Around the Island

This week in Shelter Island history

REPORTER FILE PHOTO Assessor Al Hammond argued 10 years ago his job should be appointed, not elected.
Assessor Al Hammond argued 10 years ago his job should be appointed, not elected.


United States astronaut Edward White became the first American and the second human to take a walk in space while he was tethered to a Gemini spacecraft.President Lyndon Johnson spoke to Howard University graduates in a speech that’s hailed today as defining the need for affirmative action by declaring that despite new laws, there was much work ahead to bring equality to Negro Americans.

Actress Judy Holliday died at age 42.

In a TV Guide column, satirist Art Buchwald  wrote about ways in which the ABC series, “The Fugitive,” might have been shortened or even aborted by  having the one-armed man on his deathbed confess to the murder of the wife of Dr. Richard Kimble.

A Chicago Tribune story of a new medical report vindicated girdles as responsible for swelling in women’s legs and ankles, concluding that a girdle would have to fit very tightly to cause such problems.

And on Shelter Island …

Town plans no action on county health code

Forty years ago, the Suffolk County Department of Health Services called for the installation of bathroom facilities at public beaches as required by its code. But Supervisor Thomas Jernick said it would be “impossible” at Crescent Beach. The Health Department called for one bathroom for every 60 male bathers, one for every 40 females and shower facilities with hot and cold running water.

What blocked action at the time, Mr. Jernick said, was litigation over beach ownership.

POSTSCRIPT: Just this year, the Town Board opened a discussion about the possibility of providing additional bathroom facilities at Crescent Beach.

Goat Hill clubhouse gets $9,000 face lift

In June 1985, the Town Board took another step in restoring the then 80-year-old clubhouse at the Shelter Island Country Club at Goat Hill. Work included black-topping a washed out ground area on the southwest corner of the building, cleanup of the pathway to the first tee and refurbishing of the fireplace.

Money was provided through Community Development Block Grant funds.

POSTSCRIPT: This winter, new operators of the club’s restaurant, Vue, made over the kitchen and bathroom and provided an enclosure and heat to the porch area. The new restaurant is open for lunch and dinner on Fridays through Sundays and has a pasta night on Monday nights and a lobster bake on Thursday nights.

HPOC talks sewers

Twenty years ago, the Heights Property Owners Corporation was looking to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation for a modification of standards for its waste water treatment plant. The organization had received  violations from the DEC for exceeding the limit for its sewer treatment capacity of 28,000 gallons, excessive coliform counts in the outflow and the need for a second certified plant operator. At least twice through the years — most recently, two years ago — HPOC officials had spoken with Greenport Village about connecting to its sewer plant.

POSTSCRIPT: HPOC has made modifications to its still independent waste water treatment plant through the years. It is “highly functional and in compliance with all rules and regulations,” HPOC general manager Stella Lagudis said.

Assessors urge change in their selection process

Assessors Al Hammond, John Cronin and Fred Dinkel called for appointment rather than election of a single professional assessor, maintaining that the appointed individual would possess the necessary training and skills to handle the job. Elected assessors may or may not be so qualified, they said.

They sought Town Board approval of a change that would still require a special referendum at which voters would have the final say about whether to change the status of the job. There was no such proposition on the November 2005 ballot.

As of 2003, more than 80 percent of assessors in municipalities across New York State were appointed officials, although Southold, Riverhead and East Hampton joined Shelter Island in having elected assessors.

POSTSCRIPT: Assessors continue to be elected officials on Shelter Island.

[email protected]