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Neighbors of Britannia Ask Village Board to Address Covenant Violations

Debates over Britannia's alleged covenant violations and cell tower application.

Concerns over several issues surrounding the  were heard by the during the public participation section of its June 7 meeting.

Attorney Jill Plosky, a resident of Milland Drive, expressed questions over an by The Whale's Tale to gain relief from two covenants that currently prohibit the restaurant from selling alcohol.

Plosky asked where a complaint about the restaurant’s current use should be filed within the government. She was told by Village Attorney James Matthews that any such complaint should be filed to the Village Code Enforcement Officer Robert Varese, as it would constitute a non-conforming use.

Since the matter is pending in front of the Village Board of Zoning Appeals, which acts independently from the Board of Trustees, the board members would not specifically comment on the pending application. However, Plotsky’s neighbor, John Desiderio, expressed complaints about the use to the board, and the board acknowledged the existence of such sentiment.

“We are not deaf, dumb and blind,” said trustee Thomas Kehoe. “We have our ear to the ground.”

Plosky and Desiderio also asked the board if they would ever consider amending their cell phone tower law to include a required setback length from homes. They noted that the Town of Huntington’s decision to place a setback requirement from schools of 500 feet in its newly-revised section of the town code pertaining to cell phone towers, and wondered aloud why something similar for residential homes wasn’t considered.

Matthews, who drafted the recent code changes in both the village and the town, said that the schools condition was added to satisfy concerns of the surrounding school boards. He added that such a requirement for houses wouldn’t be possible. “It would effectively prohibit the whole technology,” he said. “You would also be spending a lot of money in courts defending it. It would be a waste of taxpayer dollars.”

The next meeting of the Northport Village Board of Trustees will be on June 21, 2011 at 6PM.

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