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304 Comments by lamm

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Southampton Board Of Education Schedules Straw Vote On Merger

I have to wonder what Ms. Tutt's motivation is, to be so downright insulting to the Tuckahoe community, the Tuckahoe children and even the Tuckahoe teaching staff. The kids from Tuckahoe eventually go on to SHS and excel there alongside the best of the Southampton School kids, so she obviously isn't making either intelligent or informed comments.
The reality is that Southampton and Tuckahoe are one community. Southampton and Tuckahoe kids marched seamlessly in the Homecoming Parade. They play on the same sports teams, in school and out of school and they're in the same HS band. Our kids are friends, our families are friends, we volunteer at the same community functions, we go to the same churches, we share a library and an art museum, just to name a few.
My hope is that going forward we can have a rational discussion involving facts and keep our eye on the big picture. Tuckahoe cannot survive for much longer on its own and it would be a shame for both communities if this vote fails. Eventually the state will step in and the future of both districts will be in jeopardy, as will the future of projects like the planetarium, the oceanography lab, and the beautiful playing fields at SHS that Tuckahoe tax dollars helped to build and support.
" Oct 2, 13 6:49 PM

The 2009 school board likely would not have conceded to the demands that kids get pulled from Westhampton, nor can we blame any three individuals for the current financial woes. It's very expensive to run a small and rapidly growing district. The poor economy, the tax cap and the lack of community support that would be needed to pierce the tax cap made an already difficult situation worse. " Oct 2, 13 8:26 PM

I understand that some people feel that way, but I'm sure the overwhelming majority feel that their taxes are just too high. The reason that Tuckahoe needs to merge is because it's expensive to run a small school, no matter who is on the board (btw, weren't you a very vocal part of the contingent that strongly supported larger pay raises and step increases for the Tuckahoe teachers when the board tried to reign in spending a few years ago?). The reason we're considering Southampton over Westhampton is because we are part of the same local community, so it makes sense." Oct 2, 13 9:27 PM

Southampton is the logical place to send our kids to high school. A decent sized contingent of parents wanted Westhampton as a choice (Westhampton has an excellent reputation) and it was economically feasible, it even saved the district some money. My best guess is that Tuckahoe parents weren't requesting Hampton Bays as a high school option." Oct 2, 13 9:56 PM

A totally democratic vote regarding on-campus housing is hardly totalitarian. It was voted down and it didn't happen, that chapter is closed and has nothing to do with today's merger vote. It's dollars and cents, practicality, location and community. Perhaps your definition of "community" is a handful of people on a school board that you're not fond of, my "community" is far larger than that and exceeds well beyond just a tuition payment to a school. Perhaps you don't realize it, but 2009 board was largely the board that brought back Westhampton as an option 6 or 7 years ago, after previous boards gave Southampton an exclusive for many, many years, then that board was democratically voted out and now you lost that option. " Oct 3, 13 4:08 PM

Obbservant isn't a former school board member and isn't female either." Oct 4, 13 7:29 PM

Westhampton is 82% white. State Average is 48%. NOT diverse.
Great Schools rating: Westhampton 7, Southampton 6 Not a huge difference.
No doubt Westhampton is a better school academically, but is the difference substantial enough that we would want to send all our kids out of town?
" Oct 9, 13 6:29 PM

Parents Frustrated By Busing Changes At East Quogue Elementary

There is a process that these parents need to go through to get the child medically necessary transportation, a 504. If it is truly a medical necessity, it shouldn't be difficult or even very time consuming for the child to get special approval for bussing, it just needs to be done the right way.
" Oct 19, 13 10:37 PM

First Public Vote On Southampton-Tuckahoe Merger Is Scheduled For Next Week

Obbservant, most Tuckahoe residents live in the Southampton community, we aren't asking another community to bail us out. Tuckahoe School is in Southampton. If we asked Westhampton to merge you might have an argument and I would also guess that you wouldn't sound so angry and bitter, but most Tuckahoe residents don't want to merge with a school in another community. Raising and educating a child is about more than how many AP classes a kid can fit into their schedule. You do have quite a flair for drama." Oct 25, 13 8:46 PM

