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  •    You can’t even really call it a January thaw, since December was mild, and, save for a 15-degree night a week ago yesterday, 2012 has had above-average temperatures. This has been a very good thing where the Amagansett Rattrays’ gardening, outdoor chores, and playtime are concerned, as we (read: your humble correspondent) let things slide this fall.

  •    It is good news indeed that the Village of Sag Harbor appears to be moving forward with a project to reduce the amount of polluted run-off that crosses Havens Beach and flows into the bay. A short creek there, more of a drainage ditch, has for years carried water from surrounding upland properties and several roadside sumps. The public bathing beach there has been closed pre-emptively by the Suffolk Department of Health after heavy rainfalls, and shellfishing nearby is banned year round.

  • Another month, another delay for the Surf Lodge. The Montauk nightspot, filled in season by crowds of revelers drawn east by its hipper-than-thou allure, is supposed to answer in East Hampton Town Justice Court to some 640 citations of code violations dating from the summer. But its day of reckoning has been put off until the end of January, and probably beyond that, if the trend continues.

  •    A battle for the future of the ocean shoreline is shaping up at Georgica Beach in East Hampton, and, as state and local officials nudge the matter slowly toward a court showdown, the beachgoing public’s right to use the beaches is threatened. The dispute points to a difficult time ahead in which the self-interest of waterfront property owners will be increasingly at odds with the desires — and rights — of the public.

  •    A coffee shop in Sag Harbor may be closing at the end of the month after its landlord handed the lease to someone else. It is an old story: A property owner decides to go in a new direction, or raise the rent, or renovate. Happens all the time.

  •    As the Springs School Board continues its struggle to find ways to pay for educating students while not asking taxpayers for more and more, a cost-savings idea is gaining ground. The notion of eliminating the district superintendent’s position and handing those duties to the school principal was discussed at a forum on Dec. 22. Meanwhile, in the East Hampton School District, the board is grappling with the prospect of overcrowding in the elementary and middle schools even as the last details of its recent $79 million expansion are finalized.

  • There was a morning low tide on the last day of 2011. After tending to my household chores, feeding the dogs and chickens, and before the rest of the family was awake, I slipped out in the truck to go clamming. With little traffic on the roads before 8 a.m., I rolled easily up to East Hampton Village to buy $40 worth of gasoline and grab a clam rake from the barn.

  • Welcome Opposition
    It is early yet, with only one East Hampton Town Board meeting so far this year, but already it appears that the three-people-in-a-room way local government has been run may be coming to an abrupt end.

  • One New Year’s resolution I hope to keep is to get to the dump more frequently. I, for whatever reason, just did not take adequate advantage of my $100 East Hampton Town garbage permit in 2011.

  • At some point at the end of this week, I’ll start my Christmas shopping. Being used to operating on a deadline, I am familiar with this sort of pressure. Moreover, buying gifts late reduces the chance that our children are going to discover them before they are wrapped.

Blogs by this author:

  • Here is what we know about Hurricane Arthur and the outlook for Independence Day and beyond. There is a 100-percent probability of heavy rain from an unrelated system until about sunset Friday. Hurricane Arthur is expected to pass to the east of Montauk Point, close enough that near-tropical storm-force wind gusts are expected for the region late Friday.

    Rain and a chance of lightning will end after dark Friday, but not before as much as three inches could fall. The National Weather Service has issued warnings of flooding in low-lying areas and roadways.

  • Doing a quick spreadsheet from board of elections numbers, it appears that the makeup of the East Hampton Town Trustees is largely unchanged. Two newcomers have won seats: Brian Byrnes, who previously sought a seat as trustee, and Dennis Curles.

    The top nine are the assumed winners:

     

  • An hour after the polls closed, Carissa Katz, The Star's managing editor, reported from the Dems election night HQ in Rowdy Hall that with 7 of 19 districts' numbers brought in from the polls, unofficially, Fred Overton was in the lead for town board. Following him were Kathee Burke-Gonzalez , Job Potter, and Dominick Stanzione in the race for two open seats.

  • A handful of South Fork eateries are taking part in Long Island Restaurant week, which runs through Sunday.

    In East Hampton, the 1770 House, Fresno, and the Living Room @ c/o the Maidstone are offering the $27.95, three-course price fix deal. Southampton's Nammos Estiatorio, red|bar Brasserie, and Southampton Social Club are in, as is Fresh Hamptons in Bridgehampton and Noyac's Bell & Anchor.

    Participanting restaurants offer three or more choices for each course. Reservations have been suggested.

    About 150 restaurants have signed on Islandwide.

  • East Hampton's Democratic candidates have a sizeable registration edge going into Tuesday's voting, according to numbers from the Suffolk County Board of Elections.

    According to the Suffolk County Board of Elections, of the 16,116 registered voters in the town, 6,375 were listed as Democrats, compared to 4,043 Republicans.

  • The East Hampton Environmental Coalition this week posted the results of a questionnaire sent to the five candidates for East Hampton Town Board quizzing them on environmental issues.

    Questions covered issues including the candidates' backgrounds and environmental outlooks and specifics such as flood-zone planning, dark skies rules, and dealing with climate change.

  • <p>Blonde Redhead on Saturday and Small Black on Sunday on the banks of Fort Pond.</p>
  • <p>Rock the Farm, an annual summertime benefit for the Wounded Warrior Project, has announced that the English Beat will headline its July 20 concert.</p>
  • <p>An East Hampton Town permit for Ben Watts&rsquo;s Shark Attack Sounds party, slated this year for Friday, July 5, at the Montauk Yacht Club, was approved in a split 3-to-2 vote at an East Hampton Town Board meeting last Thursday.</p>