Coram Civic Association

LOCAL NEWS

Published June 21, 2018
LI’s Largest Companies: The new Top 10 NEWSDAY Jun 18, 2018
“Nineteen ninety-eight was dominated by electronics,” said John A. Rizzo, chief economist at the Long Island Association,. “Now it’s health care and financial. This means a shift from manufacturing and electronics to services.”…read article

LI jobless rate at 3.5% NEWSDAY; Jun 20, 2018
“The labor market remains quite strong but not as strong as this number would seem to indicate,” said John Rizzo, a Stony Brook University economics professor and the chief economist for the Long Island Association trade Group, “It’s a function of people leaving the labor force, not a function of more jobs.”…read article

Voters OK budgets in 2 school districts NEWSDAY; Jun 20, 2018
Revotes on rejected school spending plans have become a rarity in recent years—a development due, in large part, to increased public satisfaction with school budgets subject to state imposed tax-cap restrictions…read article

Red-light cameras are saving lives NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 17, 2018
Dangerous right-angle collisions were down 23 percent, but rear-end collisions were 35 percent higher. Suffolk’s rear-end collisions on all roads are up 23 percent compared with 2009, and up a nearly identical 22 percent at red-light-camera intersections in that span. We all know what’s changed on our roads. Many drivers don’t focus on driving as they talk on and play with phones and attend to navigation systems and other gadgets. Getting a citation is frustrating, but the way to avoid it is by driving attentively and following the rules…read editorial

Beware of hidden taxes in retirement NEWSDAY; Jun 17, 2018
Your taxes in retirement may be a lot more complicated than taxes while you’re working. Here’s what to expect when you hit retirement age…read article

Published June 14, 2018
Gov makes case for gun bill NEWSDAY; Jun 12, 2018
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday continued to drum up support for state “red-flag” legislation that would allow educators to get court orders to block students’ access to guns for youths suspected of being a danger to themselves or others…read article

Tying evaluations to charters NEWSDAY; Jun 13, 2018
Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan’s bill calls for decoupling teacher evaluation from student scores on standardized state tests. The measure also calls for reducing teachers’ probationary period from four years to three, allowing them to apply for tenure after that. Flanagan tied those proposals with another that would raise the limit on the number of charter schools from 460 to 560 and do away with a regional cap that had limited the number downstate
….read article

New rules on opt-outs NEWSDSAY; Jun 12, 2018
School districts where large numbers of students boycott mandated tests could be required to spend part of their federal funding to encourage greater test participation under regulations tentatively approved Monday by the state’s Board of Regents…read article

Loan program to help vets grow businesses NEWSDAY; Jun 13, 2018
Long Island veterans interested in applying can do so at excelsiorgrowthfund.org…read article

At risk to automation NEWSDAY; Jun 13, 2018
Long Island has 182,650 jobs that are “highly” vulnerable to automation, meaning that most of the work can be done by machines…read article

State bill could impact LI water NEWSDAY; Jun 10, 2018
Sen. Kenneth LaValle (R-Port Jefferson), who is sponsoring the legislation with Assemb. Fred Thiele (I-Sag Harbor), called the bill “critical for Long Island.”…read article

More 401(k)s invested now in just 1 mutual fund NEWSDAY; Jun 11, 2018
“People need to get two things right: They need to save enough, and they need to invest appropriately,” said Jean Young, senior research analyst with the Vanguard Center for Investor Research. “That sounds easy, but it’s not.”…read article

More smoothies coming NEWSDAY LI BUSINESS; Jun 11, 2018
Dallas-based Smoothie King has more than 900 stores nationwide offering frozen beverages made with fruit, juice, nuts and/or vegetables…read article

For budding biologists NEWSDAY; Jun 13, 2018
Have a kid who dreams of becoming a marine biologist? Here are several programs and upcoming events guaranteed to pique curiosity about the Island’s fabulous coastal waters as budding marine biologists dip in their toes…read article

Suffolk’s OTB big payouts NEWSDAY; Jun 12, 2018
OTB president Phil Nolan’s $45,500 raise brought his salary to $197,500 [29.9% raise], while vice president Anthony Pancella III’s salary increased by $45,000, to $187,500 [31.6% raise]. In total, 44 of the betting agency’s 51 nonunion employees received raises in May ranging from 2.75 percent to 55 percent. Some lawmakers called the raises excessive at a time when OTB is still in bankruptcy, and for a public benefit corporation whose profits are supposed to go to offset county taxes. Assemb. Michael Fitzpatrick (R-St. James), called OTB a “patronage mill . . . for an organization that is as deeply in debt as it is, maybe they should be out of bankruptcy before raising their pay.” Fitzpatrick noted that the higher pay will boost employees’ pensions when they retire. Suffolk political parties share patronage at the organization under an informal power sharing agreement…read article

Learning in the ONLINE pipeline NEWSDAY; Jun 11, 2018
Apprentices can add to their skills in new plumbing courses. The new initiative takes aim at a chronic problem on Long Island and statewide: a shortage of plumbers…read story

Audit: Excess schools cash in Mt. Sinai NEWSDAY; Jun 11, 2018
Mount Sinai has joined the growing ranks of school districts on Long Island and statewide cited by state auditors for amassing millions of dollars in cash reserves beyond regulated limits
read article

DMV hours drive us to distraction NEWSDAY OPINION; Jun 13, 2018
“Need a license or plates? Don’t plan on trying late at night or on weekends.”…read opinion

Working against students’ needs NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 11, 2018
“NYSUT’s [New York State United Teachers] priority is protecting members from any evaluation system that would make it easier to identify and possibly fire underperforming teachers. The parents’ priority is protecting children from tests or test results because of a stressful experience. Together, they’ve stymied the movement to make sure New York’s children have effective teachers and succeed at rigorous coursework that will prepare students for careers and college.”…read editorial

Don’t let up in opioid fight NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 12, 2018
In Suffolk, both opioid overdoses and deaths from them are down about by about a third through May compared with the same period last year. What is needed has not changed: Kids and adults alike need to have the dangers of opioids reinforced repeatedly, those who fall into the addiction trap need help, and police need to keep maximum pressure on the vultures profiting from deadly drugs like fentanyl and heroin…read editorial

Why teens should work over summer vacation NEWSDAY; Jun 10, 2018
Summer jobs for teens are an endangered species worth saving. These seasonal jobs offer more than a paycheck…read article

The big gulp NEWSDAY; Jun 12, 2018
Teens are drinking more sugar-sweetened sports drinks. A 20-ounce bottle of orange Gatorade has a hefty 34 grams of sugar, 36 grams of carbs, and 140 calories…read article

Published June 7, 2018
Medicare finances imperiled NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2018
For Medicare, it could mean that hospitals, nursing homes and other providers of medical care would be paid only part of their agreed-upon fees…read article

Cuomo: Let educators flag gun risk NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2018
“The evidence suggests that, in many cases, the teacher already had suspicions about a student before an action happened,” Cuomo said. “Right now, teachers are basically powerless.”…read article

Hundreds at tunnel meeting 
NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2018
A tunnel would cost between $31.5 billion and $55.4 billion, according to the study, which said it would spur “new opportunities for economic growth,” reduce road congestion and improve air quality. Residents in both Long Island communities have said a Sound crossing would add congestion and harm the environment…read article

Entry-level jobs getting more skilled, technical 
NEWSDAY LI BUSINESS; Jun 4, 2018
Getting a job at a store or fast-food restaurant — often a way into the economy for an unskilled worker — used to be as simple as walking up and down the mall and applying. Stores…are actually raising wages in a tight labor market. But they’re seeking a new type of worker: one who has a lot more skills up front…read article

Breach may fuel algae NEWSDAY; Jun 3, 2018
The breach might aid algae blooms by reducing water circulation, said Chris Gobler, a professor at Stony Brook’s School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences. The main cause of brown tides and other blooms has been known for decades: too much nitrogen, mainly from people and fertilizers…read article

LI tops in hiring by IDA projects NEWSDAY; Jun 2, 2018
Long Island accounts for nearly 25 percent of the jobs created in recent years by building projects receiving tax breaks from industrial development agencies in the state. Suffolk IDA projects had the lowest tax incentives per job, $456, while Glen Cove had the highest, $22,000…read article
With related articleUnemployment dips to 3.8%, 18-year low

The Redesign of Henry Schein NEWSDAY LI BUSINESS; Jun 3, 2018
LI’s Fortune 500 company reconfigures to meet challenges…read article

LIers learn how to save drug overdose victims NEWSDAY; Jun 3, 2018
Suffolk County Legis. William Spencer (D-Centerport), who helped sponsor the training, recalled how in 2016 a man began overdosing outside a doughnut shop in Ronkonkoma and collapsed. Although he is a physician, all he could do was lift the man’s jaw to ensure he was breathing and wait for emergency responders to arrive with naloxone—which “revived him immediately,” Spencer said. “I did not have Narcan,” he said. “It was terrifying . . . You bet I have Narcan now.” Said one Deer Park resident, “If you’ve given a nasal spray to yourself, you know how to do this.”…read article

Suffolk’s headway on opioids NEWSDAY; Jun 2, 2018
Through May 27, rates of fatal and nonfatal overdoses dropped 38 percent year over year, Chief of Detectives Jerry Gigante told the Suffolk Health Committee on Thursday…read article
Related commentary13 things about Narcan NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 5, 2018
“Consider, please, 13 unexpected things I learned about Narcan on a hot, muggy Saturday, between a visit to the gym and the barber for my husband’s bi-weekly haircut”…read column

Suffolk – GOP blocks $32.7M in projects NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2018
The seven-member GOP caucus accused Bellone of trying to pressure them to vote for all 29 projects in two resolutions rather than deal with them individually, as has been done for the past 40 years…read article

Exec shuns SCCC aid bid
 NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2018
County Executive Steve Bellone has rejected Suffolk County Community College trustees’ request for a 4 percent increase in the county contribution to their proposed budget, offering a 1.84 percent hike instead. Democratic Legis. Tom Donnelly (D-Deer Park), education committee chairman and an SCCC graduate, said the college does “remarkable work” with students who cannot afford private or four-year state schools. “I’d like to try and split the difference and get to at least three percent,” he said. “We need to do a better job of keeping the cost affordable to help out young residents move into the workforce.”…read article

Teacher bill criticized NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2018
Parent representatives of the movement on Long Island said in interviews this week that the state law that links students’ test scores to teachers’ job evaluations should be wholly repealed, rather than revised. Local teachers union leaders interviewed by Newsday said they understand the frustrations felt by many parents over testing issues, but believe nonetheless that the pending legislation deserves support. “I think this was a good start in the right direction,” said Patty Kolodnicki, a math teacher in the Levittown district who represents her union local at state-level meetings. “It’s taking pressure off teachers— therefore, it’s taking pressure off students.”…read article

Opt-Out costs feared
 NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2018
“The Every Student Succeeds Act seeks to hold states and schools accountable for keeping ‘opt-outs’ to 5 percent or less,” said Robert Lowry, deputy director of the New York State Council of School Superintendents. “All states have to find some way to comply with that part of federal law.”…read article

Get teacher-evaluation law right NEWSDAY OPINION; Jun 4, 2018
“The New York State United Teachers [NYSUT] — the state’s largest teachers union — is pushing lawmakers in the final weeks of the state legislative session to make the teacher evaluation system irrelevant. Though New York’s teacher evaluation law is far from perfect, this particular ‘cure’ may be worse than the disease.”…read opinion

Teachers prep for shooter scenario NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2018
The need for drills and training is “an unfortunate reality,” said Riverhead Superintendent Aurelia Henriquez. “There’s no way you could expect to survive one of these attacks if you’re not prepared,” said Deputy Sheriff Capt. John Rung…read article

Immigration is lost in Congress NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 3, 2018
“As Congress nears its summer recess and members position themselves for primaries and the November general election, attempts to pass legislation have become frantic. But the bills in the House of Representatives push in opposite directions to satisfy drastically different constituencies. Meanwhile, the Senate is poised to do nothing, and both parties and President Donald Trump are muddying the waters with intra-party squabbles and cynical lies.”
read editorial
Related Letters to the EditorIllegal immigration’s impact on the Island
Jun 4, 2018read Letters

See gun violence as a health crisis NEWSDAY OPINION; Jun 3, 2018
“Gun violence often baffles and enrages us—it’s painful to see young lives lost to pointless carnage—but if we treat it not as apolitical battlefield or a moral quandary but as a health challenge, we might begin to see solutions presenting themselves.”…read opinion

RFK’s message must still matter NEWSDSAY OPINION; Jun 3, 2018
“Even 50 years after the candidate’s death, his pleas for national unity can guide us.”
read opinion

Tricky calculus in NY Senate races NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 3, 2018
Legis. Monica Martinez (D-Brentwood), wants to talk about running for the 3rd Senate District seat from which state Sen. Tom Croci (R-Sayville) is retiring. Republicans last week named Assemb. Dean Murray as their candidate. “I think the governor has her on his speed dial and has talked to her three times a day in the last few weeks,” Schaffer joked late last week. All of this puts Suffolk Democratic chairman Rich Schaffer in an increasingly difficult spot. He’s long been accused of being too close to Senate Republicans and opposed to city Democrats who gave the region the unpopular MTA tax…read column
Related articles7 judges cross-endorsed…PBA chief backs Kennedy… Marian Tinari cross-endorsed for surrogate judgeNEWSDAY; Jun 4, 2018read articles

Prickly politics again in Albany NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 6, 2018
The main blame goes to those who are there. In trying to show the other side incapable of good leadership, each makes the same case about itself. If you want to show you can get things done, try it…read editorial

RFK - Legacy of hope lingers NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2018
He was making his way through the crowded kitchen of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, shaking hands with an admiring busboy, when the shots rang out and he sank to the floor, mortally wounded. It was just past midnight, June 5, 1968…read story

Published May 31, 2018
Koerick pitches Longwood to title NEWSDAY; May 30, 2018
Longwood’s Emily Koerick pitched a four-hitter against Half Hollow Hills West in the [Suffolk County] Class AA title game. Longwood (21-2) will face Nassau champion and defending state Class AA champ East Meadow (17-5) at 6:30 p.m. Friday in the Long Island Class AA final at Hofstra…read story

Federal law drives up lines at DMV NEWSDAY; May 30, 2018
New Yorkers, facing a 2020 deadline to obtain far more secure driver’s licenses to comply with a federal edict to combat terrorism, are flocking to DMV offices statewide in recent months
read article

Eye on nitrogen in LI’s fertilizers NEWSDAY; May 30, 2018
Lawn care industry representatives sparred with environmentalists Tuesday over a state bill that would ban high nitrogen fertilizer on Long Island…read article

Jay Schneiderman: ‘I’m in the race’ for comptroller NEWSDAY; May 30, 2018
Southampton Supervisor Jay Schneiderman says he is seeking the Democratic nomination for Suffolk County comptroller. County Executive Steve Bellone immediately endorsed Schneiderman as one who has the “integrity, competence and independence to be an outstanding comptroller.” Republican first-term incumbent John M. Kennedy said he’s saved $35 million in interest costs by refinancing debt, made $8 million in audit recoveries and shut down two shelter operations he labeled “criminal enterprises.” He said increased enforcement of the hotel-motel tax has raised revenue from $8 million to$12 million. “Some people talk about great ideas, others deliver. We’re just getting warmed up and we’ll do a lot more in the next term.”
read article

$15M trash contracts questioned by labor NEWSDAY; May 30, 2018
A labor leader has questioned Brookhaven Town’s decision to award trash-hauling contracts worth nearly $15.8 million to nonunion companies. Brookhaven officials told Long Island Federation of Labor executive director Roger Clayman they are required by state law to award the refuse deals to the qualified companies that submit the lowest offers in a competitive bidding process. Officials said the town is not allowed to favor union firms over nonunion companies…read article

To Hook Students on STEM, Start With Their Parents

EDUCATION WEEK; May 23, 2018
Teachers, parents, and peers can all contribute to students' perception of value. But parents, who are often an untapped resource, can play a crucial role in their children's learning and motivation because they know what interests them…read article

Move Over, Calculus. Statistics Is on the Rise EDUCATION WEEK; May 23, 2018
Statistics and data literacy advocates hope diversifying the field of interesting and rigorous math courses could broaden students' path to STEM and other careers. As of 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimations showed that jobs that require data literacy and statistics are among the 10 fastest-growing occupations in the country…read article

Governor’s appointed judges stir debate NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has plied a legal loophole that allows him to appoint judges to the little-known state Court of Claims, who are then immediately assigned to state Supreme Court sections [an elected position] statewide where they rule on criminal and civil cases
read article

New 6-year contract for SUNY union NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018
The contract includes 2 percent wage increases each year through the 2021-22 school year, access to paid family leave benefits and a newly established minimum compensation level for part-time faculty. In addition to salary increases, the agreement allows employees to access a yearly grant to help pay for their child’s education at SUNY state-operated campuses
read article

Study: Public Pensions at risk during downturn NEWSDAY; May 29, 2018
Governments have been ramping up contributions to the funds to help cover the promises they’ve made to retirees, but that leaves less money to spend on schools, police, parks and other core government services…read article

Small businesses facing uncertain tax-law impact NEWSDAY; May 28, 2018
For owners of pass-through businesses — sole proprietors, partners and owners of companies structured as S corporations — the uncertainty around the 20 percent deduction comes from the list of ways they could be disqualified…read article

Fighting MS-13 with trust NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018
In Central Brookhaven Town, the Longwood Central School District is at the forefront of moving the trust needle. Using an $8 million multiyear grant, the district is teaching its students — even kindergartners — to “advocate for themselves in difficult situations,” said Superintendent Michael Lonergan. Lonergan said there aren’t gangs in his schools but there are kids in the surrounding community who are at risk of gangs, alcohol and drugs…read article

Opening doors for the autistic NEWSDAY; May 29, 2018
Adelphi program helps those with spectrum disorders find internships…read article

Beaches rebound in time for summer fun and sun NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018
Here’s what you need to know about the issues facing East End beaches this summer season:
read article

Dilemma for dentists NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018
Young dentists who aren’t in the financial position to start their own practice are also candidates to join large [Dental Service Organizations] groups…Older dentists who no longer want to run a business are candidates to join dental service organizations…read article

What Bellone didn’t spell out NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; May 27, 2018
“The most interesting thing about Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone’s State of the County message last week may not have been what he said, but what went virtually unmentioned.”
read column

A full ‘wine experience’ NEWSDAY; May 28, 2018
Maria Rivero González has been rejiggering plans for the 205 acres her family acquired recently from the Entenmann family in a $15 million sale [Martha Clara Vineyards] billed as Long Island wine country’s largest to date…read article

Beyond school security NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 27, 2018
To prevent mass shootings, administrators also need to identify and change cultures that alienate and isolate frustrated teens…read article

Northport’s cash cow is LI’s burden NEWSDAY OPINION; May 29, 2018
Opened in 1967, the [Northport power] plant needed to use less than one-fifth of its 1,589 MW output capacity in 2016 — a usage level expected to continue to drop over the next decade. Nonetheless, LIPA ratepayers are footing the bill for nearly $83 million a year in property taxes on the Northport plant. Of this amount, $53 million flows to the [Northport-East Northport] school district, accounting for roughly one-third of its school budget…read opinion

Friday’s a key deadline for first-time voters NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 29, 2018
If you’re registering for the first time in New York, you can act now. June 1 is the deadline for new voters to register in time for the June 26 federal primary…read editorial

New heart-valve surgery a savior NEWSDAY; May 28, 2018
Until recently, heart specialists shied away from complex valve procedures in very old patients, because open-heart surgery was their primary option and those operations are far too risky in people of advanced age. Now, the emergence of minimally invasive techniques is removing age as a barrier and changing how doctors view certain forms of heart disease in elderly patients
read article

Special pooch is a life saver NEWSDAY; May 27, 2018
Diabetic alert dogs can provide warnings 15 to 30 minutes before problems show up in the blood…read article

One man’s trash is another’s HOT SPOT NEWSDAY; May 29, 2018
Riverhead is planning to roll out new trash receptacles that will have the triple duty of accepting garbage, providing Wi-Fi service at beaches and signaling sanitation workers when the bins are full…read article

Published May 24, 2018
NY schools top US in spending per student NEWSDAY; May 22, 2018
Long Island consistently surpasses the state average in spending per pupil — 100 out of 124 districts did so in the 2016-17 school year, according to the data…read article

Shootings “A health care epidemic” NEWSDAY; May 23, 2018
Michael J. Dowling, president and chief executive of Northwell Health, said in a phone interview that laws should be passed that make it harder for Americans with mental health issues to buy a gun…read article

NY estate tax doesn’t match federal laws NEWSDAY; May 20, 2018
The federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act — passed after the current New York law was enacted — increased the federal estate tax exemption from $5.6 million to $11.18 million per person. This year, the [New York] state’s exempt amount is $5.250 million…read article

Dementia costs weigh on relatives NEWSDAY; May 20, 2018
Medicare is a lifeline for seniors and the disabled, paying for “medically necessary” costs such as hospitalization, surgery, chemotherapy, transplants, medications, pacemakers and other interventions. A dementia diagnosis demands none of that…read article

Narcan offers new lease on life NEWSDAY; May 21, 2018
On Long Island, an estimated 600 people died of drug overdoses in 2017 as part of an opioid epidemic. Naloxone—or Narcan as it is commonly known — has become an integral tool for police departments in Nassau and Suffolk, officials said. It has reversed 962 opioid overdoses in Suffolk since officers began carrying it in 2012…read article

A full course of Open options NEWSDAY; May 22, 2018
For some spectators at the U.S. Open golf tournament, the draw of shopping, food and other fan experiences may be on par with the main event in Southampton next month…read article

Long Island: Welcome to Summer! NEWSDAY; May 20, 2018
With the summer vacation season set to begin Friday leading into Memorial Day weekend, local tourism promotion officials say they expect the industry to grow beyond the last estimate they have from a consultant: $5.6 billion in total spending in 2016…read article

LI cops: We’ll keep making pot arrests NEWSDAY; May 21, 2018
Pot smokers on Long Island shouldn’t expect a pass like their New York City counterparts. “The Suffolk County Police Department is responsible for enforcing all laws on the books and will continue to carry out that responsibility by arresting people who violate the law,” Commissioner Geraldine Hart said…read article

LI’s jobless rate ticks up to 4% NEWSDAY; May 23, 2018
Long Island’s overall unemployment rate nearly matched Ithaca’s 3.9 percent, the lowest in the state. Those rates compared with 4.4 percent for the state and 3.7 percent for the nation, on the same seasonally unadjusted basis…read article

Suffolk opens campsites to visiting golf fans NEWSDAY; May 22, 2018
Officials expect no impact on local campers because the event comes before the closing of school and summer vacations…read article

Suffolk signs bike-share deal NEWSDAY; May 20, 2018
Suffolk County has hired a Boston company to setup and run a bike-share program
read article

2nd tries for budget NEWSDAY; May 22, 2018
A budget that seeks to override the cap requires a 60 percent majority, and rejection in the second round of voting results in an automatic tax freeze. That kind of financial restriction can force a school district to dig into reserve funds, cut staff or reduce student services
read article

DeVos: School safety plan in works NEWSDAY; May 23, 2018
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said Tuesday the school safety commission created after the Parkland, Florida, high school shooting has held “listening sessions” with officials and parents but is still putting together its agenda and won’t report until year’s end…read article

Pause arrests for pot use NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 22, 2018
The illegal sale of marijuana has to be prosecuted. So does driving under the influence of the drug, which should be treated the same as alcohol or other drugs. But arresting and prosecuting people for possession, an act which is expected to be legal soon, would serve little purpose even if we could enforce the laws without discriminatory results…read editorial

New York looks to rackets for revenue NEWSDAY OPINION; May 21, 2018
“We know who’s going to pay the steepest price if marijuana and sports betting go through. It’ll be the addicts, of course. And the poor, dreaming of quick riches or a cheap escape. Statistics bear it out.”…read opinion

Chalk up a loss for our students NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 21, 2018
“The push to base evaluations of New York’s public school teachers partially on how much their students’ standardized test scores improve is on its deathbed. That means the movement to identify effective and ineffective teachers, rewarding the good ones and retraining or firing the bad ones, will again suffer. That means students will continue to suffer.”…read editorial

Pot is having a moment in New York NEWSDAY OPINION; May 20, 2018
Witness the mad dash to the finish line as New York politicians race to show how hip they are regarding marijuana…read opinion

New York’s big bet NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 20, 2018
Criminalized sports betting has become a losing proposition. Now New York has to play responsibly to assure that legalizing sports betting will pay off. The first action on legal sports gambling is in Albany, where lawmakers must lay down smart regulations while winning benefits for the public…read editorial

New interstellar asteroid found NEWSDAY; May 22, 2018
Scientists reported Monday that this interstellar resident is an asteroid sharing Jupiter’s orbit but circling in the opposite direction…read article


Published May 17, 2018
LI School Budgets Get Voter Approval NEWSDAY; May 16, 2018
Islandwide, proposed spending plans showed an average 2.85 percent increase for the coming academic year, with tax collections rising an average 2.37 percent, to $8.7 billion. Those were the highest increases in five years and reflected a rising inflation rate, upon which the state cap limits are based…read article

Urging study of tunnel NEWSDAY; May 16, 2018
The Long Island Builders Institute, which represents contractors in the home construction and remodeling industry, said the tunnel plan put forward by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo deserves serious consideration…read article

It’s kids night out (and parents too!) NEWSDAY; May 16, 2018
How to make date night an adventure for everyone in the family…read article

The Average Teacher Spends $479 a Year on Classroom Supplies, National Data Show EDUCATION WEEK; May 16, 2018
The new data show that the amount teachers spend on school supplies can vary widely. Forty-four percent of teachers spent $250 or less, while 36 percent spent between $251 and $500. Thirteen percent spent between $501 and $1,000, and 7 percent spent more than $1,000
read article

No, Teacher Strikes Do Not Help Students EDUCATION WEEK; May 16, 2018
“Teachers want us to treat them as professionals. To be treated as such, they must act as such. Certainly, individuals and groups have every right to seek changes to their compensation or pensions. But to do so in a manner that damages both students and the critical role public schools play is the antithesis of professionalism.”…read commentary

‘Greatest generation’ deploys again NEWSDAY OPINION; May 16, 2018
These veterans slogged through their wars and service, and then they came home to the daily grind of jobs and family. They put their backs into it, into life. They learned how to “hurry up and wait.” And they made for us a life and a nation so much more comfortable and easy than the one that formed them…read opinion

E-cigarette use in adults declines NEWSDAY; May 16, 2018
About 3 percent of adults were current users in 2016, down from almost 4 percent in 2014, the study found…read article

Published May 14, 2018
Special School Budget Update...
School Budget Vote: High Stakes/Low Turnout NEWSDAY; May 13, 2018
...read article
  
LI School Budgets NEWSDAY; May 13, 2018
...read article
 
LCSD Sample BOE Ballot
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LCSD Budget and BOE Candidate Profiles NEWSDAY; May 13, 2018
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Published April 26, 2018
Dannenberg lifts Longwood NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2018
Kyle Rafferty smoked a two out line drive and third baseman Jake Dannenberg was there to make the play. Dannenberg squeezed the drive for the final out, setting off a wild celebration. Senior righty Jarred Vanderhoof allowed five hits, four walks and struck out six in a complete game as Longwood edged Ward Melville, 2-1, to take sole possession of first place Tuesday
in a pivotal Suffolk League I baseball game…read article

LI jobless up to 4.6% NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2018
Though the data suggest a “deterioration” in the employment market, the numbers could reflect a shortage of qualified workers, said Shital Patel, labor-market analyst in the [Labor Department’s] Hicksville office…read article

Don’t count on lower LIPA bills NEWSDAY; Apr 23, 2018
Expected tax settlements on 4 plants likely won’t immediately reduce rates…read article

LI school taxes rise faster NEWSDAY; Apr 22, 2018
A Newsday sampling of district spending plans, many of which were completed last week, also indicates that a majority of school systems are choosing to devote additional state-aid funds to student programs and services, rather than to curbing taxes…read article

Contracts, mandates raise our local taxes NEWSDAY LETTERS; Apr 24, 2018
“We don’t need a higher sales tax, we need an end to state mandatory arbitration that’s given us $200,000 police salaries. We need to eliminate overtime in pension calculations, limit termination pay for unused sick days, and end 20-years-and-out retirement plans. We need to eliminate the Triborough Amendment, which continues step pay increases even after a public contract expires. We need to convert taxpayer-guaranteed pensions to private sector- type 401(k) pensions for future public employees.”…read letter

Bellone bungled exit from solar-panel contract NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 24, 2018
Give them an F for failing to properly exit a contract to construct those carports, a decision that will cost Suffolk taxpayers at least $13.5 million, and probably a good bit more…read editorial

Sensory-friendly thrills planned NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2018
May 3 is a sensory-friendly “Autism Day” at the Six Flags Great Adventure theme park in Jackson, New Jersey, and, beginning in May, applications will be accepted for a school scheduled to open in 2019 inside a Long Island equestrian center…read article

Flavorful family forays NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2018
There’ll be no arguing with the kids when it comes to these food offerings, from “rolled” ice cream to customized doughnuts to milkshakes with a Pop-Tart sticking out of the top
read article