In don't believe you are correct, the majority did not and would not have chosen Westhampton. Perhaps increasing numbers but not the majority. Two grades don't make the decision for an entire district either. You did make it clear that this is about the choice of the district we are possibly merging with and not the idea of a merger itself. Westhampton is not a contingent district, and they are not part of our Southampton community. The choice of Southampton is logical. I don't base my decision making process on the word of three board members either, and my opinion of them isn't very high, I can form my own opinions thank you, so stick to facts you actually have knowledge of instead of baseless ranting. I'm sure that if the merger goes through those lower taxes will really hurt our property values! Lol." Oct 26, 13 8:42 AM

In addition, you mention often what Tuckahoe parents want. This decision isn't just up to the parents. I don't think I need "scientific evidence" to prove that the Tuckahoe community at large would likely choose Southampton over Westhampton, and not just for community pride reasons, but also because a Southampton merger would give us a lower tax rate than a Westhampton merger.
http://www.southamptontownny.gov/filestorage/760/762/790/1354/Tax_Rate_2012-2013_(2).pdf" Oct 26, 13 10:07 AM

Local, a couple of points in response. First of all, Tuckahoe is not bankrupt, not even close. The school and grounds are impeccable, the financial condition today is good and debt is low (lower than Southampton's I believe). If you have been in Tuckahoe School recently, you would know that the building would be an amazing addition to the SHSD, and possibly a beautiful and nurturing early elementary school for the combined district. The issue at Tuckahoe is tomorrow. With a tax cap in place and projected increases in all areas, and world class golf courses that don't pay their fair share, the future is grim. If the merger is not approved, Tuckahoe will eventually be in dire straits and the state will step in and handle Tuckahoe's finances. Things like contractual obligations, utilities, etc. are fixed, even the state can't cut there. The other major areas the state can cut are things like the lunch program, buses and high school tuition. With other districts charging less than SH, either SH will have to substantially lower their tuition or the state will send the Tuckahoe students elsewhere. As far effects on the high school, SH will have less money and/or possibly a lot less money plus 1/3 less students to fill their classes, so less options will be available to the remaining 2/3 of the school. Without the Tuckahoe kids, there will not be enough students to fill some of the teams, and sports may be very negatively affected as well. If Tuckahoe kids are sent elsewhere, our 11968 community will be broken up, as 1/3 of the local school community goes to another district and participates in activities in that community as well. There's a big picture here that effects our entire community, unfortunately it's all been about $ so far. Tomorrow's vote is not binding, it's only a straw vote that would determine whether this gets looked into further. I know they're looking at ways to try to lessen the burden of the SHSD taxpayers, possibly two taxing districts so that Tuckahoe's taxes don't go down as much and Southampton's don't go up. The final vote would be in December. Give this vote a chance and let the powers that be try to work something out before the next vote." Oct 28, 13 11:50 PM

UPDATE: Southampton Voters Overwhelmingly Defeat Merger Proposal In Straw Vote Tuesday

Congrats to all the Tuckahoe/Westhampton kids, it's great that you guys won't be uprooted. A bright light in this tunnel. Thank you also to the 600+ that voted yes, it wasn't enough to get the job done, but it was good to see we weren't totally abandoned. We know where we stand with the majority of our community now, and I guess it's time to look to ourselves for survival. Hopefully our current high school students won't be uprooted, but unless the Southampton School District substantially lowers it's tuition rate to that of our Hampton Bays neighbors, we may be looking toward a very sad breakup of the community. Unfortunately for the Southampton School District, this may be an even bigger loss when the state steps in on our behalf and insists on a much lower tuition rate that matches our neighbors to the west, not only for the Tuckahoe kids, but for the kids on the reservation as well. I think a Pandora's box has been opened by this resounding no vote. I agree with Shinnecock Hills Family, this was quite short sighted." Oct 30, 13 12:11 AM

No Liman, you are not correct. The Tuckahoe school district asked Southampton merge because we can no longer afford to give our students a quality education, not because we wanted a freebie on taxes. It's really nice that Southampton has enjoyed a lower tax rate for years, but a lot of your tax breaks were at Tuckahoe's expense. Tuckahoe has been subsidizing Southampton taxes for years. That's all over now, and for those who didn't see it will soon." Oct 30, 13 12:19 PM

Hopefully both districts will be ok. You're right, Tuckahoe has options for survival, but those options are not good for the Southampton school district. It would have been better to do this amicably. You're wrong with all your nonsense that Southampton didn't want us for reasons that weren't financial. Perhaps a vocal, narrow minded minority, but mostly it was all about taxes. Our taxes going down and theirs going up created resentment. It would have been preferable and wise for both boards to realize that early on and postpone any vote until a balance could be struck through legislation that allowed an unequal tax rate, with Tuckahoe paying more and Southampton paying less, for a predetermined amount of time. Until that type of legislation is passed, mergers, that the state encourages, will continue to fail as they have been." Oct 30, 13 12:31 PM

