Around the Island

Assemblyman Thiele slated to speak at Friday forum

COURTESY PHOTO | Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr., will be the featured speaker and taking questions at Friday Night Dialogues at the Library on January 18.

Fred W. Thiele, who, as of January l, represents Shelter Island in New York State’s newly formed lst Assembly District, will be the featured speaker at Friday Night Dialogues at the Library on January 18 at 6 p.m., where he will be discussing issues affecting the Island — “1st Things First.”

Assemblyman Thiele has represented parts of Long Island’s East End through District 2 in the New York State Assembly since 1995 and is well-known to Islanders for his leadership in close-to-home legislation such as the “Open Space” law, STARS and the Freshwater Wetlands Law as well as initiatives and referendum legislation focused on fiscal responsibility and governmental reform.

In 1999, he drafted and was a prime sponsor of legislation that created the Peconic Bay Community Preservation Fund Act, which has subsequently generated more than $150 million from a 2-percent real estate transfer tax for use by the five East End towns for open space, farmland, recreation and historic preservation, including more than 375 acres on Shelter Island. He was an original proponent of the STAR program to reduce school taxes, has sponsored debt reform and property tax reform initiatives that remain among his top legislative priorities.

Assemblyman Thiele sits on a number of New York State Assembly committees, including Ways and Means, Education Election Law, Environmental Conservation, Oversight, Analysis & Investigation, Transportation and the Majority Steering committee as well as the Assembly’s Aviation Caucus.

Reservations are requested, so call 749-0042 to sign up. Friday Night Dialogues at the Library is free with donations greatly appreciated — and those attending can pick up a voucher good for a 10-percent discount off a regularly priced dinner at either La Maison Blanche or Sweet Tomato’s.

Coming up: On January 25, Rita Plush will be here with her new book, “Lily Steps Out,” a “middle-age coming of age” novel; on February 1, Museum Director Terrie Sultan will give a behind-the-scenes look at the New Parrish Art Museum and on February 8, Executive Director Matko Tomicic of The Longhouse Reserve will discuss one of the East End’s most exquisite natural treasures.