Published April 19, 2018
Report: LI births fall NEWSDAY; Apr 18, 2018
It’s a situation that should concern policymakers, as decreased births affect economic prospects, leaving fewer students and future workers and taxpayers in the population pipeline, said Kevin S. Law, the Long Island Association’s president and chief executive officer
read article

Seeking revenue to cut property taxes NEWSDAY; Apr 18, 2018
John Cameron, the Long Island Regional Planning Council chairman, said the report concentrates on revenue, but emphasized the options are aimed at reducing property taxes, not enabling extra spending. Paul Llobell, legislative chair of the Long Island Board of Realtors, said “We need to control out expenses we have now, not look for additional revenues.”
read article

Suffolk air quality gets ‘F’ NEWSDSAY; Apr 18, 2018
“In this report, we look at two types of air pollution: one is ozone, and the other is particulates,” said Janice E. Nolen, assistant vice president for the American Lung Association. Suffolk received a grade of A for low levels of [particulates], the report showed. The county, however, had 23 high ozone days. Ozone also was a problem last year for the county when the American Lung Association gave Suffolk an F. Nassau County was not assessed because there are no air quality monitors within its borders…read article

Boosting wind farms NEWSDAY; Apr 16, 2018

Utilities would have to buy the credits in addition to what they would pay for energy from the wind farms, officials said. Ratepayers from utilities across the state would pay for the credits. “If the merits of the project are good, the state shouldn’t need to be giving them an added bonus to get up and running,” said Anthony Sosinski, a lobsterman from Montauk. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo ultimately envisions 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind energy for the state by 2030.
read article

Alcohol limits too high, study finds NEWSDAY; April 13, 2018
The new study estimates that 40-yearold men who drink as much as the U.S. guidelines allow can expect to live one to two years less than men who have no more than seven drinks per week…read article

Tick infections soar on LI NEWSDAY; Apr 13, 2018
“Cases in Suffolk County hover between 500 and 700 and this is just for the reported cases,” said Jorge Benach, a molecular geneticist at Stony Brook University School of Medicine, noting that Suffolk has among the highest rates of many tick-transmitted infections…read article

LI home prices surging NEWSDAY; Apr 14, 2018
Suffolk County homes fetched a median price of $352,000, up 6.7 percent from the previous March…read article

Suffolk cop unions’ contributions NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2018
A super PAC run by Suffolk police unions last year made more than $755,000 in independent expenditures on local political races. “We are far under what could be spent,” said Noel DeGerolamo, president of the Suffolk Police Benevolent Association…read article

Court denies Suffolk’s bid to recoup $7M NEWSDAY; Apr 17, 2018
Judge rules against insurance relief citing intentional breach of contract. Suffolk in November paid EDF $3 million in cash [for the breach of contract] and got legislative approval to borrow the remaining $7.8 million, with hopes of recouping insurance money in the lawsuit. State Supreme Court Justice David T. Reilly’s ruling was dated March 28, shortly before County Executive Steve Bellone launched a surprise initiative for a 17,000 seat mega-sports arena on the same property…read article

After Surviving Classroom Shooting, L.A. Teacher Reconsiders
What School Safety Means
EDUCATION WEEK; Apr 13, 2018
While big, rampage-style school shootings get most of the attention in school safety debates, smaller incidents of gun violence in school can also traumatize students and staff and upend their sense of safety. Los Angeles teacher Sherry Zelsdorf learned that firsthand…read article

The obscene cost of politics NEWSDAY OPINION; Apr 15, 2018
Already well-known men will spend $200M in a race for U.S. Senate. Why?...read opinion

Wait, another LI arena? NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 15, 2018
The suspicion is that the plans in Ronkonkoma are really being put forth as a backup in case the arena at Belmont falls through. As of now, it’s a strategy that makes no sense
read editorial

A dangerous game in LIPA tax case NEWSDAY OPINION; Apr 16, 2018
“After years of wishful thinking and lawyer double-talk on behalf of municipalities, the State Supreme Court revalued the taxes on Shoreham based on the plant’s value and ordered a $1.3 billion tax refund to LILCO. The case was settled in 2000, and Suffolk residents are still paying the tax refund, plus interest, through a special charge on electric bills. I live in Huntington, and a similar tax trial is set to start in June for the Northport power plant. Maybe that’s why Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine has announced his willingness to settle the Port Jefferson power plant tax case with LIPA. He has learned from history.”…read opinion

Don’t lower test standards NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; April 16, 2018
“NYSUT [New York State United Teachers] wants the proficiency standards on the grade-school tests lowered because the union wants nearly all students to pass to show that nearly all teachers excel. That wouldn’t help kids get the education they need. By every reliable indicator, New York puts about 40 percent of its public school students on the path to college and career readiness. Lowering an array of accurate standards to match more upbeat but dishonest ones would mean ignoring our children’s needs in favor of NYSUT’s desires.”…read editorial

What’s that bird? Now there’s an app for that! NEWSDAY; Apr 15, 2018
Curious what kind of bird that is? You can download the app for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play…read article

Published April 12, 2018
NY payroll tax plan has uncertain future NEWSDAY; Apr 6, 2018
But how many businesses will voluntarily move to a payroll tax is unclear. “The corporate payroll tax will have extremely limited appeal,” said E.J. McMahon of the fiscally conservative Empire Center think tank. “Very few firms, if any, will opt into it. . . . The governor has grossly exaggerated the scope of that impact, implying that it affects all or most New Yorkers.” Companies and small firms with high-salaried employees— most earning $200,000 to more than $1 million a year — would benefit most from the state action. [Also,] Cuomo’s charitable entities would allow taxpayers to pay taxes to local governments and school districts as charitable donations, which remain fully deductible. “The effect of the charitable giving gambit is ultimately dependent on IRS determination as to its deductibility,” said Heather C. Briccetti, president and CEO of The Business Council of New York State…read article

Land purchase lacks funds NEWSDAY; Apr 9, 2018
A provision in New York State’s recently passed budget envisions the state buying more than 800 acres of prized woodlands around the shuttered Shoreham nuclear plant, but does not provide any funding…read article

Urging the antidote NEWSDAY; Apr 6, 2018
Surgeon General: Narcan at hand will curb opioid deaths…read article

Boosting offshore wind NEWSDAY; Apr 7, 2018
The new area identified by U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is considerably larger than four wind energy areas listed by New York State as part of its recently released offshore wind master plan. Notably, the federal area includes a large swath of water directly off the entire South Fork of Long Island…read article

More are vaping pot component, cops say NEWSDAY; Apr 7, 2018
Police made 990 arrests last year for users vaping THC, the principal ingredient in marijuana, in vape pipes. “Nicotine is a drug. THC is a drug. Using a vaping method to ingest either can have both negative health effects and, in the case of THC, be illegal,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said. “Don’t be fooled into thinking either one is harmless.”…read article

Forfeiture funds under pols scrutiny NEWSDAY; Apr 9, 2018
Suffolk Legis. Kara Hahn (D-Setauket), the Democratic majority leader, said all the county law enforcement agencies except the probation department “turned in something that in my mind is not complete and does not meet the requirements of the law. There is absolutely no detail there.”…read article

Police sued over gang IDs NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2018
“Eight months after filing our records requests, New Yorkers still have no answers from the Suffolk police about its role in the Trump administration’s immigration dragnet,” NYCLU executive director Donna Lieberman said in a statement…read article 


Suffolk selects $1B sports arena plan
 NEWSDAY; Apr 9, 2018
The proposed Ronkonkoma venue would be more than twice the size of a 7,500-seat hockey arena proposed last month by Bayville developer Bernard Shereck, who said he hopes to purchase a 32-acre site in Medford owned by Suffolk County Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. Shereck has said he would move a minor league East Coast Hockey League franchise to Medford…read article

NHL: No interest in new arena NEWSDAY; Apr 10, 2018
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the proposed Ronkonkoma arena would not be considered for an expansion team to join the Islanders, Rangers and New Jersey Devils. [Also,] Bernard Shereck, a Bayville developer who has proposed landing an ECHL team for a 7,500-seat arena he wants to build in Medford, said the Ronkonkoma arena could halt his plans. “If that sees the light of day, I don’t think it makes sense for me to do that,” he said…read article

Hart’s at the helm in SCPD NEWSDAY; Apr 10, 2018
Geraldine Hart, the first female police commissioner in Suffolk County’s history, officially took the helm on Monday…read article

ESSA Pressures States to Assure All Students Have Good Teachers
EDUCATION WEEK; Apr 3, 2018
Exactly how to define what makes an effective teacher and how to implement this ambitious goal has been left up to the states—and their track records on getting started have been mixed…read article

Testing season begins on LI NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2018
New York State United Teachers, the state’s largest teachers union, wrote in a letter posted on its website that the Education Department should change scoring so that the number of students in grades three through eight deemed proficient on tests would closely align with numbers of students passing Regents exams in high school. Any such change would raise test-proficiency levels in grades through eight — numbers that previously hovered around 40 percent — to more than 70 percent…read article


School calendar changes get OK
 NEWSDAY; Apr 10, 2018
Essentially, the new regulations, backed by many educators on Long Island, allow districts to count instructional periods in hours rather than days in order to meet the state’s time requirements…read article

No reforms = No extra $ NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 8, 2018
After New York has watched the long parade of state and local officials on trial for corruption, the problem isn’t too few laws defining what’s illegal. The problem is what’s still legal that breeds shady behavior and works against the delivery of honest government…read editorial

What to make of per-pupil reporting mandate NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 3, 2018
Cuomo’s plan seems to be meant as another kick at Mayor Bill de Blasio, as well as a nudge at districts and teachers unions in areas where a lot of money is spent without great results
read column

Don’t let LIPA break its promise NEWSDAY OPINION; Apr 6, 2018
“LIPA’s latest settlement proposals, including the announced tentative agreement with the Town of Brookhaven, can’t be viewed as being in the best interest of everyone.”
read opinion

Teachers, it’s OK not to be martyrs NEWSDAY OPINION; Apr 8, 2018
When we maintain that the kids come first, we inadvertently justify lower wages…read article

Redefining Alzheimer’s NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2018
The proposal, published Tuesday in a major medical journal, is aimed at improving research into treatments by emphasizing a “biological construct” of the disease…read article

Employing diversity NEWSDAY; Apr 9, 2018

Inclusion from a wide talent pool is key to innovation, growth…read article


Published Apr 5, 2018 
Old house needs a ‘miracle’
NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2018
Civic leaders, backed by county Legis. Sarah Anker (D-Mount Sinai), hope to add the structure — believed to be about 200 years old — to the hamlet’s historical district.…read article

Retirement plan signed NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
The program, proposed by Cuomo in January, is voluntary for private-sector employers. If employers opt in, their workers will be enrolled unless they opt out individually. AARP New York, which lobbies on behalf of people age 50 and older, led the campaign for the retirement savings program…read article

Spending, wages tick up; jobless claims drop NEWSDAY; Mar 30, 2018
Americans increased their spending just 0.2 percent in February, while their incomes were boosted by increased wages and business owners’ income…read article

Taking aim at shift changes NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2018
Lawyer Dawn Davidson Drantch, corporate counsel at Alcott HR, a Farmingdale human-resources services company, also predicted a financial burden for businesses…read article

$100M boost in aid for schools NEWSDAY; Apr 1, 2018
Long Island’s public schools will get an extra $100 million in state operating aid for the 2018-19 academic year — less than annual growth in the recent past but enough to help districts curb taxes…read article

District pitches 71 layoffs NEWSDAY; Mar 30, 2018
A drop in cash reserves prompted Standard & Poor’s to downgrade the district’s credit rating from AA+ to AA-, local officials said. “The district has been living beyond its budget for a number of years,” said Superintendent Patrick Brimstein, who was brought in last May with the specific aim of righting the system’s finances…read article

Home buyers’ blues NEWSDAY; Mar 30, 2018
In Suffolk County, home buyers require an income of nearly $116,000 to make monthly payments on a house priced at the median $365,000. That’s roughly double Suffolk’s average wage of about $57,800…read article

Otters and eagles and sharks, on LI! NEWSDAY; Apr 1, 2018
River otters appear to have doubled their range in a decade, more bald eagle pairs are setting up nests each year, and scientists are researching a great white shark nursery found off the South Shore…read article

$16M for anti-gang effort on LI NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
The new state budget will bring $16 million in new money to fight criminal gangs in Suffolk and Nassau counties, much of it targeted for Brentwood and Central Islip…read article


Suffolk chooses new vendor for beaches
NEWSDAY; Mar 30, 2018
Live rock music, cocktails and Hawaiian night will continue at Suffolk beaches this summer after parks officials chose J&B Restaurant Partners [think Friendly’s] in an $8.9 million deal to replace Beach Hut after the popular former concessionaire pleaded guilty to shortchanging the county
read article

Savings in settling with LIPA on taxes NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Romaine said the town and other taxing districts would benefit from the settlement because a court could have ruled in LIPA’s favor, and allowed the utility to stop making payments immediately. By reaching a settlement, Brookhaven officials also would avoid the possibility of having to repay LIPA up to $200 million in overpaid taxes…read article

Town, LIPA OK tax deal 
NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine was expected to announce the tentative agreement Tuesday in his state of the town address. It was expected to include an eight-year ramp-down of the $32.6million a year LIPA pays in lieu of taxes for the plant, which operated just 11 percent of the time in 2016. The ramp-down period is expected to begin in the 2018-19 tax year, with incremental reductions in tax payments over the eight years…read article

'Looping' With Students Boosts Learning, Especially for Kids of Color, Study Says 
EDUCATON WEEK; Mar 29, 2018
The research shows the importance of allowing teachers to spend more than one school year with an entire class in order to better meet individual students' needs and boost their achievement. As the researchers note, having teachers loop is a relatively low-cost measure that requires no legislative approval…read article

The vexing riddle of school funding NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
On Long Island, state aid to schools will reach $3.2 billion next year, a 55 percent increase since the 2011-12 school year. With the average Long Island school district getting a 3.57 percent increase in state aid, why are local district taxes predicted to increase by 2.6 percent, too?...read editorial

MLK still a strong force on LI NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
Memories of his visit at ceremony on anniversary of his assassination…read article

CDC warns of drug-resistant bacteria spread NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2018
“Nightmare” bacteria can cause pneumonia, bloodstream and urinary tract infections. The death rate from the organisms is estimated at about 50 percent…read article

Published Mar 29, 2018
Students rally for gun control NEWSDAY; Mar 25, 2018
The rally in the nation’s capital aimed to draw as many as 500,000 people, while more than 800 “sibling” rallies across the country filled the streets in New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Miami, Los Angeles and other cities. Young people, who brandished their new or upcoming right to vote as their leverage, dominated the events…read articles

Feds: ‘I Love NY’ signs going down NEWSDAY; Mar 27, 2018
The sign removal would potentially end a controversy dating to 2013 when the Highway Administration denied the state’s request to put them up and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the next year that the sign campaign was starting anyway….read article

Economists see 2.9% growth in ’18 NEWSDAY; Mar 27, 2018
“In large part, the increase in growth prospects appears related to federal fiscal policies,” said David Altig, director of research for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta…read article

Wary of offshore drilling NEWSDAY; Mar 27, 2018
Two weeks ago, federal officials attending a Town of Brookhaven hearing were told the drilling would prove catastrophic for the economy and environment…read article

Crunch time for state budget NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Mar 25, 2018
The budget proposed by the Democratic-dominated Assembly to increase spending by 9.3 percent is completely irresponsible. Cuomo’s $168 billion spending plan, a 2.3 percent increase, is more grounded, as is the Republican-controlled Senate’s pitch of a 2 percent hike
read editorial

Students: Increase state aid NEWSDAY; Mar 28, 2018
Westbury school officials said the district should receive $74.5 million for the 2018-19 school year. The governor’s budget allocates $35 million to the district…read article

Census question draws ire NEWSDAY; Mar 28, 2018
[The] decision to ask people about their citizenship in the 2020 census set off worries among Democrats on Tuesday that immigrants would dodge the survey altogether, diluting political representation for states that tend to vote Democratic and robbing many communities of federal dollars…read article

Six arrested in Suffolk drug bust NEWSDAY; Mar 25, 2018
Michael Fearon, 33, whom police identified as the leader of the drug operation, was arrested
Saturday at his Middle Island home. William Davis, 38, of Coram; Edward Thompson, 50, of Middle Island; Paula Amador, 50, of Brooklyn and Craig Williams, 57, of Middle Island also were arrested and charged with conspiracy in the second degree, officials said…read article

Proposal for minor league hockey NEWSDAY; Mar 27, 2018
Bernard Shereck, chief executive of Arena Management of New York, faces several hurdles in his pursuit of the Medford property, which has been vacant since the Brookhaven multiplex closed there about 15 years ago…read article

Owner: 60 acres of solar farm may be saved NEWSDAY; Mar 28, 2018
Cuomo in December vetoed legislation that would have preserved the 100 acres and another 800 at Shoreham as part of the core pine barrens…read article

Suffolk water authority OKs 3.75% rate hike NEWSDAY; Mar 28, 2018
The Suffolk County Water Authority board approved a 3.75 percent rate hike that will increase the average homeowner’s bill $14.79 a year. The authority for the first time this year also will begin fully budgeting for future post-retirement benefits for employees…read article

County Employees Earning $200,000 or more NEWSDAY; Mar 26, 2018
Nearly 1,000 Suffolk County employees made more than $200,000 last year — 30 percent over 2016 — as contracts for police and other law enforcement officers drove up pay…read article

$30M in bill will help Brookhaven National Lab renovate
NEWSDAY; Mar 26, 2018
The funding comes at a critical time for BNL, home to nearly 3,000 jobs. The lab reduced its workforce by 175 jobs last year through a voluntary buyout program. Se. Chuck Schumer called the new funding “a massive investment” that “will help BNL carry out critical projects that help put Long Island on the map as a global leader in research.”…read article

Hamlets could get zone program awards NEWSDAY; Mar 28, 2018
The town board voted 6-0 on Thursday to submit the seven hamlets—North Bellport, Mastic Beach, Center Moriches, Mastic-Shirley, Moriches, Brookhaven and Middle Island — for consideration by state officials…read article

Applications taken for state scholarships NEWSDAY; Mar 27, 2018
[The NYS] Excelsior scholarship is now open for the 2018-19 school year. The application period…will run through July 23. The application is available at hesc.ny.gov/excelsior
read article

Software helps SUNY grad rates NEWSDAY; Mar 26, 2018
The web-based auditing software allows students to see what courses they need, what order to take them in, and if they’re on track for an on-time graduation…read article

The grunt work of democracy NEWSDAY OPINION; Mar 25, 2018
Young people are working within our institutions to deliver the change we need…read opinion

Looking for a superhero? Meet Keith Caputo NEWSDAY; Mar 25, 2018
Keith Caputo points to a slogan carved in wood on a table outside his office, making sure a visitor doesn’t overlook it. The slogan reads: “There is no dis in my ability.” Caputo, 37, who has Down syndrome, has been proving this officially since 2015, when he founded Helping Makes U Happy, a nonprofit organization based in Center Moriches…read article

Published Mar 22, 2018
NY’s school-funding system can’t go on NEWSDAY OPINION; Mar 18, 2018
New federal tax code makes financing via the property tax unworkable - John Brooks
Shift chief burden for school financing to New York State – David C. Bloomfield
Progress from property tax cap will be reduced – Gary Bixhorn
...read articles

School spending debate NEWSDAY; Mar 19, 2018
LI educators prepare for new federal disclosure rules. Some worry data could be misleading, others back transparency…read article

FEMA-funded crews a boon for PSEG LI NEWSDAY; Mar 19, 2018
As it worked to keep pace with a stormy winter season, PSEG Long Island was able to take advantage of something few utilities in the state or nation can: a federally funded force of hundreds of workers ready to respond. After the devastation of superstorm Sandy, LIPA received hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid to help harden the system in preparation for the next big storm…read article

Home prices spike as LI inventory falls NEWSDAY; Mar 17, 2018
Suffolk County home prices increased, year over year, by 9.4 percent, to $360,000. Despite the increases, Suffolk’s real estate market has not gotten back to its peak median price of $420,000, reached in June 2007…read article

Search for Beach Hut replacement blocked NEWSDAY; Mar 17, 2018
Suffolk County Comptroller John Kennedy brought the lawsuit after the parks department refused to comply with his subpoena demanding that officials turn over all records connected to the bidding process as part of a comptroller performance audit. Aides to County Executive Steve Bellone say Kennedy only can conduct an audit after the bidding process is complete
read article

Speaking their language NEWSDAY; Mar 19, 2018
“We can’t do our jobs if we can’t communicate with people,” Acting Suffolk County Police Commissioner Stuart Cameron said of the 2,500-officer department…read article

Fire officials want Suffolk to preserve ban NEWSDAY; Mar 21, 2018
Volunteer fire officials Tuesday pressed Suffolk lawmakers to preserve a ban on sparkler sales to protect youngsters from burn injuries despite a new state law that automatically makes such sales legal unless counties opt out…read article

Trees cleared on 60-acre site for solar farm NEWSDAY; Mar 20, 2018
The developer of a planned solar farm in Mastic has completed clearing 60 acres of the 100-acre wooded property…read article

A taxing decision on power NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Mar 18, 2018
Taxpayers in the school districts that host National Grid’s four elderly, little-used power plants are worried, and they should be. Because the assessments on the old plants are so inflated, 15 percent of Long Islanders’ power bills goes to taxes. [But] if LIPA wins a reassessment…taxpayers would be on the hook for overpayments made by LIPA since the suit was bought in 2010…read article

Why hospitals merge NEWSDAY; Mar 18, 2018
Hospitals have been combining with larger health systems to achieve economies of scale, boost their negotiating power with insurance companies and get access to capital…read article

Published Mar 15, 2018
The Sensitive Stage NEWSDAY; Mar 14, 2018
Sensory-friendly performances bring theater fun to special-needs kids…read story

Consumer prices rise NEWSDAY; Mar 14, 2018

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Tuesday said its consumer price index for the 25-county region that includes Long Island climbed 1.7 percent last month…read article

A stunning surge in employment NEWSDAY; Mar 10, 2018
U.S. employers went on a hiring binge in February, adding 313,000 jobs, amid rising business confidence…read article

Toys R Us: Preparing to liquidate NEWSDAY; Mar 10, 2018
Toys R Us Inc. is making preparations for a liquidation of its bankrupt U.S. operations after so far failing to find a buyer…read article

School taxes to rise 2.6% on LI NEWSDAY; Mar 11, 2018
School property taxes across Long Island are projected to grow at their fastest pace in five years--an average 2.6 percent increase. School tax levies — that is, revenue raised through local property taxation — will rise next year by an average 2.78 percent in Suffolk County and an average 2.42 percent both in Nassau County and statewide. Costs of teacher pensions and health insurance are accelerating at a far higher rate…read article

$3B for LI wind farms NEWSDAY; Mar 10, 2018
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday said New York State will invest $3 billion for offshore wind farms off Long Island, the first time he’s put a price tag on the plan…read article

Linking school cameras and cops NEWSDAY; Mar 031118
Suffolk would give police access to [school] security cameras in emergency situations
read article

Up to the task NEWSDAY; Mar 12, 2018
Disability task force redirects its focus to more community outreach…read article

Pricing kids off the playing field NEWSDAY OPINION; Mar 11, 2018
TD Ameritrade estimates that 63 percent of American families whose children play sports spend between $100 and $500 per child per month on youth sports. Twenty percent spend more than $12,000 a year…read article

Wise idea to help employees save NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Mar 12, 2018
More than half of New York’s private-sector workers—about 3.5 million people — don’t have access to an employer-sponsored 401(k), according to AARP. Without such a plan, many don’t save on their own…read editorial

What happens when your parents die broke NEWSDAY; Mar 11, 2018
Blogger John Schmoll’s father left a financial mess when he died: a house that was worth far less than the mortgage, credit card bills in excess of $20,000 — and debt collectors who insisted the son was legally obligated to pay what his father owed…read article

Unpaid internships could become more common 
NEWSDAY BUSINESS; Mar 11, 2018
Unpaid internships have been around for decades. But the U.S. Labor Department in 2010 developed more stringent guidelines about when interns must be paid. But courts ruled that the guidelines were too rigid and instead looked at who benefited the most from the employer- intern relationship…read article

Published Mar 8, 2018
Xplore Family Fun Center
Xplore Family Fun Center is scheduled to open [this month] in Port Jefferson Station, in
the location that used to be home to Fun 4 All. The venue is geared to ages 1 to 12. Xplore
is currently booking birthday parties for dates beginning March 17. Xplore is owned by
the same people who own Safari Adventure in Riverhead…more information

Surgeries halted at VA NEWSDAY; Mar 4, 2018

The VA Medical Center at Northport’s continuing maintenance problems threaten what is widely considered a valued facility among Long Island’s estimated 130,000 veterans, many of whom need care for war wounds, combat related psychological stress or geriatric maladies
read article

Stepping Up The Fight Against Drug Deaths NEWSDAY; Mar 5, 2018
Towns are encouraging employees to learn how to give opioid antidoteread article
Health chief’s Medicaid offerread article

Back to the Glory Days NEWSDAY; Mar 7, 2018
Ebo Hill mansion, whose 16 bedrooms, towering portico and 48 acres of woodland made it one of Smithtown’s grandest before it fell into decline decades ago, is being bought and renovated
read story

Extra cops at poll sites NEWSDAY; Mar 7, 2018
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine asked Suffolk County officials to consider assigning police to each of the schools where voting will take place next month. “My request comes out of an abundance of caution in light of recent school shootings,” Romaine, a Republican, wrote in a Feb. 28 letter to County Executive Steve Bellone and Acting Police Commissioner John Barry. “A police presence would likely discourage tendencies toward violent action at any and all of our polling places.”…read story

Suffolk County 911 Call Center to Be Renamed in Memory
of Anthony Bocchimuzzo

On Tuesday, March 6th, the Suffolk County Legislature approved a resolution to rename the Suffolk County 911 Call Center in honor of the late Anthony Bocchimuzzo. The resolution was sponsored by Suffolk County Legislator Sarah Anker to honor the Coram resident [and 31-year member of the Coram Fire Dept.] , who suddenly passed away from a heart attack at the age of 49 in July 2017…read news release

Legislator Anker Warns Residents About the Dangers of
Liquid Nicotine
 Mar 2, 2018
E-cigarettes, which contain nicotine, cause addiction, harm brain development, and can lead to continued tobacco product use. According to the CDC, e-cigarettes are now the most commonly used tobacco product among youth…read news release

Legislator Anker Announces Public Information Meeting for
Rails to Trails
 Mar 5, 2018
A public information meeting for the Port Jefferson-Wading River Rails to Trails project will be held on Thursday, March 15th at 6:00 PM at the Miller Place High School…read news release

Two rivals dig their heels in the sand NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Mar 4, 2018
Suffolk Comptroller John M. Kennedy Jr. aides handed Parks Commissioner Philip Berdolt a subpoena ordering him to hand over “any and all records including, but not limited to, a list of potential bidders, attendance sheets for site tours and copies of submitted proposals.” Kennedy has launched an audit of the Bellone administration’s bidding process for a new vendor
read column

A break for ride-hailing NEWSDAY; Mar 7, 2018
A proposed [Suffolk County] moratorium on ride-hailing services such as Uber and Lyft was tabled Tuesday night, as more than a dozen drivers told Suffolk lawmakers that ending the service would hurt their incomes and riders who have come to depend on them…read article

Mastic Solar Farm: Trees felled amid pine barrens rift NEWSDAY; Mar 7, 2018
After three days of court battles, developer Gerald Rosengarten of Middle Island Solar Farm resumed clear-cutting of trees on Monday for the first 20-acre phase of development that calls for 60 acres of clearing, his spokesman said…read article

BROOKHAVEN TOWN - Moody’s upgrades credit to high rating 
NEWSDAY; Mar 5, 2018
“The stable outlook reflects strong fiscal management leading to ample reserves,” Moody’s said in a news release…read article

Gov undercuts his ethics effort NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Mar 7, 2018
“It’s hard to pitch yourself as an ethics reformer when you keep narrowing the definition of who’s covered by your ethics reforms. That’s the spot Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has put himself in with his tortured explanations of an executive order on campaign contributions.”
read editorial

Bottom lines under pressure NEWSDAY OPINION; Mar 4, 2018
Corporate pushback against the National Rifle Association has been a fascinating spectacle. Business has always been more nimble than government. A bad decision, or no decision, can quickly affect the bottom line. Politicians like to duck and wait for storms to blow over
read opinion

Medford Tuberculosis Sanitarium at Coram
Longwood Community News; Mar 7, 2018
On the east side of Route 112 about a mile south of Middle Country Road in Coram are
concrete ruins of what was once a local Sanitarium. The official name was the Medford
Tuberculosis Sanitarium for Working men and Women of Brookhaven Town…more

Published Mar 1, 2018
Governors plan multistate gun task force NEWSDAY; Feb 23, 2018
They said they will sign an agreement to share and collaborate on gun violence research and statistics gathering to fill in a federal void…read article

