Letters to the Editor

Fine work on storm
A hearty thanks to George Woodson and his highway crew! With less manpower and many more miles of roadway to plow, the roads were cleared quickly and early on the morning after the storm. And I am not going to complain about the noise from the plows! Thanks for a great job.

Ellen Berger

Would hotel have even paid taxes?
With the assumed loss of taxes for the Catwalk Hotel that was supposed to have been built in Flanders, I would have hoped that this so-called “economic generator” would have generated much more property taxes then those that are being generated by the Atlantis Marine Aquarium in downtown Riverhead. Yet it seems that everyone has forgotten that the Riverhead Town Board, in their infinite wisdom, has extended to the aquarium another 10 years of tax free operations.  This, of course, wouldn’t have happened with the Catwalk Hotel, if it had been built. Of course not!

Thomas W. Smith

Fringe groups don’t represent Americans
We as a nation are in mourning as the Tucson tragedy has now become the reality of how the effects of endless vitriol can affect those unhinged. When the group who tried to dismantle health insurance reform and the funding of our auto industry to save jobs would come to the “rallies” with guns and pictures of the president as the Joker, Hitler and Stalin, the right-wing media was describing these as regular Americans. They are not. Instead of looking at these issues as being crucial and addressing the needs of all Americans, this group would go to rallies and scream, spit, hate and try to convince America that they represented America. They don’t.
I don’t know about you, but if I was going to a meeting that required some serious debate and discussion, and I knew that people were armed, screaming, spitting and name calling, I might get a bit nervous and consider this situation unsafe. The reality is that some sick individuals see this as a sign that their insane intentions are justified. We must consider our actions and our voices. Our patriotism is built upon that we are one nation with one flag. And it is not yellow.

Nicholas Villani

Arizona tragedy
I agree with the column written in last week’s paper (“Tea partyers call for prayers, not blame, after Arizona tragedy”) by tea party activists Bob and Mary Meyer that it was shameful and reprehensible for some of our leaders to infer that the fact that our current gun laws are better suited for a primitive civilization, and that the incendiary rhetoric spewed forth by hateful hard right wing-nuts had something to do with last week’s tragedy in Arizona.
That’s unless, of course, it did.

Colin Grattan

Start making some sense
Riverhead Highway Superintendent George Woodson’s idea of having residents remove cars off the road during snow storms was a great idea for obvious reasons, but it was shot down by Supervisor Sean Walter.
Mr. Walter said he didn’t want a “police state,” as was reported by the News-Review. That comment made me laugh, because Mr. Walter voted for and approved the new fines for unlicensed dogs found running loose in the Town of Riverhead. Under the new regulations, a first conviction carries a fine of no more than $100; a second conviction within six years of the first would result in a fine no more than $250; and a third conviction within six years of the first and second would result in a fine no more than $1,000, or imprisonment not to exceed 15 days, or both.
Southold Town officials just set their new fines for the same thing: first offense, $10; second offense, $20; third offense, $30. Jail time? Not in Southold.
Who was it who said he doesn’t want a police state?
I suggest our town officials stop flexing their muscles, get off the power high and start working for the people — instead of feeding their bloated egos.

Laurie Downs

Animal lover ‘won’t be scapegoated’
Even on WLNG FM radio last Friday, Supervisor Sean Walter refused to publicly and immediately lift the ban on me as a volunteer, although he said he would look into it. Councilman James Wooten has said it was because I suggested at a public meeting that dogs in the shelter may have the disease parvo.
Let’s have some clarity here. I testified at a town meeting that volunteer Linda Mosca reported to me that Riverhead shelter dog Cookie might have parvo. Her dogs got sick from Cookie. Her vet, Ms. Mosca told me, said the dogs’ symptoms were similar to parvo. I relayed this to the board out of deep concern so the dogs there now would be tested and treated with antibiotics. My concern arose from the shelter dog Champ, whom I adopted to Vince Taldone. A senior dog, Champ had heartworm, Lyme [disease] and hookworm and could have died. There was reason to be worried about what Ms. Mosca reported.
The shelter dogs were tested for parvo. None had it, I was informed. But what about the other diseases Champ had? Were the dogs tested for them? I still don’t know. Now I’ve become the town scapegoat for bringing up the word parvo. This is a digression from what’s really going on at the shelter: the killing of the innocent dog Bruno, suddenly, when he was about to be allowed to be walked by volunteers at the recommendation of animal control officer Lou Coronesi, who we now know has a criminal record in Arizona for capturing endangered species. Mr. Coronesi also appears to have, at best, misled Mr. Walter by telling him Bruno had bitten a child in the face. Not true, it turns out. Another tragedy.  
I feel that reporting my reporting of possible serious health issues is responsible. My treatment by some town officials, the chief of police and Mr. Coronesi has been shocking, deplorable and irresponsible — duplicity at the highest level to keep an investigative reporter from seeing and knowing too much. How transparent this all is. Apparently no one in town government has the integrity to lift the ban so I can volunteer and help dogs. I see too much. I expected, and still hope, that Jim Wooten will be that man.

Pat Lynch

Griffing does it right
On Christmas Eve day, I was shopping at Griffing Hardware Store in Riverhead and must compliment the whole crew on their neat appearance.
Tim Griffing Sr. and Todd and David all had on maroon shirts with neckties and I spotted Frank in the back room with his maroon shirt. The only person that I did not see was Irve.
The sales staff was especially sharp-looking and, as usual, extremely helpful. Griffing Hardware sells everything from 3/4-inch rope to snow shovels and thousands of items in between. I am amazed at the sales personnels’ knowledge of their stock.
Go to a big box store and you walk and walk to find one small washer; then it will be the wrong size.
I guess I have been a customer of Griffing’s for 25-plus years, and have never have a problem.

Paul Podlas