Board Hears Opposing Views on Beach Drinking Ban

East Hampton Town Trustee Deborah Klughers spoke at a town board hearing on Tuesday to express her opposition to a proposed daytime ban on the consumption of alcohol at two Amagansett beaches. Morgan McGivern

A hearing Thursday night at East Hampton Town Hall on a daytime alcohol ban at two Amagansett beaches drew speakers mostly in favor of the concept.

Residents said that Indian Wells Beach, in particular, has become a spot for groups of partying beachgoers, a shift from the family-friendly beach it has always been. Changes put in place by the town during the last two years enforcing resident-only parking there have helped, they said, but not eliminated the issues on the sand.

East Hampton Town Police Chief Michael Sarlo spoke during the hearing as well. He said that a number of summonses for various offenses had been issued to individuals at Indian Wells in the past few years but said much of the behavior prompting complaints did not violate any laws.

Those who spoke against the proposed drinking ban at Indian Wells and Atlantic Avenue Beaches during the hours that lifeguards are present decried placing the restriction on everyone when the behavior of only some beachgoers is the problem.

The East Hampton Town Trustees, who have jurisdiction over those two ocean beaches, for the most part oppose the ban. They have suggested limiting it to Indian Wells, within a smaller area of beach and only on weekends.