The merger failure was about dollars, nothing more. As another poster said, people aren't going to vote themselves higher taxes. Even under Linda Rozzi, before the boards that you so despised, Tuckahoe budgets failed and were passed by single digits. There are a handful of people out there who do nothing but complain about school boards and blame them for every conceivable ill, and possibly even voted against what may be the best current option for both districts (in my opinion at least), just because they don't like school boards, but I believe that list is very small. Most voted it down because of the disparity in tax projections." Oct 30, 13 1:39 PM

In theory Obbservant, those are all great ideas. In reality many of those ideas won't work in today's world.
Many Tuckahoe board elections are unopposed. In good corporations, people get paid, these are volunteer positions, no experience required. We have a doctor, a pharmacist and I'm not sure what the other does, on our board. You sound qualified, perhaps you should run? I believe Mr. Grisnik is up this year.

NYS law does not allow for these positions to be appointed.

You can't take away too much from the teachers, if you do their contracts will wind up in arbitration, which is usually favorable to the unions.

A school district cannot declare bankruptcy. The state will come in and cut programming, lunch programs, busing, etc. If you know anything about Tuckahoe, there aren't a whole lot of extras.

What you're suggesting at the end is basically a voucher program, which is not legal either." Oct 31, 13 8:30 PM

Perhaps they'll be even lower, since you won't need to pay coaches or buy uniforms for some of the teams you won't be able to field without the Tuckahoe kids. You won't need all those extra AP and honors classes that Tuckahoe helps fill either. A few less instruments perhaps since they may not have enough kids for the band. Maybe some teachers can be laid off as well, with 1/3 less students. I guess after school the remaining kids who lose these activities can always go and hang out in the village. " Oct 31, 13 9:03 PM

Southampton Students Protest Failed Merger Vote

Tuckahoe taxpayers have paid very high taxes for years because we don't have the strong tax base that Southampton SD taxpayers have. In addition, we have multiple golf courses and a college that pay far less than their fair share because of their government granted lower tax statuses and we are paying the maximum allowed tuition to send our kids to Southampton High School. If there is a merger, not only do our students become part of the Southampton SD, but so does our tax base. When the new lines are drawn, the entire tax base is totaled and the same tax percentage is assigned to all homeowners in the newly formed district. In a mailing we received last week from the Tuckahoe School, they were going to try to find a way (through legislation) to tax Tuckahoe as a separate taxing district after the merger. Right now that isn't allowed by state law. As it stands now, this is off the table for another year, so hopefully before next year they can find a way to work it out so that the burden to Southampton isn't as high. Keep in mind though that another big reason taxes were so high in Tuckahoe was because the Southampton School District was charging Tuckahoe the highest high school tuition rate allowed by law, so Tuckahoe residents have been a factor in keeping Southampton taxes low for years, I suspect the high tuition rate been costing us more than it's increasing in Southampton." Nov 1, 13 12:41 PM

That was uncalled for. Was there a reason you needed to be so nasty? If you're going to criticize the writing of another, you should at least proofread your own first. " Nov 4, 13 8:42 PM

Southampton, Tuckahoe School Boards Still Working Toward Merger

Witch Hazel, the vote was for a merger, not a tax decrease. Tuckahoe School is unsustainable and will not be able to provide a quality education to its elementary and junior high school students for much longer while sending kids to either Southampton or Westhampton, BOTH charge high tuition. I understand you have a personal interest in keeping Westhampton as an option, and I agree that it's wrong that they're proposing a removal of the kids from that school (and hope that the Education Dept will step in and help there). Tuckahoe will not survive forever on its own. Something has to give. It's also very likely that Tuckahoe tax rates will eventually be lower as part of the Southampton SD, a small school is very expensive to operate." Nov 15, 13 6:37 PM

Competition Added To Many Roadblocks Facing Shinnecock Casino Hopes

But one of your previous comments stated "I support the Shinnecock Indians 100% and hope they get to do whatever they want!!!"
" Dec 6, 13 10:46 PM

