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Who is the Town Thinking of with the Roslyn Country Club?

Why does the Town of North Hempstead want to seize by eminent domain a private country club in Roslyn?

I know...this is not my first entry about the absurdity of the wanting to seize Roslyn Country Club through eminent domain (another way for the Town to TAKE a private establishment away from the owner for what they think it is worth), and probably won't be my last, but I am astoundished with how illogical it is. In these economic times, why does the Town want to take on the burden of a private business that is so rundown and unkempt that some of the residents who have an easment to use it don't want to. It is mindboggling.

I attended the Town board meeting on Sept. 27 and the acquisition of the Roslyn Country Club was on the agenda. There were about 20 speakers and the majority were opposed to the Town taking on the obligation of the club. There seems to be a small group from Roslyn Country Club Civic Association and elsewhere who are in favor of it. Some residents who spoke were from the Club area and they don't want the Town to take over the RCC either.

The RCC civic association says they want their own park; after all, they said New Hyde Park has their own pool so why can't they. I say they should have their own park, but they should pay for it like we do. We pay extra taxes for our pool which keeps the membership at a reasonable cost. What is wrong with Roslyn Country Club residents paying too? Nothing, except that they don't want to. Why should they if they have the rest of the Town supporting their pool? It is a good deal for residents of Roslyn Country Club, not us.

Supervisor Jon Kaiman said he was in the middle of ongoing negotiations with the owner and could not divulge any information. No information about cost or maintenance or repairs...no information about the catering hall...no information on how much the membership fee would be annually...no information on the ongoing cost and upkeep...no information on the projected number of people who would join in order to keep it revenue neutral.

Remember in November when it is election day whose best interests the Town is thinking of. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

