June 3rd - 7th, 2013
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Numerous people in Huntington were affected by the loss of Larry Kushnick this past week, here are just a few of the quotes from various mourners who celebrated his life this past week:
He was a dynamic leader, a mentor to me, a dear friend and a huge advocate for the community. This is a great loss." - Robert Bontempi, immediate past president of the Huntington Township Chamber of Commerce and Vision Long Island board member
"He was charismatic, he was fun, with a sense of humor you would not believe. Just a wonderful person." - Beth Uebele, sister of Mr. Kushnick
"He was the glue that made the fall festival such an annual success, and the skills he honed organizing that signature Huntington event also were invaluable in putting together the first Huntington Station Unity in the Community fair several years ago." - Huntington Town Supervisor Frank Petrone
"Larry was my partner, a mentor and a dear friend. He taught us all that there was more to the practice of law than sitting in an office and that we should engage in the community and give back. Everyone who knew him was better for it and he will be deeply missed.” - Vincent Pallaci, Mr. Kushnick's partner at the Melville law firm Kushnick Pallaci
Please join us for the 2013 Smart Growth Awards!
Friday, June 14th, 2013
- Mix land uses
- Strengthen existing communities and achieve more balanced regional development
Vision is pleased to announce the honoree for Regional Leadership Congressman Peter King for his successful work against the odds in delivering the Sandy Relief Act this year and the Federal Transportation bill last year. We will behonoring him and an excellent group of LI leaders and projects.
United States Representative Peter King
Superstorm Sandy Cleanup and Rebuilding Volunteers
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Were it not for Larry Kushnick….
As I looked around a large funeral hall, mourner-filled far beyond capacity on a recent June day, I couldn’t help but wonder about the incredible impact Larry Kushnick must have had on the lives and hearts of those present. Beneath the palpable sadness and shock on so many of the hundreds of faces was a story, a personal story of how a man – one who has left us at 51 years young – inspired them, lifted their aspirations, made them laugh at life and themselves, and set a glorious standard for community involvement and generosity. And interwoven into each of those stories, the common thread of Larry Kushnick bound with positive, community-impacting change.
It was back in 1997 when Larry – a young, but already well-connected-in-town attorney, serving with me on the Huntington Historical Society board uttered the words he invariably repeated to many, “let’s get together for coffee”. And it was at Munday’s, the famous Huntington eatery-cum-breakfast meeting joint, that Larry charmingly persuaded me to sign on to a terrific young program he was currently involved in – Leadership Huntington. And it was only a few months after that, when Larry, inspired by my desire to form an entity in town devoted to the pursuit of a new, community-based land use planning model (“Smart Growth” and Traditional Neighborhood Development) enthusiastically agreed to help move the initiative forward. So along with Larry, historian Robert Hughes and architect Alex Latham, Vision Huntington – which later became Vision Long Island -- and the Smart Growth movement on Long Island was born.
Through Larry’s circle of connections with the Town of Huntington and his unbridled energy, with support from a growing network of other Leadership Huntington graduates, the organization grew, the Smart Growth Advisory Committee was formed in Town Hall, the seminal Smart Growth Speaker Series took place, and the rest is history. And all the while Larry was there to do the grunt work – discuss strategy any hour of the day or night, roll up his sleeves at 8AM on a Sunday with marker in hand helping lay out alternative plans for a development, hand out surveys on a street corner – always with a smile, always willing to help with the next step, always exhorting us on as we came upon obstacle after obstacle, always working behind the scenes to smooth the way for the organization.
Larry helped plant and nurture the Smart Growth seed, and it is safe to say, were it not for Larry Kushnick, Vision Long Island would not have come into existence, and the Smart Growth movement likely never introduced. Long Island would be at a different place in its land use development and perhaps looking at a very different future.
As I looked around at the many sad faces in the hall, I could see so many stories like mine. So many organization and community efforts, like ours, lifted up and cheered on by Larry Kushnick to better bring their goodness and hope, in turn, to the community. So many people inspired by his energy and joy of life to seek out the very best in themselves, the willingness to give to benefit others, to make the community a better place.
With the passing of Larry Kushnick, we have truly lost a dear friend. But the indelible lessons, indeed gifts, Larry has left us with us – that almost anything is doable, pursue but temper your passions, do everything with a smile, handle adversity with grace… and a joke – remain alive for us to immortalize. Perhaps his most important gift, however, is this: do what you can to help others and doing so brings the greatest joy and fulfillment. This gift I truly cherish, and it is this gift that perhaps best allows Larry to live on in all of us as we strive to make our communities, our towns, our Island, a better place.
President and Co-founder
Vision Long Island
This past Monday The Saloon in Long Beach hosted an event celebrating the 35 seperate grants totaling $1.1 million that National Grid provided to Long Beach, Atlantic Beach and Island Park bsinesses.
To date, National Grid has awarded $5.1 million to Sandy-impacted businesses across the region. The company has pledged a total of $30 million for a program designed to provide relief for local business leaders and government officials from Staten Island to Suffolk County. The program will operate alongside the company's residential program offering grants to residents in storm-ravaged homes that need to replace boilers and furnaces.
Ken Daly, president of National Grid New York, noted that the program was created to help people where National Grid employees live and work while also recalling his time working in Long Beach after Sandy tore through the city. "In most neighborhoods most people went and took care of their own homes as best they could," he said. "This was the only neighborhood where blocks came together and they did one home at a time."
