Government: Variances on Montauk Avenue, League Hosts Former Congressman

The house at 17 Montauk Avenue as seen on March 27, 2019. Christine Sampson photo

17 Variances on the Table on Montauk Avenue

Even Bruce Anderson of Suffolk Environmental Consulting acknowledged that 17 variances is a big ask of the Sag Harbor Zoning Board of Appeals during its meeting on Marc 19. He explained to the board last Tuesday that if they applied the standard setbacks and building regulations on their triangular property at 17 Montauk Avenue, his clients, Jeffrey Brock and Belen Moneo Feduchi, would actually have a negative building area — meaning literally nothing could be built there.

They are proposing a 45-square-foot first-floor addition, a 166-square-foot second-story addition and a 42-square-foot porch. They are also proposing a pool, pool equipment and the replacement of an existing outdoor shower and existing cellar entry.

“You couldn’t place an antenna on the roof without a variance,” Mr. Anderson said. “I can assure you they’re going to be sensitive to your concerns. What they’re asking for is not a heck of a lot.”

Because only three members of the zoning board were present — chairman Robby Stein and member Susan Mead were absent — Mr. Anderson asked for an adjournment to the April 19 to go before a full board. But the members in attendance on Tuesday did have a few comments.

“It’s maxed out,” said Scott Baker, who ran the meeting in Mr. Stein’s place. “I think the owners should maybe rethink what they’re doing.”

Board member Robert Plumb said the point about negative building space was “well taken,” but said, “there are properties that are too small for pools and this may be one of them.”

Board member Hamil Willoughby simply added, “I think less is more.”

League Hosts Former Congressman Steve Israel

The League of Women Voters of the Hamptons will host a special book and author reception and talk with former Congressman Steve Israel on Thursday, April 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Seasons of Southampton, 15 Prospect Street at the corner of North Main Street, just south of the Southampton train station.

Serving as emcee for a question and answer session about the book, as well as the political scene and other topics, will be former Congressman Tim Bishop.

Mr. Israel will speak about and sign copies of his second novel, “Big Guns,” published in 2018, a political satire about the powerful gun lobby. The novel is set in Washington D.C. and in Asabogue, a mythical village located between Southampton and East Hampton, with the climax of the book taking place at a League of Women Voters candidates’ debate.

A resident of Oyster Bay, Mr. Israel was the U.S. Representative from the 2nd and then the redistricted 3rd Congressional District on Long Island’s Nassau County and Suffolk County north shore for eight terms, from 2001 to 2017. He is currently chairman of the non-partisan Global Institute at Long Island University, where his official Congressional records will be housed. For the past fall semester, he served as both a Tisch College Visiting Fellow at Tufts University, where he taught the course “Topics in American Politics: Inside Congress and the 2018 Midterm Elections” and as an Institute of Politics Pritzker Fellow at the University of Chicago, where he taught a seminar with former Congressman Tom Davis, 1999-2003 chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee.

The event is $70. Checks can be mailed to LWV Hamptons, PO Box 2253, East Hampton, NY 11937. Reservations can also be made by credit card by calling (631) 324-4637.

LaValle Seeks Women of Distinction

With March serving as Women’s History Month, New York State Senator Ken LaValle is seeking nominations from the East End for the 21stannual “Women of Distinction” program honoring local women who make outstanding contributions to their community who will be honored by the Senate on Tuesday, May 7.

Previous winners have included leading women from the world of business, academics and civic life, as well as those who have performed heroic or selfless acts, made significant discoveries or provided examples of personal excellence against difficult odds. Nominations must be submitted no later than Friday, April 19: visit