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Street change in Dering Harbor

MARTIN BURKE PHOTO Early morning light  in Dering Harbor.
MARTIN BURKE PHOTO Early morning light in Dering Harbor.

The Dering Harbor street known as Shore Road has officially been changed to Harbor Lane. At the Village Board meeting on September 8, the Board approved the change, which followed a survey of residents and a public hearing.

The change was made to end confusion with the Shore Road at Crescent Beach, which caused problems with emergency responses as well as unwanted traffic through the village.

“I’m sad to see the name go,” said Mayor Betsy Morgan, “as I love tradition. But it’s time to put safety first.”

A committee will take steps to notify all appropriate authorities as well as Google Maps and other resources. Village Fire Marshal Arthur Bloom will work with first responders to make them aware of the change.

With the impending retirement of Village Highway Superintendent Richie Surozenski, the village will make its final trash pickup on October 15. Going forward, residents may contract directly with Mr. Surozenski for pickups or with Shelter Island Environmental Services as they choose.

The cost of trash pickups will be removed from the village’s budget.

A scheduled paving of Dinah Rock Road was to be completed in the coming week by Corazzini Asphalt. Mayor Morgan reported on the state audit underway, saying that the first third of the process, the risk assessment, was nearly complete.

Trustee Patrick Parcells reported on the progress of upgrades to the water system. The new water tank had been filled and would be switched to the water system in the next few days. Residents might notice better water pressure, since the old tank had only been two-thirds full and the new tank was completely filled.

Mr. Parcells said the water usage in the village was well above where it should be, “For four days in August it was above 50,000 gallons a day. It shouldn’t be more than 20,000.”

Trustee Karen Kelsey said it was crucial to get water meters in place by spring. Mr. Parcells said that would enable the village to impose a punitive fee structure in case of excessive use.

Because of numerous complaints about noise from construction and landscaping, the Board discussed clarifying the regulation. Currently, such work as leafblowing and lawnmowing are not covered under the regulation that bans construction noise between May 1 and Columbus Day. The board will have a public hearing on the proposed change at its October 13 meeting.

The Board also took up the need to clarify its laws controlling hunting. Trustee Clora Kelly had discussed with Animal Control Officer Beau Payne the procedure for culling deer using professional hunters. Mayor Morgan said that hunting is currently illegal in Dering Harbor, so she proposed amending the law to allow for culling on properties of five acres or more.

Culling by bow and arrow hunters shooting downward from tree stands would be allowed under a deer damage permit with DEC oversight on properties of five acres or more.

Village Attorney Wayne D. Bruyn proposed an increase in fines for zoning violations, which had not been updated since 1970. A public hearing on the revised fine schedule will be held at the October 13 meeting.

Noting that there is currently no central listing of the village’s laws, the board has been conferring with a company that works with numerous municipalities to create a searchable codification of all laws.

The estimate to perform this service is $8,000 to $11,000, according to Trustee Karen Kelsey, and there would be fees for future subscription services. Mr. Bruyn said he had spent considerable time working with the New York Secretary of State’s office to find all the Village’s laws and amendments going back to 1970.

Trustee Clora Kelly raised concerns about pollution to the harbor from boats. Mayor Morgan said she would confer with the former mayor, John Colby, about previously discussed plans for a pumpout boat to be shared among Sag Harbor, Southampton and Shelter Island. Patrick Purcells said that $130,000 in funding was available for that purpose.