Riverhead Ciderhouse on Sound Avenue. Photo: Denise Civiletti

On Election Day, we will be voting for two vacant Town Council seats. There are four candidates to choose from. One of them, Joann Waski, was appointed to finish the term of Stan Carey, the former Chairman of the Planning Board in November 2021.

Recently, Ms. Waski cast the deciding vote to allow the Ciderhouse’s expansion that was done secretly, without any application submitted to the Planning Board, while completing the work.

The Ciderhouse is located on the Historic Sound Avenue Corridor. The owner has violated covenants agreed to in prior applications, making him a repeat offender. In spite of this, and in spite of multiple standing room only hearings attended with nearly unanimous opposition to the illegal expansion, Ms. Waski said she could find no reason to deny the application. Really? I and many others went to the microphone to cite verbatim violations of prior Ciderhouse covenants, and she chose not to consider them. Ms. Waski decided to ignore these undeniable facts, even though two senior members of the Planning Board voted “no” before she cast the deciding vote to give the owner what he wanted. Ms. Waski even stated her fear of being sued by the owner if the application was denied. That fear of being sued shows her inability to enforce our zoning codes, and makes her unqualified to sit on our Town Board.

I’m confident that the cumulative hundreds of attendees who witnessed Ms. Waski’s vote, which betrayed all who opposed this application, will not vote for her, and will tell their Friends and Family to confine their two votes for Town Council to the other three candidates on the ballot. I urge all Riverhead residents to get out to vote early or on Nov. 7. We outnumber the special interests, developers, and deep pockets only on Election Day. Its time to show up!

Mike Foley

Reeves Park

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