I have not been to Fire Island in many years, and I refuse to go, much as I would like to.
Why? I read on newsday.com nearly every day that Suffolk County is spraying toxic chemicals to combat mosquitoes. I don’t believe the chemicals, including Anvil and Scourge, are safe.
I don’t know why the county insists on poisoning fragile ecosystems with these toxic chemicals. Residents and visitors are not unaffected. When spraying, the county warns children and pregnant women to avoid exposure.
Why doesn’t Suffolk County take a fraction of the mosquito budget and invest in and install bat houses? Healthy populations of bats could be brought in, if necessary. Bats eat thousands of insects, especially mosquitoes, every night. I’m about to install a new bat house in my front yard.
By killing mosquitoes, the county virtually assures that bats will leave the area. Not only mosquitoes are killed; beneficial insects also die. The poisons break the food chain in the ecosystem.
Sharyn DiGeronimo, Selden
Editor’s note: The writer is a registered medical assistant.
High taxes chased us off Long Island
New York politicians are attempting to drive senior citizens out of the state by taxing them out of their limited incomes.
There is no justification for a 75-year-old Long Islander living on Social Security to pay $8,000 or more a year in school taxes.
The state School Tax Relief program, or STAR, is totally inadequate; it might at best provide a little less than $1,000 in assistance each year. At the very least, a 50 percent discount should be automatic for a 75-year-old couple.
Seniors who receive a break on their property taxes would spend that money and remain in the community. That could offset the lost revenue.
My wife and I were both born and raised on Long Island and were left with no choice but to leave when our Northport taxes went from $1,600 a year in 1971 to $13,000 a year in 2009.
We now live in a beautiful home in South Carolina and pay an annual tax of $800. We would like to move back to Long Island, but the future doesn’t look very bright under the present system.
Charles Slevin, Conway, South Carolina