Panel: Billions for dioxane’s removal NEWSDAY; Feb 27, 2018
If the council recommended a level of .35 parts per billion for 1,4-dioxane, treatment would be required on 1,685 wells in New York, costing an estimated $2.5 billion plus annual operations and maintenance fees of nearly $253 million…read article

Temporary relief on DACA NEWSDAY; Feb 27, 2018
The U.S. Supreme Court refused Monday to bypass the federal circuit courts in the legal dispute over the Trump administration’s cancellation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, meaning that young immigrants known as Dreamers will be able to continue renewing their legal protections from deportation, at least for the time being…read article

NY audit: Plainedge overestimated costs NEWSDAY; Feb 27, 2018
A new audit from the state Comptroller’s Office found that Plainedge [School District] officials overestimated expenses, including costs of employee benefits and special education, by more than $15 million over three consecutive years…read article

Court spars over union fees, Gorsuch silent NEWSDAY; Feb 27, 2018
Illinois worker Mark Janus [a union non-member required by law to pay dues] says he has a constitutional right not to contribute anything to a union [for services beyond pay and benefits] with which he disagrees [such as the unions political activities]. [By law, the dues-paying union non-member does not have to support union political activities]. “If the unions lose, won’t they have less political influence,” Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy asked David Frederick, representing the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Illinois affiliate. “Yes,” Frederick said. “Isn’t that the end of this case?” Justice Kennedy replied
read article

These LI black female doctors break barriers NEWSDAY; Feb 26, 2018
The thread linking one story to another is that each is a black woman in an elite medical specialty at a major medical center. This, in a region where black doctors less than a generation ago, regardless of gender, largely practiced in minority neighborhoods…read story

LIPA tax plan in works? NEWSDAY; Feb 28, 2018
State lawmakers are mulling a plan that would rely on state funds to help cushion the impact of a possible tax settlement for four Long Island power plants in Northport, Island Park, Port Jefferson and Glenwood Landing…read article

LI heart transplants NEWSDAY; Feb 28, 2018
“We just completed our first transplants a few days ago and will have a news conference next week,” said Dr. Alan Hartman, senior vice president and executive director of cardiothoracic services at Northwell Health…read article

Town councilman hired for Nassau Board of Elections NEWSDAY; Feb 28, 2018
Hempstead Town Councilman Anthony D’Esposito said he has been hired at the Nassau County Board of Elections as a $100,000 administrative assistant. His town board salary is $71,000. He said he will retire from the NYPD and plans to defer collecting his police pension…read article

Meet Geraldine Hart: Suffolk’s New Top Cop NEWSDAY; Feb 26, 2018
Hart, a 21-year veteran of the FBI, was chosen last week by Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone to serve as police commissioner…read article

Technology for safer water NEWSDAY; Feb 25, 2018
Suffolk agency first to get NY nod for method to remove likely carcinogen…read article

TOB: Talks set on hearings to raze unsafe homes NEWSDAY; Feb 28, 2018
The residences are on Washington Carver Drive and Middle Country Road in Coram; Spring Garden Road in Rocky Point and Avenue B in Holbrook…read article

Miller Place assigns retired NYPD cops to four schools NEWSDAY; Feb 28, 2018
Miller Place authorities emphasized that the new security guards, armed with pistols, would be assigned only to school vestibules, not to classrooms or hallways frequented by students. Officials described the additional staffing as a temporary pilot program…read article

America is failing its students NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Feb 25, 2018
The United States holds 5 percent of the world’s people, has been the scene of 31 percent of its mass shootings, possesses 48 percent of its civilian-owned guns and has a gun homicide rate 25 times that of other industrialized nations. We need the help of law-abiding gun owners to debunk and defeat the NRA argument that any attempt at reasonable regulation will lead to the enslavement of the people by a tyrannical government…read editorial

Historic moment for high schoolers NEWSDAY OPINION; Feb 27, 2018
At least three major anti-gun observances specifically inviting student participation are scheduled in the weeks to come. The March For Our Lives is scheduled for March 24, a Saturday, but two weekday events could conflict with school schedules. The March 14 National School Walkout falls on a Wednesday. The National High School Walkout has been called for Friday, April 20…read opinion

Expanding scan-and-go tech NEWSDAY; Feb 24, 2018
Like other automation technologies, it shifts more of the work to shoppers while freeing up employees for higher-value tasks…read article

Catching up after gap years NEWSDAY; Feb 26, 2018
Avani Patel, 40, who lives in Nassau, says she worked for 15 years as a senior financial adviser, but decided four years ago, after two years as a working mom, to stay home when her second child was born. While she carefully planned leaving the workforce, she says, “I didn’t have a long-term plan for how to return. I hadn’t thought that it would be difficult to do.”
read article

Players are in a hole new league NEWSDAY; Feb 27, 2018
Beanbag game cornhole gets organized as bar sport…read story

Published Feb 22, 2018
'I Worry Every Day': Lockdown Drills Prompt Fear
EDUCATION WEEK; Feb 20, 2018
For many teachers, the realization sets in during these drills that “if the door opens, they’re coming for me and my kids. My responsibility is the kids and to keep them safe, and if I don’t get that door closed tight enough, they’re coming for me.”…read article

Skirting state laws NEWSDAY; Feb 19, 2018

Campaign contributions to “reward” politicians. Shell companies to hide donations. Personal email accounts to avoid disclosure. A caution not to register as a lobbyist, so as to elude oversight. It’s all legal. “What is legal in our state is outrageous to the average New Yorker,” said Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause, which monitors state government
read article

Cuomo seeks tax programs, rules on felony-charged docs 
NEWSDAY; Feb 18, 2018
Cuomo also proposed new funding to implement early voting before elections. Cuomo also proposes to “decouple” the state tax code from the federal tax code to ease the effects of the cap on deductibility of state and local taxes…read article

Seeking to bill for EMS NEWSDAY; Feb 16, 2018
Under the proposed legislation, fire departments would bill insurance companies and government benefits programs — not the people receiving services. [Currently] fire departments are the only emergency medical service prohibited from billing for their services. Private EMS firms and police and hospital EMS providers can submit bills. But opponents say the bill, which has languished in the State Legislature for years, puts a price on a service Island residents are already paying for with property taxes and could result in higher insurance premiums…read article

Schein offers bonuses NEWSDAY; Feb 21, 2018
Henry Schein Inc., the nation’s largest distributor of dental products, said Tuesday it would spend about $4 million to pay one-time cash bonuses of $1,000 to some of its U.S. workers in light of a lower tax rate under the new federal tax law…read article

Buying drugstore chain NEWSDAY; Feb 21, 2018
Albertsons Companies executives said Tuesday their purchase of Rite Aid’s more than 2,500 remaining stores — including about 50 on Long Island— will help the combined company become a “leader in food, health and wellness.”…read article

LI to get meeting on oil drilling NEWSDAY; Feb 16, 2018
Rep. Lee Zeldin said any such meeting, for which a date has not yet been set, would comply with federal noticing requirements. In a statement, Zeldin said Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, “underscored” that the draft plan will “reflect the fact that as of now there aren’t even any known oil or gas resources in Long Island’s surrounding waterways.”…read article

PSEG-LI: High rates and rating high NEWSDAY; Feb 18, 2018
PSEG Long Island president Daniel Eichhorn, who took control of the Long Island operation in October, said “The rumor of our rates being the highest in the country has been a tough one to shake. People believe it. It’s not really factual anymore.” PSEG and LIPA, which hiked 2018 rates by more than $7 a month in January, are considering filing for a formal state rate proceeding next year that could increase rates again, starting in 2020…read article

PSEG LI not happy with pay disclosure law NEWSDAY; Feb 20, 2018
“The bill itself was more than just disclosure,” PSEG Long Island president and chief operating officer Daniel Eichhorn said. “It gave the Department of Public Service the ability to look at our management fee and evaluate it.”…read article

NUMC cuts 9 top posts, adds nurses NEWSDAY; Feb 21, 2018
“Today, nine positions deemed unnecessary were eliminated, and it’s just a start,” said George Tsunis, [newly appointed] board chairman of the Nassau Health Care Corp., or NuHealth, the public benefit corporation that runs the East Meadow hospital and related facilities. “The board is taking the first steps in reforming and reinvigorating the hospital by eliminating waste and duplicity and investing in things that are mission-critical to the hospital,” Tsunis said. “That begins with hiring 37 clinical positions, all necessary for the proper running of high-quality health care in the hospital.”…read article

Dental group growing NEWSDAY; Feb 20, 2018
Dental365, a Long Island based dentist group, is taking over three practices in the next month, as it expands throughout the region. The network will be up to 12 offices on Long Island by the end of March…read article

Meet Suffolk Sheriff Errol Toulon Jr. NEWSDAY; Feb 18, 2018
He received a master’s degree in business administration from Dowling College and began another master’s in homeland security management, then decided to get a doctorate in education at Dowling. He is the first African-American to hold the [SC Sheriff] post. He remembers clearly the first time he realized what it means to be black. He was 5 years old and news of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. came on television in his Bronx home. He recalls watching his mother, Alma, cry and his father, Errol Sr., console her…read article

LI to get $11M for septic upgrades from state NEWSDAY; Feb 16, 2018
The lion’s share of that going to Suffolk County, which is getting $10.025 million. Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said in a statement the $10 million in funding “will allow the county to significantly expand our existing Septic Improvement Program, and accelerate our efforts to protect water quality.”…read article

Plan to withhold Suffolk election aide’s pay delayed NEWSDAY; Feb 20, 2018
Suffolk Comptroller John Kennedy has put off plans to withhold election worker Marisol Martinez’s pay over alleged violations of the county nepotism law, after the county attorney warned Kennedy may be pre-empted under state election law…read article

Distinguishing fake news NEWSDAY.COM; Feb 19, 2018
“I would like to tell you that our students, the students that we teach in New York, are really on the ball and are on top of this,” said Howard Schneider, the founder of Stony Brook University’s School of Journalism [and] a former Newsday editor. “In fact, and this is pretty depressing, the results are the opposite. Young people are most vulnerable to being duped and fooled and manipulated by fake information.”…read article

Wind power can be a boon to NY State NEWSDAY LETTERS; Feb 21, 2018
“There is still work to do. Even taking into account the South Fork wind project, New York would still fall short of its 2030 goal.”…read letter

Where are funds for Rte. 347? NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Feb 18, 2018
Only 4.3 miles of the 15-mile corridor have been widened to meet increased demands, leaving gaps where the road, at points, is three lanes in each direction, and, in others, just two, creating bottlenecks. State Department of Transportation spokesman Joseph Morrissey said the state has “fulfilled the Route 347 project commitments” laid out in the five-year capital plan that expires in 2020. Any further funding is subject to negotiation in the state budget due
April 1…read article

Bring back Washington’s birthday NEWSDAY OPINION; Feb 19, 2018
“I can think of seven presidents in my lifetime I don’t wish to celebrate this Presidents Day. There is no official Presidents Day in America. It’s still on the books as Washington’s birthday, as it should be. We didn’t celebrate it because Washington was president; we celebrated it because he didn’t want to be.”…read opinion

Making Happy Meals healthier NEWSDAY; Feb 16, 2018
McDonald’s will soon banish cheeseburgers and chocolate milk from its Happy Meal menu. McDonald’s said Thursday it wants all its Happy Meal options to have 600 calories or fewer and have less than 650 milligrams of sodium. It also wants less than 10 percent of the meal’s calories to come from saturated fat and added sugar…read article

Published Feb 15, 2018
NYS: Optional payroll tax plan revealed NEWSDAY; Feb 13, 2018
Employers who choose to join the system would pay a 5 percent tax on all annual payroll expenses in excess of $40,000 per employee. Cuomo’s proposal would benefit workers of those companies by reducing the amount of income that would be subject to federal income taxes. The payroll plan wouldn’t cost employers…read article

Flanagan: Payroll tax impractical NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
Analysts and business groups questioned how many employers would go through the process of completely overhauling payroll. Some school officials also expressed concern about their ability to establish and run such charitable funds…read article

State funds immigration counseling as DACA, TPS end 
NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
The state has been funding programs to provide guidance to those losing protections under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, and the Temporary Protected Status, or TPS. About 32,900 immigrants under DACA live in New York…read article

IDAs under fire NEWSDAY LI BUSINESS; Feb 11, 2018
The yearly cost of tax breaks given to Long Island companies by Industrial Development Agencies has tripled since 2004, to more than $140 million, fueling calls for reform
read article

Call to have LI oil forum NEWSDAY; Feb 8, 2018
The Feb. 15 meeting on the U.S. Department of the Interior’s proposal to expand drilling to as many as nine sites in the Atlantic Ocean, including two off Long Island, is the only scheduled hearing in New York. “I don’t knowwhy they would think the appropriate place to hold a hearing [is . . . ] the foothills of the Adirondacks,” said Assemb. Steven Englebright (D-Setauket. “That’s almost as senseless as the proposal itself.”…read article

Forum puts focus on teen dating violence NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
February is teen domestic violence awareness month and Tuesday was Wear Orange Day, the official awareness day. But prevention requires constant effort, said Colleen Merlo, executive director of Long Island Against Domestic Violence…read article

Expanding the social host law NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
Adults who knowingly allow minors to consume opioids and other controlled substances in their homes could face jail time under an amendment to Nassau’s social host law…read article

Gang unit deployed NEWSDAY; Feb 8, 2018
A team of prosecutors and investigators is now dedicated to going after the notorious street gang MS-13, which has killed more than two dozen people on Long Island in the last two years, Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini announced…read article

Tablets go on patrol NEWSDAY; Feb 13, 2018
The Suffolk County Police Department is equipping its patrol vehicles with new portable tablet computers, [and] plans to outfit the 2,500-officer department’s entire patrol fleet, over the next three years at a cost of about $2.25 million…read article

TOB: $900G grant redirect eyed for streetlights NEWSDAY; Feb 13, 2018
“It’s a step in the right direction that we think is necessary,” Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said after the town board approved the request last week. The $900,000 is what remains from a $4 million grant the department awarded in 2009…read article

TOB: Disclosure law to include candidates NEWSDAY; Feb 12, 2018
The 10-page forms ask Brookhaven employees and candidates whether they or their relatives have outside business relationships with the town or town contractors. The forms also ask whether any family members are current or former town employees…read article

YAPHANK: Apartments, hotel get IDA tax breaks NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
The development on the northwest corner of William Floyd Parkway and the Long Island Expressway., called The Boulevard, previously was known as the Meadows at Yaphank. Yonkers-based Rose-Breslin Associates plans to build 295 rental apartments and 146 hotel suites
read article

Independent LI community hospital [Brookhaven] changing its name 
NEWSDAY; Feb 14, 2018
Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center is being renamed Long Island Medical Center, the hospital said Tuesday…read article

NY graduation rates rise NEWSDAY; Feb 8, 2018
The graduation rate for the high school Class of 2017 rose to 80.2 percent statewide--up from 79.7 percent the year before--while results on Long Island dipped slightly…read article

Teacher eval law again a hot topic NEWSDAY; Feb 13, 2018
Many opponents of the teacher-rating system had hoped the law would be repealed by the time the moratorium ends. New York State United Teachers, or NYSUT, which has 600,000 members, denounced the idea of an extended moratorium…read article

A fix for district’s finances NEWSDAY; Feb 8, 2018
Officials in the Eastport-South Manor school district, faced with a $3.2 million operating deficit for the next academic year [2018-2019], outlined a plan to fix the district’s finances that could involve staff and spending cuts and piercing the tax cap in 2019 [2019-2020]. “We’re on this ship together,” said Superintendent Patrick Brimstein…read article

Keeping IDAs on track NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Feb 13, 2018
While tax breaks for businesses, new housing developments and other projects jumped 231 percent, jobs created rose by only 109 percent…read column

Nepotism law generates a new controversy 
NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Feb 11, 2018
Oops, or more precisely, double oops. Suffolk County election officials decided last week to give a $92,699 raise to the sister-in-law of county Legis. Monica Martinez…read article

A King visit that stirred LIers NEWSDAY; Feb 11, 2018
Nearly 50 years ago, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. stepped onto the auditorium stage of the middle school in Rockville Centre…read article

Published Feb 8, 2018
Now that’s a far-out road trip NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
SpaceX’s [owned by Elon Musk] big new rocket blasted off Tuesday on its first test flight, carrying a red sports car aiming for an endless road trip past Mars…read article

Tracking flu’s LI path NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
Data analysts and doctors at Northwell Health have created what they call a “flu dashboard”
—a high-tech method of tracking people with influenza admitted to the system’s hospitals or treated in its emergency rooms…which can help determine how to allocate treatment resources, administrators said…read article

Campus owner vague on plans NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
Plans for Dowling College’s Oakdale campus have not been “solidified” as the new owner studies the best educational use for the property, a company official said Tuesday
read article

Bellone veto of borrowing bill stands NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
Richard Tortora, Suffolk’s outside fiscal adviser, said recent market swings have increased the need to give the comptroller flexibility to move fast to get the best deal and make sure all notes are sold. Bellone, a Democrat, had vetoed the bill borrowing sought by Kennedy, a Republican, and lobbied lawmakers to block an override. After the vote, Kennedy said, “Even a village idiot could decipher the politics. If this was a different comptroller with a different [party] registration, the law would already be filed.”…read article

Seeking to use $900G for lights NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
The $900,000 is what remains from a $4 million grant. “The new LED lights use less power and they are much more durable,” said Brookhaven Town Highway Superintendent Dan Losquadro after his presentation at Monday’s town board work session. “A regular street light might last a few years, depending on the type of bulb it is.” The new lights can last 20 years, he said
read article

SBU official joins agency as deputy NEWSDAY; Feb 7, 2018
Christine Kempner, a leader of Stony Brook University’s program to nurture new businesses will join Brookhaven Town as its deputy director of the Department of Housing and Human Services. Kempner will be paid $115,000 annually in her Brookhaven job…read article 

Trouble for counties when fees are taxes in disguise
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Feb 7, 2018
In Suffolk, thanks to the excessive fees charged on real estate transactions, the county’s Real Property Tax Service Agency brings in $66 million a year in fees on a budget of $1.2 million
read editorial

A pledge to boost school aid NEWSDAY; Feb 4, 2018

The annual Longwood meeting, which brings school superintendents and board members together with state and federal lawmakers, provides a regional kickoff for the annual school budget season…read article

LI’s opioid toll growing NEWSDAY; Feb 4, 2018
Authorities are projecting as many as 600 people on Long Island died last year from opioid overdoses, part of a national epidemic that caused more than 60,000 fatalities in 2016
read article

Dowling campus: Back to school? NEWSDAY; Feb 6, 2018
Dowling College’s Oakdale campus would be operated as a college again and designated an Islip Town landmark district under a draft proposal by its new owner…read article

Frontier Airlines to end 2 Florida routes from MacArthur 
NEWSDAY; Feb 6, 2018
Frontier Airlines officials said Monday that flights from Long Island MacArthur Airport to Miami and Fort Myers, Florida, will be discontinued effective April 8. The announcement comes less than a week after Frontier said it will end flights from MacArthur to New Orleans on March 5
read article

Suffolk faces fight over cops’ pay NEWSDAY; Feb 5, 2018
The average annual pay of police officers climbed during the life of the contract from $135,610 a year to $162,910 [value of defined benefit pension not included] according to the legislature’s nonpartisan Budget Review Office. The 28 percent raises given to the existing officers, plus other provisions in the contract, have eclipsed savings from the lower salaried new officers
read article

Budget chief leads 11 named to Bellone team NEWSDAY; Feb 4, 2018
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone has shuffled his staff with 11 appointments, including hiring Eric Naughton [former Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano’s top fiscal aide], as his $171,007-a-year budget director to replace retired Connie DeGiovine, who is returning to a $70,000 part-time job…read article

Siemens dropping academic contest NEWSDAY; Feb 6, 2018
The Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology — the prestigious national contest that has awarded millions of dollars in college scholarships to thousands of budding teenage researchers— is ending after 19 years, its sponsors have announced…read article

Still desperate in Puerto Rico NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Feb 4, 2018
New York’s efforts to get the power back on have been particularly helpful. New York power workers were on the ground within days of Hurricane Maria to analyze damage, and more than 450 New York State utility workers have helped restore power to more than 90 percent of San Juan area customers. But the devastation requires a wider response…read editorial

All-out effort needed on flu NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Feb 5, 2018
An all-hands-on-deck “Manhattan Project” response with investments and organizational help from world governments and philanthropies, and financial rewards for developing the vaccine, is the best way to reach the goal…read editorial

Catching a wellness wave NEWSDAY-LI BUSINESS; Feb 4, 2018
Spa-like businesses that are fostering the resurgence of “floating,” a practice that first made a splash in the ’70s, are finding a ready market on Long Island…read article

Published Feb 1, 2018
SC Leg. Sarah Anker discusses her priorities & Initiatives for 2018
...read letter

Supervisor Romaine: Supervisor Romaine’s Letter of Opposition to Off-Shore Drilling off the Coast of Long Island…read letter

Cuomo’s new LI tunnel push
NEWSDAY; Jan 27, 2018

A Sound crossing has been debated on the Island since 1938. [Cuomo’s] announcement comes after the release this month of an 87-page [$5,000,000] study that estimated a Sound tunnel would cost between $31.5 billion and $55.4 billion to build, depending on location and whether there are one or two tubes. Drivers would pay more than $500 million in tolls per year, if the fee were $20 to $25 per trip…read article

Plan for $6B wind industry NEWSDAY, Jan 29; 2018
New York State on Monday is to release an exhaustive master plan for offshore wind energy that foresees up to 5,000 people employed in and around a $6 billion industry by 2028, with annual health benefits from reduced emissions valued at up to $400 million…read article

Damper on donations NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2017
Long Island charities—particularly those relying on large numbers of small donors—are bracing for a decline in 2018 individual donations, officials say…read story

BNL Invisible Glass: Spectrum of potential NEWSDAY; Jan 29, 2017
Scientists at Brookhaven National Laboratory have created “invisible glass” that eliminates nearly all glare and potentially could find uses in eyeglasses, smartphones, solar panels and auto windshields…read article

Bellone’s ex-aide gets a 25% raise NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
Bellone signed off on the upgrade, saying Meyers “will continue to be an invaluable asset” to [Timothy] Sini as district attorney. With the new job in the district attorney’s office, Meyers’ pay has climbed by 51 percent since Bellone hired him in 2014 as a $125,514 assistant deputy county executive…read article

Solar, fuel cells at landfill NEWSDAY; Jan 29, 2018
Brookhaven Town’s plan to transition its sprawling landfill in Yaphank to an energy park topped with solar arrays, fuel cells and locally brewed methane gas could help offset the facility’s declining revenue stream, officials say…read article

Portrait of prominence NEWSDAY; Jan 30, 2018
William Sidney Smith and his wife, Eleanor Jones Smith, are returning home to Brookhaven
read story

$750G fix-up starts at Center Moriches site NEWSDAY; Jan 29, 2018
Brookhaven Town officials have begun a $750,000 project to renovate the former Knights of Columbus property in Center Moriches. The athletic field is on Frowein Road, next to Center Moriches High School…read article

Why Special Educators Really Leave the Classroom
EDUCATION WEEK; Jan 24, 2018
"I've always said that special ed. teachers are like my Navy SEALS, or special-operations forces. There's something unique that they do that nobody else can do.”…read article

Teen’s invention can prevent deaths NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
A Lawrence teenager who created a system to protect infants and young children from getting heatstroke if they are left in vehicles has won a spot in the National Gallery for America’s Young Inventors…read article

Teen creates nature trail at science center NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
A Shoreham teenager has spearheaded the creation of a nature trail at the Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe…read article

Growth of Charter Schools Is Slowing Down. Here's What's Behind
the Trend

EDUCATION WEEK; Jan 30, 2018
Since 2013, [charter school] growth rate has dropped sharply and some of the possible culprits are familiar: high real estate costs, teacher shortages, and politics…read article

State needs gov to deliver on bags NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jan 29, 2018
Last February, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo called plastic bags littering our streets and waterways a “statewide challenge.” A month later, Cuomo established the New York State Plastic Bag Task Force. Its mission was clear. Earlier this month, during a holiday weekend, that task force quietly released an 86-page report. It listed eight wide ranging options that covered nearly any possible solution, from maintaining existing policies to adding a fee to banning the bags. But the task force did not make any recommendations…read editorial

South Korea: What to know about the host of Winter Olympics
NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
It’s cold, beautiful and, yes, safe. With the Olympics set to begin on Feb. 9, here are some answers to questions about Pyeongchang and the Korean Peninsula…read article

Picking a career that you’ll actually like NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
No matter what you studied, you can find a job you love…read article

Making a budget’s a means, not an end NEWSDAY; Jan 28, 2018
Instead of hyper-focusing on the budget itself, remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing…read article

Published Jan 25, 2018
NY Dreamers to get state-funded health care NEWSDAY; Jan 24, 2018
Tens of thousands of young [illegal] immigrants in New York who could lose their protection from deportation will not go without government [taxpayer]-funded health care under a policy announced Tuesday by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo…read article

Bill to protect taxpayers OKd NEWSDAY; Jan 24, 2018
if you have to report a higher income on federal returns, then you have to on state returns as well, under current law, meaning a bigger tax liability. The Senate bill, approved in a 60-0 vote, would decouple state codes from the new federal tax code…read article

Ramped-up effort to close landfill sections NEWSDAY; Jan 24, 2018
Brookhaven officials have said they plan to close the landfill, in Brookhaven hamlet, in about seven years and turn it into an “energy park” with solar panels and other alternative energy systems…read article

NY won’t pass up tests NEWSDAY; Jan 24, 2018
New York State will not join in a federal pilot project aimed at developing alternative ways of assessing students’ knowledge without using traditional standardized tests. Emily DeSantis, the New York State’s Education Department spokeswoman, said the agency remains interested in alternative assessments, but added “the fact that there is no additional federal funding available to implement the pilot means the department must focus its resources on more immediate assessment priorities.”…read article

Teens happier with less screen time NEWSDAY; Jan 23, 2018

The happiest teens, according to the study, are those who are above average in face-to-face social interaction time and below average in social media use…read article

Barrens plan omits Mastic site NEWSDAY; Jan 23, 2018
The Cuomo administration’s state budget bill includes a measure that would expand the core Pine Barrens by around 800 acres in Shoreham, officials said, but omits a controversial parcel in Mastic favored by legislators on which a developer has sought to build a solar farm…read article

Plan to report per-school spending debated NEWSDAY; Jan 23, 2018
A state proposal requiring school systems to report spending on a building-by-building basis has education experts arguing over whether that would promote greater fairness or simply drown districts in paperwork…read article

Panel: Lower DWI threshold to 0.05 NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018

The government-commissioned report calls for lowering the blood-alcohol concentration threshold from 0.08 to 0.05. All states have 0.08 thresholds. Utah has set a 0.05 threshold starting Dec. 30. It also calls for cracking down on sales to those under 21 or who are already intoxicated to discourage binge drinking, and limiting alcohol marketing while funding anti-alcohol campaigns similar to those against smoking…read article

2.3% for schools NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018
Experts said it is not sufficient to fully meet rising costs of teacher pensions and other big expenses. Newsday’s calculations focus on operating funds, because those are widely considered a more meaningful measure of what a district receives than aid for school construction and renovation.
Longwood: 2018-19 $85,594,514  2017-18 $83,377,418  $ Inc. $2,217,096  % Inc. 2.66
read article & view LI school districts amounts

Easing federal tax hit NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018
The tax department also proposed creating a new a payroll tax. An employee and an employer would have to agree to lower an employee’s annual wage by the amount that employee would normally pay in state income tax. “There is no way our conference will agree to any kind of tax hike,” she said in an interview Wednesday. “It’s very difficult for employers to tell employees their wages are being cut,” said Senate Finance Committee Chairwoman Catharine Young
read article

Gov adding fees to battle deficit NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018
“It’s hitting people on all levels,” Assemb. Dean Murray (R-East Patchogue) said. “There seems to be no end to their creativity in finding ways to hammer New Yorkers.” Murray and other lawmakers said Cuomo’s budget should have cut more spending—but he conceded it’s a reelection year for the governor…read article

Calling for new power plant study NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018
A study last year by PSEG Long Island found that there was not the supply demand or need to repower Barrett [Island Park] or a power plant in Port Jefferson. The study also recommended scrapping a $2.9 billion plant in Yaphank…read article

State plan fosters test participation NEWSDAY; Jan 18, 2018
New York is among 11 states with plans approved this week by U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Approval means such states will continue receiving federal education aid. The new federal law, like its predecessor, requires at least 95 percent of students to participate in annual state English and math tests. The state’s newly approved plan takes a restrained approach to boycotts, providing that districts draw up improvement directions for schools that fall below the 95 percent participation rate…read article

Cuomo’s $168 billion budget plan NEWSDAY; Jan 17, 2018

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo scaled back an expected spending boost for elementary and secondary education, proposing on Tuesday a 3 percent hike instead of a previously planned 4 percent jump…read article

What’s in the budget for LI NEWSDAY; Jan 17, 2017
Key proposals affecting Nassau and Suffolk counties…read article

School cap 2% NEWSDAY; Jan 17, 2018
New York State’s baseline cap on growth in local school taxes for 2018-19 will be 2 percent, the
state comptroller’s office said Tuesday — the highest in five years and up substantially from this year’s 1.26 percent…read article

