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August 7th - 13th, 2016

Regional Updates

Forchelli, Curto, Deegan, Schwartz, Mineo & Terrana LLP

Founded in 1976, Forchelli, Curto, Deegan, Schwartz, Mineo & Terrana LLP is one of Long Island's most acclaimed and distinguished full service law firms. The Firm has always enjoyed a solid reputation for successfully representing clients in real estate, land use and zoning, tax, trusts and estates, tax certiorari, corporate, construction, commercial and litigation matters. Areas of expertise have expanded to include banking, bankruptcy, employment and labor, municipal incentives/IDA, entertainment, and more. Throughout the Firm's growth, one thing has remained constant — its focus on obtaining results for clients. Headquartered in Uniondale, NY, the Firm is conveniently located for clients in Nassau, Suffolk and New York City. Personal attention and quality representation that is both practical and cost-effective are hallmarks of the Firm's policy towards clients.

“Our team is extremely excited that through our partnership with the community and the town we have crossed yet another hurdle towards revitalizing Huntington Station.” - Ryan Porter, Renaissance Downtowns

“We’re going to bring full-time residents who are going to support, and hopefully grow, the retail base and do it in a smart way that doesn’t overload the infrastructure. Marina Pointe has all the bones you want for a Smart Growth development. It will be walkable to the train station and a short commute to the city.” - Steven Dubb, Principle, the Beechwood Organization

“With a lot of these mega-projects and master-developer-type projects, the sheer volume of what’s involved can be overwhelming and the economy of scale doesn’t always work.  We can’t be Babe Ruth and swing for the fences. Instead, we keep hitting singles and were getting things done that way.” - Hon. Sean Walter, Supervisor, Town of Riverhead

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Baldwin Downtown and Commercial Corridor Resiliency Study Underway

This past spring, Baldwin began the process of revitalizing their downtown area. At the recommendation of the Baldwin NY Rising Community Reconstruction Plan, the Baldwin Downtown and Commercial Corridor Resiliency (DCCR) Study will be completed in order to discover opportunities for economic growth, foster economic investment, increase housing options, create a more walkable neighborhood, design pleasant public spaces, and forge a resilient community, both physically and economically.

The study is set to focus on green infrastructure improvements and commercial and mixed-use development opportunities. The project leaders are placing large emphasis on the importance of community input, and as such, a number of small group meetings and large group meetings will be held in order to help create an accurate and useful report of revitalization suggestions. The final draft of the DCCR Study report is expected to be available in the beginning of 2017, with public meetings currently being scheduled and expected to take place this fall.

Specific goals of the project include improving efficient and safe transportation options, protecting the Baldwin Community from sea level rise and significant storm surge events, and promoting economically competitive and physically resilient commercial and mixed-use districts along the corridor.  The study is being funded by a grant from the New York State Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery. The NY Rising Community Reconstruction Program was designed to help resiliency initiatives in a participatory manner in 124 communities that were affected by Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

Nassau County and the New York State Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery are leading the project and the creation of the study. The prime consultant is VHB, a company of engineers, scientists, planners, and designers that work to improve mobility, enhance communities, and balance development and infrastructure needs with environmental stewardship. Other organizations involved in the design and support of the study include Vision Long Island, Kevin Dwarka Land Use & Economic Consulting, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc., LiRo Engineers, Inc. and Traffic Databank.

You can read more about the Baldwin Downtown and Commercial Corridor Resiliency Study on their website.

Local Festivals Held Across the Island

Hicksville’s 5th Annual India Day Parade drew thousands of residents, elected officials and celebrities downtown to celebrate India’s 69th year of independence from Great Britain. This year’s parade incorporated the themes of education and the environment with floats, Indian cuisine, and music. “Our main goal is to bring all cultures under one roof,” said India Day Parade USA media chairman Ajay Batra.

Many attendees were able celebrate their ties to both India and the US by singing both National Anthems.  The parade’s organizers hope that the education and environment will inspire Indian-Americans to give back to those in India where many grow up without proper access to school and a clean community.  Residents who planned to come to the event and accidental attendees all reported having a great time, according to Newsday.

Vision also attended Baldwin’s festival in Baldwin Harbor Park to take input from the community for the County Planning Study on Grand Avenue. Residents and business owners who attended the event provided excellent feedback, which will be used as part of the Baldwin Downtown and Commercial Corridor Resiliency Study, aiming to use input from individuals and groups to create a useful revitalization report. The Chamber of Commerce, Town of Hempstead, and Nassau County worked together to create this great event for the local community.

You can read more about Hicksville’s India day celebration in Newsday.

Mixed-Use Building Approved for Huntington Station

The Huntington Town Planning Board has approved a conditional site-plan for the Northridge Project, a small mixed-use project that will be located on the corner of Northridge Street and New York Avenue, with in walking distance of the LIRR train station. The plans for the three-story building include commercial space on the first floor and a combined total of 16 apartments on the top two floors. Thomas Abbate, an attorney representing Renaissance, has stressed that the apartments will not have a “cookie-cutter appearance”.

“Our team is extremely excited that through our partnership with the community and the town we have crossed yet another hurdle towards revitalizing Huntington Station,” said Ryan Porter, Renaissance Downtowns’ vice president of planning and development.

The conditional approval depends upon the revision of a roof-drain line, the type and diameter of the pipe for the drain line, the location of a concrete wash-out station, and others. The Huntington Zoning Board of Appeals granted variances to Renaissance Downtowns in May, confirming that the project would not cause any undesirable changes to the character of the neighborhood or be a detriment to nearby properties. Porter expects construction on the building to begin in late 2016 or early 2017.

