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Good Afternoon

Up on the Board: Napolitano’s successor, a death in custody, post-Sandy spending

The editorial board notes Janet Napolitano’s resignation as head of Homeland Security, the largest federal bureaucracy after the Pentagon. Her successor’s task will be to figure out if such a mega-agency is serving the country well – and if not, to reorganize it.

We’re looking at the 2011 death of Daniel McDonnell in the custody of Suffolk police. A new state report says the police, the medical examiner and the district attorney all failed to properly investigate the death of this Lindenhurst man with bipolar disorder. He suffocated during a struggle and after he did not receive his medication, the report said. The board is checking into who has jurisdiction to give this case another review.

We’re concerned about the record of Tri-State Consumer Insurance Co. State officials are investigating whether the company has illegally refused to participate in a mediation program that would help superstorm Sandy victims get settlements for home damage.

And the post-Sandy probes of how Nassau County spent cleanup funds and awarded contracts are not surprising, but we worry there could be some overlaps. There are currently six agencies examining the spending.

To voice an opinion on any of the above, please fill in a comment in the section below, or email


Up on the Board is the editorial board's blog about what we just discussed at our weekday morning meeting. These meetings are where we talk about the news of the day and hash out our positions for the opinion sections of Newsday, Newsday Westchester and amNew York.