Floral Park Board of Trustees June 18 meeting reports

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Floral Park Board of Trustees June 18 meeting reports
Photos Provided by Rivkin Radler

Deputy Mayor Lynn Pombonyo

Vision Long Island, Smart Growth Awards

On Friday, June 14, seventeen Long Island Villages, Towns and other organizations were honored at the 23rd Annual LI Smart Growth Awards Ceremony at the Crest Hollow Country Club.

Over six hundred attended with many Elected Officials, Chamber of Commerce leaders, Civic leaders, Attorneys, Developers, Architects, Engineers, Clergy, Philanthropists and many more, hosted by Vision Long Island Director Eric Alexander.

The June 13 issue of LI Business News, in collaboration with Vision Long Island, reported that the event “is recognizing successful downtown development and housing and infrastructure projects achieved through bottom-up community planning”.

Beginning in 2015, the Village’s community planning for Centennial Hall’s future use included widespread outreach to all in the Village and numerous community meetings to gather input about continuing Village ownership of Centennial Hall, leasing or selling it; identifying a highly reputable commercial real estate company (with our final selection, CBRE) to guide the community in brainstorming  potential uses (residential was the decision); and engage potential developers (the Friedman Group, located in Nassau County, was chosen) to purchase the property. The developer agreed to a thirty year commitment to residential development only, at the site.

So, along with the Village, Floral Park’s own One Carnation Avenue and the Friedman Group developers were honored for our smart growth Transit-Oriented Development on the site of the former Centennial Hall building.

Both the Village of Floral Park and the Friedman Group were honored with attractive Smart Growth plaques, on display at Village Hall. On hand for the ceremony were Guy and Ryan Friedman, their Architects and Engineer, and Village Administrator Gerry Bambrick, Building Department Superintendent Renee Marcus, and Deputy Mayor Lynn Pombonyo. Congratulations to our award winning Village of Floral Park!

Police Department

For our Police Department, I’d like to start off with the Floral Park Chamber of Commerce Street Festival on the evening of Friday, June 7th and the incredible Police Department/Department of Public Works teamwork that made this all happen.

First, the Police and DPW organize for easy access and safety. This includes the strategic placement of garbage trucks, vehicles, barriers, tables, tents, personnel and other. Throughout the event, both Departments organize the site to maximize enjoyment and safety. Both Departments also enjoy interacting with the public, adding to the spirit.

As the Street Festival starts to shut down at 10 PM-ish, the Police guide our energized festival-goers to the sidewalks, and we thank all for your cooperation. Then the magic begins as the Police, DPW and our very large vehicles move up and down Tulip Avenue, and the enormous trash bags are thrown into the trucks, debris is blown, the street sweeper arrives, and Tulip Avenue begins to look pristine and ready for Saturday morning breakfasts. It’s amazing to watch!

A big shout-out goes to our Village team leaders: Lieutenant Doherty, Sergeant Vigorito and their FPPD Officers, all working with Commissioner McAllister, and Highway Department Supervisor Roe, Sanitation Supervisor Karam and their strong DPW crews, all working with Superintendent Ginnane.

Our FPPD and DPW – they’re THE BEST!

And an important reminder from our Police – Summer is here and schools are closing within days. Please drive slowly and carefully, and watch out for our children walking in our neighborhoods, crossing our streets, and riding their bikes. Our precious children rely on us to be safe drivers. Please protect them.

Conservation Society (FPCS)

On a spectacular, sunny Saturday afternoon, June 15th, Father Tom Fusco of the Our Lady of Victory Church celebrated a most inspiring Centennial Gardens Mass for several hundred worshippers. We express our gratitude to Father Fusco and OLV, Grand Knight Matt Troy and the Knights of Columbus, President Dennis McEnery and the FPCS Volunteers, Superintendent Kurt Meyfohrt and the Parks Department, Superintendent Kevin Ginnane and DPW, and John Power and Con-Kel Landscaping.

Visit Centennial Gardens and Bird Sanctuary for your own special, sunshine-filled experience, open daily, noon to 5 PM.

