Featured Story

This week in Shelter Island history


Willie Mays became the second player to hit 600 home runs.

Singer Tiny Tim got engaged to Miss Vicky.

“Marcus Welby MD” premiered on ABC Television.

“Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford premiered.

“Sugar, Sugar,” written by Jeff Barry and Andy Kim and originally recorded by the virtual band the Archies, reached number one in the United States on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and remained there for four weeks.

And on Shelter Island . . .


Pre-Fab housing is industry hope

A study released  by Morgan Guaranty Trust revealed there needs to be a concentration on pre-fabricated housing to meet future needs. Numbers revealed that construction of new housing units from 1950 to 1969 had averaged 1.4 million a year, “far below the average 2.6 million per year needed to meet the housing target for the next 10 years,” the study said,

POSTSCRIPT: The once maligned pre-fab housing has found a solid place in building in more recent years. Escalating costs for other housing construction and  the time it takes to build has prompted upscale communities such as Greenport’s Peconic Landing to choose pre- fabricated structures.

DJTM Enterprises, operated by real estate broker Janalyn Travis-Messer, has pushed the housing here and had proposed one  complex as possibility a few years back when the Community Housing Board was looking for affordable housing. It failed to gain traction at the time for other reasons, but that doesn’t mean pre-fab housing won’t be proposed again.


Simes appoints noise committee

Supervisor Jeffrey Simes appointed a committee to study noise complaints from Island residents who were told to look to surrounding communities for an idea for their noise ordinances.

Police Chief George Ferrer said his officers were limited to what they could do beyond asking people to lower volumes of music or other noise, since there were no technical statutes in place.

POSTSCRIPT: This summer, complaints revolved around music from Sylvester Manor’s Creekside Concerts carrying across the water to neighbors, with one speaking out about the need to either move the concerts or find a way to deflect the sounds. Sylvester Manor Executive Director Stephen Searle said he wants the educational farm to be a good neighbor, but could not currently afford a bandshell to redirect the music. He noted the concerts occur only twice during the summer with one other fundraising event in the area of the creek, and promised to try to do what he could to keep the music level down.


Physical education hire controversial for community

The Board of Education drew the wrath of a number of community members when it voted to hire a man to fill the job of physical education teacher. The post had, for as far back as anyone could remember, been held by a woman.

There were an inadequate number of women role models for students, some parents insisted, while the board maintained it was hiring the best of all the applicants for the job.

POSTSCRIPT: The man hired then, who remains in the post now, is Brian Becker. Mr. Becker is former president of the Shelter Island Faculty Association.


Independence Party chooses from two major parties

The reason for the Independence Party was to break up the two-party domination of politics, but what happened on Shelter Island is typical of what happens in many communities around the country. Instead of giving voters a choice of new voices, the party in 2009 chose to endorse candidates already endorsed by either the Republicans or Democrats.

POSTSCRIPT: To date, it appears that aside from incumbent Councilman Paul Shepherd running on the Conservative Party line, all other candidates appear to be running as either Democrats or Republicans.

[email protected]