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A Sign of Our Times




Grand Jury Report critical of Smithtown town
nments supervision
of commercial
property demolition…

The Grand Jury Report is public record and available at the link below. It is 40 pages, but double spaced, and well worth the few minutes it takes to read it.

Please feel free to share your comments with us.

Click on link for Full Report






Sign of our Times

By Eric Sailor

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NYS Senator Martinez Introduces Legislation To Deal With Revenge Porn

On January 16, 2019, Senator Monica R. Martinez, (D-Brentwood) introduced legislation S.1719 which seeks to strengthen protections for victims of revenge porn. The bill is co-sponsored by Assemblymember Braunstein (D-Queens) to amend the penal law in order to make it a crime in New York State to disclose intimate images without consent. Amongst the provisions, the law would make it a misdemeanor to share an image depicting the intimate body parts of another individual without their explicit consent. Additionally, this bill would allow victims to petition the courts to issue an order to immediately remove intimate images from the web.

In the age of the internet, individuals freely and often post images that can be inappropriate or harmful. In some cases, individuals have posted intimate images of former partners that were not intended for public dissemination. The sharing of non-consensual pornography, also known as “revenge porn”, can destroy the victims’ educational and employment opportunities, as well as their personal relationships. Often times, victims of nonconsensual pornography are threatened with sexual assault, are stalked, harassed, and even subject to loss of employment.

Forty-one states and the District of Columbia have already adopted “revenge porn” laws. In addition, several municipalities have adopted legislation addressing the issue. This included the first county in the state of New York, Suffolk County, where then County Legislator Martinez worked together with Legislator Bill Lindsay and obtained unanimous approval  to enact the measure. 

“I am proud to have worked with my colleagues in the Suffolk County Legislature to pass a bill prohibiting the dissemination of intimate images without consent, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the State Legislature to criminalize non-consensual pornography, or as it is more commonly known as “revenge porn” in New York State,” stated Senator Martinez. 






NYS Police Offers Advice For Those Driving In Winter Storm

The New York State Police is advising motorists to avoid any unnecessary driving during the winter storm that is forecast to bring a significant amount of snow to many areas across the state from Saturday into Sunday.  
Troopers will be out in force during the storm to provide assistance, will be working closely and coordinating with local Emergency Operations Centers as needed, and are prepared for the potential increase in storm-related service calls.
Motorists who must travel in the areas impacted by the snow are asked to leave with extra time to make a slow and careful drive to your destination.  Take into consideration snow accumulation on the roads, the current snowfall rate, the wind, and visibility.  Use your best judgment to determine if driving is prudent. 
Remember bridge and exit and entrance ramps can be icy when other road surfaces are not. Clean all snow and ice from the entire vehicle and ensure the windshield is clear of frost. If you do become stranded, stay with your vehicle and in an emergency dial 911.
If you must travel- keep the following tips in mind:

  • Get the latest weather forecast and road conditions before leaving via your local weather apps, radio or TV stations.
  • Always clean your windows and mirrors FULLY of any snow and ice before driving.
  • Keep a full tank of gas
  • Make sure fluid levels are topped off (windshield washer fluid, anti-freeze)
  • Make sure your spare tire is in working condition, and you have a jack and lug wrench
  • Use headlights at all times to increase your visibility to others.  Remember, if your windshield wipers are in use due to weather, then your headlights must be on.
  • Drive prudently.  If the conditions are adverse, you should decrease your speed accordingly.
  • Brake early
  • Do NOT use cruise control.  This decreases your reaction time to apply braking.
  • Look out for events farther down the road.  Creating more time to react can make a difference.
  • Be aware of maintenance vehicles and emergency vehicles.  Give them room to work.
  • Stock your trunk to help you to be safe in case you are stopped or stranded in an area without assistance readily available:
    • Gloves, blankets, warmers, tool kit, first-aid kit, non-perishable foods, water, working flashlight and batteries, cell phone charger, etc.
    • Shovel, ice scraper, de-icer, snow brush, rock salt or cat litter, tow chain or cable, jumper cables or battery charger, etc.

