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August 26th - September 1st, 2017

Regional Updates

Certilman, Balin, Adler & Hyman

Certilman Balin Adler & Hyman, LLP strives to provide clients with excellent, responsive legal counsel. They deliver that service in a manner free of excessive legal actions and its related expense. The law firm works hard to fully protect their clients’ interests without incurring unwarranted costs. To accomplish this goal, their attorneys take a disciplined approach to each matter, carefully measuring client costs against associated risks and rewards.

A Message from Vision Long Island

Seeing the recent devastation from Hurricane Harvey - words can't describe the tragedy and it clearly brought back the experiences we lived through with Sandy - only intensified.

Many of us don't have family, friends, or business colleagues in the Houston area regardless lots of community organizations across Long Island are pitching in to help.  Check out the emerging efforts in this week's newsletter and pitch in. We are hopeful that all funds raised and supplies given will go directly to those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

We did want to praise our Congressman Peter King for supporting the Harvey effort and not letting the sad politics which some Texas representatives displayed delaying Federal aid for Hurricane Sandy, get in the way of assistance for local communities.  

These are true "New York values". 

Kudos to our Congressional delegation who spoke out for Harvey aid like Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand and Representatives Kathleen Rice, and Lee Zeldin.  

The Friends of Long Island community organizations are assisting in the relief effort and will have more information on the best ways to assist shortly.   As we approach the 5 year anniversary of Sandy it is all the more important for community leaders to pull together and be prepared for the next storm.

“Right now the entire nation is awestruck by the cataclysmic damage delivered by Hurricane Harvey and our hearts are heavy for Texans in its path. For those of us here in New York and on Long Island, flashbacks of Sandy are made vivid by the torrent of Harvey. That is why, as this dangerous storm continues to churn, and as hurricane season itself continues to spin, we cannot and must not allow the national flood insurance program to expire.” - U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer

“Ted Cruz (and) Texas cohorts voted (against) NY / NJ aid after Sandy but I'll vote (for) Harvey aid. NY won’t abandon Texas. (One) bad turn doesn’t deserve another. As lifelong NYer (with) NY values I will vote for emergency Harvey (funding) for Ted Cruz's constituents. Above all, true Americans must stand together.” - U.S. Representative Peter King

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Senator Schumer Calls for Extension of Emergency Flood Insurance Program

In a recent visit to Long Beach U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer called for the federal government to extend the emergency flood insurance program for individuals affected by catastrophic storms.

Senator Schumer spoke about the need for National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in light of climate change and predictions that areas like long island will continue to be hit by large and unpredictable weather events. He noted that the program is getting ready to wind down and should be improved and extended.  Schumer also pointed out that there are areas on Long Island that simply could not have been rebuilt were it not for the flood insurance program.

"I wouldn't be able to afford it,” said Liz Treston of Long Beach, who is currently in the process of raising her house.  “I would have to be welcome to them putting a lot of people on state assistance."

“Right now the entire nation is awestruck by the cataclysmic damage delivered by Hurricane Harvey and our hearts are heavy for Texans in its path. For those of us here in New York and on Long Island, flashbacks of Sandy are made vivid by the torrent of Harvey. That is why, as this dangerous storm continues to churn, and as hurricane season itself continues to spin, we cannot and must not allow the national flood insurance program to expire,” said Senator Schumer.

THE NFIP was originally created by Congress in 1968 and is administered by FEMA.  The program aims to offer affordable coverage to homeowners and businesses in flood prone areas and was created after a number of insurance companies stopped offering flood insurance due to costs.

If Congress does not act then the program is set to expire on September 30th.

You can read more here and check out Schumer’s statement here.

Suffolk Legislators Take Bus System Tour

This past week Suffolk County Legislators Calarco, McCaffrey, Spencer, and Hahn took a tour of the Suffolk County Bus System along with Transportation Advocate Paul Pressman and Legislative aides from the offices of Legislators Barraga and Martinez.

The trip wound from the S40 in Patchogue to the S29 headed to Walt Whitman Mall.  Once at the mall the legislator s transferred to the S54 heading out to Hauppauge.  The event was coordinated by Mr. Pressman as part of the “Try My Ride” Initiative and gave lawmakers a chance to see the challenges faced by riders each day.

“I hope that this tour was informative and gave clearer understanding of the workings of the bus system, transfers, and the obstacles that riders face on a daily basis; especially those with disabilities and senior citizens.” said Paul Pressman. “Hopefully, this event will inspire a meaningful dialogue to bring equitable funding for transportation, specifically buses to our county.”

