More parks in Huntington open to on-leash dog walking

The Town of Huntington has expanded its on-leash dog walking areas.

The town board last week added Phragmites Park in Centerport to the list of Huntington parks that allow on-leash dog walking. The addition expands a program started in recent years.

As required by town code, the Huntington Greenways Trail committee reviewed the possibility of allowing on-leash dog walking at Phragmites Park and recommended to the town to go ahead with the addition.

"The committee found that the area is already used by many dog walkers," town spokesman A.J. Carter said. "This will legalize the use, but limit it to the loop trail, not allowing access to the waterfront, which is another part of the trail."

The other sites that allow on-leash dog walking are Frazer Drive Park in Greenlawn, the Jerome Ambro Memorial Wetlands Preserve utility right of way in Northport, Dix Hills Park woodland trail and the Sunshine Acres Park paved path in Commack.

Frazer Drive Park in 2011 was the town's test site for on-leash dog walking. The program began as an effort to increase safety by having dog-walkers in the park after a 17-year-old girl was raped and robbed in a secluded area of the park in 2008.

The three other parks were added last year.


Mosquito spraying planned for today

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Suffolk County is planning ground spraying today, weather permitting, for adult mosquitoes on Fire Island, as well as aerial spraying of salt marshes for mosquito larvae, health officials said.

County vector control is to spray salt marshes from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. by helicopter at a low altitude using the pesticide Altosid liquid concentrate, officials said yesterday. Spraying is to be conducted in areas of the towns of Babylon, Islip, Brookhaven, Southampton, East Hampton, Riverhead and Southold.

County officials said residents don't need to take precautions, any human exposure is unlikely, and the pesticide has "no significant human toxicity," officials said.

The Division of Vector Control can be reached at 631-852-4270.

Streets in the Fire Island villages of Davis Park and Point O'Woods are to be sprayed from 6 to 10 p.m. with the pesticide Anvil, officials said.


Besides being annoying, some mosquitoes' bites can transmit West Nile virus to people.

The chances of experiencing health effects from the ground spraying are "quite low," the health department said, but children and pregnant women should avoid exposure if possible by staying clear of the area during spraying and for at least 30 minutes after.

Among the "common-sense steps" the department suggests are closing doors, windows and air-conditioning vents during spraying and for 30 minutes after.

For details, call Suffolk's spraying information hotline at 631-852-4939 or visit


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County tax money in, so no loan needed

North Hempstead doesn't need to borrow $3 million from its Outside Village Fund after all.

The town board last week approved moving $3 million from that fund to its general fund. A 0.30 percent interest rate was to apply to the short-term loan. The Outside Village Fund pays for services for residents who live in the town's unincorporated areas, not in villages.

Officials said the town needed that money because sales tax revenue from Nassau County was late. But town officials said Monday that after checking their records, the county funds had actually been paid before last Tuesday's town board meeting, when the borrowing was authorized.

"We received the sales tax from the county a couple of days before the town board meeting, but because this bookkeeping took a few days to catch up, it was not realized until after the meeting," town spokeswoman Carole Trottere said. "So, we won't need to do the inter-fund borrowing after all."

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LIRR to fix crossing this weekend

Repairs at a Central Islip Long Island Rail Road crossing that were originally scheduled for the fall have been moved up to this weekend, officials said.

Suffolk County Legis. Monica Martinez (D-Brentwood) said she urged the LIRR to speed up the repairs after receiving several complaints from residents about the worn condition of the Carleton Avenue crossing.

"Tires were blowing out. They were losing rims," Martinez said.

After inspecting the crossing, LIRR officials agreed that it was in need of emergency repairs. LIRR spokesman Hector Garcia in a statement thanked Martinez for "bringing the issue to our attention."

Martinez said she was pleased that the work will get done sooner than planned, and called the LIRR "an instrumental partner in listening and responding to constituents' concerns."

The replacement, which will take about 36 hours, will require replacing train service with buses between Brentwood and Ronkonkoma this weekend, LIRR officials said.


Grant money will enable art at dock

North Hempstead has been awarded a $75,000 federal grant to fund adding artwork to the town's dock in Port Washington.

The money, from the National Endowment for the Arts, recognizes 69 projects around the country.

