Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Warring armies turn the Carmans River red.

From: Richard Amper <amper@pinebarrens.org>

Date: August 27, 2012 9:41:45 AM EDT

Subject: Carmans River Watershed Preservation & Management Plan


TO: Carmans River Plan Supporters

Having received few useful recommendations to the original Carmans River
Plan, the Brookhaven Town Board is expected to vote on accepting for
consideration, a modified Carmans River Plan at its meeting of Tuesday,
August 28th.

The plan would include the best parts of the "Study Group" plan with one
major modification.  In deference to community concern, the approval of
designated MF sites would be de-coupled from the preservation plan and would
be addressed after the November election.  The usual re-zoning process would
be employed and Council Members would have veto power over sites they found
objectionable.  In addition there would be a Public Hearing on each site.

With several major projects proposed for the Carmans Watershed, there can be
no further delay on adopting a preservation plan.  That's why I'm asking you
to appear at the August 28th Brookhaven Town Board Meeting to speak in favor
of the Carmans Plan.

The Public Portion begins at 6:00 p.m., but you can sign up to speak as
early as 5:00 p.m..  Speakers are heard on a first come - first served
basis.  You will have just three minutes to speak.  A list of topics you may
wish to talk about follows.

*        This plan is the work of experts and citizens alike and deserves
your careful consideration

*        You are urged to amend the original plan as you see fit, but please
adopt some plan before it's too late.

*        Three major projects in the Carmans Watershed are in the pipeline:
Silver Corporate Park, Avalon Bay and the Yaphank Rail Project.  Their
development, as proposed, would end any chance to save the river.  Please
act on a plan right away.

*        It is essential that the Carmans River be permanently preserved.
Annexing the Carmans Watershed to the Core Preservation Area of the Pine
Barrens will ensure that the river corridor is protected just as the rest of
the Pine Barrens Core.

*        The Town Board has received more input and recommendations than
perhaps any other plan in town history.  Please take the elements you think
will best protect this natural treasure and adopt a plan immediately.

*        The Carmans River is a resource that transcends any council
district or even Brookhaven Town itself.  It's a treasure of regional - even
statewide significance that deserves preservation.

*        The de-coupling of the development component of the "Study Group"
plan from the preservation component addresses the legitimate concerns of
some members of the community.  We must do the preservation, now. 

*        Protection of our irreplaceable natural resources is not a partisan
matter.  80% of Long Islanders consider themselves to be environmentalists,
regardless of party affiliation.  Let the entire Town Board get behind this
historic achievement.

*        The preservation of the Carman River has been reviewed and debated
for nearly two years.  It's time that the Town Board evaluated all that they
have seen and heard and produce an amended plan that includes the best ideas
that have been advanced to date.

*        Please stop the infighting.  Protection of the river is more
important than petty politics.  The Carmans River is too important not to

*        We must not let the Carmans River fall prey to the neglect and
affliction suffered by the nearby Forge River.  Please adopt a plan to
preserve it right away.

*        I believe that years from now, you'll find that preservation of the
Carmans River will represent an accomplishment of which you are most proud.

Of course, you should express yourself in your own words, but these are some
of the arguments that may persuade the Town Board to act affirmatively on a
Carmans River Plan before it's too late.  Thanks.

Address:  Brookhaven Town Hall, One Independence Hill, Farmingville, NY







From: ABCO_mryjhnstn@aol.com
To: mryjhnstn@aol.com
Sent: 8/25/2012 12:35:08 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time
Subj: Re: Bonner Slated to Bring Back Carmans River Plan TUESDAY 5PM



Good News ...on Tuesday, August 28th, Councilman Steve Fiore-Rosenfeld will sponsor  a Bond resolution for $40M for critical open space purchases, $30M in the Carmans Watershed and $10M to purchase other sensitive parcels throughout Brookhaven.


Now ....not so good news... on Tuesday there will be another effort to resurrect the failed Carmans River (Development) Protection Plan.


