguay said at a budget hearing Monday night.

The district was originally proposed to receive $7,367,010 in state aid, a $293,211 increase from the 2023-2024 state aid of $7,073,799.

The additional aid will be used to lower the tax levy from 3.74% to 3.68%, Castonguay said. This tax levy is below the state tax cap of 3.79%, she said.

tional $1.3 billion in school aid and the restoration of the foundation aid Hold Harmless policy, which ensures schools’ foundation aid does not decrease from the year before.

The state budget adoption came after months of pushback from school administrators.

Many districts across North Shore Nassau County lamented the eradication of Hold Harmless, saying the change in aid and high insurance and pension costs produced tight budgets with higher tax levies.

Incumbent trustees Robert Fallarino and Leonard Hirsch and newcomers Denise Tercynski and Eswar Sivaraman are competing for two seats on the East Williston Board of Education in the May 21 election.

Candidates are running to secure a three-year term.

Fallarino, who currently serves as the vice president of the board, is running for re-election and Tercynski is challenging him for his seat.

Fallarino, a trial attorney who has lived in East Williston for more than 20 years, has four children who have attended schools in the district. His own interest ineducation extends throughout his family.

“I have been on the board for 15 years so obviously I have a passion for education and I have a sister who’s a teacher and now I have a son who has become a teacher,” Fallarino said, “and at the beginning of my tenure on the board, for the first couple of years, I was a swing voter on a very divided board. Since that time, I’ve learned how to build consensus and navigate the fiscal concerns with the educational concerns.”

If re-elected as trustee, Fallarino said he wants to concentrate on helping students prepare for the workforce

by guiding them toward internship opportunities and providing resources to prepare for interviews. The trustee said he is excited about academic advancements in robotics, computer science and STEAM programs in the district and wants to continue pushing these programs forward.

“My biggest concern is making sure everyone in the community is on the same page and make sure that everyone knows how transparent we are and all that we do and how balanced and fair we are in terms of our distribution of costs across all spectrums,” Fallarino said.

The East Williston resident said one of the changes made during his time on the board that he is most proud of is moving algebra and earth science courses into the eighth grade. He said this change puts all students on an advanced track, which allows them to fit more fun electives and Advanced Placement courses on their schedule in high school.

Fallarino said he has been in absolute agreement with the district budgets in past years. He said the district is fiscally responsible with consistently low tax levies.

“The years that I’ve been on the board I think have established the community can trust the sound judgement that I have,” Fallarino said. “I was a calm voice and navigated us through when I

was a swing vote on a contentious board and I can do the same with any contentious issue that pops up in the future and, more importantly, making sure we always steer clear and keep the children in mind first.”

Efforts to reach competitor Tercynski were unavailing.

Trustee Hirsch is running for re-election and Sivaraman is challenging him for his seat.

Hirsch, an accountant who has lived in Roslyn Heights since 2008, has one tenth-grader in the district and one child who graduated from the district.

Prior to serving on the board, Hirsch put his financial expertise to use while serving on a financial advisory committee and audit committee within the district. He said he recognized the skills he could offer the district and took the opportunity to run for the Board of Education in 2012.

If re-elected as a trustee, Hirsch said he would continue supporting technology and science research efforts, such as the construction of new science labs at The Wheatley School, which he said will be built this summer and completed by the start of the 2024-2025 school year. Like Fallarino, Hirsch said he wants to prioritize bringing in internship and networking opportunities for the high schoolers. The trustee said he would

“We feel that the programs and the activities and the learning opportunities that vary for all students…are maintained in this budget,” Castonguay said. “We’ve also continued layers of academic and social-emotional support for all students at all levels.”

The state Legislatureadopted the 2024-2025 $237 billion state budgetnearly three weeks late in April.

The budget included an addi-

The proposed 2024-2025 East Williston budget is $71,177,806, which represents a 3.32%, or $2,288,530 increase, from the adopted 2023-2024 budget of $68,889,276.

The majority of district revenue will come from the proposed tax levy, which is $61,374,153. The tax levy is up $2,179,547 from the 2023-2024 levy of $59,194,606.

As of February, 1,601 students are enrolled in the district. Administration expects district enrollment to increase to 1,607 in the 2024-2025 school year, making per pupil spending $44,292.35.

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE CANDIDATES Incumbent trustees Leonard Hirsch and Robert Fallarino and challenger Eswar Sivaraman are running for the East Williston Board of Education. PHOTO BY TAYLOR HERZLICH East Williston School District business students shake hands with Superintendent Danielle Gately and Board President Mark Kamberg at a meeting Monday night.

7 vie for 2 seats on Herricks board

Trustee, budget votes comes amid abuse claims settlements brought under Child Victims Act

Herricks district residents are heading to the polls on May 21 to vote on seven candidates vying for two board of education seats and a $141 million budget that includes the cost of child sex abuse claims.

For one seat, Incumbent Trustee Brian Hassan is running for re-election against Maria Bono, who has been active on PTAs.

Newcomers Ravinder Ratra, Surendra Gupta, Shaheda Quraishi, Eric Lo and Russell Stuart are running for the seat left vacant by Trustee Nancy Fein-

stein, who is stepping down from the board after serving for 12 years.

An issue top of mind for candidates and residents alike is the cost of lawsuits filed against the Herricks district under the 2019 Child Victims Act, a law that temporarily lifted the statute of limitations for child sex abuse survivors.

Some 21 lawsuits against Herricks were filed by former students who claimed they were abused between 1973 and 1991 by then-school psychologist Vincent Festa.

In the cases that went to trial, plaintiffs alleged that the district ignored initial reports of abusein the 1980s, thus

permitting the abuse to ensue.

The district has paid $1.1 million to settle four of the 21 claims thus far. The board on Thursday approved the payment of up to $35 million in bonds to settle the remaining 17 claims against the district.

Hassan has lived in Albertson since 1977 and serves as the Albertson water commissioner. All three of his children graduated from the Herricks district. If re-elected, this will be his 13th year on the board.

Hassan told Blank Slate Media his main goal in handling the cost of multiple child sex abuse lawsuits against the

district is to avoid piercing the tax cap.

He said working as a trustee is his way of giving back to the community.

“In my opinion, you’re obligated to give back,” Hassan said. “I’m a firm believer in people have either time or money, but they should not be obligated to give both. I don’t have a lot of money, so I would rather give back my time to the community.”

If re-elected, Hassan said he hopes to continue his work on finalizing a $25 million bond for capital improvements to the district. He said he is also focused on fostering a holistic approach to education by implementing additional

mental health programs for students and hiring additional school counselors.

“I’ve been on the board for 12 years. We’ve accomplished a tremendous amount in the last 12 years,” Hassan said. “If people are happy with the way things have changed for the district over the last 12 years, the academic standards that we’ve presented for the district, then vote for me. If people want a change or are not happy with the way things are going, then vote another way.”

Bono said she is ready to see some changes on the board.

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2 Mineola trustees in uncontested bids

Voters to decide on $109M budget that would cut spending by $100K in 2024-2025

Incumbent Trustees Brian Widman and Stacey DeCillis are running uncontested for the Mineola Board of Education in a May 21 election.

The two trustees said they place value on fiscal responsibility, especially since other nearby districts have proposed staff and program cuts in their draft budgets while Mineola has not.

“As someone who plans to be a community member for many years to come, I really like helping the Mineola School District area remain an amazing, affordable place to live for future generations,” Widman said in a statement to Blank Slate Media.

Widman is a Mineola High School alum and has lived in the district for more than 50 years. He works as an audit data analyst and has one child in the district, an 11th grader, and one child who has graduated from the district. He comes from a family of educators — both of his parents were public school teachers. And his wife is a public school teacher.

In addition to keeping the tax levy below the tax cap for the past 12 years, other district accomplishments include upgrading buildings, fields and infrastructure, pivoting to remote learning during the pandemic and supporting top-quality education and extra-curricular activities, Widman said in a statement.

If re-elected, Widman said he would continue to work with administrators to keep the district fiscally sound.

Trustee DeCillis is nearing the end of her first term as a board trustee.

Mineola incumbent trustees Brian Widman and Stacey DeCillis are running uncontested for re-election.

“My first term as board trustee has afforded me the opportunity to give back to a community that is really a special place and has influenced me to run for [re-election],” DeCillis said in a statement.

As a parent, educator and community member, DeCillis said she prioritizes providing students with a high-quality education that will shape them to become problem solvers, critical thinkers and collaborative teammates.

Her mission is holistic, as she said she views the student as the “whole child” and strives to foster a positive, inclusive learning environment across the district.

Both candidates are running to secure another three-year term.

District residents will also vote on the proposed 2024-2025 budget and a capital reserve proposition on May 21.

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Theproposed 2024-2025 budget in the Mineola School District is $109,552,352, which represents a $100,467, or 0.09% decrease, from last year’s budget of $109,652,819. The proposed tax levy is 2%.

This budget decrease is unusual, since most North Shore districts are facing budget increases this year and many are reaching the tax cap, blaming spikes in health insurance costs andchanges to state aid.

The district received an increase in state aid under the recently adopted state budget compared to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s initial proposal. While originally facing a $90,000 drop in state aid, Mineola will now receive about a $150,000 boost, Assistant Superintendent for Business and Operations Jack Waters said.

In total, Mineola is receiving $240,000 more than was expected when the board adopted its budget in April, but no changes will be made to the proposed budget, Waters said.

If the state aid is not used to offset revenue lapses, it will go toward surpluses at the end of the year, the assistant superintendent said.

In addition to the trustee election and budget, residents will vote on a proposition to expend up to $4.5 million from the 2022 Capital Reserve for a host of projects, including the replacement of the Mineola High School lobby roof and skylight, replacement of ceiling grids and lighting in high school classrooms, funding of softball field construction, new sidewalks at the middle school, elevator and heating and air conditioning system repairs and so on.

District residents can vote on the propositions on May 21 between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. at the Mineola Synergy Building at 2400 Jericho Tpke. in Garden City Park.

W.P. Mineola, aid in Manorhaven blaze

Eight fire departments rushed to extinguish a fire in Manorhaven Saturday night, with two of the occupants suffering minor burns.

Port Washington Fire Chief Matthew Kerin said the department was notified of a fire on Saturday morning at Manorhaven’s Linwood Road North around 7:30 p.m.

The Port Washington Fire Department is proposing a cost recovery program, the first time patients’ insurance would be billed for the department’s emergency medical service.

Kerin said ex-Chief Geoffrey Cole was the first at the scene and observed the two-story house “fully involved with fire.” The residents had already evacuated the home.

Two of the individuals who evacuated received minor burns and were transported to Nassau University Medical Center for treatment. He said the homeowner was also treated at the scene and transported to St. Francis Hospital but did not say the nature of his potential injuries.

Due to the intensity of the fire and its quick spread, Kerin said firefighters were limited from entering the house and had to fight the blaze from outside. The fire resulted in the entire home being consumed in fire, and later, the second floor collapsed.

Kerin said seven local fire departments aided the Port Washington Fire Department in extinguishing the fire, and three fire departments assisted in making calls around the town amid the emergency.

The departments that responded were the Great Neck Vigilant Fire Company, Roslyn Highlands Volunteer Fire Company, Roslyn Rescue, Plandome Fire Department, Williston Park Fire Department, Glenwood H&L, E&H, Co.,Inc, City of Glen Cove EMS, Mineola Volunteer Ambulance Corp, Nassau County Police Emergency Ambulance Bureau, Nassau County Police Department, Nassau County Fire Communications-FIRECOM, Nassau County Fire Marshal’s Office and the Nassau County Police Arson Bomb Squad.

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The Trustees of the Jones Fund for the Support of the Poor are requesting applications for its 2024 Grant Program from eligible and qualified IRC 501(c)(3) approved charitable organizations to further its mission of affording support to the poor, in the form of food, shelter, clothing and warmth, and providing support for educational programs striving to prevent the transmission of generational poverty among the underserved and underprivileged, exclusively in the Towns of North Hempstead, New York and Oyster Bay, New York as intended by the Last Will and Testament of Samuel Jones dated February 23, 1836, and as approved by the Trustees of the Jones Fund for the Support of the Poor. Program funds for the 2024 grant year will be in the form of grants totaling up to the maximum amount of $150,000.00, collectively, or such greater amount, if any, as may be determined by the Trustees of the Jones Fund for the Support of the Poor, in their sole and absolute discretion. This and any future grant program offered by the Jones Fund for the Support of the Poor is and shall be subject to the availability of funds and resources. Program funds will be awarded on a competitive basis.

All applications must be received by the Trustees of the Jones Fund for the Support of the Poor at PO Box 350, Jericho, New York 11753 or by email at TheJonesFund1836@gmail.com on or before June 30, 2024. Interested applicants can obtain further information and application packages by calling James McGahan or Dina Selearis at 516-681-3100 or sending an email to TheJonesFund1836@gmail.com.

Dems claim ‘militia’ being trained in secret

Nassau County Minority Leader Delia DeRiggi-Whitton (D-Glen Cove) said she received multiple reports that the special deputy sheriffs sought out by Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman have been secretly training at night at

the county police academy in Garden City. DeRiggi-Whitton, joined by a group of Democratic legislators, demanded transparency from Blakeman on the suspected night training sessions. She said she had asked the executive for clarification multiple times to no avail.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 6
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Nassau County Minority Leader Delia DeRiggi-Whitton speaks in front of the Nassau County Police Academy surrounded by Legislators Carrié Solages, Seth Koslow, Scott Davis and Siela Bynoe.
Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 7 T:10"
T:12.45" B:12.45"
8 Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024

School lesson in Sewanhaka draws anger Town OKs capital projects for Port Parking District

There was not an empty seat to be found at a Sewanhaka Central High School District board meeting Wednesday night when dozens of Palestinian and Muslim community members spoke out against what they called an offensive history lesson about Israeli-Palestinian relations taught by Deirdre McIntyre at Sewanhaka High School on May 2.

The teacher reportedly used a document in a history lesson that prompted students to role play as an Israeli and a Palestinian by using a script. Community members said the script included factual inaccuracies and Islamophobic stereotypes.

Speakers read quotes from the script that incorrectly conflated Arabs and Palestinians, used the word “terrorist” toward Arabs, claimed Palestinians as a whole are trying to build an army and more.

Interim Superintendent

Thomas Dolan agreed that the lesson did not fairly portray the relations between Israel and Palestinians but said it was intended to show where there was common ground.

“It’s imbalanced. There is an imbalance in this document. I do need to quote from it because there was a direction for this. There was a purpose for this,” Dolan said. “‘What do we have in common to speak about?’ The answer. ‘A great deal.’ I said it in the parking lot to some of you. We are far more alike than we are different. That was the message the teacher wanted to get to.”

Dolan said McIntyre has not returned to the school since she taught the lesson in a 10th-grade global history class.

He announced that the teacher would be returning to instruction Thursday morning with a co-teacher and he would provide the board with an update on her lessons Friday.

Continued on Page 38

The Town of North Hempstead Board authorized pursuing capital improvements for the Port Washington Parking District, including the authorization to consider issuing bonds for the projects in the future.

The improvements include the upgrade from oil to gas for the parking district’s facilities, a new vehicle, building renovations and HVAC enhancements.

The total expenses for the projects are capped at $272,741. This is broken down into $23,741 for the gas conversion, $184,000 for a new vehicle, $35,000 for renovations and $30,000 for HVAC.

Deputy Supervisor Joseph Scalero said these projects are 3 1/2 years in the making.

He called this a “relatively small authorization.”

Scalero said the board’s action only authorized the bonds but did not issue any bonds. The board would have to vote to issue these bonds at a later date if the project is continued.

“This is strictly a financing thing,” Scalero said.

Councilmember Mariann Dalimonte said that just because the board voted to authorize the projects and the associated bonds does not guarantee that the project will be carried out nor bonds issued.

Scalero said the cost estimates proposed are not concrete and can be changed, but the vote established the maximum costs for these projects.

A new authorization would need to be made if the project expenses surpass the amount approved Tuesday morning.

Dalimonte said the town’s Purchasing Department would ensure no superfluous expenses are made on the project, which Scalero affirmed.

Port Washington resident Alan Tankoos asked if any studies had been done in association with the project to explore other op-

A resident address the North Hempstead board at its public hearing Tuesday Morning.

tions to improve the parking district’s facilities.

A member of the Department of Public Works was not present at the meeting to explain the project.

Scalero described this as a starting point for the project and further actions would be taken to continue the project in the future.

Port Washington resident Jeff Rosenberg asked how this would increase residents’ taxes, but Supervisor Jennifer DeSena said she could not provide an answer since a final project cost amount has not been determined and the board has not approved any project expenditures.

Continued on Page 45

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Antisemitic lawn signs on NHP lawn

Ex-G.N. doc convicted of sexual abuse

A former Great Neck urologist was found guilty Wednesday on federal charges of sexually abusing five minors and two adults after prosecutors presented evidence showing he utilized his medical position to commit the abuse.

Dr. Darius Paduch, 56, worked at Northwell Health in Great Neck and Lake Success from 2019 until his arrest and subsequent termination in April 2023. He previously was employed at Weill Cornell Medicine in Manhattan for 16 years.

“As a unanimous jury has just found, Darius A. Paduch leveraged his position of trust as a medical doctor for his own perverse gratification,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said. “For years, patients seeking needed

medical care, many of them children, left his office as victims.”

Paduch was convicted on six counts of inducement to travel to engage in unlawful sexual activity and five counts of inducing a minor to engage in sex.

He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 19.

Paduch’s lawyer, Michael Baldassare, told Newsday in a statement that Paduch has maintained his innocence and an appeal will be filed.

Hundreds of ex-patients, including minors at the time of the alleged offenses, have named him as a predator, which has resulted in several civil lawsuits in tandem with the federal conviction.

Continued on Page 45

Two antisemitic signs, one reading “From the River to the Sea, F— Israel & Jews,” were spotted on a front lawn in New Hyde Park and reported by a community member to StopAntisemitism in the evening of May 7.

The signage was located on Old Courthouse Road outside an upscale home, according to a photo of the signs posted by StopAntisemitism on Twitter.

“We’ve never seen anything quite like this in the area,” Liora Rez, founder and executive director of watchdog organization StopAntisemitism, said.

She said there are no other reported New Hyde Park incidents in the StopAntisemitism database.

An employee in the Nassau County Police Department Public Information Office said there was no relevant information available in the database. Efforts to reach the public information supervisor for more details were unavailing.

“From the river to the sea” is a controversial phrase with a much-debated meaning, often used in recent times during pro-Palestinian protests. It refers to the territory between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea, which includes Israel. Some pro-Israel voices

have labeled this slogan an antisemitic one that calls for the destruction of the state of Israel, while some pro-Palestinian voices have said this phrase is a call for peace and equality.

The second lawn sign is split in half vertically. The left side reads “Jew” with blue and white coloring and the right side reads “Hindu” with orange, white and green coloring. Much of the writing on this sign is illegible, though it does clearly include a curse word.

Reported antisemitic incidents have spiked in recent months according to Rez, who said her organization has seen a 1500% increase in reported incidents since Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel.

Rez listed multiple incidents of verbal and physical attacks on Jewish people and bomb threats against temples that have occurred on Long Island just since that October attack.

“It was like the band-aid was just ripped off [after Oct. 7] and the floodgates just opened,” Rez said.

That is why Rez said community members must report any incidents of antisemitism in their own neighborhoods. Often, only the most “grotesque” hate crimes are reported, Rez said, which allows other incidents to be swept under the rug. The business founder said community members often fear retribution, which is why her organization guarantees confidentiality.

Honored for teaching centered on children

One of Jason D’Agostino’s preschool students recently expressed a strong fear of bees, a natural response to an insect that commonly afflicts pain with its stinging capabilities.

Rather than consoling the child and brushing it off as a simple comment, D’Agostino took the moment as an opportunity to teach his students about the importance of bees, as well as many other insects in our natural environment, to diminish the children’s instinctual fears.

On Friday morning, square patches of artificial grass adorned with insects encased in acrylic and mini magnifying glasses were placed upon the students’ tables at My Spectrum School in Manorhaven.

“It’s inviting you to come and look, explore, touch, feel, get engaged with it,” D’Agostino said.

Next to the insect activity were books filled with insect pictures. Students could then also flip through these books and mark the pages they found of interest, which D’Agostino would check to create later lessons on the children’s bug questions.

As D’Agostino spoke about his engagement with his class of about 10 students, it was clear the close bond he had formed with each one of them.

“That’s the child-centered approach,” D’Agostino said.