Not movin’ out yet NEWSDAY; Jan 17, 2018
Long Island’s housing costs are so high that four in 10 young adults live with relatives, and seven in 10 say they’re likely to move to a less-expensive region within five years…read article

Board OKs change to some meeting times NEWSDAY; Jan 16, 2017
Hearings may start as early as 5:30 p.m., beginning with the board’s next meeting on Jan. 25
read article

‘Brew to Moo’ program gets $33G grant NEWSDAY; Jan 16, 2017
State officials have awarded a $33,350 grant to support a Brookhaven Town program that uses craft beer grains to feed farm animals…read article

The coming war on entitlements NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jan 17, 2018
The new job requirements for Medicaid might not be legal and likely will be challenged in court. Either way, the rules won’t save much even if they do take effect…read editorial

Cuomo ready for federal fight NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jan 17, 2018
Whether his proposals are enough to offset a $4 billion deficit and $2 billion loss from federal health care cuts remains to be seen…read article

Published Jan 11, 2018
What schools can do help students engage more in learning
EDUCATION WEEK; Jan 10, 2018
Think about it: What do you remember from your experience as a student? Senior musical. Swim meets. Science fairs. Football games. Debate tournaments. Choir concerts. Notice the pattern? ...read article

After Loss of 'Net Neutrality,' Districts Weigh How to Protect Themselves EDUCATION WEEK; Jan 9, 2018
As school districts weigh the impact of losing assurances of "net neutrality," a professional organization is encouraging them to protect themselves up-front against a potential decline in the speed and quality of their web access…read article

Long overdue utility reliability
 NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jan 10, 2018
PSEG has yet to face down a Category 3 or worse hurricane, but a good performance so far after years of horrible ones is worth noting. PSEG is weathering the storm of Long Island’s power needs quite nicely…read editorial

Board Oks solar plan in Mastic NEWSDAY; Jan 10, 2018
The planning board’s approval Monday gives the go-ahead for development of 40 acres within the 100-acre parcel on Moriches-Middle Island Road to begin, according to the developer, the Middle Island Solar Farm…read article

NY pot plan takes a hit NEWSDAY; Jan 7, 2018

“It’s time for members of Congress that believe in state rights and drug reform to work together to pass bipartisan legislation to remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and allow individual states to regulate marijuana as they deem appropriate,” the Medical Cannabis Industry Alliance said in a statement…read article

States prep for federal tax law NEWSDAY; Jan 7, 2018
Last week, New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo used his state-of-the-state speech to pledge
to sue over the GOP tax plan, which he called “an assault” by the federal government
read article

Utilities’ tax savings probed NEWSDAY; Jan 9, 2018
The state Public Service Commission will formally explore implications of the new federal tax law to assure that windfall savings to utilities are returned to New York ratepayers
read article

Sound crossing: $55.4B NEWSDAY; Jan 9, 2018
The report, the latest examination of a concept first proposed in 1938, concludes that a Sound crossing is only feasible from Oyster Bay Town or Kings Park…read article

Meeting the mark NEWSDAY; Jan 8, 2018
Audit shows all LI recipients of state grants in recent years kept promises to maintain or add jobs in 2016…read article

Little bag-lash over law NEWSDAY; Jan 9, 2018
Suffolk County is the first county in New York State to enact a bag fee. Customers are
charged [a minimum of] 5 cents for each single-use plastic or paper bag. Several store managers and owners report little backlash thus far to Suffolk County’s bag law, which
went into effect Jan. 1…read article

A chance for court to redeem itself NEWSDAY OPINION; Jan 7, 2018
This week, the [Supreme] court will hear a case giving the justices a chance to decide whether states can purge people from the voter rolls for not voting…read opinion

Honestly, it’s time for a change NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jan 7, 2018
Election reforms and anti-corruption laws must be passed in this legislative session
read editorial

Rise, Shine and Soar in 2018 NEWSDAY HEALTH; Jan 9, 2018
A positive mindset helps power your food choices as well as your workout—at least that’s how Elizabeth Hashagen sees it…read article

Wrong share class can mean lost income NEWSDAY; Jan 7, 2018
You may not know it, but there’s a class system inside your investment portfolio…read article

Published Jan 4, 2018
Gov touts law on paid leave NEWSDAY; Jan 1, 2017
NYS program for families takes effect, along with LI wage hike…read article

Challenges ahead for Albany NEWSDAY; Jan 1, 2017

“We’re going to have to find additional savings in the budget. That’s clear.’—Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo…read article

New state laws for 2018 NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
Several new laws effective Jan. 1 will impact family budgets while trying to improve New York State’s business climate…read article

NYC aims to tap closed wells NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
The request, though, is not welcome in Nassau and Suffolk counties, where officials worry it will threaten aquifers that are the sole source of drinking water for nearly 3 million people
read article

2017 crime stats show decline across LI NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
Crime fell across Long Island in 2017, clocking historically low homicide totals even as police in Nassau and Suffolk attempted to deal with MS-13, the violent street gang officials blame for at least 14 slayings…read article

Outlook 2018: What to expect from our region’s economy
NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
The Long Island economy starts the new year with a head of steam, but uncertainty over the impact of the federal tax overhaul on consumer spending and real estate could limit growth, local economists said…read article

Shake-up by Sini NEWSDAY; Jan 1, 2017
“There will be no party, no lunch celebration,” Sini said. “We’re going to get to work right away.” Lawyers familiar with the office said Sini’s priorities—particularly training and integrity — are the right ones…read article

Bill may cut county revenue NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
The legislation passed this month would require the county to send a notice in writing to the previous owner that he or she can apply for payment of surplus sale proceeds. Legis. DuWayne Gregory (D-Copiague), the bill’s sponsor, said he believed the county has never given proceeds to a homeowner…read article 

Village payroll jumps 21% NEWSDAY; Jan 1, 2018
[Babylon Village’s] Mayor Ralph Scordino said he is not concerned about whether the payroll growth is sustainable. “Why should I be?” he asked. “It is what it is.”…read article

Math Doesn't Have to Suck EDUCATON WEEK; Dec 20, 2017
“When it comes to national attitudes about math, I am a prime example of what’s wrong with America. The last math class I took was in 10th grade (something about triangles, I think). It wasn’t math’s fault, exactly. It was the way we were taught.”…read article

Teaching Introverted Students: How a 'Quiet Revolution' Is Changing Classroom Practice EDUCATION WEEK; Dec 27, 2017
At the end of each lesson, when 2nd grade teacher Erin Pawlak asked her students at P.S. 11 in New York City to reflect on their reading or share a successful strategy, the same hands would shoot up. But what about the quiet students?...read article

Success lags for disabled students NEWSDAY OPINION; Jan 2, 2017
“So are these mildly disabled students, who are being educated in regular classrooms, learning what their non-handicapped peers are learning? The evidence says no. The state Board of Regents recently decided to avoid this more important issue by choosing to make it easier for students with disabilities to graduate and receive exit diplomas. This is not the answer.”
read opinion 

The day somebody tried to kidnap me NEWSDAY KIDSDAY; Jan 1, 2018
Before this day my mom and dad taught me to yell and scream very specific words like, “No! This is not my mom! This is not my dad!”…read story

On a somewhat macabre note…
Passings 2017 NEWSDAY; Dec 31, 2017
Gone but not forgotten” is a fitting epitaph for the no-longer-living legends in this year’s passing parade, who triumphed in the fields of music, comedy, journalism, sports and political activism, and remained influential for decades of American life…read article

Published Dec 29, 2017
Cuomo urges voting ease, ad transparency NEWSDAY; Dec 26, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has proposed measures to allow for early voting and same-day voter registration as well as safeguards to identify big-money donors behind campaign ads on social media. The proposals aren’t new…read article

School calendar overhaul NEWSDAY; Dec 26, 2017
“We’re looking to provide districts with more flexibility in establishing their school calendars, while maintaining the current amount of instructional time,” the commissioner Elia said in a statement emailed to Newsday…read article

Northwell adds Mather NEWSDAY; Dec 21, 2017
John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson has agreed to join the Northwell Health system…read article

New York population growth minimal NEWSDAY; Dec 21, 2017
The data show 190,508 people left New York for other states while 130,411 people came here from other places, for a deficit of 60,097. The Census Bureau also recorded 232,766 births and 159,676 deaths — so the state gained 73,090 through a natural population increase
read article

LI lost 900 jobs in the past year NEWSDAY; Dec 22, 2017
No New York region lost more jobs than Long Island…read article

Searching for work NEWSDAY; Dec 28, 2017
Long Island’s unemployment rate rose last month to 4.4 percent, an increase of half a percentage point from 3.9 percent a year earlier…read article

PSEG must reveal pay NEWSDAY; Dec 22, 2017
New state law requires disclosure of top company officials’ compensation…read article

PSEG investigating pole in fatal crash NEWSDAY; Dec 27, 2017
The steel poles in Eastport have been the subject of resident protests and a lawsuit by Brookhaven Town…read article

Suffolk jail will house detainees NEWSDAY; Dec 27, 2018
Suffolk County has a new agreement in place with the federal government to use part of the county jail in Riverhead to house immigrants facing deportation…read article

Sewage bill signed NEWSDAY; Dec 22, 2017
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone Thursday signed landmark legislation to ban the installation of new cesspools, require permits for new septic systems [$70] and track failures of aging wastewater systems countywide…read article

Verdict on tax law? Fog needs to clear NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Dec 26, 2017
Somewhere in the chasm between the direst predictions of harm and doom and the wildest promises of joy and prosperity will land the true day-to-day impact of the new tax law
…read column

Hold bond votes in late spring NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 28, 2017
Bond votes should be held on the third Tuesday in May, when state law requires that all residents vote on school district budgets. The law should be amended to mandate bond votes that day, too, to guarantee higher participation. In bond votes held since mid-October, Lindenhurst saw a 51 percent drop in turnout from its May budget vote, Longwood was 42 percent lower, Hicksville 30 percent, Elwood 23 percent and North Babylon 6 percent
read editorial

Why no school days in July and August? NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Dec 27, 2017
That law is outdated and largely exists thanks to industries that thrive on traditional summer vacations, like camps and tourist spots, exercising political clout to keep them. Many teachers also support the traditional break…read column

Published Dec 21, 2017
Step raises vetoed NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has vetoed a bill that would have allowed some public employees in Nassau County to receive “step” raises even when county wages are frozen. The bill had pitted public employee unions against the Nassau Interim Finance Authority [NIFA]. The Civil Service Employees Association and police unions had supported the bill…read article

New call for shared services NEWSDAY; Dec 19, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday renewed a call for local governments to share services to cut costs. “Symbolic and unimpressive,” said E.J. McMahon of the Empire Center, an Albany-based fiscally conservative think tank. “The savings were minimal drops in the bucket and it won’t get much better. Our taxes aren’t high because of local government duplication, overlap, or failure to share services. In fact, they are high mainly because salaries and staffing levels are high, especially in school districts and downstate suburban police departments.”…read article

Cuomo’s $11.5M LI gang-thwarting plan NEWSDAY; Dec 17, 2017
The goal, officials said, is to give vulnerable youths in hard hit communities the tools they need to resist the lure of street gangs like MS-13…read article

Net neutrality nixed NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
Under the new rules approved Thursday, the Comcasts and AT&Ts of the world will be free to block rival apps, slow down competing services or offer faster speeds to companies that pay up…read article

Faster tests for Lyme NEWSDAY; Dec 17, 2017
Lyme disease is increasing worldwide, but in the United States, 95 percent of all infections occur in only 14 states, and New York is one of the leading hotbeds of infection. New tools that could dramatically improve the diagnosis of Lyme disease are already available…read article

Home prices jump in tight market NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
In Suffolk County, the median home price rose by 6 percent, to $355,000…read article

Barrens expansion bill vetoed NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has vetoed a bill that would have expanded Long Island’s pine barrens area. Assemb. Steve Englebright (D-Setauket), one of the primary sponsors of the bill, vowed that lawmakers would take another stab at expanding the pine barrens in a new bill in 2018. Sen. Kenneth LaValle (R-Port Jefferson), the bill’s other primary sponsor said “These lands are particularly critical for the ecology of the Forge River. Destroying the forest and the trees to install solar power just does not make sense at either the Mastic Woods or Shoreham Old Growth Coastal Forest properties.”…read article

Calverton financing deal NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
Luminati Aerospace LLC has struck a deal with the venture capital arm of a large developer to finance its proposed purchase of the Town of Riverhead’s remaining land at the Enterprise Park at Calverton…read article
Related update article…
Town sets hearing on EPCAL sale NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017read article

Broadridge Financial plans a $126M expansion NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
Broadridge Financial Solutions Inc. plans to invest $126 million in its Suffolk County factories and add 262 jobs over the next five years…read article

LIPA OKs a rate hike for 2018 NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
Trustees approved an increase in delivery and related charges on customer bills of $7.41 a month. The utility expects power-supply charges could decrease an average $4.06 a month next year, lowering the projection for an overall bill increase to around $3.35 a month, or 2 percent…read article

State parks gave LI a boost NEWSDAY; Dec 18, 2017
Report: visitors to LI parks spent $1.3B over a year…read article

Suffolk readies 5-cent bag fee NEWSDAY; Dec 19, 2017
Stores in Suffolk County will start charging a nickel fee on each plastic and paper bag at checkout starting Jan. 1. Retailers will collect and keep the 5-cent fee. “This is just another fee to make it harder to live here,” said Legis. Robert Trotta (R-Fort Salonga)…read article

Campaign financing plan OKd NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
The money would come from the county’s share of earnings from Jake’s 58, the Suffolk Off-Track Betting casino that opened this year. Suffolk voters in the 1990s approved another campaign finance program, but its funding source was voluntary donations on property tax bills, which never materialized. Opponents said the bill would be ineffective at reducing the influence of wealthy donors from county races, because large donations can still go to political parties or independent expenditure committees. “It’s a fraud on the public,” Legis. Robert Trotta (R-Fort Solanga) said…read article

Suffolk panel kills effort to oversee asset forfeitures
NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
Disclosure that the Suffolk district attorney’s office paid $3.25 million in bonuses since 2012 using asset forfeiture funds spurred Calarco’s bill. Bellone, Sini and members of law enforcement unions argued [successfully] during the past week that legislative approval for spending is unnecessary…read article

Residency rule revised NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
The Suffolk Legislature voted unanimously Tuesday night to lift a residency requirement for senior staff in the district attorney’s office. Incoming top prosecutor Tim Sini said the residency rules would have put him at a “gross disadvantage” in attracting highly qualified applicants and he wants to be able to “to grab the talent” in other prosecutors’ office to serve Suffolk residents…read article

High school gains NEWSDAY; Dec 15, 2017
Annual school “report cards” released by the state Education Department show that 56.4 percent of seniors in Nassau and Suffolk counties received Regents diplomas with an advanced designation during the 2016-17 school year. Statewide 38.1 percent of students received those diplomas…read article

Cuomo vetoes bill to aid CUNY, SUNY NEWSDAY; Dec 20, 2017
Cuomo said the bill would have shifted hundreds of millions of dollars in costs from colleges and students to the state’s general fund. The New York State United Teachers union [NYSUT] said “We advocated for this ‘maintenance of effort’ legislation because we believe the state should pick up more of the mandatory costs of operating these exemplary institutions.”…read article

A Quest to Give Minority Voters a Bigger Voice on School Boards
EDUCATION WEEK; Dec 12, 2017
As the nation's public schools becoming increasingly diverse, there's growing concern that the composition of school boards does not reflect that diversity, and in some communities, the concern has sparked legal battles…read article

Health program victim of politics NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 20, 2017
CHIP provides insurance for almost 9 million children and several hundred thousand pregnant women who aren’t quite poor enough to qualify for Medicaid but still can’t afford private insurance. It’s also worth noting that tobacco tax increases in 1997 and 2009 that raise $11 billion a year and took the per-pack levy from 24 cents to $1.01 are still being collected even as CHIP remains unfunded and were, when enacted, justified by politicians as direct funding for CHIP…read editorial

Gang fight needs multifaceted plan NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 19, 2017
Recent studies in Virginia and California found the kind of interventions Cuomo proposes, aimed at those 11 to 15 years old, reduced gang recruitment and trouble…read editorial

Crunch time for Gov. Cuomo NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 15, 2017
It’s make or break time for legislation coming before Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Here’s one bill worth killing, one that needs signing and one that, having become law, must now lead to better behavior…read editorial

Corruption leads to watchdog expense NEWSDAY LETTERS; Dec 18, 2017
“I’m wondering why we must always make knee-jerk political appointments to solve basic operational problems. Set intelligent, transparent processes, hire good people, manage them appropriately and there would be little need for watchdogs, whistleblowers or ethics panels.”
read letter

LI still doesn’t get it about addiction NEWSDAY OPINION; Dec 18, 2017
Despite efforts to combat addiction, the problem is getting worse — perhaps because 15 years and thousands of preventable deaths later, we still exhibit some of the attitudes that gave opioids a head start…read opinion

Published Dec 14, 2017
Board of Regents recommends tightening state aid for schools NEWSDAY.COM; Dec 12, 2017
The Regents’ proposed $1.6 billion in 2018-19 school aid is down from $2.1 billion in 2017-18. “While districts are facing challenges, the state itself is facing its own fiscal challenges, with the uncertain future of federal funds in multiple program areas,” declared a staff statement that accompanied the Regents recommendation…read article

Diploma path paved NEWSDAY; Dec 12, 2017
The state’s policymaking Board of Regents voted unanimously Monday to allow special education students who struggle with academic exams to earn high school diplomas through an alternative route, one that relies instead on occupational assessments…read article

Advocates vow universal pre-K NEWSDAY; Dec 12, 2017
State Assemb. Michaelle C. Solages, state Sen. Carl Marcellino and a bipartisan group of state legislators vowed Monday to fight for publicly funded pre-kindergarten classes for all 4-year-olds on Long Island…read article

An East End wind option NEWSDAY; Dec 10, 2017
The federal sites differ from those proposed by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority in October. Since the sites all are in federal waters, a federal plan would trump any state guideline…read article

Cheap power for LI drug maker, 9 others NEWSDAY; Dec 13, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Tuesday, “These low-cost power awards continue to provide valuable incentives for Long Island companies to retain and create jobs.”…read article

Kayla’s mom suing school NEWSDAY; Dec 13, 2017
The mother of slain Brentwood High School teen Kayla Cuevas has filed a $110 million federal suit against the Brentwood schools, saying the district failed to protect her daughter against MS-13 gang members…read article

LI going viral NEWSDAY; Dec 10, 2017
Seasonal ailments, not all of them flu, are sweeping the region…read article

Arbitrating tax hikes NEWSDAY THE POINT; Dec 1, 2017
For two decades, Scheinman headed separate arbitration panels for Long Island county and village police forces that repeatedly led to huge wins for the unions, as each group’s new deal leapfrogged previous awards he had granted. He also oversaw such decisions for unions representing teachers and firefighters…read commentary

Hempstead Town’s tug of war NEWSDAY; Dec 13, 2017
Outgoing Hempstead Town Supervisor Anthony Santino presided Tuesday over sweeping changes to the town’s union labor contract and ushered in 192 personnel moves during his final meeting as the head of the town board. Among the personnel matters, the board voted 5-2 to transfer town spokesman Mike Deery to the Office of the Receiver of Taxes, where he will continue to draw his $205,000 salary as the confidential assistant to the receiver of taxes. The board also voted unanimously to promote 30 part-time workers to full-time status. Additionally, the board members, in one 5-2 vote, granted appointments, promotions, transfers and raises to 161 other employees, including the brother of Councilman Anthony D’Esposito and outgoing Town Clerk Nasrin Ahmad. The town board approved 4-3 changes to the union’s collective bargaining agreement so that no town union employee can be terminated for budgetary reasons. “This may be legal, but this is corruption,” council member Bruce Blakeman said
...read article 

Permanence in patronage NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Dec 12, 2017
On Tuesday, outgoing Hempstead Supervisor Anthony Santino and the Republican controlled town board are slated to help almost 200 employees move to safe jobs or get raises. None of this is illegal. “This is done in Washington, in Albany and, yes, in Mineola,” said Michael Dawidziak, a Suffolk political consultant…read column

Stop Santino’s imperial moves NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 12, 2017
Republicans have enjoyed a century of uninterrupted power in Hempstead, and they’ve often used that time to pad the payroll with sycophants and apparatchiks whose only goal is to keep the party in power. Now, in Tuesday’s town board meeting, Santino will attempt to blatantly redefine machine politics in a way that takes every taxpayer hostage, and booby-traps efforts to restore honest governing, all the while waving a red flag for federal prosecutors
read editorial

Holiday toy drive at Town Hall on Friday NEWSDAY; Dec 12, 2017
Those who stop by are asked to donate a new, unwrapped toy, which town officials said would help bring joy to a child of a family in need…read article

Hempstead board nixes $46.8M bond for school NEWSDAY; Dec 8, 2017
Some favored a February ballot because it would help get the construction project started quickly and let residents consider the issue separately from the district’s other spending priorities. Others favored a May vote allowing the bond issue to be presented along with the district’s regular proposed budget, and also giving residents more time to weigh the pros and cons…read article

Voters reject $200M Uniondale school bond NEWSDAY; Dec 8, 2017
Some residents expressed concern over the scope of the borrowing. The owner of a home assessed at $300,000 would have had to pay about $270 annually for the debt…read article

Is anyone ever wrong anymore? NEWSDAY OPINION; Dec 10, 2017
Everyone is so emphatically right that those who disagree are not merely in error but irredeemably so, candidates not for persuasion but for castigation and ostracism
read opinion

Outcry over tax plan continues NEWSDAY LETTERS; Dec 11, 2017
“My mom’s 2,500-squarefoot house in Orlando, Florida, is in a gated community on a golf course, with a clubhouse and swimming pool. Her yearly property tax bill is about $1,800.”
read letter

A way forward for net neutrality NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 13, 2017
The FCC’s existing regulations, known as net neutrality, require internet providers to offer the same level of connectivity and service to everyone for the same price. In other words, a provider can’t choose to slow down the service of some businesses, while speeding it up for others, or charging websites different rates. Under those rules, as for other utilities like water and electric, internet service doesn’t play favorites and consumers and businesses alike get a relatively equal playing field. But FCC Chairman Ajit Pai wants to lift the rules…read editorial

An original jumper NEWSDAY; Dec 11, 2017
Clarence Beavers and hundreds of black paratroopers in the segregated military were far from Europe in 1945, part of a secret mission to neutralize Japanese bombs causing forest fires along the northwestern United States and Canada. Beavers died Dec. 4 of natural causes at home. The longtime Huntington resident was 96…read article

Published Dec 7, 2017
Tax deduction idea gains traction NEWSDAY; Dec 6, 2017
“Possibly there’s four or five incentives tax relief that can help our high-tax states that we’re working with our lawmakers on,” said Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee…read article 

What’s the delay? NEWSDAY.COM_THE POINT; Dec 6, 2017
Remember the shared-services competition announced last year by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo? The one that offered a $20 million prize to the local government that comes up with the best plan for reducing property taxes by consolidating, restructuring or sharing services?
...read commentary

How the tax bill will affect health care NEWSDAY; Dec 6, 2017
Lawmakers will meet this week to resolve differences between the House- and Senate- passed bills in hopes of getting a finished product to President Donald Trump’s desk around Christmas. Here are some questions and answers on how the tax bill intersects with health care
read article

Port Jefferson school district residents reject $29.9M bond
NEWSDAY.COM; Dec 6, 2017
Port Jefferson school district residents Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected a $29.9 million bond proposition by a roughly 4-to-1 margin [1355 Nay to 374 Yea]…read article

Fines rules as ‘illegal tax’ NEWSDAY; Dec 6, 2017
Doug Kellogg, a spokesman for Reclaim New York, said, “Now legislators have no way to hide from the fact the fees are illegal and they need to be removed from the Nassau County budget. They also have to be removed from the Suffolk County budget. Using fees to raise revenue is clearly illegal under state law, and it’s time for the counties to have an honest discussion about their budgets.”…read article

New law on septic systems and cesspools NEWSDAY; Dec 6, 2017
Requiring a septic tank when a cesspool fails will cost an estimated additional $2,000 to $2,500 for a homeowner, county officials said. Since 1973, the county has required new homes to install both a septic tank and a cesspool…read article

Cost has risen 50% for truck-washing rig NEWSDAY; Dec 6, 2017
The facility is expected to cost $3.015 million, a 50.75 percent increase from the $2 million that town officials had allocated for the project…read article

Behold the arrival of Big Doctor NEWSDAY OPINION; Dec 6, 2017
The plan to merge a huge health insurer and a mammoth drugstore chain has, at best, mixed virtues. It would create a monster, giving information we don’t want to share to people with control over too much of our lives…read opinion

Big challenge for new sheriff NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Dec 6, 2017
Toulon’s mission mirrors that of Tim Sini, the newly elected district attorney — run an independent, effective office that puts criminal justice ahead of politics. Toulon must stand tall and help deliver Suffolk from the swamp it has been mired in for years…read editorial


A taxing bill
NEWSDAY COMMENTARY; Dec 5, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo railed against the planned curtailment or elimination of federal tax deductions for state and local income and property taxes, calling them a new and egregious form of “double taxation.” But Cuomo doesn’t practice what he preaches…read commentary

Tech sector on edge over FCC ruling NEWSDAY; Dec 4, 2017
Net neutrality repeal could stunt growth. “It will cause a significantly higher cost of business. That will lead to higher prices or worse a reduction of funds available for jobs.”…read article

How the deal with [CVS &] Aetna will likely play out NEWSDAY; Dec 5, 2017
CVS Health says it wants to use its roughly $69 billion acquisition of the insurer Aetna to dive deeper into managing customer health…read article

Shortage of plumbers on LI NEWSDAY; Dec 4, 2017
Plumbing is one of the fastest-growing professions on Long Island. Between 2014 and 2024, the number of plumbers on the Island is expected to swell 32 percent…read article

Promoting staycations NEWSDAY; Dec 5, 2017
A 30-second television ad, which shows a couple enjoying a dinner date at a North Fork restaurant, a group of friends toasting at a winery, and a mother and son sledding through the snow, will air on the News 12 networks, CBS and travel-dedicated platform Travel Spike
read article

Toulon to be sheriff NEWSDAY; Dec 5, 2017
Toulon, a former New York City deputy corrections commissioner, becomes Long Island’s first African-American non-judicial countywide elected official…read article

Suffolk County: Judge grants LIPA’s request in tax lawsuit 
NEWSDAY; Dec 4, 2017
Supreme Court Justice Thomas F. Whelan found that LIPA faced “immediate and irreparable harm” if Suffolk County and its comptroller, John Kennedy, moved forward with steps to sell tax liens placed on more than 1,600 LIPA properties…read article

Not just gym classes NEWSDAY; Dec 4, 2017
Longwood High School requires freshmen and sophomores to take a varied curriculum that includes lessons in golf, tennis, fitness and European handball. It allows juniors and seniors to choose among five tracks: Team sports, Outdoor sports, Lifetime activities, Net sports and Dance…read article

U.S. Graduation Rate Hits New All-Time High, With Gains in All Student Groups
EDUCATION WEEK; Dec 4, 2017
The graduation rate for the high school class of 2015-16 is nearly a whole point higher than the one for the previous year's class, which was 83.2 percent, according to the new data from the National Center for Education Statistics…read article

Global Reading Scores Are Rising, But Not for U.S. Students 
EDUCATION WEEK; Dec 5, 2017
The bad news is that students in the United States are bucking the trend. While U.S. 4th graders performed at an average score of 549, above the average of the 58 education systems participating in PIRLS in 2016, that score was 7 scale points lower than the last test in 2011—basically the same as they did in 2006…read article

Published Nov 30, 2017
Legislator Anker Honors Coram Boy Scout Troop 560’s
Newest Eagle Scouts

On Thursday, November 16, 2017, Suffolk County Legislator Sarah Anker joined Boy Scout Troop 560 at the Coram Fire Department for an Eagle Scout Ceremony honoring the troop’s newest Eagle Scouts, Nicholas Tlockowski and James Anthony Cruz…read press release

Cops sweep phone data NEWSDAY; Nov 26, 2017
In New York, use of the technology was virtually unknown to the public until last year when the New York Civil Liberties Union forced the disclosure of records showing the NYPD used the devices more than 1,000 times since 2008. That included cases in which the technology helped catch suspects in kidnappings, rapes, robberies, assaults and murders. It has even helped find missing people. “By its very nature, then, the use of a cell site simulator intrudes upon an individual’s reasonable expectation of privacy, acting as an instrument of eavesdropping and requires a separate warrant supported by probable cause,” wrote state Supreme Court Judge Martin Murphy…read article

Double dip OK’d NEWSDAY; Nov 27, 2017
A state panel has given former Nassau top cop Thomas Krumpter the green light to double-dip, allowing him to legally make more than $320,000 annually in combined taxpayer-funded salary and pension benefits as the leader of the 11-officer department in the Village of Lloyd Harbor
read article

Long Island State of Mind NEWSDAY; Nov 26, 2017
Natives or not, these folks find lots to like here…read story

