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27east.com

313 Comments by G.A.Lombardi

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Hampton Bays Library Board Will Seek Taxpayer Approval Of $9.9 Million Renovation Plan In March

PQ1 - couldn't agree with you more. I think the Library is an asset to the community, but it is adequate the way it is. There was a $1 million renovation proposed at the community meetings last year which seemed reasonable and prudent and fiscally responsible. How does it now snowball into $10 million? I have no confidence in the estimates or the process. I have no choice by to oppose this renovation. It is also unfair to taxpayers that are out of town for the winter to move forward on the referendum vote in mid-March with only 2 months notice." Jan 25, 17 8:11 AM

As I indicated, I have no confidence in the estimate or the process based on my attendance at 2 of the community meetings conducted by the Library administration and Sandpebble. However, I don't see where you obtained the information about Ms. LaVista contract and Sandpebble." Jan 26, 17 12:15 PM

chief 1 - I attended the HB community meeting where Sandpebble provided the engineering studies and estimates for the 4 scenarios for the repair or replacement of the HB Library ranging from about $100K to $14 million. Sandpebble made the point that they had no vested interest in the outcome. However, when the Board decided to go with the new building, Sandpebble made the presentation as the project manager. The Board was asked whether the selection of the vendors had been done by competitive bid and questions were raised as to whether or not the engineering study and project management should have been conducted by separate firms to avoid real or perceived conflict of interest. The attendees were never given an answer or explanation. " Jan 26, 17 11:29 PM

McAllister Offers Opinion On Hills Proposal, Says PDD Plan Would Have Less Impact On Environment

I made an educated, informed, thoughtful decision at the onset of the Project not to formulate an educated, informed, thoughtful opinion for or against this Project. It seemed to that it is the responsibility of our Town Board to make an educated, informed and thoughtful decision based on the merits of this multi-faceted project. It seemed to me that the environmental issues are the most critical and I have no expertise in that area. I have heard the opponents of this project state that this project will have a material adverse effect on our drinking water and bays and ocean. I have heard them insinuate that the developer engages in unethical practices and their previous projects have damaged the environment. Do the opponents really believe that our Town Board will knowingly approve a project that will damage our drinking water and bays and oceans? Do they think our Town Board will knowingly approve a project proposed by an unscrupulous developer? I find that absurd. I have more respect for our Town Board than to think that." Feb 20, 17 11:52 AM

I assume that the Town Board will take the necessary steps to complete an adequate and detailed due diligence of this project using all the data they have available to them and employing any experts they believe are necessary. Then, and only then, will they make an educated, informed, and thoughtful decision. If the Town Board does not conduct an adequate and detailed due diligence dotting all the i's and crossing all the t's, then the taxpayers and residents have a big problem for this project and every other decision before the Board - Garbage In - Garbage Out." Feb 20, 17 6:00 PM

It seems to me that the Town Board should have policies and procedures to identify independent subject matter experts. The rest should be background noise in their decision. I am not sure where the money is coming from or is used for, but if it a legitimate not-for-profit, their tax form 990 is pubic information." Feb 23, 17 7:37 AM

Southampton Town Supervisor Wants Second Vehicle Access Point For Good Ground Park In Hampton Bays

I applaud Frank Zappone, Kyle Collins and the Town Board for taking a fresh look at the plans for Good Ground Park. I watched the video of the Work Session and found the discussion to be thoughtful and focused on the business development of Main Street which was the original purpose of the Park. It seemed to me that all Town Board members agreed that this property should be purchased with Town funds as opposed to CPF monies to provide for more flexibility in its use. It seemed to be that quotes noted by Councilpersons Glinka and Scalera related more to having policies and procedures for future use of surplus funds so not to have the surplus "become a slush fund" than it was directly related to this important project in Hampton Bays. " Mar 7, 17 5:46 PM

