Thirteen town supervisors gathered Friday to begin planning coordination of the summer season on Long Island, when tourists from across the state and country descend on the Island’s beaches, in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
The supervisors focused on parks and recreation in their discussion, officials said. Supervisor Rich Schaffer, of the Town of Babylon, organized the talk.
Hempstead Town Supervisor Donald Clavin said, “The theme of our discussion was that the Covid-19 pandemic does not follow town borders, and it’s necessary to collaborate on our best practices and strategies for summer programs and services. Working together as a team and maintaining communication will be key to providing the safest environment.”
At press time, it was unclear precisely what would be open for the summer, including the beaches.
The supervisors discussed how to convey social distancing guidelines to the public, and when to open and close town facilities, including beaches and parks. Supervisors said they wanted to ensure the closure of any one facility was done in coordination with other towns to make certain no one town was overrun by beach and park attendees.
“The uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic requires us to consider all possible scenarios,” Clavin said. “Though we wish that all of our residents can enjoy the summers of the past, we accept that this is a ‘new normal,’ at least for this year.”
In addition to Schaffer and Clavin, other supervisors taking part in the talks included: Edward Romaine, of Brookhaven; Judi Bosworth, of North Hempstead; Joseph Saladino, of Oyster Bay; Peter Van Scoyoc, of East Hampton; Chad Lupinacci, of Huntington; Angie Carpenter, of Islip; Yvette Aguiar, of Riverhead; Gerard Siller, of Shelter Island; Edward Wehrheim, of Smithtown; Jay Schneiderman, of Southampton; and Scott Russell, of Southold.