Montauk Life Montauk Life August 2017 - Page 7

PUBLISHER MESSAGE WHAT’S FAIR? T he other day I stopped by one of the grand inns of the East End. Outside a block long black Es- calade limo idled. It’s suit and tied driver was cooling his leather bound heels as I walked by. “Do they serve breakfast in there”, he asked. Knowing the set-up I replied, “matter of fact, they serve their guests a beautiful spread”. Nodding he said “guess I’m going to be here for a while then”. Turns out he was there to run his clients on a short, four mile jaunt to the local airport. They had a jet, their jet, waiting there for them. To me that sounded like a sweet deal for the driver. After all, time is mon- ey and if he had to wait for them to finish breakfast he’d have to tack on a few more bucks to the fare, right? Wrong. It was a flat rate ride. “How much” said I. “$275” said he. For a ten minute drive? Oh, yea, without a batted eye, mind you. That after a stay in a property that more than likely charged $500-1000 a night for a very, very nice room. There are very few places in the world where you can hear that story. And to be honest, whoever those folks were they probably earned the right to spend more money on a four minute ride than some folks earn in a week’s hard work. That’s life, and for many, that’s fair. The essence of fairness is the understanding that 211 EAST LAKE DRIVE everyone should live by the same rules. Now wheth- er or not they have the same outcome is a very dif- ferent story, a tale dictated often by luck, heritage, guile and timing as much as talent and hard work. In Montauk I know two businesses that are taking WWW.MONTAUKLAKECLUB.COM 631.668.5705 the issue of fairness very seriously. The first is a motel recently purchased, renovated and now stalled in the process of serving food and drinks to its guests. The other is an even older property that stopped serv- ing food and drink many years ago, only to restart that process this year. Located literally within sight of one another, two similar operations with two differ- ent outcomes. The first is immersed in a legal challenge to be- gin operations, the second faces suits to shut them down. Each looks to the local laws to support their cases, each finds flaws in the regulatory process, each will be harmed immensely if they fail to win their argument. So, what’s fair? Having run a local legal gauntlet myself a decade ago that included shifting regula- tions and lengthy moratoriums that cost me signif- icant time and more money than I could afford to lose, I have a real feel for the angst these folks are facing. So what do I tell those who ultimately hold the fates of these properties in their hands? Treat them both fairly. Apply the same rules, al- low for the same latitude and look to the good of each equally. They both exist in a complex commu- nity where often public policy has been perceived to be tainted by political and personal relationships. Be fair to them and whatever the outcome most of us will be satisfied with the outcome. Kirby Marcantonio INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK TWITTER August 2017 | Montauk / Hampton Life | 7