[updated with code and a personal rant] iStar Variance extension is in 11/20/14 ZBA minutes, but wasn’t on Calendar or Decisions

UPDATE X2: Hey, look! We actually learn stuff on this blog, even if some of the city code is complete bullshit.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 9.43.40 AM

Here is the bullshit section of the code that drives me nuts:

“Sec 20–15 Petitions and applications to the board
Every petition and application to the zoning board of appeals except renewal petitions and applications thereunder… [etc etc] [LINK]

Why would there be any exceptions? Especially for a project with such magnitude as iStar. The 11/20 iStar variance extension has been referred to me as a secret meeting after the ZBA by several residents. None of us are walking code books, so of course we all think something fishy is going on. Why would the government or ZBA even want us to think that in the first place?

Is there a legitimate reason why the code is written that way? There should not be any “what happens at the ZBA meeting stays at the ZBA meeting” allowed, right? This is the kind of stuff that starts those nasty rumors and makes those in charge look bad.

I am calling for a change in the code.  Every decision should be on the Calendar and published for all to see. No exceptions. It’s all about being transparent.

[It looks like the code was last updated in 1957. In this modern copy&paste age where we don’t use typewriters, the repetitive stuff such as renewals should be published every time]

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UPDATE: It’s apparently in the code that renewals don’t need to “adhere to the requirements of notifications, publications, postings, etc” –  Captain Obvious in the comments.

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The other day I posted how iStar was granted a six month extension at the November 20th, 2014 ZBA meeting. This rumor has been floating around for a while, yet it says nothing on the calendar and decisions. Well, unless Kayne West came in like the crying baby that he is and disrupted the ZBA, I’m not sure why such a huge decision would be left off. Behold the proof:

Case number 2367: Application of Shore Road,

24 Long Beach Superblock LLC of 1114 Avenue of the Americas,
25 New York, NY for a six (6) months extension of the
JS107
1 Variance granted by the Zoning Board of Appeals on
2 February 27, 2014 for a new mixed residential/commercial
3 development on the property bordered by East Broadway,
4 Riverside Boulevard, the Ocean Beach Park and Long Beach
5 Boulevard, Long Beach, NY also known as Section 59, Block
6 116, Lot 38 on the Nassau County Land and Tax Map.
7 Who will introduce a motion on this application?
8 COMMISSIONER BYTHEWOOD: Move to grant.
9 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Bythewood has
10 made a motion to grant. Who will second?
11 COMMISSIONER FEILER: I will second that.
12 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Feiler has
13 seconded the motion.
14 Commissioner Lomonte?
15 COMMISSIONER LOMONTE: Deny.
16 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Bythewood?
17 COMMISSIONER BYTHEWOOD: Grant.
18 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Acevedo?
19 COMMISSIONER ACEVEDO: Grant.
20 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Banschick?
21 COMMISSIONER BANSCHICK: Grant.
22 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Feiler?
23 COMMISSIONER FEILER: Grant.
24 SECRETARY LYNCH: Commissioner Leonetti?
25 COMMISSIONER LEONETTI: Grant.
JS108
1 SECRETARY LYNCH: Chairman Morelli?
2 CHAIRMAN MORELLI: Grant.
3 SECRETARY LYNCH: This application has been
4 granted.

[Cover page:]

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[Case Number 2367:]zba2zba3zba4

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comments

20 thoughts on “[updated with code and a personal rant] iStar Variance extension is in 11/20/14 ZBA minutes, but wasn’t on Calendar or Decisions”

  1. Who cares? Aren’t extensions procedural and automatic?

    Very clearly Angelo Lomonte is running for council with the Republicans and has been instructed by Jimmy and Mona to vote against everything.

  2. Did prior owners (Pivelsky et al) get a renewal of their 10 story 3 or 4 building variance every 6 months? Did they have to do that for the previous 15 years?

  3. Although I played a bit part as a juror on TV once, I am not a lawyer so you may want to double check this. According to the city code/charter
    http://www.ecode360.com/LO2927

    Sec 20–15 Petitions and applications to the board
    Every petition and application to the zoning board of appeals except renewal petitions and applications thereunder (blah blah blah) abutters(blah blah blah) certified mail (blah blah blah) thereupon forthwith (blah blah blah)…..

    Since this appears to be a renewal petitions/application it probably does not need to adhere to the requirements of notifications, publications, postings, etc

  4. I am also not a lawyer but the code referenced above seems to refer to notification of the neighborhood. I’m more concerned about it not being on the agenda. Is there a section of code that refers to posting on the agenda?

  5. I’m still not convinced that it was “legal” to the letter of the law. The quoted section refers to notifying neighbors. The following section, 20-16, in regards to public notice says that any application requires prior notice of public hearing as I read it, and an application for an extension would clearly be an application. In 20-20 it says that all applications require a poster at the site. Did anybody ever see one? I would think that a request for an extension is an “application” if not how does the ZBA hear about it without someone applying for it.

  6. I don’t understand why the extension is even needed. This was sold to LB as it was going to start right away. They had the money no delays. Just like the movie theater. Something isn’t right.

  7. The (blah, blah, blah) I referenced above relates to the notice of public hearing “Upon the filing with the zoning board of appeals of an appeal or an application for a permit or variance the board shall fix a time and place for a public hearing thereon and shall give noticethere of as follows(blah blah blah)” I am sure Zapson will tell you that since they were not filing an application but only a renewal petition there is no need for a public hearing

  8. Sorry for the typo “Zapson” should have been “Zoning Board”. Ever since I downloaded the city’s response app my damn spell checker has been a little flaky.

  9. I read the document in the same way, it appears an applicant is someone who stands before the board and that public notice should be given of any applicant. But that’s just my interpretation.

    12-22-2-c seems to state that anything the board does should be a matter of public record.

    Taking those things together it seems just a little bizarre that the public item that was addressed during the meeting wasn’t on the agenda. But our officials wouldn’t do anything shady. 😜

  10. Well if he is, great! But last time we checked he’s voted NO on a lot of things that had to do with over development, during his tenure on the ZBA, so his record is pretty clear. Regardless he seems to be on the residents side! And No, extensions are not supposed to be automatic and the case is supposed to be re-heard, it’s this little thing called “due process” you may have heard of it.

  11. “Sec 2016 Noticeofpublichearings
    Upon the filing with the zoning board of appeals of an appeal or an application for a permit or variance the board shall fix a time and place for public hearing there on and shall give notice there of as follow”

    So by Sec 20-16 if you have filled with the ZBA there needs to be a public notice, read carefully, an extension is an application is it not? Therefore, the public should have been notified of this and all extensions.

  12. No notice of hearing is needed for an extension, though it should have been on the agenda. I don’t think any law has been broken.

    The Dems had promised transparency. Do you see any here?

    You fools who voted for this gang of crooks are being scammed once again.

  13. Council doesn’t do or say anything. What is the point of having them if the question nothing. They sit up there and say yes yes yes. It doesn’t matter if they are nice people they aren’t doing their jobs. I want a council that will stand up, have an opinion, ask questions, and answers the resident questions. Let’s hope 3 people will run who promise to do that very thing be involved not just take photos.

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