The focus of the variances appears to have been parking relief for 25 spaces that are not provided in the proposal. The plan, following town code, includes 55 parking spots.  These new apartments are hoped to provide housing for younger people who are looking to move to the area but are not willing to buy homes.

You can read more about the new mixed-use building in Newsday.

New Efforts to Cleanup Lake Ronkonkoma

Vision visited Lake Ronkonkoma last Tuesday with News 12 and other community leaders in an effort to jumpstart the cleanup of Lake Ronkonkoma. Local citizens claim that they have tried to improve the area in the past, but were told that they were not permitted to as they did not own the land. In particular, the area in front of the Lake Front Hotel bookstore is littered with debris and garbage, and is in a general state of disrepair.

Part of the holdup stems from the fact that three different towns – Smithtown, Islip, and Brookhaven – own different portions of the lakefront. Consequently, the Lake Ronkonkoma Improvement Society has said that each town “passes the buck” instead of committing the resources needed to make a positive change in the area. The Town of Brookhaven and the Town of Islip both claim that Suffolk County own the majority of the land, including the contentious site around the dilapidated store.

Fortunately, studies have been done and an interagency group involving the three towns and Suffolk County has recently been created in order to help advance these improvements. There is also a foundation set up that can receive tax deductible donations to help fund some of the cleanup.

The Lake Ronkonkoma Improvement Society and other local community members maintain hope that the three towns, the county, and residents can work together to redevelop Lake Ronkonkoma into an attractive summertime destination.

You can read more about the Lake Ronkonkoma cleanup efforts on News 12.

Small Transit-Oriented Developments on Long Island Find Success

A recent Long Island Business News article has highlighted the success of many new transit-oriented, downtown developments that are positively transforming their local communities. Four of the five of the projects, celebrated for their ability to help transform communities and improve the local economy, were awarded a Smart Growth Award by Vision this past June.

Marina Pointe in East Rockaway was constructed by the Beechwood Organization on a 2.72-acre site that overlooks the water and is ideally located in close proximity to the East Rockaway Long Island Railroad station. The storm-resilient, 84-unit buildings are designed to withstand the strong winds and surging waters brought by storms like Sandy that have caused significant destruction in the region. Beechwood principal Steven Dubb said that the project’s main goal was to redevelop in an intelligent way. “We’re going to bring full-time residents who are going to support, and hopefully grow, the retail base and do it in a smart way that doesn’t overload the infrastructure. Marina Pointe has all the bones you want for a Smart Growth development. It will be walkable to the train station and a short commute to the city.”

The second development mentioned, The Hills in Port Jefferson, has been constructed in an effort to jumpstart the revitalization of the Upper Port region. Developed by the Gitto Group, the 74-unit building has already helped to create a well-lit neighborhood street that positions residents near the LIRR station and local residents. The buildings contain amenities such as a state-of-the-art fitness center and a well-landscaped outdoor courtyard.  The entire first building was leased within one month, and the second building is set to be completed by next summer.

The Cornerstone has brought 42 new rental units to downtown Farmingdale. Built by Bartone & Terwilliger, the new building contains a fitness center, clubroom, and a rooftop patio. “Farmingdale is now the place to be,” said Mayor Eckstrand who is a large supporter of the numerous transit-oriented developments that have helped revitalize Farmingdale. Uniquely, the residents of the Cornerstone can wait in the lobby of their building to take the Long Island Railroad.

90 new rental units are being constructed in Copiague by Conifer Realty and the Community Development Corporation of Long Island. Called Copiague Commons, the building is located directly across the street from the Long Island Railroad station. “By taking a blighted industrial building and replacing it with empty-nesters and young professionals, they knew it would drive demand for their businesses and encourage more business and investment in their downtown,” said Marianne Garvin of CDCLI on all of the support the project has received from local businesses.

The Village Apartments at Floral Park will be constructed by Woodbury-based developer Questus Capital in order to create 36 rental apartments for residents who want to live near the downtown as well as the Floral Park LIRR station. The development will replace a large parking lot and will also create new units on top of existing retail and restaurant space. “A project like this, where you can walk to the train and shopping in Floral Park’s great downtown, will boost businesses and create a much-needed new housing opportunity,” said Robert DiNoto, a principal at Questus.

These small developments are being congratulated for actually being completed while many billion-dollar projects remain in the planning phase for years. “With a lot of these mega-projects and master-developer-type projects, the sheer volume of what’s involved can be overwhelming and the economy of scale doesn’t always work,” said Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter. “We can’t be Babe Ruth and swing for the fences. Instead, we keep hitting singles and were getting things done that way.”

You can read more about these new Smart Growth developments in LIBN.

You can also check out the videos of the four TOD projects Vision honored at the 2016 Smart Growth Awards: Marina Pointe, The Hills, Cornerstone, and Copiague Commons.

County Executive Calls for 10 Public Bus Routes to be Cut; More Possible

Suffolk County Transit will be moving ahead with bus route cuts, with plans to axe 10 routes effective October 3rd in order to bring a $78 million deficit into order. The cuts would be some of the largest in the 36 year history of Suffolk County Transit. The cuts are expected to save $1 million between October and the end of the year, and $4 million next year.

