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Northport-East Northport teachers at contract impasse

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The teachers union has declared an impasse in contract talks with the Northport-East Northport School Board, and the two sides are headed to mediation.  The parties are discussing which mediator to use, and the timing for talks will be contingent on the mediator’s schedule.

An Oct. 15 report from the state comptroller found the district overestimated spending by $39 million during a five-year period, and revenue exceeded spending by nearly $13 million.
The report upset community members, and members of the United Teachers of Northport said it spurred them to make bigger demands for the 2014-15 contract.

School goes into lockdown

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A weapon found at an Amityville middle school triggered a temporary lockdown Tuesday morning.  Suffolk police say a school security guard saw a 14-year-old boy trying to get into Edmund W. Miles Middle School with a BB gun.

A spokeswoman for the district says that student never made it into the building, and police were called. The teen was eventually released to his father. In a statement, the district superintendent said, “The lockdown was lifted in less than an hour. At no time were there any threats made to students or staff.”
No charges are expected to be filed.

MTA budget short of cash


The state’s chief fiscal watchdog Tuesday warned that a $15 billion shortfall in Metropolitan Transportation Authority capital funding could lead to further fare and toll hikes.
In his annual report on the MTA’s financial outlook, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli suggested that the agency borrowing billions of dollars, as it has done before, to finance its proposed $32 billion 2015-2019 capital plan could lead to larger-than-planned fare hikes. The MTA already is poised to raise fares by 4 percent in 2015.

Residents march to town hall in Huntington Station

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Huntington Station residents took to the streets Tuesday to ask for justice for a high school student murdered last week.
As News 12 has reported, Maggie Rosales, 18, was found on Lynch Street with stab wounds to her torso last week. The Walt Whitman High School senior was pronounced dead at the scene. No arrests have been made.
Residents Mary Beth Kraese and Jennifer Lavertu organized a march to Huntington Town Hall Tuesday night. Their goal is to call attention to the four murders in Huntington Station this year and demand answers to the recent unsolved case.

DWI murder trial underway

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It is day two of a rare murder trial in a DWI case in Suffolk County. Michael Grasing of Babylon is the first person to be charged with murder in a Long Island drunk driving case in six years.

Prosecutors argue he is a callous killer, and say his blood alcohol level was almost four times the legal limit when he ran red lights going more than 95-miles-per-hour before crashing into an SUV on Montauk Highway in Lindenhurst in June 2012. Eighteen-year-old Brittney Walsh, who had just graduated from high school 48-hours earlier, died at the scene.

The trial is expected to last for weeks. If convicted of second-degree murder, Grasing faces 25-years to life in prison.

Stabbings at homecoming in Wyandanch

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A West Babylon man is charged with felony assault in the stabbing of two teens at the Wyandanch High School football game. 

Police say there was a fight behind the bleachers during the homecoming game Saturday, and 21-year-old Kaurron Foster pulled out a black folding knife.  He allegedly stabbed one teen twice in the back, and another teen in the side.  Seventeen-year-old Malik Harrison and 18-year-old Kymel Sims, both of North Amityville, suffered wounds that are not considered life-threatening. 

According to police, the stabbing was unrelated to the football game or any other Wyandanch students.  Foster was arraigned Sunday is being held on 100-thousand-dollars bail. 

Schumer says no to GPS tracking

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Senator Charles Schumer is proposing legislation to outlaw GPS tracking of individuals without their permission. 

Although stalking is prohibited by federal law, Schumer says it doesn’t cover GPS tracking because it’s a relatively new technology.  He calls it an invasion of privacy that can be misused against ex-spouses, domestic violence victims and others. 

Under the senator’s proposal, some forms of GPS tracking would still be permitted, including for law enforcement investigations and parents who want to know the whereabouts of their kids. 

Yet another hit and run

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Suffolk County police are on the lookout for the truck driver who struck a woman in Miller Place Saturday night and sped away. 

Police say 40-year-old Tracy Mangino was walking on North Country Road near Block Island Drive when a commercial box truck hit her.  The driver did not stop. 

Mangino was taken to John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson where she died. 

Community says NO to CVS

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Plans to build a CVS in St. James have sparked a community uproar and more than 700 signatures opposing the project, which residents said will reduce property values, create traffic jams and destroy the hamlet’s small-town charm.
More than 150 people crowded a standing-room-only hearing of the Smithtown town planning board to voice their opposition to the proposed 13,551-square-foot CVS pharmacy and convenience store with a mezzanine and 57 parking spaces on Woodlawn and Lake avenues.
The proposal would require a zone change from residential to central business zoning.

Wyandanch football players suspended for bullying

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More students could be in trouble after two Wyandanch Memorial High School varsity football players were suspended from school surrounding allegations of bullying. 

“Newsday” reports the district is conducting an investigation into the alleged pranks, which are said to have taken place in the locker room.  The students were suspended from classes for two days last week but were still allowed to play football. 

The public got word of the suspensions this week, following a school board meeting Wednesday night.