Government news and happenings across the East End

Government Briefs




Thiele. Independent/Richard Lewin

Monthly CPF Revenues Plummet

Assemblyman Fred Thiele this week reported the Peconic Bay Regional Community Preservation Fund produced $5.47 million in revenue during January. This is a 44.8 percent decrease over the same period in 2018 when $9.91 million was taken in.

The January 2019 revenue number is the lowest monthly total in nearly six years since March 2013, when only $4.19 million was collected.

Recently, New York State projected a $2.3 billion reduction in state income tax collections for 2019. Governor Andrew Cuomo put the onus for the reduced tax projections on the federal “Tax Cut and Jobs Act.” That federal tax law change placed a $10,000 cap on the federal deduction for state and local taxes.

In addition to the SALT cap, in 2018, the stock market experienced its worst year since 2008, the beginning of the Great Recession, and its worst December since the Great Depression in 1931. To begin 2019, the stock market has rebounded, with major indexes rising substantially.

“It is impossible to determine trends based on a single month of CPF revenues,” Thiele said in a release. “At least a quarter of a year of data is required to determine whether the revenue drop for January is an aberration or a significant change in the real estate market. Local government officials should closely monitor CPF revenues in the coming months and be cautious in making any long-term projections.”

Since its inception in 1999, the Peconic Bay Regional CPF has generated $1.39 billion. The tax is directly accrued when a property changes hands.

New Councilmen In League Forum

The League of Women Voters of the Hamptons has invited the community to an open “Conversation with the Two New Town Board Members” to hear David Lys of East Hampton and Tommy John Schiavoni of Southampton on Tuesday, March 12, at 7PM at Bridgehampton’s Hampton Library.

Organized by the League’s Voter Services Committee, co-chaired by Anne Marshall of Bridgehampton and Barbara McClancy of Amagansett, the forum will provide residents of the South Fork with the opportunity to hear both officials, who were elected in November 2018, speak about their experiences as elected officials, the committees to which they serve as liaisons, the challenges facing the towns, and also to ask questions in an informal setting.

  Information is available by calling the League at 631-324-4637, the Hampton Library at 631-537-0015, or visiting the League’s website at www.lwvhamptons.org.

Improvements At Montauk Post Office

Congressman Lee Zeldin this week announced the completion of improvements at the Montauk Post Office. Residents had voiced concerns about package deliveries and other mailing issues.

In December, Zeldin contacted the Long Island District Post Office to advocate on behalf of his constituents. In its response, it cited the construction of a new ramp that would allow improved access to postal vehicles and more efficient loading and unloading of parcels.

This month, the Montauk Post Office completed the ramp and began sorting the parcels at offsite locations and delivering them to Montauk presorted, which, in turn, is expected to improve delivery times. New parcel lockers have been ordered, and once installed they will shorten lines by allowing post office box customers to go directly to their parcel lockers instead of waiting for a clerk’s assistance.

Zeldin said that the U.S. Postal Service “provides a critical service to Long Islanders, especially those in less accessible communities, such as Montauk, and it is critical that local residents receive the postal services they need.”