Chambers of Commerce and Our Businesses

Tulip Avenue was a sea of several thousand joyful people as all of Floral Park turned out for the Friday night before the Belmont Stakes – Floral Park Chamber of Commerce Street Festival. Thanks go to President Marie Grant, Chairperson Bill Barry, the Chamber Board and Members, and Village Clerk Joe O’Grady for a BEST NIGHT on Tulip Avenue and fun for all!

Summer is here with outdoor dining. SHOP, DINE AND CELEBRATE LOCAL in Floral Park and Stewart Manor!

Congratulations to Our Graduates!

We wish all the best to our May and June Class of 2024 graduates. You have made us proud and confident, knowing that you are creating the future and becoming our leaders.

To the Class of 2024, may your futures be filled with Success, Joy and Peace.

 

Trustee Frank Chiara

Fire Department

Our Volunteer Fire Department, along with other Fire Departments throughout the state have been notified that the Federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed changes to the Fire Brigade Standards (190.156) that may negatively affect many departments. These changes, on the surface, are intended to provide safer standards, however they will negatively affect retention and volunteerism in many departments. There will be unfunded mandates which will create a strain on smaller volunteer departments. The training standards will double to approximately 300 hours, making it extremely difficult for volunteers to meet them. It will change the medical screening process to a cost which may be unstainable for many departments and there will be additional mandates that will significantly increase the cost of providing fire protection to local fire departments and local governments.

Local Departments are requesting an extension to the public information process, allowing them the opportunity to have a balanced approach into consideration of the reality of each department.  Currently the comment period ends on 7/21/2024.

The Firefighter Association of New York State (WWW.FASNY.com) is requesting additional time to digest and appropriately respond to the proposed changes.

Please feel free to contact any of our local elected state officials to voice a concern on this matter. Our Fire Department needs your support on this very important issue. Ultimately, the cost of these new mandates will be paid for by the taxpayers in each community. Comments and a request for an extension can be sent to the federalregister.gov/documents /emergency-response.

Library

The month of June is halfway over and there are lots of planned activities and events taking place at the Floral Park Library:

  • The Summer Reading Program kickoff starts on Saturday June 23rd with Petra’s Puppets and Animal Fun on the library lawn.
  • The Adult Summer Reading Club will have weekly raffles for anyone who submits a review on a book they read. When you submit a review, you will be entered into the weekly raffle beginning Fridays from July 5th thru August 9th.  Prizes have been donated from our local merchants.  Anyone who submits at least one review will be entered into the Grand Prize raffle drawn on August 16th.  The Grand Prize is a gift card of $100 to the Harrison Restaurant.

Here are some of the save the dates for two summer concerts on the library lawn:

  • Bon Journey Concert – July 18th at 7 PM
  • Bobby Sings Bobby Concert – August 1st at 7 PM

Please remember our Library hours change in the summer time. Weekday hours will remain the same but starting in July the Library will be open on Saturdays from 9 AM to 1 PM and closed on Sundays.

Details on these and other scheduled events can be found on the Library’s website at www.floralparklibrary.org .

On Saturday, June 8th, our 103 year-young local veteran hero Dominck Critelli was welcomed back to his Mayfair Avenue home after being one of 11 D-Day participants honored by the French President in Normandy for his service at D-Day.

Mr. Critelli was given an NYPD police escort, along with Veteran motorcycle groups, from Kennedy Airport to the Village of Floral Park.  Our Village of Floral Park Police picked up the escort and led him to his home on Mayfair Avenue. Our Volunteer Fire Department, along with neighboring Departments lined both sides of street sounding their sirens welcoming him home. Many local residents and a large contingent of Veteran groups were on the street to greet him.  The owner of Nonna’s Italian Deli and Market and his son were there to welcome him back and graciously delivered free of charge, a number of pizzas and a large Italian hero for him and his family to enjoy. It was heartwarming to see this a well-deserved welcome home.

