Residents who care about overcrowding must turn out, once again, on Dec. 11 to oppose the proposed Dejana Apartment building at the upcoming Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) hearing. The Village of Manorhaven also needs to step up to the challenge and call an immediate halt to overdevelopment.
The variance application by developer Peter Dejana currently before the BZA for a three-story apartment building in a two-story zone shows the danger the village is facing. It will set a precedent for other property owners to follow. Our schools, sewers and traffic will suffer from the squeeze of future development.
It is not enough for village officials to claim that evicting tenants from illegal basement apartments or banishing unsafe houseboats at the marinas is sufficient to solve the problems of overcrowding.
Yes, property owners have the right to build according to current codes, but they do not have the right to change the character of the community by requesting huge variances on new apartment buildings, which will inevitably raise homeowner’s taxes to pay for new infrastructure.
Village officials should not blame the messenger when angry residents crowd into the BZA hearings chanting “Build to Code” and “Freeze the Squeeze”. The public is expressing their first amendment rights of freedom of speech seeking to redress grievances.
Now that the Village of Manorhaven trustees have officially passed a resolution recognizing that over-crowding is a serious problem in our community, it is time for them to take meaningful actions to freeze new development.
Caroline S. DuBois
Acting Secretary, Manorhaven Action Committee (MAC)