06/24/13 2:56pm

JULIE LANE PHOTO | TCO Michael Arnone checking out registration and inspection stickers during his tour of duty with the Shelter Island Police.

Someday, you might encounter Michael Arnone asking for your vote as he pursues a political career.

But today, your encounter would either involve his ticketing you for a traffic offense or providing a public service such as giving you directions.

The 20-year-old political science major at Gettysburg College inPennsylvania is the new traffic control officer hired for a summer gig with the Shelter Island Police Department. He’s been working the streets of Shelter Island Heights since starting the job two weeks ago.  He expected to find resistance from those motorists he has had to stop for traffic offenses — including parking longer than allowed in some business areas, not having vehicle registrations or inspections up to date or other offenses. But he has found them generally to be cordial.

Politics is his first love. Mr. Arnone has worked on campaigns to boost the candidacies of Congressman Tim Bishop and County Legislator Al Krupski Jr. But one day, he might opt to seek his own seat at some governmental level, he said.

His political science studies have opened up a wide scope of public service opportunities, including the possibility of someday seeking a career in law enforcement, he said.

“I will give law enforcement a second thought,” he said, basing that decision on his summer experience.

The Southold resident applied for a TCO position with Shelter Island, Southold and Riverhead police departments, had a good interview with Chief Jim Read and opted to take a job on the Island.

06/04/13 3:02pm

REPORTER FILE PHOTO | Mail delivery problems were relieved for one Shelter Island resident recently.

A Shelter Island Capital One customer may have been successful in tapping into one of the major list providers whose data base is causing mail delivery problems for residents here.

“We possibly are on the way to solving this for all of Shelter Island,” Patricia Shillingburg said, explaining that her May 20 letter to the president and CEO of Capital One has not only resulted in straightening out her own accounts, but led to the identity of Pershing LLC, headquartered in Jersey City, New Jersey, as the company providing list maintenance services for the bank.

Capital One bank officials told Ms. Shillingburg that Pershing provides little address space on its forms, resulting in Shelter Island Heights being abbreviated to Shelter Island, changing the ZIP code from 11965 to 11964. But bank officials were able to identify that Ms. Shillingburg used three of its services and to take corrective actions in each of the three — regular banking services, the credit card division and financial services — to ensure that she will be getting her mail correctly addressed in the future.

In her letter to bank president Richard Fairbanks, Ms. Shillingburg explained the problem, telling him gently, “I am a little fish in the big Capital One Bank sea, but I should think that your company would be able to address a statement to my correct address. I believe that this is not the bank being mean.”

“I think they should be applauded” for solving the problem,” she told the Reporter.

In a follow-up letter to Mr. Fairbanks on Tuesday, Ms. Shillingburg thanked him for the efforts to get her own statements properly addressed.

“I have been told that all of your customers with Shelter Island Heights addresses will have their address problems resolved,” she wrote. “Equally satisfying is knowing that Pershing LLC is one of the culprits and explains why the problem is not limited to just one bank,” she wrote.

The Reporter has tried to contact Pershing, a company that provides a wide range of financial services to companies and individuals, but has yet to get a response about the possibility of altering its database to accept longer addresses that could include Shelter Island Heights.Oliver Longwell, communications director for Congressman Tim Bishop, is continuing to follow through with Pershing LLC to determine how its database can be changed to recognize post office boxes in Shelter Island Heights and he’s tracking other companies that provide data base services to various corporations.

“This is just one example of the complex patchwork system we’re dealing with,” Mr. Longwell said.

He also said the United States Postal Service is working on strategies to improve delivery of mail to Shelter Islanders.

At the same time, he noted that residents here could petition for home delivery on the Island.

“It’s a decision the community would have to make for itself,” he said. Having one address for all mail, packages and official registrations “would be a major step forward in solving these issues,” Mr. Longwell said. “It’s worth discussing.”

05/08/13 11:31am

COURTESY PHOTO | Not just a day late and a dollar short but more than a year late, this letter mailed in Danbury, Connecticut and postmarked March 14, 2012, reached its intended recipient, Councilman Peter Reich, only this week. Where has it been? Nobody knows.

A month after United States Postal Service Manager Randy Sauber listened to Shelter Islanders complain about their mail delivery service, there’s finally been a response from the USPS.

Sort of.

Congressman Tim Bishop’s aide, Oliver Longwell, emailed the Reporter Tuesday afternoon to say he’d been in touch with the USPS and some word would be forthcoming.

Mr. Longwell set up an April 10 meeting on Shelter Island. Unable to get a response from Mr. Sauber about progress, he has reached out to Pitney Bowes, Experian, Trillium, Informatica and other companies that provide third-party address validation for financial transactions and non-USPS shipping services. This is to get a handle on how they build their databases and if the issue with the two Island ZIP codes can be resolved directly with them.

Among the problems is that ZIP codes don’t necessarily have to match residents’ street addresses and self-correcting data bases have frequently changed ZIPs codes resulting in mail not reaching intended recipients.

