F ire Island Pines Property Owners Association
Photo Courtesy of Larry Tallamy

I was in the Pines last weekend.  I particularly wanted to check on things after the nor'easter.  Yes, it was very cold and even some snow showers.  Our beach seems to have come through the storm pretty well.  We have close to 250 feet of lost or damaged trap bags and four of the public stairs to the beach were washed away.  Much of the sand fence was washed away, as well as the dune that had built up, particularly west of Ozone Walk.  This picture is not substantially different than what occurred from a nor'easter last winter.  FIPPOA is working through the beach Erosion Control District to repair/replace the trap bags.  We hope to use one of our Pines Contractors to do this work.  We have reported the lost stairs to the highway department and they will be replaced.  The beach last Saturday was perhaps the widest I have ever seen and large areas of a vein of red sand are exposed.  I believe this is common after large storms scour the beach.

Our harbor reconstruction project is well underway.  The bulkhead east and west of the ferry dock is being rebuilt.  The new bulkhead is being secured with helical anchors that will extend under the Pavilion building.  All of the anchors are in and road tested. I have talked this morning to Rob Magg of the Brookhaven Parks Department who is managing the project for the Town.  He says that  they are demolishing and installing as they go and things are looking good for a timely completion.

The boulevard project, long sought by the community, is actively underway and I expect completion of much of it by the time homeowners return in the spring.  FIPPOA has been granted a lease to a large section of the greenway running through the community.  Residents have long complained, for as many years as I have been in the community, (and that is a long time) of the condition of the greenway, particularly the contractor work areas.  FIPPOA is in the process of building new enclosures for the contractors which will be landscaped to blend into the greenway.  The FIPPOA board has authorized the expenditure of $100,000 to complete this work.  These funds will be recovered through rental fees from the contractors.

Separate from this project, FIPPOA is also engaged in a major cleanup of the greenway.  I did a tour late in the fall and was shocked at how much debris had accumulated in the woods.  Trash, building materials and old vehicles were scattered throughout.  It is not acceptable to use the greenway as a dumping ground.  It is a park.  In the creation of the Fire Island National Park in 1964 a deal was struck between the communities and the Federal Government.  Part of that deal was that the communities would be good stewards of any parkland in the communities.  FIPPOA has a cleanup underway. So far, we have removed 5 dumpsters of trash and debris and 6 abandoned vehicles (we are working on one more and expect to have it out in the next two weeks).   The removal of abandoned vehicles is a complex undertaking.

The residents who rent their homes in the summer need to be aware of the Suffolk County Hotel/Motel Tax of 3 percent.  The tax is applicable to all rentals of less than 30 consecutive days.  The County comptroller has decided there is substantial non-compliance and is moving to enforce the tax.  Applicability of the tax to quarter and half shares is not clear, but preliminary indication from the county is that that they view such shares as coming within the tax.  FIPPOA is working with the FIA to have this position reversed.  

In this newsletter, you can see that FIPPOA is at work all over the community, to preserve, protect and enhance the Pines.  At this time of the year, our membership drive is underway.   We do a lot to make the Pines the Pines.  I ask that you do your part by renewing your membership either as an annual subscription or a one time membership.  If you are aware of a neighbor or a friend who is not a member please encourage them to join.  

Jay Pagano
FIMI Project In The West
A number of you have asked how the new dune faired in the western communities. Based on reports from FIA members in Seaview and at the Lighthouse, the basic answer is that it performed well.

The sand on the berm, which is the most seaward aspect of the dune construction, in some cases covering nearly 90' from the toe of the dune to the water, definitely shifted around, possibly as much as 40%. But that kind of movement was expected, and the sand remains in the "system", currently in the form of an off shore underwater berm that caused the waves to break way off shore rather than on the dune itself. I am not sure of the scientific term, but a lot of the energy of the incoming waves dissipated before the water ever got to the dune itself.

The photo to the right shows the waves off shore, the new dune and overwalks in the foreground.

And this photo shows the long slope of the berm between the water's edge (admittedly at low tide) and the new dune on the right.

The design team at the Army Corps hopes that when the entire dune is completed, this seasonal movement of the sand, what they call the "sand transport system", will work to keep the entire length of the dune nourished. They describe two basic sand movements: generally from east to west along the shore, and more sporadically back and forth from north to south and back again. We hope to benefit from both.


Ivan Schneider

Ivan Schneider, 85 years old, died peacefully at his home in Miami, Florida, on January 5, surrounded by his family.
A Brooklyn native, Ivan was a very prominent New York attorney, greatly respected in his field. He won over 200 multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for his clients during a 50 year career. Ivan's practice of attending professional functions for only a short period of time became famously known in New York legal circles as a "Schneider visit."
He and his husband, Philippe, came to the Pines in 1999. He loved Fire Island, not only for its natural beauty, beach style living and informality, but mostly because of its people - intelligent, successful, fun, philanthropic, gay or straight ... they all quickly became extended family. He supported many Pines' charities, particularly the Pines Care Center.
Ivan loved a good argument (especially about politics), reading mystery novels, working out, and always living life to the fullest. He had an ingratiating smile, a wonderful sense of humor, and a warmth he shared with all who knew him.
The special joy of Ivan's life, in addition to Philippe, were his children, five year old twins, Kelly and Corey.

We also regret to report the recent passing of two Ex-Chiefs of the Fire Island Pines Fire Department.  Arthur Bond passed away at age 98.  Bond served as Chief in 1967 and 1968.  George Murphy passed away at age 77.  Murphy served as Chief in 2000.  The Pines is grateful for their years of service to the community.

Fire Island Pines Property Owners Association Officers & Directors

Jay Pagano, President 
Ed Schulhafer, Vice President
Rodman (Tad) Paul, Secretary
Henry Robin, Treasurer

Allan Baum, Alan Brodherson, Gary Clinton, Hal Hayes, Mike Hartstein,  
Greg Henniger, Garry Korr,  Chris Lovito, Russell Saray, 
Eric Sawyer, Bob Tortora, Jim Vandernoth