Hempstead to Elmont: DROP DEAD
After more than three years of community meetings and hiring outside planning consultants, the Town of Hempstead appeared finally – finally – ready to produce real change in struggling Elmont.
In a letter advising area residents of an upcoming Jan. 24 public hearing on the subject, Supervisor Kate Murray and Councilman Ed Ambrosino called the effort to remake the Hempstead Turnpike corridor “a dynamic new zoning proposal that will support growth and prosperity.”
Trouble is, the “dynamic” new zoning plan is now missing one of the key smart growth ingredients recommended in the 2008 draft plan and endorsed by the community: It doesn’t allow for housing over retail stores.
Local developer Muzzio Tallini, who is also vice president of the Elmont Chamber of Commerce, had to file a Freedom of Information Law request to find out what the town had done to the plan. He told Confidential the town’s latest proposal is “no longer consistent” with the principles in the original vision plan.
Did the town think they could hide this? And why, when citizens ask for simple information, do the powers-that-be tell them to buzz off?
Most folks in Elmont want a way to fill empty stores, redevelop blocks of rundown real estate and create a better environment for business and residents. But Tallini said Hempstead’s rezoning attempt has fallen way short.
“I was expecting something dynamic,” Tallini said.
This editorial was printed in The LIBN. The original can be found on http://www.libn.com