The article "U.S. housing starts jump" [Business, Oct. 18] notes that Long Island still has a long permit process and tight financing for new projects, hampering housing starts here.

One suggestion to cut time for the permit process is for the builders to say they will not try to get around zoning regulations. This would generate confidence with the towns and residents.

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Town zoning boards and local civic groups are very leery about builders because they are constantly looking for zoning variances that would change the character of the neighborhood.

In Levittown, we have been dealing with multiple incarnations of one project that is too dense.

When a builder buys a property, he or she should know the parameters for developing it. Builders should understand that the rules apply to them too.

Tom Caro, Levittown

Editor's note: The writer is the vice president of the Levittown Property Owners Association.