KAIMAN MUST GO October 05, 2011 at 01:35 PM
Mr. Burg - How is it that you happen to have the "fact" on the family memberships?? What trap might you be in...do you work for the TNH or did you FOIL the membership count?
BeachGal October 05, 2011 at 01:41 PM
Mr Burg - Most people who were at the pool this summer were extremely dissatisfied with the "improvements". Yes - for a child of 4 and 2 the pool is great, but for everyone else it stinks! What happens when your kids are 7 and 8 and they are playing in the pool with their friends and you can't watch them because the decorative island is in the way? What happens when they are 10 and would like to join the swim team. A swim team of 140 children who want to do something healty and productive during the summer but they cannot properly practice and swim? What happens when it is 100 degrees out and you would like to stand in 4 feet of water in the pool - but that area is about the size of a postage stamp and 300 people are trying to stand there? The pool and other public parks should be designed for maximum use by all the residents - not just the preschool ones.
Thomas Burg October 05, 2011 at 01:59 PM
From Newsday: "Town officials call it a huge success and point to resident-only membership that increased from 1,278 in 2010 to 4,443 so far this year." And just the eyeball test of how much more crowded it has been this year versus last. I have a ton of gripes with county politicians and the way things are run here - the list is as long as my arm - but the pool isn't one of them. I'd call that a first-world problem, complaining about the depth of a public pool, wouldn't you?
BeachGal October 05, 2011 at 03:22 PM
A public facility has an obligation to serve as much of the public as possible. The Manorhaven Pool is designed to serve only families with small children. What about families with older children? Families with children who would like to be on a swim team? Senior Citizens who's Aquasize class was compromised by the lack of depth in the pool? Adults who would like to swim for recreation and/or exercise? It may not be the most important problem in the Town but it certainly makes the point that when solving Town issues Kaiman and Co. do not think about ALL the people who live in the town and that IS a big issue.
Ben October 05, 2011 at 03:47 PM
Burg, The statitics qouted in Newsday about record memberships are not accurate in fact at Tully/Denton Ave Pool memberships are at an all time low the Kaimen adminstration has cut the costly $$$ Early Bird Swim at Denton ave and now all of those dollars are spent at the Hofstra Swim Center. The Newsday ariticle states "record attendence" and that was when the pool was open for free after that when the pool began to cost money no one came they would not spend money to wade -- for a while it was very easy to just walk in without paying then Hawkins was screamed at by Kaimen and they put up ropes, etc. to keep people on line and pay. Beacgal your comments are correct and you forgot the disabled who use pools for physical therapy it is impossible to swim in 3.5 feet of water at Manorhaven or Tully/Denton Ave pool with a hip replacement, etc. both of these pools are a disaster and when Jon Kaimen has lost the next election or has moved on to another office the TNH are stuck with 2 wading pools.
Ben October 05, 2011 at 03:53 PM
Beachgal, I suspect that this guy Burg is in bed with Kaimen i would not bother to address his opinions here - the pools are another Kaimen disaster and this will be proved on Election Day
KAIMAN MUST GO October 05, 2011 at 04:10 PM
I urge eveyone to look into the Roslyn Country Club deal before election day. Know the facts, be informed and remember to vote!!
Thomas Burg October 05, 2011 at 07:06 PM
Tinfoil hat time. Jeez. Get a grip dude. Hope Kaimen loses too. But the better news is that you clearly won't be at the pool next summer. Looks like we got a two-for-one special with the redesign.
Thomas Burg October 05, 2011 at 07:10 PM
It was absolutely packed every time I went this summer, and I was probably there 6 times all told, the last time being Labor Day Sunday. Maybe midweek it's not busy, sure, but it certainly was when I was there. And memberships are the measure the town is interested in. I'd ask that they add more shade for starters. Anyway, I'm done.
Katie Cohen October 07, 2011 at 04:38 AM
Mr. Burg I have Five Kids, And the older ones hate the new pool. We had a membership for the summer and it was not worth the money, Sorry I do not agree with you. it might be good for small kids but thats it.
Ben October 07, 2011 at 06:53 PM
Ruth, To see an empty pool check out the indoor TNH Tully/Denton Ave Pool that place is really slow membership is at an all time low after the Kaimen adminstrations costly renovations no one swims in an indoor pool that is so shallow one can not swim but only wade in this pool.
Jc martin October 08, 2011 at 08:21 PM
Ruth, why would you go to a facility you so evidently despise "literally everyday"? Do you see any contradiction in that? Ben, I hope you find your deep water soon so that the rest of us might be treated to some fresh material.
KAIMAN MUST GO October 08, 2011 at 09:01 PM
Under Supervisor Kaiman our taxes have increased, our debt has increased and the building department is one of the most inefficient building departments in New York State. But Jon Kaiman continues to give himself an A+ rating. Who is doing the rating? How is that for fresh material?
