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King Kullen in St. James seek to expand

The Smithtown Planning Board has forwarded to the town’s board of trustees a proposed zoning change to allow King Kullen to expand its St. James grocery store.

The planning board voted unanimously Wednesday night to refer the matter to the town board, which will hold a public hearing on the zoning change.

The Bethpage-based supermarket wants to purchase a house on Washington Avenue as part of its plan to increase the 30,000-square-foot store by 4,000 square feet. The town board would have to change the zoning of the house's property to allow use by a business.

Members of a Veterans of Foreign Wars post, which has its headquarters next to King Kullen on Lake Avenue, have raised concern that the expansion will reduce the value of the post’s property.

Frank Todaro, commander of Sgt. John W. Cooke Post 395, said the expanded store would come too close to the post, and he wants the town to have the plan redesigned.

Todaro said VFW members would attend the town board public hearing, which has not been scheduled. “Hopefully they’ll see our point of view,” Todaro said.

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