State Education Commissioner Fields Questions On Common Core

In my opinion, deep thinking is something learned at home, not at school. It's intelligent conversation at the dinner table that creates inquisitive children. This will never happen across the board with NYS students today, as many parents prefer their kids at the computer so they can get some free time themselves in their busy schedules. Life is getting in the way for everyone. In my day, schools taught reading, writing and arithmetic and the US fared well in the international standings. NCLB was necessary because I remember kids going to high school who couldn't read, but it went too far, placing too much emphasis on testing. If a kid did poorly at school, it wasn't always the teacher's fault (and if you got a call or note home you were in big trouble), but by the same token, we do need a way to weed out lazy teachers (there are plenty). At this point, I would rather schools went back to teaching the basics, while possibly keying on an Asian like system of repetition and mastery. We also need to address the short attention spans that kids are developing as a result of their lifestyles, and children's programming on Disney and Nickelodeon that constantly portray adults as morons, which created an atmosphere of disrespect.
Common core is based upon some very sound ideas, but I don't think it's realistic.
" Dec 7, 13 11:13 PM

Tuckahoe Exploring Tax Options For School Merger

Tuckahoe has been a "perk" for Southampton SD residents as well, since Tuckahoe taxpayers have had to absorb the tax breaks given to golf courses and have absorbed exorbitant tuition rates. Both a huge benefit for SHSD residents.
" Jan 11, 14 6:31 PM

Obbservant, you have some good observations but no solutions. Teacher salaries and benefits have increased dramatically, with Tuckahoe in line with others. You can't go backwards as far as salaries go. If we refused to raise salaries, binding arbitration would have done it for us. We don't have a slew of programs from which to cut. Governor Cuomo had a great idea, let's put the tax cap in place and reign in spending. That's an idea whose time has come, but he was well aware that expensive, small school districts would need to consolidate. It's my belief that there should be even greater consolidation of districts (and "east end" district perhaps) and that school boards should be completely abolished. Unpaid, non professionals (in education) running school districts is a strange concept. It's also my belief that the state should make consolidation decisions, because it will never be fair and equal and many are voted down, even though they are the right thing to do. Chief1 is right, it's time for drastic measures." Jan 12, 14 11:41 PM

C'mon Obbservant, those are not realistic solutions. Just like mine, they will never happen, to no fault of Tuckahoe.
1) So let's take Quogue, quadruple their enrollment and diversify its 90+% white student population so it's under 50% and see if they look as good on paper as they do now. Do they still not even bus their kids? Add transportation costs into the mix because many of our students couldn't show up at school without a bus. I agree with you on runaway union costs, but they can only be addressed going forward. The "mindless escalation" has been across the board all over NYS, Long Island especially, which is why binding arbitration in Tuckahoe would have ruled in the teachers' favor. This is a systemic problem in education, not just in Tuckahoe and I agree that the likes of Weingarten have been self serving. We don't have the excessive number of teachers as we did in the past, we don't have assistants in each classroom like we did a few years ago. Quality of education would suffer greatly if a 3rd grader were in a class of 40+ because one teacher was cut. We are pretty bare bones right now.
2) This is irrelevant. A public school district cannot declare bankruptcy. Although New York’s Local Finance Law §85.80 does permit some municipalities to file a petition for bankruptcy under provisions of the laws of the United States, the state law does not include public school districts within its definition of the term “municipality” for this specific purpose. School districts are excluded
from the definition of municipality in the Local Finance Law.
3) Is not legal either.
Your answers are clear examples of why consolidation is necessary. There are no easy answers. I think we both have some good ideas, (in my opinion anyway), but it isn't how things are done, and changing how things are done from a legal standpoint is well above the ability of our tiny school district. They are drastic measures, and in theory, good ideas, but they just don't work as the law stands now. Consolidation is the only option at this point, unless the community is willing to pierce the tax cap, which will never happen.
" Jan 13, 14 10:50 PM

That's a wonderful little lesson in federal bankruptcy, but you well know that it's not going to go down like that. Tuckahoe isn't going to be the school to break the mold with overly drastic measures nor are we taking on the UFT. The state will step in and help if need be, but we're not even close to that yet. Other measures need to be exhausted before that can happen and we are still years away. We could get rid of pre-k, we could send the kids to Hampton Bays for high school (the tuition $ difference between SH and WH high is not significant), we could keep kids in Tuckahoe another year. We can cut some busing services, we could cut the lunch program. We can cut the sports buses. No more trips anywhere. There are options that would need to be exhausted before the state steps in, but they leave us just a bare bones school that doesn't benefit the students. This is why we need to consolidate, and if Tuckahoe pays a greater share of the taxes to encourage that to happen, then that's how it needs to be, our taxes would still be lower than they are now, and our property values won't suffer because we have a district on the brink. One thing I'm fairly confident of is that SH SD isn't going to allow our kids to go to Hampton Bays, they'll bend as soon as that's a realistic option. That'll hurt them, they lose tuition and SH SD taxes increase or their school and sports programs get cut. You talk idealistically and you look at these things from an unrealistic perspective, and you still offer no realistic solutions." Jan 14, 14 8:50 PM

