December Village Board Meeting

Thursday, December 03, 2015

December Village Board Meeting

A crowded room this evening for the monthly Village Board meeting as the main feature was a Special Exception hear­ing on the application of the current owner of the old bowling alley property for 10,000 square feet of retail use where 3,000 square feet is allowed as a right.

The considerable interest in the project is because the owner intends to build to suit CVS Pharmacy as a potential tenant, and many attendees were concerned about the negative impact such a store would have on neighboring Barth's Pharmacy just down Sunset Avenue.

Attorney John Bennett

Appearing for the applicant was attor­ney John Bennett of Bennett and Read accompanied by the estimable David Emilita of Szepatowski Associates, a former planner for the Village and an architect of Westhampton Beach's Master Plan.

Not aided in their presentation by murky maps and site plans behind them, the pair went "through the numbers" to address the requirements for a Special Exception, and then sat back as numerous area residents, including Lou Cassara, proprietor of Barth's, rose to question the need for a CVS Pharmacy, frequently using the term "box store" as a pejorative.

What most of those in apparent opposition don't grasp is that the municipality has a number of fully articulated standards in its code, and if those standards are met, then the application will be granted... to do otherwise is to invite an unwinnable legal action.

(Unfortunately for them, "We don't want to see a CVS in the Village" isn't an acceptable argument in an appellate hearing in Riverhead.)

The Board held over the Special Exception hearing 'til the January meeting, but it is anticipated that no decision will be coming 'til a subsequent meeting.

In regular business, among other resolutions the Board...

  • ...allocated Community Development Block Grant Funding of $4,700 each to the Westhampton Beach Historical Society and HUGS Inc.
  • Authorized the use of Rogers Beach for the West­hamp­ton Beach High School Student Government to hold a "Polar Beach Plunge" this Sunday, from 9:30 to 11:30 am. when the weather is forecast as "sunny and 54°."
  • Authorized the use of the Village Green by the Greater Westhampton Chamber of Commerce for their Winter Fest, Saturday, December 12 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm.
  • Appointed Maureen Jones as Confidential Secretary to the Mayor at an annual salary of $44,000.
Who didn't see this coming...

...when the Village Board entered into an agreement with Barry Bernstein, owner of the former Parlato Gas Station property on the corner of Main Street and Library Avenue?

The improver poroperty on the corner of Main Street and Library Avenue

Wisely, the Trustees were among those that did, and protected the Village's ±$1,700 investment (topsoil, seed and DPW labor) with a contract specifying the return of up to $3,000 in associated costs if the Village-improved parcel is developed or sold in the next two years.

"Beautification," of course... at nominal cost to the Village.


1. Kym Laube said...

Hi Dean... Thanks for including the information about the Block Grant. I am pretty certain it is $4,700 each, not $47,000. We are appreciative for the grant and are doing the happy dance! We love the thought of the extra zero, too!

Glad to see that someone was paying attention, but thanks, I've fixed it.

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