For years, Suffolk County Transit has been woefully underfunded in terms of the aid it receives from the state. The State Transportation Operation Assistance (STOA) formula which is used to deliver state aid uses only two metrics to calculate aid- mileage traveled and the number of passengers the systems carry. Suffolk County, who has a similar population in comparison to Nassau County, receives far less in state aid than Nassau, with Suffolk contributing more than $25 million to their system, while Nassau contributed the minimum of about $3 million last year.

Advocates have been demanding for years that the State give Suffolk its fair share, with Vision recently drafting an Emergency Action Plan that yielded additional funds for both Nassau and Suffolk’s transit systems to stave off some of the proposed cuts with NICE, and supplement funding in Suffolk to prevent future cuts.

Vision is glad to see Legislators taking the time to view with their own eyes the type of experience the common riders have.  We hope that this will spur some to work towards funding the system in order to keep it running for those who need it most.

NYS Files Lawsuit Against EPA to Prevent LI Sound Dumping

New York State is suing the EPA in order to prevent the dumping of dredged materials into the Long Island sound.

Governor Cuomo and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced on Thursday that the state will take action against the EPA for a proposed site of dumping dredged material just north of the North Fork.  According to the Governor’s press release, the site selected violates both the Ocean Dumping Act and the Coastal Zone Management Act.  Environmentalists in the area have also spoken out against the dumping, noting that dredged materials could be toxic and potentially dangerous to the local environment.

“We’re very encouraged by the lawsuit,” said Aaron Virgin, vice president of Group for the East End. “We think it’s a travesty that they would take dredged material that could have potentially hazardous material in it and dump it off our shore.”

Organizations have been working to end EPA dumping in the sound for around 10 years now.  Congressman Lee Zeldin noted that those sites were only ever meant to be short-term, limited use solutions.

“The Long Island Sound shouldn’t be a dumping ground,” said Representative Zeldin.  “Especially when there are many viable alternatives to open water dumping, including recycling and safe disposal on land.  We need a much more aggressive path to phasing out open water dumping at these sites in the Long Island Sound.”

You can read more here.

Apartments Proposed for Downtown Lynbrook

The Village of Lynbrook is considering a proposal by developer Mill Creek Residential to build a luxury apartment complex in the downtown area.

Mill Creek presented the plan to the board at a previous meeting, proposing a transit oriented residential community located within a half-mile of public transportation.  The complex would include 250 studio, one-, and two-bedroom apartments along with courtyards, outdoor kitchens, balconies, and rooftop decks.  The apartments would be intended for millennials as well as baby boomers and will offer one year leases.  Mill Creek noted that 60% of residents in similar developments across the island renew their leases each year.

“Today’s apartment residents are craving a downtown living experience along with convenient access to a mix of urban and suburban lifestyle experiences,” said Russell Tepper, senior managing director at Mill Creek. “Lynbrook’s new residential community would serve all types of residents … so that they may take advantage of the luxuries of suburban living, without sacrificing the trappings of an urban, modern lifestyle.”

The complex would require an overlay district as the proposal only calls for 1 ½ spaces per unit while the village normally requires 2 ½.  Mill Creek will also offer shuttle service to residents who are looking for a faster route to the local LIRR station.  Should approval and necessary zoning changes be acquired the complex will take approximately 2 years to complete and require an investment of about $80 million.

Mill Creek already has several apartment complexes in the local area, including two that recently received Long Island Smart Growth Awards.  They have shown themselves to be capable community partners and Vision Long Island looks forward to seeing more in depths plans for this new proposal.

You can read more here.

Northport Village Approves First Step for Downtown Hotel

Northport Village has approved code and zoning changes that will allow for a proposed hotel on Main Street to move forward.

The hotel is being proposed by Kevin O’Neill and Richard Dolce, the co-owners of the John W. Engeman Theater.  The multimillion-dollar project would cover about 220,000 feet and include a 200-seat restaurant on the ground floor.  Between 22 and 24 rooms will be located on the above floors along with office space for management.

The zoning change approved at the meeting will allow for hotels / inns to operate within the village.  The board also approved a residential to commercial zone change for the parking lot located behind the site.  Around 20 people spoke at the village board meeting with about an equal split between residents for and against.  The biggest concern among those seemed to be parking and congestion, a common point of concern when new projects are proposed. The project is still in the initial steps with plenty of planning needed before it can progress.  The zoning changes give a clear way forward but no timetable is set.

