Kevin Canty, commander of the Howard Lathrop Post 2307 VFW in Lynbrook, told of being deployed to Afghanistan a month after his first child was born in 2008. “It really tarnishes the image of [the village motto] ‘Lynbrook USA,’” he said of the board’s decision. “When we answered the call there was no means testing.”
Pat Cardone, ex-commander of the post, said he would have liked the board to reach out to the veterans community prior to the vote. “Even if it was to appease us,” he said, “the right thing to do was to have us involved.”
School districts near Lynbrook have passed the exemption in recent weeks, including East Rockaway, Malverne, Rockville Centre and Valley Stream’s three elementary districts. The Hewlett-Woodmere district did not vote on a resolution due to a lack of public input.
“This does not diminish our respect for the veterans and our appreciation of how they have served this country,” Bresnihan said. “We did what we think is fair for our entire community.”
East Rockaway approves exemption
The East Rockaway Board of Education unanimously passed its resolution on March 11. The average non-veteran village taxpayer will pay $49 more per year in school taxes, according to Dr. Joan Colvin, the school district’s director of finance and operations. Some 349 veterans live in the district.
The board held a hearing on the resolution on March 4, at which it heard from veterans in the community. Board President Kristin Ochtera said she and her colleagues thanked them for their service. “Considering the sacrifices and the duty that they have performed for our country and our community … we felt that this was [a way] to honor them,” she said.
Pat Iuliucci, quartermaster of the Robert F. Garrison VFW Post 3350 in East Rockaway, said that the exemption would be good for local veterans. “We hope by doing things like this that the younger veterans will be able to stay here and live on Long Island,” he said. “Any kind of savings adds up.”
Gold Star Parent Exemption