A bankruptcy filing would not be approved on the federal level any time soon, as we are not insolvent. You also don't make note of the fact that Tuckahoe teachers' salaries are not nearly the highest in the state (as was the case with Copper River) and are in line with all others in the general area (and schools in the Copper River SD are not funded with property taxes). What is unusual about Tuckahoe and only a handful of other schools on long island is that we pay too high a price for high school tuition. We would need to deal with that first. We would need to send our kids to a district with substantially lower tuition rates, and there so happens to be such a contingent district. As I said, it's my belief that SH SD will not allow that to happen, but I'm not sure I'm willing to wager my child's education on it, and it will become yet another very contentious issue for our community." Jan 16, 14 2:22 AM

Hobby Lobby Ruling Called A Setback By Tim Bishop And Victory By Lee Zeldin

Plan B One-Step is sold in pharmacies without a prescription and without any age restrictions. I don't believe it's customary for over-the-counter medications to be covered by insurance anyway." Jul 13, 14 11:47 PM

Southampton School District Presents New Projections For Tuckahoe Merger

East End, Tuckahoe taxpayers made life easier for Southampton taxpayers for years. While Tuckahoe griped about the crazy high tuition costs they were charged by Southampton, they were told to basically deal with it. So they did. Those days are coming to the end and within the next few years Tuckahoe will fold or send kids to the lowest bidder. That won't make life easier or better for either district, and high school programs rely heavily upon the Tuckahoe students attending." Aug 16, 14 10:24 PM

"Not to mention throw away $9 million tax dollars we have already paid to save Tuckahoe", Just curious, what's that about April? As far as I know, Tuckahoe pays Southampton a very high tuition to send their kids to SH High. I've never heard of Southampton paying Tuckahoe for anything, but I could be wrong." Aug 18, 14 10:33 PM

This is a perfect example of why the Hamptons was voted one of the most unfriendly towns in America. The message sent to Tuckahoe kids is "you aren't needed or wanted here unless you pay what we tell you", and the message sent to Southampton kids is "don't help your neighbors and friends because they chose to buy there, so screw them, they can go find help elsewhere". I I have to agree with what Westhampton had been saying for years, send your kids here, we want them, we will charge less and will give the kids a superior education to that which your Southampton neighbors charge you more for. It's time for Tuckahoe to change direction, our neighbors have spoken. Make a good deal with Westhampton for a lower tuition, and take the savings to try to keep Tuckahoe viable. Then we can sit back and watch as Southampton can no longer field full teams and AP classes. They can build their $9 million building rather than take Tuckahoe's beautiful property. We will watch as the parents of Southampton students fight tooth and nail for tax increases to make up for the large Tuckahoe tuition loss, while the Southampton Association and residents of their own district tell them to go scratch." Aug 23, 14 11:04 AM

Jewish Religious Boundary Goes Up In Westhampton Beach

All religions have some aspects that outsiders find silly, for instance, celebrating the birth of Jesus on December 25th when it's clear that he wasn't born in the winter. I'm sure there are reasons why the eruv is needed for the orthodox Jews, and you likely need to be practicing that religion to understand it completely. Denying a particular group something that has no effect on you in an effort to keep them out of your neighborhood is just wrong and the only ones who benefit from a continued legal battle is the lawyers. " Aug 23, 14 9:52 PM

Southampton School District Presents New Projections For Tuckahoe Merger

You are right April, it is the tax cap that is bringing Tuckahoe down. Big Fresh, no, we didn't buy in this district with the knowledge that this would happen. Tuckahoe has been subsidizing Southampton SD residents for a very long time, to the tune of over $4 million per year, which averages $35,000+ per Tuckahoe student (not including transportation). Tuckahoe isn't looking for a handout, we will pay taxes to the Southampton district as well. You will not be maintaining OUR building, you will own it and YOUR students will attend school there as well. You will not be subsidizing OUR busses, we will be paying taxes for them. The house on the property (not across the street) can be utilized, or possibly sold, it's a non issue and only a benefit as far as this possible merger is concerned, as it increases the value of the property. I know it sucks that your taxes will eventually go up a little, and I don't blame residents for being angry about that, but Tuckahoe has make a move, and when Southampton turns their back and Tuckahoe goes elsewhere, there will be a price to pay in Southampton as well, with no concessions from the state to soften the blow. Make no mistake April, our relationship is a two way street." Aug 24, 14 11:58 AM

