Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Up until last week’s piece on the Nassau Coliseum, the focus of my work for the Long Island Press has been mostly a critical look at recent planning efforts undertaken by Suffolk County. Notable examples include my analysis of the flawed Connect Long Island plan, criticisms concerning the Suffolk County’s lackluster water protection planning efforts, and my take on the recent “regional planning alliance” that was formed to shepherd through the Ronkonkoma Hub.The focus on Suffolk is intentional – simply put, Suffolk County is where the urban planning action (if it can be called that) is on Long Island. With roughly 46,000 acres of vacant open space left, multiple opportunities for redevelopment, and room for expansion, Suffolk is where any meaningful development policies can still be enacted on Long Island. Suffolk County’s policymakers routinely discuss land use issues. In Nassau, they toss tax breaks at political insiders while praying for the best. Even worse is that planning is needed just as much in Nassau as it is in Suffolk. Nassau is a stagnant county, and even worse off in regards to regional planning. Simply put, there is no body of work to build future strategies upon.Suffolk has a rich legacy of planning efforts that over the course of recent administrations has become watered-down and special-interest driven, which is a disservice to the process itself. Good policies have been enacted, continued and expanded, but others leave room for improvement. And that is why I write about these important issues in the first place.Late last week, Suffolk released the latest iteration of its “Comprehensive Master Plan.” Entitled Framework for the Future, this document lays out the county’s growth strategies through 2035. Interestingly enough, Suffolk already produced such a plan in 2011, and the Long Island Regional Planning Council studied Sustainable Strategies for Long Island 2035 in 2010. Both documents are detailed and lengthy (the LIRPC plan is around 230 pages), making the 76-page document just released by Suffolk seem quaint by comparison.Compared to the other efforts, the new report reads like a series of disjointed press releases from the Suffolk County Executive’s office. Essentially it is the same series of solutions that are pushed routinely. A true inventory that quantifies regional needs is missing. Where is a detailed housing analysis, data-backed commercial and industrial analysis, transportation assessment or the like? In the past, the county’s housing studies alone were 120 pages. In total, the latest plan, minus the introductions and the platitudes, has a mere 48 pages of written analysis. Quality vs. quantity is not the argument here because much of what is presented is clearly recycled content from the administration’s previous press releases, statements and Suffolk County reports. The previous studies were lengthy and dense – each page filled with facts, figures and recommendations.By itself, the latest version is not a bad document. The data included in it covers several years as it should. Arguably, the 2011 plan did all of the groundwork already, but what is troubling is that the current document released by the Steve Bellone administration makes no reference to any of the previous 2035 plans, even in passing. There has to be a better way to bring cohesion to these efforts.And they must go beyond photo ops and luncheon appearances featuring smiling county executives. At least, Suffolk provides a fertile ground for policy debate, creation and incubation. Not so west of Route 110. Recently, Nassau’s comptroller of all people had to take the reins to bring about a much needed discussion of the county’s future, hosting a series of public hearings and even going so far as to write a strategic plan in regards to retaining LI’s millennial generation. Time is running out for Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and Suffolk County Executive Bellone to make a coordinated meaningful difference in meeting the Island’s ever-pressing needs.Our woes don’t respect the county line, and we have to stop planning at the regional level like they do.Rich Murdocco writes about Long Island’s land use and real estate development issues. He received his Master’s in Public Policy at Stony Brook University, where he studied regional planning under Dr. Lee Koppelman, Long Island’s veteran master planner. Murdocco is a regular contributor to the Long Island Press. More of his views can be found on www.TheFoggiestIdea.org or follow him on Twitter @TheFoggiestIdea.
Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on February 14, 2020 at 2:28 pm Syracuse (14-10, 7-6 Atlantic Coast) has two more chances at a marquee win ahead of the ACC tournament. The first is Saturday afternoon against No. 8 Florida State (20-4,10-2). SU has lost three of four and leading scorer Elijah Hughes is dealing with a lower-body injury suffered before the Orange’s last game. Here’s what our beat writers predict for the matchup: Nick Alvarez (16-8)One moreFlorida State 84, Syracuse 73The Orange should be given credit for how close the North Carolina State game was despite losing Hughes. But, moral victories don’t matter anymore. And Syracuse’s resume needs wins. The path to 20 is getting murkier and Florida State won’t make it any clearer. The Seminoles haven’t lost at home, force turnovers and protect the rim. SU’s recent struggles from 3 may only compound its issues. The Orange may put up a tougher fight if Hughes returns, but this season is on the brink. Michael McCleary (15-9)Nole chance.Florida State 87, Syracuse 65Syracuse might not have Hughes for this game, and it’s an unlikely win from the start. That’s a recipe for a disaster. The Orange need one of these next two games (Florida State or Louisville) to keep its tournament hopes alive. To do that, SU would need some kind of otherworldly performance. The loss the other day didn’t destroy them, but this game sure can. It’s a big one for Syracuse, but Florida State is going for a No. 1 seed and has a lot of incentive to crush the Orange’s chances.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textJosh Schafer (16-8)No sunshine in that stateFlorida State 85 Syracuse 71 The Seminoles are one of the few consistently good teams in a bad ACC. It’s a tough road game from the start. Add in the fact that the conference’s second-leading scorer might not play for Syracuse and, if he does, he’ll likely be hurting. FSU hasn’t lost at home this year and will pressure Syracuse defensively all game long. The Orange need strong shooting from Buddy Boeheim and Joe Girard III to have a chance at winning. If Syracuse gets that, then anything can happen. It is, after all, the ACC in 2020. Comments
Former Black Starlets coach, Isaac Opeele Boateng has described the head coach of the Black Stars, Avram Grant, as a ‘safety’ coach and not a risk taker.According to the former Asante Kotoko Coach, the Israeli tactician hasn’t been the best in terms of player selection for matches.Grant called up a number of new players for Ghana’s friendly matches against Senegal and Mali, but many of them were unused substitutes.Ebenezer Assifuah, Seidu Salifu and Jeffery Schlupp were all not part of the AFCON 2015 squad, but were included in the list for the friendly matches in France. Assifuah and Salifu were unused substitutes in both matches.Coach Opeele believes Avram Grant should have emulated the style of his predecessor and used the opportunity of the friendlies to try the two. “I can tell you Avram Grant is not a risk taker, he is a safety coach. How can you play friendly matches without testing your newly called players? “We are tired of the old faces. Bring on the new boys to exhibit what they have,” he charged, speaking on Asempa FM’s Ultimate Sports Morning Show.“[Former] coach Kwesi Appiah brought a lot of new players when he was the head coach of Black Stars and these players are still performing incredibly for the nation. Why is Avram Grant not doing same?”Christian Atsu, one of Kwesi Appiah’s products, won the overall best player in the 2015 AFCON in Equatorial Guinea, and a lot of Ghanaians are praising the ‘Silent Killer’ – as Appiah was called by his players – for the opportunity he also gave others like Albert Adomah, David Accam and Jeffery Schlupp from which the Black Stars is benefiting now.Grant led the Black Stars to second place in the 2015 AFCON tournament, but the former Chelsea trainer believes his charges can achieve more. –