Political Briefs 06.20.13

Meet a Lot of Candidates

    The East Hampton Group for Good Government will host a meet-the-candidates lawn party on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Laurie and Arthur Malman’s house in East Hampton.

    The nonpartisan group sponsors a number of forums on topics of interest to local voters as well as private get-togethers for members with a variety of leaders in local government.

    Saturday’s party will offer attendees a chance to talk with candidates running for East Hampton Town office this year, including candidates for supervisor, town board, town trustee, town justice, assessor, clerk, and highway superintendent.

    There will be wine and hors d’oeuvres, but no speeches or fund-raising, the hosts promise. The Malmans live at 99 Georgica Close Road. In case of rain, the gathering will be held on Sunday.

G.O.P. Hopefuls Target Overcrowding

    Fred Overton and Dominick Stanzione, the Republican and Independence Party candidates for East Hampton Town Board, are pushing for comprehensive reform of the town’s housing codes, more effective housing code enforcement, and smarter residential planning across all of East Hampton.

    In a position paper issued earlier this month, the candidates say it is time to “reverse a decade of decline in Springs” and outline a number of points that should be discussed in a “productive conversation about overcrowded and unsafe housing in East Hampton, especially in Springs.”

    They call for additional code enforcement officers who will focus on housing safety, a substantial increase in fines or property taxes for repeat housing code violators, a comprehensive educational and communications program, a rental registry law to protect tenants, property owners, and neighbors, supporting longer-term regional transportation options, and consideration of new occupancy, safety, and enforcement regulations.

    “Several communities on Long Island have addressed similar unsafe housing conditions,” the candidates said in a release. “Our planning department might prepare a comparative survey of local laws enacted in other nearby communities. We should invite public officials from some of these communities to talk about their specific experience.”

Cantwell Urges Coastal Recovery Plan

    Larry Cantwell, the candidate for East Hampton Town supervisor on the Democratic and Independence Party lines, has urged the East Hampton Town Board to submit a grant application to the state to help fund the cost of a professional coastal hazard mitigation and recovery plan.

    Governor Cuomo announced on June 12 that a hazard mitigation grant program would provide over $500 million to help local governments and nonprofits pay for such plans, with the state chipping in 75 percent of the cost for successful applicants.

    “The past two storms, Irene and Sandy, are a wakeup call we need to heed,” Mr. Cantwell said in a release, adding that the town needs to be proactive as it prepares to handle the consequences of global climate change, more frequent storms, and sea-level rise.

    Mr. Cantwell, who so far is running unopposed, is urging the town to hire an expert to work together with local fire departments, nonprofits, town personnel, and the community to develop the plan, saying that it is “a tremendous opportunity to identify hazards and areas of vulnerability along our coast so we can take positive action in advance of serious storms and hurricane events in the future.”

Democrats to Hold Springs ‘Listen-In’

    The Democratic candidates for East Hampton Town supervisor and town board, led by Kathee Burke-Gonzalez, a town board candidate from Springs, will hold a “listen-in” issues forum for the Springs community on Wednesday evening at Ashawagh Hall.

    Joining Ms. Burke-Gonzalez will be Larry Cantwell, the supervisor candidate, and her town board running mate, Job Potter. The candidates have invited Springs residents to share their concerns and hopes for the hamlet and discuss what they think the town can do to improve their quality of life.

    The forum will begin with refreshments at 6:45, with a discussion chaired by Mr. Cantwell starting at 7 p.m. It will be the first in a series of hamlet “listen-ins” that the Democrats plan during the campaign season.