The town will reach out to residents as part of a project "visioning process," according to a news release from the New York State Council on the Arts.

The effort would "transform the dock from an underused parking lot into an attractive, interactive park with green infrastructure, natural and built art elements, and spaces for community gatherings and arts programming that connect to the area's maritime heritage," according to the news release.

Town officials are working on the dock project with Long Island Traditions, described as a regional folk arts organization, and Landmark on Main Street, a performing arts center. The groups are to work with an artist to design a new park for the town dock area.


Shelter fundraiser offers free adoptions

Dogs take center stage Aug. 8 at this year's Shelter Choice Awards fundraiser, hosted by the Islip Animal Shelter and Adopt-a-Pet Center, where the pups will vie for titles including "sloppiest kisser," "best smile," and "fan favorite."

Free adoptions to approved applicants will be sponsored by Live.Love.Bark Dog Rescue, the shelter's volunteer group. Adoption fees are normally $111 for a dog and $65 for a cat. The adoptions also include the pets' spay or neuter surgery, microchip, rabies shot and any applicable town license, according to a town news release.

It will be held at the shelter on South Denver Avenue in Bay Shore.

A training demonstration is planned with one of the shelter's "all-star" dogs at 11:30 a.m., according to the release. At 12:30 p.m., a red carpet walk and awards ceremony begin, with a 2 p.m. drawing for raffle winners. Guests are required to be present to win, the news release states.

If a pet has been waiting more than one year to be adopted, its new parents will go home with a free bed and a large bag full of food, treats and toys, according to the release.

Those who wish to adopt a pet but do not own their home must submit a notarized letter from their landlord stating that pets are allowed in their household and that there are no weight or breed restrictions. All standard application processes also apply to adoptions on this day.

Vendors will be on hand for microchipping pets, which costs $25. For microchipping, all dogs must be on a non-retractable leash and cats must be in carriers. Pets with a history of aggression or fear are requested to be muzzled.

Visit the shelter's Facebook page at for more information on the event, which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., to see the adoptable animals' photos or to vote for your favorite dog.


Gallo leads Spinello in fundraising race

City Councilman Anthony Gallo Jr. raised nearly $53,000 in the first six months of 2015 in his bid to unseat Mayor Reginald Spinello, who took in less than $36,000, according to state campaign-finance filings.

But the Friends of Reggie Spinello campaign committee started out with more money, so it still has more cash on hand -- $62,297 -- than Friends of Tony Gallo with $20,852.

Gallo is running as a Republican. Spinello is a member of the Independence Party who has also received the backing of the Republican and Democratic parties.


Village to float bonds for fire department

The Village of Lindenhurst is bonding to cover costs of fire department upgrades and equipment.

The village board of trustees last month voted to approve $300,000 in bonds for fire department capital projects. The board in May approved spending $344,226 on air packs for the fire department.

While most of that cost was covered through grants, $118,876 remained. The bonds will pay for that cost and the rest of that money will be used for additional safety equipment and capital improvements on some of the firehouses, such as roof and parking lot improvements, officials said.


National lab to host girls science camps

Two science-based camps for middle school girls are to take place over the next several weeks at Brookhaven National Laboratory.

Girls Inc. of Long Island, a nonprofit based in Deer Park, is running the camps.

The first camp, Engineering for Science, takes place July 27 to July 31. Participants get to tour the lab and learn about the work there, including the latest experiments, according to the Girls Inc. website. Participants also are to take part in design challenges, with hands-on work designing circuits. Participants will also investigate solar panels and test solar water heaters.

The second camp, Fun with DNA Science, is to be held from Aug. 3 to Aug. 7. Participants learn about basic genetics and cell biology and will get to construct cells and DNA models.

Girls will use compound microscopes to view cells and will be able to extract DNA from human and plant cells, according to the website.

Participants will also be able to use stereo microscopes to observe mutations in fruit flies and study genetically engineered bacteria cells with genes of fireflies.

Both camps are open to girls in grades six through eight and take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Registration is $100 for each camp with a limited number of scholarships available.

Snacks will be provided and free transportation to the camps is available for those who live in Central Islip, Patchogue and Riverhead.

For more information, contact program coordinator Samantha Marciano at 516-724-6633 or at To register go to