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East Hampton OKs $2.25M for Sandy repairs

This aerial photograph of Morcihes Inlet, looking west,

This aerial photograph of Morcihes Inlet, looking west, shows a newly created breach from east of Moriches Inlet and west of Cupsogue County Park, with as ocean water flowing into the bay at West Hampton Beach. (Oct. 31, 2012) Credit: John Roca

The East Hampton Town board took several steps to deal with the impact of superstorm Sandy at its meeting Thursday night, including approving $2.25 million in bonds to repair town roads and facilities. The board expects the money to be reimbursed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The town will use $1.5 million to repair and repave roads, and the rest to repair buildings, parks and other town facilities that have an expected useful life of at least five years. Any federal or state reimbursement for storm damage will be earmarked to pay off those bonds.

In other storm-related action, the board voted to update its agreement with the American Red Cross to designate the Montauk Playhouse as a mass care shelter for emergency evacuations. During Sandy, the town said, the Red Cross indicated it could operate only one emergency shelter, and the town designated East Hampton High School -- which is closer to the town population center -- to be that shelter.

The board also voted to waive fees for residents bringing storm-related debris to the Springs-Fireplace Road landfill on Nov. 23-25 and on Nov. 30-Dec. 2.

In an unrelated action, the board adopted the proposed $87.4 million town budget for 2013, making only minor changes previously agreed to at a work session that increased the general fund by less than $63,000 and increased the proposed tax rate by 0.133 percent. Like all other votes, the margin was 5-0.

One change involved switching a part-time job and a full-time job so that there would be one full-time employee in the code enforcement department. The board also added $40,000 for a deer population survey.

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