Tuckahoe Appoints Sixth-Grade Teacher As New Principal

Here we go again April, here's some additional information that you may not have considered before making your comment above. In grades pre-k through 8, Tuckahoe has around 400 students (not including the ones we send out) Tuckahoe has one superintendent, one principal and no assistant principal. In Southampton pre-k through 8 there are around 1000 students, 2 principals and 2 assistant principals and 1/3 of a superintendent (assuming he is split equally between the three districts). So tell me what the problem is and why you consider Ms Sicari's promotion to principal "reckless"? Both superintendents need to follow the same laws, they need to file most of the same reports, they both need to oversee all state mandated responsibilities, etc, etc. So what you're saying is that Mr. Dyer alone should do close to the same job as Dr. Richard, Dr. Grimaldi, Mr. Frazier, Ms. Wright and Dr. Farina? Really? The student to top administrator ration is about the same in Tuckahoe as Southampton. Ms. Sicari is an excellent choice. You should also keep in mind that the new principal was a very experienced 6th grade teacher that was probably at the top of her pay scale after 18 years and the new teacher that is hired to replace the empty teaching position will likely be earning far, far less, creating another area of savings to help offset the cost. It's clear you don't want the merger, but don't bash just to bash, and stick to arguments that make sense." Aug 29, 14 12:19 AM

Meant to say "split equally between the three schools", not the three districts.
" Aug 29, 14 12:23 AM

I did not know that. According to GreatSchools, Southampton SD spends $4000+ per year per student more than Tuckahoe.
" Aug 29, 14 11:12 PM

April, there was an assistant principal then, now there is none. There were two top administrators then and two at the top now. " Aug 31, 14 3:00 AM

April, Tuckahoe is a bare bones school, there aren't bells and whistles and programs are minimal. After contractual expenses, Tuckahoe's biggest expense is the tuition that is paid to Southampton High School. The SH District has charged Tuckahoe and the Shinnecock Indian Reservation (paid by the state), the highest legal rate they could charge for decades, and because Tuckahoe families wanted go to school in their own community, they've paid. This has subsidized your taxes for decades, but that era is coming to an end. The choices now are merging with another district or pulling all the Tuckahoe kids out of Southampton and sending them to a substantially less expensive high school. I don't think that Southampton could or would drastically lower our tuition, because they need to justify the high tuition charged to the state for the reservation. April, you seem to believe that Tuckahoe is in the shape they are in because there is lots of waste, but that's wrong. We don't have the tax base, the mansions, or the business district that Southampton enjoys, plus we have hundreds of acres of low tax properties (like the golf courses and the college). Both districts need to look at this from a practical standpoint and let go of the anger. Most of all we all have to realize that something must change and that change for Tuckahoe means change for Southampton as well, whether or not the merger is approved." Aug 31, 14 9:57 AM

Your post clearly shows me that you don't know what you're talking about. The country club school thing was about 10 years ago, and the superintendent thing was years ago as well. So lets try to live in the present. You would need to ask Southampton what they're netting, but the fact that they forced Tuckahoe to sign an exclusivity agreement and stop sending kids to Westhampton in exchange for a slightly lower tuition answers that question in a more general way. Golf courses by law get HUGE tax breaks and pay only a fraction of what they should. How we can use golf courses to promote the school (or why we even want to promote the school) is beyond me. Again, let's try to live in the present April, Tuckahoe has no special programs, bells or whistles, some quite large classes, few teaching assistants, a highly diverse population with it's own inherent struggles, and you haven't given me a current, valid example of why you think Tuckahoe is wasteful." Sep 1, 14 8:17 PM