Hampton Bays Library Officials Still Pursuing Purchase Of Adjoining Lot

BTW, I went to the Library board meeting on Tuesday along with several other concerned residents. As ST as indicated several times in these posts, this is a closed appointed board formed under the rules of an "association". Based on their own admission "they don't need the approval of the taxpayers" to buy the building even though it violates the spirit of the vote. They also indicated that they don't know what they will do with the building. "Maybe we will rent it out", they say when pressed for the cost of maintaining or demolishing the building. Since when is a library in the real estate rental business? St has been right all along, - taxation without representation. The Board is accountable to 5,000 residential property owners and dozens of commercial property owners for millions of taxpayer funds. This is a tremendous responsibility. As a former auditor and CPA, I take the fiduciary responsibility over my tax monies very seriously. I plan on following up with various requests under FOIL. "Trust but verify" as the saying goes." May 7, 17 11:13 AM

st - honestly, I did not realize how bad the situation was until I went to the Board meeting on Tuesday. I will reserve any further comment until I submit and receive responses to the document information request I am preparing which will include their competitive bidding process and RFP process, engagement letters and contracts, documentation supporting the the alleged overcrowded parking lot that has had multiple accidents, etc. I have spent 30 years as an auditor - the documents, or there lack of, will speak for themselves. " May 9, 17 12:19 PM

Hampton Bays Library No Longer Seeking To Purchase Adjoining Property

The Board did an evaluation on the building and presented to the public in August 2015. The meeting was covered by The Press. They had a listing of repairs and upgrades that were needed then. No building, much less a public building, should fall into disrepair. I am not sure what they have or have not done to repair or maintain the building since the evaluation two years ago. At the April 2017 Board meeting, it was reported that that water was coming in from the foundation. I am an auditor, not a builder, but I suspect that is a good place to start making repairs." May 10, 17 1:35 PM

Baywoman, I don't know anyone that was in favor of buying the building specifically because they did not have a plan. What were they going to do with it, how much was it going to cost to renovate and/or maintain, etc. It is almost two years that this is going on. I know that the Board members are volunteers and dedicated members of our community, but that role comes with a tremendous responsibility for taxpayer funds from over 5,000 property owners. " May 11, 17 7:54 AM

MS-13 Has Presence On South Fork, Police Officials Say

Police Chief Skrynecki will be making a presentation tonight (Wednesday, June 21st) at the Hampton Bays Fire Department Substation on Ponquogue Avenue. The meeting is open to the public and everyone concerned about Hampton Bays should consider attending." Jun 21, 17 3:43 PM

CaptainSag, no secret meeting. It was the monthly HB CAC meeting and we hosted the Police Chief. Chief Skrynecki indicated he is going community to community making presentations. I don't know where he is going next, but I suspect that if you contact him, you can find out. BTW, there were posters all over Main Street, emails were sent out from various community associations in Hampton Bays, it was on Patch and on various social media platforms. " Jun 22, 17 7:43 AM

Westhampton Free Library Appoints New Trustee, Places Term Limits On Board Members

st, I understand your frustration. The Hampton Bays library is also an appointed board under an association library structure. I did some research on the process after the Hampton Bays library board put forth a 2nd referendum. I had no idea how undemocratic the process is. I am thankful to those that step up to volunteer to be on the board, but just like the school board, they are receiving and expending taxpayer funds and the boards should be voted in by the taxpayers. " Jul 20, 17 12:10 PM

New Head Of Southampton Town Public Safety Appointed, With Some Dissent

The video should be on the Town website in a few days. I suggest everyone watch it, even if you are not a Hampton Bays resident. I, too, was there (clearly since I have been quoted in this article). Many of us that have "stepped up" did so because we love Hampton Bays and we recognize that there are serious issues that need to be dealt with by serious, smart, dedicated leadership. It seemed clear to me that neither Jay Schneiderman nor John Bouvier believes that the issues facing Hampton Bays are a big deal. They suggested that our calls for action are "politically motivated" and "unsubstantiated misconceptions" It seems that they believe we should not be concerned with the squalor and danger in the illegal motels, gang stabbing, MS-13 gang activity, violent home invasions, brothels,and drug dealing, low performing schools and high taxes. They are right.. WE shouldn't be concerned.... THEY should be concerned and be taking action. Maybe the reality is they have "unsubstantiated misconceptions" that can never be overcome and they will never act to correct the issues. Thank goodness for the East End Drug Task Force including the Southampton Town Police Department - they seem to be taking our issues seriously.
" Aug 24, 17 3:18 PM

