10/19/14 10:15am
The candidates for a Southold Town Trustee seat, Abigail Field and David Bergen, at Saturday's debate. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

The candidates for Southold Town Trustee, Democratic challenger Abigail Field and Republican incumbent Dave Bergen, at Saturday’s debate. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

The two candidates in the Southold Town Trustee special election agreed on most of the issues at an East Marion Community Association debate Saturday.

The Nov. 4 trustee election pits Republican incumbent Dave Bergen against Democratic challenger Abigail Field.  (more…)

09/30/14 3:04pm
Tom Schiliro (left) and Anthony Palumbo, who are running for the  first district state assembly seat, debated Monday night in Riverhead. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

Tom Schiliro (left) and Anthony Palumbo, who are running for the second district state Assembly seat, debated Monday night in Riverhead. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

The Women’s Equality Act, and specifically, the parts of it dealing with abortion, was a hotly debated issue between the two candidates for the second district state Assembly seat during a debate Monday night at Polish Hall in Riverhead, which was sponsored and moderated by news website RiverheadLocal.com.  (more…)

09/29/14 12:00pm
United Riverhead Terminal in Northville plans to convert two of the existing petroleum tanks on its property to gasoline storage tanks. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

United Riverhead Terminal in Northville plans to convert two of the existing petroleum tanks on its property to gasoline storage tanks. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

Remember the gasoline shortage that followed Hurricane Sandy? Things like that could be less likely to happen after future storms, given a proposal to store more than 4.8 million gallons of gas in Northville holding tanks that now contain oil.

The plan for the 287-acre United Riverhead Terminals property on Sound Shore Road will be subject to a public hearing before the Riverhead Town Board. A hearing date of Tuesday, Oct. 21, at 7 p.m. has been discussed but not yet formally approved.

“The project was initiated after the response we received from government officials during Superstorm Sandy,” said Scott Kamm, general manager of United Riverhead Terminals.

When Long Island was crippled by a gasoline shortage during the power outage cause by Sandy, officials asked if URT had gasoline storage capability. But at the time, it stored only petroleum, Mr. Kamm said.

The company, which acquired the former Northville Industries property in 2012, now plans to convert two existing tanks to store gasoline. It also wants to build two additional 19,000-gallon tanks for blending 10 percent ethanol into the gasoline. There are currently 20 storage tanks at the facility.

The two tanks to be converted are on the north side of Sound Shore Road. One tank, with a capacity of 87,000 barrels of oil, will hold 2.7 million gallons of regular gasoline; the other, which can hold 67,000 barrels, will contain 2.1 million gallons of premium gasoline, according to URT. (One barrel equates to 31.5 gallons.) The project already has state Department of Environmental Conservation approval, according to Mr. Kamm.

The proposal doesn’t technically require a special permit, since it isn’t a 10 percent expansion, according to town environmental engineer Joe Hall. However, Town Board members decided to hold the hearing anyway, because Northville residents had inquired about the project.

Supervisor Sean Walter also suggested that URT do a traffic analysis for the intersection of Sound Avenue, Pennys Road and Northville Turnpike.

09/19/14 2:04pm
Long Beard Brewing Co. owner Paul Carlin is gearing up for a move to Riverhead. (Courtesy) For more photos visit:

Craig Waltz of Long Beard and others in the craft brew scene look to Riverhead as the beer ‘hub.’ For more photos

Over the years, Riverhead has sought to be a lot of things.

But a hub for craft beer?

That’s what one prospective brewer says it’s becoming, and it’s what’s drawing his company to the area. Long Beard Brewing Co. is an up-and-coming craft beer brewer that’s looking for a home in Riverhead.

They’re eying the Second Street firehouse near downtown. See northforker.com for more.

