The Town of Oyster Bay filed a lawsuit against the Pine Hollow Club alleging it created pickleball and tennis courts and a driving range without proper permitting. NewsdayTV's Macy Egeland reports. Credit: NewsdayTV

The Town of Oyster Bay filed a lawsuit in early February against the Pine Hollow Club in East Norwich for allegedly erecting ball courts, a driving range and a retaining wall without proper permitting.

The suit, filed Feb. 1 in state Supreme Court, seeks to shut down the amenities — a move the club’s attorney said in court documents could have “a seismic, and potentially fatal impact on the Club's operations.”

State Supreme Court Judge Danielle Peterson on Feb. 6 denied the town’s preliminary request to halt use of the facilities. The two sides are scheduled to next meet for a settlement conference April 2.

A pair of neighbors of the club said in court documents that they are pestered with the persistent popping sound of pickleball games at the newly erected courts, which border homes adjacent to the club. Newsday reported on that dispute with the club last fall.

Another neighbor alleges the driving range causes errant golf balls to land on nearby residential property. That resident filed a separate suit last year; however, the club’s legal representation noted a state Supreme Court judge denied the lawsuit’s attempt to shut down the range and the Appellate division has affirmed that ruling twice. 

"Homeowners report disturbances during early morning hours, often before 7 a.m., and throughout the day, disrupting their peace and quiet and infringing on their rights to the enjoyment of their homes," the town's attorney wrote in a court filing. 

Those complaints spurred the town to investigate the club’s permitting.

The town said the retaining wall, which is 6 feet high and approximately 20 feet long, was built without a permit, and that the club has failed to get a certificate of occupancy "consistent with the change of use of the tennis courts/pickleball courts, the golf driving range, and the retaining wall."

The club, which has operated for over half a century, has around 350 family memberships, which correlates to around 1,200 members, according to court documents. Those memberships include access to the driving ranges and tennis and pickleball courts.

The club’s operation predates the adoption of the current town zoning, and the racquetball courts and driving range fall under the typical “accessory uses” of a country club and therefore should not be considered to be in violation of town code, the club’s attorney wrote.

Jason Stern, one of the club’s attorneys, wrote in a Feb. 2 document that the club “has had courts for racket sports and a driving range for decades.”

The town, though, believes the creation of the facilities are an improper expansion. 

“We urge the Pine Hollow Country Club to be good neighbors and come into compliance with local zoning laws that were created to protect surrounding homes from noise and other nuisances caused by activities on the property," Supervisor Joseph Saladino said in a statement. "At the end of the day, they should meet with the homeowners and forge a solution that is respectful of all.”

Bram Weber, an attorney for the club, declined to comment. Andrew Preston, an attorney for the town, also declined to comment.

The Town of Oyster Bay filed a lawsuit in early February against the Pine Hollow Club in East Norwich for allegedly erecting ball courts, a driving range and a retaining wall without proper permitting.

The suit, filed Feb. 1 in state Supreme Court, seeks to shut down the amenities — a move the club’s attorney said in court documents could have “a seismic, and potentially fatal impact on the Club's operations.”

State Supreme Court Judge Danielle Peterson on Feb. 6 denied the town’s preliminary request to halt use of the facilities. The two sides are scheduled to next meet for a settlement conference April 2.

A pair of neighbors of the club said in court documents that they are pestered with the persistent popping sound of pickleball games at the newly erected courts, which border homes adjacent to the club. Newsday reported on that dispute with the club last fall.

Another neighbor alleges the driving range causes errant golf balls to land on nearby residential property. That resident filed a separate suit last year; however, the club’s legal representation noted a state Supreme Court judge denied the lawsuit’s attempt to shut down the range and the Appellate division has affirmed that ruling twice. 

"Homeowners report disturbances during early morning hours, often before 7 a.m., and throughout the day, disrupting their peace and quiet and infringing on their rights to the enjoyment of their homes," the town's attorney wrote in a court filing. 

Those complaints spurred the town to investigate the club’s permitting.

The town said the retaining wall, which is 6 feet high and approximately 20 feet long, was built without a permit, and that the club has failed to get a certificate of occupancy "consistent with the change of use of the tennis courts/pickleball courts, the golf driving range, and the retaining wall."

The club, which has operated for over half a century, has around 350 family memberships, which correlates to around 1,200 members, according to court documents. Those memberships include access to the driving ranges and tennis and pickleball courts.

The club’s operation predates the adoption of the current town zoning, and the racquetball courts and driving range fall under the typical “accessory uses” of a country club and therefore should not be considered to be in violation of town code, the club’s attorney wrote.

Jason Stern, one of the club’s attorneys, wrote in a Feb. 2 document that the club “has had courts for racket sports and a driving range for decades.”

The town, though, believes the creation of the facilities are an improper expansion. 

“We urge the Pine Hollow Country Club to be good neighbors and come into compliance with local zoning laws that were created to protect surrounding homes from noise and other nuisances caused by activities on the property," Supervisor Joseph Saladino said in a statement. "At the end of the day, they should meet with the homeowners and forge a solution that is respectful of all.”

Bram Weber, an attorney for the club, declined to comment. Andrew Preston, an attorney for the town, also declined to comment.

  • The Town of Oyster Bay filed a lawsuit against the Pine Hollow Club alleging it created pickleball and tennis courts and a driving range without proper permitting.
  • The club says the facilities fall under the typical use of a country club.
  • The club's attorney said shutting down those facilities could have “a seismic, and potentially fatal impact on the Club's operations.”
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