I believe the civil service issue was dealt with - "where there is a will there is a way:. The new code enforcement director will only be as effective as the Town Board allows. If there is no will to do anything about the illegal use of the motels or the illegally over crowded housing, nothing will change. The number of officers have clearly not kept up with the number of building permits and residents. The issue about additional code enforcement officers was raised last budget cycle, but I believe it was voted down. If it becomes a "numbers" game, they will focus on the low hanging fruit like sheds, noise, overgrown grass. I am not confident that much will change about the illegal use of motels or the illegally overcrowded housing based on the Town Board meeting, but we can't give up." Aug 24, 17 5:54 PM

Hampton Bays Library Heating System Failure Will Leave Building Without Heat For Weeks

I am seriously confused and concerned here. Who doesn't want the building to be maintained? The taxpayers voted down a $10 million new building and expansion - I have heard no one say that the building mechanics should not be repaired and replaced in necessary. I have been to several Board meeting with other residents and in fact we suggested that the Board come up with the plan and put it before the voters so the building does not continue to deteriorate. The is a major capital asset paid for with taxpayer funds in our community and needs to be properly maintained." Oct 4, 17 10:22 AM

I am not sure where you get those numbers from. there are approximately 5000 residential properties in HB that pays for the library. Different people use it at different times. I suspect it is closer to the other way around - 5000 properties pay for it and I suspect that they don't have 5000 patrons a day." Oct 4, 17 1:58 PM

Crowds Fill Hampton Bays For San Gennaro Feast Of The Hamptons

I honestly don't understand the negative posts. I was there several times since I can walk from home with family and friends - we ate, drank and chatted. There seemed to be a lot of people from outside HB (and based on the captions on the pictures - there were). It was especially crowded Sunday afternoon with lines for the food trucks. I was glad to see our local restaurants highlighting their fabulous food. I think Hampton Bays has the best restaurants and not everyone will come out just to go to a restaurant.
There were people walking on Main Street too. Let's celebrate our local success and thank the volunteer organizers - (now if we can just get the Town officials to do something about the illegally used motels maybe these visitors would have someplace to say overnight...just saying!)" Oct 4, 17 2:18 PM

Hampton Bays Library Heating System Failure Will Leave Building Without Heat For Weeks

I agree st, it is an undemocratic process." Oct 4, 17 9:12 PM

Crowds Fill Hampton Bays For San Gennaro Feast Of The Hamptons

The success I was referring to was a successful event arranged by volunteer organizers. So what if they too end up with customers that day. So did Kriegs Bakery and they didn't even have a food truck. I don't see where any taxpayer monies were used for this event. Obviously, this doesn't fix the problems of HB - no one said it did. The Town needs to address the illegal use of motels, code violations, the presence of gangs and drugs, business zoning, business development, etc. Celebrate one day of fun, good food, good music, some positive exposure for HB for a change and move on." Oct 5, 17 6:47 AM

Hampton Bays Library Heating System Failure Will Leave Building Without Heat For Weeks

First of all if the Library leadership does not properly maintain, repair and replace those capital items that need to be maintained, repaired, and replaced, no one will have a library to use since I am pretty sure based on the last vote, there will be no new building. The upkeep of the building should be their number one priority. They presented 4 scenarios to the public three years ago - two of which presented repairs and upgrades. The study was supposedly completed by a professional engineer - where is that data? They should not be spending their time worrying about yoga classes." Oct 6, 17 10:02 AM

Southampton Town Considering Creating Opioid Task Force To Combat Spread Of Drugs