Hey Big Fresh…This isn't just about taxes, but about a district that can no longer afford to operate. I wish we could continue to keep everything just as it is. Compared to the rest of Long Island, even Tuckahoe's taxes are relatively low. I agree with you though, the merger won't be approved. It is my belief that we should get over the notion of going to school in our own community and merge with Westhampton, or at least talk to them about a significantly more affordable tuition rate in exchange for sending all future high school students to Westhampton (I never believe in pulling a kid out of their current school). You guys in Southampton can then deal with how to fight against the Southampton Assn and their full page ads that encourage the community to vote down the inevitable budget increases that will indeed come from losing millions every year in Tuckahoe tuition. Southampton is very possibly facing a lose-lose decision, which is why it's my contention that it's more about keeping the community intact. " Sep 1, 14 8:43 PM

Couple Donates $50K To East Quogue Elementary Science Program

Wow, so nice to hear good news like this. The kids are very fortunate." Sep 2, 14 10:31 PM

Southampton Expresses Doubt Over Merger With Tuckahoe

The board makes perfect sense. If there's no interest in a merger, why waste time and money. If Tuckahoe can't survive financially, perhaps it's time to send the Tuckahoe kids all to Westhampton, or talk about a merger with them. As much as I don't want to see the community broken up, the writing is on the wall. It's a shame the two tax district thing didn't pan out, it seemed like an ideal solution." Sep 3, 14 8:58 PM

No choice, we are in a better place to negotiate a good tuition and possibly save Tuckahoe by sending all kids to Westhampton. April, you are right, the districts are supposed to be neighboring, but rules can be changed, especially since we have a governor that really wants small districts to merge with larger ones. Tuckahoe voters won't approve Hampton Bays. Westhampton is an excellent district and may be easier to sell to residents if Southampton is off the table." Sep 3, 14 11:54 PM

Southampton Village Board Concerned About Plan For King Kullen In Tuckahoe

I avoid the village completely in the summer and Waldbaums is not a pleasant place to shop. Citarella traffic is a test of my patience. There is nowhere else for regular folks to shop in between Hampton Bays and Bridgehampton, that's a long stretch." Sep 4, 14 12:06 AM

Southampton Expresses Doubt Over Merger With Tuckahoe

Perhaps Southampton will take on Bridgehampton kids to replace Tuckahoe students. It's time for Tuckahoe to cut the cord with the Southampton SD and move in a different direction." Sep 4, 14 2:57 PM

Based upon the last vote, there aren't many supporters. Thats sad, but it's the reality. Perhaps Tuckahoe needs to accept that and move forward, and consider piercing the tax cap to keep our school open and maintain our property values. Sending the kids to Westhampton would be a good thing in the long run, it is an excellent school, and lots of very successful kids go out of district now. It isn't going to kill them. Then after a few years maybe Southampton will want to talk merger again. Who knows. We have to move on as a community. " Sep 5, 14 10:00 AM

Southampton Village Board Concerned About Plan For King Kullen In Tuckahoe

Nor was village interested in Golden Pear, Schmidts or all the other smaller eateries in Southampton when it approved the much larger Citarella. The only competition King Kullen has in Southampton is Waldbaums. Although it is the closest store to me, I avoid it and go to Hampton Bays. The commercial tax base for a new King Kullen may help the Tuckahoe School District as well." Sep 5, 14 12:46 PM

David, it's not the ONLY reason, and you are incorrect that businesses don't add to the tax rolls. The reason I like the King Kullen proposal is because I would like to not have to drive 10 miles to pick up a few things at the supermarket. Hampton Bays has three shopping centers. Water Mill has a shopping center. Bridgehampton has a shopping center, Southampton Village has a shopping district. Tuckahoe should have their own as well. Southampton doesn't consider Tuckahoe as part of their community, but they want us to shop there and pay tuition there. Now they want to decide whether or not we can build a shopping center in Tuckahoe? It's time for Tuckahoe to finally become it's own community. " Sep 5, 14 9:05 PM

svo, if Waldbaums wants to compete with King Kullen, it will upgrade when competition is created, it's a crappy store because there is no competition, just like its East Hampton store. The Southampton/Tuckahoe area can easily support two supermarkets, and as far as traffic through the village streets, many that live in Tuckahoe are using those side streets to get to Waldbaums, and the new housing plans being developed in Tuckahoe will use those side streets to get to Waldbaums as well. Ideally I would love to see an IGA in one of the strip malls already in existence in Tuckahoe, but nobody is proposing that. Any other location would create an additional traffic signal, this one does not, there's already one in place. No, I'm not expecting a tax "windfall", but with all the properties in Tuckahoe with tax breaks and exemptions, a supermarket will pay far more than the golf courses and college. This should not be a decision made by Southampton Village government, and I hope they don't waste time and taxpayer money on a lawsuit. " Sep 6, 14 9:54 AM