An earful on solar plan NEWSDAY; Nov 28, 2017
Jack Kulka, president of Kulka Construction, a Hauppauge construction management firm, predicted the program would result not only in the loss of employment in the 4,000-job local solar industry, but “hundreds of thousands of jobs” would leave the Island…read article

ISP – A New Approach to a Sound Future NEWSDAY; Nov 26, 2017
MacArthur makes big changes to get on solid financial ground. “We’re operating the airport
like a business,” said airport Commissioner Shelley LaRose-Arken (a professional airport manager rather than a political appointee). By the time LaRose-Arken was hired in the spring of 2016, the airport had lost half its daily flights since 2007, and about $5.5 million in revenue since 2010. “Experience counts, it really, really does,” Carpenter said. “In the past, appointments to the airport have been political, quite frankly. This person [LaRose-Arken] went through a very serious vetting process, has a proven track record, ” said town Supervisor Angie Carpenter…read article

Cops, schools team up for at-risk students NEWSDAY; Nov 28, 2017
Suffolk County cops work with educators to teach kids about cyberbullying, sexting, sexual assault and the health risks posed by tobacco, alcohol, e-cigarettes, marijuana and over-the-counter drugs…read article

Suffolk sued [by LIPA] in tax dispute NEWSDAY; Nov 28, 2017
LIPA on Monday filed suit against Suffolk County and its comptroller, asking a court to invalidate tax liens placed on its properties by the county to halt their seizure or sale in an ongoing tax dispute…read article

Proposal to ease cesspool rules NEWSDAY; Nov 28, 2017
Health officials said the plan would affect 5,000 to 9,000 homeowners annually. Industry officials put the [additional] cost at between $2,000 to $4,000 for replacement cesspools
read article

Suffolk leading drug suit NEWSDAY; Nov 17, 2017
Suffolk County’s lawsuit against drug companies and physicians it accuses of fueling the county’s opioid epidemic will be heard in February before state Supreme Court Justice Jerry Garguilo..read article

LAG - Build a new train to the plane NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Nov 26, 2017
There are plenty of unknowns about a LaGuardia AirTrain. They start with how to pay for it
read article

Will Reversal of FCC’s ‘Net Neutrality’ Policy Help or Hurt Schools? 
EDUCATION WEEK; Nov 23, 2017
Net neutrality is the idea that web content should be treated equally by internet service providers, rather than allowing them to deliver material at faster or slower speeds based on which content providers are paying more, or other priorities. In 2015, a Democratic majority on the FCC set out to safeguard net neutrality through a series of regulations forbidding blocking, throttling, or “paid prioritization” of content. But [FTC Commissioner] Pai’s order—scheduled for a vote by the FCC on Dec. 14—curtails those rules. Some school officials and education organizations are deeply skeptical that the plan will protect educators’ access to online sources, or nurture innovation by K-12 entrepreneurs…read article

What does it mean to be a man? NEWSDAY OPINION; Nov 26, 2017
The spate of sexual harassment allegations debunks the ‘feminization’ of men. It seems obvious the problem with men isn’t that they’ve become feminine. Rather, the problem is what it has always been—that, as men, we too often define manhood by the use of our (usually) superior strength and/or position to take what we want…read article

Con-con foes can get to work NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Nov 27, 2017
“The many foes of the constitutional convention should continue to lobby on behalf of principles they expressed during their vigorous opposition. That includes the labor unions, the environmentalists, the New York Civil Liberties Union, the state Conservative Party and every other group that said it supported various needed reforms but also argued that a process to make those reforms already exists--namely, passage by the State Legislature of amendments to the state constitution. To every engaged person who worked so hard spreading the disinformation that pensions would be stolen in the con-con effort, we expect you to be just as relentless. And we expect it to result in real change. Otherwise, your opposition to the constitutional convention was just hypocrisy. And we know it wasn’t that.”…read editorial

Warm and sunny study NEWSDAY; Nov 28, 2017
People who grew up in regions with average temperatures close to 72 degrees tend to be more agreeable, conscientiousness, emotionally stable, extroverted and open. Previous research has indeed linked geography to personality. “Midwest nice” and “New York abrasive” can be teased out of previous survey results…read article

Published Nov 16, 2017
Budget director gives NY blame for tax pain NEWSDAY; Nov 15, 2017
“Whose fault is that? Is it the federal government’s fault that New York taxes are so high that they’re driving people out of the state?” asked Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget. “Even with the federal deduction [for state and local taxes], people have been leaving New York — high-income folks have left already,” he said. “So I don’t think it’s up to the federal government to save New York from its bad decisions.”…read article

YAPHANK - Spring dredging set for Lower Lake NEWSDAY; Nov 15, 2017
After the sediment and plants have been removed, the 25-acre lake will be restored to its normal depth of about 25 feet…read article

Pill with sensor approved NEWSDAY; Nov 15, 2017
The new pill, Abilify MyCite, is embedded with a digital sensor that is activated by stomach fluids, sending a signal to a patch worn by the patient and notifying a smartphone app that the medication has been taken…read article

Some Common Core revisions win praise NEWSDAY; Nov 15, 2017
The revisions put more emphasis on the need for student play in preschool and kindergarten, while maintaining much of the Common Core’s requirements for academic preparation. “We didn’t see as many shifts there as we would have liked,” said Jeanette Deutermann of North Bellmore, a founder of the Long Island Opt Out network of parents and educators
read article

New pension law praised NEWSDAY; Nov 9, 2017

Tuesday’s referendum was passed by a 67 percent to 25 percent margin. The other 8 percent didn’t vote on the proposal. Currently, more than $604,000 a year in pension checks go to 13 officials convicted of corruption…read article

Tough immigration enforcement looms NEWSDAY; Nov 13, 2017
The focus will be on review of the federal Form I-9, which employers and employees must complete to verify employees’ identity and eligibility to work in the United States…read article

3rd-highest taxes for NY cell users NEWSDAY; Nov 10, 2017
Of New York’s 24.64 percent rate, 18.3 percentage points are from the state, New York City, other cities, counties, school districts and transit districts, and 6.34 percentage points are from the federal government. On Long Island, school districts do not levy a tax on wireless service
read article

When Technology Affects Jobs NEWSDAY BUSINESS; Nov 12, 2017
Technology is both a destroyer and enhancer of jobs on Long Island…read article

Finding LI Teaching Jobs NEWSDAY; Nov 13, 2017
For teachers, dual certification makes teachers more marketable [and] provides extra job security. For school employers, it supplies flexibility in assigning teachers to different classes throughout the day…read article

LIPA bill hike seen for ’18 NEWSDAY; Nov 14, 2017
LIPA bills for 2018 are projected to rise around 2 percent, or $3.35 more a month for average residential customers. LIPA customers also will see an increase in the revenue decoupling portion of the bills, which is intended to help the utility pay its costs even as sales decline because of green-energy measures, among other factors. The revenue decoupling charge will add $2.39 to average customers’ monthly bills next year, LIPA projects…read article

Dems back off $1.5M cut to budget NEWSDAY; Nov 12, 2017
The Suffolk Legislature’s Democratic majority Wednesday backed off its proposed amendment to cut $1.5 million from County Executive Steve Bellone’s budget to fill vacant positions, even though Republicans said it would deepen the budget hole and be used to fill patronage jobs. “It’s totally irresponsible to kick the can down the road. We have to learn how to say no,” said Legis. Rob Trotta (R-Fort Salonga)…read article

In hot pursuit of a new top cop NEWSDAY; Nov 11, 2017
The new commissioner will have to cope with a $511.2 million budget, 3,540 authorized positions, 2,907 of which are filled, and their costly contracts, due to expire at the end of 2018, as well as major concerns about gangs and opioid abuse…read article

Checking up on managers NEWSDAY; Nov 13, 2017
Republican Suffolk County Comptroller John Kennedy said he has started a “time and attendance audit” of senior managers at the Suffolk Board of Elections…read article

Suffolk plan would replace failing cesspools NEWSDAY; Nov 14, 2017
A proposed Suffolk County law would require homeowners to replace failing cesspools with septic tanks starting in 2019. Replacing a cesspool costs between $4,000 and $8,000 depending on the house, and installing a septic tank would cost about $2,000 more…read article

Small 'Nudges' Can Push Students in the Right Direction 
EDUCATION WEEK; Oct 17, 2017
research has shown one of the quickest ways to lower motivation is to try to force people to make changes—even if they agree with the end goal…read article

Even When States Revise Standards, the Core of the Common Core Remains 
EDUCATION WEEK; Nov 13, 2017
A review released on Monday of 24 states’ revisions show that they have largely preserved the common core’s most important features…read article

LI’s tax break boondoggle NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Nov 13, 2017
Time and again, Long Island’s industrial development agencies [IDA’s] have shown they’re dysfunctional and fragmented, at times giving tax breaks to meaningless projects that neither create jobs nor bring significant change to the region…read editorial

Winds of change for housing on LI NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Nov 10, 2017
Increasingly, candidates have been talking about the need for more rental housing and truly affordable housing, for building it near transit hubs and for creating walkable communities — all with the goal of turning Long Island into a vibrant place where young adults want to live, not a calcifying region they are desperate to flee and can’t afford. These candidates point to successful turnarounds like Patchogue as models…read editorial

Inclusive Clothing-Adaptive fashion for those with special needs 
NEWSDAY; Nov 13, 2017
Getting dressed is becoming easier— and more stylish — for the disabled and those with special needs as another major retailer is making significant adjustments to one of its clothing lines to accommodate an underserved community…read article

Strategies if you feel you’re underpaid NEWDAY; Nov 12, 2017
Figuring out whether your skills, experience and contributions to the company should net you a raise is tricky. Just because you feel underpaid doesn’t mean you are—but it’s worth finding out…read article

New pressure points NEWSDAY; Nov 14, 2017
The new normal: under 120/80. The new guidelines indicate that hypertension begins at 130/80, rather than 140/90 as emphasized by previous recommendations….read article

Diabetes and the brain NEWSDAY; Nov 12, 2017
“We might be able to provide patients with a better sense of what they can do over their lives with Type 1 diabetes to prevent problems in later years [and] avoid cognitive dysfunction,” said Dr. Alan M. Jacobson, chief research officer at NYU Winthrop Hospital…read article

SkyWatch: See the Leonid meteor shower NEWSDAY; Nov 11, 2017
We will actually see the Leonids during the predawn hours of Nov. 17 and, possibly, Nov. 18
read article

Published Nov 9, 2017
Feds to end immigrant protection NEWSDAY; Nov 7, 2017
At the end of 2016 there were 439,625 immigrants with TPS, according to national figures issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Approximately 5,300 were from Nicaragua and about 86,000 were from Honduras. Temporary protected status, or TPS, is a designation granted to immigrants from countries thrown into chaos by war, natural disasters or other crises, to protect them from deportation. In the cases of both Honduras and Nicaragua, the designation came after those countries were assailed by Hurricane Mitch in 1998…read article

Strong gains seen in service sector NEWSDAY; Nov 6, 2017
The strength in the services sector is emblematic of a U.S. economy that looks increasingly healthy…read article

Public pension costs hikes loom NEWSDAY; Nov 6, 2017
Pension costs for teachers and other professional school staffers are expected to rise about 10 percent in the 2018-19 school year for districts on Long Island and statewide…read article

LIRR ridership lags NEWSDAY; Nov 7, 2017
Darnell Grisby, director of policy development and research for the American Public Transportation Association, said that despite the recent drops in ridership, the LIRR is still “performing better than the national picture,” partly because of the lack of viable, cheaper alternatives…read article

80 warehouse layoffs NEWSDAY; Nov 8, 2017
A Port Washington maker of wigs and other human and synthetic hair products said Tuesday it plans to lay off up to 80 Long Island-based workers as it shifts most of its warehouse operations to Georgia…read article

Suffolk County and Brookhaven Voting Results NEWSDAY; Nov 8, 2017
..read results 

Suffolk mulls restoring cuts, borrowing $5M more NEWSDAY; Nov 7, 2018
Budget amendments proposed by majority Democrats would… add $571,000 to county expenditures in 2018, according to the legislature’s nonpartisan Budget Review Office
….read article

Education commissioner touts more state-funded pre-K on LI
NEWSDAY; Nov 8, 2017
Only 7 percent of Long Island 4-year-olds have access to full-day programs, compared with 100 percent of New York City students. In 2013, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo committed to a five-year phase-in of universal pre-K. Last year, the state Education Department asked for $100 million for prekindergarten programming but received $5 million, said state Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia…read article

The Case(s) Against Personalized Learning
 EDUCATION WEEK; Nov 8, 2017
When any new educational strategy receives money and attention, questions arise. Like other efforts to improve U.S. schools, personalized learning is getting swept up in decades-long disagreements over how children learn, the proper role of teachers, and who gets to decide how public education is organized…read article 

Personalized Learning: The Journey to Student-Centered Instruction
MCGRAW-HILL EDUCATION
Change can be challenging for educators who face time constraints, scarce budgets and
resources, multiple stakeholder communities, and continuously evolving initiatives. Building
a bridge from existing practice to increased personalization, and purposefully taking each step to cross that bridge can assure classroom transformation and optimize each student’s opportunity for achievement…read white paper

Sini’s task as DA: Clean up Suffolk NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Nov 8, 2017
In Suffolk, criminal justice and politics have been an unholy mix. It’s time to start anew
read editorial

Surveil mosques to prevent terrorism NEWSDAY OPINION; Nov 7, 2017
“We must examine sanctuaries for Islamism and Islamist sympathizers in mosques, centers and neighborhoods. Counterterrorism experts and politicians must know that far from being Islamophobic, the scrutiny is supported by Islam. The Quran demands that Muslims fight injustice, even testifying against relatives.”…read opinion

Study: Stents no aid to painNEWSDAY; Nov 7, 2017
Having a stent placed in a coronary vessel to relieve chest pain may be of no benefit for some heart patients despite the procedure being one of the most common in cardiac care
read article

Published Nov 2, 2017
Various Advertising Against the NYS Constitutional Convention
...more info 
 
Candidates for Suffolk County offices
NEWSDAY; Oct 30, 2017
Judges, DA, Sheriff, County Legislators…here is the list of who is running…read list
 
Candidates for Brookhaven Town Races NEWSDAY; Nov 1, 2017
Town Supervisor, Highway Supt., Judge, Town Council reps…here is the list of who is running
read list 
 
[CON CON] Unions bolsters ‘NO’ vote effort NEWSDAY; Oct 31. 2017
The group, New Yorkers Against Corruption, got $1.8 million in donations in the last two weeks, including $500,000 from the New York State United Teachers union, $350,000 from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, $250,000 from the Civil Service Employees Association, and $140,000 from the New York State AFL-CIO…and still has $1.2 million left to spend…read article

Imprisoned ex-chief gets $145G pension NEWSDAY; Oct 27, 2017
James Burke, the imprisoned former Suffolk County police chief at the center of the indictments of Suffolk District Attorney Thomas Spota and a top aide, currently collects an annual pension of $145,485, according to state records. That taxpayer-funded income is in addition to a one-time $194,901.98 payment he took from his pension when he retired, according to the state comptroller’s office. And it doesn’t include the nearly $435,000 Burke received in 2016 for unused sick and vacation time…read article

State health marketplace enrollment starts NEWSDAY; Nov 1, 2017
The enrollment period for the NY State of Health marketplace will run until Jan. 31, six weeks longer than the federal marketplace’s enrollment period…read article 
Related article…
Smart choices for open enrollment NEWSDAY; Oct 30, 2017
One of the most significant decisions you’ll make during open enrollment is about your health insurance…read article

Costly natural gas to fuel winter rate hike NEWSDAY; Oct 29, 2017
National Grid cited higher natural gas prices in projecting average monthly heating bills will increase 10 percent this winter…read article

LI’s war on drugs NEWSDAY; Oct 30, 2017
Suffolk Police Commissioner Timothy Sini, the Democratic candidate for Suffolk County district attorney, said: “We can put drug dealers on notice that if people die as a result of the drugs they sell, they will be treated like murderers . . . It sends a message to drug dealers that we are not going to tolerate drug dealing in our communities. It also sends a message to residents that we will aggressively investigate complaints of drug dealing.” Rep. Tom Reed, a Republican who represents western New York State, is sponsoring a bill aimed at dealers who were caught selling over 100 grams of fentanyl that would give federal prosecutors the power to punish them with life in prison or death…read article

Single IDA urged for LI NEWSDAY; Oct 31, 2017
The Citizens Budget Commission report concluded that businesses from one town or village “can be lured to another in the same region through tax incentives, without generating any real new jobs or additional revenue.”…read article

New plant, 115 more jobs NEWSDAY; Nov 1, 2017
CVD Equipment Corp. of Central Islip is buying a 180,000-square foot facility near its headquarters for $13.9 million as part of an expansion plan. State officials said the expansion would create 115 new jobs. The Town of Islip is providing a package of tax abatements over 14 years worth more than $2 million…read article

Therapy group expands NEWSDAY; Nov 1, 2017
Uniondale-based Professional Physical Therapy has acquired South Shore Hand Therapy in Merrick and plans to buy more such facilities, its CEO said Monday…read article

Suffolk cops plan intervention for addicts NEWSDAY; Oct 31, 2017
Commissioner Timothy Sini said his officers would identify suspected drug abusers and turn their names over to the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, or LICADD, which will counsel them to voluntarily enter a treatment program…read article

Info on bonuses for DA staff subpoenaed NEWSDAY; Oct 27, 2017
Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota’s office has paid a total of $2.7 million in bonuses since 2012 using an asset forfeiture fund, according to documents released this month…read article

Hofstra’s legal visionary NEWSDAY; Oct 29, 2017
The year-to-year decline in applications began between the 2012-13 and 2013-14 academic years. For the class entering in August 2012, Hofstra received 3,892 applications from prospective full- and part-time students. That number dropped to 2,671 in 2013; 2,343 in 2014; 1,848 in 2015; and 1,808 in 2016…read article 

[Proposition 2] Pension measure has its limits NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 29, 2017
Even if voters approve the proposition, it will only affect state and local officials who commit felony crimes, directly connected to their official duties, starting Jan. 1, 2018. “You’d think that an orange jumpsuit would be more of a deterrent than losing your pension, but that turns out not to be the case.”…read opinion

No need to open up NY’s constitution NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 30, 2017
There have been only two successful constitutional conventions since 1894, and both were called when the nation was in crisis…read opinion

Looking for sense in nation’s gun laws NEWSDAY LETTERS; Oct 27, 2017
“I’m not required to attend any classes or qualify on any weapon I possess. In fact, I don’t even have to see the broadside of a barn; no less hit it.”—Retired police officer…read letter

The Fragile Generation REASON.COM; Dec 2017
When we don't let our kids do anything on their own, we don't get to see just how competent they can be—and isn't that, ultimately, the greatest reward of parenting? We need to make it easier for grown-ups to let go while living in a society that keeps warning them not to. And we need to make sure they won't get arrested for it…read article

Published on Oct 26, 2017
How the new minimum wage law is affecting LI manufacturers
NEWSDAY; Oct 22, 2017

New York State’s new, higher minimum wage is leading to drastic actions by factories on Long Island that produce food or drugs, have small staffs or use low-skilled workers on their assembly lines, according to executives and government records. “The potential for lost jobs is particularly acute, given that manufacturers face global competition,” said Moody’s economist Adam Ozimek. Uncle Wally’s executives Michael Petrucelli and Louis Avignone, in an IDA letter obtained by Newsday, said, “For us to remain profitable, 1 out of every 4 of our workers will lose their jobs.” The company employed 160 last year. Cuomo overcame opposition to the [minimum wage] measure by including the wage raise in the 2016-17 state budget, which had to be adopted in order to fund state operations…read article

Job growth still slow NEWSDAY; Oct 20, 2017
“Companies across a variety of sectors have reported having a hard time filling open positions, which maybe limiting potential job growth,” said Shital Patel, labor market analyst
read article

Health premium increases looming NEWSDAY; Oct 24, 2017
Even after firms make plan changes such as raising deductibles or switching carriers, according to early responses. “Employers are facing the biggest premium increase since 2011,” says William Lovy of Mercer, national HR consultants, in Manhattan. In particular, employers face drug costs rising about 7 percent next year due to new specialty medications…read article

Wind project off LI named Empire Wind NEWSDAY; Oct 24, 2017
The developer is Norwegian [Statoil, which is two-thirds owned by the Norwegian government], but the name of the first wind-energy array off Long Island’s South Shore will be distinctly New York: Empire Wind. Statoil has ambitions beyond the Empire Wind project. New York State this month identified more than 1 million acres of offshore waters for future wind arrays. [Statoil] noted production will be based on contracts the company negotiates with the state or power companies…read article

Gaining venture capital NEWSDAY; Oct 23, 2017
Long Island companies are on pace in 2017 to eclipse the $41.26 million in venture capital raised last year, based on data through mid-October…read article

Suit challenges Suffolk’s fee hikes as illegal NEWSDAY; Oct 25, 2017
Under state law and legal precedent, local fee hikes have to equal the cost of providing services. The county increased its “tax map verification fee” from $60 per parcel to $200 in 2015 and added a new $300 fee for mortgage recordings in 2016. Legis. Robert Trotta (R-Fort Salonga) filmed the process of verifying the tax map numbers and processing the mortgage documents, which took a county worker 51 seconds…read article

National honor for LI teacher NEWSDAY; Oct 20, 2017
Fifth-graders inevitably find themselves drawn into Kate Hunter’s social studies lessons, whether the subject is homelessness, bullying or the sacrifice of World War II veterans who were the students’ great-grandparents…read article

Suffolk County: No movie magic here NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Oct 24, 2017
Looks like Suffolk is projected to have a 2018 structural deficit larger than that estimated for Nassau, where the Nassau Interim Finance Authority has overseen county budgets for 17 years…read article

Fee hikes will get their day in court NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 25, 2017
The Real Property Tax Service Agency, which collects these fees [tax map verification and mortgage recording], has an annual budget of $1.2 million, but it brings in $66 million in fees. A charge levied by a county that covers the cost of a service rendered, like recording a mortgage or updating a tax map, is a fee. A charge levied by a county that wildly exceeds the cost of a service rendered is a scam…read opinion

FDA approves new shingles vaccine NEWSDAY; Oct 24, 2017
Anyone who’s had chickenpox — nearly everyone over 40 — harbors the varicella-zoster virus that causes the disease. The virus can resurface decades later, triggering painful sores on one side of the body…read article


Published on Oct 19, 2017
Myths & Realities of a State Constitutional Convention
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Oct 15, 2017
“Unhappy with our state government? The ‘con-con’ gives New Yorkers a way to set things right. At the moment, however, opponents of a convention are flooding the zone with political advertising. Many high-spending special interest groups, including labor unions, are among those spending to oppose a constitutional convention. By now, you’ve seen the lawn signs. Or the bumper stickers. Or the posts on Facebook. One victim of this heated rhetoric is the truth. There is a lot being said that is simply not fact. To make a good decision on whether to support a constitutional convention, one needs to understand what is myth and what is reality.”
read editorial

Convention foes have the cash NEWSDAY; Oct 16, 2017
Public worker unions, politicians and others opposed to a state constitutional convention that could overhaul state government have heavily outspent convention backers, with the most intense TV ad blitzes expected over the next four weeks, according to records and interviews
read article

CON-CON & the other Two Amendments Ballotmedia
What are they and what do they really mean?...read more

Benefit checks to be 2% bigger
 NEWSDAY; Oct 14, 2017
The cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, affects benefits for more than 70 million U.S. residents, including Social Security recipients, disabled veterans and federal retirees. It comes to only $25 a month for the average beneficiary.…read article

Aggressive panhandling banned in Patchogue NEWSDAY; Oct 12, 2017
Patchogue Retailers Committee, in a letter to the board that was read during the meeting, said the group supports the law “because it is consistent with our goal of improving the shopping experience in Patchogue. We have all had customers make comments about not feeling safe because of panhandling.” New York State does not have a similar code, village officials said. The state used to have a panhandling statute, but a U.S. Supreme Court decision in 2015 struck it down on the basis it violated First Amendment rights…read article

Tick kits sent to LI schools NEWSDAY; Oct 14, 2017
Stony Brook Southampton Hospital is providing more than 500 tick removal kits to about 150 schools in Suffolk County, officials said. Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne infection nationwide, and Suffolk County has been a hot zone of the ailment for decades, experts said
read article

Budget called ‘risky’ NEWSDAY; Oct 17. 2017
Bellone spokesman Jason Elan criticized the legislature’s sales tax estimates. He said [of the] Budget Review’s consultant, “We know of no other municipality using their services…”
read article

Immigrant loss could have cost NEWSDAY; Oct 14, 2017
Suffolk would lose $373M spending a year, report says…read article

DA bonuses questioned NEWSDAY; Oct 14, 2017
Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota has awarded almost $2.7 million in bonuses to prosecutors since 2012 without approval from county legislators. The money came from a state asset forfeiture fund that in Suffolk is controlled by Spota. District attorney Division Chief Edward Heilig said the district attorney raises, which are all approved by Spota, were based on merit and that many went to prosecutors who work more than the 35 hours a week the county requires…read article

TOB - $5.8M federal grant for emergency plans
NEWSDAY; Oct 17, 2017
Brookhaven Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said the grant would help the town improve its responses to hurricanes, snowstorms and other emergencies…read article

Regents exams to get more scrutiny NEWSDAY; Oct 17, 2017
Lorna Lewis, superintendent of Plainview- Old Bethpage schools, said allowing a committee of teachers to review questions that already had been field tested means, in effect, that those teachers would see all questions actually slated to appear on exams. That, she said, could give such teachers an unfair advantage…read article

Books - What’s cool for kids NEWSDAY; Oct 15, 2017
Paige Britt’s “Why Am I Me?” (Scholastic, ages 3-7) invites very young listeners to consider something both astonishing and elegantly simple: What do I know about myself?
...read reviews

Troopers in LI schools? Not so fast NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Oct 15, 2017
In Longwood, which also balked at the program, the district ultimately wrangled the closest thing to an apology from the state. That came in a letter from Letizia Tagliafierro, a Cuomo staffer stating, “We acknowledge that neither the Longwood SHS nor the JHS experience gang activity in their buildings.”…read column

¿Hablas Español?. . .Why not? NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 16. 2017
Nationally, and especially locally, trends point to an American future told in Spanish as well as English. Though assimilation into America’s melting pot has, should and will continue to include learning English, this needn’t come at the expense of commonsense practicality…read opinion

The Soviet experiment’s rise and fall NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 17, 2017
With its slogans of equality for all, human solidarity, and the elimination of oppression and want, communism appealed to millions of people in the West in the last century…read opinion

Warily waiting for the supervolcano NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 15, 2017
Magma is building beneath Yellowstone’s mighty mountains. And it’s due to blow
...read opinion

Strategies for buying your first home NEWSDAY BUSINESS; Oct 15, 2017
Rising home prices, wages that haven’t kept pace with those increases, and high levels of student debt are forcing first-time home buyers on Long Island to find creative ways to afford the biggest purchase of their lives…read article

Mata Hari, mystery for a century NEWSDAY; Oct 15, 2017
LEEUWARDEN, Netherlands—A century ago on Sunday, an exotic dancer named Mata Hari was executed by a French firing squad, condemned as a sultry Dutch double agent who supposedly caused the deaths of thousands of soldiers during World War I…read article

Secrets found in cosmic crash NEWSDAY SCIENCE; Oct 17, 2017
It was a faint signal, but it told of one of the most violent acts in the universe, and it would soon reveal secrets of the cosmos, including how gold was created…read article

Published on Oct 12, 2017
Tuition aid for U.S. territory students NEWSDAY; Oct 7, 2017
The State University of New York will offer in-state tuition to students from Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as requested earlier in the week by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo…read article

State: Beware ID theft NEWSDAY; Oct 11, 2017
“By taking proactive security measures now, taxpayers can reduce the likelihood that they’ll become victims of identity theft.” acting Commissioner Nonie Manion of the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance…read article

Clean power rules to end NEWSDAY; Oct 10, 2017
The head of the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday that he will sign a new rule overriding the Clean Power Plan, an Obama-era effort to limit carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants…read article

Anti-bully law aimed at parents NEWSDAY; Oct 10, 2017
Parents of children found bullying other minors could face jail time under a new law approved in this western New York community…read article

Pushback on troopers NEWSDAY; Oct 9, 2017
Schools balk at state effort toward gangs. Longwood’s protest triggered a letter from a Cuomo staff lawyer to the school admitting the designation wasn’t made on reports of gang activities in its schools…read article

PSEG LI rises in survey ranks NEWSDAY; Oct 10, 2017
The latest [customer satisfaction survey] increase puts PSEG in 11th place among the 17 largest eastern utilities. Over the past two years it has received more than $8 million in bonus compensation, even as it has missed measures of customer outage duration and frequency
read article

On LI, seized assets in the millions NEWSDAY; Oct 8, 2017
Suffolk took in $4.1 million in assets through state [criminal] charges…read article

Learning How to Learn Could Be a Student's Most Valuable Skill 
EDUCATION WEEK; Sep 28, 2017
In survey after survey, technology experts and business leaders are skeptical of the ability of the K-12 and higher education systems to evolve quickly enough to respond to the workforce demands of the future. To be sure, no one knows precisely the recipe for producing the most prepared, adaptable workforce. But at the very least, to learn how to learn is a gift. And it may just be one of the puzzle pieces to navigating an uncertain future…read article