D’Agostino’s education model is formed around the school’s students, what he called “inquiry-driven, process-based” learning.

“Everything starts off with a phenomenon, some type of prompt, some type of provocation,” D’Agostino said.

It’s this approach that earned him the honor of being named the best teacher in Nassau County by Blank Slate Media in 2023.

D’Agostino said the award came to him as a surprise. As one averse to the spotlight, he said the honor reflected the success of his students more than his role as the teacher.

“To me, that’s more rewarding than an award,” D’Agostino said.

D’Agostino is the director as well as a teacher at My Spectrum School, an early childhood preschool that aims to foster a love of learning and develop children’s natural gifts to reach their full potential.

Along with D’Agostino, the school also won five other awards in the competition, including Best Preschool and Best Private School.

On Friday morning, the school and its three teachers were also presented citations from North Hempstead Councilmember Mariann Dalimonte for Provider Appreciation Day.

D’Agostino received his bachelor’s in psychology from Adelphi University and a master’s in early childhood education from Long Island University.

He described his teacher style as based on a number of sources, including psychologist Jerome Bruner, LIU associate professor in early childhood education Efleda P. Tolentino, the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education and various schools of thought.

The Reggio Emilia approach is based upon a child’s natural curiosity that fosters deeper connections between students, teachers, families and the community through a child’s active engagement with their classroom environment. Teachers then observe their students’ interests in development to adapt their teaching to their students. His students ages 3 to 5 have a natural curiosity, D’Agostino said, due to a plethora of new experiences for them.

Continued on Page 38

10 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
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OUR VIEWS Editorial Cartoon Opinion

It’s a good time to be a lawyer in Nassau

On the bright side, this is a good time to be a lawyer in Nassau County.

At least if you work for Nassau’s three towns and the county government. Or do work for them.

Taxpayers, who will have to foot the bills for these lawyers, may not be so happy with the sheer volume of litigation brought in recent months by or against Nassau County and the towns of Hempstead, North Hempstead and Oyster Bay.

It is true that there are legitimate reasons for governments to sue or be sued in the course of doing business.

But there seem to be more than several instances in which legal actions were the result of poor policies or just plain politics.

One instance is Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman’s controversial sports ban on transgender women and girls, which barred them from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity at about 100 county-run facilities.

A state judge on Friday evening struck down Nassau’s ban, finding that Blakeman had acted beyond his authority in enacting the executive order.

In issuing the ban in February, Blakeman had cited concerns about transgender women gaining an unfair advantage in athletic competitions but failed to name a single instance of that happening in Nassau County. This was noted in the judge’s decision

Democrats said the transgender ban was cruel and potentially dangerous to transgender youth, who report alarmingly high rates of depression. But some Republicans appeared to see transgender sports bans as a winning political issue.

The Republican County executive said last week he is not ready to give up after the state judge struck down the transgender ban — even while criticizing New York’s courts in a manner similar to that of a certain Republican presidential candidate.

The decision, Blakeman said in a statement, displayed a “lack of courage from a judge who didn’t want to decide the case on its merits.”

“Nassau County will appeal without much faith in the Appellate Division applying the law without far left doctrine being used to undermine women’s sports,”

he said of the state court’s decision.

Blakeman had earlier unsuccessfully sued state Attorney General Letitia James in federal court after she issued a statement urging the county to rescind its ban, which she described as “transphobic and blatantly illegal.”

A federal judge wrote in April that she found the county’s claims based on the equal protection rights of women and girls to be “unpersuasive” and ruled against the county’s effort to prevent James from filing a court challenge.

Last week, county Legislature Democrats also blasted their Republican counterparts for approving a $750,000 contract with a special counsel to defend Nassau in several lawsuits challenging a wide range of fees that have been used by the county to avoid raising taxes.

The fees include a $150 charge for red-light violations – despite a state law limiting the fine to $50 – and fees related to property liens.

In March 2020, a Nassau State Supreme Court justice wrote that a $355 tax map verification fee was an “unlawful and unconstitutional tax” on Nassau County deed filers.

In April 2023, a four-justice panel of the State Supreme Court’s Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department, unanimously affirmed the lower court’s ruling.

“The fees imposed were excessive and improper, as they were exacted for general revenue purposes and not tied to the county’s obligation to maintain its property registry,” the court ruled.

Blakeman filed an emergency order at the time asking the Legislature to reduce the fee to $270, which was approved in a party-line vote.

Democrats have pushed unsuccessfully to kill the fee.

The county is also embroiled in litigation with Hofstra University over a 99year lease agreement with Nassau that would permit Las Vegas Sands to develop a $4 billion casino and entertainment project at the site of the Nassau Coliseum property in Uniondale.

In April 2023, Hofstra sued Nassau, claiming that the county violated the state’s open meetings and environmental laws and that Nassau County and Sands did not follow proper protocol in their approval process.


22 Planting Field Road, Roslyn Heights, NY 11577

Phone: 516-307-1045

E-mail: hblank@theisland360.com



In November 2023, a state judge invalidated Nassau County’s approval of a 99-year lease agreement for the project. In February 2024, another judge ruled that Sands lacks a valid lease for the Coliseum and its surrounding land.

Nassau announced in April it will rework the lease agreement in the face of opposition by Hofstra.

A month ago Blakeman continued with his legal efforts, filing a lawsuit against Gov. Kathy Hochul and the state, challenging a new law that moves most local elections to even-numbered years, beginning in 2026.

Under a bill that Hochul, a Democrat, signed into law in December, most town and county elections in New York will move from odd to even years. Races for governor, president, and Congress are held in even years.

The lawsuit by Blakeman, a Republican, and the GOP-controlled Nassau County Legislature argues that the state violated its constitution in enacting the new law and seeks to block it from taking effect.

The county lawsuit dovetails with a campaign against the law by Republicans statewide who argue that voters will ignore local issues when county and town elections occur with federal and state contests.

Democrats say local elections should coincide with gubernatorial and presidential contests when turnout is highest. Democrats historically have better turnout during gubernatorial and, particularly, presidential years.

The three towns—North Hempstead, Hempstead, and Oyster Bay—are Repub-


Cameryn Oakes, Taylor Herzlich



Stacy Shaughnessy, Melissa Spitalnick, Barbara Kaplan, Bill Lucano


Yvonne Farley

lican-controlled and have recently joined the county in the lawsuit.

Last week, Town of North Hempstead residents overwhelmingly spoke out against the litigation, which they called a political move, a mishandling of taxpayers’ money, and a sacrifice of democratic processes for partisanship.

“It is inconceivable to me that there could be some members of this board, as well as our supervisor, who support such a frivolous and costly agenda item when it is your primary responsibility to protect the hardworking, middle-class families that call North Hempstead home,” resident Scott Wolff said.

Wolff has a point, but the measure passed along party lines.

We would be more sympathetic to the Republicans’ call for a greater focus on local elections if so many of their candidates didn’t avoid interviews about the position they were running for with papers like ours.

But the towns are not just following the leads of Blakeman and Nassau County.

The Town of Hempstead filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday in an effort to halt the MTA’s incoming New York City congestion pricing model, making Hempstead the first Long Island town to initiate legal action against the plan.

MTA officials said congestion pricing is set to hit commuters on June 30. Car drivers can expect a $15 charge to enter Manhattan at 61st Street and below, truck drivers can expect a $24 to $36 charge depending on their vehicle size, and motorcycle drivers can expect a $7.50 charge.

The program is intended to reduce

traffic and improve air quality in New York City, as well as generate revenue for the MTA.

Hempstead Supervisor Don Clavin, who called the plan a “money grab” by the MTA that would not improve services, said the town had hired attorneys “to seek an injunction to stop this program.”

But Clavin’s criticism contradicts his and other Republican town supervisors’ frequent demand for local control when the state has sought to to increase housing in Nassau County to address New York’s housing crisis.

What’s good for the goose should be good for the gander.

The Town of North Hempstead also signaled in February that it would not take action to avoid a legal fight when Republican councilmembers rejected expansion plans for the Hillside Islamic Center in New Hyde Park.

Religious institutions are protected in building houses of worship by a federal law passed by Congress after a pattern of discrimination was found in applications by minority religions.

But this did not dissuade town Republicans

“Sometimes the Town Board has to turn around and say ‘you know what? We’re going to get sued over it and we’re going to get brought into court, I’m going to stick up for my constituents first,’” said Republican Councilmember Ed Scott at the time.

North Hempstead also hired an outside law firm after the Islamic center filed a lawsuit against the town.

Is this the best use of taxpayer money? We don’t think so.





Williston Times • Great Neck News Herald Courier • Roslyn Times Manhasset Times • Port Washington Times

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 12


Who writes better, men or women?

I recently read the essay “Total Eclipse” by Annie Dillard about the 1979 eclipse. It was mesmerizing, magical, and profound and I began to wonder why I haven’t read a comparable piece about the 2024 eclipse we all were so excited about just a few weeks ago?

I seriously doubt that there will be an essay written about this year’s eclipse that even comes close to the way Annie Dillard handled the 1979 eclipse. Here’s a sample of her writing:

“I had seen a partial eclipse in 1970. It bears almost no relationship to a total eclipse. Seeing a partial eclipse bears the same relation to seeing a total eclipse as kissing a man does to marrying him or flying in an airplane does to falling out of an airplane.”

Her writing reminded me of other great female writers like Joan Didion, Gertrude Stein and Virginia Wolfe. And I began to wonder who are better writers, men or women. It might be fun to compare the two sides, kind of like the World Series but without the uniforms, knuckle balls or bats. So let’s pick five players on each side and see what happens.

On the women’s side we have Annie Dillard, Joan Didion, Gertrude Stein to bat 1st, 2nd, 3rd in the line up with Virginia Wolfe in the clean-up spot. And on the mound will be Mary Shelly as pitcher. On the men’s side let’s put Tom Wolfe, Donald Barthelme, David Foster Wallace and E.B. White with T.S. Elliot pitching.

First up are the women. Annie Dillard bats first. I have already told you about Annie. Another line from her essay goes like this: “I turned back to the sun. It was going. The sun was going,

and the world was wrong. The grasses were wrong.” Or the description of the seedy hotel she was staying in: “The hotel lobby was a dark, derelict room, narrow as a corridor, and seemingly without air.” Not a bad at bat, let’s give her a single.

Next up is Joan Didion, a part of the New Journalism school of writing where they would get involved with their subjects for extended periods of time and then publish long form essays about the experience. She wrote “Slouching Towards Bethlehem” and “The White Album” both about the social, drug and sexual revolutions that took place in America back in the late 1960s.

She was brave enough to talk about her nervous breakdown induced by the insanity of San Francisco’s HaightAshbury flower children. Let’s give her a walk. So now we have a man (or, in this case, women) on first and second with no outs.

Next up is Gertrude Stein, whose 1935 essay “What are Master-pieces and Why Are There So Few of Them” tells you everything you want to know about the subject of genius. However her style is so obtuse that it verges on the incomprehensible. Gertrude strikes out swinging. Now there are still two women on and only one out.

Batting cleanup is Virginia Wolfe. T.S. Elliot throws her a 95 mile an hour fast ball right down the middle, which she hits for a three-run home run, clearing the bases with one swing. Anyone who has read her feminist treatise “A Room of One’s Own” will agree.

The score is 3-0 and now it’s the men’s turn to get up.


First at bat is Tom Wolfe author of “A Man in Full,” “The Right Stuff,” “I Am Charlotte Simmons,” and “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.” This is one intimidating batter and Mary Shelley tries to pitch around him. He gets a walk.

Next up is Donald Barthelme, master of the post-modern short story. Mary Shelly does not have a clue as to how to pitch to him, and furthermore doesn’t like his look with that odd beard.

She is so distracted by his strange appearance and his ironic demeanor that she walks him in four pitches. Man on first and second with no outs.

Next up is David Foster Wallace, the guy who Gourmet Magazine sent to write about the Lobster Festival in Maine and returns with a 40-page essay on the ethics of killing lobsters.

David Foster Wallace is the guy whose footnotes were often longer than his text and who was arguably the best writer in America until he killed himself. In his at bat he struck out looking. You

see David Foster Wallace was an overthinker.

The cleanup batter was E.B. White, the genius who wrote “Charlotte’s Web” and my favorite essay of all time “The Ring of Time.” No one can pitch past E.B. and he hits an out-of-the-park home run on the first pitch which ties the game at 3 all.

The game goes on and both pitchers go on to shut out the other team and the game is eventually called in inning 13 due to darkness. Mary Shelley, the writer of “Frankenstein,” pitched masterfully, giving up only one hit, that home run to E. B. White. T.S. Eliot, the man who wrote “The Waste Land,” was overheard saying “April may be the cruelest month but baseball is the cruelest sport. I pitch a two hitter and I look like a bum.”

It is hard to say after seeing this World Series of writers which sex is better at writing.

The women writers all write with

clarity and compassion and sensitivity and seem to be in touch with the current zeitgeist of the time. Virginia Wolfe wrote of London in the early 20th century with all its upper-class stuffiness and tradition. Didion wrote about the insanity of the Sixties in America.

The men I mentioned were also in tune with the times and masters of their craft like Tom Wolfe writing about Miami of the 1990s in “Back To Blood” or David Foster Wallace making a state fair in the Midwest actually sound interesting.

Who can say which sex is better at this game of words? All I know is that I am happy that I have read every one of these masters and have learned plenty from them all. And let’s give the MVP to Mary Shelley for pitching so beautifully, for writing one of the most influential novels of all time and for being credited with starting the science fiction genre in literature.

Gov. Hochul’s ‘Big Ugly’ budget, part 2

In my last column, I noted that Gov. Hochul’s $237 billion spending plan—which is up 35% since 2019—is unsustainable due to anemic economic growth.

The state’s economy, which grew by only 0.7% last year vs. 2.5% nationally, is not expected to grow much this year and the state’s monstrous $16 billion structural deficit will escalate.

Adding to the bleak economic picture is the never-ending exodus of Wall Street firms to Florida, which unlike New York does not have a state income tax or estate tax.

The New York Post reported May 8 that “160 Wall Street firms have moved out of the Big Apple in recent years—56 of which took their business to Florida, sucking a whopping $1 trillion in financial assets under management out of Manhattan.” That shift, according to Bloomberg News, “has paved the way for a ‘Wall Street South.’” Financial moguls who ditched New York included Carl Ichan and hedge fund giant Paul Singer of El-

liott Management. While New York’s commercial real estate 20% vacancy rate is at an all-time high, Florida’s office rentals are booming, particularly in Palm Beach, West Palm Beach, and Boca Raton.

If the wealthiest continue to rush to the exit doors, New York’s income tax collection will take a major hit. Why? Because 1% of households—76,000 out of 7,600,000— pay nearly 50% of the state’s total income tax revenue.

Think about it. If another 10,000 to 15,000 of those households move out in the next couple of years, New York will be in even deeper financial trouble.

Its tax base will be shattered.

The state’s share of Medicaid costs, which have spiraled from $22 billion in 2021 to $36 billion in 2023, is budgeted to increase by only $900 million. However, estimated costs in recent budgets have consistently been wrong. And there is no reason to think that this budget year will be any different. Cost overruns will fur-


On The Right

ther exacerbate the structural deficit.

(To cover themselves, Albany pols buried in the budget a new $4 billion tax on Managed Care Organization health insurance plans.)

There’s more bad budget news. The resurrection of the 421-a tax break, that incentivizes the construction of new apartment rentals, is a shadow of its former self.

To keep that item in the budget, the governor surrendered to the radical leftists in her party.

The new program has two flaws that will be construction project killers.

First, it significantly lowers the income threshold for eligible tenants of “affordable” apartments in any new development. This policy will make it more difficult for new housing projects to be profitable.

Next, according to Two Trees Management, a major apartment building developer, the program imposes “certain wages that are consistently higher than the past, whether with union or non-union labor.” Newsday, stating the program increases wages and benefits to be at least $40 per hour, called it a “boon for unions.”

Real estate journalist Steve Cuozzo at the Post has reported “that the misbegotten measure has killed plans for River Ring, a $1 billion four-acre complex on Brooklyn’s East River Waterfront” that was to be built by developer Two Trees management.

The budget’s “Squatter” law is more hype than substance.

The Empire Center’s Cam Macdonald, in an analysis titled “A Squatter ‘Fix’ That May Fix Squat,” concluded, “The new provision that makes it certain in statute that squatters are not tenants may reduce confusion about the rights of persons who occupy property for more than 30 days. And such clarification may give property owners greater confidence to enlist assistance from police in self-help evictions, but it didn’t change the rights they already had prior to this month.”

In other words, Macdonald wrote, “property owners unwilling or unable to use self-help must endure the same expenses and delays in eviction proceedings that a clearer definition of squatting does not help.”

So, despite all the claims by Hochul and her legislative confreres that they passed a responsible budget, it appears it is another “smoke and mirrors” plan that panders to special interests while increasing spending, taxes, and pork.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 13


American Wetlands Month a time to celebrate

There are lots of negative associations with wetlands from our vocabulary (swamped, bogged down) to the image of muddy, mosquito-ridden, out-of- the-way places mainly good for discrete dumping of bodies.

There are many descriptives for this type of environment: swamp, marsh, fen, bog, slough, mire, swale. Wetlands became the preferred term in 1953 when first used in a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service report.

Though wetlands only account for 6% of land surface in the nation, they are super productive, containing 40% of the world’s biodiversity. Wetlands are diverse and can be found on the margins of freshwater lakes, ponds, rivers and streams.

Brackish wetlands are at the point where freshwater meets salt, like where streams run into bays and harbors along our shoreline and the mangrove wetlands of the South. Saltwater wetlands directly face the ocean and absorb the brunt of tidal action.

Each kind of wetland hosts plants and animals specially evolved for that habitat and climate.

In the United State, 95% of wetlands are freshwater, unless you live along the seaside or on an island, where those numbers can be reversed locally.

Wetlands are also one of the most

threatened habitats, as humans have been filling them for hundreds of years.

The USFWS recently released its sixth report on the status of wetlands in the U.S. (2009-2019) and it makes depressing reading. Wetland loss increased by more than 50% since the previous study with more than 221,000 acres lost, mostly by being filled.

Another type of loss of wetland is the change from vegetated to mudflats or being drowned into ponds or lakes.

According to the USFWS, wetlands provide these environmental benefits; Improve water quality – Often described as the “kidneys” of watersheds, wetlands are able to filter and trap pollutants, excess nutrients and sediment.

• Protect against flooding and stabilize shorelines – Wetlands act as a buffer that absorbs the energy and excess water from waves and storms, reducing flood damage to inland areas. Their vegetation and root systems also help prevent erosion.

• Recharge groundwater supply – If a wetland is connected to a groundwater system, it can help provide water when stream flows or lake levels are low. This helps maintain the water supply for drinking water and irrigation as well as for wildlife and plants.

• Sequester carbon – Wetlands capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere

and store it in soil and plants, helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

• Peatlands, for example, cover only about 3 percent of the Earth’s surface but store approximately twice the amount of carbon than the entirety of the world’s forests.

• Recreation opportunities – Healthy wetlands provide myriad opportunities to connect with nature, whether through photography, fishing, wildlife watching, boating, hunting, or hiking.

Though over half of wetlands in the U.S. have been lost in the last 200 years, things did begin to turn early in the last

century. Protection of wetlands began in 1934 when Congress passed the Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp Act, which started the purchase and preservation of wetlands. In 1986, the Emergency Wetland Resources Act was adopted. Portions of the Clean Water Act and the Rivers and Harbors Act also protect wetlands.

In New York, the Tidal Wetlands Act was adopted by the state in 1973. In 2017, the DEC published Tidal Wetlands Guidance Document for Living Shoreline Techniques to “encourage appropriate use of living shorelines in place of hardened approaches for erosion control, because living shorelines offer greater habitat and ecological value than hardened shorelines and revetments.”

In 1975 the New York State Legislature passed the Freshwater Wetlands Act, which covers most of the wetlands in the state. Its purpose is “declared to be the public policy of the state to preserve, protect and conserve freshwater wetlands, and the benefits derived therefrom, to prevent the despoliation and destruction of freshwater wetlands, and to regulate use and development of such wetlands to secure the natural benefits of freshwater wetland, consistent with the general welfare and beneficial economic, social, and agricultural development of the state.”

In 2023 that protection was expanded to cover an additional million acres of

smaller wetlands.

