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Hempstead approves law to ban public urination, defecation

The Hempstead Town Board unanimously approved an ordinance

The Hempstead Town Board unanimously approved an ordinance Tuesday banning public urination and defecation. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Hempstead Town Board members on Tuesday unanimously approved an ordinance banning public urination and defecation.

Councilman Dennis Dunne said police responding to complaints could not write citations because the town had no law as part of town code.

“The reason for this is, there’s been a problem — police couldn’t write a ticket,” Dunne said. “This is disgusting. Most of the time there are big-rig drivers or cabdrivers urinating in clear sight in our parking fields.”

Dunne said the new law will allow Hempstead Town public safety officers, Nassau County police and park rangers to write tickets when they witness violations of the law.

Town officials said the law would not apply to emergency medical situations.

Board members also approved a 5-year $244 million capital improvement plan, which includes infrastructure improvements, road paving projects, pothole repairs and storm drainage projects that raise roads throughout the town.

The capital improvement plan budgets $29.3 million for this year to build a $282,000 emergency communications center and $356,000 for emergency public safety equipment.

The plan also includes $5.5 million budgeted this year for improvements to town parks and $4.3 million for improvements to water districts in Bowling Green, East Meadow, Roosevelt and Uniondale.

“This is the road map of priority projects we have,” Town Supervisor Laura Gillen said. “Each year we look at what needs to be addressed.”

Town officials said they would explore grant funding to contribute to projects, but cautioned that grants were not guaranteed.

Board members also approved a transparency resolution to require disclosure of all contracts exceeding $10,000 and posting all budget materials online, including job specifications.

Some residents argued the resolution didn’t go far enough to answer information requests or enforce town officials to follow the transparency law.

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