However, Deputy Mayor Henry Tobin did have questions on this large application concerning zoning and parking. Two of the possible ways to address the impacts of this project are to reduce the number of seats or to exact impact fees to secure additional parking for the Village. Reduction of seats is the typical approach, but impact fees also usually work where the municipality has set up a parking district to successfully manage, expand and maintain parking for the business district. Since Northport does not have a district set up, they would need to do some fair analysis to exact a fee that would be commensurate with the impact of this application. Unfortunately, some of the creative solutions concerning mitigation of parking may have been skipped due to unwillingness on the part of the developer and other members of the Village Board. Seeing the popularity of this application it seems folks do not want it delayed any further.  

It would be unfortunate if the Village reacts to approving this very large application by being overly restrictive on other extremely deserving proposals such as the Skippers application for rooftop dining, which Vision Long Island and many others supported. The good news is that over 75% of the responses in their survey to all local residents and an overwhelming number of speakers at those hearings were in support of that use for Skippers.

We do recognize the contribution the Northport Theatre has made and many downtown performing arts centers across Long Island have to balance their impact with their benefit. Towards that end we are aware that this theatre owner could have put additional seats in his establishment at the outset and did not. The owner is also known to be very generous towards local churches and community organizations and is very popular in town.

You can read more here.

Multifamily Housing on the Rise in Downtown Copiague

Multifamily housing developments have been booming in downtown Copiague as the Town of Babylon continues to work towards creating a dense, walkable neighborhood for the hamlet.

Copiague Commons is the most recent development, a $33.5 million, 90-unit mixed income housing complex on Railroad Ave.  The development just opened its doors and tenants began moving in this month.  The Commons recently held a lottery to award low income units to people who had been affected by Sandy. Conifer Realty, developer of the Commons, along with Town of Babylon, won a Smart Growth Award in 2017.

Three other projects are also in the work and at various stages of development.  Plans include a 12-unit, three-floor building at 1800 Great Neck Road, which was approved by the Town Planning Bard on August 21st.  That building will replace a single-floor commercial building and hopes to begin construction in the next few months.

In even more preliminary planning are two lots on Marconi Boulevard that is hoped will host a pair of apartment buildings and have 10 units in each.  The final concept is for 12 units on Oak Street, with architects currently working on renderings.  One fifth of the units the three projects will be required to be affordable housing due to Town code.

Copiague has become an ideal location for developments such as this.  With a diverse working-class population and centrally located LIRR station.  The hamlet also hosts a compact commercial core and is capable of supporting mixed use development in the downtown.  Babylon recognized this fact by rezoning in 2015 in order to encourage development.

You can read more on this here.

Despite Earlier Press Reports and Statements Suffolk County Planning Commission Not Seeking to Overturn Heartland Town Square

The Suffolk County Planning Commission leadership made a statement this week that they are not seeking to overturn Phase 1 of the Heartland Town Square development that was approved by the Town of Islip last month.   The Chairperson of the Planning Commission supported by the Deputy Chair issued a letter to the editor in LI Business News that claimed not only are they not seeking to reverse the project’s decision but that they do not have the legal authority to take that action.    

The initial confusion started with a Newsday article on July 23rd titled   “County board eyeing legal options to overturn Heartland zoning”.   In that article the Suffolk Planning Commission Chair was quoted as saying:that the conditions placed  by the Suffolk Planning Commission and then overturned were crucial to protecting the region from potential impacts of the Heartland project.  Further stating that the conditions “looked out for the residents of Suffolk County because with a project of such a magnitude, it affects everyone in the county, not just the Town of Islip,”  

An objection by any of the three neighboring towns could trigger the county planning commission to hold another public hearing and possibly revote on its recommendation. A two-thirds majority by the county commission would be needed to overturn either part of or Islip’s entire zone change, Casey said. Suffolk County attorneys are currently reviewing their legal avenues and what a possible revote by the commission could do to the project, she said.

The Newsday article generated a response from the Long Island Regional Planning Council who wrote a letter to the Commission opposing attempts to overturn Islip’s decision.

The quotes from the Suffolk Planning Commission Chair and tone of the Newsday article one day after the historic Islip vote prompted some local municipal officials and Brentwood residents to contact Vision Long Island to draft a statement in opposition to the Commission’s potential reversal. After conversations with multiple officials and community members Vision’s Director drafted an op-ed in LI Business News that praised Islip officials for the approval of Heartland’s Phase 1, outlined the need to still address apprenticeship programs and secure local jobs for the project and state that Commission action to overturn Islip’s action after 15 years of planning would be a mistake.