09/15/14 12:50pm
Andrew Hubner of Shoreham-Wading River High School, physics teacher Andrew Kolchin, Asia McElroy from Riverhead High School and former Riverhead High School student Phil Becker of Bay Shore do some experiments with Newtown's Cradle Friday at BOCES' new Regional STEM high school in Bellport. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

Andrew Hubner of Shoreham-Wading River High School, physics teacher Andrew Kolchin, Asia McElroy from Riverhead High School and former Riverhead High School student Phil Becker of Bay Shore do some experiments with Newton’s Cradle Friday at BOCES’ new Regional STEM high school in Bellport. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

How often do high school graduates wonder how they will ever use the things they learned in high school once they get into the “real world?”

For Andrew Hubner of Shoreham, at least, that’s not a question right now.

The Shoreham-Wading River High School junior is one of seven students from eastern Suffolk County who are attending the county’s first high school focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics — otherwise known as a STEM school.

“I’m hoping to get into chemical engineering because that’s my passion, and I’m hoping to build a good foundation for when I go off to college,” said Andrew.

Eastern Suffolk BOCES opened its first regional STEM high school — open to students throughout the region — this fall at its Gary Bixhorn Technical Center in Bellport.

The opening comes in the wake of steps being taken across the country to improve America’s educational standing on the global stage in scientific fields.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, the nation ranks 25th in mathematics and 17th in science among industrialized nations. And while only  16 percent of high school seniors are interested in a STEM career, the DOE reports, science-based careers are among the most expected to increase through 2020.

The White House issued a 143-page report in May of last year detailing continued efforts to increase STEM funding through a variety of channels, namely the federal government’s Race to the Top program as well as efforts to hire and re-educate the nation’s K-12 science and math teachers. And last week, state Sen. Ken LaValle (R-Port Jefferson) was on hand to issue a $100,000 check from New York State.

The Gary Bixhorn Tech Center only has 7 students in its first year, in part because the funding for it didn’t arrive until July, by which time most students had already set their schedule for this semester, physics teacher Edward Moloney said. In addition, this first year is only eligible for high school juniors, whereas next year and in subsequent years, the school will have juniors and seniors.

The students can still participate in sports, graduation and other programs at their home districts.

Pooling regional resources for the select group who decide to take the STEM curriculum opens doors for the students and school districts alike, said Riverhead Assistant Superintendent for curriculum and instruction David Wicks.

“That’s the beauty of this type of program,” he said. “With just two kids, it’s not feasible for us to do this in-house. But with a regional program, you can support the program.”

All school districts in the region pay into the administrative budget for Eastern Suffolk BOCES, and only districts with students participating in the STEM school pay, on a per pupil basis.

Mr. Moloney’s classroom has a 3D printer, where students can design objects on the computer and then see them actually built on the 3D printer. The printer had made a working, adjustable wrench in a prior demonstration, Andrew said.

There’s also a wind tunnel in the class, where students will design a turbine and then be graded on which turbine produced the most energy, and made the least noise, Mr. Moloney said. Also in the classroom is a solar-powered oven, capable of reaching temperatures as high as 350-degrees, he added.

In addition, engineering and architecture software such Auto CAD (computer aided design)

“The STEM high school is based on ‘Project Lead the Way’ engineering curriculum, which is a college-level curriculum that is being taught to high school students,” Mr. Moloney said.

Project Lead The Way (PLTW) is a nonprofit organization that develops hands-on, project-based STEM curricula for use by schools.

As far as the course load goes, in their junior year, students will take four credits of Project Lead the Way engineering, along with algebra, trigonometry, pre-calculus or AP Calculus; AP or Regents Physics; English 11; physical education and health; and U.S. History.

In their senior year, students will take four periods of PLTW engineering, an internship program, English, pre-calculus or AP calculus, AP or Regents chemistry, physical education and economics/government.

“When they finish this course, they will have skills that they can use in the real world engineering environment or they can choose to go on to college,” Mr. Moloney said, adding that college credits will be available to colleges such as Rochester Institute of Technology, among others.