HBLC, I suspect that people post anonymous comments about the Town Administration since they or a family member relies on the Town to feed their family and may be afraid of retribution and retaliation if they criticize the administration..Even within our own community, I have found people who I thought were fighting for Hampton Bays have chosen their political party or their own agendas and have targeted me since I do not agree with them. 27east allows for anonymous posts. Those that are in positions of authority put themselves in a position to be criticized. Specifically regarding the actions of the Town Administration - -one of the attendees at some of the community meeting often uses the Groucho Marx expression "who are you going to believe - me or your lying eyes" to describe the Town Administration. How many years have they said they were working to correct the illegal use of motels? Several of us went to the Town Board meeting on August 22, 2017 to voice our concerns about public safety, illegal use of motels, mismanaged capital projects, etc. . (It is on the website and makes for an interesting watch) and we were, from my perspective, dismissed by John Bouvier and Jay Schneiderman. I found Mr. Bouvier's assessment of our comments as "myths" and "unsubstantiated statements" unbecoming an elected official and now have asked (4) times for him to substantiate his assertions with no reply to date. I found the fact that Mr. Schneiderman said his plan to improve Hampton Bays was working based on the metrics baffling since I had FOILED his plan and metrics only a month early and the response was that NONE existed Mr. Bouvier and Mr. Schineiderman indicated that they were looking for code enforcement statistics as a reason to hire a new director. There was an attendee at the meeting raising his hand to say "we have those statistics - they were given to us last week at the CAC meeting form the SOS system". I voiced my concerns that the administration does come up with effective solutions based on my observations as compared to my 32 years of corporate finance, auditing, tax experience. My concerns started in March 2016 when I made query about Hampton Bay Economic Development Committee and a study for a "pattern book" and "form based code". I asked for minutes, sign in sheets- anything to document the recommendations for actions and spending in Hampton Bays that may forever change the landscape of the community. There are no minutes or even sign in sheets. I did step up to be part of the solution, but honestly it doesn't seem to matter. An auditor goes by "trust but verify, but after a while you become skeptical and skip over the "trust" part. It seems that some of the members of the administration, hear what they want and do what they want. .Good Luck on the Task Force and I do hope it is effective since this is a critical issue in our community. " Oct 8, 17 10:18 AM

big typo here....does NOT come up with effective solutions." Oct 8, 17 11:52 AM

Southampton Town Issues More Than 200 Code Violations For Illegal Rentals In Hampton Bays During Housing Crackdown

Kudos to Code Enforcement, but Supervisor Schneiderman is avoiding the main and critical issue about the illegal USE of the motels as full time housing. There are hundreds of units within Hampton Bays. This illegal activity has not only created unsafe living for those involved, but illegally enriched the landlords and placed an unfair tax burden on the property owners who follow the rules. Supervisor Schneiderman was well aware of this before he took office almost 2 years ago. Some residents have voiced concern that his "plan" for accessory apartments and affordable housing is to amend the rules and change the illegal motels into legal affordable housing and illegal apartments into legal accessory apartments - leaving the density and tax burden just where it is - "out of sight out of mind" - some members of his administration say otherwise, but it is hard to believe much of what is said. " Oct 14, 17 8:35 AM

The words he used at the August 22nd Town Board meeting were "myths", "unsubstantiated statements" and implied we didn't understand the difference between reality and perspective. I have asked Mr. Bouvier several times to "substantiate" his statements with no reply. He and Supervisor Schneiderman indicated that they wanted data, while code enforcement had provided data from the SOS system to the HB CAC only a few days earlier and had been doing so for months. There is a saying that when you point the finger at someone, three point back at you....just saying..." Oct 14, 17 9:14 AM

VOS, I respectfully disagree with you. If these motels returned to original use and properly marketed, they could be successful. I purchased a home in Hampton Bays almost 20 years ago due to its central location and my partner and I continue to "stay-cation" every year. There are free and low cost activities from May to November from music at Mescutt to dance, art,community activities. Hampton Bays has the best restaurants. We have used our home for our 12 nieces and nephews to go to Splish Splash and the Aquarium in Riverhead. I hate to use the word "golf" but there are plenty of great golf courses around. We have taken the LIRR to Montauk and the SC Bus to Greenport. It is THE BEST Hamptions and that is why it infuriates me so much that the Town has dumped on it for so many years." Oct 14, 17 12:31 PM

Of course, the waterfront is the primary attraction, but I was pointing out some other benefits and attractions. We can't go back and we all need to move forward in a positive way. The Town needs to address the illegal USE of motels. They have avoided it for years." Oct 14, 17 3:21 PM