In a recent LIBN Op-ed the Planning Commission Chair suggested Vision’s Director shared “misunderstandings” in his editorial. Since the misunderstanding was contained in the aforementioned Newsday article and featured quotes from the Planning Chair it would appear the Chair was either misquoted or had a change of heart.

Vision is now heartened that the Suffolk County Planning Commission leadership has also made a statement to correct the record in Newsday, where the initial confusion occurred, on the change of position or incorrect quotations.

However, in the meantime Huntington Town Supervisor Frank Petrone has filed an official complaint to Suffolk County in order to protest approval of the Heartland project. The County's planning commission will now review the plan for traffic mitigation in order to appease Huntington, but it's not expected to significantly impact the project itself. You can read more on this development here.

To read the full Newsday article on Suffolk County’s Planning Commission’s earlier position to overturn the Heartland Project check it out here.
To read the letter from the LI Regional Planning Council opposing a potential overturn of the Heartland Project check it out here.
You can read the Suffolk County Planning Commission leadership’s letter to the editor correcting the record in LI Business News here. (Letter is located on page 16 of the digital edition, subscription required)
Vision Long Island’s Op-ed in LI Business News is available here.

Harvey Victims Need Your Help

With the devastation that Hurricane Harvey unleashed in Texas, Long Islanders are reminded well of the gravity that disaster brings to entire communities in both the short and long terms. Several drives for monetary donations, as well as for physical donations, are underway and in the planning stages in order to bring relief directly to communities in need. Friends of Long Island groups understand first-hand how it is a bottom-up approach that best serves communities in the relief and recovery process, and will be partnering with organizations that helped us in the past on Long Island so they can help others, as well as targeting grassroots organizations to provide assistance.

When disaster occurs, the most important thing is to get cash to the affected region first-and also to know where donations are going. While well-intended, shipments of material goods in the immediate wake of disaster can clog up infrastructure, manpower, and storage that are critically needed- it is best to wait to send physical items until there is a collaborative effort with those on the ground to assess actual needs. There will be initiatives upcoming that we will communicate and will need your support for.

Here are some links where you can donate financially, with the funds going to good use in the relief process. These organizations had a positive presence in recovery and were well received on Long Island post-Sandy:

Friends of Long Island
You can find other vetted ways to donate here. Once there is an assessment of needs and capacity, Friends of Long Island will support recovery efforts in Texas, as we have done in other regions, while assisting our residents here on Long Island. We will also accept financial donations, which will go directly to communities and organizations on the ground, with 0 admin fee. To donate, please email

Since the aftermath and needs of Hurricane Harvey are not yet fully known, Friends of Long Island groups are currently assessing the situation, connecting with community organizations on the ground, and planning to assist as appropriate in the near future. In the meantime, national groups below are also gearing up to assist.

Other Regional Efforts

All Hands Volunteers
All Hands Volunteers is a US-based, 501(c)3 non-profit organization that addresses the immediate and long-term needs of communities impacted by natural disasters by engaging and leveraging volunteers, partner organizations and local communities. Their vision is to demonstrate the power and value of volunteer service through the tangible work done, the hope it brings to suffering communities and the transformative experiences it provides for volunteers.

Amateur Radio Emergency Service organizes and trains volunteers to serve their communities by providing public service and emergency communications. They were a great organization on Long Island post-Sandy.

Church World Services (CWS)
CWS's work began in 1946, in the aftermath of the Second World War, with a mission to feed the hungry and help those in need. They were very helpful providing cleanup materials and other assistance post-Sandy.

Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity partners with people in your community, and all over the world, to help them build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Habitat Suffolk assisted greatly post-Sandy on Long Island.

Island Harvest
Island Harvest was created in 1992 by one woman with a cooler, a station wagon, and a strong desire to help people in need. Linda Breitstone, our founder, was infuriated that food from a local convenience store was being thrown away at the end of the day – with a safe house for women and children down the street. In response, she established Island Harvest and our mission, “to end hunger and reduce food waste on Long Island.”

Islamic Relief USA
When disaster strikes, Islamic Relief USA responds immediately to get vital resources to survivors as quickly and efficiently as possible—like what they are doing now for Hurricane Harvey survivors. Islamic relief helped our communities post-Sandy.

