Tags Posts tagged with "Harborfields"


Paul Lasinski, center, smiles with Harborfields High School Athletic Director John Valente, left, and Principal Rory Manning. Photo from Hansen Lee

Paul Lasinski of Greenlawn has been an athletic trainer and health teacher at Harborfields for nearly 20 years, and in less than two weeks he will walk the halls and fields of the high school for the last time as he prepares to retire.

It was about 18 years ago when Lasinski, or “Ski” as he’s known at school, took the position of athletic trainer. Ever since then, he has been a mainstay of the HF athletic program.

“I try to treat the student-athletes like I would want my child to be treated,” Lasinski said in an interview. “The kids here at Harborfields are really great. If you treat the students well and they know that you’re there for them, they know you’re giving your all for them, then a bond will come.”

Lasinski said he will be moving to South Carolina soon, and his replacement has already started training. Rachel Jersky, currently the athletic trainer at Bayport-Blue Point High School, will take over from him.

Lasinski’s history
• Hofstra athletic trainer in 1976, when men’s hoops first went to NCAA tournament
• Two sons graduated from HHS
• Was athletic trainer at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy
• Has been at Harborfields since ’97

“Not having Paul roam the sidelines in his infamous trainer’s cart, or watch him tapes hundreds of ankles throughout the year, will be difficult to get used to,” said John Valente, Harborfields director of health, physical education, athletics, medical and nurse services. “[He] has left his mark on so many that he can never be replaced for who he is and what he has represented to the Harborfields Central School District.”

Lasinski said his favorite moments over the course of his HF career have been the times when he worked closely with the students. He said he was not looking forward to saying goodbye.

“The last week is going to be so difficult for me,” he said. “Being around the kids … and watching them play was such a highlight for me.”

He said one of his favorite memories was when the boys’ basketball team won the New York State championship in 2012. Lasinski was on the bus coming home with the team from Glens Falls when he said members of fire departments in the town reached out to him because they wanted to orchestrate a welcome home ceremony for the boys. He let the head coach know, and they decided to keep it a secret from the boys to surprise them.

“When we pulled around the corner … and the boys saw the sirens and the American flags, it was mayhem. That was a special moment,” he said.

Valente said it’s no secret the athletic director shares a bond with many student athletes.

“Behind this talented professional is a man revered by students, staff, parents and the entire community,” he said in an email. “Paul … gives of himself freely. He has been known to travel to athletes’ homes to check on an injury or provide care. It has always been inspiring and touching to witness the interaction that Paul has with the student athletes. They genuinely love Ski.”

Lucas Woodhouse, point guard of the 2012 team and now a key member of the Stony Brook University basketball roster, said Lasinski was an important piece of the group.

“[He] played a huge part in our team’s success over the years,” Woodhouse said. “He was great to be around, so much that people would go to just hang with him and talk about anything. It was great to have him be a major part of the team every year.”

The Greenlawn resident said he has enjoyed his time as a health teacher and said the most important part of teaching high schoolers is maintaining an open conversation, whether the topic is drugs, nutrition or sexual activity.

“You have to talk about it [with the students],” he said. “You really have to tell them what’s going on and make them aware of the choices they could make and how they affect them.”

Lasinski drives his golf cart around the grounds at Harborfields. Photo from Hansen Lee
Lasinski drives his golf cart around the grounds at Harborfields. Photo from Hansen Lee

As an athletic trainer, Lasinski would be looking over nearly 300 student athletes each day during the busier sports seasons.

“Thank God they don’t all get injured at once,” Lasinski joked.

He said a Saturday in the fall could have him working up to 12 hours, between soccer games in the morning and then football games in the later afternoon.

“You need to have a good wife,” he said of his wife Bonnie, who was a support system when he would work extra hours at the school. “She spent a lot of Saturdays without me, but she knows it’s what I love. This is what I do best. This keeps me young.”

And his efforts did not go unnoticed across the district. Valente said Lasinski has gone above and beyond his work responsibilities throughout his years of service.

“Paul works many hours and never looks at his watch,” he said. “It is not uncommon for him to be treating students as early as 6 a.m. on a Saturday morning, and then work over 10 hours throughout the day being at all of the contests.”

Superintendent Diana Todaro and Assistant Superintendent Francesco Ianni were both delighted the budget passed. File photo

Tuesday night was a success for school districts in the Huntington area, with all budgets approved, including Harborfields’ cap-piercing $82.8 million budget.

