08/05/14 5:00pm
08/05/2014 5:00 PM
Town Board Member James Wooten giving it his best shot on the bocce court Tuesday. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

Town Board Member James Wooten giving it his best shot on the bocce court Tuesday. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

There was some stiff bocce ball competition at Veterans Memorial Park Tuesday morning, where members of the Riverhead Town Board joined area bocce players to celebrate the opening of the Calverton park’s new courts. (more…)

06/04/13 4:00pm
06/04/2013 4:00 PM


The Riverhead Town Board approved Tuesday afternoon an $8,000 stipend for recreation superintendent Ray Coyne as compensation for his taking on the responsibility of running the town youth bureau.

The vote was 4-1, with Councilwoman Jodi Giglio casting the lone no vote.

The position of youth bureau director has been vacant since last year, when longtime director Donna Lyczkowski retired. The Town Board eliminated the position from the 2013 budget.

In February, the board put off voting on a resolution to change Mr. Coyne’s title to parks and recreation administrator, and to increase his annual salary from $94,049 to $102,049. The difference is that the stipend would only be a temporary increase.

Matt Hattorff, president of the Civil Service Employee Association, voiced opposition to the stipend, saying his union employees are the ones doing all the work.

But board members who supported the move said it would be cheaper than hiring a full-time youth bureau director, and the stipend was only for this year. The February resolution, however, would have given Mr. Coyne a permanent increase.

Supervisor Sean Walter also said the town probably will not hire a full time youth bureau director in July, as had been the plan last November when the budget was adopted. That means that Mr. Coyne’s department would retain responsibility for the youth bureau for the entire year.

Mr. Coyne was present at Tuesday’s meeting but did not speak.

To read what else happened at Tuesday’s meeting, click here to read a recap of reporter Tim Gannon’s blog.


June 4, 2013 – Agenda by rnews_review


June 4, 2013 – Packet by rnews_review

05/24/13 7:59am
05/24/2013 7:59 AM

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | All the debris from Hurricane Sandy appears to be cleared from Iron Pier Beach.

Our often unsung town workers have worked hard since Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the town’s bay and Long Island Sound coastlines last fall — be it through clearing debris or repairing infrastructure — to get the beaches ready for the summer season. The town also dredged and dumped sand to build up beaches and protect houses in Wading River.

The workers should be commended for their effort. Mother Nature has also done her part in helping restore the shore, especially at Reeves Beach, which was virtually nonexistent this winter. But all this hard work and good fortune could be wasted if town recreation department head Ray Coyne moves ahead with plans to leave town beaches without lifeguards for Memorial Day weekend and four more weekends in June.

The News-Review toured the local coastline last week, and the beaches look great. Yet Mr. Coyne tells us he wants to hold off on filling lifeguard chairs until the end of June, because he wants “a little more time to clean up.”

He also mentioned that the move would save the town money. With temperatures already reaching well into the 70s, however, the time is now to make our beaches safe for families.

Aside from obvious safety concerns of having beachgoers swimming at their own risk in June, it’s important to remember that residents from Riverhead, the North Fork and across Long Island put up with the high cost of living here in part because of our proximity to water.

There’s no reason to shave off any part of the summer season unless it’s absolutely necessary. Saving a few bucks is not a good reason.