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The Lost Homes of Summer

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By Timothy Bolger   IN THE TWO YEARS SINCE about 20 oceanfront homeowners lost their property to government bureaucracy, preceding bulldozers building new dunes on half of Fire Island, those homes sit vacant and largely dune-free. The properties, mostly in Ocean Bay Park and Davis Park, were either bought out or condemned to make way for whatwill be the last …

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FI’s World Heritage Site Moonshot

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By Timothy Bolger Fire Island advocates pushing hard for the barrier beach to be designated a World Heritage Site – a designation that could come with grant funding and a higher profile – aren’t taking no for an answer. Behind the effort is Babylon-based attorney Irving Like, who famously helped lobby for the creation of the Fire Island National Seashore …

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Eye on FI: Sharks, Media Frenzy Hit the Beach

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By Timothy Bolger Shark Week arrived early on Fire Island when two kids were bitten while swimming here last month, days before Discovery Channel’s annual block of TV programming dedicated to the ocean’s apex predators. Instead of living vicariously through their televisions, Fire Islanders got a first-hard taste of shark bite mania when the news media descended upon the barrier …

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Eye on FI: Could Islip Districts Help the Beach?

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By Timothy Bolger Racial equity is the argument behind the latest push to split up the Town of Islip into council districts to reform its current at-large voting system, but the idea may work in Fire Island’s favor, too. Advocates last month filed a lawsuit in Central Islip federal court alleging Islip, the town board and Suffolk County Board of …

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FIN Scores Four at PCLI

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By Shoshanna McCollum The Annual Press Club of Long Island (PCLI) Media Awards were bestowed during a dinner ceremony at Woodbury Country Club on June 7, 2018, where Fire Island News received honors in four separate categories – a record number for this publication within the news year cycle. Two of the awards cite reader contributors as lead recipients. Fire …

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Eye on FI: Saltaire’s Seismic Subdivision

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By Timothy Bolger The late Liz Claiborne’s former estate, the last bay-to-ocean private property on western Fire Island – one of only six like it on the barrier beach – is slated to be subdivided by developers. At a May 16 meeting held nine days before Saltaire’s elections, the village board took seven minutes to approve the buyer’s request to …

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Eye on FI: Battle Brewing Over Offshore Drilling

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By Timothy Bolger Not since Fire Island’s sandbars shredded schooners a century ago has this coast seen as much drama now that New York State declared war on President Donald Trump’s proposed opening the Atlantic to offshore drilling. Trump’s order for the U.S. Department of Interior to study leasing federally managed sea beds to energy companies for fossil fuel exploration …

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FI Eateries Adopt Surcharge

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By Timothy Bolger Some Fire Island restaurants are giving patrons a taste of a new 3 percent surcharge that restaurateurs say is needed to offset recent New York State-mandated minimum wage increases for tipped employees. Nine of the 11 restaurants in downtown Ocean Beach are serving the fresh fee this summer. Some find it tough to swallow, but the Ocean …

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FINS Halves Deferred Maintenance Backlog

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By Timothy Bolger The Fire Island National Seashore (FINS) cut in half the amount of delayed construction projects ranging from repaving roads to modernizing marinas in the federal park over the past year, officials said. The deferred maintenance backlog, as such un-kept upkeep is known, had a price tag of $16 million last year, but was reduced the $8.6 million …

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FI News Marks 60 Years in Biz

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By Timothy Bolger This summer marks the 60th anniversary of Fire Island News, which inspired us to take a moment to reflect on the storied history of the oldest newspaper covering the beach. Over the past six decades, the News has reported on it all, from the workaday police blotters and community gossip to politically pivotal moments in the region’s …