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Great Neck Estates residents, officials lash out at LIPA

A utility pole in Uniondale (Nov. 6, 2012)

A utility pole in Uniondale (Nov. 6, 2012) Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

Angry Great Neck Estates residents lashed out at the Long Island Power Authority at a village meeting Monday night, while town, county and state officials in attendance shared their own frustrations with the utility.

“It’s a disaster — communication has been horrible,” Village Mayor David Fox said, describing the content of LIPA’s twice-daily conference calls with public officials as “rhetoric, lies, outright nonsense.”

Some village residents had been without power for 15 days after superstorm Sandy, and prevailed upon the village to consider burying utility lines or making it easier to remove problem trees.

“Residents are angry and they have every right to be angry,” said Nassau County Legis. Judi Bosworth (D-Great Neck). “I have never experienced anything like this. ... This can never happen again. We all need to join forces and figure out what we need to do.”

Assemb. Michelle Schimel (D-Great Neck) described talking in Saddle Rock with linemen from Minnesota who said they had been unable to work for two days because they were waiting for new utility poles. Schimel said the utility had told officials that there were no supply-chain problems.

“I’m hoping once things settle down, I hope heads will roll,” Schimel told the crowd. “We need some real reform. I hope LIPA appointments are meaningful, tactical and intelligent, rather than just political.”

LIPA representatives did not respond to a request for comment.


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