We are helping Lutha Leahy-Miller get the word out about this campaign to fight the decision to make certain Southampton beaches “Village Only.”

Although not an official Surfrider campaign right now, we would like to help give visibility to this issue as it relates to beach access.

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Join Us:  Thursday, April 9th, At Southampton Village Hall At 6PM


Save Surfing & Access For ‘Non-Village Residents’ At Our Southampton Beaches!


Discussions are being held about turning Wyandanch, Old Town, and/or  Cryder’s Lane into ‘Village-Resident-Permit-Only’ beaches. In other words, you would only be able to park there if you are a Southampton Village Resident. Your Non-Resident Southampton Beach Pass or Permit would not work there. So, if you want to continue to surf in the Southampton Village in the summer, please dress nice and meet with us at Southampton Village Hall on Thursday, April 9th, at 6PM Sharp. Please come with prepared statements and a polite manner and we will hopefully be able to solve this like gentleman (or gentlewomen)…

Below is my own proposal regarding the situation…

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Solution: 3,000 Non-Resident Village Beach Permits

It seems to me that the decision to make Cryder Lane Beach, Old Town Beach, and/or Wyandanch Beach ‘Village-Permit-Only’ is decidedly unjust and unfair. Many of us, The Town Residents of Southampton, have grown up on these beaches our whole lives only to have them taken away from us even without the option of purchase of Non-Resident Permits. De facto segregation of the beaches when coupled with permit lock-outs is barbaric and totally unfair to those of us who are as much a part of Southampton Town and Village as are the Town Hall, Village Hall, or the once-public Southampton beaches.

I for example, am a third generation Southamptoner. My Grandfather and Grandmother, Ray and Marilyn Leahy settled in Southampton Village in the 1950’s. They raised my mother and aunt and uncle on Leo’s Lane. I myself grew up in North Sea and Water Mill because my mother and father were not wealthy enough to afford homes within the Village Limits. But, back then, in the 70’s and through much of the 80’s, the Village Beaches were public, and that drew tourists and local Southamptoners to the shore for many a summer.
It is in fact; Southampton’s gorgeous white-sand beaches, which are perhaps the most important, draw for tourists to come to our Town and Village. I don’t see why the best thing in Southampton, should be closed to all but the most elite who can afford to live within the Village Limits. Why, many of us, the Southampton Town Residents, have been a part of the Village far longer then many of the newer Village Residents who are, in fact, only here in the summer…
So, while I actually feel that our Southampton beaches should really be open and free to all who come here, local or visitor, residents Village or Town, it seems there must be a more rational approach, a compromise. I propose looking to East Hampton Village. They offer a select number of 3,000 Non-Resident Village Permits that go on sale in March or April, and once these are sold out, that’s it.
In this way, East Hampton Village is able to decidedly solve both the issues of revenue and limited parking in one sharp stroke. This, I feel, would be also the fairest way to solve the problems of parking and revenue for Southampton’s Village beaches as well.
I would further pose that any students of Southampton High School be able/allowed to have free Village Beach Permits since they are attending school in the Village of Southampton. The idea that a Southampton High School student cannot park at the Village beach is, quite simply, abhorrent. They especially, should have free and total access the beaches, the sand, the sea, and the surf. I mean, what else is there for them to do in the summer that’s as healthy and natural as going to the beach to enjoy the briny salt air and the balmy summertime heat? Surely not staying away from the shore due to lack of funds or lack of Village citizenship…

Please, do not close out the option of buying Non-Resident permits, to us, the Southampton Town Residents. Many of us have been here for decades, and shutting us out would be abhorrent, immoral, and just plain wrong. Think about it, who shows up at the Polar Bear Plunge? Who comes and organizes the Village and Town beach cleanups? Where do the Southampton Village Policeman (and Policewomen) call home? Where do the dedicated men and women of the Southampton Village Ambulance Corps or the Southampton Village Fire Department hail from and call home? Who has been raised and bred along the shores of the Southampton Village beaches for many a decade?

 

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Please consider this most rational and fair of proposals as a solution to the problem of parking and access to the Southampton Village Beaches…

Yours truly,
Lutha Leahy-Miller
Southampton Town Resident since 1976…
Third Generation ‘Mariner’ and graduate of Southampton High School…