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  • The East Hampton Village Board has been looking at some quality of life issues as the new year approaches and as another booming summer season appears likely. One issue overdue for attention is the matter of permits for large private gatherings and special events.
  • Perhaps the most compelling observation in a discussion about a proposed school in East Hampton for special-needs children came recently from a parent of a 3-year-old with autism. The discussion concerned a town-owned site on Stephen Hand’s Path for which a private school offering specialized education had been suggested.
  • Attention surrounding Representative Lee Zeldin’s planned fund-raiser with Steve Bannon, late of the White House and now back at the Breitbart organization, overshadowed the fact that he was a co-sponsor of House legislation to allow holders of concealed-firearm permits the right to carry their guns anywhere in the United States. The act would force states to honor out-of-state concealed-carry permits even if they were opposed to doing so. The bill would allow private citizens to carry hidden firearms even in places like New York City, where they are not now permitted.The implications for a country already bleeding from gun violence are dire. Mr. Zeldin’s co-sponsorship of a measure that will lead to even more killing, suicide, and serious injury defies understanding.
  • President Trump again made it plain this week, in moving to drastically cut the size of two protected areas of public land in the West, that he favors exploitation over historical and environmental protection, and over the survival of Native American cultural sites and artifacts. In Utah, he announced Monday that the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments would be reduced to a fraction of their former selves. This is a sad day for those who care about open spaces and America’s wild lands.
  • Although voters approved a referendum last year that allowed up to 20 percent of the East Hampton Town Community Preservation Fund’s annual income to be used for water quality projects, there have been few indications of how that might work in real life. Now, as the managers of the Whalebone Village affordable housing development in East Hampton have asked the town for up to $376,000 to upgrade its septic system, the lack of guidelines is apparent.
  • By now, we have all had our flu shots, right? Well, not exactly. According to federal government statistics, less than half the adults who should get the influenza vaccine each year actually do so. For children, the rate is better, but far from ideal.
  • We hope that the several people who spoke in opposition to a proposed affordable apartment complex in Amagansett were outliers rather than representative of a majority of hamlet residents. If they were an indication of wide sentiment, this town is in more trouble than we had supposed.
  • Giving Tuesday came and went here this week with myriad pitches floating in electronically and a few coming to the old-fashioned mailbox. Guild Hall went a step further, trying a live event streamed on Facebook from noon to midnight. During the day, Guild Hall staff went before the camera to talk about what they do. East Hampton Village Mayor Paul F. Rickenbach Jr. stopped by. Music and readings came later on. With the help of a video feed made possible by the LTV technical staff, viewers were able to join in on and off during the day, and a dozen or two were hovering when we watched.
  • East Hampton Town’s decision to remove a horse barn on land it bought in Amagansett in 2014 has raised a bit of skepticism. Though some might consider tearing down a barn wasteful, it is the right decision.
  • If for self-interest alone, homeowners and businesses should jump on a new energy efficiency program sponsored by PSEG Long Island. In an effort to meet peak demand, while at the same time reducing everyone’s utility bills, free power audits are being made available. It is as simple as phoning 800-567-2850, making an appointment, then setting aside a couple of hours while your house or business is evaluated by a certified energy inspector.