In “Settlements galore” [News, April 4], Newsday reported that as Nassau County executive, Edward Mangano “had hoped to move to a four-year cycle to give the county more time to build a more accurate assessment system. But superstorm Sandy in 2012 damaged thousand of homes and delayed the reassessment.”
This is not true. Sandy was simply an excuse used by the Mangano administration so it could delay reassessment and continue receiving huge political donations from entities that would benefit from such delay.
How do we know this? First, because when Sandy hit New York on Oct. 29, 2012, the tentative rolls for 2013-14 had already been generated. No attempt had been made to reassess by that point, and no attempt was made thereafter to either bring in a consultant to reassess, or to restaff the Department of Assessment so it could do the job. The Department of Assessment continued to operate with an underqualified acting assessor, who had no ability to reassess 350,000 properties.
With appropriate staffing, and a qualified assessor or consultant, reassessment immediately after Sandy would have been far more equitable to those affected, but no attempt was made.
It is worth noting that New York City reassessed after Sandy, saving those in damaged properties millions of dollars.
Jeffrey B. Gold,
Editor’s note: The writer is a former member of the Nassau County Board of Assessors.
Bring a container for leftovers
The April 11 business-section story “Bracing for straw ban” made me think of my grandmother, who years ago carried a plastic bag to restaurants so she could take home the bread left in the bread basket.
At the time, we were embarrassed, but perhaps she was more progressive than we imagined.
If each of us brought our own reusable containers to restaurants for leftovers, it would be a kindness to the environment as well as help to save money on such containers for restaurant owners. Of course, many of us need to do this, not just a few.
Jews must unite to fight anti-Semitism
Although we are both Jews, Congressman Lee Zeldin is an embarrassment to me. The policies and people he supports go against Jewish values.
Recently, Zeldin accused Rep. Ilhan Omar of anti-Semitism because she called Stephen Miller a white nationalist [“Anti-Semitism rally focuses on rise in crimes, rhetoric,” News, April 1]. But I believe Miller is a white nationalist, just like Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, who headlined fundraisers for Zeldin’s re-election campaign. Miller advocates policies that terrorize immigrant communities, like the separation of immigrant children from their parents.
I believe Zeldin attacks Omar because she’s a Muslim woman of color criticizing the white nationalists he has embraced and enabled. Zeldin has failed to criticize Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa, who has spouted racist propaganda for years. But, of course, King is a white man.
My mother was right when she told me that I would be judged by the company I keep. Zeldin keeps shameful company and seems proud of attacking the most vulnerable among us. The only way for Jewish communities to be safe in the United States is to join with all communities to fight anti-Semitism, racism, Islamophobia, xenophobia and all forms of bigotry — because we are only safe in solidarity. That includes Lee Zeldin.
Forever-ban on ‘Millie’ goes too far
The head of Levittown schools says the production of “Thoroughly Modern Millie” will never be shown again after some protesters condemned some of its content as racist [“Schools chief: No more ‘Millie,’ ” News, April 12]. Saying a controversial high school play will never be shown again is going too far. We can’t change history; it is what it is.
I saw this musical years ago on Broadway, and it is all in good fun. The musical is set in the 1920s, a time when depictions that are objectionable now were acceptable.
Of Irish descent, I would never consider protesting outside the current Broadway show “The Ferryman,” which stereotypes the Irish as hard drinking, dancing, etc. People need to chill out and have some fun.
Cold Spring Harbor
Tuition aid to Dreamers is unfair to taxpayers
The just-approved New York State budget includes $27 million for college aid for immigrants whose parents entered the country illegally. Under the Dream Act, students who qualify will be eligible for Excelsior full-tuition scholarships, the state Tuition Assistance Program and other aid [“What state budget means to you,” News, April 1].
I’m at a loss for words. I struggled to get my two kids through college, and I make a good living. This is truly unfair to taxpayers and hardworking middle-class people fighting the battle of paying for their kids’ college.