If you read between the lines here, really nothing is changed except that the owners may or may not pay some fines. The housing is still illegal and the motels are still illegal. It has now made Channel 7 News. How is this "press" any better than the "bad press" in the Post a few months ago?Supervisor Schneiderman indicated at the August Town Board meeting that the Post article directly caused a potential buyer to back out of a $1 million deal in Hampton Bays. This press makes Hampton Bays look like the wild wild west. The bad press in the Post was out of the Supervisor's control, this one was not. Was it more important for Supervisor Schneiderman to get good press for himself before the election than to consider the adverse consequences the "bad press" would have on Hampton Bays? " Oct 15, 17 1:53 PM

Scalera Votes Against Schneiderman's $99 Million Southampton Town Budget; Spending Plan Approved Anyway

The Town of Southampton Press release headline states the budget "reduces taxes for the second straight year:" As a CPA I would like to know what accounting method is employed at the Town that an $8 million INCREASE in taxes is "a reduction"? I realize that the taxes over the assessed values is lower, but that is meaningless to anyone paying their taxes. It is time for the Town Board members to stop campaigning with headlines of "lower taxes" and code enforcement "surges" and fake metrics and get on with running the Town Government in a efficient and effective manner with transparency and accountability. " Nov 24, 17 11:55 AM

It doesn't matter who is Supervisor, they need to STOP campaigning and start running the government in a transparent and accountable manner. " Nov 25, 17 10:15 AM

Southampton Town Board Member Won't Attend Work Sessions Until School Ends

Taz, I am one of those people that do not want an elected position, but you know what you are getting into when you sign up for it. i have worked in corporate jobs for more than 30 years and had to attend functions at night and weekend and was required to respond to clients and leadership no matter what day it was or what time it was, I did not get paid extra for that. People that own there own business often work 24/7. People with minimum wage jobs are working 3 jobs to pay the bills. You do what you have to do to get your job done or you get fired or can't feed your family. In the case of elected officials, we have to wait until their term is up to fire them by our vote. I really don't think it is the same thing." Jan 4, 18 11:36 AM

Not everyone in corporate america makes "the big bucks". I made less that $100,000 and was required to have 2,000 "billable" hours so lunch, paid time off, training, attending events etc. was not included. While there were medical benefits, there are very few pensions in corporate america anymore. " Jan 4, 18 12:06 PM

Seepdracer/Summertimegal, I believe we should challenge ourselves and those around us to do better each day - that is one of the reasons our Country is falling behind in so many areas and have allowed mediocrity to take over. We need to challenge our elected officials to do better each day. We are allowed to also voice our displeasure with their performance and actions since we are their bosses in a way. When someone challenges the actions of an elected officials, we should evaluate how they act and react. Calling those that speak out "sad sacks" or telling them to "man up" does no on any good. You are attacking the person and not the issue. " Jan 5, 18 7:42 AM

Are you really suggesting that because one Town official is potentially not doing their job it is ok that another does do his/hers? Wow - no wonder the government is in the shape it is in. I hope this is not what we are teaching our children. Just for the record, I am a politically unaffiliated and I believe Ms. Kiernan ran on both the democratic and republican line last time. I can't speak to whether Ms. Kiernan or Mr. Schiavonni are doing/going to do their jobs, but we should all be challenging them to do the best. That is OUR job as residents, voters and taxpayers." Jan 5, 18 3:57 PM

What? What is wrong with our society that when we compare one potential bad behavior with another. Oh, he only robbed the store - he did't kill anyone! Seriously, everyone needs to hold everyone accountable for their own actions. We need to help each other and challenge each other to do what we are supposed. I seriously hope this is not what we are teaching our children." Jan 9, 18 7:18 AM

