This week, as a representative of SPOKESPEOPLE, our newly formed east end cycling advocacy group, I attended the Sag Harbor Village trustee meeting, with the intent of presenting them with a proposal to rescind the current ban on cycling on main street in the village.
This proposal was initiated by the chief of police, Det. Fabiano, and was wholeheartedly endorsed by the mayor, Greg Ferraris, at a meeting the prior month. On proposing the change to the village ordinance, trustee Tifany Scarlatto and trustee Ed Deyermond roundly condemned the proposal, refusing to give the mayor a vote for consideration to come before a public hearing. This, despite the voicing from the floor, of the chief, to "give it a try, at least on a trial basis". By a slight margin, the board, with the support of a few villagers on the floor, agreed to put forth the proposal for a review at a public hearing, Jan 13th, 2009.
WE NEED THE SUPPORT OF LOCAL PEOPLE to make this work.
We are proposing this change to the village law, as a component of making the village more cycle friendly, to make cycling into town a viable alternative to driving, and to follow in tandem with the vision of the mayor to promote a "green" sag harbor. He after all, was the initiator of the 725Green committee, the group charged with doing its utmost to improve the transport, air, water and general life choices with a vision of making the village a beacon of green-ness on the east end.
Now comes the hard part: many of the village trustees, and many of the villagers, have some weird notion that RE-introducing cyclists onto main streeet is going to wreak havoc on the village, causing mayhem, death and destruction, with likely theft of properrty..
It is our job to present the rescinding of this ordinance, as part of a proposal to improve cycling access to the whole village as a reasonable idea, complete with proposals for other bike routes in the village, safe locking sites for bicycles and introduction of SAFE ROUTES TO SCHOOLS with a bicycle component.
PLEASE ATTEND OUR MEETING, tomorrow, at ZIGGYS, 3pm, to brainstorm ideas and to develop a strategy to convince the village that we, as reasonable TAX-PAYING, VOTING residents, believe that retraction of this (in the chief's words, "unenforcable out of date law") is a good idea, and one that will contribute to a better quality of life in our town, on our beloved east end.
PLEASE CUT and PASTE into an email for anyone you know who rides bikes!!
Oh Yes, and to the wierdo who stormed my office today, yelling at my staff about this being "a stupid idea" and "trying to get people killed".. get a life.. and don't you dare invade my place of business again....