A Safety Issue - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 2206604

A Safety Issue

I have been a resident of Southampton for 37 years. I have a special attachment to the community: I am a direct descendant of Thomas Sayre, a founder of Southampton who landed at Conscience Point in 1640. My many times great-uncle Job Sayre is the namesake of Jobs Lane. The Sayre homestead occupied the land on Main Street where Village Hall now stands.

I have been wondering why no one has raised the issues of safety and security for the residents of the village regarding the garden/park? Who will be using this park? Agawam Park is mostly used for events. Most village residents have their own lovely gardens. And we have pleasant, wide residential streets, and the world’s best beaches, for walking.

Will this space be used primarily by day-trippers who spend no money in the village? If they picnic in the garden, who will pick up after them? Will the garden close at dusk? Who will enforce that? How will we handle people who stay overnight in the garden?

At The Press-sponsored event on September 28, I thought I heard that properties purchased by the Community Preservation Fund must be open to the public 24/7. Does this mean that the village gives up jurisdiction? Is that something we want in the heart of our beautiful village?

Private funding is talked about, but if there are problems, maintenance and security issues fall back upon village resources. How can a village that cannot deal with 300 dead and diseased trees that need to be cut down deal with a potential new maintenance issue?

I have one of those diseased trees right outside my property. PSEG came within five days to look at it and agreed it is hollow inside and threatens the power lines running through its branches. They need an invitation from the village to take it down. The village has been unresponsive.

No one disputes that the lake must be cleaned up, but shouldn’t construction of a sewage treatment plant be moved to the forefront? Shouldn’t both crises facing the community be put to a referendum for the voters to decide?

One small observation: The lake will never be cleaned up as long as village maintenance workers park on Pond Lane and proceed to clean up the droppings left by the geese and ducks by shoveling the poop into the lake. This has been observed by many of us who regularly travel down Pond Lane.

Finally, I ask the trustees not to cause a traffic nightmare for the taxpaying voters of the village by closing Pond Lane. Instead, use eminent domain to widen and repave Pond Lane. If properly executed, this could leave room for a vegetative border.

Annette Geddes