Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Eastern Long Island and in particular the South Fork Towns of East Hampton and Southampton have a housing crisis.
People who work there in schools, hospitals and the service industry can't afford to live there.
Eastbound morning traffic and westbound evening traffic - known as the 'Trade Parade' is glacial.
Last week voters in 3 east end towns approved a measure designed to help finance affordable housing by taxing a portion of first time home sales.
But there are obstacles to achieving the goal of constructing affordable dwellings—not least of which is finding sites where building new housing and retail space doesn’t harm the environment or surrounding businesses and residents.
In historic Sag Harbor village, where home prices and store rentals have climbed in recent years - a proposal for 79 affordable apartments above retail space in the downtown area has met with opposition from residents concerned with environmental and other impacts in the area.
Wednesday, October 19, 2022
On Long Island's East End, schools, hospitals and other public services rely on a workforce that can’t afford to live where people work. Rents can easily reach $6,000 or more for a two bedroom house–and that’s just for the nine months of the off season. Year-round housing is even more difficult to find. With summer housing out of reach to anyone except the wealthy, year-round workers find themselves without housing just when rents are the least affordable.
As a result, the daily so-called “trade parade” of workers driving in from the west adds hours to long commutes – and people have been quitting their jobs in droves: teachers, health care workers, firefighters, police, shop clerks, local government staff and more. Help wanted signs are everywhere, with fewer workers willing to brave the commute or able to afford the rents.
On November 8 voters will decide on legislation that would allow the towns of
East Hampton, Southampton, Shelter Island and Southold to each establish a Community Housing Fund funded by a half percent addition to the existing 2% real estate transfer tax that funds the Community Preservation Fund.
Last year, State legislation authorizing the Fund was signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul. The bill was sponsored by State Assemblymember Fred W. Thiele, Jr. and his counterpart in the State Senate Anthony Palumbo.
The legislation mandated that Towns would have to first adopt a Community Housing Plan and a local law establishing the fund. That’s already happened. But a final step remains: a referendum by the voters to approve the legislation. That’s on the ballot November 8.
This week I spoke with Sean McLean, managing partner of the development firm "MPACT Collective" about his experience with affordable housing development in the town of Southampton, New York. The firm is focused on addressing development with a commitment to social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Mpact Collective is working with the village of Sag Harbor on similar plans for affordable housing–plans that approval of the referendum will make much easier.
Wednesday, September 21, 2022
New York State's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act
was signed into law in July of 2019
The legislation requires New York to reduce economy-wide greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 and no less than 85 percent by 2050 from 1990 levels.
But fossil fuel interest are working to slow down or stop the implementation of the law.
Host Francesca Rheannon talks with Betta Broad of New Yorkers For Clean Power about the gas industry's disinformation campaign against state plans to implement the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.
Thursday, July 21, 2022
Wednesday, March 16, 2022
A group of East Hampton residents say they are alarmed by global warming and in particular about species collapse.
They say that our lawn culture is poisoning us and insects in our yards and killing the planet.
They are calling for habitat restoration and healthy yards, which means
re-imaging our landscape together with our landscapers.