Village Meeting Minutes – January and February 2014

At the January and February Trustees meetings, the main issue was the application to develop a 56 unit senior housing complex on Moses Lane, near Corrigan Street.  The 11 acre property is currently zoned for ½ acre residential parcels.  As a result, the developer is applying under a code provision that allows for a zoning change where the property lies within a “walkable” distance of the village center (defined as ½ mile from the village business district.)  Each unit would be 2 stories and approximately 2,000 sq. ft.

Many at the initial meeting questioned the benefit of the project, which they stated would not be “walkable” from the village, would have much greater density than existing zoning permits, would cause significant additional traffic in a residential area, and would have limited community benefit given the numerous condo housing choices already in the village (these will not be moderate income or worker housing units.)  The village attorney will be reviewing the full application to determine the next steps.  The board may forward the application to the Planning Board for its recommendation on the project and its merits.

Rick Kearns, a village resident on Burnett Street, spoke to the board about an out-of-scale house going up in his neighborhood.  He requested that the board review zoning and the powers of the Architectural Review Board (ARB) as the charm of many streets have been destroyed by oversized houses.  He also noted that the ARB was not doing its job in protecting existing homeowners.  The Mayor stated that current zoning was the tightest it has ever been (the overturned Bates Law zoning from 2006 was actually much tighter) but agreed to review the matter.

Coincidentally, for nearly 2 months an important application has been before the ARB from Farrell Builders to construct a large home on a flag lot in the historic district (483 Hill Street.)  Ann Pyne and Barbara Missett have been leading the fight, as the scale and mass of the house is 2 to 3 times the Historic District homes it is adjacent to.  The village code states “New construction shall be compatible with the character of nearby properties in the historic district.”  Compatibility is then defined in the code as scale and proportion relative to adjacent historic properties.  For 2 months, this application has been discussed with only minimal changes in spite of significant opposition.  The next meeting is on March 26th at 7:00 pm in Village Hall.  Please attend if you are available.

We have also been following the dispute between the Town Board and the Town Trustees, in which the Town Trustees could lose their authority over the bays and beaches.  This dispute is currently in the courts.  Also, subsequent to month end, the NY State Legislature included changes in the upcoming state budget which would allow merging schools districts to phase in tax increases due to a merger.  The Association is disappointed that New YorkState and the Southampton and Tuckahoe School Boards are not addressing the core issue of overspending and waste.  Instead, they appear more interested in concealing them.  We support a combination which benefits the students and saves money for all taxpayers.

March 22, 2014

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