44° Good Evening
44° Good Evening
Long IslandNassau

North Valley Stream voters to decide which library will serve them, Elmont or Valley Stream

Voters in the North Valley Stream Library Funding district go to the polls on May 5 to determine if facilities in Valley Stream or Elmont will serve as their main public library.

Both libraries have bid for the job now held by Elmont, whose contract expires at the end of the year.

The vote was to be held April 21, but when Valley Stream learned that all polling would be in the Elmont Public Library building, it reached an agreement in State Supreme Court in Nassau on April 16 to stop the vote. As a result, the vote was rescheduled.

Supreme Court Justice Thomas Feinman crafted the agreement that placed voting in schools in Valley Stream and Elmont.

"That one of the bidding libraries should be the election site instead of the two local schools previously used, did not seem like a level playing field," said Michael Hopkins, attorney for the Valley Stream library.

The sites and dates for such elections are set by the town, Hempstead in this case, which had moved the vote site because school officials said it might interfere with student testing, town officials said.

North Valley Stream, with a population of about 16,600, had about 450 voters in the last election in 2010, Hopkins said.

He also said Valley Stream's Henry Waldinger Memorial Library came in with a bid for the contract at "about $100,000 less than Elmont's, which was $540,000."

Waldinger had the contract for three years before Elmont won it for five years in 2010.

Elmont library vice president Pat Nicolosi and library director Roger Podell each said he could not immediately confirm the bid differences, but both said they have a bigger and better library than Valley Stream.

"Elmont is one of the largest libraries on Long Island," Podell said, adding that it has "one of the biggest collections of books and other materials in Nassau County."

Hopkins said Waldinger "is one of the best libraries on Long Island and has a top-shelf-caliber staff."

Nassau top stories