If you are involved in a collision or leave the roadway:
If you drive off the roadway and are stuck in a snow bank or ditch, stay in your vehicle and call 911.  DO NOT exit your vehicle unless it is an absolute emergency.  You put yourself at risk of being struck by another vehicle.
Roll your windows down a few inches or turn your vehicle off if you are stranded in snow for a period of time with your vehicle running. Covered mufflers can cause serious physical injury or death due to inhalation of carbon monoxide.
If you should become stranded on the Thruway or any roadway, know your location by being aware of your direction and mile post marker.  This will help emergency personnel reach your location as quickly as possible. 
Follow the New York State Police’s Twitter page @nyspolice for up to the minute information on road closures and weather alerts. Motorists can also check 511NY before traveling at or by downloading the mobile app. The free service allows users to check road conditions and features a winter travel advisory system with real-time travel reports and a color-coded map indicating which state roads are clear, wet or snow covered.
The Thruway Authority provides a wide variety of information for travelers including current traffic conditions, accidents, and lane closures on their website at www.thruway.ny.gov, or through their mobile app.
Slow down.  Be prepared.  Be safe. 


FYI - NY POST Article Nancy Pelosi Exacts Her Revenge On Kathleen Rice

Nancy Pelosi exacts her revenge on Kathleen Rise is the headline of NY Post’s article on Long Island’s Congresswoman Kathleen Rice.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi got the last laugh on New York Rep. Kathleen Rice Tuesday night, denying the former Nassau prosecutor a coveted seat on the lower chamber’s high-profile Judiciary Committee. Read more 


Hunter Who Fatally Shot Woman While Illegally Hunting Sentenced To Prison

A man who had mistaken a woman for a deer while hunting illegally after sunset in November 2017 was sentenced to prison, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today.

Thomas Jadlowski, 34, of Sherman, NY, was sentenced in Chautauqua County Court by Judge David Foley to serve one to three years at a facility to be determined by the New York State Department of Corrections. The sentence was issued as a result of Jadlowski’s guilty plea to criminally negligent homicide in the shooting death of Rosemary Billquist on Thanksgiving Eve 2017.

Jadlowski, who was illegally hunting deer after official sunset, aimed and fired at Billquist, his neighbor, when he mistook her for a deer as she was walking in a field behind her home in Sherman.

“Every hunting accident in New York is preventable when people follow basic hunting safety rules,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “I hope this tragedy serves as a reminder to hunters across the state to always be sure of their targets and beyond. We are grateful to the hard work of our Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs), Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson, and the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office to bring this case to justice.”

Now that the criminal case is over, DEC is commencing an administrative action to revoke the defendant’s sporting license.

DEC would like to remind all hunters to follow DEC’s Hunting Safety Rules:

  • Assume every gun is loaded.
  • Control the muzzle. Point your gun in a safe direction.
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
  • Be sure of your target and beyond.
  • Do not hunt deer and bear in the dark; big game hunting ends at sunset (link leaves DEC’s website).
  • DEC encourages hunters to wear blaze orange or pink. Wearing orange or pink prevents other hunters from mistaking a person for an animal, or shooting in your direction. Hunters who wear hunter orange are seven times less likely to be shot.

For more information on these and other important hunting safety tips, please visit DEC’s website.



New Law Requires Water Parks And Amusement Parks To Report Complaints To Police



Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today signed legislation into law that requires amusement parks and water parks operating in Suffolk County to immediately report any criminal conduct, including sex offenses, that occurs on their property to the appropriate law enforcement agency. The bill, which was sponsored by Suffolk County Legislator Susan A. Berland and was passed unanimously at the December 4th meeting of the Suffolk County Legislature, is designed to strengthen enforcement of criminal complaints by ensuring authorities are promptly notified.

The legislation follows an incident that occurred last summer at a waterpark where young girls were reportedly groped by a group of men in the wave pool and the park failed to immediately notify local law enforcement agencies of the incident or obtain identifying information from the alleged perpetrators.  

The law, which goes into effect 90 days after it is filed with the New York State Office of Secretary of State, requires the owner, operator, employee or agent of an amusement park or water park operating in Suffolk County to immediately contact an appropriate law enforcement agency when a criminal act, including sex offenses, occurs on their premises. Entities in violation of this law will be punishable by the payment of a civil payment not to exceed $5,000 for the first violation and a $10,000 penalty for subsequent violations, to be recovered in a civil action.


