From the Remsenburg Association Board
Dear Remsenburg Neighbors,
Although it's time for our annual Spring update, it's not business as usual in Remsenburg this year. Life has changed for all of us. We’re very lucky that at this point we have very few cases of COVID-19, and we’re hopeful that situation won’t change. We hope everyone is well and adjusting to what will be the new normal, at least for a while.
As I wrote this letter, I was also getting ready for that afternoon’s meeting of the Association Board. My first agenda item was “Review of minutes of February 28th meeting.” That meeting feels like a lifetime ago.
Then - we met in person at The Remsenburg Academy, with a couple of call-ins from Board members at home with kids or on the road. Business as usual. Now - our meetings will be held entirely online as we all isolate ourselves in our houses.
As an initial response to the current COVID-19 crisis, the Remsenburg Association has made the difficult decision to postpone the Solstice Party to Saturday, September 12th, 2020. Please mark your calendars!
The decision was reached by consensus of the Remsenburg Association Board that our original June date would not be workable under any circumstances. While we all hope the worst will be over by then, we did not feel that it would be possible to host a large social gathering in June.
Hopefully by September, enough time will have passed that we will be able to celebrate our beautiful early fall season together.
The venue remains the Westhampton Yacht Squadron as it was last year. The Yacht Squadron, and especially Manager Dot Capuano, have been extraordinarily helpful and accomodating during this difficult time.
In the meantime, I’d like to update you on some of the initiatives that The Remsenburg Association has taken over the last year.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM 2019:
The 160 Acre “Woodfield Gables” site purchased by Southampton Town Community Preservation Fund.
Along with other area organizations, the Remsenburg Association advocated for the town’s purchase of the “Woodfield Gables” site extending north and west from the intersection of Old Country Road and Speonk Riverhead Road.
The Remsenburg Association’s advocacy included in-person testimony by me at the January 21, 2020 meeting of the Southampton Town Board. This is one of the largest acreage land purchases made by the CPF and one we’re proud to have played a part in bringing to fruition.
At the same Town Board meeting, Remsenburg Association Board member Bill Heine and I advocated on behalf of Westhampton homeowner Eleanor Kobel, who is the owner of the Historic Topping-Raynor House in Westhampton. She has executed a groundbreaking deal with the Landmarks & Historic Districts Board of which Bill Heine is a member.
This deal provides for, among other things, the purchase of a facade easement by the CPF. This money will help finance repairs to the house and enable Eleanor to keep the house in her family.
The Remsenburg Association is hopeful that this deal could provide a model for Remsenburg homeowners looking to preserve their homes for generations to come.
The Topping-Raynor House
The Speonk Solvent Plume Working Group
The Speonk Solvent Plume Working Group has restarted. It is chaired by area resident and hydrogeologist Bob Mozer. Bob spearheaded restarting the group in response to his own and the community’s concern that monitoring of the Plume by the DEC had been neglected. Because of advocacy by Bob, The Remsenburg Association, the Peconic Baykeeper, and others, the State DEC and other governmental bodies are once again focusing on comprehensive monitoring of the Plume.
41 North Phillips affordable housing project.
The Remsenburg Association continues to monitor the 41 North Phillips development. We’re pleased to report that the development is now making “payments in lieu of taxes” (PILOTS) to our school.
Last year the Association funded the upgrade of The Remsenburg Park. Many thanks to all involved for transforming what was an overgrown untamed corner of Bridle Path and South Country into a serene and beautiful landscape. Right now the daffodils are almost in full bloom and they’ll be followed by spring and summer shrubs and flowers. In the fall there will be an amazing stand of pink wild hibiscus.
We’re very lucky to have such natural beauty in our midst!
Annual Meeting, Sunday, October 4th 2020, at 1:00 pm.
Finally, we’re still planning to hold our Annual Meeting at The Remsenburg Academy for all Remsenburg Association members. This gathering provides an excellent opportunity for members to catch up on local events and changes, and voice questions, concerns and suggestions regarding the continued progress of our hamlet. We look forward to seeing you there!