Smithtown seeks to haul industrial strip to court

Jezco Containers, of Kings Park, is among the Jezco Containers, of Kings Park, is among the businesses that could be affected by the Town of Smithtown's plan to compel changes in an area known unofficially as the Kings Park industrial park. (May 3, 2013) Photo Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

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Smithtown officials voted unanimously Tuesday to authorize town attorneys to ask a state judge to issue a restraining order against a Kings Park industrial site for alleged zoning code infractions.

Town officials say more than two dozen heavy and light industrial businesses are operated at the Lawrence Road site, which is zoned for residential uses.

Neighbors of the roughly 44-acre site have complained about noise and foul odors they attribute to the property. Supervisor Patrick Vecchio said the town decided to go to court following "the outcry of the people living in the vicinity."

The town board resolution cites 34 people and firms linked to the site, including Jezco of New York; Jezco Containers; Town, County and State Recycling; and members of the Gesuale family. An attorney for the family could not be reached for comment.

Residents at Tuesday's meeting praised the town board for acting.

"That's a big help for our cause, and we're really happy about that," Michelle Garry said. "We're not about shutting down businesses over there. We're all about having them comply" with town zoning.

The Gesuale site is the second Kings Park industrial business Smithtown officials have taken to court this year. In March, a State Supreme Court judge issued a temporary restraining order against KPE II for alleged zoning violations. A decision is pending on the town's request for a temporary injunction against KPE II.

Past attempts by Smithtown to crack down on industrial sites have failed. Town Attorney John Zollo said the town will argue that problems linked to Gesuale have worsened in the past year.

In December, following complaints from neighbors, the state Department of Environmental Conservation ordered Town, County and State Recycling to stop accepting debris from superstorm Sandy. The company agreed to reduce decomposition by altering the way it processes solid waste.

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