Good morning. Here’s a look at opinion content published in The Journal News today, Tuesday, Jan. 18:
Leandra’s Law: Editorial
We comment on the one-year anniversary of Leandra’s Law, which made driving drunk or under the influence of drugs with a child under 16 in the vehicle an automatic felony. A second phase mandated ignition -locking devices for anyone convicted of DWI. We write:
… With passage of Leandra’s Law, New York became one of the strictest states in the nation in terms of confronting DWI. While the overall effectiveness of ignition locks has not yet been proved — or, perhaps, cannot be — there is evidence pointing favorably to their success. A study sponsored by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety showed that alcohol traffic violations drop by 64 percent in the first year such devices are required. (Are the devices responsible for the decline or the resulting publicity about drunken driving? That is just one question for highway safety officials to ponder.) …
Westchester government: Editorial
The squabbles between the Westchester County Board of Legislators and the administration of County Executive Rob Astorino. In the latest chapter of the saga, some members of the Board have tried to oppose the appointments of Deputy Planning Chief Edward Buroughs as planning commissioner and attorney Mary Mahon as director of real estate. We write:
… The board’s Appointment Committee, voting along partisan lies, last week rejected both Astorino picks. The full board should reverse course when it takes up the matter tonight.
For one, both nominees are well-qualified for their positions: Buroughs has a track record in planning that goes back decades, working intimately with towns and villages in Westchester, Putnam and Rockland counties, including in such high-profile projects as the Tappan Zee Bridge/287 corridor project. Mahon has extensive experience working in government and for big institutions: she was general counsel for both the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Long Island Rail Road, dealing in all manner of complicated land-use matters. There has been no suggestion that either is a slack or slouch, in which case they absolutely should be sent packing. …
Phil Reisman assesses calls from across the spectrum of public conversation for greater civility in American life. Reisman concludes that it’s class, not civility, that’s in short supply.
Westchester government: Commentary
Marsha Gordon, president and CEO of the Business Council of Westchester, writes a Community View in favor of County Executive Rob Astorino’s nominee for planning chief, Ed Burroughs.
Teaberry Port: Commentary
Michael J. Pointing, vice president and general manager of United Water New York, offers a reply to a number of early comments on his company’s plans to demolish Teaberry Port, an 18th-century structure that sits on United Water property in West Nyack.