Soundfront residents worry erosion study will take too long

02/16/2011 4:18 PM |
BETH YOUNG PHOTO | As each winter storm scours away more beachfront from homes near Hashamomuck Cove in Southold, residents worry that help from the government will be too little and too late.

BETH YOUNG PHOTO | As each winter storm scours away more beachfront from homes near Hashamomuck Cove in Southold, residents worry that help from the government will be too little and too late.

As each winter storm scours away more beachfront from homes near Hashamomuck Cove in Southold, residents worry that help from the government will be too little and too late.

Officials who attended a public forum on erosion sponsored by Southold Town Wednesday morning said that the most important thing for residents to do is to pressure the New York State Legislature to pay its share of a $3 million study of the area from Kenny’s Beach to the Sound View Inn to be conducted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Roman Rakoczy, a planner with the Army Corps, told the crowd of about 80 residents who crowded into the Southold Town Recreation Center Wednesday that once the funding is in place, the study could take three to five years, after which the federal government, New York State and Suffolk County would again be asked to pay for a project to curb the erosion along the sensitive area of shoreline.

Residents who live near the cove were vocal in their disappointed with the word from the officials.

“Are we going to let this water take our land? We have to try and resolve this,” said Freddie Guerra. “Assume that our roof got blown off our house tomorrow. Would it take us three to five years to patch up the roof? That’s the same thing that’s happening to our land. I remember going to the Southold beach. You could walk from one end to Hortons Point. You can’t do that anymore. In three to five years, I think we’re gonna lose the house.”

“We need to stick together as one voice,” said Michael Verni. “We’ve been down this road before and nothing will happen.”

Stacey Milios, whose family has a condominium at North Fork Beach Condominiums was upset that she hasn’t seen any action on reopening the section of Soundview Avenue in front of the 42-unit complex that was closed after the post-Christmas blizzard.
“From April until mid-November we’re here and we we spend a lot of money here,” she said.

Town Supervisor Scott Russell said that the town is waiting to hear whether the Federal Emergency Management Agency will pay to fix that road.

As to the long-term solution, Mr. Rakoczy said that the federal government will pay for 50 percent of the study and the state needs to fund 35 percent and the county will contribute 15 percent. Once that study is complete, he said, the federal government will pay 65 percent of a the cost of constructing a permanent fix for the problem, the state will pay 24.5 percent and the county will pay 10.5 percent.

County Legislator Ed Romaine, who was at the meeting, said that the county is committed to the project, primarily because the study area is alongside County Route 48, one of only two east to west routes along the North Fork.

“If we don’t preserve the houses, and the short term solution is to at least stabilize the beach, if at the end of the day Route 48 is breached, to rebuild the road would be very difficult,” he said.

State Assemblyman Dan Losquadro urged attendees to write letters of support that he can bring to argue his case to other members of the legislature during the upcoming budget negotiations.

“If you want to put bullets in the gun for us to help us at that target, please feel free,” he said.



8 Comment

  • Build/purchase a house too close to the water and you will get what nature dolls out. Also, don’t demand that I pay for it. Your house can wash into the sea and I DON’T CARE.

  • I’ll huff, and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house down… Sounds like a personal problem. Good for Scott Russell for telling it the way it is. Maybe he should have gone further as to say that it’s NOT the towns responsibility to defend against Mother Nature so as to save PERSONAL property.

  • When the houses go – the road goes – electric, gas and water lines for the last 11 miles of the island are gone- emergency evacuation route is gone- the ambulance route to Eastern LI Hospital is gone
    – and our taxes will be gone from the town coffers – taxes for which we receive no benefit from the school system – the largest proportion of YOUR taxes.

  • I’m sorry, I don’t know what to say. I understand the concern of the people, but erosion is a fact. Do they expect the govt to rebuild the beach? At whose expense? We are at a time when we are talking about firing teachers. We are a barrier island. Look at the tax maps for the south shore. Some of them show lots that are no longer “with us”. I resent my taxes going to protect the homes of people who choose to live on cliffs or on the edge of the island.

  • Something that I see folks forgetting is the people that are in danger of loosing there homes are also taxpayers. Some even pay higher taxes because they are near the water. Some also bought their homes when there was a alot of land between the house an the water.

  • I keep reading things about “My tax $ to save others homes”. First let me say all of the people on Hashamomuck Cove are tax payers too. Most over the years have put there hard earned money into protecting the beach,thier homes and yes RT 48. Some have on a few occations over the last I guess 40 years have tryed to get goverment and home owners together on the same page to stop what is happening along that area now. There is alot of RED tape involved in being allowedto do things along any waterway. Please do not berate people for trying to keep there homes. The entire Island has errosion problems. Someday it will effect everyone that lives , works or commutes thru the Island.

  • Earmark Disclosure 64146, HASHAMOMUCK COVE, SOUTHOLD

    Call your congressman and tell him to kill this bill…

  • Why is this on the SI website?