Endorsement: Vote yes on three propositions

There may not have been a ballot proposition in any recent year that’s been more discussed than the Community Housing Fund 0.5% transfer tax. The proposition is on Tuesday’s ballot in all East End towns except Riverhead.

The legislation is clear in outlining how funds raised if the proposition passes can be used, and if voters look back on the money that has reached the coffers from the original 2% Community Preservation Fund, they will see how effectively it has been allocated for open space preservation and water quality. Whatever money comes in during the 20-year period of the housing fund will directly help offset the costs of providing rental units, including units in existing structures where owners may wish to offer apartments at reasonable prices, but need some financial assistance.

In a region where land preservation remains a top priority, supporters of the housing fund proposition say that if we fail to retain younger residents who can volunteer as firefighters and emergency medical service personnel, then taxes will rise to create a paid fire department and a paid ambulance service. 

We recommend a “Yes” vote on Proposition 3. 

Proposition 1

The New York State Proposition 1 would enable bonding to fund efforts to ensure clean water and clean air and to create green jobs. Nothing is closer to the hearts and minds of East End residents than protecting the environment. The passage of Proposition 1 would allow the state to bond up to $4.2 billion to make environmental improvements to preserve, enhance and restore natural resources. It would fund capital projects to offset flood risks, provide open space land conservation and allocate money to mitigate the impacts of climate change and fund infrastructure. 

Again, we recommend a “Yes” vote on Proposition 1. 

Proposition 2

This proposition would set term limits that allow the county executive, comptroller and members of the county Legislature to serve no more than 12 years. That term would be based on 12 full years of service to which the person is elected. It would remove a calculation that currently includes any part of a term that person might serve by fulfilling the remainder of a term of someone who resigned, was removed or for any other reason did not complete that term. 

Too many long-serving elected officials forget they are public servants with an obligation to represent the interests of the people who put them in office. It’s time to codify term limit provisions.

We recommend a “Yes” vote on Proposition 2.