Tag Archive | "West Water Street"

West Water Street Developers File for Chapter 11 on the Defunct Condo Property

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It has been over three years since East End Development, LLC — the team of developers behind the now defunct condominium project at 21 West Water Street — have paid workers to complete any work at the 19-unit building.

It has sat, more than half way finished for years, a large box of tiles on one of the building’s balconies unmoved, slowly disintegrating to literal dust.

Last week, the future of that project was dealt another blow.

On October 12, East End Development, LLC filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy in United States Eastern District Bankruptcy Court. Emil Talel is listed as the managing member of the LLC, with Michael Maiden and Terry Soderberg also listed as co-debtors in the filing.

According to a copy of the filing, East End Ventures debt associated with the 21 West Water Street property is estimated at $35,344,415.89. The filing states that East End Ventures assets include the half finished 21 West Water Street condominium building, which they value at $27,300,000.

The only other asset listed in East End Ventures documentation is $206.53 in a JP Morgan Chase Bank account.

The 1, 3 and 5 Ferry Road parcel, which the same developers unsuccessfully attempted to develop into condos under East End Ventures LLC — a case that resulted in a lawsuit between the firm and the Village of Sag Harbor — is not listed as one of the company’s assets as it was managed under its own limited liability corporation.

Twenty-six mechanics’ liens are listed against the 21 West Water Street property from creditors holding secured claims in the bankruptcy case totaling $34,653,840.52 with an additional $7,353,840.52 in unsecured claims made by the same companies.

The largest mechanic’s lien filed against the property is by the Longview Ultra Construction Loan Fund through Amalgamated Bank — East End Venture’s loan provider. They have filed a $30,484,011 lien on their own.

On Tuesday afternoon, a representative from Amalgamated Bank declined to comment on the Chapter 11 filing.

Several local companies have also been impacted by the project. Bridgehampton Steel & Welding has filed a $76,092 mechanic’s lien, Pristine Pool Construction Corp. has filed a $71,703 mechanic’s lien against the project, Southampton Brick & Tile has filed a $94,340 lien, Southampton-based Squire, Pierson & Sons, Inc. has a $94,239.47 lien and Water Mill Building Supply, Inc. has a lien of $213,949.

Unknown claims may be made from the Internal Revenue Service, the New York State Department of Finance and the New York City Department of Finance, according to the filing.

“Unsecured” and “non-priority claims” amount to $690,575.17, including $11,060 owed to local Sag Harbor attorney Dennis Downes — the attorney who helped secure approval for East End Development for the 21 West Water condominium project. An additional $20,076 is owed to Bridgehampton architect Kathryn Fee, $277,139.94 is owed to RLW4 Construction out of Southampton, and even the Village of Sag Harbor is owed $523.75.

As East End Ventures has filed for Chapter 11, not Chapter 7, it is attempting to reorganize its debt rather than liquidate, although under bankruptcy law Chapter 11 proceedings can move to Chapter 7 proceedings.

However, on Tuesday, Talel remained optimistic that despite the years long delay in getting the project off the ground that it would in fact move forward some time this winter, in part, because East End Development filed for Chapter 11.

“We will settle with everyone involved and negotiate to the best of our abilities,” said Talel. “This will allow us to go back to construction as quickly as possible. Nothing has changed and the project will be completed in an expeditious way.”

The 21 West Water Street condominium project was originally proposed in 2006 and was approved in 2008, with residents and village boards alike largely supporting the project, in large part because the condos would take the place of a nightclub and restaurant just on the edge of a residential district.

The project included 19 condos and a rooftop swimming pool.

While they were gaining its final approvals for 21 West Water Street, Talel and Maiden proposed a condo project at 1, 3, and 5 Ferry Road, under the East End Ventures corporation.

While failing to find support for a number of different versions of that project, in 2009 the village’s zoning code changed, drastically reducing the number of condominium units allowed on the Ferry Road parcel and requiring affordable housing be worked into the project.

In September of that year, Talel and East End Ventures filed a $30 million damages suit against the village as well as an Article 78 suit, claiming they were led to believe the project would be exempt from the new code, similar to the approved condominium project at the former Bulova Watchcase Factory.

While both suits would ultimately be dismissed in 2011, as of fall 2009 workers were already walking off the job at 21 West Water Street for non-payment and by July of 2010 there were over $3 million in liens recorded with the Suffolk County Clerk’s office against the property.

