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East Meadow parking permit bill planned

Nassau University Medical Center and the Civil Service

Nassau University Medical Center and the Civil Service Employees Association reached agreement on a six-year contract Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

Resident parking permits could be coming soon to East Meadow residents who say streets in their neighborhood are being choked by cars parked by Nassau University Medical Center employees and patients.

State Sen. Kemp Hannon (R-Garden City) and Assemb. Thomas McKevitt (R-East Meadow) have agreed to submit legislation in January that could create a residents-only permit-parking district, the lawmakers said Friday. Both men acknowledged that the proposal could meet resistance in Albany, but said residents' parking concerns are justified.

The permits are necessary to reclaim spots that became scarcer in June 2011 when NUMC closed a parking garage, said Yvonne Amato, a resident who has helped lead the permit drive.

The influx of cars has caused traffic congestion and left homeowners' cars blocked in their driveways, Amato said.

"This is not a parking lot," Amato said. "These are residential streets."

Amato and others have said the permits should be used to regulate parking on Jefferson, First and Second streets, and Roosevelt, Lincoln and Franklin avenues -- all of which are south of Hempstead Turnpike and a few blocks from the hospital.

Streets to be covered by the legislation have yet to be determined, Hannon said.

The legislation would enable Hempstead Town officials to put up signs and issue permits, McKevitt said. The town would comply, Hempstead spokesman Mike Deery said.

Arthur A. Gianelli, chief executive of NUMC, said the hospital supports the effort. The hospital "has been working with our neighbors and with Sen. Hannon to address the parking concerns emanating from the surrounding community," he said.

Other areas in the state that have resident parking permits -- not including those related to commuter rail parking -- include Yonkers, Rensselaer, Binghamton, Mamaroneck and Albany.

McKevitt said the legislators will need to prove that the closing of the parking garage caused a "great hardship" in the neighborhood -- which it has.

"You have an entire neighborhood where people are not able to use their own streets," said McKevitt, who lives elsewhere in East Meadow.

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