County approves Nassau Knolls expansion

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The Nassau County Legislature has approved a land acquisition for Nassau Knolls Cemetery. (Photo courtesy of the office of Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton)

A 121-year-old cemetery in Port Washington is on track to receive a land addition following approval from the Nassau County Legislature.

At a session on March 22, the Legislature unanimously approved an emergency resolution regarding an acquisition request for a parcel of land submitted by the Nassau Knolls Cemetery.

The cemetery, which has operated in the same location since 1900, is currently in contract to purchase a small parcel of land on Beechwood Avenue from its current owners.

The parcel, which includes a house, driveway and backyard, measures 45 feet by 125 feet, is located alongside of existing Nassau Knolls property and will be used for cemetery purposes, according to general manager Jim Gallante.

“The [former owners] lived here until they died, and their son inherited it,” Gallante said in a phone interview. “Nobody’s lived there for 20 years, and it’s on the edge of our property. It’s valuable for us to use.”

Gallante said that if the deal is closed, the cemetery plans to knock down the house, which he said was an “eyesore” on the block, fence the property and “beautify it” to match the rest of the cemetery. He said that he hopes the cemetery will be able to purchase more land on Beechwood Avenue and expand in the future.

“We owned all of Beechwood years ago, but they sold it off in pieces,” Gallante said. “We’re kind of running out of land, so this will help us better serve the community.”

The manager added that Nassau Knolls had to receive permission from the state’s Division of Cemeteries prior to going to the county for approval. Nassau County Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton (D-Glen Cove) assisted in making sure that the resolution to annex the land was approved.

“It is a pleasure to be able to respond to Knolls Cemetery’s request to approve their application,” DeRiggi-Whitton said. “Because of the deplorable condition of the house on the property, several residents have contacted my office requesting that the County approve Knolls’ request so the house will be torn down and the property will be beautifully maintained.”

“Having been in business for well over 100 years, Knolls Cemetery has no new land to develop,” Gallante said. “This property will help us provide for the future needs of the residents of Nassau County. We are looking forward to dramatically improving the property and so is the Port Washington community.”

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