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Montauk United

Providing Montauk Residents a Means to Speak and Act as One!


November Report - Illegal Rentals

Posted by joan on 11 November, 2015 at 16:30

Montauk United

It's Time to Show Our Strength


There is little doubt that the explosion of on-line rentals through web sites such as Airbnb and VRBO has had a negative impact on our Quality of Life in Montauk. The availability of short-term weekend house rentals attracts a party crowd that cares little for the community itself. Experts believe short term rentals are the root cause for the unruly late night mayhem, crime, and outrageous behavior that has led to the very dangerous conditions that have affected Montauk.

Existing laws are virtually useless in combating this type of rental as they require code enforcement officers to make three separate visits to a property and each time get sworn statements designating the rental.

Both the East Hampton Police Dept. and Code Enforcement Dept. agree. Using the existing laws to gain control of the situation would require many more enforcement officers than the Town can possibly afford.

A rental registry will greatly help enforcement by identifying what properties are being rented, how often and to how many people. And each rental property would be given a registry number that would be required to be listed with any advertising for the property.

Current laws allow owners to rent homes for less than two weeks only twice in a six month period. This will not change. Longer rentals --year-round, summer, or monthly -- are also not affected.

On November 19 at 6:30 in the VFW hall in Amagansett (across from Brent's) there will be a Public Hearing to allow the public to weigh in on the new proposed registry law. It is critical for those in favor of the registry to show up in force to demonstrate your support for the Town Board's proposal. Landlord scofflaws and some real estate companies are building an organized opposition. One year ago a more complicated proposal was defeated when there were only a few speakers in favor of a registry. We don't want that to happen again.

What you can do to help:

1. If you can, attend the November 19th meeting at the Amagansett VFW and support those who speak in favor of the new rental registry.

2. Better yet, sign up to speak in favor of the registry. Just saying you support the new registry is important.

3. Send an email to [email protected] saying you support the new registry.

4. Send emails to the Town Board members. All you need to say is I support the rental registry.

Larry Cantwell: [email protected]

Peter Van Scoyoc: (Montauk Rep.): [email protected]

Kathee Burke Gonzalez: [email protected]

Sylvia Overby: [email protected]

Fred Overton: [email protected]

There is also an excellent registry Q&A web page at


This is what MONTAUK UNITED is all about. Let them know we care about Montauk and we expect action.

Tom Bogdan


Categories: Member Reports

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Reply George
18:31 on 8 January, 2016 
The rental registry is now history. Like it or not the town now must enforce it. I suggest residents of the town use this ord. to clean up rental homes in their neighborhood. I also suggest the enforcing agency make public reports that can be reviewed T for accountability by the town board. The public has a right to know what enforcement action is being taken on their and others complaints.
Reply Frank Riina
22:30 on 19 November, 2015 
Rental Registry Public Hearing Straight Talk:
Those that support the Rental Registry at the Public Hearing Thursday night were few and those that opposed it were many. They were mostly individuals with skin in the game, aka in the rental business. No doubt there opposition will significant affect the Town Board's decision.

If you support the Rental Registry and want to see the proposal become legislation email the Town Board asap and let them know you support the Rental Registry.

Larry Cantwell: [email protected]
Peter Van Scoyoc: [email protected]
Kathee Burke-Gonzalez: [email protected]
Sylvia Overby: [email protected]
Fred Overton: [email protected]

Frank Riina
Reply Anthony
22:27 on 11 November, 2015 
While I love the group's efforts, and support many of the initiatives, I cannot support the Rental Registry as a means to combat the over-occupation, crowding and quality of life issue we all are experiencing in MTK.

Existing Certificates of Occupancy outline the number of legal bedrooms, the town can use that.
Also, the Town has absolutely no right to proactively know whether or not I have rented my property or not during any particular season. That is part of the implied Bundle of Rights that accompanies Real Property, and I am not willing to give away those rights. Specifically, this Registry is an encroachment on my Right of Control and my Right of Disposition.

And I need to pay the Town a fee for this dimunition of my property rights? Come now...

If there is a problem at the house, there are ample laws on the books to write citations and fine the tenant or the owners. If we do not believe that the existing laws are tough enough, let's focus on strengthening them.

Adding an Orwellian "Registry" seems foolhardy, likely unenforceable, and will probably not have any impact on scofflaws anyway.

A suggestion: require that a copy of the current rental lease be held on the property at all times, and would need to be shown for review to enforcement officers if/when there is a complaint or issue at the house.

Kind regards,
Anthony Risicato