The routes that are scheduled to be cut are:  S35, S71, S90, 1B, 5A, 7D/E, 10A, and 10D/E. Several of the routes proposed to be cut service one or more LIRR train station, one or more bus transfer areas, as well as colleges, parks and beaches, and Brookhaven Town Hall.  The busiest of the routes that are scheduled to be cut is the S71 route, which starts at the Stony Brook LIRR station, passed the LI Veteran’s Home, Stony Brook University, Suffolk Community College, Brookhaven Town Hall, Yaphank LIRR station, County offices in Yaphank. and the Mastic-Shirley LIRR station. That route had 51.296 riders in 2014, and was on pace to have increased ridership in 2015.

County Executive Steve Bellone said the cuts were necessary as growing transit operating costs threatened to push the county’s subsidy of its bus system to $36 million — an “unsustainable” amount for the County. Suffolk is expected to chip in $30 million a year to the transit system- much higher than other countries (Nassau was paying $6 million last year for their share, then increased it by $3 million in order to restore cuts). Bellone also said that more cuts may occur if there is no increase in state aid. Nassau County receives about $66 million a year in state transit aid compared to Suffolk’s $26 million. The state says that is because Nassau has about four times the numbers of daily riders when compared to Suffolk.

Aaron Watkins-Lopez, of the nonprofit Long Island Bus Riders Union, called on the county to hold off on the cuts, which will only save Suffolk about $1 million this year, while impacting hundreds of residents. “You’re going to leave people stranded in the middle of winter for a million dollars?” Watkins-Lopez said. As of yet there has been no rider surveys completed, and there is no estimate as towards how many jobs will be affected by the cuts; the county is hopeful that riders in the areas that are cut will be able to walk to other nearby routes or find other transportation.

Public hearings on the cuts will be held Sept. 8 at 3 p.m. at the Suffolk Legislative Auditorium in Hauppauge and Sept. 9 at 3 p.m. at the Legislative Auditorium in Riverhead. You can read more about the upcoming bus cuts in Newsday

Largest Wind Farm in the US to be Built off of Long Island

The Long Island Power Authority will vote on whether or not to approve a 15-turbine wind farm within the next few weeks. The site, off the coast of Montauk, is being eyed by Deepwater Wind LLC, the builder of the first wind farm in the United States. Their proposal, selected by the Long Island Power Authority, includes the construction and installation of 15 wind turbines that would feed the South Fork over 90 MW of energy. Once this project receives final approval, Deepwater Wind will be building on the largest wind farm in the nation. The project is expected to cost ratepayers $1.20 per month, which is competitive with the cost of a gas-fueled plant. it is estimated that the wind turbines could be up and running as soon as 2022. 

The first offshore turbine was built only days ago off the coast of Block Island. Four more will soon follow, feeding 30 MW of energy to Block Island and Rhode Island. LIPA estimates that 1 MW of power drawn from wind is enough energy to power 465 houses. LIPA’s vote on the new wind turbines are part of Governor Cuomo’s push for New York State to use 50 percent renewable energy by 2030. “Just last week, Rhode Island advanced the first offshore wind turbines installed in America. Now, NY is on the cusp of voting YES to our Nation’s largest offshore wind farm. September’s LIPA vote could be an historic game changer for Long Island and New York. LIPA could vote yes to offshore wind and pave the path forward for a renewable future that brings us new hope that our nation can be a leader in the fight against climate change. Now that’s a legacy that all New Yorkers will be proud of,” stated Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of the Citizens Campaign for the Environment.

There are a number of benefits to offshore wind farming, including job creation, proximity to dense populations, and decreasing the use of fossil fuels. Were all of New York’s waterfront to be utilized, over 38 GW of power could be generated solely from offshore wind farming. “This is the first in New York, it’s the largest to date, but we’re looking at this and seeing a tremendous offshore wind resource that will be developed and it’s not the last,” Long Island Power Authority CEO Thomas Falcone. “I think this is a very big step for New York, but also for the United States.”

In 2015 the University of Delaware compiled the New York Offshore Wind Cost Reduction Study and determined that New York has the ability to reduce costs by approximately thirty percent by increasing the visibility of and properly preparing for the farms. Furthermore, as the global market grows, it is expected that there will be an additional twenty percent reduction in costs by 2020. New York joins Massachusetts, who has also recently made strides in policy actions to help make wind power a reality, and Rhode Island, who is in the middle of building their own 30 MW offshore wind farm near Block Island, as a leader of offshore wind power construction.

You can read more about the new offshore wind farm on the Newsday.

Decrease in Sales Tax Collections in First Half of 2016

A report released by New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli specified that local sales tax revenue grew only 1.7 percent during the first half of 2016. While sales tax revenue growth was at 2.6 percent during the first three months, the second quarter of 2016 saw a growth rate of only 0.8 percent. This pattern is opposite what was seen the past two years, as both had stronger growth in the second quarter as compared to the first quarter.

Overall, the total local sales tax collections grew by 130 million dollars. Growth varied drastically by region, however. “While statewide sales tax revenues continue to rebound slowly, only some parts of the state are seeing growth,” DiNapoli said. “The slowdown in sales tax collection growth reflects a three-year trend. Collections trickle in the first half of the year, followed by more robust growth in the second half. And recent economic projections suggest that sales tax collections will pick up again by the second half of 2016.”

The Mid-Hudson region saw the most growth at 2.7 percent, followed by the Finger Lakes at 2.5 percent and then New York City at 2.4 percent. Central New York, Western New York, and the North Country all saw collections decline. Overall, 34 of New York’s 57 counties saw growth in tax collections. On Long Island, Suffolk County saw a 0.4% increase in sales tax collections over the first six months, while Nassau County saw an increase of 1.3 percent;- both counties saw sales tax receipts lower than projections.

