Featured Story

This week in Shelter Island history

REPORTER FILE PHOTO North Ferry is seeking a rate hike this year, the first since 2011. In 2004, it sought a hike to help defray the costs of adding a second large boat to its fleet. The latest request is aimed at helping the company to get out of the red, since it has lost money the past two years.

REPORTER FILE PHOTO
North Ferry is seeking a rate hike this year, the first since 2011. In 2004, it sought a hike to help defray the costs of adding a second large boat to its fleet. The latest request is aimed at helping the company to get out of the red, since it has lost money the past two years.

40 YEARS AGO
Jernick tourism view enrages Huschle

When tSupervisor Thomas Jernick Jr. told the Reporter  Shelter Island having “no need for tourists,” he enraged David Huschle, chairman of the Eastern Long Island Travel Trade Executives.

The Shelter Island Chamber of Commerce president at the time, Leonard Bliss, wasn’t pleased, either. He characterized tourists as those who travel “from place to place, perhaps lodging overnight at a hotel or motel, taking in the local tourist attractions and entertainment provided — and then moving on without contributing too much to our economy.”

He went on to say that the Island economy was sustained by second homeowners and renters whose presence results in jobs here. He also told a television interviewer, “Tourists can go fly a kite.”

POSTSCRIPT: Today, Islanders might eschew increased traffic and crowding at some of their favorite restaurants and stores during the tourist season, but are open enough to the business they bring to move forward with beach day passes that previously could only be had by those staying at an Island inn or hotel.

30 YEARS AGO
Town waives dock hearings for storm repairs

Public hearings for dock and bulkhead repairs were suspended in April 1984. The suspension was designed to give  residents whose docks and bulkheads were damaged by a severe storm on March 29 of that year the ability to move forward more quickly in making repairs in time for the upcoming summer season. Damages were estimated at more than $3 million that year.

POSTSCRIPT: This year, following Superstorm Sandy, residents were allowed to move quickly on repairs since the Town Board fast-tracked applications unless they identified problems with proposed work.

20 YEARS AGO
Submersible well pumps identified as source of lead

Submersible well pumps with brass or bronze components were determined by the United States Environmental Protection Agency to be a potential cause of lead, exceeding acceptable health safety limits.

The Suffolk County Department of Health Services was offering tests to detect lead levels to homeowners at a cost of $65. While water delivered from public sources such as in Dering Harbor was being routinely tested for lead, that didn’t account for fixtures in individual houses where lead was being added to the drinking water.

POSTSCRIPT: Water quality continues to be an issue with most recent attention being paid to nitrates that can’t be eliminated; bacteria that needs to be treated; chloride levels that leave some on the Island without acceptable drinking water; and concerns about aged septic systems that are failing. The subject of water contamination gets a lot of attention from both the Water Advisory Committee and Irrigation Committee.

10 YEARS AGO
North Ferry makes its pitch for rate hike

It was April 2004 and North Ferry General Manager Bridg Hunt was asking the Suffolk County Legislature for a rate hike  that would enable it to purchase a second large boat identical to the Mashomack that had quickly turned the company from a “commuter’s nightmare” into “a pleasant trip to work.”

Its last increase of 8 percent had been approved in 2001. Mr. Hunt was asking for a 12.5 percent hike in one-way cash fares; a 60 percent increase in non-resident 10-trip ticket books; a more than 14 percent increase in the resident 10-trip book for residents; and a more than 22 percent hike in the five-day commuter pass.

POSTSCRIPT: Mr. Hunt has just announced a request for a hike, the first since 2011, that would trend with the federal cost of living standards. The aim is to get the ferry service out of the red ink it has been experiencing in the past few years. While he said he sees some turn around in business this year, it wouldn’t be enough to put the company in the black without an increase.

 

j.lane@sireporter.com