According to the Chapter 11 filing completed earlier this month, Amalgamated Bank has already begun foreclosure proceedings against East End Development, which is still in court.

For Sag Harbor Mayor Brian Gilbride, after three and a half years of watching the 21 West Water Street building fall further and further into decline, he said he was not optimistic about the project’s future. But at the end of the day he hopes someone resurrects the project to protect that section of the village from further blight.

“There is not a day I walk into Schiavoni’s that someone doesn’t ask me about this,” said Gilbride.

Plans for Havens Beach Remediation Estimated Around $207,000

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Sag Harbor Mayor Brian Gilbride has two major projects he would like to see accomplished before the end of his second term — the remediation of stormwater runoff contamination in the dreen that lets out into Havens Beach, and the bulkhead project to prevent further erosion on West Water Street.

If Tuesday night’s Sag Harbor Village Board of Trustees meeting was any indication, Mayor Gilbride will likely meet both goals.

Sag Harbor Village Planning Consultant Rich Warren was given permission to move forward with the permitting process for the remediation of the dreen at Havens Beach after a lengthy presentation on the scope and potential cost of a project over a decade in the making.

Six months ago, Warren presented preliminary plans to the village board outlining what his firm believes will be the most effective solution to manage bacteria in the dreen, created largely by stormwater runoff. The proposal combined the use of bio-filtration through a restored wetland in the ditch itself, as well as mechanized filtration, but Tuesday Warren said the plan has evolved slightly.

After studying the site for six months, with the aid of surveyor Michael Hemmer and engineer Steven Maresca, Warren said the final plan was devised after the team developed an understanding of the true topography and hydraulics of the site.

The final plan involves dredging approximately 1,550 cubic yards of silt and muck that sits at the bottom of the ditch, thereby slightly altering the slope into the ditch. Clean sand will fill the ditch and once it is clean, will be planted with wetland vegetation, creating natural bio-filtration. Warren said the system will help slow the velocity and flow rate of water entering the ditch after a rainstorm, and absorb pollutants like nitrates and phosphates before they can enter Sag Harbor Bay.

At the north end of the dreen, near the discharge point at Havens Beach, a concrete vault containing 300 Smart Sponge Plus SmartPaks — the only Environmental Protection Agency approved filter to handle the removal of bacteria from water — is proposed to add a second layer of filtration.

In addition, on the south end of the ditch near Hempstead Street, a new catch basin will be connected to an existing catch basin, with new piping also installed and the whole system re-pitched to allow for better water flow into the dreen. Warren originally planned to place a second filter unit on the south end of the ditch, but the topography prevented that. Instead the filter unit on the north end will be larger than originally planned.

Engineering is also planned on the north end of the ditch to aid in the proper flow of water into the filtration unit and out into Sag Harbor Bay.

Warren estimated the project will cost $207,000, although he stressed that was a ballpark figure and not necessarily the final cost. The more expensive aspects of the project involve purchasing the Smart Sponge Plus SmartPaks, which will initially cost around $75,000. According to Warren, the Smart Sponge SmartPaks will need to be replaced on a rotating basis, which could cost about $20,000 annually.

Warren added that after initial talks with Suffolk County, there may be grant funding available to offset the cost to the village.

Both the county and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation appear supportive of the plan, and after receiving approval to apply for permits, Warren said he believed this could be a plan implemented as early as next spring.

“I think we are ready to move forward,” said Mayor Brian Gilbride.

The Sag Harbor Village Board also received a presentation from Warren on a proposal to bulkhead a section of West Water Street to prevent erosion on the beachfront from threatening a section of roadway.

Last week, the village’s Harbor Committee — without the support of its chairman Bruce Tait — found the project inconsistent with the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP).

On Tuesday, Warren said he had furnished a report to the Harbor Committee showing the plan was consistent with the LWRP as well as the village’s Harbor Management Plan. The Harbor Committee, he added, did cite policies within the LWRP in its decision to find the project inconsistent, but members were not specific about why exactly the bulkhead does not conform with the LWRP.

According to village attorney Fred W. Thiele, Jr., the village board has the right to overrule the Harbor Committee, and on Tuesday night it appeared the board was leaning that way, although trustee Ed Gregory asked for time to review Warren’s material before weighing in.