Despite their importance to diversity and protective functions, wetlands are still overlooked. On Long Island we are lucky to have many types of wetlands protecting our shorelines and waters. They are extra important here because of their ability to filter water both recharging our sole source aquifer and removing contaminants before they flow into the bays and Long Island Sound. They also serve as natural buffers to the tidal storm surges as well as important habitats to a huge variety of plants and animals. Wetlands are something to celebrate and protect even if you don’t want to go tromping in the mud.

USA tumbles from Top 20 of ‘Happiest Nations’

The dictator wannabe insurrectionist Donald Trump, whose entire political modus operandi is based on fomenting hate, violence and terror, can’t understand why only migrants from “s—hole” countries are desperate to come to the USA, but few are clamoring to emigrate from “nice” countries like Denmark, Switzerland or Finland.

In fact, for these “nice” countries, which have universal health care (the U.S. is the only one out of 33 industrialized nations without it), paid parental leave and affordable child care, prescription drugs at a fraction of what Americans pay, gun control, clean energy, women’s rights and affordable college, the United States is the “s—hole” country.

The USA tumbled out of the Top 20 in the 2024 World Happiness Report for the first-time in the report’s 12-year history – falling from 15th to 23rd, just a year ago.

That’s despite record employment (the longest stretch of unemployment below 4% since the 1960s), rising wages (exceeding inflation), the first time in decades that people can choose to quit a dead-end job for a better one, and the fact the U.S. economy is growing twice as fast as in any other G7 country this year. And for the first time in generations, we have a president who is not only committed to policies that bring economic, environmental, social, political and criminal justice for all, but is implementing them.

In fact, even though the answer to that perennial election year question, “Are

you better off than four years ago?” is an unqualified “yes” (when COVID was killing 1,000 people a week and 30 million lost their jobs and were in fear of losing their homes as well), holistically people do not feel better off and feel their world view is shaky.

“Do you know what the 22 countries ranked ahead of the U.S. in happiness all have in common?,” Melanie Darrigo quipped on Threads. “Universal healthcare. Turns out people are happier when they don’t have to choose between food and seeing a doctor.’

Republicans call the things that make people in other countries happy “Communism” and are chomping at the bit to cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and repeal the Affordable Care Act. They also want to reverse the bulk of Biden’s investments in clean energy infrastructure and environmental protection regulations, rolling back limits on credit card fees and junk fees and making the wealthiest pay their fair share of taxes, so they can make permanent Trump’s $2 trillion taxgiveaway to the richest individuals and corporations.

It doesn’t help that the Doomsday Clock is now at 90 seconds to midnight — the closest ever to apocalypse, that the Earth is still warming, oceans are overheating, supersized climate disasters are more frequent, bringing death, destruction, flood, famine, drought.

Or that wherever you look, authoritarian wannabes are succeeding at replacing the Rule of Law, democracy and international order with the medieval “golden

all the progress so hard won through the entire 20th century –- all the things that have made our lives better, made us feel optimistic about the future. They are actually passing laws to repeal Biden’s climate actions, Obama’s Affordable Health Care. They have put the kibosh on affirmative action (that was the practical, moral alternative to paying reparations to correct centuries of systemic racism) and DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion). They even want to reverse laws that protect election workers from intimidation and harassment.

mise. Traveling to learn about how other people live was considered a value.

Somehow hate speech has become the pinnacle of “free speech.” We have disintegrated into banning books and banning history, replacing critical thinking with banning critical race theory, and retreating back into the isolationist nonsense of “American Exceptionalism” while demeaning “globalism” as “elitist” (whatever that means).

rule:” Might Makes Right.

And yet when you examine the primary sources of the high anxiety — political violence, gun violence, lost reproductive freedom, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Israel-Hamas war, a resurgence of violent protests — what do these things have in common? They are actually all choices. All human-caused. All manufactured, if you will, calculated to make people anxious, vulnerable, fearful, feeling out of control, expanding the gap between haves and have-nots. These threats are calculated to make the public look to an authoritarian who promises to wave a wand and make everything better. Except that we’ve seen what Fascism looks like and feels like, and only have to be reminded of it.

Republicans are on a tear to reverse

There is a sense that there is no justice, no fairness in the universe, that evil is triumphing over what is good and decent. You can’t feel secure in any of the rights won, as 170 million American women have discovered, or policies implemented. There is a national malaise, even depression, increased anxiety and fear, and people feel literally off-balance as the country, if not the world, seems to have gone off-kilter. A little Alice in Wonderland. A lot Orwell.

People were happier when our culture since the 1960s had been making progress , moving toward a Golden Age of inclusivity and acceptance, of collaboration and community. We used to speak of “political correctness.” We used to have companies and colleges with active diversity programs. We used to have a government which compromised to find consensus and, yes, forged progress.

We had achieved a decent level of openness to ideas and communication, of opening perspectives and vistas, of appreciation for other cultures, of compro-

What we are witnessing is a cultural sea change, as if the rushing tide of progress is being reversed just as we were so close to achieving what we claim are our ideals.

While Republican candidate and dictator wannabe Trump promises retribution, carnage, and to end democracy and the Rule of Law, President Biden loves to recount how he responded to the Chinese premier who asked him to define the United States in one word: “Possibilities.”

And how Biden loves to end his speeches saying, “I’ve never been more optimistic about our future. We just have to remember who we are — with patience and fortitude, with one heart. We are the United States of America, for God’s sake. There is nothing beyond our capacity if we act together and decently with one another. We’re the only nation in the world that’s come out of every crisis stronger than we went into that crisis. That was true yesterday and it’s true today, and I guarantee you will be true tomorrow.”

Biden’s task is to get the nation back on that track.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 14
PHOTO BY JENNIFER WILSON PINES Oceanside Marine Nature Study area

These are our students now out there protesting

Campus protests dominate the news, with many commentators offering views on the protests. Now it is my turn.

The protesters are our students. Soon after the war began in response to the horrific Hamas attack on Israel, they exercised their rights to free speech and assembly to mount peaceful protests to advocate for a ceasefire, a return of hostages and negotiations for a sustainable peace.

And they wanted the United States to broker it, just as it brokered the Good Friday accords between Northern Ireland’s political parties and the British and Irish governments.

In reaction to peaceful protests and civil disobedience, campus leaders called in militarized riot squads. Our students have seen besieged people on both sides betrayed and slaughtered.

They, and I, wonder why it is that when we show sympathy toward the people of Gaza, we are deemed antisemitic? Why can’t we hold two thoughts in mind at the same time: support for the people of Israel even as we criticize their government? After all, we can criticize our government without being unpatriotic.

We want our students to be informed, to question assertions and challenge assumptions., To know that words matter, actions have consequences. They also must know that

their assertions and assumptions will be tested and their actions judged. This is the mark of an inquisitive mind. Our responses should not be to berate, bully and beat them. Instead, we should work to de-escalate the situation. We should use the tools of community activists to promote dialogue and negotiation.

We want our students to be compassionate, to think globally and to think for themselves, even in groups. We want them to promote democratic ideals, informed citizenship, and to believe in peaceful resolutions to disputes, whether personal or political. We adults should model these behaviors.

We should engage our students and educate them. The institutions where protests are moderate seem to be the places where students are taken seriously and where the faculty and administration work together to take advantage of a “teachable moment.” This moment begs for history lessons on the 2,000 years of Jewish peoples being exiled from their homes and the 1948 displacement of Palestinians by Western governments. These are histories that affect beliefs and influence actions today.

We teach about human rights and preach justice for all. Doesn’t this include Palestinians as well as Israelis? Those who define antisemitism as any criticism of Israeli policy create a

“straw man.” After all, sympathy for Palestinians is not the same as support for Hamas.

Police actions at Columbia University, UCLA and elsewhere have incited sympathetic protests around the country. The media’s focus on 30or so elite campuses has distorted the public’s knowledge of what is happening at the 4,000 other institutions of higher education.

These reports in turn inspire nonstudent actors to join the fray, a not unusual outcome. It also is probable that the right-wing, circus-like Congressional hearings have exacerbated tensions on campus and fostered misinformation. I wonder why these same zealots called the Jan. 6 insur-

rection a peaceful march instead of what it was.

The student demands vary, but the primary goal is to stop the killing. Many also want divestment from companies that provide weapons for enforcing the occupation of Palestine, disclosure of university investments and affiliations that support the war in Gaza, a boycott of relations with Israeli universities while the universities in Gaza are being destroyed, and the demilitarizing of university research.

These demands should be engaged. We need to acknowledge legitimate questions. Each “demand” is an assertion grounded in assumptions. Some assumptions can be rebutted with evidence, but providing evidence requires engagement. This is the start of the teachable moment. Engage the assertion and examine the evidence. We have seen some universities do so and end protests.

In our book, “Letters to Students: The Meaning of a College Education,” Dr. Drew Bogner and I discuss the importance of critical thinking and a knowledge of history. We say that the basics of a college education are learning to question, i.e. examining what came before whether in politics or engineering; imagination, i.e., learning from the arts, literature, and music how to consider life in new ways; compassion, i.e., putting one-


self in another’s shoes and acting on their behalf; and reflection, i.e., wondering what we can learn from experiences of all types.

Unfortunately, there are politicians who want to control what is taught and how. Their brethren are banning books and attempting to substitute political criteria for professional judgment. What lessons do these actions convey to students?

Of course, the protesters need to know the difference between peaceful protest, civil disobedience, and unlawful behavior. Isn’t it our responsibility to teach them? Shouldn’t we have common sense rules about protests that specify time, place and behavior restrictions and are applied uniformly? Given the history of student protests, shouldn’t we have these rules in place to protect free speech, safety and the freedom to study?

These are our students. We owe it to them to listen. Shouldn’t we say that we recognize the humanitarian crisis and want peace, with hostages released and the restoration of healthcare, food supplies, shelter, and schools? Maybe all of us will learn from the dialogue.

Dr. Robert A. Scott, President Emeritus, Adelphi University; Co-Author, with Dr. Drew Bogner, “Letters to Students: The Meaning of a College Degree,” Rowman & Ltttlefield, forthcoming, 2024.

Include Nassau residents in rail discount program

For so many reasons, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board’s April 30 enactment of a discount program for New York City monthly rail tickets that excludes Nassau and Suffolk residents is extremely disappointing — especially amid the advent of congestion pricing and its fiscal impact upon Nassau County households.

As a lifelong resident of Plainview and the representative of the Nassau County Legislature’s 16th District for the last eight years, I am keenly aware of the extent that residents in my district rely upon Long Island Rail Road train service to commute to and from work in the five boroughs each and every day.

Moreover, as a policymaker, I am cognizant of the environmental benefits associated with increased mass transit use and the positive fiscal impact that greater ridership would generate for the MTA and our county.

Considering those clear benefits for our county and our greater region, Nassau and Suffolk’s exclusion from this incentive program makes little sense.

Furthermore, it strikes me as a missed opportunity to extend a gesture of goodwill to Long Islanders in an atmosphere rife with palpable frustration regarding the implementation of congestion pricing.

Imagine the frustration of a commuter residing minutes from the Queens

border in Elmont upon their discovery that they will be paying more to ride the train to Manhattan than someone up the block in New York City simply because of an arbitrary line on a map dividing municipalities!

State lawmakers now have a responsibility to address this glaring omission.

As stated in an April 30 news release announcing the five-boroughs incentive initiative, “the programs are funded by the Outer Borough Transportation Account, created in 2018 by the New York State Legislature to provide $50 million per year to improve transportation in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island in association with congestion pricing.”

The MTA must now work with state officials to identify resources that can be swiftly applied toward funding a comparable discount initiative for the benefit of Nassau and Suffolk County commuters.

A strong and comprehensive commitment to mass transit will yield tremendous benefits for our future, but out entire region must be included to maximize those opportunities. It now behooves New York State to act and correct the glaring and illogical inequities that currently exist.

Arnold W. Drucker, of Plainview, is the Nassau County Legislature’s Deputy Minority Leader. He has represented the Legislature’s 16th District since December 2016.


I support Nanette Melkonian for ed board trustee

Ihave known Nanette since our now 23-year-olds were in preschool.

We connected over our shared passion for public education, both believing that every child deserves an appropriate education that meets their individual needs while challenging them to be the very best students they can be.

top of the issues facing our schools in these rapidly changing times.

Nan is extremely knowledgeable about education and New York State regulations and takes the time to continue learning so she can stay on

She understands that these are not ordinary times, and for the sake of our kid’s futures, we must be extraordinary in how and what curriculum we deliver.

Acceptance, inclusion, tolerance are not just words to Nan, it is how she lives. Nan really listens and makes sure community members feel heard, always advocating for what is best for our kids.

Nan is a true leader with a heart

of gold. I am proud to support her and to call her my friend. Please join me in voting for Nanette Melkonian for board of education trustee on May 21.

Suzanne Hershkowitz Port Washington

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 15 MY TURN
ARNOLD W. DRUCKER Nassau County Legislator

The truth must be told about democracy in America

Iread today, in one of your publications, with a good deal of disgust, the lie that Donald Trump is a threat to our democracy.

Was he that threat in his first term? No! The biggest threats to our democracy are the stolen elections of 2020 and 2022! This is the truth, and [Prsident Joe] Biden be-

lieves that he can do it again. That man lies to us constantly. Yesterday, he told an audience that the inflation rate was 9% percent when he took office.

It was actually 1.4%. How can you support such an evil liar?

Why I am running for school trustee in Great Neck

My name is Steven Chen. I am a proud father of two boys who are attending the Great Neck Public Schools. I was appointed as a Trustee of the Great Neck Board of Education in September of 2023. I am running for the same position to serve for the next three years.

I immigrated to the United States from China when I was 10 years old. Growing up, I attended public primary and secondary schools around the TriState area. As a product of public education, I believe in the value and virtues it provides. Many families move to Great Neck precisely because of the topnotch school system we currently enjoy. This system wasn’t built overnight, it is the culmination of many decades of hard work and dedication by previous school board members, school administrators, teachers and staff and most importantly, the residents of Great Neck. For most of us, the home we live in is the singular most valuable asset we possess, and be-

cause of the school system we have, this investment grows in value year after year. The Great Neck Public Schools system is the crown jewel of the peninsula. We must cherish it, maintain it and let it flourish even more.

Since my family and I moved to Great Neck 12 years ago, I have been very involved in the community. I have served as the Committee Chair, the Cub Master and other leadership roles in our local Cub Scouts Pack 178. Currently, I am also serving as the Co-President of the Great Neck Chinese Association. Community service provides me with the satisfaction of knowing that I have done something good, and it is something that I have been doing since I was a “Candy Striper” at a hospital when I was 16 years old. I believe community service is a building block for a diverse and yet close-knit community. It is the avenue where we can teach our children to be less self-centered, to have empathy, to treat others with

kindness and to help those in need. With the common goal of doing good, we can all come together to build a better Great Neck.

Like all of you who have experienced the era of COVID and witnessed the continuing political divide on so many issues, I too wish our community could be more united and have less divisions among neighbors. I believe the way we can achieve that is by listening to each other and being respectful of one’s opinions whether we agree or not. Being open-minded and a good listener are prerequisites for one to be a good communicator and a community builder. With that approach, I hope to gain your trust and partnership in serving our school district.

As a trustee, I constantly remind myself of the importance of fiduciary duties not only to our children’s education but also to our taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars. With a public accounting background, I am equipped with the proper knowledge to understand

our district’s financial standing. The Great Neck Public Schools district is in a very fortunate position where we enjoy our AAA credit ratings from rating agencies. Just like many other institutions, financial prudence is a fundamental pillar of sustainability. We must maximize the utilization of our assets and provide the best education for our children. With our current administration team, I am confident that we have the right leadership in place to further enhance our long-term financial stability.

It is my hope that all registered voters residing in the Great Neck Public Schools district will come out to vote for me and my colleague Grant Toch on Tuesday, May 21st from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Please check the school website https://www.greatneck.k12.ny.us/ Page/4901 for your voting location.

How can the MTA spend $15 billion in 6 months?

Even with congestion pricing starting by June 30, there is no way the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority will be able to advertise, award and issue a Notice to Proceed to contractors representing $15 billion worth of projects within the following six months.

There are also billions in other ongoing capital projects plus billions more not yet underway whose work will be carried over into the next $51 billion or more 2025-2029 Five Year Capital Plan. There may not be enough resources to integrate the implementation of $15 billion or more carryover congestion-pricing-funded projects from

the $51 billion 2020-2024 Five Year Capital Plan, billions more in ongoing non-congestion-pricingfunded projects with those in the first and second year of the upcoming $51 billion plus 2025-2029 Five Year Capital Plan.

The MTA lacks sufficient procurement, project managers, engineers, legal, and force account employees, along with track outage availability to proceed with all these projects in the same time frame. Billions of capital improvement projects will be delayed. Costs will increase due to inflation and other factors as time goes by.

The upcoming $51 billion plus 2025-2029 Five Year Capital Plan is due to be released in October

Biden is a historic mistake

Dear President Biden, you, sir, are a disgrace and an embarrassment to a once great country.

You will forever be remembered for your betrayal of an ally you will soon regret losing.

Dear my brothers and sisters in the diaspora, if you vote for this man, your grandchildren will one day have to live with the shame of having a grandparent who betrayed his/ her people.

Biden has today taken off the gloves and blatantly rewarded the barbaric Jew-hating terrorists who murdered, raped, and mutilated innocent Jews.


Today, I am embarrassed to be an American, words I truly never thought I’d write.

As sad as this is for Israel and the Jewish people, it’s infinitely worse for America. Want to know why?

Open a history book. When an empire comes after the Jews, it is the beginning of the end for that empire.

So, Mr. Biden, prepare to meet your Babylonian and Assyrian friends.

Today, you made a historic mistake

Bill Spitalnick Roslyn

and adopted on or before Jan. 1, 2025. This should include a master integrated resource loaded schedule for how the billions in carryover capital projects will proceed with billions more in the new five-year capital program. MTA Board members, elected officials, city, state and federal funding agencies such as the Federal Transit Administration, commuters, taxpayers, transit advocacy groups and transit reporters need to see this critical information.

It is the only way we can determine if the MTA is up to meeting the challenge..New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli just released his “Annual Update:Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Debt Profile Report” covering May 2024 to

May 2025. His report confirms what I’ve been saying all along about the MTA’s problems with both advancing previous and current ongoing Five Year Capital Programs, increases in long-term debt and growing annual debt service payments.

Larry Penner Great Neck

Larry Penner is a transportation advocate, historian and writer who previously served as a former director for the Federal Transit Administration Region 2 New York Office of Operations and Program Management.

Ask you to support me as trustee

Fellow residents of Great Neck, my name is Grant Toch and I am declaring my intention to run for re-election as Trustee of the Board of Education for the Great Neck Public School District. I have had the privilege to serve our community on the Great Neck Board of Education for the last three years, two of which I served as Trustee and, this current year, as Vice President.

We have had many accomplishments during my three years on the Board of Education. We successfully selected our new Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent for Business Affairs. We also successfully negotiated contracts with the Great Neck Teachers Association and almost all other bargaining units. Even more, we passed two fiscally responsible budgets within the property tax cap limitation while continuing to invest in the academic and athletic programming our families demand and the social and emotional support our students need.

With these hires and contract negotia-

tions complete, my focus will be on making sure we continue to invest in the programs all of our students require to develop the talents and emotional well-being needed to succeed in our increasingly competitive world. I will also work to make sure the experiences our students have are similar throughout our schools.

I will also continue to focus on increasing the transparency we provide to our community. This includes simplifying our website to make information more accessible, providing community members access to more information, continuing to meet with community members to listen to their experiences and enhancing our communication efforts overall.

I say all this from the backdrop of a parent who has been involved in our community for many years prior to and during my Board of Education experience. Prior to my election to the Board of Education, I served 12 years on the United Parent Teacher Council, where I was a member and Chairperson of the Budget Committee, a member of the Legislative Com-

mittee, and served on its executive board for 6 years. For 2 years I also served on the Board of Education Financial Advisory Committee. Elsewhere in the community, I have been a parent leader for youth sports teams and serve currently as a member of the board and finance committee for Temple Beth-El. I ask that you support my candidacy so that I may continue the work required to enhance and maximize the opportunities provided to all of our students, ensure that the resources required by our teachers are adequately met and provide the oversight necessary so that the school district can thoughtfully and transparently address its financial responsibilities and plans for its future. As a parent with children in our schools and active in our community, I am committed to the success of the Great Neck Public School District.

Respectfully submitted, Grant Toch

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 16 READERS WRITE
Milton Brody Roslyn Heights Steven Chen Great Neck
Letters Continued on Page 18


Foreclosure can be a daunting, stressful

Not being able to pay your mortgage is an experience that 95,349 families and individuals throughout the U.S. have been dealing with in the foreclosure filings during the first quarter of 2024 according to ATTOM.COM, a leading curator of land, property, and real estate data.

