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Just Right

Editorial Board on May 16, 2023
On Thursday, May 25 — just in time for Memorial Day weekend, and thus the start of “the season” — the ribbon will be cut on John Steinbeck Waterfront Park,... more

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Talk Is Cheap

Last week was the final Express Sessions event of the season; a dozen live events brought together panelists and community members to discuss a variety of topics of importance to the community. As the break for a busy summer arrives, the question arises: Does it make a difference? The topic for the event last week in Sag Harbor focused on that village’s readiness for climate change and the perils it will bring — but, like other topics from throughout the fall, winter and spring, it was relevant for other villages and hamlets on the South Fork. Rising waters and worsening ... 15 May 2024 by Editorial Board

Skip the Stuff

When it comes to changing the world, some things are easier to do than others. The region has done some sweeping things with an eye toward the environment. After a few false starts, Southampton Town and East Hampton Town helped lead the way with a ban on plastic grocery bags, which eventually spread to Suffolk County, and, in 2020, to all of New York State. For a while, the idea that people might stop relying on free plastic bags and — horrors! — bring their own reusable bags to the grocery store seemed unreasonably ambitious. Today, it’s an afterthought for ... 8 May 2024 by Editorial Board

We’re Waiting

The eight stations on the Montauk Branch between Speonk and Montauk generally, on a weekday, will see 10 trains stop throughout a 24-hour period. The problem: Only half are between the hours of 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., presumably when most people might actually use the train to ride from local stop to local stop. The South Fork Commuter Connection went a long way toward improving the usefulness of the LIRR for a daily commute, making sure there were reasonable morning and afternoon options for east-west commuters, and adding in shuttle buses to get workers from the buses to their ... by Editorial Board

Time To Talk

Let’s start with a clear message: The Eastville Community Historical Society is an incredibly valuable commodity for Sag Harbor, and its new request to the school district to begin levying a community tax to provide about $75,000 a year for “general use, maintenance and capital improvement financing” is not at all unreasonable. That’s particularly true in the context of the Sag Harbor Whaling & Historical Museum’s existing annual levy, and its recent request to more than double it to $125,000 a year. But with the new request, it might be time for the school district, and Sag Harbor as a ... 1 May 2024 by Editorial Board

Positive Path Forward

State lawmakers and Governor Kathy Hochul delivered for residents of the South Fork and Stony Brook University in the state budget formulated last week. As part of the massive spending plan, the governor agreed to a measure that would allow the state and the Town of Southampton to partner in an effort to restore the historic windmill at Stony Brook’s Southampton campus. Additionally, Hochul’s plan to create up to 15,000 affordable housing units on state-owned land across the state — including at the Southampton campus — was included in the budget. Both measures mark a significant dedication by state and ... 24 Apr 2024 by Editorial Board

Investing in News

The 2025 New York State budget approved on Saturday includes elements of the Local Journalism Sustainability Act, providing a payroll tax credit for local news outlets — a lifeline for a vital but struggling industry that benefits every state resident. Over the past quarter century, traditional revenue sources for community newspapers have been greatly diminished as international conglomerates have largely gobbled up the advertising business and moved it online. Largely as a result of this shift, between 2004 and 2023, 2,627 weekly publications closed or merged with other papers between 2004 and 2023. Some papers that survived have become husks ... by Editorial Board

The Parking Dilemma

On May 14, the Sag Harbor Village Board will begin an important and long-overdue conversation with its residents about a subject that affects everyone, resident and visitor alike: parking in the village. It’s an essential conversation that requires some structure before it begins in order to be fruitful, and not just a cacophony of complaints. A workshop preceding the official hearings will be held at 6 p.m. on May 1, live and on Zoom. Here are a few statements that should be considered for discussion. These are not meant to be statements of absolute truth — they are ideas that ... 17 Apr 2024 by Editorial Board

No Farmers, No Character

The bumper stickers used to be ubiquitous on the roads: “No Farms No Food.” The slogan is a registered trademark of the American Farmland Trust, which mails out those bumper stickers for free to anyone in the United States who requests one. It’s a simple, accurate message, but it’s one that is lost on many people who think food comes from the grocery store or Amazon Fresh and forget that these retailers are merely intermediaries. On the South Fork, one doesn’t need to drive far in any direction to come across farmland. It is one of the pleasures of living ... by Editorial Board

Everyone Poops

It’s the title of Tarō Gomi’s beloved children’s book, which has, for nearly 50 years, been delivering a simple but universal reminder: “Since we all eat, we all must poop. All of us! Everyone!” It doesn’t seem like fodder for this space — but, increasingly, more and more people behave as though (how shall we put this?) their own poop is perfumed in a unique way. We are all trapped together on an island that, though long, is densely populated in places, and increasingly so. As a result, we are slowly befouling this place we call home, polluting groundwater with ... by Editorial Board

At the Helm

1994. It’s hard to imagine, but despite being a matriarchal society, that was the first year Shinnecock Nation women were permitted to vote on tribal matters. And it wasn’t until 2013 that the nation had its first female on the Council of Trustees. So it was great to witness the momentous milestone on April 2, when Lisa Goree was elected the new chair of the Shinnecock Nation Council of Trustees. She joins Bianca Collins, who continues serving as trustee, and Linda Franklin, who, as sunksqua, has an important nonvoting advisory role. It’s encouraging to see the nation vote Goree into ... by Editorial Board