I have complained on numerous occasions in writing and by phone about the horrible sidewalk conditions on the west side of Seamans Neck Road from Hunt Road to Miller Place in Levittown. The trees have lifted up the concrete so much that joggers, kids riding bikes and mothers pushing strollers are forced to use the street. It's a dangerous situation.
Seamans Neck is a Nassau County road, so we turned to the county's Public Works Department to find out what it would take to restore the sidewalk to a safe condition.
The county is taking steps that could lead to the sidewalk's replacement. But there's news that may not be as welcome: Property owners would wind up paying for the repairs.
Michael Martino, department spokesman, said the county is sending workers to evaluate the roughly 1-mile stretch of sidewalk to determine what sections need replacement. Notices will then be sent to owners whose properties border those sections informing them that repair is their responsibility.
"Under the county's administrative code, homeowners are responsible for sidewalks abutting their properties," Martino said. "The Department of Public Works is assessing the area and will be contacting owners to inform them that sidewalk repairs are their responsibility."
If a homeowner does not arrange for repairs, the county would consider doing the work on that section and assessing the cost to the owner. But because county funding is limited, Martino said, he couldn't estimate whether this sidewalk would get onto the department's project list or, if it does, when the work would get done.
Nassau residents with sidewalk problems on county roads can contact the Department of Public Works at 516-571-9600.
-- MICHAEL R. EBERT
There's good news for residents of a Bellmore neighborhood: The three large military trucks that had occupied a front yard are gone.
Neighbors contacted Watchdog about the trucks in the summer after waiting several months for Hempstead Town to take action -- specifically, to arrange for the trucks to be removed.
The town told us then that the trucks' presence in the yard was a violation of town code and, in addition, that the trucks were unregistered. The town had sent notices of violation to the property owner and, when he appeared in court in July, he was told to remove the trucks. A new court date of Sept. 25 was set, and the town said if the trucks were still in the yard on that date, it would be ready for trial.
By late September one truck was gone. A town spokeswoman reported Oct. 3 that the others had been removed.
And we can report a measure of good news at one eyesore property featured on this page in August. The bank that owns an abandoned house on Westbury Boulevard in Hempstead has been acting like a good neighbor.
The recent moves come after Bank of America, in response to a Watchdog inquiry, sent a crew in August to clean up the abandoned property. But that cleanup neglected to address the problems that spilled over into other yards. One neighbor, Josephine Williams, said she would need to hire a gardener to do the work necessary to get rid of the tangle of vines and other vegetation that had worked its way over and through the fence.
Williams called us late last month to report that a bank representative had returned and finished the job. Her yard, and that of a neighbor, are now free of the vines and other vegetation that had taken root on her side of the fence.
-- JUDY CARTWRIGHT