Asia McElroy of Riverhead High School is hoping to get into the field of biomedical engineering, and she is also attending the STEM school.

“There’s a shortage of female engineers and I’ve heard companies are looking for more female engineers,” Asia said.

She’s also the only female in the engineering class. While the school only started on Sept. 1, she says, “I like it. It’s very direct.”

Schools like this could become the wave of the future, Mr. Moloney said.

“There’s a STEM shortage out there right now and it’s predicted that the STEM occupations will grow twice as fast as the rest of the industry, so it’s very relevant to the students now,” Mr. Moloney said.

The STEM school, held in a classroom that previous was used for a cosmetology class, has a number of Riverhead connections.

Mr. Wicks and former Riverhead assistant superintendent Peggy Staib, who is now an associate superintendent for the Eastern Suffolk Board of Cooperative Educational Services, are the co-chairs of the STEM High School advisory board for BOCES, and Sam McAleese, the principal of Bixhorn Tech, is a former principal at the BOCES Harry B. Ward Technical Center in Riverhead.

Julie Lutz, Eastern Suffolk BOCES chief operating officer, confirmed that Mr. LaValle has stressed the need for such a school many times to them, and she’s happy to finally deliver.

“You watch something in the planning stages for so many, many months and then you actually see it come to fruition, it really is an amazing thing,” she said Friday.

Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that one student involved in the program is from Southold. One student from the district registered, though opted not to attend, according to a spokesperson.

08/17/14 11:07am
Marco and Ann Borghese. (Credit: Jane Starwood file photo)

Marco and Ann Borghese. (Credit: Jane Starwood file photo)

Marco Borghese might have been a prince in his native Italy, but those who knew him here remembered him as a man with an approachability that belied his noble roots.

“He never needed the spotlight,” his son Fernando told a crowd of mourners at Our Lady Of Ostrabrama Church in Cutchogue. “He was always more concerned about everybody else around him.”

Read more from the service on northforker.com

08/07/14 9:31pm
FILE PHOTO COURTESY OF SILVERWOOD FILMS | The cast and producers of 'Phoebe in Wonderland' gathered at a premiere party at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah in 2008. Left to right: Bill Pullman, Felicity Huffman, Doug Dey and Lynette Howell of Silverwood Films, Elle Fanning, co-producer Ben Barnz, Patricia Clarkson, and writer/director Daniel Barnz. 1/30/2008

FILE PHOTO COURTESY OF SILVERWOOD FILMS | The cast and producers of ‘Phoebe in Wonderland’ gathered at a premiere party at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah in 2008. Left to right: Bill Pullman, Felicity Huffman, Doug Dey and Lynette Howell of Silverwood Films, Elle Fanning, co-producer Ben Barnz, Patricia Clarkson, and writer/director Daniel Barnz. 1/30/2008

Douglas Dey, a former Southold resident and Calverton businessman, was sentenced to 42 months in jail Wednesday for his part in a $25 million bribery scheme, according to federal officials.

Mr. Dey, who had a manufacturing business at the Enterprise Park at Calverton called South Bay Apparel, was convicted for offering bribes in a multi-million dollar “kickback scheme” with a clothing company executive in the 1990s and 2000s. (more…)

08/01/14 11:58am
Hampton Coffee beans on display at the company's Southampton location, which opened last year. (Credit: Michael White)

Hampton Coffee beans on display at the company’s Southampton location, which opened last year. (Credit: Michael White)

Popular South Fork coffee roaster and espresso purveyor Hampton Coffee Company is looking to set up shop in Aquebogue.

The company’s chief executive officer, Jason Belkin, is seeking to convert the former Go Solar building on Main Road into a coffee shop, espresso bar and bakery with off-site preparation, according to an application filed with Riverhead Town. Read more at northforker.com.

Mr. Belkin and an attorney for the company met before the Riverhead Town board on Thursday.

Read meeting coverage here.