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Reporter Letters to the Editor

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Fresh Pond concerns
To the Editor:
I’ve been out of town, but some friends pointed out the October 4 Reporter letter sent by Vincent Novak.

The reference to the “Not a Bathing Beach” signs brought back happy memories of a satisfying supervisor moment.

Back then, Mr. Novak worked relentlessly to ban all humans from Fresh Pond (he’s flipped now that he’s attempting to cash out). As he wrote, he persuaded a mid-level county health enforcement employee to rule that swimming was prohibited at any town landing We have about two dozen on the Island that did not have a bathroom and a lifeguard. Imagine the taxpayer expense!

After getting that ultimatum from Mr. Novak, as your supervisor, I drove to the county health department headquarters. I eventually ended up in a very senior official’s office, making my pitch that the bucolic East End was more informal in its practices than suburban western Suffolk, and this informality had largely worked successfully over the decades in keeping our residents happy and adequately served.

I pledged that the Town of Shelter Island would not take active steps to encourage swimming, etc. at these landings and agreed to back this up with the “Not a Bathing Beach” signs at the busiest landings, such as Fresh Pond and Menhaden Lane. The senior health department official accepted the suggestion, overruling the edict Mr. Novak had secured. They would continue to allow swimming in modest numbers without requiring a bathroom and a lifeguard.

The past year or two I’ve noticed the sign has not been up at Menhaden Lane. The water quality issues are of a far different magnitude than Fresh Pond, but it might not be a bad idea to consider re-hanging the sign, for what it’s worth.

So, swimming will continue at Fresh Pond, Menhaden Lane and elsewhere and we must strive to keep Fresh Pond water as healthy as possible for the swimmers. The latest suggestion from the Fresh Pond Neighbors Association seems to be that bringing more cars and people to the Pond will do the trick.

And God forbid, if the parking lot, kayak rack, benches etc. end up being put in at the Fresh Pond town landing as some are proposing, a health department official making a subsequent routine inspection might have a long memory and conclude that Shelter Island has reversed course and is now actively encouraging swimming at the Fresh Pond town landing and revive the bathroom and lifeguard requirements.
JIM DOUGHERTY
Former Shelter Island Town Supervisor

No cameras
To the Editor:
Why does the Shelter Island Police Department need to know when and who enters and leaves our Island? How will this information be used? With whom will it be shared? For any and all purposes?

This a tremendous waste of our resources — $125,000 of our hard earned tax money.

I’m not one to avoid the convenience of E-ZPass over a concern about “Big Brother” watching.

However, I fail to see any benefit to the Island’s citizens by allowing Police Chief Jim Read to shadow every individual on Shelter Island. This a gross invasion of our privacy that can have no reasonable rationalization.

It would be so much easier to ask the two ferry companies to install security cameras on a reusable loop.

I urge the Town Board to strike this from the budget.
PHIL BAILEY
Shelter Island

Total support
To the Editor:
The Shelter Island Early Childhood Learning Center (SIECLC) and our board of directors would like to thank our community for the generous support we received in making our first “Bowling Event” a wonderful success.

Shelter Island businesses and community members are always so kind in supporting us and we could not survive without you! We would like to give a heartfelt thank you to the following people: Tim Sheehan, Kate Rossi-Snook, Bethany Ortmann, Dave Clark, Hans Schmid, Amelia Clark, Kelsi McIntosh and Cliff Clark for their assistance.

We would also like to thank the following businesses and organizations for their generous donations: The American Legion, The Shelter Island Recreation Department, Maria’s Kitchen, ‪Shelter Island IGA,‬ Piesano’s Pizza, Star’s Cafe, ‪Isola‬ Bar and Restaurant, The ‪Ram’s Head Inn,‬ Il Capucino Ristorante, Montauk Brewery and ‪Channing Daughters Winery.

And of course, a special thanks to all the participants and donors who laughed and had fun with us for such a great cause, especially the winners, “Teacher’s Strike!”

If you would like to learn more about The Shelter Island Early Childhood Learning Center, including our Forest School, or to support our program, please visit shelterislandpreschool.com.
KELLY GILLOOLEY SURERUS
President, Shelter Island ECLC

Marking calendars
To the Editor:
There’s only two weeks left until Election Day, a good time to remind our community of upcoming events so that calendars can be marked. First, there will be a rally in support of Democratic congressional candidate Perry Gershon at 10 a.m. Saturday, November 3, in the Center. Dogs are welcome.

Also, there will be the traditional Election Eve Ham Dinner at St. Mary’s Church Monday evening. Reservations are requested.

On the subject of food, the United Presbyterian women will have their traditional Election Day Luncheon with local clam chowder and hot dogs, no reservation needed. I think that luncheon has been held for over 90 years now.

And, of course, Election Day is Tuesday, November 6, with polls open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. All four Shelter Island Election Districts are polling at the school. If you need a ride to the polls, contact the town’s Senior Services.

Finally, come and stop by the election night gathering at Isola restaurant on Grand Avenue after 7:30 p.m. for fun food, a cash bar, good conversation and a chance to watch election results come in.
HEATHER REYLEK
Chairwoman, Shelter Island Democrats

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