Growing Number of States Embrace Career Education 
EDUCATION WEEK; Oct 4, 2017
"What we're seeing is that there's been a shift from focusing purely on college readiness to thinking also about career readiness," said Jennifer Thomsen, who analyzes policy for the Education Commission of the States…read article 

A tax-reform punch in the gut for LI NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 8, 2017
“New York is home to some of the highest state and local taxes in the nation. Officials in Washington must understand that ending the deductions would be bad for New York, bad for Long Island and bad for all of our constituents,” states US congressmen Thomas Suozzi and Peter King…read opinion

Laws on scheduling gaining momentum NEWSDAY BUSINESS; Oct 9, 2017
“Predictive scheduling” [is] legislation that generally requires employers to give a certain amount of advance notice to employees of their work schedules and compensate them if those schedules are changed…read article

Companies with a conscience NEWSDAY; Oct 8, 2017
The companies say that corporate social responsibility promotes innovation, brand differentiation, customer engagement, and employee recruitment and retention…read article

Published on Oct 5, 2017
Legislators retain role on reforms NEWSDAY; Oct 2, 2017
Bills that would prohibit elected officials from controlling a constitutional convention have been blocked in the State Legislature. Failure to advance the bills means that a key argument of opponents of a constitutional convention remains alive: That elected officials could hijack the panel from private citizens and block meaningful reform…read article

Union fees back in Supreme Court NEWSDAY; Sep 29, 2017
“We are now one step closer to freeing over 5 million public sector teachers, police officers, firefighters, and other employees from the injustice of being forced to subsidize a union as a condition of working for their own government,” National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation President Mark Mix said in a statement. The case involves only public- employee unions but those unions are the strongest segment of an organized labor movement
read article

Cuomo raises profile NEWSDAY; Oct 1, 2017
Hank Sheinkopf, a veteran Democratic political consultant, said the governor’s efforts to raise his profile and sound off on issues key to certain constituencies (unions, Latinos) is foremost about next Year [NYS Governor’s race, but] “Should it create speculation about 2020? Yeah, it should,” Sheinkopf said…read article

Deportation fears keep ‘dreamers’ away NEWSDAY; Oct 1, 2017
“People say, ‘If I reapply for DACA, I’m more of a priority’ for deportation.”…read article

MTA’s tollbooths in rearview mirror NEWSDAY; Oct 1, 2017
With the removal of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s last two toll plazas at the Throgs Neck and Bronx- Whitestone bridges on Saturday, all of the MTA’s nine crossings are now cashless. Wayne Joseph, president of the Bridge and Tunnel Officers Benevolent Association, said his union was “on board” with the change to cashless tolling, but thought his members should be compensated for moving into a more dangerous law enforcement role. “There’s still a need for us. Nobody’s losing their jobs or anything like that,” Joseph said. “It’s just a shift in primary function.”…read article

Missing links in the chains NEWSDAY BUSINESS; Oct 1, 2017
Some big retailers find Long Island a daunting market to enter. “It could take less than 45 days to get something approved elsewhere, but that same process could take two years or more here,” said David F. Chinitz, president and CEO at Park Place Realty Group in Melville
read article

Calculating tax reform’s impact on LI NEWSDAY; Oct 1, 2017
For most taxpayers, the proposal’s core is the simplification of taxes by collapsing the current seven brackets — which range from 10 percent to 39.6 percent — into three brackets of 12 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent, with a possible fourth for high-income filers. How those streamlined brackets will affect Long Island taxpayers cannot be determined — the framework did not include their income ranges…read article

Sites ID’d for offshore power NEWSDAY; Oct 4, 2017
New York has a goal of 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030 from federal waters primarily off the Long Island coast…read article

New Law Will Ensure Access to Narcan On-Site at Service Providers
OFFICE OF SARAH S. ANKER; Oct 4, 2017
At the General Legislature Meeting on Tuesday, October 3, the members of the Suffolk County Legislature unanimously approved Introductory Resolution 1679, sponsored by Legislator Sarah Anker. The resolution is a local law to ensure access to Naloxone, a medication that reverses the effects of drug overdose, at substance abuse and mental health service providers
read press release


Traffic cam study OKd NEWSDAY; Oct 4, 2017 
Bill sponsor Legis. Sarah Anker (D-Mount Sinai) said the county will spend $250,000 from its Traffic and Parking Violations Agency…[on] hiring an outside contractor to study why injury accidents at nearly half the red-light camera intersections have gone up…read article

Panel rejects health pay-in for nonunion workers
 
NEWSDAY; Sep 28, 2017
A Suffolk legislative committee on Wednesday rejected a proposal to require all nonunion employees to pay a portion of their health insurance, as public employee union members warned the county against imposing a similar requirement on them. The bill defeated by the Government Operations Committee would have saved the county $850,000 a year by requiring 323 nonunion workers, including political appointees and prosecutors, to pay 15 percent of health care costs starting Jan. 1. All union and nonunion employees hired after 2012 currently pay 15 percent of their health insurance costs.…read article

Brookhaven to bid on Amazon HQ NEWSDAY; Sep 28, 2017
Amazon has said the selected headquarters will bring 50,000 jobs and invest $5 billion in the local community. Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said Wednesday that Calabro Airport is appealing because the land has already been cleared and another 108 acres next door at the shuttered Dowling College could bring additional space. “Amazon wants a campus-style facility,” the supervisor said…read article

Brookhaven Town - OT drops 11% as payroll stabilizes 
NEWSDAY; Sep 29, 2017
Brookhaven chief of operations Matt Miner said municipal spending on payroll can be unpredictable because of bad weather and other unanticipated events. He said Brookhaven was fortunate last year that snowstorms were relatively few, so that Highway Department crews earned less overtime for clearing roads…read article

Brookhaven Town – Jumping on dumping NEWSDAY; Sep 28, 2017
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine wants to pay residents up to $1,000 to complain about illegal dumping…read article

The Arts Need to Be a Central Part of Schooling 
EDUCATION WEEK; Oct 2, 2017
It is hard to ignore the growing body of research that correlates arts experiences with multiple domains of learning, including academic achievement, motivation, and thinking skills
read article

Fast track to regents NEWSDAY; Oct 2, 2017
The academic year had ended weeks before, but at The Windsor School on Flushing’s busy Main Street, more than 200 students from Long Island were back at the books in July
read article

Long Island looks like a loser NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Oct 1, 2017
Simplifying the system and lowering the number of brackets would make sense. For the vast majority of taxpayers, figuring out what they owe in taxes should be an easy process that takes into account just a few factors. The new plan to reform federal taxes could cost New York’s homeowners and larger families thousands more a year…read editorial

Too much of a good thing NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 1, 2017
The popularity of our national parks is putting stress on their natural beauty…read opinion

There’s absolutely no need to panic NEWSDAY OPINION; Oct 2, 2017
“Amid the current climate of political despair, I’ve so far managed to keep my head. That, in turn, seems to be driving certain people around me crazy.”…read opinion

Insulin illustrates health care woes NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Oct 2, 2017
For people who have generous health care plans with small deductibles and copays, insulin prices aren’t a problem. And for people poor enough to be on Medicaid in New York, insulin prices are not a big issue because they have no deductibles or copays. But a 50-year-old patient with a bronze-level family plan from an Affordable Care Act exchange would have to meet an average annual deductible of $8,000 before insurance starts paying for his or her insulin. That’s on top of policy premiums averaging $1,100 a month…read editorial

U.S. braces for tough flu; shots urges NEWSDAY; Sep 29, 2017
Everybody needs a shot, starting at 6 months of age, according to the CDC. Flu is most dangerous for people over age 65, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions such as asthma or heart disease. On average, the CDC said flu kills about 24,000 Americans each year, and last year, the toll included 105 children…read article

Published on Sep 28, 2017
Big push to pass Dream Act NEWSDAY; Sep 26, 2017
The measure would protect undocumented minors who face deportation because of President Donald Trump’s decision to end the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program…read article

Survey finds 20% of teen athletes had head trauma NEWSDAY, Sep 27, 2017
“While participation in contact sports can provide numerous health benefits and a way to build confidence and leadership, there is always the risk of concussion,” said Dr. Robert Glatter, a former sideline physician for the Jets…read article

Target hiking pay to $11, then $15 NEWSDAY; Sep 26, 2017
Shares of Minneapolis based Target fell 0.73 percent Monday to close at $58.55, as investors worried about how much the wage hike would hurt the bottom line…read article

Face of LI is changing NEWSDAY, Sep 26, 2017
“I definitely think that when people outside of Long Island think of Long Island, they think about it as bastions of privilege and elite kind of middle-class families, but the demographics have changed and our institutions need to reflect that change…” said Sonia Arora, [who along with] her husband founded a collective they call Long Island Together…read article

Red-light cam study gets OK NEWSDAY, Sep 26, 2017
Suffolk Democratic legislators approved a six-month study on the safety of red light camera sites in a tense committee meeting Monday after blocking a GOP effort to suspend the program Jan. 1 until a review is done. The public works committee voted 5-2 in favor of a resolution sponsored by Legis. Sarah Anker (D-Mount Sinai). ..read article

SAT scores up, with a caveat NEWSDAY, Sep 26, 2017
National scores for the Class of 2017 on the redesigned SAT college entrance exam are the highest posted in 45 years. The recalibrated scores reflect a thorough overhaul of the SAT based on new benchmarks for measuring students’ readiness for college…read article

High school students also enrolled in college classwork
NEWSDAY; Sep 27, 2017
Many more high school students are fast-tracking their studies by simultaneously taking community college courses as a way to save time and money on higher education
read article

Confessions of a desperado millennial NEWSDAY OPINION; Sep 21, 2017
My apologies for killing everything. All I wanted was avocado and a trophy…read opinion

College-search software I want to kill NEWSDAY OPINION; Sep 22, 2017
Naviance is a nifty, award winning piece of software. The thing is, I would very much like to destroy every copy of it in existence…read opinion

Published Sep 21, 2017
School rebuff NEWSDAY; Sep 15, 2017
School officials in Longwood and Huntington told residents yesterday that they had not been consulted in advance about a state program [Cuomo] to send state troopers into their schools. Longwood Superintendent Michael Lonergan wrote on the district’s website that he “had NO prior knowledge of the formation of the task force or the details on how the district was chosen.” He added “our schools do not have gangs roaming the hallways or threatening our school community,” blaming media outlets for the portrayal…read article

Sanders offers health bill NEWSDAY; Sep 14, 2017
The bill would establish Medicare…as the nation’s health care system; enroll all children up to age 18 during the first year; and phase it in over four years by lowering the age of adults each year until everyone is covered. Sanders did not offer estimates of the cost or how he would pay for the bill. But the Medicare for All bill he promoted as he ran for president last year would cost $1.38 trillion a year, paid for by higher taxes, especially on the wealthy…read article

CENSUS: LI Median Incomes Up in ’16 NEWSDAY; Sep 14, 2017
Median household income in Nassau rose to $105,870 in 2016, up from $102,403 the year before. In Suffolk, the median rose to $92,933, from $89,488 in 2015…read article

LI home prices up as listings dwindle NEWSDAY; Sep 15, 2017
In Suffolk County, the median sales price increased by 6.5 percent compared with the previous August, to $375,000,There were 7,345 homes listed for sale in Suffolk last month, down 15 percent from the previous August…read article

State: LI’s unemployment rate up to 4.4% in August NEWSDAY; Sep 20, 2017
Long Island’s unemployment rate inched up to 4.4 percent in August, from 4.2 percent in August 2016…the rise in the number of jobless residents amid a growing labor force likely indicates that more discouraged workers have restarted their job search…read article

Job growth stumbles NEWSDAY; Sep 15, 2017
Long Island’s job growth has weakened the most in more than seven years, data released yesterday show. Just three of the Island’s nine private sectors gained jobs. The government sector expanded by 1,000 jobs…read article

$3B Suffolk budget adds 235 police NEWSDAY; Sep 16, 2017
The police district rate will rise by 4.85 percent [after rising almost 4% this year]. The proposed budget includes no layoffs…but banks on major union concessions on health insurance. Noel DiGerolamo, Suffolk PBA president, said he was…“happy to assist” the county in talks, but declined to comment on the size of concessions under discussion or when a deal might be struck. “But I am unaware of where they are coming up with these numbers. My calculations are significantly different,” he said….read article

Q&A: One-on-One with U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos 
EDUCATION WEEK; Sep 18, 2017
U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has faced some big challenges in her more-than six months in office. We talked about all of that and much more in a wide-ranging interview Friday, the final day of the secretary's "Rethink School" tour, which kicked off last Tuesday and covered six states…read interview

County budget sleight of hand NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 19, 2017
In Suffolk, the general property tax fund is tiny and hikes do not reap big bucks, so the action is in the police district property tax fund. County Executive Steve Bellone’s $3 billion budget proposes to hike that levy by 4.85 percent—after it rose almost 4 percent this year. But the increases didn’t exceed the property tax cap either year, because . . . magic! OK, it’s not really magic…read editorial

Suffolk will need to do more to cut health costs NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 18, 2017
When Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone unveiled his 2018 budget Friday, a key stumbling block stood out. Health care spending is out of control, and the fact that most county employees don’t pay for any part of it is just a small piece of the problem…read editorial

Published Sep 14, 2017
Andrew Cuomo: Troopers going to 10 Suffolk schools to fight gangs 
NEWSDAY; Sep 13, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced that 10 state troopers will immediately be deployed to 10 Suffolk schools for gang prevention. The schools are: Brentwood High School; Central Islip Senior High School; Huntington High School; Longwood High School; Wyandanch High School; Bellport Senior High School; Freshman Center, in Brentwood; Longwood Junior High School; Ralph G. Reed Middle School in Central Islip; and Brentwood West Middle School…read article

NYS: Paid Family Leave
 NEWSDAY; Sep 10, 2017
Eligible employees can receive as many as eight weeks off, as of Jan. 1. The maximum leave rises to 10 weeks in 2019. It changes for the final time in 2021, when employees may take up to 12 weeks off…read article

Saving lives in LI’s opioid crisis NEWSDAY; Sep 12, 2017
Suffolk officials said they’ve held more than 278 classes and have trained more than 9,000 people on how to administer the drug since they introduced their naloxone program in 2012
read article

PSEG: Smart meters by 2022 NEWSDAY; Sep 10, 2017
The $291 million transformation that will give the utility and customers real-time data about usage and eliminate the need for estimated bills — along with more than 160 jobs
….read article

Share plan could save $37M NEWSDAY; Sep 13, 2017 
Suffolk supervisors…and County Executive Steve Bellone yesterday unanimously passed a plan to share municipal services that county officials hope will save county taxpayers $37 million over the next two years. Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter said yesterday that while he supported the plan, it was only “playing around the edges” because personnel costs make up about 70 percent of expenses…read article

SC IDA: Firms invested $775.7M
 NEWSDAY; Sep 12, 2017
The IDA invested an average of $704 in incentives per job retained or created, while companies invested $49,900 per job, the report conducted by the Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Planning found…read article

Recycling site starts $200G expansion NEWSDAY; Sep 8, 2017
“We’re ready to go to the next level,” said Supervisor Edward P. Romaine in an interview. “We’re preparing for the future. We really want to give a big boost to recycling.”…read article

A leap forward for arts NEWSDAY; Sep 13, 2017 
The state Board of Regents voted unanimously for the new guidelines, which cover dance, music, theater and visual and media arts. The standards will go into effect with the 2018-19 school year…read article

Blueprints for success
 NEWSDAY; Sep 12, 2017
Two state blueprints spelling out what public school students on Long Island and statewide should learn in the future and how districts can help them succeed won unanimous consent yesterday from the state Board of Regents…read article

How Virtual Reality Is Helping Train New Teachers 
EDUCATION WEEK; Sep 5, 2017
The idea is that incoming teachers can feel what it's like to be confronted with challenging behaviors—for instance, students yelling, pulling out their cellphones, jumping on desks—without having to step into a physical classroom. And they can do so at any time on their own by using a smartphone and VR headset, which can cost as little as $10…read article

How colleges on LI rank NEWSDAY; Sep 12, 2017
U.S. News & World Report released its 2018 Best College rankings today, placing Princeton, Harvard, University of Chicago and Yale in the top national spots. The top-ranked Long Island institution on the national list is Stony Brook University, in a six-way tie at No. 97…read article

Get the facts on Equifax NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 13, 2017
The enormous Equifax data breach compromises the personal information of as many as 143 million Americans, more than half of the nation’s adult population. When Equifax did go public [with the data breach news], it gave those affected an impossible choice: Sign up for credit monitoring and other help, but give away your right to sue…read editorial

Want a new career? 5 steps to take first
 NEWSDAY; Sep 11, 2017
You may have identified your next career, but giving up the security of the current one will take energy, money and time. Before you quit your current gig, take these five steps…read article

Published Sep 7, 2017
See who wants your vote in the Sep 12 primary
On Tuesday, Sep 12, NYS is holding their Primary Vote day. All political parties that have more than one candidate vying for their party’s endorsement will have a Primary Vote to select their nominee for the November general elections. Most Coram and Longwood residents, depending on their party affiliation, have some choices to make. To find out what those choices are,
click here.


A new driving force at Riverhead NEWSDAY; Sep 4, 2017

Alyssa Paprocky still is learning what it takes to succeed behind the wheel of a race car, but people at Riverhead Raceway are already talking about the 22-year-old driver from Coram
read article

Dreamers program ending NEWSDAY; Sep 6, 2017
Trump urges Congress to replace plan shielding young immigrants…read article

Search on for insurance NEWSDAY; Sep 4, 2017
The 126,000 policyholders of Northwell Health’s CareConnect insurance subsidiary face a potentially arduous search for new insurance. Individual market insurance rates in New York are slated to go up 14.5 percent next year, while small group rates are scheduled to go up 9.3 percent…read article

Health care is at a premium NEWSDAY; Sep 3, 2017
Double-digit rate hikes face some buyers who don’t qualify for subsidies, tax credits
read article

Major crime down on Long Island NEWSDAY; Sep 4, 2017
In Suffolk, major crime —which includes homicide, burglary and robbery — fell 12.6 percent from the same period last year…read article

The Feel of Fortune NEWSDAY; Sep 4, 2017
Suffolk County OTB’s 6-month-old video lottery betting parlor at Jake’s 58 Hotel & Casino in Islandia continued its run as one of the state’s most successful…read article

The graying of Long Island’s unions NEWSDAY; Sep 3, 2017
Organized labor is dealing with retirements, a shortage of young workers and a slow recovery from recession losses…read article

2 local labor disputes end NEWSDAY; Sep 1, 2017
Waldner’s, an office furniture firm, closed its in-house distribution and installation business on July 5, turning to subcontractors for that work. The company said 20 full and part-time workers represented by Teamsters Local 814 were laid off. The agreement, ratified yesterday, secured severance of “one week of pay per year of service,” said Jason Ide, president of Local 814. Alside Supply Center in Old Bethpage…16 members of Teamsters Local 807 went on Strike. The strike, over proposed changes to health care coverage and the removal of a pension plan, ended after the workers found jobs at other companies employing Teamsters….read article

Suffolk lawmakers suspend raises for themselves, other officials
NEWSDAY THE POINT; Sep 6, 2017
Suffolk County legislators voted Wednesday to suspend automatic cost-of-living pay raises for themselves and other elected county officials for the next five years…read article

Tussle on benefits pay NEWSDAY; Aug 31, 2017
Suffolk faces a $160 million budget deficit between ongoing revenue and expenses, and a public backlash on fee hikes. The bill being proposed would cost 323 nonunion workers--including county prosecutors and political appointees--$1,500 a year for an individual plan or $3,154 for a family plan. It would go into effect on Jan. 1 and save the county $850,000 a year. If union employees contributed 15 percent, it could save upward of $30 million a year
read article

In defense of cameras NEWSDAY; Sep 1, 2017
The county’s most recent red light camera report released in July found an overall 5 percent decrease in injury accidents compared with the year before they were installed, but injury accidents increased at 46 of 100 intersections…read article

Opt-out rates dip statewide NEWSDAY; Aug 31, 2017
Numbers of students boycotting the state’s Common Core tests dropped in the majority of school districts statewide this year, though the figures remained especially high on Long Island. Of 50 districts statewide with the highest opt-out rates, 40 are located on the Island
read article

Zero hour looms to fix Social Security and Medicare
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 3, 2017
The fiscal stability of both programs is faltering, and the longer repairs are delayed, the harsher the solutions will be…read editorial

Workers, robots and progress NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 4, 2017
Our nation must prepare our workers for what’s coming, even if we don’t know exactly what that is, with a constantly evolving effort to retrain and transform the workforce, to move forward with technology and find our place among the robots…read editorial

A cruel reversal for Dreamers NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Sep 6, 2017
Trump makes immigrants a political football. The change in immigration policy the Trump administration announced yesterday jeopardizes the legal status of nearly 800,000 people brought to this country illegally as children…read article

5 times when you should buy your leased car NEWSDAY ONLINE; Sep 1, 2017
The buyout option at the end of a car lease can be an attractive opportunity or a tool for damage control. Here are the times when you might want to stay with old faithful
read article

Blink and you’ll miss it NEWSDAY; Sep 1, 2017
In an instant, one seven-hundredth the speed of the blink of an eye, the ant snaps its jaws shut around the unsuspecting creature…read article

Published Aug 31, 2017
Convention of Hope NEWSDAY; Aug 27, 2017
Proponents see Constitutional Convention as chance to curb corruption; opponents fear bunch of insiders…read article

Nursing home abuse unreported NEWSDAY; Aug 29, 2017
More than 1 in 4 cases of possible sexual and physical abuse against nursing home patients apparently went unreported to police, says a government audit that faults Medicare for failing to enforce a federal law requiring immediate notification…read article

School’s back in NEWSDAY; Aug 30, 2017
“A longer school year is better; a longer school day is better,” Jericho Superintendent Henry Grishman said…read article

Diploma Debate: LI Families seek Change NEWSDAY; Aug 29, 2017
Demand new options to Regents certification. Overall, more than 11 percent of students in Suffolk County and more than 9 percent in Nassau did not graduate on time or never completed high school at all in 2016…read article

NIFA Oks retirement incentive NEWSDAY; Aug 30, 2017
Evan Cohen, NIFA’s executive director said as many as 247 employees had signed up for the program as of Monday, their annual salaries totaling about $17 million. The 50 percent limit on backfilling those positions means the $17 million in savings could only be reduced by about half that amount…read article

Solar installations dive at LI homes NEWSDAY; Aug 28, 2017
The number of new residential solar-power installations on Long Island so far in 2017 has declined by more than 50 percent…read article

TOB: Town to join anti-dumping lawsuit NEWSDAY; Aug 29, 2017
“This is something we are adamantly opposed to,” Brookhaven Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said in an interview…read article

More Americans Give Top Grades to Public Schools EDUCATION WEEK; Aug 28, 2017
The percentage of Americans rating K-12 education quality—at both the national and local levels—at an "A" or "B" is the highest it's been since the 1980s…read article

New Federal Rule Could Force States to Lower Graduation Rates 
EDUCATION WEEK; Aug 25, 2017
Diplomas with less-rigorous requirements are the target of new language in the Every Student Succeeds Act. The law requires states to calculate their graduation rates by including only "standard" diplomas awarded to a "preponderance" of students, or diplomas with tougher requirements…read article

We need a holiday from calendar fuss NEWSDAY OPINION; Aug 30, 2017
With life as confusing as it is today, it’s nice to happen upon a debate with such a clear-cut resolution: Everyone’s wrong on both sides…read opinion

The problem when test results provide few answers 
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Aug 27, 2017
“If your child, in a school where only 30% of the students achieved proficiency, has never taken the tests, are you assuming that he or she is proficient?...read editorial

‘Members Only’ Medicine NEWSDAY; Aug 27, 2017
Growing numbers of doctors on Long Island, frustrated with seeing 30 patients or more in appointments each day, are adopting a business model that drastically reduces their daily
caseload…read article

Published Aug 24, 2017
State Tests: LI students improve score NEWSDAY; Aug 23, 2017
More than 45 percent of students in grades three through eight in Nassau and Suffolk counties reached proficiency or better on both exams, while about 40 percent of students statewide did so, the agency said. More than 900,000 students across the state took exams out of about 1.1 million who were eligible. Jeanette Deutermann, chief organizer of the Long Island Opt Out network, was not impressed by the state commissioner’s report of a drop statewide in opt-outs. “Honestly, if that makes her feel better to say that it’s dropped, I’m willing to allow her to feel good about that,” Deutermann said…read article

LI jobless rate rises slightly NEWSDAY; Aug 23, 2017
Local economists said the rise in the number of employed and unemployed residents, and in the jobless rate, could indicate that more discouraged workers, or those who had dropped out of the market, restarted their job search because they believed their employment prospects had improved…read article

GOP contest certain in 6th NEWSDAY; Aug 20, 2017
Frank Vetro and Gary Pollakusky are battling in the Sept. 12 GOP primary ballot for the right to take on Democratic Legis. Sarah Anker in the 6th Legislative District. Two years ago Pollakusky managed the campaign of Steven Tricarico, who narrowly lost to Anker…read article

For students, a glut of college rankings NEWSDAY; Aug 20, 2017
Big data is putting a fine point on value and cost. College application crunch time is just around the corner, and the number of rankings that compare postsecondary institutions nationwide has grown exponentially…read article

Ways to stop being the family’s ATM NEWSDAY; Aug 20, 2017
The best way to stop enabling is to first recognize when you’re doing it and then create a plan for saying no…read article

Published Aug 17, 2017
College isn’t the only way to achieve the American dream 
THE WASHINGTON POST: Aug 16, 2017
Transitioning away from believing that college is the only way to attain the American dream must begin with acknowledging that non-white-collar work is an important part of our economy deserving of both respect and more attentive cultivation…commentary

U.S. teen drug overdose deaths up after years of decline, report shows

AP; Aug 16, 2017
Health expert said it's likely teen overdoses edged up in 2015 because of the increasing availability of newer and more lethal kinds of opioids like fentanyl, which is sometimes mixed with heroin. "If the drugs are more potent, your chances of it (drug use) being fatal have perhaps increased," said Sally Curtin of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
read article

Birth pains for Excelsior NEWSDAY THE POINT; Aug 12, 2017
The state appropriated funds for 22,000 scholarships, but received at least 75,000 applications by the July 21 deadline. And that number could go up. “We’ve been saying it’s 75,000 applicants, but likely it’s more than that,” Elizabeth Bibi, deputy director of media relations for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, told The Point. “We’re still calculating the applications.” Bibi said every eligible student would receive the full scholarship…read article

Helping NY homeowners NEWSDAY; Aug 14, 2017
State buys 203 LI mortgages at risk of foreclosure. Under the program, the state essentially becomes the lender, providing homeowners with more latitude to continue paying a mortgage that they found to be unaffordable under traditional banking practices. The program also provides funding to repair homes…read article

Window on LI wage gap NEWSDAY; Aug 11, 2017
Long Island workers near the top of the pay scale earn six times more than those near the bottom, according to a study of wage inequality released yesterday. New York Fed President William C. Dudley said wage inequality is an issue that needs to be addressed…read article

Setting up solar NEWSDAY; Aug 14, 2017
One of state’s largest energy farms planned at Calverton…read article

Nassau home prices jump 9.8% in a year NEWSDAY; Aug 16, 2017
In Suffolk County, the median price was $365,000, a 5.8 percent annual gain. In Suffolk, the median has yet to reach its pre-recession high of $420,000…read article

Record sales for Home Depot NEWSDAY; Aug 16, 2017
Strong retail sales bolster economic outlook NEWSDAY; Aug 16, 2017
read articles

Review of pool fence regulations NEWSDAY; Aug 14, 2017
More Huntington residents may be able to enjoy the fun of a backyard pool under changes proposed for fence requirements. Huntington Town officials tomorrow are to discuss changes to town code which would allow pool owners to use their neighbor’s fence as part of the requirement for having a fence around a yard with a pool…read article 

Traffic Dept. launches new website NEWSDAY; Aug 16, 2017
Brookhaven residents now can request new traffic signals, pavement markings and guide rails on the town’s website…read article

Yes, Race and Politics Belong in the Classroom 
EDUCATION WEEK COMMENTARY; Aug 15, 2017
Ten tips for teachers to engage students in difficult conversations. Recently, Elise, my 7-year-old, walked into the room as I watched a heated conversation about immigration on a popular national news channel and asked me: “Why are people so mad at each other?” I reassured her that people were not necessarily mad at each other as much as they were passionate about their views on the topic. With a look of confusion and a bit of disbelief, Elise walked out of the room. I knew I had missed an important opportunity—a teachable moment—with my daughter…read commentary

The Poison of Identity Politics WSJ OPINION; Aug 13, 2017
The politics of white supremacy was a poison on the right for many decades, but the civil-rights movement rose to overcome it, and it finally did so in the mid-1960s with Martin Luther King Jr. ’s language of equal opportunity and color-blind justice. That principle has since been abandoned, however, in favor of a new identity politics that again seeks to divide Americans by race, ethnicity, gender and even religion…read opinion

