Southold Town land preservation manager Laura Klahre is putting together a management plan for the Bittner Preserve on Soundview Avenue in Southold, which was acquired for preservation three years ago by the town and county.
Now, the town is trying to open the 57-acre property to the public. But a major sticking point has been trying to contain the costs of taking down 12 utility poles on the site.
Ms. Klahre said Verizon has agreed to remove five poles for free and give a sixth to the town. LIPA wanted to charge the town $21,000 to remove the other six. The electric utility also intends to charge more than $5,000 to remove its wires from the poles.
Councilman Chris Talbot asked why the work had to be done by LIPA; other board members said it’s likely due to liability, union and contractual issues.
Also included in the plan are creating a parking lot, removing 350 feet of driveway closest to the Sound bluff and planting the bluff with beach grass and beach plums. The town’s public works department will do that work.