Throughout budget season, Assistant Superintendent for Administration and Human Resources Franceso Ianni had presented the board with several options for the 2016-17 budget. Some stayed within the 0.37 percent state–mandated tax levy cap, but did not offer programs the community had been asking for, like full-day kindergarten. Others included such programs but went above and beyond the cap. After much debate, the board adopted a nearly $83 million budget with a cap-busting 1.52 percent increase to the tax levy.

Among the costs in the budget are $600,000 for full-day kindergarten, $70,000 for a BOCES cultural arts program, $52,000 for a third-grade orchestra program and $120,000 for an additional special education teacher and two teaching assistants.

Harborfields residents have been vocal about wanting full-day kindergarten on the budget and one group, Fair Start: Harborfields Residents for Full-Day Kindergarten, traveled to Albany to seek help from state legislators on making it possible.

Rachael Risinger, a member of Fair Start, said she and the organization are elated to see a budget pass with full-day kindergarten on the menu.

“We are extremely thankful the Harborfields community came together to pass this year’s school budget,” she said in an email. “Kindergarten orientation was this week and we’ve heard from so many parents how excited their young kids are to go to full-day kindergarten starting in September. Now they will have the same fair start as every kindergarten student on Long Island.”

The district needed a 60 percent supermajority to override the cap in its budget, and with 2,099 votes in favor and 1,017 votes against, the supermajority was achieved.

Superintendent Diana Todaro said she is pleased with the outcome.

“It’s a budget that supports and meets the needs of all of our children, from kindergarten through the high school,” she said. “We just want to thank our community, parents, staff members and especially the board of education who supported us throughout this entire process.”

Ianni, who will be taking over for Todaro in 2017 as superintendent, said he is excited to work with the programs in this budget next year. “I’m very exited and pleased for the students and the community, [for] all the programs that we’re going to have,” he said. “I’m really excited [to go] into the new school year as the new superintendent in January, [with] these kinds of programs in place.”

Incumbent Hansen Lee and newcomer Colleen Wolcott were also voted in as school board members for the upcoming year, with 1,569 and 1,301 votes, respectively.

“I am extremely excited about the passing of this historic budget, and how the community came together for all of our kids,” Lee said. “[And] I am excited about my second term and [am] looking forward to more exciting things to come at Harborfields.”

Wolcott said she is eager to get started.

“I’m very excited to serve my community more than I have already been doing,” she said. “It is my honor. I’m excited to have a voice on the board of education and to work collaboratively with the district to make it better than it already is.”

Challengers Chris Kelly (1,001 votes), Marge Acosta (992 votes) and Joseph Savaglio (571 votes) fell short in their own bids.

Assistant principal Tim Russo smiles at the board of education meeting before his appointment as principal is announced. Photo by Alex Petroski

The Tornadoes have a new leader.

Assistant Principal Tim Russo was appointed principal of Harborfields High School Tuesday night at a board of education meeting.

Russo has been a part of the district for 15 years now, holding several roles over that time as an athletic coach, social studies teacher, student manager, and assistant principal.

“I think my experience in the district, being here so long, gave me an understanding of the culture of the district and the school itself,” Russo said of why he thinks he makes a good fit for the job.

Russo said he’s enjoyed his time at Harborfields and he feels like his time spent there has been an ideal scenario.

“This is the first district I ever worked in, and I couldn’t really see myself ever leaving the district,” he said. “I’m just so happy here. And this is a perfect fit for me; it felt like everything kind of aligned. You’re in the spot that you’d love to be, you get the opportunity to move forward professionally and continue to work still with all of your closest friends and colleagues.”

Current Principal Dr. Rory J. Manning is leaving the position to take over for Francesco Ianni as assistant superintendent for administration and human resources next year. And Ianni is leaving his post to become superintendent of the district, as it was announced earlier this year that Diana Todaro would be retiring in 2017.

“It has been a pleasure to work with Mr. Russo these past years in his roles as teacher, student manager and assistant principal,” Todaro said in a letter to the district. “I wish Mr. Russo much success in his new role and I am extremely confident that he will lead the high school through many new initiatives, in addition to ensuring the high standards of excellence.”

Ianni has been working with Russo for years, originally when Ianni was an assistant principal at the high school and Russo only just a social studies teacher there.

