The Sag Harbor Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) to the Town of Southampton continues to focus on regional issues affecting the whole of the town, this week continuing a discussion about public access to the planning board and how the town is handling its solid waste management department.
Currently, the town is just beginning to assess the true cost of its waste management department, which has been in the red and which some officials have suggested should be privatized to save taxpayers money. Members of the North Sea CAC and North Sea Civic Council are not sure the idea will save taxpayer’s money and have concerns it will increase traffic in their hamlet.
On Friday, North Sea CAC and Civic Council members Dan Gebbia and Lucy Dunne attended the Sag Harbor CAC to discuss their concerns. After hearing Gebbia and Dunne out, the Sag Harbor CAC agreed it would support the North Sea CAC by adding their names to a letter to town officials questioning the change.
According to CAC and Coalition for the Preservation of Sag Harbor (CONPOSH) member Priscilla Ciccariello, in light of these concerns CONPOSH will host a forum on Sunday, September 20 at 2 p.m. at the Sag Harbor Presbyterian (Old Whalers) Church discussing solid waste, although a panel of experts has yet to be announced.
CAC member Stephen Schumann is continuing to monitor areas where trash is being illegally dumped, in particular on Town Line and Scuttlehole roads. According to Schumann, now that the community is in the throes of summer, illegal dumping has gotten particularly bad.
Schumann said he intended to reach out to Suffolk County Legislator Jay Schneiderman, who has helped the CAC on this issue in the past and the group decided not to take further action until that summit was held.
In other CAC news, the Coalition East – a group of CACs east of the Shinnecock Canal that have banded together in order to present a united front to town officials on regional issues – has continued to hammer away on recommendations it will make to the Southampton Town Planning Board in the hopes of giving the public a greater voice in the planning process.
According to CAC Chairman John Linder, not just community groups, but local contractors, support the concept of allowing public input early on in the planning process for developments in the town.
“We all just want the whole thing to be more streamlined and efficient,” explained Linder.
The Group for the East End has also been helping craft these recommendations, including one that would create a committee of experts which would review ambitious projects proposed in the town in an advisory capacity for the planning board, which is an appointed board.
Linder said a final draft was not ready, but that he would keep the committee informed when it was completed.
Lastly, the committee agreed to reach out to the Water Mill CAC to ask if they would like the Sag Harbor CAC’s support in their opposition to a proposed cell phone tower in Water Mill.
“It’s humongous,” said Ciccariello.