John Keating, Vision Long Island board member and the economic development specialist at National Grid, noted that the application asks home and business owners to provide estimates of damages, costs of repairs, and resources received from insurance companies. "Then we make a determination in house about how much we can provide to offset some of that gap between what their costs and resources are," he said while also mentioning that National Grid had committed grants to more than 300 businesses.
Glenn Ingoglia, preisdent of the Island Park Chamber of Commerce, said that over 90% of businesses in his chamber were without insurance and astonished at the lack of federal assistance. However, National Grid has provided approximately $500,000 in grants for affected businesses, helping to mitigate the damage from the disaster.
"It was the only grant that businesses could get," he said, "and National Grid came through at a time when, had they not, I could think of a handful of businesses that wouldn't be around today."
Vision Long Island participatwed in the press conference along with local businesses, community and government leaders.
For more information check out the Long Beach Patch here.
At the Town Hall meeting on Tuesday night, June 4th, the Renaissance Downtowns LLC’s plan to redevelop the Huntington Station landscape along New York Avenue from 11th Street to High Street was unanimously approved by the Huntington Town Board, and received support and cheers from many members of the audience.
The plan calls for creating a walkable community by including mixed-use centers, using some municipal and private properties near the Long Island Rail Road train station. The greater plan was approved but the town-appointed master developer still needs any approvals that will be required, like zone changes, variances and for the site plan.
Prior to the vote, Renaissance held an interactive campaign called Source the Station in which residents of the community participated and shared their concerns and hopes about Huntington Stations. it was an opportunity to vote on different ideas for the downtown plan such as voting their favorite retail ideas include a bookshop, cafe and performance space; a Long Island Rail Road station retail cluster; a fresh fruit and vegetable stand; and a restaurant row. The board voted in favor of the master developer’s revitalization plan largely due to this campaign and the overwhelming support of the community.
The strategy proposes changes along the area to create a focuses downtown around the train station including new retail and landscape improvements. In addition to more than a dozen supporters who spoke on behalf of the project and those wearing their Source the Station tee shirts, Supervisor Petrone made mention of the 800 residents who took part in Renaissance Downtown’s online crowd sourcing process.
For further reading, please visit Newsday.
Dear potential volunteers who have not yet signed up for a community for this weekend.
Vision Long Island is organizing physical clean-up and rebuilding crews to assist local communities damaged by heavy flooding for this weekend.
Thanks for your past help of Sandy impacted residents but much work still needs to be done. I know that with the holiday season, it may be hard for you to come out but any time you could donate would be greatly appreciated.
This weekend we will be continuing our cleanup efforts in the following communities:
Services for yeard work will be needed at:
30 Johnson Place
Services for rebuilding will be needed at:
West 1st Street
For more information, please contact Eric Alexander 631-804-9128
Saturday at 9am
For location, please contact Eric Alexander 631-804-9128
St. Andrew's Church
250 Neighborhood Road
Mastic Beach, NY 11951
Saturday and Sunday at 10 am
Skilled labor preferred for rebuilding.
For more information please contact Victoria Lissy at 631-617-7273
Please provide your own supplies needed for clean-up: Industrial bags, rakes, hammers, shovels, gloves, masks, heavy boots. We may have many of these items available but it is safer to have them ready to go just in case.
With a goal to get at least 50-100 more Long Islanders back in their homes, the Friends of Long Island group has embarked on a fundraising campaign to initially raise $500,000 for building materials and labor. All donations will go directly to these communities to aide in recovery efforts. If you would like to support the relief efforts, you can send your donations to:
Vision Long Island Sandy Relief
24 Woodbine Ave
Northport, NY 11768
SIMPLY CONTACT INFO@VISIONLONGISLAND.ORG OR CALL 631-804-9128 SO WE KNOW WHO IS SIGNING UP
Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano announced today that he will host the first of its kind Disaster Preparedness Seminar for Nassau County businesses on June 12th at the Nassau County Office of Emergency Management in Bethpage. The free seminar will run from 6-8 p.m.
County Executive Mangano will lead this first-ever municipally sponsored seminar, which will feature a panel of experts who will discuss the lessons learned from Superstorm Sandy. Topics will include business continuity issues, insurance issues, document management, government resources available for assistance, and how to plan for and manage your business in an emergency.
“Hurricane Sandy damaged and destroyed many Nassau County businesses,” said County Executive Mangano. “My administration is working with local businesses to help them recover from the devastation caused by the super storm. With the start of Hurricane Season, it’s important to study the lessons learned from the past and put them to work so that businesses can be prepared should mother nature strike again in the future.”
Scheduled to participate in the seminar are:
Each participant will receive a packet of informative educational materials.
Those interested in attending should RSVP by June 9th to RSVP@NassauIDA.org or by telephone to (516) 571-1745.
The Nassau County Office of Emergency Management is located at 510 Grumman Road West, Bethpage, New York.
Just a reminder that next week is the 2013 Smart Growth Awards, so register now if you haven't already!
Newsletter Editors: Christopher Kyle, Program Coordinator
Contributors: Lucy Ayala, Program Assistant; Tawaun Weber, Assistant Director; Elissa Ward, Sustainability Director
We strive to provide continued quality publications such as this each week. If you have any news or events that you would like to add to our newsletter, submit them to email@example.com for consideration.
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