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AMAGANSETT is within East Hampton Township, on the East End on Long Island, New York

Preservation of valuable land (and the term “valuable” is subjective) usually brings competition and controversy along with it.  Municipalities today spend millions of dollars of taxpayer money to preserve open space for a myriad of reasons, from health or resource concerns to political reasons.

After a few down years, the Hamptons real estate market is back and so is the Peconic Bay Community Preservation Fund, which collects a tax of nearly 2% on every transaction completed within the 5 East End Townships of Suffolk County.  That’s BIG BUSINESS today! And they are only one of the contributors to the Preservation alliance, made up of private funds, federal, state and county funds.

And while there truly ARE those who want to preserve for all the right reasons, like Bob DeLuca (see below) there are those who may want to “preserve” for themselves…judge for yourselves.

“It’s death by a thousand cuts,” said Bob Deluca, president of Group for the East End, an environmental group. Or rather, death by a thousand septic tanks, swimming pools and landscaping crews with all their effluent and runoff.

Read the following NYTimes piece:

Publication: The Southampton Press

CPF figures show slight rebound

Aug 26, 09 10:52 AM by

CPFJennifer L. Henn

For the second month in a row, the Peconic Bay Community Preservation Fund has posted an encouraging amount of revenue—$3.7 million for the month of July—according to a press release issued Monday by State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr.

That number is just short of June’s total, $3.84 million, which was the highest single-month total of the previous eight months.

see story here

In a previous post, we stated that East End dollar volume of sales was down 80% from the peak in 2007.  The following CPF revenues supports that. 2009 revenues are down 82.5% from 2007.

That’s not being a ‘bear’ or negative about the market…that’s reporting facts. I’m a long-term bull on Hamptons real estate. I still believe that a long-term investment in a property on the East End of Long Island will provide years of enjoyment in one of the most beautiful places on earth as well as a good monetary return on the investment.

That being said, facts are facts, and putting your head in the sand doesn’t make it any better. There are some terrific deals in this market. If you are a buyer, find an agent who can tap into them. If you’re an agent, drill down into each listing, understanding the motivation of the sellers and find out who’s a ‘real seller’ and who’s a poser. If you’re a seller, wake up and smell the coffee. For the most part, properties that ARE selling today, are selling for an average of 35% below 2006-7 values. If you’re not willing to sell at that level, then think again about listing your home.  Sure, there will be some exceptions to this…if you have one, let me know.

HAMPTONS.COM

As of April, East Hampton’s CPF has taken in $1,668,534, compared to the $5,631,267 accumulated by the same time last year and $9,538,793 in receipts recorded by April 2007, the highest grossing year since the two percent tax was instated in 1999. Most were expecting a bad year for the fund, though the first four months of 2009 have been particularly discouraging, declining 67.6 percent throughout the South Fork over the same period in 2008 (2008 revenues were 41.1 percent below 2007).

see story here

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