It’s a sign of things to come this November NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Aug 12, 2017
Political campaigns, they say, begin in earnest in September. And yet, in the doldrums of August, a lawn sign has sprouted in front of a house on Arnold Avenue in West Babylon
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Ring of Fire: Here comes the sun… NEWSDAY; Aug 16, 2017
It’s the first total solar eclipse visible in the United States in almost four decades…read article

Study: 1 in 8 American adults are alcoholics NEWSDAY; Aug 12, 2017
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate 88,000 die from alcohol-related causes yearly, more than twice the toll of opiate overdose…read article

Published Aug 9, 2017
Rewrite constitution? NEWSDAY; Aug 8, 2017
Corruption and a rigged political system are battle cries of both sides in a debate over whether New Yorkers should vote this fall to rewrite the state constitution…read article

Panel sounds alarm on opioids NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
Last week the commission, headed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, urged Trump to declare a national emergency. Doing so, it said, would “awaken every American to this simple fact: If this scourge has not found you or your family yet, without bold action by everyone, it soon will.”
read article

Chicago sues over threat to withhold ‘sanctuary city’ funds 
NEWSDAY; Aug 8, 2017
Mayor Rahm Emanuel has taken his fight against President Donald Trump’s immigration policies to court, with Chicago becoming one of the first cities yesterday to sue the government over what many U.S. cities argue are illegal bids to withhold public safety grants from so-called sanctuary cities. “So it’s this simple: Comply with the law or forego taxpayer dollars,” said U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a toughly worded statement…read article

Factory’s new hires: robots NEWSDAY; Aug 7, 2017
The robots were coming in not to replace humans, and not just as a way to modernize, but also because reliable humans had become so hard to find…read article

Congestion pricing eyed NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is considering a “congestion pricing” plan for his 2018-19 state budget that would impose an added cost for cars, including “for-hire vehicles,” in New York City. A decade ago, former Mayor Michael Bloomberg pushed for congestion pricing in New York City, but the bill was blocked in Albany. The Bloomberg proposal would have charged drivers $8 at peak, high-traffic times to enter Manhattan in certain areas. Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone also declined to comment…read article

NY third in wind energy NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
New York is ahead of most other states in wind-energy production and planning, ranking third in small land-based wind arrays. Federal tax incentives for wind power that once covered a third of project costs are set to expire Dec. 31, 2019…read article

Drug factory planned NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
The Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency awarded $356,542 in tax breaks. The drug maker pledged to add 24 jobs by 2020 to its payroll of 22. Dondeti and Tanya Akimova, who co-founded Saptalis, told the IDA board that without Suffolk’s assistance, the company would have to expand in Virginia or Florida…read article

Brookhaven Lab to cut 175 jobs NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
“This staff reduction offers an opportunity for the laboratory to reduce its costs and redirect funding toward growth areas,” BNL spokesman Peter A. Genzer said. [This is a] “voluntary program” that isn’t related to President Donald Trump’s proposed 2018 budget…read article

Suffolk: $7.8M claim denied NEWSDAY; Aug 8, 2017
“This was totally avoidable had we simply performed on the contract,” said Legis. Tom Cilmi (R-Bay Shore). “One bad decision will now cost taxpayers. . . in excess of 20 percent of our general fund tax levy.” “We definitely should take a look at it,” presiding officer DuWayne Gregory (D-Copiague) said. “We have to do our due diligence to make sure that something like this does not happen again as a good steward to the taxpayers.”…read article

Yaphank: New fish passage reconnects lake, river NEWSDAY; Aug 8, 2017
Freshwater fish can now swim from Upper Yaphank Lake into the Carmans River to reproduce for the first time in about 300 years. “It’s finally coming to fruition,” Bob Kessler, of the Coalition to Save the Yaphank Lakes, said of the project…read article

Yaphank to host renewable cells NEWSDAY; Aug 7, 2017
LIPA considers fuel cells an efficient way to strategically fill power vacuums on the electric grid. They also help the utility avoid costly transmission projects. Collectively, the fuel cells will be the largest renewable energy project on Long Island, in terms of megawatts. Fuel cells are considered a “green” energy in the state, capable of earning renewable energy credits, because they turn natural gas and similar fuels into energy through an electrochemical process rather than combustion. Neal Lewis, executive director of the Sustainability Institute at Molloy College, said although some environmentalists oppose fuel cells because they use fossil fuels, he doesn’t oppose LIPA’s plan. “I think it’s an appropriate technology as long as it’s a small part of the overall energy mix,” Lewis said. He called them a “transitional” energy source that can back up intermittent green-energy sources…read article

By erasing districts, town gains NEWSDAY; Aug 9, 2017
Some districts, are not needed because they no longer collect taxes from residents. Other districts disappeared years ago because of mergers, but were never formally stricken from town records. “It’s not going to save a lot, but it’s going to save some,” said Town of Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine. Dissolving the districts helps bolster Brookhaven’s bid to win a $20 million grant in the state’s Municipal Consolidation and Efficiency Competition…read article

7 ‘first’ days for kids NEWSDAY; Aug 8, 2017
“Jericho has almost always started school before Labor Day, in order to get the 186 days,” said Superintendent Henry Grishman. The other districts opening before Labor Day are Great Neck, Herricks, Oyster Bay- East Norwich and Westbury…read article 

College Tests Battle: SAT vs. ACT NEWSDAY; Aug 7, 2017
Admissions exams ramp up their competition for students. Over the past decade in New York, where the SAT has reigned supreme for years, the popularity of the ACT has grown sharply. The number of SAT test-takers statewide in the class of 2016, however, was more than 148,000 — still more than double that of those taking the ACT. College Board upped the ante in adding its first-ever August test date. The Manhattan- based nonprofit, which sponsors the SAT, posted a notice in late April that registration for the exam was open…read article

Shut down Start-Up NY and revamp state efforts 
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Aug 7, 2017
A recent Newsday report showed that on Long Island, more than half of the companies in Start-Up NY have dropped out. Fifteen of the paltry 28 Long Island businesses that joined either left the program on their own or were removed by the state for failing to comply with guidelines. Some failed, others left New York. Still others remained, but left the program because of its administrative requirements. Start-Up, on which the state spent $53 million to advertise initially, isn’t working here. A year ago, it was time to stop the program. It still is…read editorial

Overdose crisis: Match words with funding NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Aug 9, 2017
In Nassau and Suffolk, opioid overdoses killed 493people in 2016.That’s about 16 deaths per 100,000 people; the national rate is about 10 per 100,000. Trump’s panel has some good suggestions. They include increasing the availability of treatment with medication, currently offered in only 10 percent of programs, and changing federal Medicaid rules to allow reimbursement to facilities with more than 16 beds. That would be a start, but far more must be done…read editorial

Flanagan reveals alcohol struggle NEWSDAY; Aug 7, 2017
Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan said yesterday he recently completed an alcohol treatment program, saying it was a “step I needed take for myself and for my family.” He concluded, sending a message to others with addiction: “No one is immune. Seek help and regain your personal pathway through life.”…read article

Selling Homes: Online listing, 2% fee NEWSDAY; Aug 7, 2017
REX Real Estate Exchange, which charges a selling commission of 2 percent instead of the usual 5 percent to 6 percent, launched its Long Island operation last week…read article

Published Aug 2, 2017
Tick bite triggers red-meat allergies NEWSDAY; Jul 30, 2017
Hundreds of people on the East End have become allergic to red meat in recent years after being bitten by the Lone Star tick, with scattered cases cropping up elsewhere across Long Island, medical experts say…read article

Who Gets Hurt When High School Diplomas Are Not Created Equal 
EDUCATION WEEK; Aug 1, 2017
A new study finds that U.S. schools hand out 98 different kinds of high school diplomas, and 51 of them fail to prepare students adequately for college or careers…read article

Published July 27, 2017
From the desk of Suffolk County legislator Sarah S. Anker…
Legislator Anker Announces Permanent Advisory Panel to Address the Opiate Epidemic in Suffolk County
On Tuesday, July 25th, 2017, Legislator Sarah Anker and presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory were joined by their colleagues and drug awareness and substance abuse professionals to announce an initiative to address the opiate epidemic in Suffolk County. Legislator Anker has put forth legislation to form a permanent Heroin and Opiate Advisory Panel which will address the staggering number of opiate overdoses in Suffolk County …read full press release

Opiate advisory panel proposed in Suffolk NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
Almost 500 people died from opioid overdoses on Long Island in 2016, the most ever, according to medical examiners’ offices…read article

Pols call for help to end corruption NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause New York, said that across New York State, a number of local ethics policies have been either not implemented or not enforced
read article

LI firms investing $20.5M NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
Edo Corp. and Curtiss-Wright Flow Control Corp. received allocations of low-cost electricity from the state Power Authority yesterday to support the plant upgrades…read article

LI unemployment rate pushes past 4%, as job market grows 
NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
The increases in all the numbers, even the unemployment rate, reflect a healthy job market, local economists said…read article

Suffolk County: Court fee may rise NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
County lawmakers have resurrected a proposal to double the administrative fee on Suffolk traffic and parking tickets from $55 to $110, and it now appears to have the support to pass
read article

Pine barrens group unveils new website NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
“Our goal was to create a site worthy of everything the Central Pine Barrens region offers, and I believe we’ve done that,” John Pavacic, executive director of the Central Pine Barrens Joint Policy and Planning Commission…read article

Town sues over power poles NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
Brookhaven Town has filed suit against PSEG Long Island and LIPA over a hotly contested $31 million project to install tall steel poles in Eastport…read article

TOB: ‘Hoops for Hope’ tourney on Aug. 4 NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
The third annual Jake Engel “Hoops for Hope Barbecue” basketball tournament will be held Aug. 4 and will feature music and entertainment. All proceeds will go to Hope House Ministries…read article

Are We Asking Enough of High School Graduates? EDUCATION WEEK; Jul 19, 2017
There’s a graduation crisis brewing in the United States. As states submit their new ESSA accountability plans to the U.S. Department of Education, they will be required to use high school graduation rates as one of their indicators of student performance. This leaves unaddressed a long-standing problem: Graduation doesn’t mean the same thing in every state, and graduation standards are often absurdly low…read article

LI teen’s angle forces Regents to rescore test NEWSDAY; Jul 26, 2017
The question will be rescored to give all students credit. The question did not have “one clear and correct answer,” according to a notice posted on the state Education Department website
read article

Jun 29 - Jul 5, 2017
Senate OKs ‘big ugly’ bill NEWSDAY; Jun 30, 2017
In usual Albany fashion, the deal was negotiated behind closed doors by the governor and two house leaders. Rank-and-file members had to wait for hours before seeing a printed bill, followed by a short window to review it before voting…read article

U.S. Labor Dept. seeks decision on OT pay NEWSDAY; Jul 3, 2017
The Labor Department wants salary level to count in deciding who is eligible for overtime pay. But it’s holding off setting the maximum pay a worker can get and still qualify…read article

Opioid antidote in LI schools NEWSDAY; Jul 5, 2017
School districts on Long Island and statewide are stocking naloxone onsite in school buildings to have the opioid antidote at the ready because of the growing issue of abuse of the deadly drugs…read article

SUFFOLK COUNTY - ‘Senior advocates’ to detail aid programs
NEWSDAY; Jul 3, 2017
“Nobody should ever have to go without food, medical attention or other necessities,” Suffolk
County Legis. Lou D’Amaro (D North Babylon) said in the statement, and urged the elderly to “take full advantage of this professional community outreach program.”…read article

July 4 float doesn’t fly NEWSDAY; Jul 3, 2017
Yaphank display is moved after group complains…read article

Our damaging emphasis on testing NEWSDAY OPINION; Jun 30, 2017
“Hypernormalized school testing hurts students’ social and emotional growth. Focusing on the whole child, regardless of scores, needs to become our newer normal.”-Michael Hynes-Pat-Med Schools…read opinion

New Trend on LI: Younger students taking regents NEWSDAY; Jul 3, 2017
Fifty-two seventh-graders in Malverne’s middle school walked across the street to the high school last month, found their seats in the gymnasium and sat for their first Regents exam — in Earth Science — along with ninth-graders and 10th-graders. All of the seventh-graders passed
read article

The six Americas? Well, not on this Fourth NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jul 3, 2017
Americans have lots to be grateful for this Independence Day, but nothing more so than Igor Panarin being wrong…read column

What parents should know about new Snapchat, Instagram features NEWSDAY; Jul 5, 2017
People they have accepted as friends on the app can see their exact location on a map while they have the app open. The main concern for parents may be whether their children have accepted people they don’t know in real life. And teens may be doing that in their constant quest to amass followers…read article

Jun 15 - Jun 28, 2017
PLUM ISLAND is a federally-owned magnificent sanctuary for wildlife at the eastern end of Long Island Sound currently threatened by development...read article

New study: $15 minimum wage law cost Seattle jobs NEWSDAY; Jun 27, 2017

Seattle’s $15-an-hour minimum wage law has cost the city jobs, according to a study released yesterday. A University of Washington team studying the law’s effects found that the law has boosted [hourly] pay in low-wage jobs since it took effect in 2015, but that it also caused a 9 percent reduction in hours worked. For an average low-wage Seattle worker, that’s a loss of about $125 per month, the study said. There would be about 5,000 more low-wage jobs in the city without the law, the study estimated.…read article

PSEG pay disclosure bill passes NEWSDAY; Jun 25, 2017
The bill, which passed the Assembly and Senate unanimously, would amend the LIPA Reform Act of 2013, which a PSEG lawyer in 2015 said explicitly provided for the company to keep salaries and contract costs secret…read article

Blood Bank: Dire need for donations NEWSDAY; Jun 27, 2017
Supplies usually become “fragile” beginning around the July 4 holiday through Labor Day, he said, in large part because blood drives at local colleges—about 20 percent of the overall supply — languish over the summer break…read article

Hope for LI’s housing shortage NEWSDAY; Jun 27, 2017
For those struggling to afford life on Long Island, creating more rental apartments in private homes “could be a big, immediate win,” said Nancy Rauch Douzinas, publisher of the Index
read article

Comtech to stay on LI NEWSDAY; Jun 27, 2017
The Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency granted Comtech $360,581 in tax breaks over 10 years in return for the company’s promise to maintain its local payroll of 114 employees and to add another 18 within two years. A year ago Comtech requested IDA assistance, saying it had recently purchased a Maryland company and had excess space there and in Florida and Arizona…read article

Town’s hacked website shut NEWSDAY; Jun 27, 2017
“They didn’t get into any of our records. None of our records were affected at all,” said Supervisor Ed Romaine. “They were looking to spread fear. This is an amateur attack to do just that.”…read article

Behind Suffolk’s bond rating NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 27, 2017
The bond-rating drop this month, from A to A-, adds urgency for officials to find cuts, raise revenues — or reconfigure Suffolk government to make things work. The trick will be to get it done — or, as has happened in Nassau, face the prospect of a decade-long crawl up from insolvency…read article

Mom knows gang peril in school NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 25, 2017
Most members, officials said, are male, ages 16 to 29, with ties to El Salvador, Honduras or Guatemala. Officials agreed that MS-13 considers undocumented minors—or as Angel Melendez of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations more bluntly put it, “undocumented alien children”— who, as part of a program, were settled with relatives or guardians in Brentwood and Central Islip, as prime candidates for membership…read article

Best beaches for kids NEWSDAY; Jun 28, 2017
What makes a great beach for families? Nonnegotiables: a short walk from the parking area to the sand to minimize the schlep with the kids and all their beach chairs, towels, buckets and shovels. Lifeguards. Nearby bathrooms. A perk: something extra to entertain the kids, such as an adjacent playground or a spray park. Here are 10 Long Island beaches that meet the nonnegotiables and throw in some perks as well…read article

Jun 8 - Jun 14, 2017
Obamacare challenge NEWSDAY; Jun 9, 2017
Regulators may reduce the 16.6 percent increase in Obamacare individual insurance rates that insurers have requested in New York. But industry experts warned that if the state were to cut the increase request too aggressively, insurers could leave the marketplace…read article

Safeguarding senior savings NEWSDAY; Jun 12, 2017
By the time Roseann Keiles realized a scam artist had his hooks in her mother, Marie Barbuto, the damage was done. The 82-year-old Long Island woman, who had Alzheimer’s disease, had mailed away thousands of dollars in little envelopes to a man calling himself “Mr. Cashman” who phoned every day asking for money…read article

LI firm’s good fortune NEWSDAY; Jun 8, 2017
Henry Schein Inc. is Long Island’s lone representative on the list of Fortune 500 companies…
...read article

Where is the geographic center of Long Island? NEWSDAY; Jun 8, 2017
To calculate the center, cartographers use an application called a geographic information system, according to Suffolk County cartographer, Carl Lind…read article

Lasting Legacy NEWSDAY; Jun 12, 2017
Park in North Bellport rededicated in honor of community volunteer…read story

Exam times reduced NEWSDAY; Jun 13, 2017
The Board of Regents voted yesterday to cut by one-third the amount of time that students in grades three through eight spend taking much-debated state exams in English Language Arts and mathematics, starting next spring…read article

Suffolk fight on LIPA and taxes NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 11, 2017
For Suffolk, the LIPA tax issue has only added to the county’s structural deficit — the difference between recurring revenues and expenses — which is estimated at $135.3 million to $179.7 million…read column

A new generation buries its own NEWSDAY OPINION; Jun 12, 2017
Millennials are grappling with the opioid plague. They need better information…read opinion

Polar bears treading on thin ice NEWSDAY; Jun 9, 2017
Rapid global warming has sped up the movement of sea ice off Alaska’s coasts, and polar bears already at risk are paying a price…read article

Jun 1 - Jun 7, 2017
Constitutional divide NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
Residents in November will vote on a statewide referendum to hold a convention to make changes to the New York State Constitution. The state constitution mandates that every 20 years voters get the opportunity to cast ballots on holding a convention. “If the public votes for a convention it’s because the public wants change,” said Evan Davis, manager of the Committee for a Constitutional Convention. For example, Davis said convention delegates could create a commission to sanction lawmakers for official misconduct; more fairly disburse state education funds; and prevent judges from being chosen by political party bosses…read article

Student interest is high in free NY college tuition NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
To be considered for the fall semester, students must fill out the application by July 21
read article

Fears drive immigrants off food stamps NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
About 3.9 million citizen children living with noncitizen parents received food stamps in fiscal 2015. “It is an attempted moral blackmail to say ‘If you Americans don’t give me your money, I can’t stay here and feed my children,’” said Mark Krikorian, an advocate for reducing immigration. “Well, it’s your choice. No one made you sneak into the United States.”
read article

Legislature plots final days NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2017
Lawmakers will continue working on measures that could become part of a traditional end-of-session “big ugly” deal. Among the contenders facing longer odds are: Pension sweeteners for public worker and teacher unions influential with the legislature that are commonly sneaked into the late-June rush of legislation, but which fiscal watchdogs argue are political favors that are costly to taxpayers…read article

Pull illegal signs, feds press state NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
A total of 514 signs have been put up by the DOT and the state Thruway Authority at a cost of $8.1 million…read article

U.S. productivity flat; labor costs increase 2.2% NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
The productivity of American workers was flat in the first three months of this year, while labor costs rose at the fastest pace since the second quarter of last year…read article

PSEG grid girds for storm season NEWSDAY; Jun 1, 2017
Weather forecasts predicting an above-average number of storms this season may meet their match in an electric system undergoing one of its most intensive and costly hardening initiatives in decades…read article

LI proposals seek priority NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
Panel hears pitches on developments seeking state funds…read article

$31.7M power project nearly done NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
PSEG Long Island in recent months has been fielding complaints from residents and businesses along a stretch of Eastport connected to a seven-mile array of 80-foot steel poles along a wooded stretch of County Road 51…read article

$3M to help LI battle spread of pine beetles NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
The invasive species, considered one of the nation’s most destructive forest pests, first was discovered in New York in 2014 at the William Floyd estate in Mastic Beach, Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge in Shirley, Connetquot River State Park Preserve in Oakdale and elsewhere in Suffolk County…read article

Shedding light on street lamps NEWSDAY; Jun 5, 2017
PSEG Long Island has begun a formal count of all the streetlights on Long Island in a move that could lower some municipal electric bills and raise others…read article

Bellone: Smaller County Hike kin SCCC Budget NEWSDAY; Jun 1, 2017
Bellone’s version of the $220.9 million college budget provides a $42,414,805 county contribution to the two-year school—$417,880 less than trustees sought…read article 

Catch a Lyft in Suffolk NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone yesterday became the first downstate suburban official to embrace the startup of local ride-hailing services in time for the July 4 weekend
read article

Sparks fly over power poles NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
Brookhaven Town councilman Dan Panico yesterday rebuffed claims by PSEG Long Island that he had been “thoroughly briefed” on a project to install dozens of 80-foot-tall steel poles along a business and residential district of Eastport…read article

All Star Arena: IDA eyes tax-break clawback NEWSDAY; Jun 3, 2017
The developer of an indoor soccer facility in Coram may have to repay tax breaks granted in 2013 because he didn’t notify officials he had leased space to a CrossFit studio, the Brookhaven Town Industrial Development Agency said…read article

TOB: ‘Humble and Kind’ students recognized NEWSDAY; Jun 7, 2017
Brookhaven Town Councilman Dan Panico has recognized third-grade students at Dayton Avenue Elementary School for their humble and kind efforts…read article

Revisions criticized NEWSDAY; Jun 6, 2017
New York State’s recent attempts to revise academic standards for elementary and secondary education appear to weaken or muddy major requirements in reading and writing, according to pro-standards groups at the national and state levels…read article

More Testing Is Forecast for Nation's ELL Students 
EDUCATION WEEK; May 24, 2017
The significance of English-learners is on the rise as this population grows and the changes in federal law that suggest a more precise look at how those students are performing in school are a reflection of that, advocates and experts say…read article

Nitrogen woes no easy fix NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Jun 4, 2017
“These are all baby steps,” said Assemb. Fred Thiele (I-Sag Harbor). “But it’s like turning around a battleship. It will need a 10-year commitment and an ongoing source of revenue.”read column

Movin’ Out
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Jun 4, 2017

Numbers are slight, but if population declines persist, they will reshape Long Island’s schools, housing, industry and future…read editorial

Shoreham’s Empty Legacy NEWSDAY; Jun 4, 2017
No nukes, little else at site 38 years after protest…read article

May 25 - May 31, 2017
LIPA - Energy storage batteries: $109M NEWSDAY; May 25, 2017
LIPA will spend $109 million for two large energy-storage batteries to help with soaring summer demand in the Hamptons, LIPA officials also detailed a previously reported plan for future energy use on Long Island. The long-delayed plan found that while LIPA won’t need new power sources until at least 2035, the authority will contract for some 800 megawatts of renewable resources, such as offshore wind and solar…read article

LIPA exceeds ’17 storm budget NEWSDAY; May 27, 2017
$38M spent so far, half on March event that fell short of dire forecasts…read article

Bellone touts Suffolk summer NEWSDAY; May 25, 2017
Kicking off the summer season, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone yesterday called on local residents to not only vacation in Suffolk, but also make the county’s revitalized downtowns their prime destinations along with beaches and vineyards…read article

Getting out of Suffolk NEWSDAY; May 30, 2017
Brookhaven and four other western Suffolk towns accounted for almost all of the county’s loss of more than 5,000 people in a single year. Martin Cantor, director and economist at the Long Island Center for Socio-Economic Policy in Melville, said people leave because of high costs driven by taxes and utility rates…read article

TOB: 9 defensive driving classes offered NEWSDAY; May 30, 2017
The first class is scheduled for June 15 at the town’s Rose Caracappa Senior Center in Mount Sinai…read article

Teaching Students to De-Stress Over Testing EDUCATION WEEK; May 24, 2017
Some districts are taking steps to help students better cope with test anxiety and other stresses of school…read article

No teacher shortage cited on LI NEWSDAY; May 25, 2017
Public schools on Long Island and in most other areas of the state do not face an overall shortage of teachers, despite what some recent news accounts have suggested, the New York State School Boards Association said yesterday…read article

Reform immigration? Fix the laws NEWSDAY OPINION; May 31, 2017
People who are in this country illegally have no right to be here. People who want them gone have every right to demand they be expelled. That’s the law, in a nation of laws. And we should let far more people in legally, while doing a much better job of vetting and tracking them to keep out criminals, and kick out any who commit crimes before achieving permanent legal status…read opinion

May 18 - May 24, 2017
Suffolk top cop testifies before Congress on MS-13 gang
NEWSDAY; May 24, 2017
Sini testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, saying he welcomed the opportunity to work with the panel to figure out ways to eradicate the gang from communities…read article

Audit: NY agency data lacking NEWSDAY; May 18, 2017

In a report disputed by Cuomo, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said yesterday that the Empire State Development Corp. failed to meet more than half the reporting requirements for tax credits and job creation as it dispensed hundreds of millions of dollars in tax breaks
read article

‘Tax-cap effect’ boosts budgets NEWSDAY; May 18, 2017
Voters’ adoption of [school] spending plans in all the systems was the first time the region produced a 100 percent passage rate since one-day balloting began in 1996. Said Senate Majority Leader John J. Flanagan (R-East Northport) in a statement, “Together we have shown that it is possible to reduce New York’s tax burden and continue making smart investments that will support our schools.”…read article

Bellone: County committed to erasing MS-13 NEWSDAY; May 22, 2017
“Our mission is to eradicate this criminal organization from our county,” Bellone said
read article

Sini to testify on MS-13 NEWSDAY; May 23. 2017
Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy Sini is scheduled to testify [Wednesday, May 24] before a congressional panel in Washington. The hearing comes as Suffolk authorities, and residents in particular, grapple with the apparent rise in the gang’s brutality and killings
read article

NeuLion 4-mile move gets tax break NEWSDAY; May 19, 2017
NeuLion was co-founded by Nancy Li, wife of billionaire Charles B. Wang. Without IDA help, NeuLion “would need to relocate its headquarters to another location outside of New York State,” company attorney Toni J. Hoverkamp said, adding the Island would lose 142 jobs that pay $77,465 a year, on average, excluding benefits…read article

TOB: IDA to audit Clare Rose jobs amid strike NEWSDAY; May 19, 2017
“It is not the role of an IDA to mediate or interfere in labor disputes,” said Brian McMahon, executive director of the IDA trade group New York State Economic Development Council
read article

In Some States, ESSA Means More Powers for Local School Boards
EDUCATION WEEK; May 24, 2017
Michael W. Kirst, the state school board chair of California, said that as school boards receive more decision-making powers, they should look to broaden their conversations from debates over school construction, budgets, and superintendent contracts to ways of improving classroom learning…read article

Can a Career Tech Ed. School Be Too Popular? EDUCATION WEEK; May 22, 2017
Equitable access to high-quality career-and-technical-education programs is a thorny issue that's getting attention as CTE experiences a resurgence of support from policymakers who consider it an overlooked avenue to higher education and the job market…read article

Don’t make deals with our ballots NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 19, 2017
The leaders of four political parties in Suffolk County have been scheming to deprive voters of their right to an honest election this fall. Stop the deals. Stop the cross-endorsements. Stop rigging every race…read editorial

End the Medicaid burden on counties NEWSDAY LETTERS; May 23, 2017
Newsday’s editorial [May 15] mentions that 15 other states pay a portion of their Medicaid costs with local taxes. True, but the editorial leaves out the important point: New York State’s Medicaid mandate accounted for an astonishing $7.2 billion of the $9.5 billion total local-government Medicaid burden across the entire United States…read Letter

How Senate and Cuomo can improve voting in NY
NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 23, 2017
The State Senate must break its recent mold, take up and improve the Assembly’s legislation. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo needs to rediscover either the passion or the political calculation that led him to propose his own strong set of measures in January and help move a good package forward…read editorial

Johnny, we hardly knew ye, but we still miss you NEWSDAY TV; May 22, 2017
Twenty-five years ago today [May 22, 2017], the country said goodbye to arguably the purest entertainer television had ever created…read story

Ways you can ruin your finances fast NEWSDAY; May 21, 2017
Here are common ways to trash your finances fast, plus how you might be able to undo or limit the damage…read article

Facing up to danger NEWSDAY; May 21, 2017
More LI softball players opting to wear face mask on field…read article

May 11 - May 17, 2017
NYS economic growth in ’16 slowest in 3 years NEWSDAY; May 12, 2017
New York’s 2016 growth rate was about half that of the nation. “To spark the economy, we must fix systemic problems and improve our worst-in-the nation tax burden and second worst business tax environment,” said Douglas Kellogg, a spokesman for Reclaim New York…
...read article

Bills seek to reinstitute Start-UpNY reporting NEWSDAY; May 16, 2017
State lawmakers are seeking to re-establish reporting requirements for participants in Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s tax-free zones program that were repealed in the recently adopted state budget. Start-UpNY created 757 jobs statewide last year, 332 in 2015 and 76 in 2014 after the state spent $53 million on advertising the program…read article

Calmer ed forum NEWSDAY; May 12, 2017
Roger Tilles of Great Neck, who represents the Island on the state Board of Regents and co-chaired [Thursday’s] session, speculated that the light attendance might reflect the fact that public anger over state testing has cooled as Elia and the Regents have shown a more sympathetic understanding of objections raised by parents and teachers…read article

