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May 6, 2017 7:06 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

'Truck Beach' Lawsuit Appealed By Amagansett Homeowners

A group of Amagansett homeowners who have objected to the use of 4x4 vehicles on the beach in front of their homes have appealed a state court ruling.
May 9, 2017 12:02 PM

Attorneys for a group of Amagansett homeowners who have objected to the use of four-wheel-drive vehicles on the beach in front of their homes have appealed a state court ruling that tossed aside their objections.

The homeowners, including more than 100 residents of the dunelands neighborhoods at the western end of Napeague commonly referred to as Beachampton, filed notices of appeal in State Appellate Court on Wednesday, May 3.

“We’re appealing every claim,” attorney Steve Angel, who represents one group of plaintiffs, said this week. “We appealed as soon as possible, because it took forever to get the decision. The decision was only entered last week.”

The appeal had been expected since State Supreme Court Justice Ralph T. Gazillo issued a rather scathing dismissal of their challenge last November. The judge said that the homeowners, and the owners of the nearby White Sands Motel, had wholly failed to prove that they had clear chain of title that showed they owned nearly a mile of ocean beaches bordering their subdivisions, as they had claimed.

The judge also brushed aside their claims that East Hampton Town and the East Hampton Town Trustees had violated their public duty by allowing dozens of 4x4 vehicles to line up on the beach on summer weekends, creating what the homeowners have claimed is a substantial nuisance that robs them of their ability to enjoy their properties.

“The undersigned is not at all persuaded that the plaintiffs have established their ownership of the beach,” Justice Gazillo wrote in his 40-page decision in November. “Taken one step further, the absence of ownership severely undermines the support for the balance of their ‘nuisance’ claims. Even if … that were not the case and ownership had been demonstrated to the law and the court’s satisfaction, however, the court is also unpersuaded that those claims have been sufficiently proven and would otherwise survive objective scrutiny.”

The case will now be presented to the state court’s appellate division in Brooklyn, where it will be reviewed by a panel of five judges. It will likely be several months before arguments in the case are heard by the judges and it could then take months to as long as a year before they issue an opinion.

Mr. Angel would not discuss the specific positions in Justice Gazillo’s ruling that he and co-counsel James Catterson, an attorney with the gargantuan multinational law firm Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, would challenge in their appeal arguments.

Anthony Tohill, the attorney for the East Hampton Town Trustees on the case, said that he is confident the decision will stand up to legal scrutiny.

The initial lawsuit had spurred the Town Board to begin condemnation proceedings, putting it in position to seize ownership of the beach through the right of eminent domain, should the courts find that the homeowners have title to the sand. The board shelved the condemnation process after the ruling last fall and Supervisor Larry Cantwell said this week he does not yet see it as necessary to resume the effort in light of the appeal.

“It was a very strong decision in favor of the town and we believe it will be upheld on appeal,” Mr. Cantwell said. “The work we’ve done to this point is available any time the town wishes to proceed with the condemnation.”

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Again, these people dont know when to stop !!! Leave OUR beaches alone!!! They have always been accessible to us all an should remain that way !