This is a 3% increase from the previous quarter, but down less than 1% from a year ago. However, March 2024 showed 32,878 U.S. foreclosure filings up 3% from the previous month but down less than 1% from the previous month and 10% less from a year ago.

Those major metro areas with populations of 200,000 or more that had the largest numbers of foreclosure starts in the first quarter including NYC, NY (with 4,404 starts), Houston, Texas, (with 2,977 starts), Chicago, Illinois(2,867 starts), Los Angeles, Ca.(2398 foreclosure starts), and Miami, Fl.(2319 foreclosure starts). The highest foreclosure rates were in Delaware, New Jersey, and South Carolina.

Some may not be aware of other ways to keep foreclosure from happening or at least to stave off the process, providing enough time to recoup and recover and to do what is necessary to increase their incomes with a 2nd or 3rd job or side hustle and stabilize their situation.

I do understand that it is by far a very stressful and worrisome event and it’s not easy to deal with when having to confront what to do and in which direction to

head. Losing one’s home is life-changing, but taking a positive attitude and doing what is necessary will hopefully allow you to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The first thing one should do is sit down, try to relax, clear your head, and create a plan (as I always say if you “fail to plan, you will plan to fail”).

I am sure you would prefer to stay in your home and not have to move, as this has been your familiar space, whether short or long term and feel most comfortable to continue living in your own home.

As I mentioned, finding and securing new and additional income should be one of the first steps in being able to continue paying your mortgage. However, simultaneously, communicating with your lender should be tantamount in finding solutions to be able to stay put.

You will need to ask a loan representative if a modification of your loan can be considered with a lower interest rate and/or payments. If this is possible, the bank will most likely add the unpaid interest and whatever principle is owed to the back end of your mortgage. Most important try to make sure you ask for the name and I.D., extension, or direct number of the person that you initially converse with.

This should be the go-to individual that you want to always speak with. Developing a bit of rapport will be most

helpful in your situation, as they are human too and may have dealt with the same situation on a personal level as you, as well as with others who are experiencing the same circumstances.

I have assisted several people, by interceding in the negotiations with the homeowner providing me authorization to speak on their behalf.

The timing and approach will be crucial in allowing you more time to strategize and work out your plan. However, you should have an idea going forward in advance of getting behind in your payments.

Keep in mind when you are 3-4 pay-

ments behind, you will now be in lis pens, heading towards foreclosure. Your credit will be impacted once you are in this position. You must have constant communication with your bank and especially since that one representative with whom you have begun to build rapport and somewhat of a relationship.

From my experience in dealing with foreclosures, sometimes it is a long road to remedying and rectifying your mortgage issues. Luckily in NYS, I have seen some homeowners stay in pre-foreclosure for up to 7 years; sometimes saving so much money, that they are almost able to pay cash for another residence, depending on where they live.

This isn’t a normal occurrence but can sometimes happen. Having a qualified attorney to assist you will provide the extra cushion of time to hopefully get your finances in order and stave off foreclosure.

Following this path and contemplating what to do but not see any way out, then selling would be the most logical path to pursue; while you are still in control of your home and hopefully have a good amount of equity that you will be able to take with you.

Don’t procrastinate for you should have a timeline to know when will be the most advantageous time to sell by getting a Realtor to assist you. In some ways, time is somewhat on your side, but don’t wait too long.

Your bank would rather not foreclose on you, as it is a costly undertaking, as much as $50,000 plus and if you are being represented by an attorney, it could cost you $300-$500 per hour; unless a flat fee is discussed and negotiated.

It is in your best interest as well as the bank’s to somehow and someway to discuss, negotiate, and formulate a way to keep you in your home. If possible, working out a lower rate and/or monthly payments could be the solution.

You need to take the right attitude in conveying your commitment to agree to a solution and begin making your payments.

Lastly, during the process, stay in touch with your lender and make sure you return all calls. This will bode well in doing what is required and necessary, as it will show your lender that you are taking full responsibility in needing and wanting to stay in your home. I wish all who are having financial issues good luck.

If you need any advice or a consultation, feel free to reach out to me at anytime.

Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave Suite 180 in Great Neck. For a free 15-minute consultation, value analysis of your home, or to answer any of your questions or concerns he can be reached by cell: (516) 647-4289 or by email:Phil@TurnKeyRealEstate.Comor via https://WWW.Li-RealEstate.Com


Most likely, you are already using MFA. If you’ve received an email that sends you a code to enter, or a text message that dings to alert you to take action, that is MFA. The common thread is they require additional proof of identity, beyond the log-in, when accessing sensitive information.

With cybercrime now exploding, small and midsize businesses (SMBs) must be proactive to protect their critical data. This includes access to their networks, accounting systems and operational systems, hosted both locally and in the cloud. Every SMB has its own considerations. Some need email encryption, most need secure VPNs to support remote workers.

Sandwire advises and implements robust cybersecurity services to shield SMBs from harm. MFA is but one arrow in our quiver.

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Car Accidents


t is with great pleasure I wholeheartedly endorse Dr. Shaheda Quraishi for the upcoming School Board election. I have had the privilege of working with Dr. Quraishi for over 12 years and can firmly attest to her exceptional leadership,communication and analytical skills.

She is a caring professional and extremely skilled pain management physician for Northwell Health since 2007 and assistant professor at Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra University.

Dr. Quraishi is the clinical director for the Department of Pain Management and responsible for high-quality patient care, performance improvement initiates,developing policies, staff education and management. Her strong leadership helps streamline our business strategies and supports our organization’s success.

Accidents • Trip/Slip and Falls • Train/Subway Accidents • Medical Negligence Claims • Workplace Injuries Appellate Practice: • Civil Appeals - Motion and Post-Trial

John Lavelle, Williston Park Resident, Parishioner, St. Aidan’s Graduate (‘93) and Proud SAS Parent 630 Willis Avenue Williston Park, NY 11596 516-325-1175


Dr. Quraishi is extremely passionate about the Herricks students because she was one. She has been a Herricks resident for most of her life and graduated in1995 from Herricks High School top of her class (valedictorian). She is the mother of three amazing children who all attend Herricks schools and she is deeply committed to the children, parents, and schools in Herricks.

She is highly motivated and has proven herself to be a strong community supporter with her involvement in the Health and Safety Committee during the pandemic, lead coach for the Girls on the Run in 2019/2020 and head couch for Let Me Run in 2022.

Dr. Quraishi has served on the Herricks PTA for many yearsand is currently on the executive board of Denton and Herricks Middle School.

As a Herricks resident for over 25 years, I am extremely confident Dr. Shaheda Quraishi would provide us with strong leadership and the best possible education for our students. She is strongly committed to continue the tradition of excellence in Herricks.

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It’s 3:00 p.m. Do you know where your teenagers are?

Since when is stealing from neighborhood stores an acceptable after-school activity? Parents, these are the same suburban stores you shop in. These are the stores your neighbors shop in. Do you have sufficient insight into the activities your kids are engaged in after swiping your American Express card for their daily burger and fries lunch accompanied by a black-and-white shake?

Since when is “stealing for kicks” an acceptable after-school activity? We’re not talking about low budget items like candy or cookies but stealing off store shelves just for the sake of stealing. Well-to-do kids from local families seem to know they can get away with it. They show no fear and they show no remorse. Their strategy? They show up en masse surrounding the store aisles. They sit cross-legged on the floor in the back of the aisles and refuse to budge. They trash talk mentally disabled store employees. Some teens anyway. Certainly, not yours.

Clean-cut kids, with chiseled grins and boyish smiles are stealing. The pretty girls, too. Parents, please open your eyes and open a dialogue with your teens. Otherwise, the next wake-up call you receive may be from a police officer after they’ve handcuffed your son or daughter. Yes, the girls are guilty of this behavior, too, according to local merchants.

And if you still aren’t inclined to act, consider how you will explain a police record or community service on an elite college application. Some things in life can’t be fixed even with excellent SAT scores.

Judy Shore Rosenthal Great Neck

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U.S. Navy Blue Angels to return on 20th anniversary

Bethpage Federal Credit Union and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation have announced the final performer line-up for the much-anticipated 20th Anniversary Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach, taking place on Saturday, May 25, and Sunday, May 26, 2024, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m..

The United States Navy Blue Angels, which headlined the very first Bethpage Air Show back in 2004, will return to Long Island to headline the 20th Anniversary show. This will be the Blue Angels’ 10th headliner performance for what has grown into one of the most respected air shows in the country.

“The Bethpage Air Show symbolizes the credit union’s roots and is a testament to Long Island’s history in aviation. It is a true collaboration and we are honored to continue to support and help produce this extraordinary show,” said Linda Armyn, president and CEO, Bethpage Federal Credit Union.

In 2004, New York State Parks invited Bethpage to be the title sponsor of the show, recognizing the credit union was founded by employees of Grumman Aerospace.

The Blue Angels also have strong ties to Long Island, flying Grumman Hellcats, built on Long Island for the team’s 1946 inaugural flight. The team then went on to fly other Grumman aircraft including the Bearcat, Cougar and Tiger, one of which, now proudly hangs at the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City.

Military performers joining the Blue Angels include the United States Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, the A-10C Thunderbolt II Demo Team, and the U.S. Navy F-35C Demo Team.

Civilian performers Mike Goulian, North America’s most decorated aerobatic pilot; the world-famous Skytypers; Warbird Thunder Airshows; Farmingdale State College Flying Rams; Long Island’s own David Windmiller and the American Airpower Museum Warbirds.

“2024 is a very special year for us. Not only are we celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Bethpage Air Show, but we are also celebrating the 95th anniversary of Jones Beach State Park and the 100th anniversary of New York State Parks and the Long Island State Park Commission,” said George Gorman, regional director, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historical Preservation. “Spectators are in for a real treat!”

To help celebrate the 20th-anniversary show, organizers are giving away 30,000 commemorative U.S. Navy Blue Angels signed posters to fans attending the practice show on Friday, May 24, and the weekend show on Saturday, May 25, and Sunday, May 26th.

The show will also feature other celebratory elements throughout the holiday weekend including a special, 15 ft x 20ft, anniversary cake weigh-

ing in at 1000 pounds, which fans will be able to enjoy on Friday, following an 11:00 am Jones Beach Press Conference.

“The show brings park visitors together to pay tribute to our nation’s great military and the pilots who serve and protect Americans, as well as our honored veterans. I would like to thank our sponsors, our volunteers, as well as federal, state, and local agencies for helping the show become a treasured Long Island tradition,” continued Gorman.

Returning again for the 2024 show is the Bethpage Air Show Mobile App. Text ‘Airshow’ to 516-842-4400 to download the app for performer and sponsor information, a site map, helpful FAQs to help prepare you for the show, and more to come. Available now on the App Store and Google Play.

The Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach is one of the largest, most respected and most popular air shows in the country. Over 240,000 fans attended the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach in

2022 when the Blue Angels last performed during a stormy weekend show. Last year, over 419,000 fans attended.

The Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach is sponsored by Bethpage Federal Credit Union; New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; Newsday, WABC-TV Channel 7; Natural Heritage Trust; Connoisseur Media Long Island; Catholic Health, Jones Beach Brewery; Rallye Motor Company; PSEG Long Island; News 12 Long Island; The Foundation for Long Island State Parks; Pinelawn Memorial Park and Arboretum; Stop & Shop; and New York Islanders. The show can be heard in its entirety on WHLI 1100 AM and 104.7 FM.

The Bethpage Air Show is free to the public, but the standard $10.00 vehicle use fee will be collected each day upon entry to the State Park.

For 2024 NYS Empire Pass Card holders, there is no vehicle use fee charge.

Available for $80, the 2024 Season Empire

Pass is a wallet-sized scannable card that can be shared within a household and not assigned to a specific vehicle. The Empire Pass Card provides unlimited vehicle access to most facilities operated by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. 2024 Season Empire Pass Cards are available for purchase at any Long Island State Park beginning April 1, 2024, and can be utilized immediately and are effective until December 31, 2024 to enjoy the forests, the seashores and the lakefronts of New York State’s parks through all of New York’s beautiful seasons. For up-to-date information about this year’s show, please visit www.bethpageairshow.com or https://www.facebook.com/BethpageAirShow/, or contact the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, Regional Office, Recreation Department at 631/321-3510.

U.S. Navy Blue Angels

The wreck of The Prince Maurice 1657

On the night of March 8, 1657, as a Nor’easter raged, a Dutch ship, The Prince Maurice , slammed into the coast of Fire Island.

Aboard were 129 souls – passengers, crew and Dutch West India Company soldiers. Ashore were Indigenous people on their coastal night watch, listening to the ship crash against the shoal.

May 30 - June 2, 2024

Thursday 5 PM - 10 PM

Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation, noted: “We are delighted to support projects that push the boundaries of history, culture, and the digital world.

The New Amsterdam History Center’s integration of 3D models, original documents, Encyclopedia, and maps is an entirely new way to experience the past.”

Until now, the story of this dramatic Long Island shipwreck and rescue has been known only to a handful of historians. But the rescue on an ice-laden beach has been part of Indigenous history for 400 years.

Friday 5 PM - 11 PM

Sunday 12 PM - 8 PM Sponsored By

Saturday 12 PM - 11 PM

Herricks Community Center 999 Herricks Road New Hyde Park, NY


Now, thanks to a grant from the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation, the New Amsterdam History Center’s groundbreaking Mapping Early New York project has combined old-fashioned research and new technology, including AI, and a new window on history has opened wide for children, their parents, historians, map nerds, and computer gamers.

One of four presentations will be made at the Port Washington Public Library on Friday, May 17, 7:00 — 8:30 P.M.

Kathryn Curran, executive director of the


Sold Online or at the Community Center Main Office

$25 Vouchers for One-Day Bracelets

Save Up To $15 If Purchased In Advance If Purchased at Carnival on Thursday and $40 Friday - Sunday


Scan QR Code to Purchase Tickets Online All Advance Voucher Sales Begin Monday, 5/13 and End Thursday, 5/30 - 5 pm

“This project follows in the footsteps of our recent 3D Model created for the NewYork Historical Society’s installation New York Before New York: The Castello Plan , on view March 15 – July 14, 2024″, said Esme E. Berg, executive director. “We are delighted to bring it to Long Island on May 16, 17 and 18, when members of NAHC’s research team will be in Southampton, Port Washington and Shelter Island to offer lively, richly illustrated presentations including interactive maps and 3-D models.”

Presenters: Toya Dubin, Mapping Early NY Project Director & Drew Shuptar-Rayvis, Algonkian Historical Consultant

Admission is free of charge; space is limited. Reservations are required.

MAY 30 - JUNE 2, 2024

Thursday 5 PM - 10 PM

Friday 5 PM - 11 PM

Saturday 12 PM - 11 PM


Sold Online or at the Community Center Main Office $25 Vouchers for One-Day Bracelets

Vouchers Available for Purchase In-Person at the Herrick's Community Center Main Office on the Following Dates and Times: Monday 5/13 – Friday 5/17 9 AM – 2 PM Monday 5/20 – Friday 5/24 9 AM – 2 PM Tuesday 5/28 9 AM – 2 PM, Wednesday 5/29 from 9-2 and Thursday 5/30 from 9-5

SAVE UP TO $15 IF PURCHASED IN ADVANCE $35 If Purchased at Carnival on Thursday and $40 Friday - Sunday

Sunday 12 PM - 8 PM

Herricks Community Center 999 Herricks Road New Hyde Park, NY

QR CODE TO PURCHASE TICKETS ONLINE All Advance Voucher Sales Begin Monday, 5/13 and End Thursday, 5/30 - 5 pm

* 50% OF ADVANCE SALES BENEFITS THE HCF * For more information call 516 742-1926

ATM available during Carnival Houurs

Vouchers Available for Purchase In-Person at the Herrick’s Community Center Main Office on the Following Dates and Times: Monday 5/13 – Friday 5/17 9 AM – 2 PM Monday 5/20 – Friday 5/24 9 AM – 2 PM Tuesday 5/28 9 AM – 2 PM, Wednesday 5/29 from 9-2 and Thursday 5/30 from 9-5

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 20
the Herricks Community Fund
GAMES KIDDIE RiDES Presentedby DreamlandAmusements
more information
50% OF
call 516 742-1926
By the
Community F u n d
21 Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 JUNE 8, 2024 DELGADO TO

Four Seasons returns to Sands Pt. Preserve

The Four Seasons in Music returns to Sands Point Preserve on May 19 at 5 p.m. with “A Tour de France.”

The Preserve’s historic mansions and waterfront grounds are the backdrop for this unique chamber music series, created by series artistic director Kathryn Lockwood.

Each concert features music and poetry inspired by the time of year and themes of romance and resilience. Internationally renowned musicians present captivating performances with repertoire.

The May 19 concert celebrates both the French Fete des Voisins – an evening get-together with neighbors and friends for a moment of conviviality – and Fete des Meres, extending Mother’s Day festivities. Come feast your ears with French composers, old and new, when duo Jalal (Kathryn Lockwood, Viola and Yousif Sheronick, Percussion) is joined by violinists Deborah Buck and Min-Young Kim, cellist Caroline Stinson, and soprano Abigail Brodnick.

The spring program includes music by Gabriel Fauré, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson, Claude Debussy, Edith Piaf and many more.

The concerts are followed by themed receptions – a time to mingle with the artists, friends, and concertgoers.

Tickets are $45 for members and $56 for non-members and include all fees.

Temple Beth Sholom Brings Broadway to Roslyn JUNE 3, 2024 AT 7:30 PM


Soul to Soul follows the experiences of the African-American and Jewish communities, and their paths to America’s promise of freedom — overcoming segregation, prejudice and economic hardship. The concert portrays stirring songs in Yiddish and in English (English supertitles will be provided), culminating in a high-energy collection of music, celebrating the historic partnership of these two communities during the Civil Rights Era. Featured performers include: Lisa Fishman (Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish), renowned Cantor Magda Fishman (Senior Cantor at B’nai Torah Congregation); Broadway veteran Elmore James (Disney’s Beauty and The Beast on Broadway and Big River); and, Tony Perry (Shpiel! Shpiel! Shpiel!). The musical ensemble includes Dmitri Zisl Slepovitch, Brian Glassman and Matt Temkin, with musical direction by Zalmen Mlotek. Special presentation by Cantor Ofer Barnoy.

Teach a child according to his way; even when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6).

Temple Beth Sholom is committed to quality education and to meet both the physical and cognitive needs of our students. Become a Sponsor, Buy a Ticket, Make a Donation Support Temple Beth Sholom’s Inclusion Program Register at www.tbsroslyn.org/event/soul-to-soul

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 22
401 Roslyn Road, Roslyn Heights, NY 11577 • 516-621-2288• www.tbsroslyn.org/event/soul-to-soul
Lisa Fishman Magda Fishman Elmore James Tony Perry PHOTO COURTESY OF SANDS POINT PRESERVE The Four Seasons in Music brings ‘A tour de France’ to Sands Point Preserve.
A Blank Slate Media Special Section • May 17, 2024

Making friends at every age is possible

“Count your age by friends, not years. Count your life by smiles, not tears.”

– John Lennon

While John Lennon’s life was tragically cut short at a young age, he had lived long enough to understand the importance of community and a positive outlook on our health and life.

Loneliness and social isolation have become serious health concerns. Nearly half of U.S. adults report that they sometimes or always feel alone. 35% of older adults report being socially isolated.

According to a new study, the physical effects of social isolation and loneliness are equal to smoking 15 cigarettes a day. Other health concerns include depression, cognitive decline, and compromised cardiovascular and immune functions.

The message is clear — no matter our age, we need the company of others for optimal physical and mental health.

Earlier in life, we formed relationships more easily, meeting people at work, in the neighborhood, and through our children. Over the years, friend and family networks start to fray. People move, change jobs, retire. Our children chart their own path. We lose people dear to us.

While change is inevitable, loneliness is not. Whatever your personality and activity level, there are many opportunities and tools that connect seniors to family, friends and new acquaintances.

Family & Children’s Association’s Senior Division assists Nassau County older adults with an overall wellness approach to help cope with

and mitigate social isolation. These activities and opportunities have applications across the entire senior community.

To help foster companionship, we first encourage healthy eating habits and appropriate physical activity.

Sharing a meal or exercising with a neighbor or friend is a great way to meet both of these goals. There are meal programs for people who find cooking or shopping physically difficult. Everything else feels a bit easier when you feel the best you can. It’s also important to treat technology as a friend, not a foe.