“He’s a great guy with an outstanding personality that works well with kids and the faculty,” Ianni said in a phone interview. “He’s been a great teacher, and coach, and in all of the communities here, he is very well respected. It’s always difficult to bring a great school to next level, but he has the ingredients to be successful and to provide students with the necessary support to go to the next level.”

Russo said is he up to the challenge of bringing the high school to that next level.

“I’ve been given the opportunity to take the school from being outstanding to maybe just a little bit more outstanding,” he said. “I want to be a guide, to lead the faculty and let them understand that we’re confident in everything we do in the buing and we just want to continue to do the right thing for the kids and make sure we continue to be great.”

Alex Petroski contributed reporting.

The 2016 Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame induction class was honored at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge. Photo by Alex Petroski

By Alex Petroski

Greatness in the world of athletics was on display to be celebrated Friday night. Members of the 27th class of the Suffolk County Sports Hall of Fame were inducted at a ceremony held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge. They will join past inductees like Boomer Esiason and Craig Biggio in the pantheon of impactful Suffolk sports figures.

“Each year we induct the very best of Suffolk County,” Master of Ceremonies and 1999 Hall of Fame inductee David Weiss said to kick off the evening. “These are men and women on and off the playing field who had a positive and lasting impact, and have left a legacy for all of Suffolk County.”

Among the inductees were Northport star lacrosse player Jill Byers; Setauket resident and 27-year New York Jets beat reporter, Rich Cimini; legendary Harborfields football coach and Smithtown football star, Tom Combs; the first varsity boys’ basketball coach at Comsewogue, Frank Romeo; and Deer Park three-sport standout and football All-American at Stony Brook University, Chuck Downey. Richie LoNigro, owner of Port Jefferson Sporting Goods, which has been open since 1973, was also honored with a special recognition award.

Byers graduated from Northport in 2005. She is the only athlete to be named All-Long Island team in three sports during her high school career, playing basketball, soccer and lacrosse. She was a two-time All-American in lacrosse during high school, and also received the distinction four times during her career at the University of Notre Dame. She also competed on the United States women’s lacrosse national team.

“African proverb states that it takes a village to raise a child,” Byers said during the ceremony Friday. She credited, among others, her three older brothers for her success, stating that they never let her win at anything. “Thank you to my village for giving me the opportunity to represent you here tonight.”

Setauket resident Rich Cimini was inducted into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as a beat reporter for the New York Jets. Photo by Alex Petroski
Setauket resident Rich Cimini was inducted into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as a beat reporter for the New York Jets. Photo by Alex Petroski

Cimini is the longest tenured Jets beat reporter in team history, working for the Daily News, Newsday and for the past six years, ESPN. He has received awards from the Associated Press and the Pro Football Writers of America for his work over the years.

He joked that he didn’t feel like he belonged in a class with people who accomplished so much on the field, being that his accomplishments took place entirely in the press box.

“I feel like the nerd who got invited to the cool kids party,” Cimini said.

He mentioned his supportive parents and his understanding wife of 25 years, who is okay with planning their lives yearly around the NFL schedule.

“She’s the real hall of famer in our family,” Cimini said of his wife Michelle, who is actually a lifelong New York Giants season ticket holder.

Tom Combs has been the athletic director in the Patchogue-Medford school district since 2003. Before that, he played Division II football at Ashland University in Ohio following his four years at Smithtown. He became the head football coach at Harborfields in 1990, where he won five county championships and two Long Island Championships over a 13-year run.

“I am humbled by the talent and accomplishments of this class,” Combs said. “I’m just very honored and blessed to be up here.”

Combs has two daughters who followed in his footsteps and became teachers and coaches.. He thanked his family, friends and players for helping him to achieve the successes that led to his induction.

“Being a football coach is always something I wanted to do,” he said, adding that his players earning scholarships to attend college and play football was always important to him. “That’s what I’m always proud of as a coach.”

In 1968, Frank Romeo became the first varsity basketball coach at Comsewogue. During a 24-year span, Romeo led Comsewogue to eight league titles, one large school Section XI title and 15 straight playoff appearances. From 1987 to 1990, Romeo’s record was 62-5. He left Comsewogue to become the head basketball coach at Suffolk County Community College in 1992, where he made the playoffs in all of his seven seasons there.

Romeo used the word “we” repeatedly about his spot in the Hall of Fame.

