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Patchogue debates the future of a foreclosed home they'd prefer be saved from demolition

The Patchogue Village board of trustees are considering

The Patchogue Village board of trustees are considering action on this house at 37 Maple Ave, which is considered a zombie house, and is shown Tuesday, July 14, 2015. Photo Credit: Chuck Fadely

For the fourth time, the Patchogue Village board of trustees has adjourned a public hearing to discuss knocking down an abandoned Maple Avenue home deemed a public safety hazard.

Village attorney Brian Egan, in an interview Monday, said officials want HSBC Bank National, which owns the home, to rehabilitate it rather than the village tear it down.

However, village officials said, bank officials didn't show up at last week's trustee meeting, where the public hearing was to take place.

The absence has forced Village Mayor Paul Pontieri to rethink whether he wants to add the public hearing to future agendas, at least until a resolution between both parties has been resolved.

"We were pressuring the bank to make a decision," the mayor said before admitting his plan didn't work. "You try dealing with these banks, and they're going about their business. They don't care. It's another piece of paper on the top of their desk."

Egan said the home has unique architecture details that add texture and character to Patchogue, and that it should be preserved instead of torn down.

And Pontieri revealed Monday that a young married couple has asked to buy the home and pay the costs associated with bringing the property up to village code.

"It's a beautiful home. If there is any way to preserve it, we'll preserve it," the mayor said.

Westchester attorney William Bode, who represented HSBC Bank National at a board meeting in September, didn't return phone calls Monday.

Last month, he requested an adjournment to allow the bank additional time to determine if the blighted structure can be brought up to code.

He said then that the homeowner had walked away from the house and that the bank was in the process of foreclosing on it.

Village officials said they aren't rushing a demolition because there haven't been a lot of residential complaints about the home. Board members originally adjourned the public hearing in July.

"It just shows how long it takes a bank to deal with a village," Egan said.

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