Letters to the Editor: 4/14/16


Still in Use

Dear Editor:
In response to the letter written by Mr. James Sanford in regards to the former Stella Maris school building, I would like to correct a few misstatements regarding the property and its use.
The former Catholic school, owned by St. Andrew Parrish, has been used both before and after its closing for the religious education of the Catholic children of our community. The number of children average approximately 140 children per year and classes are held from September through May. The building is also used by various police departments during their training of crisis situation as well as other organizations in the village. According to the Sag Harbor Village Office, this building is neither listed as abandoned nor has the zoning on this building been changed. As far as the appraised price of the building, two appraisers have both estimated the building at 3+ million dollars.
I am hoping that this letter clears up any confusion on the status of the building or its appraised price.
Sincerely yours,
Evans Gerecke
Sag Harbor


Enforce the Code

Dear Editor,
I just want to voice my complete agreement and concurrent outrage at the wanton disregard of laws and codes regarding property fencing, as put forth in a Letter to the Editor last week. It seems that all over Sag Harbor now are visibly illegal fences that surround property, are conjoined to fences on adjacent properties, leaving no corridor for the animals to proceed, often trapping deer in fences where I and many rescuers have to extricate them, often injured, which is both inhumane and unnecessary.
Why can’t Code Enforcement enforce the code… not only for new residences which often egregiously flout the rules after they are built and “pass inspection”, but often older homes whose new, large and surrounding fences are noticeably in violation. It isn’t just a matter of ignoring the rules: it is also the fact that the fences are mostly ugly as is attitude of total disrespect and disregard for all the work the board and village has done to maintain the beautiful look and heritage of Sag Harbor.
Isn’t it possible to start enforcing the codes for fencing which are very specific so that the people who violate them will 1) alter them to meet code; 2) add to the village coffers by paying fines; and 3) get discouraged from thinking they will get away with flagrantly disregarding the rules. If Code Enforcement needs more people, that’s also a good idea.
Beverly Schanzer
Sag Harbor

Excerpt from a Grandmother’s Autism Diary
September 22, 2011

Dear Editor:
Over the last several years, I have this recurrent true-to-life dream. It’s a dream that thrills me, then devastates me. In it, Max, my five-year old grandson, and I are walking along having the most mundane conversation. He can be either next to me, a few paces ahead of me, or dawdling just in back of me commenting on something in the surrounding he’s noticed. It’s so pleasant, so effortless, so happy, so… normal … and for a split-moment it all seems like it’s always been so. Then, it dawns on me: Hey! Max doesn’t really speak at all. Then, I’m thinking — Have I missed some crucial milestone? Why hasn’t my son or daughter-in-law mentioned to me that Max can talk now? Which therapy has worked this miracle? How can they forget to tell me something so monumental? So important? In quick succession I become befuddled and think that maybe Max has always spoken; that Max does not have autism. While I’m having these thoughts, Max keeps talking to me. I think, surely, this is not a dream, a dream of my wildest longing but reality. Then just as quickly I think, no, this is a dream. But please dear God, let me live in this dream. Don’t wake me. Yet, I force myself to wake up just so I can know the truth. And it devastates me, as if I had to find out all over again he has autism. It devastates me for Max, for my son, for Max’ mom.
They must both have similar dreams, but I’m afraid to ask them.
Then, one day, while on the fly, I saw a post by a mother on one of the autism sites I regularly visit who had experienced the same kind of dream and the same blow upon awakening. I’m beginning to think it’s a phenomenon our autism community experiences a lot. Not only our community, but other people who are operating in extremis: like soldiers and people in war-torn countries.
Julie Penny


Need Strong Code

Dear Editor:
Clearly the builder of the house at 11 Eastville Avenue has total disregard for the citizens of Sag Harbor. It would appear that he also has total disdain for the spirit of the law. He has chosen to build a house that is a prime example of why we need our new building code. If you walk or drive by this monstrosity you will note that it is at least a story higher than any other house in the neighborhood and because of its footprint totally overwhelms the lot on which it is built. In reporting this fact to the building inspector, I found that everything that this builder is doing was totally legal under the old building code. Yes, our monster builder had acquired his building permit before the recent moratorium went into effect and I am told that now we have no legal means to stop him.
If we lived in the Old West we would “run this builder out of town on a rail.” Unfortunately, at this point the only thing that we can do to this builder is to let him know collectively that he is not the kind of person that we want to do business with!
Sara Gage
Sag Harbor