FAA ruling on helicopter noise upheld, praised
Local officials are praising a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington last week upholding the Federal Aviation Administration’s ability to require helicopters to fly over Long Island Sound to reduce noise, saying it opens the door to similar noise abatement efforts in the Hamptons and on the North Fork.
The FAA made an overwater North Shore route mandatory in 2012 — there are exceptions for bad weather and for helicopters with no overwater safety equipment — but the federal agency was sued by Helicopter Association International, which claimed the FAA lacked the power to impose the route.
But the court ruled the FAA had the power to protect people living on the overland helicopter routes from the noise caused by those aircraft.
Assemb. Fred W. Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor) said “now that the court has established the FAA’s legal authority to protect the public from helicopter noise, it is time for the FAA to provide the same protection to the South Shore as the North Shore by approving a mandatory Atlantic Route,” adding such a route could be in place by next summer.
East Hampton Town Councilman Dominick Stanzione said the court decision “is very good news for the Town of East Hampton’s efforts to regulate helicopter noise at East Hampton Airport.”
— MITCHELL FREEDMAN
Golf event to benefit 5 fire departments
The 40th annual Marty Mongoni Golf Outing, sponsored by the Five Towns Kiwanis, will honor the area’s local fire departments on Monday.
The group plans to give the Hewlett, Inwood, Lawrence-Cedarhurst, Meadowmere Park and Woodmere fire departments $1,000 each.
The departments can use the additional funds, particularly the Meadowmere Park firehouse, which suffered damage from superstorm Sandy, said Tom Cohen, one of the organizers of the fundraiser.
The full-day event starts at 10:30 a.m. at The Woodmere Club, 99 Meadow Dr. in Woodmere, and features hours of golf, brunch and dinner. There will be a “Beat the Pro” challenge, a putting contest, raffles and auction prizes.
For more information, call the club at 516-295-2500.
— AISHA AL-MUSLIM
Groundbreaking held for Riverhead shopping center
The construction site of a new $25 million shopping center on the western end of Route 58 in Riverhead was bustling with activity Tuesday, as heavy earthmovers pushed dirt while carpenters and electricians worked inside the already half-completed retail stores.
With permits filed and engineering work done, owner/developer Saber Real Estate Advisors was busy trying to get The Christmas Tree Shops, Dick’s Sporting Goods and the other retail stores ready for opening by the end of the year.
But one ritual had been overlooked. Amid the bustle and the construction dust, town supervisor Sean Walter and other officials threw several shovels of loose dirt in the air in a ceremonial groundbreaking.
Walter smiled as he touted the town’s planning and zoning efforts in getting the developer the required approvals.
He might also have been smiling at the thought that when the stores are finished taxes on the property will be about $600,000 a year; as an empty lot, the 12-acre site paid about $55,000.
Martin Berger, managing principal at Saber Real Estate Advisors, said there were no unexpected construction delays in the project, which fills the last large vacant lot on the west side of Route 58 in Riverhead.
The project is slightly east of the Tanger Outlet Center, and adjacent to the Glenwood Village retirement community. An 8-foot earthen berm has been built next to those houses to block noise.
The ceremonial groundbreaking was on a small part of the site area that will become a Starbucks.
Before the new 119,000-square-foot shopping center opens, there is one final detail for the Armonk-based company to take care of: So far, the center has not been named.
— MITCHELL FREEDMAN
Free forums on substance abuse
Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano has announced his administration will offer a series of community forums with a panel of experts on substance abuse treatment, recovery, criminal justice and law enforcement to answer questions about how to deal with those close to you with a substance abuse problem.
“You can get your loved one help and hope by attending one of our community forums,” Mangano said in a statement. “Better understand your loved one’s addiction. Hear solutions from a variety of professionals. And learn how you can save a life by administering a medication that reverses an opiate overdose.”
County staff will train and provide attendees older than 18 with nasal Narcan or Naloxone kits, which can stop the fatal effects of a heroin or prescription painkiller overdose.
Each forum will be offered from 7 to 9 p.m. at the following locations and on the following dates:
*July 24: NARCAN Training, Bethpage Public Library, 47 Powell Ave.
*Aug. 1: Panel/forum, Williston Park Village Hall, 494 Willis Ave.
*Aug. 8: Panel/forum, Lynbrook Knights of Columbus, 78 Hempstead Ave.
*Aug. 22: Panel/forum, Hicksville Firehouse, 20 East Marie St.
The first forum was held Thursday in Bellmore.
For more information, or to register for a forum, call the Nassau County Police Department Office of Community Affairs at 516-573-7360 or email Elaikin@nassaucountyny.gov.
— SID CASSESE