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Local Accomplishments.

Local Democrats Get Good Things Done For All of Us.

Proud of our Southampton Town Democratic majority accomplishments and developing plans, we are doing and intend to continue to do what’s best and right for the entire Town and all its residents.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Local Economy

Agriculture fostered the growth and development of Southampton Town, and by creating Agricultural Conservation District secured that legacy and maintained farming as a viable economic feature of Southampton Town. Hampton Bays is a vital hamlet and with community input informing a new vision for a Hamptons Bays Central Business District hamlet, residents can look forward to an economy of their own design. Looking farther west in Southampton Town, Democrats created the Riverside Revitalization Action Plan, a key component of which was expanding the Children’s Museum of the East End, and by securing a $120,000 grant for the CMEE an important piece to the revitalization plan was enacted.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Fair Housing

In recent years, Southampton Town created 64 affordable housing unit, 26 for the Sandy Hollow project in Southampton and 38 for the Speonk Commons project in Speonk. In cooperation with Habitat for Humanity, Ground was broken on Nov 21, 2021, for 5 private affordable homes in the Riverside section of Southampton Town. Southampton Democrats recently passed an Accessory Apartment Law, which allows private homes to convert space for apartment dwelling. For the long term, a public plan for affordable housing will be added to Southampton Town’s Comprehensive Plan. Overall Southampton Town’s housing stock consists of 520 affordable units, or 1.2% of total housing units, On November 8, 2022, Southampton voters approved a Community Housing Referendum which, when combined with the Town’s housing plan, will increase the total number of affordable housing units.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Fiscal Responsibility

To improve finances Southampton Democrats eliminated operating fund deficits of $8.1 million – deficits attributable to “adoption of inaccurate budgets poor financial record keeping, inadequate cash flow and lack of monitoring to ensure that actual and planned spending matched.” All problems associated with past Republican administrations.
That ended with the election of Southampton Town Democrats. Standard and Poors 2022 Credit Rating report stated: Southampton’s credit profile is characterized by very strong reserves and liquidity and consistently positive operating performance, supported by strong management policies and practices.
Standard and Poors’ glowing report can be found here: Town-Maintains-SP-AAA-Rating-2022 (southamptontownny.gov)
The “strong management practices” cited by Standards and Poors is mainly manifested through Southampton’s exemplary budgeting process. Remarkably, despite a significant increase in Southampton’s population – mostly driven by Covid-19 relocations – the tax burden has not increased for Southampton residents.
“The 2022 Budget addresses that reality by judiciously investing in improvements to facilities and modernization, seeking operational efficiencies and right sizing of staff. Although there are staffing increases proposed in the 2022 Budget, those increase represent only a 2% growth over 2021 staffing. The Town’s ongoing efforts to reorganize, to streamline processes and to implement labor saving technologies play a very important role in creating a budget that meets the needs of the community while protecting the taxpayer. As a result, the 2022 Budget supports those staffing increases as well as providing significant investment in Town facilities while reducing the tax rate in the General Fund by 1%
2022-Budget-Message (southamptontownny.gov)
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats cared about Covid-19

When Covid hit the East End, Southampton Democrats immediately sprang into administrative action, mitigating the deadly impacts of Covid with helpful outreach to everyone and especially to the vulnerable. Southampton Town Democrats created All For The East End, or AFTEE, a vehicle to raise funds, qualify for grants to augment food bank operations. AFTEE created “Feed the Need Campaign” which assisted many local employees impacted by Covid. The ASAP program – All For The Seniors – was a delivery system to bring essential items to seniors who might be homebound or otherwise in need; assisted with vaccination appointments and travel to those appointments. More than 20 merchants signed up to help ASAP, enabling 1,500 deliveries to 1,000 seniors. AFTEE and ASAP and other efforts to combat Covid came about as the result of a leadership group organized for such purposes. These efforts are a model for other public health emergencies.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Public Safety

