53° Good Morning
53° Good Morning

Good schools keep property values high on Long Island

This home on Brookside Drive in Huntington was

This home on Brookside Drive in Huntington was posted for sale on July 23, 2014. Credit: Steve Pfost

My husband and I are senior citizens who never had children attend the Half Hollow Hills school district, yet we do find a way to pay our school taxes.

Here’s why: the very first, oftentimes the only question a potential home buyer will ask is, “What school district are you in?”

That is largely what your home value is based on. Seniors need to keep this in mind when they ask for a pass on paying property taxes.

I invite you to compare the price of your home to one in a less desirable school district. You will not only sell your home more easily but receive a higher price.

Laura Gramm Leone, Dix Hills

Skepticism about fee for home alarms

Nassau County’s mandatory home alarm registration and $100 fee are just another ridiculous attempt to take money from taxpayers.

If police time is wasted responding to false alarms, why not fine the individual homeowner instead of requiring a fee from everyone? What becomes of all the money raised by embroiling the homeowner in yet another ridiculous fee every two years?

If you think the revenue will go toward something positive, I would direct you to the state lottery, which was sold to the public as a way to pay for education.

Vince Iuliano, Holbrook

The high costs of illiteracy

I’m writing to express my concern about the low level of adult literacy in Suffolk County. Literacy is perhaps our most critical skill. It can mean the difference between a life well-lived and a life of hardship.

Unfortunately, more than 15 percent of Suffolk’s adult residents read at or below a sixth-grade level. Seventy-five percent of unemployed adults are non-readers, and almost 45 percent of adults living below the poverty level do not possess basic reading and writing skills.

This number would be much lower if our communities made literacy a top priority.

A mother’s reading skill is the greatest determinant of her children’s academic success, outweighing other factors such as neighborhood and family income, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Children whose parents read with them score 10 points higher on standardized tests, according to the National Center for Family Literacy.

Our communities, legislators and educators need to address this problem more aggressively.

Mary Gambacorta, Hauppauge

Editor’s note: The writer is a volunteer with Literacy Suffolk, which tutors people in reading and writing.