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Resident Complaint: Lack of Questions at Last North Hempstead Meeting

Not much attention paid during Town's December vote to rezone Port Washington, one resident said.

Speaking before the start of Tuesday night's Town of North Hempstead meeting, Hank Ratner of Port Washington brought up the town's Dec. 12 meeting. He noted that at this approximately four-hour meeting, which focused largely on Port Washington's there weren't many questions from North Hempstead's councilmembers.

Ratner was referring to a controversial zoning change that was approved at that December meeting. The change allowed for some Main Street businesses to expand to a maximum of three stories in buildings that contain both residential and commercial uses. The plan also includes an idea of shared parking, where residents would park in spaces at night that commuters occupy during the day. Initially the plan included several consecutive blocks of Main Street, but the latest proposal took some of those blocks out so as not to create a "canyon effect," or in other words have too many tall buildings in a row.

At Tuesday's meeting, Ratner said that there was one question from Councilwoman Anna Kaplan about a petition related to the Model Blocks. He said he felt more questions should have been asked of some of the speakers at the public hearing.

Supervisor Jon Kaiman said that all of the councilpeople are informed about the issues presented before them.

Perhaps an issue that was "complicated" for a town resident did not require as many questions from a town board member, Kaiman said.

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Local Resident January 11, 2013 at 02:12 PM
Hello Patch...I think you need to correct your article above. The rezoning proposal does not allow for "some Main Street businesses to expand to a maximum of three stories in buildings that contain both residential and commercial uses". This proposal is for the PROPERTY OWNERS to redevelopment their properties, not the business owners. In fact, most of the existing businesses on Main Street are against the rezoning proposal and would be, in all likelihood, displaced and out of business should any development occur. This proposal has NOTHING to do with the local businesses and EVERYTHING to do with local property owners.
Local Resident January 11, 2013 at 02:37 PM
Actually the RFMBPW is also "watching the water henhouse"...this is only one of the problems with the rezoning proposal. RFMBPW originated, developed, lobbied for and got this proposal through to the ToNH Town Bored. Water Commissioner Mindy Germain is also the Executive Director of RFMBPW. Water Commissioner David Brackett is also the Treasurer of RFMBPW. Having 3 Water Commissioners should ensure some level of independence of balance of power. But with 2 of the 3 both belonging to the RFMBPW and being supporters of the rezoning proposal, RFMBPW has started to consolidate power within the Port community. Our Councilwoman is also married to a member of the RFMBPW Board of Directors, so the conflicts-of-interest and consolidation of power is just furthered.
Local Resident January 11, 2013 at 02:41 PM
They are still a group of concerned citizens...they are just more concerned about themselves and their "friends". A better question is: When did they stop being a not-for-profit?
local concerned resident January 14, 2013 at 12:32 PM
i agree!!

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