The decline in sales tax collections can largely be attributed to the falling gas prices; since mid-2014, gas tax collections are down 156 million dollars. While all counties were given the option to change to a flat cents-per-gallon tax system in 2006, only Seneca County made the switch, leading to the decrease of local sales tax collections.

You can read State Comptroller DiNapoli’s sales tax collection report here.

Small Business Loans Available for Wyandanch Rising Retail Space

The Suffolk County Department of Economic Development Corporation will be dedicating funds in order to help small businesses that would like to be located in mixed-use, transit-oriented development areas. The program was created to start a revolving loan program to help small businesses open up in new retail space in Wyandanch Village, as well as other similarly developed areas.

$300,000 has been set aside for the fund, with loans between $20,000-$75,000 being given for “character loans, mostly”, allowing first-generation businesses to up and coming transit-oriented developments. “I think it’s potentially a great program because there is a tremendous need in trying to bring local businesses that are non-national chains,” said Russell Albanese, the chairman of Garden City-based Albanese Organization, which developed Wyandanch Village, a mixed-income and mixed-use transit-oriented development.

The program’s goal is to fill in a funding gap for business owners that want to occupy retail space in new developments in those transit-oriented communities, while filling up vacant retail space. For example, the residential units at Wyandanch Village, less than two years occupied, are fully leased, while there is plenty of retail space available; 50% in one building, and 80% in the other.  The hope is to bring needed funding to smaller businesses, rather than big-box stores to fill out vacant rental space in order to create more of a sense of place in the new developments. Smaller businesses don’t have the purchasing power that larger franchises do, which can hurt their opportunity to locate in the areas. The loans are for up to ten years at  2 to 3% interest rate, and are subject to refinement.

There’s also a possibility for additional funding to come from the Empire State Development Corp, the SBA or private banks to supplement dollars with the need.  You can read more details about the was the small businesses are able to get assistance in LI Business News.

Farmingdale Live at Five on Main Events this Summer

Farmingdale Live at Five On Main is a free summer program offering a number of music nights to people in downtown Farmingdale Village. The event will take place four times throughout the summer, with dates set for August 11th, and August 25th from 5pm to 9pm. Three bands will perform each night along Main Street between Prospect Street and North Front Street. The event will focus on more than just music; many merchants, restaurants, and clubs will be participating to provide the public with a number of options for dining and shopping. Three of the four nights will also feature a movie night on the Village Green, weather permitting.

No traffic will be allowed on Main Street on either side of Conklin Street from 4pm to 10pm, allowing for a two block pedestrian area for the events. Free parking will be available in Village parking lots, which are located along Conklin, on Main Street, north and south of the street closure, in the former Waldbaum’s parking lot, along neighboring streets, or in the Train Stations Lots after 4 pm. Similar events are also being held in Patchogue (Alive After Five), on August 4th, and August 18th, and in Riverhead (Alive on 25) on August 11th, and August 25th.  Farmingdale and Riverhead's events are modeled after Patchogue's Alive After Five event (now in its 15th year), which was recently awarded a Smart Growth Award.

More information about participating merchants and supporters and rain dates is available on Farmingdale's Live at Five’s website.

Blue Claw Festival in Mastic Beach

The 12th Annual Blue Claw Festival, hosted by the Mastic Beach Property Owners’ Association, will be held in Mastic Beach at Marina One on Sunday, August 28th from 11 AM to 6 PM. Attendees have the opportunity to enjoy fresh steamed shrimp, crabs, crab-cakes, clams, beer, wine, and soda. Admission is free and attendees will have the chance to enjoy music and dance performances presented on the show mobile and children’s activities such as face painting and sad art. A large selection of vendors with food and arts and crafts will be present as well.

To learn more about the event, visit the Mastic Beach Property Owners’ Association’s website.

Westbury Concert Series

The Village of Westbury will be hosting its free evening concert series at the Piazza Ernesto Strada in the Village of Westbury Square on the corner of Post Avenue and Maple Avenue. Free parking for attendees will be available in the Village Madison Avenue parking lot behind Rite Aid. All of this year’s concerts will be held on Fridays from 7pm to 9pm. Featured performers include Dance Visions NY, North Shore Pops, and Sonido Clasico. The series will also include an art event to complement the music. Handmade cards and Paint Night are just a couple of the activities to be held in conjunction with the concerts.

For more information, you can visit the Greater Westbury Council for the Arts’ website.

Long Island’s 4th Annual Car Free Day

You can join the efforts to increase the use of sustainable transportation this Thursday, September 22, 2016 on Long Island’s 4th Annual Car Free Day. Last year, almost 3,000 Long Islanders pledged to go car free, saving 78,000 miles in driving and 39 tons of carbon dioxide emissions. Car Free Day was celebrated in over 2000 cities in 40 countries around the world in 2015. To participate in this year’s event, all you have to do is promise to be either car-free or car-lite on Car Free Day by signing an online pledge form. You also receive the chance to win free prizes once you have made the pledge. 511NY, MTA, NICE, Suffolk Transit, HART, Long Beach Municipal Bus, and the Nassau-Suffolk Bicycle Coalition all have information about getting around town without using a car. Vision Long Island is a proud sponsor of this successful event.

For more information on this international event, you can visit Long Island’s Car Free Day website here.

