Written by Cory Twibell Friday, 17 September 2010 00:00
At the last Village of Westbury Board of Trustees Meeting before the fall equinox, Mayor Peter Cavallaro and the other board members looked back on the events of a busy summer and highlighted some of what the village can expect in the coming months.
Benevetto Soccer Club, located on Post Avenue, had received what Cavallaro called “complaints of illegal gambling” on the premises and as a result, the mayor temporarily suspended operations because of several unresolved issues at the site.
“There could have been illegal gambling taking place, and that would be in violation or direct contradiction of statements that were made on the record last time,” said Mayor Cavallaro.
Cavallaro highlighted four main issues with the soccer club, which included the refusal to pave a parking lot across the street after zoning board requests, the operation of the establishment after permitted hours, a late building renewal application and arrests for “illicit gambling,” said Cavallaro.
“The problem with continuing the hearing … would be that his special use permit has already expired, so he’s already operating without a special use permit. It would be my recommendation that until we continue the hearing, that [the owner] not be permitted to operate … until some of these questions get sorted out,” Cavallaro said.
Cavallaro called the soccer club’s permit “essentially void at this point” and stated that village officials will pass by the lot on a daily basis to ensure that the club is not operating until the board is satisfied on all four issues.
“That should be a normal, everyday stop to make sure he’s not operating without a special use permit,” said Cavallaro.
After the public hearings, the board approved a request from the Carle Place Civic Association to allow the 31st Annual Family Fun Run/Walk on Sunday, Oct. 24 at 1 p.m.
Senior Building Inspector Bill Mello noted that he recently met with the architect for the vacant Dunkin’ Donuts on Old Country Road and a representative from Taco Bell. Mello said Taco Bell is “100 percent ready to move forward with a change of occupancy,” meaning the fast-food restaurant will move from its current location to the vacant Dunkin’ Donuts site where the restaurant will hope to add a drive-thru window, an amenity which it does not feature at its current location.
Mello also said that the court calendar for September is “extremely busy” and the village has been very active in moving forward with housing violations.
“The efforts are increased and we will continue to go at it full steam,” said Mello.
In regard to the Post Avenue theater project, Mello said the replacement of the main roof and other exterior renovations are part of what he called “phase one,” and the developers hope to begin that work by the end of September.
Trustee Steven Corte said that work will begin on the townhouses at the empty lot on the corner of Westbury Avenue and Carle Road in the near future.
“They’re going to be building 11 attached townhouse type units for senior citizens over the age of 62, and that’s going to be done through the Town of North Hempstead,” said Corte.
Trustee Joan Boes reported on the village’s summer recreation program, which ended on Aug. 26.
“They planned eight trips for the children enrolled in the program this summer, among them Coney Island Aquarium and NY Hall of Science Museum. Lunch was provided on a daily basis by Island Harvest, which provided a very nutritious lunch for all the participants in this program,” Boes said.
“The children were very entertained and well-educated this summer,” she added.
Boes said the village is now in the process of signing up children for the after-school program, and all residents interested in the program should contact the village recreation department.
Mayor Cavallaro said that the village took all necessary precautions to prepare for Hurricane Earl, which did not have a significant impact on the area. He also said that the paving projects for the summer are coming to a close, but the sidewalk and curb work will continue as part of an ongoing construction plan.
Cavallaro also noted that the village is adding to its code enforcement personnel, an especially important step as higher volumes of patrons will be flocking to the Post Avenue area when the theater is completed.
“It’s going to be able to increase our code enforcement presence and services that we’re providing but it’s not going to have an effect on the residential taxpayer, so that’s an important partnership with the Business Improvement District,” he said.