Jc martin October 08, 2011 at 09:37 PM
Same old same old mr. Rice. That's fresh? And why was it "empty" Ruth? Did you two think I ran out of the baseline in 69?
Jc martin October 08, 2011 at 09:38 PM
Gather the lynch mob. There's a contrary opinion on here.
Ben October 08, 2011 at 09:49 PM
Ruth, and Kaiman Must Go, Do not bother with this guy Martin or the others. I am in a business where I need to explain everything at least 3 times and so I find myself reinforcing my points often -- and here it is the point about the lack of available swimming facilities due to the Kaiman adminstrations costly and disasterous renovation of 2 TNH pools Manorhanven and Tully/Denton Ave they are both just 3 feet deep and it is impossible to swim in these pools new costly shallow pools they cost millions of dollars - to wade in and not swim. And I now swim at Hofstra Swim Center for half the price of Kaimans costly $$$ Early Bird Swim at Tully/Denton Ave Pool which is no longer offered to the taxpayer I swim in a HUGE and DEEP swimming pool and I see other TNH residents who are not spending money on a TNH pool instead they swim at Hofstra. Jon Kaiman's pool renovations are a costly disaster. Why would Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman demolish 2 swimming pools to convert them to wading pools? At pools its about swimming and NOT wading.
Jc martin October 08, 2011 at 09:55 PM
Do you?
Jc martin October 08, 2011 at 10:03 PM
Scuba Ben: want to race? I used to be able to swim the circumference of my 18 foot circular pool two times under water. You would have hated it. It was only four feet deep.
Thomas Burg October 09, 2011 at 02:15 AM
Thank you JC. My wife and I are laughing out loud on the couch reading your comments. Cheers. I can only hope that the naysayers are correct and the pool is empty next summer. That would be great, getting it all to ourselves.
Jason October 10, 2011 at 01:39 AM
Thomas: you do know that Jc Martin is a Town Hack! he works in Town Hall. I do enjoy reading your comments keep them up. My older kids(11-13) are not happy with the pool, my younger daughter(7) likes it..
Sir lancealot October 10, 2011 at 01:46 AM
According to the author, the acquisition of open space and parkland for town residents is a bad idea. Do not invest in the community. That seems to be her mantra. This is the same person though who wishes to spend close to a million dollars of taxpayer money to rehab the Schumacher house. That nobody but her and a few others attach any significance to the building, or that the building sits in the district she resides in, seems unimportant. So please reconcile ms. Author, why these economic times justify such an investment in your immediate community, but not the acquisition of more open space and parkland for the general community. I look forward to hearing your logic
Rick Ueland October 11, 2011 at 02:51 AM
After reading all the posts on this blog, I listened to both Kaiman and Tu tonight concerning the Roslyn Country Club. I want to thank all the folks who have posted for enlightening me on how screwed up the TONH is under Kaiman and his own comments show how this is such a bad deal for the average taxpayer in the TONH. I live in an incorporated village so all I basically do is pay taxes to the TONH and haven't used any of the TONH facilities in many years since they dropped many of the programs they used to run. The only other thing I can think of when I hear Kaiman's name is the Building Department scandel so his track record isn't that good to me! This deal smells to high heaven of an inside deal for a vested few supporters - should we expect anything more? As Tu said, if the folks in that area want the pool, let them setup a special district.
Stephen October 15, 2011 at 12:44 AM
I've honestly never seen such pure fiction accepted as gospel in a "political" discussion. Nearly every fact that the writer has spewed for nearly a year is simply...made up. I urge anyone interested in this issue to attend meetings and really listen to who is throwing around what facts and what the support for their assumptions are. It's all speculation. If you want to participate in a hatchet job so that adversaries of the current administration can climb over your backs to badmouth the Town's government, go right ahead. But for any of you who aren't trying to advance someone's political campaign, you are really allowing yourselves to be used by a small, politically driven bunch. As for a special district, do you believe Town spending should end at Clinton G. Martin? Are you keeping a yacht at a mooring at the Town Dock near Sands Point? Do you spend $400 plus per foursome at Harbor Links? There are facilities all through the town that tax dollars support or that an operational failure will force town dollars to be used. The only thing that is special about this park is that it's come up right before election time. There is every reason to believe the town will be able to do what they say and none (that isn't made up) to believe they will fail. Assuming this goes through and costs taxpayers nothing is the writer willing to stand up and admit she was wrong?
Marianna Wohlgemuth October 15, 2011 at 12:48 PM
