02/27/15 9:59am
02/27/2015 9:59 AM

Words such as “crisis” and “urgent” often lose their currency when public officials spend them as freely as sailors on sprees.

But credit Shelter Island Supervisor Jim Dougherty — chairman of the East End Supervisors and Mayors Association — for pursuing an end to a fully realized crisis confronting the region’s future in the form of polluted groundwater and the waters that surround us(more…)

02/20/15 7:00am
02/20/2015 7:00 AM
Governor Cuomo giving his State of the State address the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany Jan. 21. (Credit: Courtesy Flickr photo)

Governor Cuomo giving his State of the State address at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany Jan. 21. (Credit: Courtesy Flickr photo)

The rushed rollout of the Common Core State Standards under Gov. Andrew Cuomo during the 2012-13 school year set off alarm bells in school hallways and living rooms across the state. All of a sudden, teachers and parents in New York were being told that well over half of the student population had failed to make the grade based on the new Common Core-aligned math and ELA state assessments.  (more…)

02/12/15 7:59am
02/12/2015 7:59 AM
The house at 29 Lewis Street remains boarded up three months after the raid. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

The house at 29 Lewis Street remains boarded up three months after the raid. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

Breaking up an open-air drug market might spell relief for the afflicted neighborhood, but it is nothing like ridding a country of an occupying foreign force.

The relief is only temporary, especially in low-income areas.

As long as there are jobless high school dropouts, there will be more gang members and drug dealers ready to take the place of those serving time upstate. Indeed, it seems as if every two to three years the district attorney announces another big bust of a group of people ferrying illegal narcotics from NYC to Riverhead.  (more…)

02/06/15 12:00pm
02/06/2015 12:00 PM

state leadersAlbany is in need of serious reform. It’s been known for years, even decades, and is obvious to anyone who pays the slightest bit of attention to our state government.

There appeared to be hope with the 2010 election of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who ran on a reform agenda. But he ended up shutting down his own highly touted investigative body, the Moreland Commission, when its members began to hone in on the root of most problems in Albany: outside money earned by lawmakers, and specifically lawyers who have long claimed they couldn’t disclose details of their work — including their clients — because that would be a breach of lawyer-client privilege. (more…)

01/16/15 10:00am
01/16/2015 10:00 AM
(Credit: Grant Parpan)

(Credit: Grant Parpan)

As you leave the terrace at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., with its sprawling views of the U.S. Capitol, you pass the sign in the above photo. You might encounter this statement — which sums up the importance of a free press and defines the overall theme of the museum — after hours of perusing the many artifacts in the collection that underscore the difficulty and risk inherent in protecting this freedom, both here and around the world.  (more…)