Recent New York State Appellate Court decisions appear to have nullified the long-standing authority of the Southampton Town Trustees to regulate shore–hardening structures on the beaches along the Atlantic Ocean within the incorporated villages within the Town of Southampton.
In response to these decisions, the Trustees have proposed to amend their regulations to, among other things, rescind all permitting and regulating of 4x4 vehicular access onto the beaches along the Atlantic Ocean within the incorporated villages. The role of the Trustees is an important one within the town, one that carries a tremendous amount of responsibility, not only to ensure the protection of our shores and waterways but also preserve and protect our community’s public easement over the ocean beaches as established under the Dongan Patent of 1686.
This easement provides the basis for the Trustees’ permitting and regulating 4x4 vehicular access to our beaches. The recent court decisions limiting authority of the Trustees will take away these rights and protections that the community has relied upon for all of these years. This is not what the community wants.
I ask you to please support the Southampton Town Trustees in their efforts to have their authority reinstated by challenging any law or amendment that would seek to limit that authority and by initiating a bill for a new law that would re-confirm and re-establish the authority of the Trustees. I also ask that you please use all of your available resources to investigate and scrutinize any legal precedent that might contradict the recent court decisions. The residents of the Town of Southampton need your protection and support.