Jane Jacobs Film to Premiere at Toronto Film Festival

Citizen Jane: Battle for the City will be premiering this September at the Toronto International Film Festival

Citizen Jane: Battle for the City, is a film about cities through the lens of Jane Jacobs, author of the 1961 book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities. Directed and Produced by Matt Tyrnauer, Produced by Robert Hammond, Corey Reeser, and Jessica Van Garsse.

In 1960 Jane Jacobs’s book The Death and Life of Great American Cities sent shockwaves through the architecture and planning worlds, with its exploration of the consequences of modern planners’ and architects’ reconfiguration of cities. Jacobs was also an activist, who was involved in many fights in mid-century New York, to stop “master builder” Robert Moses from running roughshod over the city. This film retraces the battles for the city as personified by Jacobs and Moses, as urbanization moves to the very front of the global agenda. Many of the clues for formulating solutions to the dizzying array of urban issues can be found in Jacobs’s prescient text, and a close second look at her thinking and writing about cities is very much in order. This film sets out to examine the city of today through the lens of one of its greatest champions.

You can learn more about the premiere here

Comment Period Open for South Shore Coastal Storm Risk Management Project

The Army Corps, with the passage of the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013, has been awarded the funding to complete ongoing coastal storm risk management projects. As such, they have prepared a Draft General Re-evaluation Report/Environmental Impact Statement for coastal storm risk management project that is intended to minimize erosion and increase hurricane protection from Fire Island Inlet to Montauk Point (FIMP). The $1.2 billion project, which has already replenished beaches on Fire Island, is expected to take place over the next several years, with 30-50 years of contingency plans.

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “The release of this Draft General Re-evaluation Report/Environmental Impact Statement is an important milestone, decades in the making, which moves New York State and the Army Corps of Engineers one step closer to the construction of the project.  I look forward to continuing to work with our federal and local partners to complete this comprehensive storm damage reduction project so we can better protect citizens, businesses and economy of Long Island.”

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is opening a 60-day review period for the public to submit written comments to assist in the agency’s evaluation of the project changes. Public comments can be submitted by e-mail to either or by September 30th. The Army Corp Engineers will also be holding a number of public meetings within the next 60 days to receive feedback on the draft.

Further instructions for submitting comments and the report and its associated documents are available on New York District’s website.

Coastal Ecosystem Resiliency Grant

The National Marine Fisheries Service is soliciting proposals for Coastal Ecosystem Resiliency Grants to implement projects to improve or restore coastal habitat. 10 proposals are expected to be awarded grants valued between $100,000 and $2,000,000. The goal of such efforts is to strengthen the resilience of U.S. marine and coastal ecosystems and decrease the vulnerability of communities to extreme weather while also supporting sustainable fisheries by contributing to the recovery of protected resources. Applicants may be institutions of higher education, non-profit organizations, and local or state governments. All applications are due by August 16, 2016.

You can learn more about the application process for this grant here.

Over $200 Million in Funding Available for Bicycle and Pedestrian Projects

New York State has  more than $200 million in expired earmarks and grants available that can now be spent due to provisions in the current federal transportation funding bill, Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST). This money includes over $18 million for projects involving bicycles and pedestrians, as well as other roadway improvements. Parks & Trails New York has assembled a website that explains both eligibility requirements and a map illustrating where each earmark may be used.

Long Island has several million dollars that were earmarked for projects over 10 years ago, with the projects either not coming to fruition, being partially complete, or being funded by other sources.  Instead of losing out on those earmarks, funding will be able to be repurposed for other projects within a 50 mile radius of the original project location., that are eligible for Surface Transportation Block Grant  funding, and that will be complete on or before September of 2019. The maximum Federal share of funding for the new project must be the same as the share of the original project.

New York State has to notify the Federal Highway Authority of its decision to repurpose the money by August 29, 2016, so the deadline is quickly approaching. You can contact your bicycle and pedestrian coordinator if you have an eligible local project for which you would like to receive funding. For more information or if you have any questions, please call Parks & Trails New York at 518-434-1583, or email Ron Epstein of NYSDOT at

National Endowment for the Arts Grant

The National Endowment for the Arts has an Our Town grant program that aims to support creative placemaking in downtown communities. In order to be eligible for the grant, there must be a partnership between arts organizations and the government, other nonprofit organizations, and private entities. Projects of two types will be considered: Arts Engagement, Cultural Planning and Design Projects which represent the character and quality of a community, and Projects that Build Knowledge About Creative Placemaking, available for organizations that provide technical assistance to those doing place-based work. Matching grants range from 25,000 to 200,000 dollars.  The deadline is September 12, 2016

To learn more about the grant, and apply, visit the National Endowment for the Arts’ website.

Applications Being Accepted for Environmental Excellence Awards

The Federal Highway Administration is now accepting applications for the 2017 Environmental Excellence Awards.  These awards are meant to recognize projects that use FWHA funding to not only comply with environmental regulations, but to achieve environmental excellence.

 Nominations are accepted for any and all projects that have used FHWA funding to create an environmentally conscious transport solution. Applications will be accepted until September 15, 2016. Any questions may be directed to

For more information about the nomination process, you can visit their website.

New York State Homes and Community Renewal Grant

The Housing Trust fund is currently accepting applications for approximately 26.9 million dollars of State and Federal funds for projects relating to housing activities including housing rehabilitation, homeownership, manufactured housing rehabilitation or replacement, well and septic replacement, and lateral connection assistance that primarily benefit low- and moderate-income persons. Eligible applicants include non-entitlement villages, towns, cities or counties throughout New York State. The 2016 Application for CDBG Housing Activities will be available on the NYS Homes and Community Renewal website and is due no later than 4:00pm on Wednesday, September 28, 2016.

