Featured Story
07/25/16 2:00pm
JIM COLLIGAN PHOTO Several interested parties visited Reel Point in February to asses damage. Far left, Town Engineer John Cronin, Fourth form left, Department of Public works Commissioner Jay Card Jr.

JIM COLLIGAN PHOTO Several interested parties visited Reel Point in February to assess damage. Far left, Town Engineer John Cronin. Fourth from left, Department of Public Works Commissioner Jay Card Jr.

The town is partnering with the Peconic Land Trust (PLT) to study methods of improving, or even saving, one of the Island’s most important waterways. (more…)

10/02/15 10:00am
ILLUSTRATION: GETTY IMAGES/iSTOCK Things are looking up on several fronts.

ILLUSTRATION: GETTY IMAGES/iSTOCK Things are looking up on several fronts.

Bad news, it’s been said, travels at the speed of light, while good news travels at the speed of molasses. Going uphill. In the winter.

But we’re here to put some acceleration behind several pieces of news that have come down the track lately. (more…)

06/20/13 8:00am

AMBROSE CLANCY PHOTO | The Town Board met in work session Tuesday. From left, Councilman Paul Shepherd, Supervisor Jim Dougherty, Councilman Peter Reich and Councilman Ed Brown. Not shown in photo, Councilwoman Chris Lewis.

At Tuesday’s Town Board work session members began to winnow down projects they want to ask government agencies to help fund.

Department of Public Works Commissioner Jay Card Jr. presented a list of priorities to the board for what’s called “hazard mitigation grants.” These grants funnel money from the federal government to states, which then provide money to local municipalities after natural disasters. At the local level, municipalities kick in 25 percent of the total grant money.

Mr. Card’s list included elevating the Island’s low-lying areas to mitigate flooding on West Neck Road, Westmoreland Drive, Brander Parkway, Ram Island Road, Ram Island Drive and Gardiners Bay Drive.

Increasing electronic communication between emergency response departments made the cut as well as offering “grants to homeowners to bury electric services in accessible properties.” And finally, grant money was considered to put boulder groins at Shell Beach.

Time means money, Town Attorney Laury Dowd noted, reminding the board that letters of intent for grants have to go out within the first couple weeks of July.

Sticker shock hit the board when Mr. Card estimated that the Shell Beach project could enter the $160,000 range.

The board seemed to be in agreement on one project, which would be increasing communication capabilities for town first responders.

Councilman Peter Reich seemed to speak for the consensus when he said the town “could find $15,000 for communications,” but for road elevation, “it could be half a million dollars and 25 percent of that’s not something we have sitting around in [Supervisor Jim Dougherty’s] office drawer.”

With a government communications grant, the town would be able to help residents immediately if a disaster struck, and would be the most cost effective.

Resident Vinnie Novak suggested that for under $10,000 the town could set up a low power frequency FM transmitter. These send out a signal using lower power than, for example, a commercial station, and are aimed at smaller areas.

Mr. Novak noted that if power goes out, all cable and Internet connection goes with it, but “every resident has an FM radio in their cars,” and the town would be able to communicate vital information to residents.

Mr. Card stressed that elevating roads was essential in a disaster to get medical personnel to flooded areas. Councilman Ed Brown asked for estimates of cost and the board will pursue the matter next week.

03/20/13 8:00am

REPORTER FILE PHOTO | Shelter Island Town Hall.

At Tuesday’s Town Board work session Department Of Public Works Commissioner Jay Card Jr. discussed fixing the fence at Crescent Beach that was severely damaged by Hurricane Sandy. The board also turned its attention to putting in place a watershed management plan for the future.

The beach fence, which runs about 675 feet, should cost about $30,000, according to Mr. Card, and 75 percent of that will be reimbursed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The project will be put out to bid.

Town Attorney Laury Dowd gave a presentation on the watershed management plan. Last September there was a review of existing conditions, laws and practices. The next step is to come up with recommendations to deal with improving conditions. With a plan in place and recommendations made, the funding process to mitigate or improve conditions can begin.

The recommendations focus on six areas: stormwater runoff and water quality; town water bodies; municipal facilities; wastewater; regulations and public education and stewardship.

The board decided to review each individual recommendation over the course of several work sessions to prioritize them.

The full report can be seen by going to the town’s website at shelterislandtown.us; on the committee menu go to “MS4” where the management plan recommendations can be viewed.

In other business Mr. Card suggested that the Police Department’s 10-year old emergency power generator, which is to be replaced, not be put up for sale but installed at American Legion Hall.

The board seemed to be in agreement with the plan.

There was also discussion of auctioning off old town vehicles.