LONG LIVE THE DONGAN PATENT 1686

By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 6, 17 7:56 AM
2 members liked this comment
It's not just the beach in Amagansett. Beach driving is being attacked all over the east end by the new wave of elitists and snobs. The Napeague "truck beach" is empty 355 days per year, but I guess that's not enough. In EH town, the anti-beach driving crowd now attacks moms with their kids at Maidstone Inlet, and families tailgate grilling on the beach at night, all of this being legal as well. The bottom line is that this movement against beach driving has little to do with beach driving, and ...more
By bluefish (11), springs on May 6, 17 8:27 AM
Baloney. Driving on beaches at the same time as pedestrians is hazardous. We have all seen the dangers. I would think that most of the hazardous driving is not by 'year-rounders' but by the Memorial Day to Labor Day crowd. And most garbage is not left by year round residents but by those who arrive to enjoy the beauty and don't care who cleans up after them. These issues are serious! With more development comes a need for balance and a way to make all responsible.
By albrightj3 (2), amagansett on May 7, 17 3:50 PM
1 member liked this comment
I should make clear I am in no way for privatizing the beaches. I think the same people roaring down the beaches and leaving garbage are the same people with w homes on the ocean - just not in front of their home
By albrightj3 (2), amagansett on May 7, 17 3:53 PM
1 member liked this comment
BRAVO SIERRA, you are making the same argument as the fake SAFE organization and the timing of your appearance here is quite suspect.
By bigfresh (2901), north sea on May 7, 17 4:01 PM
1 member liked this comment
If your feel that driving on the beach at 10 mph while pedestrians are walking , is hazardous, well than nobody should be allowed to ride a bicycle , walk or jog down street or roads. Cars only. Nobody should be allowed to swim or surf because there are boats an jet skis in the water! Show us the statistics on pedestrians being injured on the beach by a moving vehicle! As for the "summer crowd" being the most hazardous drivers on the beach...any inexperienced or uneducated driver should be required ...more
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 8, 17 7:30 AM
1 member liked this comment
REMEMBER SANDY HOLLOW, REMEMBER THE ALAMO.
By pw herman (661), southampton on May 6, 17 8:32 AM
1 member liked this comment
Remember when people came here for the scenery and not "the Scene".
By bluefish (11), springs on May 6, 17 9:25 AM
These people suck! They come from away because they love this place, then try to change it to mimic he s**t hole they migrated from.
By bigfresh (2901), north sea on May 6, 17 10:03 AM


Saturday, May 6, 2017
11:34 AM

A couple of thoughts

1. The actual year round residences in the area being contested is less that 10 percent of the homeowners who live there, the remaining 90+ percent are seasonal residence. Don't be mislead by this appeal, the true intentions of the appeal and the initial lawsuit have nothing to do with their use of the beaches. If the appeal is won it will significantly drive up their summer rental nd overall property values in their ...more
By tothepoint (5), East Hampton on May 6, 17 11:54 AM
This fake SAFE group collectively are the biggest bunch of elitist numbskulls ever to plot a beach privatizing campaign. When asked how many tides there where in a day,their EXPERT witness didn't know the answer!!! During the course of their diabolical campaign to SUE public beach goers off the beach, one of the morons sent in a letter to the STAR and claimed that the typical SUV weighed about ten times what it actually weighed. We are lucky that we are dealing with privatizers with minuscule ...more
By Rocky (10), East Hampton on May 6, 17 2:02 PM
Dongen Patent
By clamdigger (64), Quogue on May 6, 17 2:18 PM
1 member liked this comment
All you homeowners in the lawsuit, GO AWAY, GO AWAY. You have no claim to any publicly owned dunes, beach, etc. Find something better to do with your money.
By rvs (71), sag harbor on May 6, 17 6:00 PM
It really all about money. If it costs them $100-$200k in legal fees to remove this from in front of their houses, then they will list them for much much more. Of course they probably bought the houses in the winter and their "broker" used loosely didnt disclose this or talked it away just to make the sale. These homes should have covenants, like some of those around the airport stating that they are aware and cannot sue. This is happening all over the country its a problem and has to be stopped.
By North Sea Citizen (449), North Sea on May 7, 17 7:22 AM
It really all about money. If it costs them $100-$200k in legal fees to remove this from in front of their houses, then they will list them for much much more. Of course they probably bought the houses in the winter and their "broker" used loosely didnt disclose this or talked it away just to make the sale. These homes should have covenants, like some of those around the airport stating that they are aware and cannot sue. This is happening all over the country its a problem and has to be stopped.
By North Sea Citizen (449), North Sea on May 7, 17 7:24 AM
Continued support of beach access groups is vital!! SHOW YOUR SUPPORT FOR ALL the BEACHES via...
-CFAR ( Citizens For Access Rights)
-SABA ( Southampton Association For Beach Access)
-Surfrider Foundation
-LIBBA ( Long Island Beach Buggy Association)
-UMAPA ( United Mobile Access Preservation Fund )