“For all of my former players at Comsewogue and at Suffolk Community College — they were the main ingredient in the term ‘we,’” he said. “They did the playing and they made the sacrifices. Some years we were good enough to win championships and other years we played just as hard and we didn’t win championships. They can now be assured that they made their mark in Suffolk County. They got us to the Hall of Fame.”

Frank Romeo was inducted into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as varsity basketball coach at Comsewogue High School and Suffolk County Community College. Photo by Alex Petroski
Frank Romeo was inducted into the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as varsity basketball coach at Comsewogue High School and Suffolk County Community College. Photo by Alex Petroski

Chuck Downey was a standout wrestler, football player and lacrosse player during his years at Deer Park. He was a part of Stony Brook University’s first football team in 1984, where he still holds nearly 30 school records and 12 NCAA records. He was a three-time All-American while at Stony Brook, which earned him a professional contract with the National Football League’s Philadelphia Eagles. That marked the first time a Stony Brook athlete signed a professional sports contract. Downey has since followed in the footsteps of his father Raymond, an FDNY Battalion Chief. His father died in the line of duty on Sept. 11, 2001.

Weiss gave Downey a memorable introduction.

“What a great way to end a wonderful evening with an inductee who epitomizes the word hero from a family of heroes,” Weiss said of the last member to be announced.

Downey joked that he’d rather be in a burning building then standing in front of a room full of people to speak.

“I’m truly honored and deeply grateful to be up here tonight along with these other amazing athletes,” he said.

Many of Richie LoNigro’s 12 children, 25 grandchildren and five great grandchildren were present to honor the man who has become a fixture in Port Jefferson.

“I own a business that makes trophies and trophies are things that we’re all very proud of. I brought my trophies with me tonight and they’re all sitting out there in the audience,” he said, talking about his family. “These are my trophies and awards, and I take them with me wherever I go.”

To learn more about the Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame visit www.suffolksportshof.com.

By Elana Glowatz

Desperate times call for desperate budget measures.

For the first time in four years, a northern Suffolk County school district is taking aim at its tax levy cap, looking to bust through that state budget ceiling as more districts around New York do the same in tight times.

The New York State School Boards Association said the number of school districts seeking a supermajority of voter approval — 60 percent — to override their caps has doubled since last year. The group blames that trend on inflation.

tax-cap-graphicwThe state cap limits the amount a school district or municipality can increase its tax levy, which is the total amount collected in taxes, from budget to budget. While commonly referred to as a “2 percent tax cap,” it actually limits levy increases to 2 percent or the rate of inflation — whichever is lower — before certain excluded spending, like on capital projects and pension payments.

This year, the rate of inflation was calculated at just 0.12 percent and, after other calculations, the statewide average for an allowed tax levy increase will be 0.7 percent, according to NYSSBA.

“The quirks and vagaries of the cap formula mean it can fluctuate widely from year to year and district to district,” Executive Director Timothy G. Kremer said in a statement.

More school districts are feeling the pressure — a NYSSBA poll showed that 36 districts will ask voters to pass budgets that pop through their caps, double the number last year.

It may be easier said than done: Since the cap was enacted, typically almost half of proposed school district budgets that have tried to bust through it have failed at the polls. That’s compared to budgets that only needed a simple majority of support, which have passed 99 percent of the time since the cap started.

In 2012, the first year for the cap in schools, five districts on Suffolk’s North Shore sought to override it, including Mount Sinai, Comsewogue, Three Village, Rocky Point and Middle Country. Only the latter two were approved, forcing the others to craft new budget proposals and hold a second vote.

Middle Country barely squeaked by, with 60.8 percent of the community approving that budget, and Comsewogue just missed its target, falling shy by only 33 votes.

Numbers from the school boards’ association that year showed that more Long Island school districts had tried to exceed their caps and more budgets had failed than in any other region in the state.

But four years later, Harborfields school district is taking a shot.

Officials there adopted a budget that would increase its tax levy 1.52 percent next year, adding full-day kindergarten, a new high school music elective and a BOCES cultural arts program, among others. Harborfields board member Hansen Lee was “optimistic” that at least 60 percent of the Harborfields community would approve the budget.

“We’re Harborfields; we always come together for the success of our kids and the greater good,” Lee said.

The school boards’ association speculated that more school districts than just Harborfields would have tried to pierce their levy caps if not for a statewide boost in aid — New York State’s own budget increased school aid almost $25 billion, with $3 billion of that going specifically to Long Island.