You can contact the Office of Community Renewal within NYS Home and Community Renewal at (518)-474-2057 with any questions, or visit their website.

$16 Million in Grant Money for Energy-Efficient Housing Construction

As a part of Governor Cuomo’s goal to reach 50% renewable energy by 2030, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority is offering $16 million dollars for the design and construction of energy-efficient housing. It has been projected that buildings that take advantage of this support will see yearly savings of 9 million dollars.

"Ensuring New York's buildings are constructed to the highest standards of energy efficiency is crucial to both our long-term sustainability and prosperity of the state,” said Governor Cuomo. "Smart choices about efficiency can simultaneously save money and protect the environment. This investment promotes that principle in order to build healthy communities and save consumers hundreds of millions of dollars."

Half of the 16 million dollars will be offered to builders of low-rise buildings, including single family homes, and the other half is meant for builders of mid- and high-rise buildings that consist of apartment units. Applications for this grant money will be accepted through December 29, 2017, or until funding runs out.

More information about the grant and the application process can be found on NYSERDA’s website.

Help Wanted

Intern with Vision Long Island!

Vision Long Island is looking for interns! Our staff likes to say we "wear many hats," and interns will have to do the same. Interns will assist with planning, design, outreach, event planning, writing, research, attending meetings, reporting, photography, video and more. Bring your unique skill set to the table! We are looking for energetic and conscientious individuals with an interest in urban/suburban planning from a bottom-up perspective. This is a valuable opportunity to work with great people and learn about the issues impacting Long Island. Strong writing skills a plus.

Full-time COC Compliance Manager Position Available in Amityville

The Long Island Coalition for the Homeless is seeking applicants for a Full-Time Continuum of Care (COC) Compliance Manager in their main office located in Amityville.  This position requires a strong ability to research and understand policies and regulations; strategic planning; compliance monitoring, training and coordination of multiple groups and activities.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

Maintain thorough knowledge of housing programs’ regulations and environmental review process;  assist Executive Director in monitoring and evaluating CoC programs and the provision of technical assistance as appropriate; coordination with Associate Director and HMIS staff for COC-related reporting; preparation of statistical reports pertaining to homelessness and housing; support Associate Director in development and implementation of initiatives to end homelessness, including facilitation and chairing of subcommittees as appropriate.

Local travel will be also required for this position. Benefits after probationary period will be available. These include paid time off (vacation, holiday, sick, personal), medical insurance for the employee (premium paid by LICH), and Simple IRA plan (with employer match). A criminal background check will be required before employment is offered.

Interested parties should submit a resume and salary requirements via email. For more information about this position, please click here . Please do not call Long Island Coalition for the Homeless regarding this position.

What's happening on your Main Street this weekend?



Bow Tie Grand Avenue

1841 Grand Avenue, Baldwin


Bellmore Movies

222 Pettit Avenue, Bellmore


Freeport Historical Museum

350 S Main Street, Freeport
Housed in a Civil War cottage, the museum chronicles Freeport's history through the 20th century. On display are a spinning wheel from the town’s oldest house, vaudeville-era items, waterfront memorabilia, a 1930s television and a 1777 13-star flag. The museum holds a collection of historic postcards and high school yearbooks from the early 1900s to present day.
Open Sundays 2PM-5PM.
For information, visit their website or call 516-623-9632

Garden City

The Garden City Historical Society

109 Eleventh Street, Garden City
Founded in 1975, The Garden City Historical Society is dedicated to preserving the historic character and ambiance of the Village of Garden City, and educating its members and the public in preservation and history related matters. The Society owns and operates The Garden City Historical Society Museum at 109 Eleventh Street, an original 1872 A.T. Stewart-era “Apostle House” listed on the National Register of Historic Places, which was deeded to the Society by the Episcopal Diocese. The Society maintains an Archive of over 1,200 artifacts and a Historic Structure Survey of pre-1935 residential and non-residential structures in the Village of Garden City. It offers periodic lectures and presentations, and publishes a newsletter. The Society’s A. T. Stewart Exchange (consignment shop) on the lower level of the Museum offers unique items for sale. The shop (516-746-8900) is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays (Tuesday is senior citizen discount day) and from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.

For information, visit their website.

Glen Cove

Garvies Point Museum and Preserve

50 Barry Drive, Glen Cove
The museum is a center for research on Long Island geology, Native American archeology and natural history. Current exhibits feature, “The Seasonal Round”, an exploration through Long Island Native American life throughout the seasons. Exhibits on Long Island’s glacial formation, landform change and cultural evolution are on display. Prehistoric artifacts and audio descriptions add to the story of Long Island migrants, their lifestyles and interactions with newcomers such as Europeans. The museum has special educational programs to accommodate field trips and science research on the history of Long Island.

Garvies Point Museum and Preserve
To arrange a visit, call 516-571-8011 and for information and brochures, visit their website

glen cove
Glen Cove Theatres

5 School Street, Glen Cove

Great Neck

Palace Galleries

117 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck
The museum features highly distinctive collections of antiques, artworks and fine furnishings from around the world. It is a premier art dealer dating back to 1971 and features expertise in 17th to 19th century works. The gallery experience offers the opportunity to not only view fine art but to purchase a piece which stands out.