Steve Bannon To Attend Fundraiser For Representative Lee Zeldin In December

I would normally not weigh in on National politics, but I happened to catch a PBS special last night on the downfall of Acapulco over the past decade. This used to be the resort of the starts back in the day. It has now been taken over by the mercenary gangs that have gone past making money from drugs and have moved to extortion. The only business doing well is private security. Some businesses end up paying the extortion since it is cheaper than the private security. The local government and police deny what is happening. I certainly don't agree with what President Trump said, but we need to admit there is a worldwide epidemic of drugs, gangs, terrorists, extortion and corruption and for the most part starts with living in extreme poverty and a sense of desperation no matter how nice the beaches are. To the extent that the U.S. can help the economy of other countries, we should, but we can't be naive enough to believe we can do it without first putting on our own oxygen mask before we try to save others." Jan 13, 18 10:53 AM

Thiele Pushing For Additional South Fork Trains By This Fall

I am a big proponent of public transportation as a transplant from NYC and commuting from Hampton Bays 80 miles 2/12 hours each way to work in NYC to afford my little piece of paradise. Some of the larger employers on Long Island provided van service for employees to attract the "best and brightest". One of the logistics discussed was where the starting point was west of the canal suggesting Speonk or Hampton Bays. That would require individuals west of those locations driving and parking in those hamlets taking up parking for the hamlet residents/shoppers. I hope as the Town Board moves forward that the benefit exceed the costs and once again the hamlet residents and stores west of the Canal don't bear the burden of the workforce working east of the canal." Jan 17, 18 12:48 PM

It is easy enough for the Town to conduct an on-line survey to see the interest in this service. Based on this article, this proposed train service is to commence after the U.S. Open event this summer. The traffic for the U.S. Open last time started in Nassau County since I personally was on the LIE trying to get home to Hampton Bays from work. The additional service may serve the workers well, but the Town Board needs to address whether or not it will adversely impact Hampton Bays or Speonk if that is the starting point for the train. From what I observe, the "trade parade" starts west of those hamlets and people may be driving and parking in those hamlets at the expense of the hamlet's residents and businesses. " Jan 19, 18 2:04 PM

Southampton Town Seeks Feedback About Good Ground Park In Online Survey

Now the U-Haul/Service Station is closed and John's Bargain looks like it is closing too. This amphitheater is great, but it is a drop in the bucket in what needs to get done to revitalize Hampton Bays. I can't help but visualize "Nero Fiddling while Rome is Burning" every time of of the officials gets on the amphitheater stage. I wrote several letters to the editor about this....maybe it is time for another. " Jan 22, 18 2:42 PM

IMO, the the park was a good idea, but poorly designed and executed. I live near the entrance to the park and I have not been shy about my concerns. It is active 10 days and the rest of the time it is an attractive nuisance (or as some people call it "zombie park'). I am fully aware of the vandalism, loitering, homeless camps and I believe a fire recently. However, it is there now and we need to move forward. The Town and other sponsors had some nice concerts at the amphitheater there last year. That park will truly be zombie park and attractive nuisance if the Town doesn't stop being the Town of "no" for responsible development in the commercial district and start addressing the core issues in the community such as the illegal use of motels. " Jan 23, 18 7:21 AM

and let me add, the actions of the Town over the past decade or more has robbed Hampton Bays of its vitality and the spending power of its residents to support the local businesses. By their own submission for a grant - over the past 10 years there is an increase in the economically disadvantaged families moving into the community with over 50% of the children eligible for free lunch. Many others are working or retired middle class that have seen their taxes go up faster than their cost of living increases robbing them of their disposable income. Who can afford a $12 egg platter at a diner? It is no wonder our businesses are closing. No amphitheater is going to fix that no matter who much they try to convince us of that. It is time they come up with real solutions. " Jan 23, 18 8:12 AM

Yes tourism is great but I live in Hampton Bays and don't want it to be added to to list of "nice places to visit but I wouldn't want to live there" " Jan 23, 18 9:45 AM

As a resident of Hampton Bays, I respectfully disagree that the first two comments were off topic. They referred to the blight in the community. The development of the Park was supposed to be part and parcel to a greater redevelopment plan that included correcting the illegal use of buildings and building a vibrant downtown. Very little information has been provided as to the Town's overall plan for redevelopment and their actions being taken on the illegal use of motels." Jan 23, 18 10:41 AM

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