Dozens of Blue Point residents attended a Brookhaven Town Board meeting Thursday night to voice opposition to a plan to buy a convent and turn it into a drug rehabilitation center.
The Westhampton-based Seafield Center has said it plans to buy the St. Ursula Center — nestled in a residential neighborhood on Middle Road near Great South Bay — and convert it to a 76-bed rehab facility.
Jason Borowski of Blue Point told the town board that 1,500 residents have signed a petition opposing the project.
James Powers, president of the Blue Point Parent Teacher Association, said the facility would be a “huge safety concern” because of the nearby Blue Point Elementary School. He said Seafield should find a different site.
“We’re just against the location of this facility,” Powers said.
Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine told the crowd the convent property was “not zoned for a rehab facility” and would require a rezoning to allow the Seafield facility.
Romaine added the town had not received a rezoning application.
Seafield officials on Thursday postponed a Dec. 7 community meeting at the convent to discuss their plans.
In a brief email to Newsday, Seafield chief operating officer John Haley said town officials have told him he should discuss the plan with “community leaders” before buying the property. Haley said the private, for-profit center does not plan to drop its proposal to buy the 8.3-acre property.
Sister Joanne Callahan, leader of the Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk, could not be reached for comment. The order announced Nov. 16 that it had reached an agreement to sell the site to Seafield. The nuns did not announce a sale price.