Voter support school budgets NEWSDAY; May 17, 2017
All 124 Long Island school budgets passed…read article

PSEG uses steel for new poles NEWSDAY; May 16, 2017
More than 175 steel transmission poles nearly 80 feet tall are replacing smaller wooden ones along a north-south thoroughfare between Riverhead and Eastport. PSEG spokesman Jeff Weir said the steel poles are needed to harden the system against storms…read article

Smaller legislature nixed NEWSDAY; May 15, 2017
William Lindsay III (D-Bohemia), sponsor of the bill, estimated the move would have saved $2.5 million a year in reduced offices and staff…read article

$10M OKd for septic program NEWSDAY; May 17, 2017
The Suffolk Legislature yesterday unanimously approved a $10-million grant program to help homeowners pay for high-tech septic systems that can cost as much as $17,500…read article

Support for Selden apartment tax aid NEWSDAY; May 16, 2017
The $32 million project cannot secure bank financing without the IDA tax incentives, developer Michael Kelly said. Bruce Morrison and Rich Cremmins of the Selden Civic Association also expressed concern about “our neighbors’ subsidizing” the education of students who would live in the new apartments…read article

TOB: Make your home more energy efficient NEWSDAY; May 17, 2017
A session [Thursday, May 18] titled “A Homeowner’s Guide to Energy Efficiency” will teach residents which light bulbs to use to conserve energy, along with other ways to lower their electric and gas bills. Town Councilwoman Jane Bonner is expected to host the 7 p.m. event at the Rose Caracappa Senior Center, 739 Rte. 25A in Mount Sinai…read notice

Makers Fairs: Bring science to life for LI students NEWSDAY; May 17, 2017
Two maker festivals are happening on Long Island in the coming weeks—one in Nassau County, the other in Suffolk…read article

State Aid to Education: The Funding Formula NEWSDAY; May 14, 2017
All districts—rich or poor—will get baseline aid under funding calculation. And while it once was advertised as a mechanism for providing more money to systems that have impoverished students, the formula currently spreads the cash around. For individual districts, that serves to hold down property taxes, which rank among the nation’s highest…read article

Progress, yes, but still Incomplete NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 14, 2017
New York State has improved school programs since it bungled Common Core, but now test boycotts are the biggest challenge. There is a lot of effort, and a lot of money, going into improving education. But the students need to take the tests so we know what’s working and what isn’t…read editorial

Pass better laws to defeat gangs NEWSDAY EDITORIAL, May 12, 2017
Avoid feel-good bills that can’t be enforced…read editorial

A visit to the PEZ factory: Sweet! NEWSDAY KIDSDAY; May 15, 2017
PEZ candy was invented in 1927 in Vienna, Austria, by Eduard Haas III. The PEZ candy was used as a breath mint. The name PEZ comes from the German pfefferminz, meaning peppermint. Using the first, middle and last letter of the word, Haas came up with the name PEZ…read story

May 4 - May 10, 2017
New name for Common Core in NY NEWSDAY; May 10, 2017
The name change helps underscore that teachers and parents throughout the state joined in the revamping, said Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa. “It’s an opportunity to take all the best of the components and turn it back to the teachers and the people who do the work,” said Rosa, a former Bronx school administrator. The standards had consistently drawn praise from educators for their widely acknowledged strengths…read article

High nat’l ranking for 5 LI schools NEWSDAY; May 10, 2017
Locust Valley had the highest ranking on the Island, placing 120on the list. Locust Valley was followed by Manhasset High School, 157, The Wheatley School in Old Westbury, 159, South Side High School in Rockville Centre, 165, and Syosset High School, 200…read article

"Primary mission is murder”
 NEWSDAY SPECIAL REPORT; May 7, 2017
Teens from Central America more violent in bid to make their mark. At the heart of that profile are newcomers from Central America eager to make their mark within an immigrant gang already known for its code of brutality and its weapon of choice, the machete, the sources say. They represent a very small but dangerous cohort among the thousands of young people under 18 who, according to federal statistics, have illegally entered the United States unaccompanied by adults since 2015…read Special Report

New state law makes union dues deductible NEWSDAY; May 6, 2017
Cuomo made New York one of the first states in the nation to allow the write-off…read article

Energy cost details sought NEWSDAY; May 8, 2017
Missing from an exhaustive study by PSEG were the costs to develop hundreds of megawatts of new offshore wind arrays and solar power needed to comply with state clean-energy mandates. “Why would they propose something without knowing what the cost is going to be?” said Carole Leonard, president of the Leisure Village Association, an all-electric community in Ridge…read article

LI school taxes NEWSDAY; May 4, 2017
Many schools plan to add new student programs and services next year, aided by millions of dollars in fresh financial assistance from Albany, as well as reductions in state pension costs
read article

New benefit for young workers NEWSDAY; May 7, 2017
Companies with operations on Long Island are starting to offer a benefit of keen interest to millennials: helping them pay off their student loans…read article

‘Enormous’ stash of heroin NEWSDAY; May 4, 2017
A Coram man described as a neighborhood drug dealer was arrested yesterday after authorities found “an enormous” amount of heroin in his home — as well as a cache of guns and more than $16,000 in cash, police said…read article

Coram: $1.2M road project declared completed NEWSDAY; May 8, 2017
The project included drainage improvements and new curbs and sidewalks on the roads, all of which are in the Strathmore Court neighborhood…read article

Grad rate of 95% is goal NEWSDAY; May 9, 2017
The 159-page blueprint…is the product of 18 months’ work by Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia, her staff and consultants. Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa of the Bronx urged members to set high expectations for students under the ESSA plan. “All kids can do this,” she said. “I think if we start under the assumption that only some kids can do this, we hold ourselves back.”…read article

Young minds hard at work NEWSDAY; May 7, 2017
Hundreds of Suffolk County children in kindergarten to grade six competing [Saturday] at Brookhaven National Laboratory’s annual Elementary School Science Fair in Upton…read article

Municipal raises unsustainable NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; May 7, 2017
In Suffolk — unlike in Nassau, or most other municipalities, for that matter — nonunion employees get additional compensation each year via step increases…read column

The answer blowin’ in the wind? NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 7, 2017
Invenergy offers an ambitious proposal to build wind and solar farms in rural Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, and to send us that power via the existing grid and a new underwater cable…read article

Update the ways New York votes NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 8, 2017
If lawmakers refuse to approve changes, and if Cuomo fails to act as either a prod or a battering ram, the re-energized public can get it done on its own—by voting in November for a constitutional convention…read editorial

It’s a mad dash toward reform NEWSDAY COLUMN, May 9, 2017
Transparency in government? More than two years of scandals, convictions and a variety of corruption allegations has made the issue almost impossible for politicians to ignore. At least, that is, during an election year…read column

Book: Suffolk tops state for UFOs NEWSDAY; May 9, 2017
Is there something strange going on in Suffolk County? More UFO sightings have been reported in Suffolk than in any other county in New York State…read article

Food chain expanding NEWSDAY; May 5, 2017
Stew Leonard’s to open 2nd LI store in East Meadow…read article

Half of U.S. homes hang up landlines NEWSDAY; may 5, 2017
Just over half of U.S. households — 50.8 percent of homes and apartments—had only cellphone
service in the latter half of 2016…read article

New generation of gardeners NEWSDAY; May 7, 2017
Millennials are digging in and more are growing their own food…read article

Apr 28 - May 3, 2017
Con-Con at bat NEWSDAY TALKING POINT; May 3, 2017
The most contentious item on the November ballot could very well be the question of whether New York should hold a constitutional convention in 2019. Labor unions, especially teachers unions, are against a convention because they say it could result in changes in pensions and the right to unionize…read Talking Point

Young adults can’t afford to leave nest NEWSDAY; May 2, 2017

A Pew Research Center survey released last year revealed that for the first time in 130 years, young people ages 18 to 34 are more likely to be living with parents than with a romantic partner…read article

Ocean winds rising NEWSDAY; Apr 30, 2017
Norwegian firm prepping to build 100 turbines off LI…read article

LI lab’s funding saved NEWSDAY; May 3, 2017
The new federal budget deal ensures full funding for Brookhaven National Laboratory this year, and could help protect 3,000 local jobs…read article

All-electric LIPA users seek relief NEWSDAY; May 3, 2017
More recently, the group cited new bill charges such as revenue decoupling, an upstate nuclear plant bailout and a three-year rate hike as chief factors making their electricity less affordable. They also cited the cost of pending projects such as the $1.62 billion South Fork wind farm…
...read article

Suffolk considers suing LIPA NEWSDAY; May 3, 2017
A proposed legislative resolution sought by Suffolk Comptroller John Kennedy would direct the county attorney to assess the viability of legal action against the Long Island Power Authority for failing to pay $6.6 million in property taxes. “This is a huge step forward in getting it before a court of law,” said Brookhaven Supervisor Edward Romaine, who first raised the issue in 2015. Jason Elan, spokesman for Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, said the administration was unaware of the proposed LIPA resolution…read article

IDA: Door company plans to expand site NEWSDAY; May 2, 2017
IDA officials said the company said it would move if the benefits are not approved…read article

TOB: Higher revenue leads to $6.5M surplus NEWSDAY; May 2, 2017
Brookhaven Town finished last year with a $6.5 million budget surplus because of increased revenues and reduced payroll spending, town officials said…read article

Math Test Boycotts NEWSDAY; May 3, 2017
“Until state assessments are cleanly and clearly uncoupled from teacher evaluations and are used solely to inform instruction, opt-outs will continue to be a reality,” Middle Country Superintendent Roberta Gerold said…read article

Common Core revisions unveiled NEWSDAY; May 3, 2017
Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia announced new revisions yesterday in English and math standards that apply to public elementary and secondary schools statewide and acknowledged that the Common Core moniker might be dropped from those academic guidelines…read article

They know the score NEWSDAY; Apr 30, 2017
Test grading has been a surprising answer for data firm eager to grow…read article

Chairman: SBU to cut theater NEWSDAY; May 1, 2017
Students at Stony Brook University are rallying in support of the theatre arts department after its chairman said he was told admissions would be suspended because of budget cuts…read article

Questions for next MTA boss NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; May 3, 2017
It’ll take audacity and ingenuity for the new MTA boss to uncover the remnants of featherbedding. Until then, we’ll have the same headlines about excessive overtime payments, spurts of outrage and unanswered questions…read editorial

The Breakfast Top 10 NEWSDAY; Apr 27, 2017
A food critic ranks your on-the-go morning sandwiches…read article

Depression Glassware: Reflecting the past NEWSDAY; May 2, 2017
Fans of Depression glassware can’t get enough of the stuff…read article

Apr 20 - Apr 26, 2017
Weak links in brick-and-mortar chains NEWSDAY; Apr 23, 2017
Private equity deals put retailers at higher risk…read article

LI’s jobless rate in March falls to 4% NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
The number of unemployed residents declined by 4,100 to 58,600, the lowest for the month since 2007…read article

Big raises in counties NEWSDAY; Apr 23, 2017
In Suffolk, all of the 532 full time nonunion employees, including elected officials, receive the same percentage raises as the 4,500 members of the Association of Municipal Employees, the county’s largest union. In 2016, the salary hike was 3 percent, plus step increases of 4.4 percent.…read article

LIPA review: Don’t overhaul aging plants NEWSDAY; Apr 23, 2017
LIPA and PSEG found no need for additional generation, but they cited state mandates by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in doubling down on plans for new green energy over the next 20 years — about 800 megawatts of primarily offshore wind-generated power. Neither the LIPA summary of the full (and unreleased) PSEG study nor LIPA officials who briefed Newsday last week gave any indication of the ratepayer cost of those new green energy power sources…read article

Large scale battery sited NEWSDAY; Apr 21, 2017
Long Island’s first large-scale energy-storage battery would be placed on a parcel of land owned by National Grid in East Hampton…read article

LI Index unveils data-rich online map revamp NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
The Long Island Index is unveiling a redesigned online map that provides information on everything from schools and local governments to neighborhood level population profiles…
...read article

Sini: State Police to help fight MS-13 NEWSDAY; Apr 21, 2017
On Wednesday, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said he was prepared to offer resources to help the county combat MS-13 violence, which Cuomo called an “out of control” situation…read article

Plan to ‘eradicate’ MS-13 NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2017
After recent killings, Bellone calls for more resources to take on gang in Suffolk…read article

Amid backlash, Bellone pulls fee hikes for tickets NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2017
Bellone responded yesterday by dropping plans for $8.1 million in new and higher fees and called instead for cuts that would block step increases for about 400 top county nonunion employees, and force them and elected officials to pay a 15 percent share of health insurance costs…read article

7 LI schools in top 200 NEWSDAY; Apr 25, 2017
Jericho High School led the Island’s schools, ranked 11th in New York State and 67th nationally…read article

Emerging degrees NEWSDAY; Apr 23, 2017
Editor’s thoughts: This is primarily an advertisement for colleges; however, it does provide some insight to the reader regarding degrees with the most current job potential…read ads

Shoreham-Wading River: Class of 2018 trip defunded NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
Leaders of the Shoreham- Wading River school district, facing a backlash for paying nearly $153,000 for the senior class trip to Disney World, are defunding next year’s trip. “They’re getting such pressure,” board member Jack Costas said in an interview. He said he believes board members and administrators were worried the community would “vote ‘no’ for the budget in protest.”…read article

Exploited with deadly results NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 20, 2017
“I would say a disproportionately high number of unaccompanied minors have been put into the Brentwood and Central Islip communities, particularly Brentwood,” Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) said in an interview yesterday. “I think, from talking to people at the federal level, there is reason to believe that MS-13 is coordinating a good bit of this, including whether or not families are encouraged to take kids or pressured to take kids.”…read column

Albany’s unfinished business NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 23, 2017
Gov. Cuomo says he’s done dealing…read editorial

Yes, we can stop DWI tragedies NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 25, 2017
No one benefits from cars that let people drive drunk. It’s time they disappeared…
...read editorial

Where’s action on gangs? NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 23, 2017
“The bottom line is that MS-13 members don’t care,” said retired Suffolk Det. John Olivia whose work with the task force helped convict 40 MS-13 members. “Snitch? Bam, you’re dead. Don’t do the work? Bam, you’re dead. And if they can’t get to you, they’ll make a telephone call to El Salvador or somewhere else and say, ‘Kill his parents,’ ‘Kill his brother.’ ”…read column

Newfound planet could harbor some form of life NEWSDAY; Apr 20, 2017
It is in the constellation Cetus, 39 light years or 230 trillion miles away…read article 

Why isn’t every day Earth Day? NEWSDAY OPINION; Apr 23, 2017
What’s the downside to protecting nature?...read opinion

A few good reasons for adults to watch ‘13 Reasons Why’ 
NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
Parents: If you hear your middle and high school kids talking about a new Netflix series called “13 Reasons Why,” you might want to jump into the conversation…read article

Family Fun: Bikes and tykes NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
Long Island’s parks abound in public paths ideal for safe, fun family rides…read article

Shoreham: Suffrage’s summer home NEWSDAY; Apr 26, 2017
Suffragist Elizabeth Cady Stanton led the 19th-century fight to win women the right to vote. For about the last 15 years of her life, Stanton worked from her summer home in Shoreham…
...read article

Apr 13 - Apr 19, 2017
New superintendents appointed in 2 districts NEWSDAY; Apr 19, 2017
In the Springs district, Debra Winter will become superintendent effective July 1. Winter has served as assistant superintendent for student and community services in the Longwood school district for the past 16 years. She received a lifetime achievement award from the Long Island Association of Special Education Administrators for her mentoring work and advocacy for students with disabilities. She is a former president of the group…read article

Start-Up NY rule axed NEWSDAY; Apr 14, 2017
The new state budget removes a requirement that businesses participating in the Start-Up NY tax break program report annually on how many jobs they’ve created and how much money they’ve invested in their operations. Start-Up NY participants have created 1,135 jobs in 2 1/2 years while the state spent $53 million in advertising to promote the program…read article

Shoreham: Tour adds to debate on site use NEWSDAY; Apr 19, 2017
A proposal by local and state lawmakers to preserve 800 wooded acres around the shuttered Shoreham nuclear plant from development as a solar farm got a potential boost yesterday as officials of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s administration toured the site on a fact-finding mission…
...read article

Polls: Rising benefits costs worry employers NEWSDAY; Apr 19, 2017
A separate survey of about 100 retailers and other service firms on Long Island, in New York City and its northern suburbs found employee benefit costs were a top concern. After employee benefits, the major problems for factories were finding qualified workers and taxes…
...read article

Study: Wind farm to fall short NEWSDAY; Apr 17, 2017
“An offshore wind farm at the center of a LIPA plan to address spiking electric demand on the South Fork will produce excess energy when it’s needed least, and fall short of a sharply expanding summer peak load.” The cost for energy from the project would average about 22 cents a kilowatt hour over 20 years [$1.62B], about three times that of conventional energy. Robert Amundsen, an energy- management expert at the New York Institute of Technology in Old Westbury, said LIPA’s plan to use wind energy to address a growing need raises questions. “From an operation standpoint it doesn’t really make sense to consider a wind farm as a peaking resource because the idea of peak is to have the power when you need it, and turn it off when you don’t,” he said. “The wind farm is not like that.”…read article

Time for power players to deal NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 16, 2017
LIPA, local governments should end court fight and agree on lowering taxes on plants. LIPA officials are taking a hard stance in their talks with Brookhaven (and being rebuffed by the other municipalities entirely), but need to settle for a deal like the one nearly brokered in 2013…read editorial

Home prices in Nassau, Suffolk jump NEWSDAY; Apr 14, 2017
In Suffolk County the median sales price was $329,900, an increase of 6.9 percent over the $308,600 reported during the same time last year…read article

Grants for replacing septic systems NEWSDAY; Apr 19, 2017
A public hearing on the proposal is scheduled for Tuesday, and a vote of the legislature could come as soon as May 16. The meetings will be at: 7:30 p.m. April 27 at Port Jefferson Village Center, 101 E. Broadway in Port Jefferson [and other locations]…read article

$192.6M Suffolk capital plan unveiled NEWSDAY; Apr 18, 2017
“Legislator Kevin McCaffrey (R-Lindenhurst), minority caucus leader, said that although he hadn’t yet seen the capital plan…” “Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory (D-Copiague) said he had not yet been briefed about Bellone’s capital proposal…”…read article

Bellone hires ex-town supervisor as top aide NEWSDAY; Apr 18, 2017
Jon Kaiman will make $178,733 a year. Kaiman will start with the county later this month when he steps down as president of Arden Claims Service, a Port Washington company that administers negotiated or court ordered settlements, an administration spokesman said. Sources said Kaiman had requested an opinion from the Suffolk County officials about whether he could do outside consulting while working for the county…read article

Suit: Pet group fraud [Friends of Freddie] NEWSDAY; Apr 18, 2017
A Middle Island pet rescue under investigation by the state attorney general’s office was hit with a lawsuit yesterday alleging that sick dogs are being put up for adoption and that fake pet medications are being distributed…read article 

SWR Taxpayers pick up tab to fly seniors to Disney World for four days of fun NEWSDAY; Apr 19, 2017
The [Shoreham-Wading River] district picked up almost the total tab, including airfare and hotel rooms — at a cost of nearly $153,000, compared with less than $10,000 the previous year. Interim Superintendent Neil Lederer said, “If you’re going to look at anybody for making poor judgment, in going forward with the present, the trip that occurred this year, in this academic year, then it would be me,” he told residents at the meeting. “As superintendent I’m responsible for all decisions.”…read article

Million-Dollar Teachers: Cashing In by Selling Their Lessons plans
AP; Apr 13, 2017
“Miss Kindergarten” is in the million-dollar club. So are “Lovin Lit,” the “Moffatt Girls” and about a dozen other teacher-entrepreneurs who are spinning reading, math, science and social studies into gold by selling their lesson plans online to fellow teachers around the world…
...read article

Can Requiring a Post-Graduation Plan Motivate Students? Chicago Thinks So. EDUCATION WEEK; Apr 17, 2017
"What are you doing after graduation?" High school students may grow weary of such inevitable questions from family and friends, or anxiety-ridden as they contemplate their college or career decisions. But now, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proposed requiring students to report more formally on their post-graduation plans in order to get their diplomas…read article

Fear of too much failure driving state standards NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 13, 2017
Parents and educators will not let rigorous requirements rule if it means more students will fall short of the goals…read editorial

Pull out all stops to end violence NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 14, 2017
Suffolk County Police Commissioner Tim Sini called this “a long term war,” and that’s true, but the immediate response must be to overwhelm: with patrols, investigation, and good intelligence. The perpetrators must pay. The violence must stop…read editorial

Sini weighs running for Suffolk DA NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 16, 2017
But Sini has yet to officially declare his candidacy and has declined to comment on his committee appearance or his interest in the race. And he didn’t even show up for Suffolk Democrats’ spring dinner two weeks ago, a normal stomping ground for potential candidates…
...read column

The new vending machines: Dispensing data NEWSDAY; Apr 16, 2017
New LI high-tech vending machines gather consumer details for advertisers, retailers…
...read article

Gardening in today’s climate NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 16, 2017
Getting good results demands patience, curiosity and care, no matter the crop…read column

Apr 6 - Apr 12, 2017
Budget highlights NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2017
The State Legislature over the weekend gave final approval to a $163 billion state budget, which was nine days late. The 2017-2018 budget had been due April 1. Here are some of the major highlights:…read article

Free tuition: Primer NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2017
Here’s what you need to know about what Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and lawmakers are calling the “Excelsior Scholarship,” which will provide a pathway to a tuition-free education for some students at the City University of New York and State University of New York campuses
read article

More budget power [for Cuomo] NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2017
Cuomo’s “federal funding response plan” replaces the constitution’s practice of calling
back the legislature, giving the governor leverage in the process by providing him the final word [on what] to cut and how much, if the legislature fails to agree to a plan…read article

Job openings rise; hires, quits fall NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2017
The overall figures suggest that the job market remains healthy, although it has yet to take off during the early stages of the Trump presidency…read article

$129M boost in aid for LI schools NEWSDAY; Apr 9, 2017
The aid agreement brings overall state assistance to public schools in Nassau and Suffolk counties to $3.1 billion for the coming year…read article

Study: LI property tax among highest in U.S. NEWSDAY; Apr 7, 2017
In Suffolk County last year [#13 in the U.S.], 69 percent of property taxes went to schools, 17.4 percent to local governments and 11.3 percent to the county, including 9.3 percent to police. The costs of government—including schools, police and municipal services—are higher on Long Island than across the nation as a whole…read article

Challenge of recruitment NEWSDAY; Apr 10, 2017
“As Long Island nears full employment, attracting talent across a variety of occupations is becoming more difficult,” says Shital Patel, labor market analyst in the state Labor Department’s Hicksville office…read article

Dowling sale OKd NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2017
Princeton Education Center plans to use the campus as a private, bilingual K-12 school licensed by New York State. Representing Princeton Education Center, Chengyu Hou, an attorney with Liu, Zheng, Chen & Hoffman in Manhattan, said “Princeton has many schools,” declining to comment further. He didn’t disclose the location of Princeton’s headquarters, and the company could not be reached for comment…read article

Record number of fatal overdoses NEWSDAY; Apr 10, 2017
At least 493 last year, with powerful fentanyl often to blame, officials say…read article

County payrolls top $1B NEWDAY; Apr 9, 2017
In Suffolk, total compensation for 12,700 full- and part-time employees rose by 5.3 percent to $1.018 billion over the prior year…read article

Aerospace departures NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2017
Luminati Aerospace LLC, the Calverton startup that plans to build solar-electric airplanes, said yesterday that two senior officials have departed the company. Fifteen people remain on staff
read article

Suffolk sheriffs contract OKd NEWSDAY; Apr 11, 2017
The new pact, which runs from 2011 to 2018, provides 20.1 percent in cumulative salary increases, plus added adjustments for settling the lawsuit, that make the payout about 23 percent, Bellone aides said. The contract also includes a no-layoff provision…read article

Regents Exams: Passing scores staying at 65 NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2017
State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia has quietly dropped plans to raise passing scores on Common Core Regents exams in English and math by the year 2022…read article

Big payrolls drive rising fees NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 11, 2017
In Suffolk, the number of workers decreased by 1,000 under Bellone, leaving a balance of 12,700. Logic — and certainly the county executive’s boasting — might make residents assume that an almost 8 percent staff reduction for Suffolk, would translate into savings. And significant ones at that. But no…read column

Panel shifts stance on prostate cancer tests NEWSDAY; Apr 12, 2017
An influential U.S. government advisory panel is dropping its opposition to routine prostate cancer screening in favor of letting men decide for themselves after talking with their doctors
read article

Mar 30 - Apr 5, 2017
BROOKHAVEN: Town gets top S&P credit rating NEWSDAY; Apr 5, 2017 
Standard & Poor’s has reaffirmed Brookhaven’s AAA credit rating--the highest designation the financial agency issues--citing the town’s strong fiscal position and commitment…read article

State budget deal NEWSDAY; Apr 5, 2017 
In an abrupt turnaround [Tuesday] after sometimes chaotic, marathon negotiations, the State Senate and Assembly prepared with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to pass a state budget nearly a week after it was due…read article

SUNY heads: Don’t raid our funds to pay for tuition plan

NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2017
State University of New York campus presidents have criticized a proposal by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to raid the colleges’ foundations to help pay for his “free college tuition” initiative. The SUNY campuses raced to embrace Cuomo’s idea but didn’t realize there would be other costs, said state Sen. Kenneth LaValle (R-Port Jefferson), who chairs the Senate Higher Education Committee. “They were 100 percent behind the governor’s idea of free tuition and now they are upset that they are part of his funding solution,” he said…read article

97,000-plus opt out of exam NEWSDAY; Apr 1, 2017
The updated totals from all responding districts showed 97,068 students of 189,417 eligible to take the exam--51.2 percent--opted out of the test, according to the survey. Last year--51.6 percent--opted out of the test…read article

Electrical apprenticeships NEWSDAY; Apr 5, 2017
The Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee for the Electrical Industry of Nassau and Suffolk Counties will begin taking applications [Apr 5] for 31 apprenticeships…read article

New wind farm to cost $1.62B NEWSDAY; Apr 3, 2017
That makes it the fourth most expensive energy contract in the LIPA portfolio, after all National Grid plants at $5 billion, the Neptune cable on the South Shore at $1.75 billion, and the Caithness plant in Yaphank at $1.67 billion…read article

PSEG LI boosts budget for energy efficiency NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2017
Some of the biggest chunks of the budget are for rebates for Energy Star appliances and other home and commercial products. Money for rebates comes from state programs and a charge on customer bills…read article

Riverhead closer to EPCAL deal NEWSDAY; Apr 5, 2017
“We will be using this historic facility for exactly what it was intended for when Grumman built it in 1956,” said Daniel Preston, CEO of Luminati Aerospace. “By 2022, we project the creation of 2,000 new jobs for Long Island.”…read article

Crackdown on illegal dumping NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2017
State and local officials are intensifying efforts to stop illegal dumping in Suffolk County…
...read article

Suffolk plan for new, higher fees meets resistance 
NEWSDAY COLUMNIST; Apr 2, 2017
Legis. Kevin McCaffrey (R-Lindenhurst), said Bellone views fiscal woes through “rose colored glasses.” “He worries about nitrogen in the water, but it won’t be a problem--no one will be living here,” he said…read article

TOB - Plea for buildings’ removal NEWSDAY; Mar 31, 2017
Brookhaven Supervisor Edward P. Romaine has asked federal authorities to remove buildings at a Superfund hazardous waste site in Port Jefferson Station after a series of fires there earlier this month…read article

The Life-Changing Potential of Student Mentorship 
EDUCATION WEEK; Apr 4, 2017
According to the National Mentoring Partnership’s analysis of more than 70 mentoring-program evaluations, a mentor-student relationship creates social, emotional, behavioral, and academic improvements in young people’s development, resulting in higher graduation rates and college enrollment. Mentored students are more likely to participate in extracurricular activities, and have better relationships with adults. They are also less likely to start using illegal drugs or start drinking alcohol…read commentary

Latest test for [NYS] ed chief NEWSDAY; Apr 4, 2017
Leaders of a statewide coalition that helped organize the test boycott called for [Commissioner] Elia’s removal from office, contending that the education chief had exacerbated parents’ and students’ anxieties over state exams, rather than providing relief…read article

Push LI poverty out of shadows NEWSDAY EDITORIAL; Apr 3, 2017
While changing federal guidelines and improving the reach of programs is part of the answer, the real solution lies in lifting people out of poverty. That requires seeing the region’s economy through a wider lens, to create a diversity of jobs and train a work force that is prepared to take them…read article

"E PLURIBUS UNUM" Admit immigrants who share U.S. values 
NEWSDAY LETTERS; Apr 5, 2017
We want to accept people of all cultures, but “e pluribus unum” means “out of many, one.” We should welcome people who believe in our values and want to become Americans. It has nothing to do with skin color or religion…read letter

Girls Lacrosse-The dilemma over helmets NEWSDAY; Apr 2, 2017
Girls lacrosse players on LI are for the first time allowed to wear headgear–but many won’t…
...read article

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Remember:
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”…Anne Frank 
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