Board to vote on tree-grinding spot
Smithtown Town Board members plan to vote today on a bid that would relocate the grinding of tree stumps and debris at the Montclair Avenue highway yard elsewhere after neighbors complained of dust and noise.
Smithtown Supervisor Patrick Vecchio called a special meeting to rescind a $210,000 bid awarded to All Island Excavating Corp. to grind the material at the St. James highway yard. Instead, the town plans to vote on approving All Island’s bid for $385,000 to transport and dispose of the material at a location off-site.
“When I found out about this grinding noise . . . I immediately called Glenn Jorgensen’s office to stop the grinding,” said Vecchio of complaints from residents.
When asked about the $175,000 price increase to haul the debris and grind outside of Smithtown, Vecchio said, “We’ll bite that bullet, because the peace and the quiet of the neighborhood is very important to us.”
The town is covering the cost with reserve funds, he said. Robert DeMoustes, 65, who lives on Montclair Avenue, said, “We’re very pleased that they’ve heard the residents . . . The grinding that they were doing had excessive noise during the day time and created a lot of dust.”
Vecchio said Smithtown entered into a consent decree with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation to remove excess debris from superstorm Sandy or face a $450,000 fine.
— LAUREN R. HARRISON
Public hearing set for monoxide detectors
The village board has scheduled a public hearing April 7 on a proposed change to the village code that would require owners of all commercial and residential buildings to install carbon monoxide detectors.
Village officials said state building code requires all homes to have a detector, but there is no requirement for commercial buildings.
Mayor Ralph Ekstrand said the broader village proposal is a result of the death last month of the manager at the Legal Sea Foods restaurant in Huntington Station from carbon monoxide poisoning. He described it as “a no-brainer after the fatality.”
Village administrator Brian Harty said “any home is required to have a CO detector under the state building code. A lot of people are probably not aware of that.”
The mayor said expense should not be an issue, particularly for homeowners. “It’s $29 for a carbon monoxide detector,” he said. Even though commercial models are more expensive, Ekstrand said he did not think the price should be an issue. “We’re not talking like telling a gas station to put in a generator.”
Harty said the village building superintendent is developing specifications for the commercial establishments. “Part of this is going to be an education effort that the village will make,” he said.
The hearing is scheduled for 8 p.m.
State Sen. Carl Marcellino (R-Syosset) introduced legislation in February requiring detectors in commercial establishments. Chad Lupinacci (R-Huntington) and Michael Montesano (R-Glen Head) are co-sponsors in the Assembly.
— BILL BLEYER
Veterans reach out to Sandy victims
Hundreds of families whose lives were affected by superstorm Sandy will receive free gift cards courtesy of a veterans group on Saturday.
Members of the Town of Babylon Fire Chiefs Association Hurricane Relief Fund will distribute the $250 gift cards from Target and Lowe's. Money raised for the gift cards comes from the Wounded Warrior Project, from a portion of their proceeds from last summer’s Wounded Warrior Solider Ride in the town.
The Wounded Warrior Project is a national service group offering more than a dozen programs for injured service members and their families, such as benefits counseling.
More than 250 families will receive the cards, which total more than $65,000, from 9 a.m. to noon at Babylon Town Hall in Lindenhurst.
— DENISE M. BONILLA
Pizza-box campaign targets drug abuse
A Lindenhurst Village community group is kicking off the first Friday of Lent with a pizza box campaign targeting drug abuse.
The Lindenhurst Community Cares Coalition plans to launch the campaign at Spasso’s Pizzeria at 6:30 p.m.
Informational stickers with artwork designed by student Adrianna Farrugia, and the message “Don’t Let Drugs Slow You Down, Just Eat Pizza!” will be placed on pizza boxes.
The stickers will encourage parents to visit the group’s website, lindycares.org, where they can access drug abuse resources, as well as community events aimed at reducing drug use and underage drinking in the community.
The stickers will also be placed on boxes from other area pizzerias, including Mr. G's, Alitalia, Roma, Stellas II, and Felicetti Brothers. For more information, email lindycaresLCC@gmail.com or call 516-815-3337.
— DENISE M. BONILLA