While technology can be intimidating, it can

Family Care Connections, LLC

also be a life changer, particularly if your mobility is limited. It allows you to connect virtually with families, friends, and other means of support and community.

Where to get technology training? FCA’s Smart Van visits libraries and community centers across Nassau County to familiarize patrons with the basics of technology and help them get started. Training includes instruction on internet safety and recognizing scammers.

Many local libraries also provide basic computer classes that open the doorway to audiobooks, movies, podcasts, and other digitally delivered materials that can be accessed from your home, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your library is also a wonderful resource for in-person and virtual meetings.

Learning to manage technology can also be a lifesaver. In one instance, FCA taught an 80-year-old client to use her cell phone, helping her to connect with a friend in Nevada. During one such call, the client sensed that her friend was ill. Feeling empowered and tech-savvy, she called 911 and convinced the dispatcher to give her a 911 number specific to Nevada. Her friend quickly received lifesaving emergency medical treatment. While a cross-country emergency call is not the norm, being able to use a cell phone with confidence can help in a crisis closer to home.


Through a grant from the NYS and Nassau County Office for the Aging, FCA has also been able to provide certain clients with a voice-operated, artificial intelligence care companion, ElliQ.

ElliQ provides easy to use companionship, health and wellness support, and entertainment

options that help seniors remain independent and safer in their homes. It learns the user’s routine and provides medication and other reminders. ElliQ is widely available to the general public as a subscription service.

Dorot’s University Without Walls is an online program that provides a wide variety of virtual classes, including exercise, art, music, instruction, and support. A mobile device or computer can connect the user to classes via an internet link and alerts users when a class is about to begin.

FCA’s Friendly Visiting Program and AmeriCorps Senior Community Assistance Program connect volunteers with homebound seniors who could benefit from a visit. The goal of the program is to reduce social isolation and loneliness and to engage senior volunteers in their community.

Volunteers provide companionship, respite, technology education and chore services in the home or an outside meeting place. While this is largely a volunteer program, certain eligible volunteers may earn a stipend through the AmeriCorps Senior Demonstration Program that funds the initiative.

Volunteering is an excellent way to meet people, provide structure and purpose and connect people with individuals and communities. Whether you want to help people in need or work on behalf of a cause, there’s a volunteering job for you.

What you choose to do is up to you. Overall, it’s about staying connected.

Lisa R. Stern is the assistant vice president of Senior and Adult Services at the Family & Children’s Association in Garden City.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 24
Nassau (516) 248-9323 Queens (718) 470-6300 Dr. Ann Marie D’AngeIo, DNP, PMHCNS Dr. Frank G. D’Angelo, JD, Ph.D, M.Div 901 Stewart Ave., Ste. 230 • Garden City, NY 11530 www.FamilyCareConnections.com • Nurse Geriatric Care Manager • Assistance with Aging at Home • Assisted Living & Nursing Home Placement • Elder Care Consulting and Counseling • Medicaid Application & Consulting Services • Real Estate and Housing Options for Aging
President/Faculty: The New York Society of Clinical Hypnosis [NYSCH.ORG] Diplomate/Faculty: American Academy of Pain Management: DAAPM Certified Cognitive Behavioral therapist: CCBT Certified: Telehealth Certification Institute New York State Licensed professional for 30 years plus PhD: Human Behavior LCSW: Licensed Clinical Social Worker DAAPM: Diplomate with the American Society of Pain Management CCBT: Certified Cognitive Behavioral Therapist *Will provide receipt for out-of-network insurance plans. Dr. Marlene L. Levy PhD, LCSW, DAAPM, CCBT Contact: 516.944.3885 PSYCHOTHERAPY CLINICAL HYPNOSIS *Anxiety *Stress Management *Pain Management *Individual, Couple, Family Issues, *Test taking issues

Eyebrows for men and women over 50

Eyebrows play a crucial role in facial expression and aesthetics, particularly for individuals over 50.

As we age, our facial features can become less pronounced, leading to a “fading effect”.

Maintaining well-defined eyebrows is essential as they frame the face and enhance its overall appearance. Moreover, eyebrows are integral to conveying emotions; their movement can significantly alter one’s expressive capacity.

Therefore, attention to eyebrows is not merely about vanity, creating a younger look but also about preserving the clarity of our emotional expressions.

One of the fantastic options for those over 50 looking to redefine their facial aesthetics is professional eyebrow shaping, to enhance the natural features and creating a subtle lifting of the face.

Micropigmentation offers a solution to redefine and accentuate the eyebrows. It’s an excellent way to restore definition to brows that have thinned with age, ensuring a natural youthful appearance.

Micropigmentation, also known as permanent cosmetics or dermal pigmentation or tattooing, is a procedure that involves implanting pigment into the dermal layer of the skin, can be used to enhance the eyes, lip, and eyebrows.

Mimicking hairs on the eyebrows, to improve the appearance its particularly beneficial for individuals over 50 who may have lost definition in their eye-

brows due to thinning and hair lost.

Micropigmentation, can create a natural subtle enhancement, fuller look providing long lasting results and reducing the need for daily eyebrow makeup application. This is perfect for those with busy lifestyles, or those with motor skills compromised (like arthritis, Muscular Dystrophy, hand tremors, osteoarthritis, etc.), or vision impairments (cataracts, macular degeneration, macular dystrophy, etc.) that make applying conventional make-up challenging.

Micropigmentation procedure typically takes about 1 to2 hours to complete. This is a meticulous process that requires precision to achieve a natural look, the time of the procedure depends on the complexity of the desired look, extent of the hair loss, and the practitioner experience.

The cost can vary widely depending on the practitioner’s expertise, geographical location, quality of the pigment, quality of the instruments used, etc. This is a great investment considering the longevity quality of results, es well as the savings in time and makeup products. Overtime and the daily convenience it provide, many find a worthwhile expense.

Micropigmentation of the eyebrows involves consultation, to design and discuss the proper shape, color and placement of the eyebrows.

Everyone is unique therefore is very important to consider facial features, skin tone, skin type and texture, hair color, personality, etc. To create the appropriate

shape is very important to sketch the eyebrows before micropigmentation.

Immediately after the Micropigmentation, the color will show a little darker, and the eyebrows slightly swollen, for few days.

The initial healing phase will take between 7 to 14 days. This time depends on the health of each individual, also if they follow proper aftercare instructions. During those days is normal to experience some light scabbing, that sloughs off by itself between 5-7 days.

Post-micropigmentation care is crucial for ensuring the best possible healing and final appearance. It’s important to avoid direct sunlight, as UV rays can alter the pigment’s color and impede the healing process.

Wearing protective hats or visors is a good alternative for outdoor activities. Similarly, high-pressure water can disrupt the delicate healing skin, so gentle showers are advisable.

Pools and whirlpools pose a risk of infection and can also cause the pigment to fade, so they should be avoided. Facials and the application of chemicals or soaps can irritate the treated area, potentially leading to suboptimal results.

Planning your micropigmentation appointment should take into account any upcoming events or travel plans, as the treated area typically requires about two weeks to heal adequately. After this period, the pigmentation will settle into a natural, softer appearance, enhancing your features for those special occasions.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 25 Sands Point Rehabilitation Center provides each of our residents and families with superior care in a warm and nurturing environment delivered by our professional staff who are dedicated to the principles of compassion, kindness, excellence, and service. _ In house doctors _ RNs,LPNs, CNAs _ Respiratory Therapy _ Dieticians _ Physical, Occupational, and Speech Therapy _ Wound Care _ Neuro-Rehabilitation _ Amputee Rehabilitation _ Stroke and TBIs First Accredited Vent Unit in New York State. Services provided 516-719-9423 // 1440 Port Washington Blvd // www.sandspointrehab.com

10 questions to help find your retirement lifestyle

One of the most important decisions we make at every stage of adult life is where we are going to live.

Whether it’s our first apartment, the home where we raise a family, or a relocation for work, where we live plays an outsized role in determining how we will live. Retirement presents us with that decision once more, and with it the chance to explore new avenues of opportunity, meet new people and enjoy a variety of what life has to offer.

Where you live in retirement will, in many ways, dictate your access to the activities that will enhance these years of your life.

Determining the right retirement living situation for you starts with asking the right questions and carefully considering your personal needs and desires. For many of us, it can be hard to imagine a new phase of life that isn’t dictated by getting up and going to work.

The optimal time to begin the planning process is while you’re still working. You’ll want to avoid the all-too-common mistake of failing to plan, whether it’s having no plan, waiting too long to make a plan, or thinking that you don’t need a plan.

You don’t want to be pressed to make a choice when you unexpectedly have a need. There are what can seem like a dizzying array of options out there. The more you learn about the options, the easier your decision will be.

While this hesitation may stem from our uncertainty about the future, one thing is certain. We all age, and our needs will change as we do. It’s better to be proactive than reactive. It’s not unlike starting a business.

This is the business of your life and you’re planning to meet your needs now and in the future.

Here are 10 questions that can get you started in the process.

1. What do I want my future to look like?

2. What do I want to continue to do?

3. What do I not want to do?

4. What can’t I do?

5. What will I not be able to do?

6. What kinds of activities interest me?

7. Where do I want to be— near family, in my familiar community? City, country, suburbs?

8. What kind of people do I want to be with?

9. What amenities would I like?

10. How much space do I need?

Look around the house and ask: what do I want, and what can I do without? It’s critical to be realistic with your answers.

Consider, for example, your current state of health. If you or your spouse have health issues now, it’s more than likely that you will have greater health concerns in ten years. You must be honest about the barriers to things you want to do now and how you will manage those challenges later in life.

A retirement home is an option for some, but be sure to look beyond the real estate to the services—health care, shopping, activities, and transportation that come with it or are nearby.

The services will be important as you age. A 55-plus community that suits your lifestyle in your 60s may not have the services to support you after age 75 or 80.

Popular options include lifecare retirement communities like Jefferson’s Ferry that enable residents to age in place, with independent living, rehabilitation, assisted living, skilled nursing and memory support facilities available on one site with the peace of mind that comes with a full spectrum of onsite senior health services at predictable rates; others include assisted living facilities that offer private rooms and apartments; independent living senior living communities; condominiums and shared space with family members, to name a few.

Socialization is at the top of the list for successful aging. Engaging with others—our friends, family, service people and caregivers help us thrive. Having more time to do the things you like and enjoy the company of old and new friends and family is a wonderful gift.

Elissa Gargone is vice president of Sales and Marketing at Jefferson’s Ferry Life Plan Community in S. Setauket, New York.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 26 NASSAU KNOLLS CEMETERY & MEMORIAL PARK LOVELY & QUAINT Grounds Open Daily Open To All Faiths Headstone Flat Marker & Cremation Grave Sites and New Mausoleum Payment Options Available For Pre-Need 500 Port Washington Blvd., Port Washington 944-8530 Est. 1900 PRESENTED BY BLANK SLATE MEDIA WINNER Best Nassau County OF 2023

Fri 5/17

The Lovin Spoonful @ Boulton Center

For The Performing Arts Bayshore NY @ 8pm / $50

The Lovin Spoonful with Seven Billboard Top 10 hits from the 1960s in‐cluding "Summer In The City", "Do You Beleive In Magic", "Day Dream" & "You Didn't Have To Be So Nice" Boulton Center For The Performing Arts, 37 West Main Street, Bay Shore. boxof�ce@boul toncenter.org, 631-9691101

Annie Get Your Gun presented by the Herricks Players @ 8pm / $22-$30

The Herricks Players proudly announce their upcoming pro‐duction of the beloved musical

"Annie Get Your Gun," running from May 10-19 at the Herricks Community Center, 999 Her‐ricks Rd, New Hyde Park. Her‐ricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park. herricksplayers@gmail.com, 516-742-1926

Wonderous Stories & Half Step @ 8pm / $38.30-$71.10

The Space at Westbury Theater, Westbury

JALC: Internationally Ellington with the Future of Jazz Orchestra @ 8pm / $42

The fruits of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s educa‐tional mission will be on display with Interna‐tionally Ellington. Tilles Center, LIU Post Col‐lege, 720 Northern Boulevard, Greenvale

Sat 5/18

Jewelry Making Workshop: Wire Earrings Workshop with Ross Barbera Saturday, May 18, 10am-1pm @ 10am / $81-$90

Jewelry Making Workshop: Wire Earrings Workshop with Ross Barbera Saturday, May 18, 10am-1pm Adults and Teens 16+ Location: The Manes Art Education Center $81 members | $90 non-members The Manes Education Center at Nassau County Museum of Art, One Museum Drive, Roslyn. events@nassaumuseum.org, 516-484-9337

Bethune/Height Recognition Program's 50th Anniversary Gala @ 12pm / $125

Celebrate 50 years of empow‐erment at the NYS Bethune/ Height Recognition Program's 50th Anniversary Gala. Join us for an inspiring afternoon

featuring keynote speaker Rev. Dr. Gwendolyn Elizabeth Boyd

Leonard's Palazzo, 555 North‐ern Boulevard, Great Neck. ncn wnysbhrp2022@gmail.com, 516-387-2227

Category3: Porch FestLong Beach @ 2pm

Rock N Roll Avenue, 128 W Penn St, Long Beach

Annie Get Your Gun presented by the Herricks Players @ 8pm / $22-$30

The Herricks Players proudly announce their upcoming pro‐duction of the beloved musical "Annie Get Your Gun," running from May 10-19 at the Herricks Community Center, 999 Her‐ricks Rd, New Hyde Park. Her‐ricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park. herricksplayers@gmail.com, 516-742-1926

Sun 5/19

LSLF Ride/Walk For Research

@ 8:30am / $25-$40

Enjoy a bike ride through Port Washing‐ton and raise money fort cancer research at the same time during the ninth annual Lauri Strauss Leukemia Foundation Ride for Research BikeTour/ BayWalk. Port Wash‐ington. LSFLF@ LSLF.com, 516-7671418

The Beat Lives On 5K Run/Walk @ 10:30am / $30 Venetian Shores Park, 801 Granada Parkway, Lindenhurst. events@elitefeats.com

DIYnosaur Terrarium Workshop @ 1pm https://cstl.org/diynosaur-ter‐rarium-workshop/ 1450 Tangle‐wood Rd, 1450 Tanglewood Road, Rockville Centre. helpdesk@cstl.org, 516-7640045

Live at Five Presents ScienceStock Music Festival @ 1pm / $15

Brought to you by Live at Five and the Science Museum of Long Is‐land! A perfect fusion of the vibrant energy of live music with the won‐ders of the natural world and scienti�c dis‐covery. Science Mu‐seum of Long Island, 1526 North Plandome Road, Manhasset. liveat �ve@smli.org, 516-6279400

“The Servants of the Gilded Age” by Esther Crain @ 3pm / Free Step into the world of the ser‐vants during New York's Gilded Age as author Esther Crain dis‐cusses her second book, "The Gilded Age in New York, 18701910." Trinity Episcopal Church, 1579 Northern Boulevard, Roslyn. info@roslynland marks.org, 516-625-4363

Annie Get Your Gun presented by the Herricks Players @ 3pm / $22-$30

The Herricks Players proudly announce their upcoming pro‐duction of the beloved musical "Annie Get Your Gun," running from May 10-19 at the Herricks Community Center, 999 Her‐ricks Rd, New Hyde Park. Her‐ricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park. herricksplayers@gmail.com, 516-742-1926

Thursday May 23rd

Levittown Carnival

@ 5pm

May 23rd - May 27th

2999 Hempstead Tpke, 2999 Hempstead Turnpike, Levittown. 866-666-3247

Enjoy midway fun for the whole family over Memorial Day weekend at this annual event sponsored by the Levittown Chamber of Com‐merce, featuring thrilling rides and games for all ages and favorite fair food. Admission and parking are free.

Mon 5/20

Beach Volleyball Training for Juniors at Long Beach: Sponsored by Orlin & Cohen Sports Medicine @ 6pm

May 20th - Jul 31st

This program’s goal is to teach basic volleyball skills in a noncompetitive environment. Play‐ers will be broken up by skill level. Ages are used as a start‐ing point to break players into groups, but 1 Laurelton Blvd, 1 Laurelton Boulevard, Long Beach. eevb@optonline.net, 631-355-1293

Gold Coast Cinema Se‐ries: Who Is Stan Smith? @ 7pm / $16

A lyrical and emotional journey, charting the extraordinary life of tennis superstar Stan Smith. Manhasset Cinemas, 430 Plan‐dome Road, Manhasset. info@ goldcoastarts.org, 516-8292570

Flip Circus @ 7:30pm Circus Vazquez - Walt Whitman Shops, Huntington Station


School Board Elec‐tion and Budget Vote @ 6am

School Board Election and Budget Vote Carrie Palmer Weber Middle School, 52 Campus Drive, Port Washington. president.LWVPWM@ gmail.com

School Budget and Board Elections @ 7am

School Board Election and Budget Vote Manhasset Sec‐ondary School, 200 Memorial Place, Manhasset. presi dent.LWVPWM@gmail.com, 516-883-1297

Wed 5/22

Red, White & Blue Paint and Sip @ 7pm / $45 Patriotic Paint & Sip! Get ready for another Paint & Sip with Risa of Soul Work Sisters on May 22nd - Right before Memorial Day weekend! Garvies Point Brewery & Restaurant, 45 Herb Hill Road, Glen Cove. risa@soulworksis ters.com, 917-450-4434

Thu 5/23

Merrick Train Station Carnival @ 5pm May 23rd - May 27th There's something for everyone at this familyfun annual event, from thrilling rides and games for all ages to fair food for every ap‐petite. Free admission. Visit the website for savings on rides Mer‐rick. 866-666-3247

New York Liberty vs. Chicago Sky @ 7pm / $20-$1100 Barclays Center, Brooklyn

Fri 5/24

The Benderz @ 10pm The Inn, 943 W Beech St, Long Beach

Calendar information is pro‐vided by event organizers. All events are subject to change or cancellation. This publica‐tion is not responsible for the accuracy of the information contained in this calendar.

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 28
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Jean-Marie Addeo Levantini

Senior Director, Ambulatory Care Garden City NYU Langone Health

Dr. Neva Alexander CEO/Founder Nevalliance Co-Director Ascend Long Island

Phil Andrews President Long Island African American Chamber of Commerce

Bob Bernard, Sr. Senior Vice President, Debt & Equity Northmarq

Adam Boll

Senior Vice President, Strategic Business Initiatives Northwell Health

Jerome J. Bost

Director of External Affairs IBEW Local 1049

Lisa Burch, MPH CEO/President EPIC Family of Human Services

John Burke

Global Head of Business & Professional Services Citi Commercial Bank

Dr. Martin Cantor Director Long Island Center for Socio-Economic Policy

Dr. Maria P. Conzatti President Nassau Community College

Armando D’Accordo President CMIT Solutions

Roy DiMarco President RGD Marketing

Dr. James Dolan Executive Director CEC Health Care

Jose Dominguez CEO American Red Cross Long Island

Robbie Donno Co-Founder Gift of Life International

George Duffy Executive Director/CEO SCOPE Education Services

Andrea Elder-Howell Vice President, Legal Services PSEG Long Island

Cherly Fajardo

Senior Vice President ExpanseFT

Sari Friedman, Esq. Senior Partner Friedman & Friedman PLLC Attorneys at Law

Thomas Garry

Managing Partner Harris Beach PLLC

Louis Grassi CEO Grassi Advisors

Jeffrey M. Kimmel

Managing Partner & CEO Salenger, Sack, Kimmel & Bavaro, LLP

Adam Koblenz

Member and Partner

Sahn Ward Braff Koblenz Coschignano PLLC

Howard Kroplick

Co-President/Chairman of the Executive Committee Roslyn Landmark Society

Maqsood A. Malik

President & CEO M&J Engineering P.C.

Nancy Marie-Thérèse Manigat, MBA, LCSW COO

CN Guidance & Counseling Services

Edna Mashaal Founder, Managing Partner Edna Mashaal Realty

David P. McKelvey Tax Partner Marcum LLP

Vinny Muldoon Owner Old World Quality Corp.