Meanwhile, Mr. Sauber has not responded to inquiries whether he has received any answers to the many questions posed at the April 10 meeting. Islanders might have expected him to arrive in April with a few suggestions to solve their difficulties in getting mail from such governmental agencies as the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, the Internal Revenue Service, the Board of Elections, Social Security and Medicare.

Councilman Peter Reich tops the list this week of those done wrong by the United States Postal Service. Keys sent to him from Danbury, Connecticut to access a relative’s house on the Island postmarked March 14, 2012, more than a year ago, just reached him this week. The sender had listed Mr. Reich’s street address, not his post office box, but he’s certainly well known on the Island and someone should have been able to identify that the envelope belonged to him. Where those keys have been for more than a year is as much mystery to Mr. Reich as anyone else.

04/18/13 12:00pm

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO | Supervisor Jim Dougherty speaking Sunday at the Ram’s Head Inn at the ‘State of the Town’ meeting sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Shelter Island.

To the Editor:

The 2013 helicopter season is fast approaching.  Last year Shelter Island fared well regarding helicopter noise with the two routes to East Hampton Airport I helped negotiate — half the flights via a southern route over Georgica Pond and the balance via a northern route veering south east over Jessups Neck well to the west of Shelter Island.

A group of Hamptonites (some of whom like the convenience of helicopter commutes but don’t want the noise over their homes!) are attempting to persuade the pilots and East Hampton Airport (the decision makers in the end, but we all must voice our opinions to try to influence their decisions) to revive for one-third of this summer’s flights the discredited North West Creek route, which turns westerly through the “South Ferry channel” as they call it.  (I have been urging the pilots, should they insist on this route, to continue north, well east of Shelter Island, thereby avoiding disturbing Shorewood, Silver Beach and North Haven, and they are considering it, though complaining about the slight increase in flight time.)

Please contact our Assemblyman Fred Thiele (537-2583) and our Congressman Tim Bishop (259-8450) to protest the possible revival of this discredited North West Creek route (being referred to by its proponents as a “test” implying the discredited route has never been used before).  Recently, as the “beggar thy neighbor” motives became increasingly clear, the Quiet Skies Coalition, an impartial volunteer group working to minimize the adverse effects on the East End quality of life  of the increasing helicopter traffic, issued a statement withdrawing from these discussions, stating: “As a coalition representing all areas of the East End, I think it better for Quiet Skies Coalition to withdraw from these negotiations, as any result bringing more noise to one group at the expense of another is a liability for some portion of our membership.  This is a Hobson’s choice.”

Please ask our elected officials representing us to maintain the 2012 routes, sparing the town that enacted the law in 2007 banning helicopter landings and take offs —  thereby eliminating helicopter commuting for Shelter Islanders — from bearing the brunt of the noise and disturbance of weekend commuter flights by our well-heeled South Fork neighbors.

James D. Dougherty

Supervisor, Town of Shelter Island

04/18/13 12:00pm

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO | Supervisor Jim Dougherty speaking Sunday at the Ram’s Head Inn at the ‘State of the Town’ meeting sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Shelter Island.

To the Editor:

The 2013 helicopter season is fast approaching.  Last year Shelter Island fared well regarding helicopter noise with the two routes to East Hampton Airport I helped negotiate — half the flights via a southern route over Georgica Pond and the balance via a northern route veering south east over Jessups Neck well to the west of Shelter Island.

A group of Hamptonites (some of whom like the convenience of helicopter commutes but don’t want the noise over their homes!) are attempting to persuade the pilots and East Hampton Airport (the decision makers in the end, but we all must voice our opinions to try to influence their decisions) to revive for one-third of this summer’s flights the discredited North West Creek route, which turns westerly through the “South Ferry channel” as they call it.  (I have been urging the pilots, should they insist on this route, to continue north, well east of Shelter Island, thereby avoiding disturbing Shorewood, Silver Beach and North Haven, and they are considering it, though complaining about the slight increase in flight time.)

Please contact our Assemblyman Fred Thiele (537-2583) and our Congressman Tim Bishop (259-8450) to protest the possible revival of this discredited North West Creek route (being referred to by its proponents as a “test” implying the discredited route has never been used before).  Recently, as the “beggar thy neighbor” motives became increasingly clear, the Quiet Skies Coalition, an impartial volunteer group working to minimize the adverse effects on the East End quality of life  of the increasing helicopter traffic, issued a statement withdrawing from these discussions, stating: “As a coalition representing all areas of the East End, I think it better for Quiet Skies Coalition to withdraw from these negotiations, as any result bringing more noise to one group at the expense of another is a liability for some portion of our membership.  This is a Hobson’s choice.”

Please ask our elected officials representing us to maintain the 2012 routes, sparing the town that enacted the law in 2007 banning helicopter landings and take offs —  thereby eliminating helicopter commuting for Shelter Islanders — from bearing the brunt of the noise and disturbance of weekend commuter flights by our well-heeled South Fork neighbors.

James D. Dougherty

Supervisor, Town of Shelter Island