The other day, I was driving home on Route 27 to my little piece of heaven on earth, a/k/a Hampton Bays, and was thinking of the “BESS Mess” and the town’s unbelievable attitude and behavior toward my hamlet lately.
Despite the fact that I was a mediocre student of French, I found myself singing aloud from the French National Anthem: “Aux armes, citoyens. Formez vos bataillons. Marchons, marchons!”
To be clear, I have no intention of storming the palace. However, I believe those words springing up from my subconscious reflect my distress at the Soutampton Town Board’s inaction representing the well-being of its natural resources and its people.
Over 500 people attended a meeting and made it abundantly clear that they did not like the proposed downtown development plans, especially with a sewage treatment plant just off Montauk Highway, adjoining the cemetery and the park. It appeared that we had been heard — and then recently noticed what seemed to be a sly and underhanded way of getting the plant back in that same spot.
Then there’s the Bel-Aire Cove Motel. A rally, 2,000 signatures on a petition against development, plus an overflow crowd at Town Hall — and the supervisor is still not giving in. Coming up fast is the proposed change in the accessory apartment law that, theoretically, could double our population.
Moving on, we now have the “BESS Mess.” For those not fully informed, it is two proposed lithium battery storage facilities in Hampton Bays. Where else? Funny you should ask. The one dangerously close to the Shinnecock Canal and Meschutt Beach could be approved by the Planning Board. There are 30 units of 24 batteries each.
Please read up on lithium batteries. Google it. At the very least, the information could curl your hair.
So, what can we do? Stay alert. Show up at everything pertaining to Hampton Bays. Write letters. Call elected officials. Seriously grill new candidates for office on local issues. Some say start a political action committee. Others say get write-in candidates for November. Many say start a war chest for potential lawsuits.
I don’t know what to say, except, maybe, “Bon chance, Hampton Bays.”
One fine body…