Michael Pfaff President/Chief Business Officer Long Island Ducks

Michael Recco President & CEO Friends For Life Home Care

Michael Reed CEO Elite Construction of NY

Michael Rosenblutt President/CEO Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation

Josephine Savastano Chief Banking Officer New York Valley National Bank

Frank Scalese CEO Blue Ocean Wealth Solutions

Jeffrey Schwartzberg Co-Founder/Managing Principal Premier Commercial Real Estate

Sheldon Shrenkel CEO/ Executive Director Nassau County Industrial Development Agency

Howard M. Stein Managing Partner Certilman Balin Adler & Hyman, LLP

Linda Stuurman President Last Hope Rescue

Katie Swanson Executive Director Bethany House

Sherry Tucker CEO WellLife Network

Luis Vasquez President Long Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Devon Zappasodi, MSW Director PFY, A Division of Long Island Crisis Center

30 Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 2024 HONOREES
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Dems claim secret ‘militia’ training

Continued from Page 6

“The county executive is deliberately obscuring the specifics of this militia training,” DeRiggi-Whitton said. “The bottom line is it’s just absolutely the wrong approach to take. If you are training people, it should be out in the open.”

A spokesman for Blakeman did not confirm or deny to Blank Slate Media whether special deputy sheriff training has begun, but News12 reported that seven Nassau residents have completed their deputy training.

“Democratic legislators who consistently support pro-criminal policies that make us less safe continue to denigrate law enforcement retirees and military veterans who are willing to donate their valuable time as an added level of protection in the event of an extreme emergency,” Blakeman told Blank Slate Media in a statement.

The group of Democratic legislators pushed for details on how thorough the special deputy sheriff training is, citing a risk to taxpayers.

“If these deputies are not trained to the level of, for instance, our police who endure a five-month rigorous program, and something God forbid ever went wrong, it would be the taxpayers’ money that would have to go out to cover any type of lawsuit,” DeRiggi-Whitton said. “We will be liable as taxpayers.”

The legislators questioned the cost of the program itself, including how much the deputy sheriffs are being paid – that is, if they are receiving a salary at all.

Legislator Seth Koslow, who represents parts of Freeport and Merrick, said the special deputy sheriffs must be paid if they

are being trained or it is a violation of the law. On the flip side, if the sheriffs are being paid more than $3 an hour, Blakeman is required to face the Legislature to request more money for payment, which he has not done, Koslow said.

“Either [Blakeman is] making people train for free and using them as labor without payment, or he’s paying them more than he is entitled to pay them,” Koslow said. “Either way, he is violating the law.”

The Democratic legislators said they have received complaints from their constituents, who are fearful of the proposed program.

“These mothers in my community are coming to me, like Elizabeth Forbes, who has two sons, two young black men, who are concerned about the details of this plan,” said Legislator Carrié Solages, who represents Elmont and Valley Stream. “If individuals who have no training, no bias training, are gonna be armed under the collar of law and do something against someone, that would be irreversible.”

Nassau County resident Sabine Margolis is behind a digital petition demanding that Blakeman halt the creation of the citizen sheriff program. The petition has received more than 2,500 signatures.

When Margolis questioned legislators Mazi Melesa Pilip and Scott Strauss on the sheriff program at a civic meeting in April, Strauss mentioned a similar program run “successfully” in Westchester County.

The exact Westchester program Strauss was referring to is unclear. One possibility is the Public Safety Emergency Force, a specialized reserve unit made up of part-time deputy sheriffs.

All members of the PSEF are“duly sworn peace officers”who often assist with traffic and crowd control at special events, like street fairs and fireworks celebrations, and have worked with the Westchester County Police in the past during the Sept. 11 attacks, hurricanes, power outages and presidential, vice-presidential and papal visits, according to the Westchester government website.

Members of the PSEF have “full police powers” while on duty and all volunteer members are provided with a county-issued firearm, according to the website.

Democratic legislators have repeatedly said the sheriff program is unnecessary due to countywide safety under the Nassau County Police Department.

Nassau County is rated thesafest county in the United States, according to U.S. News & World Report.

And the Police Department is well-funded. In Nassau, 971 county workers earned more than $200,000 in 2022, with 942 of these 971 highest paid employees working for police or corrections, according to Newsday.

But Blakeman seeks to expand county law enforcement bybringing in emergency special deputy sheriffsto be on call for county-wide emergencies.

A Nassau County ad with a March 31 application deadline called for county property or business owners, specifically former law enforcement and military veterans, to apply to the emergency sheriff position. Blakeman has not yet disclosed how many individuals applied to the program.

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Flynn Classified Advertising Manager 516-307-1045 Ext. 218 dflynn@theisland360.com


Classified Advertising Manager 516-307-1045 Ext. 218 dflynn@theisland360.com

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 36 ▼ SERVICES One time use only. Cannot be used conjunction with any other coupon offer. Valid for any new service except subscription fees. Must mention coupon at the time of sale. WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Place your ad in print with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group. Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award-winning community newspapers. WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award winning community newspapers and Post your ad yourself by going to https://classifieds.theisland360.com Place your ad in print and online with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group.
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Debbie Flynn
WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Place your ad in print with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group. Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award-winning community newspapers. WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award winning community newspapers and Post your ad yourself by going to https://classifieds.theisland360.com Place your ad in print and online with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group.
22 Planting Field Rd, Roslyn Heights, 11577 www.theisland360.com 821 Franklin Avenue, Suite 208 Garden City, NY 11530 (516) 294-8900 www.gcnews.com 22 Planting Field Road Roslyn Heights, NY 11577 www.theisland360.com 821 Franklin Avenue, Suite 208 Garden City, NY 11530 (516) 294-8900 www.gcnews.com
Debbie Flynn
Advertising Manager
Ext. 218
WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Place your ad in print with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group. Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award-winning community newspapers. WANT TO FIND A JOB? READY TO FILL A JOB? Your ad will appear in all 11 of our hyper-local, award winning community newspapers and Post your ad yourself by going to https://classifieds.theisland360.com Place your ad in print and online with the Blank Slate Media and Litmor Publications Advertising group. Contact Debbie Flynn Classified Advertising Manager 516-307-1045 Ext. 218 dflynn@theisland360.com 22 Planting Field Rd, Roslyn Heights, 11577 www.theisland360.com 821 Franklin Avenue, Suite 208 Garden City, NY 11530 (516) 294-8900 www.gcnews.com 22 Planting Field Road Roslyn Heights, NY 11577 www.theisland360.com 821 Franklin Avenue, Suite 208 Garden City, NY 11530 (516) 294-8900 www.gcnews.com Contact Debbie Flynn Classified Advertising Manager 516-307-1045
THE AWARD-WINNING Manhasset Times Great Neck News Roslyn Times Port Washington Times Williston Times New Hyde Park Herald Courier 22 PLANTING FIELD ROAD, ROSLYN HEIGHTS, NY 11577 (516) 307-1045 WWW.THEISLAND360.COM ACCESS US IN PRINT AND ONLINE We Have The Pulse on Your Community

Herricks OKs $35M to settle abuse suits

Continued from Page 1

The proposed budget-to-budget increase is 5.2% or $6,990,394.

The larger-than-usual increase is due in part to the cost of settling these CVA claims, board members said in April. Without the costs allocated toward pending claims and legal fees, the 2024-2025 budget increase would be 3.25%, which is much more comparable to other district budget-to-budget increases, Superintendent Tony Sinanis said.

The district had an original state aid projection of $27 million when the board adopted the proposed 2024-2025 budget. State aid will provide around 20% of total district revenues in the 2024-2025 budget, according to the administration.

Rutkoske said the district will receive $100,000 more in state aid under the recently approved state budget than under Gov. Kathy Hochul’s initial proposal. The assistant superin-

tendent for business said the administration has not made changes to the budget due to the slight bump in aid.

The state Legislature adopted the 20242025 $237 billion state budget nearly three weeks late in April.

The budget included an additional $1.3 billion in school aid and the restoration of the foundation aid Hold Harmless policy, which ensures schools’ foundation aid does not decrease from the year before.

The budget adoption came after months of pushback from school administrators.

Many districts across North Shore Nassau County lamented the eradication of Hold Harmless, saying the change in aid and high insurance and pension costs produced tight budgets with higher tax levies. At previous meetings, Herricks board members and administration said they were pleased with their state aid.

Residents can vote on the budget on May 21.

Three EWSD candidates vie for two seats

Continued from Page 2

continue to oversee improvements to the athletic programs and safety and security measures, as well.

Hirsch said his biggest concern for the district is the long-term effects of the pandemic and increased social media use.

“Students and adults alike really spend a significant amount of time on phones and watching videos and not really engaging, so I’m very concerned about that,” Hirsch said. “I want to make sure the district continues to make a focus so that people can find a community within our district and make those connections, whether they’re academics, clubs, athletics…where students can find their place.”

Hirsch said one way the district encourages this sense of community is by making adjustments to offerings based on which clubs students are joining and which clubs receive less interest.

8 Like Fallarino, Hirsch said he is proud of the district budgets in recent years. The district has stayed within the tax cap during his entire tenure, Hirsch said, and the debt

balance has reduced by more than $2 million. Hirsch said when he first joined the board in 2012, the school faced a wash of changes: the introduction of the state tax cap, the common core curriculum and new teaching standards. However, he said since the board plans ahead and has a strategic plan in place, they are able to conquer these challenges.

“My passion really has grown well beyond sort of the financial aspects of the district and I’ve had the opportunity to have a front row seat to see the district in action across so many facets and just wanting to be a champion for our children has just really engulfed me over the years,” Hirsch said.

Sivaraman is challenging Hirsch for his current trustee seat.

Sivaraman has been an East Williston resident for seven years. He has three kids currently in the district: a high school senior, a high school sophomore and a kindergartner. Sivaraman is the head of research and development at Dentsu International, a global marketing and advertising agency. He has a background in data science and analytics.

Sivaraman said board members need to

become more active and willing to question choices passed down by administration. With a background in mathematics, Sivaraman said he questions things for a living.

“There’s a certain indifference that I’ve observed in the board in the context of being responsive to residents,” Sivaraman said. “They don’t question the administration.”

Sivaraman said his biggest concern for the district is academic performance, which he said is evidently slipping.

And despite district performance faltering in his opinion, Sivaraman said that the district budget and cost per student is still high. According to last known student enrollment, East Williston per pupil spending was $42,627 in the 2023-2024 school year.

Sivaraman said a problem with current academic performance is that the school experience is not a uniform one for all students. He said the experience is “average” and “mediocre” and no longer “superior” or “outstanding.” He said he thinks the Math Department at East Williston is good, but he is concerned about other departments and the lack of transparency in hiring standards.

Sivaraman said he has spoken to district parents who have chosen to send their children to private schools. He said this problem is a slippery slope that the board must address.

He said he has not noticed any board members who come from an academic or otherwise “rigorous” background, and believes his career in research science will be an asset. He said he believes there is a sense of “fatigue” among board members when they view proposed budgets because they have seen so many budgets over the years. Smaller budget items that need increases might seem miniscule to the board, but to residents like him that are unused to multimillion dollar budgets, these increases are substantial, Sivaraman said.

The district will hold a budget hearing May 13 at 8 p.m. at The Wheatley School at 11 Bacon Rd., Old Westbury. Board members will present a proposed budget at the meeting.

District residents are set to vote on the budget and elect two trustees May 21 between 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at The Wheatley School.

EWSD state aid increases, tax levy decreases

Continued from Page 2

The rising cost of employee benefits and health insurance are two main factors in the overall budget increase, the deputy superintendent said.

The proposed budget includes three new science labs funded through the capital reserve, Project Adventure courses for students, a district-wide security audit, an additional school psychologist, technology upgrades, artificial intelligence software offerings, increased academic competitions and more, Castonguay said.

The budget is up for vote May 21 along with the election of two trustees and two other propositions.

The first proposition residents will vote on is the adoption of the budget.

The second proposition is the transfer of a leftover balance of about $650,000 from the 2015 capital reserve fund into the 2023 capital reserve fund, Castonguay said.

The third proposition is the transfer of a leftover balance from the 2019 capital reserve fund to be used for capital projects, including the replacement of the North Side School roof and auditorium renovations at The Wheatley School, Castonguay said.

Residents can vote on the propositions and two trustees May 21 at The Wheatley School gymnasium from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The board announced that the school start times in the district will change for the fall 2024 semester. The changes will give Wheatley students more time to sleep in, Castonguay said.

“All the buildings talked about the impact of these new times and at Wheatley, we’re going to be able to manage all the athletics, the clubs,” Superintendent Danielle Gately said. “It should not hinder the students participating and if anything, we were able to work it out so that we can just take advantage of all the opportunities.”

The Wheatley School currently starts at

7:50 a.m. with a 2:26 p.m. dismissal. In the fall, school will begin at 8:25 a.m. with a 2:55 p.m. dismissal.

Changes to Willets Road School and North Side School will not be as drastic.

Willets Road School currently begins at 7:55 a.m. with a 2:50 p.m. dismissal. In the fall, school will begin at 7:50 a.m. with a 2:30 p.m. dismissal.

North Side School currently begins at 9 a.m. with a 3:15 p.m. dismissal. In the fall, school will begin at 9:05 a.m. with a 3:20 p.m. dismissal.

During the time allotted for public comments, one resident questioned the board on its policies governing how it responds to resident complaints at these public meetings.

The resident said she first became outspoken at board meetings last year. She claimed she questioned an administrator about responsive classrooms at a meeting last year and the next day, that same administrator called her about an

incident involving her son kicking a water bottle at school that occurred 16 days before the phone call.

The resident said she believes that phone call was telling her to not ask questions at board meetings.

The resident said she feels like she is “back in former Soviet Union” and has spoken to an attorney.

“We just simply ask that we don’t talk about students [at board meetings]. We don’t talk about our own students. We don’t talk about staff,” Mark Kamberg, president of the Board of Education, said. “It’s really to protect everybody as a whole.”

The district council said administration follows all of the district policies when addressing complaints.

The board also honored students for their achievements in business, physics and Italian poetry at recent school competitions.

37 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT

Schechter installs planters for protection

Continued from Page 1

While Hiltzik said the security company has not dealt with an incident of someone driving their car into a school building, it is a security measure taken by private Jewish schools and temples worldwide.

“If you would walk around temples, other day schools in the tri-state area, you would see that those planters are there,” Hiltzik said.

The head of school clarified that the planters are not a reaction to the Israeli-Palestinian war.

“This work was an ongoing project for three years. I know that it will come across like, oh, my God, this is because of [Hamas’ attack on] Oct. 7,” Hiltzik said. “No. No. This is not reactive to that.”

Rather, she said, the timing of these plant-

ers is coincidental and due to the recent grant approval. The Mineola school district approved the planters’ installation and has been involved throughout the process, she said.

The sizable planters will soon be filled with soil and flowers and will look “very friendly” since they are not meant to act as a deterrent, Hiltzik said.

The head of school said there have been no recent hate messages or incidents against the Schechter School. She emphasized how wonderful it has been working with the surrounding community in Williston Park.

“This is our 16th or 17th year in the neighborhood and the neighborhood, the neighbors, the stores around, St. Aidan’s … we do great programs with them,” Hiltzik said, citing the strong fabric of the community.

Israeli-Palestinian history lesson called ‘offensive’

Continued from Page 9

Speakers thanked Sewanhaka High School principal Nichole Allen for her swift response to the lesson, speaking directly with concerned students and sending a letter to Sewanhaka school parents.

The head of the history department also re-taught the lesson to the 10th grade global history class on Israeli-Palestinian relations, the board said.

More than 10 residents, students and alumni addressed the superintendent and board members at a podium, their comments lasting about an hour.

Some speakers were passionate. Some were solemn and shed tears at lives lost during the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“The first thing that came to my mind was: What was she thinking? What was she think-

ing? How could any teacher who we entrust our children to in their right mind think that a lesson like this would be acceptable to students, 10th graders?”

Farhana Islam, a district parent and pharmacist, said. “This is a

really egregious error that needs to be taken extremely seriously… hopefully [we] can send our kids to school and not have to worry that somebody is gonna call them a terrorist, which has happened.”

Some speakers acknowl-

Residents, students and alumni in the audience at a Sewanhaka Central High School District board meeting Wednesday night.

edged the work that has already been done by district administration to foster a more inclusive environment, like providing prayer rooms for Muslim students in every high school building and expanding their Halal food selection.

One resident, who said she immigrated to the United States from Palestine 14 years ago as part of a “dream,” spoke at the podium with her 15-year-old daughter nearby to help translate.

“My family, I’m losing it. I’m losing them,” the resident said as she started to cry. “I’m not opening TV for my kids. No need to show what happened because always everything now scary.”

Her daughter stepped up to the podium next.

“She’s trying to say that she has children, little children, and she’s hiding what’s going on in

Palestine from them because I’m 15 and I can’t even sleep because of what’s going on in Palestine,” the daughter said, “and the fact that it’s spreading to school and then spreading to the children and then the children are misunderstood about the whole real situation, it’s putting us [at] risk.”

Community members demanded that staff members be retrained, and not just with general sensitivity training, but specific lessons on Palestinian and Muslim inclusivity.

“We are a very diverse community in Elmont itself. Nearly ¼ of the student body is Asian and we feel that currently…the school staff perhaps it doesn’t reflect the diversity of the student body, which is okay if there can be measures of sensitivity training [and] discussions,” said another district parent whose children attend El-

mont Memorial High School. Dolan said the district provides extensive sensitivity training and resources to school staff and this training will continue. The superintendent emphasized how grateful he was to see such a large crowd in the audience and encouraged community members to continue to attend board meetings and speak out, since he said the school board is as direct as democracy gets.

“We want to be that approachable person who creates an environment of safety, and again, I’m going to ask you for some help with that. Tell us how we can do better,” Dolan said.

Dolan ended the meeting the same way many speakers began their comments: by saying “Assalaam alaikum,” an Arabic greeting commonly used by Muslims that means “Peace be upon you.”

D’Agostino honored for child-centered teaching

Continued from Page 10

“So you want to create an environment that gives them the opportunities to engage their curiosity and explore new things, new concepts new ideas, new phenomenons,” D’Agostino said. “And that’s really the crux of what we do here.”

D’Agostino’s teaching methodology for his students is based on the four E’s: Embark, Explore, Engage and Elaborate. A fifth E – Evaluate – is then D’Agostino’s role.

The learning process begins with an embarkment, or a concept or idea that the student is curious about. D’Agostino said the purpose is to draw in the young child’s interest.

Everything starts with a question at My Spectrum School, D’Agostino said, and from there the learning process begins.

Even the layout of the classroom is an extension of the school’s teaching model.

The classroom is designed with the intent to invite the children into different areas of learning and a diverse range of subjects.

Along the walls are signs reading “engineering” and “science” and “library,” creating designated spaces around the room for the children

to explore different subjects. Strewn between each subject area are collections of tables intentionally placed in a communal area so children are encouraged to explore different spaces.

“It’s meant to invite the children over to see what’s going on,” D’Agostino said. “And that leads into the learning module.”

Everyday begins with this morning meeting, where D’Agostino talks with his students about their lives.

“And if anything pops up that creates interest among the group, I take that and form a mini theme around that,” D’Agostino said.

Without being told, the students immediately gathered at their desks organized in a Ushape, facing a projected screen and surrounding a communal rug at the beginning of their school day early Friday morning.

Multiple students shot their hands up to take turns reading the phrase “Today is Friday, May 10, 2024” off the screen.

As the children began their day of learning, giggles could be heard during their correct answers to each question, with a playful banter exchanged between them and their teacher.

“We’re like a little family,” D’Agostino said.

38 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
PHOTO BY TAYLOR HERZLICH New planters installed around the perimeter of the Schechter School. PHOTO BY CAMERYN OAKES My Spectrum School director and teacher Jason D’Agostino flips through a student’s workbook. PHOTO BY TAYLOR HERZLICH


Back Tercynski as E. Williston school trustee

Last year, I wrote a Letter to the Editor singing the praises of Denise Tercynski, lamenting the fact that she was running against Mark Kamberg, and wishing she were running against someone else.

It seems I have gotten my wish. And this time, I wholeheartedly support her candidacy. I have to add that I am extremely impressed with the fabulous example she is setting for our children by running a second time.

I have known Denise since our graduating seniors were in Northside together. I have always found her to be well-informed, involved, and tenacious. Denise was a constant and reliable presence at anything schoolrelated, whether it be PTO meetings, coffee with various administrators, or a myriad of school happenings.

She is completely and utterly dedicated to her children and their educational goals. She is laser-focused on what is not working and what needs to be changed, and she is determined to the see the job through.

If elected trustee, she won’t foist valid complaints onto others or tell people to contact the school personnel or the superintendent. She will listen to what is being said and figure out what can be done about it. She will not stop until the problem is solved to her


At this time, I truly believe the East Williston school board is in desperate need of new blood. Trust has been eroding steadily over the past few years and community confidence is ebbing away.

