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Minutes of the General Membership Meeting of the Westmoreland Association
March 17, 2008
The meeting was called to order
at 8:05 P.M. by President Walter Mugdan. A motion was made, seconded and
unanimously adopted to waive reading of the minutes. (Mr. Mugdan noted that the
minutes were available for review on the Westmoreland website.) Treasurer Gary
Savage gave the Treasurer’s Report indicating that the balance-on-hand was
$17,008.74 as of March 17, 2007. A motion was made to accept the Treasurer’s
report. The motion was seconded and the report was unanimously approved.
John Costanza has resigned from the Westmoreland Association Board of Directors. A motion was made, seconded, and unanimously adopted to thank John for his many years of dedicated service to the community.
Mr. Mugdan then announced the nominees for Officers and Board members for 2008-2009: Officers: Walter Mugdan (President), Sheldon Rosenblum (Vice President), Gary Savage (Treasurer), Charles Manna (Secretary). Board Members: Kathleen Beckett, Thomas Dent, David Diaz (new nominee), Franklin Lloyd, Peter Reinharz, Robert Timmerman, Philip Toscano. A motion was made to accept the entire slate of officers and directors. The motion was seconded and passed unanimously.
• Reconstruction of sewers and water mains in parts of the neighborhood is nearing completion. The “under pavement” has been completed on the streets and the final layer will be added later this spring. Unfortunately, the contractor broke his promise to keep the granite block curbing where it was undamaged. All the new curbing is concrete. Since Westmoreland is not labeled a “Historic District,” we have no recourse. Also the scope of the job did not include replacing sidewalks. Homeowners who believe the contractor damaged their sidewalks (or other parts of their property) will have to file a claim for damages. It was suggested the Homeowners call 3-1-1 to initiate the claims process.
• LIRR Train Whistle discussion.
New federal government regulations that became effective several years ago require trains approaching grade crossings to blow their whistles in a particular pattern, at a specified volume, and for a particular length of time. The loud and long whistling at the Little Neck grade crossing is extremely irritating to nearby residents. The regulations provide that a “quiet zone” can be established if certain safety measures are adopted. Two alternative proposed measures were discussed at the previous meeting One proposal involves installation of four (“quad”). Currently it is the only proposal supported by the NYCDOT, but there is not sufficient funding available to proceed with this proposal. The LIRR estimated the cost at $800,000, a figure that some of our members consider to be significantly inflated. The second is the CB-11 divided roadway proposal. This involves, among other elements, median dividers on Little Neck Parkway and reconfiguration of the LIRR parking lot to relocate the entrance/exit from LNP to 39th Road; it was estimated this proposal would cost about $100,000 to $150,000. Congressman Gary Ackerman earmarked about $225,000 in the federal budget for addressing the grade crossing problem. City Councilman Avella is expected to earmark a similar amount in the upcoming City budget. (See Minutes of November, 2007 meeting for a more detailed description of both proposals.)
At the November, 2007 meeting the Westmoreland Association membership voted to support the quad gate proposal, because of concerns that the median divider proposal would result in increased traffic in our community.
At the March, 2008 meeting Christine Hatami reported on a “hybrid” or three-gate proposal. This would involve two full gates on the north side and a median divider on the south side. A motion was made to maintain support of the original plan (the Quad Gates). The motion was seconded and passed.
• The Douglaston / Little Neck Historical Society’s annual meeting is Sunday April 13, 2008 in the parlor room of the Douglaston Community Church. Dr. Jeffrey Roessler will conduct a talk on neighborhood preservation.
• Police revealed that the murder that occurred the evening of December 25, 2007 in the playground across the street from PS 94 was a “hit” that was intended to eliminate a witness to a crime. Several individuals have been arrested for the murder, and police indicated the case against them is very strong.
• The Lawn Litter Law was passed. If a sign is on the front lawn forbidding circulars, the people who distribute them will have to comply.
• Expansion of the Little Neck Library onto the adjacent lot is still being considered.
The next meeting is May 19, 2008.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:30 PM.
Charles Manna, Secretary
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