Sag Harbor Village Harbor Committee Votes Against Bulkhead on West Water Street

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Despite having seemingly secured the votes to adopt a resolution supporting a bulkhead project on West Water Street during a work session held two weeks ago, this week a majority of the Sag Harbor Village Harbor committee reversed their decision. They instead asked the village board to look at other options, or at the very least, provide the committee with a detailed report on why other counter-erosion efforts would prove ineffective on that section of beachfront.

For a decade now, erosion has plagued a portion of West Water Street, directly across from a now defunct condominium project. For over two years now, the current village board has been closely monitoring erosion at the site, which was left deteriorated in the wake of storms in 2009 through 2011, with whole sections of the embankment eroded to the point where some utility lines were exposed. Directly under the narrow roadway lie septic, water and electricity lines.

In June, Sag Harbor Village environmental planning consultant Rich Warren conceived formal plans to construct a 568-foot vinyl bulkhead at the beach as well as five four-by-four platforms with stairs to allow access to the beach and dockage.

The proposal still is awaiting New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) approval, although according to village officials the NYSDEC supports the concept of a bulkhead on the project and shot down several other counter-erosion options including the use of gabions — wire cages filled with rocks that would be placed against the embankment.

While Harbor Committee Chairman Bruce Tait has supported the project, last month he failed to find the votes to deem it consistent with the village’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Project (LWRP). At a work session late last month, Tait appeared to have secured some votes in favor of the project, but failed to find the same support during Monday night’s Harbor Committee meeting.

Before a vote was taken, Tait encouraged his board to at least vote the measure down or approve it rather than make no resolution and leave the Sag Harbor Village Board of Trustees without any feedback.

Tait added that he believes the village’s Harbor Management Plan, which dates back far before the LWRP to the 1960s, supports this kind of project.

The Harbor Management Plan notes the Harbor District in Sag Harbor has “been subject to extensive public investment that is exposed to flood hazards out of necessity,” read Tait directly from the document. “Therefore, the water dependent uses in the waterfront and marine zoning districts have a priority for shoreline hardening to protect them against the erosive forces of storm events … Where a substantial portion of the water-dependent use in the Harbor District has been bulkheaded, it may be desirable to continue the bulkheading along the full length of the use.”

“There are key words there: ‘may be’,” replied committee member Jeff Peters. “There has to be another way.”

Committee member Brian Halweil said that while that language supports bulkheading there is also language within several policies of the LWRP that do not.

He said unless he was shown evidence that other alternatives were ruled out, he was inclined to find it inconsistent with the LWRP.

Peters and John Christopher supported Halweil’s motion. Tait did not support the resolution and committee member Dr. Tom Halton was absent.

Halweil also asked the village board to look into a long term plan for the outflow pipe in that area, as well as more details on plantings and why there is no opportunity for planting beyond the bulkhead and down onto the existing beach.

Meanwhile, the committee continued to hold the line on its demand that applicants hoping for a wetlands permit fulfill at least the minimum requirement of a 25-foot wetlands buffer of native plants in order to be given approval — in particular, when it comes to its own membership.

Christopher, who recused himself from the discussion, has proposed a 668-square-foot addition on the upland side of his 92 Redwood Road home. His planner, Matt Ivans of Suffolk Environmental, originally proposed no additional wetlands buffer as the Christopher family has preserved a large expanse of wetlands on their property.

After months of debate, Ivans came back this week with a 15-foot wetlands buffer.

Tait said he would need to hear an argument for hardship, outside of wanting more lawn, in order for the application to gain his support.

Halweil said he believed the committee should take into account the fact the Christophers are building on the landward side of their home and are not adding a pool. He said he was willing to find the application consistent.

“There are three people voting on this board tonight and I think we need to hold the standards high,” said Tait.

“My personal fear is going to be like the Town of Southampton where every time you want to do something it is going to be another bite out of the apple, more and more and more buffer,” said Ivans.

Both Southampton and East Hampton towns are even more restrictive with their wetland setbacks.

As the committee was unable to reach consensus, they agreed to table the measure until next month’s November 14 meeting.

Similarly, David Sokolin’s wetlands permit applicant was also tabled. Sokolin has proposed a 13 by 25-foot swimming pool within his existing deck at 176 Redwood Road. Last month, his planner, Sean Barron, proposed at 10-foot wetlands buffer and was quickly sent back to the drawing board.

Sokolin argued on Monday night that he was sensitive to environmental issues, which was why he chose to construct the pool within the existing deck and not in the yard.

Barron added he has submitted a new plan with a 15-foot buffer, which does extend 20-feet if decking next to the bulkhead is counted as a part of the buffer plan.