The Jewish Federations of North America
They provide a lifeline for Jews and non-Jews in distress, at home, in Israel and across the globe. Whether it’s missiles raining down on Israel’s south, a violent conflict in Ukraine, Hurricane Sandy on the East Coast or an earthquake in Nepal,  Federation is there to help — and to rebuild. This organization directly funded recovery on Long Island post-Sandy.

LDS Philanthropies
Through generous donations from people like you, Humanitarian Services of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who operates LDS Charities, provides aid to people around the world without regard to cultural or religious affiliation. Known locally as the “Mucking Mormons”, LDS helped thousands of residents throughout Long Island.

Lions Club of Long Island
The Lions Clubs of Long Island are conducting a Huricane Harvey emergency relief supply drive. Non-perishable foods are most needed. Please pack in secure, marked boxes. Second most needed are new mini refrigerators. Third most needed are water pumps and hoses. Bank Gift Cards and Cash Donations welcome! Check Link for locations to drop off donations to.

Long Island Council of Churches
During tragic events like Hurricane Harvey, many of us look for ways to reach out and help. The most immediate and effective way to support is to: Donate Money, Donate Blood and Pray. The devastating impact of Hurricane Harvey continues to cause damage to the Gulf Coast and surrounding communities of Houston. As of August 29th, Houston Mayor, Sylvester Turner stated that there are about 12,000 shelters open, with another 13,000 shelters to open August 30th . Instead of requesting tangeable goods like clothing and can goods, I am asking that we support the efforts of Mayor Turner with monetary donations, at least until the waters recede.

Long Island Volunteer Center
The Long Island Volunteer Center works to provide support to, and promote and advocate for, volunteer service on Long Island. LIVC was designated a New York State Regional Volunteer Center in September 2011 to raise the profile of volunteerism on Long Island and increase volunteer engagement. LIVC was and continues to be an asset to our area. You can see volunteer opportunities in Texas, as well as on Long Island, by visiting their website.

NECHAMA is a voluntary organization that provides natural disaster preparedness, response, and recovery services nationwide. Through the years they have brought comfort to disaster survivors by training and mobilizing thousands of volunteers to help communities after floods, tornadoes, and other natural disasters. NECHAMA helped immensely on Long Island, Friends of Long Island will be partnering with the organization for recovery efforts in Texas.

NYS Senator Phil Boyle Donation Drive
Our thoughts and prayers go out to our fellow Americans in Texas now coping with the devestation caused by Hurricane Harvey. Please consider donating non-perishable food items, clothing, and pet-related items during our week-long drive to help people and their pets who have been displaced by this devestating storm.

Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies
Portlight Strategies, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) organization, founded in 1997 to facilitate a variety of projects involving people with disabilities, including post-disaster relief work. Portlight's longest running disaster recovery effort followed the devastation of Superstorm Sandy in the shore communities of New Jersey and parts of New York City, and lasted for 18 months. During that time, they replaced lost durable medical equipment and ramping, and assisted residents in purchasing and installing accessibility equipment that was made necessary after their homes were elevated to meet federal flood insurance requirements.

Team Rubicon
Team Rubicon's primary mission is providing disaster relief to those affected by natural disasters, be they domestic or international. By pairing the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders, medical professionals, and technology solutions, Team Rubicon aims to provide the greatest service and impact possible. Team Rubicon helped greatly post-Sandy.  A Long Island native and FoLI affiliate, Maj. Keith Grant, was a former board member for Team Rubicon.

On this Labor Day the working people of Texas need our help

A call for help from Long Island Federation of Labor President John Durso:

We are asking for your help as our brothers and sisters in Texas are experiencing one of the biggest natural disasters they have ever faced.

Hurricane Harvey’s slow movement and a resulting deluge have hit Houston, Galveston Island, Corpus Christi, Beaumont-Port Arthur, parts of central Texas and many areas in between. And the danger from the torrential downpour is far from over.

Donate now to the Texas Workers Relief Fund to help working families in Texas affected by Hurricane Harvey.  If you wish to donate by check please make it out to the "Texas Workers Relief Fund (memo:Hurricane Harvey)" and mail it to the Texas AFL-CIO, P.O. Box 12727, Austin, TX 78711.

We know from experience in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy that outside support was integral to recovery from such a powerful disaster. Union members are extraordinarily generous in tough times. Events like Super-storm Sandy in the Northeast, much like Harvey in Texas demonstrate that union members are always ready to step up and help families in times of crisis.

The Texas Workers Relief Fund, a 501(c)(3) charitable fund, which is overseen by the Texas AFL-CIO, provides direct help to union families in need.

