It's a fact that many of the residents of Westhampton Beach (and the surrounding hamlets) are fed up with the one and only supermarket alloted to the town... Waldbaums. It is dilapidated, dirty, and disgusting. Many of us have repeatedly purchased rancid meat from the store. Some of us have had unpleasant experiences when trying to return or exchange their rotton products. Others have learned that if they decide to continue shopping there, they have to closely look at the expiration dates, inspect the color of the item, and perhaps even do the smell test before the final purchase. It's kind of like shopping in a thrift store, only the prices are higher than the average retail supermarket.
Do residents want a new supermarket? Why, yes, they do!! Is there a developer who is willing and able to build one? Actually, yes, there is!! Wouldn't you think the town board would be in favor of this? Well, apparently, no, they are not. It seems like the Village of Westhampton Beach has made an exception for Waldbaums to exist. However, there is no permit than can actually be applied for since first the zoning law needs to be amended to allow "groceries." That's all. One word has to be added. It seems simple, right? One word, and the permit can be applied for. Then we can start the process.
Okay, so the zoning law needs to be amended to allow a new supermarket in Westhampton Beach (on Old Riverhead Road). This is not a big deal at all, but the members of the board simply seem to be ignoring Mr. Mendelson's (developer for new grocery store) request. Apparently, the board is ignoring what the town residents want. A few board members are causing us to travel to Hampton Bays to shop at a clean store (with fresh produce and meats, etc.) Maybe if some of us show up at the town meeting on Feb. 7th, we will be allowed to speak up to encourage the board to pass a motion to get the process started. Personally, I think all of us would benefit from a shiny new supermarket in Westhampton Beach. I've had friends look into purchasing a home here, and they were very turned off by the lack of a good grocery store. What do you think? Care to come to February's town meeting?
After all, a new grocery store would enhance our real estate values, encourage a healthy diet, and make the obligatory visit to the supermarket a pleasant one. Is that so much to ask for?