The auction bid to sell Mastic Beach Village Hall closed Monday afternoon at $330,000 — more than $160,000 under the building’s appraised value — but accepting the purchase would violate state law, the Brookhaven Town attorney determined.
Town Attorney Annette Eaderesto said the New York State Constitution mandates Village Hall buildings must be sold at no less than the appraised value. Anything less would be considered a gift of property, she said.
“The bidding was closed, but the village can review all bids,” Eaderesto said Monday. “The last bid is below the appraised value. It’s not illegal yet because they haven’t approved it.”
Mastic Beach is selling buildings and other assets before it dissolves as a village at the end of the year and reverts to being an unincorporated part of Brookhaven Town.
The website Auctions International, where the auction is being held, doesn’t identify the bidder.
Jim Giovanniello, Long Island sales representative for upstate East Aurora-based Auctions International, said bidding on the building closed at 12:15 p.m., pending approval by the village.
He referred all other questions to Mastic Beach Mayor Robert Miller, who didn’t return phone calls seeking comment.
The Village Hall has four offices, four bathrooms, one conference room and a courtroom. The site has room for nearly 100 parking spaces.
Also being sold at auction are village vehicles, file cabinets, front-end loaders, an asphalt grinder and village hall’s public address system. About $200,000 in assets have been sold, excluding Village Hall.
Officials have said they hoped the asset sales would raise enough money to pay off about $700,000 to $800,000 in debt.
Any remaining debt after the village closes would be paid by Mastic Beach residents, who would be assessed a special tax by Brookhaven Town. Village officials have said that tax could be imposed next year or in 2019.