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Dec 31, 2018 9:22 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Town Awards Westhampton Beach Additional CPF Money For Drainage Project

Main Street in the Village of Westhampton Beach. ANISAH ABDULLAH
Dec 31, 2018 9:22 AM

Southampton Town Board members voted on December 20 to give the Village of Westhampton Beach an additional $828,535 in Community Preservation Fund money to help pay for a drainage improvement project in the village, despite being asked to hold off until 2019 by the town's Water Quality Advisory Committee earlier in the month.

The amount awarded was $71,643 less than the $900,178 that Westhampton Beach Village officials requested, because board members did not find it necessary to cover the administrative costs with CPF revenue. Instead, those should be paid by the village.

The money will be added to $1,238,922 that was awarded to the village in October, to be used for water quality improvements in the form of better drainage along Main Street.

Dubbed the Main Street project, Westhampton Beach officials are working to improve drainage in the commercial district while burying utility lines and adding sidewalks and two traffic circles.

The village turned to town officials for the additional funds when estimates for the drainage portion of the project came in higher than expected.

The drainage project consists of installing two hydrodynamic separators to filter out impurities before storm drain water empties into Moniebogue Bay. It also includes replacing an underground brick culvert that sits beneath two buildings in an alleyway.

In order to replace the culvert, both buildings need to be supported structurally and a dry space needs to be created by the contractors. While the project was originally expected to cost $459,025, the lowest bid, which was submitted by Wading River-based Excav Services Inc., came in at $1,220,560.

Janice Scherer, a member of the Water Quality Advisory Committee, which oversees the use of CPF money for water quality improvements, told town board members that $71,643 in administrative costs was included in the village’s request, as well as costs associated with de-watering to create a dry space for the contractors to work in.

Ms. Scherer advised the board not to approve the additional money. While the expenses are legitimate, she said at the time, the village should use the money it received up to that point and come back in 2019 to apply for more money.

But the town board approved the additional money anyways.

According to Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, the project was already approved by the board when the first round of money was awarded in October. Unfortunately, the costs came in higher, but explained that happens from time to time.

The project was one of seven in the Town of Southampton that received funding for the first time since the CPF program was modified to allow 20 percent to go toward water quality improvements. It was also one of two projects that the village received funding for.

In total, Westhampton Beach received almost $2,368,922, which included $1.13 million to be put toward the village’s new sewer district. With the additional money, the Village of Westhampton Beach has received $3,197,457.

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Over $2 million awarded to one village in our town. What happens when others need water quality money???
How about the most polluted pond in NYS???
By knitter (1941), Southampton on Jan 2, 19 3:50 PM
Hi Knitter. There's an application process that's pretty thorough and diligently reviewed by an advisory committee as well as by the Town Board. The funds are available to all municipalities, and are awarded to qualifying projects that demonstrate specific metrics that will improve water quality. Being that we all share the same surface and groundwater, I'd be happy to offer some help with the process if you have a project that you're involved with that qualifies for this funding (I'm on the WHB ...more
By briantymann (31), westhampton beach on Jan 3, 19 11:18 AM
Be aware this funding (although some free $$) comes at a larger price for the Village of WHB. The sewer project will take a net 2% reduction of nitrogen out of the Bays surrounding WHB and 14% out of the small initial "pond" that flows into the balance of the Bays. The total cost of the project is exceeding $23+ Million with supposed $5m + $2m + some small funding so the net to the tax payers is about $16m (and we don't even know the final cost yet as it will not start until 2020. ...more
By Bobt (48), WHB on Jan 3, 19 1:33 PM
Knitter, agawam was green when I was a kid, I’m sure it was green when you were a kid. My father, who would have been 101 , said it was green when he was a kid.it would be great if they ever decided to try to “fix” agawam.
By Fred s (3321), Southampton on Jan 2, 19 3:58 PM
Hey SH Village - Pay attention.
By Mouthampton (439), Southampton on Jan 3, 19 7:57 AM
Regarding all this “free” money for our Main Street Revitalization and Sewer Projects: Is 100% of this money ours for Phase 1 alone, or are percentages of these monies doled out contingent upon Phases 2 and 3 breaking ground? We know Phases 2 and 3 will never happen (see the WHB September 2017 Village meeting where I witnessed and it was videotaped where the H2M engineer stated that Phases 2 and 3 would never happen “because the costs would be astronomical, requiring construction ...more
By st (129), westhampton beach on Jan 3, 19 6:47 PM
Um, who besides you and your lockstep husband is suggesting that there's anything "free" about these funds?

I think you and "Bobt" should run for office this year under the "Disgruntled" banner.

By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Jan 3, 19 10:20 PM
We are not "disgruntled" Frank. We merely want the truth to be told and a taxpayer vote. Do you attend the meetings? Is this your taxpayer $$? We are all free to express our opinions. If you don't like then then tough crap!
By Bobt (48), WHB on Jan 4, 19 7:15 AM
Um, duh, Frank the reason why "free" was purposely placed in quotation marks was because we all know the money isn't "free." It's tax dollars already collected from everyone. Your brilliant comment is so enlightening to this conversation.
By st (129), westhampton beach on Jan 5, 19 7:45 AM
I do believe the tax payers voted this Board into office,some for 3 or 4 terms. Obviously we like the job they are doing.
By tenn tom (259), remsenburg on Jan 4, 19 8:05 AM
Either the board should hope to receive enough grant money to pay for the entirety of the sewer system construction or the project should go out for a vote. Just because an administration is voted in doesn’t mean they have carte blanche to spend multi-millions without a capital project vote.

The administration is not transparent. I stated facts. If clean water is the issue, why isn’t the 100-bed Seafield House included in Phase 1? Or the country club, the WHB schools, Best, ...more
By st (129), westhampton beach on Jan 5, 19 8:05 AM