05/23/13 8:00am
05/23/2013 8:00 AM
Great job Riverhead police

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Town police and state troopers teamed up to capture a shooting suspect Monday night on Osborn Avenue in Riverhead’s Polish Town

Alarm bells rang out through Polish Town Monday night as ambulances and town and state police cars — their lights and sirens blaring — descended on several crime scenes within minutes, and just a few blocks, of one another.

It was no terror scare, but it was no drill either. Police arrested a shooter accused of injuring a woman on Raynor Avenue with a shotgun blast and, in a separate case, a would-be armed robber on Osborn Avenue.

Monday night’s incidents, culminating with police officers storming an Osborn Avenue house and dragging out a suspected gunman, served as a reminder of the dangers our police and emergency workers face every night, often when the rest of us are tucked safely in our beds.

We also saw on full display the fine work of two police agencies that coordinated with each other and mobilized quickly to secure three crime scenes and make quick work of violent acts in our communities. While such incidents in town are, of course, cause for concern — and downright frightening for many — Riverheaders can take comfort in the quality of the men and women sworn to protect us.

05/22/13 5:00pm
05/22/2013 5:00 PM

Suffolk’s Democrats and Republicans have both held nominating conventions, but neither party has decided who will run in November for the North Fork’s open State Assembly seat.

The Suffolk GOP met last Tuesday in Holtsville, but held off on naming a candidate for the Second Assembly district. After the convention, Republican chairman John Jay LaValle said he expected to have a candidate selected by Friday or possibly Monday.

On Monday, he said he expected a decision by Tuesday, but no candidate had been chosen by Tuesday night.

The GOP has screened a number of candidates, including Southold Councilman Chris Talbot, former Ed Romaine aide Bill Faulk of Manorville, Southold Trustee Bob Ghosio, Mattituck attorney Stephen Kiely, New Suffolk attorney Anthony Palumbo, Mount Sinai attorney Raymond Negron and John Kreutz, Brookhaven Town deputy receiver of taxes. Mr. Talbot has opted not to seek re-election to the Southold Town Board this year.

By controlling 67 percent of the district, the Brookhaven GOP would appear to have the upper hand in the selection process.

Suffolk’s Democrats gathered Monday night, but rather than select an Assembly candidate the party took the unusual step of putting the choice in the hands of the Brookhaven, Riverhead and Southold committees. The 2nd Assembly District extends from north central Brookhaven east to Fishers Island.

Riverhead’s Democrats will meet first, holding their convention Thursday night, followed by Brookhaven on May 28 and Southold on May 29.

“This appears to be a close race at this point,” said Southold Democratic chairman Art Tillman. He asked that party members not commit to any one candidate prior to the convention.

“Our small party will have greater influence if we can proceed united at this point and this requires party discipline,” the chairman said in a recent email to committee members.

As is the case with the GOP, Brookhaven’s Democrats may have the final word on the nominee.

Democratic contenders include Cutchogue winery owner Jim Waters of Manorville, Riverhead attorney John McManmon, Rocky Point attorney Jennifer Maertz, East End Arts director Pat Snyder of Jamesport, Suffolk Park Police officer Tom Schiliro of Manorville and Riverhead attorney Ron Hariri.

Ms. Maertz, who twice ran unsuccessfully for a state Senate seat, is the only candidate with prior political experience.

The Assembly seat opened up when Republican Assemblyman Dan Losquadro of Shoreham won a March special election for Brookhaven highway superintendent.


07/26/12 5:00pm
07/26/2012 5:00 PM

TIM GANNON FILE PHOTO | J. Kings owner John King at a recent ‘open house’ at the planned Grapes & Greens facility on Sound Avenue in Calverton.

“Grapes & Greens,” the agricultural processing and storage facility being built in a former plumbing warehouse in Calverton will host state Lt. Governor Robert Duffy at a “ribbon cutting” ceremony Friday morning.

The project, which will process local agricultural products and store local wines after bottling in a way that would expand the market for those goods, got the go-ahead from the Riverhead Town Zoning Board of Appeals on June 14.

But that decision came after a neighboring property owner on Sound Avenue in Calverton who was concerned about the potential for notice and truck traffic resulting from the facility challenged the town’s issuance of a building permit for the site.

J. Kings Food Service Professionals, which is running the operation out of the former Blackman Plumbing warehouse, has since purchased the building but it is not yet operating, said Diane Fennekohl, an executive assistant at J. Kings.

Friday’s event is a ceremonial event.

“We’re in the process of primping the building to be ready for what we want to do with it,” she said. “We’re still drafting permits and things like that.”

She said all of the equipment needed for the facility has been ordered and is waiting to be installed.

Company owner John King said the company does agricultural sorting and processing at a facility in Bay Shore but wants to move that function to the Calverton site to be closer to the North Fork farms.

The facility is expected to allow local farmers to get better value for their crops by extending the life of their product, according to Mr. King, who said the facility will allow produce to properly frozen to prolong its freshness.

The site will have a $900,000 hydro cooler, which local farmers say they could not afford to purchase on their own.