Southampton Town has a lower overall crime rate than the vast majority of U.S. cities. For comparison, the national total crime rate is 2,489 incidents for every 100,000 people. There were 520 crimes reported in Southampton Town, New York in 2019, the most recent year crime data is available. Adjusted for population, the city’s annual crime rate is 1,018 incidents for every 100,000 people. Southampton Town’s overall crime rate is 41% lower than the overall crime rate in New York. Statewide, there were 336,919 crimes reported in 2019, or 1,732 for every 100,000 people.
Southampton’s favorable crime rate can be attributed to a well-functioning and professional police force. Professionalism was enhanced in 2016 when the Southampton Democratic Town Board appointed Steven Skrynecki, formerly Chief of the Nassau County Police Department, to the Chief of Police of Southampton Town. Under Chief Skrynecki training became a focus as the hiring of bilingual police officers to relate to the growing Latino Community.
Public Safety is more than a police function and other actions include the following:
  1. Created the Department of Public Safety and hired Ryan Murphy – formerly the Coordinator of Safety and Fire Rescue in Patchogue – to serve as the new Director of Public Safety for Southampton Town. Mr. Ryan’s expertise in disaster planning and code enforcement made him a perfect fit for the job. .
  1. A reorganization of the Public Safety Department brought code enforcement, the fire marshal’s office and the office of animal control under one roof – all in Hampton Bays – the most centrally located hamlet in Southampton. Having all departments reorganized in one building under one director has allowed cross-department coordination and improved overall efficiency.
  1. Adopted and implemented an all-hazard mitigation plan. Recognizing that preparation is the best defense, the Town released a new brochure: Be Prepared. Updated, handy, and compact, the pamphlet is designed specifically for Southampton residents, with valuable information such as: important phone numbers, advice for caring for the elderly and those with special needs, pet safety, advice on protecting homes and businesses, assembling an emergency “go-bag.”
  1. Developed a “police use of force” protocol, including training clips used to demonstrate field training in the areas of de-escalation, intervening and tactics employed. It specifically meets and exceeds best practices in several areas. Southampton also adopted a clear policy on when to report use of force to NYS.
  1. Other actions include the following: updated the emergency dispatch console, resolved East Quogue Fire Department dispatch issue; participated in the Hurricane Sandy Task Force and implemented recommendations such as, adopting ways to speed up power restoration and keeping emergency response teams functioning throughout storms and other emergencies.
  2. Created an Alarm Registry to track abusive use of alarms and malfunctioning alarm systems. Adopted and then amended a system to implement fines and penalties.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about our Environment

Southampton Democrats commitment to beautification, coastal erosion mitigation, education programs, land and natural habitat preservation, noise abatement, waste management, and especially water quality improvements has given the Town an opportunity to sustain our economic engine and way of life.
Safe Clean Water
Water quality is a significant public health matter on the East End and Southampton Democrats urgently delivered potable water and installed public water connections to communities beset with contaminated private wells. Water quality project grants from Sag Harbor to Eastport dot the landscape, a partial list includes:
$547,000 to Sag Harbor’s water quality analysis and sewage treatment upgrade; $134,000 to Southampton Village for a permeable reactive barrier for Lake Agawam and $231,000 for stormwater attenuation at Old Towne Rd; $160,00 to Stony Brook to evaluate septic systems that will reduce Nitrogen discharges by 50%; $4,233,000 for Westhampton Beach Sewage project; completion of the sewer system is projected to divert nearly 5,000 lbs. of nitrogen away from Monibogue Bay annually, reducing its total nitrogen load by 24%. The Hampton Bays Water District was found to contain water contamination and in their role as HB Water District Commissioners approved the spending of $1 million to install carbon filtration systems on affected wells.
Sustainable Fishing
Nothing says the Hamptons like fishing in our world-renowned waters. With that in mind, In November of 2018, a $1.9 million renovation project was completed. The project restored Ponquogue Bridge piers on both sides making for great fishing and diving access for all to enjoy. The south pier offers ample parking and a boat launch for all to use. This pier is closer to the main channel and offers slightly deeper water for anglers and divers to explore.
There’s also fishing as a commercial enterprise, providing jobs, income and a way of life. With that in mind, Southampton Town replaced Suffolk County as manager of the Shinnecock commercial dock, The transfer will consolidate government services, reduce the burden on taxpayers, assure local control and maintenance, and allow the Town to begin a revitalization project of the area that will benefit the commercial fishing industry and visitors alike. The next phase of rehabilitation will be bulkhead replacement and electrical infrastructure upgrades.  The bay front property west of the dock will be added to the Town’s Parks and Recreation Department.
Commitment to Reducing Carbon Emissions
Southampton Democrats, working within the framework of the Town’s Sustainability Plan, have committed to meet 100% of community wide electricity needs through renewable energy sources by the year 2025, and carbon neutrality for town facilities by 2040.  To formalize that goal, a Town resolution committed Southampton to adopt a Climate Action Plan (to be prepared by the consulting firm, Ramboll, Inc) as part of the Town’s Comprehensive Plan.
By adopting specific regulatory and legislative actions, Southampton Town has begun to make the climate plan a reality and the goals attainable. 1) Guided by the NYS Stretch code, initiated reduction in energy consumption by 10-12% by requiring high efficiencies for all new or substantially reconstructed residential dwellings; 2) Converted 2,580 incandescent streetlights to LED lighting, leading to $270,000 annual savings through reduced maintenance and energy savings; 3) Passed a ground-based solar code, opening the way to hiring Kearsarge Inc., to build a solar array farm in North Sea which was, in turn, enabled by the creation of the Community Choice Aggregation/Community Choice Power program. Initially, Southampton will receive $60,000 in lease payments from Kearsarge that will be escalated in following years; 4) Committed to building a 4-station electric charging unit in an existing municipal parking lot in Bridgehampton paid for by the New York Power Authority.
More
A grant to East Quogue will give life to a native plant garden project; a joint plan with Cornell Cooperative Extension established a Marine Education Center;  in 2016 adopted a Coastal Waters and Resource Protection Plan; working now on an airport noise abatement plan, and adopted Sunday noise control for building projects; Community Preservation Fund office evaluates 400 open space preservation projects on annual basis; adopted a sewage rebate program and mandates new construction projects to install new septic systems; adopted a ban on lighter than air balloons and one-use only plastic bags; fought Sand Land mining company to preserve our sole use aquifer; over-sized utility poles removed; improved waste removal projects and added equipment to facilitate beach refuse pick-up.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Infrastructure

