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Shelter Island Reporter Letters to the Editor: Sept. 2-9

Letter correction

To the Editor

In last week’s Reporter, Richard Krause wrote a letter stating: “An amateur, inexperienced boat operator made a pass too close to one of the South Ferry boat slips recently and made contact with the ferry boat. It sparked a call to the town’s Police and Fire Departments.”

To the best of my knowledge, this did not happen at South Ferry. Our crew does not know anything about it. I asked Mr. Krause where he heard such a thing.  He could not remember where he got his information, he thought someone told him it did.  He apologized for not verifying before writing the letter. Apology accepted.

Although I do not believe that specific incident happened, I agree with Mr. Krause’s general point that there are way too many private boat operators (power and sail) who do not respect the rules of the road, who do not demonstrate common sense, and in the case of large power boats, do not consider the impact their boat’s wake has on other mariners or the shoreline. 

The Shelter Island and neighboring town Police Marine Units are doing an excellent job patrolling our waters. They regularly intercept boat operators in violation of the rules of the road. They have made a difference at the South Ferry channel and other places around the Island, but they can only patrol one place at a time.

It  probably is just a matter of time until there is a serious boat-into-boat incident.

CLIFF CLARK, President, South Ferry

Asking for your vote

To the Editor:

I’ve been a proud Islander since my family and I moved when I was a year old. I’m now raising two children here with my wife Kelly because we want them to benefit from the experience of growing up in this close knit, supportive and engaged community just like I did.

I’m running to be your Town councilman in November to safeguard all that we cherish and to ensure that Shelter Island has a bright, sustainable future, and works for all.

From forming the Shelter Island Action Alliance in 2020 to rally Islanders to provide meals to neighbors in need and provide critical lifeline support to local businesses, to launching Shelter Island Fireworks in 2015, a nonprofit to ensure that our annual July 4th fireworks tradition remains fully funded, I have always tried to grab the bull by the horns and give my all towards causes that I’ve felt passionate about.

I’m passionate about ensuring that we leave the Island for our children and our seniors and our working families that is better than we inherited. Towards that end, there is much that we can do now, such as: 

• Aggressive action to ensure the sustainability of our water supply.

• Commonsense affordable housing to make room for a new generation of contributing, young, working families like mine.

• Expansion of children’s and senior programming that harnesses the best of this close community of neighbors.

• Making sure that the Town serves all of us, transparently and with enthusiasm.

I’m asking for your vote on November 2 so I can be your voice and advocate in Town Hall, and help shape a Shelter Island for all, forever.

BRETT SURERUS, Shelter Island

Town Clerk bid

To the Editor:

Through working as the Zoning and Planning Board clerk and clerk to the committees, as well as assistant to the Town Attorney since 2018, giving back to my community has been an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling experience, and I am running to be your elected Town Clerk to play an even bigger role in moving Shelter Island forward.

I took a deep interest in how government works while attending law school and have been fortunate in being able to apply those lessons, and those from years in the private sector, to help improve the way our Town works. I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish through teamwork and coordination, such as starting and growing a digital filing system, simplifying access to critical records, and rolling out a new online day parking pass application system, the last item of which dramatically boosted revenue and improved the customer service experience. All of these upgrades have helped the Town become more efficient.

There is so much more that the Town Clerk’s office can do to improve your everyday experience and increase its transparency and productivity, like introducing credit card and online payment options, expanding our use of digital document libraries, simplifying and coordinating the bureaucratic processes, increasing the reliability and depth of our archives, and streamlining communication with improved response times. I will work tirelessly to identify and implement these and other opportunities.

I’m excited by the prospect of what we can achieve in moving our Town forward and am asking for your vote in November so that I can be your partner in this endeavor.


Earning your vote

To the Editor:

As summer draws to a close, I am hopeful that Shelter Islanders will turn their attention to the November elections and take advantage of the many opportunities to meet all of the candidates as you make your way towards this critical decision.

I am one of those candidates — running to fill out the remaining two years of Mike Bebon’s term on the Town Council. If you see me at STARs Café having a coffee or otherwise around town, please stop by and have a chat about your concerns and hopes for our Island’s future.

If I earn your vote, you will be voting for a balanced voice on the Town Council that recognizes that we are all in this together on our small island, that we all have our own, sometimes conflicting interests, but that we can all achieve much to our mutual benefit. We all know the pressing issues that face our island — protecting our water, preserving housing for Island families, reducing tick-borne diseases, as well as many other issues and opportunities that impact the quality of our life here on Shelter Island.

Many of you know me (and perhaps voted for me, thank you!) from my years as an Assessor. I have also worked in the school business office, for Coecles Harbor Marine, and at the Chequit/Ram’s Head inns, among other places. My experiences allow me to see the world from both the private and public sectors and to have an appreciation of the promise and the limits of government.

I have been navigating complicated, nuanced conversations all my life and will bring a measured, well-grounded yet urgent approach to these issues that appreciates and considers all Islanders’ interests and concerns.

I hope that you have all had a wonderful summer and I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible this fall.