The Village News: Editorials

January 19, 2016

A Recording Of The First Bellport Village B&B Committee Public Meeting


EditorialSeveral months ago, the Bellport Village Board created a B&B Committee to explore and come up with recommendations as to how the Village Board should approach the topic of B&B’s in Bellport Village. On Saturday, January 16, 2016 the first public meeting of the Bellport Village B&B Committee was held. The meeting was at the Community Center on Bell Street in the Village and it was a packed house for the two hour meeting. Many residents thought they would be hearing recommendations from the committee, but instead, the purpose of the meeting was to give a status report as to what the committee had found out so far and for the committee to listen to what the residents had to say before they make their recommendations to the Village Board. The audience of residents was asked if they were in favor of B&B’s in the business zoned areas of the Village and most said yes. They were then asked if they were in favor of having B&B’s in the residentially zoned areas of the Village and most said no.

It was obvious that the members of the committee had taken their charge very seriously with many hours of work put in by Chairperson Mary Butler and committee members Russell Nardozza, Eric Sofo, Loretta Drew, Steve Pocaro, and Dwight Trujillo. The committee had thoroughly researched how villages, hamlets, and towns across Long Island were dealing with the growing problem of short term rentals, B&B’s. We should all be grateful for their efforts.

The one disappointment of the meeting was that only Mayor Fell and one of the four Village Trustees, Leslie O’Connor, attended the meeting. The Mayor tried to make an excuse for three of the Village Trustees not being there by saying that if they were all there it might constitute an official meeting which isn’t allowed by law, but that simply isn’t so. One, they could have simply sent out a notice a week prior to the meeting saying that they would be attending; or two, they could have just attended and listened without saying anything. The law doesn’t say that the five Village Board members can’t eat in the same restaurant at the same time. It just says they can’t all sit at the same table and discuss business at that restaurant. The Mayor also said that another reason for the three Trustees not attending was because it might have a “chilling” affect on the meeting. Considering how hot things got the first time the Board tried to rush through their ill-conceived Village Code concerning B&B’s, I don’t think there was much chance of a chill in the room.

If you weren’t able to attend the meeting, here is our recording of the entire two hour meeting from beginning to end. You’ll hear how thorough a job the committee has done on your behalf. We hope Trustee Ferrigno, Trustee Rosenberg, and Trustee McGrath take the time to listen to it.

Please Click Here for the recording.



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Larry Sribnick

Larry Sribnick