Golden opportunity


As a member of the community and a businessman, I wish to express my distress over the interference of the Group for the East End in attempting to thwart the Bulova project.

Virtually every citizen, government board and civic organization has weighed in positively and decisively. Sag Harbor went through the process of approvals in 1981. Now the Group is costing us tens of thousands of dollars as they usurp our village’s future as the Group attempts to make itself relevant. They are outsiders, and their condescension knows no bounds.

Robert DeLuca has no idea how little regard the people in the town have for this arrogant bureaucracy; their patrons apparently don’t care that they are jeopardizing the retail future of Sag Harbor Village and possibly even perpetuating a Superfund site. Pretty good for an environmental agency, isn’t it? The Nature Conservancy and the Peconic Land Trust have trumped the Group’s preservation mission, and effective environmental watchdogs are aplenty. Obstructionists, especially outsiders, should not be allowed to compromise the future of our village.

If the project fails to go forward, a highly likely event in this economy, the responsibility for losing $100 million in investment, hundreds of local (construction) jobs and dozens of permanent local labor placements will be at the feet of this dated, litigious organization. The town will have lost 30 affordable housing units and the economic multipliers that attend this sort of investment.

I have lived in Southampton Town all my life, and I am embarking on my 37th year in the same business in Sag Harbor. I admit to being passionate, but I do not engage in hyperbole when I say it is my opinion, and the opinion of many others, that the failure of this project to go forward will be the death of Sag Harbor as we know it.

Many people sincerely hope the Town Board permits Sag Harbor its right to self determination. Please recognize our village has worked diligently and tirelessly to cover all environmental bases to ensure this project will happen. We are trying to take advantage, very carefully, of a golden opportunity. Whatever self-serving legal argument the Group wishes to invoke to save face will be balanced by an understanding they are not what the voters want, and they stand in the way of environmental cleanup, affordable housing, prosperity for Main Street’s “mom-and-pops,” and lots of local jobs.

I believe voters will take note if the town allows itself to be lured into blocking something we need and approve of.

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