HEMPSTEAD - The Hempstead Town Board today approved a bill that prohibits any new fast-food or convenience stores from being open between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m.

Bellmore resident Eileen Casazza led last year's successful fight against the proposed opening of a 24-hour White Castle restaurant on Sunrise Highway. She says 24-hour stores are often magnets for a wide variety of quality-of-life crimes.

The new law allows existing stores that have the proper permits to stay open 24 hours a day. New stores can apply for a variance to stay open from 1 a.m. to 6 a.m.

Jim Calvin, president of the New York Association of Convenience Stores, is adamantly opposed to the law.

"We reject the premise that convenience stores are the root of all evil," Calvin said in a written statement.