Now that New York school districts have settled into the cap, Long Islanders’ eyes are on Harborfields, to see whether it becomes an example of changing tides.

Next Tuesday, Harborfields will see if it has enough public support to go where few Long Island districts have ever gone before, above and beyond the tax levy cap.

Harborfields High School. Photo by Victoria Espinoza

Five candidates are vying for two open seats on the Harborfields board of education.

Hansen Lee

Hansen-LeewIncumbent Hansen Lee is seeking a second term while board member Irene Gaughan is not seeking re-election.

In an interview with TBR News Media, Lee said he was the best option to represent the community because he is proactive with engaging students and parents.

“I haven’t missed a concert in the last eight years … and I attend at least one varsity and junior varsity sports game per team. I want to be visible, so that when I make a board decision, I have first-hand knowledge of what’s going and what the community thinks.”

Lee has served the district for the past 17 years with the Harborfields Alumni and Community Educational Foundation and as a district volunteer.

He said technology is an area he has worked to improve in the district. Instituting Wi-Fi, and the use of Google Chromebooks in schools are some of the accomplishments he is proud of initiating in his first term.

Chris Kelly

CK-PicwChris Kelly ran for a seat last year, and this year, said he wants to help the district think more long-term.

“Harborfields needs someone to go through the numbers, and I’d like to do some long-term planning,” he said in a phone interview. “I can predict variables and prepare us for years to come, and keep the district on top.”

Kelly has been working in the market data business for the past 19 years, and is a self-proclaimed “numbers guy.” He has volunteered for the Harborfields Get Out the Vote committee, the Parent Teacher Association, and has worked with Fair Start: Harborfields Residents for Full-Day Kindergarten.

“I get to see the glue that holds the school together,” he said.

Marge Acosta

Marge-Acosta-for-BOE-pic-grwMarge Acosta, a former primary school science teacher, threw her hat into the ring. The Centerport resident said she thinks her education experience and “insight on how children learn,” could be used to help bring in new programs to the district. Acosta said she would like to see more science, technology, engineering and math programs integrated into district curriculum.

“It is crucial for kids to have success in the future,” she said of these programs. “Obtaining a curriculum that is developmentally appropriate and effective in preparing our children for the 21st century must be our first priority.”

Acosta is a member of the Harborfields full-day kindergarten committee, Fair Start and the PTA.

Colleen WolcottColeen-Wolcottw

Fellow Centerport resident Colleen Wolcott also entered into the race. She has experience as a special education teacher and said she wants to “maximize opportunities for students with special needs,” bring additional electives to the high school, and develop marketing tools to improve communication and the dissemination of information between the board and the community.

Wolcott is the current president of the Harborfields Special Education Parent Teacher Association, and is a member of the district’s health and welfare committee, the Washington Drive PTA, and the Harborfields Alliance For Community Outreach.

“I’ve gotten in the trenches,” she said in a phone interview. “I know the administration well and I’ve gotten to see how it all works.”

Joseph Savaglio

Joe-SavagliowRounding out the panel of candidates is Joseph Savaglio, a Long Island native who said he wants to use his experience with overseeing budgets to help control costs and improve the educational system at Harborfields.

“I would like to see an expansion of curriculum in arts and languages,” he said, “as well as restore some programs we lost in special education and sports.”

Savaglio has been a resident for 27 years, and working with real estate management companies, has managed properties all over the country.

Harborfields' Jake Miller and Alex Martin makes their way around the track. Photo by Bill Landon

By Bill Landon

Rocky Point and Harborfields each looked to notch their first victory of the season Tuesday, but the Tornadoes’ boys’ track and field team blew past the Eagles on their home track, to win the League V meet, 103-38.

Harborfields' Randy Maldon leaps into the sand pit. Photo by Bill Landon
Harborfields’ Randy Maldon leaps into the sand pit. Photo by Bill Landon

Harborfields long jump standout Randy Maldon, a senior, was the talk of the event, taking first with a jump of 18-9 3/4, to come up well ahead of the second place finisher.

Maldon, who has competed in the event since his sophomore year, also runs winter track, and said the windy conditions affected his performance despite the positive turnout.

“The wind definitely throws off my steps — it’s pushing me back so I have to push harder, and it affects me in the air,” he said. “Going down the runway, I drifted to the left a little bit.”

