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Monday
Apr252016

Letter To Editor - DOT Plans LIE Welcome Center But What About Truckers

Regarding the article last week titled

DOT plans LIE welcome center,

I find it disgraceful that between Governor Andrew Cuomo, our local politicians and our community that they are taking a small rest stop east of exit 51 and turning it into a rest area for 135 cars only ! The current parking area is often overflowing with tractor trailers. That sentence alone should tell you theres a need for rest spot for the trucks drivers that bring goods onto Long Island. But no, let’s turn it into a welcome center to create safe travel for all ( no trucks welcome ! ) and also support the economic growth of L.I. . Last I checked if a driver in a car needed food and or rest , they could pull off any exit and find what they needed. A truck driver and I mean a tractor trailer who is not doubt from out of state and delivering goods, needs a spot to rest because his driving time is legally up, has no place to go. Trucking companies and their drivers find it very difficult to pick up and deliver on L.I now. I can’t wait to see what happens when you take away the small area they have now to rest. I know this, for my husband is a long haul truck driver and tells me how L.I is the only place that doesn’t have any rest areas for these drivers that work long hours. The officials and our community should be ashamed of themselves. I would rather have a truck stop with hard working drivers resting in my backyard than a welcome center that will have Suffolk County Police patrolling the area for security concerns. What a waste of money. 

Candace Steck Warren

Smithtown 

Friday
Apr012016

Letter To The Editor - Trump Articulates Republican Abortion Position

Hillary should force the Republicans to own their anti-abortion position

Hillary Clinton shouldn’t be condemning Trump for his assertion that women who get abortions should be punished; she should be defending him.  It is one of the few times Mr. Trump has told the truth and it has the Republican party aghast.  The Republicans insist that abortion should be illegal. The next logical step as Trump pointed out is that the criminals (women) should be punished.  It is disingenuous in the extreme for the Republican party to then turn around and claim that women are innocent victims in all this. That is merely a perpetuation of their core belief that women are too childlike and muddle-headed to make considered, premeditated decisions about their own health. Hillary shouldn’t let them get away with this.  Punishing women is the next logical and obvious outcome in the Republican push to criminalize abortion and the Republicans should be compelled to own their position with all its implications in full view of the voters.

Eric Stubbs, Saint James 

Saturday
Feb272016

Letter To The Editor - Congress Needs To Get Their Heads Out Of The Sand

Congressman Zelden recently wrote an Op-Ed Piece suggesting that a bill he  authored, the Counterterrorism Screening and Assistance Act of 2016, H.R. 4314, “would screen for infectious diseases abroad in order to contain and prevent any potential outbreaks. The bill also helps quarantine the virus…”  Unfortunately this is little more than political maneuver to suggest that congress is serously addressing the threat.  Unfortunately it does not.

Vector borne illnesses kill about one hundred million people a year worlwide – roughly the equivalent of a little less than 1/3 of the U.S. poplulation.  While tropical diseases are major players in this, they are not limited to the tropics (Lyme Disease for example).  Vector control, immunization and public health measures to prevent spread are world-wide efforts, yet the death toll remains high.  Travel restrictions and screening travelers are part of this effort to contain the spread. What is not being addressed is root cause of the threat of Zika, Malaria and other diseases to the “temperate climate” countries like the US, is the spread of the geograpy of the tropical zones.  With global warming the moquito popluations carrying these disease populate a larger area of the globe.  

If the leadership of congress would collectively get their heads out of the sand, accept the scientific evidence on global warming and begin to address global warming, then perhaps they can actually do something  more than provide sound bites for campaign ads.

Thomas Biancaniello, MD

Thomas Biancaniello MD, FACC, FAHA, Professor of Pediatrics Columbia University Medical Center, Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics & Medicine, Stony Brook University. 

(Thomas Biancaniello is the spouse of the editor of Smithtown Matters)

Monday
Dec282015

Letter To Editor -Thank You Councilman McCarthy And Robert Murphy

Here is the latest update on the situation on my driveway. After the last time when Councilman McCarthy stepped in and put me in touch with Robert Murphy from the highway department I am proud to say that I have a new apron, sidewalk, and part on my driveway.

Mr. Murphy actually stopped by my house today and stated that they were going to redo the strip in front of the driveway because he wants to have a little bit more of a lip to make sure no water gets in. He stated this will be done either Wednesday or Thursday of this week.

I can tell you that I have nothing but respect for Mr. Murphy and Mr. McCarthy for the way that they handled this situation. Speaking with the previous leadership at the highway department was nothing but useless but these gentleman have got the job done. I thank them very much. 

Peter Connerton

Sunday
Dec132015

Letter To Editor - When Doing The Right Thing Is Not Enough

Dear Editor,

In keeping with our efforts to do our part in reducing global warming and eliminating air and ground water pollution, we decided to abandon our oil heating system and buried tank and install a natural gas system. That is until we were informed of the cost. 

The summer we had moved into a 30 year old home in Head of The Harbor, a community with 2 acre zoning. After 6 weeks of repairs, we were still faced with the old oil burner and buried tank as are most of the neighbors.  Oil heating is environmentally dirty and expensive to operate and leaking oil tanks, polluting ground water, are a reality, especially buried more than 30 years. The gas line we need is available at the corner of our property and conversion would reduce our heating cost too.

After some research, we were informed by the National Grid that the gas line was approximately 300 ft from our home and that they would pay for 100 ft. of the line. We then, would have to pay for the remaining 200ft at $101.00 per ft., install a new heating system at a cost of $8,500 to $18,000 and have the buried oil tank abandoned for an additional $2,500.00, making the conversion an impossible task. National Grid did say however that if I was able to get a sufficient number of neighbors to switch to gas, they might cover the entire gas line cost. 

I researched every home on our street, Bacon Rd, and several side streets, Googled the addresses, sent out letters of explanation along with sample cost calculation cards, and postage paid self-addressed return mail cards. Over the next 6 weeks and after a tax record search to correct some names and addresses, I added even more homes until there were 44 in all and 20 responses….90% desperately wanting to get natural gas.  

Armed with the data, I went back to the National Grid again and again until they responded with a phone call. I was informed that due to the 2 acre zoning and long distances to homes, there was still a quarter of a million dollars we would have to pay IF ALL 44 homes were willing to convert to natural gas……The environment will have to pay. We can’t. 

This letter is a plea and wakeup call  to our neighbors and political leaders alerting them to the predicament we are in to ever save our planet, house by house, town by town, city by city.  Business must profit to continue to operate and flourish so only our government can help. Our government will only help if we all ask.  I and 20 neighbors are asking.  

Sincerely 

Robert F. Bayer