When Long Island was mostly farmland, horse hooves pattered over all corners of Suffolk County. Today, some members of the equestrian community say suburban sprawl, with its zoning codes and finicky neighbors, are seriously straining local ranches.
In 2009, Suffolk Legis. Jack Eddington helped establish an equestrian task force to investigate hardships that ranch owners cope with and ensure their survival.
At a series of task force public meetings, many horse owners have complained about being saddled with harsh local zoning law.
The task force will hold another three public meetings next week where members of the horse community are encouraged to air complaints and discuss experiences.
The meetings are scheduled for Aug. 24, 6 to 8 p.m., at the Huntington Town Hall; Aug. 25, 6 to 8 p.m., at the Maxine Postal legislative building in Riverhead; and Aug. 26, 6 to 8 p.m., at the William Rogers legislative building in Hauppauge.