We at Floral Park want to give a huge THANK YOU to Mr. Critelli for his distinguished service to our country. Thank you to all who came to support and welcome him back to our community, as well as Nonna’s Italian Deli. Their generosity is a great example of how our local businesses support our community.

Trustee Jennifer Stewart

4VS

At the last Cable Committee Meeting, James Green reported that the newly purchased frame-sync generator is being installed next week. The upgraded equipment will eventually allow the studio to send an HD signal to the frame sync, which will then be converted to a 16×9 SD signal, then sent to the Altice headend for viewers. After installation, testing with Altice technicians will commence. The success of this project will ultimately determine a timeline for the conversion of our facility into a full HD production studio.

Jim Green and Francis Brandt continue to work on the project honoring WWII veterans from Floral Park who died while in service. The program is scheduled to be completed and aired by Veteran’s Day this November 2024.

An ongoing recruitment effort during May and June has resulted in three additional high school and college students joining the 4VS staff. These new staff members are in addition to the three individuals who joined during the winter/spring months. Please visit the studio’s website at 4VS.org for information about our weekly programming.

DPW

The Highway Department has put down 50 tons of hot patch and completed various road repairs, as well as swept all Village roads. The Parks Department has satisfied several property maintenance violations around the Village, including placing planter boxes outside on commercial strips, watering all flowers, hanging baskets, and planter boxes, and performing maintenance in all Village Parks. The Maintenance Department cleaned all Village buildings and continues to work on the new doors inside the library. The Sanitation Department collected 53 tons of household garbage, 8 tons of paper and cardboard, 5 tons of commingled plastics and bottles, and 14 tons of bulk rubbish.

I would like to thank DPW, and supervisors Kevin Roe, and Joe Karam for their efforts in getting Tulip Avenue prepared for the Chamber of Commerce Street Fair and just as importantly, breaking it down and cleaning up afterwards.

MTA

Please continue to let the MTA know your thoughts and concerns regarding the proposed bus route into the Village.

Cultural Arts

The schedule for our Summer Concert series will be released shortly, we are looking forward to see many of you out on the Memorial Park lawn, enjoying sounds from a variety of genres.

Trustee Michael Longobardi

Building Department

At the last meeting it was mentioned that the building department received a proposal for apartment buildings at Jericho Turnpike and South Tyson Avenue with a proposed public information meeting by the North End Civic Association scheduled for June 17th.  That meeting was postponed and tentatively reschedule for September to allow time to work out further details of the plan for a more informative meeting.

I have some status updates regarding several projects taking place in our Village:

  • The Village is awaiting the submittal of building permits for the restaurant proposal at 99 Covert Avenue.
  • Construction is set to begin this summer on Covert Avenue Fire property. Further updates on the timeline and staging will be provided once the start date is confirmed.
  • Reconstruction of the 266 Jericho Turnpike fire property is underway and is expected to take about a year.
  • Foundation construction is near complete for the apartment building at the former Centennial Hall site.
  • Construction continues for the Tulip Avenue Pedestrian walkway connecting the Spur parking lot to the Tulip/Carnation Avenues intersection by the Post Office and is expected to be completed in July.
  • A permit was recently requested for medical offices on the second floor of 170 Tulip Avenue. That work is expected to start soon pending some additional information.

As a reminder, all driveways and ductless air conditioning systems require a permit prior to start to ensure compliance with the zoning and building codes.  Please check the Building Department website for a full list of requirements and permit applications.  You are welcome to call the Building Department to ask questions or obtain assistance for permitting.

Recreation and Pool:

Our pool opened Saturday June 8th at 12:00 PM and will stay on modified hours until June 21st.   June 22nd the pool will open for full summers hours from 10:00 AM to 8:45 PM.  Our first heat wave is fast approaching this week. We are going to have extended hours to 9:45 PM on Thursday and Saturday.  Friday night will be closed for the rescheduled Teen Luau, with was rained out thanks to Mother Nature.