I'll bet he donated plenty! Perhaps as much as Citarella donated to village officials for their very special treatment. It's business as usual in the Hamptons. The project isn't far fetched though. A King Kullen bringing traffic to a standstill and clogging village streets is far fetched. People have to drive to a supermarket. The closer a market is to home the less street, the less driving, the less clogging." Sep 6, 14 12:39 PM

You're comparing a new supermarket in Southampton to Riverhead??? This is the problem with the arguments against the supermarket. I'm reading unsafe, clogged streets, ugly sprawl, standstill traffic, mega mall...all pretty far fetched. " Sep 6, 14 4:39 PM

What do people really want in that location? Another mechanic? Used tire place? Perhaps we need another car dealer? Or better yet maybe more condos! Something will eventually be built there, it might as well be something the Tuckahoe community actually needs." Sep 7, 14 12:48 AM

For some size perspective, here are some number's I found online. If I'm wrong, I'm sure someone will tell me:
The property is 7.25 acres or 315,810 sq. ft. For visualization, this is over 5.5 NFL football fields, including end zones.
The King Kullen will be 40,000 sq. ft., there will be 15,000 sq. ft. of shops and a 3,500 sq. ft. bank, for a total of 58,500 sq. ft. (on a 385,810 sq. ft. lot). For visualization, the total building is the size of a single football field on a lot the size of 5.5 football fields.
Is the 15,000 sq. ft. allowable zoning (quoted above by obbservant) per lot? I believe there are several lots contained in this project.
The very reduced scope of this project (much smaller than the original plan with no apartments) is not quite the mega mall that opponents are making it out to be.
Fatal accidents happen as a result of existing high speed traffic, this project may slow down cars a bit and will likely reduce fatalities. I'm not even sure if it will slow traffic, but it definitely won't speed it up.
I suspect that if there were a vote (which won't happen, we have a representative govt), it would be of the entire community, and not just those who live adjacent to the property, and would likely pass. This process has gone on beyond a single election cycle, and if people truly felt that ATH was in Morrow's pocket, the community had their chance to get her out of office. Most developers out here contribute to political campaigns, I'm sure this is no exception (this info should be found in public filings, right?).

" Sep 7, 14 10:17 AM

Southampton School District To Host Meeting On Thursday To Discuss Potential Merger With Tuckahoe

You are incorrect Chief. The state would rather we work this out on our own, and have offered incentives to do so. Governor Cuomo wants this, local state politicians went as far as having a bill passed in Albany specifically to help make this happen, because they want it. We have a school district about to go broke that wants it. Do you really think that Tuckahoe residents are going to start the process all over and do the required long and expensive feasibility study to merge with Hampton Bays, knowing that Tuckahoe residents won't approve it? After Southampton shoots this down, and after Tuckahoe goes broke, the state steps in, and they will be responsible for the education of the Tuckahoe kids. They have the total power to "redistrict". They aren't going to redistrict us in to Hampton Bays when the Tuckahoe School facility is closer to many Southampton kids than the Southampton facilities are! And if they do, I highly doubt you will still have 10 years of one sided incentives to do so.
" Sep 9, 14 6:19 PM

Chief, one thing that we are sure of, Tuckahoe SD will not exist for long, but our kids will still go to school. In the very short term, how this happens is in the hands of the Southampton SD voters. After that, it will be in the hands of the state. Southampton will EASILY be the only logical place for the kids, (especially with a good portion of our kids there already), and that's exactly where the state will put the Tuckahoe kids. If you believe otherwise, you're fooling yourself. Think about this and follow it through to it's logical conclusion." Sep 9, 14 6:46 PM

Sandy, in the long run, where do you really, truly think the Tuckahoe kids are going to wind up when the school closes?" Sep 9, 14 7:56 PM

Tuckahoe has cut staff by over 20% and has a residency officer who works to verify that kids live in the district. Tuckahoe does not have the authority to close the motels. Where do you see this going chief? What happens when Tuckahoe cannot pay its bills? We are talking about the very near future. Do you think the state is going to just send kids home to be schooled by their parents? " Sep 9, 14 11:07 PM

I was being sarcastic. Of course they will not all be sent home to learn. They will be sent somewhere though, unless the Regional HS idea flies. If that happens I suppose Southampton High is at risk of losing both Tuckahoe and Reservation $$$. Then your taxes will really fly." Sep 10, 14 1:28 PM

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