There have been vocal demands for increased transparency that have been ignored, resulting in some very unhappy residents. Denise will change that. She will bring increased access to the inner workings and answer questions that others brush off. As a community, we need that.

We need someone to address issues, challenge the status quo, and bring the community back into the inner circle.

In addition to being a longtime concerned and involved parent, Denise has educational perspective, with good ideas and insights. She’s someone who is never removed, but not too close for tunnel vision.

This is a huge plus and desperately needed. Right now our district is stagnating, and angry rumblings illustrate the need for change for a new person. That is what is needed right now. East Williston needs Denise. We need Denise.

Vote Yes on Port’s Prop 2, re-elect incumbents

Iam writing in support of this year’s school budget and yes to Prop 2, which approves the spending of funds that this community previously set aside for the future. It would be counterproductive to vote no on either.

I am also supporting the incumbents Nanette Melkonian, Adam Smith, and Adam Block to keep the current board intact because they have come together with the rest of the board, despite differences of opinion and a rocky start three years ago, and delivered on the issues they ran on such as addressing aftercare for working parents, revamping homework policies, rooting out waste, expanding access for gifted learners, providing bilingual access at meetings, reassessing departmental expenditures, and supporting professional development of staff and faculty.

To unseat them is to essentially to fire them (and these are unpaid positions) when they have done the job they set out to do, and much more.

Despite coming out of a pandemic and the shift back to in-person learning, they accomplished more in three years than I have seen any board accomplish in the 20 years I have lived here.

In addition, the board as a whole addresses the needs of a wide range of students. It is the first time to my knowledge I

have ever heard the words “executive function” and “twice exceptional” being uttered at a board meeting. These are things, in addition to vocational training, that have been left unaddressed for too long.

Melkonian, Smith and Block have served across numerous committees and made significant impacts on many programs. I would not attempt to list them but their accomplishments are evident in their answers during a recent debate hosted by Agate PW. (Agate and the local League of Women Voters host debates each year.).

That debate is available on Agate’s FaceBook page; each incumbent also has a candidate page highlighting their work and Board of Ed meetings are recorded and accessible on the district’s YouTube channel. I encourage anyone to visit those pages and www.portnet.org where budget information is available.

These three incumbents have come together to support students, teachers and administration and have presented a budget that continues to invest in our students and community. I believe they merit a second term to continue their work and expand on the improvements they have made.

Upcoming events at the Williston Park Library

From the Director

The summer 2024 Reading Program theme is Adventure Begins at Your Library. Our program will run from June 29 to Aug. 10. Once everything is confirmed, program information will be forthcoming and posted on our Facebook page and in this column.

We are suspending donation acceptance until further notice. We are at storage capacity. Please consider donating to The Book Fairies. Their contact number is 516-557-6645.

The library is still distributing Covid-19 tests while supplies last. Please ask at the Reference Desk.

New titles added to the collection: #1 Lawyer — James Patterson

Expiration Dates — Rebecca Serle Never Too Late — Danielle Steel Princess of Las Vegas—Chris Bohjalian Good Material — Dolly Alderton Studies at the School by the Sea— Jenny Colgan Finding Margaret Fuller—Allison Pataki Great Country—Shilpi Somaya Gowda

Programs for adults Reiki—May 23—6 p.m. in the Assembly Room of Village Hall. $10 p/person; p/session.

Yoga — Saturdays—May 11, 18, 25; June 1, 8, 15, 22 — Noon-1 pm in the Assembly Room of Village Hall. $10 p/person, p/ses -

sion. Please bring a yoga mat, water bottle and towel; Wear comfortable clothes. Call the library (742-1820) or email willistonparkprograms@gmail.com to register.

Empire Safety Defensive Driving Course— Thursday—May 16—10 am-4 pm in the Assembly Room of Village Hall for drivers of all ages. $33 p/person ($35 p/person for Spanish workbook). Registration forms are available at the Circulation Desk. Call the library (7421820) or email willistonparkprograms@gmail. com to register.

Book Discussion — Wednesday—May 8 — 7 p.m. in the Assembly Room of Village Hall and via zoom. Copies of Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath will be available the Circulation Desk. https:// adelphiuniversity.zoom.us/j/96885670102 ?pwd=VGtSYnkyUW9acVJyV0tyNUtUZnMy Zz09 Meeting ID: 968 8567 0102 Passcode: WPBookClub or just call 1-929-205-6099 on your phone and it will ask for the meeting ID and password above

Children’s Programs

Storytime with Miss Beth—Tuesdays—May 14, 21, 28; June 4 and 11—12:00-12:45 in the Children’s Room. Please, no walk-ins. Call the library (742-1820) or email willistonparkprograms@gmail.com to register.

Memorial Day Take-n-Make Craft—Saturday—May 25—12-1pm in the Crildren’s Room. Call the library (742-1820) or email willistonparkprograms@gmail.com to register.

Sport Psychology

Dr. Tom Ferraro has specialized in sport psychology for 20 years and works in the fields of golf, tennis, soccer, baseball, football, wrestling, lacrosse, figure skating, gymnastics, softball, fencing and more. He has helped professional teams, Olympians and elite young athletes learn how to manage the intense pressure of competitive sports. He appears on both TV and radio and has sport psychology columns in 5 different newspapers and has been featured in The New York Times, Wall street Journal and the London Times. Golf Digest includes him in their list of top mental game gurus in America. For a consultation see below:

Williston Park Professional Center

2 Hillside Ave, Suite E. Williston Park NY 11596 (building parallel to E. Williston railroad station) drtomferraro.com drtferraro@aol.com

39 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT

NOTICE OF ANNUAL SCHOOL DISTRICT ELECTION AND PUBLIC HEARING on the 2024 - 2025 School Budget in the HERRICKS UNION FREE SCHOOL DISTRICT Town of North Hempstead, Nassau County, New York

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the annual election of qualified voters of the Herricks Union Free School District, Town of North Hempstead, County of Nassau, New York will be held on Tuesday, May 21, 2024 in the Gymnasium of the Herricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, New York between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. for the purpose of voting, on voting machines, on the following matters:

A. to vote on the annual school budget as set forth in Proposition No.1 below:         PROPOSITION NO 1

RESOLVED that the 2024-2025 annual school budget for the Herricks Union Free School District and the appropriation of the necessary funds therefore and the levy of taxes necessary to meet the expenditures in said budget be authorized.

B. to elect two board members for a three-year term commencing July 1, 2024 to fill the vacancy occasioned by the expiration of the term of Nancy Feinstein and Brian R. Hassan.

C. to vote on such other propositions as may properly come before the voters at this annual school election.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that the Board of Education will hold a public hearing at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 9, 2024 at the Herricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, New York for the purpose of discussing the expenditure of funds for school district purposes and the budgeting thereof for the school year beginning July 1, 2024 and ending June 30, 2025 (the 2024-2025 annual school budget).  At said hearing all persons in interest will be given an opportunity to be heard.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that a copy of said 2024-2025 Annual School Budget for the Herricks Union Free School District containing a statement of the amount of money needed to meet the estimated expenses for school purposes for the 2024-2025 school year, exclusive of public monies, together with the text of any propositions, questions and resolutions which will be presented to the voters, will be made available upon request and may be obtained by any district resident at the following offices of the school houses, at the Herricks Community Center, on the District’s internet website (www.Herricks.org), the Williston Park Library and at the Shelter Rock Library during the fourteen days immediately preceding the day of the budget vote and election, except Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, between the hours of  9:00 a.m. and 3:00  p.m.

Center Street School, Center Street, Williston Park, NY Denton Avenue School, Denton Avenue, New Hyde Park, NY Searingtown School, west end of Beverly Drive, Albertson, NY Herricks Middle School, Hilldale Drive, Albertson, NY Herricks High School, Shelter Rock Road, New Hyde Park, NY Herricks Community Center, Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, NY Shelter Rock Academy, Shelter Rock Road, New Hyde Park, NY Williston Park Library, Willis Avenue, Williston Park, NY Shelter Rock Library, Searingtown Road, Albertson, NY

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN pursuant to Real Property Tax Law Section 495, an exemption report detailing exemptions from real property taxation shall be available and appended to any tentative, preliminary or final budget.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that each candidate for the office of a member of the Board of Education shall be nominated by petition and a separate petition for each such candidate shall be directed to and filed in the Office of the Clerk of said School District located in the Herricks Community Center between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., and no later than 5 p.m. on Monday, April 22, 2024.  Each such nominating petition shall be signed by at least twenty-five (25) qualified voters of said school district, and shall state the residence of each signer, and shall state the name and residence of the candidate, and shall describe the specific vacancy on said Board of Education for which the candidate is nominated, which description shall include at least the length of the term of office and name of the last incumbent.  No person shall be nominated by petition for more than one specific office.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that Herricks School District has personal registration of voters and that the Board of Registration for the School District shall meet in the Herricks Community Center, Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, New York, on Tuesday, May 7, 2024 between the hours of 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. for the purpose of preparing a register of the qualified voters of the School District who are entitled to vote.  In addition, registration can be accomplished on any school day from 8 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the District Clerk’s Office through May 16, 2024.  The register so prepared will be filed in the Office of the Clerk of said School District in said Herricks Community Center and will be open for inspection by any qualified voter of said School District between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on each of the five days prior to and the day set for such vote, including Saturday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. by appointment only, except Sunday.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that a person shall be entitled to vote at the annual election who is:  1) a citizen of the United States, 2) eighteen years of age or older, 3) a resident of the School District for a period of thirty days next preceding the election he or she offers to vote at and 4) registered to vote for said election.  A person shall be registered to vote if he or she shall have permanently registered with the Nassau County Board of Elections or with the School District's Board of Registration.  Only persons, who are so registered, may vote.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that said Board of Registration will meet during the hours of voting and at said annual election on May 21, 2024, at the Herricks Community Center for the purpose of preparing a register for school meetings and elections held subsequent to said annual election.  Any person shall be entitled to have his or her name placed on register provided at such meeting of the Board of Registration he or she is known or proven to the satisfaction of such Board of Registration to be entitled to vote at school meetings and elections for which the register is being prepared.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that all propositions and questions, which qualified voters of the school district desire placed upon the voting machines at said election, shall be made by petitions subscribed  by not less than one hundred  (100) qualified voters of the district and filed in the Office of the Clerk of the School District between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. and no later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 22, 2024 thirty (30) days prior to said election, except as to propositions and questions required by law to be stated in the published or posted notice of the annual election which shall be filed not later than sixty (60) days prior to said election.  When the last day for filing a petition falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the petition may be filed on the Monday following the last day for filing. Upon the filing of such a petition the Board of Education shall determine by resolution whether or not to place such questions or propositions on the voting machines.  In the event that the Board of Education shall determine that it is not proper, feasible or practicable to place such proposition or propositions, question or questions, upon a voting machine, then such proposition or propositions, question or questions, as the Board of Education may resolve to place before the voters at said election shall be voted upon by the use of paper ballots.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that the applications for early mail and absentee ballots for election of members of the Board of Education, the adoption of the annual budget and vote on any other propositions and questions as may be legally placed before the voters at the annual district election may be applied for at the Office of the Clerk of the District.   An application for early mail and absentee ballot must be received by the District Clerk no earlier than thirty (30) days before the Annual Election.  An application for early mail and absentee ballot must be received by the District Clerk at least seven (7) days before the Annual Election if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter, or the day before the Annual Budget Vote/Election if the ballot is to be delivered personally to the voter or his/her designated agent.  Upon receiving a timely application for an early mail and absentee ballot, the District Clerk will mail the ballot to the address designated on the application by no later than six (6) days before the Annual Election.  No early mail and absentee voters’ ballots shall be canvassed, unless it shall have been received in the Office of the District Clerk no later than 5:00 p.m. on the day of the vote.  A list of all persons to whom early mail and absentee ballots have been given shall be available for inspection in the Office of the Clerk of said School District and will be open for inspection by any qualified voter of said School District during regular office hours between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN that military voters who are not currently registered may apply to register as a qualified voter of the school district.  Military voters who are qualified voters of the school district may submit an application for a military ballot. Military voters may designate a preference to receive a military voter registration, military ballot application or military ballot by mail, facsimile transmission or electronic mail in their request for such registration, ballot application or ballot. Military voter registration and military ballot application forms must be received in the Office of the District Clerk no later than 5:00 p.m. on April 25, 2024. No military ballot will be canvassed unless it is returned by mail or in person and (1) received in the Office of the District Clerk before the close of the polls on election day and showing a cancellation mark of the United States postal service or a foreign country’s postal service, or showing a dated endorsement of receipt by another agency of the United States government; or (2) received by the Office of the District Clerk by no later than 5:00 p.m. on election day and signed and dated by the military voter and one witness thereto, with a date which is associated to be not later than the day before the election.

Notice of Formation of The Tooth Fairies Dental Agency, LLC. Articles of Organization filed with Secretary of State of NY (SSNY) on 03/20/2024. Office location: Nassau County. SSNY designated as agent of Limited Liability Company (LLC) upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY should mail process to Debra Annala: 14 Willow Place, Albertson, NY 11507. Purpose: Any lawful purpose.

LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE OF BOARD OF TRUSTEES WORK SESSION INC. VILLAGE OF EAST WILLISTON PLEASE TAKE NOTICE THAT the Board of Trustees will hold a Board of Trustee Work Session at Village Hall, 2 Prospect Street, East Williston, NY on Tuesday, May 28, 2024. This meeting is being held in lieu of the regular meeting date of May 27, 2024. By Order of the Board of Trustees Joanna E. Palumbo Village Clerk May 17, 2024



I, the undersigned, Village Clerkof Williston Park, do hereby give notice that I have received the Tax Roll and Warrant for the collection of taxes levied for the present year, and I will be in attendance to receive taxes at the Village Office, 494 Willis Avenue, in said Village from June 1, 2024 from eight o'clock in the morning until four o'clock in the afternoon, except Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays, and that for said period of time taxes may be paid to me without additional charge and that on all taxes remaining unpaid after July 1, 2024, five percent (5 %) will be added for the first month and at such rate as determined by the Commissioner of Taxation and Finance for each month or fraction thereof, until paid.

TAX RATE: Homestead $ .30967 per hundred Assessed Value Non Homestead $ .71019 per hundred Assessed Value

Kristi Romano, Village Clerk

Dated: May 13, 2024 Williston Park, NY


(formerly known as Twitter) @theisland360.com

40 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
7, 2024 BY ORDER OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION New Hyde Park, New York Lisa Rutkoske, District Clerk Herricks Union Free School District Town of North Hempstead FOR YOUR LOCAL NEWS VISIT US ONLINE AT theisland360.com

AVISO DE ELECCIÓN ANUAL DEL DISTRITO ESCOLAR Y AUDIENCIA PÚBLICA sobre el  Presupuesto escolar 2024 – 2025 en el  Distrito Escolar De Herricks Ciudad de North Hempstead, condado de Nassau, Nueva York

POR LA PRESENTE SE NOTIFICA que la elección anual de votantes calificados de el Distrito escolar de  Herricks , Ciudad de North Hempstead, Condado de Nassau, Nueva York se llevará a cabo el martes, 21 de mayo de 2024 en el Gimnasio del Centro Comunitario Herricks, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, Nueva York entre las 7:00 a.m. y las 9:00 p.m. con el propósito de votar, al votar en  máquinas, en las siguientes asuntos:

A. votar sobre el presupuesto escolar anual como se establece en la Proposición No. 1 a continuación:


SE RESUELVE que el presupuesto escolar anual 2024-2025 para Herricks Union Free School District y la asignación de los fondos necesarios para ello y la recaudación de los Impuestos necesarios para  sufragar los gastos que en dicho presupuesto se autorice. B. elegir a dos miembros de la Junta por un período de tres años a partir del 1 de julio de 2024 para cubrir la vacante ocasionada por la expiración del término de Nancy Feinstein y Brian R. Hassan.

C. votar sobre otras propuestas que puedan presentarse ante los votantes en esta elección escolar annual.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que la Junta de Educación llevará a cabo una audiencia pública a las 7:30 p.m. el jueves, 9 de mayo de 2024 en Herricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, New York con el propósito de discutir el gasto de fondos para propósitos del distrito escolar y el presupuesto del mismo para el año escolar que comienza el 1 de julio de 2024 y termina el 30 de junio de 2025 (presupuesto anual del  año escolar 2024-2025). En dicha audiencia, todas las personas interesadas tendrán la oportunidad de ser escuchadas.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que una copia de dicho Presupuesto Escolar Anual 2024-2025 para el Herricks Union Free School District que contenga una declaración de la cantidad de dinero necesaria para gastos estimados con fines escolares para el año escolar 2024-2025, sin incluir dinero público, junto con el texto de las proposiciones, cuestiones y resoluciones que se someterán a la votantes, estará disponible a pedido y puede ser obtenido por cualquier residente del distrito en las siguientes oficinas de las escuelas, en el Centro Comunitario de Herricks, en el sitio web del Distrito (www.Herricks.org), la Biblioteca de Williston Park y en la biblioteca de Shelter Rock durante los catorce días inmediatamente anteriores al día de la votación y elección del presupuesto, excepto los sábados domingos y festivos, en el horario 9:00 a.m. a 3:00 p.m.

Center Street School, Center Street, Williston Park, Nueva York

Denton Avenue School, Denton Avenue, New Hyde Park, Nueva York

Searingtown School, extremo oeste de Beverly Drive, Albertson, NY Herricks Middle School, Hilldale Drive, Albertson, Nueva York Herricks School, Shelter Rock Road, New Hyde Park, Nueva York Centro Comunitario Herricks, Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, Nueva York Shelter Rock Academy, Shelter Rock Road, New Hyde Park, Nueva York

Biblioteca Williston Park, Willis Avenue, Williston Park, Nueva York

Biblioteca Shelter Rock, Searingtown Road, Albertson, NY

SE DA AVISO ADEMÁS de conformidad con la Sección 495 de la Ley del Impuesto sobre la Propiedad Inmueble, un informe de exención  que detallan las exenciones de los impuestos sobre bienes inmuebles estarán disponibles y se adjuntarán a cualquier   presupuesto preliminar o final.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que cada candidato para el cargo de miembro de la Junta de Educación deberá ser nominado por petición y una petición separada para cada uno de dichos  candidatos deberá ser dirigida y presentada en la Oficina del Secretario de dicho Distrito Escolar ubicado  en Herricks  Centro Comunitario entre las 8:00 a.m. y las 3:00 p.m., y no más tarde de las 5:00 p.m. el lunes, 22 de abril de 2024. Cada petición de nominación deberá estar firmada por al menos veinticinco (25)  votantes  calificados de dicho distrito escolar, y deberá indicar la residencia de cada firmante, y deberá indicar el nombre y   residencia del candidato, y describirá la vacante específica en dicha Junta de Educación para que el candidato es nominado, cuya descripción incluirá por lo menos la duración del término de  cargo y nombre del último titular. Ninguna persona podrá ser nominada por petición para más de un puesto específico.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que el Distrito Escolar de Herricks tiene un registro personal de votantes y que la Junta de Inscripción del Distrito Escolar se reunirá en el Centro Comunitario de Herricks, Herricks Road, New Hyde Park, Nueva York, el martes 7 de mayo de 2024 entre las 4:00 p.m. y 8:00 p.m. con el propósito de preparar un registro de los votantes calificados del Distrito Escolar que tienen derecho a votar. Además, la inscripción se puede realizar cualquier día escolar de 8 a.m. a 3:00 p.m. en la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito hasta el 16 de mayo de 2024. El registro así preparado  se archivará en   la Oficina del Secretario de dicho Distrito Escolar en dicho Centro Comunitario de  Herricks y estará abierto para  inspección por cualquier votante calificado de dicho Distrito Escolar entre las 8:00 a.m. y las 3:00 p.m. en cada uno de los cinco días antes del día fijado para dicha votación, incluido el sábado de 9:00 a.m. a 11:00 a.m.; solamente con cita previa, excepto los domingos.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que una persona tendrá derecho a votar en la elección anual que sea:1)ciudadano de los Estados Unidos, 2) dieciocho años de edad o más, 3) un residente del DistritoEscolar por un  período de treinta días inmediatamente anterior a la elección en la que él o ella ofrecevotar y 4) registrado para votar por  dicha elección. Una persona estará registrada para votar si él o ellase ha registrado permanentemente con  la Junta de Elecciones del Condado de Nassau o con la Junta deRegistro del Distrito Escolar. Solamente  las personas, que están registradas, pueden votar.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que dicha Junta de Registro se reunirá durante el horario de votación y en dicha elección anual el 21 de mayo de 2024, en el Centro Comunitario Herricks con el propósito de preparar un registro para las reuniones escolares y las elecciones que se celebren con posterioridad a dicha elección anual. Ninguna  persona tendrá derecho a que su nombre se incluya en el registro proporcionado en dicha reunión de la  Junta de Registro a menos que  él o ella es conocido o aprobado a satisfacción de dicha Junta de Registro para  tener derecho a votar en las juntas escolares y en las elecciones para las que se prepara el registro.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que todas las proposiciones y preguntas, de los votantes calificados de el el distrito escolar que se deseen poner de en las máquinas de votación en dicha elección, se hará mediante peticiones suscritas por no menos de cien (100) votantes calificados del distrito y presentado en la Oficina del Secretario de  el Distrito Escolar entre las 8:00 a.m. y las 3:00 p.m. y no más tarde de las 5:00 p.m. el lunes, 22 de abril de 2024 treinta (30) días antes de dicha elección, excepto en cuanto a proposiciones y preguntas  requerido por la ley que se indique en el aviso publicado o fijado de la elección anual que se presentará  a más tardar sesenta (60) días antes de dicha elección. Cuando el último día para radicar una petición cae en un  sábado o domingo, la petición podrá presentarse el lunes siguiente al último día de presentación. Sobre la  presentación de dicha petición, la Junta de Educación determinará mediante resolución si se coloca o no  tales preguntas o proposiciones en las máquinas de votación. En el caso de que la Junta de Educación deba  determinar que no es apropiado, factible o practico colocar tal proposición o proposiciones, pregunta o preguntas, en una máquina de votación, entonces tal proposición o proposiciones, pregunta o preguntas, como la  La Junta de Educación puede resolver colocar ante los votantes en dicha elección será votada por el uso de boletas de papel.