We learned what it was like to experience hundred year storms with the death and destruction left in their wake. We cannot make everyone whole; but our movement can send a message of solidarity, a message that we are with working people badly harmed by Hurricane Harvey in heart, in soul and in spirit. On this Labor Day, let us dedicate ourselves to the working families who need our help urgently.

Please donate now.

In Solidarity,
John R. Durso
President, Long Island Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO

Long Island Business Council to Hold Candidates Forum on September 19th

The Long Island Business Council will be holding a Nassau County Candidates Forum on Tuesday, September 19th, 2017 at the East Farmingdale Fire Department, located at 930 Conklin Street in Farmingdale from 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM.  The forum will feature Republican Candidate Jack Martins and the winner of the Democratic primary.

You can RSVP for the event by calling 877-811-7471 or emailing  Attendance is free for LIBC members and $45 for non-members.

You can view the flyer for this event here and register online here.

APA to Hold Annual East End Planning Conference on September 20th

On September 20th, the APA Long Island Section will hold its annual East End Planning Conference! This year the conference will be held at the Hotel Indigo East End located at 1830 West Main Street in Riverhead. Hotel Indigo is centrally located on the East End on Route 25 just west of downtown Riverhead. We look forward to an afternoon and evening of discussion on timely planning topics and networking.

To view the program, REGISTER for this event, and pay online, please visit Or, send a check payable to “LI Section” to: Kathryn Eiseman, APA LI Section Treasurer, c/o Nelson, Pope & Voorhis, 572 Walt Whitman Road, Melville, NY 11747. (If paying by check, please also send an email confirmation to Kathy Eiseman

at A REGISTRATION link can also be found on

Long Island’s 5th Annual Car Free Day to Take Place on September 22nd

The 5th Annual Car Free Day will take place on September 22nd this year.  Take the pledge to leave your car at home on Friday, September 22nd and celebrate sustainable transportation on Long Island.  In 2016, 4,111 Long Islanders pledged to be car free or car-lite, resulting in the avoidance of 84,000 miles of driving and 42 tons of CO2 emissions!

You can take the online pledge here and be eligible for prizes.  All pledges made through 11:59pm Eastern Standard Time on Friday, September 22, 2017 will be entered into the prize raffle drawing. Prize eligibility is available to those physically living or working on Long Island in Nassau or Suffolk counties.

Restore NY Communities Initiative Informational Meeting to be Held Online September 25th

Empire State Development Corp. will host a free workshop on September 29th for municipalities interested in applying for some of the $80 million in redevelopment funding available through Round 5 of the Restore NY Communities Initiative. ESD has also scheduled informational workshops for Sept. 25 in Schenectady and Sept. 26 in Rochester, as well as a live webinar covering Restore NY application requirements at 10 a.m. on Sept. 25. More information on the workshops available here; email to register for the webinar.

29th Annual Keys for the Homeless Conference to be held on October 20th

The Long Island Coalition for the Homeless in co-sponsorship with Stony Brook University of Social Welfare, will be holding its Annual Keys for the Homeless Conference on October 20th.  The event will feature a keynote address from Richard Hooks Wayman, the Executive Director for the Children’s Defense Fund.  The theme of the Conference will be Breaking Down Barriers: Serving our Most Vulnerable.

The Conference is currently accepting sponsors, which will be available through October 2nd.  Sponsorships start at $1,000 for our Corporate Partners and $500 for Non-profit Partners.  Journal ad opportunities are still available as well.  If you have any questions you can go here to find more information and can contact Ksusha Cascio by email here or phone at 631-464-4314 x 123.

Central Islip's "Good Neighbor Awards" to be Held on October 26

The Central Islip Civic Council will be honoring four individuals for Outstanding Community Service on Thursday, October 26th.  Debra Cavanagh from the Central Islip Coalition of Good Neighbors, Islip Councilman Steve Flotteron, Rob Goldman Suffolk Community College, and Barbara LaMonica from Central Islip School District.

The event will take place at Watermill Caterers at 711 Smithtown Bypass in Smithtown.  You can find more information for the event and civic council here.

National Endowment for the Arts Our Town Grant, due September 11th

The National Endowment for the Arts’ Our Town grant program supports creative placemaking projects that help to transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with arts at their core. This funding supports local efforts to enhance quality of life and opportunity for existing residents, increase creative activity, and create a distinct sense of place. Applications due September 11. To find out more, click here.

Suffolk County to Provide Septic Improvement Grants

Starting July 1st, you may begin the process and submit your application for the Septic Improvement Program.