Westhampton Beach is set to acquire a state-of-the-art community center that will include nutrition services for seniors and a youth services program. The $4.1 million purchase of a 22,000 square foot property on 112 Old Riverhead by Southampton Democrats advanced this project.
A major renovation of the Ponquogue Beach Pavilion will delight beachgoers.  The renovation began in November, 2018.  Built in 1966, the entire 3.9 acres site has been transformed into a modern, eco-friendly facility utilizing sustainable products, including an increase in natural lighting through sky-lights and harvesting rain-water for irrigation and restrooms. In addition, the renovation includes a new roof, upgrades to exterior materials including decking and low maintenance, chemical free siding.   The ramp to the beach has been extended and widened and the concession area has a new look with additional outdoor seating.  The indoor and outdoor lighting has been replaced with LED fixtures. There are more outdoor showers and the renovated restrooms include changing areas.  The parking lot has been upgraded with rain gardens and native plantings.  The parking area surface has been recoated and restriped. And, the attendance booth and entrance have been replaced and modernized to improve appearance, accessibility and safety. The total renovation costs $3.35 million.
Not only the beach pavilion in Hampton Bays, but Flying Point in Water Mill will get a facelift, too. The pavilion at Flying Point Beach in Water Mill will be renovated, after Southampton Town Board members approved spending $960,400 on the project.
Renovations to the Southampton Town Public Safety division will enhance services. Emergency Management Administrator Ryan Murphy approved, saying that, “The new headquarters is centrally located and, in the town’s biggest population center. The new site provides a modern, up-to-date workspace for employees and better access for the public. A location west of the Shinnecock Canal is going to make employee recruitment much easier.
The Tiana Life Saving Station is being renovated. The town has spent $815,290 to restore the property, which included some demolition work and the removal of non-historic structures such as bathrooms, a kitchen, and the main bar outside, as well as exterior and interior restorations, the latter of which is currently underway. This last year, the building’s exterior was restored with cedar shingles, its tower reconstructed and raised, and gable windows with bronze screening, boat ramps and barn doors were all installed.
These other projects made the grade, too:
  • A grant to the North Sea Community Center to align with the American with Disability Act
  • Rebuild Foster Avenue playground
  • Southampton Youth Services roof repair
  • Several renovations and improvements to the physical components of the Hampton Bays Water District
  • Elevate Dune Road by 6 inches.
  • Fixed kennel cages at animal shelter
  • And more…..
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Community Health

