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Village of Dering Harbor adopts overhauled code

The Village Board, meeting via Zoom on Saturday, Oct. 10, adopted a Local Law to Provide for the Codification of Local Laws, Ordinances and Certain Resolutions to be designated “Code of the Village of Dering Harbor.”  Board members Karen Kelsey and Clora Kelly had worked with the company General Code to go through all of the local laws and eliminate repetitions and update references. 

Village attorney Wayne Bruyn said there were no substantive changes. “As with other municipalities that have done this,” he said, “it’s very important to enable residents to understand the laws and allow for enforcement.” The new code will be available online and two hard copies will be kept at Village Hall for residents’ reference. Going forward, any new Village laws will be added to keep the code up to date.

The Board also adopted a Local Law amending Article X of the Zoning Law, updating and revising procedures of the Architectural Review Board. Among other measures, it allows residents considering alterations to their property to have an informal pre-submission meeting with the ARB at no cost. Fees for subsequent sessions will be discussed at the next Board meeting. Trustee Clora Kelly said the ARB’s aim was to “maintain the aesthetic integrity of the Village.” The updated section of the zoning law, she said, would help to remove any ambiguity and “tighten up” the ARB’s power so its rules were clearer and more enforceable. 

In another discussion, Ms. Kelly raised the question of the extent to which the Village could regulate seaplanes seeking to land in the harbor. Mayor Patrick Parcells said that based on his experience with these craft, “They can’t brake or reverse” during the landing process. “They’re not so maneuverable” once they’ve reduced their speed and altitude, and “subject to winds,” he said.

Mr. Bruyn said that other municipalities, especially on the South Fork, have regulations on where seaplanes can land, “not in ponds, for example.” Other rules cite the size, noise and maneuverability factors. Ms. Kelly indicated that she would look into what the Town of Shelter Island and other municipalities have done on this issue and report back to the Board.