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East End Business Notebook: DWI Enforcement Affecting North Fork Bars

Also this week, Southampton Village residents picked apart a study that could permit supermarkets, and Westhampton Beach Village is going to court with one restaurant owner.

WESTHAMPTON-HAMPTON BAYS

Lawsuit Filed Against New Eatery, Buckhead's Grill

After issuing two stop-work orders, the Village of Westhampton Beach has decided to file a lawsuit against Buckhead's Grill, a new eatery that was slated to open in August in the formerFinn's site on Old Riverhead Road that the village said has done work on the site without proper permits.

RIVERHEAD

Riverhead Target Found Selling Banned Pesticides

The Target Corporation agreed to a civil penalty of $43,850 after a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation investigation revealed the company was selling pesticides banned on Long Island at stores across Long Island, including its Riverhead location.

According to a release from the DEC, Target was ordered to remove the banned pesticides from all stores throughout the region in addition to the penalty.

SOUTHAMPTON

Southampton Supermarket Law Study Skewered

The Southampton Village Board will continue to mull legislation that would enable a new grocery store to open in the village, after a steady stream of members of the public took to the boardroom lectern Thursday to decry the plan and the study that states it will not have an adverse impact on the village.

The report commissioned by the village and prepared by consulting firm Nelson, Pope & Voorhis looked at the impacts a new 20,000-square-foot supermarket could have on the village. It concludes, “The proposed action and its potential impact will be either insignificant or mitigated, and all such impacts will be localized such that no regional impacts are expected.”

It goes on to recommend that the Village Board votes to determine that further study under New York’s State Environmental Quality Review Act is not necessary.

But that determination does not sit well with a number of residents.

EAST HAMPTON

Plans for Car Wash Could Clean Up Former Star Room Property

If a new application is approved at the old Star Room property in Wainscott, the only music neighbors may need to worry about is the disco-era classic.

Last week, the East Hampton Town Planning Board reviewed a preliminary site plan for a car wash — which would be the first full service car wash in the Town of East Hampton — on the long-vacant Montauk Highway property just west of the Wainscott Shopping Village.

Jeffrey Schneider and Tom Barton are contemplating building Hamptons Wash on the property that housed a nightclub under several different names including Star Room, SWA, and The Swamp, often a bane to neighbors, who complained about noise and traffic. The club has been closed for about five years and the property remains on the market for sale with Enzo Morabito at Prudential Douglas Elliman for $2.495 million.

NORTH FORK

DWI Checkpoints Cause Shift in Bar Business

This past summer was the summer of stepped-up enforcement to curb drunk driving, with 40 percent more driving while intoxicated charges this summer compared to last in Southold Town alone, and DWI checkpoints set up throughout the North Fork on holidays and other key weekends. Last week, Suffolk County District attorney Thomas Spota announced that due to the success of the DWI checkpoint program — just over Labor Day weekend, the task force made 19 DWI arrests, two for driving while impaired and three for drug possession — the next phase of enforcement will be on the water to catch those boating while intoxicated.

But with these programs now in place, with the majority of DWI checkpoints set up during the evening and overnight hours, those in the local bar and restaurant industry said they have seen changes — good and bad — in business. Marianne Reilly, manager at Four Doors Down in Mattituck, said that Labor Day Weekend in particular was “way off” due to the DWI checkpoints, one of which was set up not too far away near Cox Lane and Route 48 in Mattituck. Even the popular Santana tribute band, Abraxas, didn’t draw half the crowd they normally do.

“And a lot of people had designated drivers — we served a lot of water and soda," she said. "Many just didn’t go out at all because of the checkpoints, and I know we suffered because of it."

Jerry Can September 24, 2012 at 12:55 PM
True Jim. They could provide breathalyzer tests of their own to for their patrons. Or, you, or someone, could start a breathalyzer testing service for the restaurant industry. The roads might be safer that way too if people could see how inebriated they are before they drive home. Just an idea.
Erin Schultz September 24, 2012 at 02:37 PM
James Anthony Baxter said on North Fork Patch Facebook: "Cops out here should worry more about underage drinkers and smokers. Leave us ADULTS alone"
james anthony baxter September 24, 2012 at 03:00 PM
We should be concerned about UNDERAGE drinking not the adults so much. Also if we legalize pot (GOD FORBID) we wouldn't need so many DWI checkpoints. Wake up!!!!!!!! Look @ the stats of pot related deaths vs alcohol deaths. Stop making America a POlICE STATE
Walter Noller September 24, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Why is it that everyone who is against this issue sees anyone who's had an adult beverage as a falling down drunk? Get real. This issue has too many flaws due to the fact it generates income to police, insurance, the company that makes those dumb machines to see if you're driving intoxicated that cause distractions on their own and have ruined the lives of many good, law abiding citizens. Ask those who've paid over and over just because they got caught... Not that they were intoxicated or driving recklessly, but hit the margine set by the federal government (who, BTW, forced states to abide and had MADD pushing the issue). And I know all you tea tottlers are already having minor strokes, but the fact is it's more about income and being able to have something quantitative to show than it is about quality on the roads. Good driving habits, respect for others, and most importantly, personal responsibility, be it in your driving habits, drinking habits or anything else you do that effects others. I want to know how many people were inconvenienced in order to "catch" these drunks. There is no doubt these are police state tactics. Perhaps you'd be just as satisfied if they did door to door searches to see who's breaking other laws. And yes, it's that invasive. I don't want drunks on the road, but I do want there to be respect for our liberty and freedom. This subject comes close to infringing on those.
Jerry Can September 24, 2012 at 04:00 PM
@J.A.B.Not sure what you are saying. The DWI checkpoints are supposed to check for alcohol and drug related "influence". The breathalyzer, that I know of, only detects alcohol in the breath put out by the lungs. How pot is determined I suppose comes from other tests carried out and possibly a blood test at the station. To curb the risks associated with younger drivers, the drinking age was increased years ago from 18 to 21. I don't think it should make a difference if a driver is "underage" or of legal age, he/she is still driving drunk. The penalties might be harsher I suppose you are arguing because they are underage. I would say that perhaps older drivers should be penalized more because they are supposed to be wiser and more mature. In my experience, I have found that younger drivers are more sensible in a sense when it comes to drinking and driving and having designated drivers. The risks to them and insurance premiums are one big factor. As for legalizing pot, I feel it should be treated and regulated like alcohol and tobacco and taxed accordingly and money put into education, prevention and recovery.

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