The Tornadoes flexed their muscles early, dominating, the 1,600-meter to take the top five spots. First across the line for Harborfields was sophomore James DeSantis, who won the event in 4 minutes, 59:06 seconds. Harborfields senior Jake Miller won the 3,000 in 11:28.2, finishing just ahead of teammate Alexander Martin, a junior, as both runners traded the lead several times.

“It was windy, but I ran with my teammate Alex alternating laps and we would take turns blocking the wind,” Miller said. “We needed to see who had a little bit left with 800 meters left.”

Rocky Point’s Chris Valleau, a three-year varsity competitor, competed in the 200 and 400 dashes, and said he felt he underperformed.

“I can run better than I did today,” the junior said, adding that it had nothing to do with the windy conditions.

Rocky Point senior Kevin LaRosa, who competed in the 100 and 200, finished the races in 13 seconds and 28 seconds, respectively.

“I thought we underperformed as a team today — we certainly could’ve done better,” LaRosa said. “The conditions really didn’t affect me today in the shorter races, but it does in the longer distances.”

Cameron Cutler leaps over the hurdles for Rocky Point. Photo by Bill Landon
Cameron Cutler leaps over the hurdles for Rocky Point. Photo by Bill Landon

Alex DeMottie, a senior who competed in the high jump, 800 and 4×800 relay, echoed LaRosa’s and Valleau’s assessment that there was room for improvement.

“It wasn’t my best performance,” DeMottie said. “I’ve got to work harder to improve my times.”

Rocky Point head coach Chris Donadoni said in the end, his Eagles just faced a better team.

“I was pleased with our shotput and discus events today, although we didn’t get to see those because those events are held on the lower field,” the head coach said, adding that his assistant coach said each kid threw their best in both events. “It’s a growing process with this team. They’re real young and inexperienced, so each meet is an opportunity for all of them to learn something. We’ll look at each of their performances, but more importantly, how they prepare mentally for each event. They’ve made progress in their preparation since the start of the season.”

With the win, Harborfields improves to 1-2 as the Eagles fall to 0-3.

Rocky Point travels to Westhampton Beach on April 30 for an 8:30 a.m. meet.

Harborfields High School. Photo by Victoria Espinoza

Full-day kindergarten is one of the several new programs featured on the adopted 2016-17 budget for the Harborfields Central School District.

The board of education presented a cap-piercing $82.8 million budget last night, with a 1.52 percent increase to the tax levy cap.

Francesco Ianni, assistant superintendent for administration and human resources, speaks during the budget presentation. Photo by Victoria Espinoza
Francesco Ianni, assistant superintendent for administration and human resources, speaks during the budget presentation. Photo by Victoria Espinoza

The district has been looking at several options for a budget this year, some that stay within the .37 percent state-mandated tax levy cap and maintain current programs, and others that go above the cap but add new programs and features to the district.

The adopted budget included a new music elective at the high school, third grade string, a teacher’s aide testing room at Oldfield Middle School and a BOCES cultural arts program.

Since this proposed budget is higher than the tax levy cap, the budget will require a 60 percent supermajority of voter approval, and taxpayers in the area will not be eligible for the $130 state tax rebate, which is part of a state incentive program that encourages municipalities to comply with the cap in exchange for the tax rebates.

Board member Hansen Lee said he thinks the community will get behind this budget.

“I’m really optimistic that this budget will pass,” Lee said at the meeting. “We’re Harborfields, we always come together for the success of our kids and the greater good. Most of all I want to say thank you to the community for your continued input in the entire process.”

Many residents have said they will stand behind the budget due to the inclusion of full-day kindergarten, which the district said would cost about $600,000.

Members of the group Fair Start: Harborfields Residents for Full-Day Kindergarten, traveled to Albany in March, hoping to spread awareness of their efforts to support full-day kindergarten on a state stage.

Board member Suzie Lustig said it is time for full-day kindergarten.

“[Full-day kindergarten] is part of a 21st century education,” she said at the meeting. “It’s part of what our future is. The time is now to be progressive.”

Board member Donald W. Mastroianni recorded the only vote against the adopted budget.

“In my opinion, a budget that stays within the cap this year would absolutely be an educationally sounds and fiscally responsible budget,” he said. “And it will continue to fully support the excellence of Harborfields. I cannot support the budget proposed that would pierce the cap this year and I will be voting no.”

This year, the district received nearly $16 million in state aid, which will make up about 19 percent of the budget, according to the district. The 2016-17 tax levy of $62.1 million will make up 75 percent of the budget, and the final 6 percent will come from reserves and fund balance.

