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Great Neck residents unite to protest eviction plan

Tenants of a rent-stabilized Great Neck apartment complex and their supporters filled the village board of trustees meeting Tuesday night, asking for help to avoid eviction from a redevelopment project.

The Great Neck planning board meeting Thursday will consider plans by Kings Point Gate Associates to raze the structure and build 62 market-rate condominiums in its place.

Residents and supporters held up posters with slogans such as “Save our homes!” and “Oppose demolition of our homes!” and asked the board to find ways to help the 27 families who live in the Middle Neck Road complex.

The tenants pay rent ranging from $750 to $1,700 a month, and have expressed concerns that they wouldn’t be able to find other affordable housing in the village if they had to leave their current homes.

“Neighbors should stand up for neighbors, and they are your neighbors,” Great Neck resident Paul Shapiro said to the board.

Great Neck Mayor Ralph Kreitzman said he felt “absolutely terrible” about the tenants’ plight, but added that there was little the village could legally do.

“This board does not have the authority to stop the project,” Kreitzman told the audience. “We don’t have the power to just stop it. I wish we could. We’re not going to violate the law.”

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