The Huntington Town Board held its April 13, 2021 meeting remotely and broadcast meeting audio and video live, where they approved funding for a new animal shelter and approved plans for a permanent memorial to honor victims of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Town Board tasked the Directors of the Departments of General Services and Parks & Recreation with recommending an appropriate permanent memorial and location for the memorial to honor the victims of the COVID-19 pandemic. Recommendations from the departments will be due within 90 days of the passage of the resolution.
“Given the magnitude of this once-in-a-century pandemic, and the isolation that resulted for all of us and especially for our most vulnerable, we want to give these victims’ survivors a sacred place where the entire community can honor their loved ones’ memories and the significant impact these losses have had on our community together,” said Supervisor Chad A. Lupinacci.
The Town Board authorized the construction of a new animal shelter on Creek Road in Halesite with an estimated maximum cost of $7,000,000, $500,000 of which will be paid for by grant funding from the New York State Companion Animal Capital Fund and $500,000 from the proceeds of bonds previously issued in 2014. The remaining $6,000,000 would be bonded to finance the balance.
Supervisor Lupinacci stated, “This cost-efficient state-of-the-art animal shelter facility will complement our shelter staff's great record of behavioral rehabilitation, training, and adoption of our furry friends.”
The value-engineered plans drafted on March 2, 2020, ensure cost-efficiency while providing necessary ADA-accessible facilities recommended by the Huntington Animal Shelter staff, including 50 double-stall kennels with slide gates to house up to 100 dogs (72 in the adoption area and 28 in the isolation area for dogs with rehabilitation needs), a multi-purpose training room, outdoor dog run, specialized HVAC system with multiple-stage filtration to provide for isolation of various areas, medical room, canine bathing area, specially designed lighting enabling higher illumination for cleaning of kennels, and energy-efficient mechanical and electrical systems.
The Town Board scheduled public hearings for the Tuesday, May 11, 2021 Town Board meeting at 2:00 PM to consider:
- Amending the Code of the Town of Huntington, Chapter 173 (Streets and Sidewalks), Article IV (Maintenance of Sidewalk Area); giving property owners more time to remove snow and ice from sidewalks and making penalties of noncompliance commensurate with the size of property frontage.
- Amending the Code of the Town of Huntington, Chapter 198 (Zoning), Article IX (Height, Area and Bulk Regulations); to require screening of rooftop equipment, such as HVAC or wireless telecommunications equipment, on commercial and industrial buildings where appropriate.
- Authorizing various actions be taken upon certain properties designated as blighted in accordance with Chapter 156, Article VII, §156-60 (Blighted Property).
At the request of the applicants, the Town Board adjourned considering the following public hearings to the Tuesday, June 15, 2021 Town Board meeting at 7:00 PM:
- Zone Change Application #2019-ZM-444, Equestrian Estates of Melville, to change the zoning from R-80 Residence District to R-20 Residence District for the property located on the east side of Round Swamp Road, south of Northern State Parkway, Melville, New York SCTM #0400-228-02-(002,003,015.001).
- Zone Change Application #2020-ZM-448, Huntington Hospital, to change the zoning from R-10 & R-20 Residence Districts to C-1 Office-Residence District for the properties located on the north and south sides of View Acre Drive, east of Park Avenue, Huntington, SCTM #0400-074-01-020 & 074-02- (011,012,013,014,015,017.001,017.002).
In other action, the Town Board:
- Established the Town of Huntington Asian-American Task Force.
- Established a Chapter in the Town Code regulating the installation Wireless Telecommunications Facilities, exerting the Town's authority to the fullest extent regarding applications to install wireless telecommunications equipment, cell towers, antennas and small cells across the Town to protect neighborhood aesthetics and promote public safety.
- Created a Special Equestrian Center Overlay District to help preserve open space.
- Approved Environmental Open Space and Park Improvement Funds for recommended improvements (Fair Meadow Park and Manor Field Park in Huntington Station and Halesite Marina Park in Halesite.
- Granted a request by SailAhead Corporation, a non-profit which provides therapy to wounded military veterans suffering from PTS/PTSD and depression through sailing, for the waiver of mooring permit fees for the 2021 Sailing Season.
- Expressed their support of planning with the Trust for Public Land to establish potential terms of shared agency protection of a portion of undeveloped Lloyd Harbor Seminary Property and approved the funding of an appraisal in conjunction with potential municipal partners and land trusts.
- Renamed Manor Plains Nature Park as Squires Nature Park in honor of a unique volunteer, Joy Squires, and to name the loop trail the “Joy Trail;” an extraordinary volunteer for over 45 years, Joy Squires has served on the Huntington Conservation Board since 1974 and as its Chair since 1979, as Chair from 1998-2020 and current member of the EOSPA Committee, as a member of the Trails Committee and numerous other advisory Town roles. She was also President of the NYS Association of Conservation Commissions (NYSACC) for 30 years.
- Renamed the Town of Huntington Recycling Center at 641 New York Avenue, Huntington, New York after Ernesto “Ernie” Modesto Chea a dedicated retired Town employee who lost his battle with cancer in January 2020; Ernie had fled Cuba as a young child in 1966, learning English in his new home in Huntington, New York and flourished in the community. Ernie was a long-time Town employee and Supervisor of the Recycling Center since 2009, where he made a significant impact on his coworkers and the community, until his retirement in December 2019.
- Accepted the donation of a tree from Covanta for the Town's Arbor Day Observance.
- As members of the Community Development Agency, approved a lease agreement with Bioreference Laboratories, Inc. for the purpose of performing rapid COVID-19 testing for low-income residents at 1268 New York Avenue, Huntington Station for a period of 6 months.