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Hempstead IDA approves tax breaks for Barnum Island apartments

WaterView Land Development's John Vitale addresses the Hempstead

WaterView Land Development's John Vitale addresses the Hempstead IDA board on March 29, 2017. Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

The Hempstead Town Industrial Development Agency on Thursday approved tax incentives for an Island Park developer to build 86 luxury apartments on Barnum Island.

WaterView Land Development LLC of Island Park received a 10-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes, or PILOT, agreement, as well as a mortgage-recording tax abatement and a sales tax exemption, according to IDA documents.

The IDA board voted 3-1 to approve the deal. Chairman Arthur Nastre, who has represented the developer in other matters, recused himself and board member John Ferretti Jr. voted against it.

The waterfront apartment complex, with 26 one-bedroom and 60 two-bedroom units that rent from $1,800 to $2,800, is to be built on the former site of the Paddy McGee’s and Coyote Grill restaurants, which never reopened after they were damaged in superstorm Sandy. Ten percent of the apartments are to be “affordable workforce housing.”

Two new full-time and two part-time jobs must be created by the second year of the project. Concerns had been raised that the construction would not create union jobs but WaterView’s attorney, Peter Curry, said the owner “has always built local.”

“I think they’re going to get a shovel in the ground very promptly,” Curry said after the vote.

Previous votes on the project were delayed following clerical errors and zoning changes. Some residents nearby were worried that their homes could be flooded and their waterfront views obstructed, but Curry said the town approved the site plan.

The PILOT agreement freezes the property’s current taxes at $87,341 for three years, which were reduced from $111,512 following a grievance. After that, the payments increase until they are $413,000 in the 10th year. The final number reflects an appraisal of the taxes after the complex is constructed.

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