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Brookhaven hearing on future of Middle Island affordable housing plan set for June

Brookhaven Town Hall in Farmingville.

Brookhaven Town Hall in Farmingville. Photo Credit: Newsday / Bill Davis

A Brookhaven zoning panel may decide next month whether town officials improperly issued building permits for a Middle Island affordable housing project.

Town Board of Zoning Appeals chairman Paul DeChance said a hearing is scheduled for June 17 in the dispute between Long Island Pine Barrens Society officials and Medford nonprofit developer, Concern for Independent Living.

DeChance, who said the project developer has the required environmental and wastewater permits, made the announcement Wednesday during a board meeting at Brookhaven Town Hall where supporters and opponents discussed the development.

Concern for Independent Living plans to build 123 apartments, about half of which would be for military veterans. The mixed-use plan also calls for retail shops.

Pine Barrens Society executive director Richard Amper said he believes town officials erroneously issued building permits in December based on "misrepresentations" by Concern officials. Amper said the developer falsely claimed it owned the property.

Concern for Independent Living executive director Ralph Fasano said he found that accusation "insulting."

"We have more than 80 projects in the Town of Brookhaven," Fasano said. "We know how to play by the rules."

DeChance told Amper that Concern's project also received town site-plan approvals.

"We have a site plan," he said. "It lays out the entire project and it is an approved site plan."

Amper has said town officials improperly used approvals from a previous plan at the site, a mixed-use project called Sandy Hills, to approve the Concern development. Town officials said they did not do anything improper.


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