ABCO's  latest assurances from the members of the town council who did not support the plan indicate that none of the four who originally brought forward and supported Resolution 380 have agreed to change their votes.  Resolution 380 was passed to provide a new roadmap designed to de-couple efforts to protect the Carmans Watershed from corresponding initiatives to advance high density multi-family housing, expansion of the Core of the Pine Barrens, as well as the mandatory transfer of development rights program, among other issues.  Clearly, it seems apparent that Supervisor Lesko, and Councilmembers Bonner and Walsh (who in fact also voted for Resolution 380), have now reversed their affirmative votes of last April 24th.  Faced with pressure from PBS's Dick Amper and LIBI's Mitch  Pally all have flip/flopped and are once again advancing the original plan as developed by special interests for special interests.  Clearly it is very important and vital that we keep the pressure on our elected representatives on the Town Council and demand this seriously flawed plan is put to rest once and for all.  Then our communities can continue to move forward with a new process designed to develop an Alternative plan created by community for community.


So ABCO must once again ask our residents to come out on Tuesday and tell the town board "NO" still one more time, we need to continue to demonstrate our support for the strong council members who remain steadfast. Councilmembers Mazzei, Fiore-Rosenfeld, Panico and Kepert are being lobbied, pushed, manipulated and even threatened by members of the former study group to reverse their votes.


Sadly, it appears that Dick Amper, and Supervisor Lesko seem to have convinced Councilwoman Jane Bonner (2nd CD) to introduce another 7 resolutions resurrecting the plan at the very end of the work session on Thursday. This latest attempt comes just two weeks before Mr. Lesko departs his position after serving only nine months of  his second term.  The latest attempt to advance the original plan splits the plan into several smaller pieces among several resolutions.  Perhaps if one reso fails perhaps others may still pass?  The essense and details of the March plan seem to have remained largely the same, including expansion of the Pine Barrens Core, another Home Rule Message to the State Legislature to once again enact the same bill they did in June of 2011.  Additionally, one reso seeks approval of  the original DGEIS as prepared for the March 2012 plan...along with the MF scorecard,  etc.  Oh yes,  the whole objectional  ball of works.  


Sadly, it seems that Ms. Bonner may have been distracted and simply didn't hear all the testimony regarding the many other mirad complex objections regarding the plan; including the seriously flawed science, inadequate water quality standards and open space protections, the huge 'oversight' in failing to include all public lands within qualified protection zones, the obvious agreement to exempt from the plan large and potentially destructive projects, and the massive over-development of Brookhaven that would occur and would be sanctioned by the plan.  Finally still including coordinated state oversight of  local zoning controls regarding the TDR credits to the Central Pine Barrens Commission, a state entity.  Site plans would still be reviewed...just not easily rebuked or denied.


Although a complete detailed review of the 7 resolutions is now on-going, the latest plan appears to only delete the previously identified multi-family TDR recieving sites. Instead it would appear to now include the entire town as available recieving areas for the 'as of right' transfer of development (750+ TDR's) still mandated by the plan. 


 Still, the development lobby continues to  push very hard to modify or pass two new zoning codes...neither were previously vetted with all council members, the civics, residents or our communities.  One reso also expected on Tuesday revises the present MF code and another reso proposes enacting a separate new code section labeled 'Next Generation Housing'.   Could be more higher density housing is still coming to Brookhaven no matter which code is used. Let's hope the entire town council is not hearing impaired and understands that apart from some limited areas and communities most of our residents do not want higher density housing no matter what it is called. 


Also some of the plan's most ardent advocates are contiuning to threaten the town with a lawsuit if it don't provide more sites for TDR development under the old 1992 Pine Barrens credit program.  Irony is; these are the very same developers who routinely refused to purchase appropriate Pine Barrens Credits in developing much of Manorville, Medford, Miller Place, Mount Sinai, as well as other areas where higher density housing, huge condo complexes and massive McMansions,  have been constructed over the last two decades.  Lession:  when the .fox is in the chicken coop and quietly kills all the chickens, he will still yell "where's my dinner"! Such are the developers at work here...the process is outrageous and must be brought to a halt...Tuesday seems like a good time.


Sadly, what seemed to be a welcome and unaimous accord reached last April via Reso 380 to decouple the elements of the poorly disguised development plan have disappeared.   No one can approve officials casting insincere and bogus votes to deceive  the public, but more importantly some members of the town Council seem fully vested in continuing to serve special interests rather than serving the best interests of the Carmans River or carrying out the expressed will of the people of Brookhaven. 


MaryAnn Johnston


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