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Prom boutique to aid needy teenagers

Brookhaven wants to help young girls get dressed for the biggest dance of the year.

The town plans to open its prom boutique on March 7 to help teens of limited financial means get a dress and attend their school proms.

Students can choose from a selection of gowns, handbags and costume jewelry, as well as makeup and fragrances. There is no charge, but recipients must qualify for financial assistance.

The boutique is offered through Brookhaven’s Department of Housing and Human Services’ Youth Bureau, which is on the second floor of Town Hall. In past years, Brookhaven has given away 1,000 prom dresses.

The boutique is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 pm. until June 17, with the exception of a few days when it will open and close a few hours later.

Appointments can be made at 631-451-8011.

All clothing donations must be dry-cleaned and pressed and can be left at the boutique Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

For more information, visit



Hearing on theater replacement put off

A public hearing for an application to replace the historic First Playhouse theater in Great Neck Estates with a five-story apartment complex has been adjourned again, the latest in more than a year of delays.

The applicant’s Uniondale-based attorney, William Bonesso, said they are still responding to concerns raised by the state Department of Public Works. The hearing was originally adjourned to Feb. 8, but the applicant requested an adjournment to the next board meeting, scheduled for March 14.

Previous plans called for a five-story, 20-unit building, with retail space and underground parking, at the site of the theater at Maple Drive and Middle Neck Road. It was constructed in 1925.



New storefronts for downtown buildings

Mineola’s downtown neighborhood will soon undergo a facelift, thanks to a new effort to standardize storefronts.

Last week, the village board made the first step in this endeavor and unanimously voted to create a grant assistance program to help building owners and tenants redesign their storefronts.

An outside consultant specializing in downtown revitalization, Tom Savino of Plainview-based Vision Accomplished, presented information on funding and design at a public meeting Wednesday.

According to preliminary plans, building owners and tenants would contribute a minimum of 25 percent of the cost for improvements, with the rest covered by federal housing community development block grants.

Storefront improvements would apply to all new tenants and owners. The new policy would not be retroactive but currently existing businesses could choose to opt in the program, village Clerk Joe Scalero said.

The results will be a more “cohesive and harmonious” downtown area that aligns with the community’s master plan for a revitalized neighborhood, Savino said.

“We’re in the process of revitalizing our downtown,” trustee Dennis Walsh said. “This fits in the scheme.”

— Christine Chung


Lawmaker to present budget information

Assemb. Brian Curran (R-Lynbrook) plans to host a town-hall-style New York State budget presentation meeting Feb. 17 at 7 p.m. at the Baldwin Public Library.

“This presentation is necessary to highlight the fiscal impact Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed state budget will have on Long Island taxpayers, businesses, public and private school districts, local governments and not-for-profit organizations,” said Curran, who has hosted similar events in the past.

“All taxpayers should be in the loop on what the proposal entails and what their elected representatives are doing for them in Albany,” he added.

The library is at 2385 Grand Ave.



Collection changes

increase recyclables

Town of Huntington officials say waste collections have increased thanks to changes recently implemented.

Early last year, the town switched to single-stream recycling, allowing residents to put all recyclables into a single can that is collected weekly, a town news release said. Previously, residents were required to separate bottles and cans from newspapers, magazines and cardboard and put them out for collection on alternate weeks.

As a result of the changes, the amount of recyclables collected increased by just under 10 percent: from 13,327.44 tons collected in 2014 to 14,609.23 tons in 2015, town officials said in a news release.

In 2013, town officials began allowing residents to call for curbside pickup for electronic waste such as televisions, computers, computer printers and monitors. For many years, the town had accepted e-waste at its recycling center.

On Jan. 1, 2015, a state law took effect making e-waste recycling mandatory by banning the collection of e-waste with regular garbage. Town officials and the town’s refuse vendor began placing stickers on e-waste left out on the curb improperly, informing residents of the law and listing the options for disposal.

As a result, calls for curbside pickup nearly quadrupled in 2015, with 2,391 calls, as compared to 643 in 2014, the release said.

“These are encouraging numbers,” Supervisor Frank P. Petrone said in the release. “I hope that residents will continue to embrace single stream recycling and the recycling and proper disposal of e-waste. In doing that, they are helping to preserve our environment and save money by eliminating the need to build new resource recovery plants and burn more of our solid waste.”

— Deborah S. Morris


Anger management for teens offered

The Smithtown Youth Bureau is hosting an interactive program to help teens better manage anger.

The program consists of five interactive workshops that will help students in grades 9-12 discern “normal” anger and learn practical anger management skills to deal with the emotion in a healthy and constructive way, organizers said in a news release.

The topics will focus on personal anger triggers, relaxation methods, positive assertiveness skills, anger level awareness and monitoring, and conflict resolution strategies.

The workshops will be held each Wednesday from Feb. 24 through March 23, from 3:30-4:30 p.m. at the Horizons/Youth Bureau Center Community Room at 161 E. Main St.

Attendees must register by Feb. 17. For more information and to register, call 631-360-7595.

— Lauren R. Harrison


Town help hotline gets millionth call

The Brookhaven Town call center, which residents use to get information on everything from trash collection to shows at Bald Hill, has received its millionth phone call.

Town officials hailed the Jan. 26 call — from a Stony Brook resident requesting a town recycling collection calendar — as a milestone for the hotline, which was established on Sept. 12, 2007. The hotline (631-451-8696) is one of the few municipal call centers on Long Island.

“A lot of people didn’t know what 451-TOWN was” when it was established, Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said in an interview. “Here we are eight years later and we’ve had our 1 millionth caller.”

The caller, who Romaine said did not want to be identified, will receive a package of gifts such as rounds of golf at town courses, a pass to the Mastic Aquatic Center, season passes at town pools, tickets to a Brookhaven Amphitheater concert and a 2016 resident parking sticker.

The call center operates 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, except holidays. Weekend calls are routed to a Public Safety Department dispatcher. Call center agents handle questions about non-emergency services such as recycling, code enforcement, street lighting, highway maintenance, parks and town events.

Romaine said the town receives several hundred calls a day, and up to 1,000 daily calls in bad weather.

“The ladies who work there do a phenomenal job,” he said. “They probably know more about town government because they’ve had to answer so many questions.”



Wynsum Avenue play area proposed

The South Merrick Community Civic Association is holding a public forum at 7:30 tonight on the feasibility of having a pocket park on Wynsum Avenue upgraded to a playground for children.

Several elected officials are expected to attend, association president Joe Baker said in a news release.

The meeting will be at the Merrick Golf Course Clubhouse at 2550 Clubhouse Rd. For more information call 516-978-8310.

— Sid Cassese


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