Tabulation of Votes

Percentages reflect the number of YES or NO votes divided by the total number of ballots cast (364).

Actual YES and NO votes cast for each proposition shown in parentheses.

1Building size: Under current zoning rules, a house can cover 20% of a parcel, 8000 sq. ft on an acre, but this can result in a 20,000 usable sq. ft. home ( 2 1/2 storeys) regardless of the size of nearby homes. Similarly, a 5,000 sq. ft., 2 1/2 storey house can be built on 1/4 acre. This measure would limit new house construction or significant expansions so that they are not too much larger than those of their neighbors.  
 No construction shall be permitted that would result in overall housing size (usable square footage) that is out of scale with the existing housing in the immediate neigh- borhood; this provision shall be in addition to zoning requirements, including lot cov- erage, setback, height and other limitations.YES 80%(292)NO 19%(68)
2Traffic on Main Road: This measure would require that, before any proposed building, expansion, or change in use, the property owner demonstrate that traffic would not be made worse by the proposal or change. This would apply to wineries, other commercial activities, housing developments, and Plum Island associated projects.  
 Construction, development, and commercial activity shall be limited and managed so that there is no material increase of vehicular traffic on Main Road in Orient; there shall be no change in category or scope of use that would materially increase such traffic.YES 82%(297)NO 16%(55)
3Advanced septic systems: Currently old cesspools can be rebuilt, and marginally effec- tive septic systems can be used in new construction. This contributes to nitrate pollution of our drinking water and bays. This measure would require best practices when new construction or major work is being done. It also promotes a subsidy program to help pay for upgrades.  
 All new construction, or substantial renovations and expansions, and all upgrades or replacements of existing cesspools or septic systems shall include an installation of an enhanced septic system; the Town shall use its best efforts to secure subsidies for up- grading of existing systems to enhanced septic systems.YES 79%(286)NO 20%(72)
4Agricultural preservation: Officials attempt to preserve farmland with public finds, but there is no formal requirement preventing that farmland from being turned into a private lawn or a high-hedged garden.  
 .All purchases of development rights on lands currently being used for agricultural purposes shall include covenants in deeds requiring preservation of historic viewsheds, and either active farming or dedication to public use.YES 84%(304)NO 16%(59)
5Preserving the viewsheds: Currently the vista along Main Road and the causeway is just one factor in an environmental impact statement, and these statements are not required on all projects that could compromise our historic views. This would restrict changes that significantly damaged the historic viewsheds.  
 To help preserve open vistas and community character, construction, landscaping, hedges, fencing, signage or other actions that materially impair the historic viewsheds, including the vicinity of the causeway and Route 25, shall be prohibited.YES 85%(310)NO 14%(50)
6Stormwater runoff: Currently there is significant runoff into Orient Harbor, Hallocks Bay and the Long Island Sound from adjacent roads. There are some pipes and culverts that carry road debris and petroleum waste directly into our waterways. This proposal would require a plan to reduce the pollution of our waterways.  
 A plan to prevent direct stormwater runoff from roadways into Orient waterways shall be developed and implemented.YES 92%(336)NO 7%(27)
7Pest control: We are struggling with deer, ticks and other insects, phragmites, mile-a- minute vine, knotweed, and other pests. This would create a system to focus corrective action that is fine-tuned to our community.  
 An Orient Pest Control District shall be established to control insect and animal pests, and invasive plant species.YES 80%(292)NO 17%(61)
8Traffic calming: Residents are often trapped in their driveways by the continuous stream of high speed Ferry traffic. Buses and autos struggle to enter Main Road near the school, firehouse, Village Lane and Youngs Road. This proposal would require a plan to ease these traffic problems.  
 A traffic calming plan for Main Road shall be developed for the areas around Village Lane and the Cross Sound Ferry; the Town shall use its best efforts to obtain coopera- tion from the necessary agencies to bring about implementation.YES 80%(290)NO 19%(69)
9Development based on infrastructure: Current regulation allows for more dense con- struction in business and marine districts if there is Town water or sewer service present. This proposal would remove this encouragement of denser construction and more intense use. It also would strengthen zoning as a means to preserve community character.  
 The availability of public water or sewer services shall not be a basis for increasing permitted land use densityYES 86%(314)NO 12%(44)

Of the 364 ballots cast, 355 included a name, and 9 did not. For each proposition, the percentage of anonymous ballots was significantly more negative than the signed ballots. While we asked that all ballots be signed to ensure eligibility, the unsigned ballots are included in the totals above because they tend to slightly reduce the level of endorsement of the propositions, and we wish to be as conservative as possible in stating the support for these measures. Omitting them would slightly raise the endorsement level on several items, but not materially.

Recent Happenings

The Zoning Update Project – March 3, 2024

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