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Oct 21, 2009 12:05 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays residents push for longer moratorium

Oct 21, 2009 12:05 PM

Ms. Green also took issue with plans for roadways in the hamlet. She said that the county is thinking about making Montauk Highway from the intersection with Route 24 west to Bellows Pond Road five lanes wide. Two lanes would head east, two would head west, and a fifth, in the middle, would be for turning, Ms. Green said.

Suffolk County Department of Public Works did not return phone calls.

Ms. Green added that plans are coming down the pipeline for extending a lane of State Route 24 past the Hampton Bays Diner to Good Ground Road. Eileen Peters, a spokeswoman for the New York State Department of Transportation, said that that plan would have to be initiated by Southampton Town. Ms. Peters did say, however, that the state issued Stop & Shop a permit to create two turning lanes on the southbound lane State Route 24 heading east. The state also approved the creation of two turning lanes for the eastbound lane of Montauk Highway heading into the northbound lane of State Route 24.

Those plans aside, the Rechlers’ notice of claim states that the town adopted the moratorium in “bad faith” and that it was excessive in length, and states that the town did not allocate enough money to the studies that necessitated the building ban.

“Our project would be an economic boon to Hampton Bays but we cannot even get our applications processed,” Mr. Rechler wrote in the e-mail. “We filed a claim because the delays have caused an economic toll on the project, but also because we believe in the project so strongly and feel it’s beneficial to the community.”

Mr. Adams emphasized that the notice is not an official lawsuit, only the first step toward one.

“They may or may not file,” Mr. Adams said. “Just because they brought a notice of claim, doesn’t mean they’re actually going to file.”

He said that the town can now ask for a hearing in order to ask the Rechlers about their claim. Officials have not yet decided on whether or not to have a hearing, Mr. Adams said. Mr. Adams declined to comment extensively on the claim and reserved any statements until an actual lawsuit is filed.

“From what I see right now, I don’t think that they have a valid claim,” Mr. Adams said.

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Hampton Bays can't afford to extend the moratorium in an economic downturn. The town board needs every penny of application and permit fees and increased property tax revenue that it can generate to try and fill in the giant financial crater they dug. Plus all those upisland contractors need the work. Gotta help them, too. They give SH politicians a lot of money.
By Noah Way (450), Southampton on Oct 21, 09 10:05 AM
Moratorium- Greek for "I do not know how to govern" We do not elect the civics. Our Town Board has made them a governing body. Ridiculous.
By The Real World (368), southampton on Oct 21, 09 2:11 PM
The Rechler's claim that the town delayed them for 19 months. The moratorium wasn't 19 months long? The Rechler's are asking to build more than they could "as of right". They knew this when they purchased the property. There was no guarantee that they would get what they want. The town has zoning for a reason. Why every one thinks it is ok to ignore the zoning and building whatever the builder wants is a mystery. If the Recherler's built what they could "as of right", they would have been ...more
By bb (922), Hampton Bays on Oct 25, 09 10:06 AM
Yes, but they are staying they have been stalled for 19 months. Part of the reason is because of them, nothing to do with the town. Since they are threatening to sue the Town one is lead to believe that it is all the Town's fault. It isn't.

By bb (922), Hampton Bays on Oct 26, 09 9:38 AM