Tait advised them to come back next month and show a plan that can get as close to the minimum requirement as possible, even if it means proposing 30-feet of buffer on the sides of the property and less in the center.

Warren added the committee is actually asked to enforce a 75-foot buffer, but can make exceptions. However, the code states that under no circumstances should they allow a buffer smaller than 25-feet in an effort to protect the wetlands and the waterfront of Sag Harbor.

“Take a big bite out of this, otherwise go to the zoning board of appeals,” said Tait. “There is an appeal process.”

Richard Pantina of 12 Notre Dame Road has proposed demolishing an existing house and building a new two-story home with a 2,934-square-footprint as well as a swimming pool, spa, stone patio and new sanitary system.

Last month, Tait and the committee asked that Ivans come back with a buffer larger than 25-feet given the scale of the development, and on Monday, Ivans delivered by proposing 35-feet of buffer to the wetlands.

He is expected to be granted his permit next month.

Former Mayor Balks at Bulkhead Proposal for West Water Street

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A former Sag Harbor Village mayor lambasted plans proposed by the Sag Harbor Village Board of Trustees to install a bulkhead along a portion of beachfront on West Water Street during a Harbor Committee meeting this week, and questioned why that body wasn’t more concerned with protecting valuable foreshore just outside the village’s downtown.

On Monday, August 8, Pierce Hance approached the committee questioning the trustees’ plans to stabilize the West Water Street embankment, directly across from the stalled 21 West Water Street condominium project.

For over two years now, the village board has been monitoring erosion at this particular section of beachfront, which after snow and rain storms in 2009, 2010 and 2011 left sections of the embankment deteriorated to the roadway, posing a possible threat to not only the road, but the septic, water and electric lines that line below the asphalt.

Despite temporary fixes by the village’s Department of Public Works, which dumped sand and rocks on the beachfront in an effort to sure-up the shoreline in the short-term, dating back to early 2010 trustees began discussing finding a long term solution to the problem. In June village environmental planning consultant Rich Warren announced formal plans to bulkhead the beach with a 568-foot vinyl bulkhead, as well as five four-by-four platforms with stairs to allow access to the beach.

The proposal still is awaiting New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) approval, as well as approval from the Harbor Committee, which will hold a formal hearing on the proposal at its September 12 meeting.

Hance said that erosion in that area has been a problem for over a decade and a problem that was ignored for years.

“The problem is neglect and the solution is not putting in a bulkhead,” said Hance. “The solution is remediating that foreshore.”

Hance said if the village does bulkhead the area, before long, no beach will be left, and along with committee member Dr. Tom Halton, noted the village’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan is not in favor of bulkhead projects.

Harbor Committee chairman Bruce Tait disagreed, arguing the LWRP advocates for not using shoreline hardening when there are other choices to be considered.

“One fact we can agree upon is there is a danger of losing that road if something isn’t done,” said Tait.

Tait said 15 years ago, the village considered installing coconut coir logs, durable biodegradable erosion prevention logs, and it may be advisable to at least explore that as another solution. However, he added, it may be the beachfront has eroded to a point where that is no longer viable and the only way to save the roadway is through a bulkhead.

Hance disagreed, calling bulkheading that area tantamount to creating “a dead waterfront.”

Warren said the kind of remediation Hance was suggesting would require the village to fill out into the water or cut back into the roadway, as the embankment is too steep in the center to support vegetation.

“Most of that bank is vertical and there are big pieces coming off,” he said, adding the bulkhead was actually an idea supported by the NYSDEC.

“If you are feeling like you want to do something different, you should schedule a work session with the board of trustees,” he advised the committee.

One of the Harbor Committee’s own members, John Christopher, was sent back to the drawing board on Monday night after a wetlands permit he sought to add a one story addition to his 92 Redwood Road home was tabled after the board asked that a better plan to buffer wetlands be drafted by his consultant.

Christopher sat silent during the hearing after recusing himself from the discussion while his consultant Matt Ivans of Suffolk Environmental Consulting laid out Christopher’s problem.

Christopher’s addition is actually on the landward side of his residence, over 80-feet from the wetlands, and he and his wife have maintained what Ivans described as a thriving and dense natural buffer without regulation.

Ivans said his client hoped to be exempt from the buffer requirement given that he has maintained so much natural vegetation.

