Roger Tilles, Exec Dir Tilles Center
September 24, 2004 @ 12:00 am EDT
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Our speaker, Roger Tilles, began with a very humorous story and then went on to discuss some serious issues.
Roger explained the law suit that resulted in Long Island residence being asked to help fund NYC schools. The inequity according to Mr. Tilles is that there are schools right here on Long Island that are starved for cash. Why should we neglect the underserved schools on Long Island while funding NYC schools? Mr. Tilles rightfully points out that the taxes in NY City are low relative to Long Island, and that’s where the money should come from first.
Another important issue is workforce housing, which is wrongfully resisted on Long Island. Part of the controversy is that the issue brings out the racist instincts in some people. The argument can also be made that by resisting workforce housing we undermine the labor base that makes the region function. Moreover we undermine the ability for our own children to claim home ownership.
Mr. Tilles spent some time on discussing the arts, and the importance of this segment of Long Island activity has on us, and what we perceive as quality of life. Theater dance and musical presentations at the Tlles Center and other Long Island venues are as good or better than almost anywhere in the country. A second class arts entity is not what we are, but we perceive ourselves as less than the best. It’s kind of a group inferiority complex.
In the Q&A we asked numerous questions on the topics discussed, and it was lively as usual.
Next week and the week after that is Oct 1, and Oct 8th there will be no meeting. On the 15th we will have John Waffenschmitt, from American Refuels. That meeting will be held at the dinning room at NYIT in Central Islip.