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Mooring space tight for applicants as water council wrestles with solutions

JULIE LANE PHOTO Mark Labrozzi got little satisfaction from the Waterways Management Advisory Council Monday night when he sought an alternative mooring site for one of his boats.

JULIE LANE PHOTO
Mark Labrozzi got little satisfaction from the Waterways Management Advisory Council Monday night when he sought an alternative mooring site for one of his boats.

The Waterways Management Advisory Council (WMAC) is struggling to respond to applications for mooring sites since there’s an increasing number of people seeking them and little turnover among those who have them.

Mark Labrozzi didn’t get much satisfaction Monday night in his request for a mooring in Menantic Creek that’s already crammed with existing moorings and boats that need room to maneuver in and out of the area.

Mr. Labrozzi was moored in an area with a kind of seaweed that became overgrown in April, blooming to the point it prohibited him from using the site. The bloom disappeared about two weeks ago, but Mr. Labrozzi was seeking a solution to the problem before next year. All he could elicit from the WMAC was an agreement to revisit the issue if the bloom reappears next April.

Mr. Labrozzi told the WMAC that areas around town landings that are meant to provide access for those without moorings are becoming clogged because of illegal, blocking free passage for other crafts.

There were brief discussions about a number of other pending issues:
• Efforts to protect Reel Point from further erosion remain on hold, said Councilman Jim Colligan, Town Board liaison to the WMAC. He’s waiting for further information from Peconic Land Trust, which owns Reel Point, and from Public Works Commissioner Jay Card Jr. about what efforts town workers may be able to undertake to shoe up the point.

“We’re not going for the Cadillac solutions,” Mr. Colligan said, noting that a report by consultants lists a menu of steps that could, if all were embraced, cost up to $70 million.

Mr. Card and former Town Engineer John Cronin have said that the price could be cut considerably by implementing some of the suggested steps and then have the work done by town workers so the cost would only be for materials.

Still, the price tag isn’t yet known. Both Mr. Colligan and Peconic Land Trust officials have talked about seeking grants.

• Pandion Acquisitions is awaiting deals to sell two remaining properties in the development of the former St. Gabriel’s property that fronts on Coecles Harbor. Owner Richard Hogan applied for a community dock, but also indicated buyers of two lots on the extreme sides of the new development might each want their own docks.

In the past few weeks, Mr. Hogan has said he prefers a single community dock and hopes that will ultimately serve all homeowners. But until those lots are sold, the WMAC can’t go forward with the application

• A seagrass management plan developed by the town could be under way within the next year. Mr. Colligan speculated it could take a few years to complete. Mr. Eklund suggested that some early money to initiate actions could come from the Water Improvement Projects Advisory Board that is funded with Community Preservation Funds. A full story on the seagrass management plan will appear in next week’s Reporter.

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