On Monday, August 14, 2017 Legislator Fleming joined Assemblyman Thiele, County Executive Bellone, Legislator Hahn, East Hampton Town Deputy Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc, Sag Harbor Mayor Sandra Schroder, Sag Harbor Trustees, East Hampton Trustees, Suffolk County Commissioners of Parks and the Department of Public Works (DPW) along with community groups and organizations to announce $500,000 in funding that was appropriated by the County Legislature for the renovation of the roof and exterior of East Hampton’s historic Cedar Island Lighthouse. The Long Island Chapter of the US Lighthouse Society and Friends of Cedar Island Lighthouse will also announce the kick-off of their fundraising campaign to raise the funds needed to complete the exterior and the entire interior of the Cedar Island Lighthouse, repurposing the structure as a working Bed and Breakfast.
The county has engaged Lee H. Skolnick Architecture to design the exterior of the lighthouse. The Cedar Island Lighthouse was constructed in 1868 to replace an earlier wooden structure. Over the past 146 years the Lighthouse has survived erosion, hurricanes, and a fire which gutted the entire interior. After it was decommissioned in 1934, the lighthouse passed into private hands until 1967 when it was acquired by Suffolk County Parks. Since then the lighthouse has suffered from vandalism, a fire in 1974 as well as lack of maintenance.
In October of 2010, the Chapter entered into a Stewardship Agreement with Suffolk County Parks to work together to restore the Lighthouse. In 2010, the Suffolk County Legislature passed legislation to amend the agreement authorizing the Chapter to operate the Lighthouse as a bed and breakfast after the restoration is complete. This will keep the lighthouse open to the public as well as generate funds for the continued maintenance of the Lighthouse. The Lighthouse will contain a living room, kitchen and keeper’s quarters on the first floor with two bedrooms on the second floor. The work on the roof is scheduled to commence in 2018.
“The Cedar Island Lighthouse is a significant and historic part of Sag Harbor’s history, said Legislator Fleming. I am glad to have been able to partner with the other elected officials, groups and the dedicated and tenacious private stewards of the lighthouse, in our community, to restore this monumental and iconic structure which has been a focal point of this community’s history for generations. Repurposing the structure as a working bed and breakfast will allow it to once again play an important role in the economy of the East End.”
During the press conference New York State Assemblyman Fred Thiele spoke of how important the lighthouse was to the community and that he would be working with New York Senator Kenneth LaValle to secure funding for the restoration efforts in the 2018 State budget cycle.
State Assemblyman Fred Thiele said, "The Cedar Point Lighthouse is an important historic resource for the Sag Harbor Community. Its restoration has been a dream for decades. Now, through a public-private partnership, that dream is closer to reality. The approval of county funding is a major catalyst towards needed restoration efforts. I will be working with State Senator LaValle to seek state funds to assist the county in its restoration efforts during the 2018 State budget process."
“The Cedar Island Lighthouse has been an iconic landmark in Suffolk County for over 145 years, and we are thrilled to provide the necessary resources to help restore and preserve a significant part of our history,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “I applaud Legislator Fleming and our partners in government for their commitment to this project and look forward to its completion."
“Time and technology has, in essence, dimmed the lights of our island’s legendary lighthouse,” said Legislator Kara Hahn, Chairwoman of the Legislature’s Parks and Recreation Committee. “However, through the partnership of County, State and other public and private entities, we have begun restoring the luster of Sag Harbor’s guardian of seas and will instill new life and purpose into this icon of our maritime history.”
Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman echoed the importance of the lighthouse.
“The Cedar Island Lighthouse is truly a unique treasure to the East End,” said Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman. “When completed, the lighthouse will again be the beacon of beauty she once was.”
East Hampton Town Deputy Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc, whose family farm overlooked Northwest Harbor, said, “I applaud Suffolk County for their efforts in restoring this lighthouse and in preserving our maritime heritage.”
“Our many thanks to Bridget Fleming, our County Legislators, and all others who have helped to arrange for the restoration of Cedar Point Lighthouse. For many years our residents have been concerned about the deterioration of this landmark and it is truly wonderful that it now will be restored!” stated Mayor Schroder.
“I think it’s great the Cedar Island Lighthouse will be getting restoration it so desperately needs” stated Robert Bori, Harbormaster
Lee H. Skolnick Architecture + Design Partnership is thrilled to be have been selected to take on this wonderful and critically important project along with our esteemed partners.
“To have the opportunity to make such a great impact in the preservation of this jewel of American history is a distinct privilege, said Lee Skolnick. “As longtime residents of nearby Sag Harbor, my partner, Paul Alter and I have enjoyed visiting and sailing by the abandoned lighthouse with our families for many years. We are eager to imagine how amazing it will be to have it restored to its former glory! And as ardent boosters of the community, we are extremely gratified to add this project to our roster of local educational and cultural resources.”