We thank everyone who participated in this inclusive, civic process. We are now able to let the people of East Quogue vote as to whether or not to incorporate. We invite our neighbors to get educated about this opportunity.
Based on all of our research, the benefits and protections of village incorporation are many, including the critical protections of community character, our environment and our local taxpayers. The people of East Quogue can finally have nonpartisan representation by people who live in our community. We can get immediate focus on issues important to our community, like the need for public water mains, investments in our main street and speed controls on many local streets.
As a village, we can access investments from state, county and town resources. As a village, we can have a say in zone changes. As a village, we can explore having a village beach. And only as a village can we protect our community members from decisions that will impact them. If we remain an unincorporated hamlet, the town can increase our density, which will result in high taxes and other undesirable impacts.
Look at what is happening in the unincorporated areas of our town, and then look at the seven villages in our town: Sag Harbor, Sagaponack, Southampton, North Haven, Quogue, Westhampton Beach and West Hampton Dunes. The unincorporated areas have density issues, while the villages are prospering communities with low tax rates and ongoing investment.
We know we would be better off as a village. The great news is that it costs very little to operate a village. The only thing we are required to have is an elected board, which will be all volunteer, and a village clerk/treasurer. High-cost services like highway, parks and police would continue to be provided by the town at the same rate we already pay. Your school and fire districts stay the same. But existing, significant revenues, like building permits, sales tax, mortgage tax and cable franchise fees, would now stay in East Quogue to fund our village and support our community.
This strategic approach is why it will only cost about $50 more a year for someone with a $500,000 assessed home value to have local rule. The proposed village budget is posted at our website, eqvillageexploratorycommittee.com.
Let’s keep East Quogue the same beautiful place, and let’s all say no to high taxes, increased density and loss of investment — and say yes to a positive future with the Village of East Quogue.
Dave CeliEast QuogueMs. Kooi, Ms. Daddino and Mr. Celi are members of the East Quogue Village Exploratory Committee—Ed.
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