Bellone Voluntarily Takes Salary Freeze And Contributes To Health Insurance


County Executive Saves Suffolk Taxpayers Nearly $300,000 through 2019
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today announced that his salary will remain frozen in 2019 for an eighth consecutive year. Since taking office, County Executive Bellone has voluntarily reduced his salary, declined to accept a salary increase statutorily permitted by law, and also became the first county employee to contribute towards their healthcare expenses in county history.  Altogether the County Executive has saved taxpayers $296,389 through 2019 as a result of his actions.
“If we are going to ask our hardworking county employees to do more with less, it is important to lead by example,”said Suffolk County Executive Bellone. “In the end, our shared sacrifices have achieved real savings while protecting the taxpayer.”
In 2012, the County Executive announced that he would voluntarily reduce the maximum salary that he was entitled to take by $21,000, earning $4,000 less than what his predecessor was paid and opting to freeze the lesser amount of $187,000 for the duration of his first term. In the eight years since, the County Executive has declined all statutorily authorized salary increases, leading to a savings of $274,686 in salary alone. This year, the County Executive will again take a salary reduction of $45,000 below what is permitted under county law.
The County Executive has also saved taxpayers nearly $22,000 by contributing to the cost of his health insurance since 2012. As part of the County Executive’s government reform and fiscal responsibility agenda, in 2013, the Suffolk County Legislature passed legislation requiring county employees to begin paying towards the cost of their health insurance, saving taxpayers more than one million dollars on an annual basis.






“It was like I can’t stop it and my government is not there to help,” said a California woman whose information was stolen. Read more at NBC News
(Identity theft is a crime. While the FTC does not have criminal jurisdiction, it supports the criminal investigation and prosecution of identity theft by serving as a clearinghouse for identity theft complaints, part of the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel complaint database.)

Dr. Scott Blyer Teams Up With Suffolk County To Help Victims Of Human And Sex Trafficking


Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today joined with law enforcement officials and members of the Suffolk County Task Force to Prevent Family Violence to announce a partnership with Dr. Scott Blyer, a plastic surgeon with Cameo Surgical Center, to help facilitate the recovery of human and sex trafficking victims by offering tattoo removals, at no cost to the victim, to remove painful reminders of their past. The announcement coincides on Friday, January 11, which is dedicated as National Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

Victims of human and sex trafficking are often times marked or branded with tattoos ranging from the name of the trafficker, their initials, a rose, or a crown, to symbolize a traffickers ownership over a victim. The removal of these tattoos assists survivors of human trafficking in the recovery process. Member agencies of the Suffolk County Task Force to Prevent Family Violence will provide Dr. Blyer’s practice with referrals of victims seeking to have their tattoos removed. Tattoo removals will be provided free of charge on a first come first serve basis.

 “The services our county executive and his staff secured today signifies more than the removal of a branding, it acknowledges that this is a home grown issue on Long Island and across our country and that we as a community are giving these individuals a chance to feel supported and cared for during what is probably the most traumatic experiences in their life.” Jennifer Hernandez, Executive Director, Empowerment Collaborative of Long Island

National Human Trafficking Awareness Day was implemented to raise awareness among Americans that human trafficking does not just happen in other countries, but in states and communities across the United States. Cases of human trafficking have been reported in all 50 U.S. States. It is estimated that between 20 to 30 million men, women and children around the world are victims of human trafficking. Trafficking affects all communities and people, regardless of race, class, education, gender, age, or citizenship. 

The Suffolk County Task Force to Prevent Family Violence seeks to educate and protect victims, increase public awareness, and help to prevent family violence, including intimate partner violence and abuse and neglect of children, adults and elders, in Suffolk County. In 2017, this task force formed a Human trafficking committee, which has forged alliances with hospital networks and the SCPD Suffolk County Human Trafficking Unit to best understand the complex issue and advocate for the implementation of policies to serve the victims. Member advocacy agencies of the task force include, EAC Network, SEPA Mujer, Brighter Tomorrows, Crime Victims Center-Parents for Megan’s Law, The Retreat, Long Island Against Domestic Violence, Victims Information Bureau of Suffolk, and New Hour for Women and Children

In order to combat human trafficking in Suffolk County the Suffolk County Police Department launched a Human Trafficking Investigations Unit, the first of its kind on Long Island that has led to record levels of human trafficking and sex crimes arrests. The Suffolk County District Attorney’s office has a companion unit that includes prosecutors assigned to the District Attorney’s Human Trafficking Team. Additionally, Suffolk County’s Human Trafficking Court connects victims to counseling, drug treatment and job training. 

 Dr. Scott Blyer said  “Every day we perform surgeries that transform patients’ lives and give them an approved self-confidence. I cannot imagine the amount of courage it takes for someone to change the trajectory of their lives and leave a situation like the one being discussed today.  Even after they make this huge step in their life, they still have to look in the mirror and see scars and tattoos reminding them of their horrific past. I am very blessed to have the ability to help these brave people. I look forward to helping in any way I can.”


