The aging and "neglected" infrastructure of the Riverhead water district will get an overhaul, Supervisor Sean Walter announced this week. He has assigned special projects manager David Cullen to work with water district superintendent Gary Pendzick to develop and implement an improvement plan to help meet the town's ever-increasing public water demands, especially in the peak summer months.
If the MTA eliminates service on the Greenport branch, in keeping with its announcement Friday, the state should at least repeal the MTA payroll tax instituted last May to bail out the financially troubled transportation authority, according to state, county and local elected officials.
Gathered outside the shuttered Riverhead railroad station in the blowing rain Monday morning to protest the MTA's plan to axe service on the Greenport branch, Assemblyman Marc Alessi, County Legislator Ed Romaine, Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter and Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell were united in their expressions of outrage over the transportation authority's plans to cease train service on the Greenport branch east of Ronkonkoma beginning in September. They all called for an immediate repeal of the new MTA payroll tax, imposed over the objections of local state legislators last year. Alessi said he and Senator Ken LaValle, who was not at the press conference because the State Senate was in session, would immediately introduce bills in both chambers of the State Legislature to repeal the controversial new payroll tax. The new tax — 34 cents on every $100 of payroll, including municipal, school and special district payrolls, was passed by the legislature last year to avert massive fare hikes and drastic service reductions throughout the system of trains, buses and subways serving the metropolitan area.
Former Riverhead Supervisor Bob Kozakiewicz was appointed part-time deputy town attorney by the Riverhead Town Board at its regular meeting Jan. 20. The former supervisor will serve a minimum of 20 hours per week in his new post and receive compensation of $44,000 per year, plus benefits including health insurance.
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday unanimously approved a bill to rename the Riverhead post office as the “Private First Class Garfield M. Langhorn Post Office Building,” in honor of one of Riverhead's Vietnam War heroes.
The bill was introduced by Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) to honor the Riverhead Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, who was killed in Vietnam Jan. 15, 1969 when he threw himself on a live grenade to save fellow soldiers.
“As they conduct business each day, the people of Riverhead who visit the post office will be reminded of PFC Langhorn's extraordinary service and sacrifice, and can reflect on the true value of freedom,” said Bishop during a speech on the House floor. “They will know that PFC Garfield M. Langhorn was a national hero, and the values for which he gave his life – honor, loyalty, family – will forever be memorialized.”