For information, visit their website or call 516-439-5218

great neck
Clearview Squire Cinemas Great Neck

115 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck


Hicksville-Gregory Museum

Intersection of Heitz Place and Bay Avenue, Hicksville
The museum includes a history of the Heitz Place Courthouse and a collection of earth science materials to describe the natural history of the area. It features one of the few remaining Long Island lock-ups and is one of the few remaining courthouses standing from before Nassau County split from Queens. The earth science exhibit in the museum has recent additions of a Mosasaur skull, prehistoric amber and the horn of a Triceratops horridus. The educational program at the museum offers experiences in paleontology, dynamic earth processes and investigating butterflies and moths.

For information, visit their website or call 516-822-7505

Long Beach

Long Beach Historical Museum

226 W. Penn Street, Long Beach
The museum, operated by the Long Beach Historical and Preservation Society, is a classic Craftsman-style summer villa. The house built in 1909, features large stain glass windows which are a hallmark of classic Long Beach estates. The house and backyard are furnished with local artifacts, including an original broadwalk bench, photographs and archaeological findings. The garden features original stock rose bushes.

For information, visit their website.


Clearview Manhasset 3

430 Plandome Road, Manhasset

Oyster Bay

Oyster Bay Historical Society

20 Summit Street, Oyster Bay
The Earle-Wightman House built in 1720, gives a picture of life in Oyster Bay during the colonial period and its transition through the mid-20th Century. It features an 18th century garden, maintained by the North Country Garden Club, holds ornamental plantings as well as herbs used for cooking, medical purposes and fragrances. Exhibited are postcard, photograph, map and newspaper collections. Current exhibition, “Women Wearing History: The Force Behind Fashion”, details women’s influence on the textile and fashion industry in the 19th and 20th centuries.

For information, visit their website or call 516-922-5032

Port Washington

Landmark on Main Street, the Jeanne Rimsky Theater
232 Main Street, Port Washington

Tickets and more information available here

Bow Tie Port Washington
116 Main Street, Port Washington

Rockville Centre

Museum of the Village of Rockville Centre-Phillips House

28 Hempstead Ave, Rockville Centre
The museum is a restored 19th century Victorian home which displays life in Rockville Centre in the 19th and 20th centuries. It features furnishings, antique kitchen tools, carpentry tools and clothing of the time period. The museum is considered one of the finest small museums in the state and there is never an entrance fee for special events or exhibits.

For information, visit their website or call 516-766-0300


Bow Tie Roslyn Theatre

20 Tower Place, Roslyn

Sea Cliff

Sea Cliff Village Museum

95 Tenth Avenue, Sea Cliff
The museum presents changing exhibits on the history and culture of Sea Cliff. It strives to raise community awareness by preserving artifacts, photographs and costumes relating to the unique historical background of the village. It contains 287 photos taken by Long Island postcard photographer, Henry Otto Korten. Currently exhibited, “Then and Now…” displays a range of artifacts and costumes over a 125 year span. Exhibits include the Connor Cottage, Victorian Kitchen, and a historical town diorama.

For information, visit their website or call 516-671-0090


Seaford Cinemas

3951 Merrick Road, Seaford


The Space at Westbury

250 Post Avenue, Westbury

Tickets and more information available here



140 Merrick Road, Amityville
Tickets and more information available here

Bay Shore

The YMCA Boulton Center
37 West Main Street, Bay Shore
Tickets and more information available here

Cold Spring Harbor

Cold Spring Harbor Whaling Museum

Main Street, Cold Spring Harbor
The museum explores the relationship between Long Islanders and the sea through. It details the history of the regional whaling industry, whale conservation and the history of Cold Spring Harbor as a maritime port. A new exhibit, “Sea Ink” explores tattoo art and its nautical origins. Exhibits featuring New York’s only fully-equipped 19th century whaleboat, ship logs and correspondence as well as whaling and maritime artifacts. Art programs are available for all ages.
For information, visit their website or call 631-367-3418

East Hampton

Guildhall, John Drew Theater
158 Main Street, East Hampton
Tickets and more information available here

East Hampton Historical Society

101 Main Street, East Hampton
The headquarters for the East Hampton Historical Society, the house is an example of life in the post-colonial era in the East End. It features historic furnishings and crafts built by local craftsmen of the time. The Historical Society also has four other museums and town houses including one of New York’s first educational academies and a colonial town government meeting house.

For information, visit their website or call 631-324-6850

East Islip

Islip Art Museum

50 Irish Lane, East Islip
The museum is the leading exhibition space for contemporary art on Long Island, featuring work from international, national and emerging local artists. It is said to be the best facility of its kind outside of Manhattan. Current exhibits feature “Print Up Ladies” which is a survey of contemporary works created by female artists, and “Inked” by Kathy Seff. The museum’s store features one of a kind jewelry, crafts and art work. Educational opportunists are also offered at the museum through its Cultural School of Arts.
For information, visit their website or call 631-224-5402

Huntington Village

The Paramount
370 New York Ave, Huntington
Tickets and more information available here

Heckscher Museum

2 Prime Avenue, Huntington
Located in Hecksher Park, the museum features collections of European and American paintings which spans over 500 years of Western art. Photography has become a growing part of the collection as well.

