To the Editor,
What could lie ahead for Wainscott if we say yes to incorporation? Is the Citizens of the Preservation of Wainscott budget realistic? Would it really provide us with more cost-effective services, tax control, and environmental protection? Could an all-volunteer government handle the complex development issues facing Wainscott? I was skeptical and started examining their plans. I found C.P.W.’s jerry-rigged approach to drawing the new boundaries of the proposed village of Wainscott as concocted and impractical as the consequences we’d all face if we believe their unlikely bare-bones budget.
The Wainscott Hamlet Study provides a plan on improving the haphazard character of the commercial district. This project is complex and requires expertise on many levels. The study also addresses the sand/gravel pit, a 70-plus acre area zoned for commercial and industrial development. With these two issues alone, C.P.W.’s budget is grossly inadequate.
Next, could a part-time volunteer government (mayor, trustees, planning, zoning) handle and expertly navigate the enormous task demanded of them? With limited resources, no architectural review board and a poorly visualized budget, the disparities in the real budgetary burdens would need to be addressed. We could easily become the next Mastic Beach.
Who will absorb the direct impact of the budget gap? Do the math. Our taxes would increase as the budget became more realistic.
Take a look at C.P.W.’s vague, poorly produced budget for yourself. Their budget is disingenuous and does not support their promises or goals. How could anyone be expected to make a positive judgment about this plan and budget or for that matter even take them seriously?
As a coastal community vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and our existing challenges both known and unknown, it is imperative we have the support of professional performance and realistic budgeting that East Hampton Town can provide.
For me the choice is clear. Staying a hamlet and continuing to work with East Hampton Town’s strict zoning laws, their expertise, and diverse resources will and has served Wainscott well. Vote “no” on incorporation.
Postscript: Esperanza Leon, a resident of Wainscott, is a board member on the East Hampton Town Architectural Review Board.