On July 10, I was hand-delivered, at my home, a copy of a lawsuit—close to 3 inches thick—filed by members of the East Quogue Village Exploratory Committee. It named Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, for rejecting the committee’s petition, including me as a respondent, along with 17 others who were against the village at a meeting held by the town, which requested comments in writing from the public.
Should these committee members rule a village if it succeeds? Their focus is to control local decisions, including zoning, in East Quogue, while everything else will remain with the town. Who are the donors funding their efforts? What are their motivations? Lawsuits are very expensive.
My opinion is that this is all about the golf course planned for the Pine Barrens by Discovery Land Corporation of Arizona, who has sued the town for $100 million for denying their original application as a planned development district. I hear that there is another suit against a conservation group by an official of Discovery Land.
Now the village committee has chosen to name those who were against them at a formal town hearing as respondents in a lawsuit? What happened to the First Amendment? Where will this stop? I guess we should all fold up shop and let the proponents of the golf course have their way?
Not me. This only emboldens me more.
The committee estimates that East Quogue property taxes will increase by $50 per year for a home assessed at $500,000. Many homes in East Quogue are assessed higher than that, so their increases will be proportionately higher. If and when a village is formed, who will bear the costs of lawsuits, which I think certainly will result from zoning decisions? I doubt it will be the “donors” to the exploratory committee. I assume it will be the residents of East Quogue who will pay.
I believe those in a position to benefit financially from overdevelopment are behind this proposal. Many are local business owners, real estate brokers and developers, those in the construction trades, etc. This is at the expense of the ground water, drinking water and health of the bays of the entire Town of Southampton. This is not a local East Quogue issue.
If this petition is approved and a vote is held on the incorporation of a village in East Quogue, please take the time and step up to vote against it. We need a volume of voters to show up to prevent this from happening, since I understand a simple majority of votes cast can change our world here in our lovely hamlet forever.
Vicki GreenbaumEast Quogue
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One fine body…