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Board of Ed Discusses Possible Lease with Atlantic Auto Mall

Lease agreement would provide parking spots for auto dealer at Masera Learning Center in exchange for yearly rent and sports fields improvements.

The West Islip Board of Education presented a tentative plan to lease space to Atlantic Auto Mall at the board's monthly meeting Thursday night.

Board President Steve Gellar outlined the basics of the proposal, which would include constructing a 150-space parking lot to be used by Atlantic Auto employees at Masera Learning Center as part of a 10-year lease. Atlantic would pay the district $30,000 per year, and would have naming rights to the scoreboard on the high school turf field.

In exchange, the auto group would pay for improvements to various sports fields throughout the district, including those at Masera, Bayview Elementary and West Islip High School's Barberry Field, which would be converted to a turf field. Masera would also receive a new sidewalk and parking lot.

What are your thoughts on the proposal? Weigh in here.

Gellar said the agreement is still in the preliminary stages, and negotiations are ongoing. "Nothing is final yet. We don't have a contract at this point," he said. 

The district is also pursuing the possibility of a technical education program funded by Atlantic Auto, said Superintendent Rick Simon, though specific details were not given.

Masera is occupied by Eastern Suffolk BOCES, and its intramural fields are utilized by the West Islip Soccer Club. Under the proposed agreement, Masera would receive an $18,000 rent reduction per year for the remainder of its existing lease.

Gary Kofsky, President of West Islip Soccer Club, spoke favorably of the proposal. "This enhancement to the existing fields seems like a very nice holiday gift," he said. "I think this will be a very good thing for all the members of the district."

If plans materialize, sports teams within the school district would double their time on the turf fields. Additionally, community youth groups would gain about 20 hours on the fields each week.

What are your thoughts on the proposal? Tell us in the comments below.

Rich December 22, 2012 at 09:42 PM
I am totally confused. Our district is in a "budget crisis" and consequently according to the BOE we needed to throw our youngest students "under the bus". There was "no alternative to closing to Elementary Schools and redistricting 800 of our youngest students". We also over crowed the remaining 4 ES, elimated our only Dance Program, closed the Westbrook which was being considered for a prestigious award and possible 150,000 grant, made cuts to the Boces Program, broke a promise to keep the Special Education Program at Westbrook until they graduated, plus numerous other cuts. But now only 7 months later they suddenly the BOE has access to 1 million to build a second turf field. What happened to the "Crisis"???? I guess there is always a way to find money for the things that you really want to do. Unfortunately for the ES children it wasn't them or their education.
shrekman1 December 22, 2012 at 10:30 PM
Tom sorry you feel the way you do. EVERY AREA OF WEST ISLIP HAS ITS CROSS TO BEAR! NO EXCEPTION! While you might not agree, it is true. We live in an over populated community. Example: with in a one mile radius we have two high schools, one middle school, three elementary schools, a hospital, nursing home, marina, library, strip malls,(a catering hall at one time) restaurants, several gas stations, two super markets and the list goes on and on. Everyone in West Islip quality of life is effect by something While I can appreciate you longing for days gone pass, as I do, the fact of the matter is things change is enviable and upgrades are needed. I don't know about you but my school tax bill is high enough. If a business wants to help the school district out with a plan,why is that bad? If you really want to upgrade education, do the same, present a plan. I'll support you. We are fortunate to have an opportunity that is presenting itself. This is good for West Islip. I hope more of the private sector will get involved. Happy Holidays
Thomas Duignan December 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM
Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to you Shrekman and all of you wonderful people. The people who live near this Auto Mall will pay the price in traffic and sleepless nights however, it seems that with like so many other proposals, the ones that are not affected, just go for the benefit without concern for their fellow residents. That's not a "Community" in my opinion, It's divide and conquer! You say you long for the past but, then you say change is "enviable". Sounds like a contradiction in terms. I wonder how you would feel if this proposal was to bring commercialism closer to your front door and back yard. We know where we moved to however, they weren't supposed to encroach upon our lifestyles. In any event, good luck, god bless.
Michael Hunt December 25, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Wendy If you insist on continuing this behavior I will have to increase your medications yet again. Mike
Michael Hunt December 25, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Right on Tom Atlantic will use the parking area just as a staging area not for employee parking. When they can't find a particular car the just hit the remote 'Panic" button to find it. This happens all the time at Audi...150 spots...who's going to cound every day? They now store hundreds of cars just off Udall Rd. inside the industrial area north near the Deer Park LIRR station. They refer to it as the "HILL" Delivery trailers & flatbeds throughout the day.....only the beginning....150 becomes 200 becomes 250 etc....As you may see I have had no choice other than to increase Wendy's medications because of her irrational behavior. I am sure you will agree .Stay well for the holidays...We killed the 7 Eleven now let's all band together and ban this. Mike

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