Recognizing that accidents happen and that emergencies are inevitable, Southampton Democrats demonstrated a firm commitment to a robust ambulance corps by bonding $5.5 million for a new ambulance building. The new building will allow a thorough training program, sleep-over capabilities, and equipment modernization.
Aware of the ravages visited on Southampton Town residents by the Opioid addiction crisis, Democrats created an Opioid Task Force. Members appointed to the Task Force were subject matter experts, ready and able to make the following sound recommendations.
  • Supported evidence-based Prevention Education programs in both school and community settings.
  • Developed a multi-pronged strategy for disseminating information to community.
  • Created new Parent/Guardian Education program.
  • Measured effectiveness of prevention awareness program with school districts every other year and facilitated Prescriber Education for medical professionals
  • Maintained Town multidisciplinary coalition and initiated a youth coalition component for class credit.
Southampton Town Democrats also worked to bring the THRIVE rehabilitation program to a facility in Westhampton Beach. This free and non-clinical center opened in response to the heroin and opioid epidemic sweeping across the country. Due to the success of THRIVE Suffolk and the continued need for services and support in our communities, THRIVE Nassau later opened in June 2019 and THRIVE East End in November 2021.
Recognizing the importance of nutrition Southampton Town Democrats announced the opening of a farmers’ market, which is part of its Flanders Farm Fresh Food Project. The market is run by young staffers with the Southampton Youth Bureau.
Finally, Southampton Democrats created the Edith Windsor Heart Project. The project consists of a heart-shaped memorial tribute to Edith Windsor. Civil marriages will be performed at the heart site and money raised by purchasing heart-shaped mementoes will be donated to the Edith Windsor Health Clinic at Stony Brook Southampton.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about Traffic and Transportation

Town officials recognized the need for research and strategic planning to mitigate the traffic and transportation issues on the East End. Two large research and planning projects have informed Town Government. One is the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center and the other is the Town’s Comprehensive Plan Transportation element.
Under Volpe, the initial transit concept under evaluation proposed a Coordinated Rail-Bus Network process as a means of improving local mobility. Southampton Democrats responded with the South Fork Commuter Connection shuttle bus program. Although negatively impacted by the Covid pandemic, the Shuttle is making steady gains and is becoming a viable mode of transportation for local commuters.
Under the general rubric of the Comprehensive Plan Transportation Element many projects have been implemented or will be implemented to mitigate commuter and general public traffic issues, some are:
  • Created parking districts in Bridgehampton and Hampton Bays.
  • Created the Bridgehampton Pedestrian and Traffic study that should increase pedestrian and traffic safety. Six new crosswalks are proposed.
  • Through a grant program, added bus stop shelters in Flanders to improve and facilitate transportation options for Flanders residents.
  • Created the Townwide Road Capital and Strategic Improvements Plan that has addressed traffic flow concerns at various local intersection:
    • Greenfield Road alignment
    • Limit Parking on Long Neck Road
    • Install speed indicator at Hampton Bays elementary school.
    • Improved traffic flow at Scuttle Hole Rd and Millstone Rd by relocating STOP signs.
    • Addressed traffic flow concerns during land management and development issues. For example, voted down a proposal for a Tuckahoe shopping district due to negative impacts on traffic.
    • Traffic re-routing plan for CR39 – Various pilot projects to change traffic patterns and traffic lights to move commuter traffic more efficiently.
    • Deerfield and Middle Line Highway signage.
    • Evaluate McGee and CR39 intersection for left turning arrow.
    • Pave unpaved sections of Montauk Highway in Hampton Bays.
    • Study traffic flow issue at Deerfield and Head of Ponds Roads.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about our Parks and Recreation