FYI -Fiat Chrysler To Resolve Vehicle Emission Test Allegations

01/10/2019 12:00 AM EST

The Department of Justice, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the State of California announced today a settlement with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V., FCA US, and affiliates (Fiat Chrysler) for alleged violations of the Clean Air Act and California law. Fiat Chrysler has agreed to implement a recall program to repair more than 100,000 noncompliant diesel vehicles sold or leased in the United States, offer an extended warranty on repaired vehicles, and pay a civil penalty of $305 million to settle claims of cheating emission tests and failing to disclose unlawful defeat devices. Fiat Chrysler also will implement a program to mitigate excess pollution from these vehicles. The recall and federal mitigation programs are estimated to cost up to approximately $185 million. In a separate settlement with California, Fiat Chrysler will pay an additional $19 million to mitigate excess emissions from more than 13,000 of the noncompliant vehicles in California. In addition, in a separate administrative agreement with the United States Customs and Border Protection, Fiat Chrysler will pay a $6 million civil penalty to resolve allegations of illegally importing 1,700 noncompliant vehicles.



County Executive Bellone Reminds The Public Help Is Available This Winter


Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today announced available housing and heating assistance for residents through the county during the cold weather months.  The Suffolk County Department of Social Services Safe Beds Program is operational and will provide emergency shelter to those in need during inclement weather, which is defined when the air temperature is at or below 32°F, including wind chill.

“As winter approaches, the county will provide available heat and shelter for those seeking to escape the frigid conditions.” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “We encourage anyone who is in need of temporary housing, emergency fuel or other assistance to contact the Suffolk County Department of Social Services immediately.”

Dennis Nowak, Acting Commissioner of the Suffolk County Department of Social Services said: “The Department of Social Services stands ready to assist Suffolk County residents that require our services during severe cold weather.”

Housing Assistance:


Temporary housing assistance is available for those who wish to apply in-person at Suffolk County service centers located in Deer Park, Coram, Hauppauge and Riverhead. Specific addresses and information on these centers can be found below and at www.suffolkcountyny.gov. Outside of normal business hours please contact emergency services at 631-854-9100.

Service Center Locations

South West Center

2 South 2nd Street

Deer Park

(631) 854-6600

Smithtown Center

200 Wireless Blvd.


(631) 853-8714

Coram Center

80 Middle Country Road


(631) 854-2300

Riverhead Center

893 East Main Street


(631) 852-3500

MacArthur Center         

3455 Veterans Memorial Highway

Ronkonkoma, New York 11779



Residents who receive Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) benefits and are in need of fuel or emergency burner repair are advised to contact the Suffolk County Department of Social Services Home Energy Assistance Program immediately at 631-853-8820. If assistance is needed on weekdays after 4:30 p.m., weekends or holidays, residents can call the Department of Social Services Emergency Services Unit at 631-854-9100.

For Renters


Between October 1st and May 31st, when outside temperatures drop below 55 degrees Fahrenheit, internal dwelling temperatures must be at least 68 degrees Fahrenheit, day and night. Each dwelling is required by law to have heating facilities that are properly installed, and maintained in safe and good working conditions, and are capable of safely and adequately heating all habitable rooms, bathrooms and water closet compartments. Residents whose landlords are not in compliance with this requirement are advised to call the Suffolk County Department of Health Temporary Residence Unit at 631-852-5900. Temporary interruptions necessary while performing repairs or alterations are permissible.

The County Executive additionally provided the following winter weather tips for homeowners and residents to stay safe: 

  • Protect your pipes. Run water at times to help prevent your pipes from freezing.
  • Make sure portable heaters are placed on a flat, leveled surface and to keep all flammable objects, including cloth, papers and rugs, away from it.
  • Drive with caution and be mindful of your surroundings.  During the winter, roads may ice over and become slippery even if no precipitation is present.  
  • Check on friends and loved ones who are elderly or may be sick during the extreme cold or during snowfall.
  • When outdoors, cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs from extreme cold.
  • Be aware of the warning signs of hypothermia, which include shivering, confusion, memory loss, drowsiness, exhaustion and slurred speech.  Infants and children who are suffering from hypothermia may appear to have very low energy and bright red, cold skin.
  • Unvented or malfunctioning space heaters can emit carbon monoxide so make sure that smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are operating properly and have fresh batteries.
  • Pets should never be left outside while you are at work or out of the house for any extended period of time.
  • Walks should be limited to less than 15 minutes if the temperature is below freezing.
  • If your dog must be outside for any reason this winter, monitor them closely and be sure to bring them indoors if they begin to show signs of distress.

For more information on the County’s winter weather protocols and snow removal preparations or for more winter weather safety tips, log on to www.facebook.com/stevebellone or www.suffolkcountyny.gov.