SE NOTIFICA ADEMÁS que las solicitudes de papeletas de voto por correo anticipada y en ausencia para la elección de miembros del  Junta de Educación, la adopción del presupuesto anual y la votación sobre cualquier otra proposición y pregunta  como se puede colocar legalmente ante los votantes en la elección anual del distrito se puede solicitar en la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito. El Distrito debe recibir una solicitud para una boleta de voto por correo anticipada y en ausencia en la oficina del Secretario no antes de treinta (30) días antes de la Elección Anual. Una solicitud para una boleta de voto por correo anticipaday en ausencia debe ser recibido por el Secretario del Distrito por lo menos siete (7) días antes de la Elección Anual si la boleta es  para ser enviada por correo al votante, o el día antes de la Votación/Elección del Presupuesto Anual si la boleta debe ser entregada personalmente al votante o a su agente designado. Al recibir una solicitud oportuna para un boleta de voto por correo anticipada y en ausencia enviada por correo, el secretario del distrito enviará la boleta por correo a la dirección designada en la solicitud a más tardar seis (6) días antes de la Elección Anual. Ninguna boleta de votantes por correo anticipada y ausentes  debe  ser escrutado, a menos que se haya recibido en la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito a más tardar a las 5:00 p.m. el día de la votación. Se facilitará una lista de todas las personas a las que se hayan entregado papeletas de voto por correo anticipada y en ausencia  disponible para inspección en la Oficina del Secretario de dicho Distrito Escolar y estará abierto para inspección  por cualquier votante calificado de dicho Distrito Escolar durante el horario regular de oficina entre las 8:00 a.m. y las 3:00 p.m.

SE DA AVISO ADEMÁS de que los votantes militares que no están actualmente registrados pueden  solicitar registrarse como votante calificado del distrito escolar. Votantes militares que son votantes calificados de la escuela distrito pueden presentar una solicitud para una boleta militar. Los votantes militares  pueden designar una preferencia para  recibir un registro de votante militar, una solicitud de boleta  militar o una boleta militar por correo, facsímil  transmisión o correo electrónico en su solicitud de tal registro, solicitud de boleta o boleta. Los formularios de registro de votantes militares y los formularios de solicitud de boleta militar deben recibirse en la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito a más tardar a las 5:00 p.m. el 25 de abril de 2024. Ninguna boleta sera escrutinada a menos que sea devuelto por correo o enpersona y (1) recibido en la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito antes del cierre de las urnas el día de las elecciones y que muestre una marca de cancelación del servicio postal de los Estados Unidos o de un   servicio postal de un pais extranjero,o mostrando un endoso fechado de recibo por  otra agencia de los Estados Unidos Gobierno; o (2) recibido por la Oficina del Secretario del Distrito a más tardar a las 5:00 p.m. el día de las elecciones  y firmado y fechado por el votante militar y un testigo de ello, con una fechaque se asocia no ser más tarde que el día anterior a la elección.

FECHA: 7 de marzo de 2024


Nuevo Hyde Park, Nueva York

Lisa Rutkoske, Secretaria

Distrito Escolar De Herricks

Ciudad de North Hempstead

41 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
42 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
43 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT


The resolution, a summary of which is published herewith, has been adopted on May 9, 2024 and the validity of the obligations authorized by such resolution may be hereafter contested only if such obligations were authorized for an object or purpose for which the Herricks Union Free School District, in the County of Nassau, New York, is not authorized to expend money or if the provisions of law which should have been complied with as of the date of publication of this Notice were not substantially complied with, and an action, suit or proceeding contesting such validity is commenced within twenty days after the publication of this Notice, or such obligations were authorized in violation of the provisions of the constitution.


The object or purpose for which the bonds are authorized is the payment of settled claims resulting from litigation commenced against the District pursuant to the New York Child Victims Act, at the estimated total cost of $35,000,000.

The amount of obligations to be issued is not to exceed $35,000,000.

The period of probable usefulness is between five (5) and fifteen (15) years and shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of the New York Local Finance Law.

A complete copy of the bond resolution summarized above shall be available for public inspection during normal business hours at the office of the District Clerk, Herricks Union Free School District, 999-B Herricks Road, New Hyde Park New York 11040.

Dated:      May 9, 2024

Herricks residents head to polls to elect 2 trustees, vote on budget

Continued from Page 3

The former New York City school teacher has lived in Albertson for 22 years. She has three children who have graduated from the district and one who is currently a 10th grader.

Bono said that if elected trustee, one of her goals is to mitigate traffic issues around the schools, especially the middle school. However, she said her main goal is to spark change amongst the board of education itself.

“I also feel it’s important that people on the board, that there’s a turnaround and new blood,” Bono said. “Currently, we have five members that have been there for 12 years, plus. And none of them have children on the board and I think that’s important as well in order to be relevant and be able to connect with the community.”

Bono later acknowledged that she misspoke and one member has been there for only seven years.

Bono said her biggest concern for the district is keeping the tax levy increase under the tax cap.

said Ratra, who volunteers with various Albertson civic associations. “My motive is only to help people.”

Gupta is a North Hills resident who graduated from the Herricks district. He has a 12th grader in the district and a son who graduated from Herricks in 2018 and now serves as a naval officer.

Gupta runs two family-owned children’s education centers with his wife in New Hyde Park and Hicksville called Smart Brain International. He said they have been successfully running the business for 21 years and understand education is not a “one-path type of approach,” but often more nuanced.

The resident said his biggest concern for the district is intolerance toward diverse students and families. He said he has heard negative comments from community members about changes in the neighborhood when it comes to increased diversity.

district is growing enrollment, a financial stressor that she would hope to combat by maximizing state aid and federal grants.

Quraishi said she supports the board’s adopted 2024-2025 budget and believes the board is handling lawsuit costs well.

Lo has been a Williston Park resident for six years. While Lo works as a financial adviser, his wife owns a coffee shop in Williston Park, where he said local parents often come in and speak about their experience as district parents. The couple has two young children in the Herricks district.

If elected, his goals include improving school facilities, especially at the middle school, replacing outdated sports uniforms, lending his financial background to budget conversations, improving communication efforts between the board and district parents and better supporting district-wide sports and arts programs. He said he wants to be a conduit for these district parents and their concerns.

She said she is happy with the current proposed budget and the way the administration is handling Child Victims Act costs. She said she does not want to see major changes in how the board handles the budget and programming.

Bono said she has been extremely involved in the district for 20 years, including acting as the president of nearly every district PTA at some point.

While Gupta acknowledged that addressing these tolerance issues is not an overnight fix, he said he wants to create an environment where people begin talking about diversity more often and encourage small group conversations to take place.

Regarding the district’s proposed budget and how the administration is handling costs due to child sex abuse lawsuits filed under the Child Victims Act, Gupta said he would need to take a closer look at the budget before sharing his opinions.

“I do have two very young children in the district so we are going to have a number of years here,” Lo said. “Being in a position that we do have this establishment within the community, it allows us to really listen to a lot of the local parents all around, not just our elementary school, but elsewhere. The middle and high school.”

If elected, he said he would not be averse to piercing the tax cap during his tenure as trustee, but there would need to be solid justification for doing so.

“I think my reputation and my work that I’ve put into the district speaks for itself. Everyone who knows me knows that I’ve given 110% to Herricks since the minute I walked into the school district,” Bono said. “I have extremely close relationships with the administration, the teachers, the parents. My reach is very far.”

Meanwhile, five new candidates are competing for the remaining seat on the board.

Ravinder Ratra is a business analyst who has lived in Albertson for 25 years. He has two sons who graduated from the district in 2006 and 2010. He comes from a family of educators – his mother and brother are teachers and his sister is a school principal.

He said his biggest priority as a trustee would be to keep the district budget and tax levy as low as possible. He said the administration is wasting available resources in the community.

For example, he said, the board had a contract last year with a company to improve the Herricks image and branding. Ratra said this was an unnecessary expense.

He said his second priority would be to improve the district rating, which he thinks is lagging. He would do this by trying to get ahead of trends, such as artificial intelligence, which he would encourage to be implemented in classrooms.

When it comes to the budget, Ratra said he did not want to go into the details of how the district is handling lawsuit costs because they are unavoidable and better left to legal experts. He said he does not want to pierce the tax cap as a trustee but would consider it if necessary for programming.

“I came here in this country with $22…and it is time for me to give back,”

Gupta said he enjoys serving the district, and this trustee position is another way to continue that volunteer work. The North Hills resident is a firefighter and EMT in Albertson. His older son, who is now a naval officer, was also a firefighter and EMT, and his 17-year-old son in high school is a firefighter.

“It’s been a very long time being in this district and I know a lot of other people have moved out. I stayed and I love this place,” Gupta said. “I love the schools and I think it’s done wonders for my own children and it’s just something that I want to make sure that other people have that opportunity.”

Quraishi is a lifelong Nassau County resident. She is no stranger to the district, having lived in the Herricks district for nearly 40 years. She has three children in the Herricks district: one in elementary school, one in middle school and one in high school.

“As a physician from Northwell, I am uniquely poised to help facilitate [the partnership between Northwell and Herricks],” Quraishi said. “The mental health needs of our students is also a very, very big concern and I want to make sure we’re providing all the resources that we can to help our kids be the best that they can be.”

If elected, she said her goals include increasing the number of security guards for students’ safety and security, improving cybersecurity efforts, and improving the district’s partnership with Northwell.

The physician also works as an assistant professor at the Hofstra School of Medicine. She said education is her favorite part of her job.

She said her biggest concern for the

Lo said some of his biggest concerns for the district include CVA costs and student access to social media. Lo said he thinks the board is doing a good job of handling lawsuit costs. He said he worries about cyberbullying and the spread of misinformation online among students.

“I think residents should vote for me because…I am here for the long haul,” Lo said. “I want to improve the experience for our students and, of course, hopefully the teachers as well.”

Efforts to reach Stuart were unavailing.

An issue top of mind for candidates is the large year-to-year increase included in the proposed budget.

Herricks School District board membersadopted a proposed 2024-2025 budgetof $141,710,364, which represents a 5.2% increase from the 2023-2024 budget of $134,719,970.

The proposed tax levy increase is 2.38%, which is within the state tax cap. Superintendent Tony Sinanis said the district’s average tax levy over the past seven years was 1.78%.

Board members said the larger-thanusual budget increase was due in part to the cost of settling child sex abuse claims against the district filed under the Child Victims Act.

When the board adopted the proposed 2024-2025 budget, the district’s original state aid projection was $27 million. According to the administration, state aid will provide around 20% of total district revenues in the 2024-2025 budget.

Rutkoske said the district will receive $100,000 more in state aid under the recently approved state budget than under Gov. Kathy Hochul’s initial proposal. The assistant superintendent for business said the administration has not made changes to the budget due to the slight bump in aid.

Residents will vote on the budget and elect two trustees on May 21 from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Herricks Community Center, 999 Herricks Rd., New Hyde Park.

44 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT

Ex-G.N. doctor convicted of abusing patients

Continued from Page 10

The federal conviction involves abuse that occurred from about 2007 to 2019, yet the multiple lawsuits claim it spanned more than two decades.

The lawsuits are being presented by multiple “John Does,” with one lawsuit including 58 anonymous minors and adults alleging abuse.

One lawsuit states the alleged abuse is “almost indescribable,” but that Paduch “digitallyraped, fondled, groped, ogled, masturbated, objectified, and sodomized patients with both his ungloved hands as well as phallic shaped sex toys.”

Some victims are alleging that the abuse was ongoing over multiple years, with one stating it occurred over five years while his patient, according to court documents. This victim was also a minor during the five years of alleged abuse.

“For nearly two decades, Defendant Darius A. Paduch pretended to practice medicine in the field of urology, while instead engaging in a career of racketeering, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, and sex-trafficking of both minors and adults,” one lawsuit states. “During this time, defendant Darius A. Paduch acted as a disgusting, sadistic and perverted sexual predator who used his esteemed and trusted position with “corporate defendants” to sexually groom, ex-

ploit, abuse, rape, molest, fondle, sodomize, and commit various acts of physical, verbal, and sexual assault and battery on thousands of patients, including the plaintiffs herein, all under the pretense of providing legitimate, medically necessary, medical care. [sic]”

Another lawsuit states the victim experienced “severe emotional and psychological distress, humiliation, fright, dissociation, anger, depression, anxiety, a severe shock to his nervous system, physical pain and mental anguish, and emotional and psychological damage,” due to the alleged abuse.

The suits also are being brought forward against the hospitals, accusing them of negligence. One suit says Weill Cornell Medicine was aware or should have been aware of the alleged abuse that was occurring.

One lawsuit alleges the medical centers and their associated organizations – including Northwell Health – conspired with Paduch to shield the alleged abuse and sexual assault.

Allegations contend other healthcare employees were present in the room during some instances of abuse yet did not do anything to stop it.

The lawsuits contend that multiple victims had reported the alleged abuse to the hospitals before his arrest.

Town approves for Port Parking District projects

Continued from Page 9

The board also amended its zoning laws to approve the establishment of firehouses in residential zoning district AAA, which is permitted in the other residential zones of AA and A.

Dalimonte said this would only affect West Shore Road in Port Washington, where Fire Department obtained 12 acres of land but was not zoned for firehouses.

The councilmember said they now have the ability to build a firehouse on that land, but only if they seek to in the future.

In other news, the board also opted to establish various new traffic signs and zones, as well as amend its fire protection agreements with the Albertson Fire Department and the Roslyn Fire Companies.

A “No Stopping” restriction was established from 9 p.m. through 8 a.m. on the east side of Central Avenue starting south of First Street in

Garden City Park.

The signs were requested after residents requested a solution to stop a neighboring autobody shop from parking cars along their streets which sometimes blocked driveways and were in various states of repair.

Councilmember Dennis Walsh said the town’s traffic engineer proposed the restriction on overnight parking as a solution to resolve the issue.

The board also established a school speed zone and a westbound full stop on Dogwood Avenue at the intersection with School Drive in Albertson.

The town amended its agreements with the two fire companies to reflect an alignment with their adopted budgets.

The North Hempstead Board will convene again at 7 p.m. on June 4 for its next public meeting.

Women’s Health Care of Garden City committed to personalized care

John L. Gomes, MD, founded Women’s Health Care of Garden City in 1995. It has remained an independent private practice, providing personalized obstetrical and gynecological services.

He employs the technical advances of conventional medicine with an integrative approach to navigate women through difficult pregnancies into the menopausal years. He treats a wide variety of OB/GYN conditions and is dedicated to providing the highest quality of care.

All tests are conveniently done on the premises, and a dedicated, compassionate staff is on call 24/7.

He is committed to excellence in patient communication, education and support, as many patients come with anxiety associated with past experiences and future concerns.

Dr. Gomes received his undergraduate degree from Brown University, and his Doctor of Medicine from Columbia University.

He is both Board Certified and a Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Women’s Health Care of Garden City is located at 1000 Franklin Avenue, Suite 200, Garden City.

45 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT
Call 516-222-8883 or visit online at DrGomes.com
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Port’s Bryce Katty trades the ice for fairway, possible title

The two sports seem to be extremely different, like night and day, cold and hot, the New York Knicks and boring playoff games.

Growing up in Port Washington, Bryce Karty had two passions: golf and hockey.

One is a game filled with passion and intensity, with hitting, shooting, and passing, while opponents try to hook, hold, and trip to slow you down.

The other is a leisurely game where the only opponent is the course, and manners and decorum are extremely important.

When he turned 13, Karty felt like it was time to make a choice: Which one to really dedicate himself to and get serious about.

He chose the outdoor sport.

“I just thought about it and felt like I could go further in golf, so I stopped playing hockey and really started practicing golf a lot more,” Karty said. “I still love hockey but golf is where I wanted to be.”

While Karty is thrilled by the New York Rangers playoff run and once dreamed of being Adam Fox or Artemiy Panarin, his choice of sport seems to have paid off.

One of the top golfers in Nassau County, the junior at Schreiber High, is aiming for the boy’s individual title at next week’s county championships on May 21 after coming so close to winning last year.

Karty placed second to Wheatley’s Joseph Dolezal at counties last year while helping Port Washington win both the county and Long Island championships as its No.2 golfer.

Karty then went to state and shot an 81 on the famously difficult Black Course at Bethpage State Park in the L.I. championship, the best mark of any golfer there.

Finally, Karty qualified for state and finished 37th in the state, shooting a 161. If he qualifies for states this season, he could be the first Port Washington player to make states three straight years.

“His knowledge of the game, his course management, is really great,” said Port Washington coach Mike Killoran. “He’s always working on his swing, analyzing what has gone wrong. He’s a real student of the sport.”

Karty’s love of golf started at age five when his grandpa George took him to

Harbor Links in Port Washington. Almost immediately, Karty was able to watch other golfers’ swings and replicate them.

“My grandpa tells me that he’d show me how to swing, point to someone else swinging on the range, and I would then do it well,” Karty recalled. “I always had pretty good hand-eye coordination.”

Despite neither of his parents playing golf, Karty continued to learn and play. Hockey was his main sport; he competed on the Long Island Gulls travel team and loved it.

But golf was the stronger pull, partly because of the unpredictability and challenge of the game.

“You can always shoot lower and better,” Karty said. “One day you can be hitting it perfectly, then the next day you think you’re doing everything the same way, and you’re playing badly. I love the challenge of it.”

The mental part of the sport is even more difficult.

“Everything on the golf course is internal; you can’t scream or yell or throw stuff,” Karty said. “The whole sport is between your ears, so you have to figure out how to control your emotions. You let it out in your head.”

Karty said his rule on being upset or happy about a shot is “to take five seconds and then let it go.”

“You just have to pick up your mental game and get right back at it,” Karty said. “There’s so much downtime in golf when you’re walking or preparing. It’s so important to be mentally ready when you’re going to hit a shot.”

Karty’s strengths on the course aren’t just his driving and putting; he’s also constantly helping his teammates, Killoran said.

“Bryce always has a drill ready to go to help the other kids, something that will improve them a little bit,” Killoran said. “He’s like having another coach.”

Karty’s goals, besides getting back to states this year, include playing Division I college golf, and he said he’s already heard from some coaches.

A lot depends on how he finishes this season and how he performs in summer tournaments.

“I just want to keep getting better and hopefully do better at states this year,” he said. “All the time I spent chipping and putting and practicing, hopefully, will pay off, and hopefully, we can win the team championship again, too.”

Blank Slate Media Newspapers, Friday, May 17, 2024 47 SPORTS WWW.THEISLAND360.COM
PHOTO COURTESY OF KARTY FAMILY Port Washington junior Bryce Karty, one of the top golfers in Nassau, is aiming for a county title next week.
48 The Williston Times, Friday, May 17, 2024 WT

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