For information, visit their website or call 631-351-3250

AMC Loews Theatres – Shore 8

37 Wall Street, Huntington

cinema arts centre
Cinema Arts Centre

423 Park Ave, Huntington

Islip Village

Islip Cinemas

410 West Main Street, Islip
Showtimes at Islip Cinemas


The John W. Engeman Theater
250 Main Street, Northport


89 North
89 North Ocean Avenue East Main Street, Patchogue
Tickets and more information available here.

Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts
71 East Main Street, Patchogue
Tickets and more information available here.

The Emporium
9 Railroad Avenue, Patchogue
Tickets and more information available here

Plaza Cinema & Media Arts Center
20 Terry Street, Patchogue

Port Jefferson

Theatre Three
412 Main Street,
 Port Jefferson
Tickets and more information available here




Port Jefferson Historical Society
115 Prospect Avenue, Port Jefferson
The Mather House Museum, the headquarters of The Historical Society of Greater Port Jefferson, and features several exhibitions of local artifacts. The museum complex features the 19th century home, a country store, a marine barn, a tool shed, the Spinney Clock Museum and the Thomas Jefferson Perennial Garden. Exhibitions feature ship models, period furniture and paintings, vintage tools and clothing, antique dolls, taped oral histories, 250 antique clocks and other examples of life in the 19th century.

For information, visit their website or call 631-473-2665


Suffolk Theater


Vail-Leavitt Music Hall
18 Peconic Avenue, Riverhead
Tickets and more information available here

Sag Harbor

Bay Street Theater
The Long Wharf, Sag Harbor
Tickets and more information available here

Sag Harbor Whaling and Historical Museum

Main and Garden Streets, Sag Harbor
The museum details Sag Harbor’s whaling industry through the 19th century and its impact on the culture and development of the area. It details how the whaling industry brought migrants from all over the globe and turned the port into an international destination. Artifacts left by whalers, antique tools, harpoons, captains’ portraits, antique furnishings and children’s toys are all on display at the museum.

For information, visit their website or call 631-725-0770


Sayville Historical Society

Edwards Street, Sayville
The museum is the headquarters to the Sayville Historical Society. The museum aims to foster historical spirit, encourage historical research and to preserve historical materials. The museum features products of both Sayville and other Suffolk localities. The Society holds 4 historic buildings, 1,500 items of clothing, 1,000 photographs, a map collection and numerous classic furnishings. Its collection is ly growing and tours of the Edward Homestead offer a view at the areconstanta through its history.

For information, visit their website or call 631-563-0186

Sayville Theatre

103 Railroad Avenue, Sayville


Smithtown Township Arts Council

660 Route 25A, St. James
The Council aims to enrich the township and surrounding area’s quality of life through celebrating and supporting the arts in everyday life. It is a goal to make art accessible to people of all backgrounds. It Mills Pond House is a valuable place in its preserved traditions as well as its evolving and unique influences. Current exhibit, “Winners Showcase” displays the artistic development and achievements of the region and nation. Classes in jewelry making, poster design, scrapbooking, pottery, drawing and several other skills and topics are available. The Council has also partnered with local downtown businesses to display local artists’ work.

For information, visit their website or call 631-862-6575


Southampton Historical Museum

17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton
The Southampton Historical Society was created to preserve the town’s history as well as history from the surrounding area. Its Rogers Mansion Museum features year round exhibits, a research center and education programs for children and adults. Current exhibit: Current exhibit: “If These Walls Could Talk: Meet the Families of the Rogers Mansion”.  Its research center allows for visitors to conduct research with a professional research assistant. Collections feature antique furnishings, a classic parlor room and dining hall and photographs of the 1938 historic hurricane.

For information, visit their website or call 631-268-2494

West Sayville

Long Island Maritime Museum

88 West Avenue, West Sayville
Featuring 14 acres with 9 historic buildings on the West Sayville waterfront, the museum preserves Long Island’s maritime history and heritage. It is committed to research, preservation and interpretation of the region’s nautical history and the relationship to Long Island’s natural history. The Elward Smith Library houses racing trophies and records of over 500 wrecks and groundings in the Long Island waters. The other buildings feature rotating exhibits of maps, photos, newspapers and personal accounts of maritime history. Also highlighted are boats and materials left behind by the US Life Saving Service.

For information, visit their website.

Nassau Legislature Approves $6 million for New Bus Grant Match

In a climate where politicians on the Federal and State level often find it challenging to work together and cross party lines for the good of their constituents, a breath of fresh air came from the Nassau County legislative chambers last week to benefit NICE bus riders.

Legislator Laura Curran broke ranks with her fellow Democrats, casting the deciding vote to approve $6 million in bonding for replacement of 28 NICE buses that have over a half of a million miles of travel and are over a dozen years old. For borrowing to be approved 13 votes are needed- there are 12 Republicans in the legislature. Without the $6 million in borrowing, NICE would be forced to cut service to those that rely on it to get to work, school, medical appointments, and to visit downtowns. “This is a very important issue in my district,” said Curran, who has and continues to work on improving bus service for her district and Nassau. “I just couldn’t say no.” The vote is proof that bipartisan agreements can be made to do what is best for constituents.

The funding will allow for 90% matching funding to the tune of around $48 million to flow to Nassau from the Federal and State governments to complete the project- Nassau pays $6 million, $48 million in grants are received. 

Smart Talk

Newsletter Contributors:
Tawaun Weber, Assistant Director; Elissa Kyle, Planning Director;
Jon Siebert, Program Coordinator, Chris Kyle, Administrative Director

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Vision Long Island
24 Woodbine Ave., Suite Two
Northport, NY 11768
Phone: 631-261-0242. Fax: 631-754-4452.

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