Written by Cory Twibell Friday, 12 November 2010 00:00
During the Nov. 4 Village of Westbury Board of Trustees Meeting, Mayor Peter Cavallaro and his colleagues updated residents on a number of topics happening within the community.
The meeting opened with two public hearings: one considering a proposed local law enacting parking restrictions near the Islamic Center of Long Island and the other considering a special use permit to maintain a church along Post Avenue.
Cavallaro and the board unanimously adopted the proposed law, which will enact a “no parking zone” on Fridays from noon to 2 p.m. in the area of Jamie Drive, Talbot Drive and Franklin Street. Several residents from the area adjacent to the Islamic Center were present for the vote.
“There were numerous concerns raised regarding the parking situation at and around the Islamic Center. There was also information put on the record by the fire department that at those hours when the mosque is in high use and there’s parking on both sides of the street it would be difficult if not impossible for emergency, fire personnel and vehicles to travel throughout the area,” said Cavallaro.
Residents from the area raised concerns regarding traffic volume on Sundays, but Cavallaro and Senior Building Inspector Bill Mello assured the residents that once the 41 parking spots are added to the mosque site, it “should help alleviate this problem,” said Mello.
Cavallaro and Mello noted the village will continue to monitor the area on Sundays to determine if further parking restrictions will be necessary in the future.
“The issue on Sunday may require some more study. I think what I’m hearing is that it warrants a little more review on our part. We’re committed to working with the residents in the area so that the situation is going to be a lot better than it has been in the past,” Cavallaro said.
The second public hearing featured an application for a special use permit, which would enable the Redeemed Christian Church of God House of Favor to maintain a church at 146A Post Avenue in Westbury.
The site, which was formerly a fitness center, would be used for what a spokesman from the church described as community outreach, youth counseling and support programs, as well as a site for public worship.
The planning board, in conjunction with the Westbury Business Improvement District, advised the board against approving the special use permit, as they noted that a non-profit organization along Post Avenue might be detrimental to commerce and retail in the area.
Cavallaro said the planning board’s recommendation to deny the special use permit was also based on what he called “mischaracterizations” in the application process.
The mayor ultimately opted to adjourn pending the applicant’s “revision of materials,” as several items in the church’s application needed reviewing.
Last month, the village enacted a smoke-free policy in the vicinity of all village public buildings and in all village parks, and Cavallaro said he’s already heard a few positive reviews regarding the newly imposed policy.
“We employed the policy and we started to post, in the buildings, the signs saying you can’t smoke on the premises, and we have on order the signs for the outdoor spots and the parks and what not,” he said.