The Northport-East Northport Public Library’s budget was approved. File photo

The votes are in, and all library budgets in the Huntington area have passed.

The Harborfields Public Library $4.8 million budget passed with 244 votes in favor and 29 against, resulting in a 0 percent change from last year. Centerport resident David Clemens was also elected to the library’s board of trustees. Clemens is currently a trustee of the Suffolk County Historical Society and chairman of the library committee.

Huntington Public Library’ $8.8 million budget is also a 0 percent increase from the 2015-16 budget. There were 201 votes in favor to 34 against, and incumbent Trustee Charles Rosner was elected for another term.

Director Joanne Adam said the new fiscal year’s budget included expanding operating hours on Friday nights during the summer months so the library can be open until 9 p.m. on Friday nights yearlong. Another addition from the budget Adam touched upon is the library rejoining Partnership of Automated Library Systems.

“This will enable our patrons to pick up their hold items at any library in the county and will make the process of borrowing items from other libraries much easier,” Adam said.

Northport-East Northport had the highest vote count, with 408 votes in favor and 65 against for the nearly $9.8 million budget. The budget has a $21,100 overall increase in the tax levy.

Incumbent Margaret Hartough was re-elected as trustee there. She is currently the head of the teen services department at the Half Hollow Hills Community Library.

Finishing off the list is Cold Spring Harbor Library and Environmental Center, which passed the approximate $2 million budget, another budget with a 0 percent increase, with 143 votes in favor and 22 against.

Trustees Dana Lynch, Gayle Quaglia and George Schwertl were re-elected for another term.

“The residents of Cold Spring Harbor have continually demonstrated their commitment to the Library,” Director Roger Podell said in a letter posted on the library’s website.

The Northport Public Library. File photo from library

It’s budget season for libraries across Huntington Town, and they’re looking to keep costs low.

The Northport-East Northport Public Library has proposed an overall lower budget, but with a slight increase in the tax levy. The total budget is an approximate $160,000 decrease from last year’s; however, the board is proposing to collect $21,000 more in taxes than the year before.

Among the reasons for this is the fact that the library had $165,000 in unrestricted fund appropriation for last year’s budget, but not this year. Compared to revenues collected last year, the library expects to collect about $181,000 less.

The biggest costs for this year’s budget include employee salaries, health insurance, books and electronic resources.

Northport-East Northport 30-year-resident Margaret Hartough is running for re-election as library trustee. She is currently the head of the teen services department at the Half Hollow Hills Community Library.

“The Northport-East Northport Public Library has always been a special place for me and my family,” she said in a statement. “My children spent many hours at the library, and benefited from all the great resources and wonderful programs. I believe the library is truly the heart of the community and strong libraries build strong communities.”

Over at Huntington Public Library, the board of trustees has proposed a 0 percent increase for the budget; asking residents to approve the same approximate $8.8 million budget as last year.

The Harborfields Public Library. File photo
The Harborfields Public Library. File photo

Compared to the 2015-16 budget, building renovation costs are less than half of last year’s, with a difference of about $540,000. This contributes to the 0 percent overall increase. Costs are also going down by 80 percent for printing supplies and 100 percent for bibliographic utility, which is a service that provides record keeping.

Library trustee incumbent Charles Rosner is running unopposed for re-election. He first joined the board in 2011. Rosner received an MBA from Harvard Business School and before retiring in 2002 was a CEO at Gemcoware in Hauppauge.

Harborfields Public Library is following suit with Huntington and proposing a 0 percent increase for its 2016-17 budget, with a $4.8 million overall total. Most of the library’s costs mirror last year’s numbers, with the biggest difference in retirement and health insurance. Retirement costs decreased by $83,000, and health insurance costs increased by $50,000.

Centerport resident David Clemens is running for a seat in the Harborfields Public Library board of trustees. He previously served as a trustee for the Huntington Historical Society and the Greenlawn-Centerport Historical Association. Clemens is currently a trustee of the Suffolk County Historical Society and chairman of the library committee there.

Finishing out the Huntington area is Cold Spring Harbor Library, with a proposed budget of about $2 million and an overall 0 percent increase. By far the biggest item on the budget is salaries for employees, which comes in at just over $1 million.

According to the library’s website, highlights of the budget include supporting vital programs like free e-books and homework help.

Residents can cast their votes on Tuesday, April 5, at their respective libraries.