The Septic Improvement Program is available to qualified owners of residential property located within Suffolk County.

Grant funding, of up to $10,000, will be provided toward the purchase and installation of Suffolk County Department of Health Services approved Innovative and Alternative nitrogen removal onsite wastewater treatment system (I/A OWTS) and leaching structure, as well as toward attendant engineering and design services. An additional $1,000 may be available toward installation of Pressurized Shallow Drainfields for a maximum grant of up to $11,000. All other costs, including, but not limited to, costs above the authorized grant amount, irrigation repairs, electrical improvements unrelated to system installation or other improvements necessary for the installation are the responsibility of the property owner/applicant. Post-installation landscaping restoration is also the responsibility of the property owner/applicant.

Preferential consideration will be given to properties in environmentally sensitive areas.

Please note:

Submission of an application does not guarantee an award of a grant. The County reserves the right to change the terms and conditions of the Septic Improvement Program at any time. This program is highly competitive and applications will be prioritized by area and other eligibility requirements and will also be based upon the availability of funding.

In addition:

  1. Grant Awardees will be required to execute a grant agreement with the County of Suffolk.
  2. Grant Awardees must permit Suffolk County Septic Improvement Program representatives the right to enter onto the property to perform any site assessments related to the processing of applications.
  3. Information and documentation that is submitted with the application may be subject to independent verification by the County.

If you would like to speak to someone directly about the program and/or Grant Application, please call the Department of Health Services at 631-852-5811. Staff will be available to answer your questions Monday-Friday from 9am-5pm. You can also send an email to

Social Justice Grant: Pop Culture Collaborative

The Pop Culture Collaborative is now accepting applications for their 'Pop-Up' grants program. These rapid response grants are available on a rolling basis throughout the year for any individual, organization or company working to harness the power of pop culture to create just, authentic narratives of people of color, Muslims, immigrants and refugees through TV, movies, sports, music and all forms of entertainment and mass media.

The Collaborative is a new, multi-million dollar philanthropic resource created by Unbound Philanthropy, Nathan Cummings Foundation, Ford Foundation, The JPB Foundation, and General Service Foundation—all organizations committed to growing and experimenting with pop culture narrative strategies as powerful tools for change in the real world.

They have designed these grants to help leaders in justice movements, the arts, entertainment, advertising, academia, and technology respond nimbly to increasingly common assaults on pluralism and inclusion in our society.

Grants range from $5,000 to $30,000, and projects must have an imminent time-hook or a project timeline that can be completed within a four-month time frame. Individuals with fiscal sponsorship, non-profit and for-profits are all eligible to apply. Projects should aim to advance social change and authentic narratives in popular culture for people of color, immigrants, refugees and Muslims.

You can find full 'Pop Up' Grant Guidelines and Application Information here, and can submit your idea here. Every idea will be considered, and applicants will be notified if the program wishes receive a formal proposal.

NYS Climate Smart Communities Grant Program Funding Available

Funding will be available for inventory, assessment, planning and implementation projects that advance the work of municipalities in addressing climate change. Priorities for the 2017 round include specific adaptation actions that reduce flood risk and increase preparedness for future extreme weather conditions, specific mitigation activities related to transportation and reduction of food waste, and specific Climate Smart Communities certification actions that advance municipal ability in the future to implement adaptation and mitigation projects in the identified implementation categories.

A municipal resolution from the lead applicant authorizing application submission and documenting the availability of local match in the event of grant award must be submitted at the time of application.

For general information and questions on the Climate Smart Communities Program, please contact the Office of Climate Change, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Office of Climate Change, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233, 518-402-8448,

NYS DEC Technical Assistance Grants Available

The New York State DEC continuously accepts applications for Technical Assistance Grants (TAGs). TAGs are a citizen participation tool available to eligible community groups to increase public awareness and understanding of remedial activities taking place in their community. TAGs are available to eligible community groups for the purpose of obtaining independent technical assistance in interpreting existing environmental information about an eligible “significant threat” site being remediated in the State Superfund Program or Brownfield Cleanup Program. Technical assistance is intended to help the grant recipient and the community it represents to understand existing environmental data developed about the site, comment on site remedial activities and proposals and share this information with the public.