From Sag Harbor to Eastport recreational and beach facilities have been improved under successive Democratic Administrations. Knowing that that rich recreational opportunity translates to personal well being as well as economic success, Supervisor Jay Schneiderman gave the Parks and Recreation Department the backing it needed.
  1. East Quogue Dog Park. In the words of Councilwoman Julie Lofstad, “Members of the community were looking for a place for their dogs to run safely and play with other dogs; I’m happy to see this project come to fruition. It’s a great way for residents to be outside with their pets and socialize with their neighbors.”
  2. Flanders/Riverside. The Big Duck. In 1997, the Big Duck was named to the. National Register of Historic Places. The Big Duck is situated at Reeves Park and Southampton is working to improve a walkway that visitors use to visit the park.
  3. Flanders/Riverside. Development of the Riverside Maritime Trail Park with pedestrian access to the Peconic River, passive recreation and shoreline/wetland restoration, is a cornerstone feature of the Riverside Revitalization Action Plan (RRAP).
  4. Flanders/Riverside. Develop Riverside Park. The Park will facilitate a re-orientation of land use and community life toward the river, providing a linkage between a new downtown Riverside and the River and functioning as an anchor for new mixed use development and increased economic activity.
  5. Flanders/Riverside. Improve Ludlam Park playground. The site located at the intersection of Ludlum Avenue and Old Quogue Road in Riverside will gain new bleachers, re-netting of existing soccer goal post frames and new lines drawn for the two existing baseball fields, turning it into one multi-purpose field that will make it easier for visitors to play soccer as well as baseball.
  6. Hampton Bays. Built Good Ground Park. Following more than 10 years of planning, Good Ground Park opened to the public in the Spring of 2017. This passive recreational park complete with amphitheater sits adjacent to Hampton Bays Main Street. Many concerts and events have been held to rave reviews. A playground and parking were added after the park’s opening. The park is intended to enhance the downtown business area as well as provide a rich community resource.
  7. Hampton Bays. Improvement to the Maritime Park. This property is located along the Shinnecock Canal, adjacent to the Parks and Recreation Department in Hampton Bays. The Town has removed an old fence, improved landscaping, and opened it up so that visitors gain easier access to the canal.  The Town proposes to make additional improvements funded in part by a $300,000. benefit payment made by the developer of C.P.I.  An additional amount of $220,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds will also support these improvements.
  8. Hampton Bays. Bike Lane. The proposed location of this project is within walking distance of public transportation, is accessible through a designated bike path, and is connected to the hamlet center through a series of paved sidewalks. The project proposes improvements to 3.0 acres of open space parcel of property purchased by the Town for $1.15 million through its Community Preservation Fund (CPF) on the west side and adjacent to the Shinnecock Canal.
  9. North Sea. Built Pickle Ball Court at North Sea Recreational Facility. “This is going to be a very well utilized facility,” said Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, who is an avid player himself. “There is a huge pickleball community here in Southampton Town and those numbers are only going to continue to grow as more people get exposed to it. It’s a great sport.”
  10. Hot Dog Beach Reopened. “It’s been so much fun to see this spot get revitalized, but with the growing patronage it became increasingly important to us that we provide lifeguard staff,” said Town Parks Director Kristen Doulos. The nine-acre parcel at 35 Dune Road was purchased by Southampton Town using $4.07 million from the Community Preservation Fund. Construction began in 2017 to restore the boardwalks, add a new ADA-compliant ramp, and security lighting. When the gates opened that June, it was formally named William H. Swan Beach, had a 175-car unpaved parking lot, two portable toilets, and a Mister Softee truck.
  11. Sag Harbor. Purchase Land for Steinbeck Park. The Southampton Town Board voted unanimously on July 10 to approve the purchase of 1.25 acres in Sag Harbor Village that will become the site of the proposed John Steinbeck Waterfront Park. The parcels of land that the town is acquiring for $10.5 million with the use of community preservation fund money include 1, 3, and 5 Ferry Road, on the Sag Harbor side of the bridge that leads to North Haven. For more than a decade, they have been blighted with abandoned buildings.
  12. Establish Aquatic Center at IGHL.
Did You Know? …

Local Democrats care about our Local History

Southampton Democrats believe that all groups, irrespective of race, color, creed, or national origin deserve a seat at the table, a voice in decision making and recognition of their contributions to Southampton Town and America at large:
Southampton Democrats, recognizing past injustices suffered by the Shinnecock Nation passed the Graves Protection Act to protect sacred burial ground and followed up by establishing a committee to assess vital issues impacting the Shinnecocks. A land use moratorium was the first initiative proposed which will be used to identify sacred ground.
In recognition of the rich history of African Americans and their many contributions to the East End, Southampton Town joined with the Southampton African American Museum to save and rehabilitate the Pyrrhus Concer House. By using CPF funds, the Concer house was saved from private development and purchased for historical preservation.
Due to an increase in antisemitic incidents perpetrated against Jewish people, Southampton Town approved a resolution with language spelling out the definition of antisemitism as understood by the International Holocaust Alliance.
The Southampton Town Board voted earlier this month to authorize Supervisor Jay Schneiderman to formally request participation in the Certified Local Government program. Participation in the CLG program allows municipalities to partner with the state and federal government throughout the processes of identifying community resources and protecting historic properties. Statewide, over 70 communities participate. The Town Board passed the required changes to its zoning code following a May hearing that drew no public comment in opposition.

Local Democrats care about all of us, All Across the Map.