Dr. Tom Halton agreed, questioning why projects landward from existing structures should even be considered for a wetlands permit by the committee, and therefore subject to providing a natural buffer to wetlands areas.

“What we are trying to do by wetlands law is ensure we have buffers in place throughout the area,” explained Tait. “The only way we can do that is enforce the law as a permit comes in. But we have an ability to look at these and make judgments as we see fit and that is the purpose of having this board look at these permits; otherwise it would be a stamp at the building department.”

Warren noted the committee’s code demands buffers as great as 75-feet to wetlands, and states they should not approve any natural buffer less than 25-feet. He noted that Christopher’s existing buffer ranges from 15-feet in size to just a few on some portions of the property.

Tait asked Ivans so come back with a plan at the committee’s next meeting that shows a compromise.


Sag Harbor Village Takes a Closer Look at Erosion on West Water Street

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Sag Harbor Village Harbor Committee Chairman Bruce Tait and village environmental planning consultant Rich Warren examine the effects of erosion on West Water Street Monday evening.

Photographs taken in 2009 of the village owned waterfront on West Water Street in Sag Harbor show a healthy beachfront bordered by grasses and a few trees before the landscape meets the roadway.

But pictures taken at the same location two years later show a wide beachfront with sections of small bluffs that protect the roadway from the water fallen in large clumps. Orange cones protect pedestrians and drivers along entire lengths of the beach where erosion goes to the base of the road. In one spot, a tree’s roots are almost entirely exposed on one side to the elements.

And this was the second winter in a row that this happened.

For two years, the Village of Sag Harbor Board of Trustees has been monitoring the erosion at the beachfront directly across from the now stalled West Water Street condominium project. The erosion is largely attributed to heavy snowfall and storms that slowly picked away at the waterfront, presenting the possibility that the septic and electric lines underneath West Water Street could eventually be compromised by the deterioration, let alone the roadway.

The Sag Harbor Village Department of Public Works has instituted stopgap measures each winter, dumping snow and even rocks on that section of beach — at the ire of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). The NYSDEC issued the village notices of violation last year for installing those temporary fixes on the waterfront. Last month Sag Harbor Village Environmental Planning Consultant Rich Warren announced formal plans to construct a bulkhead on the property to prevent any long term damage to the roadway.

The proposal, which is still awaiting approval from the DEC as well as the Sag Harbor Village Harbor Committee, entails constructing a 568-foot vinyl bulkhead along the length of the waterfront.

In addition to the bulkhead, five 4 x 4 foot platforms with stairs are proposed. These would provide access to the beach, which also has a number of village dock spaces that are accessed through a cable-tie pulley system. That system is un-operational without users standing on the beach.

According to a report filed with the village by Warren’s firm, Inter-Science Research Associates, the current stairways to the beach are so few, there is evidence that people are gaining entry to that section of beach by climbing down steep slopes of dune, which is causing even more damage to the area.

On Monday night, Warren presented the concept to the Harbor Committee, which is being asked to weigh in on the matter immediately while the project awaits approval from the NYSDEC as well as funding from the Village Board of Trustees, which Warren noted have pushed for the plan’s completion.

Warren said the issue was not a new one, and in 2006 the village board attempted to protect the area with gabions. These are essentially stones held in place by a metal wire cage, but the idea shot down by the NYSDEC, which no longer views that a viable method of shoreline hardening.

According to Warren’s memo, the department is probably not wrong, at least in this instance.

The gabions, he says, would eventually erode after being washed in the salt water of Outer Sag Harbor Cove for several years, and if people tried to scale the structures down to the beach they could be injured. They could also imperil boaters trying to access their crafts off the cable-tie pulley system, and high velocity waters, which have wracked the area in recent winters, can also damage those structures.

The only other alternative to the bulkhead is not doing anything to the waterfront, which Warren states would eventually lead to the roadway collapsing into the beach over the course of several more years.

After the village was cited by the NYSDEC for trying to shore up the beach with rocks, it met with the agency and enlisted Warren and Hampton Bays engineer Steve Maresca to draw up plans for a long term solution.

Warren said in addition to the bulkhead, the plan has been conceived to allow for the future construction of a walkway over the beach, similar to Marine Park so should the waterfront erode over time there is still access to the dock space.

“I think it is a good plan,” said Harbor Committee Chairman Bruce Tait. “It works to solve the problem down there.”

While the committee as a whole appeared supportive of the concept, Tait and the board agreed to review the plan and formally review its consistency to the village’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP) at next month’s August 8 meeting.