Funding is limited to $50,000 per site, with no matching requirement. A community group must be a nonresponsible party community group or one that is in partnership with another nonresponsible party community group. The group must be a 501(c)(3), and a group whose members’ health, economic well-being or enjoyment of the environment may be affected by a release or threatened release of contamination at the eligible site. The group must be one whose membership represents the interest of the community affected by the eligible site. Eligible sites must be Class 2 sites on the New York State Registry of Inactive Hazardous Waste Disposal Sites or sites being remediated under the State’s Brownfield Cleanup Program that the DEC has determined pose a significant threat to public health and/or the environment.

For more information, you can visit the DEC’s site here.

Long Island Coalition for the Homeless Seeks Training Manager

The Long Island Coalition for the Homeless is seeking applicants for a Full-Time Training Manager for our main office in Amityville.  This position requires an ability to understand policies and regulations; provide training to staff and community members on the regional Coordinated Entry System (CES); research, negotiate, schedule and track participation in training and workshops for Continuum of Care members; coordinate with staff/committee members to seek out other training opportunities, including participation in planning for the annual Keys for the Homeless Conference.

 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).

 Job description is as follows:

REPORTS TO: Associate Director

SUMMARY OF RESPONSBILITIES: The Training Manger works to develop and present training/workshops related to the Coordinated Entry System (CES); researches, negotiates and schedules training for COC (including those to be presented at annual Keys for the Homeless Conference, as appropriate). The Training Manager will learn the CES process by participating in client engagement, Vulnerability Assessment and outreach to various stakeholders. Additional responsibilities include maintaining knowledge of all services offered by homeless housing and assistance programs; assisting in strategic planning associated with the CoC and national initiatives to end homelessness as it relates to coordinated entry as it relates to training.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include the following. Other duties may be assigned.

  • Learn CES as a provider, in order to train on same to stakeholders (including shelter staff, outreach staff, staff and volunteers at libraries, churches/PSM, volunteer shelters, soup kitchens, food pantries
  • Develop training materials and presentations for above stakeholders
  • Provide hands on, onsite training and follow up assistance to above stakeholders
  • Survey COC members for trainings needed related to implementing and operating Housing First programs, working with various special needs populations, and technique trainings including Motivational Interviewing, Harm Reduction, Critical Time Intervention, Progressive Engagement, etc.
  • Research training resources for appropriate training/workshops; negotiate costs as appropriate, schedule trainings and management registration, preparation and attendance.
  • Outreach to COC members and others for additional training opportunities, including for Keys Conference workshops, as appropriate.

QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor’s Degree in communications, social work or related fields plus five years work in a related field; Master of Social Work degree or graduate degree in human services-related study preferred, plus two years’ experience in case management or related experience in human services, or seven or more years’ experience in the human services field. Proven ability to present materials and train staff in various settings. Strong working knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint); knowledge of other presentation applications acceptable. Preferred additional knowledge of computer database applications (Foothold AWARDS- preferred, Access, Client or Costumer databases of accounting database software). Must have ability to communicate respectfully with people in crisis; ability to communicate effectively, both written and verbal, and work closely with persons within and outside the agency. Must be self-motivated and have a commitment to organization’s mission, visions and goals. Must have private transportation.

Interested parties should submit a resume and salary requirements via email to Please do not call the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless regarding this position.  Questions should be submitted via email only.

Long Island Housing Services Seeking New Executive Director

Long Island Housing Services is seeking a new Executive Director.  The organization was founded in 1969, in the wake of the tragic assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the subsequent passage of the Fair Housing Act, Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968. The organization was formed by a grassroots group of volunteers and civic and religious leaders. Its mission is to eliminate unlawful housing discrimination and promote decent and affordable housing through advocacy and education.

The Executive Director must be an experienced and seasoned leader and manager who will provide oversight of the organization, engage in the broader fair housing community, and develop and maintain strong relationships with funding sources, including local, state and federal government. The Executive Director must also have a strong and honed ability to motivate, develop, and manage staff. S/he must communicate openly and honestly, promoting inclusiveness, cooperation, and teamwork.

Applicants must apply by October 6th, 2017.  You can view the description of responsibilities, qualifications, and how to apply here.

The Impact of Hurricane Harvey

Natural disasters see no color, they do not care where you were born, they do not care about your wealth, they do not care about who you love. Neither should unity.  #WeAreOne #WeStandWithHouston #RIP

Smart Talk

Chris Kyle, Communications Director

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

We strive to provide continued quality publications like this every week. If you have any news or events that you would like to add to our newsletter, submit them to for consideration.

If you are interested in becoming a newsletter or news blast sponsor, please call the office at 631-261-0242 for rates and opportunities.

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

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