This will never, never be revenue neutral. It would have to cost more than $2,000 annually just to finance the debt that will be incurred, unless the number of memberships ($1,500 @ 1,000 members = $1,500,000) are higher which I don't forsee. BTW, Clinton G. Martin Pool, is a special tax district, paid for by taxes in New Hyde Park (we are not getting any money from the town other than $15,000 rent on the building they operate and own, and we maintain at our cost by the way), budget is $1,150,000 just for upkeep - that is not even the debt service on RCC. You better get out your calculator and do the math yourself. I stand by my original premise - this should be a special taxing district like New Hyde Park and not put the debt on the backs of the taxpayers. Oh yes, where do you live? It is curious you don't put your last name, unlike me who is not ashamed of who I am.
Stephen October 15, 2011 at 06:07 PM
Marianna, you don't know what you are talking about. I don't mean that pejoratively, but factually. The problem is that the people who read your blogs trust you and think the numbers--which are the key rationale for opposition to this--are reliable. While they are certainly one possible outcome, reliable they aren't. Ultimately, you have have no idea what the purchase cost will be. You have no idea what the revenue lines will be from membership, from instruction, from any food concessions, from tennis usage and rental will be. And worse--you appear not to have tried! You may be able to some work on renovation costs, but you discussed no real analysis to date--so presumably, you've done none. Your tag team partner, Mr. Geld, says he's a contractor, but simply accepted someone else's numbers on the property cost and made up a whole financial statement's worth of operations costs unrelated to his skills (which do seem fairly preposterous). If the numbers are right, the town should scrap it. But no one knows whether they are right. And you've kept that a secret. I have no problem with people opposing this project. Debate creates better ideas. I have a great deal of problem you deceiving your neighbors and mine with numbers that you simply make up. Once the Town finishes negotiating, they have committed to releasing the figures. Anyone who actually cares about this issue should see what the Town has to say before they reject it, that's all. Try honesty.
Rick Ueland October 15, 2011 at 06:47 PM
Stephen, I'm not a political person - I'm just your average taxpayer who gets pretty upset when the TONH wants to take on the financial liability of buying the Roslyn Country Club property using my tax money and their financial justification for it not costing taxpayers' money is selling memberships at $1,000 a season. Are they serious? Is this the role of a Government Agency - use tax money to support a pool for a limited group of residents? To me, this is much different than a pool that reaches the masses at a nominal amount –period. Don't try to say that it is to preserve property for use by Town residents. We don't need to take on any additional debt service in this economy. At all levels of government, they are having problems adequately maintaining parks already in the system. Keep the property on the tax rolls and keep our taxes down! Waiting to see the financials makes no difference to me. The concept is wrong. Besides, the anticipated revenues will be based on projected membership. Given the economic conditions we are experiencing, who knows what the actual membership will be in the coming years if the economy declines. Who then will be responsible for debt service payment under this model – you guessed it – the taxpayers!
Ben October 15, 2011 at 07:24 PM
It looks like Jon Kaimen will be defeated on Election day by Lee Tu and so all of the Roslyn Country Club Pool plans will never pan out. I hope that Lee Tu can find a way to bring Tully/Denton Ave Pool back so that the TNH residents will have an indoor pool for swimming like the one the late Supervisor then Senator Michael Tully had built in 1979.
Marianna Wohlgemuth October 15, 2011 at 11:27 PM
Stephen, My numbers are sound. I can't take you seriously because you are hiding behind your "name" and won't come forward and identify yourself and where you live. How can you believe, unless you are a millionaire who has money to burn, that the average taxpayer in New Hyde Park or the Town of North Hempstead, can actually afford an extra $1,000 to $2,000 annually for a country club? And, how much money will the town need to generate to support and maintain an 8-acre pool/tennis court facility? It will become an exclusive club for the elite and we will be left out looking forlornly through the gates. You're right - the people believe me because you just have to read what I wrote. If the CGM Pool costs $1.1 million to run yearly, which is comparative to the RCC size, then it would take over 1000 members to cover the cost of operations. Not sure how much the debt service would be since the current administration has not released any numbers to try to convince us otherwise but that would probably be in the neighborhood of another $1 million yearly which means you need another 1000 members. I am not afraid of my facts - they are true. The residents of New Hyde Park believe me because I speak the truth and always have their best interests at heart.
Rain man October 17, 2011 at 12:52 AM
This Water is definitely not deep enough.
Figure that one out October 24, 2011 at 05:08 PM
Well Ruth, you've made your political motivations quite clear. You and your grandchildren love the pool, BUT management has to change? Makes no sense.

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