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Roundup: Bond issue for turf fields at high school rejected
Bond issue for school turf fields rejected
Harborfields school district residents voted down a bond proposition Wednesday that would have paid for two synthetic turf fields at the high school.
The 15-year, $3 million bond plan was defeated by a vote of 2,075 to 429, according to the district’s website.
The proposal divided residents over whether now was the time to spend the money. Peter Saros, a Centerport resident, presented the school board in August with a community-driven petition asking for the turf fields and other upgrades.
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Saros said he was feeling sadness and disappointment Thursday, but “really on behalf of the students.”
“It’s a long war,” he said. “This is the first battle . . . we are formulating a new referendum.”
Steve Dombrower, who has two sons in the district, said he was “thrilled” with the vote and that he didn’t expect to see it defeated by such a large margin.
“That was a little bit surprising but it does send a very serious message that the people of the community, they take notice and care about large sums of money and how it is spent,” he said.
According to district officials, state and education law says a community member can submit a petition for certain specific purposes, provided a minimum number of qualified voters sign. In this case, 127 signatures were required, and Saros presented a petition to the board with 214 signatures.
The petition met legal requirements, so the board was compelled to undergo a State Environmental Quality Review, and once the request for the improvements was deemed in compliance, by law the board had to authorize a proposition to present to voters.
— MACKENZIE ISSLER
NICE Bus showcases mobile apps
Nassau County's bus operator wants its customers to check out several mobile applications that could make getting around easier.
Nassau Inter-County Express, or NICE Bus, has created an "app showcase" on its website featuring what it says are some of the most useful mobile tools for riders.
The site, NICEBus.com, now features nine mobile applications, including those to help users plan their trips door-to-door, and others that incorporate social media, such as Twitter, to give bus riders real-time service conditions.
NICE is also one of the first transit agencies in the United States to provide service alerts on Google maps.
NICE chief executive Michael Setzer said the showcase is the product of NICE's policy of releasing data to outside developers to create their own apps.
"It's a mobile world," Setzer said. "Our goal is to use every communications tool we can to provide better, faster information to our customers."
NICE officials said they will continue to add apps to the online showcase, and expect that their functionality will expand after the agency rolls out a GPS-based system next year that will provide users the real-time location of buses.
— ALFONSO CASTILLO