First We've Heard - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1807946

First We’ve Heard

Congratulations to Kara Bak on her new position as Southampton Town director of housing [“Kara Bak Assumes Helm Of Southampton Town Housing And Community Development,” Residence,, August 10].

I read with great interest that the town is in the very beginning stages of purchasing U.S. Coast Guard housing in Westhampton north of Stewart Avenue. This possible plan was first discussed as early as 2011. The Hampton West Estates Residents Association, which represents the 170-plus resident units south of Stewart Avenue, has made it clear over the years that our preference is for owner-occupied housing with no rentals. That position has not changed.

In addition, as we understand it, the U.S. General Services Administration was to auction these properties off, not to sell them to another government agency. If you check the real estate sales in our neighborhood, you will see that there is a strong market in this already affordable housing development, and prices have increased. The sudden sale of 24 units at a low value will immediately put a number of families “under water,” and there are many other issues that need to be discussed.

I’d like to point out that this is the very first mention to us that the town is considering purchasing these properties. Congressman Lee Zelden’s office has been our only source of information. Hopefully, the town will be more communicative and transparent as this plan develops.

Forest Markowitz

Westhampton Beach