The Village of Port Jeff Board of Directors held their monthly public meeting on Monday, June 6, addressing a number of issues.
Code Enforcement Chief Fred Leute reported that while the village hasn’t noticed a recent spike in auto break-ins, it is a crime trend that is occurring in d other nearby areas. He reminded the villagers of the importance of locking their cars and not leaving key fobs inside the car when they are away.
“If you lock your car, there are no incidents of someone breaking into cars,” he said. “It’s not worth it to them… If you lock your things, lock your windows and lock your cars, you’ll be safe.”
Suffolk County Police will run training programs for village officers, “and that includes active shooter certification for all of our employees,” Leute said.
He also pointed to his office’s ongoing efforts to monitor speeding through the application of speed cameras and officers posted near stop signs. Through these activities, he noticed a surprising phenomenon.
“The interesting thing that comes out of that is that after they’ve done that for the past week and a half, they find that it’s mainly the people in the village who are stepping up,” he said.
Leute stressed the importance of calling his office rather than reporting the incidents on social media. “If you have a good heart and want to help this village, call us,” he said. “Don’t go to Facebook, call my guys. We’ll listen, we’ll figure out what the problem is, and we’ll fix it. He added: ‘Going to Facebook and degrading either the village or the gendarmes or the highway service… whoever it is, it’s not productive.’
Administrator Rebecca Kassay announced that she had a productive meeting last weekend with the Beach Street Community Garden, a group of community gardeners and volunteers. She said she also hopes to have a meeting with Elizabeth Hornstein of the Long Island Sound Study to explore ways the village can secure possible funding for certain projects.
Kassay said Hornstein specializes in assisting “villages like ours, municipalities that have goals regarding flooding and other environmental issues, to connect us with grants available at the state and federal levels.” .
Administrator Stan Loucks said there were still vacancies within the recreation department.
“We’re looking for junior advisers, senior advisers, lifeguards – these positions are always open, so you can apply through the Village Center,” he said.
Loucks also reported positive news about the country club, whose membership this season topped 600 members. “It certainly indicates that we have an outstanding facility,” the trustee said. “However, the golf courses can only accommodate a limited number of golfers. We may have discussions in the very near future on the possibility of capping our membership.”
Loucks concluded his report by reminding residents that the restaurants at the country club are open to the public and membership is not required to eat there. “Country club dining facilities are not private,” he said. “These are public places – The Turn as well as The Waterview. These are public restaurants and many people don’t know that they can go up there and go to these places.
Administrator Bruce Miller provided an update on his recent deliberations with senior planning and training staff at Long Island Rail Road. Miller said there was “a lot of movement, but I don’t know if you would call it in a positive direction.”
At the conference, the LIRR presented several alternatives to the village. The parties discussed the idea of having two tracks, ie a second track between Port Jefferson and Huntington stations. The LIRR also offered to repair the bridges. When the idea was floated for the electrification of the line, LIRR responded with the need to purchase more land to accommodate both tracks.
Miller wondered if LIRR’s many alternatives might complicate the planning of this project too much, dooming it from the start.
“I just think they’ve put so many bells and whistles on this project that they can then say, ‘Well, we’d love to do all of this but we just can’t. It’s just not economically feasible,” Miller said. “Part of my problem is the fact that we have a lot of residents who live in Port Jefferson…but commute to the Ronkonkoma line. To me, that’s very “non-green”.
Deputy Mayor Kathianne Snaden announced a number of upcoming events in the village, including the upcoming Maker Faire on Saturday June 11 in the village centre.
“I worked with the museum on coordinating with our code department for safety, for road closures, for parking,” she said. “It’s shaping up to be a big event, as it always is. We are happy to have him back after the COVID years and get back to having fun with the kids.
Mayor Margot Garant has announced that a fireworks display will take place on Sunday July 3 at East Beach with a rain date of July 8.
The Mayor also congratulated the high school baseball team and the women’s lacrosse team on their successful seasons.
To follow the entire meeting, Click here.