Locals Plan Huddle Over Illegal Motels, Rentals

The group will discuss their action plan at a meeting on Friday night at 6:30.

Credit: File photo
Credit: File photo
The two-year-old Concerned Citizens of Hampton Bays civic group are not going away anytime soon. The group's leaders say they are continuing their mission to clean-up Hampton Bays with a strategy pow-wow set for Friday night at 6:30.

Mike Dunn, president of the Concerned Citizens in Hampton Bays said the group is inviting the community to the open meeting, which will be held at Hampton Bays High School, in an effort to discuss goals for the new year.

"We have to take matters into our own hands to revitalize the area," said Dunn.

On the top of the agenda, he said, is the illegal use of motels and rentals across Hampton Bays.

"Once we fix the illegal rental problem, everything else will fall into place — property values will go up," he said.

According to Dunn and research conducted by the civic group, nearly 86 percent of all rental homes in Hampton Bays don't have legal rental permits from the Town of Southampton.

He also said that 60 percent of students who attend the Hampton Bays School District come from homes that are rented, which Dunn said is an indication of a problem.

Also an issue, he said, is that there are 68 students attending the Hampton Bays School District who currently live in a motel.

"There should be no one living in motels," said Dunn, adding that not only are the families living in motels costing taxpayers over $1 million in school costs, but they are also monopolizing motel rooms that can be used for tourists, killing the area's economic engine.

"We have to crack down on all of this," said Dunn. "We are not looking to enforce anything that was is already on the books."

Dunn said residents have waited long enough and that they will continue to put pressure on town leaders to accomplish the goal.

So far, Dunn said that strategy has had some success — over the past year, he said the Hidden Cove homeless shelter has been closed down and the town did not approve an application to convert the Hampton Bays-based Tiana Pines Motel into an apartment complex.

"There is awareness there, but we need more action," said Dunn.

The Concerned Citizens also have a plan to formulate a think tank and focus group that will bring business owners and residents together to find way to positively promote Hampton Bays as a tourist destination.

"Hampton Bays is the jewel of the Hamptons. It is beautiful. We just have to get through this brick wall and people will come," said Dunn.


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