If you have not joined the pool already, it is a great time to consider signing up and enjoying everything it has to offer this summer. Some of those great events include the National Ice Cream Soda Day this Thursday, June 20th with $5.00 Ice Cream Sodas at D&J Refreshments; on Wednesday July 17th D&J Refreshments will have $3 hot dogs for National Hot Dog Day.  Some other events include Grandparents’ Days, Residents’ Days, Rollback Nights, Top Your Own Sundae Nights, and more.

This past weekend The Rec Center and Little league hosted the annual Michael R. Davidson Foundation Baseball Tournament. My fellow Board Members and I had the honor of attending the opening ceremony on Saturday. The Michael R. Davidson Foundation was created in memory of Resident and FDNY Lt. Michael R. Davidson who answered his final call making the ultimate sacrifice on March 23, 2018. The Foundation continues his legacy by helping first responders and military families. This Little League tournament is just one of many events to support the foundation in his honor.

I want to thank the park staff for all their hard work in getting the fields ready for the tournament, especially after Mother Nature struck on Friday Night.

Monday June 26th our youth programs will begin and Monday July 1st our morning sports programs will begin. There is still time to sign up for those activities. Village of Floral Park Leisure passes are required to use the recreation complex and to register for the programs.

A quick reminder for everyone is that for safety reasons no bikes are allowed in the park.

Town-Village Aircraft Safety & Noise Abatement Committee (TVASNAC)

The next meeting will be at 7:00 PM on Monday, June 24, 2024 at Hempstead Town Hall, One Washington Street, Hempstead. If you want to make a noise complaint regarding air traffic, you can call 1-800-225-1071. You can also go to the Village website at fpvillage.org which has the links under the TVASNAC Noise Complaint Contact Information Page on our home page

Mayor Kevin Fitzgerald

As mentioned this evening, we approved a settlement with the MTA/LIRR on the last few open items that were part of the Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) that we agreed with the LIRR prior to the commencement of the 3rd Track Project.  This settlement will enable the Village to move forward with certain mitigation projects to offset some of the impacts to residents of the 3rd Track Project. As this brings to an end the MOU and although the certain physical efforts the Village now can be completed, I thought it would be a good time to thank certain individuals for their efforts over the past few decades who gave a significant time and commitment to ensure that any adverse effects on our residents and property were reduced:

  • Mayor Ann Corbett who had the foresight to start the 3rd Track Task Force when the project was first proposed.
  • Mayor Phil Guarneri and Mayor Kevin Greene who worked tirelessly to push back and ultimately defeat the first iteration of the project.
  • Mayor Thomas Tweedy who picked up and lead the fight when the 2nd iteration was proposed.
  • Mayor Dominick Longobardi who worked to ensure that once the project was approved over the many objections and serious concerns that an MOU was negotiated to ensure the Village impacts were minimalized and improvements guaranteed.
  • Former State Senator (now Nassau County Comptroller) Elaine Phillips who worked with us and the MTA to have the MOU agreed to.
  • The current Village Board who attended and spoke at the many public hearings.
  • Former Trustee the late Jim Rhatigan.
  • Former Trustee Archie Cheng who during his tenure spent many hours as the Village’s LIRR liaison working day in and day out with the LIRR and 3TC during the construction. He even was of assistance during the past week.
  • Village Administrator Gerry Bambrick who was intimately involved in every step from legal to operational to visiting residents, and more.
  • Village Attorney John Ryan.
  • Our Superintendent of Buildings and DPW Renee Marcus, Kevin Ginnane and Steve Swiniski.
  • Our Police Commissioner Steve McAllister and the entire Police Department.
  • All of our current and former Fire Chiefs.
  • The members of the 3rd Track Task Force especially Dennis McEnery.
  • The various School Board members and School Administrators.
  • The local community relations team from 3TC.
  • The various administrations at the LIRR especially Hector Garcia who was always willing to meet with residents in both public forums and private settings. Plus, his willingness to always pick up my calls to discuss ongoing issues.
  • All of the residents, business owners and neighbors who spoke at public hearings or wrote letters with concerns.

Everyone had a significant part in making this project better and certainly a model on how large governmental projects can be successful with the input and consistent involvement of the residents

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