These are all volunteer groups whom preserve an protect beach rights and access as well a conservation . THEY are the ones who organize beach clean ups, who educate the ...more
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 7, 17 7:57 AM
1 member liked this comment
United Mobile Access Preservation Association Mission Statement:

To join in formal organization, all associations that partake in the use and access to costal, tidal or inland waters and their beaches of the North American continent for recreational purposes and to help promote a reasonable and balanced approach of vehicular access to Americas beaches. To work for the conservation and preservation of the above stated areas : To preserve and encourage the use and enjoyment of these areas ...more
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 7, 17 8:13 AM
Summer people
Summer not
By Ew225 (2), Center Moriches on May 8, 17 7:04 PM
They're not "homeowners".

A home is something you live in, and go HOME to each and every day.

These are second or third HOUSE owners.
By Mr. Z (9303), North Sea on May 8, 17 9:31 PM
1 member liked this comment
The Appeal when fully perfected by the filing of all briefs and the Record will not be heard in a matter of months. Based on the volume of appeals in the Second Department, the appeal might not be scheduled for argument for at least a year or more. Michael Rikon
By mrikon (1), New York on May 11, 17 11:25 AM
LONG LIVE THE DONGAN PATENT 1686

LONG LIVE TRUCK BEACH

LONG LIVE THE PICNIC AREA

By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 12, 17 6:39 AM
Truck Beach? That's ridiculous. Get the trucks and the rednecks off the beach. For crying out loud....that looks horrendous. Truck Beach? How about Nature Beach....turn the radios off, ditch the wif-fi, lose the toys and relax.
By SlimeAlive (585), Southampton on May 12, 17 6:57 AM
I see your back to your old self again!! Wanna go to the beach? Ill pick you up in my big dirty redneck truck.......

Whats really ridiculous here is your derogatory "redneck" remark
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 13, 17 8:16 AM
Park in the lot, grab your chair, an umbrella and a book, towel and bottle of water in a bag. Relax. Then leave.

It's not rocket science.

There is never a need to park a truck on the beach and sit next to it all day. Sit in the lot if you need to be next to a gigantic piece of steel and plastic so badly.
By SlimeAlive (585), Southampton on May 14, 17 7:04 AM
Would a boat make more sense? Id gladly buy a boat an take your out to sea.
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 14, 17 7:16 AM
Tradition matters Slime, your tradition is to park in a paved lot and walk to the beach carrying a few things, good for you! Our tradition is loading up the tuck with surfboards, paddleboards, fishing gear, chairs, umbrellas, barbecue , tables, coolers, kids and the dog, then driving onto OUR right of way and enjoying a day at the beach. You do it your way and I'll do it mine, I will not infringe on your rights and you damn sure will not infringe upon mine.
By bigfresh (2901), north sea on May 14, 17 7:49 AM
I don't have to infringe on you turning the beach into a Jets tailgating party. It's under attack now. Because it's ridiculous.
By SlimeAlive (585), Southampton on May 15, 17 4:40 AM
1 member liked this comment
Our family beach day is not a Jets tailgating party. Your stereotype is rather narrow minded , shame on you ! Just because OUR beach day is different from your beach day doesnt mean WE are in the wrong. Its "under attack now" because so many more people want to partake in this long honored tradition.

Learn to coexist and accept what is different in this world. Life would be awfully boring if everything were the same.
By toes in the water (530), southampton on May 15, 17 7:42 AM
In your opinion Slime,
By bigfresh (2901), north sea on May 15, 17 5:47 AM
long live rednecks
By bluefish (11), springs on May 18, 17 9:39 PM
1 member liked this comment
funny thing about the anti-beach driving crowd, is that there are far more public beaches that prohibit daytime beach driving than those that allow it, so why do the snoots complain when they don't have to go where the "rednecks"go

oh, but the rednecks are OK to repair their homes, mow their lawns, respond to emergencies, tutor their kids, clean their homes, but not good enough to be seen on the beach with a 4x4

the levels of elitism and arrogance astound
By bluefish (11), springs on May 18, 17 9:43 PM