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.
With annual school votes on Tuesday, the nearly complete lack of public controversy is striking, especially as two districts are seeking 60-percent support for budgets that will increase the amount brought in by taxes by more than a state-mandated cap. Notable as well is the absence of competitive races for school boards.
The juxtaposition between old East Hampton and new could not have been made more stark than the recent news, first reported in the New York Post, that a hedge fund manager had paid $147 million for a verdant 16-acre ocean-view property off Further Lane in East Hampton Village. While the supposed sum Barry Rosenstein agreed to pay for the three lots in the estate of the former owner was stunning in and of itself and a record for residential property, that two 18th-century Dominy family workshops remain there adds a significant twist.
Although it may seem coincidental that May is Mental Health Month and also the time when New York voters are asked to approve school budgets for the coming academic year, the link between mental illness and school safety is becoming increasingly clear. Unfortunately, school administrators and boards have been slow to catch up, opting for big-ticket expenditures on hardening buildings against the extremely rare chance of an armed attacker and failing to also expand counseling, on-campus therapy, and other programs.
The United States made it official this week in a report that linked global warming primarily to human activity. For every American, a heating planet is reason for concern. Here on the South Fork, where a rising sea level linked to the climate heating up is a real and present danger, concern should be heightened.
Suffolk Executive Steve Bellone was to have visited the East End yesterday and you would have thought the president was coming from the advance fanfare. Advisories to the press from his Hauppauge office arrived on Monday afternoon, then the phone calls started, then we had Tuesday follow-ups.
East Hampton Town Hall was crowded last Thursday for a hearing on a proposed law that would strictly limit how and where so-called formula stores can be opened. In general, blocking the homogenization of the town’s commercial strips will be important to maintaining the area’s desirability among second-home owners and tourists. However, several aspects of the proposal should be looked at closely before going further.