There's plenty of news happening on any given day in Port Jefferson, and the same can be said for the towns around us. Here's a look at what's making headlines in nearby Patch towns.
From Sachem Patch: Cops Seek Trio That Robbed Holtsville Store. Police are seeking the public's help in identifying and locating three suspects who robbed The Barn convenience store in Holtsville earlier this month. According to police, on March 12 a woman with two passengers pulled up to the barn and ordered a soda. While the cashier turned to fill the order, a black male passenger wearing a ski mask hopped out of the car with a shotgun and demanded money. The cashier complied and the three suspects fled the scene.
From Miller Place-Rocky Point Patch: Rocky Point Supe's Budget Won't Pierce Cap; Teachers Union Speaks Out. After passing a budget last year that exceeded the tax levy cap and passed with over 60 percent of the vote needed, the 2013-14 Rocky Point School District budget proposed by Superintendent Michael Ring would not pierce the cap. At Monday's budget hearing at Rocky Point High School, Ring proposed a $74,261,582 budget, which would be an increase of 3.75 percent over last year's. It includes a projected levy increase of 3.56 percent, which is at the cap for the district.
From Smithtown Patch: . While discussing options the district has with proposing the upcoming budget, Superintendent Anthony Annunziato said there is an option to present a budget that would pierce the tax cap. A 60-percent super-majority approved vote would be needed to approve the 4.7 percent proposed tax levy. During the next budget hearing, set for April 2 at 7 p.m. in the Joseph M. Barton Building on New York Avenue, the district will provide a glimpse into the fiscal future of the district, which could include the possibility of bankruptcy.
From Kings Park Patch: Hightower Homes Spared Wrecking Ball for 2 Weeks. Smithtown officials have temporarily spared Hightower Homes from a date with a wrecking ball, giving the new owner two weeks to make the property safe. Smithtown Town Board voted unanimously to revoke their Feb. 28 resolution that allowed town workers to enter Hightower houses, at 77 and 81 Main Street in Kings Park, to clean up or demolish the vacant buildings, deemed unsafe by building inspectors.
From Three Village Patch: Chabad ‘Friendship Circle’ Seeks Teen Volunteers. In a Detroit suburb a decade ago, a teacher wanted to encourage a teenager to get involved in the community. The Friendship Circle – an organization which pairs teen volunteers and youth with special needs to facilitate fun and friendship – was born. Since then, the Friendship Circle has inspired 100 other branches of the program around the country, including a program at Chabad at Stony Brook established seven years ago. "This is about friendship, social life," said Rabbi Shalom Ber Cohen of Chabad at Stony Brook, who runs The Friendship Circle with his wife, Chanie. "The program thrives because the teenagers feel very good about themselves and the parents are happy and the kids are happy. It feeds its own success. It really is brilliant." But Chabad SB's Friendship Circle is in need of volunteers to continue "curing loneliness with love." According to Rabbi Cohen, for every two volunteers the organization gets, 10 families with special needs children want to participate.