Sag Harbor Village Looks to Stabilize West Water Street

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Whether they have the help of a luxury condominium developer or not, Sag Harbor Village officials acknowledged this week that a long term plan needs to be developed to stabilize the waterfront embankment on West Water Street, parts of which have taken a beating during recent nor’easters.

On Tuesday, December 8 Sag Harbor Mayor Brian Gilbride asked the board for suggestions on how to handle the beachfront on West Water Street after receiving word from Sag Harbor Superintendent of Public Works Jim Early that the embankment had been damaged for the fourth time this year.

“I feel the village should work on getting the area in a stable condition before we have another storm and we could possibly lose more of the bank and possibly some of the road,” said Early in a letter to the board.

According to Gilbride, Early and his crew have already had to replenish the embankment several times this year.

Across the street from the beachfront is the luxury condominium development known as 21 West Water Street, which recently renewed its building permit with the village. Earlier this fall, project manager Mark D’Andrea said the condos were in the final stages of completion. According to Gilbride, part of their original site plan approval included an agreement that the developers would aid the village in creating a waterfront boardwalk at the site, although discussions stalled after the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) expressed some concerns with the plan, which may have altered the roadway in its creation.

No permits have been issued for a project at the embankment.

“This is our property, our project,” said village attorney Fred W. Thiele, Jr., noting any agreement on the part of the developers was simply to participate with the village in stabilizing the area.

“We will have to give this serious thought during the budget process,” said Gilbride.

“This has been going on for a number of years,” acknowledged village trustee Ed Gregory.

The board agreed to empower village planner Richard Warren to look at revising plans for the area and continue talks with the NYSDEC in order to get the ball rolling on stabilizing the area, and would contact the developers of 21 West Water Street about their involvement.

Attorney Edward Burke, Sr., representing the Hastings family, approached the board looking to appeal last month’s decision by trustees to deny the couple the right to acquire an adjacent, village-owned sliver of land used for many years as a driveway to the family’s Norte Dame Road residence.

According to the Hastings’ environmental planner, Susanna Herman, the family hopes to demolish and rebuild their home in order to accommodate their four young children. Given the flood zone the house resides in, Herman said a new sanitation system is being “shoe horned” into the property as a result of setback requirements and does not meet Suffolk County code. The Hastings would like to be able to shift the system further away from the water, and can only do so by either acquiring the piece of village-owned property.

Herman said the Hastings would also accept an easement from the village and noted variances and approval by the village’s historic preservation and architectural review board will also be required before the project can move forward.

Trustee Tiffany Scarlato said she had concerns about impeding public access to the waterfront – a priority for a village with a Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP), which demands the board protect that access. Herman countered that no one in the neighborhood uses the path to access the bulkheaded beach and that there is access at other points in the neighborhood.

Kieran Murphree, representing the Hastings with Burke, said a title search was underway to see who truly owned the strip of land, noting a survey from the 1930s indicated the property was not meant for public access, but specifically for access to the Hasting property.

Gilbride suggested waiting to see the results of the title search before the board moved forward with a decision.

“If it’s the village’s you will have a difficult sell with me,” he said.

Sag Harbor has officially struck a deal with National Grid to continue use of its land on Long Island Avenue as a parking lot for the next year. According to Gilbride, National Grid has had private offers to use the property, but Thiele noted the NYSDEC has not determined what, if anything, can be developed on the site, which was recently remediated for coal tar.

The yearlong lease, at no cost to the village, will be good until November 30.

On Tuesday, the village board adopted a new law streamlining how Sag Harbor officials deal with abandoned boats following a months-long battle to remove a vessel left drifting and crashing against the breakwater. The new law allows village officials to remove any hazards to navigation with little bureaucracy.

In other news, Gilbride read a proclamation naming May 1 Silver Star Banner Day, a day created by The Silver Star Families of America to honor ill and wounded soldiers. The board also acknowledged local Eagle Scout Mark Mahoney, who led the village in its Salute to the United States flag at the opening of the meeting.

Lastly, the Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce was granted permission to host pony rides on December 19 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., although a location has yet to be established. While the Chamber hoped to use the grass at Marine Park, chamber member Benito Vila said he would work with Early to come up with a new location after Early expressed concerns about damage to the grass and sprinkler system.

According to Vila, it is the hope of the Chamber that the event will bring more holiday shoppers to Main Street.