East Hampton Town officials were on the right track last week when they denied a last-minute request for a permit from the operator of an annual for-profit bicycle ride to Montauk. Unfortunately, with as many as 1,500 participants already having paid up to $300 apiece, officials had little choice but to reach a settlement and allow the ride to go on.
Not to sound ungrateful, but we are hardly alone in thinking that there are some 14 long weeks before we get our town back. An Amagansett innkeeper of our acquaintance said that the weekend just past was the strangest he had seen in more than three decades in business. In Montauk by Saturday noon, there were scores of people drinking on the upper deck at one of the more notorious bars. Traffic was terrible — and dangerous.
The East Hampton Town Republican Committee has come up with an idea worth considering about the Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund, the 2-percent tax on a portion of most real estate sales that is used by the East End towns to buy farmland, other open space, and historic properties. The committee has suggested adjusting upward the preservation fund thresholds to make it easier for homebuyers shopping at the lower end of the spectrum to close deals.
As the United States involvement in Afghanistan winds down, and in the aftermath of the protracted occupation of Iraq, it is as meaningful as ever for Americans to reflect on the contributions of those who wear this country’s uniforms. Monday’s East Hampton parade will stop traffic on Main Street for a brief time, the temporary silence a tribute in a small way to those who never made it home. This year, too, we will think of three men, two who were killed in combat and one who, though not veteran, touched the lives of many who were.
There was not much the Town of East Hampton could do other than reluctantly say yes when a Showtime television production company recently sought a permit for a week or so of taping for episodes of “The Affair” at the end of the month. This is despite conditions that many residents described as intolerable when the series’ pilot was filmed in Beach Hampton in September. Back for more, the company is to tape scenes in five locations in Montauk and at the Lobster Roll restaurant on Napeague through June 4.