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Oyster Bay helping scatter geese for free

Massapequa Park trustees have renewed an agreement with the Town of Oyster Bay that provides geese abatement on village properties — this year, for the first time, at no charge.

At its meeting Monday, the Village Board authorized town employees to enter three village parks as part of the “GeesePeace” program. The long-running town program uses three trained border collies to regularly scatter geese at various recreational grounds.

Oyster Bay also provides the service at no charge to the Massapequa and Plainview-Old Bethpage school districts and the Hebrew Academy of Nassau County in Plainview. Other municipalities, including Nassau County, have similar programs for their own parks, schools and golf courses.

In past years, the town charged each partner for the service but has waived the fee because of tight village and school district budgets, officials said. Massapequa Park once paid $22,000 annually.

“We think it’s a great move,” said Village Administrator Peggy Caltabiano.

Oyster Bay’s GeesePeace program was the subject of controversy earlier this year, when animal welfare advocates objected to its border collies being housed full time at the town shelter, with long stretches of confinement.

Town officials later agreed to let the dogs live with trained handlers when not in use.

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