New Changes for Long Island Townships May Affect Doing Business in the Region

Mar 7, 2017

Long Island, New York, Economic Development

The following are recent changes and updates occurring in select Long Island towns, including Islip, Babylon and Brookhaven. The changes include programs to provide incentives to legalize improvements on commercial properties, important code changes to reopen and redevelop the East Farmingdale Train Station, as well as code changes to clearly define an electric generating facility for alternative energy uses.    It is important to stay abreast of these types of changes as they may affect future development in these areas.

Town of Islip is Implementing a Short-Term Program to Incentivize the Legalization of Improvements on Commercial Properties

The Town of Islip is implementing a short-term program to incentivize the legalization of improvements on Commercial Properties that were built without valid permits prior to January 31, 2013.  To encourage participation in the program, the Town is discounting the Certificate of Compliance fees by 40 %.  In order to qualify for the incentive, a complete Certificate of Compliance permit application must be filed with the Building Department by May 31, 2017.

The Town is strongly urging business owners to take advantage of the program, since it is of limited duration and the Town does not intend to expand the timeframes for filing.  Supervisor Angie Carpenter has stressed that “[t]his is a one-time program to remedy a serious public safety issue. I urge property owners to come forward and bring their buildings up to code.  Our inspectors and Planning Department officials are eager to work with these local businesses and guide them through this process."

If the Town grants a permit, the structure must be brought into compliance within one year.  If a violation has been reported and an appearance ticket issued, however, property owners are not permitted to qualify for the incentive program.  The Town has also advised that enforcement efforts will be increased, once the Compliance Incentive Program ends on May 31st.

Town of Babylon Looking to Redevelop East Farmingdale Near Route 110 and Conklin Street Intersection

During the week of January 30, 2017, the Town of Babylon held public meetings to gather community input for the proposed redevelopment around the intersection of Route 110 and Conklin Street in East Farmingdale.  Community members and civic associations were able to create their own designs for how the area should look after the redevelopment.

The proposed new development centers on the reopening of the Republic Train Station, previously closed in 1986, and establishing a rapid bus transit system along State Route 110.  The redevelopment would create a mixed use community, including residential, office space and shopping areas with open spaces throughout.  Through the use of ‘form-based code,’ as opposed to traditional land use zoning, the Town of Babylon envisions the area becoming a vibrant place to retain young people, with a strong business community and diverse housing choices for Long Islanders.

Over the next few months, the Town of Babylon will refine the plan and host additional public meetings to gather more community comments.  The Town hopes to hold public hearings on the possible code changes needed for the development by the fall.

Town of Brookhaven Provides Definition and Zoning Requirements for Electric Generating Facilities

The Town of Brookhaven passed legislation on February 9, 2017 defining an electric generating facility as ‘all buildings, equipment, structures, and other stationary items for the development of electric power which are located on a single site or on contiguous or adjacent sites and which are owned or operated by the same person.’  The new definition clearly defines what constitutes an electric generating facility, no longer leaving it open to interpretation.  Previously, the Town of Brookhaven did not have a definition.  The Town Code also provides express zoning requirements for electric generating facilities imposing:

  • Minimum lot area be 20 acres;
  • Maximum stack height is 125 feet;
  • Minimum stack setback is 150% of the height of the stack from any lot line;
  • Minimum percentage of lot to remain natural and undistributed is 30%;
  • Minimum vegetated perimeter buffer is 500 feet along all lot boundaries that abut residential zoned property;
  • Except as otherwise provided, maximum structure height is 50 feet; and
  • Compliance with the exterior lighting standards provided by the Town Code.

With the new definition, the zoning requirements for an electric generating facility will include fuel cell energy facilities and will require Special Use Permit approval by the Town Board.

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