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Monday, November 24, 2014
Elmont library grant may to go schools instead

A state grant that was made available to the Elmont Library four years ago may be revoked.

The Dormitory Authority of New York informed the library Board in 2009 that a $100,000 grant was available. Library officials confirmed at the time that they planned to accept the grant, and intended to use it for a parent-child learning room.

State Sen. Jack Martins, who represents the 7th District, claims that the library board did not submit the paperwork necessary to secure the grant, and that he learned at a January meeting that the library had found other sources to fund the project. Martins, who took office in 2011 and was not involved in securing the original grant, now intends to redirect it to the Elmont School District.

Library Business Consultant Frank Marino contends that he discussed the grant with Martins at the January meeting and that Martins suggested that the library reapply for the grant for another project that Marino detailed — new solar panels.

But according to Martins, the library board did not notify the state that it no longer needed the grant for the learning room, and never submitted details for a new project. Marino maintains that the forms the library received in March still referred to the original project, and that calls requesting that the purpose of the grant be revised on the paperwork have not been returned.

Library Trustee Patrick Nicolosi and Elmont Schools Superintendent Albert Harper both told the Herald last week that they had applied for $100,000 grants from the Dormitory Authority. Harper said he would use the grant funding to refurbish the auditorium at the Clara H. Carlson School.

Martins sent a letter to the library on June 14, stating his intent to have the grant to the library withdrawn and redirected to the school district. The library board will discuss the issue at a meeting on Thursday.

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